Frogging Again

I frogged three projects today.

One, I wasn’t liking how it was turning out. Maybe the yarn was too busy for the pattern, and the random colour changes were not randomly nice enough for my brain. And so, it was frogged.

The second project was of course another shawl. And I liked the pattern. And I liked how the colours were working in the pattern. But I didn’t have enough of the yarn, and I didn’t want a shawlette. And I don’t remember what the brand or colour is, so that I can purchase another skein if needed. But as far as I remember, I only had this one ball of it. Maybe when I sort out the yarn stashed in the boxes and bags, I’ll find another skein of it. But I’m pretty sure that there’s only one. AAarrghhh …. And so I frogged it.

As for the third ball – well, it was a WIP long enough. And while I had big plans for the project, alas, I wasn’t feeling that project again. Maybe because it was a WIP for so long. Or maybe because I had started it when I was just learning and practising stitches and didn’t like how wonky it looked. And so … it was frogged 😦

On the plus side … I have 3 balls of yarn that I can start new projects with 🙂 🙂 I’m hopeless, I know …

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Cakes for Wraps

Red Heart came out with colour-coordinated cakes for wraps, and the colours were looking good on the site. But when I saw it in person, this was the only one that I liked from the selections available in the yarn store.

With the good yardage in light fingering weight, I thought it would make for a good-sized shawl-wrap. I’ve always liked the almost-blanket size wraps, the ones that can wrap around you twice. Light-weight wraps work well for spring too.

This is the progress so far. I’m liking it, so we will keep on going 🙂

With the yarn being thin, it’s going to take a while to finish this in time for spring. And because winter and cold weather has just started here on the east coast, I’m still puling out wool yarn and working on winter items 😉

I’m quickly piling up WIPs again 🙂

Fruity Pebbles Dress

I was so excited to start something with this yarn last year … But it’s been starts and froggings, and the yarn was getting frayed.

With one skein of yarn, I usually look for knit projects, because for me, knitting takes up less yarn.  And with one skein of yarn, there’s more chance that it’ll be a decent-sized project.

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None of the projects I started was looking like anything I wanted to continue with So I decided to make a toddler dress.  I figured there would be enough yarn for that, even if it was crocheted.

I followed a basic pattern, crocheted from the top down.  I made a few notes here and there as I worked on it, so hopefully now that I’m putting it together, it’ll make sense.  Because of the colours, the boys have named it the “Fruity Pebbles Dress”.

skittles dress1

Fruity Pebbles Dress

Yarn:  fingering weight
Hook:  E4/3.50mm
Other notions:  stitch markers
Abbreviations:  ch = chain
dc = double crochet
sc = single crochet
slst = slip stitch
st = stitch
trc = triple crochet

This pattern will fit from newborn to 6 months.

** Note:   This pattern has not been tested by others.  The pattern is based off my notes and what I did.  If you find something that does not work, please do let me know.

Set-up round:  Ch 50;  join to make a circle, making sure that it does not twist. Alternatively, you can ch 50, ch 1 and start from Rnd 1.
Rnd 1:  sc around; slst to first sc;
Rnd 2: (Filet stitch) ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1), sk next st, dc in next st, ch1.  *Sk next st, dc in next st, ch1*.  Repeat from * to * around.  Slst to third ch of the first ch-4.
Rnd 3:  ch 1, sc in same st.  Sc in next st, around.  Slst to beginning sc.
Rnd 4:  Repeat Rnds 2 and 3
Rnd 6:  (V-stitch round)  Ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1), dc in same stitch.  *Sk 2 st, v-stitch in the ch-1 sp of the v-stitch below.*  Repeat from * to *.  Slst to third ch of beginning ch-4.
Rnd 7:  Sl st to ch-1 space.  Ch 4, dc in same stitch. Sk 2 ch, v-stitch in ch-1 sp.*  Repeat from * to *.  Slst to third ch of beginning ch-4.
Rnd 8: (increase row)  Sl to ch-1 space.  Ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1), dc in same space.  *Ch 1, sk 2 st, v-stitch in ch-1 sp.*  Repeat from * to *.  Slst to third ch of beginning ch-4.
Rnd 9:  Repeat Rnd 8
Rnd 10:  (increase row)  Sl to ch-1 space.  Ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1), dc in same space.  *Ch 2, sk 2 st, v-stitch in next st.*  Repeat from * to *.  Slst to third ch of beginning ch-4.
Rnd 11:  Repeat Rnd 10
Rnd 12: (increase row)  Sl to ch-1 space.  Ch 4 (counts as dc and ch 1), dc in same space.  *Ch 3, sk 2 st, v-stitch in next st.*  Repeat from * to *.  Slst to third ch of beginning ch-4.
Rnd 13:  Repeat Rnd 11 and 12 two times, or until width measures 20 inches or to desired width.
Rnd 17 -18:  Slst to ch-1 space.  Ch 4, dc in same space.  *Sk next st, v-stitch in ch-1 sp.* Repeat from * to * around.  Slst to third ch of beginning ch-4.

