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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I’ve not forgotten the crochet!

Craft | Wednesday November 17 2010 | 11:05 am | Comments (7) | Tags: , , , , |

Good morning!  I’ve been up quite early this morning, which is reallynot like me!  I’m rather good at sleeping and particularly with everything that’s been going on lately my sleep has been quite disturbed so I have been catching up a bit during the day.  I am a great believer in sleep as a healer!

I just realised that my last few posts haven’t even mentioned crochet!  I still find it a little odd when I write about other things going on on my life and not primarily crafty things.  I’m not sure anyone’s interested in them either, but I do quite like sharing the odd random other bits and pieces.

So time to get back to the crochet!  I’ve not been sitting here twiddling my thumbs without having a crochet hook in them. 

I have been making some more apple coasters, in green this time:

I’ve also started another circle scarf.  This is really an amazing pattern, I love it so much!  This one is again in King Cole Riot, this time shade number 400 which is blue, grey, green shades and is destined for a present!

Now don’t be alarmed by the word I’m about to use!!!  I IRONED the first circles scarf!  Have you noticed in the picture of the new blue one that each little circle curls in on itself?  The first finished scarf curled up like this along its whole length which looked funny and meant the lovely circles couldn’t be seen properly. 

Ok, maybe I could have blocked it properly, but I’m very naughty and impatient.  I pressed it very lightly with the iron on wool setting, so it wasn’t too hot.  It worked a treat!  The circles have flattened and overall it has a lovely more lacy feel, which I really like.  Here are a couple of pics of the very final finished result:

 

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Party Ring Scarf

Craft | Sunday November 7 2010 | 9:22 pm | Comments (10) | Tags: , , , |

 

After seeing the beginnings of this, my second, circle scarf, my friend suggested it should be the ‘Party Ring’  Scarf.  She’s so right!!!  Do you know what Party Rings are?  Those brightly coloured round biscuits?

This scarf is for my 6 year old niece for Christmas and the candy colours are so bright and jolly, I just love them.  And yes, they are like yummy party rings!

For this scarf instead of continuing at the end of each row and working the next half of the circle, I changed colour completely, giving really quite dramatic colour mixes.

Does it make you hungry?  My sister has asked me if I can make a hat to match it.  Thank goodness for Ravelry!!

 

 

 

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Crochet for Breakfast

Craft | Wednesday October 20 2010 | 8:39 pm | Comments (5) | Tags: , , |

This morning I awoke at an embarrassingly early hour. 5.00am to be precise, and that’s not like me. You see, I’m a real night owl. I believe my natural sleep pattern is from about 2.00am – 10.00am. This does not fit well with a standard 9-5 job, so I do try to be in bed by about midnight, and last night I wasn’t much later than that.

So why was I awake to early today? I have no idea other than the fact that I have a lot going on at the moment and my head is all a-spin with it.

There was however a plus side. I had breakfast at home while watching the news (I love the news by the way – in fact I write this while listening to the Comprehensive spending Review here in the UK on the radio – we will all know our financial fate by the end of this!). After breakfast I still had an hour before I even needed to get ready for work. The best thing to do in that hour was crochet! Well, I couldn’t do anything noisy at 7am and disturb my neighbours, could I?

I had already started the first strip of my circles scarf and I was able to get that finished. Don’t you love the way the colours blend into one another and mix and match along the length of this strip and within each circle. Brilliant and simple.  Each circle doesn’t lie as flat as I would have liked, but I will give it a press and hopefully it will be a bit better.  

The pattern itself is deceptively simple.  Its basically just a shell pattern at intervals along a chain, and then the same on the other side of the chain. 

I have no intention of making early starts a regular thing.  In fact I am hoping it doesn’t become a habit – it’s not one I would like to have.  I am always stunned when people tell me the things they manage to do before coming to work each day – hanging washing out, cleaning the floor, making lunches.  Even more impressive are those who manage to get themselves AND kids out on time.  I can just get myself out.

