Patina Scarf

Today I have a new FREE knit pattern for you! Aren't you so excited?! Yep, I knew you would be.

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This is "Patina Scarf", a very basic knit that makes a perfect project for a really colorful yarn. Colorful yarns can sometimes be difficult to use, because the color changes tend to break up stitch patterns, lace, cables, etc. Interesting stitch patterns seem to look their best in solid colors, but we've all seen some drop dead gorgeous colorful yarns out there, haven't we. I know you have!

Yarn Whimsies

So, when you find a colorful worsted weight yarn, this is your pattern. The scarf has alternating sections of stockinette and reverse stockinette stitch, so there is a little variation in texture, but nothing to keep you from just enjoying the glorious color of your yarn.

The yarn I used was a handspun yarn. I love how colors come together when I begin with dyed roving and then spin it to let the colors come together randomly. This yarn was made with roving I dyed myself with food coloring. This was my first time dying anything. I'm not sure that I did a fantastic job, but that's beside the point. I tried something new! I spun this myself and then crocheted it into a hat. A really ugly hat. In fact, World's Ugliest Hat.

I was inspired by one of my Facebook followers to frog the whole project, block the yarn, and make it into something new. So, that is where this scarf came from.

If you want to make this scarf yourself, but don't dye or spin, you can look around online for indie dyers that do some gorgeous things with yarn! One of my top picks would be Ancient Arts Fibre Crafts, but you can't order directly from their site, you have to find a store that carries it.

Now for the free pattern!

Patina Scarf
Design by April Garwood

Difficulty Level: Beginner

Finished Size: About 5 ½” x 65” or 14 cm x 165 cm

Yarn: I used a worsted weight/4/medium yarn that was handspun. It was 100% wool. About 215 yds.

Needles: Size US 10 (6mm): straight or circular. Adjust needle size if necessary to obtain correct gauge, but gauge is not crucial, so this is not a really big deal.

Notions: Yarn needle

Holiday Papercrafting

Gauge: 15 sts x 20 rows = about 4”x 4” or 10 cm x 10 cm.

-       Scarf begins at one short end and works across to the other short end. Easy peasy!

CO 20 sts
Row 1(RS): Knit each st.
Row 2: Purl each st
Rows 3-20: Continue to knit across each RS row and purl across each WS row.
Row 21: Purl each st.
Row 22: Knit each st.
Rows 23-28: Continue to purl across each RS row and purl across each RS row.

Repeat Row 1-28 ten times.

Work Rows 1-20 one more time. Bind off.

Weave in all ends and block scarf to measurements. All done!

Happy stitching!

DIY Afghans


Salina Sweater

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Salina Sweater is one of my newer self-publish crochet patterns. I. love. this. sweater! So does Drama Queen, who is the lucky owner of this cozy sweater. Get your own copy of the pattern here.

I originally designed this sweater for WEBS to use in marketing their yarn, as the sweater is crocheted in their yarn Valley Yarns Longmeadow, a DK weight, cotton/microfiber blend with great softness. However, they wound up changing directions with the patterns they were looking to publish, and gave me the opportunity to self-publish the pattern instead (thank you!).


This pattern is made to fit with generous ease throughout the body, and a little more snugly in the arms.

The pattern is written with bust circumferences of 33, 39, and 45 inches (or 84, 99, and 114.5 cm). You'll probably want to choose a size 2 to 6 inches larger around than you are, and choose 2 colors that you love together.

Unfortunately, I have just discovered that Longmeadow has been discontinued. However, their yarn, Southwick is also DK weight and similar fibers, so you might try that as a substitute if you can't get your hands on enough Longmeadow.

I am excited to offer a free copy of this pattern to one lucky winner. You'll be entered by sharing this blog post on Facebook or Twitter! If you'll tweet it and tag me with @BananaMoonStdio, you'll be entered, or if you'll go to my Facebook page and share my post about the pattern, you'll also have an entry. Just be sure to make your Facebook share public, otherwise, Facebook won't let me see that you've shared it. I'll choose a winner in one week and get a hold of you to send you the pattern!

Happy stitching!


Half Double Crochet and hdc Decrease

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Today's mission is to show you how to make a half double crochet stitch, and also, how to make the most basic half double crochet decrease.

Wool Yarn from Knit Picks

First off, when you see the abbreviation "hdc" in a pattern, it means half double crochet. This stitch is sort of half way between a single crochet and a double crochet, both in it's height, and in the way you make it. So, here we go...

