Giveaway: Crochet 2018 Calendar

Enter to win - 2018 Crochet Calendar Giveaway by Little Monkeys Design

Enter to Win: Crochet 2018 Calendar

I have 2 patterns published in the Crochet 2018 Calendar by Andrews McMeel Publishing. They have sent me an extra Calendar, and I want to give it away to ONE lucky winner!

A winner will be chosen January 8, 2018 at 9 am.

Enter and share with friends for 10 bonus entries.

How to Crochet Surface Slip Stitches

Learn to work the surface clip stitch with this crochet tutorial  video - then use this for the Tic Tac Toe game board crochet pattern - create a travel size game.

I recently wanted to make something fun for my little guy who is almost 5 years old. He has plenty of hats and won't wear scarves, but loves to play!

When we go to a local restaurant, he like to play with the little chalkboards they have there to help keep children quite while they wait for their food. Lately he's been grabbing the Tic Tac Toe boards, and we are learning to take turns winning!

Tic Tac Toe game board crochet pattern for a travel size game board. Store your pieces inside the game - by Little Monkeys Designs.

That gave me an idea - I could crochet him a travel size Tic Tac Toe board that never runs out of chalk! 
Tic Tac Toe game board crochet pattern for a travel size game board. Store your pieces inside the game - by Little Monkeys Designs.

Introducing: The Tic Tac Toe travel game board

I love how it turned out - it looks a lot like a chalkboard! I designed it using basic crochet stitches so that my Beginning Crochet Course students could make it for themselves too. It is a pouch with all the game pieces stored inside and buttoned shut for traveling.

But, it needed one fancier stitch - the surface slip stitch. So, I created a quick video to show you how to work a surface slip stitch on the top of your project.

It's quick and easy! 

Tic Tac Toe game board crochet pattern for a travel size game board. Store your pieces inside the game - by Little Monkeys Designs.
If you'd like to crochet your own travel size Tic Tac Toe game board, the pattern is available on Little Monkeys Designs. (FYI - if you sign up for my crochet newsletter, you can grab a 20% off coupon to use on this fun pattern.)

Tic Tac Toe game board crochet pattern for a travel size game board. Store your pieces inside the game - by Little Monkeys Designs.

p.s. I took the game to my grandparents over the Thanksgiving weekend and they loved it! Grandma even requested the pattern to crochet one for herself as they spend a lot of time in the Doctor's office. I sent her the pattern - and a finished game board.

FREE Crochet Pattern - Holiday Cowl

FREE Crochet pattern - Holiday Cowl - by Little Monkeys Designs

Tis' the Holiday season - the time of giving! And I have a gift for you!

I created a FREE crochet pattern for you to use to make yourself a fun Holiday cowl. I choose a red and green theme, but feel free to choose any color scheme you want.

Over 25 Small Businesses to shop for the holidays

If you're like me, you like to support small businesses during the holiday season. I've put together a list of small businesses that I've done business with and can highly recommend to you.  Many are having terrific Black Friday - Cyber Monday Sales. I've noted coupon codes as I am aware of them. For many shops no coupon codes are needed for the sale.

Ready for Winter Collection

Fall and Winter are definitely the time of year that we pull out our yarn and crochet hooks and get busy! There are so many gifts to make for the Holiday season. Plus, don't forget to crochet a few things for yourself! 

Just in time - my Ready for Winter Collection of crochet patterns gives you some fun crochet projects to make for everyone on your list!

Crochet World - Tasseled Mug Rug Crochet Pattern

Tasseled Mug Rug coaster crochet pattern by Angela Plunkett of Little Monkeys Designs featured in Crochet World Magazine December 2017 Edition.

Winter is the best time to pull out your yarn and crochet hook and create something fun for yourself or as a gift. 

With the holidays right around the corner, handmade gifts are always appreciated too!

Yarn Review: Crafty Housewife Yarns

Yarn Review of handspun art yarn - thick and think yarn - by Erin of Crafty Housewife Yarns. Now to create a one skein crochet pattern with this gorgeous yarn.

When I saw this gorgeous yarn come across my Instagram feed, I just knew I had to find an excuse to purchase it! Just from the photo I could tell that it had gorgeous color and texture. Then I noticed the sparkle, and I was sold!

Triangle Shawls

November's Pattern Pack Pro features Triangle Shawls - my Vintage Summer shawl crochet pattern is featured as one of the 6 triangle shawl crochet patterns -

I’m excited to announce that I’ve been published in the latest issue of Pattern Pack Pro.
You can find my pattern and 5 other fantastic patterns HERE:

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is breast cancer awareness month - show your support - crochet a demonstration breast for a new mom or your favorite nurse or lactation consultant. FREE crochet pattern with newsletter subscription.

