Wednesday, July 26, 2006


Many a conversation with my fellow crocheters has revolved around Works in Progress. I wondered just how many projects a single crocheter or knitter could have going at once before losing his or her mind. Today I discovered that my limit is FOUR. Taking stock this morning I realized that on the hook I had: two lapghans, a scarf, a baby hat, and the pi shawl. YIKES!

Overload... So, I sat down and finished the scarf because it was closest to being complete and then made the firm decision (one I'd been waffling on) to frog one of the lapghans. Why? Well, I was creating my own pattern and discovered the stitch combination, although beautiful, was hell on even tension. I haven't given up yet, however, will put it on the back burner for now.

Then, of course, in true crocheter fashion, I started a new project! This is the yarn: Patons Grace 100% Mercerized Cotton in Lavender. With any luck this will in short order become the travel bag.

WIP Count: Travel Bag, Pi Shawl, Baby Hat, and Lapghan...FOUR!

Now I just have to commit to starting NOTHING ELSE until at least one of these is done! :-D (Any bets...?)

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


The Yarn Harlot does it again by providing not one but two more blogs that I have to haunt! The first is a blogger addicted to argyle socks and the second the wonderfully humorous and talented creator of the picture to the above. There are more cartoons on the blog. This one "leapt" out as I am more than passingly familiar with this scene...

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Do I look like a shelter animal?

I must since I'm using a pattern from the "Snuggles Project" to create a scarf for myself. Yes, this one is for me, me, me. It feels odd working on winter wear in the summer, however, I have to agree with those that say scarves, hats and mittens make great small projects for the HOT weather. Case in point:

The background is my rather drab colored winter coat. This scarf crocheted from Lorna's Laces hand-dyed yarns in Shepherd Sport superwash wool, color "watercolor". It is wonderfully soft and being a sport weight is draping well. Happiness is...

Weekly I meet in a local book store with a WONDERFUL and wacky group of ladies and gents who knit and crochet. Upon arrival this week we were delighted to discover a clearance sale that included craft books. Yes, the sticker says 75% off. Now I ask you, could you have resisted?

We laughed and laughed over this book with its inventive hats for tots. Some of my favorites: an ice cream cone brim with vanilla soft serve and a cherry pompom, clown hat, elf, lion, and if you can believe it (although I'd NEVER subject a child to this one), a pink poodle hat complete with curly ears! These designs are creative and adorable! Now all I need to decide is where to start!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

The Solution (and other stuff)

I bet your asking, "What was the problem?" Well, as those who have been reading know I made two scarves for the "Think Pink" project to promote breast cancer awareness and had yarn left over. I knew the third scarf would need to be narrow and open weave if there was to be enough yarn. Here's the problem: such a scarf would need fringe to make it hang straight and I'm afraid the scarf won't be long enough to wear if it has fringe. Enter the solution: make a mobeus scarf! One continuous piece with a single twist. This would:
1) take advantage of the fact that this pattern had a tendency to twist a little at the ends before the fringe was added
2) I could keep crocheting until I ran out of yarn (thrifty, no?)

Here it is with the lovely, Barney, modeling the scarf in its twisted around the neck state.

I'm amazed that a 7oz skein of yarn could yield three scarves. To the wash with them and then off in the mail. Another charity project complete.

These are the first six caps for the "Save the Children" project I talked about in the last post. I got a killer deal at Building 19 where the cotton used to make the three hats on the left was on sale 3/$1.00. The hats on the right represent using up some of the acrylic left over from another project (black) and a skein of lime green that came from the Salvation Army (do I get bonus points for supporting two charities at once? grin) No surprise, these hats work up quickly and are fun to play with color wise. Happy Hooking!

Sunday, July 16, 2006

A Worthy Cause

I was visiting my parents this weekend when my father brought me a print copy of an article he was reading on line. It was picked up from the Associated Press and recounted how a Connecticut grandmother was knitting baby caps in connection with Save the Children. This project known as "Caps for the Capital" has a goal of 75,000 knitters/crocheters making caps to send to Malawi and Bangladesh in hopes of giving the newborns there a better chance of survival by helping keep them warm. If you want to go directly to the patterns click here.

