Wednesday 15 April 2015

Hook & Needle News 15/04/15

I've been feeling very tired lately. Not sleeping well and having very vivid dreams. Not enough energy to do anything when I get home from work. Except crochet, of course. So, no further work done on the renovations. I know I should be exercising and maybe now that the weather's finally better, I'll be able to get out and walk. If only I could find shoes that would keep my feet from aching. A life-long problem for me...
So, I've finished Part 6 of Sophie's Universe.
It now measures about a metre across. Here's a close up:
Remember the Yarspirations CAL that I wasn't enjoying?
Well, I've seen people's almost finished product and I'm still not impressed, so I don't intend to finish this one. But what to do with all of that yarn? Someone had posted a link on facebook's Crafty Crochet Community to "A Blanket of Roses Afghan" pattern and I had saved the link to my favourites. I wasn't sure about doing it in aqua/teal, so decided to try a sample and see what I thought. So, I began. However, I was not really happy with the darker (bluer) yarn in the picture above. After I purchased the yarn for this CAL, Walmart got in a different colour, which is a darker teal, instead of the aqua and it actually blends with the variegated better than the aqua does. 
See what I mean? While the aqua may not look terrible, it doesn't look as awesome as the teal does. And it bugged me. But I didn't think I could justify spending the extra money on another ball of yarn and tearing all of the aqua out of the squares I had already completed. And what was I going to do with the aqua anyway if I didn't use it in this CAL? But when I decided to use the CAL yarn for a different project, and after starting with the aqua and not really liking it, I decided to also invest in the teal yarn. Here's my first motif:
A couple of people I shared this picture with said it reminded them of the movie, "Frozen." And I, too, thought it looked somewhat like a snowflake, so I'll probably call it something like Crystal Roses. Three hexagon motifs and one square done so far. And I'm loving this one much more than the CAL. Meanwhile I still have to decide what to do with all of these squares I started.
I have some ideas, but I'm going to wait till I finish the Crystal Roses and see how much yarn I have left over. But all of that layered aqua and white yarn has got to go... Yuk!
One day while perusing the yarn in Walmart, I discovered that they had some more blacklight yarn.
I'm still not sure what I'm going to do with it, but I bought this green to go along with it. Plus the aqua I'm not using in the Crystal Roses afghan blends with the blacklight as well. The big white ball is for the Crystal Roses afghan. Since white is the main colour in that afghan, but I wasn't planning on it being the main colour in the CAL, I needed more. 
I finished April's Drop Stitch Crochet Cowl from Red Heart's "Learn a Stitch, Make This Cowl" project. This cowl required a large 19 mm knitting needle to make the drop stitches. I don't have one and couldn't find one locally. And I was impatient to get started, so I went into Canadian Tire and bought a 19 mm dowel.
So I nicknamed this the "dowel cowl." Necessity is the mother of invention, as my mother said. And it worked!
Here's the finished product. It called for Red Heart Medley yarn, but I decided to use Bernat Big Ball Chunky in Intrigue instead. I really like this colour combo. And it was available at Walmart, so I didn't have to wait for an order. 
This is the first cowl not made in the round, so I had a seam to sew.
I was quite happy with how this stitch worked up.
Last evening, I went to Walmart craving something sweet. They still had some Easter goodies at 75% off, so I picked up a couple of items. Normally, I eat a very healthy diet. And I'm also trying to be more conscientous about my eating and lifestyle. And most chocolate is not something that can be eaten conscientously as it is produced using slavery, including child slavery. So, if your chocolate is not Fair Trade, it's not fair. So, I thought, "If I don't buy the chocolate, I can have some yarn." The yarn won. 
This will be the main colour in the Choo Choo Train afghan that I will make for my grandson. He loves this colour. And he loves trains. It's Red Heart Super Saver in flame.

Wednesday 1 April 2015

Hook & Needle News 01/04/15

I see it's been nearly a month since I last posted and I have been busy. I posted previously that I am doing Red Heart's monthly "Learn a Stitch, Make this Cowl." I'm all caught up now. Here is January's Twisted Cowl, which is crocheted, and I actually finished it just last night.
This one was made with Red Heart Medley in Eclectic.

Since my goal had been to get back into knitting, I started with Candi's Checked Cowl for February and was quite pleased with the results. 
This was made with two strands of Red Heart Soft in Lavender.

March's Lovable Cowl was a bit more of a challenge for me. I really didn't like the appearance of this one as well as the other two.

But appearance wasn't the only issue. I kept losing count and made a lot of mistakes in this one. Fortunately, most of them are hidden under the rolled upper edge. Somehow mine ended up shorter and wider than the one in the picture with the pattern. But honestly, my count wasn't that far off and the number of rows is correct. <shrug>
I made this one out of Red Heart Unforgettable in Parrot. And every time I looked at the name of the yarn, I kept thinking of this song:

For April, it's a Drop Stitch Crochet Cowl, which is supposed to be made in Red Heart Medley again. I think I might try an alternate yarn. I enjoyed using the Medley in the Twisted Cowl, but I'd have to order it online or wait until I can get into the city as it's not available in town. And I want to try different yarns. Meanwhile, I'm continuing with Sophie's Universe CAL. I've finished to the end of Part 5.

In addition to the original colours I had chosen, I have added some Red Heart Super Saver in black, blue, cornmeal, hunter green and carrot. Aside from the tulips/leaves rounds, I decided to to rounds 33 through 46 in rainbow order. Only round 46 is left to be completed of the rainbow section, which will be the Lavender. Here's a close up showing all the colours.
Unfortunately, the purple (tulips and last round) looks more blue in this picture, at least on my monitor. And the hunter green (tulip leaves) appears almost black.
I've also gotten a little more work done on the Bavarian crochet scarf, but haven't taken a picture. 
That's my crochet progress to date. This evening I did a little taping and mudding in my craft studio in the basement. I need to get that finished as I've got quilting projects to get caught up on.