Monday, 10 December 2012

Crochet Crush part 2

It was only once I reached my 30s that I began to think about trying crocheting. Its hard to remember how I filled my time before it! There's not many days that go by now that I don't pick up a hook and some wool. My Mum learnt when she was young but it wasn't/isn't something she dedicates much time to. I don't ever remember seeing her crochet when I was growing up, I only found out that she could long after I left home. But when I first mentioned that I fancied learning she produced the brilliant booklet she first learned with, Of Course you can Crochet!

This sweet retro guide includes the basic steps and stiches you need to make a beloved granny square.  And beyond...I reckon I need some granny square slippers in my life, a bed jacket not so much. However, I'm particularly fond of the idea that the booklet was intended to teach a daughter her first lessons and if age doesn't disintegrate these pages I will hope to use them to teach my own little lady.

To most people, me included, the granny square typifies crochet. But with my tentative steps into hooking, it became quickly apparent that colour changing in crochet kind of gets on my wick. I'm not ruling out ever making a granny square blanket, in fact I have, a solid square version for my friend's son, but as with most things in life I like my crochet easy.

And so from Ravelry I discovered the wonderful blog and the perfect for beginner tutorials on Attic24.
Plans for a blanket of my own became superseded by blanket plans for a small person. I decided on the Granny Stripe, the essence of granny squares but with lovely long lines avoiding colour change, except at the end of the row. This was to be my baby's first blanket which I spent most of my pregnancy making.

Ooh how I loved making this. Lovely squishy Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino. Gorgeous yarn that I've used for 3 blankets in total. I'm a little more restrained with my yarn choices these days, well for big projects like this anyhow, but if you hunt around its usually possible to find Baby Cashmerino on sale on line. And little Reet Petite will love this forever, once she's old enough to have clean hands at all times, oh and can wrestle it away from her mother, ho hum.

I was aiming for gender neutral. Sure, there's a pretty distracting overshadowing coral pink in the mix but its balanced by an aqua blue in the edging right? My friend had it on the money when she saw it in the making by asking if I was pretty sure I was having a girl then. Which ironically I wasn't, I was utterly convinced I'd get a blue one. Just a very laidback cool with pink, blue one.

In the last two years, there's been a further five blankets, the latest completed this week.

This blanket was made for husband as an anniversary gift. It is a lap blanket, as requested to keep him warm whilst at work during the winter months. The poor fella has a job where he can work from home most days, so no his grandad like tendencies will not be revealed to the wider public in an office. When consulting on favoured colours, I was pointed in the direction of a picture that hangs in our kitchen:

Bounce by Gabrielle Reith
The picture was an engagement gift from husband's folks and is by Gabi, a very talented multimedia artist.  Husband has known Gabi and her husband for some time, they being fellow north-easters.

The colours I used were a bit on the darker side, but hey they're manly! I decided on a ripple as a) its a very relaxing pattern to use and b) the blue/green colours reminded me of the sea which is also quite fitting as husband grew up near the sea, the less than tropical north sea. I used Wendy Mode Chunky, a 50% merino wool 50% acrylic yarn. Its no baby cashmerino, but it is cosy and warm and will hopefully survive use by another creature of our household:

Just keeping it warm

And here is the intended recipient:

Happy Anniversary husband! May you be warm and toasty at your work x

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