Yuki’s pouch

 

I originally made this little pouch for myself for carrying my phone, keys etc if I go out in the evenings without a bag. It’s in tapestry crochet from a pattern by Carol Ventura using 4-ply organic cotton and carrying the unused yarn to add stiffness. I love the end result and the nifty way of securing it but I have decided I want to experiment with shape, colour and design a bit more, maybe even adding in beads. Yuki loves cats and I promised to make her something so I hope to give her this when she visits in July.

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Wonderwool 2019

img_20190505_170653This was my first ever yarn festival and it was quite overwhelming at first. I thought I had a plan but it turned out I didn’t. I just walked around marvelling at the beautiful colours and textures and eventually bought skeins of random colours that I loved, mostly without a project in mind. My well-thumbed brochure was very useful and I got to all the stands I wanted, my main mission being to try and locate sustainable and fairtrade yarns and colours. This meant avoiding acrylic and superwash although I wasn’t very vigilant about enquiring about the nature of dyes (chemical or otherwise). Interestingly, Janie Crowfoot had written about this very topic in her newsletter this week.

img_20190505_165950Blacker Yarns are from Cornwall and I struggled to choose something from their stand, which was full of beautiful, unusual yarns. In the end I chose this wool/linen mix but I have no idea what I will do with it yet.

Namolio was a relatively small stall with some amazing linen yarns. These are quite tough and shiny so I think they will be ideal for jewellery. I got two big skeins and a little sample pack of different colours. I also bought about 700g of hand-dyed wool that I can use to make a new jumper.

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Wooly Chic had a small stall with a lovely friendly owner and a huge range of organic cotton. I was spoilt for choice of bright colours but, in the end, opted for black and grey as I want to make a tapestry crochet evening pouch, which I will bead, to brighten it up.

I couldn’t resist these yarns from Watercolours and Lace who, it turns out, come from somewhere near Diss. The colours and yarn mixes are absolutely beautiful and in the end I chose 100% baby camel; lambswool silk; and alpaca/mohair. I can’t wait to try them out. Similarly, the silks from Willow Knits were beautiful colours and all silk.

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Manos del Uruguay produce fairtrade yarns and I chose a pack of contrasting colours in a merino wool/silk mix. Various sellers stock them.

I bought one more set of mini skeins – Scheepjes cotton, which is not organic but I really wanted some more colours of cotton. And I visited Midwinter yarns on purpose because I wanted to see their linen (I believe linen, like wool, is environmentally friendly). Unfortunately they had not been able to bring their linen range to the show but I took this photo so I can order online.

As well as buying luxury yarn, I also went to two workshops. The first was Jane Crowfoot’s beaded crochet masterclass and the second was spinning. It was great to meet Jane Crowfoot and see how she worked and I picked up some really good tips from her. She also admired my freeform bag!! I made a little beaded motif that I hope to turn into a card for Gill. I had already tried some spinning so it was great to get advice from an experienced spinner. I am not proud of my resulting yarn but I did learn where I was going wrong and I think I would like to pursue spinning when I have time. It could be a very relaxing hobby. I also met Pauline Turner, who was full of energy and tried to persuade me to sign up to part 2 of the Diploma. I’m not tempted as I’m so busy at the moment and I want to do it when I have time to savour it. In the meantime I need to finish a shawl I am making for Pearl, a teddy I am making for Yuki, Gill’s card and the evening pouch for me that I haven’t started yet. Then I need to start making my jumper and, most importantly, start exploring the wonderful yarns and ideas I have for making necklaces.

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Project 3 feedback

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I can’t believe this got an ‘Excellent’! I suppose when you’ve made something yourself you’re aware of all the flaws that others don’t notice. Very pleased, anyway.  I now just have a few samples and my final project (a bag) to finish.  I’m very pleased to have found one or two other bloggers doing the Diploma and encouraged to find that we seem to have similar issues, particularly in relation to filet.

I also meant to note that making this blouse made me very aware of the amount of time that goes into crochet. If I wanted to make any money out of this I would have to charge more than £500 for a garment like this to cover the time!! Something to bear in mind when looking at crocheted items in the shops. Spare a thought for the maker.

Project 3 Vintage blouse

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This filet blouse is made in no 5 mercerised cotton on a 1.50 mm hook, although I did move to a 1.25 for some of the edging. The gauge was correct for the stitches but a bit long for the rows so I reduced the number of rows. I also crocheted the collar (which I made a bit smaller than the pattern) onto the blouse, rather than sewing it on later. The only sewing was the shoulder seams.  The pattern came from this book that I found in a charity shop.20190304_153619

I had been wanting to make it for a while and I love the colour I eventually chose. It was very time consuming to make but good to follow a detailed filet pattern.  The recommended filet was 1ch and 1tr to make each space rather than the more usual 2 ch.  This worked well.

The finished garment was a bit looser than I would have liked, although it was the size indicated in the pattern. I think this was because the book was published in the eighties and the style was looser-fitting.  This also explains the large collar. I made buttons to finish it, incorporating some gold thread to make them sparkly and a bit stiffer.  They worked well.