I know it has been a couple of months since my first and only blog post, but I do have a good excuse. I have been trapped in a whirlwind of Christmas crochet!
I decided that this year I was going to make make accessories for my family, and because I like to make things more difficult for myself, I decided to design each item from scratch. This may sound ever so generous, but I had an ulterior motive: my goal for 2017 is to publish some of my crochet patterns, and this way I could use my loved ones as guinea-pigs for the prototype versions of my designs! Initially the plan was to design and make five crocheted hats. I started making the presents at the beginning of November so I’d be well prepared, and at the end of November I realised that I was well ahead of schedule, so I would have plenty of time to add a few more Christmas projects to my to-do list… right? Hats for everyone!
I also ordered a big bag of random ‘waste wool’ (mainly broken or custom blended bits of wool top) from Wingham Wool Works, and some of the scraps of dyed Merino I received were perfect colours for my Mum. I decided to spin them on my drop spindles, and make the resulting yarn into a shawl for her. I spun over 600 metres of sport weight two-ply yarn over the course of a week, and in the process I managed to injure my shoulder and back due to the repetitive strain. I spent the rest of December stiff and creaky as a result.
I also decided to have a go at wet felting and made two zippered pencil cases for my Dad and sister using natural and dyed wools. The process was a lot of fun, but the wool breeds I used weren’t the easiest to felt so it was physically hard work. Unfortunately, due to the last minute rush, I forgot to photograph the pencil cases before I wrapped them, but next time I visit my parents I’ll make sure I take a photo. I also managed to forget to photograph some of the hats I made, but luckily I’ve kept detailed pattern notes them, if I want to make them again.
Despite my early preparedness, my hands decided to seize up a couple of weeks before Christmas due to too much crocheting. Slowing down was not an option, so I was forced to alter my crocheting technique (which is easier said than done after 16 years of crocheting in one particular way) and soldier on. By Christmas Eve I found myself frantically weaving in yarn ends, wet blocking, then turning up the heating and desperately willing a host of hats stretched over balloons to dry out fully so I could gift wrap them!
I am hoping to do some photo tutorial patterns for some of these designs in the very near future, starting with a free pattern for the Raised Braid Hat, so keep checking the blog!
Hope everyone else had a fantastic Christmas and New Year. I spent some of the Christmas money I received on lovely, lovely yarn for some new designs I am working on. I was crocheting again as soon as my hands stopped aching quite so much, which was just after Christmas dinner…
It’s an addiction.