Blimey O’Reilly….

I swear, some days, I must have ADD.  I seem to have a total inability to finish what I’m doing before finishing another project!  Every time I go near Ravelry, or the yarn shop, I start something new…

So now I have not 1, but 2 Rondo bags, in different colours.  I do enjoy making them, and when my Mother asked if I’d like to make some charitable contributions to her women’s club for sale, it’s the first thing I thought of.  Plus, I have a stash of yarn I bought years ago and have never managed to find the right project for, until now.  I have 10 balls of 5-ply ribbon yarn which is perfect for these bags, and quite frankly I’ll be glad to see the back of it.

I’ve also managed to start a project for my God-daughter (also my cousin) – she decided she wanted a mermaid tail lap blanket, so last week I bought the yarn and started.  She doesn’t know I’m making it, so it will be a nice surprise.  The thing is, I’ll really need to buckle down and get on with it, I have this and 1 other project that have a deadline looming – 2 blankets to be completed and blocked before 7th May.  I have no idea how I’m going to do it.  It’s time like this I’m kinda glad I’m not working right now, but Crocheting all day is difficult.  I just can’t sit still for that long 🙂

There are still 3 other projects on the go, they’ll just have to hibernate for now…

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Woohoo!!

I’ve only gone and managed to finish 2 projects in 1 day, YEY ME!

What’s even better is that one of them is the lap rug I’ve been working on since September.  4 darn months.  It’s all blocked, all that is left is to attach the backing.  I wonder if I could use the sewing machine?

ta-daaaa

ta-daaaa

And I finally managed to make something for myself, I finished my Rondo bag too 🙂

Just for me :-)

Just for me 🙂

I realised that pretty much everything I’ve made in the last 12 months was for someone else, so I’ve been trawling through Ravelry looking for things that I like, while at the same time trying to work through my stash.  I have some yarns that I’ve had for years, I’d bought them for knitting projects but they never materialised, or the yarn just didn’t suit the project.  I’m determined to make some room in the cupboard….  It’s my birthday next week and I’ve asked for vouchers for my favourite yarn shop (see, I’m not daft) and I’m just dying to see what they’ve got in for Spring/Summer 🙂

2 down :-D

I finally managed to get a couple of projects finished, yay!  The granny square baby blanket was really easy to work up, I think it only took 4 evenings to do.  I also managed to finish the mammoth task of knitting a cushion cover for the Rubik’s Cube storage box, which I started at the beginning of January.  I’ve never knit with super bulky yarn before, so that was a new experience; towards the end, just turning at the end of each row was a chore in itself.  I’d expect bulkier yarn to work up faster than lighter yarn, but the weight of it slowed me down, I wasn’t expecting that!

So last time I had 4 projects on the go, so with 2 down you’d expect there to be 2 left, right?  Wrong!  I’ve somehow managed to increase my list once again, and I currently have 3 WIP’s and a list of another 10 ready to follow 😀  I’ve seen loads of amigurumi projects I’m just dying to make.  But before all that, I finally decided to make something for myself.  I’m going to make the Rondo Crochet Bag by Drops Design.  I have a stash of multi-coloured sock yarn just waiting to be made into something (I had originally wanted to make socks, but it just seems like too much effort).  I think I’m going to need some sort of project planning software to work out what needs to be done first though, some things I want to make have definite deadlines (Moomin amigurumi needs to be done by mid May, for example)….  problem is I have no idea how long something will take until I start it.  Hmmm….

Cushion cover – front

Cushion cover – back

The granny square baby blanket

Oh, and there’s still the lapgan to finish, harumph 😦

So much crochet, so little time…

…and cramp! argh!

I’d being frantically working through the lapgan for my Sis-in-Law and getting frustrated, the joining is taking as long as making the squares, so I decided to put it to one side and focus on something new (a change is as good as a rest).  So I decided to re-work a project I was making for my Mum for Christmas; I’d started making cushion covers but the pattern just wasn’t sitting right, so I frogged it and made her a blanket instead, following Jennifer Ofenstein’s Strawberry ice-cream baby blanket pattern. I made it using Scachenmayr Bravo yarn in red, yellow, blue and green – Mum’s favourite colours and she loved it 🙂 Stupidly forgot to take a photo before I gave it to here though…

Christmas and New Year were a bit crazy – Christmas Eve with DP’s family, Christmas Day with my family, 3 days in France with DP’s extended family, back to Belgium for what turned out to be an amazing overnight at Martin’spa at Chateau-du-Lac in Genval (amazing place, I would highly recommend it), then back in time to shop for NYE dinner with friends. Few! It took me and my digestion about a week to get back to normal after all that food and dashing about, but I wouldn’t have had it any other way. So back to normal and back to crochet.

The trouble with WIP’s is that, at some point, you need to finish them. Unless you’re like me and you start new projects anyway! The Sis-in-Law’s lapgan is STILL a work in progress… it is slowly becoming my nemesis. I have almost finished joining the squares, and the backing I was crocheting has been abandoned (not enough yarn, dang) in favour of a fabric backing, which I have yet to purchase. I’ve managed to start 2 more projects since the Holidays; I would normally say I must be insane at this point, but it’s the crochet that’s stopping me from going there. If I didn’t I may have re-painted the apartment by now.

Project 1 is a lovey blanket for DP’s brother’s new baby girl, due in March. I’ve taken the granny square pattern from the lapgan and expanded it – I’m using Red Heart Soft Aran in Rose and my 5mm (H) hook to make it, I have 20 squares all ready to be joined, but I want to make some in white, too, to break up the colour a bit.

