Are you looking for a quick gift for your favorite yarn lover, or perhaps something to announce your own love of yarn to the world? I’m sharing a tutorial for how to make a handmade yarn with knitting needles ornament. With just a few supplies, including leftover yarn from your last crochet or knitting project, you can make this easy peasy ornament in less than 15 minutes!
This project is part of Craft Lightning Hot Glue edition.
Before I share the tutorial, let me tell you a little about me and hot glue.
Growing up, I had three main creative influences:
My dad, who is a painter and photographer. He taught me basic painting and drawing skills.
My maternal grandmother, who was an expert in all things needlecrafts. She taught me to crochet, sew, and embroider, and tried to teach me to knit, too. From time to time, we’d do some other crafts, like latch hooking.
My mom, who is a masterful seamstress and can flip beat up old furniture into like-new beauties. She would decoupage from time to time, too.
Nowhere in my childhood did I experience hot glue. As a relatively clumsy teen and then adult, I continued to avoid it. It seemed like I’d be tempting fate to put heat and glue anywhere near my flesh.
Then, in January, I went to Creativation, the annual trade show for the crafts industry. Before the event officially kicks off, Angie from The Country Chic Cottage and Carolina from Always Expect Moore and 30 Minute Crafts host a night out for crafts bloggers. They had a hot glue project planned, and they patiently took me from life as a hot glue newbie into the world of the anointed.
Hot Glue Hacks and Crafts starts off with Glue Gun Basics, which tells you everything you need to know about different types of glue guns, glue, and accessories, while also sharing some great tips like how to avoid those little strings of glue that seem to trail off everywhere. The rest of the book is filled with projects, which are organized by type (for kids, home decor, holiday, jewelry, and entertaining). There’s also a Glue Gun Hacks section which shows you how to make stencils, stamps, molds, and faux geodes with hot glue, as well as how to etch with hot glue. This section includes a project for making your own stand, too, which is really helpful (and safer) if your glue gun didn’t come with a stand. There are also templates in the back for some of the projects.
My favorite projects in the book are the lampshade, the stencils, and the stamped pillow. All of the projects include detailed progress pictures — just like what you’d expect to see in a blog tutorial — so even when the project isn’t something you plan to make, you can still pick up some hot glue tips and tricks. If you’d like to have the ability to make some quick handmade gifts for friends and family (and yourself), but also to learn how to really maximize your hot glue gun, I highly recommend Hot Glue Hacks and Crafts!
As you might have guessed by now, the book is the inspiration behind this edition of Craft Lightning, where a group of bloggers share 15 minute craft projects. Here’s what I made with my glue gun!
How To Make a Handmade Yarn with Knitting Needles Ornament
Tutorial by Underground Crafter
Now that you know where to get more information if you’re a hot glue newbie like I was just a few short months ago, let’s dive into the project! This yarn and knitting needles ornament works up quickly and it’s great for decoration or a gift. I got all the supplies I needed at Michaels using the Buy Online, Pick Up in Store option.
Are you always on the hunt for the perfect project bag to tote your next work-in-progress in? In today’s tutorial, I’m going to share how to make your own customized Makers Gonna Make project bag using iron-on and the Cricut EasyPress 2.
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 sponsored by Cricut, but all opinions and thoughts are my own.
Before I share the Makers Gonna Make project tote, let me tell you about my new favorite toy (er, um, I mean tool), the Cricut EasyPress 2.
If you’re like me, ironing is your least part of crafting. When I was quilting a lot, I always dreaded the torturous ironing at the beginning of each project. And, in the last two years, as I have made more and more Cricut projects (mostly iron-on), I have been reminded why I don’t quilt too much anymore! Ironing is really just not fun and with iron-on projects, sometimes the lack of fun can also lead to poor application. If you’ve ever had any of these ironing problems in your craft projects…
…you may want to check out the EasyPress 2, a new heat press by Cricut. I shared my unboxing here on Facebook if you’d like to see what’s in the box.
How Is the Cricut EasyPress 2 Different from Original EasyPress?
