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Friday, March 11, 2011

12 Block Series: Block 1: Cross-stitch Block

The square was made with Lily's Sugar'n Cream, a 100% cotton, medium worsted weight yarn, and is shown with the optional Finishing Edge.

The instructions for this square will allow for any yarn of any weight to be used, though the final size will be effected.  Please read through the instructions (they're short) and the notes following for more information and ideas.

Finished size: Approximately 9" x 9" (Using a medium worsted weight (#4) yarn and size G (4.25mm) hook.)
Gauge:  4 stitches (2 cross stitches) = 1", 6 rows (3 each of alternating sc and cross stitch rows) = 2".  Always test your gauge by making a swatch.

Stitches used:
chain (ch)
slip stitch (sl st)
single crochet (sc)
double crochet (dc )
cross-stitch (cs)
skip (sk)

Special Stitch Instructions:  Cross-stitch pattern (cs):  sk next stitch, dc in next stitch, then dc in sk stitch.
Pattern is worked over an even number of stitches, two for each cross-stitch, plus the turning chain.
Turning chain does not count as a stitch in this pattern.

Ch 31
Row 1:  Sc in the back bar of the second chain from hook and in each of next 29 chains. (30 sc). Ch 3, turn.
Row 2:  Dc in each of first two sc, cs (see Special Stitch Instructions above) over next 26 stitches (13 cs made), dc in each of last two chains. Chain 1, turn
Row 3: Sc in each stitch across (30 sc). Ch 3, turn.
Repeat Rows 2 and 3 for pattern until at length desired, ending with Row 3, do not ch 3. If making into a dishcloth,, do not end off, do not turn and follow instructions for Optional Finishing Edge, or add one of your own.  Otherwise end off and work in ends.

Optional Finishing Edge: Work sl st evenly down the side of the piece, ch1 at the corner.  Sl st in each stitch across the bottom, ch 1 at corner.  Sl st evenly up the opposite side, ch1 at corner, and sl st across the top of your work ending with a sl st to join at beginning. Work in ends.

Close-up detail of the stitches crossing over each other, creating a cross-stitch.

For dishcloths or facecloths, it is recommended that you use 100% cotton and work the Optional Finishing Edge to provide stability.

Stitch Multiples (or calculating the starting chain): Each cross-stitch requires two stitches to complete.  Chain an even number of stitches, and add the appropriate number of chain stitches for the turning chain.   For example, in this pattern, the chain is 31, 30 for the body of the work, and 1 for the turning chain for the first row single crochet.  If you wish to use the cross-stitch stitch without the single crochet rows, then the appropriate turning chain stitches (3) would need to be added to the 30 stitches of the body.

To increase the size of the block, you will need to add any multiple of even number of stitches.  Likewise, to decrease the size of the block, you will need to subtract any multiple of even number of stitches.

This pattern can be done in any yarn of any weight and with any size hook.  You can also increase or decrease the number of starting chains and total number of rows to create the individual sized square of your choice.

Play around with it, and have fun!

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