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Showing posts from February, 2013

"Be of Good Cheer" Samplerghan

I've been thinking about what my next afghan would be for a while-- long before the last one was anywhere near done.  (This is how you know you're addicted, by the way.)

Since I happen to have accumulated a fair amount of red yarn (and have no wish to make a Christmas-themed blanket), it seemed like a good time to try that "Cath Kidston-inspired" look so many people have been using, over the past couple of years.  Never mind that until I saw one of those afghans, I had no idea who Cath Kidston even was.  (g)  The color scheme (if you're unfamiliar with it) varies slightly from project to project-- but it's always very bright and cheerful.  Generally, there's a lot of tomato red mixed with baby blue, candy pink, white and/or cream, sunny/lemony yellow, and fresh, springtime greens.

I went through my acrylic worsted weight and set aside the colors I would use.  I may have purchased one or two skeins to complete my palette.  Well, it was perfectly justified…

Canadian Breeze Cushion Cover

Motif:
Modified version of Motif # 106 from Edie Eckman's Beyond the Square.
I worked the pattern as written through third round, following with a round of sc in each stitch (3 sc in corners).

It's not a difficult motif, at all, but BPdc can be a little messy to work, if you're not used to it.  


Yarn:
I Love This Yarn in "Summer Sky" and a variety of unknown remnants.  Medium brown, a dark country blue, a light country blue, and various creams and beiges.


Hook:
4.0mm (G)
This is my favorite-- or at least most-used-- hook, lately.  It has a polymer clay-covered handle.  After getting used to the clay-covered hooks and then switching back to an uncovered hook (because I didn't have a covered one in the right size), I'm pretty sure there is a difference in comfort.  My hand got tired faster with the plain hook, and part of the back of the hook (maybe the very end?) was rubbing against my palm, somehow, and making it tender.  I had to readjust my grip!  I'…

The Granny Square Book

The Granny Square Book: Timeless Techniques and Fresh Ideas for Crocheting Square by Square
by Margaret Hubert



Many of the things I most appreciated in Edie Eckman's Beyond the Square and Around the Corner Crocheted Borders books are also present in this sturdy volume by Margaret Hubert. 

If you, like me, love books of crochet motifs (squares only, in this instance), where the emphasis is decidedly on those motifs, as opposed to patterns for garments, etc.-- this is most definitely worth investigation.


Construction:
The book is a 176-page, hardcover, spiral-bound book.  The pages have that satiny finish that is usual for this sort of craft book, and they are of reasonable thickness.  It feels like a book that will stand up to years of use. 


Contents:
Introduction--
The first 26 pages include a page of acknowledgements, a table of contents, an introduction, and a fairly comprehensive section on crochet basics.  Step-by-step photos accompany detailed instructions of how to make the b…

Crocheted Cushion Cover

As soon as I finished the last afghan (and thank you for all the kind comments, btw!), I decided my next project should be on a smaller scale.  Even though I already have the yarn set aside for the next blanket (help, I'm addicted), it just felt like an intermission was in order.  And yet I wanted motifs.  The natural choice was to make a crocheted cushion cover.

I looked through my books, in search of a nice square.  The one that grabbed me this time was Motif #106 from Beyond the Square.  It uses lots of BPdc (back post double crochet), which seems to be less common than FPdc (front post double crochet).  At least, I seem to have tended toward motifs that include FPdc more often than motifs with BPdc.  It's an interesting stitch, though I do find it somewhat messier to work than FPdc... or plain old everyday regular dc.

I wanted to use up some of the scraps of beige/ecru/cream and brown yarn I had left over from the last afghan-- and I was in the mood for blue, so I went scr…

50 Fabulous Crochet Squares

50 Fabulous Crochet Squares (Leisure Arts #4420)
by Jean Leinhauser and Rita Weiss



This is a book of... 50 crochet squares!  (Who'da thunk it, right?)

It's a 72-page paperback, "staple-bound", "booklet-style book" from Leisure Arts, and the fifty crochet square patterns are the work of four designers-- Jean Leinhauser, Rita Weiss, Janie Herrin, and James G. Davis.

Each square is presented with a large, full-color photo alongside the written pattern.  (There are no charts, unfortunately.)



The patterns range from the classic granny square to more advanced patterns with highly textured stitches or floral overlays.

The authors assume that you know how to crochet (or are learning from another source).  There's a brief (one-page) introduction on the subject of how the size of your finished square will be affected by the thickness of the yarn you use.  The book ends with a couple of pages of "general directions"-- abbreviations, symbols, and terms u…

Yarn Bombing on Flickr

I was uploading a few photos to Flickr today when I saw that the Flickr blog has put up an entry about yarn bombing.  (So I thought I'd pass along the link.)

I've never seen any yarn bombing "in the wild", that I can recall-- but then again, I don't live in or near a major city, and I'm not even out of my own back yard on a daily basis.   That could have something to do with it.  ;o) 

Part of me thinks yarn bombing is, well, a waste of time and perfectly good yarn.  (g)  Another part of me thinks, "C'mon, don't be such a grump!  Think about the fun-- the surprise-- the sense of whimsy you're giving to the people who'll see it." 

I think I'd be open to participating in a small way in an organized yarn bombing, but I certainly don't care enough to organize one, myself.  There's so much other stuff I want to make or do!

Gypsying Afghan = DONE.

Phew! 
This one felt like it really dragged at the end, but it's done, done, done!



I washed and dried it this afternoon, then took it out onto the patio for a little photo shoot.  I think I could've done better with my photos, but they'll do to get the point across.  (The darkest colors look a little darker than in reality, unfortunately.)

So, the specifics.

(Here's the Ravelry project page.)



I'm sure you'll recognize the pattern.  It's the popular "African Flower" or "Paperweight Granny" hexagon motif.  There are multiple versions of the pattern floating around-- or multiple sources for it, at least.

The pattern's not difficult, but there are a ton of ends to weave in.  (That's just the way it goes, if you change colors several times per motif.)  Weaving the ends is definitely the most challenging and tiresome part of the project. Even though I took care to do a little at a time, as I went, it still ended up feeling like a lot…