WIPs & WIMs – January 2013

4 Jan

I generally like to have an idea of what I’ll be working on throughout the year, as I need plenty of time to get things done….that is, if they really must get done at all.  Crochet is my therapy, my relief and I don’t want to be bungled down with *gasp* dead-lines!  The world is full enough of deadlines and ‘have to’s’.

So….what did I do today?  Gave myself a dead-line.  Uh-Boy!  My grandson sweetly asked for a SpiderMan blanket, like the one I crocheted my son a few years ago.  His birthday is in April.  The FIRST of April.  SpideyGhans need time.  Figured I best come up with a plan of what I need/want to finish before the summer heat is upon me.

Le Plan du Jour

1- baby afghan for SILs grandbaby, due in April – have about 2/3 of the black & white grannies done.  Assemble with a bright green.

2-Grandson’s SpideyGhan – round ripples are fun to start, but when they get big, it seems to take forever to finish a round!  Think I have enough ILTY blue and red in my stash.

3-finish the Christmas afghan that I started…..ooooohhhh, 2 years ago.  Its in the joining stage (my downfall e v e r y.t i m e)

4-table runner for my kitchen table, which I just ordered the yarn for about an hour ago [picking colors and buying yarn (some cozy Vanna’s Choice colors were on sale at Joann’s)- no problem getting that done!]  Nothing complicated here – thinking 3 or 4 – 12″ squares with a few granny stripes-type border.  I wonder who Joann is?

There’s my plan but, well, you know………..

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‘Finally, The Ripple’ is Finally Done!

1 Jan

Started in Feb 2012 and finished New Year’s Eve 2012!  It took while and I usually don’t crochet in the warm southern months, but patience is definitely a part of working on big blankies.

Sometimes crochet is just busy work – to carry around with me and work on as I sit waiting on something or someone.  Dish clothes are an excellent carry along project and help me get through the ‘waiting’.

Sometimes crochet is meditative and prayerful.  Some of my best conversations with my Lord are while crocheting.  Oft times the prayer is intercessory as I work on a gift for someone.  The last scarf I completed was started with no one in mind, but before it was over, the Lord let me know who it was for.

Sometimes crochet is quite purposeful.  There is a need.  Charity squares and baby blankets are quite purposeful.  They are also worked up with prayer.

Sometimes its just fun.  Test squares are fun and so are garlands.

Sometimes I need to expand my skill level and there are plenty of challenging squares to fill the bill. Some day, there will be doilies in my house, homemade by me.

Sometimes I find something so amazingly beautiful and inspiring that I just have to make it.  This ripple is such a project; inspired by Attic24 and her love of color.

Color is contagious and Color is happy!

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Pattern:  NeatRipple by Lucy of Attic24

Yarn:  Cascade 220 Superwash Wool – 2 balls of 10 colors. I adore this yarn!

Hook:  H – my only Tulip Etimo hook and my favorite by far.

Each repeat is 28 stitches (add a ch 3 to turn)
With a starting chain of 227 (224 + 3) and 124 rows (62 color changes) this gave me a 60″x70″ afghan.  It fits atop our queen size bed, but there is very little hanging over the side and it doesn’t quite make it top to bottom.  The original plan was for a border of about 4 or 5 rounds, but I did not have enough of any color to complete one round.  The colors were chosen randomly and I do wish I had bought a light orange color to add in the mix.  Nevertheless, I am almost giddy with my big ripple and it has brought me many happy hours of crocheting, praying, sitting quietly or watching some TV, wrapping myself up with it while I work, making happy color choices, and just all around contentment.

 

 

Baby Blanket #2 – The Purple

6 Dec

Pattern:  Lucy’s Neat Ripple Pattern

Yarn: I Love This Yarn: white, orchid, amethyst, purple

Hook:  H

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I added a border to even out the ripples:

  • 1 round of sc in white and as needed to fill in the valleys of the rippled edges
  • 1 round of hdc in orchid
  • 2 rounds of hdc in amethyst
  • 1 round of sc in purple

I don’t like the way the white shows up so obviously on the sides and next time will use a more neutral color for the first round of the border.

The final size was 42″ x 35″.

Directions for crocheting a straight border on a ripple can be found on the Wires & Yarns blog.

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Baby Blanket #1

18 Nov

Apparently, it is the season for another round of babies!  I don’t normally make baby blankets as shower gifts, but felt motivated to do so this time.   So, I set aside my ‘favorite project ever’ and began work on a round ripple for a baby girl.  This is what came of it.

Ainsley Grace Round Ripple

My color inspiration was this Double Treble Square I made last winter, but it didn’t quite come off in this larger project.  Still pleased with the blanket, just not thrilled.  I love the center of a round ripple!

This pattern is Gentle Waves Round Ripple by Michelle Rhodes at Mik Knits.

I used an I hook.

