PlanetJune Craft Blog

Latest news and updates from June

Archive for November, 2011

Accessories CAL roundup 1

It’s time for another crochet-along roundup from the PlanetJune ravelry group members. The Accessory-Along raised some interesting discussions this month (some of which I’ll blog about in future): the difference it makes when you ‘yarn under’ instead of ‘yarn over’ when you crochet, how to do the Tunisian knit stitch, and the difference between working into a ch and a ch-sp. See, Crochet-Alongs are fun and educational!

As many of the PlanetJune Accessories patterns take far longer to complete than an amigurumi, the group members have voted to extend the Accessories CAL for another month, to give people more time to complete their projects, or even start new projects to give as Christmas presents. You can join in too, if you’d like – we’d love to have you join us!

In addition, I’ll be launching the 2011 Christmas CAL tomorrow (with prizes!) so check back here or on Ravelry for details πŸ™‚

And now let’s see the November results of the Accessories CAL! (As usual, I’m crediting the participants by their Ravelry usernames, so you can look them up on Ravelry if you want more details.)

Let’s start this roundup with the show-stopping larger projects:

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
Shunra’s stunning Diamond Flowers Scarf Wrap (using the increased size modifications) & Pysselkiisen’s Scarf Sweater (modelled by her sister)

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
jukatca’s Lacy Bobbles Cowl, worn two ways

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
PixyKayte’s Chunky Elegance Rug (small size) & my Aunt’s miniature Lacy Bobbles Cowl for my cousin’s new baby

And here’s a selection of some larger project WIPs that we can look forward to seeing again, hopefully completed, in the second roundup at the end of next month:

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
Shunra’s Diamond Flowers Scarf & klopferli’s Lacy Bobbles Cowl

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
Enphra’s Climbing Eyelets Triangular Shawl & CrochetColorJunkie’s Gossamer Lace Wrap

And now to the ‘quick and easy’ projects!

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
A selection of my other patterns cleverly turned into accessories by Fatals-attraction, most of which use crochet thread and tiny 1-2mm hooks to make tiny versions! (Gecko pin, Basic Rose ring and necklace, Tiny Whale necklace, Toadstool [from my book] necklace, Love Hearts photo frame, Amigurumi Balloons pin)

PlanetJune Accessories CAL
theMarkofSMB used my Plumeria pattern to make a lovely crocheted headband

PlanetJune Accessories CAL
theMarkofSMB also crocheted 2 Scalloped Scarves and an amazing 10 Lip Balm Holders! (I think I know what some people are getting for Christmas this year!)

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
Fatals-attraction’s Scalloped Scarves and klopferli’s Lip Balm Holders

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
Lip Balm Holders by klopferli and Lightblue

PlanetJune Accessories CAL PlanetJune Accessories CAL
Lip Balm Holders by PixyKayte and Fatals-attraction

PlanetJune Accessories CAL
4 Lip Balm Holders by jukatca

Another great roundup! Well done to all the CAL participants; your projects all look wonderful πŸ™‚

From large to small, there is, I hope, something for everyone to be found in my Accessories range. If you’d like to make any of the projects featured in this roundup, you’ll find all the patterns in the PlanetJune Accessories section of my shop. And, if you have time this coming month, please join the Accessories CAL and share your projects with us before the end of the year!

Comments (2)

Gift Boxes crochet pattern

A couple of months ago, I put out a call in my Ravelry group for Christmas or Holiday design requests, and the most popular idea was for a square gift box, worked in the round. It’s easy enough to crochet a square base, but working the sides in one piece in the round means that the resulting box won’t look square – there are no corners, and, with every round, the square becomes more and more circular…

I decided to rise to the challenge and develop a circular box, worked in one piece in the round, that still looks square. I actually thought I’d already come up with the perfect technique, but, after testing it, I wasn’t happy with the result, so I went back to the drawing board. I created at least 10 cornering techniques and compared samples of each to find the ultimate corner, but I think it was worth the effort, because these boxes undeniably have real square corners:

crocheted square gift boxes by planetjune
I chose rich peacock hues for my boxes, with a lighter shade of each colour for the trim, but of course you can change the look by using traditional Christmas colours, or any other colours you like.

Each box has a removable lid, and they are sized so that, with the lids on, the three can nest neatly inside each other. The smallest is 2.5″ (6cm) wide and the largest is 4.5″ (11cm) wide.

crocheted square gift boxes by planetjune

You can also use them, with or without lids, as pretty little desk or bathroom organisers, or to display trinkets…

crocheted square gift boxes by planetjune
3 of the small boxes without lids

If you’d like to try out my special no-sew, worked-in-a-spiral, square corner technique, the Gift Boxes pattern includes full written instructions, and a bonus 3 page step-by-step photo tutorial at the end of the pattern. I laid it out like this so you’ll have plenty of photos to make sure you’ll definitely be able to understand how to make the corners, but you can save on ink by not printing the last 3 pages!

The Gift Boxes crochet pattern is now available in my shop, or you can bundle it with any other 2 PlanetJune Accessories patterns by picking up a custom set of any 3 Accessories patterns.

Note ready to make it yet? Add it to your Ravelry queue!

I hope you like them!

Comments (8)

holiday patterns and tutorials

I’ve created so many Christmas-related patterns and tutorials over the past 5 years, I thought it might be helpful to see them all together in one place.