When Cricut announced the EasyPress last year, it was available in one size (9” x 9”) and in one color (Sky). The EasyPress 2 is available in three sizes (6” x 7”, 9” x 9”, and 10” x 12”). Besides the difference in prices (as you might guess, the smallest is the least expensive), each size is best suited for different types of projects and situations. If you make a lot of smaller iron-on projects, like baby clothes or hats, or if you plan to take your EasyPress 2 to craft night often, you might want the 6” x 7” size. If you make a lot of larger projects, like banners or blankets, you will probably want the 10” x 12” size. The 9” x 9” size (which is the one I have) is great for medium sized projects, like shirts, bags, and aprons.
And, of course, the EasyPress 2 is available in Raspberry, not just Sky. The bottom of the EasyPress 2 is ceramic and flat, so it heats very evenly and stays dry. It also has a USB port for firmware updates in the future. If you like to pick your colors, that matters, too, right? It also comes with a Safety Base. You can rest your EasyPress 2 on the Safety Base while it heats up, between applications, and between projects. No more accidentally burning your arm on the side of an iron, or worrying about damaging your crafting surface (or your pressing surface) in between presses. The EasyPress 2 heats up to as much as 400 degrees, but it feels cool on the sides, so as long as it is in the Safety Base, you shouldn’t have to worry about burning yourself between project steps. The Safety Base also comes with rubberized “feet” so you don’t have to worry about it scratching your crafting or storage surface, or slipping out of place.
How Does the Cricut EasyPress 2 Work?
Having never used the original EasyPress, I wasn’t sure how much of a learning curve there would be. I was pleasantly surprised about how easy it was to use.
There are six buttons on the EasyPress 2. On the left side, you have the power button (to turn it on and off). The button with a thermometer on it (upper left) is what you press when you want to change the temperature. And, the button just beneath that with a clock on it is what you press when you want to adjust the time needed.
On the right side, you have a plus and minus button. After pressing the temperature or time button, you can adjust up or down with these buttons. On the far right, you have the Cricut button, which is just like the “Go” button on your Cricut machine. This will be red while the EasyPress 2 is heating up, to indicate that it is not yet ready to use. Once it reaches the right temperature, your EasyPress 2 will beep and the light will change. Even if you don’t hear the beep, you can what the temperature it has reached by checking the digital readout. There is a detailed chart of recommended EasyPress settings here that includes the temperature, time for pre-heat, time for application, time for post-heat, and whether the material is a “warm peel” or “cold peel” material. Some materials come off more easily after cooling completely (“cold peel”), while others can still be warm to the touch (“warm peel”).
Once you have reached your temperature — which happens quickly, even when you have an 80 degrees or more temperature difference between materials — and have set the amount of time you need, you’re ready to use the EasyPress 2. As the name suggests, it is literally about an easy press at this point.
Place your project on a heat-safe surface (I used the 12” x 12” EasyPress Mat, which is also portable for crafting on-the-go). Then put your project on the mat, and your iron-on material over that. Lift up your EasyPress 2, place it on top of the project you’d like to “iron,” and press the Cricut button. Once the time is counted down, it will beep again and you can remove it and return it to the Safety Base. If you want to use it to press fabric, just put your fabric on your heat-safe surface and go.
How To Make a Custom Makers Gonna Make Iron-On Bag with Cricut EasyPress 2
Tutorial by Underground Crafter
Now that you know all about the EasyPress 2, are you ready to make your custom Makers Gonna Make project bag? I customized the big project bag to show my love of Cricut and sewing. Be on the look out in a few weeks for the follow up project — customized notions bags (made in the three sizes pictured below) for crochet and knitting!
Weeder and scissors (so you can save any excess materials for your next project) — I used the ones in my Essential Tool Set.
Customize Your Bag in Design Space
Use my Makers Gonna Make Project Bag in Design Space “as is” by clicking on Make It, or customize by looking for images in your favorite crafts, changing the font, or adjusting the sizes of the images. Here are just a few of the Cricut options available, for example.
Use the EasyPress 2 to press out any wrinkles on the bag before you get started.
Position the largest piece of iron-on on your bag first with the clear liner at the top. That piece will make the biggest impression, so make sure it’s straight! I had to press this twice, because at first I didn’t realize that the straps on the bag were making the EasyPress 2 uneven. For the second application, I held down the EasyPress 2 firmly to make sure it was straight.
