Crochet is magical. Any one of us that have even a basic familiarity with the art of the hook know this.
This past week I got to demonstrate another version of crochet magic. I was asked by my kids to create a “Merlin” cloak and hat as a birthday gift for one of their good friends. The birthday party was this past Saturday so I can post the pictures of the finished project now.
I had made a version of this costume for my oldest when they wanted to be Harry Potter for Halloween last year. What I needed: 1 1/2 yards of 60″ wide poly fleece, about 300 yards of acrylic yarn (I used 2 different colors), 24″ wide by 15″ tall piece of acrylic felt, size G hook, sewing needles and sewing thread.
The first part of this project was to cut out the “cloak” from the poly fleece. The great thing about poly fleece for a project like this is I can leave the raw edge un-hemmed and it won’t fray. The piece of fleece I was using had a few bits cut out of it, so I had to work around that. I folded it in half and cut out the shape I wanted with a concave curved bit for the “collar”. The photo shows the basic shape I cut out with the collar in place.
Then I blanket stitched along the collar area to give me an edge to crochet into. The collar itself was a single crochet base worked into the blanket stitching, then some slight increasing with double crochet stitches to create the shape I wanted. I wasn’t really following any type of pattern. Just going by a feel for how I wanted the finished collar to look, as well as including a “button-hole” for the button fastening.
You can see the button and button-hole better in this photograph.
Of course, it isn’t a real magic costume if you don’t have a hat. So I grabbed some black felt and cut out a shape to make a cone for the crown of the hat. To make the hat go more with the cloak I cut out some of the leaves and stars from the left-over scraps of fabric I had from the cloak.
I then sewed them in place with a simple whip-stitched edge. Once all the appliques were sewn on I rolled the felt into a cone and sewed the seam where the edges overlapped.
I crocheted a brim by starting with a foundation single crochet strip that was the right circumference for a good fit. Rounds of single crochet worked even and then in flat increases created the rest of the brim with a finishing round of double crochet worked even. After the crocheted brim was finished I used yarn and a zig zag hand stitch to attach it to the bottom of the felt cone.
The final costume was finished just in time to be wrapped and ready for my kids to give to their friend. The costume was a big hit and already has had some serious play time.