Shape armholes: 
Lay piece out flat.  From the outside edge of left side, count 12 v-stitches in.

Adjust the piece so that the circle join (with the live working yarn)  is under the armhole. Place a stitch marker through both sides of the piece.  Make sure that there are also 12 v-stitches on the other side.  There should be a total of 24 v-stitches loose, to shape the armhole.
Repeat on right side.

Picking up the yarn from under the armpit join, continue the pattern to form the body of the dress.  You will be crocheting in the round from one marker to the next, and around to the starting point.

skittles dress2

Rnd 16 – 17:  Repeat Rnd 12 (increase row).
Rnd 18:  (shell stitch row)  Ch 1, sc in same stitch.  *Skip 2 stitches, 5 trc in next st.  Sk 2 stitches, sc in next st.*  Repeat from * to * around.  Slst to beginning sc.
Rnd 19:  Ch 4 .  2 trc in same st.  * Sc in third stitch of shell from round below.  5 trc in the sc from round below.*   Repeat from * to * to last stitch.  2 trc in the beginning sc.  Slst to top of first trc at beginning of row.
Next rounds:  repeat Rnd 18 and 19 to length desired.
Last row:  sc evenly around for the border.

Finishing:
Armholes:  attach yarn through a stitch at the bottom of the armhole that joins with the body.  You will be following the shell stitch pattern.

Round 1:  repeat Rnd 18 (shell stitch row).
Round 2:  repeat Rnd 19 (3 trc).
Repeat Rnds 18 and 19 twice.   Crochet additional rounds if you want to make the sleeves longer.
Last row:  Sc evenly around.  Fasten off.

Neck:  Attach yarn to the top of the shoulder. sc evenly around.  
Rnd 2: Crochet Moss stitch around the neck.  (ch 2, sk next st, sc in next st.  *ch 1, sk next st, sc in next st.*  Repeat from * to * around.  Slst to beginning sc. 
If the neck is too wide or loose, add another round of moss stitch pattern.
Last row: sc in each stitch around.
Fasten off.

Border:  sc 2 round around the bottom of the dress.   Fasten off.

Block or steam slightly, stretching lightly to shape.

Hope you enjoy making the pattern.
** Note:   This pattern has not been tested by others.  The pattern is based off my notes and what I did.  If you find something that does not work, please do let me know.

The Year of the CALs: Autumn Jewels Wrap

2018 came and went … Projects were started and unraveled … more projects were started and put aside …

It was a chaotic year for me. I don’t know if I’ve settled down yet from the stresses and tensions of events early last year. But I do know that I needed to get back to crafting … and I’m hoping that there’ll be more time for that this year … Wait, let’s just make it a goal and say that I will make time for crafting this year.

I can’t even remember now what I was working on during the past year. I did take quick photos of some projects, and I did finish some items, so let’s start from there.

This past year was the Year of the CALs. After so many years of declaring intentions to join and participate in a CAL and downloading the patttern, this past year, I actually did join and stuck to it! Wow !

Maybe because last year was stressful, and the CALs gave me a purpose to sit and work on something. The weekly releases of the pattern probably did help in settling me down, in giving me something to work towards to, and following a pattern instead of trying to make up random stitches and counts probably helped a lot too 🙂

And here’s the first one that I was actually excited to work on – the Autumn Jewels Wrap. Actually, I worked on this after the CAL was done, but I’m counting this as a CAL that I actually ‘joined’ 🙂

Autumn Jewels Wrap

I got this yarn from a stash forum. And when I saw a pic of the Autumn Jewels Wrap, I knew that the yarn would be perfect for it. The colours weren’t jewel tones, but I liked the sparkly thread that ran through the yarn, so that can be the jewels part of the pattern 🙂

The pattern is not hard, and neither the construction of the piece. I’ve made items in similar fashion, either by design or mistake 😮

Decorative borders are always something that I’m at a loss to do, other than crochet evenly across the edges and then a couple of rows/rounds of single crochet. Maybe that’s something I should experiment with this year, and come up with a go-to border pattern that I can use in projects. It shouldn’t be that hard.

I really enjoyed working on this. The sparkly thread made this a little stiff, but it’s still drapey enough over the shoulders.

Blocked and drying in the sun

I’m on the lookout now for jewel-toned yarn to make another one, in a smoother yarn (maybe a wool/silk mix), and in a bigger size. Let’s see if I can get it done in time for autumn this year 🙂

My Summer Tunic Top

I got this beautiful silk-mix yarn a couple of years ago, from a destash group and started several projects and frogged it because I didn’t like the way it was turning out.

