Our second annual Christmas Countdown continues today With Alex! Each day until Christmas, we are releasing amazing patterns on the Mary Maxim blog but only for a limited time. Make sure to download and save these patterns before January 31st. And don’t forget to take a minute to stop and follow today’s Featured Maker Alex from With Alex on Facebook and Instagram.
I am a stay at home mommy that spends my days filled with creativity. When I’m not creating something out of yarn or food, I can close my eyes and listen to my son playing his electric guitar or trombone in the background. Since becoming chronically sick, I spend a lot of my time in my bed, but I distract myself by crocheting, designing, writing, and collaborating with wonderful, creative people like me. “Nap often and dream big” is my slogan. Every day I have to take a nap, but I still have big dreams, and someday I hope to achieve them all. Some days are wonderful, and I get a lot accomplished, and other days, I can only dream, but I like to take one day, one pattern, one blog post, one video at a time.
My maker journey started at a young age. First, I fell in love with drawing, painting, and then later on photography. My parents were artists, and they made sure that their children were exposed to art and creating at a young age. As a teenager, I studied painting and then went on to study art history in college. After college, I became chronically sick, and my camera became my best friend, next to my favorite characters in my books, of course. I used photography as an outlet for my creativity, and it led me to portrait photography, which then led me to learn crochet so that I could make those cute, little baby hats. Soon, I found myself crocheting non-stop, and I started using my camera to photograph my crochet creations, instead of people unless they were wearing my designs. I started designing very soon after learning how to crochet. I loved being able to sketch something out and then create it with yarn. I am completely in love with designing crochet, especially shawls, beanies, and amigurumi.
Chunky Crochet Beanie
The Big Fan Beanie was inspired by those amazing, knit pieces that have the beautiful long stitches. I have always loved the spike stitch, and I thought that it would work perfectly to mimic this knitting technique in crochet form. As soon as I thought of this idea and sketched it out, I contacted my friends over at Mary Maxim, because I didn’t have a lot of experience with chunky yarn and I thought that they could suggest something for this design idea. They quickly got back to me and recommended Mary Maxim Marvelous Chunky yarn, and I quickly looked it up. As soon as I saw it, I fell in love and knew it would be perfect for this design.
Mary Maxim Marvelous Chunky yarn is made from 100% acrylic, and it is super soft. I thought that a yarn like this would be very heavy, but it’s light and buoyant, and it makes a wonderful beanie! Each strand of yarn is twisted with different colors, which creates a beautiful mosaic of colors as you crochet. I had so much fun designing this pattern with this marvelous yarn, it really is marvelous!
The Big Fan Beanie is a cute, cozy hat with a large, fan stitch that is simple yet delicate, which adds the perfect amount of whimsy. It has a ribbed border and the crochet stitches used, makes this hat look knit, plus with Marvelous Chunky yarn, it is incredibly squishy soft! This hat looks intricate and complicated, but it’s really a simple and fun crochet pattern to make, and with the chunky yarn and larger crochet hook, it works up relatively fast!
The neatest part about this hat is the fact that it is created from the simple spike stitch. 5 spike stitches make up the fan on this beanie, and with this chunky yarn, it really pops. The fan can be worn in the middle of the hat, or you can twist the hat a little to make the fan go to one side of the hat, which is how I like to wear mine. I’ve also added a large faux fur, sky blue pom pom to mine, and I think it is the perfect addition!
Free Crochet Pattern
Download the Free Big Fan Beanie Pattern here until January 31st, and follow along below for more notes tips and tutorials! Alex is famous for her Youtube Tutorials, so make sure you stop by the blog and her youtube channel.
Notes, Tips, And Tutorials
Diagram of the Fan
Each spike stitch is worked into the same chain space.
How to make a Waist Coat Stitch (wst)
Keep the loop on the hook as tight and small as possible. Insert the hook into the next stitch, pull up a loop (make this loop larger than normal) yo and pull through all loops on the hook. Click here for the waistcoat stitch video tutorial.
How To work into the back humps of the chains:
Row 1 says to work into the back humps of each chain. Look at your chain and tilt it toward you and look at the back of the chain. There are humps along the back of each chain. Insert your hook into the back hump.
Bernat Softee Chunky
Loops & Threads Charisma
How to make the Brim
After Row 1, fold in half with the right side out and line up the first stitch and the last stitch made.
Working in a continuous spiral, without joining, (This does not take away the slant from the stitches but it does help.)
R2: put a wst into the 1st sc of the last round by inserting the hook into the 1st sc of the last round, yarn over and finish the wst (mark this st with a st marker). Don’t worry about the gap at the bottom of the stitches. This will be fixed later.
Continue with R2 and the pattern.
Stay tuned as we release more free patterns from Mary Maxim and many other Independent designers and countdown Christmas.