Aside from being a crochet designer, I'm also a Registered Nurse and an International Board Certified Lactation consultant. Over the past 15 years I've helped numerous moms learn to breastfeed their new babies. I've also had several close friends battle breast cancer. So - 

October and Breast Cancer Awareness Month are a big deal to me!

Beginning Crochet Course by Mastering Crochet with Angela Plunkett

Learn to Crochet with the Beginning Crochet Course by Mastering Crochet.

Crocheting isn’t just about yarn and hooks.

When you learn to crochet you are giving yourself the gift of a great sense of accomplishment! You are learning a skill that will help you relax, while channeling all your creative energies into a fun project. Crocheting keeps your hands busy, your brain active, and increases hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills and range of motion.
Once you learn to crochet you will have an on going source of handmade gifts to give friends and family members for birthdays, holidays and other special occasions.

Tools of the Craft - What a Crocheter REALLY Needs

 What a crocheter really needs to crochet - FREE crochet video series - learn to crochet - beginning crochet

When you walk into any craft store it's hard not to get overwhelmed with all the choices! They have for sale every crochet hook, yarn, and more that you could ever need!! 

It's easy to buy everything that's "pretty" and then go home and wonder what you're going to do with it.

Debunking a Crochet Myth

Debunking a common crochet Myth - FREE Crochet Video Series - Learn to Crochet - Beginning Crochet course

One of the biggest hangups I hear from aspiring crocheters is "I'm not a Grandma! Only Grandmas crochet!"  

That is just not true!

5 Reasons Why You Should Learn to Crochet

FREE crochet video series by Mastering Crochet. Beginning Crochet - learn to crochet at your own pace.
One of the most frequent (and important) questions I get from people watching me crochet is:
"Why do you crochet?" or
"I'd love to learn that, but .... (fill in the blank)".

Top 10 Reasons to Learn to Crochet

Top 10 Reasons to Learn to Crochet - beginner crochet - by

You are busy! Maybe you have a full time job - outside the home or as a momma with a handful of kiddos. You have family, friends, and community obligations.

You definitely don't have time to learn a hand craft! Right?

Maybe, it's actually that you definitely MUST take time to learn a hand craft.

Several of us were recently talking about the benefits of crocheting, one of the many different hand crafts.

Here are the top 10 benefits that kept coming up:

A Visit to Echoview Fiber Mill

A visit to Echoview Fiber Mill by Angela Plunkett of Little Monkeys Design.

Don't you love it when things just fall into place?? I know I do!! Especially when it involves buying more yarn! ;)

Last week we were on a family trip that circled up to Kentucky, back through east Tennessee, across North Carolina, landed in Hilton Head, SC for a few days (maybe you saw a few of my beach pictures?), up through Atlanta and back home to Nashville. 

Yes, a looooong trip with 4 teenage girls and a 4 year old boy! 

We had many highlights on the trip, but for me the last minute plan to visit Echoview Fiber Mill in Weaverville, NC was awesome! I have been wanting to see the mill for a few years now - ever since I meet Melissa and Amalia at STITCHES South 3 years ago. It was then that I discovered their wonderful, natural dyed yarns and learned about their unique, sustainable fiber mill.

Yarn Review: Raffia

Raffia Yarn review by Little Monkeys Design - Beach Bound Straw Bag crochet pattern

I've been seeing them everywhere - those lovely straw bags - large enough to hold everything you need at the pool or beach.

But I couldn't bring myself to purchase something that I COULD make!

So began the search for Raffia yarn, as I learned with some searching is what the straw yarn is called. It's not easy to find! Finally I found a way to order it on Amazon Jo-Ann's and Premier.

Tide Pool Tank in Interweave Crochet

Interweave Crochet Magazine Summer 2017 edition - Little Monkeys Design - Tide Pool Tank crochet pattern

Last year I worked up the courage to submit a crochet pattern to Interweave Crochet magazine.

You can imagine my surprise when they accepted my design for the Summer 2017 edition!!

Enter the GIVEAWAY

Giveaway - Baby Love Collection of crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design - baby blanket crochet patterns
Enter the Giveaway

Enter to win the entire 

Baby Love Collection of crochet patterns

This collection includes 6 baby blanket crochet patterns. Each is unique and would make a terrific baby gift. The patterns include instructions on how to increase the blanket sizes in case you’d want to make one for yourself! ;)

Crochet Survey Question

Hey friends - let's talk crochet for a few minutes!

