Irish Crochet Bebe Lace Motif (Dress)

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I have been meaning to make a dress with the Bebe Irish Crochet motif but have made only shrugs with the motif. This time, I finally managed to make a dress.

The hardest part of making a dress with a motif is choosing the right motif. In this case, I selected a bebe motif without the Irish rose in the center. I also made this motif smaller by working only until round 7 of the 9 rounds of the motif. I modified the corner picot-loops at round 7 so that it can be joined to other motifs. Here below is a chart of the motif that I used/modified – the motif marked B.

irishcrochetbebelace

 

The next decision to make when using motifs to make a dress is to decide how many motifs you will use to fit around the body. Of course this also means you must decide where you will start the dress – at the top, over the bust, or below, at the hem? Or perhaps at the waist or hips? Whatever you decide, you should have a strategy for shaping. My strategy is simply using different hook sizes.

I used cotton thread size 8 and 1mm crochet hook. I started with motifs that go at the top, then I join the motifs to fit around my bust, not very tight, with 1-2 inches allowance.
I used cotton thread size 8 and 1mm crochet hook. I started with motifs that go at the top, then I join the motifs to fit around my bust, not very tight, with 1-2 inches allowance. Do not make it too tight! Study your motif carefully – often it looks loose with one strip of motif, but when you add more motifs, it gets tighter. Also when you crochet the edging, the motif also gets tighter. If you want a larger bust dress with fitted waist, you will need to make a dress that has a zip at the back.

 

When I get to the upper part of the hips, I change to a larger hook, 1.24mm, and when I get to the widest hip area, I change to 2.5mm hook, all the way down to the hem of the dress.
When I get to the upper part of the hips, I change to a larger hook, 1.24mm, and when I get to the widest hip area, I change to 2.5mm hook, all the way down to the hem of the dress. For the straps, I made a chain using three strands of the cotton thread.

 

Here, the hem of the dress is worked in two rounds: first a round of 8-ch loops, then a sc-picot round. Refer to the crochet chart of the Bebe motif above for the pattern of the edging. I also used this same edging for the neckline and armholes.
Here, the hem of the dress is worked in two rounds: first a round of 8-ch loops, then a sc-picot round. Refer to the crochet chart of the Bebe motif above for the pattern of the edging. I also used this same edging for the neckline and armholes, with an extra 2 sc added for each loop for the hem of the dress so that the skirt flares out a little bit.

 

I made a lining for the dress. This is the first time I have made a lining for a crocheted dress. I made the lining like I would make a dress that I would wear. When making a lining, I learned that I should not fall into the temptation of making the lining smaller than the dress.
I made a lining for the dress. This is the first time I have made a lining for a crocheted dress. I made the lining like I would make a dress that I would wear. When making a lining, I learned that I should not fall into the temptation of making the lining smaller than the dress.

 

I sewed the lining to the dress by hand, as neatly as possible.
I sewed the lining to the dress by hand, as neatly as possible. This is my first attempt at a dress lining and it is not perfect. I would like to do this better next time.

 

The I sewed on these bra pads/cups, so that I don’t need to wear bra with this dress. It is not nice to wear bra with the straps showing. if I wear strapless bra it is very uncomfortable. Another strip of lining fabric should go over the pads here.
Then I sewed on these bra pads/cups, so that I don’t need to wear bra with this dress. It is not nice to wear bra with the straps showing. if I wear strapless bra it is very uncomfortable. Another strip of lining fabric should go over the pads here. Note that because I am an A cup (small bust size), I can put the dress on with the bra pads. If you are a larger size and wish to sew bra pads to the dress, you will need to have a dress that has a zip at the back so that you can put it on easily.

 

The finished dress!
The finished dress! It is a formal dress. Unfortunately I don’t have anywhere formal to go to … not yet anyway.

 

Here, I try to model my own crocheted dresses. I also always take my own photos. It is not perfect, but I try. Since I don't have a dress form or tailor's dummy, I often use my own body as 'dress form'. This makes it difficult to make dresses for larger sizes. One day I will need to get a tailor's dummy, it is not easy to find ....
Here, I try to model my own crocheted dresses. I also always take my own photos. It is not perfect, but I try. Since I don’t have a dress form or tailor’s dummy, I often use my own body as ‘dress form’ but my body is very small. This makes it difficult to make dresses for larger sizes. One day I will need to get a tailor’s dummy, it is not easy to find ….

 

The back of the dress .. it is quite low and quite bare, so maybe I need to wear a shrug with this! Anyway, it is suitable for a formal occasion.
The back of the dress .. it is quite low and quite bare, so maybe I need to wear a shrug with this! Anyway, it is suitable for a formal occasion.

 

If you are interested in learning more about Bebe Irish Crochet, you can study the book “How to Make Bebe Irish Crochet Lace.” Happy crocheting!

Irish Crochet Bebe Lace Motif (Shrug)

There is something called “Bebe Irish Crochet” in antique patterns and these usually consist of an Irish rose center with the double picot filling all around it. As square motif or medallion is made and can be joined together to make the lace fabric.

I have collected some examples of this “bebe Irish crochet” pattern and have decided to use them to make crochet garments. I am making the motif in size 8 cotton thread and 1.24mm hook, and came up with a shrug. Why not give it a try?

The finished shrug using the Irish crochet square motif, sometimes referred to in antique patterns as bebe Irish motif.
The finished shrug using the Irish crochet square motif, sometimes referred to in antique patterns as bebe Irish motif.

 

THE MOTIF

Here are various examples of the motif in antique and modern publications.

