Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Halloween Project #1: Crocheted Halloween Spider Web Doily

I yearn for Autumn all year round, Halloween in particular. Everything about Halloween is absolutely amazing, the decorations especially! Since I love Halloween so much, I'm going to try to do 31 Halloween related tutorials from now until October 31st.

This pattern was originally found in "150 Weekend Crochet Projects", but I'll write it out for you guys here.

- I used Red Heart Acrylic yarn, but really, any yarn will work.
- Orange and black is an awesome Halloween combination, but I think this could be done in a lot of different colors. Black and white, purple and green, green and orange?! Halloween is amazing, and the possibilities for this are endless. not to mention, this is a fairly quick project, so making a handful wouldn't be absurd.

Web Motif = 4 1/2 inches in diameter

Pattern Notes
Sl st to join each rnd in beg st.

Spider Web Motif (Make 7)
Rnd 1 (RS): With orange, ch 12, sl st to join to form a ring, ch 6 (counts as first dc, ch 3), [dc in next ch, ch 3] 11 times, join in 3rd ch of beginning ch-6. (12 ch-3 sps)

Rnd 2: Ch 9 (counts as first tr, ch 5), [tr in next dc, ch 5] 11 times, sl st to join in fourth ch of beg ch-9.

Rnd 3: Ch 11 (counts as 1st tr, ch 7), [tr in next tr, ch 7] 11 times, join in fourth ch of beg ch-11.

Rnd 4: Ch 13 (counts as first tr, ch 9), [tr in next tr, ch 9] 11 times, join in fourth ch of beg ch-13.

First Spider Web Motif Trim

Rnd 5: Attach black in first ch of any ch-9 lp, ch 1, sc in same ch as joining. Sc in each of next 3 ch, [ch 7, sk 1 ch, sc in each of next 4 ch, sk next tr, sc in each of next 4 ch] 11 times. Ch 7, sk 1 ch, single crochet in each of next 4 ch, join in beginning sc, fasten off.

Remaining Spider Web Motif Trim

Rnd 5: Attach black in first ch of any ch-9 lp, ch 1, sc in same ch as joining. Sc in each of next 3 ch, ch 3, sl st in center of free ch-5 lp of adjacent motif, ch 3, sk 1 ch on working motif, sc in each of next 4 chs, sk tr, sc in each of next 4 ch, ch 3, sl st in center of next free ch-5 lp on adjacent motif, sc in each of next 4 ch, continue working as for Rnd 5 of first spider web motif trim, joining 2 ch-5 lps per side along 1, 2 or 3 adjacent motifs.

I don't have on hand, but I would add some plastic spiders before putting on display.

Looking forward to making 30 more Halloween Projects!

Monday, June 27, 2011

My Novel Arrived Today

Yes, that's right. My novel.

Rubbing my face against it, like a cat, so everyone knows it's mine.

- Last September I had a crazy dream about parallel universes.
- Last November 1st, I started my second ever NaNoWriMo journey.
- November 30th, The novel was finished with 67,409 words.
- Around March, my cousin told me he wanted to start a website where people could read books for free, so I finally had some incentive to read over this thing and edit it.
- From April - June, Billy and I coordinated to edit this.
- Then, about a week ago, I sent everything in to CreateSpace to get it published.
- Today, my self-published copy showed up at my door.

What the hell is NaNoWriMo, and what is the point?

NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month, and it takes place annually between November 1st - 30th, and roughly 118,000+ people all around the world write a 50,000 word novel in a month. The point is to have a rough draft of a novel, for everyone who has said "I wanna write a novel" but has never had the discipline to do so.

Are there winners? Are there prizes?

Everyone who hits the 50,000 word mark is a 'winner', and the prize is a certificate to print off and hang up on your fridge, as well as a code to use on CreateSpace for a free copy of your novel, and the ability to tell everyone that you have written a novel. What more could you want?

Why is NaNoWriMo one of the best things ever?

