Weekly Planner: free printable! (+ suggestions!)

Planners are a big deal. They can get really fancy. And there are planner people to follow on instagram. Whoa.

It’s a little overwhelming!

I’ve always struggled with finding the right planner for me. I love having a paper planner, but I always found it hard to find the right one. Some have a page for each day (I don’t have nearly enough going on!) and some are monthlies (I need more than an inch to write all my appointments for a day!). I just want a lovely, weekly planner. With room for a to-do list. And a way to separate those things I have to do on Tuesday from the things I have to do sometime this week.

So, I designed my own

I know! It’s such a Stacey-thing to do!

FreshStitches Planner page

FreshStitches Planner page

I posted a photo to instagram, and you guys LOVE it! And want to do it yourself! Sure, why not?

Download the Printable!

Now, I know this planner won’t be perfect for everyone. After all, I made it just for me!

Let me tell you a bit about the features. One page is the ‘weeklies’, an overview of the week. I have a box for the weekly to-do list (things that I can do anytime, but need to get done that week), a checkbox task (things that need to be done every day, but it doesn’t matter when… like posting to facebook or checking email) and a meal planning area.

Freshstitches planner weekly todo list 8.5 x 5.5

You can download the Weeklies page in pdf format, here.

Then I have another page called the ‘Dailies’… things I schedule in for every day. You can see there is a blank space for the date, and a space to write a major task to work on each day. Below the date, I include appointments or items that have to be done that day (like 10am dentist appointment). I left a little space in the corner of the page for goals or mantras to keep in mind for the week. And I shaded out Friday and the weekends… a reminder not to schedule too many things for then!

You can download the ‘Dailies’ page in pdf format, here.

Make the Planner + Suggestions!

To make your planner, simply print both of these pages on 8.5″ x 5.5″ paper and have it wire bound! It’s a convenient size! I used 20lb paper (which is quite thin), so the resulting book isn’t too thick even though I printed out through the rest of 2017.

The wire binding means it lays open nicely on the table and you can see both pages at a glance. If you want to get creative, you can throw in extra pages (like a monthly calendar) on your own! Google ‘calendar printables’ for oodles!

You can write in the numbers and dates, but I splurged and bought these adorable number stickers. They fit perfectly. I also love these fun travel stickers. And of course I have my knitting stickers by Symposi Press.

It’s so much fun!

I hope you enjoy! And tell me about your planner!

 

 

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Free Download: Flower Barrette Instructions and Templates!

Sometimes you want a quick little project that makes something really cute. Right?

Flower Barrette Kit from FreshStitches

Flower barrettes! They’re easy! And you can make them with any two colors of felt (I recommend a wool-blend for durability)!

FreshStitches Flower Barrette pattern

You can download the pdf template & instructions, here.

You’ll need:

  • Four 4.5″ x 4″ pieces of felt (two in fun colors and two in black)
  • A 2″ snap-on barrette
  • A sewing needle
  • Dark embroidery floss or sewing thread
  • A button
  • orange flower square

    If you’d like all of that in one handy package, then grab the Flower Barrette Kit, which has the materials to make 3 barrettes!

    kit contents

    Enjoy!

Free Bulky Hat Pattern + Bulky Rainbow Samplers!

You guys LOVED the worsted weight Rainbow Yarn Sampler Pack… so I’ve put together a bulky one!

bulky yarn sampler freshstitches

I’ve got a great deal for you, as well as a FREE pattern! (I know you love those, too!)

Free Download: Easy Bulky Hat Pattern

I wrote up a quickie pattern for you that shows off the wonderful texture and colors in this yarn!

Freshstitches bulky hat

It’s a free pattern, and you can download the pdf, here.

You can knit the entire hat with one 16″ circular… no need to switch to double points! You can grab the Size 13 needle you’ll need… and that’s all!

Easy Bulky Hat Freshstitches

The hat is sized to fit a woman’s medium (21″ head circumference), but is pretty stretchy, so you can probably fit it on a slightly larger one!

Get your Bulky Rainbow Sampler Pack

Okay, so now you have your pattern. I bet you want the yarn, too, right?

bulky yarn freshstitches

I’ve put together Bulky Rainbow Sampler Packs!

