New Knitting Pattern: BIL Beanie


Knitting Pattern: BIL Beanie
Us knitters get a lot of requests for handmade gifts, which is both a blessing and a curse. It’s a great feeling to be able to give someone something that you put your love and work into, but there aren’t always enough hours in the day to produce all the knitted-love we have to offer! This conundrum came up when my brother-in-law asked me for a hat. Several times. I really, really wanted to make him one, but with deadlines and family obligations it took way longer than I’d have liked it to. That said, I wanted to knit him something classic enough that it wouldn’t go out of style (read: wouldn’t require a replacement any time soon), and also quick enough to make that I’d be able to finish it in a few evenings. The result, is the BIL Beanie (modeled by my husband, not my actual BIL, though) Knit in a chunky, lush alpaca blend and on Takumi Bamboo Size 9 needles this project goes by fast, but feels luxurious every stitch of the way. Bookmark this for holiday gifts for the guys (and gals) in your life. Enjoy!

Approx 150 yds/75 gr of bulky-weight, alpaca blend yarn in (A) Dark Gray and (B) Light Gray. (I used 1 hank each of two colors of this.)
Size U.S. 9 (5.5 mm), 16″/41 cm Clover Takumi Bamboo circular needle
Size U.S. 9 (5.5 mm) Clover Takumi Bamboo double-pointed needles
Stitch Marker
Clover Jumbo Tapestry Needle

Finished Size
Unisex S/M(L/XL)
Stretches to fit 21″(23″)/53.5(58.5) cm head

Approx 17 sts x 20 rows= 4″/10 cm in 2 x 2 rib, slightly stretched.

RT: Right Twist—K2tog but do not slip st off needle, insert right needle between these 2 sts and knit the first st again, slip both sts off needle.

With circular needle and A CO 88 (92) sts. Join, being careful not to twist sts. Place a marker (pm) for beginning of round (rnd).

Rnd 1: *K2, p2; rep from * around.

Rep Rnd 1 until piece measures 2″/5 cm from CO edge.

Beanie body:
Join B; cut A.

Rnds 1 and 2:*K2, p2; rep from * around.

Rnd 3: *RT, p2; repeat from * around.

Rnd 4:*K2, p2; rep from * around.

Repeat Rounds 1–4 until piece measures 6″(6 1/2″)/15(16.5) cm from CO edge.


Note: Change to dpns when necessary.

Join A; cut B.

Rnd 1:*K2tog, p2; repeat from * around—66 (69) sts.

Rnd 2: *K1, p2; repeat from * around.

Rnd 3: *K1, p2tog; repeat from * around—44 (46) sts.

Rnds 4: *K1, p1; repeat from * around.

Rnd 5: *K2tog; repeat from * around—22 (23) sts.

Rnd 6: Knit.

Rnd 7: *K2tog; repeat from * to last 0 (1) sts, k0 (1)—11(12) sts.

Cut yarn leaving a long tail. Thread tail through remaining sts. Pull tight and secure.

Weave in ends.

Block if necessary.


Yarn Arts Ambassador, Clover Needlecraft

Tool School with Steve Butler, Nancy Zieman Fusibles

nz fuse

What is it? – Interfacing is used in many sewing and craft projects to provide extra support, body, reinforcement or shape.  Basically it enhances our creative potential by allowing us to do things beyond the capability of the fabric alone.  A fusible interfacing is a specific type of interfacing that has a heat activated adhesive applied to it.  This “fusible” type interfacing allows us to simply iron it into place.  Clover and Nancy Zieman have taken this convenience a step further in the development of four really cool fusible interfacing tools.  In each application they make the creative process fun, fast and accurate.

What does it do? – Many sewing and craft projects benefit significantly with the addition of some special little accessorizing touches.  Unfortunately many of these little touches are very often labor intensive.  Clover fusibles to the rescue!