Not last year, but the year before, my boyfriend broke up with me after we'd been dating for just under a year. I was pretty upset, and found myself doing just about everything I could. I was taking up new hobbies, buying new animals, reading more, writing more, painting more, even took up a Kung Fu class to kill some time. He broke up with me in September, and by November I was over it, but I had still vowed to participate in NaNoWriMo. and I figured it would be fun to try it out.

November of 2009 was hard. A lot of awful things happened, but worst of all was witnessing the death of a resident at the home where I was a caregiver. I was so lucky to have NaNoWriMo, because every awful thing that happened to me that month was so easily expressed through my writing, and I had to express myself, because I had to meet my word goal. There were times I found myself crying in front of my computer, because I just couldn't write anymore, I had run out of ideas, and patience, and ability to think clearly.

I actually gave up for 5 days. I stopped writing, racked up an 11,000 word deficit, and only after that did I vow to finish the novel. I did it. It wasn't easy, but I finished with 50,003 words. I felt invincible, like I could do absolutely anything. It was through writing that I was able to learn a lot about myself that I didn't know before, and how to deal with the passing of Pauline.

It's astonishing what I learned, and how much of yourself really goes into a book. Everyone was a part of me, everything mimicked something that had happened to me in the past. Was I still hung up on these things? Am I really that dark? I opened up more, I felt more, I paid more attention. I had changed because of this novel, because of one month!

How come you barely finished your 1st novel, and your 2nd novel had an extra 14,000 words, and you never had any breakdowns?

Just like with anything else, you get better with practice. I was inefficient at writing outlines the first time around. Not to mention, I was 'scared" I would have 'too much', didn't know how to write characters or sub I learned from my conglomerate of mistakes, and fixed them the 2nd time through. I still had some very minor issues last year, and I intend to learn from those as well. It will be the same for you, I promise. Just stick through it the 1st year and it will get better and better every year.

Why everyone should write a novel:

Every year I try to recruit friends to do NaNoWriMo with me, and I never succeed. I try to tell people how great it is, how fun it is, but for some reason, people don't think sitting in front of a computer monitor every night to write 1,667 words is fun. I've tried every angle, but really, it's just something you have to experience. That moment when you can't stop laughing because a character of yours called their friend's girlfriend a whore in a clever, and subtle way. That moment when you cry because you just killed off a sweet old man. The moment you smile, because it's November 29th, and you finally get to write that scene where he gets the girl. It may sound stupid, but it's your world. It's a place you have made, and everything lives and dies by you and your rules. And why wouldn't you want to do that for a month out of the year?

Can I add you as a friend on the NaNo site?

Of course, my screenname is CaffeinatedTarantula. I'm looking for more people to cheer on, and who will cheer me on.

You will be hearing more about NaNoWriMo as we inch closer to November, but now is a good time to start thinking about ideas if you're going to do it :)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Would You Like Fries With That?

My Dad loves food. My Dad eats whatever he wants, however he wants, and doesn't feel bad about it. Growing up with a Dad like this is a blessing and a curse. While I am the same way with my eating, I tend to be less healthy because of it. I've finally started figuring out that it's okay to eat healthy, even if my Dad gives me a hard time about it.

Almost every occasion I can, I make my Dad food. It's usually dessert, and I think I do this because he really does love ooey gooey in-your-face fattening high-cholesterol extra grease never-ever-low-fat AWESOMENESS. It also gives me an opportunity to partake in said awesomeness, as well. So when I found a book of crazy cupcakes, I guess it somehow turned into a Father's Day tradition.

So last year I made my Dad Chocolate Moose for Father's Day. No, not a typo. They were chocolate cupcakes that looked like moose. So this year, to keep the tradition going, I decided to do another kind of crazy cupcake. These are  much simpler, but still have that 'wow' factor.

I know you're thinking "How is putting french fries on top of cupcakes 'wow-ing'?" Well, that's just it. They're not fries! They're pound cake!

I got the idea from "What's New, Cupcake?", and it's so simple. Not only that, but this is the 5th idea I've taken from that book, and all of them have been fun and easy. I highly recommend this book.

