Crochet · Knitting · Sewing · Year of Projects

YOP – year 9 – week 1

Today marks the first week and post of a new Year of Projects year.

Can you believe this is our 9th year? It doesn’t feel like I’ve been doing this for 9 years! I’m always in two minds whether everyone’s wrap up posts looking back on everything, like last weeks post are my favourite or whether it is in fact visiting everyone’s first post of a new year and seeing the lists all laid out. Either way I think I just enjoy the whole entire process.

So this week is all about setting out my list, and plans for the coming year. What I’m hoping to accomplish over the coming months for my projects and makes. As usual I’m going to take what worked last year and in previous years for me and bring that forward, discard what doesn’t work for me and hopefully along the way refine that whole process. I will also be talking about what I’ve done this past first week on projects.

I have two main aims to this years list. One is somewhat similar to last years in that it’s main focus is to help me obtain a me made wardrobe. The second aim of this years list is to use what I have already and purchase as little as possible. I’m not putting myself on a yarn or fabric diet but I want to be more conscious and aware of my footprint in these areas and why purchase when I have something already that is suitable. Only this week I’ve had to go through my wardrobe and take out all the clothes that are now once more too big for me, which is wonderful considering the weight loss journey I’m on, but I am conscious about the footprint this is causing with having to purchase and indeed make new items of clothing.

So my plan for this and for the coming year is to purchase a few key things, which I’m aiming to do by September and then I aim to put a no purchase on new clothes for at least six months. I’ve managed to work perfectly fine with a very limited wardrobe to this point, considering what little in it fits. Any pieces I’ve cleared out that I can re-purpose I will be doing so, other wise I will be donating them to second hand shops.

Also all the patterns I’ve listed I have already so for the next YOP year I’m not going to be purchasing any new patterns and instead I will be using what I have. I hope to use as much yarn from stash as I can and will only purchase yarn for garments if I don’t have the amount needed or can’t make the amount needed from stash. As for fabric, I only need to purchase some fabric for both tops on my list, I have fabric already for the other items. At the moment I am tracking how much yarn comes into and out of my stash for the calendar year so let’s take that one step further with patterns and fabric and aim to use what I have already.

I will still be working monogamously on individual projects as I just find this was the biggest success of the last year and I have no wish to change or alter that, if it’s not broke don’t fix it.

There will be three main areas of the list this year, which I will detail with my chosen patterns and in greater detail below and one section that has no real aim only for me to dip into when the desire strikes.

Knitted Garments

This section is my comfort zone. The more knitted garments I make the more elements and modifications I like to make and incorporate and I’m comfortable making them. So while I have a list of patterns I’d like to make and you will see the return of some of my favourite designers as well as a pattern I’ve knitted before. I will be making modifications to quite a good few of them as I go along, by the end of the year I may just abandon these stated patterns and knit from my head. This could be exciting but I’m a little hesitant to put it down right now as it will depend on what else is going on as I also want to explore some more vintage patterns and this is going to be a sub section of the knitted garments section with no real goal only to explore it some more. The proposed garments for now, in no particular order, are;

 

Sewn Garments

Now this section is not in my comfort zone. It’s been a steep learning curve this last year in not only learning new to me sewing techniques but also my taste in patterns and in what suits me has changed. I have made it a much more modest and manageable list this year. This will help it to seem less overwhelming and a couple of the items I hope to make several versions of. Again you will see some familiar designers and patterns. The list of sewn garments in no particular order are;

 

Socks

This year will again feature a sock section. Socks are easy to knit and make a good change of pace project. I hope to continue to knit my way through the Wendy D. Johnson Toe Up socks for Everybody, or at least the socks from it that I’m interested in. I’m not going to complete any of the colourwork socks in this book and two patterns I will adapt for my own sock recipe numbers. In no particular order the remaining projects from this book are;

 

Blankets

This is the section of my list that I will dip in and out of as the desire strikes. This section as the title suggests is for blankets, crochet blankets to be more specific. I’m for now only listing the one current blanket I’m working on but should it by some miracle get finished this year I have other blanket projects that can replace it.

  • Woodland Blanket

So with the plans for the coming year out of the way, let’s take a quick look and what I’ve been doing this week. Well for one thing finishing off those button bands on the Mae Cardigan, which is all complete now and off the needles. Course it does need blocking and it’s buttons sewn on but you know I’ll get to that eventually and have a finished project post for it and shhh the Magnolia sweater.

Mae Cardigan

So with Mae off the needles I was debating about what I wanted to start next, what project did I want to being with and I seemed to be faffing about over the decision so rather than waste time I decided to start with a pair of socks while I thought about the garments I wanted to cast on. These I’m hoping to be a change of pace from garments as for the last few months I’ve just been working steadily on different garments. After a quick little root around in stash I opted for this Eden Cottage Tempo 4ply yarn in the Geum colourway and I’m beginning with the Victory sock pattern from my list. Here is what I have to show so far.

