Bib tutorial

I’ve recently started making terrycloth bibs for friends having babies. They have gotten good reviews, and are very easy, so I thought I’d post a tutorial for them.

terrycloth bibs

Materials: towels or terrycloth remnants, fabric pens, commercial bib pattern (or well-fitting bib, used as pattern), coordinating cotton calicos, 3 big snaps per 2 bibs.

Cut out the pattern piece. For a bib like the red one, use the pattern as a guide to arrange strips of calico on the towel; use a short, wide zigzag to edgestitch them down. After that, pin the pattern to the towel and cut it out; zigzag the edge to keep it from fraying (you’ll probably need to go around twice). For a bib like the green one, cut out the bib and zigzag the edge. Make a template for the blocks and cut them from calico; use fabric pens to draw letters on the blocks. Let them dry flat for 24 hours and iron to heat-set the ink. Use a wide, short zigzag to edgestitch them to the bib and then a narrower zigzag to “draw” the edges of the block (work from inside to edge to prevent bubbling). To finish both bibs, split the snaps into 2 piles, each 1 of one half and 2 of the other. Sew the 2 matching halves to one strap end and the mismatch to the other. This allows it to be adjustable, which may or may not really be necessary but seems like a good idea. Make sure the ends lap over each other! I put the two matched halves facing out and the other facing in, so the unused half won’t be cold on baby’s neck. You could also use velcro, in which case make any unused scratchy side face out.

A few technical notes: I have found that tension matters a lot more than I’m used to – I use the bib fabric color in my bobbin, and the applique fabric color on top, so if the bobbin thread pulls through at all it is very noticeable. My tension runs from 0 to 9 and is usually set about 4; for these, even a 2 causes pull-through. 1-1.5 is the appropriate setting. I also decrease the pressure of the presser foot to avoid puckering of the top fabric as the foot smooshes it along in front.

Manta ray finger puppet

manta ray finger puppet close up
Hi there!

An early crochet effort of mine was trimming Roman Sock’s manta ray pattern down into a finger puppet, because I lack the attention span to do the full project. I have six rows of the full-size version, waiting.

For those of you who wish to follow suit, I believe I used an F-hook, though gauge isn’t important, and acrylic worsted-weight yarn from Jo-Ann’s – nothing fancy.

Working from the original pattern (crochet abbreviations):
gray side has 2 rows of 3 sc for head, and 6 rows with sc inc on each end for wings.
base of tail is 3 sc wide, has a second row of 3 sc and then decreases by omitting turning ch; when you get to 1 sc, ch 7.
sl st from there down the tail and to the tip of the wing, and then from the base of the tail on the opposite side (omitting the ch-7 part) to the opposite wing.

In cream I left out the tail.

manta ray finger puppet pieces

After embroidering the eyes with black embroidery floss, I used pink embroidery floss to whipstitch the two halves together on the inside of the mouth, then wound the floss horizontally around those stitches (in place of Brie’s pink felt, which would never fit in a finger puppet). Then I slip stitched between the side of the mouth and the base of the tail on each side to finish connecting the halves.

manta puppet

manta puppet

Hairy Green Monster

I am a member of the Amigurumi Army on Ravelry, and every month brings an amigurumi mission. February’s mission was dragons and serpents, and my effort is at the top of the picture of my embroidery floss animals. March’s mission was “green means go!”: create something, anything, green. I decided to create a green monster, using the brush crochet technique. I had recently acquired a dog slicker brush and read it works best on mohair and wool, so I got some Red Heart Stitch Nation Full o’ Sheep in “thyme”, picked out my E hook, thought about overall shape, and started stitching!

Stumpy the crocheted green monster

He turned out more complicated than I expected, so a pattern pdf will follow later, once I have time to put it together. Handwritten, the pattern is three and a half pages long! Not because it’s overly difficult; at least some of the length is due to separate left and right arm patterns, so they will be mirror images.

Rock Star Monster
Rock star