What You Need:

- Box of cake mix (I used Pillsbury Golden Butter Recipe)
- Frosting (I used the canned stuff. For this one I used a 12 oz. can of "Whipped Cream" frosting and I loved it! Easy to use, and you can do a lot with a little). If you do make your own, you'll need 12 - 16 oz.
- 1 pound of thawed pound cake (It will be in the frozen section. Yes, get the big one.)
- Crinkle cut vegetable cutter.
- Red food dye.
- Both regular size and mini cupcake tins.

How To Make This:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.. To make an extraordinary box cake mix, ignore the directions on the back. Use 4 eggs, a cup of buttermilk (if you don't have buttermilk, use a cup of milk, a tablespoon of lemon juice, stir and wait 10 minutes), and however much oil it calls for on the package (usually 1/3rd cup). Stir it all together.

Golden buttery goodness.

3. Make your cupcakes! Mine ended up making 17 regular size and 8 mini.

4. Cut off the ends of your pound cake using your crinkle cutter. Cut your pound cake into 1/2" thick slices, then cut the pound cake crosswise into 1/2" strips. Put your "fries" on 2 greased baking sheets.

5. Preheat your broiler to high. Toast the poundcake strips under the broiler until golden (about 20 - 30 seconds). Turn the pieces and continue toasting until all sides are golden brown (I just used my fingers. Tongs were kind of awkward, and the poundcake isn't actually all that hot). Repeat with the other tray. Let them cool.

6. Tint about 1/4 cup of your frosting red (I used a little more). Frost the mini cupcakes with the red frosting for the cups of ketchup.

7. Frost the regular size cupcakes with the white frosting.

8. Arrange your fries on top of your cupcakes.

9. Feast!

I hope you guys enjoy this as much as I did. I also highly recommend buying "What's New, Cupcake?" if novelty cupcakes sound like a hobby you want to pick up. I can definitely assure you that you will impress people every single time.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

TMNT Mug Cozies

You can get the original pattern from here, or use my modified pattern from here.

How to Make (Badass) Sculpey Pendants

Remember in my last post how I said you should get a lot of necklace chain in case you end up making more jewelry? Well here's another tutorial on how to make some simple pendants using polymer clay (sculpey) and pictures.

Dragon in an Egg (hence why he's upside down). My favorite one.

The original tutorial was found here.

Thor was my practice piece and didn't turn out great.

Due to some issues I had, here are some tips I have for you along with the original tutorial:

- First of all, Sculpey is actually somewhat toxic when you cook it. After doing this project I had a bit of a headache, and just didn't feel well. I would recommend doing this project with as many windows open as you can, with fans in as many of them as you can. I would also recommend going into another room while the sculpey is cooking, and closing the door, then doing that for awhile afterward. I did not take any of this advice and I had a headache for quite awhile, and felt kind of nauseous.

- Second of all, if you sculpey looks like this after you've cooked it:

...then you've done it all wrong. It should still be white when you take it out, or the corners should be brown in the worst case scenario. After some extensive Google Fu, I found out that apparently burning Sculpey smells funny, but since I don't have a sense of smell I can't vouch for that, but I think you should be aware of it as a warning.

- All ovens are different, and be aware of how yours works. I would recommend doing a test square to see how long you should bake it.

-I would also do one piece at a time, in case you really ruin things. That way all your time, effort and energy haven't been put to waste (see above picture...)

- In the tutorial, she uses a pasta machine, but a rolling pin works just as well. Have some patience. Don't roll it back and forth in a crazy frenzy. Push it forward once, lift and repeat. This is good for 2 reasons: it won't stick to your rolling pin, and there will be absolutely no air bubbles when you do it this way.

Absurd and badass.

The tutorial says to use pictures printed off, but I don't have a printer, so I used pictures from already cut up books and a promotional comic book that I got for free from my place of work. As you can see, you can do any shape. The dragon there did take a long time, and my only tip for you if you do something like that is this:

When you're cutting out your shape, keep in mind that cutting the shape from the sculpey is going to be be even more tedious than cutting the shape from the magazine/book/comic/paper, so simplify and cut corners when and if you can, because you need to be realistic. I omitted some spikes from the dragon because I had a hard enough time cutting them out, so I knew cutting them with the sculpey would be even more awful. I think it worked out :)

Good luck, and enjoy!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

How to Make a Tarantula Fang Necklace, and adventures with jewelry in general.

