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32+ Free Handmade Gift Ideas for Home | Crochet – Knit – Sew

33+ Free Handmade Gift Ideas for Home via Underground Crafter - collage

Welcome to the fourth roundup of the Christmas in July Make Along! This week’s theme is the home. I’ve included home decor ideas for the holidays as well as handmade gift ideas for the home. I’ve searched the web to find you 32 handmade gift ideas, including 14 free crochet patterns, 12 free knitting patterns, and 7 free sewing patterns. If you still need more inspiration, I’ve included links to several more roundups with 160 more ideas!

This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links. All photos are © the respective designers and publishers and are used with permission.

  • If you’re just hearing about the Christmas in July Make Along, you can find out more here. 29 bloggers have teamed up to bring you 31 days of handmade gift ideas and the chance to win one of 17 great prizes!
  • If you’d like to chat with other crocheters, join the Underground Crafters Facebook group.
  • If you’d like regular email reminders during the Make Along, sign up for the Underground Crafter newsletter.
  • Use this button below on your Ravelry project pages or elsewhere on social media. Right click (on desktop) or tap and hold (on mobile) to save.
2019 Christmas in July Make Along with Underground Crafter - text on a white background with pine cones

33 Handmade Gift Ideas for Home

Roundup by Underground Crafter

33+ Free Handmade Gift Ideas for Home via Underground Crafter - collage

14 Free Crochet Patterns

These crochet patterns include pillows, bunting and decorations, baskets, a rug, a scrubby, and a blanket.

33+ Free Handmade Gift Ideas for Home via Underground Crafter - collage of crochet patterns

Left column, from top to bottom:

  • Pinewood Pillow by E’Claire Makery: This highly textured pillow makes a perfect plush holiday gift.
  • Ho Ho Merlot Bottle Boot by Hooked by Kati: This adorable project is a unique twist on a wine bag.
  • Guardian Angel by Oombawka Design: This would make a great tree-topper or home décor gift for friends or family who like to decorate for the holidays.
  • Quick Gift Scrubby by City Farmhouse Studio: This durable scrubby is made with two strands of yarn held together.

Center column, from top to bottom:

  • Boho Ornaments by The Purple Poncho: These fun and festive ornaments can be hung as bunting year round.
  • Festive Bunting by Thoresby Cottage: This simple pattern can be easily adjusted for other holidays by cutting different letters from the felt.
  • Mossy Oaks Rug by Jessie At Home: This plush, textured rug is crocheted with two strands of yarn held together.
  • Herringbone Square Basket Set by Yarn + Chai: This set of modern nesting baskets uses plastic canvas for stability.

Right column, from top to bottom:

12 Free Knitting Patterns

These knitting patterns include table settings, a blanket, a pillow, a pouf, a spa gift, and a set of plant cozies. Shown clockwise from top left corner.

33+ Free Handmade Gift Ideas for Home via Underground Crafter - collage of knitting patterns
  • Stockinette Plant Cozy by Brome Fields: This is one in a series of patterns for potted plant covers including Jute, Herringbone, Lattice, and Garter stitch variations.
  • Winter Pillow by Stana’s Critters, Etc. for KnitPicks: This classic yet modern pillow is a great introduction to stranded colorwork.
  • Pillow with Aran Triangle via AllFreeKnitting: This textured pillow would make a great gift, or knit it in holiday colors to decorate.
  • Utensil Stockings by Craft Bits via AllFreeKnitting: Add some festivity to the holiday table with these cute stockings.
  • Taos Lap Blanket by Two of Wands: This Southwestern-inspired blanket makes a wonderful gift.
  • Cable Knit Soap Sachet via AllFreeKnitting: These textured soap sachets make a great addition to a spa gift.
  • Peppermint Drink Coaster via AllFreeKnitting: The pattern for these festive coasters includes instructions for knitting with a knitting spool loom or double pointed needles.
  • Pouf with Pizzazz via AllFreeKnitting: Let your guests put their feet up after the holiday meal on this handmade pouf!

7 Free Sewing Patterns

These sewing patterns include pillows, napkins, and reusable gift wrap. Shown clockwise from top left corner.

