Wednesday, May 24, 2017

New Pattern and a Bright Side

Wow - It seemed like some unseen force was trying to stop the progress of this pattern, but it's finally FINISHED! 

1-2-3 Beautiful Scarf, crochet, pattern, for sale, Ravelry, scarf, cowl, Caron Simply Soft, yarn

  I can't believe two whole months went by from the first post, Mess or Masterpiece. I asked for your opinions... Is it a neat design or a terrible idea? Most agreed that it wasn't the pattern; the color of the yarn was the problem. So, I finally decided on the right yarn, made it in a solid color, and was satisfied enough to start creating charts and directions... But then life kinda fell apart.

  The cover was blown on my super-secret project when my car broke down. The good sides to that situation: It forced me to get my truck back on the road, and it gave me an idea to help fight the algorithm change. Sorry that my rant to Ford made its way onto a crochet blog. I'm working on another(?) blog that will be the proper place for such things in the future.

  Frantically working to get the truck road-worthy made me realize that I've been missing a part of my life. It later registered that I am a very diverse person and the world is missing out on so many things I have to say because I limit myself to family-friendly, craft-oriented blogs... And yes, I said blogs, because I already have another. However, I will be deleting that "random craft" blog because it's horribly neglected. Perhaps when I complete a craft once a year, I can just share it here.

  As for the other parts of me: Some of those might involve four-letter-words and middle fingers because I swear the morons all come out whenever I drive. (Wait, maybe they're always out there...) But seriously, I need a place to scream "stop passing people on a double yellow line in a blind curve, you idiots!"; I crave a following where somebody might have heard my favorite metal bands/songs; I think I saw Bigfoot when I was a kid - That's an interesting story nobody really wants to hear (lol); there's a lot of good reasons to share why I won't work with electricity; sometimes I want to talk about the latest politics; will I find others who laugh at the whisper of "Chicken Permission"? It doesn't always have to involve profanity and insults, but I know there's so much that just doesn't belong here.

Chicken Permission, Rob Dyke, YouTube, mug, merch

  Crochet, yarn, and trips to the craft store are still very much a part of my disparate life! This blog is here to stay. So I'll ask of you: Please show me the same respect I've shown you by keeping the "family-unfriendly" out of this blog... If the material isn't for you, then you're welcome to come back to the land of yarn where it will now be free of my complaining about car parts. Or if you already know it won't be your cup of tea, don't go there at all. But, don't think you're getting away that easy! You'll still get rants about how the local Michaels never has buttons. I promise there just won't be any middle fingers or Meshuggah here.

  So with all that figured out, it was time to get to work on the pattern... Oh, but wait, then I got sick. Finished with the creation of the scarf but stumped for a name, I reached out for help again. My mind flip-flopped through the awesome ideas that readers were sharing. Something stuck out to me. The most common word used in the comments: Beautiful. Well, it made me decide on part of the title, but then what?

  Then, I skipped the Granny-Spiration Challenge when Dad was put in the ICU with pneumonia. Just when it looked like he would get to go home, the doctors came back with what sounded like scary news. Each day as I visited him, I worked on another scarf. (Eventually I made a cowl, too.) Besides the rainbow of colors filling my bag, there's another bright side here: After a minor surgery and a quick recovery, he seems to be doing better than ever. Pneumonia really might have saved his life, and Anderson is happy to have him home.

cats, white, Anderson, kitty

  I had a chance to peruse the comments again and consider a name for the scarf. It all came together with a suggestion about the stitch count... There's only three numbers in the whole pattern. One, two, and three; plus it's done in just one, two, three rows/rounds! With things slowly getting back to normal, I was able to put the finishing touches on the PDF for the pattern. The 1-2-3 Beautiful Scarf got a less elegant name than I expected, but I think it has enough character to speak for itself without a fancy title. Thank you so much to all of you who commented. Without you, this would still just be "Scarf #1"!

1-2-3 Beautiful Scarf, crochet, pattern, for sale, Ravelry, scarf, cowl, Caron Simply Soft, yarn

  Sometimes it takes awhile to shine through, and there's times you're not looking hard enough to see it yet. There is almost always a bright side to the stresses in life. I'm going to work more often on for-sale patterns until I can make more than pennies a day again... But I really like the idea of giving you all chances to get them for free, too. If you missed out on this one, there will be more in the future. It's the most I can do to say "thank you" to all my readers. When I wrote in a post that you can help support the bloggers you like just by turning off your ad-blocker, I saw what you did there; you listened. 😉 80% of you listened, and it helped a lot. Thank you.

Now, let's see if I can figure this out!

If you're interested in purchasing the pattern for the 1-2-3 Beautiful Scarf, you can find it on Ravelry -OR- If this works right, you should be able to buy it right here without being a Ravelry member! (No guarantees it's going to work; this is my first time doing this.) Click the "buy now" button:

Happy Crocheting!