Both my tarantulas molted last October, and their molts have been sitting around doing nothing since then waiting for me to do something with them. I've been meaning to put them in a shadow box to display, but frankly, I just couldn't get myself to spend the money on a shadow box.

What I really wanted to do was make some tarantula fang jewelry, but I didn't even know where to start. I've never made jewelry, and I barely even wear it. Not only that, but I couldn't find a tutorial anywhere online about what I needed for tarantula fang necklaces or anything. But the stars were aligned yesterday and I went out to Micheal's to get some jewelry stuff.

Here's what I learned yesterday, and maybe you can learn something too.

- Chains: Micheal's (from what I can tell) sells 2 lengths of chains. They sell 3 feet of chain for about $3, or they sell a roll of 12 yards of chain for $10. I bought the latter. I was worried it would be cheap-looking, but as you can tell, it really doesn't. This, I think, is the much better deal. Even if jewelry making ends up not being for you, you can save money on future jewlry because....

- Charms: At a craft store, you can buy 4 charms for $4, while if you buy actual jewelry at a store, you'll pay anywhere from $10 - $20. With the roll of chain you have, the next time you go out to buy jewelry, just go somewhere like Michael's and buy a few charms for a few bucks. Put them on your extra chain, and increase your jewelry collection 200%. The heart you see there is one of 4 different hearts that I got.

- Tools: I knew I was going to need something, but I was pretty overwhelmed by all the different types of pliers I saw there. Honestly, I found a "basic beading" book and opened it up, and found that "Chain Nose Pliers" would be the best option for someone only buying one tool. They are good for opening up the chain so you can 'break off' a length for a necklace, not to mention opening up jump rings, and closing the clasps I used on the tarantula fangs.

- Other stuff (Jump Rings, Lobster Clasps and End Caps With Loops): Jump rings (The rings that connect charms to the necklace) come in packages of no less than 150, I swear. I just wanted a few, and ended up getting a lot, because there just didn't seem to be any other options. Not a bad thing, though, they were still fairly cheap, and now I'm set for life in all my jewelry-making endeavors. Lobster clasps come in packs of 10, and are about $3. You may want to look around for other means of clasping, but I like lobster clasps the best, so I went with them. End Caps with Loops are what I used to put the tarantula fangs in. They come in packs of 50 or so.

How to make this:

- 3 Tarantula Fangs (After your tarantula molts, you can use your chain nose pliers to pull them out of the molt). For mine, I used 1 from a full grown rose hair (The one on the heart), and 2 from a full grown Pink Toe.
- 3 End caps with loops
- "Lost and Found" brand "Large Metals Heart" Charms.
- 5 Jump rings
- 1 Lobster Clasp
- I used 21" of chain, but you can use whatever is comfortable for you.

1. Attach Jump ring and Lobster clasp at the end of your chain.

2. Slightly close the end caps with your chain nose pliers, then put the thicker end of the tarantula fang as close to the bottom as you can (closing them slightly will keep them in place better). Completely close the end cap with your crimp nose pliers. You may hear some crunching, but that's not bad, as long as it's not too much. The fangs are surprisingly resilient. I made sure the 2 I was going to use on the chain were facing opposite directions so my necklace would have some symmetry. This took me a long time, so have some patience. Typing this out feels weird, because it truly was so much more difficult to do than to say.

3. Insert jump rings into all your your end caps.

4. Put jump ring through the bottom hole of the lacey heart.

5. Add jump ring to heart.

6. Attach heart to center of necklace.

7. Attach fangs on either side of heart. The spacing I used was 8 chain links away from the heart.

You can use your chain nose pliers for everything in this project.

Have fun!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Crochet Compendium, and a modified pattern.

