FO Friday – Pixie Waistcoat

It’s a beautiful, sunny Friday here in Australia, in our first week of Spring – but my toes are still cold and it’s nice to rug up just a little on chilly mornings – for which this little pixie waistcoat is perfect ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s my take on the granny-stripe shawl/vest/cowl/wrap – so versatile! – pattern by Michelle Greenberg. I used one Lincraft Cake (Aussie store brand) in ‘Blooming Roses’ instead of two Caron Cakes, and I added an sc (US) border to the long edge. 

It worked up super fast – a most satisfying and practical Spring make. If you’re heading into Autumn you can just keep on with those repeats for two cakes. Happy hooking! ๐Ÿ˜€

Spring has Sprung!

Happy days, winter is no more! It’s gone 4pm and I am out on the veranda in shorts and tee, only just now thinking about pulling on a pair of jeans as the temperature drops for the night. Love it!

I’ve all but finished my Willow baby blanket, just a couple of ends from the border to sew in. Baby hasn’t pipped me to the post, and I await the happy news ๐Ÿ™‚ So, I’ve spent yesterday evening and parts of today on a new project – a vest, using a Lincraft Cake in the Blooming Roses colourway. 

Yup the wip list remains massive haha but the weather will get progressively warmer now and I wanted to have a first crack at a Lincraft Cake before the season escapes me. They’re listed as aran weight on Ravelry, same as the Caron Cakes, but I feel the Caron Cakes are a bit heavier weight in comparison, and this one closer to a dk? Maybe it’s just this ball though. Anyone else compared the two?
Happy hooking to you, whichever season you are now embarking upon ๐Ÿ™‚

Accidental Kids Crochet Cardi

This morning I unearthed a shrug I started way back in May and settled happily back into finishing the front bodice and trim. I used Caron Cakes in Rainbow Sprinkles with a 6mm hook. The pattern is by ‘Double Stitch Twins’ Erika and Monica Simmons in their book Double Stitch: Designs for the Crochet Fashionista.

I’d never crocheted a fitted garment before so it was an interesting learning experience! Alas, upon completion my suspicions that I should have made the next size up were confirmed, as my shrug was a little too snug. So sad!

However, happily a little person expressed interest as I sat outside bemoaning my mistake. My daughter tried it on and loved it – “So warm, mumma! So pretty!” So, all is not lost and I am a happy crochet mum โ˜บ

And on that note, I think it’s time to pack away the worsted now. Spring is coming! 

Are you Feeling Lost in Time?

I’m feeling it! ๐Ÿ˜ Lost in Time is a recently released customisable shawl pattern by Johanna Lindahl of Mijo Crochet. You can add it to your Ravelry queue here or go directly to the pattern here. I kept seeing it over and over again on Instagram and when I was gifted some gorgeous Italian wool last month, this beautiful popcorn-detailed pattern immediately came to mind!

I was initially a little concerned because said wool – Cool Wool Big Melange by Lana Grossa – is listed as worsted weight on Ravelry, and while Johanna explains that any yarn / hook may be used, all of her suggested yarns were lighter weight. The recommended hook size for Melange is 3.5mm, however, so I figured it’s more of a light worsted – certainly feels that way, but please do correct me if I’m wrong in making assumption based on recommended hook size? Anyways so I’ve gone with a 6mm hook in the hope that I’ll achieve a good drape.

So I’m on round 26 and I’m liking the drape thus far *phew* although only time will tell as it grows so everything crossed! There’s been a fair amount of frogging, which I blame on tired eyes and small children – certainly not on the pattern, which is a lovely pdf so no ads to wade through either, despite that it’s free. How generous is that! I have made an error in part of one row which is of course blindingly oblivious to me but I imagine not to anyone else, and as I was a few rows and three colour changes along when I saw it, I’ve decided to suck it up  – and never again mention it after this moment ๐Ÿ˜ 

I’m going for more scarf than shawl and as the pattern is a twelve row repetition there is a lot of room for size customisation as well as hook / yarn variation. At this point I’m thinking maybe another 3 repetitions.

A note on colour changes. I have a gazillion ends going on and should I make this again (def likely) I will go for a variegated yarn and most likely I’d treat myself to a Scheepjes Whirl – I’ve coveted some of that for a while and I’ve seen some lovely renditions of the project in beautiful Whirl colourways. Have you hooked with Whirl? How was it??

Have you made Lost in Time? What yarn, which hook? Do share ๐Ÿ˜Š

Finished Project Friday – Beanie for Brain Cancerย 

This afternoon I finished my very first beanie! I used a simple and satisfying pattern that I found here on Ravelry. It’s called Jules’ Slouch Hat and it is entirely hdc (US) , which is my favourite stitch. I don’t know why, I just find something soothing about it, yarn over and loop up, then simple slide through all three…do I sound like a nutter? ๐Ÿ˜ What’s your favourite stitch at the moment? I’m also really feeling popcorns right now – love that texture!!