After pressing your first piece of iron-on down, you can start to add the other pieces.
Don’t forget to adjust the temperature and time settings on your EasyPress 2 if you switch to a different material, like I did!
To avoid creating an uneven pressing surface from the added height of the bag straps, I held my EasyPress 2 sideways for the side pieces.
Once you have everything pressed down and all the pieces have reached the right temperatures, you are ready to peel off the clear liners and enjoy your new project bag!
If you love the look of watercolor, you’ll love this easy peasy die-cutting project. These watercolor gift tags are the perfect final touch to your handmade gifts! They also make great price tags for craft fairs.
This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links. Materials for this project were generously provided by Cricut and Darice.
Last week, I shared my review of the Cricut Cuttlebug, and today I’m sharing my first tutorial. I’m always on the look out for super cute gift tags to go with my handmade gifts and recently I’ve been loving the watercolor and brush lettering trend. However… I’m just not any good at making stunning watercolors and even after taking a class with the very talented Persia Lou last year, I have yet to become a brush lettering expert. (Apparently, I’m supposed to practice??!!) I still had some of the supplies left from the class (because maybe by sitting in my closet, they will magically transform me into an brush lettering pro), and I decided to make a very small watercolor project where my lack of skills would not impede me in any way. I can confidently declare that this is TRULY a beginner-friendly project!
How To Make Die-Cut Watercolor Gift Tags
Tutorial by Underground Crafter
To customize your version, use different colors of paint or ink, or use a different set of dies and stamps. I was able to get about 30 tags from a single piece of 9” x 12” watercolor paper, but you may be able to make more or less if you use a different set of dies. If you’re using these as price tags at a craft fair, use colors that match your logo or booth set up.
Since your watercolor paper will end up cut into lots of small pieces, it doesn’t have to be perfect! My method was to start with one color and paint random splotches all around the page, then move on to the next color and do the same thing. I kept repeating this (I used 5 colors in all) and then at the end, I went back and filled in any little spaces that weren’t painted.
Cut your watercolor paper down into strips. To minimize paper waste, I placed the dies on top first to see how much cutting area I would need. You could also cut these into 6” strips to fit into your Cuttlebug’s cutting area.
Layer your “Sandwich”
Start with Plate A at the bottom.
Position your Mat on top of Plate A.
Position one Plate B on top of the Mat.
Place your Tiny Tags Dies face up (textured side up) on top of Plate B.
Position your watercolor paper strips face down (wrong side up) on top of the Dies.
Position your second Plate B on top of your paper.
Crank and Repeat!
Crank your Cuttlebug so the dies cut through the paper.
After each pass through the machine, you can reposition the dies, paper, and second Plate B as described above to continue cutting.
Decorate and Finish
After you cut all of your tags, use your tweezer to lift your tags off the dies…
…or your weeder to easily pop your tags out of the die by poking it through the little holes in the die on the wrong side.
Crochet Pattern and Tutorials by Charles Voth Designs
Notes from Underground Crafter:
This pattern uses US crochet pattern abbreviations. You can find a master list of abbreviations here.
A complete video tutorial is available after the written pattern.
I know that many, many, many crocheters don’t really like to work up swatches to check their gauge or their tension, or to see if they are using the right hook for the yarn they’ve chosen to crochet. Some people avoid it with a carefree attitude, and others with a guilty conscience. In this post, I’m not going to harp or preach about swatching to get gauge. However, I think that swatching is a super practice and a great one for learning new stitch patterns, and more importantly for uncovering amazing looking crochet.
In fact, I was swatching and experimenting with stitches for a few hours one day, and what resulted was my discovery of this beautiful stitch pattern, which I’ve called the “flat ruching pattern”. To pronounce this word take the “oo” sound from “boot” or “root” and say “rooshing”. It comes from a French word meaning “frill”, but this was based on a Celtic word meaning “tree bark”. Ruching is a way to gather fabric in rows to make larger widths of fabric fit across shorter widths in order to sew them together. I think it does look like what I image tree bark would look like if it were soft and silky, instead of hard. The tight small ridges that divide the longer evenly gathered strands of yarn are like the stitching worked in sewn fabric to create the gathers.
