12 Dec 2015

Scheepjes Christmas Blog Hop - Free Hot Water Bottle Knitting Pattern

Hi Folks!

So today we have reached the 12th and final day of the Scheepjes Christmas Blog Hop 2015!
I think you will all agree, we have seen some stunning patterns and great ideas :-)

Yesterday we visited the lovely Bernadette and saw her stunning Christmas Noel Collar *swoons*

I thought I'd do a quick recap of the projects just in case you missed any, so here goes!

Day One

Annelies' Decorative Hanger

Day Two

Sarah's Secret Surprise Santa

Day Three

Nerissa's Christmas Gnome

Day Four

Tammy's Candy Cane Wine Cozy

Day Five

Tatsiana'a Gift Tag

Day Six

Carmen's Sweater Make-over

Day Seven

Jellina's Crochet Christmas Trees

Day Eight

Atty's Crochet Christmas Angels

Day Nine

Esther's Crochet Mandala Jar Topper

Day Ten

Kirsten's Cross Stitch Mug Cozy

Day Eleven

Bernadettes Christmas Noel Collar

Aren't they fabulous?....and best of all?.....all free!!!!

Ok so if you've been following my blog, you'll know that I've been learning to knit socks. Actually, it's turned into a bit of an addiction! So it popped into my head the thought that by varying a sock pattern you can make all manner of things! Cool!

And with winter upon us, what better than a snuggly hot water bottle cover??!!!!

I promise that it's really easy! If you can knit and purl you can make this. Ok there are a couple of other techniques involved too but I've found some lovely video tutorials that will help you. 
The main body is knitted and I've added some simple crochet snowflakes to decorate but you can add whatever you like. 

Ok let's get started!


(NB the pattern is for a 2litre bottle - if yours is smaller or larger you will have to adjust the pattern accordingly)

Hot Water Bottle (Mine is a 2 litre one that I bought cheaply from Amazon)
5mm circular needle with a decent length cord (minimum 80cm....it just makes it easier when working the magic loop method)
3 - 3.5 mm crochet hook (I've used a 3.5 as I hook tightly)
Scissors and a darning needle.

Techniques Used

Judy's Magic Cast On (JMCO)
Magic Loop 
Jeny's Surprisingly Stretchy Cast Off 
M1R & M1L
Duplicate Stitch (optional for adding detail to the reverse)

Just click on the technique and it will take you to the tutorial :-)

Let's do this!!!!

Using JMCO cast on 48 stitches (24 on each needle)
Knit one round (remember to knit into the back of the stitches on the second needle to untwist them!)

Increase Rounds - to shape the bottom of the hot waterer bottle we will increase on alternate rounds until we have 64 stitches in total (32 on each needle). There are 2 rounds that will form the increase pattern as follows:

Round 1 (knit 1, M1L, knit to last 2 stitches, M1R, knit 1) Repeat on second needle.
Round 2 Knit

Repeat until you have 64 stitches. 

 Knit the next 52 rounds. Try your hot water bottle cover on regularly to check for fit. (ummm.....on the hot water bottle....not yourself ;-) hahaha!!!)

You should now be ready to start the decrease rounds!
Don't worry if it feels a little loose. Remember that when filled with water the bottle will expand a little :-)

Decrease Rounds

Again these are made of 2 rounds as follows:

Round 1 (knit 1, SSK, knit to last 3 stitches, k2tog, knit 1) Repeat on second needle
Round 2 Knit

Repeat these 2 rows until you have 36 stitches (18 on each needle)

Home stretch now!

Knit 1 round.

We are going to knit the neck cuff twice the required length so we can double it over and give the appearance of a polo neck!

Work 33 rounds of knit 2 purl 2 rib.

Cast off using Jeny's surprisingly stretchy cast off.
Now this is important! If you don't use a stretchy cast off you make not be able to fit your hot water bottle into it's cover!!!!!

You now have a finished hot water bottle cover ready to decorate!

Crochet Snowflakes

There are tons and tons of free crochet snowflake patterns on the internet. God bless all those lovely designers that share free patterns :-)

I chose 2 free patterns for my snowflakes. 
I won't explain the making of them step by step here as quite frankly the instructions on the blogs are fab and why reinvent the wheel??!!!!

I used this pattern to make the large snowflake and this one to make the 3 smaller ones. 
They were made with regular Stone Washed yarn in Moon Stone. 

After a quick block (this really did transform them so don't skip this step!) they were ready to attach. 
I pinned them in place and using the regular Stone Washed I joined them using a stitch at each point. 

NB Fill your hot water bottle with water and place the cover over it before attaching the snowflakes!
This helps to prevent the cover being distorted in shape. 

Cute huh?

On the back of my cover I added a Scheepjes label and a little triangle of stitches that were sewn using the duplicate stitch method. 

I hope you like my pattern and I'd love to see your covers! 
Til next time x

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11 Nov 2015

Rock Those Socks Make-Along - The Lace Version Free Pattern!