I honestly don't remember the last time I finished 3 projects in a day, so I'm feelin' pretty good about today. It was definitely a lazy day, though. After working 8 days in a row, then 4 days of temperatures in the 90s, I more than welcomed a day all to myself with temperatures in the mid 60s. I spent probably about 10 hours of my day crocheting today, and it just wouldn't be me if my posts weren't made around 3 AM ;)

1. Gypsy Head Scarf

This took all of an hour and a half, and looks really nice. The yarn I used was Lion Brand's Tweed Stripes in the "Caribbean" colors. The pattern called for a ch of 144, but I did 154 and I still felt as though it was a tad short (though, I like my head scarf ends to go like 5 or 6 inches past my shoulders). This just touched my shoulders. Like I said, though, definitely happy with the results, and how quickly it went.

2. Sushi Roll Scarf

I have actually been working on this for about 2 weeks now, but finally managed to finish it today. This is actually a wedding gift for someone I've only met a handful of times, but whose wedding I'll be attending later this month. The only reason I did a handmade gift was because, well, first of all, those are the only gifts they're accepting, and they're refusing to accept store-bought gifts, but have set up a donation to a charity if anyone feels like they have to spend money on them. I loved that so much, that I vowed to make something for them (read: her) if for nothing else than to show my gratitude about how she's handling her wedding.

All in all, it was a fun project at first, but when I got to the 36" of white for the 'rice' I got really bored, and subsequently frustrated with how bored I was getting. By the end, I was happy to be done. The project is a cute idea, but I think it was a little too simple for how ambitious I've been feeling lately when it comes to my crocheting.

3. Turtle Power Mug Cozy

First of all, this concept is awesome. What wasn't awesome, was thinking "Hey! Here's an easy 2 hour project!" and then spending roughly 7 hours on it. I think part of the problem was that the mugs the original pattern-writer used were smaller than the mugs I use. While her pattern totals 16 rounds, mine is I definitely think something was off. I edited the pattern for those whose mugs are 3.75" high.

(I'm copying and pasting most of her original pattern, but will put my changes in bold.)

-Worsted weight yarn in green, white, black, and orange (substitue red for Raphael, purple for Donatello, or blue for Leonardo).
-G Hook for cozy and whites of eyes
-E Hook for pupils
(I used an H hook the whole way through)
-Tapestry needle

Base rounds 1-7 = 3 inches = Base of a standard coffee mug

Special Stitches:

hdcdec: Half double crochet decrease (yo, insert hook in next st, yo pull up loop, yo, insert hook in next st, yo pull up loop, yo, pull through all 5 loops on hook)

Base worked in continuous rounds
R1: With green and using G hook, ch 2, 6 sc in second ch from hook (6sc)
R2: 2 sc in each sc around (12sc)
R3: *2sc in next st, sc* 6 times around (18sc)
R4: *2sc in next st, 2sc* 6 times around (24sc)
R5: *2sc in next st, 3sc* 6 times around (30sc)
R6: *2sc in next st, 4sc* 6 times around (36sc)
R7: *2sc in next st, 5sc* 6 times around (42sc)
R8: 1 sc in each sc (42 sc)

Sides worked in rows back and forth (I worked the 1st part of these in rounds (before the opening for the handle), mostly due to mis-reading the pattern, and it still worked out.)
R9: ch 1 (does not count as stitch now and throughout), in back loop only hdc in each st around. ss to first hdc. ch 1, turn (42hdc)
R10: Working in both loops, hdc in each st around. ss to first hdc, ch 1, turn. (42 hdc) 
R11:  Working in both loops, hdc in each st around. ss to first hdc, ch 1, turn. (42 hdc) 
R12: hdcdec over next 2 sts, 38hdc, hdcdec over last 2 sts, ch 1, turn. Do not join to first stitch of this row. (40 hdc)
R13: hdcdec over next 2 sts, 36hdc, hdcdec over last 2 sts, ch 1, turn. (38hdc) 
R14 - 15: hdc in each st around. (38hdc)
R16:  hdc in each st around, finish off, cut green. (38hdc)
 R17: join orange with ss, ch 1, hdc in each st around, ch 1, turn. (38hdc)
R18 - 20: hdc in each st around, ch 1, turn. (38hdc)
R21:  hdc in each st around, finish off, cut orange. (38hdc)
R22: join green with ss, ch 1, hdc in each st around. (38hdc)
R23: join green with ss, ch 1, hdc in each st around, finish off, cut green. (38hdc)

Using H hook join orange with ss at end of R20, ch 30, sc in second ch from hook and in next 3 sts, hdc to end of ch, ss to end of R21, cut orange. (4sc, 25hdc)
Repeat tie on opposite end of mug.