Victory socks

So there you have it, a relatively detailed look at what I’m hoping to achieve and accomplish this year and a quick little update just to cover what I have been working on this past week.

The list in it’s weekly format for this coming Year of Projects year looks like this;

Year of Projects 2019-2020 List

Knitted Garments

– Patterns

– Vintage Patterns

Sewn Garments

Socks

Blankets

  • Woodland Blanket

 

If you enjoyed reading this post and are interested in finding out more or indeed joining in, we love new members you can check out our Ravelry group and weekly posts here.

Ruth.

 

Crochet · Knitting · Projects in Progress

YOP – year 8 – week 47

Today’s post has been written a few days ago and published early. There has not been a lot of making going on, for a couple of reasons. Today is my Mum’s first year anniversary mass, while this coming Wednesday is her actual anniversary and I just haven’t felt like doing much, much of anything really. I’ve spent most of this last week on my own either over a coffee or taking a run/walk. The head space has allowed for some quiet to all that’s going on around me. Getting outdoors and getting more active has reminded me of why I enjoyed it so much in my youth, when I used to compete nationally in orienteering. This is also something I want to continue and focus more on and is why I am in the process of setting up a separate blog where I can write about the walks, treks and trails I go on. I’ll keep you posted on that for anyone interested.

I have been making, it’s just been a lot slower and for an hour or two only late in the evenings. The concentration is not so good I’ve found at the moment and I seem to be only able to concentrate on a row or two of the Mae cardigan. It’s not that it’s complicated, it’s just more my concentration on it, but I am enjoying the bits I’m doing on it here and there and I know myself well enough now to not push it further than that. Here is where it is now. The only way to get a good colour representation was for me to put something lighter into the shot, ie my hand and arm but this is a better picture of the colour than last weeks shot.

Mae Cardigan

I have been picking up my crochet blanket that I blogged about a couple of weeks back and I’ve been putting a row in here and there. It seems to be a lot more mindless and my fingers are enjoying the change of pace the different craft is bringing. I’m going to show you the blanket now because this coming week I just don’t think I’m going to get an extra post written up.

Crochet Blanket

and that’s it, short and sweet with not much happening, but the list it looks like this;

Year of Projects 2018-2019 List

Knitted Garments

  • Fintry – started July 7th – finished August 9th
  • Lichen – started August 11th – finished October 10th
  • Bentley – started October 13th – finished December 9th
  • Gingerbread – started March 26th – finished April 5th
  • Coloring – started January 1st – finished January 20th
  • Aster – started January 27th – finished February 26th
  • Cumulus Blouse – started October 20th – finished December 20th
  • Magnolia – started April 14th – finished May 4th
  • Mae Cardigan – started May 8th –

Sewn Garments

Socks

6 pairs

  • My Dearest Loveliest Elizabeth – started July 16th – FROGGED
  • Sock #1– started August 10th – finished August 26th 
  • Sock #2 – started August 30th – finished September 30th 
  • Sock #3 – started October 11th – FROGGED
  • Sock #4 – started November 4th – finished December 6th 
  • Sock #5 – started November 17th – FROGGED
  • Sock #6 – started December 10th – finished December 30th
  • Sock #7 – started January 4th – finished January 27th
  • Evelyns Socks – started March 1st – finished March 5th
  • Sock #8 – started March 7th – finished March 18th
  • Elizabeths Socks – started March 18th – finished March 24th
  • Sock #9 – started April 5th – finished April 14th

You can find the YOP group and weekly posts HERE

Ruth.

Crochet · Projects in Progress

Project in Progress – Crochet Blanket

After last weeks post I took all the advice, thank you for all your comments they helped lots, and had a think about what I could and would do about the crochet blanket.

Crochet Blanket 3

Quite a few of you were happy with the blanket as it was, and that made me feel so much better about the choices I had made. A few of you were completely right in that I was over thinking it, I’m completely guilty of that especially when it comes to patterns and colours. Even with all of that I wasn’t happy with the blanket, so I took the advice of taking out the larger green sections and seeing how I felt about the pattern then.

Crochet Blanket 2

After I took those out I stood back and assessed it once again. The colours ended up feeling out of balance….this is where more over thinking came into it I suspect. But I went with it anyway and frogged it all back until I had this;

Crochet Blanket 3

It really wasn’t that painful ripping out all that work and having all those little balls all over the table felt good, it must have been the right decision. Now with it all gone, it was time to begin again. I was reminded on instagram by Nicola, about the Moorland Blanket on the Attic 24 blog here. It didn’t take all that long to realise this would probably work better than the ripple I had been doing and would suit the colours I’ve chosen to work with. This blanket is also smaller in size than the one just frogged. This blanket will fit a single bed opposed to the double size I had been doing, so each row is done quicker and yet I’ll still end up with a substantial size blanket that will get thrown over the sofas for the family to use.

