Loopy Curly Crochet Brooch

As promised here is another simple but cute crochet brooch to make for Christmas!

This is the flower I added to a kokeshi doll made for a customer who lives all the way across the ocean in Malta!  hmmm...the flower looks a bit flat in this picture..LOL.

The Loopy Curly flower is made in 3 separate pieces sewn together.

Loopy Curly Crochet Brooch

Materials : I used a sports weight yarn with a 3/0 (2.3 mm) crochet hook. For the Kokeshi Doll, I used double strands of crochet thread.

  1. Flower Layer 1 : Chain 6, slip stitch in starting chain to form a circle.  {Chain 10, single crochet in starting circle} 10 times. End. Set aside
  2. Flower Layer 2 : Chain 6, slip stitch in starting chain to form a circle.  {Chain 15, single crochet in starting circle} 17 times. End. Set aside. 
  3. Flower Layer 3: Chain 6, slip stitch in starting chain to form a circle.  {Chain 20, single crochet in starting circle} 20 times. End, leaving a about a 10" tail. Set aside.
  4. Layer the three pieces atop of each.  Thread 10" tail from flower layer 3 to sew layers together.
  5. Embellish the brooch as you wish : rick rack, ribbons, cotton lace, etc. Attach to back.
  6. Cut a circle out of felt and sew to back of flower; sew on brooch pin.
Happy Day

    The "C" Word

    Hello Summer!  It's nice to see you.  Long, lazy days.  TV reruns.  Crowded malls.  Garage sales.  Tank tops.  Bored kids.  Shave ice : local speak for Snow cones.  Ahhh, but you'll be in past soon enough; giving way to the cool winds of fall and the inevitable mad dash to Christmas.  There, I said it...the "C" word.  Oh let's not be in denial; for as soon as summer is at close, Walmart will be stripping school supplies off its shelves to stock oodles and oodles of Halloween mish mash.  Yup, it happens every year like clock work.

    So I thought to myself, this is a perfect time to get ahead with a few Christmas gift ideas with one day craft projects.  To start are these cute crochet brooches that you can make in no time at all; perhaps while watching reruns of Hawaii Five-O or while the kids are splashing about in the pool or stuck in the airport.

    This lovely crochet roll brooch is soooo simple, a dozen or two will take no time at all! 

    First a word...this is a brooch; no exact fitting required so the choice of yarn and needle is all yours.  I used a sports weight yarn with a 3/0 (2.3 mm) crochet hook.  I think a little thicker yarn (one that requires a size 4/0 to 5/0 needle) is better to give the leaves a bit more structure.

    Helpful to have on hand, is a yarn needle to hide loose ends and to sew pieces together. The eye is large enough to thread yarns and the tip is not as sharp as a sewing needle.

    Zakka Inspired Crochet Roll Flower Brooch Pattern

    • Row 1 : Chain 41, single crochet in 5th chain from hook.  { Chain 3, skip 1 chain, single crochet in next chain}, repeat. [the 'single crochet in the 5th chain' forms a loop that you will use to finish the 2nd row]
    •  Row 2 : Chain 4 (this is later referred to as the Chain 4 loop), (double crochet, chain 1, double crochet, chain 1) in lst loop to form a cluster.  {Double crochet, chain 1, double crochet, chain 1} in remaining loops, ending with a chain 3 (this is later referred to as the Chain 3 loop) then single crochet in the loop formed by the chain 5 step in row 1

    • Row 3 : Change color to form an edging, if you'd like.   Chain 3, single crochet in the 'chain 3 loop'.  Chain 3, single crochet in the 1st space between the 2 double crochet in the prior row.  {Chain 3, single crochet in the next single crochet space}, repeat, ending with chain 3, single crochet in the 'chain 4 loop', chain 3, single crochet in the lst chain in row 1; end. Leave a 12" tail.

     Now for the roll : Gently roll the crochet piece to form your flower.

    Thread loose end through needle. Turn your flower over and secure by sewing across the bottom; being sure to catch the bottom loops from all the rolled layers.

    Continue sewing around the bottom of the flower to secure.

    Now for the Leaves
    • Chain 10, single crochet in 2nd chain from hook. { half double crochet in next chain, double crochet in next five chain, half double crochet, single crochet in last chain}. Chain 2, single crochet in 1st chain on opposite side of chain 10. {repeat}, ending with slip stitch to 1st chain in 1st row to from pointed end, leaving 5" tail. Make 2.  Position leaves on the flower bottom and secure. 
    Final Steps : Adding the Bottom and Brooch Pin
    • Row 1 : Crochet a 'wa' with 6 single crochet(sc) or use this alternative method: chain 2, 6 single crochet in 2nd chain from hook, join to form a circle.  
    • Row 2 : Chain 3, 2 double crochet in 1st chain (this forms a 3 double crochet cluster).  {3 double crochet in next chain} repeat ending with slip stitch on top of chain 3. You will have 6 clusters.
    • Row 3 : Chain 1, single crochet in 1st chain, sc in next ch, 2 sc in next chain. {single crochet in next 2 chain, 2 single crochet in next chain}, repeat, ending with slip stitch to 1st stitch. Sew bottom to back of flower.  Add brooch pin.

