Posted on

pattern preview: stacking crochet baskets with handles

Let me introduce you to the newest crochet pattern available here at jakigu.com and in my Etsy shop. This is the second pattern in the Coiled Crochet Series. As I wrote before, coiled crochet is my absolutely favorite technique to make crocheted baskets. If you don’t know the first thing about coiled crochet, then this pattern would be a great place to start. You’ll learn the basics – all the while making a set of pretty awesome baskets.

Crochet baskets with handles - a DIY crochet project for beginners

Sturdy crochet baskets with handles - a nesting set

When I shared some work-in-progress pictures based on this pattern on a popular Facebook crochet group a couple of months ago, the interest was overwhelming. My fellow crocheters appreciated the same attributes of these crochet baskets as I did. They are colorful, quick and easy to make, practical, durable, sturdy – and they have handles!

Continue reading pattern preview: stacking crochet baskets with handles

Posted on

work in progress: journal cover (or clutch)

Hoping pictures are worth many words, here is a photo update on my newest project: a crochet journal cover.

crochet journal cover

In the process of making it, it became clear that it could easily be transformed into a clutch, or a book cover – with no adjustments to the pattern necessary.

Personally, I am inclined to turn it into a clutch – and then store both my journal and my pens in it. A clutch journal cover of sorts.

But making it into a standard book or notebook cover would be so simple by adding felt (or other non-fraying fabric) pockets on the inside to hold the book covers in place.

In either case, I am so pleased with the way it looks so far.

What do you think? What would you make it into? And… would you be interested in a pattern? Let me know!

Posted on

pattern preview: coiled crochet bowls

Everything you could possibly need to know to make a set of these wonderfully sturdy stacking crochet baskets in one awesome information and image packed file, coming to my shop next week.

Update: the pattern is finished and can be found right here on jakigu.com, and it is also available in my Etsy shop.

Coiled Crochet Stacking Baskets or Shallow Bowls, a PDF Pattern by JaKiGu

Apropos. 54 pages. Can it even be called a pattern, or have I written a book?

Coiled Crochet Stacking Baskets PDF Pattern by JaKiGu Preview

If you haven’t heard of the coiled crochet technique before, I wrote a little about it here. In short: I am in love with this technique so rarely utilized in crochet circles that there is barely any information available on it yet so awesome I want to scream about it from the mountains! There’s no better way to crochet sturdy and durable baskets, bags, potholders, and rugs. Period.

Learn coiled crochet with this awesome 54-page pattern and guide book, and make your own sturdy and durable crochet baskets.

Posted on

work in progress: coiled crochet & wayuu

Taking crochet basket making to the next level. Staying true to my choice of natural fibers but adding a splash of color to my designs.

I know I repeat myself but I love coiled crochet. Crocheting over a coil makes baskets incredibly sturdy, and therefore durable. Nothing makes me more sad than a crocheted basket that needs to be starched to hold its shape.

The coil in this case is made of two strands of jute, and five strands of cotton. Two of the cotton strands – a white and a rose – are working strands; the other three serve a “padding,”  or placeholder, purpose. In a design with more colors (up to 6 are common), yarn of all the colors used would need to be carried under the stitches. Even though I am only using two colors now, I want to create a universal pattern that would work equally well with 1 or 6 colors with consistent results in regard to size, gauge, and overall design.

A slight departure from my usual coiled crochet technique is evident in the way stitches themselves are executed. Instead of working regular single crochets, I am working the stitches in back loops only to closely mimic the appearance of the crocheted bags made by the Wayuu people in Colombia. Just type “mochila wayuu” in Google image search and be prepared to be blown away by the breathtaking, colorful designs.

Colorful Style and Durability - basket crocheted in Wayuu style over a coil

I deliberately chose the (seemingly) simplest design to play with: working all increases with accent color, and all other stitches in base color. Where the increases are placed changes the design drastically. The purple sunburst design is created by working all purple increases into the second stitch of the previous round’s increase. The rose spiral is the result of working all rose increases into the stitch preceding the previous round’s increase.

