If you own just any one pin loom, quilt-style project opportunities are endless. However, the growing number of pin-loom shapes and a better understanding of how to weave them opens the doors to even more, playful quilt designs that all seem to call “Pick me, pick me!”
This blog introduces one of those more complex designs, the “Flowers, Stars, and Hearts” table topper.
For this autumn version of the table topper I used Hobby Lobby “I Love This Cotton” in 336 Cinnamon Cedar (a variegated yarn resulting in red, yellow, and green jewel weavies, 2 balls), and one ball each of 18 Bruschetta, 40 Sage, and 14 Gold.
The design may look overwhelming, that’s why I put together photo-guided step-by-step instructions for weaving and assembling the table topper. The pattern will be half-off in our Etsy store this week, no coupon required.
Go get the “Flowers, Stars, and Hearts” pattern HERE.
But wait! We’re not done yet … imagine that you use the same design and start playing with different colors … you may get a classic holiday design, or radiant stars , or a kaleidoscope, or … That’s why the pattern not only includes a chart for the autumnal table topper and some more examples, but also a printable blank chart, so that you can design your own.
Designing with hexagons can be tricky, but it is also full of amazing surprises: This blog is about how easy it is to achieve Polka dot effects with hexagons!
Let’s start with looking at a small block of six hexagons (top left of the following graph). They are arranged in two rows, three hexagons each row. The first row has the sequence of “background, background, dot”. If you feel like dancing, you could say “skip, skip, dot”. The second row starts with a dot and has two background hexagons that follow.
Because of hexagon geometry, the dots between the rows are offset just right to make a classical Polka dot pattern.
Now you just need to repeat those “steps” within each row, and repeat those two rows, to any size you like. There you have your polka dot pattern!
To demonstrate, I made a Polka Dot Cowl in autumn colors … and did I mention that cowls are perfect medium size pin-loom projects, perfect for trying out crafting ideas … and perfect for gift giving?
The Autumn Cowl was woven on the TinyTURTLE™ Loom F-Fine sett with a yarn that is unfortunately discontinued (WEBS Camp Color Fingering, colors Audiophile and Somewhere Over the Rainbow). You can substitute any sock/fingering weight yarn or use the TinyTURTLTE™ Loom R-Regular sett with worsted weight yarns.
If you like the background plaid effect of the sample cowl, look for a yarn with “micro stripes”. Here are two examples:
Tempe Yarn’s Desert Garden is dyed with TURTLE looms in mind.
The variegated yarn on the left is Dusty Miller, on the right is Lupine. A suggestion for the dots is Desert Shades in Merlot (the “real” colors are actually more vibrant than in this photo).
Call the store for assistance at 480-557-9166 while they are updating their online shop.
In my stash I had these yarns from the Chaos Fiber Co.
The Micro-Stripe color is Birthday Party, combined with “dots” of Tonal Minis in Turquise Pop, Hot Pink, Hot Orange, and Lemon Drop. Use one or all!
The cowl measures about 21.5″ in the round and is about 9″ tall. You can easily change the size by adding/subtracting rows and repeats. The modeled cowl for example has one extra repeat, which brings it to 27″ in the round.
Here is the chart for making the cowl:
For your own Polka dot projects, and no matter which hexagons you’re using, here is a Hexagon Polka Dot Design chart for you. Print it in landscape layout for best results. If you need a larger chart, print and tape together as many copies as you need.
I want to thank Gale Zucker, www.gzucker.com, on Instagram @galezucker, for her amazing ability to bring out the best of a hand-crafted item in photography, and to Josephine Ankrah, Instagram @sweetjsphn, for perfectly modeling the Polka Dot Cowl.
The TURTLEs are looking forward to seeing your Polka dot projects!
I hope that I’m not the only person who was not aware that people use coasters for the cup holders in their cars … It took Tammy Anderson’s recent Facebook post with a picture of her newly created coasters to inspire me that woven hexagons would perfect for that purpose.
Photo credit: (c) 2023 Tammy Anderson. All rights reserved. Used with permission.
I’ve been using napkins for years, particularly during this hot summer.
Napkins no more! From now on, I will have handwoven coasters for all cup holders in my car, and just because I can, they will be seasonal!
HOW TO: This is probably the most perfect beginner project with a purpose that I can think of: Just weave a hexagon … weave in the ends … DONE!
I decided to weave the ends back into the weaving, which maintains an even edging all around. The “extra threads” are barely visible and just add to the coasters ability to soak up a few more drops of condensation.
After weaving the tails back in, just clip them.
Applications are endless, here are a few suggestions:
Make a set of 4-6 coasters as a great gift for someone who gave you a ride or is on the road a lot.
Think ahead and make stocking stuffers for friends, family members, colleagues.
Make those coasters in team colors, or make a set in someone’s favorite or car colors.
Great little something for a new driver? First car?