I was 8 years old when my grandmother taught me to crochet, so I don't remember every NOT knowing how to crochet. Over the years I've had a lot of people watch me crochet - especially in public - and ask, "How do you do that? Is it hard? I'd love to learn, but ... or I could NEVER do that!."

Is this/was that you?? Or maybe someone you have taught to crochet recently?

If you thought learning to crochet was beyond you, but surprised yourself by learning and loving it - I want to hear from you! If you're still in the consideration stages - I want to hear from you too!

Introducing the Baby Love Collection

Baby Love Collection of baby blanket crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design

The Baby Love Collection is a beautiful collection of 6 unique baby blanket crochet pattern. Utilizing sport and worsted weigh cotton blend yarns, this collection of baby blanket crochet patterns create lightweight blankets perfect for summertime babies.

Baby Love Collection of baby blanket crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design - Dreamy Waves chevron crochet baby blanket pattern

Dreamy Waves - beautiful chevron baby blanket crochet pattern. It creates a lightweight blanket perfect for summertime babies.

Baby Love Collection of baby blanket crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design - Pure Love crochet baby blanket pattern

Pure Love Baby Blanket – a simple textured stitch is combined with a twisted shell edging to give this blanket a sweet and treasured appearance.

Baby Love Collection of baby blanket crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design - Perfection! Crochet baby blanket pattern

Perfection! Baby Blanket – a soft ripple stitch is combined with modern color blocking to give this blanket a sweet and contemporary look.

Baby Love Collection of baby blanket crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design - Royal Baby blanket crochet pattern - crochet baby blanket pattern

Royal Baby Blanket – a beautiful solid color blanket with a coordinating color edge stitch resembling a crown.

Baby Love Collection of baby blanket crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design - Jewel Tones crochet baby blanket pattern

Jewel Tones Baby Blanket – using 4 coordinating yarn colors, a textured stitch pattern gives this blanket a contemporary look.

Baby Love Collection of baby blanket crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design - Sea of Colors crochet baby blanket pattern

Sea of Colors – a simple V-stitch and a fun puff stitch are combined with an exciting color composition to give this blanket a wonderful texture and an ombre appearance.

Baby Love Collection of baby blanket crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design

 Who can resist making a gorgeous blanket for the newest little one??

Craftsy Classes on Sale

Anytime I'm wanting to learn something new, I turn to the internet. You can usually find someone who has already mastered the skill and loves to teach it to others.

Craftsy is one place where you can find all kinds of classes:

Why I'm in love with my Tulip Etimo Rose Crochet Hook Set

Tulip Etimo Rose Crochet Hook Set review -

It's your birthday/Christmas/fill in the blank holiday coming up soon. Don't know what to ask for as a gift? I would highly suggest a set of crochet hooks.

Yes, you already have a set of crochet hooks, but .....

Vintage Style Mother's Day card with yarn - a QUICK card craft

Did Mother's Day (or someone's birthday) sneak up on you? Do you need to make a card quickly and cheaply? Here's your answer!

Vintage Style Mother's Day card to make with yarn - a quick card craft - yarn art

I love a vintage style card, so I couldn't resist creating a banner or bunting style Mother's Day card. It will take you all of 5 minutes!! This would make a beautiful birthday card as well.

Yarn Art Card Making with Kids

Yarn Art card making with kids - Mother's Day cards - card crafts for kids - preschool arts and crafts

I love using scrap yarn pieces to do fun crafts with my kids. Lately we've been making cards - specifically Mother's Day cards.

Yarn Art card making with kids - Mother's Day cards - card crafts for kids - preschool arts and crafts

My little guy didn't want to be left out of the action! Using some yarn scraps he created this card with just a little help.

A classic crochet DIY Mother's Day card

A classic crochet DIY Mother's Day card - crochet flower card

 I like to make crochet related gift cards to give to friends and family. Here is one of the cards I created this week. Scroll to the bottom for links to more fun crochet and yarn related card making ideas.

Make a cute card with your child using scrap yarn

We have lots of extra yarn at our house! Today I made a video with my little guy showing you how we made a cute card using scrap yarn pieces. 

We planned for this to be a Mother's Day card, but it can easily also be used for a Valentine's Day, Father's Day, or even a birthday card.

A cute Mother's Day card to make with your kids using yarn - a quick card craft - yarn art - preschool arts and crafts idea

Crafting with yarn - Mother's Day cards for kids to make

With all the crocheting that I do, I have a huge amount of scrap yarn - yarn that is in too small of an amount to crochet with. But, I hate to throw it away!!

 I've been thinking all year about what to do with these scraps. When I noticed that Mother's Day was creeping up on us, I had an idea for those yarn scraps - I'll let my preschooler use some of this yarn to create unique, one-of-a-kind Mother's Day cards for all the mothers we know. 

