Back from a Detour

If there’s such a thing as a Contemplation-in-Progress project, then that’s what I’m working on. And sporadically at that. I actually haven’t knit or done any kind of yarn related work at all for more than 2 weeks now. I’ve been doing some programming for myself, and it was going so great that I didn’t feel the need to work on my other crafts. ๐Ÿ™‚ And now that my programming work is done, and I’ve created a few “great things” ๐Ÿ˜‰ , the crafty calling is back.

And now I’m picking up from my last post, where I signed off wondering what I should make next. I’ve taken a tiny step forward in the contemplation process – I’m making a poncho. (I think.) I still haven’t found a project yet, though, so I hope I figure it out soon.

It’s funny how my pastimey detour affected my book devouring too – I usually listen to books or podcasts while I work on crafty stuff, but since I can’t really concentrate on a book while I program, last month was the least reading that I did this year! But on the plus side, whatever little I read, I ended up reading with my eyes, not ears – and I’m glad my reading speed hasn’t reduced much.

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Yesteryear Yoke

My Yesteryear yoke is now operational! ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m so happy that I chose this pattern to replace the destroyed lace in my top, because it complements the top so perfectly. (The pattern is Yesteryear Top by Mimi Alelis.)

Yesteryear Yoke | Crochet | Anita

I crocheted the yoke just as described in the pattern. Well, almost. I did make a few mistakes, and I decided to just leave them be. I miss fixing knitting mistakes – unraveling an entire crochet round just to add a missed stitch seems like too much work, doesn’t it?

Once done with the yoke, I made a couple of body rows at the front and the back, and finished them with the edging described in the pattern. It was a few days before I picked up the project again, but when I did, I quickly blocked it and hand-stitched the front and back onto the respective edges of my top.

Yesteryear Yoke | Crochet | Anita

If there was anything I could change in this project, it’d be to shape the front and back a bit, so they’re less curved and don’t fold over the rest of the fabric as much as they do now. But that’s nitpicking, really – and I don’t know where the shaping could happen or how much it’d help, since there are only 2-3 body rows.

Overall, the project was enjoyable and the result is definitely more than satisfactory. I would absolutely love to crochet the entire top some time. (I’ll probably add a picot edging to the sleeves. Looks like I’m discovering crochet stitches now, hehe!)

What’s next?

I have yarn that I don’t have projects for. I’ve been thinking of frogging a few older projects that I don’t wear much, and there’s the Bamboo eyelet cardigan WIP that I’d frogged and I love the yarn and I really want to make something with it, and some yarn that my sister bought a while ago and wants a shawl from, so let’s see what works out. Maybe some of your projects will provide the required inspiration…

WIP: Yesteryear Yoke

My crochet project is now underway!

I mentioned in my previous post that I own a top that I’ve only worn once so far – its lace yoke disintegrated at places when I washed it. (Talk about delicate!) I’ve been looking at making a crochet yoke for the top, so I can add it back into my wardrobe. Since I’ve not reached “level=designer” in crochet yet, I looked up patterns that I could use for the yoke, and chose the Yesteryear Top by Mimi Alelis.

Yesteryear Yoke | WIP | Anita

I couldn’t get the suggested gauge with the mercerized cotton thread that I’d chosen for this yoke, but after some calculations, I found that I could still follow instructions for a smaller size from the pattern, and get my desired fit. No conversions needed, yay! ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ve not followed crochet patterns before, and this project was the perfect opportunity to learn how to read a crochet chart. Between the clear, closeup pictures in the pattern and the instructions, it wasn’t too difficult to understand how to read the chart that was provided. I’ve completed almost half the project now, and fingers crossed the yoke does fit me fine.

By the way, if I’d assumed that crochet and knitting knowledge, like cycling or swimming, doesn’t fade with lack of use, I was proven wrong here, because I suddenly had doubts about the single crochet stitch(!) – I had to go on Youtube to reacquaint myself with it. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ Has this ever happened to you?

Wall Hanging: L&T SAL 2018

My Linen and Threads SAL project is now a wall hanging!

Wall Hanging from Linen and Threads 2018 SAL

We haven’t selected a place for it in the living room yet, but when we do, this is how it’ll look.

I added decorative crochet edgings to the top and bottom of the piece, a dowel at the top, and a fringe at the bottom. The fringe is still wonky, and I’m hoping to find methods to straighten it. If all else fails, I’ll just find some heavy-ish beads to add to it, and that should do it.

Edging Details of Linen and Threads 2018 Wall Hanging

I made up the crochet edging as I went, and had to redo the first row quite a lot to find the right crochet hook size to work with – scrunching up the cross stitch fabric is obviously a deal breaker. Turns out the 4mm one was perfect. I used the crossed double crochet pattern for the main feature of the edging – though I added a treble crochet stitch, and worked on the wrong side: * sl 2 st, tr in 3rd st, dc in 1st slipped st, dc in 2nd slipped st. *


Knitting-wise, I’ve completed the brioche section of the yoke, and have started finishing the neck using an i-cord bind off. When that’s done, I’ll move to the sleeves.

Amherst Cardigan brioche yoke

Looks like my swatching didn’t catch my distinct loose brioche purl gauge. I tried to fix it as I continued, but it persisted. This definitely calls for more practice! ๐Ÿ™‚

During this knit, one of the thin (2mm) bamboo needles that I was using for the brioche section cracked. (Doesn’t that happen to all of us at some point on the job? ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) Well, when I’d bought the needle set, I knew it would happen some day. There are no local yarn stores near me, and I’ve been waiting for discounts on steel needles online, but they never seem to be on. International shipping and possible customs taxes would make the cost prohibitive without discounts, so for now, I’ve bought a cheap set of thin metal needles as replacement – after all, it’s not every day that I use the thin ones! (This might be the first project that I’ve had to go so thin.)

Have you ever had needles crack or come apart during a project?

A ‘Fishy’ Sleeping Bag

I used up leftover yarn from a project or two, and made a sleeping bag for one of our favorite jewelry models – Penguin. ๐Ÿ˜€

'Fishy' sleeping bag

This project was a UFO till recently – I think I’d started it more than a year ago. I’m pretty happy that I finally picked it up again and finished it! (And I used up both leftover balls, so that’s another yay!)

The project itself is pretty simple. The tail fin is single crochet stitched in a circular manner so it stays stiff. (It still twists a little, though.) The body is double crochet, also worked in circles with color changes. The finishing at the top edge is a row of shell stitch, and I made the stitch spans wider so the edge becomes a bit more snug. (Also, I was running out of yarn. ๐Ÿ˜€ )

When I’d started on this project, I had grand plans of adding some fins on the sides too, but I guess I overestimated the amount of yarn (or maybe underestimated the size of the project), and in the end, there just wasn’t any yarn available for the fins. No worries, I think Penguin likes it just the way it is! ๐Ÿ˜‰


After that satisfying finish, I’ve completed designing a rectangular shawl for my sister. We’re using a single color for this project – which is a change from my previous shawl project, the colorful Oshara Shawl – so all I needed was a lot of textured stitches, which I’ll use for sections of the shawl. More on this one when I work on it enough and click pictures of it!

I’m also working on the August section of the Linen and Threads Mystery SAL – I’ve just finished figuring out the colors, and have started stitching with my main color.

That’s it from me this time. I’d love to hear how your projects are going!

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 ๐Ÿ˜€ ) 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! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Coffee mug cosy / cover

Coffee mug cosy / cover