As in the photo above, you'll start by wrapping your yarn around your hook. This is what we call a "yarn over", usually abbreviated "yo".

Next, insert your hook under both loops of the next stitch or chain, then it should look something like the photo above.

Then, wrap your yarn around your hook again and pull this through the stitch, by catching it under your hook as you pull your hook through the stitch. I usually turn my hook a little toward the left as I slide it. It catches the yarn well, and slides through the stitch more easily. If I were writing these instructions into a pattern, this part would say "yo, pull up a loop".

In the photo above, the loop closest to the hook is the loop that I just made by pulling my yarn over through my stitch.

Now, yarn over again, and pull this through all 3 loops on your hook. Now, I do this quickly because I am used to it, but you may find that pulling through the first two loops goes smoothly, and then you need to change the direction of your pull slightly to get through the 3rd loop. I tend to push the non-working end of my hook up into the air a little more as I go through that 3rd loop.

Ta-da! All finished.

Felici Self Striping Yarn from Knit Picks

Now, for the decrease stitch. You'll see this one abbreviated like this: hdc2tog. This is short for "half double crochet two stitches together", which means that you are going to turn two stitches into one stitch, or decrease by one stitch. This is helpful when you are doing something besides making squares and rectangles. You use decreases when making hats, or amigurumi (3-D crochet stuffed animals or dolls), or when shaping garments. In the project I'm working on in these photos, I am using decreases to shape a raglan seam in a garment. So, here's how to do it:

Here's how it looks before.

Yarn over (or wrap your yarn around your hook).

Insert your hook under both strands of the next stitch.

Yarn over, and pull that yarn through the stitch, just as you did for the half double crochet.

Now, yarn over again, but don't pull this through the three loops.

Instead, insert your hook into the next stitch.

Yarn over again, and pull this through the stitch.

Now, yarn over one more time...

And pull that yarn over through all five loops! Finished!

I hope this was helpful to you! Please visit me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Ravelry, or Pinterest! I love hearing from you! Interested in this project I was working on? It's my latest crochet pattern! Primary Sweater Dress.

Happy stitching!

New Chroma Yarn Colors from Knit Picks


Crochet in the Back Loop

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Have you ever seen a pattern instruct you to crochet in the back loop of a stitch? Sometimes this may be written like "sc blo" or "hdc in BL". There may be other ways that designers notate this, but if you aren't sure what an abbreviation means, check the intro material of the pattern for an abbreviation list, check the back pages of a magazine or book for a list of abbreviations, or contact the designer or publisher if you aren't sure.

Stitching into the back loop only is very simple. Normally, when crocheting into a stitch, you should work under both loops.  Look at the picture above. The last row you see worked (in orange), has several single crochet stitches. The tops of them each look like two little parallel lines. Sort of like an equals sign. Sometimes, they look a little more like a sideways 'v'. To work a typical crochet stitch, insert your crochet hook under both of these strands of yarn.


To work through the back loop only, you will insert your hook only under the strand furthest from you, the strand towards the back of your fabric. Notice that which loop is the front, and which is the back, changes when you turn your fabric. The front loop is the one closest to you when it is time to work the stitch. The back loop is the one furthest from you when it is time to work the stitch.

Looking at the picture above, you can see that I inserted my hook under just the back loop. You can see the front loop still, just under my hook, and my hook only has one strand of yarn over the top of it. 

Once you've inserted your hook, you complete the single crochet stitch as usual: yarn over, pull up a loop, yarn over, pull through both of the loops on your hook. 

You can see in the picture above, my newly completed single crochet stitch, plus a few others. You might notice that you can still see the unused front loops forming something of a line under my newly-formed stitches. Back-loop-only, or front-loop-only stitches are often used for just this reason, to leave this line on the fabric, to provide texture, or a certain look. 

I hope this has been helpful to you! Please visit me on my Facebook page, Instagram, or Twitter! I'd love to see you around!

Happy stitching!

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Book Review: Crochet to Calm

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A month or so ago, I was sent Crochet to Calm by Interweave. I was rather surprised to receive it, as I was not expecting it. It's a really nice book. The projects are on trend, but oh-so-easy. All of these are simple patterns that make nice TV-watching or conversation-having projects. 

