3 days 3 projects

Craft | Wednesday January 4 2012 | 4:16 pm | Comments (4) | Tags: , , , , , |

There’s nothing like being away from home in a cottage in the middle of nowhere for some time to crochet! And that’s just what I’ve done the past few days! New year in Yorkshire is wild and windy, but crochet filled!

I’m not often a very intensive crocheteer, but the past few days I’ve found my mojo – long may it last!

What have I made? Well, you saw a glimpse of colourful pastel yarn in my last post as a teaser. I’ve been meaning to try McKinley’s Sprintgime Hat for ages and finally got round to it!  When I was visiting my family at Christmas time one of my nieces arrived wearing a gorgeous crochet hat her mum had bought her.  I recognised the pattern straight away and remembered it was in my faves on Ravelry.

I had recently made my other niece (I have 2) a beret that just didn’t fit so she was top of my project list for McKinleys hat.  I’ve now made 2 of them and plan one more – she has two cousins who she will share them with!

The red one is Stylecraft Special DK (Share 1010 Matador) and there’s not much to say about it that hasn’t been said before all over crochet blogland.  Hard working yarn that does what it says on the tin etc.

As for the pastel yarn, well…. it’s gorgeous: Sirdar Snuggly Crofter Baby Fair Isle effect DK (quite a mouthful isn’t it).  This yarn is really really lovely to use and feels wonderfully soft yet stable and practical and the colours are super.  I used shade 0159 and on the ball it looks pretty but made up I love it so much more.  The composition is 55% Nylon / 45% Acrylic but it doesn’t have a synthetic feel – if anything it has a lightweight cotton blend handle, without the weight or firmness.  I think it’s perfect for this hat pattern.

I wanted to make the hats slightly larger than in the McKinley pattern so I added one round to the centre pattern, 3 rows to the shells and one row to the banda although I have to admit I spiralled the band so didn’t keep count the same, I’m guilty of not using markers very often.  I used a 4.5mm hook, which for some reason is my preference when using double knit yarn, over a 4mm, unless it ‘feels’ slightly finer than a standard dk.  The flower I used is one I made up myself.

So with these hats some little girls will have cosy ears – much needed after the storms this week!

And what of my other make?  Well, the man who puts up with all my crochet and yarn (which is now in his house so there’s no hiding it) never gets the benefit of it, poor soul.  Time to remedy that.  He isn’t a cosy cable jumper or homemade socks kind of guy, so I whipped up a mega chunky cosy scarf for him.

The yarn is King Cole Magnum Chunky and used 3 balls in shade 349 – a nice manly grey (he was given alternatives at scoffed and each of them!).  I’m going to write out the pattern properly in another post, although it was very simple and I made it up as I went along.

So there you have it!  A big start to my crochet year and lots more to come, if my plans go according to plan!

I’d love to hear what you’ve worked on so far?

 

 

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Happy New Year!

Craft | Sunday January 1 2012 | 6:23 pm | Comments (4) | Tags: , |

Well here’s 2012!! Who’d have thought this time last year that the new one would come round so quickly!

I’ve started off my new year with some crochet watching old films on TV. Rather a cosy and relaxing day. Perfect!

Here’s a little glimpse of today’s project:



Today’s other job today is directing some technical wizardry so that next time you visit things will be a bit different around here. I’m rather excited by it all!! It might even all happen by tomorrow but if not I’ll look forward to hearing what you think when I finally hit the big red button!!

In the meantime I’ll get back to cracking the whip with my live-in IT expert!!

I hope 2012 brings you lots of wonderful things and good health to enjoy them xx

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Counting them out

Craft | Tuesday March 22 2011 | 12:43 pm | Comments (2) | Tags: , , , |

 

The next stages of the Crochet Club patterns involve adding beads to crochet stitches.  I’ve never done this before and I’m quite enjoying it and I love the finished look.

However, I really hate counting out the beads, in the same was I hate counting foundation chains! Grrrrrrrrrr!

I had to find a way to reduce the risk of errors so I came up with the solution in the picture above.  I counted the beads in 10s into an ice cube tray before threading them onto the yarn and BINGO, it all worked out just fine!  Highly recommended if you’re doing similar, and a pink flower shaped ice cube tray makes it a much more pleasant experience too!

