Saturday, 24 December 2016
Well, I am now officially an OAP! (For non-UK folks that means Old Age Pensioner, what you Americans call Senior Citizens -so much nicer!) I was invited, along with my friend Pat, to attend a school band concert and afternoon tea "For the OAPs". Pat's two granddaughters were playing and the standard of musicianship is very high at their school. I actually played BINGO! Not that I won anything but it was a bit of fun, and the music was brilliant. SO, no school Nativity plays for me but I did get into the Christmas Spirit somewhat, at last! And at home the decorations - though minimal - are in place and a very tiny tree is dressed and lit up.
There are a few more presents under the tree now, and our grandson Chris has just been round with his, so it's looking far more Christmassy. I haven't wrapped Jim's yet - his guitar hard gig-bag will NOT be wrapped, maybe a bit of tinsel round the neck!
What's off my hook?
I've hooked about eight blankets or throws, and a couple of cushion covers. One scarf, with the Noro yarn was a cobbled together of two pieces of crochet which resulted in a very uneven shape! It was just rows and rows of trebles, made up as I hooked along. But so far everything has been very simple. I wanted to try something a little more challenging and so loved the look of a chevron scarf - well, almost a shawl - on Pinterest, that I checked out the free pattern on Ravelry. I downloaded the pattern by Dena Stelly, and began the 32 chain foundation. I was quite intimidated at first as it was a quite sparsely worded pattern which left a couple of doubts in my mind - due to my inexperience, not Dena's pattern. However, once the chains and the first row were completed it was plain sailing. I used Rico Creative Melange yarn which is DK but feels more like 4-ply, so I used a 3.5 hook. I'm really pleased with this skinny scarf, it snuggles round the neck beautifully - I might even stitch up the ends and turn it into an"Infinity" or Mobius loop cowl.
Following on the success of the first Melange scarf I hooked a larger foundation chain (62 chains) in a different colour way of the same yarn. People who are used to me working in very bright shades might be surprised to learn I CAN do pale and interesting! The longer chain is SO satisfying to hook - you chevron away for longer before turning and get into a lovely rhythm. I actually feel so relaxed and happy when I'm crocheting, perhaps it should be prescribable by your GP! The shades haven't photographed very well, but you can see it on the left here. For these subsequent scarves, I used a size 4mm hook, and I like the slightly looser, lacier effect.
The one in the centre is a green and purple colour way which is lovely and I have earmarked this one as a present for someone, but I need to make it up into a cowl.
As I had two more colour-ways I made shorter scarves with the blue and the raspberry shades - these will be cowls, I think. Here are all the scarves folded up.
What's ON my hook?
I saw a pair of WONDERFUL fingerless mittens, sold by Anthropologie, and now sold out - even at the price you'd pay there! The lovely Emma on Potter and Bloom blog has put a youtube video up to show how she has made a similar pair, using granny squares. It looks very simple so I'm about to have a go. The central motif is a puffy flower which I've not made before, so I've learned a new stitch too. I'll keep you posted on how I get on with them! Meanwhile here's as far as I've got!
The centre is actually pistachio green, not lime as it looks here. Greens somehow don't translate well with my camera, sadly.
So, in the run-up to Christmas, that's what I've been getting up to. I know lots of you have been feverishly decorating, making jams and marmalade and puddings and mince pies, and rushing round from one school concert to the next Nativity Play - but life is quieter for us. So whether you celebrate Christmas or not, enjoy the holiday and festive spirit, we can all embrace that, I think!