This project has been percolating in my brain since I saw this stool covered with a granny-round cover three years ago. Three years ago (pin to prove it)! Of course at the time I didn’t have lots of brightly colored yarn scraps in the same weight (I flit about yarn the same way I flit about projects, I’m all over the map). At the beginning of this year a friend was destashing yarn and gave me these balls of worsted weight Nature Spun yarn.
And this weekend I decided it was time. Being stuck on the couch all day due to feeling ill had something to do with it… I’m almost done, but surprised at how long an outer round is taking. Since I’m not comfortable enough with crochet to wing it and expect my piece to come out flat and round I went searching on Ravelry for a pattern. I found this Granny Mandala pattern that seemed like the best fit. Monday night I thought I was done with the top and so I lightly steam blocked it. Nope, not done yet. And that is how my pile of WIP grows.
An example of taking way too long to make something is this ducky blanket I sewed and crocheted last year. A few hours in front of the television and a car ride to the coast was “all” it took to get the crochet border on, leaving me to wonder why did it take me 5 months between stitching two pieces of fabric together to get to the finished object. Of course I also can’t believe I just implied crocheting ~160″ of edging with size 10 crochet thread and a tiny steel hook measured in millimeters was quick.
The timeline: I bought the fabric in 2006. I stitched the blanket together in April 2011. I quilted it together to guard against shifting in July and I crocheted the edging on it in September.
And true to form I did a bit of swatching before diving into finishing the blanket.
If you look closely you might notice that the edging changes a couple of times… better to test it out on this fabric scrap that the blanket. I tried a triangular edge, and at least two different scallop sizes.
Oh yeah, and I made a test crochet thread project along the way (bonus finished object), earrings from Linda Permann’s book, Crochet Adorned. I wanted to make sure I was comfortable with the crochet thread and steel hook before I attacked my blanket.
This poor crochet blanket keeps getting put on the back burner. Yesterday I wrongly thought that I’ve shared all of my WIPs.
I started this back in 2005, put it down for two years, made a few more squares in 2007 and finally finished the squares in 2011. Then I realized that my gauge changed (or maybe I picked up the wrong hook during my push to finish the last of the squares). I also missed one square and duplicated another.
At first these mistakes got me down, but then I realized, the intended baby just turned six and her sister is two, maybe two doll blankets would be just the thing and so I tossed out the original layout.
But I still have to block all these squares and I’d like to find some 1/2″ gingham to aid me in that process.
I keep reading 2009 lists and somehow it feels like 2009 should not have happened yet, but it did and it is gone.
What crafty things did I accomplish? I sort of love the photo mosaic, but I hate putting it together. As I started the process though, I thought, “wow, look at everything I did!” and that was nice.
That empty lower corner is where I should have a picture of the Margaret sling bag I made my sister but forgot to take a picture before I gave it to her.
I knit: pretty pink princess (sheldon from knitty), newborn booties (magic slippers from ???), bright scarf (drop scarf pattern that is a modified clapotis), camping hat version 2.5, grandpa’s hat, my leaf lace camping hat, pink lemonade (elenka from knitty), february lady sweater, brimless topi (from knitty), asymmetrical cable scarf (from One Skein), Panda legs (improvised pattern), Turn-a-Plain (Turn-a-Square from Jared Flood), Brynn’s Ruffles (modified Lilly pattern from Larissa Brown), Poppy brooch (riff on Nancy Ricci’s poppy pattern), Crumpet beret, Peach Baby and Sea Baby (ribbed baby jacket pattern from Debbie Bliss adorned with a flower from Crochet Adorned)
I crocheted: Butterfly cap (from Vallieskids), Medallion Table Runner (from Crochet Adorned)
I sewed: little artist’s drawing case (from Craft Apple when it used to be a free pattern), Unstructured bag (idea from a Japanese craft book), two Hourglass Pillows (Amy Butler pattern), Hello Kitty Pajama Pants (Simplicity pattern), Bloomers for Pink Lemonade (Favorite Things pattern), woolen flower brooch (from Design Sponge), Buttercup Bag (modified, from Made by Rae), Margaret sling bag (from Oh Fransson), Moleskin Cover (mashup of a family pattern and Mr. Monkeysuit pattern), oh and recovered 4 patio chairs (not sewing, but it involved fabric)
I grew and mostly did not kill: mint, rosemary, primroses, cat grass, radishes and arugula
What crafty things did I leave unfinished?
I did finish one marigold sock (though didn’t take a picture), now I need to sit down and do a little knitting csi before I can start the second sock, doh. And I’ve made progress on both sassymetrical and ishbel. But I stalled out on machine quilting the HK quilt way back in springtime. I basted the three layers together, wound 5 bobbins worth of thread and then chickened out. The Anna Tunic was hemmed during the christmas sewing (quick while I have matching thread in the machine) and just waiting for buttons to be sewn on.
I’m going to ignore the list of things I never got around to starting. But I am focusing on finishing up before I tackle too many new projects. Except fingerless gloves, because not having a grab and go knitting project that stuffs in a purse was making me cranky (just ask TheHusband). So I grabbed a single skein of yarn, jotted a few notes from the Maine Morning Mitts pattern and started last weekend during an errand run with TheHusband.
