Saturday, March 26, 2011

What Next?

When it comes to crafting, many beginner projects are geared for girls (at least I've had a hard time finding EASY projects for the guys).

Having conquered the very basics of knitting, my wee one has got it into his head that he must learn to crochet (secretly I think he wants to make a pile of amigurumi friends).  So we fiddled with hooks and yarn.  After much trial and error, he finally mastered chaining. And he chained and chained and chained . . . well, we had lots of chains!

So we took three of those chains, braided them and made some lovely bookmarks.

Crocheted Bookmarks

Bookmark Detail
Not bad for a beginner crochet project, eh?  Now here's the kicker: what next?!  We tried working on the single crochet stitch, but he's not quite got the hang of it.  It's challenging if you haven't learned how to "read" your stitches.  

I found a beginner crochet booklet from Leisure Arts with good how-to photos.  We also checked out various videos over at YouTube.
Beginner Crochet Book
But as you can surmise from the cover above, many beginner projects are geared for girls: scrunchies, headbands, flowers . . . **sigh**  I suppose he could make a scarf, but that can get boring for an 8 year old (seeing as scarves can go on forever and ever and ever . . . 'nuff said).  I'm looking for small, quick items. 

The book did have a project that might be doable: a key-chain/backpack decoration that could be "boyish" with the appropriate colours (yeah, that stuff matters to 8 year olds).

Keychain or Backpack Decoration

If you've got some better ideas, please pass on the links, author, book title (whatever) . . . need a little help to keep my son's interest going.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Socky Surprise

Good Fit
The surprise is that one sock is finished (ends all woven too).  How is that possible with all that crochet on my plate?  Suffice to say that it is in my wrist's best interest to "mix it up" (don't scoff when someone says too much crochet can lead to a sore wrist).  

Result: cushion cover has seen little progress, but one cozy sock warms my left foot (especially appreciated since winter desperately hangs on, even though I've spied the beginnings of crocuses barely sprouting--not in my own garden 'cuz there's still a wee bit of snow hanging 'bout).
Very Colourful

I'm using the same worsted sock pattern from Paton's sock booklet (Rav link).  It's the same pattern I used for my DK tropical coloured socks (finished last month).  I must confess that those tropical socks were a wee big--mostly loose 'round the ankle (for a big girl, I've got small ankles and wrists).  So I made some changes:
  • cast on 42 stitches (instead of 48)
  • worked K4P2 rib instead of K2P2
  • worked heel over 20 stitches using another pattern
  • made foot 5” long instead of 5.5

Hopefully I can get the second one cast-on before the end of the weekend.  A girl needs a portable, tag-along project. 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

How Goes the Crafting?

Remember those worsted socks?  One of them should have been finished by now.  I had turned the heel and was working on the gusset decreases.  And it was working up quickly. But it's on hold for the moment.
Sock in Progress
Why?  Well, mainly I've been working obsessively on my Bernat projects (by the way, the blog has started updating.  You can check out my newest post here ).

Also, I'm keen on finishing my sofa cushion cover.  Right now, it's my new carry-along project.  And carry it everywhere I have! I've also decided to add a little striping for interest (visually and for myself).
Cushion Cover
But I made a classic rookie mistake.  Can you spot it?
Unintentional Increases
See how the edges gradually increase.  That's not right!  Did I frog it?  Nah.  Since it's a prototype, I decided to live with the big boo-boo.  When it's finished, I can place the more narrow section towards the back of the cushion where it won't be noticed.

How goes your crafting?

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Just a Sucker

For gadgets.  Any kind really, but especially ones for crafting (such as knitting or crochet).  Is it wrong to love gadgets and wee do-dads this much?  What?  It's just me?
Knitterly gadgets
For $9.95 I got a wee pouch filled with: tape measure, gauge ruler, coil-less safety pins (20), 2 row counters, needle protectors (2 sets), large stitch holder, and 2 blunt needles (small and large).