33+ Free Handmade Gift Ideas for Home via Underground Crafter - collage of sewing patterns
  • A Kids’ Pillow Bed by It’s Always Autumn: This quick project is an easy and affordable alternative to children’s pillow bed/chairs.
  • Penguin Mat for Kids by Morena’s Corner for Fairfield World: This fun project includes a video tutorial.
  • Color Block Pillow by Hooked for Life: This simple pillow pattern can be made in seasonal colors for modern holiday décor.
  • Reusable Gift Wrap by Try It Like It Create It: This is a gift that keeps on giving and is perfect for eco-conscious friends and family members.
  • Patchwork Peace on Earth Pillows by 5 Little Monsters: These festive pillows combine patchwork and embroidery.
  • Pizza Pillow by Always Expect Moore: This whimsical project makes a great gift for kids, teens, or any pizza-loving adult.
  • Stamp and Stitch Christmas Napkins by Ann Butler Designs: These simple, low-sew napkins are easy to customize with different stamps or fabric inks.

Still need more inspiration for handmade gifts for home? Get 160 more ideas from these roundups!

  • 30 Free Handmade Winter Holiday Pillow Patterns and Tutorials via Fairfield World
22 Handmade Gift Ideas for the Home via Underground Crafter | Find your next project in this roundup of crochet, knitting, sewing, embroidery, and other craft projects for the home, including pillows, table settings, towels, storage baskets, and more!
32 Handmade Patterns and Tutorials To Make Great Gifts for the Home via Underground Crafter
24 Free Crochet Patterns for the Home via Underground Crafter
2019 Hygge Home Crochet Along with CAL Central and Red Heart Yarns
24 Free Knitting Patterns for Dishcloths and Washcloths via Underground Crafter
Little Dots Coaster, free crochet pattern in Wool and the Gang Shiny Happy Cotton yarn by Underground Crafter | Get this easy peasy coaster pattern and find more inspiration in the roundup for 18 free crochet and knitting patterns for winter white décor.

Finishing Touches Knit Along with KAL Corner – Parts 3 & 4

KAL Corner, the knit along group started by me, Pia from Stitches n Scraps, and Joanita from Creative Crochet Workshop, is back for the third and fourth parts of the Finishing Touches Knit Along! We’ll be sharing 12 more free knitting patterns by eight designers for the perfect finishing touch! We’ll be focusing on the home and then on little gifts.

This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links.

This is the main post for this knit along. Read on for more details including:

  • How the Finishing Touches Knit Along (Parts 3 & 4) Works,
  • How To Join the Finishing Touches Knit Along (Parts 3 & 4),
  • Finishing Touches Knit Along (Parts 3 & 4) Schedule,
  • Finishing Touches KAL (Parts 3 & 4) End-of-KAL Giveaway Prizes, and
  • Enter the Finishing Touches KAL (Parts 3 & 4) End-of-KAL Giveaway.

How the Finishing Touches Knit Along (Parts 3 & 4) Works

Finishing Touches Knit Along with KAL Corner

I’ve teamed up with KAL Corner, the group founded by me, Pia from Stitches n Scraps, and Joanita from Creative Crochet Workshop, and some of our favorite knitting designers to bring you 24 free knitting patterns for the perfect finishing touch!

Every other Thursday December 12, 2019, we’ll share a free knitting pattern. Lion Brand has generously provided us with yarn for this KAL, so all of the patterns will be made with Lion Brand yarn.

To keep things interesting, every quarter we’ll have a new theme and a new set of giveaway prizes. Part 3 of the KAL is all about the perfect finishing touches for the home, and Part 4 of the KAL is all about the perfect little gift. We also have a great prize from Lion Brand!

How To Join the Finishing Touches Knit Along (Parts 3 & 4)

  • Sign up for our newsletter to get an email when a new pattern is released.
  • You can join in by knitting the patterns as you have time.
  • By the end of the KAL, you’ll have up to 24 knitted projects. You’ll also have the chance to win great prizes!
  • Share your progress and post pictures of your finished projects. Tag your projects and posts #KALCorner on all social media.
  • If you’d like to chat with other knitters, join the KAL Corner Facebook group or visit this thread in the Underground Crafter Ravelry group
  • Use the button below on Ravelry or elsewhere social media. Right click (on desktop) or tap and hold (on mobile) to save.
Finishing Touches Knit Along with KAL Corner

Finishing Touches Knit Along (Parts 3 & 4) Schedule

Each participating Finishing Touches KAL designer will create a free knitting pattern for the home (in Part 3) or for little gifts (in Part 4) using Lion Brand yarn. This post will be updated as each pattern goes live.