Crochet Potholder - Bag Bottom - Basket Base - Crochet over Coil

 

Posted on

work in progress: mystery crochet project

This crochet project has been on my mind for almost 4 years.

Don’t worry! It does not take that long to finish it. You know how life is. You make a plan, and life makes you change it. Dozen times over.

In fact, this is quite a simple crochet project, requiring only the knowledge of magic circle, slip stitches, and single crochets, and a lot of patience to complete countless hexagons and pentagons.

Yet, in the world of crochet, the finished product will be utterly unique and novel – and when you see what it is, you’ll be just as excited about it as I am.

This picture is your Clue #1. Can you guess what I am working on?

Stay tuned for Clue #2.

Posted on

work in progress: coiled crochet vessel

This adorably shapely crochet bowl meets all the requirements I focus on when designing a crochet container: it is made with durable natural materials, it feels sturdy and substantial; and it can be used for a variety of purposes.

Its current role as a planter cover is to hide an unsightly container in which my new pothos clipping is growing new roots. But previously, it served me wonderfully as a counter-top fruit basket. My husband has the smaller one on his desk as a catchall. And just ask my 4-year-old son and he’ll tell you how many rocks from his little rock collection can fit in, or how well it sits on his head as a helmet!

Round Crochet Bowl in Jute

Would you like to learn to make a container like this yourself? A pattern with an amazingly detailed step-by-step photo tutorial is coming soon. Comment below and three lucky commenters will be randomly chosen on November 30, 2017 to receive a free copy of the pattern & tutorial PDF.

Jute and Cotton Crochet Bowl

In the meantime, I invite you to have a look at the other crochet baskets I have designed, either in my online store, or in my Etsy shop.

Coiled Crochet Basket - Jute Bowl

Posted on

coiled crochet baskets

Baskets, baskets, and more baskets! Baskets make me happy.

They are fun and relatively quick and easy to make, and oh-so-useful! My son loves to keep his little cars and blocks and treasures in them. My husband appreciates that the fruits on our counter are readily accessible, yet contained. And I? Most often, I use a recently made basket to hold my yarn as I work on the next one!

I tend to be critical of my creations and never make grandiose statements about them, so this is huge: These are the most amazing baskets I’ve made to date!

Coiled crochet. Such a simple concept – and so widely underused, if you ask me. Crocheting over a coil helps create a thicker textile without the need to use too much yarn. It also makes work grow faster as the stitches are considerably taller than they would be without the coil. And perhaps the most significant quality of a coiled basket, in my opinion, is the sturdiness that comes with it. I appreciate the delicate nature and decorative characteristic of stiffened doilies shaped into bowls, but how practical are they, really? Coiled crochet baskets, bowls, and containers, on the other hand, beg to be used – and can handle a great deal of abuse, too!

Possibilities are virtually endless when it comes to choosing a coil. Ropes and clotheslines of various thicknesses, several strands of yarn (scrap or deliberately chosen), fabric strips, recycled plastic bags (aka plarn), a crocheted chain, or even wire; to name just a few options.

For the large blue basket, I used 2 strands of jute. In the small red and yellow baskets, I crocheted over cotton clothesline.

I love crocheting over jute so much! Using two strands of jute allowed me to control the tension a little more evenly – and I adore the way the color of natural jute peeks from in between the stitches. And because jute is not really used to crochet in this case (unlike the baskets in my Jute and Cotton Series), it’s not too tough on fingers.

But I was equally pleased with working with the cotton clothesline. Its standardized size and neural color (that could be possibly custom dyed to suit any project needs) as well as the fact that it’s widely accessible make it a really practical coil choice.What do you think? Do you like the coiled crochet concept? Have you ever made anything in this technique? Would you be interested in a pattern?

