I once read a short essay about knitters and crocheters and how most have a disproportionate view of the level of difficulty of the work they do. They make something, that the rest of the world looks at and thinks “wow that looks really difficult” and the knitter/crocheter is dismissive and says that it’s not that hard, it’s just stitch x, or a small baby thing etc. They’re not being smug or whatever, they just really don’t see it as something difficult. Generally I’d agree with that, and it relates to anything anyone does – whether it’s computer programming, painting walls, crocheting, lawyering. It’s not hard for the person who is in the field.
Except for this baby blanket. I look at it, it doesn’t look hard. I look at the pattern, it doesn’t look hard to follow.
I then proceed to spend days trying to figure out the first 3 rows.
Finally, with the aid of this helpful tutorial, I figured it out. Then it’s easy peasy lemon squeezy from there!
||Chromium Star Blanket by Laura Lynn Hanks
||Panda cotton blend and Sullivan’s coton-a
I signed up for the 2014 handmade valentine day cardswap thinking I would have heaps of time to make 4 cards over 3 weeks – hahaha I hear you laughing from here.
I started to get a little worried when I realised I needed to allow a bit more delivery time for international postage… but at least I’m not alone in my delusion. I’m in group #32, which means there’s at least 159 other people around the world frantically trying to finish 4 handmade valentines cards for complete strangers. That makes me feel a little better.
Crocheting hearts for inside the cards. I originally followed the pattern thinking it was UK stitches (hence the little one on the left!) and realised on the second row that it was in US stitches – the fact that there are 2 naming conventions for the exact same stitches drives me mental!
I carved some shapes out of an enormous eraser that can be found at Kmart for $2. I attempted to make a chevron one, but my skills were lacking and I ended up with tiny hearts instead.
Stamping the hearts onto the calico was fun
This is my in-progress shot when stamping the calico for the bunting. I didn’t realise I had this many scissors in the house, let alone all on one table!
I then sewed the bunting to the card and hung the crochet heart inside.
If you ask my son what colour he wants of anything, the answer is always “pink!”. Pink milk, pink paint, pink socks. Which is why he thinks this latest little rattle is for him and not someone else!
With the stripes I’m attempting a seamless join, which sort of works – at least it looks less obvious than usual.
The downside to the stripes of course is taking 3 balls of cotton with me and having to untangle them every 5 minutes because I am uncoordinated like that.
I have one more rattle on the horizon, and then there will be a break from them for a while. Though really I should continue making them in reserve, as even though the actual rattle only takes a few days, I seem to take months on end getting to complete them.
||Dog rattle by Suzie Fry
||Yatsal 4 ply cotton in pinks and grey
I had a nana craft week – I made a teapot cosy!
I should have added more stitches in the beginning – maybe another 6 either side – so it fits around the wider part of the pot.
That said, it did stretch when I blocked it. If I make this again I might add a few increases (and then decreases) like darts on a skirt!
For those interested in the actual numbers, I started with 43 chains across the bottom, which became 21 chains on the side pieces, then up to 53 chains by the time I added extras across the spout and handle. To decrease around the pot rim – I did 8 hdc, 2toghdc starting from centre of handle.
||Leah’s Rose Tea Cosies by Leah Maxwell
||Spotlight Marvel (grey), Yatsal (rose, green)
This was the fastest blanket I’ve ever made, and the easiest. A very simple repetitive pattern that I’ve used a few times already and yet it hasn’t gotten boring – probably because it’s a mindless tv job. I used a lot less cotton than I thought I would – 3 and a bit yellow balls, and almost 2 of each of the white and grey balls.
It might be time to give the ripple pattern a bit of a break – thankfully this is the last one in the queue – I was planning to use the green and grey yarns for a grown up version, but it seems that’s no longer necessary, so I’ve saved myself quite a few months of work and some very sore fingers!
Now to decide what next… I’ve been thinking it might be time to embrace some nana crafts and make a tea cozy. I would have loved to do an Alice in Wonderland tea party theme for my wedding, but sadly I didn’t have the lead time or the spare time to make gorgeous tea cozies, wacky doilies, mad hatter fascinators, comb op shops for eclectic crockery and sugar bowls, and all sorts of cut crystal champagne flutes. Maybe something to work towards for my 40th birthday party, which is sadly only 6 years away. Plenty of lead time you might say!
||Easy Ripple Afghan by SusanB
||10 ply Wendy Fiori cotton, 5 ply Coton-A cotton
A friend of mine has been considering making button bouquets for her sister’s wedding but also to sell – which led me to offer to make some sample crochet flowers to add into the mix. These flowers are quite easy to make and look absolutely adorable in sets of 2 for headbands.
Sadly, I am destined to have little boys, not little girls, so I’ve decided to try my hand at selling pretty little headbands. Feel free to drop by my madeit shop and have a browse!
So after a bit of a break, wherein I got married, went on honeymoon for a month, fell pregnant, had even worse morning sickness than the first time mixed in with a decent bout of depression; I have finally made it back to the land of the living, and crafting and blogging.
I’ve gone from doing nothing at all to suddenly having many projects on the go. All are just variations on a theme really.
Number 1: FINISHED!
A table runner for the top of my son’s chest of drawers. I’m not even sure why I’m doing this one, as noone seems to care about a layer between the chest and all the junk, but there you go. This one doesn’t have long to go – it will probably only be 8 stripes in total and is a good one to take in the car or to parks.
Number 2: FINISHED!
A cradle blanket for Baby #2. The benefit of this is that it’s a smaller blanket and therefore more likely that I will finish it before the due date. My one problem is the incredibly steep price of cotton yarn at Lincraft these days, and the fact that noone else seems to be making grey cotton yarn.
Update: Lincraft have had a bit of a sale on, so I stocked up. I ended up buying 5 balls of grey, but am only about to finish the first ball after reaching the halfway mark, so I’ve obviously overestimated there.
Number 3: Haven’t even started
I’m not even sure why I’m making this one, except that I really like the colour combination of sage green, moss green, mid grey, and white. This one will be either a ripple blanket or a star blanket.
I really should finish the christmas tree skirt I started for last year. It only needs a few more rounds on it to fully cover the table that the tree sits on.