Monday, 6 November 2017

GRANNY SQUARE BOHO / BEACH TOP

free crochet ladies boho top, free crochet granny square top, free crochet beach top
GRANNY SQUARE BOHO / BEACH TOP

This is an easy granny square adapted to make a top, and if you have made one granny square before, this one is going to be an easy peasy blast. 
This is surely going to be the first in a long line of boho / beach tops – so keep an eye out for my blogs.

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Come along and let’s work on this beauty together.  

And inspired by this photo, here are my pattern notes as I work on my project.


Materials usedToday I’ve used some unbranded cotton with a 3.75 mm crochet hook

For Indians : Our lovely Indian Anchor knitting cotton and White rose knitting cotton yarns are a good substitute.  I’d also suggest Alize cotton yarn – and you can get all of this with a easy mouse click on the top right hand side of this blog (read : Click here to buy yarns Online)

For Non-Indians : I’ve used a regular (tho unbranded) knitting cotton. The other international yarns I’ve used of this thickness are Milford Satin knitting cotton, DMC Petra knitting cotton & Aunt Lydia Bamboo Viscose 10 knitting cottons.  
You can use any yarn with a suitable hook to make this pattern.

Difficulty level : Intermediate to Advanced Skill level. 
The “Advanced” skills are not for the stitches used (stitches are basic).  It applies to the use of techniques to join the squares and finishing.  That said, this is not that hard – so come along and enjoy this creation.

Stitches used :
Starting slip knot : Here’s how you start with a slip knot.  https://youtu.be/lJcqsVcs8cw 

Starting slip knot 1 or the Sloppy Slip knot : This is a neat new way to start your work without a slip knot.  https://youtu.be/YfC7KmGpifs

What is a chain stitch ? Here is an easy video tutorial https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXx5ukBjKkY

Magic circle : To refresh your skill, please view this easy video https://youtu.be/ISC39yOqWro

Foundation Single Crochet : fsc : To refresh your skill on the fsc, please view this video https://youtu.be/mcT85fwh4mA 

Single Crochet : Sc : yo, insert hk into st ; yo (2 lps on hk); yo, draw through both lps.  One sc made.  Check out the video at https://youtu.be/ghACqBpA-3k

First stitch for Single Crochet : This is how I like to start my row of sc. Check out the video at https://youtu.be/6pVYRfsf4_M

Half Double Crochet : Hdc :  yo, insert hk into st ; yo (3 lps on hk) ; 
yo, draw through all 3 lps.  One hdc made.  
Check out the video at https://youtu.be/sDiELJdB2Dg

Chainless start for Half Double Crochet : I dislike the ch-2 start, and this is what I do to start my row of hdc. Check out the video at https://youtu.be/lWXpl1KdbZ8 

Double Crochet : dc : yo, insert hk into st ; yo (3 lps on hk); [yo, draw through 2 lps] twice.  One dc made.  Check out the video at https://youtu.be/xdnjB27zpYo

Chainless start for Double Crochet : I dislike the ch-2 / ch – 3 start, and this is what I do to start my row of dc.
Check out the video at https://youtu.be/wskv3iTjRx0


Whipstitch to join : Here’s a quick tutorial on how to join using the whipstitch at https://youtu.be/wZ-9LNzftMA

Invisible join : Here’s a quick tutorial on how to join using the embroidery needle and whipstitch to get an invisible join at https://youtu.be/a6XZQ6VzJFM

Single crochet to join : Here’s a quick tutorial on how to join using the single crochet at https://youtu.be/6FXoW_47_dI


Abbreviations used :
lp(s) : Loop(s)                  sc : Single crochet
dc : Double crochet         sp : Space                                           
sl-st : Slip stitch               ch : Chain
st(s) : Stitch(es)               hk : Hook
yo : Yarn Over
                                                           
                                   
Instructions : (Using U.S terminology)
Please note that I start all my rows with a ch 1, turning chain for ease.
Please check the top of this blog for easy video tutorials on all stitches used in today's pattern.
Please read through all my notes before you pick up your hook, so you know just where we're heading in our pattern.
In my patterns I work with the principle of stitch count and body measurement.  This means that you need to work the stitch count in pattern, till you get the measurement (length and/or width) that you need for your project. 

free crochet ladies boho top, free crochet granny square top, free crochet beach top

This pattern uses granny squares to make the front and back of the beach top.  Before we head off let’s work on a few ideas and see what we are creating.

