Jane's Hooked on Crochet

A place to write about my crocheting, things I'm learning, book reviews, ideas, projects in mind, works in progress, patterns, photos, fair entries, whatever...

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Mittens & Hat

A friend asked me to make a pair of mittens and a hat for a toddler; in light, light. light pink. I thought Red Heart's Baby Clouds would be a great choice, pale pink, soft & cuddly. I bought one skein and started searching for a pattern.
I started with Lion Brand Homespun Family of Mittens -http://www.lionbrand.com/patterns/chs-mittens.html
thinking that Baby Clouds and Homespun would be about the same thickness and the pattern says Toddler (size 2). The pattern calls for a G and an H hook. A G hook with Homespun! What were they thinking? The yarn needed at least an I hook, and then the mittens would be too big.
LB's Wool-Ease Chunky Crocheted Mittens -
Again, chunky yarn with a G hook.
So I abandoned that gorgeous, soft Baby Clouds and tried RH Baby Sport, I place this between a sport weight and a worsted. Still too big. So I switched patterns to Children's Crocheted Mittens from Sue's CrochetandKnitting.com - http://crochetandknitting.com/mittensm.htm
This pattern has suggestions for hook changes to make different sized mittens. I used Lion Brand baby yarn and an F hook. I also adjusted the pattern, using about 3/4 of the starting chain called for. The mittens are adorable. Can't wait to get a picture of these on the blog. I am now creating a hat in the same stitch pattern. The request was for a hat that divides into 2 parts and they each have a tie. I'm thinking like a Santa hat, but split into two parts after the head is covered.
I also have patterns for 2 versions of Tunisian mittens, 1 with a thumb and 1 without. These call for a sport weight yarn. I should give them a try. I love Tunisian!
Back to the hat!

Friday, January 28, 2005

CGOA Regional Conference

Why am I worrying about what online course to take next? I just spent $400 on classes at the Crochet Guild of America Regional conference at the end of March. It is being held along with the Knitting Guild of America National Convention in King of Prussia, PA. That's almost local for me! I take my daughter to a dance competition twice a year in King of Prussia.
I registered for the Breakfast Fashion Show on Friday, and the Banquet & Fashion show on Saturday. I've signed up for 2 Tunisian classes - Design your Own Tunisian Crochet Afghan (6 hour class), and Cosmic Color in Tunisian Crochet. Then a class to learn a new technique, Basic Overlay crochet (another 6 hour class). The other 3 hour classes I've selected are Portable crochet, Everything about the Post Stitch (I love front posts, and back posts. An afghan I made using linked front posts & linked back posts won Best of Show at the county fair.), and Crochet by the Numbers. This is going to link my favorite hobby with another passion - mathematics. The class includes Fibonacci numbers, Golden Ratio, Golden rectangle, and Mobius strips. I teach a class on Recreational Math and cover all these topics! That should be great fun.

Class at Needlecraft University

Today I'm finishing the sweater vest I made in my online course at Needlecraft University.
Check out the site, they have classes in crochet, knitting and ribbon embroidery. The crochet classes include classic crochet, Tunisian and Broomstick Lace; and there is great variety in the projects. The class I took was Lace Vest, but the important part of the class was not simply following a pattern & making the vest. This class taught how to take your measurements, work a gauge swatch, and then how to calculate how to make this fit. With the information learned, I can now use any sweater pattern I like and adjust the pattern to fit me.
I'll get pictures soon, I want to post one here and one in the classroom files at Needlecraft University.
What class shall I take next? :-)

Saturday, January 15, 2005

The Paperwork!

I finished another scarf today and decided I had enough different designs that I could self-publish a booklet of Tunisian scarf patterns. I spent several hours at the computer making notes; things that would need to be included in the pattern book, things that needed done, pictures needed, etc. I also started typing the specific patterns.
In the evening I spent another hour or more putting written patterns and photos into my reference book. It's a 4 inch binder with records of all the items I've crocheted. Well, technically not all. I have patterns, yarn wrappers, yarn samples, and photos of all the projects since the beginning of 2003. The previous decades are mostly gone.
After getting all the patterns & photos into the book, I spent time making notes of the pages of items that I entered in the Gratz Fair in the fall of 2004, and the items I entered in the Pennsylvania State Farm Show this month. I entered 15 items in the county Fair, and won 12 ribbons, 4 Third place, 4 Second place, and 4 First place which included a Best of Show for an afghan. The Farm Show had less categories and you could only enter 1 item per class, so I only entered 6 items. I won 3 ribbons, 2 Third place and 1 Second place. I thought that I didn't fair that well, however, my husband reminded me that it's not a County Fair, it covers people throughout the state. Okay, that's not too bad!
Now I need to learn how to add links and photos to this site to make it more interesting.
This pineapple tablecloth took 1st Place at the Gratz Fair in September 2004 Posted by Hello

This pineapple doily is made with #20 Cebelia thread. It took 2nd Place at the Gratz Fair, 2004 Posted by Hello

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Passing on the skill & joy of crocheting

At the beginning of December I spent a week visiting family in North Carolina. Parents, 2 brothers, sisters-in-law, nieces, grandniece, and sister. What a great time we all had, and the weather was such a change from the Pennsylvania fall.
I made a scarf with Red Heart Baby Clouds yarn in peppermint; pale mint, pink & white; in the Tunisian knit stitch.
I taught my sister how to do Tunisian crochet, she knows how to do classic crochet. I gave her a set of Easy Tunisian hooks from Carolyn Christmas for a Christmas gift, the set includes a small booklet with instructions on basic stitches. This weekend I got a call from my niece, she had taken over the hooks while on college vacation and was making a shawl from a homespun type yarn. She needed help adding a new skein of yarn. Her younger sister had gotten knitting needles and was busy making herself a scarf, she was having a little problem gaining stitches. I told her how to do a decrease and correct her problem without having to pull everything out. That's discouraging for a young beginner. I can't wait to see the finished projects.
I've been busy in between Christmas preparations with making more scarves. I have some gorgeous new yarns, railroad type, and thin ribbon with colorful confetti. I need to type the patterns and try to get them published.

Layette update & Christmas notes

The layette was finished in time for the baby shower in December. Sweater, bonnet, booties, mittens, and newborn socks. Gosh, those little socks are adorable. I think I might make a few pairs in neutral colors and have them on hand for little gifts.
What about making the little socks in red and white and hanging them on the Christmas tree!
Our tree ornaments are all hand made, a tradition I started when we got married 30 years ago. When our first daughter was born, I starting making her a new ornament each year, and kept that up with the second girl. Each gets a new ornament each Christmas with the idea that when they moved out on their own, they'd have enough ornaments for their own small tree. Fabric items include a heart with lace trim, angels, and fans. Needlepoint items include Santa face, ice cream cone and stocking with Santa. Some of the crocheted items on the tree are Santa hats, mittens & boots, Santa faces, ice skates crocheted onto paper clips, gift packages, and snowflakes. My favorite ornament was made by a friend and is a small knitted sweater, with the tiniest ball of yarn, and toothpicks for knitting needles! We had a fabric lace angel on the top, but she's looking a little ragged. I'm thinking of crocheting an angel, that will need blocked and won't stay nice looking when packed regularly for a year. Another fabric angel, possibly with a cotton dress that can be starched and pressed every year might be the best idea.