Category: Crochet

Projects of 2015

UntitledI know I haven’t been as diligent about posting here as I should be, and I don’t have a very good excuse. Since we’re getting closer to 2016, I thought I’d talk a bit about the projects that I finished in 2015. Keep in mind that I’m still pretty new to knitting, at least in my eyes. I started trying to learn many years ago and I just never ‘got it’ – then in September of 2015 when I attempted again it finally all just started to make sense. My first big goal was to knit socks, which I have now completed 2 pairs of (and I love them). I’ve got another post lined up about my knitting goals for 2016, so I won’t get into too many more details about that yet. What projects did I finish in 2015?

A baby cardigan was my first ever completed project. It was done flat, and I had to seam it. I didn’t even know then that there were actually ‘types’ of seams, and the poor thing is going to be frogged because it just looks absolutely horrid and I can’t imagine a child actually wearing the item. The second thing I made was a baby blanket and it’s supposed to be in a basket stitch but for some reason my stitches are way off and things are crazy. Therefor it’s another frogged project. The yarn is beautiful so I’ll find a better use for it. Next up were a pair of fingerless mitts. Now, these were much better, still knit flat (I hadn’t ventured into knitting in the round yet) but they fit me and they weren’t half bad. Unfortunately they also were not seamed very well, and now they’re falling apart. I’d like to knit myself some proper gloves or mitts before too long.

Then came a batch of random dish towels. I learned my first lace stitches and practiced making my knitting even. I eventually gave those away to a friend. The projects that followed took on a much better look, as I followed up with a baby top, my first pair of socks, a colour work hat, and then a little mini lace headband. I still have each of those items and like them quite a bit. Then came a bit of a hat phase. I knit one minecraft hat for a friend of mine, and then another friend asked if I would knit her three of them for her family. Then came a lacework hat, and after all of those were done (and I swore off hats) I still ended up completing two more. A deer hat for my youngest brother, and a Star Wars hat for myself. I really enjoy colour work, that’s for sure.

Between all those hats I knit a tardis dishcloth, a cable scarf, my first shawl (mostly garter stitch, very little actual lace), and a spa day facecloth. 17 projects in total, using 5,157 yard of yarn. Not bad for someone who just started in September, I think. As always, please feel free to add me to your Ravelry friends list if you happen to frequent those forums. They’re absolutely fantastic, and I probably wouldn’t have knit half the things I did without the motivation and encouragement of the groups I joined, along with the amazing designers who have both paid and free patterns for people. It really is a great place for knitters and crocheters. Like I said, 2016 is just around the corner, and I have some big ideas in mind for what I’d like to accomplish – but that will have to wait for another post.

 


Yarn Sales? YARN SALES!

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Since I just recently started knitting (September of this year) I’m still learning about the ins and outs of yarn purchases. What I do know is that the yarn I usually get from Michaels (the only local craft store in my area) is not as nice (also the price is very expensive) as the yarn I get from say.. KnitPicks while they have their cyber monday sale going on. That means that most of last week was spent stocking up on a lot of yarn. I mean, a LOT. Probably too much. OK definitely too much. I do have quite a few patterns in mind and added to my queue which should take care of most of these, but here’s the grand total of what I’m waiting to show up at my door. They should arrive throughout the week and into next week, hopefully:

  • Lint Shaver
  • Locking Knitting Stitch Markers
  • Blocking matts
    2 Cobblestone Heather Brava Worsted
    2 Dublin Brava Worsted
    2 Baker Street Felici Special Reserve
    2 Rainbow Felici Fingering
    2 Fedora WotA Sport Yarn
    2 Forest Heather WotA Sport Yarn
    2 Thyme WotA Sport Yarn
    1 Black Brava Sport
    1 Dublin Brava Sport
    1 Silver Brava Sport
    1 Umber Heather Brava Sport
    1 White Brava Sport
    2 Rainbow Felici Fingering
    2 Time Traveler Felici Fingering
    2 Black Stroll Glimmer
    2 Sagebrush Palette
    1 Blue Varigated Special BUY
    1 Denim Varigated Special BUY
    1 Fashion Varigated Special BUY
    1 Peacock Varigated Special BUY
    2 Purple Varigated Special BUY
    1 Red Varigated Special BUY
    2 Black Brava Sport
    1 Celestial Brava Sport
    1 Dublin Brava Sport
    1 Eggplant Brava sport
    1 Fairytale Brava sport
    1 Grass Brava Sport
    1 Lady Slipper Brava Sport
    1 Marina Brava Sport
    1 Red Brava Sport
    1 Solstice Heather Brava Sport
    1 Wine Brava Sport
    2 Fanciful Felici
    5 Clover Palette
    2 Jay Stroll Glimmer
    2 Potion Stroll Glimmer

