I noted that it has been a good while since I’d made any posts, in my last blog entry. This has been due to a lack of inspiration but also, I think, because of quite a big lifestyle change. [Please note this post is not meant as any form of judgement except maybe of the industries involved… and of myself]
Last year I became Vegan after becoming aware of practises which deeply upset me. I’d been vegetarian for 21 years but failed to realise the part I was still playing in the cruel treatment of animals.
Part of this change entailed me no longer using wool and yarns containing animal products.
I’d always been of the mind that obtaining the fibres necessary to produce wool was a simple (and perhaps kind) shearing of sheep – no need for death. However, I discovered the process of shearing is not always kind due to industrial demands (fast hands can become careless). I came to learn that the sheep used, may have strips of skin removed; the wool that they have been breed to overproduce might otherwise matt. And when no longer producing wool in abundance, or of a high enough quality, these lovely animals are slaughtered for cheap meat.
Silken fibres involve the death of the silkworms… Again not something I realised before I went Vegan.
I felt guilty and angry with myself for not knowing.
I’m now using up any animal fibres I have and am not buying anymore. There are many alternatives I can and am using such as cotton, bamboo and synthetics.
[Insert apologies for lack of posts]
Last week I decided I wanted to crochet a sheep or cow in the style of Dirk the Dragon by Lydia Tresselt (follow link to ravelry). I’ve used her lovely pattern to create a basic body shape to which I’m planning to add different ears, feet, hands and tail. I’m also planning on adding a surface crocheted fleece.
I’ve got quite a lot done in a short space of time and will add some updates as I progress!
A few weeks ago a friend posted a photo to me on facebook. It included a link to a lovely pattern for crocheted booties with a crocodile stitch cuff. The same friend was having a naming ceremony for her little girl 4 days later. I decided it would be lovely to make her daughter a pair of the booties.
I have never crocheted so fast or furiously- it was totally worth it.
I purchased the pattern from knit picks UK and received the pattern within an hour via email (it seemed longer as I was so eager to start!). The pattern was written using american terms (by Lianka Azulay) and easy to follow.
The yarn I used was Sirdar Folksong. In retrospect this was maybe a little on the thick side for this project but I liked the feel and colour.
I love way they turned out. They are a little too big for my friends daughter but I was worrying they might be too small. Its nice she can grow into them. 🙂
A few weeks ago I started an amigurumi Sea horse from Vanessa Mooncie’s book “crocheted Sea Creatures”.
There are 12 wonderful creatures to make. However the creatures that really caught my eye and persuaded me to buy the book were the Sea horse and the Octopus (which I’ve yet to start).
I love the way my sea horse has turned out. It is just over a foot tall which was longer than I expected it to be. The crocheting involved was relatively easy involving simple increases, decreases and a fair amount of colour changing.
The pattern uses UK terminology which wasn’t a problem. However, I must admit that the wording of the pattern was not always straight forward. There were several points where I was left a little stumped. I persevered and I’m glad I did so.
I used Paton’s DK Smoothie and some old Navy blue acrylic yarn I had left over from another project.
I’ve finished a project! Yes it was simple.Yes it was quick. But its finished… even the ends have been woven in!
In actuality, I’ve finished two projects because whilst I was crocheting I could see I would have enough yarn for gloves or mittens. I opted for Wristers which I have made lots of times before (see here). I did however tweak the pattern slightly, so that the ribbing on the cuffs was more pronounced I alternated front post double crochets and back post double crochets (US terms)
I’m rather pleased with how it’s all turned out turned out. I used a 10mm crochet hook and created a round of about 64 stitches. I then worked a spiral (like amigurumi) using double crochets (US terms) forming a tube til it was about arm length. I worked in a spiral as I’m really not keen on seems left when joining rounds and chaining up; others may not see it but I do. 🙂
The colours are really autumnal and I’m not convinced the photographs do the pieces justice. Also, lacking a more glamorous model I had to do the job myself. 🙂
I’ve wanted to crochet but it has been hard recently. There’s really no reason, as far as I can see, for the lack my lack of inspiration; I’ve found it really difficult to pick up a project. Putting pressure on myself wasn’t working so I decided it was ok to take a break.
Then this week I felt an urge. I rummaged though my boxes of yarn and choose some wool I need to use up (more about that later) and thought about how I could use it.
I’ve started making a Snood. I’m modelling it on a knitted one I purchased a few years ago. I’m not doing anything complicated as the yarn is so pretty as it is.
It’s lovely to want to crochet again.
I finished the two amigurumi minions I was crocheting. To say I’m pleased with how they turned out would be a massive understatement. Best of all, the friend I was making them for loves them too. 🙂
I used a pattern by Stephanie at http://www.allaboutami.com/post/11585794742/minionpattern as a starting point. The pattern called for facial features made of felt but I must admit I’m not keen on doing this, There’s nothing wrong with using felt it’s just a personal preference. As a result, I created my own crocheted facial features… the trickiest of which being the mouth and teeth.
I particularly like the hair on the purple minion which I created by crocheting into the head and chaining 15 repetitively. The yarn was unusual with fibre coming from a central strand (called Brazilia from Schachenmayr).
I’ve already been asked to make another minion and have several other commissions to make too. It;s good to keep busy 🙂
I managed to get my hands on quite a lot of Patons Colour Works Aran at a bargain price. Better still the colors are gender neutral (not that colours should be gender specific, but that’s getting off point).
I’m making some accessories for when it turns colder. Some of them may be destined to become Christmas gifts.
I’ve started with a simple scarf consisting of double crochet (US terms) and chains to create squares. I’m using a 10mm crochet hook so it has a very loose, mesh like and soft look.
I think I’m about two thirds of the way through; I’ll share a picture of the completed project within the week.
After this, I’m planning on a hat and fingerless gloves using the same yarn. That said, I’ve also got a couple of Amigurumi minions to make for a friend… we’ll see what I’m inspired to crochet first. 🙂
I’ve two finished projects that I’d love to share but can’t. As soon as the projects have reached their owners I’ll reveal. 🙂
Schools have broken up so I’ve got some time off. Although I’m part time (by choice), I’ve been teaching nearly full time for the last few weeks. I’m pleased I can now dedicate some time to other things I love to do 🙂
And the first thing I’m working on?
I’ve picked back up a shawl I started ages ago. I’m finding I can only crochet in small bursts with the kid silk yarn though; my hands get far too hot!
When it’s complete it will definitely need to be blocked but I’m liking the way it looks and it’s softness to the touch is wonderful
Here is my last big project modelled by the latest addition to our family, my nephew Elijah. 🙂
I think everyone will agree that he looks absolutely gorgeous! I’m now wondering if I could make an adult sized one for winter 🙂