Gifts for your Crochet Yarn Artist

20160203_093202.jpgWith Valentines Day fast approaching I thought I’d help you out. Candy and chocolate are nice but they spend more time on our hips than our lips. Jewellery is always good. 😉  Stuffed toys are cute we tend to think…”I could crochet one just like that!” Which brings me to some suggestions.

So what gifts would be great when your love adores crochet? Allow me to make a suggestion or two. (Fellow yarn artists..please feel free to add to these suggestions!)

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This is a hobby that you need more than one of various items. The most obvious is yarn. We always need (yes NEED) more yarn.

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A bit of advice. Most projects need at least two balls of the same colour (and brand) of yarn so please gift at least two. Another important reason to give multiples is in many cases the yarn is dyed in batches (called lots) so the exact shade varies slightly by lot. So if they have to go back to the store to buy a second ball they may not get a matching dye lot!

I’m sure you know we prefer to work with soft yarn. But please do not be tempted to buy the ‘specialty’ yarn. It’s often difficult to work with and/or is appropriate for very few projects.

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For example… Bunny Tail yarn is cute but I have no idea what to do with it!

Now you’ve picked a couple balls of soft yarn… What do you buy with it? A new crochet hook is a good start. Look on the back of the package of yarn to find out what size.

hook size for the yarn

Most stores have one or two types of hooks. Perhaps you’ve noticed which your yarn artist prefers?P_20180114_125209_vHDR_On

Maybe they’re like me and enjoy a variety.

There’s no “best” hook. It’s all preference. Just start with selecting the correct size (see above).

Your yarn artist now has enough to make a project. But there are a few other items that make the process more fun (and easier)

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Scissors, measuring tape

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stitch markers, darning needle

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bobby pins – mark the line in a crochet pattern

A cute pair of scissors, a measuring tape, a darning needle and stitch markers are the little things that make each project go smoother!

And while we’re making things smoother…

Jagged nails and rough skin catch on yarn. When you’re working with the beautiful soft yarn you want your hands soft too.

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The added bonus of gifting these items to you yarn artist is they will make you soft, homemade, full of love pieces.

“When you show others love, you are shown, love. When you give love, you receive love.”
― Donald L. Hicks, Look into the Stillness

Products shown are from my personal collection. I do not have any connections with the companies.

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Pondering Projects for 2018

I want to start the year by finishing the works in progress. Considering how long some of them have been set aside I could almost call them new projects!

I have to finish the baby blanket, baby’s first lightsaber, and big sister’s lightsaber first. My co-worker’s little girl is due to arrive in February!!

soft gray stitchesThen I want to finish the Sidewalk Shawl for me ❤ Alongside that I want to figure out how to make my Mickey blanket. I’ve learned so much since I first decided that I wanted to make the blanket. I should be able to figure it out.

I shared with my WW group that I wanted to learn new stitches this year and discovered that there is a local crochet group I can join. I think I’ll ponder my Mickey blanket a bit then bring the idea to them See what some brainstorming can create!

I really do want to try something new. My general theme for 2018 is brave …to step out of my comfort zone. New crochet projects and stitches are my first step.

 

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Marly’s Granny Square Cardigan

Perhaps since I’m going to be at my healthy weight next winter I’ll invest in some fantastic yarn and make myself a cardigan???

 

 

I do have some ‘new’ projects that are on the “to make” list already. A friend has ordered them for next Christmas. I think that next Christmas I’m going to not make gifts. I’ll take orders… maybe even revive my Etsy Store?

I’ll see what the year brings! Early January is like a new ball of yarn… it’s full of possibilities!

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Caron Countdown

 

 

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Bumble Snowman

 

 

December 2017 ~ Yarn and Tea

I imagined myself posting this on time alas there is only so much one can accomplish in a month. Especially with a well-timed illness.

I was on the couch from Christmas ’til New Years but I’m feeling 90% better now. It was a well-timed illness because I finished all my Christmas crochet gifts, all my wrapping and cooking AND was just starting to feel icky on Christmas Day!!  I was fortunate to have absolutely nothing to do last week and could dedicate it all to being a sleepy, sick couch potato,

In December, I finished off the hats, made a couple other scarves. I didn’t get the last

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Waffle stitch baby blanket

baby blanket or the baby toys done because I won’t work on baby stuff when I’m sick. They’ll be the perfect way to start off 2018!

 

Over the past few months, I worked on several Christmas crochet gifts (pattern links) that started with a C2C shawl for my sister in July.