Close-up of Items

Isn't it annoying when you accidentally leave behind your little bag of knitting accessories?  Maybe its in the other WIP project bag.  Even this so-called monogamous knitter can have more than one project on the go.  And sometimes in the rush out the door, I forget about the accessory bag.

Just need to add a crochet hook and a pair of scissors.  This second bag of accessories should curtail any accidental mishap that might arise during my crafty endeavors outside the home.  

What's in your bag?

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sofa Cushions

The thing about a nice comfy sofa is that it gets used. A lot.  Even if its a well-built sofa (custom-made by my second cousin in his furniture shop back in TO), with frequent use the fabric eventually begins to wear.  A sofa cover can hide the wear-and-tear, but then it too becomes worn (personally I'd like to blame the kids for all the wear-and-tear).

Then the light bulb goes on.  The one in my head (hey, it happens every now and then).  While looking through my pattern booklets, I came across this design for a chair cushion.

Chair Cushion That Inspired My Light Bulb Moment
 Now the pattern is for a 16x16" chair cushion, but it could work for a sofa.  My sofa cushions are 21x21" and thicker, but if I adjust the number of stitches it can work.  I'll just make the band that connects top to bottom thicker and leave the back open (maybe use a couple of simple ties so that the cover stays on the cushion).

Then I started hooking.  I'm using some lovely Briggs and Little Heritage in blue heather (which had been gifted to me  at Christmas and I had hoped would become a lovely cardigan, but alas this woolly goodness was meant for greater things).
The Start of a Sofa Cushion Cover
If knitters and crocheters can "yarn bomb" trees, lamp posts, statues and bridges, then surely I can make a sofa cushion cover. 

Here's hoping ;)

Saturday, March 5, 2011

So Much More

Crafting.  Much, much more crafting.  Crafting galore!

Beginning of Sock

Started another pair of socks using Bernat Jacquards.  They're working up quickly so the photo above is misleading as I'm past the heel and working the gusset.  I had to tweak the Patons pattern: cast on 42sts instead of 48sts and worked a K4P2 rib (worked cuff in same pattern but on 3mm DPNs.  After an inch or so, switched to 4mm DPNs). 

I wasn't sure how I would turn the heel since I'd changed the stitch count.  So I used Glenna C's worsted Weekend Socks (Ravelry link) 'cuz her pattern's heel count was the same as mine (20sts).  Franken-pattern?  Why not?!  Do I truly need to tax my addled brain cells when someone somewhere has already done all the work (And its probably on the internets and available for free)?  Besides, me and math don't get along.

Finished my Bernat vest--at long last!  It's taken way too long to get through this project, mostly hindered by crafting ennui, lack of energy and missing mojo.  This weekend, gonna seam the sides and weave the ends (piece 'o cake, right?).  And I sooo wish I could show you some of it.  Well, maybe a little peek would be okay.
You can click on my sidebar to the right where all my Rav projects are listed if you're looking for a pattern link and more details (some day all my posts on the project will get published **sigh**).
Beginning of Wavy Ripple Crochet Blanket 
I also started a charity project through Bernatcares.  They're running a CAL/KAL where participants can make blankets for Project Linus. There are a few free patterns available and even forums where one can chat about one's progress or ask for assistance.  Don't think I'll frequent the forums; I prefer chatting over at Ravelry 'cuz I just love the set-up (and honestly I don't feel like signing up for something else). 

Remember the pinwheel blanket my knit group worked on this past fall (more details about the charity pinwheel blanket over at Ravelry)?  Since that project was a lot of fun, I thought I'd give it another go.  This time I'm making the Wavy Ripple Crochet blanket (gotta add that pattern to the Rav database when I get the chance).  Learning a new crochet stitch and trying out a new yarn was enough to get me going.  I'm actually through one pattern repeat.  Hope this works up quickly.  It certainly is a relaxing project.

Hope your weekend is full of crafty goodness. :)
Related Posts with Thumbnails