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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Zig and Zag

Craft | Thursday September 22 2011 | 11:10 pm | Comments (5) | Tags: , , , , |

Hello again! I’ve been a bit bad at blogging again haven’t I!! I look back on last autumn when I took part in Blogtoberfest and managed to blog every day for a whole month and didn’t resort (too much I hope) to writing nonsense. How do I get things back on track? No idea!

I have been busy though and that’s one reason I have come back today. Last week I finished a baby blanket I have been working on and have presented it to its intended recipient and so I can now share the details. Well, when I say ‘intended recipient’ that’s not quite accurate. The baby it’s for isn’t due for another 10 days yet but I won’t see the baby’s mummy for a while as I don’t know when I will be back in Scotland in the next month or two. So when I was there last week I went to see Kerry, my sister in law’s sister in law! Work that one out… my brother’s wife’s brother’s wife!! (is that punctuaton correct – I’m not sure!)

There are loads of rippley blankets around but I wanted something with a bit more of a well defined pattern, so I chose a zig-zag pattern and found one on on Caron which was just what I wanted. I used Sirdar Calico which has a lovely weight and finish and it is really easy to work with – not at all splitty. And the colours it’s available in were perfect! Oh, probably most important for the end user – machine washable. In the end I used approximately 1 and half balls of each shade repeating each colour just twice. One of the things I really love about this pattern is the ribbed texture from crocheting into the back loop at all times. Also there is a little hole at the top of every zig (or zag?) which gives it an interesting finish too.

Want to see more? All of these pictures were taken when the blanket was pinned out for blocking. (more…)

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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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That darn cat!

Random | Friday February 25 2011 | 5:53 pm | Comments (3) | Tags: , |

Source: ICHC

I know I post a lot of these cat and yarn pictures, but they give me such a lot of amusement!  I hope they make you smile too :)

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Yarn Temptation

Craft | Friday February 18 2011 | 12:17 pm | No Comments | Tags: , |

Source: ICHC

Think what you could make with all that yarn, if the cat doesn’t get to it first!!!

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Measuring Up

Craft | Tuesday January 11 2011 | 11:11 am | Comments (10) | Tags: , , , |

Want to know a secret?  I’m very naughty!  I have never, ever made a tension square before.  When I knitted I didn’t.  Since I have been crocheting I haven’t.  Until now!

Thankfully I’ve never had a problem with stitch tension.  In fact I am rather proud, if I say so myself, at having what could be classed as a very standard and even tension and projects have always come out as intended.

So why start now?  The Crochet Club project I am just about to start isn’t critical on size in terms of fit, but I have been soooooo impatient to get started it was a way to get started.  It also let me try out the yarn (Rowan Cotton Glace) which I really like!  It’s quite a dense cotton that has really crisp stitch definition and isn’t very ‘splitty’ compared to some other cottons.

So how did I measure up?  The advised tension for this project is 21.5 stitches x 24 rows over 10cm square using a 3mm hook in double crochet.  I got 21 stitches x 25 rows.  I think that’s close enough for jazz!

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