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Hat Magic

Magicians pull rabbits from their hats. Me, I pull yarn. I don’t have a yarn bowl you see, and to stop my ball of wool from from rolling around the floor gathering bits that I’ve yet to hoover up, it occurred to me that my cap could be a decent substitute. And in this, if nothing else, I was astute!  I tried using a bowl from the kitchen, but glass is slippery and the yarn would jump out onto the floor if I was too exuberant in my pulling technique. The cap is more effective as the fabric grips the yarn slightly, and the sides of the hat also collapse in a bit, helping keep the yarn in situ.

Yarn bowls are marvellous inventions though – the slit in the side of the basin manages the yarn so that it doesn’t ever bounce out. I gifted one to a friend, and tried it out before I wrapped it, and realised just how ingenious the yarn bowl is. Another friend has a neighbour who is a talented ceramicist and the next time I see her, I will suggest she make some and sell them at our local yarn store. I would certainly buy one, as I like her work. Meanwhile, I will continue using my hat.

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Friend or Foe?

… when an F.O. becomes an enemy!

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It’s taken me a while to get around to this pattern. It’s Dora Ohrenstein’s Perfect Fit Raglafrom issue 27 of Inside Crochet (way back in March 2012). I’ve finally hooked it up. and the result is a massive disappointment! It doesn’t fit, though I thought I’d swatched and taken correct measurements. Plus the seaming isn’t up to scratch – it ain’t easy sewing together lacy pieces, and I’m beginning to realise why people work seamlessly! I never really minded seaming before.. So this Finished Object became a Failed Object, thus a Fo(e)!

Phooey to it!

Okay, so ya win some ya lose some, right? Failure is an opportunity to learn and develop. However, I’ve also encountered obstacles in part 2 of the International Diploma in Crochet – namely, communication difficulties with my tutor. She just doesn’t ‘get’ what I’m saying or asking. I know communication is a two-way thing, but I don’t know how to make myself any clearer! It’s very dispiriting. So after raising the subject with said tutor, I’ve decided to have a ‘hook hiatus’. I’m returning to (ssh!) knitting for a while. Prior to the IDC, I knitted and crocheted in fairly equal measure, but have rarely picked up the needles since registering. I have a long-neglected queue of knit projects to be getting on with. This isn’t to say that I’ve outgrown crochet or that I think knitting is the better craft. I just require an interlude. My crochet will undoubtedly be better off for it.

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And then there were none…

For the first time in several years (and quite possibly since I started my yarn adventures), I didn’t knit or crochet any gifts for Xmas. I’ve been beavering away on an all-consuming design.

I was, however, the grateful recipient of a couple of presents that were either knitted or relating to the craft: one was a bright orange blanket, being put to good use already; the other, a set of blocking mats, which will be very useful when I finish the lacy project I’m working on.

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Did anyone (in the UK) watch the adaptation of Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None? Death by knitting needle is a novel, but plausible, way of killing someone off. Move over, Xena: Warrior Princess! I don’t think crochet hooks would be quite so effective!

All that’s left to say is: Happy New Year! If 2015 hasn’t gone well for you, I hope 2016 is better. And if you’ve had a fab time this year, may it continue next year!

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Dipping

I didn’t tell you, did I, that I finally finished Part 1 of the International Diploma in Crochet? I received the certificate back in August, and am now signed up to Part 2 which focuses on design.IMG_1864

I’ve only sent in and received back a couple of samples so far. I’m too distracted by all the designs that have been gathering dust in my head during Part 1, and now they’re all clamouring for attention! I’ve been swatching like mad, and trying to make sense of numbers. I’ve no doubt my maths is going to let me down, especially when it comes to grading. As well as the valuable process of writing instructions/charts for samples and projects of IDC Part 2, I am very glad there is a free pattern testing group on Ravelry, which I intend to make use of. If anyone snaps up any of my designs to test, that is!

N0 doubt most of you have heard of the w.i.p. (work in progress) Well, here is sneak-peak at a couple of designs in progress (is there such thing as a d.i.p. in knitting and crochet parlance?) …

I’m not sure if other designers find this, but the process of design ain’t quick, even when it’s a simple design!

 

 

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A Woolly Witch

Seeing as it is Halloween, I thought I’d show off a woolly witch I’ve had for.. ooh, 20 years or so. My friend who started me off on my yarn-mania made it for me – only the hat is knitted – and it hangs from my cupboard door. All year around. Oh yes, this witch is not just for Halloween!
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Knit one pearl one…

I got  a book out from the library a few days back – I don’t read much fiction these days – too busy with my hook! But it’s something to pass the time when queueing in the post office (to send off samples/projects for the International Diploma in Crochet, for example) or travelling on tubes (not on buses though, as I get travel sick – yuk!) On page 53, I came across this error…

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…..and reader correction!

Not sure I would go quite that far …would you?

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Snazzy Keyring

My fervour for buying crochet magazines has somewhat diminished as my skills have improved through doing the International Diploma in Crochet. I’m less likely to need the how-to sections found in mags, though I do enjoy reading about history and designers etc. I did, however, get the latest Simply Crochet for the mini crochet hooks on a keyring…

IMG_1515Gimmicky, I know – it’s not like crochet hooks are difficult to carry around anyway (unlike knitting needles which have poked holes in my bags). But I couldn’t resist these! I had a quick go at crocheting a few rows – not enough yet to know if they’ll be useful for anything other than a keyring.

Has anyone else got these? I wonder what you think of them – love or hate?

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