But, I digress. Here I am striking a pose for you, which was fun! I’m not a wearer of hats but I confess I rather like this one. It’s not staying though because it’s for a silent charity auction in aid of brain cancer research in a couple of weeks time, in a small coastal town a little to the North of here. If you would like to be involved in a similar event, just Google or Facebook (is that a verb?) ‘Beanies for Brain Cancer’ – there seem to be a fair few going on in regions where it’s currently winter, as it is here.

And here’s a close up of the wool, which I’ve been raving about on Instagram – it’s ‘Circus’ California 8ply from the Cleckheaton range. I bought it on a whim online and I just love this variegated 100% wool – the colours are gorgeous and the change is frequent, perfect for a small project such as this. What’s your favourite variegated yarn?

Wip Wednesday – Sophie, Willow & a Beanie

It’s the first week of the school hols and so far we have a good mix of home days and excursions going on – and there has been crochet, hurrah!

First up, a Sophie’s Universe update. I’m into part five now and still loving her soooooooo much! I’m really glad I bought the book (from Wool Warehouse – for some reason it’s not yet listed in my usual store, Book Depository), it’s just beautiful. 

I’m also making pleasant and steady progress on my new Willow baby blanket (pattern by Jan Eaton in 200 Crochet Blocks). Six down, fourteen to go!

Lastly, I ordered some Cleckheaton California 8ply on a whim last week while purchasing some Lincraft Cakes to try. It’s beautiful 100% wool and last night I started a beanie – the colourway is ‘Circus’ and I love it! I took it to the play centre today and got a few rounds in while my girls worked off some of their boundless energy with friends. I got chatting to another woman with wool in her hands – not a common sight! – who was doing Afghan crochet, which I’ve never seen before. So interesting! With a giant knitting needle with a hook on the end, which I assumed was a Tunisian hook but apparently not. I must google. Great to see public crochet and enjoy some impromptu yarny chat!

I’ve never actually made a beanie before, not wearing them myself. If it works out ok I’ll share the pattern I found. I plan to donate it to a charity silent auction that’s happening up the coast later in the month, in aid of brain cancer research. I’m not sure of the origins of this event but there seem to be several going on – search Facebook ‘Beanies for Brain Cancer’ for information local to you if you’d like to be involved.

And that’s it from me for now. Must get dinner on. If hols allow, I’ll be back Friday. Meantime, I wish you happy hooking ๐Ÿ˜€

Corner to Corner Crochet Bag

I am finding being a mum somewhat challenging at present and am intensely grateful for my chosen forms of therapy: running – my half marathon training is on track – and of course, crochet ๐Ÿ™‚ My girls are almost five and almost seven, and my joyous relief at being beyond the baby and toddler years and associated mental health issues (Post Natal Depression) is slightly tempered by the dawning realisation that with each new childhood era come new challenges which suddenly make teething and toilet training seem like a walk in the freaking park!

But I digress from the purpose of this post, which is to share with you my new bag! Let me just retrieve one more chocolate Hobnob from the back of the vegetable drawer in the fridge…

Ahhh, that’s better ๐Ÿ˜€ So, I taught myself Corner to Corner – C2C – crochet last week using thisย YouTube tutorial, and loved it. It hooks up into a nice solid fabric which I thought would be good for a bag. I experimented with a worsted-weight variegated yarn (Moda Vera Florentine Collection in Bruno) and a 6mm hook – one size down from the ball band recommendation, to add density.

I kept increasing until the width measured about 11″ and then decreased on one side only until the long side measured about 14″ , at which point I began the decrease on the other side. Thus emerged a rectangle measuring approximately 14″ by 11″. I folded the rectangle in half lengthways and sewed the short edges together.

Being impatient, rather than waiting for my D-shaped handles to arrive, I decided to use the 5″ hoop handles I already had. I centred the hoops and used four stitch markers so I’d know where to fix them in place. I went all around the opening of the bag in sc (US), including a single crochet around the hoop at each stitch marker. I then stitched the hoops securely in place on the inside. It was tricky and next time I will wait for the D handles!

However, there was an unexpected bonus – the hoops add extra structure to the bag and it stands up sooooo nicely! At the moment I am using it as a mini project bag. It contains myย needle caseย – aย Moogly pattern, and my rendering of it was actually featured in Tamara’s newsletter this week which was fun to see! – ย scissors, and a paper bag for collecting ends after weaving in. It’s the perfect size for storing block wips – perfect as I’ll be starting anotherย baby blanketย soon ๐Ÿ™‚

This was a fun little project that worked up quickly and made me smile. If you haven’t yet learned C2C, go for it! It’s easy to learn, works up fast and has so many possibilities ๐Ÿ˜€