The wrong side of this stitch pattern, shown above, highlights the frilly rows of stitches differently, and the gathering rows look like miniature zig-zag ribbons, also called rick-rack. For some projects, I would consider using this as the public side, just because I really like the “rick-rack” rows and how they look.
The fabric that results from crocheting the flat ruching pattern is quite stretchy and squishy…There is a lot of “air” or loft in the rows that have the long strands. I think it’s perfect for garments because it has lots of movement. I crocheted this swatch with a bamboo/cotton blend, that’s a DK weight (#3 according to yarnstandards.com) and a size E (3.5mm) hook. But I have made washcloths with worsted weight kitchen cotton yarn, and DK-weight acrylic, and sock-weight sheep’s wool… It looks great with any yarn, but especially one with a sheen to it.
To crochet the flat ruching pattern, we use two different stitches. First we work an inverse single crochet, which simply means that the hook is inserted from back to front. The other stitch is the hitched double crochet, which I think will be new to all of you, unless you have worked a similar stitch, called the Love Knot or Solomon stitch. I borrowed one of the steps of the Love Knot and applied it to a double crochet to invent the hitched double crochet. Maybe I should say I only unvented this (discovered something that has already been invented, but isn’t widely known). Regardless, I’m going to break down how to crochet the flat rushing stitch pattern.
First, here are the instructions; below them, I explain how to make the 2 stitches we use.
Chain any number of stitches.
Row 1: Sc in second ch from hook and in each ch across, turn.
Row 2: Ch 2, dc in first st at base of ch-2, ht-dc (hitched-double crochet) in the back loops only of each st across to last st, dc in last st, turn.
Row 3: Ch 1, sc in first st, inv-sc (inverse-single crochet) in the front loops only of each st across to last st, sc in last st, turn.
Repeat Rows 2 and 3 for pattern.
How to crochet the hitched double crochet
Yo, and insert hook into the back loop of the next st. Yo and draw up a loop and loosen it to the height of the previous dc
Pinch the base of the pulled up loop and the yarn feeding in from the ball.
Yo, and pull through the first 2 loops, ensuring that you don’t let go of the pinched yarn strands.
Insert the hook in the gap between the pinched strand and the raised loop, yo, and pull up a loop. Then pull this same loop through the remaining 2 loops on the hook.
How to crochet the inverse single crochet
Bring the yarn to the front of the hook and insert hook into the front loop of the next st.
Yarn under, or in other words, lay the chin of the hook over the working yarn and draw through the fabric. As you draw the hook through rotate it around so that it is in its normal position to continue.
Yarn over, and pull through the 2 loops on the hook.
Not everyone likes to learn new stitches from words and photographs, so I’ve also made a video which you can watch below, or here.
I hope you try making either a washcloth, or a summer tee, or a wool scarf for the cold weather with the flat rushing stitch pattern. It’s unique drape and texture will make all your yarns look great!
I’m so excited to introduce a new guest contributor today. Emily Reiter is the designer and tech editor behind Fiat Fiber Arts. In this post, she’ll be sharing her Fiducia Clutch, a Tunisian crochet pattern embellished with embroidery. If you’re an embroidery newbie, not to worry! Emily has included video tutorials for 11 different basic embroidery stitches in the patterns. You’ll be able to learn them through this sampler project.
This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links.
About Emily Reiter from Fiat Fiber Arts in Her Words
As a Catholic wife and mother of 5 small children, the most common remark I get regarding my work is, “How do you find the time?” My half-joking answer is “neglect.” Cross-stitch was my first fiber love. I’ve stitched since 2nd grade. But when I had my first three children, I stopped stitching and life became exceedingly stressful. I fell into a horrible bout of post-partum anxiety after the third was born. As part of my recovery, I began to attend meetings of our local chapter of the Embroiderer’s Guild of America. It reminded me of the true contentment I feel from creating things with a needle in my hand. My husband could also see the effect.
Soon my fiber love branched into crochet. I had always crocheted but wasn’t very adventurous with it. Then I discovered a book of amigurumi patterns in the library. The embroidery section abuts the crochet books. Each toy I made was like Christmas for my kids. They still have and play with all those toys from 6 years ago. Crochet took off after that.
