Sunday, August 31, 2008

Ooh, crochet along!

Hello there folks! I hope you have all been having a glorious holiday weekend. I have certainly been making the most of my extra time off. And even though not all of it has been spent crocheting, I still feel like I've made some decent progress this week.

First things first, I finished the vest I wanted to make for my new pirate jinxlet that is on his way. Mr. Picasso Pants was kind enough to model the finished project for us:

It is a little bit bigger than I had planned on it being, but I kind of think it works. I used the pattern for the vest from the Leisure Arts Sock Monkey booklet (thanks to my little sis for sending me that book!) and I used my Alpaca Boucle yarn to make it. It's a pretty happy little outfit, just waiting for the right space faring alien to come along and don it.

After making that I was kind of at a loss for my next project. I have two more in my queue, not counting the Doctor Who project, but I haven't gotten a chance to take the patron of the commissioned blanket yarn shopping yet and the cape is going to be a pretty darn involved project, so I'm not quite ready for that one yet.

Then I got my newsletter from Lion Brand yarn and found out that they are having a crochet along! How fortuitous. The pattern is the Crochet Sampler Afghan, which is one I had been thinking about giving a go.

I went out Wednesday and bought my yarn--I've decided to go with Lion Brand's Pound of Love (in turquoise) rather than the Fisherman's Wool called for. Cori doesn't play well with yarn that isn't machine washable. It also calls for a size P hook, so I had to get one of those. It is making for a pretty large, loose weave. I am pretty happy with it, because it's super nice and soft and I think it will be a great cuddle up blanket. I do think sometime down the road though I'd like to give it a try with a smaller hook (I know several of the participants of the CAL are doing just that), because it seems this pattern is meant to be made with a tighter weave and I bet it would look pretty nifty that way as well.

The pattern itself is pretty simple. There are three different squares, and it calls for ten of each. Here's a glimpse at each square.

Square one: This is just a straight forward single crochet the whole way through square. It gets a little added texture since the pattern calls for you to SC in the back loop only of each row, which gives it those fun ridges.

Square two: Another pretty simple one, this square just alternates single crochet and double crochet rows. If you remember, that's what I used for my friend's birthday blanket back in April/May. I love how that particular pattern looks, especially with a big hook, and it is such a simple one to do as well.

Square three: This one is a little more complicated, at least for me. Though once I got the hang of the stitch, it seemed to work up much more quickly. This one alternates single crochet rows with rows of the cluster stitch (with three double crochets to a cluster). It looks really super spiffy. I may incorporate this stitch into another blanket down the road.

So those are the three squares. They are assembled in a basic 3, 2, 1 repeating order, with five squares to a row and six rows. I've got four squares completed and hope to get another two done today and another two done tomorrow. I did have to make one change to square one though. The pattern calls for that to be 33 rows long, but squares two and three are each only 18 rows, which at 10 rows of SC and 9 rows of DC each, works out to about 28 rows of SC. So I am making my square one only 28 rows. We'll see how it looks as the blanket progresses, though I think for me that may be the way to go. You know me, I can never just stick with a pattern.

If you're interested in the crochet along, it doesn't seem to have any time restrictions, and it just started this week, so feel free to jump right in! You can learn more at Lion Brand's Blog for the project. They also have a group up in Ravelry.

So until next time, happy crocheting!

Have a great week,

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