Wrap ‘n Fuse Piping – Piping is a great way to accent any project but if you want a perfect match to your intended fabric you’re going to have to make it yourself.  Cutting cords, fabric, basting and then sewing it all together on your machine is time consuming, tedious and fraught with potential for error.  With Wrap ‘n Fuse Piping it’s a snap and your piping is perfect every time.  Simply wrap your fabric around the Wrap ‘n Fuse material, iron it in place, trim to size and you’re good to go.  Wrap n’ Fuse Piping is available in three sizes, either 3/8″ x 2.2 yards,  3/16″ x 2.2 yards or 3/16″ x 6 yards.

9512 Wrap-N-Fuse

Fuse ‘n Bind “Fusible Binding Tape” – You’ve just finished some place mats, pot holders, a wall hanging or some other sewing or craft project and you need a binding.  What’s the fastest, most accurate way to do it?  Place the one inch Fuse ‘n Bind to the center of your 2” coordinating fabric; then iron to fuse into place.  Iron the seam allowance on one side of the interface at ½” and sew along the top edge of the other side of the interface. When you fold it in half you’ll have the perfect half inch binding… easy, fast and ready to sew in place.  Fuse ‘n Bind is available in either 2 or 6 yard lengths.

9573 Fuse N Bind 2yds

Fuse ‘n Gather “Fusible Gathering Tape” – Gathering reduces a large area of fabric to a smaller area resulting is small folds that add fullness to your fabric.  Ordinarily it involves a lot of figuring, measuring, basting and adjusting to get a uniform look.  Fuse ‘n Gather make a potentially complex operation simple.  Just iron the tape onto the wrong side of your fabric with the blue threads up.  Tie the threads together at either end and pull the threads on the other end to achieve the desired appearance.  Attach to your project and you are done.  Fuse ‘n Gather is available in either 5/8″ x 6 yard or 5/8″ x 15 yard lengths.


Create-a-Strap – There are many uses for reinforced straps.  We think of them primarily for purses or totes but they are also wonderful for pocket openings, decorative seams or anywhere we need a little extra strength or shape.  Just iron the Create a Strap fusible onto the wrong side of your fabric, fold the edges over at the perforations and iron again to hold the crease in place.  For free standing projects you can sew a decorative ribbon or fabric accessory over the seams to give it a more complete, finished look.  Create a Strap is available in either 5/8″ x 2.2 yard or 1.25″ x 2.2 yard lengths.

9510 Create-A-Strap

Watch Tool School Here!!!

Bead Crochet Kit Giveaway happening Right NOW!!!

Bead Crochet Kit Giveaway from Clover Needlecrafts, Jesse James Beads, Interweave, and Candie Cooper

Candie Cooper in conjunction with Interweave has created four new videos!!! Today she wants to share her “Bead Crochet!” video with you!!! Visit to learn how to enter her giveaway. You can win a free How-to Video, Clover Crochet Hooks and beads & elastic provided by


With this video you’ll learn how to make elastic necklaces and earrings in no time! Purchase your video today here from the Interweave Store.

Bead Crochet Giveaway Kit

Jumbo Amour-Made Hanging Planter!

Clover VH_BLOG_BANNERPlant Hanger

Crochet Hanging Planter
Every time I think I’m going to sit down and teach myself how to macrame a plant hanger, I end up looking longingly over at my crochet hooks. Crochet is so much more my jam! Truth be told, though I much prefer the look of bulkier yarn hangers, made with chunky yarns. Unfortunately, though until recently I didn’t have a large enough hook that would both do the job, and be comfortable to work with. I love the look of big crochet but man, sometimes creating it makes my wrist angry. Well, my friends, I’m pleased to report that my crochet dilemma is no longer! Thanks to my friends at Clover, I’m now the proud owner of a size 12 mm, Jumbo Amour Crochet Hook which is not only super-comfy to crochet with, but also comes in my favorite color: turquoise. <insert awkward, but joyful crochet-inspired dance>

Man, I dig this hook — and when I also came across the same shade of jersey, t-shirt yarn I knew they’d be besties, right away. The result of their partnership is: Plant Happy, a bulky planter holder that’s fit to be tied onto anyone’s patio awning. Make one for yourself today, then bookmark this pattern for teacher gifts later. Enjoy!