But after several froggings, the yarn was getting frayed and losing its luster.  So I decided that I had to start a project, and stick with it to the end.  Since summer was starting, I decided I should just make a blouse or top.  Then I won’t have to spend to get a new top, and I use up yarn from the stash, right? 🙂

I decided on a top-down crochet top, with the idea of a block of squares for the pattern.  I started with the basic circle, with increasing rounds.  The pattern stitch is just a round of sc, then a row of 2dc, ch 1, 2dc, around.  For the increase, I would ch2, instead of the ch 1.

And so I crocheted on, shaping the armholes, and then continuing the rounds for the body.  But then, it started to balloon out … I must have added a stitch somewhere.  Or maybe my tension changed … I wasn’t liking it …

And another round of frogging took place … 😦


A new issue of the Crochet magazine came out, with photos of summer tunics and tops.  I decided to follow a tunic pattern, instead of trying to come up with one.  I was a little concerned that I would run out of yarn – I had lost the labels for this yarn, and wouldn’t know where to get it.  Besides, it might be discontinued by now too.  But I went on, anyway.

I was liking the way this was turning out … no more frogging.

I shortened the length of the panels, eyeing the balls of yarn that I had left to work with.

With the two panels done, for the front and back, I only had 1 1/2 skeins of the yarn left for the sleeves.  More guessing games on the length of the sleeves, to make sure that I had enough yarn for both 😮  That’s why the labels all say to buy enough yarn for your project, right?

And the finished product … apologies for not so good pics, but I was excited to wear it, so I took a selfie.  Forgot that I could have asked somebody to take a pic of me, so maybe next time.

It didn’t turn out too bad.  I had about a half ball of yarn left-over too! 

The neckline is a bit too loose, so I’ll use that to tighten up and shape the neckline a bit. One sleeve edge is tighter than the other, but that should stretch out with use.  The horizontal rows didn’t match front and back, because when I was joining the panels, one panel was coming out longer than the other, even though they both had the same number of rows.  Don’t know why that was – maybe my tension changed again, or I was crocheting looser.  So when I was joining the panels, I was ‘decreasing’ one side, so that the bottom edges would match.  *sigh*  More lessons learned.

All in all, I’m quite happy with it 🙂

Discontinued

I bought this yarn years ago, and waited too long to use it …

It seems that it’s now been discontinued, because I couldn’t find it anywhere when we went yarn shopping, and neither online  😦

So now I’m rethinking my yarn stash … I really should go through it and take inventory and organize.

Because I’m sure there’s other yarn there that’s probably been discontinued 😦

Unless I find a suitable substitute for this yarn, a bulky wool from Loops and Thread Impeccable, it’ll have to stay as an in-between sized cowl.  You know what that is … not long enough to loop around twice, but an awkward size when hanging down from your neck.  Oh well …

 

Enabler Shoppers

I finally made it to Michael’s and Joann’s (the craft stores here).  And that’s because SIL is here, and of course it’s always exciting to go yarn shopping with another enabler … errr .. fellow shopper 🙂

I didn’t realize how many bags we had between us, until I looked in the back seat …

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OMG … did we really buy so much??

Here’s a tip for all yarn shoppers … don’t go for long periods without going into the yarn/craft shops, even if it is just to see what’s new and feel all the new yarn and textures that’s out there.  Because when you finally get to go out, this is what happens … lol

For me, my main goal was to get two more balls of the Red Heart Treasure and the Impeccable Loops and Thread in grey and white, to finish off the languishing WIPs that I unearthed a couple of weeks ago.  And guess what … they’re discontinued !!  horrors !  I couldn’t find them at Michaels, or maybe I didn’t see them, because these Caron Big Cakes were in my way …

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These Big Cakes are big ! Oh, bad photo – there’s nothing to compare them with.  I’ll show comparisons next time.  Anyway … they’re over 500 yds each, and all acrylic – which was kind of a let down for me, I thought they might have the same 20% wool as the original cakes.  But I’m off-setting it against the additional yardage.

I picked up the Cookie Crumble (the grey/white) off the shelf, and picked up what I thought was another cake of the same colour.  It wasn’t, and I didn’t realize it until I took it out of the bag to take a pic of the yarn haul.  But I’m thinking that it’s close enough to the grey/white, so that if I alternated rows/rounds while working with it that it would not be noticeable.  *sigh*  I was thinking of making another jacket/coat with it, but we’ll see what it evolves into, when I start working with it.

I picked up the other two colours with the plan to mix and match them already.  The colours are close enough.  I’m thinking maybe a squarish/rectangular poncho.  Hmmm … maybe one colour for the front, and another for the back.  That might be interesting …

By the way, I haven’t stopped starting WIPs … I’ve got a couple more started … more on that later … I need to organize this yarn haul first …