Saturday, 19 March 2011

So....the squares.....

How many so far?
Well still the 35 I showed a few days ago actually. I was going to make lots more, honest, but they looked so nice in that little layout that I thought that to add more colours would be to break up their loveliness. (OK,OK,I'll admit it - I had enough for a project so I stopped as usual!).
I edged every square in white DC, and that took some time I'll tell you. 

But not as long as joining them all together with a simple slip stitch:
Then I needed an edging. The family consensus was that the colours as they were looked very girlie so I needed some gender balance. Now I personally wouldn't mind what the colours were as long as they blended nicely but not everyone feels the same do they. So I found some blue and some fawn and worked in TC all the way around the edge of the work:

Then to finish off I thought a nice little picot edging, . Only by now each round was 500 stitches so this last round was a very long one. Roughly 1500 stitches! Yes I know, I know, lots of you make full size throws with hundreds and hundreds of stitches in each row, but  I've tried that once before and only got as far as the first row lol, so this was a major piece of hooking for me:

And so the project was finally finished. 
The scrap yarn baby blanket:

What started with a way of using up scraps of yarn too small to do much with, became a many hours long work of cosiness:

(The little cushion was made for me one christmas by Craig for his Y7 something or other class)

Oh yes, it needs a little more blocking I think, but I was so impatient to show you all. I am rather loving the world of hooking now, shame on me for hiding from it for so long. And all I need then is a baby to go with it, or a friend with a baby. Or just someone who wants a small blanket....... I really need to think things through before starting on them, so many finished items with no-one to use them!

No technical details for this project lol. Just scraps of yarn hooked into 35 squares of different colours, all finished of with a pretty border. I couldn't tell you how much yarn was used in each shade as I didn't bother to check but I know that it hasn't made the slightest difference to the scrap yarn bag! For some reason it seems to be getting fatter the more I delve into it?

So now I'm in the lull. The space between finishing one project and starting another. I really don't like this bit at all, having to think about what to start next, looking through the stash for the next yarn to enjoy, choosing the method of crafting, browsing through patterns for inspiration......I think sometimes I prefer when I have a request for a make, at least the decision is made for me then ;-)

Oh well a weekend of work now whilst I think about what to start on next. See you all soon.


Wednesday, 16 March 2011


Should I deal with this:

Or continue with this:

Guess ;-)


Tuesday, 15 March 2011

The last little bit....

Of the red chunky from the previous posts that is.
Owen was playing with the yarn in my projects-on-the-go bag and kept snuggling the leftover Marble chunky against his cheek to feel it's softness. Now I know I didn't have enough for a scarf but I thought what the heck, let's see how far we get. I even thought I might be about to break the no yarn buying rule to get a decent length scarf. But as it happens I ended up with a scarf that is about 85cms long. Not long enough to knot or wrap around but just long enough for Owen to wear it the way he always wears scarves - hooked round the back of his neck and then crossed over in the front so that it lies flat down his chest. It isn't bulky under his coat either so just about perfect really. 

Technical details:
Yarn: James C. Brett Marble chunky - the final 80g.
Needles: 6mm straights.
Pattern: No pattern followed, it's a scarf!
Cast on 29sts, and then garter stitch with a slip stitch rib pattern on each side.

Another one for the gift box. Good job really as the red bag has come out and been claimed by Jen already!
Now back to the squares........


Monday, 14 March 2011

Low boredom threshold!

Remember the other day when I posted about the blanket I was making Sophie which became a shoulder bag when I got bored with crocheting squares? Well deja vu time! I have been crocheting some squares with scrap yarn, thinking I would make a cosy throw for the caravan........only I got bored again! So with 35 made in differing colours I decide to lay them out to see how they were looking together:

Rather nice don't you think?
I like the way these squares actually start from a circle before gradually evolving into a square.
So what to do next? More squares? Or perhaps keep with what I have and maybe turn them into a couple of cushion covers?
I don't know yet but I'll be sure to let you know.


Wednesday, 9 March 2011

And there's more........

So I said how much I enjoyed working with the Marble Chunky right?
And how I liked the rippled effect for the bag?
And how quickly it knitted up?
So I just had to do some more. But not a bag this time:

Instead I came up with the idea of a big slouchy jumper to keep Heather warm through the spring and into the summer evenings:

Technical details:
Yarn: James C. Brett Marble chunky shade MC14 approximately 200g.
Needles: 6mm straights.
Pattern: as I went along!

