Friday, February 27, 2009

Felted Lantern Necklace - Free Crochet Pattern and Weekend Crochet-Along

I just received a nice little note that reminded me of how much I like to interact with other crafters. Sometimes in this online world, I forget how meaningful human contact can be. It's been a while since I've shared a pattern or done a crochet-along, so now about doing both?

Today I'm posting the pattern for this cute Felted Lantern Necklace. I originally designed this pattern for a crochet class I used to teach back in Virginia. I love a pattern where every time you make it, you can put your own spin on the design. These days, with the vast variety of beads and fibers in the marketplace, this pendant can take on so many unique looks.

This weekend I'll go through the pattern step by step in a crochet-along. I'll take pictures of all of my materials and show you the stitches every step of the way. If you've never felted before, this is a great project to introduce you to the fun of machine felting. So dig through that yarn stash and find a little wool and a bead or two and we're off!

Felted Lantern Necklace

Glass Stone Color Key:

Blue – Peace
Green – Happiness
Yellow – Strength
Red – Love

Yarn – Patons Classic Wool (22 feet)
Hook – I or J recommended
Glass Accent Beads – your choice

Beginning (Row 1)
Wrap the tail end of the yarn clockwise around the first two fingers of your left hand one time making sure to leave 10 inches in the length of the tail. Insert hook under first strand, hook the back strand and draw it up. Holding the loop you just made in place, ch 1. Then make 3 sc in loop. Pull the tail end of yarn to draw the loop to a close
Row 2: (working in the round) 2 sc in each of the three sc from beginning row 1. (equals 6 sc)
Row 3: 2 sc in each of the 6 sc from row 2 (equals 12 sc)
Row 4: sc in each st around (equals 12 sc)
Row 5: *dec over next 2 sc* 6 times
*Now choose a glass stone and insert it inside your pouch
Finish pouch by continuing to dec over next two sts until the pouch is completely closed. It should have a nautilus or sea shell shape.

Neck Chain
Continuing with same yarn, chain a length long enough so that when held to the beginning of the chain, it slips easily over your head. (Remember that it will shrink when felted, so be sure to allow a few extra inches.) Then join with a sl st to the top of the pouch. Be sure there is no twist in your chain. Finish off and weave in end securely.

Accent Beads
Using a large eye needle, thread the tail strand of yarn first through a larger bead, then through a smaller one. Thread the yarn back up through the larger bead and use a sewing knot to secure it to the bottom of your pouch. Finish off by weaving in the remaining tail securely and cutting off any excess yarn.

Hand Felting

Fill a large bowl or a sink with water as hot as you can tolerate. Submerge your necklace until it is wet through and then use dish or hand soap and lather it up. At first the yarn will stretch, so be careful not to let the stone fall out. Rinse off the necklace by agitating it in the water. Continue to soap and rinse until your necklace becomes the size you desire. While it is wet, it can be molded and shaped to your liking. Check the neck chain to be sure it’s not getting too short. It can be stretched out some while it is still wet. Blot dry without creasing the fibers.

Machine Felting
Start with a tablespoon of laundry soap, your lowest water setting and a hot wash cycle. About five minutes after agitation begins, check the status of your item. It will actually have gotten larger, as it will have relaxed in the heat of the water. This is perfectly normal. Back into the wash for another 5-10 minutes and you can then stop the agitation and see how it's coming along. Now is when you can pull it back into shape if it's twisted, or you can separate pieces that are sticking together and shouldn't be. Keep checking at 5-10 minute intervals until you have reached the desired size, which may take multiple wash cycles [do not run the entire machine cycle, but just rerun the wash portion]. Once it starts to felt down, it can shrink up pretty fast. You should start checking it more frequently to be on the safe side. If your item is resisting felting or stops shrinking before you'd like it to, remove it from the washer, wring it out, and a quick plunge into an ice water bath and back into the tub will work wonders. Adding a pair of old jeans or a pillow case for added agitation helps speed the process along. Never use a towel or your felted item will lint. It is very important to remove your item before the machine begins to drain and especially before the spin cycle. If left to spin, the felt can crease and those creases will never come out. Rinse off in a sink to remove excess soap. Lay flat on a towel to dry or block pieces like hats over an appropriately sized bowl.

Related Post: The Felted Lantern Necklace ~ Companion Video


Anonymous said...

How pretty--I love the idea of a soft felted necklace, the idea of having something warm and natural as adornment.

Linda L Lanese said...

Hi Jennifer,

I did an article about your Felted lantern necklace free crochet quick and easy pattern on craft gossip felting and I hope you stop by and leave a comment and have your friends and family do the same. I enjoyed looking through shop and I am going to try your necklace pattern. Thank you for sharing this pattern with my readers. Here's a link to the article:
By the way, I am holding a giveaway on a set of 15 circular bamboo knitting needles, which is the real treat for my readers. When you stop by, do enter the contest.

Warm regards,
Linda Lanese
Craft gossip felting

Barbara said...

Came across this on Craft Gossip Felting. I like it and will give it a try

Joan said...

I love felting and these are really cute. The chain part would also make a good necklace to display an art bead or special pendant.

HJC Editor said...

Hi! Great tute! I will be linking at in future post.