Sunday, February 18, 2018

In my world, stashes are for fabric, not yarn

When I started making Prayer Shawls back in 2014, I decided that I would not generate a yarn stash.  However, it seems that no matter how hard I try to estimate the amount of yarn that I need for a project there is always some leftover.  Hence, the following collection:

These were all leftovers from previous finishes.  I thought I would use them all together in one shawl with a  ripple effect style similar to this old gem from my youth:

The pattern I chose is one that I've done several times now.  (Ironically, it's called the One Skein Wrap, although this project would be using multiple skeins.) I began crocheting with the first three pink shades, but I decided that there was too much of a jump in hue between the two darker pinks and the light pink.

I went back to look in my leftover yarns, and came up with one more skein in the dark pink/red range, and decided to ditch the pale pink and set aside the teal/aquas for another day.

Then I added in a thick, variegated yarn in the same color family.

 The thing I love about this pattern is the stitch called "dc7tog", or "double crochet 7 together".  You make 7 double crochet stitches, without pulling the yarn through the last loop, leaving you with a bunch of loops on your hook like this:

Then you pull the yarn through all the loops left on the hook.

Lastly, you gather them all together with a single chain.

The result is a series of gathered shells that create the peak in the ripple pattern:

To make the shawl, I varied the yarns as I went along and this is the way it turned out.

 In this closeup photo, you can see that the thick, variegated yarn introduced a bit of blue.

When all was said and done, I still had some yarn leftover, but I had certainly made a dent.

One more photo that shows the color variations.  I think they all came together very nicely!

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Monday, February 5, 2018

Of Football, Fish and Florals

I learned that our local Quilt for Kids chapter was ready to accept new quilt donations, so I got out some of the fabrics I had set aside, invited a friend over to join me,  and did some sewing.  I began with this set of fat quarters, and a coordinating half yard of the white flowered print.

 From each of the fabrics pictured, I cut a wide strip, sewed a narrow pink strip to each side and then subcut them into units like these:

I set the units into alternating directions and came up with this:

To be honest, I thought the vertical units of the white flowere fabric would look more like stripes, but  that's what happens sometimes when you work on the fly.  I brought scraps of the fabrics to the fabric store and found this watermelon fabric that I thought would tie it all together.

I added a narrow strip of a dark pink as an inner border, and the whole thing turned out like this:

I had quite a few units left over, and so the next day  I  made up another quilt top with just the leftovers:

I actually like it better than my original plan, in fact I might make another just like it.

While I was working on my pink watermelon top, my friend Linda was busy sewing up two quilt tops from kits that our Quilt for Kids chapter puts together.  I wish I had taken photos of the two cute quilt tops that she finished that day. 

I liked the idea of sewing from a precut kit, so I decided to make up a couple of my own. 

I had one yard each of a football fabric and an fish fabric.

I picked a tone-on-tone yellow that coordinated with both of them, and then a blue and green to pair with the yellow.

The last piece of the puzzle was to search the stash to  find a fabric for a narrow inner border for each.  For the fish quilt, I chose an orange, and for the football quilt, I found a dark brick red that matched the footballs.  I cut all the fabrics and had two kits ready to go:

In what seemed like very little time at all, I put together both quilt tops.  By working on both kits at the same time,  I was able to save steps at the ironing board and at the cutting table.  Besides, not being a football fan, it was great  to have a project to work on while everyone else was watching the Superbowl.

Here is the fish quilt:

And here is the football quilt:

Hope this quilt makes some little football fan happy.  I know that the football fans in my house were not too happy last night. 

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