Posted on

crochet baskets pattern bundle

Crochet Baskets by JaKiGu, Pattern Bundle

Reaction to my basket patterns has been overwhelming. My heart is filled with joy and pride when I read reviews such as these:

The best written pattern!!! The explanation are clear and go into the smallest details. Just gr8
-Hadas

Amazingly detailed pattern with lots of pics and clear step by steps! Brilliant! The creator of this pattern has been so so helpful when i got myself confused, and as a result i have a new fav basket pattern! Beautiful and sturdy!
-Kayla

I love, love, love this pattern. The basket has a special stitch that creates a firm ridge on the bottom. Jana has created a visually stunning, professional PDF tutorial. WELL DONE!
-Amara

Best instructions ever! Easy to follow. Pictures showing techniques were so helpful! Thank you!
-BetS

It warms my heart knowing so many people from around the world appreciate my patterns and enjoy the process of creating something out of seemingly nothing with a little help from my instructions.

Since all three stacking baskets sets from my Jute and Cotton Series come in complementary designs and sizes, even without so many of you asking for it I knew I wanted to make all three patterns available in one convenient listing for those who want to own an instant pattern collection. The bundle offers the all three pattern sets (9 basket patterns in total) at a HUGE discount – just a dollar more than a single pattern if purchased individually.

If you’d prefer to purchase the bundle through my Etsy shop instead, please use coupon code BLOGZLAVA3 for an instant $3 off an already discounted Etsy bundle.

And remember: if you have any questions, let me know. I’m here to help.

Happy crocheting!

JaKiGu Crochet Baskets Pattern Bundle

 

Posted on

work in progress: coiled crochet basket

I am so in love with the basket I am working on right now – I just had to share a snapshot with you!

Worked similarly as traditional coiled baskets, this one is crocheted with cotton and contrast acrylic over jute coil. What an amazing structural strength that jute lends to this basket! If I described my round and square jute and cotton baskets as sturdy, and the lace baskets as firm, this one can only be described as “solid.” Honestly, it feels more like wicker than fabric. On my quest to design the most durable, functional basket, this one might be a dream come true.

What do you think? How would you describe your ideal crochet basket? Is a basket’s ability to keep its shape an important attribute of a crochet design? Would you consider giving a coiled crochet basket a try? Should I start working on a pattern?

 

Coiled Crochet Basket by JaKiGu.

 

Posted on

crochet pattern: square jute and cotton stacking baskets

My round jute and cotton stacking baskets hardly need an introduction.

That’s why I am so happy to announce that their eagerly awaited square version is finally here.

Square Basket - JaKiGu Crochet Pattern

This pattern took way, way longer than I ever thought possible to publish, but at last it is here – and also in my Etsy shop.

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

The 25-page instantly downloadable PDF file contains instructions to crochet 3 perfectly stackable square crochet baskets. Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Aside from nine written pattern sections, this instructional booklet is packed full with 37 high-quality detail-focused photos, four step-by-step photo tutorials, and many useful notes, tips, and tricks.Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

These three square baskets complement the round set perfectly both in size and proportion, and will add to your growing collection of simple, practical, and lasting home decor items made with the simplest of natural fibres: jute and cotton.Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

And now, both patterns are available as a discounted bundle!

The bundle is also available in my Etsy shop. If you’d prefer to buy it there, don’t hesitate to use coupon code BLOGZLAVA3 for an instant $3 off the already budget-friendly pattern bundle.

JaKiGu Crochet Pattern Bundle

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Square Stacking Baskets by JaKiGu

Posted on

crochet pattern: jute and cotton stacking baskets

My to-date most comprehensive and detailed instructional booklet is now available right here on jakigu.com as well as in my Etsy shop.

Stacking Crochet Baskets, a Pattern Designed by JaKiGu

Cotton Lace and Jute Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu-Jana K Gusich

Three basket sizes. Nine pattern sections. Sixty-two photos. Five step-by-step photo tutorials. Twenty pages of countless notes, tips, and tricks.

