Sunday, July 10, 2016

On And Off The Hook...

It feels, this past week, as if I've made a grand start to my YOP year.  Very productive with lots of yarny goodness.

As of July 1st, I'm participating in a Ravelry Crochet A-Long of the Spice of Life Afghan.   When we were voting for an afghan to make together this was not my first choice (or actually among any of the afghans I voted on), but now that I've begun, I'm loving it!  So much so that I'm making two.  At the same time.

One in colors approximating the designer's original colors (using yarns mostly in my stash):



And a second one in a more earth-toned (sorta) palette with some pops of color:


It's great having two on the hook at the same time.  If I get tired of one, I can switch for some variety. But the real genius of doing two simultaneously (that I discovered this week) is that by working a section in the designer's colors first (which I know I like), I then know what those rows look like, how the stitches lay, and how one row plays with the rows preceding and following it. That's a great advantage as I ponder what colors to use next in the second blanket.  Not that I feel all that confident about my color choices, but it does help.   If you're interested in knowing what colors and yarns I'm using, click on the links preceding each picture.

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Near the end of June, in the 2016 Weekly & Dishcloth CAL group  a small group of us recently took up the challenge to learn Tunisian crochet. We all made dishcloths:


After making a couple of these cloths, I decided to explore another tunisian stitch pattern and for the Red Heart Lovers' June CAL I started to make a Shadow Stitch Scarf, but feeling like the fabric I was creating was too stiff for a scarf, I took a deep breath, contemplated frogging it, but then got the great idea to make a pillow!


It's a simple thing, but I kinda love it!



I don't know how much I love tunisian crochet itself, in all honesty, but it's been interesting to learn.  And it's really not difficult.  Of course, the things I've made are among the simplest things to make (squares and a rectangle), but still... For first projects, I was pleased with how well they came out.  I'm going to try to get some cabled tunisian hooks so I can make something larger.  I guess then we'll see how easy I think it is.

And I've recently discovered the 2016 Ravelry Ravellenic Games.  I'm hoping to participate on a team - just because that sounds like a lot of fun, but the only group I'm active in that I know is hosting a team is the Ravelry Red Heart Lovers' group. They are a wonderful, encouraging bunch, and I definitely want to join them, but if everything that team makes has to incorporate Red Heart Yarns I may have to go it alone for some "events" if I get the itch to make something with other yarns. Check out the Revellenics if you haven't already.  You can join a team, or participate as an individual in events. Some amazingly creative and energetic folks have put together a fun group activity to coincide with the 2016 Summer Olympics in August.

There's more I could share (I said I've been productive), but I think I'll save some stuff for next week. For now, if you'd like to see what other YOPpers are up to, check out this week's thread.  Our small group of participants doubled, I think, as we began this new YOP year.  I'm looking forward to being inspired by all the wonderful creations everyone makes.



27 comments:

  1. Your blankets are beautiful!!!! You are doing great with Tunisian. Good for you for turning that into a pillow!!
    I'm doing Ravellenic Games. Very excited!!

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    1. I noticed that you're also doing the Ravellenics, Dianna. I'll be seeing you there!

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  2. Wonderful blankets. What a great idea to do two at the same time. Good job on the tunisian. I have done it but not a fan. The finished product is always pretty though.

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  3. Your blankets are gorgeous and the cloth is perfect - a very productive week!

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  4. Love your blankets especialy the earthy tones one. Your tunisian is lovely, I tried it but gave up in disgust! I am doing the ravellenics also with the Colourful Cals groujp, so far I am entered in the Cowl Jump and Cal Wrestling.

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    1. Cool! I need to check out the Colourful Cals group. I'll look forward to seeing what you make for the games!

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  5. Tunisian is something I would like to learn so I will put that on my future to-do list. Great idea to make two blankets at once and I love both colour sets.

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  6. You have great patience. I like how each row of your blankets are different; that definitely keeps the project interesting. The Tunisian crochet pillow is terrific. I like how your dishcloth has a different texture and an interesting one for the edging.

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  7. Oh darn, I need to get into the dishcloth KAL group and check out the tunisian washcloth. I've been wanting to learn. I have a set of Denise needles that I bought on ebay and have never really made anything. I just tried and got frustrated. My fibromyalgia has been flaring up so I've been in bed a lot the past few weeks. I love your two blankets. I often do that too and make two at once, mainly because I finish and still want to do more. It is fun playing with colors too. I like the stitch you used for your pillow, it looks like a zipper. I can't wait to see what else you do.

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  8. Your blankets are so lovely. I love the colors. I have to apologize. I copied your YOP graphic. I thought it was one from the ravelry page. I didn't realize it was your own. It's very pretty but I'll make one of my own. Would you like me to remove it from my post? I am very sorry. Lisa

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    1. No need to apologize, Lisa! The graphics that were shared in the YOP group (in the graphics thread) are free for any YOP participants to use. I'm flattered you like mine. I think I'll probably end up using various ones (that several other Yoppers have made) throughout the year. I like different ones for different reasons (and maybe different seasons). Use (or don't use) freely any of the graphics I've made - and certainly any that anyone has shared in the graphics thread. We don't normally have so many to choose from. I think a bunch of us got graphics-happy this year. :)

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    2. I am so glad to hear that. I was worried I'd made a big No No. I may change mine up as well.

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  9. Both afghans look great. Also love your Tunisian projects. I find Tunisian crochet very relaxing but don't do much of it as I find its rather thick. Your idea of a pillow is a good one though - was that using the double ended hook?

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    1. Thanks, Dorothy! I used a single, approximately 9-inch long hook.

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  10. You are off to a great start! If my family wasn't coming I would join the SOL blanket CAL. I like the Spice of Life blanket and I love the fact that you are doing 2 at a time and your reasons for it. It makes sense to me and I may have to try that. I have tunisian crochet on my list to learn this year. It was your washcloth that originally reminded me it was something I wanted to try. I know I will slack off for 2 weeks when my family is all here but for now at least I am off to a good start also. Have a great week!

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  11. I really like yuor crochet blankets ") The look so different even though they are the same pattern and the colours you have chosen work very well together. I have never tried tunision crochet but again I certainly like the effect of what you have created. I would love to make some wash cloths,nthey would make a great present idea, wash cloths may be making their way on to my list. Lol :) Leah x

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  12. Sometimes, I think it's time to learn to crochet and/or learn Tunisian crochet......and then I remember that I have plenty of knitting in my queue and fiber to spin and all the designs to make. Oh well.

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    1. lol I feel similarly about knitting. I feel like I "ought" to learn to knit - so it went on my YOP list again. But crochet is so versatile and interesting to me. Still... I think I should at least give knitting a good try. Soon. Very soon.

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  13. Oh those blankets - love them both. I like the idea of doing two at once, it gives you the chance to play with colours.
    I absolutely adore your Tunisian pillow. I love everything about it. A very strong piece.

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  14. I love your dishcloths. Tunisian is so cool looking. LIke weaving and crocheting at the same time

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  15. That dishcloth looks wonderful! It looks thick, absorbent and nicely scrubby. I really like the contrast between the border and the centre block. Looks like it'd make a good baby washcloth too!

    I love your pillow! Sturdy fabric is just the thing for a pillow!

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