Hi Folks!
Ok, really sorry about the delay in getting this pattern together for you.
Life is frantic. 
I don't have enough hours in the day. 
Enough of that. 

Its finally here! To download the PDF click HERE!
As usual you can join in the sock discussions over on Sarah's Ravelry group HERE.
Or share your pics on social media via #rockthosesocksmal
Now pop on over to Sarah's Blog. She has some wonderful sock making resources to share :-)
Sorry for the stupidly short post today. Time is not on my side. 
Hopefully the next time I'll have lots of pics to share and maybe a new project ;-)
Til next time x
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4 Nov 2015

Rock Those Socks Make-Along - The Pattern!

Eeeeeeeee!!!!! What a time I've had working out how to share a PDF on this blog!!!!
I think it's fair to say I'm not the most technically astute. I have been known to throw the teeniest of tantrums when internet thingy stuff doesn't work :-)))

Anyways.....back to the subject in hand! 
Today we are putting all the tutorials and instructions together and publishing patterns!

Sarah's pattern is over on her blog HERE! Ok, ok, ok....I know....her PDF is way better than mine! I have to confess that I may have a little PDF envy!!!

I just love her Chevron Sock design. I can see lots of these being made!

She made them with Scheepjes Invicta Colour, a gorgeous slow colour changing sock yarn. 
I do believe that Wool Warehouse are now stocking this yarn ;-)

I've put together a written pattern for the stripy socks. I'm working like crazy on the lace version. 
It'll be here soon. I promise! They take a little time to put together and to be honest I'm totally shattered and wiped out at the moment. But I'm working on it ;-)

I've loved seeing all your sock creations, both knitted and crocheted!
I'm truly amazed at how different they all are. 
Keep sharing the photos! 
A per usual....Sarah's Ravelry group is HERE.
Post your photos on social media with #rockthosesocksmal

Ok, here we go.....

Can can find the pattern PDF by clicking HERE!

I used Scheepjes Stone Washed yarn for my socks. It's one of my all time favourite yarns. I just love it!
You can find all the posts on this blog relating to the make-along HERE.
I'll also update my tutorial page to include the patterns and blog posts over the next few days. 
Join us next week when we will have details of a lovely give-away for all you sock makers!
Til then x
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1 Nov 2015

Rock Those Socks Make-Along - Knitting.....A few Things I've Learned Along the Way

Evening all :-)
Well, it's been a bit of a roller coaster week here. 
Not been well. 
Couldn't quite work out why I've been feeling so worn out.
Now I know! 
It's easily fixed....YAY!!!!
Anyways enough of that crap....
Let's talk socks!!!
I've finally finished my knitted socks :-)))
Happy doesn't quite describe it!
Proud as Punch is nearer the mark.
I followed the instructions over on Sarah's blog, Crafts from the Cwtch HERE.
Much swearing and tantrum throwing went into the making of these socks.
They are not perfect.
I fact they contain numerous mistakes. 
BUT... I love them :-)

I used Scheepjes Invicta Matterhorn in colour 6.
350m/100g and its made up of 70% Superwash Wool and 30% Polyamide so you can wash it at 30 degrees and should be fairly hard wearing. 

My finished socks weigh 61g so one 100g ball is plenty to make a decent sized pair. Mine fit a UK size 5 foot. 

Like I said...lots of mistakes ;-)
But I learned a whole heap of new techniques along the way....
1. Judy's Magic Cast On

This seriously is like magic!!! 
Ok, it take a fair few goes to get it right but I managed in the end. 
I found THIS you tube clip really helpful!
2. M1L & M1R

Ok so I needed to google the instructions....but I learned another new thing!

3. Afterthought Heel

Which isn't really an afterthought as you plan where it goes....but hey! you know what I mean ;-)

4. Jeny's Surprisingly Stretchy Bind Off

There's a fab video tutorial HERE!

I just wished I had found it when I was casting off my pair of socks!!!!
It would've saved ripping back about 4 million times and lots of swear words ;-)
I cast mine off using the crochet method with a size 5mm hook. They are still a little on the tight side....but on the plus side....the buggers won't fall down hahaha!!!!

Lessons learned and all that ;-)

I've thoroughly enjoyed making my knitted socks. In fact I'm making more!
I think I might have a new addiction!
I feel the need to fill my sock drawer with gorgeous (I'll get there eventually!) hand made socks. 
Right.....off to sock yarn shop!

See you all next week for a full pattern release of both the plain and lace crochet socks.

Please share your progress...

On Sarah's Ravelry Group HERE!
Or on Social Media... #rockthosesocksmal

Til next time x

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28 Oct 2015

Rock Those Socks Make-Along Part 3!

