Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Crochet - Shimmer skirt

Here is the other large project I have going right now; a long skirt for my younger daughter. The yarn had come out for Christmas last year in Walmart. I had no purpose in mind for it, but I liked the colour and shimmer, so I grabbed a couple of balls. It's Bernat Shimmer, which is very much like the Patons Brilliant (in face, until I hunted out the label to write this, that's what I thought it was, having used it for the balletneck sweater). It's a hand wash only yarn, with a bulk rating of light (3), and it came in 300g balls. It's 69% acrylic and 31% polyester.


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I'm making this pattern up as I go along, using the techniques from Mary Jane Hall's, Crochet That Fits. I didn't count the stitches when I made the foundation chain. Instead, I simply held it up to my daughter to measure from her waist to her ankles. The stitch markers frame her hip area, with a sc waist band at the top, hdc at the hips and dc for the body. My original thought was to have a button closure at the waist, but I think it might not actually need it. We shall see. The pattern will be repeated like this for the entire skirt so, like the afghan I'm making for my older daughter, I won't bother taking more photos until the end. I will make it wide enough to fit snugly around the hip area, so that the weight of the skirt is held by the hips, as well as the waist.


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This is a close up of the foundation chain, which is one area I did things a bit differently. I worked the first row of stitches into the BACK of the foundation row, leaving the top loops available for later. When it comes time to sew up the seam at the end, this will have the foundation chain looking just like the last row of stitches, so it won't need any extra finishing. If I do end up adding a button closure, this will also give me loops to work into.

Depending on how much yarn I have left with this is done, I might be able to make a matching top, as well.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

New project: Crochet - Reminiscence afghan

I've got several new projects on the go right now, all of them crochet. I really need to work on something else, too! *L*

This one, however, is a special request. My older daughter asked me to crochet a blanket for her to use this winter. She needs something for those "in between" nights, when it's too cold for a sheet, but too warm for her comforter, and she didn't like anything she saw in the stores.

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We went through so many pattern books at the library, I no longer remember which one this is from! I know I've seen it in Michael's, too, so I'll have to look it up. I'm not finding it in the library any more - it's either checked out, or at a different branch.

The pattern is called Reminiscence. It's done with a H/8 - 5.00mm hook and worsted weight yarn. My daughter chose a Red Heart Comfort Sport in brown, which came in 350g balls.

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The pattern for the body is a repeat of one 4 stitch shell. The texture is created by the first two dc stitches done in the 3rd and 4th stitches of the shell below, 1 ch, then the final dc done in 1st stitch of the previous shell group, worked from the front. This requires a bit of digging and twisting to get the hook into the right spot. It's really quite nice, but kind of slow going.

Since the entire body is done like this, I won't bother posting any other photos until I start working on the lace border. I'm looking forward to that part :-D It might take a couple of months before I post about this project again, though. *L*

Sunday, August 2, 2009

It's finished!! Crochet - balletneck sweater

Finally, after several interruptions and delays, I got the balletneck sweater finished. You can view the photos for the entire project here, and the step-by-step blog posts here.

Here are the final photos. The sweater is being modelled by my daughter so, aside from the bust area, it's about 3 sizes too large on her.

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First, the modified yoke. When I tried it on, before ending off the yarn, it actually rested a bit higher on my shoulders, but not high enough to rub against my neck. The width those extra rows added really balanced it out, too. The only frustration with finishing the yoke was running out of yarn about a dozen stitches before the end of the last round. *L*

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A quick look at the side seam, which is a valley row in between the red lines I drew on.

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Here, I've marked the extra row and seam joining the lower arm portion to the upper arm portion. On the other arm, this seam is at the back.

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And finally, the whole thing. Being so many sizes too large for her, the body is much looser than it would be (though with the ribbed design, it doesn't really look it, does it?), the neck line higher, and the 3/4 sleeves would be slightly farther from her wrists.

The front and back are the same, except for the joining stitch on each round of the yoke. In fact, my daughter put it on backwards at first and we didn't notice until I deliberately went looking for the joins to see how obvious they were. I will probably add some sort of label to mark the back.

In trying it on myself, I found only one odd thing about the sweater. For some reason, the sleeves tend to turn while it's being put on, so that I have to twist them straight again before I put my arm completely through. I'm not sure why it does that.

I think it turned out rather well. :-D I hope my mother likes it. When I give it to her, I'm going to include one of the extra balls of yarn, in case she wants to add something to the cuffs or bottom, or in case repairs are needed at some point.