CROCHETING THE SHRUG

 

I made several motif, join-as-you-go, to make a rectangle.
I made several motifS, join-as-you-go, to form a large rectangle that fits around my arms and shoulders.

 

Here is the completed rectangle. It will be joined at the sides with a gap in the middle.
Here is the completed rectangle. It will be joined at the sides with a gap in the middle, typical of a crocheted shrug.

 

Here, the sides are joined where the sleeves are formed.
Here, the rectangle is folded lengthwise and then seamed to make the sleeves.

 

The shrug so far - I will need several rows to go all along the front edge and back.
The shrug so far – I will need several rows to go all along the front edge and back.

 

The shrug in progress - the ends of the sleeves also need cleaning up, a simple trim of sc and picots.
The shrug in progress – the ends of the sleeves also need cleaning up, a simple trim of sc and picots.

 

The shrug is easily constructed. In addition to this rectangle joined along the sleeves, I crocheted rows all along the sides and back of the opening of the piece, so it looks more like a bolero.
The shrug is easily constructed. In addition to this rectangle that is folded lengthwise and seamed to make the sleeves, I crocheted rows all along the sides and back of the opening of the piece, so it looks more like a bolero, as shown in this photo.

 

The back and front edging of the shrug is finished - now need to make the trim and weave in ends.
The back and front edging of the shrug is finished – now I need to make the trim and weave in ends.

 

The back and front edging of the shrug is finished - now need to make the trim and weave in ends.
The back and front edging of the shrug is finished – now I need to make the trim and weave in ends.

 

The finished shrug - I made crocheted ties and wove it along the neck of the shrug and attached a ball and tassel at the end.
The finished shrug – I made crocheted ties and wove it along the neck of the shrug and attached a ball and tassel at the end.

 

The finished shrug using the Irish crochet square motif, sometimes referred to in antique patterns as bebe Irish motif.
The finished shrug using the Irish crochet square motif, sometimes referred to in antique patterns as bebe Irish motif.

 

The finished shrug using the Irish crochet square motif, sometimes referred to in antique patterns as bebe Irish motif.
The finished shrug using the Irish crochet square motif, sometimes referred to in antique patterns as bebe Irish motif.

Princess Louise Bag 1917

The Princess Louise Bag that I made some 8 years ago - I used crochet cotton thread size 8 and 1mm hook.
The Princess Louise Bag that I made some 8 years ago – I used crochet cotton thread size 8 and 1mm hook.

Some 8 years ago I made this bag, my very first Irish crochet project. This is from a pattern published in 1917. I would like to make this bag again. I make a copy of the pattern here for you below. Let’s try making this bag. I will use crochet cotton thread size 8 in beige colour, and hook size 1.24mm. There are some minor errors in the pattern which I will try and point out in the step-by-step photos below.

MAKING THE BAG

The pattern starts with ch 10 and sl st in the first ch to make a ring.
The pattern starts with ch 10 and sl st in the first ch to make a ring.

 

Make ch 3 (count as dc) then make 23 more dc in the ring for a total of 24 dc. Sl st in first dc to join.
Make ch 3 (count as dc) then make 23 more dc in the ring for a total of 24 dc. Sl st in first dc to join.

 

Ch 6 (count as dc and 3-ch), sk dc and dc in next dc, ch 3, sk dc, dc in next dc ... and so on, making 12 3-ch spaces. End this row with ch 3, sl st in first dc to join.
Ch 6 (count as dc and 3-ch), sk dc and dc in next dc, ch 3, sk dc, dc in next dc … and so on, making 12 3-ch spaces. End this row with ch 3, sl st in first dc to join.

 

This is the Third Round in the pattern - make 12 spokes,
This is the Third Round in the pattern – make 12 spokes.

 

Here the 12 spokes are completed and the next round of spokes will begin.
Here the 12 spokes are completed and the next round of spokes will begin.

 

The next round of spokes is commenced at the back of the first spokes, catching the spokes on the 3-ch of the second round. See the pattern at Third Round.
The next round of spokes is commenced at the back of the first spokes, catching the spokes on the 3-ch of the second round. See the pattern at Third Round.

 

The spokes being crocheted at the back of the first round of spokes.
The spokes being crocheted at the back of the first round of spokes.

 

The thread is cut at the end of Third Round. At Fourth Round, the thread is joined with a sc at the tip of one of the spokes. Ch 5, then sc in tip of next spoke and so on. Take care not to miss any spokes.
The thread is cut at the end of Third Round. At Fourth Round, the thread is joined with a sc at the tip of one of the spokes. Ch 5, then sc in tip of next spoke and so on. Take care not to miss any spokes.

 

Here, all 24 spokes are joined at the tip with 5-ch spaces between them.
Here, all 24 spokes are joined at the tip with 5-ch spaces between them.

 

Fifth Round o f Pattern - sl st to center of next sp, then a round of 3-dc groups separated by 3-ch is made, with an increase for each of the four corners.
Fifth Round o f Pattern – sl st to center of next sp, then a round of 3-dc groups separated by 3-ch is made, with an increase of two groups of 3-dc for each of the four corners.

 

Sixth Round of Pattern - the double picot stitch is made all around with an increase at the four corners. NOTE that the double picot pattern is such: ch 7, 1 sc in second ch made, ch 8, 1 sc in third ch made, ch 2, sc in next sp ...
Sixth Round of Pattern – the double picot stitch is made all around with an increase at the four corners. NOTE that the double picot pattern is such: ch 7, 1 sc in second ch made, ch 8, 1 sc in third ch made, ch 2, sc in next sp …

 

Seventh Round of Pattern - a second round of double picots is made.
Seventh Round of Pattern – a second round of double picots is began.

