Work in Progress Wednesday -Hooded Shawl

Due to the holidays, progress on my knitting has been slow. I’ve added a whole 6 rows to the shawl since last week and I’m guessing I won’t make much more progress this week unless I end up having a lot of time at the New Years Eve Party I’m going to, but since it’s a boardgaming party, my hands won’t exactly be free most of the time.

And since I’ve only added a few rows, I decided not to add a picture this week. Once I start adding the hood I’ll probably post some picture updates.

I hope you all are having a good time this holiday season. I’ll see you Monday to share one of the Christmas gifts I made.

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The Colorful Christmas Tree

Undecorated Christmas TreeI finished my Christmas Tree a few days before Christmas. You can see it here in it’s undecorated glory. I ended up taking it apart a second time when I realized I was adding too many rows in between the branch rows past the first three, which I also noticed after I started taking apart the last two branch rows when I noticed I forgot a row on the branches so it was a bit shorter than the others.

After fixing everything, I was much happier with the result, however, I think if I make another one I will add back in that extra row I had between branches. It gave it a lot more height and gave more room for adding decorations.

Decorated Christmas TreeBecause the rows were really close together I decided to forgo adding beads as ornaments and instead just made a star and garland to put around the tree. You might recognize the colors of the garland from my Jasmin Headband.

The star was made using some scrap sock yarn. I was really hoping that I could get three stars out of it and give it more dimension, but I only squeaked out three and just enough extra yarn to sew the pieces together. You can find the pattern I used for the star here. I didn’t block the stars, but I do plan on doing that at some point before Christmas next year.

And I may also add beads next year for more color to the tree, or I may just leave it as is, but I will probably also make a second taller tree. But I’ve got almost a whole year before I need to start thinking about those things. Until then, I’ll be removing the star and the garland and storing them away while the tree will adorn the top of my dresser.

 

Work in Progress Wednesday – Hooded Shawl

Peruvian Baby Cashmere YarnOn a recent visit with my mom she pulled out some baby cashmere yarn. I couldn’t find it in my heart to say no to such a fine offer. So, I brought the yarn home with the express idea that I would start on a project right away.

At first I thought I was going to make a whole set of items to wear. I thought about making a scarf or cowl and a hat and maybe some gloves,  if there was enough left over. But when I was talking to friend about how we both have this really big curly hair that hats just don’t really work with she mentioned that she wanted to make a hood and then I thought about some hooded scarf patterns that I had seen. Eventually I came across a pattern for a hooded shawl and I had to try it since I had the exact right amount of yarn.

Hooded Shawl - UnfinishedUnfortunately, not all things go well. I already know I’m going to have to make some adjustments to the pattern after finding out that the Mulled Grape color was from a bad lot. There were several breaks and tears in the yarn making it very hard to work with. Which basically means that I’m not going to have enough of one of the colors to actually do the shawl the way it’s meant to be done. I’m pretty sure I’ll be cutting out the last alternating section.

The one really nice thing is that because this is such a simple pattern it is very quick to knit up. So after I add the hood I may try and see if I can stretch out my yarn to finish the rest of the shawl, and if I can’t, I won’t have spent too much time trying it.

For now I’m going to knit to the end of the next large lavender block and then start working on the hood with placement on the side. I’m guessing that’ll I’ll end the shawl with an I-cord of the mulled grape after the last lavender block. It’ll only make the shawl 10 rows short along the top edge (but 20 total rows of the pattern since the edge stitches are slipped at the end of a row), which should be fine since most of the images I’ve looked at show the hood spanning from the first alternating section to the beginning of the third large block, which is what I’ve knitted so far.

 

Autumn Multi Fuctional Cowl – Skirt – Hood

Autumn Cowl - Skirt FinishedSince finishing this project I have worn it once as a skirt and twice as cowl. I’m liking it very much in both areas. Though I think I like it just a bit more as a cowl. Unfortunately, not even adding a second color got the cowl to be long enough to also work as a hood.

I finished the pattern as originally called out, which surprised me a little, though I do have a tendency to crochet a bit tight. I still had some of the flax colored yarn left, so I added a few extra single crochet rows after realizing that I didn’t have enough to add a full row of star stitches.

I sewed up the side and tried it on and, as I suspected, it was not long enough for me to comfortably wear as a skirt. I looked through my color options and chose Patons Silk Bamboo in Sapphire. I had two skeins of this particular yarn and I thought I could probably add a three more rows of star stitches. Not to mention it was shiny like the flax colored yarn.

Unfortunately, I had a bit of trouble getting the star stitches to work since I was trying to do them in the round instead of going side to side and I was working from the starting edge. I probably could have crochet a set and then stitched it to my finished piece, but ended up just doing single crochet stitches instead to give a smoother finish for the part that would likely end up covered by a shirt anyway. The bamboo yarn was also slightly thinner than the Bernat Soy Natural Blends, which also contributed to my deciding to just do single crochet.

I added two rows to the starting edge for accent. Then I flipped to the other end and added 7 rows of single followed by a row of double crochets done with four double crochets followed by a chain 1 and skipping the next stitch to create a space. I then finished it off by adding one more row of single crochets and ran a ribbon through the spaces.

I’m pretty proud of the result and I love the vibrancy of the sapphire against the flax. It’s also nice to have a cowl in a different color palette than my pink and black one so I can always have something warm around my neck without clashing too horribly.

And as noted in my WIP from last week, the original pattern can be found here.