Part 3 Schedule (Home)

Part 4 Schedule (Little Gifts)

Finishing Touches KAL (Parts 3 & 4) End-of-KAL Giveaway Prize

We’ve teamed up with Lion Brand to bring a wonderful prize to a lucky winner!

Lion Brand is providing one winner with a choice of colors for 4 skeins of Go for Faux yarn. Show your support by following Lion Brand on Website | Facebook | Instagram.

Continue reading to learn how to enter the giveaway for your chance to win!

Enter the Finishing Touches KAL (Parts 3 & 4) End-of-KAL Giveaway

  • This is the end-of-KAL giveaway for the 2019 Finishing Touches Knit Along (Parts 3 & 4). The knit along is hosted by KAL Corner and the giveaway is organized by Underground Crafter.
  • Enter the giveaway using any of the options on the Rafflecopter widget below by 11:59 p.m. Eastern on Monday, December 30, 2019.
  • One winner will be chosen from the entries at random to win a prize from Lion Brand listed above.
  • Winner will be contacted approximately one week after the entries close. Winner will have two weeks to claim their prizes. If winner do not respond within two weeks, prize will be awarded to alternate.
  • By entering this giveaway, you are agreeing to share your contact information with Rafflecopter and/or Underground Crafter. You can read the Rafflecopter Privacy Policy here and the Underground Crafter Privacy Policy here to understand how this information is used.
  • The names of winners will be made available in list form by request from Underground Crafter.
  • This giveaway is open worldwide, except where prohibited by law.Don’t forget to join the fun in the KAL Corner Facebook group or in this thread in the Underground Crafter Ravelry group.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Crochet Bobble Bag Pattern: Caribbean Sunset Bag

Caribbean Sunset Bag, free crochet pattern in Paintbox Yarns Chunky Pots and Simply Chunky yarns by Underground Crafter | flat lay photo of textured, striped bobble crochet bag on faux brick background with Frida Kahlo shoes and dangling stone necklace

The Caribbean Sunset Bag is a textured, bobble crochet bag pattern that is the perfect size for bringing with you on your next adventure!

This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links. Yarn for this project was generously provided by Paintbox Yarns. Camera and vinyl backdrop were generously provided by B&H Photo Video and Pro Audio.

Last year, I was contacted by Crochet Now, a British crochet magazine, about being profiled in an upcoming issue. My Designer Sketchbook was included in Issue 41, along with the pattern for the Caribbean Sunset Bag.

It was kind of exciting, but then there was a sad part, too. You see, the folks at Crochet Now didn’t love the pictures I took of the bag, so they asked me to mail the sample to the UK for photography. Looking back on my pictures, I can see what they didn’t like. The lighting is not great and the composition is over the top in some of them. The backgrounds are competing with the bag for attention, and dulling out the colors of the beautiful (and coordinating!) Paintbox Yarns Simply Chunky and Paintbox Yarns Chunky Pots yarns.

How To Photograph Handmade Crafts with Flat Lay by Underground Crafter - flat lay disasters collage

The problem was that once the bag returned home and the issue went live, I realized I didn’t love THEIR pictures of the bag either. (You can see their pictures on the pattern’s Ravelry page.) This whole experience inspired me to go on a journey of photographic improvement. You can read my 10 tips for how to photograph handmade crafts with flat lay here, or watch the highlights video with my top 5 tips below. (If you can’t see the video, you can watch it on YouTube.)

I hope you love the pictures I took of the Caribbean Sunset Bag this time around. I think the pictures let the bobbles pop and the yarn colors shine. Here are a few of my favorites.

Here’s one getting ready for a fabric painting project with Plaid craft paints.

Caribbean Sunset Bag, free crochet pattern in Paintbox Yarns Chunky Pots and Simply Chunky yarns by Underground Crafter | flat lay photo of textured, striped bobble crochet bag on faux brick background with craft paint supplies

And, here’s another for a planning day – just my tablet, erasable pens, and a crochet hook for swatching.

Caribbean Sunset Bag, free crochet pattern in Paintbox Yarns Chunky Pots and Simply Chunky yarns by Underground Crafter | flat lay photo of textured, striped bobble crochet bag on faux brick background with tablet, crochet hook, and pens

Here’s one with a pair of cute earrings… because you can never have too many of those, right?

Caribbean Sunset Bag, free crochet pattern in Paintbox Yarns Chunky Pots and Simply Chunky yarns by Underground Crafter | flat lay photo of textured, striped bobble crochet bag on faux brick background with tablet, pen, and earrings

And, here’s what my bags are usually filled with – yarn and a hook for my next project!

