I just discovered CreativeBug.com. It’s basically a website dedicated to online videos for Knitting, Crochet, Sewing, and other crafts. From short how-to videos and projects to full craft classes and workshops. But it’s also kind of an online school for knitting and crochet. I love the idea!
What makes Creative Bug unique is that a project is taught entirely through video. Also, you will recognize many famous knitters and crocheters in these videos. Many of whom you may be a fan of already ! They are taught by expert instructors many of whom are well-known designers and crafters with decades of experience. And all in a very easy to follow and enjoyable way.
Each class, workshop, or project features a series of step-by-step videos. The first one I checked out was Norah Gaughan’s Knit Cabled Hat. Loved the way the project was broken up into different smaller videos for each step. The videos looked wonderful and I really enjoyed hearing about Norah’s love of cables too.
It sure beats you-tubing for random how-to videos!
How It Works
CreativeBug.com is not free. However, the monthly subscription is $4.95 and can be cancelled at any time. This subscription gives you unlimited access to videos each month. That’s not bad! Even if I signed up for a month just to take one class, it is well worth it! Also, a very affordable way to take classes for people who’d like to try out Knitting for the first time or people on a budget! There is a free section too that includes classes like How To Thread A Serger and other basic fun stuff.
Check it out! There is a 2-week trial available for new members too.
Hunting down just the right fabric, sewing machine, knitting needle, and even yarn is part of our wonderful hobby! There are so many places to search for these things from your local yarn shop, nation-wide craft stores, to online shops and websites. One unlikely place hobbyists may not think to look in is AMAZON.COM!
I have purchased many hard to find items that I was surprised Amazon carried, like this Pendant Yarn Cutter by Clover. They happen to carry many Clover items (heart them for sewing and knitting/crochet tools)! Along with OLFA rotary cutters, Gingher fabric sheers and much more! And for decent prices too.
They have an Arts, Crafts, and Sewing section! I especially like to find sewing supplies on here because they tend to have a large selection and for decent prices! But they carry anything from markers, colored pencils, drawing desks, and drawing pads to fabric markers, rotary cutters, and cutting mats! Stitch markers, crochet hooks, and even yarn and fabric. Ott-Lite crafting lamps, Dress Forms… And everything for your home crafting studio! Including Sewing Machines and Sergers!
Doing Your Shopping Online
I’m a big online shopper/browser for my fiber crafting needs. While looking for things like fabric and yarn are best done in person, shopping for machines, tools, notions, etc online can be a very efficient way of finding the perfect tool and for the best price. While there are so many wonderful sites out there, here are a few places to start:
Larger Knitting and Quilting Specialty Stores online like Fabric.com and Yarn.com.
Small Indie Yarn Shops Online like found on Etsy
Nation-Wide Craft Stores like Joann, Michaels, or Hobby Lobby
Big Box Stores like Target, Walmart, and Costco.
Are you a New Yorker? For more on where to buy Sewing, Knitting, or Crochet items in NYC, please check out my posts here in the Where To Buy section.
Stuffed Totoro by Lucy Ravenscar
Check out these awesome knits (and crochet) I found while trolling the interwebs for stuff! If you’re a Harry Potter, Dr. Who, Super Mario, or Lord of the Rings fan type of knitter, then here’s some great ideas for your next project. Many include full patterns and for free! Browse and Enjoy!
by Just Crafty Enough
Space Invader Socks
by Aija Goto
by Man With A Jaw Harp
Here are some free patterns to gear up for the Fall Season from Interweave. For both Knit and Crochet. Some projects even feature both Knit and Crochet in the same pattern. Interweave publishes Knitting Daily and Crochet Me! Above are Crochet patterns. Below are Knit patterns.
All downloads are available in handy e-book format. You must provide an email to download. They also publish free sewing patterns! Interweave also has some lovely free guides like Beginning Knitting or Beginning Crochet; Advanced Knitting Techniques and Advanced Crochet Stitches that can be downloaded as e-books just like the above patterns.
Are these patterns gorgeous or what?! I was looking for scarf patterns and got sidetracked. These were too cute to pass up. Love DROPS Design. They’re Scandinavian so the patterns are sometimes hard (for me) to decipher. But if you’re confident in your Knit or Crochet skills and/or are Intermediate to Advanced it should be fine! DROPS Yarn is also hard to find in the U.S. but NordicMart.com carries them online! Read on for more adorable patterns. Patterns are free and some are for Knit and some are for Crochet.
Are these blankie patterns especially gorgeous or what?! Some are classic modern, some nostalgic, some fancy. All lovely designs whatever your preference. Love DROPS. All are free and in either Knit or Crochet depending on the pattern. All patterns in this post by DROPS Design. Read on for more lovely patterns.