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

If you like it, you might want to check out my Jute and Cotton Crochet Series for additional basket designs.

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

Stacking Baskets Crochet Pattern by JaKiGu

Crochet Stacking Baskets, a Crochet Pattern

Posted on

work in progress – an update

Oh, moving. Four weeks ago, I moved for the seventeenth time in less than 15 years; and I am not even in the military. My husband and I chose this nomadic life, and enjoyed every aspect and every moment of it. But, we were ready to settle down.

And so this time, we moved our little family into our very own house, and we have no plans to move anywhere anytime soon (and, I secretly dream of never moving anywhere again, ever). Because no matter how many times you go through the process, and how efficient you are at packing your belongings for a move across continents, states, or just down the street, the aftermath never gets easier. Packing is easy. It’s the cleaning, unpacking, and organizing following a move that takes the biggest toll. It requires motivation, determination, and tons of energy. And time. Oh, so much time. And with a curious, clingy toddler in tow, the end is seemingly beyond my reach this time.

I hoped to have two more patterns ready by the end of May. That now seems a little too unrealistic. Especially since, at least in the Jute and Cotton series, I want to make versions of all baskets available in three different sizes to offer a stackable set. That’s a lot of baskets to make, and many lines of instruction to write, check, double check, test, and then check again. My husband laughs and says that I seem to be making baskets just to contain my old baskets.

crochet baskets by JaKiGu

So, patterns for which baskets are coming first, and when?

This lovely lacy design has become my favorite in the Jute and Cotton series and I can’t wait to share it with you – hopefully by the end of June. (Psst: The pattern for this basket is available in my shop. Click on the image below to check it out.)

Jute and Cotton Crochet Basket by JaKiGu

I wouldn’t want to disappoint a long line of eager crocheters patiently waiting for the square version of my very popular round jute and cotton baskets. It shouldn’t be long before this design is available as well. (Psst: It’s already available as well. Click on the image below to see it in my shop.)

Square Jute and Cotton Stacking Crochet Baskets by JaKiGu

And then? There are so many more basket ideas I’ve been toying with and designs for which I want to share with you! In the picture from my workshop (which these days is the windowsill) above, you can see some of them in various stages of completeness: a design that’s complementing the lacy basket; the polka dot baskets; a tall and narrow container that can be hung and serve a myriad of functions inside the house and out; and a basket with rolled rim worked in a double thick stitch that is sturdy yet really soft. And then I’ve been testing a basket worked in a brilliant new stitch that I accidentally invented (or discovered through trial and error while trying to make the square baskets) – this stitch is amazing, and creates the foundation of the sturdiest basket I’ve ever made despite looking quite delicate. Oh, and then there are baskets worked in a variation of the star stitch – they are also quite stiff and their surface features lovely texture.

And that’s just baskets. I have several bracelets, cushions, and floor mats just waiting to be taken more seriously. And then, there is a mammoth of a project I’ve been working on ever since my son was born almost two years ago. It’s nowhere to be finished, but when I finally get my hands on it, it will be magnificent. I’m keeping its identity a secret, and if you guessed it’s a blanket/throw/afgan, you’d be wrong. It’s a design quite rare in the crochet world, and I am so very proud if it. No worries, it will not take you two years to complete.

Oooh, and also, I’ve been dying to start writing free tutorials for my blog. There is so much I have learned about crocheting through my own mistakes, and I’d like to share this knowledge with you.

As you can see, all I need to make this all happen is a little help from a full-time housekeeper and a live-in nanny (and for each day to have 48 hours).

It will happen!

And one last thing.
I sure hope you decide to have a look at my pattern shop right here at jakigu.com. The current sale is pretty sweet!
However, if you prefer to purchase my patterns through my Etsy shop, you’re welcome to use coupon code BLOGZLAVA3 for an instant $3 off any purchase of $6 or more.
Go make something beautiful!