Caribbean Sunset Bag, free crochet pattern in Paintbox Yarns Chunky Pots and Simply Chunky yarns by Underground Crafter | flat lay photo of textured, striped bobble crochet bag on faux brick background with crochet hook and yarn

My very favorite picture is the one with the Frida Kahlo shoes and the necklace shown at the top of this post and right before the pattern. Which one do you like the best?

If you make your own Caribbean Sunset Bag project, I’d love to see it! Share your progress and questions by tagging me on Facebook as @Underground Crafter, Instragram as @ucrafter, or Twitter as @ucrafter. You can also share a picture in the Underground Crafters Facebook group. Sign up for my weekly newsletter and get a coupon code for your choice of one of my premium patterns and other subscriber goodies. Plus, you’ll never miss one of my free patterns again!

Add the Caribbean Sunset Bag to your favorites or queue on Ravelry.

Underground Crafter on Ravelry

Caribbean Sunset Bag

Crochet Bobble Bag Pattern by Underground Crafter

Caribbean Sunset Bag, free crochet pattern in Paintbox Yarns Chunky Pots and Simply Chunky yarns by Underground Crafter | flat lay photo of textured, striped bobble crochet bag on faux brick background with Frida Kahlo shoes and dangling stone necklace

This textured bag is the perfect size for bringing your project on your next adventure.

Finished Size

  • 14.75” (37.5 cm) wide x 10” (25.5 cm) tall with 15” (38 cm) straps.

Materials

  • Paintbox Yarns Simply Chunky yarn (100% acrylic, 3.5 oz/100 g, 149 yd/136 m) – 2 skeins in 333 Marine Blue (CA), or approximately 230 yd (210.5 m) in any bulky weight yarn.
  • Paintbox Yarns Chunky Pots yarn (100% acrylic, 7.1 oz/200 g, 297 yd/272 m) –skein in PP09 Paradise (CB), or approximately 190 yd (174 m) in any bulky weight yarn.
  • US I-9/5.5 mm crochet hook, or any size needed to obtain correct gauge.
  • Yarn needle.

Gauge

  • 14 sts in pattern = 4” (10 cm) across. Exact gauge is not critical for this project.

Abbreviations Used in This Pattern

  • bob – 3-rep bobble – [Yo, insert hook in st, yo and draw up a loop, yo and draw through 2 loops] 3 times in same st, yo and draw through all 4 loops on hook. Stitches n Scraps has a helpful tutorial for the 4-rep version of this stitch here.
  • CA – Color A
  • CB – Color B
  • ch – chain
  • rep – repeat
  • sc – single crochet
  • sl st – slip stitch
  • st(s) – stitch(es)
  • yo – yarn over
  • * Repeat instructions after asterisk as indicated.
  • [] Repeat instructions between brackets as indicated.

Pattern Notes

Pattern Instructions

Front Panel

  • With CA, ch 53, or any multiple of 7 sts, + 4 sts.
  • Row 1: Turn, skip 1 ch, sc in next st and in each st across. (52 sts)
  • Row 2: Turn, ch 1, sc in first st and in each st across.
  • Row 3: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 4: (Right Side) Turn, ch 1, sc in first st, *bob in next st, sc in next 6 sts; rep from * across to last 2 sts, bob, sc.
  • Row 5: Rep Row 2, changing to CB in last yo of last sc.
  • Row 6: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 7: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 8: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 9: Rep Row 2, changing to CA in last yo of last sc.
  • Rep Rows 4-9, 5 more times.Fasten off CB. Rep Rows 4-5 once more, do not change color.

Front Panel Edging

  • Round 1: Turn, rep Row 2, turn to work along short edge, ch 2, sc in side of each Row across to foundation chain, ch 2, turn to work along foundation chain, sc in underside of each ch, ch 2, turn to work along short edge, sc in side of each Row across working over yarn tails, ch 2, join with sl st to first sc. Fasten off.

Back Panel

  • With CA, ch 53, or any multiple of 7 sts, + 4 sts.
  • Row 1: Turn, skip 1 ch, sc in next st and in each st across. (52 sts)
  • Row 2: Turn, ch 1, sc in first st and in each st across.
  • Row 3: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 4: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 5: Rep Row 2, changing to CB in last yo of last sc.
  • Row 6: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 7: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 8: Rep Row 2.
  • Row 9: Rep Row 2, changing to CA in last yo of last sc.
  • Rep Rows 4-9, 5 more times.Fasten off CB. Rep Rows 4-5 once more, do not change color.