 

Here the Seventh Round is completed. Fasten off at the end of Seventh Round.
Here the Seventh Round in progress. Fasten off at the end of Seventh Round.

 

At Eighth Round of Pattern, fasten the thread at corner picot with sc. Then a round of dc-ch 3-dc-ch 4 is made.
At Eighth Round of Pattern, fasten the thread at corner picot with sc. Then a round of dc-ch 3-dc-ch 4 is made.

 

The Eighth Round in progress. Remember that this round is worked without widening at the corners.
The Eighth Round in progress. Remember that this round is worked without widening at the corners.

 

Here, the last round of the bag is crocheted.
Here, the last round of the bag is crocheted. Increase is made at the corners of the bag.

 

The finished piece, two of these are made, then joined at the sides as instructed in the pattern.
The finished piece, two of these are made, then joined at the sides as instructed in the pattern.

 

One side of the bag finished, the other side is begun.
One side of the bag finished, the other side is begun.

 

The two sides of the bag are being joined here, along three edges of the bag, as instructed in the pattern.
The two sides of the bag are being joined here, along three edges of the bag, as instructed in the pattern.

 

The three edges of the bag are now joined together.
The three edges of the bag are now joined together.

 

The "Border" section of the pattern is worked here. This is worked in rounds around the opening of the bag.
The “Border” section of the pattern is worked here. This is worked in rounds around the opening of the bag.

 

The Border around the opening of the bag is crocheted, then the "beading" is made. The "beading" is where the strings of the bag are woven through.
The Border around the opening of the bag is crocheted, then the “beading” is made. The “beading” is where the strings of the bag are woven through.

 

The Border/Beading crocheted all around the opening of the bag.
The Border/Beading crocheted all around the opening of the bag.

 

The discs and balls completed - ready for assembly.
The discs and balls completed – ready for assembly.

 

I have lots of these - cheap nylon cords - good and strong and just the right thickness for the bag's drawstrings.
I have lots of these – cheap nylon cords – good and strong and just the right thickness for the bag’s drawstrings.

 

The bag with the drawstrings, balls and discs - ready for assembly.
The bag with the drawstrings, balls and discs – ready for assembly. 

 

Crochet friend Natalia has these very useful notes about putting the ball and discs together with the drawstrings:

Pass the cord through the bag beading (by the way, that ‘second beading’ they talk about confused me, I had to check the photo to make sure I hadn’t missed a round of stitches), join ends of cord, attach discs to join, pass doubled cord through ball, put join in ball. I didn’t have any cord suitable so I made some with the same thread. I only used just over one bobbin to make the bag and trimmings, I thought I’d be using more! I’m joining the cord ends with a knot, which won’t loosen because I’m sewing the discs to the knot. Then once the knot is inside the ball, I fill it with cotton and tighten the hole a little, the knot will stay inside and won’t move, which I guess is the point of it all -hide the join and have only one of the sides of the cord slide inside the ball to loosen or tighten the bag.

 

 

This is the same fabric left over from the lining I used on the first bag I made years ago. It is not the best lining, perhaps, but I like that it is strong fabric.
This is the same fabric left over from the lining I used on the first bag I made years ago. It is not the best lining, perhaps, but I like that it is strong fabric.

 

The lining is drawn out in measurements same as the bag - with longer fabric at the opening of the bag.
The lining is drawn out in measurements same as the bag – with longer fabric at the opening of the bag.

 

Here is the lining sewn up - this will be sewn inside the bag along the sides of the bag.
Here is the lining all done – this will be sewn inside the bag along the opening just under the drawstrings.

My crochet friend Natalia gives the following helpful suggestions in making the lining for the bag:

The lining is quite simple: make it the same size as the outer bag. Do not fall in the temptation of making it smaller. Just two squares put together, sew together three sides, finish the fourth separately. Put inside the bag and secure. Tips:

  1. do the finishing on the mouth side first and it’ll look neater when you’re done. Since the bag is lace and it shows through, you want the public side of the lining on the outside, or better a fabric that’s reversible.
  2. Secure the lining along the lips of the bag; it takes tension out of the fabric. Also, attaching the lining at drawstring level ensures it will close and open along with the outer bag, which is more user friendly than having it stand alone.
  3. To make seams that look the neatest even if they’re visible, do French seams: sew pieces together face out, trim seams, turn inside out, seam again close to the first line of stitches. Turn again and place in bag.

Natalia adds: Attaching the lining was less fussy than I expected. I placed a pocket book inside to keep it in place and sewed along the opening, just below the beading. I secured the corners too for stability. And yes, I chose to keep the reverse outside, like in the original model. Why? Because of the tendency of the spikes to curve this way. I thought it’d look better.

 

I made a knot near the end of the drawstrings so that the balls won't slip out.
I made a knot near the end of the drawstrings so that the balls won’t slip out.

 

The finished Princess Louise Bag.
The finished Princess Louise Bag.

 


EDITED INSTRUCTIONS FOR PRINCESS LOUISE CROCHETED BAG

Princess Louise Crocheted Bag No. 275

INSTRUCTIONS

BAG

Ch 10, sl st in first ch to make a ring.

Rnd 1: Ch 3 (count as dc), 23 dc in ring, sl st in first dc to join (24 dc made).

