Posts Tagged Hydrangea Blanket
It’s the 15th of the month again and time to talk about using scraps instead of throwing them away or storing them in forgotten corners.
I read on Facebook that a woman locally to me here in France is sending off parcels to Samos in Greece containing things for newborns. She asked if any knitters (or crocheters) could make small blankets.
I immediately thought of the leftover yarn I used for my large Attic24 Hydrangea Blanket – in the background above – which would be perfect for a miniature version.
Big enough to wrap a newborn in.
So that was my whole scrappy project this month but I thought I’d include a half size one too. Half size because it was really spare, long standing stash stuff rather than scraps I used. Although, the project could be made using scraps if you had some fairly big ones.
My lovely bath/shower cap had gone mouldy so on a trip to the beautiful city of Carcassonne the other day with a friend, I searched everywhere for a new one. Not a one could I find, not even a boring plain, thin plastic one. So, undeterred, I came home and made my own.
I used one of my large wire hoops (bought to house crochet mandalas or similar) to draw a circle on a layer of fabric and a layer of some water resistant fabric given to me years ago for lining wash bags or similar.
I unearthed the end of a roll of ready made binding and sewed it on around the circle.
Then used another odd piece to make a casing for the elastic.
I sewed the casing on two inches inside the diameter in order to achieve a bit of frou frou.
It has yet to be tested under the shower for water resistance but I’m quite pleased with it. (Sorry it was only half scrappy).
(p.s. I’ve not been overly visible on my own blog recently owing to upheavals in daily life – nothing bad unless you count probably moving from my beautiful big house in the foothills of the French Pyrenées with 2.5 acres, back to the U.K. where we’ll be lucky to get something with a garden big enough to swing one of our cats 🙀. Anyway, I have been reading everybody’s blogs even though I might have only had time to press ‘like’ now and then – just saying.)
Scraphappy Day is organised by Kate & Gun for anybody who wants to make new things from scraps of any kind – doesn’t have to be fabric or yarn. Here’s a list of participants – both regular and occasional – if you want to have a look at the sort of things you can do with scraps.
Contact Kate (first name on the list) if you want to join in.
Kate, Gun, Titti, Heléne, Eva, Sue, Lynn (me), Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, Sandra, Linda, Chris, Nancy, Alys, Kerry, Claire, Jean,
Joanne, Jon, Hayley, Dawn, Gwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline,
Sue L, Sunny and Kjerstin
Well, sort of but I’ll get that out of the way first.
I had lots of Stylecraft Special left after some other projects and decided to make another Attic 24 blanket. I made the Hydrangea Blanket a couple of years ago and it’s lovely with all the subtle shades a hydrangea flower can go through but this time I was using whatever colours I had left hanging around the place so it’s quite a lot brighter and not quite as big as the original which was big enough for a single bed.
Enough is enough. I think I could now add blankets to the list of ‘beyond life expectancy’ items I have which, to date, consists of fabric; yarn; quilts; clothes; shoes; cats – especially cats.
However, I still wanted something fairly simple to do whilst perched, like a little ball of confusion and stress, in front of Netflix of an evening. Then I spotted a PDF pattern online for something tempting. I had to order the ‘yarn’ though which took forever to come from a far flung corner of Eastern Europe.
It came in a 200m length on a massive spool.
Once I had completed the circle I knew I was going to enjoy this project. I was tempted to buy more cord – there are some amazing colours – but restrained myself to see whether I would like the finished item enough to want to make more.
Sometimes I can be sensible.
A lovely big 7mm crochet hook is what’s required and, although I feel it helps aesthetically, it doesn’t actually have to be pink.
The only thing left to do was an i-cord
Did you know that it’s called an i-cord because the woman who (sort of ) invented it said it was easy enough for an idiot to make?
I wonder if iphones were named on the same principle. 🤣
Anyway, this idiot had great fun making that long, slightly stretchy cord.
Not a blanket.
I’ll probably stop at one as they are so ridiculously quick and easy to make that I didn’t get very far at all through a Netflix series before I’d finished and, as the lockdown in France has been extended for another two weeks, I need something that will be with me for the long haul.
