How to make a 30 second infinity scarf and headband!

Be fashionable and warm in the blink of an eye with a pair of scissors and a T-shirt! You can make a matching infinity scarf and headband set in less than 30 seconds with just 4 cuts! Super easy no-sew tutorial on www.cucicucicoo.com

Look great and stay warm in the blink of an eye with a pair of scissors and a T-shirt! You can make a matching infinity scarf and headband set in less than 30 seconds with just 4 cuts! Super easy no-sew tutorial on www.cucicucicoo.com

I am a total infinity scarf junkie.

I am also a junkie of upcycling old T-shirts.

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And, even if I know perfectly well how to sew, I also love super quick projects that require no sewing.

Look great and stay warm in the blink of an eye with a pair of scissors and a T-shirt! You can make a matching infinity scarf and headband set in less than 30 seconds with just 4 cuts! Super easy no-sew tutorial on www.cucicucicoo.com

Last year I published a great tutorial on making infinity scarves from T-shirts by sewing together strips of the cut shirts. But sometimes it’s nice to just keep things simple. Which is why today I’m sharing a way to create a matching infinity scarf and headband set in little more than a blink of the eye. Without sewing!

Look great and stay warm in the blink of an eye with a pair of scissors and a T-shirt! You can make a matching infinity scarf and headband set in less than 30 seconds with just 4 cuts! Super easy no-sew tutorial on www.cucicucicoo.com

That’s right! All you need for this project is a T-shirt and a pair of scissors!

Are you ready? Let’s make a 30 second infinity scarf and headband set!

Read moreHow to make a 30 second infinity scarf and headband!

Evening Breath: free summer shawl crochet pattern

Evening Breath: a summer shawl crochet pattern by DROPS, made by www.cucicucicoo.com

Need a wrap to cover your shoulders with on summer evenings? Try Evening Breath, this summer shawl crochet pattern by DROPS. It can also be used as a scarf in cooler weather. This grey-scale version was created by www.cucicucicoo.com

I’ve always loved to make things by hand, ever since I was a little girl. And as the years go by, I’ve added new techniques to my repertoire. One of the handmade techniques that I’ve learned most recently is crochet, and I’ve  fallen in love with its versatility. I love how you can work all sorts of materials and also work off of other totally different materials (such as my crochet carry bags from upcycled fruit nets). But it’s also fun to make more traditional items.

Last June, one of the knit cafès that I participate in, Tricò al Bistrò, decided to do a CAL (crochet along) together for a summer shawl and we decided upon this lovely summer wrap pattern by Drops called Evening Breath.

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(I finished this last October, which is why my hair is still short-ish in these pictures. I didn’t publish this review until now because it didn’t seen very seasonal-appropriate to write about summer accessories in autumn!)

Need a wrap to cover your shoulders with on summer evenings? Try Evening Breath, this summer shawl crochet pattern by DROPS. It can also be used as a scarf in cooler weather. This grey-scale version was created by www.cucicucicoo.com

All Drops patterns are designed for a specific Drops yarn, in this case a lovely self-striping wool/nylon blend. I can’t even imagine wearing anything in wool OR nylon in the summer, never mind both together. So instead I decided to make my own stripes with a more summery yarn.

I decided on an ombre effect with various shades of the same color. My local yarn shop had the most color variety of DMC’s Natura Just Cotton yarn, but not enough shades of any one color. So in the end I decided to go for a gray-scale effect with black, dark gray, light gray and white.

Need a wrap to cover your shoulders with on summer evenings? Try Evening Breath, this summer shawl crochet pattern by DROPS. It can also be used as a scarf in cooler weather. This grey-scale version was created by www.cucicucicoo.com

The shawl is a classic triangle shape with a fan motif that is repeated ad nauseam. In order to create different colored stripes, I worked four rows in each color until reaching the final size.

Need a wrap to cover your shoulders with on summer evenings? Try Evening Breath, this summer shawl crochet pattern by DROPS. It can also be used as a scarf in cooler weather. This grey-scale version was created by www.cucicucicoo.com

The stripes really accentuate the triangle effect, especially in the back.

This was actually my very first “big” crochet project, even before my Saturn Sweater, which I already posted about a few months ago. It actually ended up being a good beginner’s project for me because, once I figured out the motif, it was pretty easy to work up. Also, it was a great project to take on the go with my because I didn’t have to count rows or stitches, so I could just pick it up and put it down as necessary. I worked on it in planes and trains, in waiting rooms and on the beach, and pretty much any and everywhere in between!

Let me tell you more now about this summer shawl crochet pattern!