Rnd 2: Ch 6 (count as dc, 3-ch), sk second dc, dc in next dc, *ch 3, sk next dc, dc in next dc, rep fr * all around, ending with ch 3, sl st in first dc to join (12 3-ch sps made).

Rnd 3: Make 12 spokes as follows: *Ch 15, dc in fourth ch fr hook, dc in each remaining 11 dc, sl st in next dc of round 2; rep fr * all around. Now working behind the spokes, sl st in next 3-ch sp, **ch 15, dc in fourth ch fr hook, dc in each remaining 11 dc, sc in next 3-ch sp; rep fr ** all around (24 spokes made). Fasten off.

Rnd 4: Join thread to tip of spoke with sc, *ch 5, sc in tip of next spoke, rep fr * on all 24 spokes. End with ch 5, join with sl st to first sc.

Rnd 5: Sl st in 3-ch sp, ch 3 (count as dc), 2 dc in same sp, *ch 3, 3 dc in next sp; rep fr * three more times to make 3-dc in each of five sps; in next sp work (ch 3, 3 dc, ch 3, 3 dc) to form a corner; **ch 3, 3 dc in next sp; rep fr ** four more times, in next sp work (ch 3, 3 dc, ch 3, 3 dc) to form a corner; rep all around to make three corners ending with ch 3, 3 dc, ch 3, 3 dc in the last 3-ch sp to form the last corner; ch 3, sl st in first dc to join.

Rnd 6: Sl st back into the sp just after a the corner, ch 1, sc in same sp, then *ch 7, sc in in sixth ch fr hook to make a picot, ch 8, sc in fifth ch fr hook to make second picot, ch 2, this forms one set of picots; 1 sc in next 3-ch sp and rep fr * all around, widening by putting an extra set of picots in each corner. Sl st in first sc made to join.

Rnd 7: Sl st up to sp between two picots, ch 1, sc in same sp; proceed all around as in round 6. Fasten off.

Rnd 8: Fasten thread in sp at corner picot, ch 6 (count as dc, 3-ch), 1 dc in same sp, *ch 4, work (1 dc, ch 3, 1 dc) in the center sp of next picot and rep fr * all around, not widening at the corners.

Rnd 9: Sl st to sp between dc, ch 3 (count as dc), 2 dc in same sp, *ch 1, 3 dc in next sp; rep fr * all around, widening at the corners as in the fifth round. Ch, sl st in first dc to join. Fasten off. This completes one side of the bag. Make second side in the same manner.

JOINING Join the two sides of the bag by putting 1 sc through first sp of both sides, *ch 5, sc in second ch to form picot, ch 1, sc through next sp and rep fr * all around, putting an extra picot in each corner. Fasten off.

BORDER Sc in sp, *ch 4, sc in next sp, rep fr * all around. Then make a round of beading as follows: *Two treble crochet stitches in sp, ch, rep fr * all around. Fourth Round – One sc in sp, *ch 5, 1 sc in next sp and repeat fr * all around. Final Round – Same as the joining round.

DISCS Chain 4 and join in a ring. 8 sc in ring. Do not join Second Round – Two sc in each stitch taken through the double thread. Third Round – *Ch 3, 1 sc in each of the next 2 stitches and repeat from *. On four discs, ch 10. On two more discs, ch 13 and fasten off.

SLIP BALLS Chain 6 and join in a ring. 12 sc in ring. Second Round – Two sc in each stitch. Make 6 more rounds of 24 sc followed by 2 rounds skipping every third stitch. Fasten off but leave long end of thread. Slip ball on cord and after running the end of cord through the beading and fastening it firmly, fasten 3 discs on the joining, then slip ball over the joining, fill with cotton and draw up with the thread left. Run the second cord through the other beading and proceed as before, working from the other side of the bag to make the cords draw properly. Line the bag with pretty pink, blue or any other colour silk or pongee.

The finished Princess Louise Bag.
The finished Princess Louise Bag.

Delancholancholing Stat

“Delancholancholing Stat” is a blouse made up of crocheted motifs. There are two flower motifs and one leaf motif used here. The motifs are found in Zhurnal MOD 524. The motifs are placed over a blouse as guide. Then the motifs are sewn together at the back using polyester cotton thread.

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After sewing, the holes between the motifs are then covered by small round motifs. This is crocheted onto the holes. A second way of sealing the holes is by crocheting at the back, working across the motifs and over the holes.

Below are the motifs used from Zhurnal MOD 524.

I used multi-colour crochet cotton thread size 8 and 1.24mm and 2.0mm hook for this project. I made this project partly to use of a small stash of multi-colour thread. Photos and notes on the project are below.

