No more Cro-Crastination…
15th October 2016
I’m no longer crocrastinating*.
*Definition – The act of putting off lots of crochet projects and keep making up excuses why you haven’t started or completed them yet.
Progress is being made on several projects, although I have to admit I have parked the My Little Pony blanket AGAIN. I just realised if I didn’t get cracking on the Attic24 Cupcake blanket then my friend’s little baby would be arrived before it was ready to snuggle them in!
So I got online and ordered the pack – it arrived and it is glorious. The colours in the pack alone make you want to get going straight away they are just so pretty. However I did hit a teeny snag. I, in my typical hasty fashion didn’t fully read the pattern before I started and got almost halfway through the project when I realised the blanket was rather too big for a baby blanket. Obviously this is because it isn’t a baby blanket – it makes up to the size of a single bed cover! D’oh!
By then, it was so far gone that I didn’t have it in my heart to frog it and start again so I parked that one ALSO, and re-ordered the same pack, and will make 2 baby blankets in slightly different dimensions but with the same pattern generally. I finished the first one last night and I am so pleased with it.
Now I just have to get back to the monstrously large one and complete that as a gift for my Mum as she is doing up a spare room and I know she’d love it to complete the look – she dropped enough hints when she saw me making it!
So, I’m on the case. Yes I’m thick and daft and shouldn’t rush into things but the silver lining is I will have 3 gorgeous blankets complete at the end of it – and then of course I will return to the dreaded graphghan!
Summer crochet how I love thee…
6th August, 2016
Sometimes I put my crochet projects in a bag and literally look at them each day as I busy myself about the house and have that longing feeling – my fingers itch to get to work on them. And usually by the time my little monsters have been tucked up in bed, I’m simply too tired to even pick up my hook – which makes me a little sad and a tad guilty. Especially when I have projects piling up.
But the joy of being a teacher is that summer time means its a little easier to get time to crochet and I have several projects on the go at the moment.
I’m currently working on my very first graphghan. Graphghan, I hear you say? Yes. Weird word. But words like that pop up so frequently in crochet you become used to it. Basically its an afghan (large blanket) which is crocheted using a graph of an image. Think cross stitch block pattern. There are some amazing patterns online that you can buy in various places and I decided to do one for Amelia as her baby blanket is too little now. I tried to find the link to the Etsy seller page that I bought it from but it doesn’t seem to be there anymore. There are other versions but not the seller I bought it from so if I find it I will add it in. Of course it had to be My Little Pony pattern and I’m currently up to my eyeballs in rainbow dash coloured yarn and trying (and often failing) to get my head around how many squares to count for each set of stitches.
Maths is NOT my strong point.
I’ve already learned some good lessons about what NOT to do when making an graphghan and I will hopefully write a little blog post on this once I finish the damn thing. It’s turning out to be absolutely huge. At least that means it will do her until she is an awkward teenager and will be too embarrassed to have a My Little Pony blanket. 🙂
Another quick project was the old faithful Repeat Crafter Me owl hat. This has been such a quick go-to pattern and very easy to follow. A friend of mine just had her second baby boy, so I made one for him and a bigger one for his older brother. They were also good for using up left over yarn in a range of pretty blue/grey colours.
It was a friend’s 30th birthday recently and I got her a gorgeous bottle of champagne – yes the real stuff – was quite tempted to keep it for myself but I resisted! I didn’t have a bottle gift bag so I decided to crochet a little flower for round the neck so she would remember the gift long after the bubbles had been popped.
I’m also waiting to start making a blanket from scraps of yarn for the relaxation room in my school and another project staring at me from the corner of my room is the Attic24 Cupcake Stripe Blanket which I’ve bought the yarn and pattern for as I’m making it for a friend’s baby due in the winter. I’d really better get started – on all these projects!
I never knew a fun hobby could be so stressful…
Oh wait, yes I did – I did musical theatre for years!
I will update soon on my progress as long as my hands don’t fall off while I’m making this mammoth blanket.
Happy hooking! 😉
Special Gifts – Crochet Jam Jar Lids
7th January 2016
I’m always on the look out for ideas for little gifts to give friends and family, especially for Christmas, birthdays and thank-yous. And since I learned how to crochet, I’m always putting my craft to use to make presents rather than buy them. Yes it saves money – well, actually sometimes it doesn’t because the yarn and the hours of work would actually add up to quite an expensive gift in the real world – but what I mean is that is isn’t about doing something for cheaper, its about creating something for someone; personalising it. I get real joy from that and I love seeing people’s faces when they realise they’ve recieved something that no-one else has.
So, with that in mind, I decided to make a little gift for my daughter’s nursery teachers out of some spare mason jars that I had (yes, I’m that sort of person – I bought a box of 10 ages ago ‘just in case’) and inside I filled them with some Quality Street (other sweet brands are available) and then I thought I would use some of the cotton yarn that I had bought ages ago and hadn’t put to use just yet. See My Sacred Stash for reasons as to why said yarn had been purchased. I got to work and crocheted the jar lid covers and I think the results aren’t bad at all! I’ve included the pattern below and just a note – depending on the type and size of jar lid you’re using you might need to add extra rows here and there but it’s mainly a ‘fit and check’ kind of routine as you go along.