The yarns used are:

I Love This Yarn – buttercup, peach, pink

Vanna’s Choice Baby – pink poodle

finished with I Love This Yarn – aubergine

I wanted to use this RR pattern because there isn’t any holes in the peaks and valleys for little baby toes to peek through.  This is, however, the waviest RR of all the patterns I’ve used.  I don’t know if that is inherent to this particular pattern or something I was doing.

The last round is half dc to make it a littler firmer on the edges….it did want to curl a bit, but the weight helps keep that to a minimum.

Rippling

19 Mar

And now, a little peek at what goes with me to my Happy Place.
Rippling Along, slow but sure

Square Heaven

16 Mar

The trouble with trebles is I have a death grip on the hook while making them. I doubt I could do this many treble clusters in one sitting without major hand cramps.

In Treble

Trebles are not my favorite nor my best-looking stitch by any means…and then to cluster them together? Well, here is the end result of my effort. It is a stunning square in more skilled hands, but I think this came out OK.

Pattern: In Treble by Julie Yeager (available as a free Ravelry download)
Hook: H
Yarn: Pink Poodle/Vanna’s Choice Baby & White/RHSS

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Is this square not absolutely beautiful?? I can’t hardly believe that I made this. Originally I wanted to do this one in a gradient of yellow, orange, to brown or dk blue, but didn’t have the right colors, so went with a pinkish gradient instead.

Double Treble Burst

There are trebles, double trebles to be exact, in this one, too, but just the long front post stitches that create the spikes, spokes, or rays, whatever you like to call them.

Pattern: Double Treble Burst Square by Amelia Beebe (find this one on Crochetville)
Hook: H
Yarn: center outward
ILTY buttercup
ILTY light peach
ILTY pink
Vanna’s Choice pink poodle
RH Soft fuchsia

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Tangled Threads

Tis a fun square to do! The designer, Melinda Miller, has a group on Ravelry that you might like to take a look at. (hint: her patterns are free for the month that it is featured as the block of the month CAL) Her patterns are versatile that allow for a lot of color play and appropriate for a nice span of skill levels.

Pattern: Tangeled Threads by Melinda Miller
Yarn: ILTY lt peach, VC pink poodle, and RHSS white
Hook: H

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OK, one more.

Lucky Charms

and a smaller 8″ version
Mini Shamrock Sq

These are Donna Kay Lacey patterns, whom also has a group on Ravelry and offers her patterns for free if you’re doing the monthly CAL. I love that! Her patterns are definitely more advanced and I’ve sent two of them into hibernation. She also hosts a guest designer for a mystery cal, such as the first square in this post.

Pattern: Lucky Charm by Donna Kay Lacey (linked to her Rav download pdf page)
Yarn: ILTY limelight, pink
RHSS Aran – kicking my butt for grabbing Aran instead of White
The 8″ is RHSS Watercolors and Lt Sage, plus the ILTY in Buttercup.

Would you believe I wasn’t going to do any CALs or Block-A-Month groups this year?? Now, I’m in 3 of them. The joys of playing with yarn!

The Ripple Dance

22 Feb

After a couple projects that tested my skill and patience, I must have wanted something dreamy to crochet. What better than a ripple? Exactly!

I bought this lovely assortment of playful yarns from WEBS quite awhile ago and just never really decided what to do with it.
First, it was a ripple,
then a granny square blanket,
and for awhile, it was going to be a granny stripe blanket.
I even entertained the Lace & Bobbles pattern, aka Stitch Sampler by Jean Holzman.
Coming, full circle…..it’s a ripple, specifically Lucy of Attic24’s Neat Ripple. All ripples are so similar and Lucy’s inspiration came from Jan Eaton’s Soft Waves (#8 in her book). The repeats are different 14 and 12 respectively, fwiw.

Finally, the Ripple

A discussion on the Lucy group on Ravelry brought about the dance….The Ripple Dance, if you will. 🙂

Another trick to this pattern is the rhythm – the dance! Each row starts with the V – the 2 US dc…so here we go…

1 & 2….1 2 3 4…1 & 2 decrease…1 2 3 4…1 & 2 and 1 & 2 increase…1 2 3 4…1 & 2 decrease…..

…and so it goes to the end with a final 1 & 2

It is the rhythm that makes ripples so addictive and enjoyable. My own little yarny high going on….all legal and good for the spirit. What makes me so happy with this particular ripple is the color….so MUCH color that it is a feast. I can’t wait to wrap myself in this blanket!
I admit that rippling can get boring in its simplicity, but the color changes come just fast enough and I look forward to standing over my box of yarns and picking the next color to work. Yes, I’ve gone completely wild and gone random with my color choices! OH!

The Details:
Chain 227 (224 + 3 turning chain) for a 60″ wide blanket
Yarn: Cascade 220 Superwash Wool
Hook: H (because its my favorite)
No dance shoes required.

Children don’t stop dancing
Believe you can fly
Away…away
~~Creed~~