I used multi-colour cottn thread size 8 and 1.24mm and 2mm hook.
I used multi-colour cottn thread size 8 and 1.24mm and 2mm hook.
Motif in progress. You may use other motifs of your choice.
Motif in progress. You may use other motifs of your choice.
I start construction at the neckline. Motifs are sewn at the back.
I start construction at the neckline. Motifs are sewn at the back.
I use a blouse as guide, putting the motifs wrong side over the blouse, then sewing together.
I use a blouse as guide, putting the motifs wrong side over the blouse, then sewing together.
More motifs placed over the blouse.
More motifs placed over the blouse.
I continue working, joining more motifs, without using the blouse.
I continue working, joining more motifs, without using the blouse as guide.
Front and back of the motif blouse, shown here joined at one side, then folded over to join at the other side.
Front and back of the motif blouse, shown here joined at one side, then folded over to join at the other side.
Almost finished. Smaller holes between motifs need to be filled in.
Almost finished. Smaller holes between motifs need to be filled in.
A small beige colour motif fill in between the large motifs.
A small beige colour motif fill in between the large motifs.
Here, a small motif is crocheted onto the space between the large motifs.
Here, a small motif is crocheted onto the space between the large motifs.
The small round motif being joined over the gap between the large motifs.
The small round motif being joined over the gap between the large motifs.
Another method of filling in gaps between the large  motifs is by crocheting a netting at the back of the blouse, shown here.
Another method of filling in gaps between the large motifs is by crocheting a netting at the back of the blouse, shown here.
White thread is used as filling-in netting, working at the back of the motifs.
White thread is used as filling-in netting, working at the back of the motifs.
Here is the front of the blouse with the gaps filled in at the back.
Here is the front of the blouse with the gaps filled in at the back.
The finished blouse - all made up of crocheted motifs joined together by sewing at the back.
The finished blouse – all made up of crocheted motifs joined together by sewing at the back.
The finished blouse. I wore it with a wrap skirt that I sewed by hand.
The finished blouse. I wore it with a wrap skirt that I sewed by hand.
The back of the blouse. I used white flower motifs at the hem of the blouse because I ran out of multi-colour threads.
The back of the blouse. I used white flower motifs at the hem of the blouse because I ran out of multi-colour threads.

Trippletimer Take 2

trippletimerfo1

 

I used 4-ply cotton yarn and 3mm crochet hook, this is a shorter, tighter version of “Trippletimer“, decorated with Irish crochet motifs. I started with a foundation chain (in multiples of 5 chs) that is about the length of half my underbust (you need to make the foundation chain longer if you wish to make a bolero that closes at the front). Adding 15 chains to this foundation chain, I followed the pattern instructions. The bolero is worked from the back-bottom, moving upwards, making the increase towards the front. When I have reached the desired length (from the bottom of the bolero to just below my armpits), I began to divide for the armholes.

I did not leave any loops open for the armholes and I decreased the two front sections near the neck so there is a slight curve at the neckline.

Having divided and worked upwards, the front left and right sides are joined to the back, leaving in the middle several loops as space at the back of the neck. Then the sleeves are crocheted in the round.

Before working the sleeves, you must count the number of loops on each armhole to make sure you have the same number of loops. Then you work in those loops the same trellis-picot pattern. However, you must devise a decrease in the round as you work the length of the sleeves. When you work the decrease for one sleeve, you must take note of the pattern so you can repeat exactly for the other sleeve.

For my bolero sleeve, I worked 3 rounds of 6-ch loops, then 3 rounds of 5-ch loops, then 8 rounds of decreasing 5-ch loops. Now the decrease of these loops in the round is a tricky one but I managed to find a way. What I do is simply, at the end of each alternating round, instead of a ch-5-sc in the last loop, I make a ch 2, dc in last loop, ch 2, and join to the first stitch. This results in a decrease of one loop at the last round. The next round, I work a ch 5, sc in dc, picot, ch 5, sl st in first st to join.

Another way to make the sleeve decrease is perhaps to crochet the sleeve in rows, decreasing at both sides then finish off and sew the seams together.

MAKING THE BOLERO
See Pattern at Trippletimer

trippletimerwip1trippletimerwip2trippletimerwip3trippletimerwip4trippletimerwip5trippletimerwip6trippletimerwip7trippletimerwip8trippletimerwip9trippletimerfo3

TRIM

Get your favourite lace trim to work along the edges of the bolero. The trim I used is this one, below.

trimsymbolchart

 

The Irish crochet motifs are all made using the same 4-ply cotton yarn with four strands of yarn as padding cord. The photographs below show how the leaf is made in Irish crochet. The leaf pattern (in symbol chart) may be found in Zhurnal MOD No. 533.

MAKING THE IRISH CROCHET LEAVES

icleafwip1

Prepare the padding cord of 4 or more strands of the same yarn as the working yarn.

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Join the working yarn to the padding cord with a sl st and a sc.

icleafwip3

Make a sc around the padding cord.

icleafwip4

Continue making more sc around the padding cord. The Zhurnal MOD leaf pattern calls for 22-24 sc, then turn.

icleafwip5

Here the piece has been turned, showing the back side of the sc stitches around the padding cord. We now need to work the second row of stitches of the leaf, this time, dropping or leaving the padding cord behind.

icleafwip6

As indicated in the Zhurnal MOD pattern, make 2 sl st, 2 sc, 6 dc, 2 sc and 4 sl st all in the back loops of each sc of the previous row.

icleafwip7

Here is the finished row. Back loop stitches make a nice ridge on the leaf. Now you must turn the leaf for the next row.

icleafwip8

Work back loop sc in each st as shown here, moving towards the tip of the leaf. When you reach the tip, turn.

icleafwip9

Here the piece has been turned and the padding cord is picked up again. The next row of back loop sc is worked along the leaf, covering the padding cord along the edge of the leaf.

icleafwip10

The finished leaf is shown here. You must turn the piece and begin the next row and the next leaf.

icleafwip11

Here the first row of the next leaf is being made, with the padding cord and back loop sc stitches.

icleafwip12

But you don’t work all the edge of the first leaf. You continue by orking sc around the padding cord only, and not joined to the edge of the first leaf, as shown here. The pattern call for about 15 sc on the padding cord alone. Then turn.

icleafwip13

Here, the open loop design of the leaf is begun, dropping the padding cord. Make a sc in the first st, then ch 4, sk 3 sts, sc in next st. make at least 3 of these then end with ch 2, sk 3 sts, dc in next st. Then turn.