Back Panel Edging

  • Rep instructions for Front Panel Edging on Back Panel.

First Strap

  • With Right Side facing, join CA with sl st to sixteenth st at top of Front Panel.
  • Row 1: Ch 1, sc in same st, sc in next 4 sts. (5 sts)
  • Row 2: Turn, ch 1, sc in first st and in each st across.
  • Rep Row 2 until strap measures approximately 15” (38 cm) long. Fasten off with long yarn tail, approximately 12” (30.5 cm) for joining.
  • Skip next 12 sts at top of Front Panel. Being careful not to twist, thread yarn needle with long yarn tail and sew end of strap to next 5 sts on Front Panel.

Second Strap

  • With Right Side facing, join CA with sl st to sixteenth st at top of Back Panel.
  • Repeat as for First Strap, but join to Back Panel.

Assembly

  • With Wrong Sides facing and working through center loops of both Panels on Right Side, join CA with sl st to corner ch-2 space. Join the Panels together with a single crochet seam (see Pattern Notes) as follows: sc in same space, [sc in each st across to next corner ch-2 space, 3 sc in corner ch-2 space] twice, sc in each st across to corner ch-2 space, sc in ch-2 space, fasten off.

Finishing

  • With yarn needle, weave in ends.
© 2019 by Marie Segares (Underground Crafter). This pattern is for personal use only. You may use the pattern to make unlimited items for yourself, for charity, or to give as gifts. You may sell items you personally make by hand from this pattern. Do not violate Marie’s copyright by distributing this pattern or the photos in any form, including but not limited to scanning, photocopying, emailing, or posting on a website or internet discussion group. If you want to share the pattern, point your friends to this link: https://undergroundcrafter.com/blog/2019/07/23/crochet-bobble-bag-pattern:-caribbean-sunset-bag/. Thanks for supporting indie designers!

How To Photograph Handmade Crafts with Flat Lay | #Crochet #TipsTuesday

How To Photograph Handmade Crafts with Flat Lay by Underground Crafter

Do your beautiful, handmade crafts look boring, ugly, or unrecognizable when you share them online? Are you finding it difficult to cut through the noise and get your Etsy shop or patterns noticed? Today, I’m sharing my 10 tips for how to photograph your handmade crafts with flat lay. These tips will take your pictures from ok to awesome! I’ve even included a video demonstrating some of the tips, so read on for details.

This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links. This post is part of an ongoing collaboration with B&H Photo Video Pro Audio, who generously provided a camera and photography equipment.

Many of us are skilled as makers but less skilled as photographers. Our beautiful projects may come across less than exciting when we share pictures online. Or, maybe your children or spouse won’t cooperate for photography, or you don’t have a budget for paying local models to wear your makes.

What is flat lay?

Flat lay is a style of photography where you literally lay your project flat against a background. It’s easier to master than other types of photography because you don’t have to worry about movement in the background, getting models not to blink, or keeping yourself in the frame for a self-portrait. Here are my 10 tips for taking amazing photographs of your handmade crafts using flat lay photography. (Don’t forget to scroll down for the video it you’d like to see some of the tips in action!)

10 Tips for Photographing Your Handmade Crafts Using Flat Lay

How To Photograph Handmade Crafts with Flat Lay by Underground Crafter

1 – Get to know your camera

Whether you’re using a complex DSLR or the camera on your smartphone, every camera is a little bit different. Use your camera’s manual (or search online for “name of your camera” manual or “name of your smartphone” camera manual) to learn about the features included in your camera. You may be surprised at what you find!

The pictures in this post were taken using a Sony Alpha a6000 mirrorless camera. Until I received this camera in April, I had never used a mirrorless camera before, and I had mostly worked with Nikon cameras. The Sony Alpha a6000 is very straight-forward, but it still helped to read through the manual to find some of my preferred settings, and of course, to practice using it by taking lots of pictures!

Maker Photo Month Instagram Challenge 2019 with Underground Crafter - Sony Alpha a6000 what's in the box

2 – Use a vinyl backdrop

Vinyl backdrops have matte backgrounds so they reduce shine from natural light or glare from a flash. These are also easy to store on a roll or you can cut them down to specific sizes that you use regularly. Bonus: vinyl is easy to wipe clean if you have any spills.