“After testing for a designer for a few years, I was encouraged to pursue technical editing. Finally, I feel tech editing combines the value of my educational background (BS, MS & Unfinished PhD in Range & Wildlife Management, strong data collection and manipulation skills, eye for detail) with my natural passions for fiber arts. I feel that I am finally serving God through my fiat (thus the business name), God’s will for my life. Why else would I have the combination of these great skills if not to serve and provide for my family?
Oh, and the answer to “how do you find the time?” is a loving and understanding husband, early bedtime for the kids, I tend to stitch fast because my time is limited. Neglect probably still plays a part, my home certainly isn’t the cleanest, but the kids are happy, clean and fed.
Tunisian Crochet Pattern with Embroidery Tutorials by Fiat Fiber Arts
I’m so excited to bring you this project via Underground Crafter!! Fiducia is Latin for trust. The last several months of my life have seen some very trying times. I have had to trust in the Lord a great deal. As I was developing this project, the idea of stitching flowers to practice embroidery came to mind. Even though we’re about to enter summer, I’m still thinking about April showers brings May flowers. We go through hard times with faith that there will be beauty on the other side.
Embroidery has been a big part of my life and I’ve always wanted to do more embroidery on crochet so I could combine my fiber loves. I chose to use the Lily cotton, honestly, because it was in my stash. You can choose any colors you wish. Pick a multi colored yarn that you enjoy to make your design. I have videos depicting the various embroidery stitches if you aren’t familiar with them.
Lily Sugar’n Cream Medium 4 weight (100% cotton, 120 yards / 109 meters, 2.5 ounces / 70. grams) Color A (Yellow) 1 skein, Color B (Violet Stripes) 1 skein
Boye US K 6.5 mm double ended Tunisian hook. (*special note: double ended Tunisian hooks have no markings on them. I’m fairly certain it is over 6 mm and possibly 7 but I found a similar photo that claimed size K 6.5mm.)
Notions: Scissors, Needle
Additional Lining Materials: Fabric of choice measuring at least 1 inch wider on all sides than finished crocheted piece. Sewing Machine, Iron, Craft glue or needle and thread.
18 Tunisian Simple Stitches = 5”, 13 rows = 4”
Stitched fabric measures 10.5” x 12”/Clutch measures 11″ long by 5.25″ when folded
TSS: Tunisian Simple Stitch: Insert hook under the vertical bar of next stitch, draw up a loop. (Note from Underground Crafter: A video tutorial for this stitch by Kim Guzman is available here.)
YO: Yarn Over
Embroidery Stitches (Note: See below the pattern for video tutorials for each of these stitches.)
Buttonhole (Blanket) Stitch
Cross Stitch: placing an “X”
Intermediate: Projects may include involved stitch patterns, colorwork, and/or shaping.
First we will stitch a piece of fabric with Tunisian Simple Stitch. We will then embroider our design on the fabric, then stitch up the sides and line the material. My clutch doesn’t have a closure, I’ll just fold over the top flap.
If you’re not familiar with Tunisian crochet, you can crochet a uniform piece of fabric in single crochet, if you wish. I don’t recommend larger stitches with gaps or holes between them.
Video tutorials for each of the embroidery stitches are available after the pattern.
Tunisian crochet is stitched by drawing up loops and keeping them on the hook all the way across a row in a forward pass. The return pass is always worked the same.
Row 1: Draw up a loop in each back bump of the chain – 40 loops on hook.
Return pass: YO, draw through 1 loop, *YO, draw through 2 loops on hook; repeat from * until 1 loop remains on hook. (40 st)
Rows 2-42: TSS across.
(If you don’t have enough yarn to complete 43 rows, that’s ok. Stitch until you have enough yarn left to do your “cast off” final row.)
Row 43: To “cast off” the stitches and have a clean edge (see below for photo tutorial), I insert my hook under the front vertical bar and under the back loop of the top stitches to complete a slip stitch. Draw the remaining bit of yarn through the final loop to finish.
Photo Tutorial for slip stitch “cast off” Tunisian final row
Insert hook under next vertical bar.