icleafwip14

The next row of the open loop design is made. Make 4-ch and sc in next loop, and so on, ending with ch 4, sc in first sc at the tip of the leaf. Then turn.

icleafwip15

Now you will pick up the padding cord again, working around it with 4 sc in each loop of the leaf. The Zhurnal MOD pattern calls for 2 sc, dc, 1 sc to make a slightly uneven edging.

icleafwip16

Here is the finished two leaves, one is solid and the other has open design.

icleafwip17

To shape the leaf, you need to occasionally pull the padding cord. To flatten the piece, you can put the piece on a flat surface, then press with one hand while gently but firmly pulling the padding cord with the other.

icleafwip18

Here is the leaf after pulling the padding cord.

icleafwip19

And here is another solid leaf made afterwards. It is up to you to improvise on the original pattern, making 2 or 3 or 4 or 5 leaves on each motif, varying in sizes.

ASSEMBLY

Wash and block the bolero before sewing on the motifs. Apart from the leaves, I made some Irish crochet flowers.

The Irish crochet motifs are arranged on the bolero and then sewn at the back. You can pin the motifs first and then turn the bolero inside out, then sew.

trippletimerwip9a trippletimerwip9b trippletimerwip9c trippletimerwip10

trippletimerfoback

Maja – No Pattern Dress

majafo1

Here is a dress I made without use of a crochet pattern. I found this construction method very useful because I do not have a tailor’s dummy or dress form. The method I used for Maja and Corinthia is to begin with motifs. In Corinthia the motifs lie over the waist. In Maja the motifs lie over the bust. The motifs begin the shape of the dress.

conrinthwipschematic

Once these motifs are made to the measurement you need, then it is easy to work upward (for the bodice, neckline and armholes) and downward (for the skirt) to construct the full dress. The three motifs make up the front of the dress bodice. There is no complicated shaping used in this dress. Crocheting the trim all around the neckline and all around the armholes is sufficient to make the shape. The trick is to use a basic stitch pattern that is flexible, for example, the trellis stitch, the trellis with picot stitch or the simple mesh.

majawip1

Maja is made up of two sections – Front and Back – and Front starts with three motifs. The three motifs in Maja lie directly over the bust and its width includes the armholes. The upper chest/neckline is added next, working upwards with left and right shoulders worked separately. After the front and back bodice are joined together, the skirt section is worked downwards, in the round.. The back is worked similarly without the motifs. There is no shaping other than the use of smaller hook at the waist.

majafo3

Maja is then decorated with Irish crochet motifs.

Maja is worked in Maharaja dyed silk from Silk Indian and 2.5mm hook.

Here, below, is the silk yarn. I wind the yarn into balls using a home-made yarn-winder.

Here are photos showing the basic dress in progress – starting with the 3 motifs that go at the front bodice of the dress. From there the top and lower section of the dress are crocheted.

Here are photos showing the Irish crochet motifs. I used worsted weight yarn of pink colour to match the silk as padding cord.

And here are the motifs being sewn onto the dress. And the finished dress below.

majawip10 majawip11

 

majafo2

 

Corinthia No Pattern Dress

corinthfo1

This is what I do when I make a dress without a pattern. I hope that this inspires you to do the same. And more.

Corinthia is an exercise in making a crocheted dress without the use of patterns and with only very minimal shaping. A basic dress is finished first then it is embellished with Irish crochet motifs.

conrinthwipschematic

Corinthia is worked in the round. Work starts at the waist: a strip of motifs joined together. Then the upper section is made up to the armpits, crocheting in rows with decrease at the front to shape the overlapping V-neckline. The V-neckline then commences separately towards the left and right Front shoulder. The low back and shoulder for the Back is added on separately. The skirt section is worked down from the waist, in rounds. There is no shaping as the motifs already narrow at the waist, gathers a bit then flares very slightly as work is done downwards.

corinthfo2

The upper part of the dress is worked in a trellis with picots stitch pattern. This is easy to shape. The lower part of the dress is worked in alternating rounds of sc, dc-ch-dc, dc, etc. – just to create an interesting mesh design.

MAKING THE BASIC DRESS

After the basic dress is finished, Irish crochet motifs are made and sewn onto the dress.

MAKING THE IRISH CROCHET MOTIFS

The hook I used for this project is 2.25mm and the yarn is 3-ply silk-acrylic and thicker 8-ply cotton yarn for the padding cord.

Some lessons:

Crochet dresses tend to stretch due to gravity. They stretch more with every washing and most specially when hang to dry. Stretch is prevented by drying flat and flat storage.

However, I tend to prefer hang dry because this allows the crochet fabric to dry faster. During the cooler and wet seasons, crochet fabric take longer to dry and have that unpleasant smell if they do not dry properly.

If you use a blocked gauge swatch, you can crochet the garment to a size approximating that of the washed finished garment taking into account stretch through washing and gravity. However, a blocked gauge can’t really account for gravity during wear.

So what I do is trial and error especially when using a yarn I am not familiar with. When I finish a basic garment (without the motifs), I try to make them shorter than the desired finished length. If the garment stretches after washing (and hanging to dry), I adjust the shoulder length. This is why I often leave tail ends undone until I am perfectly certain that the garment will no longer stretch.

Sewing a lining to the dress is another solution. The lining, especially when sewn at the seams, will keep the crochet fabric from stretching. I have not tried this before, though, so I have no experience to speak of of this solution.