Work in Progress Wednesday – Autumn Multi Functional Cowl – Skirt – Hood

Naiyaru's Autumn Multi Functionl Cowl Skirt Hood
© Naiyaru

This particular piece is something I pinned ages ago, nearly one of the first crocheted things I pinned. I really liked the look of the star stitch and to be quite honest, I’ve always wanted to make a skirt and this seemed like a good project to try just in case I decided that I didn’t like how it looked as a skirt (since I’m not exactly a small girl and can be quite self conscious).
You can find a rough pattern by Naiyaru here. I’m pretty sure that I won’t have enough yarn to make it as long as Naiyaru calls out the pattern since I’m having to make it a fair bit wider so that I can wear it as a skirt, but I think I have a few other colors I can add to the skirt if I want to give it a bit more punch and give it the length I’d be comfortable wearing it at. I also highly recommend watching the first few rows in the tutorial video on the page Naiyaru links to for the star stitch since the initial row for the star stitch in the video is for starting from the foundation chain.

Unfinished Star Stitch - Cowl - SkirtThe yarn I’m using is Bernat Soy Natural Blends in Flax. Which, as per most of my yarn hoard, is a discontinued style. It is a 50% soya and 50% acrylic combo. The yarn is very soft and has a bit of a shine too it. As it stands in the picture I’m a bit over halfway through my yarn and it definitely doesn’t seem like it’s going to be nearly long enough to cover my behind.

I did try and initially crochet this in the round, but my foundation chain kept twisting, so I will have to sew up the side when I’m finished. It is coming out nice and thick since the yarn is held double. I’m thinking it’ll be a great winter accessory for here in Texas on the coldest days and a fantastic skirt.

Jasmin Headscarf (Headband)

As winter approaches (very slowly in South Central Texas), I decided to work on some head coverings. Since it doesn’t usually get super cold in Texas, and because I have a large mass of hair, I decided to go with something that would help control my hair without killing the curls, but also could be pulled over my ears to keep them warm.

I found the Jasmin Headscarf pattern in 25 Knitted Accessories to Wear and Share. And it can also be found in French Girl Knits. Both books are produced by Interweave. I was drawn to the leaf pattern and would have loved to have done it in green, but I ended up trying something a little different. I used two different yarns both of which I no longer have the information about.

Jasmin Headband (Headscarf)The silver is what I believe to be a bamboo blend, at least the yarn looks similar to bamboo blends I’ve used in the past.  This particular yarn had been used in another project by my mom and I was just using two partial skeins that had been made into cakes.  The blue is some sort of ribbon yarn that was originally meant for a shawl, which I lost the pattern for and I decided to just trash the project and either use the yarn for something else or donate it to Goodwill as I’m not very fond of novelty yarns.

However, after searching around on Ravelry I saw that a lot of people used the ribbon yarns in combination with regular yarns and the effect looked quite interesting, so I decided to see how my wintery leaf headscarf would look.

I will say, the images in the book did not do the headscarf justice as to how large it actually was. I started out doing the pattern as called out, but realized that it was going to be massive, so instead of doing all the repeats of the pattern, I just did it as charted without adding repeats of the leaves across the middle.

Jasmin Headband (Headscarf)This is a pattern that probably should be blocked, especially if doing the full repeats, but I found that when worn this modified pattern is pretty visible as it stretches out. I’m pretty happy with the results. I did have to take apart one end when I realized how stretchy it was and needed to shorten it. So now I have a small ball of of both yarns together, which I’m thinking about trying and doing a baby headband with and just breaking the middle of the headband into a single line of alternating leaves instead of two leaves.

The other change I did make to my pattern was that instead of doing two halves of the headscarf and then using a kitchner stitch to put them together, I just continued the leaves all in the same direction so that I wasn’t doing as many new things, since I’d never done a provisional cast on before or the kitchner stitch.

I think at some point I will come back to this pattern and make it as designed, but I’ll be doing both halves at the same time for consistency in my knitting.

Work in Progress Wednesday – Christmas Tree

I’m not a big fan of fake trees. If given a choice, I much prefer to get a nice pine tree. However, I don’t have the funds to purchase a tree, nor do I really have a whole lot of ornaments to even decorate a tree this year. So, I plumbed through the depths of my yarn stash trying to find a nice green yarn to crochet a mini tree.  Unfortunately, I didn’t have any solid green yarn.

christmastreeunfinInstead I ended up picking out a yarn that I thought was fun and sort of Christmas-y since it had red and green as two of the main colors in the yarn. So here is my still in progress colorful Christmas Tree.

I will say that the green is much more vibrant in real life than in the picture. I plan on adding some beads around the tree as ornaments and I’m going to also pick out another yarn to make a chain with for a garland. And I haven’t decided if I want to make a beaded star for the top or if I’m going to crochet one.

I wish I knew what brand this yarn was, but the tag was not stuck in the middle of the cake. All I can really tell is that it’s a worsted weight yarn that I believe is cotton that has a rough bits that weren’t completely combed out. It is also a pretty sizeable skein. If you happen to recognize this, I’d love to know what it is! This was of course, one of many skeins given to me by my mother and she certainly doesn’t remember anything about it.

I also didn’t really follow much of a pattern. What I could find online usually involved making a cone and then making a row of branches and cutting the yarn each time you went to make a new row. It felt like an awful waste of such a fun yarn, so I tried to muddle through a poor translation. In then end I just ended up making sure that each time I was adding branches that I made that row a multiple of three. You can find the pattern I’m loosely following here.