Insert hook under back loop of ‘top’ stitch. Next, YO and draw through all three loops, slip stitch created.
Fasten off and weave in ends with yarn needle. Proceed to embroidery.
At this point, the clutch forms a slightly rectangular shape. If you want a trifold clutch, like mine, we need to visually separate the clutch into 3 sections. Cut a length of yarn from Color B (it doesn’t matter which color), and run a basting stitch from one side to the other 26 rows down from your chosen top edge of the clutch. Then take another length of yarn and run another basting stitch from one side to the other 8 rows up from the bottom of the piece. Now you have divided your clutch into 3 sections. The top large portion will be folded up (wrong sides together) to the larger portion. The small portion will be the closing flap of your clutch.
You may choose to use the embroidery stitches in any way you wish. I have chosen to cross stitch the word “TRUST” on the inside, and embroider a series of flowers and rain on the outside of the clutch. However you choose to do it, remember which way is “up” for each side of the clutch is opposite. You will have to turn your piece in your hands while stitching to keep the outside and inside oriented correctly. Always use one length of yarn when embroidering. We are not splitting our plies, nor are we doubling strands of yarn. Also, for ease of stitching, I recommend using a length of yarn about as long as your arm. You don’t have to be precise, it’s just a guide. Too long, and the yarn could get tangled as you pull it through, as well as lose it’s twist. Too short, and you won’t be able to do many stitches before getting another length. You’ll find what works best for you.
I started by creating my stems to each flower with my green color. Starting on the right, I used straight stitches meeting at one point. Next I created a chain stitch of 5 segments. The third in from the right was a series of fern stitches. Fourth was some stems and leaves made with split stitch. The fifth plant from the right was made with stem stitch and had a few lazy daisy leaves. Next were some longer straight stitches worked parallel to each other. The final stem all the way on the left was worked as a curved backstitch line with several lazy daisy leaves on top.
For the flowers, on the left hand plant, I worked straight stitches with French knots at the lower end. The parallel straight stitches had a woven rose upon it with alternating color French knots in the center. The following flowers were made with the blanket or buttonhole stitch made in a wheel. One is a complete wheel, while the second is a partial wheel to look like it is behind the first. The 4th flower is made with random short straight stitches meeting in the center with an alternating color French knot in the middle. I left the fern stitch sans flowers. The chain stitch stem is a flower made of lazy daisy stitches and several French knots in the middle. The first plant on the right is roughly a large triangle shape made of French knots. I thought this last one resembled a yucca flowering stalk.
The rain was made with stand alone lazy daisy stitches and several running stitches. There is no need to keep any of these uniform. When was the last time you saw rain happen in a uniform manner? Make more or less, it depends on how rainy you’re feeling on that day.
The following image is a very general design for where to place your stitches. Surface embroidery is a very free form technique. I’ve added this graphic to help with the TRUST lettering and general placement and description of the stitches I used in the prototype. The lazy daisy, button hole, and woven wheel indicators are NOT drawn to scale, simply showing placement.
It is your choice to line the clutch before or after you fold and seam it. If you are more comfortable with a sewing machine, you may choose to fold and stitch the sides of your clutch first, then fold and seam the sides of the lining to insert into the clutch. Or you can hem in the sides of your fabric so that it lies just ⅛-¼” inside the margins of the clutch. Using your craft glue, run a thin line of glue around the edges of the fabric and press to the clutch. Follow your glue instructions for drying time.
Seaming your clutch
If lining your clutch, read lining section first. Fold up the “trust” portion of your clutch so that the basting stitch is at the bottom. Matching the stitches on the sides, use a piece of leftover yarn and mattress stitch the sides together. (Note from Underground Crafter: You can find a tutorial for the mattress stitch seam here.) Repeat on the opposite side of the clutch.
Your final step will be to remove the basting stitch & enjoy your clutch!!
Basic Embroidery Stitches
How To Stitch Running, Back, Straight, and Split Stitches
How To Embroider Stem Stitch, Blanket Stitch, Chain Stitch, and Lazy Daisy
How To Embroider French Knots with Yarn
How To Embroider a Woven Rose and How To Cross Stitch on Tunisian Crochet