Each sampler pack contains 8 colors of yarn, 10 yards each. Order before the shop closes for winter break, and you’ll get the 9th color for free! It’s what you’ll need to finish off your hat!

zig zag banner

This yarn is a super-bulky, and is pretty pricey. A skein (125 yards) is $20. Whoa! So, getting this sampler pack is the best way to try out lots of colors without spending mega bucks!

Ready for some rainbow fun?

Head on over to the Bulky Rainbow Sampler Pack page and grab your bundle, now!

If either the sampler pack or needle is sold out, join the waitlist to be notified when it’s back in stock! It’ll be February when the shop re-opens!

bulky yarn sampler freshstitches

And then download your Easy Bulky Hat pattern. I can’t wait to see yours!

Free Cowl Pattern + Crazy Skein Cowl Kits!

Shepherds Wool Crazy

Do you remember when I last got a shipment of these guys? These one-of-a-kind skeins that are oh-so-delicious? You went nuts for them. And I sold out pretty darn fast.

I promised I’d get some more in the shop. (And I did! Keep reading!)

But some of you weren’t sure what do to with them.

Of course, you can do anything you want with them! I’ve knit a shawl with this yarn, I’ve made hats. Really, take any pattern you want, use this yarn, and it’ll be an amazing, stripey version that you’ll love. But some of you want a pattern.

Okay, no problem!

Free Download: Either Way Cowl Pattern

I wrote up a quickie pattern for you that shows off the wonderful texture and colors in this yarn.

Either Way Cowl

It’s a free pattern, and you can download the pdf, here.

Why is it called ‘Either Way Cowl’? Because I’m showing you two different ways to knit a cowl! Try the ‘easiest way’ if you’re new to knitting or want a really simple project! If you have some knitting experience under you’re belt, then ‘try this way’ and watch my provisional cast-on video for help!

cowl freshstitches
‘Try this way’ version shown.

Kits Available

Okay, so now you have your pattern. I bet you want the yarn, too, right?

Duo of Shepherds Wool Crazy freshstitches

I’ve put together Shepherds Wool Crazy Skein Cowl Kits (say that three times, fast!) so you can make this amazing cowl for yourself!

Each kit contains 2 skeins of coordinating Crazy yarn (or 4 skeins… check out the limited number of Deluxe Kits) and a circular needle.

FreshStitches cowl kit

I’ve paired each skein of yarn myself. These are one-of-a-kind skeins, and you never know what colors each one will contain! This time around, you can pick a color, and that color will be the connective thread in both skeins. That doesn’t mean the skein will be mostly that color, but it’ll be there. The mystery is part of the fun!

Ready for some Crazy fun?

Head on over to the Crazy Cowl Kit page and grab your kit, now!

If your favorite color is sold out, join the waitlist to be notified when it’s back in stock! I’ll be adding more, soon!

cowl freshstitches

And then download your Either Way Cowl Pattern and pick your way!

I can’t wait to see yours!

Crochet Mike the Monster from Monsters University!

Crochet Mike the Monster

I love monsters. And I love crocheting monsters. So, when I found out that Disney was looking for bloggers to write tutorials for crafts based on Monsters University, I nearly fell out of my chair.

Monsters-University banner

My love for monsters must have poured through the computer screen… because here I am, sharing my super-awesome crochet tutorial with you!

This tutorial is celebrating the release of Monsters University (in a Blu-ray combo pack) tomorrow! Hooray!

How do you pick just one monster?

I’ll confess. It was really hard to pick a monster from Monsters University to turn into crochet-form. The movie is just so darn chock-full of adorable and creative monsters!

Characters from Monsters University

I was tempted by Squishy (the multi-eyed cutie with a knit sweater!) and Terry & Terry (the double-headed duo)… what great shapes!

But in the end… I had to go with familiar and loveable Mike.

movies-monsters-university-character-art-4

You can crochet your own Mike!

Crochet Mike the Monster

To crochet Mike, you’ll need:

  • 2 colors of worsted weight yarn: green (250 yards) and white (15 yards)
  • Size H (5.0mm) crochet hook
  • Tapestry Needle
  • Polyester stuffing
  • Small amounts of felt: black, white, grey and blue
  • Craft glue (one that works for fabrics)

Once you have your supplies gathered, download now.