Today I'm sharing one of the easier cards to make - one that my 4 year old did mostly by himself.

Mother's Day cards for kids to make - crafting with yarn - preschool craft project

This card is quick and easy to make and can be personalized to Mom's favorite flower color.

10 Reasons why I love my wood crochet hook

I love nature! A hike in the woods, the sun on my face, the wind in my hair, even the softness of cotton, and the smell of lavender.

Over the past few years I've switched over to only crocheting with natural fiber yarns. I specifically love to work with cotton and merino wool yarns.

Crochet Hook Review: Happy Crochet Hooks

Happy Crochet Hooks Review by Little Monkey Design. Click this link for a discount -  

I recently posted a request on a yarn and crochet related Facebook page for readers favorite crochet hooks. It's amazing all the replies I received!! There are all types of crochet hooks out there on the market - from your basic crochet hook to some pretty fancy ones.

If money wasn't an issue, I'd buy one of every kind, but .....

I chose to start my crochet hook review project with a beautiful crochet hook from Happy Crochet Hooks after a glowing recommendation from Jess Mason, a fellow crocheter and designer.

Yarn Review: Twice Sheared Sheep Recycled Yarns

Recycled Cotton yarn from Twice Sheared Sheep's Cotton Collection, Vintage Summer Shawl crochet pattern by Little Monkeys Design.

Have you every looked through a selection of acrylic yarns and thought there had to be a better option?

There is! Welcome to the world of natural fiber yarns! You won't ever look at yarn the same way again once you've had the privilege of working with a natural fiber yarn, whether it's cotton, wool, alpaca, bamboo, silk or a blend of natural fibers.

Yarn Review: Natural Fiber Producers sport weight yarn

Yarn Review: Natural Fiber Producers sport weight yarn and shawl crochet patterns in sport weight yarn by Little Monkeys Design.

I have fallen in love with Natural Fiber Producers sport weight yarn! It is made from a blend of cotton, alpaca, and wool. This blend results in a yarn that is delightful to work with and luxurious to the touch. Named after state flowers, this collection of yarns has some gorgeous colors to choose from.

Yarn Mamas Tees, Tanks and Totes

Yarn Mamas T-shirt, tanks and totes shout out by The Little Monkey Shop.

Confession - I think I might be slightly addicted it all things yarn! 

You too?? Good, I knew I was in great company!

Maybe, you too have had your eyes on Yarn Mamas and all of Krista's goodies?? (Hint: read to the bottom for an awesome coupon!)

Yarn Mamas T-shirt blog shout out

Yarn Review: Natural Fiber Producers Northern Lights Suri Silk

Yarn Review: Natural Fiber Producers Northern Lights Suri Silk Fingering Yarn by The Little Monkey Shop

Last April I went to the last STITCHES conference in Nashville. I am always on the lookout for natural fiber yarns when I go to yarn shows.

 This year I was introduced to Natural Fiber Producersan agricultural cooperative made up of  those who raise Sheep, Alpaca, Angora, Buffalo, Musk Ox, and Mohair in the United States and Canada. By assisting with commercial fiber processing at a reduced cost, the Co-op is offering the opportunity for sustainability and enhanced profitability to its fiber producing owners.

10 ways to celebrate National Crochet Month

10 ways to celebrate National Crochet Month by Little Monkey Shop - Little Monkeys Design

March is National Crochet Month and an excuse to pick up a hook and create something fun! It's also a great time to reflect back on when and why you fell in love with crochet.

Introducing the Transitions Collection

Introducing the Transitions Collection of crochet patterns by Little Monkeys Design. Crochet shawl patterns for transitioning from one season to the next.

Whether it's almost spring or almost fall, you often find yourself needing just a little something to wrap around your shoulders to keep the chill off. 

With this in mind, I have created the Transitions Collection - a collection of shawl crochet patterns. 

Bucket List Challenge!

Bucket list challenge - magazine publication - by Little Monkeys Design

You hear it all the time - "Maybe some day I'll _____." Or "I'd really love to _____!" 

We all have a bucket list of things we'd love to do, places we'd like to go, people we want to meet.  Many of those things will never be checked off, but with a little effort and some stepping outside our comfort zone, a few of the items on our bucket list can be accomplished.

The Crocheter's Skill-Building Workshop: Book Review

The Crocheter's Skill-Building Workshop book review by Little Monkeys Design.

After crocheting for many years you think you know all there is to know about crocheting. Then you visit the book store and pick up a random crochet book, just to flip through while you wait on your children to decide which book they want to purchase with their birthday gift card.