Crochet Jam Jar Lid Cover
Pattern is in UK terms
Size 3.5mm hook.
Make a slipknot and chain 4.
Row 1: Work 11dc into first chain (the one down at the knot) and join with a slip stitch.
*Always chain 1 after you join your previous row with a slip stitch*
Row 2: Work 1dc, 2dc into each stitch around and join with a slip stitch (16dc)
Row 3: Work 1 dc into each stitch around.
Row 4 – 8: Repeat row 3 and keep holding up against your jam jar lid to check progress of size. Change colour whenever you like, make it stripes or a plain colour, it is up to you.
Row 9: Work 1dc, 2dc into each stitch around and join with a slip stitch (24dc)
Row 10 onwards: Keep working 1dc into each stitch around and join with a slip stitch.
You’ll know when your cover gets big enough, you will be able to hold it over the jam jar and see it start to curve down over the edges. Finish the last two rows with the following:
*Into Front Loop Only* 1dc in each stitch around. Join with slip stitch.
I changed colour again for the final row. Feel free to do what you like.
I used the picot stitch around to create the final ‘trimmed’ look of the lids.
Where you last joined with a slip stitch, ch 3, slip stitch back into first chain, slip stitch into same stitch.
Slip stitch 2 stitches across and repeat the picot stitch all the way around and join with a slip stitch. If you’re unsure about a picot stitch, this is a great tutorial that I found helpful.
I just used some of the contrasting yarn to make a string to tie around the lid to secure it and threaded a gift tag through.
I gave the jars to Amelia’s nursery teachers for Christmas and they seemed to like them – at least I hope so!
My Sacred Stash
11th November 2015
Anyone who crochets or knits will understand my problem.
I never have enough yarn.
Somewhere, I can hear my husband laughing so hard that he almost chokes on his derision…
Even though I have (roughly) 50 balls of yarn…or maybe slightly more than that *looks guiltily away*…it is sacred and must not be commented on, mocked, moved, touched or used by anyone else – especially my husband. I feel I constantly have to defend the fact that my tubbies and storage containers full of wool seem to be taking over the spare room – is that abnormal? Am I the only one?! I think not.
So here are my reasons that all other hookers and knitters will totally understand as to why the yarn stash is SACRED.
- You never know when you might need that colour/weight/type of yarn so you can’t throw it out. Yes, even that horrible pukey-brown colour.
- The tiniest, teensiest scraps of yarn are needed, even the ones smaller than a ping pong ball. For what? I don’t know and don’t ask me. I just need them.
- It’s pretty. I like seeing all the various colours piled up, just waiting for me to start working with them. It might take 5 years, but I’ll get there, so shut up.
- Look, I bought those skeins when I was going to make that puppet/poncho/ski mask that seemed like a good idea at the time. I’m not going to make it now. Don’t laugh.
- I bought it because I didn’t want anyone else to. Sue me.
- I have an addiction. It’s my drug. Please just accept me and love me anyway.
- Those tiny, half skeins? They were free with a magazine. Yes, I’m going to make the pattern that came with it…and I soooooooo remember where the magazine is…
- Look, Deramores had 25% off. I had to take advantage of that. So, what does it matter if there’s no petrol in the car?
- My friend who also crochets bought me that yarn. She understands me. We are one.
- I will never stop buying yarn. Ever.
Amelia’s Mum Crochet
Yes, I’m a hooker.
No, not that kind.
I love to crochet. A friend taught me a basic granny square a few years ago, and thanks to the wonder of YouTube, I gained confidence and am still learning all the time. For ages I’ve been saying I would include my various works in progress and projects on the blog, but never got round to it…that is, until now. So this page is for sharing ideas, patterns that I find useful online, patterns that (dare I say it) I might try to create myself if I get a bit more confident, and just generally talking about crochet to anyone else as happily geeky as me. For anyone based in my area, I’m a member of a crochet club and here is the link to our Facebook page, feel free to join and come along!
Recently, I’ve been working on a few projects. Several of my pals are expecting babies, so I decided to make the obligatory blankets. I hadn’t made a C2C (corner to corner) blanket before, so I found this great tutorial on YouTube by Bella Coco, which explained it so easily and clearly. I’ve made three blankets so far, one of which I used lots of leftover yarn with, and I was also surprised to see how quickly a C2C blanket makes up…definitely easier and quicker than a granny square or granny stripe in my opinion!
The first one is a bright, cheerful thick stripe…baby gender as yet unknown!
This one of course…is for a little boy who is on his way in the New Year…
And this is my leftover yarn buster…and actually my favourite (again, baby gender unknown)
Lots more projects to follow soon as quickly as my hook can manage them 🙂