Read moreEvening Breath: free summer shawl crochet pattern

Easy no-sew T-shirt bracelets tutorial

Got some old tees? Turn them into these super easy no-sew t-shirt bracelets! The tutorial shows you how to in less than two minutes! www.cucicucicoo.com

Got some old tees? Turn them into these super easy no-sew t-shirt bracelets! The tutorial shows you how to in less than two minutes! www.cucicucicoo.com

In the years that I’ve been writing this blog, I’ve collaborated with lots of other blogs and websites. And today I’m so pleased to announce that I’m starting a new collaboration with the Italian handmade learning website Make It Land! I will contribute an eco-friendly refashioning tutorial every month for my special column of sorts called “Refashion Cafè” and, seeing as the website is only in Italian, I will publish the tutorial in English here on Cucicucicoo for everyone to enjoy!

I decided to start off with a very simple refashion that anybody can do, even if she doesn’t know how to sew, crochet or do any other sort of handmade crafting: no-sew T-shirt bracelets!

Got some old tees? Turn them into these super easy no-sew t-shirt bracelets! The tutorial shows you how to in less than two minutes! www.cucicucicoo.com

The idea is pretty similar to the no-sew t-shirt sleeve necklace tutorial that I published a few years ago, except it uses a different part of the t-shirt and I’ve figured out a better way to bind all the strips together.

These bracelets are ridiculously easy to make and it’ll take you about two minutes to make one, but they’re still really cute, especially when you make them colorful and with matching necklaces! I love wearing these in the summer because they’re light and don’t stick to my skin like most other accessories.

They’re also a great gift and, because you just use old t-shirts and they’re so fast to make, you can whip some up for all of your friends!

Want to find out how? Then keep on reading for the t-shirt bracelets tutorial!

Read moreEasy no-sew T-shirt bracelets tutorial

Tepore knit wrist warmers

Tepore knit wrist warmers: a simple pattern with simple thumb openings, worked in the round on double pointed needles. A review by www.cucicucicoo.com

Tepore knit wrist warmers: a simple pattern with simple thumb openings, worked in the round on double pointed needles. A review by www.cucicucicoo.com

My friend Maria of Maria Modeo Handmade in Italy is an amazing knitter, designer and teacher. She’s helped me numerous times with my knitting issues and is incredibly knowledgeable about all things yarn-related. I already posted last year about her bandana-style neckwarmer pattern, and will post in the springtime about a summer sweater I sewed from a course of hers. The first course of hers I took, however, was for the Tepore wrist warmer pattern. (update: which is now available also in English!)

Tepore knit wrist warmers: a simple pattern with simple thumb openings, worked in the round on double pointed needles. A review by www.cucicucicoo.com

While most wrist warmers feature a little tube for the thumb, the Tepore pattern has a simple thumb opening, which is really easy and therefore ideal for beginner knitters like myself.

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Three DIY flower brooches – no sew!

Three no-sew DIY flower brooches from rolled felt and crocheted yarn | www.cucicucicoo.com

Three no-sew DIY flower brooches from rolled felt and crocheted yarn | www.cucicucicoo.com

Have you gotten stung by the homemade flower brooch bug? I certainly have! I love making fabric flowers because a) they’re easy and usually fast to make, and b) they’re so versatile! You can sew them directly to clothing as an embellishment, make hair accessories from them, attach them to gift packages, or stick a pin on the back for a brooch that you can decorate your bag or clothes with! So much fun!

I’ve made fabric flowers quite a few times in the past, such as these gathered strips of my old undies (yes! my underwear!) that became rosettes to cover stains on a t-shirt, these folded circles that got sewn together into a flower shape, and strips of wool fabric or strips of felted sweaters that got rolled up into rosettes.

Every year at Christmas I get slightly obsessive about some crafted or sewn item or another and make loads of them for everyone as gifts. And last year was the year of flower brooches! I made a few crocheted brooches, then some really fast felt brooches. Read on to find out more about them!

Read moreThree DIY flower brooches – no sew!

18 Mother’s Day DIY gift ideas with upcycling

18 Mother's Day DIY gift ideas with upcycled materials: make a gift for little to nothing by repurposing materials! | www.cucicucicoo.com

18 Mother's Day DIY gift ideas with upcycled materials: make a gift for little to nothing by repurposing materials! | www.cucicucicoo.com

Mother’s Day is right around the corner and, if you’re anything like I am, you want to make something for your mother, grandmother, mother-in-law, best friend who is also a mother, etc, but you haven’t even started yet and you probably don’t want to have to pay very much, either.

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Well, don’t fear, because today I have gathered 18 great tutorials from around the internet with Mother’s Day DIY gift ideas made with upcycled materials! So choose one or two from this list, click on either the image or the links, and get to work!