Well hello and happy Wednesday to you all!
Are you ready to finish your socks???
As usual, please do share your creations on social media by tagging the photos #rockthosesocksmal.
You can also join in the discussions in Sarah's Ravelry group HERE!
For the knitters out there, you can read Sarah's instalment over on her blog HERE!
I'm making my socks using Scheepjes Stone Washed yarn. It's lovely and soft and machine washable. 
Ok, lets get cracking!
You will be very pleased to hear that, after last weeks complicated heel making, this week is a nice and easy saunter along to the finish line :-)

Your socks should be at this stage now.

Ready to make a start on the leg and cuff.

On the plain socks, join in a new colour and work in EDC. You have 34 stitches and you need to decrease by 2 stitches on each round. I decreased on the heel side of the sock (one decrease after the starter marker and the second before the next marker). I decreased my EDC by inserting in to the stitch, yarn round hook and pulling through, and again in the next stitch. You should have 3 loops on your hook. Yarn round hook, pull through 2 loops and then yarn round hook again and pull through the final 2 loops. I have absolutely no idea if this is correct way to decrease this stitch (hahaha!) but it worked for me :-)
Repeat this row again and you should now have 30 stitches. At this point I fastened off the Amazonite and joined in the Crystal Quartz.

I worked rows of EDC the same as making the foot part in the following colours:

2 rounds of Crystal Quartz
2 rounds of Yellow Jasper
4 rounds of Amazonite
2 rounds of Crystal Quartz

This takes you up to the cuff making part!!!!

For the lacy version, I had 38 stitches. Do not decrease any stitches! As you can see from the photograph, the lace design pulls in the sock and you really do need to get them over your feet ;-)
Work full rounds of pattern (EDC1, ch1). I worked 10 rounds to reach the point where I was happy with the length. You can adjust as desired. 

To make the cuff for the plain sock, with Yellow Jasper, work a round of EDC and decrease twice in this round. I did this around the halfway point. Work a further two rounds in EDC and fasten off. 
Now weave in those pesky ends!!!!

Again we are going to work a decrease round. Because we have 19 chain spaces and 19 EDCs, I simply worked 28 stitches around the sock. Work all the EDCs but evenly work into 9 of the chain spaces too. Next 2 rounds are worked in EDC. Fasten off and weave in your ends. 


You now have a pair of snuggly crochet socks to feet your feet toasty warm as winter approaches!

I really do hope that you've enjoyed this sock making adventure.
Next week I will be sharing the pattern, hopefully in PDF format if I can work out how ;-)
I will also have news of a giveaway so join me then!!

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25 Oct 2015

Rock Those Socks Make-Along - The Lacy Version!

Evening folks!

How are you all getting on with your sock making???

As you aware, the Rock Your Socks Make-Along is a bloggers collaboration between myself and the lovely Sarah, from Crafts from the Cwtch.

Sarah is showing you how to knit socks and I'm focusing on the crochet version.

I'm using Scheepjes Stone Washed yarn for my socks and Sarah is using Scheepjes Invicta Colour
The yarns can now be purchased in the UK from Wool Warehouse :-)

You can share your progress on social media using #rockthosesocksmal or by joining us in Sarah's Ravelry group HERE!

Last time I said I would share the lacy version instructions. Sorry it's a day late!
I'm having some real struggles with my laptop....it kind of works when it wants to!!!

Anyway, better late than never ;-)

For the lacy version I've used Scheepjes Stone Washed in Rose Quartz. 
You will need 2 x 50g balls. 

The toe part is made exactly the same as the other version. At the end of round 6 you will have 30 stitches. On round 7 you will work another round of edc but increase another 4 stitches as before, giving you 34 stitches. You need extra stitches as the lacy pattern pulls the sock in a little. 

On the next round you will start to make the lacy pattern.
Work half the round (17st in edc)
The remainder of the round is worked as follows:
edc, ch1, skip a stitch, edc, ch1, skip a stitch and so on to the end of the round.  

You should end up with something like the photo above. 
Continue in this pattern.

As you can see, the lacy pattern begins to emerge.

When placed on the foot, it stretches and opens up the stitches nicely :-)

Continue in pattern until you are ready to make the heel as detailed in the last post.

The heel is made up exactly the same way as the non lacy pattern. It's worked in double crochet. 
The only difference is that you will have 2 more stitches to work so will end up with 9 rather than 7 stitches on your last step. Aim to end up with 38 stitches. If you don't have this amount....don't stress about it! Just increase or decrease in the next 2 rounds until you do :-)

Work 2 rounds in pattern as before (half edc, half lacy pattern) and you're now at the same point as the other sock. Ready to make the leg and cuff!

Join me next time when we will finishing our socks!!!!

Before I go, I thought I'd share my knitted sock so far!

(I'm using Scheepjes Invicta Matterhorn to make my socks.)

Once I found some circular needles that I love (Chiagoo Red Lace!!!!), there's no stopping me!!!
I'm working on the other sock now so hopefully will be ready to insert my afterthought heel :-)

See you Wednesday x
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