Encouraged, as I often am, by Kate over at Tall Tales From Chiconia, I am going to switch from crochet as my evening pursuit and get those hexies out and at least start joining them into flower shapes.
Just in case you feel enthused, I bought the PDF pattern for the crochet bag from this shop and it is downloadable immediately. I also bought the cord from her – it comes in wonderful colours – but, even before the current situation, it took quite a long time to come.
For one reason or another, this has been a year more dedicated to the woolly crafts than the fabric ones.
I started this first project last November but, by the time it was ready for ‘the sewing up bit’ the weather was far too warm to wear it so I left it until this November to assemble it. It was my second oversized or ‘boyfriend’ cardigan from Kim Hargreaves ‘Storm’ book of patterns using one strand of Rowan kidsilk haze and one of Kid Classic throughout giving it that nice fuzzy look. One reason I’ve showed it on the mannequin rather than me is that the photos of the mannequin wearing it show the fuzziness better than the ones of me and the second reason is, despite being over 100 years old, she looks slightly less raddled than I do at the moment.
I like it but I don’t love it as much as the silvery grey one I made. It will be worn around the house when I can’t be bothered to light the log burner and will make me a magnet for cats seeking comfort which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Since I re-taught myself to crochet, there has been quite a bit of hooking going on this year. I was enticed by these gorgeous colours in Attic 24’s Hydrangea blanket and the dense stitch pattern was an easy one to do in front of the T.V. which means I get on with it more quickly.
I didn’t register the measurements of the blanket which is single bed size so I’ve only just finished it but love it to bits.
Most of the crochet projects I’ve done so far have been in rows so I thought I’d challenge myself a bit. Sheila over at Sewchet started on this lovely blanket called Persian Tiles in the Eastern Jewels colourway and, although I’d already spotted it, I thought it might be a bit complicated but after reading about it on Sheila’s blog I thought I’d give it a go.
Unfortunately, that is not me holding up the finished blanket – I’m nowhere near that finished, blonde or young.
I’m really enjoying it so far – although I’ve only done two and a half octagons – but it’s something a bit different for me to get stuck in to and I’m gaining a bit of experience ‘in the round’ at the same time.
I’m weaving my ends in as I go along because there are multitudinous ones and it will be a mammoth task at the end if I don’t.
Thinking that I would work on both that project and one other over the Christmas holidays, I got out two balls of sock yarn I bought last year and cast on for a pair of socks. As this is only my third pair in as many years I have to keep going back to the tutorials to see what to do.
I like to do both socks at once so I don’t fall prey to the dreaded ‘second sock syndrome’ which I know I would be prone to and there is, apparently, no cure. Also, I knit from the toe up for various reasons but not least because at this stage it looks as if I’m knitting a teeny bikini top or a pair of woolly sunglasses. I am easily amused. This method works for me but involves tricksy beginnings such as Judy’s Magic Cast On and the Magic Loop Method which I need to remind myself of when I embark on my annual sockfest.
All is not so successful.
Remember the Sunshine and Showers Crochet-A-Long I embarked on a while back? Another crochet challenge I thought I’d set myself. Well, I got off to a flying start and then came the flowers.
The flowers are done separately, joined up and then attached to the existing piece.
This is where they are now. It might have been a challenge too far.
I might go back to this project at some future stage but I am also fearful that the edges of the blanket will be less than straight because of all the different stitches and patterns in each section and, in my inexpert hands, it is more likely to happen than not as I’ve noticed other people, more experienced in the ways of crochet, have had this problem.
Unfortunately, having had a pair of needles or a hook in my hands almost permanently for some time now, I think I’ve got some sort of repetitive strain injury in the fat part at the base of my thumb so I might have to resort to an ice pack, some ibuprofen, massage and a few days of yarn deprivation to see if it will right itself.
In the meantime, I will gaze at my lovely hydrangea blanket – repelling all dogs and cats until the novelty wears off – and, because I’m so chuffed with it, put a second photo on, which is almost exactly the same as the first one, just to make myself feel better about not completing the Sunshine and Showers one.