Most of the yarn was less than $2 per skein, the felici was a bit more, but it’s amazing sock yarn. The blocking mats I really needed since I have nothing to lay projects out on at the moment, and I still have my shawl ongoing. I bought brava sport in colours to make a hue shift afghan, and I saw a stranded colourwork mitt done with stroll glimmer as the background colour that was just amazing. I’m hoping that this is enough yarn to keep me busy for the next year, and my goal is not to buy any yarn at all, but instead to work on my knitting skills, gifts, and enjoy my hobby. Don’t forget, if you’re on Ravelry you can add me as a friend here. I’ve got my projects posted, my yarn stash (to date) posted (I haven’t added the KnitPicks sale items yet as I haven’t received them) and I’m pretty active on the forums in a few groups that I have found.

This weekend I started working on my 2nd pair of socks, the first sock should be completed today. It’s amazing how much faster they go once you’ve made a pair, my first pair took me a week per sock, these ones are three days per sock (approximately). They’re a pair of patterned socks, since my first pair were plain I wanted to keep challenging myself. More pictures in tomorrow’s post!


Yarn? I’ve got a bit..

I don’t own a lot of yarn, and I suppose in a way that’s a good thing. I guess it would also depend on your notion of ‘a lot’. The majority of my yarn comes from generic stores like Michaels which is all that I could find in my area, but I’ve started to branch out a bit and explore what ‘good’ yarn actually is. Price is always a factor but I’ve heard that buying good yarn is important, and I want to learn more about fiber. Right now when I look at yarn it’s hard for me to decide if it’s ‘good’ or not. The more different types of yarn I use, the more I’m able to decide what I personally like to use. Some yarn is a lot more coarse than other types. Some splits very easily and makes it difficult to knit with. Those types of things begin a long list in my learning process.

With my lack of knowledge it’s no real surprise that my first purchases were mostly acrylic worsted weight yarns. I picked up some sock yarn as well, this is also called ‘sport’ yarn, or it’s shown by the number 2 on the package indicating the weight. Very light.

One of my first ‘real’ yarn purchases (which I haven’t used yet) was ‘Hawthorne Sport Multi Yarn‘ by KnitPicks. It’s a combination of wool and nylon, which should make fantastic socks. Unfortunately I don’t actually know how to knit socks quite yet, so I haven’t had a reason to use the yarn, but I’m looking forward to it when I do (remember socks are my dream goal to complete one day). I also purchased a bunch of ‘Mighty Stitch’ worsted yarn. This is acrylic, and while it IS incredibly soft, it also splits very easily which made it difficult to work with. I bought 8 skeins total of the Mighty Stitch and I’ve already completed a baby blanket as well as two dishcloths. I’d like to complete another baby blanket (my cousins are both expecting and I want to send one to each of them) and I’m not sure yet what I’ll do with the rest. We’ll see I suppose.

Last week I added two new yarn types to my collection. One was 10 skeins of Brava Bulky in ‘Fairy Tale’ that I haven’t quite decided what to do with yet. I was thinking I might make a blanket for myself since I don’t actually have one that I’ve made, or I might make it into a sort of shawl that I can wear around the house draped like I would a blanket. The yarn has some pretty negative reviews but I liked the price and decided to give it a try anyway. Another example of where you pay for what you get.

The second type came free with my purchase for September, and it’s Brava Sport¬†¬†and I got five skeins of that. There’s a lot of complaints about this acrylic yarn but since it was free who am I to turn down yarn! I have no idea what I’ll knit up with it yet. I used to really like darker colours for knitting but the more I work with it the more I prefer light colours. They seem to show off patterns better.

What are your favourite yarns to work with? Do you have a particular store online where you like to purchase from? So far I’m only familiar with Knitpicks, but I’m always open to suggestions so if there are others out there with good pricing and especially shipping to Canada I would be all ears!

For now, the large bin in the living room is holding all of my yarn neatly. How big is your yarn stash?