Please consider joining in this worthy cause and enlisting your knitting and crocheting friends. :-D

Thursday, July 13, 2006

With a Nod to Numeroff

Ala Numeroff…a little crochet story.

IF a crocheter should make a scarf for the “Think Pink” project, THEN she will have yarn left over.

IF she has yarn left over, THEN of course she will have to search the internet for another scarf pattern.

IF she searches the internet, THEN she will get very excited when finding a pattern that includes a cable! This is something she has wanted to try.

IF she is excited about the pattern, THEN she will, of course, immediately begin to crochet.

IF she crochets, THEN she will notice that the scarf is quite wide (8 ¾ inches to be exact). She will choose to ignore this excessive width in favor of trying out the new pattern.

IF she keeps going, THEN eventually she will notice she is running out of yarn and have to make a decision: purchase more yarn or rippit, rippit.

IF she takes a visit to the frog pond, THEN being an adventurous crocheter, she will feel compelled to revise the pattern and try again.

IF she tries again, THEN the scarf will be lovely and require far less yarn than the first try.

IF the second scarf for the "Think Pink" project takes less yarn, THEN she will have yarn left over... (grin)

And so it grows...pi shawl 2

Ah, the fruits of one's creative labor...not always what one expected. :-D So, the pi shawl is slowly growing and now reaches from shoulder to shoulder (a lovely 17 inches in diameter - 55 inches to go). That's the good news. It is still soft and pliable. More good news. Also the crochet, while not lace, is creating a nice texture. Still good news.

Now for the bad news. If you look closely at the picture above you will notice that it is slightly wedge shaped at the top. It seems as I work to be growing to a size larger than that of a circle! By letting it rest and smoothing it in all directions I was able to get it almost flat again (picture left). Can anyone out there tell me if this is normal? I've asked two people who have knit Elizabeth Zimmereman's pi shawl and one says it will be bigger than a circle and the other says it should lay flat. (????) I'll be keeping an eagle eye and may try inserting an extra increase row in the next sequence of working even. The thought of working all the way to the next increase which is 48 rows away only to frog back to make it lay flat again is giving me horrors. Guess I'll just have to dig in and see how it goes! Any suggestions from the more experienced out there would be much appreciated. Thanks!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Off They Go...

The first set of chemo caps for donation have been washed, labeled, and packaged at long last! Delivery...tomorrow. :-D

Also, the first set of Snuggles are ready to go!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Think Pink Scarf #1

Isn't this a great pattern? I found it through crochet pattern central and could not resist! Not to be satisfied with just one pattern I kept hunting and came across the cool twisted fringe. It was easy and took no more time than traditional fringe. Seems to be a theme developing here of atypical fringe. First the curly q's on the granny square scarf and now this. Does anyone out there know of other interesting fringe methods? Please share!

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Adventures in Recycling

Not so long ago my very excited sister shared this web site which provides instructions on pulling apart sweaters for the yarn. I was dubious, however, my sister assured me it was worth the effort as she had dismantled several already. What sold me? The sheer quantity of yarn that was produced! Little did I know what truly awaited me.

Enter the cotton sweater and the woolen sweater purchased from the Salvation Army. Which to tackle first. Hmmmm. Well, my sister has done wool so I'll try the cotton. Did I say this was a good idea? Turns out the sweater was made of STRANDED cotton. Why would this be an issue, let me count the ways...
1) cutting the thread holding the pieces together - which one of the these *x@#** strands is the thread and which is the yarn, the room is starting to spin
2) unraveling - one would think that all four strands of cotton would remain intact if there was no hole in the sweater, right? Wrong! Stopping, winding, restarting because one of the strands is broken.
3) beautiful yarn - curly strands of string everywhere

Here's what it looked like:

O.K. so I persevered for a while then gave up on the remaining portions of the sweater. I just could not take any more. Now the dilemma. This stuff didn't look usable. Four very thin strands of curling cotton which must be held together smoothly to be worked?! No way. I plunked the skeins on my kitchen table where they sat and stared at me for months. Taunting me that all my effort was for naught.