The pattern download will take you step-by-step through the stitches you’ll need to bring Mike to life… too many for just one blog post!

Crocheted fingers

One of the things I love about Monsters University is how lifelike the animation is… and I didn’t want to lose any of that detail in the crochet version. That’s why I made sure to give Mike separate fingers and toes!

It’s a little extra crocheting… but I hope you love the results!

Add the details…

Once you’ve finished crocheting the pieces, you’ll need to decide which expression you’re going to give to Mike… during the course of the movie, you’ll notice that he sports quite a few!

mike-and-sulley-monster-university-wallpaper-wide

I decided to give Mike the wide grin (with retainer!) that’s featured on the cover of the DVD:

felt mouth

To make Mike’s mouth, use your pieces of felt and cut out the shapes you’ll need. First, cut a smile (or frown) from the black felt. Next, cut bumps (for teeth) from the white.

Here’s a trick: you don’t need to cut the teeth to fit the mouth perfectly. Just cut the top ridges for the teeth, then glue in place on the black mouth. Notice how, in my photo below, the white is hanging off the side of the black:

shaping a felt mouth

Once the glue dries, trim the excess white, and you’ll have a perfect mouth! A simple line of grey makes the retainer.

Since you’ve used yarn to make Mike, a craft glue will hold the smile in place:

mike1

Isn’t he so cute?

More accessory ideas

I’m a real sucker for the University-wear sported in the movie!

mike-wazowski-monsters-university-18119-1920x1080

How cute would your crocheted Mike look with a knitted blue and white scarf? Or an MU pennant made from felt? Use your imagination!

You can also get super-creative and make multiple expressions… and attach them to Mike with use hook and loop tape! He’ll be a toy with many emotions!

Are you going to get crocheting?

I had so much fun watching Monsters University and crocheting a Mike… I see more monsters in my future.

I hope you absolutely love this free pattern download as much as I do!

Helpful Links

Be sure to share the cutie monster you crochet!

Disclosure: This is a compensated post from Disney and Blueprint Social. I received a copy of Monsters University. All opinions are my own. I received permission to create a pattern using the likeness of Mike.

Free downloadable tags for your amigurumi!

My free holiday gift tags were such a hit that I’ve made some more!

If you’re a reader of this blog, you’ll know that I allow animals to be sold from my patterns, I just ask that you mention that it’s a FreshStitches design. To make it easier… I’ve made tags that include the info!

For your downloading and printing pleasure, I introduce to you… the amigurumi tag collection!
ree download gift tags for amigurumi crochet

Making some amigurumi? You’ll want to download these adorable tags!

I designed these tags specifically for your cutie stuffed animals… and even included a few tips for display!

Once you download and print the tags, you’ll want to fill out the tag with all the crucial info. Check out my example:

example tag for your amigurumi

The tag easily folds in half… and is ready to adorn your cutie!

Enjoy!

Pledge to Ten (minutes, that is…)

We all know that most New Year’s Resolutions fail. Do you know why? They’re too grand… too lofty. And they often seem impossible.

So here’s what we’re going to do: we’re going to set a practical crochet goal, and dedicate 10 minutes a day to reaching it. You have ten minutes a day, right?

And I’m going to give you a handy worksheet to use. Sounds do-able, huh?

Set realistic expectations, and remove roadblocks

If you’ve never knit before, then you’re probably not going to knit your first sweater this month. (Sorry if I’m the one who had to burst your bubble on that one).

But, there’s good news… the needle arts (knitting, crocheting, sewing) are all about putting in practice. I can pretty much guarantee you that if you practice in a consistent way (even if it’s not for huge blocks of time), you’ll get better.

help for reaching your crochet goals mantra

So, step one: pick a realistic goal that you think you can accomplish in a month.

Okay, onto step two (and I think this bit is really important!). You’re going to remove any possible roadblocks that you can think of that might come in between you and your goal. How many times have you sat down, ready to work on a project… only to discover that you don’t have the right hook?

The best way to guarantee success is to solve all of your roadblocks in advance. Before you begin working on your goal, gather all your materials and tools. This means downloading your pattern, getting your supplies, and even bookmarking resources that you might need. Then, when you need help… you won’t be slowed down. You’re prepared.