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I didn’t initially plan on making hats but when I experimented on my hubby I found a hat pattern that I liked for the guys. Then I found one a pattern for the girls.

It’s funny once I started the waffle pattern for the WIP baby blanket it seemed to pop up in other patterns I liked. Such as my Christmas scarf, the Urban Shell Scarf for the girls and their Alpine Nights hats.

After I made hats, scarves and cup cozies I filled little mason jars with candy or hot chocolate and topped with a plain version a pattern I found in the summer. {The holly embellishment was too big for these little jars.} I had finished my sister’s teacup coasters earlier in the fall. The pattern is one I listed in the pattern collection post.

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I hope that your December was full of yarn and joy!

I’d love to see what was on your hook! 

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November’s Yarn & Tea

Yumm, Sipping on some Sugar Cookie tea taking a break from decorating and crocheting to chat about my projects for the last month. It occurs to me that even with the long list of WIPs my hand hasn’t been hurting! For a while there I was starting to think about making those special baby blankets now because I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to crochet when I was blessed with grandbabies. I wonder what the difference is? I’ve lost a fair bit of weight/ changed how I eat… wonder if that is it?

Anyways… What was on your hook last month?

I’ve been working on hats this month. I’m excited about that because previous attempts didn’t work out. I’m enjoying the simple patterns that I’ve been using and that they work up so quickly. Partly because it’s nice to see a finished project but really it occurs to me that my nephews may lose the hats and since it didn’t take long to make I won’t be upset. LOL

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My son has been my model for these hats. He likes his hats snug but I’m not sure if his cousins will so for one hat I used the yarn’s recommended hook size and the other I used a size down. I did make the rounds two stitches shorter because the first hat was way too loose for a beanie. P_20171203_094135_vHDR_On.jpg

I’ve been using Red Heart Soft in Navy, Wine and Dark Leaf (sorry the colours in the photos don’t reflect this) The hat that was on the loose side I used a 5.5mm and the smaller one 5mm

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I’ve also been working on a Christmas scarf for me but it’s slow going because I had the brilliant idea to do thin-ish strips on a scarf. I’m torn about what to do when it’s long enough. The edges are not as smooth as I’d like so I could put an edge on to hide them but will that ruin the stripe effect?

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And then there are all the ends to weave in. If the yarn wasn’t so soft I may have abandoned this project. Or at least set it aside for next year. I’m going to finish it today.

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I’ll see how I feel when I get to “long enough” or the end of the balls. 😉

I only have a  two more hats to make for gifts. I may make scarves to go with the hats for my daughter and nephew’s girlfriend.

Plus we do a gift exchange game with all of our family. This year’s theme is homemade. The only tricky part is making something that everyone could use.

Perhaps I’ll make a bag holder?

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Cheers & Happy Holidays.

May all your WIP be finished on time and may

at least one of your gifts be new yarn!artist Scarletfoxfibers.jpg

 

 

Yarn & Tea: July ~ Time flies when you are crocheting. Part 2

I know why July flew by! I was busy and as the saying goes.. “time flies when your crocheting”. That is how it goes? Isn’t it? 😉

I was concerned that your tea (or coffee or wine) needed refreshing so I made July’s wrap up into two posts. {Part One can be read here.} So now that we’ve refreshed our mugs (or glass) here I go..

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In July I have also picked up the  Sidewalk shawl that I haven’t worked on in some time. It requires me to pay attention to the pattern. I usually make projects that don’t have changes to the pattern for each row.

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While I’m enjoying the pattern I find that I can’t work this project when my darling family is around. After all these years they still have not caught on that counting louder means I’m trying to ignore you / I’m focusing on this.

Talking about having to pay attention…

I saw this adorable zebra pattern at Repeat Crafter Me. When I posted it to my Facebook page someone requested that I make one.  It’s a lovely pattern, very straight forward with obvious colour changes. (I’ll write more when I’m done.) This will be my second amigurumi 🙂 I’m still undecided if I’ll make more. As I posted on Instagram, some focus is needed because the neighbours will wonder what the yell of frustration is all about.20170726_173829

Among other things on my social media and blogs I played with a new header and title for my Facebook page. It was originally started just for the pieces of yarn art that I sell but now I post a variety of crochet ‘stuff’ including blog posts from here. So.. it needed an update.

Perhaps I should tackle a few jobs around the house now that I’ve spent half of summer working on my crafts?

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Whew! Now to get back to my PHD (projects half done) I seem to have started several again! Oooops.

How are your projects coming along? Did you finish a few? Start one or two?

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