I use the Savage White Brick Printed Vinyl Backdrop, a white, faux painted brick backdrop. There are many different styles of backdrops available including faux wood, solid colors, and bokeh (blurred, pops of light). White has the added benefit of matching with any handmade project and helping to calibrate your camera’s white balance. I have found that using a white backdrop helps the yarn colors show more accurately than using a colorful backdrop, but you can also pick a backdrop color that contrasts with or coordinates with your favorite colors or your brand colors.

You can see some examples below showing how a backdrop can improve the final look of your photographs. These are pictures I took using various wood surfaces at home. The natural wood often makes the yarn colors look drab or distracts from the project, while the painted white wood reflects and adds a lot of shadows. Continue on to tip 7 to see how I improve the pictures using a vinyl backdrop!

How To Photograph Handmade Crafts with Flat Lay by Underground Crafter - flat lay disasters collage

3 – Use a lightweight camera

I loved all the features of my Nikon D5300 DSLR, but it was a beast. I could not take pictures one handed because it was just too heavy. This made it impossible to put my hands in the picture (to hold a crochet hook, for example) or to take a very quick, spontaneous photograph. It also made bringing my camera with me on trips or outside a pain. Since I started using the Sony Alpha a6000, I have really enjoyed how light and portable it is. Mirrorless cameras are available to fit a variety of budgets and they are generally much lighter than DSLRs (because they use a digital, rather than optical, viewfinder) but with much more control over settings, lenses, and so on than a smartphone or tablet camera.

4 – Use a tripod or monopod if necessary

If your camera is heavy, or if you have the tendency to move slightly while taking pictures, you may see evidence of “camera shake,” or slightly blurred edges in your photos. You may also have the tendency to take a picture including your thumb because you are too focused on holding the camera. Using a tripod or monopod helps to stabilize your camera, and, therefore, your pictures, and to keep your thumb out of the frame. It’s also helpful if you’re trying to keep the background, the lighting, and the project the same while switching out props. You can find many affordable options for tripods or monopods in different sizes and configurations to fit any camera or smartphone.

In the video below, I’m using the Manfrotto MT055XPRO3 Tripod with the 494 Center Ball Head with 200PL-PRO Quick Release Plate. Though this setup is pricier, it has several added benefits. The horizontal bar on the tripod makes it great for filming video tutorials of your hands as well as focusing downward for flat lay pictures. It’s a very sturdy tripod, so it can also hold a heavier camera and be used outdoors without a problem.

5 – Finish your project

The camera seems to spot every flaw on a handmade crafts project. Look over the project very carefully before taking pictures. Crochet and knit projects usually look better after blocking. Weave in ends (or hide them very well on the back), trim threads, and remove pet hair before positioning it flatly on your background.

6 – Think about your composition

The composition includes everything that will end up in the final picture. Most of us are so excited to share our handmade crafts online that we forget there is a large tuft of cat hair in the background.

Do you want your project to be straight or at an angle? Do you want to include it entirely or just share a peek? Should large projects be folded, rolled, or draped? Do you want to have a close up, where the project fills most or all of the frame, or take it from a distance, with more empty background framing your project? Think about all of these things as you position your project on your backdrop. When using a vinyl backdrop, make sure that if it has directional lines your project and your composition are lined up. Otherwise, you will end up with what looks like a trapezoid instead of a beautiful rectangular or square project. (Ask me how I know this!)

Take a moment to look through your camera’s viewfinder or LCD screen and make sure that there are only pretty things in your composition before you take a picture.

7 – Add props to your pictures

Pictures of the project alone can be boring or too stark. Get creative by adding props to make your pictures “Instagram-worthy.” Some examples of props you can find around the house include supplies you used to make the project (yarn, fabric, crochet hook, and buttons); items that can be used with the project (things to fit inside of a bag, a book you might read while sitting under a lap blanket); seasonal or holiday decorations (a small tree, a birthday hat, flowers); or clothing or accessories that you would wear with the project. Use colors that coordinate or colors with high contrast in your props for different looks. In the collage below, you can see how different props impacted the finished picture.

How To Photograph Handmade Crafts with Flat Lay by Underground Crafter - flat lay beauties collage

8 – Check your lighting

I use indirect natural light whenever possible. Direct natural light tends to cause big (and not very attractive) shadows. If you don’t have access to a well-lit place for photography, or if you usually take your handmade crafts pictures at night, invest in lighting for photography. There are a lot of portable options these days. Personally, I prefer LED lighting since it is available in both portable and natural light options. “Natural light” LED lighting tends to display yarn colors most accurately. There is also a broader range of prices, including many affordable options, and LED lighting is relatively easy to use compared to other types of photography lighting.