Read more18 Mother’s Day DIY gift ideas with upcycling

DIY Chain necklaces for spring

DIY Chain necklaces for spring. Two different techniques make two totally different-looking chain accessories, one with crochet and the other with embroidery floss, but both perfect for gift giving! #diynecklace #crochetnecklace

There are a lot of really cool ideas floating around the web for jewelry made with chains. Last year I made two  necklaces with nice bright spring colors both made of chains, but in completely different ways. With Mother’s Day coming up, these would make …

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Ball & Chain: a free crochet necklace pattern

Ball & Chain: a crochet necklace pattern by www.cucicucicoo.com

Ball & Chain: a crochet necklace pattern by www.cucicucicoo.com

Last fall I posted this picture on Instagram. What was it? My very first crochet pattern, which I’m now ready to share with you!

Ball & Chain: a crochet necklace pattern by www.cucicucicoo.com

Here it is: the Ball & Chain crochet necklace pattern!

(Suggested musical accompaniment: They Might Be Giants’ song “Lucky Ball and Chain”)

Ball & Chain: a crochet necklace pattern by www.cucicucicoo.com

I’m a beginner crocheter and knitter, so it’s a pretty simple pattern, made up of linked modules of one stuffed ball and a chain of variable length. You can choose how long the chains should be, and also how many modules to make, making all sorts of possible lengths and looks. Above you can see the three necklaces I’ve made with this pattern.  Being made with cotton yarn, it’s a nice and light spring or summer accessory!

Ball & Chain: a crochet necklace pattern by www.cucicucicoo.com

The balls are all the same size, but the chain length between balls varies from necklace to necklace.

Ball & Chain: a crochet necklace pattern by www.cucicucicoo.com

The first chain ends in a loop, which gets hooked over the last ball for a super easy closure.

Click here to download the printable pattern (and like it on Ravelry) then read on to find out more about this necklace.

Read moreBall & Chain: a free crochet necklace pattern

Knit capelet and bandana neckwarmer

Knit capelet (with short rows) and knit bandana scarf "Mani in Alto" | www.cucicucicoo.com

Knit capelet (with short rows) and knit bandana scarf "Mani in Alto" | www.cucicucicoo.com

Well, another edition of the biggest Italian handmade arts fair, Abilmente, has come and gone. Alas, I was unable to make it to Vicenza, in northern Italy, for this edition but I figured that perhaps it was about time to show you my project from Abilmente in Rome last November.

Knit capelet (with short rows) and knit bandana scarf "Mani in Alto" | www.cucicucicoo.com

I’d signed up for a workshop in the knitting/crochet atelier on how to knit short rows, taught by Miriam of All You Knit is Love. We used this technique to make a sweet little knit capelet (which you can find here on Ravelry). I used Rainbow yarn by Morefil, which I bought there at the fair.

Knit capelet (with short rows) and knit bandana scarf "Mani in Alto" | www.cucicucicoo.com

Basically, with short rows, you stop knitting partway down the needle and turn before finishing that row. In doing so, you can shape a garment without increases, decreases or sewing pieces together. In the picture above, you can see how one end of the work is considerably wider than the other. (If you want to learn this technique, why not check out this FREE short rows knitting class on Craftsy*?)

Read moreKnit capelet and bandana neckwarmer

Ayer’s Rock and other crochet hats

Crochet hats: the Ayer's Rock pattern and a slouchy beret | www.cucicucicoo.com

Crochet hats: the Ayer's Rock pattern and a slouchy beret | www.cucicucicoo.com

How is your holiday season going? I, myself, am feeling pretty burnt out with all the Christmas and other craziness that for some reason always seems to get piled up at Christmas, even if it has nothing to do with the holidays. So I’m going to hold off on tutorials for a week or so and show you some of the projects I’ve been working on lately. And much of that work has been not sewing, but knitting and crocheting.

Crochet hats: the Ayer's Rock pattern and a slouchy beret | www.cucicucicoo.com

When it started getting chilly this fall, we realized that somehow my husband no longer had any winter hats. Who knows what happened to them. So I got to work with Sesia Echos, a gorgeous organic wool and alpaca yarn. I love that this yarn is available in various tones of the same colors, so I decided on stripes of medium brown, light brown and mix of the two. Originally my idea had been to recreate the Voyages Beanie, which my husband liked a lot, but this yarn was too bulky for the project. After a bit of searching on Ravelry, I found the super easy Ayer’s Rock pattern.

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Shorten those necklace chains!

how to shorten necklace chains

  Almost a year ago, I received these fantastic pendants as part of a wonderful swap. The chains I had to wear them on, though, were just too long. They’re nice sterling silver chains that I took from some horribly ugly pendants that my mother-in-law …

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Mala and T-shirt Necklace

beaded tshirt necklace

  I’d had these wooden beads in a glass jar for nearly 10 years. I’d saved them from… are you ready?… a pair of flip-flops. Yes, that rubber part that keeps them on your feet? They were covered in these beads. They were cute, but …

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