Love, Love, LOVE all these patterns by Garn Studio AS! . They are my favorite Knit or Crochet designers around hands down. Free or paid! Sometimes the patterns are a bit hard to follow (Scandinavian) and their yarns aren’t carried anywhere in the U.S. … However, if you’re an Intermediate/Advanced Knitter or Crocheter you’ll be able to make sense of these patterns. You can also find their yarns online through NordicMart.com. There are no brick and mortar stores in the U.S. that carry Drops (except for one in California!). Read on for more patterns.
Happy June 1st! Kick off your summer with some crochet. Here are some summertime quick crochet projects for home and market featuring Cotton or Hemp yarns. All are free and all are from Ravelry.com. You must be signed up on Ravelry to view and download the patterns.
If you have not discovered Ravelry yet or are still not a member… It’s awesome for knitters and crocheters!! And worth a peak. Manage your stash, needles, hooks and more. Keep track of your WIPs and post your finished projects, get knitting help, find awesome patterns, and even set up a shop! Just sign up and go nuts. You can read more about it on my post all about Ravelry.
Patterns and Designers in this post:
Ami Striped Cotton Rug by Pierrot Yarns
Color Block Cushions by Marinke Slump
Placemats and Coasters by Marilyn Coleman
Starling Bag by Alice Merlino
Kitty Stuff Basket by Chase Clark
Hexagon Runner by Marinke Slump
Windmill Bag by Laurie Laliberte
Easter Egg Bust by Dennis van den Brink
Why has Ravelry never gotten its own post on my website!? It’s been an institution online for the Knitting and Crochet community since its inception. And something that is such a given sometimes people forget to mention it! I’d been knitting for years but only found out about it around 2010. I guess I was knitting in my own bubble without many friends who shared my hobby and oblivious to such a thriving community. So perhaps a post like this may help other ninja bubble knitters (and crocheters!).
There’s lots of groups and networks for whatever your knitting or crocheting heart desires. Ask questions in the forum, look for pattern help, plug in and make some new friends, share your expertise, or simply post your completed projects for the whole community to see. Trolling the groups is also a great way to get a birds eye view into the knitting and crochet subculture.
There are lots of great tools too like a project tracker, stash manager, needles and hooks manager, you can favorite your favorite projects, place them in a queue, keep track of works in progress, and check out what others have to say about the pattern you’re working on. And the tools don’t suck. All the yarns actually link to the manufacturer, colorway, etc. You can even include when you bought it and the price. They’ve really thought of everything.
For crafters who also sell their handmades online, it’s a great way to maximize your exposure. Kind of like Facebook but for Knitting or Crochet only!
What I Like Best
The really advanced pattern finder. You can search for very specific things from hats for kids in worsted weight yarn only to all free patterns for skirts to only projects using Size I9 hooks or US Size 5 Needles. It’s really handy. For crafters looking for just the right pattern or some inspiration it’s really one of the best pattern finders out there. Simply because it’s crowd sourced!
You can also find lots of helpful pattern insight. For example, if someone or some people have already worked on your pattern and posted it up, you can find it there, check out their comments and errata to see if they’ve stumbled across the same problems you have! There are so many projects and patterns, especially free ones found online, that it’s probably been done by someone on Ravelry! Yup, it’s that great.
The only cons are you must be logged in to see anything. So someone cannot simply link to a page, me on Ravelry, and just see some content. Which I find really restrictive. They should make some pages public or at least partially public like on Facebook! It would at least give people a taste of what they might be signing up for before they sign up. Other than that I hope they never change how well it works or how many great features they offer!
Ravelry now has 3 million users! So it’s popular and definitely a powerful resource. 3 million knitters and crocheters from all over the world is in itself a cool concept. It’s really a knitter or crocheter’s dream online buddy. For those who are especially organized, it’s got everything you need to satisfy your obsession. Really. If you’re not already on there, check it out. It’s free to join, and you’ll find there’s something on there to suit every fiber need from dabblers to die hards!
Look at these cute little crochet bows by Adaiha. They remind me of Hello Kitty bows! The pattern is easy and comes with really nice detailed photos too.
She provides step-by-step photos, the pattern, and even a downloadable PDF for your convenience. She’s also been working on a “Granny Square A Day” project since 2011! Her page also includes a list of great resources and books for crocheting granny squares.
Original Pattern by Adaiha – [pdf]
Materials: Worsted Weight Yarn
Crochet Hook: US Size H [5.00mm]
Approximate Size: 2.5” X 1.5”
Make a magic ring.
Ch 5, 3 tr in ring, ch 5, sl st in ring, ch 5, 3tr in ring, ch5, sl st in ring.
Cut yarn leaving a tail at least a few inches long. Weave yarn tail through the first ch stitch at the very beginning and fasten off.
Create the center of the bow by wrapping the two ends under and then back over the bow a few times until satisfied. Create a chain of stitches to wrap around the bow if desired. Fasten off and weave in ends. Done!
Note: Leave an extra long yarn tail and do not trim if attaching the bow onto something else.
Variations: Increase or decrease the (tr) stitches to make the bow fatter or skinnier as seen in Photo #2.
e.g. Substitute “3 tr” for “2 tr” or “4 tr”.