Saturday, September 27, 2014

My First Time Dying Silk Yarns

Salam and hello everyone. I learned silk batik panting but working with the yarn is new to me and here is the result of my first experience doing this. I showed my work to the owner of a famous silk shop and he said he is impressed with my designs. It was very encouraging hearing his comments considering these are my very first  time playing with this luxury fiber. I used iDye from Jacquard diluted in water/vinegar solution (1 liter of water for 100 ml white vinegar).


Picture above from left:

1. The light purple/light green was pre-soaked in warm water for 1 hour, painted, set aside for 1 hour without steaming, hang to dry (no steam, no heat). I washed the silk after it dried to check the color, no dye in the water at all.

2. The dark purple, yellowish and green was pre-soaked in water at room temperature for 1 night, painted,  steam 30 minutes, hang to dry.   

3. The red was pre-soaked for 2 hours. I put the dye inside a pot with 1.5 liters of water to dissolve, once it is warm right before boiling, I carefully lay the skein inside the pot and turn the fire very low to prevent it from boiling for 30 minutes then let it cool. Once it was cool I was it with cold water 3 times. 

4. The red and blue same method as no. 3.

5. The far right  was pre-soaked in water at room temperature for 1 night, painted, steam 30 minutes, cool, dry flat.

A friend in crochet group lent me a valuable tips: "Put the colours on, cover and 'cook' in 

the microwave for 2 mins at a time until the colour has been taken up/exhausted. Rinse in 

warm water. Dry." Thanks to Robyn Cobby for her kindness to share her tips.



I understood now why you should never hang your silk to dry. The water will pull the yarns down resulting in an uneven texture. I will remember this next time: Lay flat your silk yarn to dry.




Silk yarn in its natural color and after dying/painting

Testing out the result firsthand. 

Next batch Silk of India insyaAllah... 

Thanks Laurensia Debyana for  videotaping it for us. Sorry for the video turned dark in some part in the middle because light went off. Yeah, light do went off about dozen times in our place, but we are still very lucky because in many more places in the world in fact they have no electricity at all.




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If you like what you see and made something from my free patterns, please credit me by mentioning my name and my blog and provide the link to my blog. Please DO NOT re upload my files by any means to another blog or website. All my photographs are copyrighted. Thank you.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Flower of the Week No. 2 - Lotus

Last week I posted about making one flower a week. So here I am posting this before this week ended. Hey, it's Finished by Friday:-) 

This week flower is Lotus as many friends in our LCG (Lagos Crochet Group) requested. If you are following my post and make the Lotus flower with me,  feel free to make yours with any color combination of your choice. It would be interesting to see purple, amethyst, white and orange lotus blooming... 

You will need: scrap yarns in these color, white, pink and dark pink.
The flower is worked in round. A round of petals was added at the back of the previous petals by making a round of new foundation chains.

Hook: F/3.75mm


R1: Using white, 2ch loosely, 8 sc into 2nd ch from hook. join with sl st.


R2: *(Ch 2, work 3hdc bobbles
Working toward the bottom of the petal, sl st in same sp as the bobble st, 1sc in next sc) 7  times. (8 petals)



R3: Working behind the petals, (sc into the ch loop under the center of next petal, 2 ch) 7 times. Join with sl st to first sl st. (8 ch-2 sp)










R4: Insert hook into any ch-2 sp, pick up pink, (sc in next ch-2 sp, ch 5, work 3tr bobble, pc, ch 5. Working toward the bottom of the petal, sl st in same ch-2 sp); repeat 7 more times, sl st to first sc. Cut off pink. (8 petals) 




R5: Working behind the petals, *(sc to ch loop under the center of first petal, 2ch) repeat 7 more times—8 ch-2 sp. Cut off pink.

(I must admitted I may have forgotten to take the photograph of the Round 6 but the instruction is as below).

R6: Insert hook in any ch-2 sp, pick up dark pink, *(sc in next ch-2 sp, 6ch, work 3dtr bobble, 1ch, sl st into the previous ch-1 sp. Working toward the bottom of the petal, 6ch, sl st in same ch-2 sp); repeat 7 more times, sl st to first sc—8 petals. Cut off yarn leaving 15cm tail.


Flower center: Using eyelashes, leaving 10 cm tail, loosely make 2 ch, 4 sc into 2nd ch from hook. Join with sl st to first sc. Cut off yarn leaving 10 cm tail.  Tie a knot using the two ends. From behind the petals, insert the hook into the center of the flower all the way through the front, pull the tail from the eyelashes all the way to the back of the petals. Gather all the tails at the back of the petals and tie a knot to secure and dub a drop of nail polish to the knot to secure.




