Monday, March 25, 2013

Scrap Yarn

FreshStitches is having another CAL, and I plan on participating fully this time. This time around, it's called a Scrap-a-long, where we'll be using scrap yarn to create finished amigurumi. 

Using a technique called the Russian Join allows for one to make a "Magic Ball" of yarn scraps with no knots/frays. 

Well, I had quite a bit of scrap yarn, so I thought I'd go at this full-speed ahead. 

The blues and greys on the left hand side are where I started, and I used the Russian Join for that first Magic Ball. 

My reaction? 

Seriously, it took me way too long trying to get the Russian Join to work. Thus, the two skeins I wound using scraps have little bits of knots where the connection is.

The Russian Join is a great technique, and I'm glad I know how to do it; it's handy to have in your Yarn Related Toolbelt. However, for amigurumi, I can easily make sure the knots are on the inside of the fabric. So to take the time to make the joins just wasn't working for me. Plus, the overlay of the yarn where the join happens for a Russian Join is just too thick for my liking-- I thought it'd get complicated and add weird bulkiness to certain spots of the stuffed animal. 

However, I ended up with three scrap-filled magic balls to be turned into finished amigurumi.

Stay tuned to find out what exactly these magical skeins will turn into! 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Passing Down of Yarn

It's been an interesting weekend thus far. An impromptu family gathering led to a sleepover at my Grandma's house. While the night consisted of a variety of discussions, meals, and good times (as per usual with trips to Grandma's), there's something in particular I want to record here.

My grandmother passed down her yarn to me. Not all of it, of course, but all of her Worsted Weight acrylic yarn. 

This includes all kinds of yarn. Red Heart Fiesta and Super Saver; Bernat; Caron Simply Soft, plus many, many others I haven't even heard of! There are vintage skeins, as well as new ones. Colourways that I've wanted to try for months, and ones I didn't even know existed. Seeing it all handed to me (I mean literally handed to me, skein by skein, as I put them into a pile) was really something special. 

It's a big deal to me. 

When I first started crocheting, my Mema gave me some of her crochet hooks. And now I've inherited yarn from my Grandma. 

People who crochet and knit pass down heirloom items, but it never hit me before how the legacy of crocheters and knitters can pass through a family as well. After we had finished going through her yarn, she looked at this pile and said "It's time this yarn be passed to a new generation"

Yeah, it's a big deal. 

Now I find a place for all of this yarn... 

Monday, March 11, 2013

Cloudy Skies

It was cloudy the other day and it was beautiful. There was even some rain! 

Cloudy days always get a rep for being depressing in books, but I find I'm happiest when there are clouds-- maybe it's because they're rare in Arizona? Just maybe... 

But when there are clouds, there's also inspiration to snuggle in a blanket and crochet! Studying has trumped crocheting recently, but here's a recent project: 

It's a crocheting crocheted-hedgehog! The pattern is another by FreshStitches and comes highly recommended if you are learning the loop stitch. Click on the picture for more pictures of Hedgehog (real name pending).

Hedgehog may be an entry into the County Fair in the "Crochet: Toy" category. I wanted to make an owl to enter, but I just don't have the time, to be honest. Think Hedgehog would have a good shot in a fair? He thinks he's Ribbon Material! 
(Also, yeah, I know I said I wouldn't enter amigurumi again... but I love making amigurumi!)

Other entries into the County Fair will also include a crochet Reindeer, lovey, and Christmas stocking. I have a lot of loveys currently made, so I will be entering one already completed... the only question is, which one? 

I'm hoping there is enough time during Spring Break to crochet more. My to-crochet list is starting to get way too long! Hopefully there will be Work-in-Progress pictures to show this upcoming week. Official "Relax Time" starts Friday morning!