Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The world's oldest UFO... completed!

Finally, the afghan squares that sat unjoined in my mom's closet for 36 years have become an afghan!

After taking my sweet time weaving in the ends, about 2 weeks ago, I crocheted the squares together and then made a simple single crochet edging. The joining method I chose was from Edie Eckman's fantastic Beyond the Square Crochet Motifs. It's a mix of single crochet and chain stitches and it's quick and very pretty!

I was going to keep this afghan (about big enough to be a baby blanket or a lap afghan) in the living room, but my 2-year-old decided it's hers. She named it "the beautiful blanket" and dragged it to her bed. Who can argue with that?

Completing this afghan put me in a granny square kind of mood and I decided to make a half-granny square shawl out of leftover Koigu KPPPM that I had from baby blankets, mittens and my recent Charlotte's Web shawl.

I've named it "Charlotte's Granny." Like Charlotte's Web, it has exceeded my expectations!

I started with the colorways I had the least of and worked to the ones I had the most of. Conveniently, this went pretty much from light to dark. It only took a week to make, and it was loads of fun! My 2-year-old has declared this also to be hers, and keeps it in her bed.

Hmmm... this is a disturbing trend. I didn't expect my kids to start commandeering my FO's quite yet! Since it's pretty sturdy, being just half a granny square, and superwash wool, I gave it to her. She grinned her little head off and threw it over her little shoulders just like she sees me do. Pretty awesome. :-)

Now her big sister, 4 and a half, wants one, too. Thankfully I still have more leftover Koigu AND other glorious handpainted sock yarn, so I'll be beginning another soon.

For now, I've got a sock and the 2nd Frida Kahlo-inspired pattern on the needles. After I finish a big load of work later this week, I am going yarn shopping, so there a lot more projects coming!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Sun hats, in hope of someday seeing some sun!

Here in the Seattle area, this June has been dubbed "June-uary." It's cold, wet, gray, dark and dreary. June is young, so I'm hoping this will change soon, because as usual, it is driving me a bit nuts.

Back in May, we had one really nice week of sun and 70+ degree weather. I got hopeful and made the kids and myself some sun hats. I hope I didn't jinx the weather by making them, but it is looking an awful lot like a conspiracy to me. I make sun hats, the sun goes away... hmmm.

Anyway, I'm sure we will need them at some point, and I could not be happier with them! They are Alla Koval's Garden Party Crocheted Hat pattern (which is free!).

I made two of the orange hats, one for each of my girls, in Tahki Cotton Classic and one for me, in some Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Cotton. The flower on each is my favorite crocheted flower, the Flower Power Posey by Heather Lodinsky (free pattern!). They're feminine, they're super sunny and cheery and I love them! The pattern is fantastic, super-easy and loads of fun. Even after making three of them in a row, I wasn't bored. Whenever the sun does appear, our heads and faces will be stylishly well-protected!

Alla's Ravelry profile says she lives in Seattle. I've noticed she uses a lot of bright colors in her designs. I wonder if she, like me, finds color a wonderful antidote to this intolerable weather!

Speaking of color, I am dying to make a Colour Affection. I have three delightfully bright colorways of Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks That Rock picked out. I want mine to glow in the dark! The question is, do I start it soon, when our all too brief season of sunny weather is due to start in a few weeks, or do I save it for oh, September, when the wretched gloom comes back? Decisions, decisions. We'll see what kind of willpower I have.

On a whim, I started a pair of socks made with some leftover Lion Brand LB Collection Superwash Merino, a yarn I am in LOVE with. I didn't want any of it to go to waste, and holy crap, is this a great yarn for socks. It's super-elastic and boingy, it's cushy and squishy, it's not at all splitty, and being DK weight, it works up fast. I'm going to get more of this soon just for socks! I'm envisioning more stripes, Fair Isle, lace, cables, whatever strikes my fancy!

I'm also making progress on joining my mom's 36-year-old granny squares. I have them crocheted into strips, now I just need to crochet the strips together and make a pretty edging! It took me a while to weave all the ends in on all the squares. No wonder mom let them sit for 36 years, weaving in ends is so tedious! The result was worth it, though, it will be great to turn these squares into a lovely afghan at long last.