Finishing stitches are also a solution. The finishing done along the neckline, armholes, and shoulders as well as the waist in some cases, provide the “back bone” for the dress. A good strong finishing/trim of solid tight stitches will have the least tendency to stretch.

Or – of course – you can use yarn that has the least tendency to stretch and change its shape due to gravity, washing or other. Cotton is one example I can think of. It has only a mild tendency to stretch.

One solution I have tried is to crochet the yarn together with polyester thread of matching colour, as polyester thread will not stretch.

Lantana Flower

lantana

Make the Lantana Flower as corsage or attach to a crocheted strap to make a necklace or hair ornament.

You will need: Crochet cotton thread size 8 or 10: bright pink, green, yellow, yellow-orange, pale pink, pale yellow.


lantana

Hook: Steel crochet hook size 1mm

Gauge: Gauge is not very important in this project

Terminology: Pattern is written using US crochet terminology

Pattern Instructions

Lantana Flower:

Center buds: With yellow-orange thread, *ch 7. Holding the ch taut with the thumb and middle finger of the left hand, thread over hook, point the hook towards you and swing it under the chain, catch the thread from under the chain and pull it up – there should now be three loops over the hook (one “over” completed). Make a total of 5 overs. YO and pull thread through all 11 loops on hook, ch 1 to tighten the loops into a knot, sl st in ch at base of knot (Clones Knot completed). Sl St down the ch. Rep from * to make 10 buds. Sl st in ch of first bud stem to make a ring, fasten off.

It can be tricky pulling the thread through all the loops on the hook. I have found that it is easier to do this if I push the overs near the shank of the hook as I make them. This will make the loops of the overs a bit bigger and more even so passing the hook and thread through them will be easier. So don’t work the overs too close to the tip of the hook. Also, when you are about to pull the thread through all the loops, relax your grip on the loops/overs, just let the tip of the hook do all the work of catching the thread and passing it through all the loops. I have found that there’s less chance of the hook getting caught in the overs if you release your grip on them.


Middle ring: With pale yellow thread, *ch 7. Sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each ch (first stem made); rep from * to make 10 stems. Sl st in ch of first stem to make a ring, fasten off.

With yellow thread, attach with sc to tip of first stem. *[Ch 3, sl st in sc (picot made)] 5 times, ch 3, sc in tip of second stem, rep from * on 4 stems. Fasten off and continue putting picots on the remaining 6 stems this time with pale yellow thread.

Outer ring 1: With pale pink thread, make 10 stems as in middle ring. Fasten off.

Make picots as in middle ring using bright pink thread. Fasten off.

Outer ring 2: With pale pink thread, make 12 stems as in middle ring. Fasten off.

Make picots as in middle ring using bright pink thread. Fasten off.

Assembly: With floss thread or matching color thread, sew center buds, middle ring and two outer rings together.

Lantana Leaves: (Make 3)

With green thread, ch 18.

Rnd 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc in next ch, hdc in next 2 ch, dc in next 3 ch, ch 2, sk 2 ch, dc in next 4 ch, hdc in next 2 ch, sc in next ch, 4 sc in last ch, sc in next ch on other side of leaf, hdc in next 2 ch, dc in next 4 ch, ch 2, sk 2 ch, dc in next 3 ch, hdc in next 2 ch, sc in next 2 ch, 3 sc in tip of leaf to turn to other side.

Rnd 2: Sc in next 2 sc, hdc in next 2 hdc, dc in next 3 dc, ch 3, sk 2 ch, dc in next 4 dc, hdc in next 2 hdc, sc in next 2 sc, 2 sc in each of next 2 sc to turn to other side of leaf, sc in next 2 sc, hdc in next 2 hdc, dc in next 4 dc, ch 3, sk 2 ch, dc in next 3 dc, hdc in next 2 hdc, sc in next 2 sc, 2 sc in sc at tip of leaf.

Rnd 3: Working in back loops only, sc in each st all around leaf with 2 sc in st at tips of leaf to turn. Fasten off.

lantana

Assembly and finishing: Using photo as guide, put the three leaves together side by side in fan-like arrangement and sew together. Sew leaves to flower cluster. Weave in all ends.

Bougainvillea Flowers

A cluster of Bougainvillea Flowers with white hat veiling. Use as corsage or hair ornament.
A cluster of Bougainvillea Flowers with white hat veiling. Use as corsage or hair ornament.

 

This is my own crochet rendition of the beautiful flower bougainvillea. I worked very hard in making this pattern so it is very special to me. I made this when I was learning Irish Crochet. I made the white bougainvillea decorated with white hat veiling to wear as hair ornament.

A note about the bougainvillea: The actual flower of a bougainvillea plant is very small and is often white. However, each cluster of three flowers is surrounded by three (or six) bracts of bright colors including pink, lilac, red, yellow, orange and white. A bract is a modified or specialized leaf associated with a plant’s reproductive structure. Bracts are often, but not always, visually different from the actual leaves of a plant.

Each bougainvillea cluster in this pattern consists of three white bracts bearing three white flowers with green stems; and three green bracts sewn at the base of the three white bracts. Two bougainvillea clusters are made. Four green leaves are then sewn at the base of the two bougainvillea clusters.

The crocheted Bougainvillea Flowers worn as hair ornament.
The crocheted Bougainvillea Flowers worn as hair ornament.

 

Yarn: White glitter crochet cotton thread size 8 or 10
White crochet cotton thread size 8 or 10
Green crochet cotton thread size 8 or 10

Hook: 1mm

Notions: Sewing needle and thread

Instructions:

Bract and Flower: (Make 6 to make two clusters)

With white glitter thread, ch 13.