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Before, during and after

Craft | Monday March 21 2011 | 12:28 pm | Comments (2) | Tags: , , |

I hate getting things wrong.  I hate having to redo things.  But sometimes, there’s just no alternative.

After recently posting an update of the crochet club, the wonky shape of the piece above kept popping into my head and I knew I would have to rework the rows which looked too tight and pulled in on the top.

Easy I thought, I’ll undo the top few rows and crochet them again, maybe using a slightly larger hook.

However, I got myself into a real ‘fankle‘ (sometimes only a Scottish word will do!) and had no idea why I couldn’t undo the rows easily.

 

I’ve since worked it out because during the original make up the piece was crocheted on both the top and bottom edges, so the edge I was trying to rip back was really the bottom, not the top with would have undone easily! 

After a bit of frustration and a bit of ‘that’ll teach me’ I started all over again!  I am so glad I did.  This piece is now the right shape and size and looks brilliant!

Sometimes it takes a little pain to get to the gain!!!

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Catching Up

Craft | Friday March 18 2011 | 7:07 pm | Comments (4) | Tags: , , |

So there I was getting in a routine of writing here a couple of time a week, then I lost the habit and it’s been a week and half!  Where does the time go? 

Anyway, I’ve had a bit of good news this week and I have a job!  It’s only for a couple of months starting mid April but it’s given me a real boost when my confidence work-wise has been quite low because of everything that’s happened in the past few months.  I’m really quite excited about starting work again, doing something a bit different and knowing that if it’s not quite right for me it’s only for a limited time.

And then there’s been my favourite ever bit of crochet!  That’s a big claim I know!!!  In the last 24hours I have completed another element of the crochet club and not only has it been my favourite of the project so far, it is probably the one I’ve enjoyed most ever!  I just love the stitches, colours and overall look of it.  I am easily pleased aren’t I!!

Want a look (the eagle eyed amongst you may have spotted it at the top of the page!!!):

 

I am now really far behind in the crochet club.  The patterns for March have just been received and I’m just finishing the first month, from January.  I don’t know why i haven’t been getting on with it because when I have been working on it I have really enjoyed it.  No excuses really! Maybe it’s just laziness as I’ve been carrying on with the granny stripe blanket which really doesn’t require much thought.

The best thing about this element of the crochet club – it requries two!!!

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Crochet Club Progress

Craft | Thursday March 3 2011 | 1:16 pm | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , |

I posted a while ago now that I was taking part in the Jane Crowfoot’s Crochet Club for 2011 and I have been working on the pieces for this project.  I am a bit behind as I am still working on the January patterns and the February ones came out a couple of weeks ago, but I am sure I can get caught up pretty quickly.

Want to see what I’ve done so far?

These squares (there are 4 all together) are the corners and in the next stage of the patterns they are expanded to add more rows and beads!

I really like this next piece – the shape is really nice and it was really easy to make.  I am really curious to see how a shape like this can fit into the final overall project.

I’ve struggled a bit with the piece below.  As you can see it’s not lying flat and it becomes narrower as it gets to the top.  I may rip back half of it and use a hook 0.5mm up for the upper half.  There was a lot of discussion about this in the Crochet Club forums and I didn’t think it would pull in the way it has, but hey presto, pulling in!!

I’ve not blocked anything yet and the pieces definitely do need it. 

As the overall project won’t be seen until the very end when all elements are completed and joined together they all seem a bit of a random mix, although the colours all blend in a lovely way.  At first I wasn’t too keen on the deep purpley shade, it seems a but dull and dusky to me, but it is growing on me now that I see it combined with the others.  It is the main shade in the whole project and there is much more of it that any other shade, so I do need to get used to it.

The yarn is mostly Rowan Cotton Glace which I haven’t used before and I am really liking it.  The only problem I have is that for this project it’s worked on quite a small hook, considering its a dk yarn, and I am finding it a little tricksy with the smaller size.

The patterns for the next stage are much more decorative with bobbles and beads!!!  I really need to catch up before the next patterns are out in mid March!

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