When first using artificial lighting, you may need to try different set ups, including placing the lights in different positions or using multiple lights in order to get the results you want.

It’s not a total crisis if you don’t have perfect lighting, but you will need to be more confident with photo editing!

9 – Take a lot of pictures

Most often, the best picture is not the first one! Be sure to take some pictures horizontally and others vertically. If using your phone or tablet, take some square pictures for Instagram. If using a camera, take some rectangular pictures with nothing on the sides that you can crop down to square. Take multiple pictures and then delete the ones you don’t like.

10 – Ask for feedback

When you’re first trying out new setups, it can be overwhelming. Ask some of your creative friends for their opinions on your lighting, composition, or props. Share a few of your many pictures (see tip 9) and get help choosing the best picture. You can also engage your fans by asking them to vote for the main picture on your pattern or Etsy listing.

I hope you’ve found these 10 tips helpful! You can watch a video highlighting my five top tips and sharing my setup below. If you can’t see the video below, watch it out on YouTube.

By the way, do you want the free crochet pattern for the bag featured in the pictures? Get the Caribbean Sunset Bag pattern here.

Have you tried flat lay photography for your handmade crafts before?

Hello Summer Tapestry Crochet Pillow Pattern by E’Claire Makery

Hello Summer Pillow, free tapestry crochet pattern by E'Claire Makery for Underground Crafter - handmade pillow with sun and words "hello summer" in tapestry crochet held in arms in front of greenery

Have you been loving all the modern tapestry crochet patterns? Then you’ll want to bust out your hook to get started on the Hello Summer Pillow! I’m so excited to share another beautiful pattern by guest contributor, Claire from E’Claire Makery. Bring a touch of summer inside with this modern, tapestry crochet pillow! (And, if you’re a tapestry crochet newbie, don’t worry. Claire’s got you covered with her Beginner’s Guide to Tapestry Crochet!)

This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links. Photos in this post are © Claire Goodale/E’Claire Makery and are used with permission. Yarn for the sample was generously provided by Red Heart.

About E’Claire Makery

Claire Goodale is the owner, designer, and maker behind E’Claire Makery. When she’s not obsessing over yarn and coming up with patterns, you can find her out exploring, baking, watching superhero shows, and enjoying her newly married life with her husband Stephen. As a maker, her goal is to create patterns and tutorials, and share design and business tips to help give crocheters the confidence to create.

Show your support by following Claire on Website | Etsy | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Ravelry | YouTube

Hello Summer Pillow

Tapestry Crochet Pattern by E’Claire Makery

Hello Summer Pillow, free tapestry crochet pattern by E'Claire Makery for Underground Crafter

Finished Dimensions

  • 15” x 15” (38 cm x 38 cm) square

Gauge

  • For front panel – 4” x 4” (10 cm x 10 cm) square using half double crochets: 14 sts x 9 rows
  • For back panel – 4” x 4” (10 cm x 10 cm) square using double crochets: 11 sts x 7 rows

Supplies

Hello Summer Pillow, free tapestry crochet pattern by E'Claire Makery for Underground Crafter - handmade pillow with sun and words "hello summer" in tapestry crochet held in arms in front of greenery

Stitches Used/Abbreviations

  • Ch = Chain
  • Dc = Double Crochet
  • Hdc = Half Double Crochet
  • RS = Right Side
  • WS = Wrong Side

Pattern Notes

  • This pattern is made using US crochet terminology.
  • The pattern involves color changes using tapestry crochet. Experience with color work is recommended, but if you’re a beginner to tapestry crochet than you can totally do it! If you’ve never done tapestry crochet before, I’ve created a beginner’s guide to tapestry crochet that shows you how to do it. See the written and photo tutorial at The Beginner’s Guide to Tapestry Crochet.
  • I recommend reading through the pattern completely before beginning just to make sure that you understand everything in the pattern.
  • Color changes happen are indicated by the color appearing in parentheses. See color graph in paid pdf for full picture of the color changes. Buy the paid pdf on Ravelry or Etsy.
  • Turn and ch 1 at the beginning of Rows 2-40 on front panel. Ch 1 does not count as a stitch.