    Have fun playing with this pattern ;)
    - use different yarn types, colors
    - instead of crocheting leaves, add lace and ribbons
    - or? share your ideas! I'd love to hear from you ~~

    I'll share another crochet flower brooch pattern on my next post...till then...

    happy day


    I can hardly believe what I'm writing....one of my projects is featured in this oh so lovely book, ZAKKA STYLE!  Pinch me, please, but not too hard for I bruise easily.

    The book, the work of the amazing Rashida Coleman-Hale of i heart linen, features 24 zakka projects from different zakka artists/crafters. C&T publishing unveiled this book along with others in their Fall catalog at the recent Quilt Market show. 

    The book is destined to be out in the market in December 2011.  Be on the look out!

    A Trip to the Pier

    Yesterday we drove to the windward side of the island, taking the freeway, the Pali highway, then through tunnels burrowed into the mountains. When the kids were kiddies, a game played was to see who could hold their breath until the end of the tunnel.  No blackouts, just 'nanni nanni boo boos' for the losers!

    I love this side of the island, where mountain greens, sky blues, and sea glass converge into a visual fiesta of mother nature's best dress.  In fact, President Obama likes it here too, taking up residence in an abode by the sea while on vacations back home in the islands. 

    We stopped at the Heeia Kea Pier General Store and Deli for lunch, a charming place with picnic tables out front; surrounded by the ocean, people fishing off the pier, kayakers, and boaters.  A most wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon. I think my mom, Yoshiko, wanted to spend more time here to breathe in the salty air, to watch folks at play, and to remember my papa who loved to fish. I want to bring her back to the pier, perhaps to fish and eat homemade bentos..that would be a good thing.

    teriyaki beef sandwich on flatbread with fresh island veggies ... so ONO : local speak for yummy
    But all food and no play is hardly a perfect day for me.  I messed around with another design...this time, a bear bag with a drawstring top.  I originally started to make another rabbit bag but somehow it turned into a bear.  These kiddie bags are fun to make, albeit it takes a bit of time to prepare the pieces.

    One of my biggest challenge in creating new designs or playing around with designs inspired by my many Japanese craft books is the lack of fabric. Oh, I have a fabric stash but it seems I never have 'THE ONE'.  I am tempted to buy, buy, buy...but cash flow is a problem so for the most part I just have to make due with what I have, although I do want some tasty linens that I spotted on the web. sigh.  As god is my witness, I will one day have all the fabric without want. (Yeah, like that's ever going to happen.)

    happy day

    Meet My Mom

    Meet my mom, Yoshiko. She looks so sweet and lovely in this photo...HAH.  I would post a current pic but trust me, it would scare the little ones. She once sang to a baby and the po' thing cried and cried out of fright. Yup, she's that scary.

    I visit my mom on the weekend to play scrabble with her.  She can whop my butt with 300+ scores...her secrets? .... always blocking me from using the triple word score spaces even if it means making only 6 points herself, spelling words backwards, and using a word that she's 'pretty sure' is in the dictionary even after I tell her there is no such word.

    Oh I guess if I really think hard I could think of something nice to say about her...ummmmm... Well, as I've told you all before in a post or two, my mom LOVES to sew.  I love that she has sewing memories...of sewing Shirley Temple style dresses for my sister, buying yards and yards of khaki to sew school pants for my brothers, drafting patterns for dresses she admired in stores, sewing patch quilts to sell at the swap meet, sewing clothes for her 'special' grand daughter ....  She's feels lonely without her sewing machine; it having been skirted away by a little borrower.  Although not sewing for years, the love still brews within. Okay, I guess she's still sweet...but I'll hold off on the lovely...hahaha.

    As for my own sewing memories, I thank you all for being a part of this time in my life when sewing has become a big part of me.

    I worked on a couple pouches this week; again trying out one new design.

    I call this one my White Rabbit  fold over pouch; made with a brown linen fabric and a cotton linen fabric covered with the White Rabbit and friends

    And this one is a new pouch design, with a rounded top and tucks at the bottom.  It was my first time sewing a zipper in a semi circle form; doing a test run on another fabric before using this fabric from Japan.

    I broke 2 sewing needles sewing on the zipper! that really sucked! It was a good thing I recently bought new needles or I would have shed a tear or two.


    An Engineer or Crafter?

    kokeshi doll crochet hook cozy
    This is my Kokeshi Doll Crochet Hook cozy; one of my earlier zakka designs.  I decided to rework the pattern, a pattern that had lost its integrity over time from too many tweaks each time used. 

    I felt like an engineer, fitting the different components together; the main piece, the facing for the face, the face itself, the pockets for the crochet hook, and the lining.  My goals were to develop a process to minimize steps and to achieve a more consistent end product (see what I mean by being an engineer? heh).  And by golly I think I finally got it, making 4 of these cozies over the last few days with little problem. 

    I'm tired but happy. 

    in etsy shop now

    A SWEET Sewing Tool

    Can you guess what this tool is?  It's an elastic threader, found in a Japanese knick knack shop similar to Daiso.  The store sticker labeled the threader as a seam ripper.  Took me a while to figure what it was;  standing and staring at the package, deciphering the photo, because it did not look at all like a seam ripper!

    I am so glad I bought it; making it so much easier to thread the cords for my kawaii bento bags.

    Here how it works ~

    Secure the end of the cord by pulling through the metal loop and pushing that red plastic thing up against the cord.

    Pull the wire through the drawstring casing. That's it. Beats using a safety pin!
    How sweet is that?