T-shirt or Jersey yarn (12 oz. I used 1/2 a cone of this.)
Size 12 mm Jumbo Amour Crochet Hook
Split Ring Stitch Marker
Super Jumbo Tapestry Needle
Tara-cotta pot (7″/18 cm diameter at mouth x 6″/15 cm tall)
Book or 8″/20 cm piece of cardboard

Plant Hanger Tools

Finished Size
Stretches to approx 25″/63.5 cm long (excluding tassel and hanging loop)

9 sts x 8 rows = 4″/10 cm in sc


Ch 7; join with a sl st, taking care not to twist. Place marker.

Rnd 1: Ch 1 (counts as sc), sc in next ch and in every ch around. Join with a sl st. –7 sts.

Rnd 2: Ch1, sc in same st, *2 sc in next st; rep from * around. Join with a sl st. –14 sts.

Rnd 3: Ch 1, 2 sc in next st, *sc, 2 sc; rep from * around. Join with a sl st. –21 sts.

Rnd 4: Ch 1, sc in next st and in every st around. Join with a sl st.

Plant Hanger2

Main Section:
Rnd 1: Ch 5, sk 2, sc in next st, *ch 4, sk 2, sc in next st; rep from * around. Join with a sl st in first ch of beginning ch 5. Place marker. –7 loops made.

Plant Hanger3

Rnd 2: *Ch 4, sc in loop space; rep around. From here you’ll be working in a spiral, but use the marker as a guide to know when you’ve made a full round.

Continue as for Rnd 2 until piece stretches to approx. 4 1/2″/11.5 cm tall, ending with a ch 4, sl st in the loop closest to the marker.

Fasten off.

Plant Hanger 4 small

Hanger Strands:

Divide planter Main Section into fourths. Join yarn at the loop space of one of those four points.

Crochet a 14″/35.5 cm chain.

Fasten off, leaving at least a 9″/23 cm tail.

Repeat for remaining 3 points.

Make tassel:
Wrap t-shirt yarn 15 or so times around cardboard piece. Slip an additional piece of yarn through the top loops of all of the strands; tie.

Carefully slide yarn off the cardboard, and pinch together about 1″/2.5 cm down from top, cinching tightly, using an additional strand of yarn.

Cut the bottom loops to create tassel strands.

Knot the four, Hanger Strands together, then create a hanging loop by tying an additional knot with the chain tails.

Weave in ends.

Place pot inside Planter Hanger. Donezo!

Plant Hanger1
Yarn Arts Ambassador, Clover Needlecraft, Inc.

Psst! Learn more about knitting, crochet, and cool products like the Jumbo Amour hooks on my, “Ask Me Monday” live video streams. Log on and tune in to my Facebook page every Monday at 10amPT/1pmET. Hope to see you there!

Big Apple Lemon Drive

Lemon 2

Want to be part of making history and have lots of fun doing it? Want to promote your guild or group and win some money for it? Join the Craft Yarn Council in its Big Apple Lemon Drive to draw awareness about the stress-busting benefits of knitting and crochet!

Why the need for lemons in NYC you ask?

Inspired by the success of its Stitch Away Stress campaign in April, the Council wants to have some more fun with the stress-reducing benefits of knitting and crochet… this time on one the most stressful days of the year, April 18, 2016, otherwise known as Tax Day!

April also happens to be National Stress Awareness Month (you get the connection).

With the help of your guild or group, the Council plans to hand out thousands of knitted and crocheted lemon stress balls with a message about the stress-reducing benefits of these crafts to taxpayers on the busy streets of New York City. Hopefully, they will be inspired to take up knitting or crochet and experience the health benefits themselves!

(courtesy of

To learn more visit and to sign up click here!

Watch Twinkie Chan make a lemon from start to finish!!!

Vickie Howell’s Watermelon Baby Bib!

Clover VH_BLOG_BANNERwatermelon bib3

You may’ve noticed that just as fruit goes in and out of season, its respective member’s likenesses go in and out of style. Last year you couldn’t walk more than a few paces in your local department store or boutique shop without seeing something inspired by pineapples. This year, the same seems to be the case for its less-acidic friend, the watermelon! I’ve seen slices everywhere — from beach balls and buttons, to handbags and headbands, to dolls and dresses. Watermelon is the new pineapple. Clearly.