Pattern Instructions

Hello Summer Pillow, free tapestry crochet pattern by E'Claire Makery for Underground Crafter - handmade pillow with sun and words "hello summer" in tapestry crochet held in arms in front of greenery

Front Panel

  • Ch 57, turn, skip 1 ch.
  • Row 1 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 56
  • Row 2 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 37, (Cream) hdc 19
  • Row 3 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 20, (Yellow) hdc 36
  • Row 4 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 24, (Cream) hdc 32
  • Row 5 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 29, (Yellow) hdc 27
  • Row 6 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 30, (Cream) hdc 26
  • Row 7 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 6, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 5, (Pink) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 9
  • Row 8 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 8, (Pink) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 6
  • Row 9 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 7, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 7, (Yellow) hdc 7
  • Row 10 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 7, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 7
  • Row 11 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 8, (Pink) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 7
  • Row 12 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 9, (Pink) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 1, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 1, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 7
  • Row 13 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 7, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 7, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 7, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 8
  • Row 14 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 8, (Pink) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 6
  • Row 15 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 6, (Pink) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 7
  • Row 16 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 7, (Pink) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 7
  • Row 17 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 24, (Yellow) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 7, (Yellow) hdc 7
  • Row 18 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 8, (Pink) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 22
  • Row 19 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 21, (Yellow) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 5, (Pink) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 9
  • Row 20 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 14, (Cream) hdc 6, (Yellow) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 21
  • Row 21 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 29, (Yellow) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 7, (Yellow) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 8
  • Row 22 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 7, (Cream) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 7, (Cream) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 28
  • Row 23 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 25, (Yellow) hdc 7, (Cream) hdc 6, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 7, (Yellow) hdc 7
  • Row 24 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 11
  • Row 25 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 10, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 5, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 3
  • Row 26 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 9
  • Row 27 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 9, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 2
  • Row 28 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 7, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 9
  • Row 29 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 9, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 4, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 7, (Cream) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 6, (Yellow) hdc 2
  • Row 30 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 6, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 9
  • Row 31 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 9, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 6, (Yellow) hdc 3
  • Row 32 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 6, (Yellow) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 5, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 10
  • Row 33 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 11, (Pink) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 6, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 4, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 2, (Pink) hdc 2, (Cream) hdc 3, (Pink) hdc 2, (Yellow) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 7, (Yellow) hdc 3
  • Row 34 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 8, (Yellow) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 1, (Pink) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 35
  • Row 35 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 40, (Yellow) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 8, (Yellow) hdc 3
  • Row 36 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 3, (Cream) hdc 9, (Yellow) hdc 5, (Cream) hdc 39
  • Row 37 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 37, (Yellow) hdc 6, (Cream) hdc 10, (Yellow) hdc 3
  • Row 38 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 52
  • Row 39 [RS]: (Cream) hdc 52, (Yellow) hdc 4
  • Row 40 [WS]: (Yellow) hdc 4, (Cream) hdc 52
Hello Summer Pillow, free tapestry crochet pattern by E'Claire Makery for Underground Crafter - handmade pillow with sun and words "hello summer" in tapestry crochet held in arms in front of greenery

Back Panel

  • Using the Red Heart Soft Essentials and Red Heart Unforgettable yarns held together (you can also hold two worsted weight yarns together if you aren’t using these two), begin Row 1.
  • Row 1: ch 46, starting in 3rd ch from hook dc 44
  • Row 2-27: ch 2, turn, dc 44
  • Fasten off and weave in ends.
Hello Summer Pillow, free tapestry crochet pattern by E'Claire Makery for Underground Crafter - multicolored crochet pillow held in hand in front of greenery

Assembly

  • Put two panels together right sides together, and sew them to each other. When you’re almost done, stuff pillow with stuffing and then finish closing up. If you are using a pillow form instead of stuffing, you can sew up the sides and the bottom, place the pillow form inside the pillowcase, and finishing by sewing up the top.
© 2019 by Claire Goodale (E’Claire Makery) and published with permission by Underground Crafter. This pattern is for personal use only. You may use the pattern to make unlimited items for yourself, for charity, or to give as gifts. You may sell items you personally make by hand from this pattern. Do not violate Claire’s copyright by distributing this pattern or the photos in any form, including but not limited to scanning, photocopying, emailing, or posting on a website or internet discussion group. if you want to share the pattern, point your friends to this link: https://undergroundcrafter.com/blog/2019/07/22/hello-summer-tapestry-crochet-pillow-pattern-by-eclaire-makery/. Thanks for supporting indie designers!