The Worksheet

easy crochet goals worksheet download

Now… here’s your helpful worksheet. Go ahead and download the pdf version.

Notice that there are 4 weeks, with 6 boxes each. Can you commit to spending 10 minutes a day, 6 days a week, to working towards your goal?

And if you find a little spare time… buy all means, keep going!

What’s important is that you consistently spend a little bit of time working towards your goal.

Let’s have a peek at an example:

goal setting for crochet, help

Look at how I came up with a list of concrete and helpful steps that will remove roadblocks and help me reach my goal. Nothing crazy… just little things that will help make the goal easier.

What’s your goal?

Notice this worksheet isn’t about setting your goals for all of 2013… it’s about picking one thing that you’d like to do within a month. Easy. No pressure.

If you’re feeling daring, you can print out 12 worksheets, one for each month. But, that’s optional! Start with the first month, and see how you go!

Crocheting should be fun, right?

Tell me about what you’re going to start with… I’m excited to hear your goals!

Yarn Bombing + Free Crochet Flower Pattern!

Did you know that this week is World Wide Knit in Public week? To kick off the week, my LYS had a yarn-bombing event to decorate the parking meters and trees in front of the shop.

Want to know what makes a yarn-bombing party ROCK (besides kettle corn)? Adorable crocheted flowers! I’ll share some easy patterns for crocheted flowers with you… they’re so easy, even newbie crocheters were making their own!

Easy Crochet Flower

New to crocheting? Want to make a cute flower that’s easy to sew on to any project? This flower’s the one! Grab any yarn and an (approximately) appropriate sized hook, and you’re good to go!

Check out this video for a quickie lesson on Single Crochet.

When you’re done, fasten off and add the flower to whatever you’d like!

Dangling Crochet Flower

Want a flower that will hang from the trees? (A yarn-bombing essential) Modify your easy flower pattern just a little…

Then use the chain to attach/hang your flower as you please!

Deluxe Crochet Flower

Ready for a flower with a little more pizzaz? Give this two-layer flower a try!

We had a fabulous time knitting and crocheting and decorating our surroundings in celebration of World Wide Knit in Public Week!

The best part was releasing a whole bunch of new crocheters into the world..

With these easy flower patterns, you can be a crocheter, too!

Crocheting in Rounds: free download

I love crocheting in the round! It’s easy to crochet circles… but also squares! I’ve put together this easy reference guide to get you started crocheting circles, squares and granny squares:

Download the pdf version of the guide by clicking here.

What can you actually do with these patterns? Lots! Here are a few ideas:

  • Crochet a hat. Make a circle, and continue increasing until the circumference of the circle is about the circumference of your head. Work plain rounds until it’s long enough to be a hat!
  • Crochet an awesome rainbow rug. Pick a super-bulky yarn (or fabric strips) in bright colors. Crochet a circle, changing colors every few rounds. Continue until it’s the size you want!
  • Crochet a washcloth. Pick a cotton yarn. Crochet a square, and keep going until it’s a handy washcloth size.
  • Make a pillow. Use either the square or granny square patterns to make 2 equal-sized squares. Stick a pillow insert between the two squares, sew up around the edges- and you have a great pillow!
  • Crochet an afghan. Work the granny square pattern until it’s the size you like for a blanket.

These are just a couple of ideas… the possibilities are endless!

A Crocheter's Guide to Pattern Reading- free download

Do you know how to crochet, but feel like patterns are a foreign language? You’re not alone!

Many of us crocheters learn how to do the stitches from a family member or friend, and don’t learn to read the patterns until much later. And it’s true, reading a pattern can be scary… but well worth learning how! Once you can read a pattern, you’ll be able to make anything!

I teach a class called ‘Pattern reading for Crocheter’s’, and since I want all crocheters to be able to read patterns… I’m sharing the ‘helpful hints’ page from the class with everybody!

Click here to download this page as a pdf (much better resolution)!

Of course, I know this hints page isn’t a substitute for the full class… but I’m hoping that it’ll help you with a few tricky parts about pattern reading!

And of course… feel free to post any questions you have in the comments section- maybe it’ll become a future blog post topic!