After spying this trend (again, and again), while out and about, I jumped on Pinterest to do further research. The result was a rabbit hole of watermelon findings, of which I curated my favorites onto a virtual board. That particular board, I promise, is bursting with fruit flavor! Click here to scroll through, and repin to your juicy, heart’s content. But I digress.

Watermelon Bib

My point is that I was inspired. That inspiration combined with the fact that I was headed on a trip to visit some of my favorite bubbies, got me thinking about cute ways to apply the trend to something a baby would wear. It’s so dang hot right now, though that the only knitwear I could bear to subject a little one to, is a sweet bib. So, I grabbed the Takumi needles from the set I always travel with (you can watch the video on Facebook from this week’s, “Ask Me Monday” live feed to hear more scoop on knitting while traveling), and cast-on for this wee watermelon, wearable-treat! Here’s how you can make one too.


Yarn Arts Ambassador, Clover Needlecraft


1 ball each of Bernat Cotton-ish by Vickie Howell, in colors: (A) Crimson Twine, (B) Jade Jersey, and Scraps of (C) Cotton Club
Clover Takumi Bamboo 16″ (41 cm) Circular Needle, Size U.S. 5 (3.75 mm)–or size needed to obtain gauge
Optional: 2, Clover Takumi Bamboo Double-pointed Needles (dpns), size U.S. 5 (3.75 mm)–or size needed to obtain gauge
Clover Chibi Tapestry Needle


Finished Measurements
Length: (at center) 5 1/4″ /13.5 cm
Width: 9 1/2″/24 cm


21 sts. x 44 rows = 4″/10 cm in Garter Stitch

Note: This section is worked in short-rows, and can knit with either a circular needle or two dpns.
With Color A, CO 24.

Row 1: K 23, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn (last st will now be wrapped.)

Row 2: K 23.

Row 3: K 21, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 4: Knit 21.

Row 5: K 19, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 6: Knit 19.

Row 7: K 17, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 8: Knit 17.

Row 9: K 15, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 10: Knit 15.

Row 11: K 13, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 12: Knit 13.

Row 13: K 11, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 14: Knit 11.

Row 15: K 9, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 16: Knit 9.

Row 17: K 7, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 18: Knit 7.

Row 19: K 5, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 20: Knit 5.

Row 21: K 3, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 22: Knit 3.

Row 23: K 1, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 24: Knit 1.

Repeat Rows 1-24, seven times MORE.

Note: If you chose to use dpns for last section, switch to circular needle here to accommodate extra sts.

Next Row: K 24, pu 23 across top of piece. –47 sts

Next Row: Knit.

Neck shaping:
Row 1: K 15, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 2: K 15.

Row 3: K 14, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 4: K 14.

Row 5: K 13, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 6: K 13.

Row 7: K 12, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 8: K 12.

Row 9: K 11, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 10: Knit 11.

Row 11: K 10, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 12: K 10.

Row 13: K 4, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 14: K 4.

Row 15: K 3, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 16: K 3.

Row 17: K 2, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 18: K 2.

Row 19: K 1, sl 1, bring yarn fwd, sl st back to LH needle, turn.

Row 20: K 1.

Left neck shaping done.

Row 21: Knit 47.

Rows 22-41: Rep rows 1-20 (only wrap and turn rows will now be works on WS rows.)

Right neck shaping done.


Note: You can use either dpns or circular needle for this section.
With Color B and RS facing, pu 88 sts evenly along entire bottom edge.
Row 1 (WS): Knit.

Row 2: Knit, picking up 7 sts evenly. –54 sts.

Row 3: Knit.

Row 4: Knit, picking up 2 sts evenly. –56 sts.

Row 5: Knit.


With Color B and either dpns or circular needle, pu 4 sts at top corner of bib.
Work in i-cord for 10″/25.5 cm.


Repeat for opposite side.


Using Color C and tapestry needle, duplicate stitch “seeds” in desired pattern across bib.

Weave in ends. Block if necessary.