Before I get into the roundup though, I’d like to ask a quick favour: I’ve been shortlisted for Inside Crochet magazine’s 2011 Blog awards and, if you enjoy my blog, I’d really appreciate your vote. It just takes a click to vote; no signup necessary. Vote here – thank you!

PlanetJune Christmas Crochet Patterns

My 2011 holiday pattern isn’t quite finished yet (thanks to a gardening accident to my finger which forced me to reschedule my tutorial photography session for the pattern), but I hope to publish it before the end of November, so you’ll still have plenty of time to make it before Christmas!

In the meantime, here are my other Christmas patterns from my regular ranges:



Top row: Christmas Trees, Christmas Baubles
Middle row: Poinsettia (donationware), PocketAmi Christmas
Bottom row: Christmas Pudding (donationware), Candy Cane (donationware)

And from PlanetJune Accessories:

PlanetJune Accessories Reindeer Antlers crochet pattern lip balm holder crochet pattern by planetjune
Reindeer Antlers, Lip Balm Holder (donationware – and a perfect stocking stuffer!)

By the way, there’ll be another Christmas CAL for all my holiday patterns in the PlanetJune Ravelry group from December 1st, and I think I’ll throw in some prizes like last year. You’ll find crochet-along details on Ravelry from Dec 1st, and I’ll post with a link here too once it’s all set up πŸ™‚

PlanetJune Christmas Craft Tutorials

punchneedle poinsettia by planetjunepolymer clay poinsettia by planetjune
felt poinsettia by planetjunepom-pom christmas tree tutorial

Top: Punchneedle Embroidered Poinsettia, Polymer Clay Poinsettia
Bottom: Felt Poinsettia, Pom-Pom Christmas Tree

I think that’s it! I hope you’ll find a project (or a few) that you’d like to try for your Christmas crafting this year. And please, don’t forget to vote for me πŸ™‚

Comments

free pattern: Lip Balm Holder

Never lose your lip balm again (or have it melt in your pocket) with this stylish holder! Clip it to your keyring, to your bag, or even to your belt loop and you’ll always have lip balm at hand when you need it. Quick and easy to crochet, just pop a lip balm inside and you have a perfect little gift!

lip balm holder crochet pattern by planetjune

You’ve probably seen simple lip balm holder patterns before, but not like this one! Why?

  • It’s worked in a fine yarn/thread with a small hook, so it looks subtle and elegant, not bulky and only appropriate for kids (although it’s great for kids too!)
  • Don’t be put off by the tiny size: this pattern is designed to be easy on the hands! Only the base is worked in single crochet; the sides are worked into chain-spaces, so it’s much easier to insert your hook to begin each stitch.
  • The sturdy hanging loop will keep your holder safe*.

*In case you’re wondering about that ‘sturdy hanging loop’ part, I know what I’m talking about! I first made myself lip balm holders from crochet thread in 2006. They lasted well, but I’d attached each to a metal ring by crocheting the ring to the top of the holder:
broken lip balm holder
After prolonged use, the strands of thread attached to the ring frayed through, as you can see, so I determined to give my new design a sturdy loop so the thread isn’t stressed at any one point.

lip balm holder crochet pattern by planetjune

I tested this pattern using 4 different thicknesses of thread and yarn, so you can see how versatile it is. L-R: size 5 crochet thread, size 8 pearl cotton, size 10 crochet thread, fingering weight yarn (Bernat Baby).

It works up very quickly, and if you add a yummy flavoured lip balm inside, it’ll make a perfect stocking stuffer gift!

This is a donationware pattern, and I’ve changed things slightly this time by adding some additional info that you’ll only find in the PDF version (which you’ll receive as a thank you for your donation):

  • A modification to make the holder slightly wider (in case you crochet tightly or have a non-standard-width lip balm tube)
  • A simpler edging (in case you don’t get along with reverse single crochet)
  • Tips for attaching the various types of hardware that you see in my photos

But, as always, the pattern is free for your use and donations are entirely optional πŸ™‚

Enjoy!

Go to Lip Balm Holder pattern >>

Comments (8)

how to reverse single crochet

Link easily to this tutorial in your patterns: www.planetjune.com/rsc

Today I’d like to show you my favourite technique for making a decorative crocheted edging. Reverse single crochet (also known as crab stitch) makes a twisted cord edging, and it’s very easy to achieve – it’s no more than a single crochet stitch, but you work in the opposite direction to usual (left to right for right-handers; right to left for left-handers). Provided you don’t work too fast and tangle up your stitches (which is easy to do when you’re working backwards) it’s an easy technique to master.

reverse single crochet (crab stitch) video tutorial

As it’s easier to show than to tell, I’ve put together a new video to demonstrate. I hope you’ll find it useful, if you haven’t already mastered this stitch.

(If you want to practice the technique, it’ll be featured in both of my next two patterns, and you’ll get a peek at one of them in the video – another new donationware pattern to be released later this week!)

Reverse Single Crochet (right-handed)

Click to watch this video on YouTube.

Reverse Single Crochet (left-handed)

Click to watch this video on YouTube.

Note: The videos may look a little small embedded in the blog: if so, you can fullscreen them or click through to YouTube to watch them in full HD resolution πŸ™‚

I’ve been compiling a list of crochet technique videos that I plan to create over the coming months. If you have any suggestions you’d like me to add to my list, please let me know.

If you enjoy my crochet tutorial videos, please help to spread the word about them, and/or subscribe to the PlanetJune YouTube channel.

Comments (24)

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    June Gilbank

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