R1: With white and using H hook, ch 2, 6sc in second ch from hook. Do not join to first st. (6sc)
R2: 2sc in each st around, ss to first st, cut white. (12sc)
R3: *2sc in next st, sc* 6 times around (18sc)
R4: Join orange with sc in any st, sc in each st around, ss to first st, leave long tail for sewing and cut orange. This last row will want to curve a bit. That's ok. It will flatten when you sew it to the sides of the cozy.

R1: With black and using H hook, ch 2, 10sc in second ch from hook, ss to first sc, leave long tail for sewing and cut black. (10sc)

Sew pupils to eyes using black tail from pupil.
Fold cozy in half, place one eye on orange headband to left of fold and the other eye to the right leaving a small space between. Sew eyes to headband using orange tail from eyes.
Weave in ends.

Just to clarify, I did not create this pattern, I have only modified it. For the original pattern scroll up and click the link that says "Turtle Power Mug Cozy".

(Giant words are there thanks to a mean concerned woman who accused me of stealing her pattern on Ravelry...but that's a long story for a different day. I just want to make sure I cover my ass so no one else gets mad.)

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Needles and the Damage Done

Yeah, that's right. I bought knitting needles.

They're big.

I don't really know what possessed me to do it. I'm barely competent at crocheting, but I guess the spirit moved me to pick some up. I tried some knitting tonight, and it seems like it'll be easy enough once I get the hang of it, but sitting wide-eyed in front of YouTube at 1 AM probably isn't the best way to learn.

I think Ravelry has inspired me a lot. There are a lot of patterns, and a lot of people helping other people. It's a really nice place. However, it's because of Ravelry that I'm so overwhelmed with the amount of crochet projects I want to make...:)

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

How to Impress People Without Actually Being Impressive: Part 1

I think about this a lot. People tend to be very impressed with me when I do very simple things. I don't know exactly what the "X" factor is that impresses people, but maybe I can figure it out if I write out the things that impress people.

First thing: Macaroni and cheese!

My most recent cheesy creation: Mac n' Swiss Cheese with diced ham.
I have made homemade macaroni a ton of times, and every time, people act as though I have just turned lead into gold. In all honesty, you probably have most (if not all) of the ingredients in your house right now, and get this: The recipe is on the back of boxes of elbow macaroni. I can't speak for all brands, but every box of elbow macaroni I've ever bought has had the recipe right there on it. You don't even need to look that far for this, but I'll provide the recipe here.

What you'll need:

16 Oz. package of noodles (I like to use rotini, or large elbow macaroni...but really: any noodle works)
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup flour
4 cups milk
1 teaspoon salt
Pepper (I like pepper a lot, and use 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon, but really it's just to taste).
3 - 4 cups shredded cheddar cheese (Or whatever kind of cheese. Protip: Buy a block of cheese and shred it yourself with a cheese grater, it'll be cheaper that way Protip again: Don't get supermegacheap cheese. It -will- taste funny. I have tried this before, and honestly, just spend the extra dollar.)
1 Cup breadcrumbs (Optional, and I personally do not use them)

