I have a FINISHED ITEM to show you!!! In fact, brace yourself, I have TWO FINISHED ITEMS!!!
I'm talking about crochet, of course.
Ages ago (I wish I could remember when, but I don't think I made a note of it anywhere), I started making something called a Road Trip Scarf, so-called because the person who designed it was on a road trip when she did so. (I can't imagine creating a new pattern whilst on a road trip, even if it was one of our 11-hour long drives up to the Highlands of Scotland - I'd be too busy just looking out at the scenery. I'm also not clever enough to design a pattern).
Anyway, these scarves seemed to be all over the crochet groups that I'm a member of on Facebook, and around the same time, I was trying to think of something I could make with two 100g balls of King Cole Riot.
|Oops, can't rotate it...|
According to the Deramores website, the shade colour that I had - 402 - is called Wicked, so allow me to introduce my...
Wicked Scarf!! (wow, that name took some thinking about)
|Haven't blocked it - literally just finished it here!!|
There are lots of variations on the embellishments, but most people seem to use a mixture of flowers and braids or tassels. I squeezed almost every last inch out of the two balls of yarn, because I wanted the scarf to be as big as possible, but at some point I had to stop increasing and allow enough yarn for the edging (which I tweaked slightly from the original pattern). Once I'd done that, I still had some yarn left, so it was time to do some flowers. I wasn't too keen on the ones on the pattern, so I found these and made two, attaching a wooden bead to the centre. I also didn't like the braids on the pattern, so I made six chains (I think I chained 20), threaded a bead onto each one, and then tied three to each corner of the scarf. I still had a little bit of yarn left, so I cut it into small lengths and put tassels into the last stitch of each chain.
I'm really pleased with how it's turned out. When I started making it, I was hooked (excuse the pun) - I loved how quickly it grew. Then I kind of got a bit bored with it, and moved onto something else (more on that in a minute), and then went back to the scarf recently to try and get it finished, albeit only on an evening after Junior has gone to bed - little Mr Grabby-Hands is not conducive to getting any crochet done! I wasn't sure how my flowers and tassels would work out, I'm not very good at that kind of thing usually, but I'm pleased with them. The wooden beads knock together though, which might get a bit annoying after a while! But I like how they look. So there it is, a finished scarf - yay me!!
Speaking of Junior, I really wanted to make something for him to wear. My mother in law is always tearing patterns out of her Woman's Weekly, and one of them was a little cardigan in a kind of basketweave stitch (I think it might also be known as a waffle stitch, but don't quote me on that). So I thought I'd have a go at it. I bought the yarn from a shop in Skipton that was having a closing down sale; in hindsight I wish I'd bought a nicer colour online, but I was desperate to start making the cardigan, so I chose this pale blue. I don't really like it though as I think it's a kind of 'old-fashioned' colour, I could've gone for something a lot more vibrant. It was meant to be 4-ply, but it felt like DK to me, and it wasn't nice to work with, kind of fluffy and splitty at the same time.
But I soldiered on. I made the back. Then I made the left and right fronts. Then two sleeves. It all went surprisingly smoothly for me. Then I had to make the last piece, the collar. Such a small bit of the cardigan, but I came unstuck several times, mostly because it involved something called a Short Row Technique, which I'd never heard of before. And it wasn't explained in the pattern, it was obviously assumed that I'd know what a 'turning row' was. I didn't. I asked on the Ravelry forums and thankfully someone explained it in just the right way for it to fall into place, and I finished the collar, attached it, and then sewed all the seams. I bought some buttons the other day (with bees on, as a nod to Chris' beekeeping hobby) and attached them this evening, so this is also just finished.
Excuse the not very good photos, taken this evening in the living room where the light is a bit dim.
It's not perfect, by any means, but I am quite pleased with it because it's the first item of clothing I've ever made, if you don't count scarves and gloves etc. My sewing leaves a lot to be desired, so the seams are a bit of a mess if you look closely, and I'm not sure how long those buttons will stay on. But overall, I'm pleased, even though I think it's a bit old-fashioned. I think I'll try and get Junior to wear it once, at least, and after that it might go in his memory box as the first thing his mum ever made for him!
I don't get much time for crochet these days (not complaining though!), so the time that I can spend on it is a lot more valuable. I feel like I've really knuckled down to get these two items finished, and I'm quite proud of myself for that. There have been loads of other things that I've wanted to start, but I've been quite strict and not allowed myself to get distracted with another project. And now it feels really good to know that I've got those two out of the way!
Months ago I started a chunky tablecloth for the outside patio table; I just bought acrylic yarn from Poundworld for that, since it's only going to be used outside. It's a real slog though, the yarn is quite rough and doesn't seem to slide through my fingers so I keep having to pull a length out every few stitches. I'm not enjoying it, but I've got too far to abandon it, so I think that's going to be the next project to finish, before I allow myself to start anything new.
But not tonight - I'm off to bed!!