Plus, I will read the book I asked Mr. T. for for Christmas and try to finally get to grips with pattern cutting.
So, in more ways than one I am casting off until the new year which is only two sleeps away but I will raise a glass of something sparkly to you all on New Year’s Eve and I will make the most of it because I am intending to test myself again this year by doing ‘dry January’ when I will try to maintain my sanity (and my liver) while not drinking any wine (or any other alcoholic beverage) until 1st February.
Thank you for your support, comments, good wishes, contributions, virtual hugs and all those other things bloggers are so good at, in 2017 and I hope you will stick with me in 2018 – even though I might be a touch grouchy in January 😉
While my Mum was visiting I abandoned sewing and my workroom for the much more sociable and garden friendly crochet.
I was prepared. Having made a fairly simple blanket as a beginner project I thought I’d tackle something a little more complicated and was tempted by the Sunshine and Showers blanket by Janie Crow which is running as a CAL (crochet along) on her blog here.
You make two identical sections per month for twelve months and then join some sections together and you should end up with the above which looks hideously complicated to me. Look! there are flowers and little hearts and bobbles and things – but I’m hoping to learn as I go along. There are two versions – one in a merino mix yarn and the one I’m doing which is in Stylecraft Special DK which comes in some splendiferous colours. I decided to go with the same colours used in the CAL because there will be less room for confusion and I like them anyway.
I have completed one of the sections for the month of May – the wave pattern is intentional and not due to wine consumption –
Now I have to make a second, identical one and wait for June’s section to be released when, apparently, I will learn ‘puff’ stitches – I can hardly wait and, although I know that sounds sarcastic, there is a an element of truth in it. Simple pleasures……..
I had forgotten how much I hate doing long foundation chains 😦
A glutton for punishment, however, and wanting something easier to do in between waiting for the sections to be released, I bought the yarn to make Lucy at Attic 24’s Hydrangea Blanket for which the pattern is on her blog here
At first glance I wondered why these colours were anything to do with hydrangeas but Lucy explains that she watched how the blooms changed colour over time and has some great photos on her blog (one of which below) showing how right she is.
Wool Warehouse stocks the kits for Attic 24 patterns so I went ahead and sent for them here and began the repetitive, yet addictive, stitch which forms a really nice dense texture.
I like to look at the balls of yarn in their basket. Such a range of colours is hard to resist and, although I avoid 100% acrylic in knitting projects that I am going to wear, in my house a blanket needs to be put in a washing machine. Also, after struggling with a cotton yarn that splits as soon as you look at it in my fusion quilt (squares of fabric with a crochet border) this is an absolute pleasure to crochet with. I’m hooked! Sorry, not sorry.
This is where I am with it so far but progress might slow down a little now Mum has gone back to the U.K. and I am drawn back to the sewing room.
Just in case I wasn’t already knee deep in crochet, I made a hat. For an egg. Well, why wouldn’t you?
Actually, it’s not really for an egg, although it could be, it’s for a bottle. I can’t remember where I saw it mentioned first but Innocent Drinks are, once again, asking for little knitted (or crochet) hats to put on the top of their smoothie bottles in the supermarket and, for each hat-wearing bottle sold, they donate 25pence to Age UK. Since 2003 , 6 million hats have been knitted which has helped raise over £1.9m and increase awareness of the great work done by charities like Age UK.
On a selfish note, it helps me improve my crochet ‘in the round’.
You can read about it here if you fancy putting your needles (or hook) to good use – the deadline this year is 31st July.
The fabric haul from my Walthamstow Market visit has arrived with Mr. T. from the U.K. He has got a ‘pulled’ shoulder muscle from the weight. I blame it on the black flecked jersey on the bottom there which is heavy and there is 3m of it.
I’ve given him some Ibuprofen, treated the affected shoulder with a cursory massage and told him to buy a cabin bag with wheels.
Close ups and potential uses for the precious cargo to follow .