Crochet Blanket 4

It was lovely switching the making up to a different craft and it reminded me why I like crocheting blankets so much. The fingers and hands just seem to know what to do while the brain shuts off. I like how the colours are working better together with this pattern and the whole thing feels a lot more balanced. The pattern is easy and intuitive and it doesn’t take long before you can read the pattern from the stitches themselves. I would say not to try crocheting while watching the new series of Game of Thrones as I ended up frogging the row I was working on because I got distracted and this happened several times! Currently it’s sitting in my basket beside my chair and I’ve been picking it up almost daily to work a row on it, this seems to be working for the project right now so we shall go with that for as long as it lasts or until the blanket is complete.

This has sparked a crochet bug and I’ve a few other ideas for blankets, one in particular involving some yarn scraps, but as I already have two other blankets other than this one started, perhaps starting another would just be total folly but we shall see.

Crochet · Projects in Progress

Project In Progress – Crochet Blanket

Today’s project in progress post is a crochet blanket that has been in progress for some time. Blankets are currently the only long standing projects I have still in progress as the time taken to complete them is so much longer than even a garment so I tend to work on them when the desire to do so hits. This means they are in progress for some time. Currently I have three blankets that are in progress, two are crochet and one is knit. Crochet is my preferred way to make blankets and that is why perhaps having them as long standing projects in progress doesn’t bother me.

This blanket, pictured below is my longest standing one. It is a ripple crochet blanket, the pattern for which came from the Attic 24 blog here. When I start to make a blanket I tend to look at her blog for patterns and ideas. I’m using a 4mm crochet hook and some DK weight yarn.

Crochet Blanket 3

For all my blankets I use an acrylic yarn, Stylecraft DK is my favourite and is what is used in the majority of Lucy’s blankets on Attic 24 but for this one I chose four colours of a just an acrylic blend. The yarn is soft and I’ve no issues with the yarn and think it will make a serviceable and well wearing blanket, which is what I want from all my blankets. They get used daily, by all the family through out the year and I don’t want any of them to be precious blankets, I want them to be used, loved and enjoyed.

Crochet Blanket 1

My issues with the blanket and why it’s been put away and not worked on in quite some time is one of two issues. It is either the pattern or the colour placement I’ve used. I am leaning a lot more to the colour placement but either way this project is now firmly in the I no longer wish to work on it camp.

Crochet Blanket 2

I’ve had a think what I can do to change this project so it becomes something I want to work on and finish. Ok, so I like the stripped parts before both larger chunks of the dark green stripes. I think my main issue is with those dark green wider stripes. The blanket is folded and this is a quarter of it’s width so likely big enough for at least a double bed, I can’t remember correctly as I started it some time ago but judging from the size that’s what I think. The size I’m happy with and with eight balls of the light green yarn (2400 meters) and four balls of the dark green, cream and grey (1200 meters), I don’t think running out of yarn is an issue. I’m relatively happy enough with the pattern, it’s easy and mindless but I do wonder if there is some other pattern that might work better with the colours?

The options I have are

  1. Continue on and let the blanket develop as set out already.
  2. Frog this back to take out the wider dark green stripes and then continue on with the ripple but minus the wider dark green stripes.
  3. Frog the blanket completely and begin again with another pattern…but what? Corner to corner?….granny squares?…or something else???

I’d love to hear your thoughts and or suggestions as I’m stuck with the is project and where it is at the moment. Perhaps you have a different option? Maybe you have a different pattern suggestion that you can see working with these four colours? Are the four colours enough or is another colour needed?

At this stage I’m questioning everything to do with this project…

 

Crochet · Projects in Progress

PIP (Project in Progress)

This weeks project in progress is my Woodland Blanket.

IMG_5307

The Woodland Blanket was started as a CAL on the Attic 24 blog and the colours and style of it just captured my attention. Originally I was late in joining in but worked along to my own pace anyway. Then life happened as it so often has a way of happening and work on the blanket stopped.

I’ve completed the first section and the second section begins with the tomato colour. Originally I purchased the kit for this blanket from Wool Warehouse so I didn’t need to worry about having the exact colours in my stash of Sytlecraft DK which is the yarn that comes in the kit and happens to be they yarn I like for most of my crochet blankets. I like its softness and yet I love that I can throw the blankets in the machine when I need to and the blankets don’t get destroyed. I am working the colour rows to the suggestions on the Attic 24 blog. I’m making the blanket to the 4ftx6ft size and I’m using my 4mm Addi crochet hook which are my favourite hooks to use.

I’m ready to begin work again on this blanket and have it ready for snuggling in and under this winter.

Ruth.