I'm not familiar with all the yarns used in this book, but it seemed that most of them are inexpensive yarns that you can find at the hobby stores, so that may appeal to some. Of course, you can always substitute if you're more of a Local Yarn Shop crocheter.

Here are a few favorites:

Honeycomb Blanket, by Adrienne Brigham

Peachy Arm Warmers, by Julie King

Slouchy Slipper Boots, by Lisa Van Klaveren

and Small Crochet Basket, by Desiree Hobson

Not long ago, I went on a sock-knitting binge. I made 2 pairs of socks for myself in quick succession. My four girls all started begging me for handmade socks of their own. Well, one day I started looking through the yarn vault for suitable yarn to begin a pair of socks for Lady Hops-a-lot. She asked what I was doing, and quickly showed me just the yarn she wanted. It was Red Heart Boutique Unforgettable, which is a heavy worsted weight yarn....not your typical sock yarn. This was not what I'd had in mind, but it would be a lot quicker. I thought of the Slouchy Slipper Boots pattern in this book and showed her the picture. She immediately agreed that the pattern would be perfect. Hooray! I began her slipper boots on Monday. By the end of the week I had completed, not one, but THREE sets! Lady Hops-a-lot, Princess, and Baby, all had a set in the color of Red Heart Boutique Unforgettable of their choosing. I made these while watching the Olympics. It was a great project to keep my hands busy while spending much more time than usual watching television. Here are the sets I made:

 Aren't they so cute! The pattern was easily memorized and fun! I look forward to trying other patterns from this book as well! I hope you'll get the book and try them too!

Happy stitching,


Roserock Ripple Hat

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This is Roserock Ripple Hat. Maybe you're my biggest fan and you're already be familiar with my Roserock Ripple Scarf and realize that this hat is made to match it. However, maybe you're a new friend and didn't know this. No problem. Years ago, I designed a scarf. It was made in a ripple stitch that has stripes of solid and stripes if mesh. It was beaded. I found the leftovers of the yarn in my yarn closet and decided to design a matching hat.

Interweave Store

The hat is made in the same ripple stitch pattern and is also beaded. It begins with a wide band and is long enough to be a slouchy hat, but you can easily shorten it to make a fitted hat instead.

The pattern is written in sizes 16", 18", and 20" head circumference. That's the size of the hat. You should choose a size 1-6" smaller than your own head circumference because this hat is very stretchy. It uses 2 skeins of Jojoland Melody, a wool fingering weight yarn, and a size F/5/3.75mm crochet hook. I really love the colors of Jojoland Melody, it's really a favorite of mine for that reason.

Color Stress Away with Coling Books at Interweave

If you make this hat, I'd love to see photos! You can share them on Ravelry or on my Facebook page.

Happy Stitching!

PS - I've started a monthly newsletter! You can sign up here.


Knot My Hat & Mitts

 A few months ago I had the joy of seeing this new pattern of mine released. This is available from Ancient Arts Fibre Crafts, a delightful yarn company out of Canada! This hat and fingerless mitts set is made in their 100% Superwash Merino fingering weight. The colorway is called Cross Stitch Sampler. Isn't that a great name?! I love it! It reminds me of being a little girl and watching my mom cross stitch. I'd watch has she's gradually fill in a little section of color, and then another next to it, until at least I could see the beginning of a picture. One thing I LOVE about Ancient Arts is that they offer several yarn bases, but then you can get any of their gorgeous 140+ colorways in any of those yarn bases!

This is a slouch hat with a knot tied in the bottom. You actually begin by crocheting the long tie pieces and then work up to the rest of the hat. you can roll the bottom edge up and tie it if you like that look, or leave it unrolled to leave the hat slouchy in the back. You can also easily add length if you want your hat longer, or leave out some rounds if you want it shorter.

The fingerless mitts also have ties crocheted into them that you tie in a knot to decorate your mitts (and hat). I love this! I am so pleased with how they turned out. I especially like the picture below because I think it does justice to the beautiful colors of this yarn.

The pattern stitch is seed stitch, or what I have also seen called moss stitch. The pattern is a little complex because of the ties that are made, but nothing that an experienced stitcher can't handle. If you are newer to the craft, you may need to invite your crochet buddy over for an evening to help you through that part, but when is that ever a bad thing?!

When you finish your hat and mitts I hope you'll share your photos on Ravelry or on my Facebook page! I love seeing photos of finished projects from my patterns!

Happy stitching!

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