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crochet gift guide 2018

Twinkling lights, chocolate treats, and glitter everywhere – all clear signs Christmas is near. As my son says, the most magical time of the year is here!

You may be like my mother-in-law, and have your presents bought and wrapped since September. But if you are more like me, a last-minute gift maker, you might appreciate a little inspiration. To help you out, I lined up some of my most favorite crochet projects into a versatile crochet gift guide. They represent a mix of my original designs, both free and paid. Read on for links and an exclusive 50% coupon code for everything in my pattern shop.

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free crochet pattern: crochet snowflake 2018

Call me a purist, but in our house the magic of winter season doesn’t start until the first day of December. Which is today! Which made me want to go “Hooray!” more than once. ‘Tis the season.

My 5-year-old son was helping me decorate the house for the first time today. At one moment, he picked up a little jingle bell ornament, kissed it, and proclaimed, “Oh, jingle bell, how I’ve missed you!” Seriously, what can be cuter than that?

While we certainly share love for jingle bells, the quintessential holiday decoration for me comes in the form of a snowflake. Made of wood, paper, fabric, yarn, beads, twigs, wire, or the special Swarowski crystal snowflakes my husband has been gifting me in our son’s name every year since our boy was born – I cannot get enough of them!

An so, in order to perpetuate my love for snowflakes, I am kicking off an annual tradition of bringing you an original crochet snowflake design each year on the first of December.

Ta-da! Here’s Snowflake 2018!

jakigu.com | free crochet snowflake pattern

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new pattern: crochet picture frame collection

Sometimes, if feels like this crochet picture frame pattern collection has been years in the making. And rightly so. Trying to remember the day I shared my first crochet picture frame pattern 6 years ago is as hard as trying to remember a past life.

Crochet picture frames by jakigu.com

I suspect not many of you were here through the whole evolution of my blog from a bobbin lace making journal through wire and resin jewelry blog to what it is now.

Read on for a little bit of a backstory, all the details about my newest (and biggest) pattern collection, and a 50% off coupon.

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free crochet pattern: beaded karma pendant

Happy Halloween!

When I scheduled the release of this free pattern for Halloween, I had no reason to choose this date other than pure practicality. I love sharing – even fueling – my 5-year-old’s excitement about Halloween and all things spooky. Personally, though, October 31 is just an ordinary day.

But as I was editing tutorial photos earlier this week, something on my desk caught my eye. The pendant I had just photographed ended up atop what we call The Souls binder. And as it often is with memories, this fleeting glance was all that was needed to open up memory floodgates to my childhood. You see, this season holds a special place in my heart not because of costumes and candy, but because of a different tradition: All Souls Day.

Honestly, I had originally no intention of including a personal story about this time of year, but as memories popped up in my mind I found my fingers instinctively typing along. And when I was done, I realized it was something I wanted to share. So read on if you’d like after the pattern for some childhood recollections, a new family tradition, and why I am dedicating this newest addition to my free crochet patterns collection to the memory of my paternal grandmother.

But onto the pattern first.

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free crochet pattern preview: beaded pendant

In January, I published a long list of projects I’d like to tackle and share with you this year. And while I have not been able to check items off the list as often or as quickly as I’d hoped, I did manage to accomplish quite a bit. From four new crochet patterns I added to my store, to sharing tips and tricks on working with jute, to publishing two crochet basics posts (one devoted to waistcoat stitch, the other to adjustable loop), I know I shouldn’t complain.

However, it has been painfully obvious that despite my best intentions, I am yet to share a free crochet pattern with you this year!

Well, let’s fix that, shall we?

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how to crochet: waistcoat stitch

Ah, the waistcoat stitch. The crochet version of the knitted stockinette stitch. A.k.a. the knit stitch. Or the “v” stitch. Or, if we wanted to get more technical, the center crochet stitch, or the split single crochet.

Sounds impressive, doesn’t it? However intimidating some of these names may be, though, don’t let them fool you into thinking waistcoat stitch is complicated.

I like to think of waistcoat stitch as humble single crochet’s flamboyant twin. If you know how to work a single crochet, you know how to crochet the waistcoat stitch. That is because the latter is finished exactly the same way as the former. The striking difference in their final looks depends solely on hook placement. Before we exactly pinpoint where to insert the hook – and where the hook should exit on the back side – let’s have a look at a typical waistcoat stitch up close.

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pattern preview: wine bottle koozies

I’m putting finishing touches on two new crochet patterns, just in time for the upcoming gift giving season. These adorable wine bottle koozies work up quick, and – dare I say – they are quite unique in the world of handmade crochet gifts.

Aren’t they just perfect? Seriously. Don’t tell me you can’t think of at least 5 people who’d be over the moon if you brought them a bottle of wine in one of these beauties.

If you want to get a head start – and save up to 75% – on these, read on. The patterns are available for pre-order and I’ve listed the materials needed below!

Crochet Wine Bottle Koozies / Cozies by jakigu.com

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pattern preview: crochet picture frame

Let me introduce you to the first design in the series of crochet patterns for beginners: crochet picture frame with picots, available as part of an exclusive crochet picture frame collection here, at jakigu.com, or though my Etsy shop.

Its petals with picots remind me of a daffodil. Or the rays of the still sleepy sun on a spring morning. One way or another, this bright and happy crochet frame makes my heart dance and smile.

Crochet picture frame pattern and beginner crochet guide by jakigu.com

You may ask, “Jana, what exactly do you mean when you say ‘crochet patterns for beginners?'”

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learn to crochet: adjustable magic loop

Adjustable magic loop comes in handy whenever your work starts as a crocheted circle and you do not desire a visible hole in the middle. Examples of such work include coasters, placemats, hats, doilies, rugs, or basket bases. In fact, I use this technique to start all of of my baskets.

In essence, adjustable magic loop allows you to comfortably crochet any number of stitches into a sliding loop rather than into a chain stitch, which is the alternative of starting crochet circles. At the end of the round, you simply tighten the sliding loop to close the gap, creating a center with a barely there or completely invisible hole.

Magic loop, magic circle, adjustable loop, magic ring, adjustable ring, drawstring ring – this fundamental crochet technique goes by many names. Not surprisingly, there are also quite a few ways to execute it and each crocheter has their favorite.

Below you will find my favorite way of creating the adjustable magic loop. I will demonstrate the technique on a basic crochet circle consisting of 6 single crochets.

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pattern preview: crochet basket with chevron detail

Now available on jakigu.com and in my Etsy shop: PDF crochet pattern for this adorable basket with grey chevron detail. As a reader of my blog, you are welcome to use coupon code PATDESIAT309 for a 50% discount on this newest addition to my pattern collection (only valid on jakigu.com).

Sturdy crochet basket with a grey chevron, designed by jakigu.com

What can you expect?

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