I worked a moss stitch hemline for this jumper before changing to the ripple effect pattern as described in the previous post. I then switched to a garter stitch bodice. I worked a slight decrease for the armholes and again for the neckline. The sleeves are fully garter stitch worked from the top down with the final 5 rows being stocking stitch to create a rolled hem. Unfortunately they were a little long and so I have to decide whether to shorten them to give them a better fit now, or leave them long but roll them up to extend the wearing life of the jumper. The neckline was created by picking up stitches and then working 5 rows st. st. to give a rollneck.
See, who needs to pick up loads of stitches and start ribbing away? 

So another make from stash and still a little of the marble chunky left, around 120g. Not sure what to do with this last bit so you've any ideas before it goes back into the cupboard to be forgotten about for several more years.........


Tuesday, 8 March 2011

And another one.

Helen showed me a feature on knitted accessories in one of her magazines and I spotted a really cute slouchy bag which I knew I had seen a pattern for somewhere. So again I flicked through my stack of knitting magazines and found a pattern in a supplement from one of them. So I set to work with yarn I had in my cupboard and in only a couple of hours I had this:

The ripple effect is created over a 4 row repeat and is very simple. It is just one row knit, next row knit again but wrapping the yarn around the needle twice on each stitch rather than once. The third row is knit again but you let the extra loop just drop from the needle and then the fourth row is purl. I remember working a very simple technique way back in the mid 80's when I was a teen and made myself a ripple effect batwing jumper, only I think I used three wrap overs and had a very loose, open pattern. I wonder what happened to that top as I really loved it at the time?

Technical details:
Yarn: James C. Brett Marble chunky shade MC14. 
Amount: approximately 80g from a 200g ball.
Needle size: 6mm.
Buckle: free gift from a knitting magazine.
Lining: 40cm x 40cm black cotton from fabric stash.

I bought two balls of this yarn about 18 months ago just because I liked the colourway and had lots of ideas of makes but none that I liked enough to go with.....until now. In fact I have liked working with it so much that I have just completed another project with it which I will reveal later if I get a decent photo. And it's not even a bag this time!

Thank you for the lovely comments on my crochet bag. They really made a cautious crocheter feel good about her abilities and all the kind comments I have received through this blog have really inspired me to keep developing this new skill.


Saturday, 5 March 2011

If a blanket seems too big of a job.........

First up, do you remember this post?
It was such a long time ago wasn't it? So I never did finish crocheting all the squares to create the planned gift. Instead I reached about twelve and then gave up. For a long time! But when I was routing through my knitting cupboard I found the squares again and decided to use them for something else. I hooked up a few more squares so I had 24 in all and then joined them together with DC and some pastel green yarn:

And then I made a very long strap, and some cute little crochet flowers:

Before lining the whole thing:

And ending up with a pretty little crochet shoulder bag:

(Not a very good last photo actually but my battery is about to die so I can't upload another just yet!)

You know I still feel so inordinately pleased with myself each time I create something with the hooks, it took me such a long time to try crochet and every new piece of work feels such an achievement. Knitting just doesn't hold that same finished thrill. I love knitting, but I know it, if you know what I mean? Even if the pattern seems challenging at first I know I will get it and end up with a good finished article. And there's no fear of adapting patterns, or creating my own. Knitting is my comfort zone. But crochet is different. I'm still learning, not far progressing past the basic stitches, but I'm just so excited when the piece is done and is admired by my ever patient and thoughtful husband. I'm pretty sure he isn't that interested in yarn, or hooks, or bags, or the rest of it but he knows me, and he knows how to make me feel.

So back to the bag.
Technical details:
Yarn: Playtime microfibre DK shade PP6. approximately 150g.
Sirdar in pastel green (will edit when I remember the name!) approximately 30g.
Hook size 4.5mm.
4 buttons.
lining fabric approximately 40cms x 70cms.
Pattern: Simply knitting magazine issue 55 June 2009. 

All materials from stash, both proper stash and the scraps bag, even the fabric, which used to be the bathroom roman blind!
The pattern suggests buying bag handles but I am still working from stash and had none suitable so had to crochet some instead. The pattern also stated adding buttons to the centre of each motif but as the yarn I used is so colourful I didn't think adding so many buttons would enhance it any further. The handles were held on with the buttons and stitched right through the lining for strength. The flowers and buttons just helped the bag look tidier and stopped the handles looking like an afterthought.

If you read my other blog you will know I'm cutting down on internet usage hence the long time since the last post. I will be back later though to show you what else I have been making whilst I have been away. 
Going to have a nosey round all your inspirational blogs now and pick up some new ideas for the stashbusting.
Oh one more thing - still no yarn bought this year! See, the willpower of a ........... whatever has good willpower lol.
Happy crafting everyone.