Backing fabric:  Using dark pink, 2 ch loosely, 4 ch, 16 dtr into 2nd ch from hook. join with sl st to 4th of ch-4. Cut off yarn leaving  30 cm tail.  Thread the end into a yarn needle, stitch the backing to the  back of  the flower then stitch the pin into the backing.






If you like what you see and made something from my free patterns, please credit me by mentioning my name and my blog and provide the link to my blog. Please DO NOT re upload my files by any means to another blog or website. All my photographs are copyrighted. Thank you.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Making Single Crochet With the Look of Cross Stitch - Perfect for Tapestry Crochet Project



If you like what you see and made something from my free pattern, all I ask is that you credit me by mentioning my name and my blog and provide the link to my blog. Please DO NOT re upload my files by any means to another blog or website. All my photographs are copyrighted. Thank you.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Mulberry Silk is Coming to Crochet Rockstar

I am very excited to let you know that these luxury Mulberry Silk is coming to Crochet Rockstar soon InsyaAllah. Please follow me for more info in next few weeks. InsyaAllah we all can enjoy these silk yarns at affordable retail price soon.

Lyba - 01


Reeled-01



Reeled - 02


Queen - 01


Friday, September 12, 2014

How to Calculate The Length of a Yarn the Easy Way

The label on the yarns usually says the weight and the length in each ball. But what if you are using some left over yarns or yarn stashes and had no idea of the length of them while your project says you need a certain length to complete?

Well here is the easiest and quickest way to find out. All you need is a tiny amount of yarns cut from the ball you wish to calculate and a digital pocket scale which is available at Amazon.com from under USD10. If you have no access to Amazon, check for it at shops which sells jewelry supplies. This tiny scale usually can measure the weight up to 100grams. The reason why we use the pocket scale is because it is used to measure the weight of jewelries and the accuracy is very close to the actual weight, and secondly we don't have to cut such a long thread to measure.


The scale in the picture above indicates that the weight of the yarn which is 1 gram.


Now let measure this tiny yarn and see what we get. It says 45 in or 114.3 cm.



Now let check the weight of our stash... It says 19 grams. It means the length of the yarn is 
19 x 114.3 cm = 2,171.7 cm = 21.8 M  or 23.75 yards.

Now let's try with different thickness of yarns. The previous yarn was a Light Worsted yarn. This one now is a thicker yarns, also came without label. All I know is the ball when it was new was 100 grams.


The scale says 1.26 grams, 

and it measures 55.2 inches


This ball ball is 49.25 grams

Now let's do the math: 1.26 grams = 55.2 inches
1 gram = 55.2 : 1.26 = 43.8 inches
49.25 grams = 49.25 x 43.8 = 2,157 inches
---> round it off to the nearest 10 inches=2160 inches
2160 : 36 inches (1 yard) = 60 yards.

Easy peasy right? 


Above picture shows thickness comparison in different type of yarns. Lily Sugar and Cream is a 4 ply size 4 or Medium Worsted yarn, Indonesian Soft Cotton Big Ply  is a 14 ply yarn, and the Balinese Soft Cotton is an 8 ply yarn.
The number of ply is not  corresponding to the thickness of the yarn. It is simply denote the  number of  threads twisted together to form a yarn. To get a close possible to the pattern requirements you could check your tension or gauge and make adjustment in the size of the hook or substitute the yarn  accordingly. In many cases I double the yarn to achieve the gauge required. Depending on your location on planet earth in some cases it is not easy to get the exact brand. As long as you can get the same content of the yarn you can do the above trick to achieve the nearest result in fabric.


Calculation for Indonesian yarn
100 gr ball of Katun Bali Halus (Balinese Cotton Yarn) = 169 m
100 gr ball of Katun Besar Soft  (Soft Cotton Big Ply) = 169 m


This chart estimates how much yarn you will need for specific crafts using yarn produced in Indonesia. For other brands check the label of the yarn.

Indonesia use metric system so don’t forget the conversion 1 Yard = 0.91 m

Calculation example for crochet blanket using Katun Bali Halus
Baby blanket  = 1500 yard = 1365 m : 169 m = 8 ball
Adult = 3450yard = 3105 m : 169 m = 18.4 ( 19 balls)

Using Katun Besar Soft
Baby blanket = 1300 x 0.91 = 1183 : 169 = 7 balls
Adult  3450 m = 3450 x 0.91 = 3139 : 169 = 18.5 balls (19 balls)

© Image Copyright
Irtati Wibisono 2013

EXTRA  EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA EXTRA 

HOW MUCH YARNS DO I NEED?