I had a revelation today. All that tangled curly string (ahem, I mean) lovely yarn was PINK. Yes, pink as in Think Pink Project.

Alright, I thought, try it. Courage in one hand and a size H crochet hook in the other, I began a scarf. I bet you can guess what's coming. It worked...

So, lesson learned. Stranded cotton can be disassembled and used for crochet. Will I unravel cotton again? Probably not. However, the wool is a different and MUCH HAPPIER story which I'll save for another time. Happy Recycling!

Friday, July 07, 2006

Think Pink

O.K. so for those who like short term charity commitments check out the Think Pink project(button on side bar) which is attempting to collect 1,000 pink hand knitted and crocheted scarfs to promote breast cancer awareness. I don't think I can resist making at least one item...

Dish Cloth #2


(Click on images for a close up)

So with some help from the folks at Crochet Talk I found another dish cloth pattern I liked. Why round? Well, the first one was square and I wondered if the shape would make a difference. Now that I have worked this one up, I am concerned that there are too many holes for my fingers to stick through. I'll just have to dirty some dishes and give it a try! LOL

If you like this pattern and want to give it a try click here. Just a word of warning...the pattern isn't written very clearly in places, however, it is easy to figure out what the designer meant if you keep in mind that it is repetitive and meant to be symmetrical. Happy Hooking!

Thursday, July 06, 2006

A New Group

Last night in an effort to find others who crochet and knit I went to Barnes and Noble. There I found a wonderful group of knitters who are just a hoot to be around. They absolutely LOVE good quality fiber (just listening was fascinating) and welcome newbies with open arms. Yahoo talk groups are a great resource for finding others in your area who share a passion for crochet/knitting. I'm eternally grateful to the co-worker who insisted I look there to connect with others who crochet. Thanks Ellen!

The pi shawl 2 has grown back to its pre-frogged size and is holding its shape much better. Sitting around in BnN last night resulted in much progress. See...

I know an inch and a half doesn't seem like much but when working with a 4mm hook and fine yarn this is the equivalent of many rows! :-D

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Pictures...At Last!

This is the snuggle that was worked on the diagonal. Not quite square...

The granny square scarf. It seems the looser I made the granny square the more "square" the final result. I can see more practice in my future...

And last but not least, here's the Pi Shawl 2. It has grown since this picture, however, it will soon look like this again as the subesquent rows seem to be getting looser. I think I'll have to scrap my plan to use just tr in the even rows so that the tension stays more even...


I thought the editing bar was back when I checked my blog yesterday, however, it was missing again this morning! The mystery deepens and still there will be no pictures. In the mean time I have finished another snuggle for the shelter animals to try working on the diagonal. The first part of the pattern went fine, however, it broke down from there. The result was vaguely square after I tinkered with the pattern. So it is either a pattern error or operator error. The diagonal is quite attractive leading me to go on another internet hunt for a similar pattern. Here's hoping for success!

Monday, July 03, 2006

I'm Converted!

Well, I finally used my dishcloth and am shocked to say it did a much better job than my scrubbie sponge! Who would have thought that something made from cotton would do such a marvelous job on dishes? Now I'm searching the web for more designs. =-D LOL If anyone out there has a favorite crocheted dish cloth pattern...please share.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Pi Shawl 2

Version 2 of the Pi Shawl was born yesterday and has grown to a whopping 10 and 1/2 inches in diameter. (Only 61 and 1/2 inches yet to go - aren't I the optimist?) The new yarn is lovely, soft and pliable. The original pi shawl pattern called for doing lace in the even rows, however, since this is my first go at this I decided to keep it simple and just do single repeating stitches. When my editing tool bar reappears from it's journey into cyber space where it is clearly having a blast since it has not seen fit to return to my blog, I'll begin posting pictures of P2's progress. Have a lovely holiday weekend!