Sunday, November 1, 2015

Curlicue love...

Last week I showed a picture of my first Curlicue Hat and said it wasn't the last I was making.   These hats are fun and easy to make so it's a little hard to resist the pull of making more.  Here's a link to the pattern for anyone who might be feeling the pull to give it a try.  ;^)

Fortunately for me I thought of some young girls I could make some for.  So I finished three more this week.  They are going to sisters, and I wanted them similar to each other, but not identical, so I chose three different colors of the same yarn.

After trying out several different yarns that I either had on hand, or could buy locally, I found Red Heart Gumdrop yarn to produce the most satisfying results for the young ages these are made for.  The colors are bright and fun and the variegation is short and scattered enough that pops of color appear pretty randomly, as opposed to pooling or creating odd or irregular stripes in the finished project.  I don't think I could be more pleased with how these turned out.

Here is the first hat, done in the color Apple (the green is more vivid than it appears in this picture):

And then came Grape (this color, too, is a bit more vivid than it appears here):

And finally...Cherry (this is pretty true to color - though I think the picture could have been crisper):

As a yarn review, I want to say I love how this yarn crochets up in terms of the proliferation of pops of colors, and absence of pooling or irregular striping.  Being completely honest, I like it better crocheted than knitted (having looked at various knitting projects created with this yarn).  The pops of color just seem to beg for larger stitches to show them off.

Now then... as much as I like how these hats turned out, I need to also say I'm not sure I'm a fan of the yarn itself.  And that hurts my heart.  A lot.  It hurts because it's soft and pretty perfect for baby and children's items, but it is terribly splitty when working with it.  And of course, frogging and reworking it just makes it more splitty.   I disliked this splitting tendency so much that I ended up returning the extra skeins that I had purchased when I was first enamored by the various fun colors.  Well, that and I was enamored at the sale price and an additional coupon discount I was able to use where I bought it.

The texture of this yarn when working with it is reminiscent (to me) of Caron Simply Soft.  But it's also similar to Red Heart Soft yarn.  I've used both, and I while I prefer working with RH Soft over Caron SS, neither of these yarns are my favorite to work with.  Having said that, the items I've made with RH Soft and Caron SS are beautiful.  You'd never know looking at the finished projects that I struggled with the yarns.   The reality is this Gumdrop yarn is somewhere between these two yarns in terms of softness, spin, and feel of the finished project.   For anyone unfamiliar with the above two yarns this paragraph may be useless, but if you either love or dislike the above yarns, this may be helpful.  And keep in mind... I'm just reporting what my personal experience and opinion is.

I'm not saying I wouldn't buy it again, but if I do buy it in the future, I will be selective and only buy for a specific project.  I know me  - if I buy it at a great price to stash it, it will nag me as a difficult yarn and I'll likely resist using it.  If I buy a small amount for a specific project, I'm much more likely to work it up because I'll be so eager to see what it looks like again.  

Having just explained that splitting is a problem with this yarn, I will say different colors seem to split differently.  Cherry was, by far, the least splitty and Apple the most (of the three colors used here).   Happily, that works for me because Cherry is my favorite color.  :^)   I do think I want to try out all the other colors, though. I'm really wishing I had picked up a skein each of Smoothie and Orange as well.  Having seen some finished projects using those colors, I've got a feeling they may be among my favorites too. 

In short, if you're in the market for easy care acrylic for children's items I recommend the yarn for its pleasing palette of colors.  And it finishes up nice and soft.  But be forewarned that it may split as you work it, so know your tolerance for that and buy (or not) with that in mind.

To see what other YOPers are up to, visit this week's thread on Ravelry.  There's always something interesting in the works.


  1. I love those hats and printed out the pattern last week as it will make a great quick pattern for hats for my girls. I'm just hunting down suitable yarn for them as I've none in worsted weight. I personally love the grape one but the colours you chose are brilliant all over, having three girls I like to have things similar but still different for them as well.

    1. Ooh, I hope to see pictures of your hats, Ruth!

  2. Those hats are adorable! You're right the pops of color are perfect almost as if it was dyed specifically for that hat pattern. Too bad the yarn is splitty. That is one of my biggest pet peeves as it slows you down so much. Very successful project though and I am sure the recipients will be thrilled!

    1. Fortunately, the pattern is super easy - which made the splitting yarn tolerable. But yes, it did slow things down a bit.

  3. Love this cute hat collection! I also love coming back to one pattern for several times and make several pieces!

    1. I wish I had more little girls to make this hat for. My fingers are itching to start another one already. :)

  4. I love those hats - a great idea to give them as a set, but still be able to tell whose is whose.


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