My friend posted this on Facebook . . . I wish I could knit that fast, and pretty soon, my hair will be long enough to knit with. And this is why we have stashes of yarn!
So, I’ve been blogging for a while now, and not all of my posts have comments on them, so when someone comments, I’m happy, but imagine what I felt when I saw that Sanderella’s Crochet has my blog as one of the creative spirits she admires!
Yup! Someone likes me! Yay!!
After I calmed myself down, I checked out Sanderella’s work, and she’s got some awesomely inspirational crochet herself. Go check her out!
Have I told you how I learned to knit and crochet? If I have, well, you’re about to hear it again. We’ll blame it on a mental blip.
I learned to crochet when I was five years old. I was always very proud of this fact because outside of my family, it seemed that few knew the skill, certainly none of my friends. When I was five, back in the mid-seventies, my parent made extra money by making crochet cushions and capes. They would sell the finished products to a local TG&Y, a store similar to Rite Aid. To keep me busy, my mother put a crochet hook in my hands and gave me a ball of yarn. I remember starting with chains, and eventually learning a treble crochet. I totally skipped the single and double crochet stitches.
Every winter, I’d fiddle with yarn projects, but it wasn’t until I was a teenager, when I saw my aunt using two knitting needles that I actually made a garment. My aunt Gloria taught me how to knit one summer during the 80’s. I remember how popular knitted tops were. She was making extra money by knitting them for her neighbors. I bought purple yarn and got to work. I wish I had a picture of that blouse, but I don’t, and it’s long gone.
Since then, I’ve knitted mostly scarves, hats, and stoles, and I’ve crochet blankets and hats. I’ve got my eye on this sweater, but I haven’t started on it yet. I’ve got the yarn all picked out, a lovely, soft blue yarn I picked up at Stitches West a few years ago.
I’m not sure what’s stopping me, but maybe this month I’ll pick up the needles and give it a try.
Two years ago, at my first time at Stitches West, I bought two skeins of Helen Hamman 100% Superfine Alpaca in a nice deep red color. You know how being surrounded by yarn, either at your LYS or at a knitting and crochet conference makes you go a little nuts? You squeeze the skeins and maybe rub them on your cheek, and then you put them back, walk around a little only to come back and impulsively buy the yarn without having a specific project in mind? Well, that’s what happened to me. I had these two skeins for two years. Every once in a while, I’d pick them up and think, “One day I’ll find the perfect project for you.” But I’d end up working on something that required a different type of yarn instead.
Well, back in July, I saw a Lion’s Brand crochet pattern for a shawlette. I thought, “Finally! This is the project!” The shawlette itself is not full-length shawl, but it’s perfect for a light spring day. You can drape it around your shoulders on a night out.
This is an easy project for a beginner, and if you have some experience with crochet, then it’ll be a super fast project that you can whip up in a couple of days. A chart is included if you’re a visual person. I’d recommend using a thinner yarn. If lace weight intimidates you, then a DK weight would work. The yarn I used was a superfine, not really as thin as lace weight, but thinner than DK. And because it is pure alpaca, it is warm enough that I can wear it wrapped tighter around my neck in the winter.
I got so many compliments and a few requests for it when I wore it. This project is interesting enough to make again and again yet it’s simple enough that it’s done within days. I recommend using it if you want to make a quick gift for someone.
Here’s a picture of the shawlette as it dries. I blocked it by spraying it with a water bottle, laying flat on the floor on a clean towel. I used pins to define the edges, pulling each peak tight, then I let it dry. Once it was blocked, the shawlette has kept its shape even after I wore it several times.
You can find the pattern here.
This is my 8 year old niece’s first knitting project. Those holes? They’re “design elements.” She started this when she was 5 and only worked on it when she came over. It took a long time but she did a good job.
My friend is having her first baby after many years of heartache, and I was so excited for her that I decided to crochet his first blankie. She’s nicknamed him Bumpy, so I’ve decided to call this Bumpy’s Blankie.
Inspired by little woolie’s Mixed Stitch Blanket, and using the yarn I got from Deramores, I created my own. I started with a granny stripe. I have to say that this blanket is for a little boy, but I felt the need to break up the blues and greens with the red/pinks. I think it looks good, no?
Chain 150 stitches.
1 row of dc.
1 row granny stripe. Then using the nine colors I chose, I did two rows each of the granny stripe, with the last row being all dc.
Then I flipped the blanket over, and using the second color on the starting chain, I sc loosely across the row. Cut yarn, but do not turn work. Using new color, sc across.
Notice that the sides seem to not add up, but when I counted my stitches, I had 150. This seemingly wonky side will be fixed when I block the blanket.
Next, I flipped the blanket over and did 1 row of sc, then 1 row of *dc 4, then front post double crochet. Repeat from * to the end. Repeat these two rows alternating color 3 times.
Next, I used the Wave and Chevron Stitch I found on little woolie’s blog. I couldn’t read the pattern instructions from the picture in her blog, but I could see the chart very well. I just followed it. Below is row 1 of the pattern.
The Wave and Chevron Stitch is bordered by a a row of sc in yellow. The next bit is something I found online also, but I didn’t keep track of where I found it.
Row 1 – dc.
Row 2 – ch 4, *skip next 2 st, dc 4 in next dc, ch 1, sk next 2 st, dc, ch 1. Repeat from *
Row 3 – ch 5, *dc 4 tog, ch 2, dc. Repeat
Rows 4 and 5 – dc with different color.
Next, I echoed the preceding patterns and ended with Crochet Geek’s Crochet Cluster V Stitch. I put a dc border all around the blanket.
The yarn used: Stylecraft Special DK in the following colors: aster, pomegranate, saffron, turquoise, aspen, fondant, cloud blue, meadow, and sherbet.
What do you think? Think Bumpy will like it?
Now, if only I could get myself to the post office and mail it!