This chart estimates how much yarn you will need for specific crafts using yarn produced in Indonesia. For other brands check the label of the yarn.
Indonesia use metric system so don’t forget the conversion 1 Yard = 0.91 m


Yarn Brand
Crochet Yardage
AFGHAN

Baby 20" x 30"
Adult 60" x 60"
Lace 

1760
4500
Sport/DK
Katun Bali Halus
1500
3835
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
Cashmillon
1300
3450
Bulky 

1100
2500
HAT

Child 18"
Adult 20"-22"
Lace

230
230-360
Sport/DK
Katun Bali Halus
230
230-360
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
Cashmillon
162
195-210
SCARF

Child 6" x 40"
Adult 8" x 54"
Lace

572
860
Sport/DK
Katun Bali Halus
455
845
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
Cashmillon
247
495
Bulky

163
325
SWEATER

Child (chest size) 24" - 28" - 32"
Adult (chest size) 36" - 40" - 44" - 48"
Lace

675 - 1300 - 1885
2340 - 2730 - 3250 - 3510
Sport/DK
Katun Bali Halus 8 ply
715 - 1040 - 1430
1820 - 2080 - 2470 - 2730
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
Cashmillon
650 - 845 - 1300
1560 - 1820 - 2080 - 2340
Bulky

360 - 650 - 910
1170 - 1300 - 1560 - 1690
VEST

Child (chest size) 24" - 28" - 32"
Adult (chest size) 36" - 40" - 44" - 48"
Lace

520 - 715 - 975
1235 - 1465 - 1642 - 1885
Sport/DK
Katun Bali Halus
390 - 520 - 780
910 - 1175 - 1235 - 1430
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
Cashmillon
325 - 455 - 650
780 - 975 - 1105 - 1235
Bulky

228 - 325 - 520
585 - 715 - 845 - 910

If you like what you see and made something from my free pattern, please credit me by mentioning my name and my blog and provide the link to my blog. Please DO NOT re upload my files by any means to another blog or website. All my photographs are copyrighted. Thank you.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Blog Background

Salam and hello again...
Just to share the things I have been having fun playing with other than crochet LOL. I created these seamless blog background images and thought you might like to try it. Just click save as to download. You see my blog background? That's new. I thank my friend  Aji Subhan at iStockpho for drawing the flower esp for me :-)

Let me know if you find it useful. 
The images below were created using Adobe CS6 using the standard swatch patterns in the size suitable for blogs.












xxx

If you like what you see and made something from my free pattern, all I ask is that you credit me by mentioning my name and my blog and provide the link to my blog. Please DO NOT re upload my files by any means to another blog or website. All my photographs are copyrighted. Thank you.

Monday, September 8, 2014

One Flower a Week (1)

Hi everyone... I hope this finds you well and in good spirits.  It is still a bit quite on my side here in term of school. School here is going to be opened again only on October 13 InsyaAllah. All schools in Nigeria are closed at the moment and all to comply with the government regulations for our own good insyaAllah. My son has been studying at home through online courses now but he is busy as usual, go to gym regularly and study, study and study. He is in 12 grade so I guess you know how it is for him... very hard.

Anyway, last week I crocheted this moon orchid. I was intrigued by the hybiscus flower pattern my friend made in Tunisian crochet and thought hey, what a great idea. I have forgotten how much I love this stitch and she reminded me of that. I learned Tunisian on and off and thought this is the best way for me to keep on track with this unique stitch without embarking on a large project. Well, I have one Tunisian scarf which is yet to finish... but I thought, this one should not take so long to make.

Here is how it looks like and this is the final version after making 4 other versions before this.
This crochet flower is now being tested and will be available to download from Ravelry soon InsyaAllah.


And then just now this thought came to mind.. .why not making one flower once a week? In a year I would have a collections. Would you like  to join me making one flower a week? Some of my patterns might not be free (small amount for creating the  PDF) but many will be posted as step by step photos insyaAllah and it will be free from this blog.

See you next stitch... InsyaAllah :-)

If you like what you see and made something from my free pattern, all I ask is that you credit me by mentioning my name and my blog and provide the link to my blog. Please DO NOT re upload my files by any means to another blog or website. All my photographs are copyrighted. Thank you.