1-2-3 Beautiful Scarf, crochet, pattern, for sale, Ravelry, scarf, cowl, Caron Simply Soft, yarn

Friday, May 19, 2017

Roll with It

  Having to go places always leaves me with one thought: I need more clothes; shirts the most. It's easy to order camisoles in my size online, so I usually lounge around the house in a tank. When I go out, I like to cover up a bit. Ordering nicer tops online isn't so easy... They never fit me the way I think they will. *Face palm* Wait, I have skills! Why am I not making more of my own clothes? It's just an over-shirt, so it can be lacy. And so, another top has been started.

crochet, WIP, work in progress, Deborah Norville Hipster, yarn, Premier Yarns, bamboo, top, blouse, shirt, garment

  This project will help cover three goals of mine: The first, obviously to make a nice blouse. The second, to clean out my yarn stash. (When I find it, there is part of a project using this yarn that will be a "From the Stash" article.) And third, to expand my wardrobe to include something other than black, blue and grey.

crochet, WIP, work in progress, Deborah Norville Hipster, yarn, Premier Yarns, bamboo, top, blouse, shirt, garment

  I bought four balls of this Hipster yarn online as an impulse buy; two in the color you see (Roses) and two in another color. The super-soft, stretchy bamboo blend makes a squishy fabric that's lightweight and warm at the same time, so I've been picky about what to make with it. Also, I don't like pink and I hated the way the short-changing colorway worked up.

crochet, WIP, work in progress, Deborah Norville Hipster, yarn, Premier Yarns, bamboo, top, blouse, shirt, garment

  Currently working on another project with a larger-than-usual hook, I got the idea to try the same with Hipster. Starting off with double crochet and then working up to triple crochet stitches, the yarn changed colors so quickly that they didn't have a chance to pool.

crochet, WIP, work in progress, Deborah Norville Hipster, yarn, Premier Yarns, bamboo, top, blouse, shirt, garment

  I'm still not sure if I like it, because it's one of those multi-colors that you just have to like... And I don't. It's loud. But, I've decided to continue anyway. If I'm going to add some color to my wardrobe, I might as well do it with something outrageously colorful. Plus, as I expand the stitches into double-triple and even taller stitches, the changes are happening faster within the stitch to help tone down the bright pops of red. Even so, I'm still fighting the urge to rip the whole thing back.

crochet, WIP, work in progress, Deborah Norville Hipster, yarn, Premier Yarns, bamboo, top, blouse, shirt, garment

  Nope! Roll with it. This project works up so quickly that there won't be much time wasted if I hate it. I'm hoping the first wash will help relax the yarn to make the stitches look neater. Heavily kinked from being in the stash for years, it's not making the prettiest work. Perhaps nobody will see the messy stitches through all those colors. It's almost blinding.

crochet, WIP, work in progress, Deborah Norville Hipster, yarn, Premier Yarns, bamboo, top, blouse, shirt, garment

  I do wish this yarn was available in solid colors, but it's not (yet?). It would be nice to mix this with a coordinating color to make it a little easier on the eyes. Perhaps the problem is my dislike of pink, red, or more than two colors in general... Is it just me? I'm willing to bet that many of you will agree that the colors just scream at you.

crochet, WIP, work in progress, Deborah Norville Hipster, yarn, Premier Yarns, bamboo, top, blouse, shirt, garment

  Work still continues anyway. I'll finish it, wear it, and see whether I get compliments or strange looks. Regardless of dislike for the color, I'm excited to share how simple this project is! You won't have to use super-tall stitches if you don't want to! (If you do, you can check out my old tutorial here.) Instead of writing a pattern, I'm going to create another "make-it-your-way" lesson that will teach you how easy it can be to make a perfect-fitting garment. But first, to find a solid-colored yarn for photos. And if I'm going to make more than one top, I might as well make different versions. Maybe I'll keep it the same... We'll have to wait and see.

  I haven't been home much lately to work on the pattern for the still-unnamed scarf. It needs to be done before I start working on anything else, so that will delay the tutorial for this top. Seriously, I have to fight the urge to put the scarf on the back-burner because I'm so excited to share this new project! But, no, there are people waiting on that pattern to be done. I will do the responsible thing and work on that as much as possible, and I can keep crocheting more projects while away from my PC. In the meantime, the opportunity to get the for-sale scarf pattern for free is still open to all who comment on either of the following posts:

Mess or Masterpiece?

Almost Done

Happy Crocheting! 

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Life, Squared

  We all know that other matters in life sometimes take precedence over crochet. (GASP!) Those of you who follow the blog know that I've ran into many problems over the last month. To add to the mayhem, my dad was admitted to the ICU with pneumonia. This past week has been spent visiting him and feeding his enormous cat Anderson. I love a good challenge, and I hate to back down from one. But as a result of yet another unforeseen circumstance, I have no choice but to skip participating in the Granny-Spiration Challenge for May.

crochet, cats, Anderson, Granny Square, Granny-Spiration Challenge 2017

  I have so many granny square (or granny-themed) projects around that it seems impossible to not meet the challenge... But, I need to concentrate on getting life squared away before I can get back to crochet. It's been rough this month. However, all is not lost. I have plans in place for the things I can control, and I hope it will help to make space for those things we can't predict. Everything will be explained in an upcoming post.

  You can enter the linkup and giveaway at EyeLoveKnots as always. Hopefully I'll find the time to hop in to see the awesome projects you all share! I just need some time to regroup, then I'll be back next month with another great Granny-Spiration project for you. Please do still visit everyone else in the challenge to see what they've created:

Happy Crocheting!

PS - Scarves!

crochet, pattern, scarf, Ravelry, for-sale, free gift, Caron Simply Soft

During my own sick time and the days spent sitting with dad in the hospital, I've been creating a ton of my latest scarf in different colors. And I'll let you in on a secret about this for-sale pattern: One of the stitches used is the same you'd work for a granny square corner, so it will fit into the Challenge a bit! I'm still searching for a name for the design, so look for my post shared at the linkup for a chance to get it for free on Ravelry when the pattern is finished.

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