Ah well, roll on bed time!

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Brrrrrrrrrr

Craft | Sunday February 28 2010 | 2:16 am | No Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , |

I have so much to write about as its been a busy old week, and a very eventful one too.  Its going to take several posts though to cover it all, so this one is just the opener.  

I’ve spent the last week in Scotland with my family, awaiting the arrival of a new baby (more soon) and its been very, very cold and a bit snowy.  Fortunately we didnt experience the severe snowy weather that some areas had this week.  However, I live as a ‘soft southerner’ (their words, not mine) now so I found it very cold.  Now I’m back home in Manchester, not a snowflake in site and I’ve got a cold – but my own bed will make it a lot better I’m sure.

I spent the first half of the week with my sister and her family and loved just hanging around with them, taking the kids to school, family mealtimes, homework, cbeebies etc. 

My sister has a lovely new coat and when we were out shopping she spotted a yarn, Patons Smoothie in Red Mix which matched it so I got roped into making her a scarf, in the same style I made for my niece and her cousins earlier in the year.  Its a pattern from The Happy Hooker  book and is a bit of a staple pattern for me.  I completed it in one evening so it is definitely a quick and easy project.

This shade is Red Mix, but I’ve called it Blood Orange as I think that’s exactly what its like, not quite orange and not quite red.  There’s also a little bit of steel grey, plum and coral in there too.  The pictures may not do the colour justice I’m afraid!

Here’s the end result

Blood orange scarf

Blood orange scarf folded

Being as critical as I am of my own work I feel obliged to point out my own mistakes!  My sister insists she cant see them, and that they don’t matter, but I know they’re there.  Are you like that?  Do you look at the things you’ve made and look for the mistakes?  Anyway, after the first row we decided the scarf wasn’t long enough so there’s an ‘extension’ which is only noticeable in the middle of one row, but it is there.  That’s one of the things that’s so great about crochet though, you can add on with great ease.  Also, I ran out of yarn about 12 shell loops from the end!  Luckily I’m using the same yarn for another project (details soon) but from a different dye lot.  The shade difference is very subtle, but its there!

Despite its faults my sister is delighted with the result and it has been much admired by her firends.  Orders taken girls!!!

Just one final thing for now… I LOVE LOVE LOVE Patons Smoothie and I’ve used it for quite a few things recently – its great for crochet for so many reasons.  I think it deserves a post all of its own, so watch this space.

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MMX

Craft | Saturday January 2 2010 | 7:50 pm | Comments (2) | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Happy New Year to you!  I hope 2010 brings you good times, good health and lots and lots of craftiness.  Those are the things I dream of for the year ahead anyway!

I’ve had a busy couple of weeks with my birthday, Christmas, New Year, visiting family  and lots and lots of snow! I spent Christmas at home with Caveman then we went off to Scotland to visit our respective families and most importantly see my nephews and niece.  If there was one thing would make me move back to Scotland it would be them.

The weather was a real challenge, with near knee deep snow in places, frozen roads and sub zero temperatures at all times. The coldest I was out in was -9°c at 9pm one evening, so I can only guess how cold it got in the middle of the night.  Brrrrrrrrrrrr…

And now that the gifts I have made have been given I can share what I’ve been working on for the past few month or so:

A teal / green curly wurly scarf for Rhona:

teal spiral scarf

 A flowery scarf for Jemma (a fellow crocheter):

floral scarf

 Button heart for Rhona:

Button heart

Spiral brooches for a few people, in different colours:

pink grey spiral brooch

A ‘made it up as I went along’ bag for Lucy (age 5 ¾):

 made up as i went along bag

with a sherbet scarf to match:

 sherbert scarf

A butterfly hair clip holder for Lucy:

pink and yellow butterfly hair clip holder

 

The sherbet and flower scarves are variations of patterns from my favourite crochet book The Happy Hooker, about which I have lots to write at a later date.

I hope all your crafted gifts were well received, and maybe you even received some yourself too.

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