You will need the following measurements
a)   Round Chest
b)   Neckline depth

You will need to decide whether you are working a back to this creation.  You could do just the front and have strings to hold the back together.  If you do this, this is one afternoon’s work – literally decide you are going to the beach tomorrow, and whip this up today!

So right off, let’s see what you will do if you are only working a front.  You will use this basic granny square pattern and make only 3 squares, and then you will attach them as per the instructions given here.  Finally you will work a strap from shoulder to one of the corner points of the diamond /granny square that will form the armhole, and you will run another strap from the same square corner for holding the back together.  See the diagram below (not to scale, for information only)

If you are working back and front, you will work 6 squares / diamonds and follow the instructions below.

I am going to give you the basic pattern for a granny square, without indicating colours.  This is where you creativity and combinations come in.

I will then tell you how to attach the squares to get the basic top and tassels done – and you are free to do a little beach craziness too 

Part 1 : Basic granny square pattern
Make six pieces

free crochet ladies boho top, free crochet granny square top, free crochet beach top

What is an easy way to increase the size of my granny square ? Use a longer stitch.  So if you find that you need *just that little bit more* for your square to get the round chest measure, change the dc to a trc and you’ll get the slight increase.
Conversely, if you find that the trc is working too much, then the dc is the way to go for you.

Start Round 1 : with a magic circle and work 8 sc in that circle. 
Join with a sl-st to the 1st sc.

Round 2 : 2 dc in the 1st sc and in each sc all around.
Join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.

Triple Crochet : trc : wrap yarn twice around hook, insert hk into st ; yo (4 lps on hk); [yo, draw through 2 lps] three times.  One trc made.  
Check out the video at https://youtu.be/A0y4BbgDTbs

Chainless start for Triple / Treble Crochet : I dislike the ch-2 / ch – 3 start, and this is what I do to start my row of trc. 
Check out the video at https://youtu.be/f42MO0cGYC0  

Round 3 : trc in the 1st dc ;
(ch 2, trc in the next dc) ;
rep (to) all around.  
Join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.

In this round, we will work two sets of 3 dc in the four corner ch-2 sps and form the start of our granny square.
Round 4 : sl-st into the 1st ch-2 sp ;
[3 dc in the ch-2 sp ; ch 2, 3 dc in the same ch-2 sp]
*(ch 1, 3 dc in the next ch-3 sp) ; 
rep (to) 2 times ; 
ch 1, rep [to] once* ;
rep *to* all around.  
Join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.

Round 4 : sl-st into the 1st ch-2 corner sp ;
[3 dc in the ch-2 corner sp ; ch 2, 3 dc in the same ch-2 sp]
*(ch 1, 3 dc in the next ch-1 sp) ; 
rep (to) 3 times ; 
ch 1, rep [to] once* ;
rep *to* all around.  
Join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.

Round 5 : sl-st into the 1st ch-2 corner sp ;
[2 dc in the ch-2 corner sp ; 
<ch 2, 2 dc in the same ch-2 sp> ; rep <to> once]
*(ch 1, 2 dc in the next ch-1 sp) ; 
rep (to) 4 times ; 
ch 1, rep [to] once* ;
rep *to* all around.  
Join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.

Round 6 : dc in the 1st 2 dc (corner) ;
[2 dc in the ch-2 sp ; dc in the next 2 dc] ; 
rep [to] once ; 
*(dc in the next ch 1 sp ; dc in the next 2 dc) ; 
rep (to) 4 times ;
dc in the next ch-1 sp ; dc in the next 2 dc ; 
rep [to] once* ;
rep *to* all around.  
Join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.


Part 2 : Joining Granny squares

Using one of the joining techniques given above, join your granny squares.  

How to place your granny squares to join


To join, turn your squares such that they become diamond shaped and then join two sides of the centre one to one side each of the side diamonds. We have spun our squares into diamonds, Ta .. da!

Look at the diagram below to get an idea of how to place them before joining.

How do you join the squares evenly?
a)   Count the number of stitches you have on each side and place a marker at the 2 corner points of two squares
b)   Join the squares neatly till the two corner points
c)     After having joined Squares (diamonds) 1 & 2, ensure that you once again place a marker for the two corner points of the 3rd square and join this one neatly too.
d)   Ensure that you have a neat join at the “V” between the 3 squares / diamonds which will form your neckline.
e)    Work with the same care for the other side of your top as well.
f)     You now have a “V” (facing downwards)>  We will work your shoulder straps from the top 2 points of the side diamonds.
g)    We will join the back and front from the side two points of the two side diamonds.
h)    We will hang tassels off the lower two points of the diamonds.  Got it?


