Lost

I own this top that has lace for the upper part (neck to chest.) To my horror, even with the gentlest of rinsing, the lace tore at places. I didn’t want to replace it with more lace, and instead, thought I’ll make something of my own.

I went with crochet, and thought of keeping it hole-y (I don’t wanna say lace, because it’s not πŸ˜€ ) at the neck and getting more solid as it progresses. This is where I am so far.

Lost with lace

And now, I’m lost. I don’t want to continue with the solid section, because the piece is becoming thicker than I like. To make it thinner, I’ll have to add more airy stitches, and I don’t want that. I’ve also made some bad increases that results in some frills. I don’t feel that keeping on moving ahead will help.

Yup, I’m lost, and I think I’m gonna undo the whole thing and start over. Maybe with knitting this time, so it’s light and yet solid. I really had my heart set on crochet, though. Such a conundrum, isn’t it!

Coffee mug cosy / cover

My sis got a coffee mug at her job yesterday for their green initiative, and she asked if I could make something to protect the mug, maybe with some old scrap yarn. I did have just the scrap yarn for a crocheted cosy that can double as a cover if I make it slightly longer. Since I started late, I was doubtful of finishing it the same day, but I did finish it, hurrah! (Technically, it was the next day because it was past midnight, but shhh…)

Before I could call it a night, I embroidered a free-form heart on it to add that extra zing! πŸ˜‰

Coffee mug cosy / cover

Coffee mug cosy / cover

Letter holder

Well, it’s been a long time since I did some crochet, and I finally got the opportunity. The table in my room has been collecting old receipts. (I know right, in this age of online everything!) I don’t think I really need them, but I decided to keep them at least until the warranty period of their items expires — warranty periods have gotten shorter anyway. But dusty papers lying forever(ish) on a dusty table? Especially when I need to clear it now and then, at least partially, to make room for my crafty ( πŸ˜‰ ) endeavors? Why not shove them into a letter holder instead?

So I made a letter holder. After all, I had quite some yarn left over from my projects, and what better use for all that yarn, right? Look at it doing its job!

Letter holder

Letter holder

This letter holder was quite easy to make because almost everything in here is double crochet.

I first made the base with some dark brown super-bulky yarn, and this was the quickest part — I was done before I could say “letter holder”. I started bottom up, increasing the number of stitches at both ends in every row as required. I kept crocheting with the same width until the desired height. I then crocheted one single-crochet row around a wooden rod that I added to stabilize the structure. Finally, I decreased stitches on both ends to reach the top. I made a sturdy loop at the top that I would use to hang the piece.

I then made the granny squares independently. Well, mostly independently, because I used the join-as-you-go method to stitch them together while I made them. I always start granny squares with a magic loop, and this was no exception. I first made the larger piece, then made and attached each smaller piece to it. I’d thought I’d go with one more layer of smaller pieces, but decided not to.

Instead, I added three rows of double crochet in different colors around the granny square ensemble. The piece now looked wide enough to fit the base — slightly bigger, actually, so it has some slack to hold the letters and who-kn0ws-what-I’ll-throw-into-it. I used single crochet join to firmly attach three sides of the front piece to the base. Pre-pinning the pieces at regular distances helped me maintain the same gauge throughout, and get a uniform look.

I now felt that the base looked kinda bald, so I used single crochet to add a fine edging around it. πŸ™‚ This turned out to be good in more ways than one, because it made the piece maintain its shape better.

Finally, I cut a few pieces of yarn and added a tassel at the bottom.

An earflap hat for my sis

My sis asked me to knit a hat that’s not too tight, covers her ears well and also has functional ties that she can actually tie up. We decided on an earflap hat with ties. I was dying to try out and learn intarsia in the round, so I thought this project would be suitable. I had some amounts of yarn left over from past projects that would work well for some small colorwork detail in a hat, so I decided to use those with the main yarn. I started out with a garter stitch border, and then was ready for some colorwork.

I’d looked for in-the-round intarsia methods from time to time, and hadn’t found many foolproof ways. Tip #1 always seems to be “If possible, just don’t do it.” πŸ™‚ Well I did want to, so these are what I tried:

  • Slip color-2 stitches while working color-1 ones, turn work, then slip color-1 stitches while working color-2 ones. I was pretty hopeful about this method, but it didn’t work for me because it resulted in some overly loose columns just before the first slipped stitch of a color.
  • Flat knitting simulation — Finish the right side, turn work, add an extra ‘reverse’ yarn-over (that is, with left-arm facing me), go through all stitches on the reverse side, work that extra stitch with the last stitch of the row, turn work. This resulted in a bumpy column where the extra stitch was knit with the last stitch.

There were a couple of other methods that seemed to me similar to these. I stuck with method #2, and my sis was considerate enough to ignore the bumpy column, but I’m still going to figure out sometime how to make the first method work correctly for me.

Before starting with the earflaps, I first confirmed with my sis where she wanted the colorwork column to be positioned. πŸ™‚ After marking out the spots for the flaps, I started out with knitting them, but then decided to crochet instead because I thought they would do well to be thicker.

I then strung yarn into the crochet edges and made 5-strand braids for the ties.

Earflap hat

Both my sis and I love how it’s turned out!

Striped phone cover

… with flowers!

Striped phone cover

This is a pretty old project of mine —Β  a phone cover made using leftover yarn from other projects. (After all, isn’t that what phone cover projects use — leftover yarn? Mine always have…)

For the body, I knit in the round for the required length, alternating blue and pink rows. At the top, I created holes by repeating *yo, k2tog*, then bound off in the next row. I then sewed up the bottom. For the pull cords, I made two 3-strand braids, each about four times the width of the cover. I looped the cords from opposite ends, weaving them between the yarn-over holes, and finally knotted together the ends of each cord.

The cover still seemed too plain, so I crocheted two flowers that I secured tightly on the cover. Ta da! ❀

Tote bag motif

I crocheted this circular motif for a joint project — a tote bag that my sister and I decided to make. Though I say it’s a joint project, the sewing of the piece, which is the more tedious work, is handled by my sister. (She sews really well.)

Tote Bag MotifI was watching a movie while I worked on this motif and am not even aware of what exactly I did, but I’m pretty pleased with this piece. πŸ™‚ I started out with a magic loop, and worked circles of chain stitches, single crochet and double crochet until it got big enough. My mom loves the center of the motif, and I agree it looks good, but only because the rest of the piece supports it.

My sister will embellish it with beads before affixing it to the tote. I can’t We can’t wait to use it! [Update: Here’s the tote bag. I love it!]

Waiting granny square pieces…

Granny square piecesI’m trying to remember how old these pieces are. (The photo looks pretty old, but I assure you, I clicked it just yesterday using a retro camera app on my phone. Very retro, indeed! πŸ˜€ ) I almost can’t recall when I made these, but they’re at least a couple of years old. I can say for sure that I had just learned about granny patterns and knew squat about magic loops, because I remember being not too happy with the holes in the middle of the granny squares but letting it slide.

I crocheted the squares from leftover yarn, and used whip stitch to tie them together. For the edging, I used two rounds of double crochet.

I’d made these so they can be brought together and fashioned into a clutch purse. And guess what — they’re still awaiting their destiny! πŸ™‚ (Okay, I guess that’s the wrong smiley to use here; this might just be my work-in-progress-for-so-long-that-i-have-almost-forgotten-about-it project…) It’s now sitting with my current work-in-progress project so it keeps reminding me of its presence. Maybe one of these days…