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Tips 'n Tricks

Do you have a helpful hint or handy trick that will make any aspect of crocheting easier? Share it! Post ideas on scrap yarn usages, stitch markers, starching, hook organization, color changing, maintaining your sanity while following a difficult pattern, etc. There is most probably someone out there that will benefit from your help. Need ideas yourself? Read others' comments--we all live and learn!

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Saturday, February 05, 2005Name: Marcy

Subject: storing hooks

Comment: In additon to the tip from Del B.:

some toothbrush holders have a small hole at each end that tiny hooks may slip through, I put a cotton ball in each end to help prevent that.



Thursday, February 03, 2005Name: Jequeta

Subject: counting rows

Comment: Sometimes you may need to count many rows. A good way to keep track is to use coins. Say you are on row 5 and the next 5 rows need to be repeated. This works great when working in rounds. Using a nickel for row 5, add a penny to it when you finish row 6, another one for row 7 etc. When you finish row 9, you should have 1 nickel and 4 pennies. For row 10, change to a dime. This has helped me many times, especially when I cannot located my row counter. Coins are always handy.



Thursday, February 03, 2005Name: Del B.

Subject: hook storage

Comment: I store my smaller crochet hooks in a plastic travel case used for a toothbrush. The case easily fits any place you store your yarn.



Thursday, February 03, 2005Name: Marcy

Subject: marking rows

Comment: I have run into several patterns that say to mark a stitch or a row with a small piece of contrasting yarn, I hate trying to tie a piece of yarn onto my project. I found that a bobby pin works beautifully, especialy if you have the kind with the rounded ends, thay way it will not split your yarn as easily, and it is easy to place and to remove.



Tuesday, February 01, 2005Name: Sue Ellen

Subject: Learn to crochet

Comment: I have been crocheting for over 20 years and I was lucky enough to be taught very basic crochet by my grandmother when I was young. However I wanted to learn more. I found that checking out books from the library from the CHILDREN'S section worked wonders. They are written in very simple language and usually have wonderful illustrations for those of us who are visual learners.



Thursday, January 27, 2005Name: Betty

Subject: Marking patterns

Comment: when I am crocheting pettern I have a trick my mother shared years ago. I use a straight pin with a large ball head (hat pin works great!!!), or even a t pin, and stick it into the pattern where I am at. It keeps me right on track and I can follow rows really easy. If you are afraid of damaging your pattern (I have reused mine lots of times!!) just make a copy and that way, also, if the pin gets bumped out of place you can find where you were with the 'new hole'



Tuesday, January 25, 2005Name: Linda

Subject: lost hooks

Comment: I've been crocheting for 40 years. It's my stress reliever, my therapy.My hint---I made a bunch of small cloth bags and into each I put a little container of assorted size needles and a scissor(I bought them for 15cents each at the school supply sale). When I start a project I put the hook I need into the bag with the needles and scissor and that goes into my work bag.I also put one containing a few different size hooks into the car so I don't have to crawl under the seat the next time I drop my hook on the way to work (yes, my husband drives). In this complicated, electronic world in which we live, crocheting takes me back to the days when we hung our laundry on the line and no one thought we were weird for doing so. And yes, I do hang my laundry on the line!



Sunday, January 23, 2005Name: Allison

Subject: Sanity with Difficult Patterns

Comment: Whenever I am working on a challenging pattern - I walk away and come back to it a few days later, reread the pattern and try again in a quiet room with no interruptions. Oftentimes, I figure out what I was doing wrong and that breather from it refocuses me on the project I'm working on!



Saturday, January 22, 2005Name: debra

Subject: granny squares

Comment: whenever i finish up a project i use the left over wool to make small granny squares - i have about 300 of them in all different colors - when i get ready to stich them up in black i will have a blanket with many mulitiple colors that if i had to go out and buy all this wool it would be quite costly.



Thursday, January 20, 2005Name: Dorothy

Subject: granny squares

Comment: When you make an afghan out of squares or any other shape make a couple extras stitch them to the back side of the afghan. If you ever need to replace a square you have it made and the color will match because it has been laundered with the rest of the blanket. Not to mention the dye lot will be the same. No more searching for an old dyelot or pattern.



Tuesday, January 18, 2005Name: Paula

Subject: Pattern Saver

Comment: Patterns Ideals
I save some of my wrapper patterns from the yarn... (possiblibly where I have gotten older. lol) Some of the type is so tiny at times I go nuts having to use a magnifying glas every time, I've needed to check which stitch now or where I am on the pattern...
Solution:
I scan it! enlarge and print it out. Oh this works wonders... Helped me in preserving those percious lil' patterns.
Another resource for patterns have been off the wonderful websites such as this one. When I print out the patterns I make sure I set my printer to print out the website address... for my referance. I also keep those lose patterns in a Scrapbook using the clear protective pages as pockets... I keep them organized alot better. Plus I actually add Scrapbook pages of the projects I have done in it. Keeping record of whom I made it for, Hook size, which yarn I used and size of finished projects and etc... Makes it nice because I have given every project I have made as gifts... It give me a momentum of my gifts I have given. I haven't been crocheting as many as years as most of you have... but hope to still be crocheting in many years to come.



Friday, January 14, 2005Name: Stacia

Subject: Keeping Track of WIP

Comment: Every time I choose a project and purchase materials I list the name of the pattern, the brand, type, color, and amounts of yarn needed, the hook size I end up using, and who it is for on a table created in Microsoft Word. As I complete projects I change the font color to red and record the finished size. I also take a picture fo the finished project. This way I can look at things later should I decide to use the pattern again!



Thursday, January 13, 2005Name: Rien

Subject: Dragging Hooks

Comment: If your hooks are dragging you could also try coating them with clear nail polish, or even the colored kind for a really pretty effect. I'd recommend using a clear base coat first, though, and obviously make sure the nail polish is absolutely dry before using the hooks. ;)



Tuesday, January 11, 2005Name: Ruth

Subject: sweaty palms

Comment: Household alcohol works well, too, as it dries the skin. Learned this in the "old days" when some women used to struggle putting on their foundation in the summer. Seemed to work better than power. Of course it may be necessary to use lotion when done working with the yarn,or be careful that you don't have a reaction to the alcohol. Worked well for me.



Monday, January 10, 2005Name: carley

Subject: crochet bracelits

Comment: If you want to make a gift for that spical somone and you dont have alot of time on your hands?? well then you can make a crochet bracelit!! all you need is:
.one strand of yarn
.siccors
.and your crochet hook!
all you need to do is make one strand of crochet! tie it together and there you have it! if you have another minute or two you can make a necklace also all you need is a bigger strand of yarn!!
thanks!




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