Part 3 : Border around diamonds

Now that you have the diamonds joined, let us run a small border all around, before we make our shoulder straps and join the back to the front.

a)   Re-attach your yarn at any point on the side of one of the diamonds / granny squares.
b)   Mark the corner points of the top.
c)     Run a round of sc all around the squares, with 3 sc in each corner st.
d)   Work a sc 2-tog (single crochet 2-tog) over the 2 sts in the “V” point / neckline.  Check the top of this blog for a “how to”
e)    Work stitches such that you get a stitch count in multiples of 3 all around.

Once you have finished this preparation, lets’ start on the actual border.

Just so it looks really good, you must ensure that you get a dc in that centre stitch of the “V” of your top and in the two corners where you will work your shoulder straps.  So in case it’s easier for you, re-attach your yarn at one of these points, counting off to ensure that you will get the dc in these three points.

Round 1 : dc in the 1st sc ;
(ch 2, sk next 2 sc, dc in the next sc) ;
*rep (to) till the 1st corner marker ; 
[ch 2, dc in the same corner marker]* ;
rep *to* all around 
and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

We will work 2 sc in each ch-2 sp, and work 3 sc in each ch-2 corner sp.  The corner sp for the following round will be the (dc ; ch 2, dc) all in the same sp that forms a “V”.  Got it?

Round 2 : sc in the 1st dc ;
(3 sc in the next ch-2 sp ; sc in the next dc) ;
*rep (to) till the 1st corner “V” sp ; 
3 sc in that corner ch-3 sp* ;
rep *to* all around 
and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Now in the final border round, we will work a shell in every alternate ch-3 sp.  For the sake of getting it all right and perfect, please check how you need to work your shells. 
How do we do that?
a)    You must have a shell in the corner ch-3 sps. 
b)   So work back from the corner ch-3 sp and see where you need to start working your 1st sc. 
c)     We will be working our shell Stitch in the centre sc of each 3-sc set.
d)   We will work an sc in every alternate 3-sc set, and once again in the centre sc of the set.
e)    Our Shell st is [dc ; (ch 1, dc) ; rep (to) once] all in the same sc.
f)     Our Corner Shell st is [dc ; (ch 1, dc) ; rep (to) 3 times] all in the same sc.

Following the above ground rules, let’s work this last border round.

Round 3 : sl-st into the 1st centre sc of the 1st 3-sc set ; sc in that same sc ;
(sk next 2 sc, Shell st in the next sc ; sk next 2 sc, sc in the next sc) ;
*rep (to) till the 1st corner 3-sc set ;
sk next 2 sc, Corner Shell st in the next sc* ;
rep *to* all around and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.
 

Part 4 : Shoulder & side Straps

Shoulder strap placement
(diagram not to size - representation only)


Side attachment of front & back granny squares 
(diagram not to size - representation only)


Strap attachment of front & back granny squares 
(diagram not to size - representation only. Colors only to differentiate)

For the straps I have worked a row of foundation half double crochet for the length I needed for my straps – two each for the shoulders and two for the sides.
Foundation half double crochet is like the fdc, but instead of working a dc, you work a hdc chain.

If you find this too confusing, you can
a)   Work a fsc chain for the length needed ; Turn and then work an sc in each fsc all the way back to the start.  Fasten off and attach onto the top ; OR
b)   Work a regular chain length for the length needed ; Turn and work a hdc in each chain all the way to the start.  Fasten off and attach onto the top.
c)     Attachment : Check the photo above.  Ensure that you allow your work to hang for a bit before tightly securing the ends – no matter what yarn you are using.  Even cotton yarn tends to stretch a bit on hanging / wear.


Part 5 : Tassels

Along the bottom edge, let’s hang some long tassels. 
Decide on the following :
a)   how much yarn do you have ?  (as this will decide the following answers)
b)   how far apart you want them ?
c)     how thick would you like them ? (Remember that when you measure your tassels, you will be doubling them over, so keep this in mind before you close on this idea)
d)   how long would you like them ?
 
For a quick “how to”, check out this video

 Once you have your answers and have checked out the video, all you need to do is add in your tassels and you're done with this beautiful granny square boho / beach top.  This is one kick-ass (oops ;) ) boho top, don’t you agree?

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Have a great day and see you soon. 

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