Project 2 came from our Christmas gift from DP’s Dad. DP has a reputation for be a little bit obsessed by cubes and cubing, so we received a giant one that acts as a storage box, it’s so cool. My present was 5.5mm knitting needles and enough MyBoshi super-chunky yarn to make a cushion cover for the top! It’s been so long since I knit anything that I’ve really slowed down. So far one side has taken about a week of my spare time, it’s hard going but I’m enjoying it.

The Cube

The Cube


The mess that is my WIPs - the lapgan (left) ,cushion cover (right) and the baby blanket squares (top)

The mess that is my WIPs – the lapgan (left) ,cushion cover (right) and the baby blanket squares (top)

100 down….

… and at the moment, 20 to go.  I’m finally nearing the end of my lap blanket project that will be DP’s sister’s housewarming gift.  It’s taking a bit longer than expected, but I’ve enjoyed making all of the squares.  I’ve already started my next project, a Christmas gift for my parents, loosely based on the lap blanket project.  I’m making the same design of square, but with a larger hook (5mm instead of 4mm) and working 1 extra round, then I’ll sew them together to make cushion covers.  I’m also still looking for projects to make for christmas gifts, but it’s not so easy.

The finished squares, ready to go

The finished squares, ready to go

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The pieces that will become Mum’s new cushion covers

My mum spent 2 weeks in October visiting my Grandmother while my Uncle, her full time carer, too a much needed holiday with his daughter.  While she was there Nana taught her how to turn a heel and knit in the round.  Despite her advanced years, she still has nimble fingers, and can produce lovely things from memory without a second thought.  I had made her a lapgan for when she goes out and about in her mobility scooter and she loved it 🙂  Her return gift was a small and quite fragile-looking doily that my Great-grandmother had made some 75 years ago.  It’s quite intricate, made with crochet thread and a home-made hook.  Nana tells me her mum made lots of things from her own designs, including this doily.  I’ve been trying to work out which stitches she had used in an attempt to recreate it myself, but with the stitches being so fine, it’s quite difficult.  What it has given me is the encouragement to learn more and more about crochet, so hopefully sometime I’ll have the confidence to sit and create my own designs.  My greatest wish is that one day I will have someone to pass on these skills and ideas to… until then, I’ll keep on making, frogging, remaking and enjoying some of the wonderful designs I find.

Great-granny's Doily

Great-granny’s Doily

Some of the beautiful detail from Great-granny's doily

Some of the beautiful detail from Great-granny’s doily

A welcome break and plans for the holidays

DP’s sister is moving in with her boyfriend at the end of the month, and she’s so super organised that she’s bought everything they need for their need apartment – we kept asking what we could buy as a housewarming gift, but there’s nothing else she needs… So I decided to make her something home-made that she couldn’t buy – I’m making her a multi-coloured lap blanket following a pattern from Ravelry –

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/lap-rug

So far I have 8 different colours to use, and I’m getting 10 squares per ball of yarn.  I’ve got a huge stash of grey that I can use to fill the gaps.  Thanks to having all those lovely distractions like grocery shopping, cleaning and laundry, it had taken me a week just to make about 8 or 9 squares, it felt like this would take forever.  But then we had a weekend away planned, visiting friends in Paris for their birthdays party (his and her birthdays are only 2 days apart), so I took 2 balls of yarn and my hook and carried on crocheting in the car.  It was a lovely weekend, we even had some time to have a walk around the city and the weather was just perfect, it felt more like late Summer than Autumn.  I was a little worried at first that I wouldn’t have many people to talk to at the party, but luckily there were more than just our core circle of friends that were able to speak English; it was nice to feel part of the group for a change.

Back in the car I was amazed at how much I was able to get through without other distractions!  It got me thinking that, on our return, I would set up a space in our spare room to crochet; no laptop, no TV… just me, the radio and my yarn 🙂  I’ve also been trying to plan a layout for the blanket, but now I think the best way would be to wait until I’ve made all of the squares and just lay them out on the bed and start playing with what looks good.

I’m enjoying it so much I’m already planning to make another one as a Christmas gift for my parents, but with a different colour palette.  Now, back to work….

I don’t like frogging

I’ve just finished frogging my third abandoned project in about a week, it’s so depressing.  They were all projects that I really liked the look of but was a little unsure of how it would turn out.  1 pair of slipper socks, a newborn sleep cocoon and a hat for my almost 2-year-old niece.  The hat, and a scarf, I managed to rescue – I’d started with a limited amount of yarn and was determined to make it work, I was so happy it turned out well 🙂  I made a few adjustments to a favourite pattern and it’s worked out great.  For the others, well I’m back to trawling through Ravelry, trying to find something that will either be perfect or I can adapt for what I want.

I guess part of the frustration comes from trying to use up all the yarn I already have.  We’ve all done it, taken a liking to a yarn we’ve seen because of the colour/price/it’s sooo soft!  I have quite a few bits of yarn of different weights, colours, etc. none of which, at first glance, look as if they would go together if they mix them.  And what do I make?  With the holidays gradually getting nearer (the start of Autumn being a stark reminder), I’ve been trying to find gift ideas for people and wondering if I’m going to have the time to make everything.  I need to make a list…..

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This week’s (almost finished) project

Here we are again….

I recently found myself unemployed for only the second time since I took my first part-time job at the age of 15. Before the 3-month contract that just ended, I was sat at home for just over a year; at first it was fine, I managed to find plenty of those ‘to-do’ jobs (the ones […]