How to do it:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees (F).
2. Cook and drain noodles according to directions on package. Rinse with cold water and set aside.
3. Melt butter in large saucepan.
4. Add flour, salt and pepper, using a whisk to stir in until well blended.
5. Pour milk in gradually, stirring constantly.
6. Bring to boiling point and boil 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
7. Reduce heat and cook (stirring constantly) for 10 minutes. By now your flour and milk should feel somewhat thick (not extremely, but just noticeably.). That means you're doing it right.
8. Add shredded cheese little by little and simmer an additional 5 minutes, or until cheese is completely melted.
9. Remove from heat.
10. Add noodles to saucepan and toss to coat with cheese sauce.
11. Transfer noodles to a lightly greased baking dish.
12. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs (if that's your sort of thing)
13. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 - 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

There. That's it. If I can give any advice, don't skimp on the salt and pepper, and don't buy cheap cheese (I restate it, because it's important) and people will be impressed in no time. I honestly can not express the amount of times people have been impressed with just the -idea- that I ca make homemade macaroni and cheese.

So go. Go make some nom noms.

Rainbow Scarf With Clouds

I made this scarf about 2 months ago or so, and since I just (finally) typed out the pattern on Ravelry, I figured I may as well write it out here, as well.

This pattern will use a single crochet, so your rainbow will be bright, and dense. This is definitely an improvement upon my last rainbow scarf, and as a matter of fact, this was the scarf I was wearing when someone stopped me on the street to ask me where I bought it. When I told them I had made it myself, they offered to buy a scarf from me! I have also received a -ton- of compliments on it, including a woman who told me I have the best single crochets she's ever seen, and if she didn't see me making it, she would think it had been done by a machine.

But don't get all intimidated by my ego here. When I made this scarf I had only bee crocheting for 9 months. I just practice a lot. Nothing crazy here. Also, I know the clouds look intimidating, but I promise those are easy, too!

This is the 1st pattern I’ve written out, so please let me know if anything is unclear.

Stitches (and abbreviations) you’ll need to know for this pattern:

ch - chain
sl st - slip stitch
sc - single crochet
ps - Puff stitch

For Puff stitch:

-Wrap the yarn over the hook, insert the hook below the chain. Wrap the yarn over the hook and draw through. There will be 3 loops on the hook.
-Wrap the yarn over the hook, insert the hook below the chain. Wrap the yarn over the hook and draw through. There will be 5 loops on the hook.
-Wrap the yarn over the hook, insert the hook below the chain. Wrap the yarn over the hook and draw through. There will be 7 loops on the hook.
-Wrap the yarn over the hook, pull the yarn through all 7 loops.
-Wrap the yarn over the hook, pull through(chain) to secure puff stitches at the top.

To make clouds:

ch 4. sl st to connect them in a circle. ch 1. Make 8 ps within ring. Connect ps with a sl st. ch 1. Now do 2 ps in the space between each ps. You will now have 16 ps. connect with a sl st. ch 1. Work 1 sc in the ps, and 1 sc in the space all the way around the circle. You will have 32 sc. Connect and tie off.

Repeat this circle 20 times.

Tie in all loose ends.

Using a tapestry needle, sew 3 circles together in a line, then 2 on top to make sort of a ‘pyramid’ (as pictured). Repeat this 4 times so you will have 4 ‘clouds’. Make them as symmetrical as possible.
Put the ‘wrong sides’ of 2 clouds together and connect them by sewing together the bottom 3 circles. Leave the top 2 circles open and un-sewn for now. So you will now have 2 clouds.

To make the rainbow:

Chain approximately 300 red. sc in every space. sc 4 rows, follow that with 4 sc rows of orange, yellow, green, blue, purple. This makes the rainbow approximately 5 1/2” wide and will fit nicely within your clouds.

Putting it all together:

Tuck the ends of the rainbow in between the open space of your clouds. Using white yarn and a tapestry needle, sew the clouds on your rainbow. Be sure your rainbow is exactly perpendicular to the clouds so it doesn’t get sewn on crookedly. Also, be sure to close up the sides of the clouds that aren't on the actual rainbow. Do this twice.

Now you have a dense, bright rainbow, and with the clouds on both sides of the rainbow, there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to wear it!

This is fairly time consuming, and requires a lot of patience (especially sewing the clouds to the rainbow without making it a crooked mess, not to mention doing a scarf completely in sc), but the results are worth it.