Secret Christmas Project Revealed: Medallion Table Runner from Crochet Adorned by Linda Permann
I’ve been wanting to make my mom something for a few years now, I got my crafty spirit from her, and when I saw this table runner I thought it would be perfect; when I was a kid she used to collect doilies and a nice change from her growing collection of quilted table runners (she quilts). The only problem was that none of the colors I could find of Lion Brand Cotton seemed like they would work in her house. The kitchen/dining room is full of warm woods and colors (cedar cabinets IIRC, oak flooring an adjacent/attached sun porch full of cedar siding and rustic tile). Finally, while we were out on our annual apple expidition, we stopped by a small local alpaca farm/yarn store. This store had an assortment of Tahki Cotton Classic yarns and I found perfect “mom” colors. The small problem is that Tahki Cotton Classic is a dk weight yarn while Lion Brand Cotton Classic is a worsted weight yarn. Oh well, throwing caution to the wind (and feeling compelled to buy something since we were the only customers in the shop and the proprietor had left their adjust home to join us in the shop) I decided to get yarn for a planned project and hope it worked.
I got off to a rocky start, ripping stitches more often than I knit them, but once I bought a pack of those green and orange locking stitch markers from Clover and marked the end of each row it went much smoother. I think I tried using my coil-less safety pins but didn’t like how I tended to snag the yarn a bit. While I was having a few issues with the first few medallions I grabbed a skein of LB cotton and made one of each motif. I still had the same issue of the large medallion center wanting to form the shape of a hat, a more experienced crocheter suggested that I just snug-up the magic ring center more and that seemed to work; but I also realized that each medallion tended to relax a bit a day after being made.
While I started this project nice and early, it stalled in November when I started several other things. Finally in December I sat down and made a concrete effort to get at least one medallion done a day. Since each medallion was a bit smaller than intended I thought I’d need more medallions, so I made as many extra as I could manage in the few days before Christmas. I got 11 small medallions from 1 skein of the Cotton Classic, but only 5 of the 6 needed medium medallions, and 4 of the 5 needed large medallions so I used a second skein for each of those colors. I was so worried about having enough medallions for a decent sized table-runner (I stopped crocheting sometime on Christmas Eve) that I ended up wrapping up the medallions and giving it to my mom “assembly required”, then I spent the 26th and 27th at her house laying out and stitching the table runner together.
It was nice that I was able to layout the runner on the same table it was to adorn, she gave me input on the length (requesting it not be so long that plates sat on it at either end of the table). As you might be able to see in the above photo, I used a piece of wax paper to help me keep things even (making the wax paper the intended length and marking the center line). I actually only used one extra medallion, a small one. But if you compared the pre-sewn layout to the finished object, I did have to stretch a few of the medallions to get everything to fit nicely together. Perhaps an entirely different layout would have worked better, with less space between each medallion, as the book illustrates, would have worked better – I don’t know. I was a little worried about the yarns bleeding, and warned my mom since I skipped blocking. Just a couple days after I left she hand washed it in cold water and told me there was no problems with bleeding (1. darn cats and 2. yay).
1) I am not feeling very creative with titles.
2) I clearly have a thing for these colors, this is the second object with these colors, and I am currently coveting a Manos del Uruguay yarn with similar colors.
3) I'm sorry this is the closest to a good picture as I could get for this wrap.
4) Despite sitting, I feel like I'm leaning they way you do when climbing up a steep hill (which might explain number 1 and 3).
Way back in 2003 ago my dear friend M (I have many dear friends named M_______ but if she is reading this she'll know) sent me a goody package including the Better Homes & Garden's Simply Creative Crochet premier issue. This issue taught me how to make granny squares and overall just got me out of my single crochet rut.
However this might be my first finished object from a pattern in it. I started the pattern in either February 2005 or February 2006 (I suspect 2005), finished my first skein and realized that it was crocked, so I ripped the whole thing out and started over, at a much slower pace. Then it got warm and I got distracted. I finally picked it up again last month and buzzed through the second and third skein (made some mistakes that are mostly hidden by the border).
Finished size: 17.5 inches by 62 inches
Pattern: Soft Boucle Shawl (apparently the pattern author also wasn't feeling very creative with her/his titles)
Okay I don’t have that many WIP… I think there are 10:
- crochet shawl
- crochet baby blanket (intended recipient is now 1)
- knit scarf
- knit tank top (actually I haven’t started yet)
- crochet water bottle holder
- crochet purse (actually I just need to block, steam and find embellishments)
- knit doll blanket (I wonder if the requestor is even still interested)
- knit scarf (I might give up on this project)
- knit one skein baby hat, haven’t started but the baby isn’t due until October and it is one skein
- knit xback tank top
Then there are all the projects in my head that I want to do. Like some National Knit Crochet a Sweater Year (I can’t remember how they abbreviated it) sweater. I haven’t even picked a pattern or yarn for that so I don’t think it will happen. I know I know, two tanks tops would be one sweater…but I fell in love with this bamboo/cotton yarn blend (Katia bamboo and saw this pattern book with a tank top that looks a lot like my favorite tank top, Louisa Harding yarns Beachcomber Bay Design Collection) so that went on the list. And I already had ribbon yarn for the X back tank (from Knitty) that I found for 50% off at Michael’s (I thought wow a knitted object for only $15 worth of yarn, cool).
So I started Xback back in April. I got thru 2 1/2 skiens in about two weeks, then I thought, this doesn’t look right and discovered that it was like twice the width I needed it to be, so I ripped it (plus I had screwed upn the seed stitch pattern). Then I had to rewind the balls (didn’t know that I should do this on spools at the time), then I started over. It is now August and I’m on skein 4. I’m at the part where I have to split it to make the v-neck and I’m a little scared. But I should just jump in and finish. It will probably go quickly and today is a good knitting day if I ignore everything else on that to do list.