Row 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc in next 2 ch, hdc in next 3 ch, dc in next 3 ch, tr in next ch, 2 tr in next ch, 5 dc in next ch to turn to other side of bract, 2 tr in next ch, 1 tr in next ch, dc in next 3 ch, hdc in next 3 ch, sc in next 3 ch, 3 sc in ch at tip of bract to turn to other side of bract.

Row 2: Sc in next 3 sc, hdc in next 3 hdc, dc in next 2 dc, 2 dc in next dc, 2 tr in each of next 3 tr, 2 dc in each of next 2 dc, dc in dc, 2 dc in each of next 2 dc, 2 tr in each of next 3 tr, 2 dc in next dc, dc in next 2 dc, hdc in next 3 hdc, sc in next 4 sc, 2 sc in sc at tip of bract, ch 1.

Run sl st down the midrib of the bract.
Run sl st down the midrib of the bract.

 

Row 3: (Midrib of bract, refer to photograph above) Insert hook in first sc at tip of bract, pull thread through sc and loop on hook (sl st made); make 17 more sl sts down the middle of the bract, keeping the sl sts fairly loose so that crocheting the flower stem on it later will not be difficult. At base of bract, ch 2. Fasten off.

To make the flower/bud stem, make the sc by inserting the hook in both loops of the sl st made along the midrib of the bract.
To make the flower/bud stem, make the sc by inserting the hook in both loops of the sl st made along the midrib of the bract.

 

Flower Stem: With light green thread, attach to base of bract with sc in ch. Insert hook in both loops of the first sl st along the bract’s midrib, pull thread through, YO, pull thread through both loops on hook (sc just made); make 7 more sc in next 7 sl st along the bract’s midrib. (Refer to photograph above).
Ch 8; holding the ch taut with the thumb and middle finger of the left hand, YO, point the hook towards you and swing it under the chain, catch the thread from under the chain and pull it up – there should now be three loops over the hook (one “over” completed). Make a total of 4 overs. YO and pull thread through all 9 loops on hook, (lightly push the loops upward and pull the thread to tighten the loops into a neat ball), ch 1 to tighten the loops into a knot, sl st in ch at base of knot (Clones Knot completed).

(It can be tricky pulling the thread through all the loops on the hook. I have found that it is easier to do this if I push the overs near the shank of the hook as I make them. This will make the loops of the overs a bit bigger and more even so passing the hook and thread through them will be easier. So don’t work the overs too close to the tip of the hook. Also, when you are about to pull the thread through all the loops, relax your grip on the loops/overs, just let the tip of the hook do all the work of catching the thread and passing it through all the loops. I have found that there’s less chance of the hook getting caught in the overs if you release your grip on them.)

8 sc around the ch (be careful not to twist the ch), then sl st in sc at the point where stem and bract connect and down to end of stem, ch 1, fasten off.
Flower: With white thread, attach with sc at the base of the Clones Knot. [Ch 3, sl st in loop of sc (picot made)] 5 times to make 5 ch-3 picots around the Clones Knot. Fasten off.

Assembly: You should make 6 bracts to make 2 bougainvillea clusters (there are 3 bracts in a cluster). Sew together along the base of each bract at the back, refer to photograph below.

Sewing the bracts together at the base.
Sewing the bracts together at the base.

 

Sewing the bracts together at the base.
Sewing the bracts together at the base.

 

Green Bracts: (Make 6)

With green thread, ch 13 and follow instructions for making bracts. Do not make stem or flower, just the bracts.

Assembly: Sew three green bracts underneath each of the bougainvillea clusters, alternating with the white glitter bracts.

Leaves: (Make 4)

With light green thread, ch 13.

Row 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook, sc in next 2 ch, hdc in next 3 ch, dc in next 3 ch, tr in next ch, 2 tr in next ch, 5 dc in next ch to turn to other side of leaf, 2 tr in next ch, 1 tr in next ch, dc in next 3 ch, hdc in next 3 ch, sc in next 3 ch, 3 sc in ch at tip of bract to turn to other side of leaf.

Row 2: Sc in next 3 sc, hdc in next 2 hdc, ch 2, sk 2 dc, dc in next dc, ch 2, sk 2 tr, 2 tr in next 2 tr, 2 dc in each of next 5 dc, 2 tr in each of next 3 tr, ch 2, sk 2 dc, dc in next dc, ch 2, sk 2 hdc, hdc in next hdc, sc in next 4 sc, 2 sc in sc at tip of leaf, ch 1.

Row 3: Sc in each st to ch-2 sp, 2 sc in ch-2 sp, sc in dc, 2 sc in next ch-2 sp, sc in next 6 sts, 2 sc in each of next 10 sts, sc in next 6 sts, 2 sc in ch-2 sp, sc in dc, 2 sc in next ch-2 sp, sc in remaining sts to tip of leaf. Make 2 sc in st at tip of leaf, ch 1.

Row 4: Insert hook in first sc at tip of leaf, pull thread through sc and loop on hook (sl st made); make 17 or 18 more sl sts down the middle of the leaf. At base of leaf, ch 2. Fasten off.

Assembly: Assemble the 4 leaves in an alternating order then sew together. Sew the base of this leaf arrangement to the bougainvillea cluster with the green bracts. Then sew the second bougainvillea cluster at the base of the arrangement of 4 leaves.

The bougainvillea flowers made in red.
The bougainvillea flowers made in red.