Of Fantastic, Cat’s Claws and Tropical Delights

I am terribly sorry about having you made to wait for todays post. Usually I set everything up on Sunday so that publishing occurs right on time. Yesterday however I was so tired that I could not make myself write anything that would at least make a moderate amount of sense. For those who are wondering now – no I did not spent the whole nights of the long weekend crocheting (though I actually did one square). My hubby and I spent three days sightseeing the city of Hamburg – a really great place to visit. We have walked what felt like a marathon or two and almost every day just dropped right into bed as soon as we were back at the hotel again.

IMG_0319Last week I promised you some gorgeous squares of my Nuts about Rose – so this is what I will therefore do now.

The first three where really fun to make and seeing the picture might make you understand why I love this square. I am really considering exchanging my logo with a nice shot of one of them – even though I like the current one which I hand lettered myself. The squares name is chosen well – it’s Fantastic! by Julie Yeager and fantastic is what this square really is.

IMG_0320The second set of squares actually contains two patterns – one called Cat’s Claw by Margaret MacInnes and the other one Tropical Delight by Susan Stevens. I ❤️ the Tropical Delight as it looks so pretty – my color scheme works great here. But it was by miles the hardest pattern I have ever crocheted – and I have already done very many … It felt like ages until I was finally finished and I messed up the stitch count in the last rounds and had to get creative to get to the right stitch count on all sides in th end. I think the complexity of that square was the reason why it was matched with two Cat’s Claws. This one was really easy and is fast to make. Nevertheless it looks quite fancy.

The blanket is now fast approaching a good size – I laid out the squares on my floor (yes, I know, again ☺️) to see how the squares fit together. I am really happy with how it starts to look.

A finish and a new beginning

IMG_0303Last week was actually the last week for my hygge – and I am really a little bit sentimental about it. It’s been a long journey with quite some ups and downs and it was a really hard work blocking it in the end too. It softened up after wet-blocking so actually using it as a wrap might be an option. I have not found a fabric yet that spoke hygge or Danish mermaid to me. So I did not line it yet and at the moment it is just hanging around a little bit waiting for the right usage.

 

IMG_0307As it seems now I have a lot of spare time and as I promised last week there’s a new CAL I am participating in. It’s Stardust Melodies by the gorgeous and creative designer Polly Plum. It’s all about textures, so I picked some Paintbox cotton aran as cotton makes stitches more defined than the fluffy acrylic yarn. My hubby picked the colour scheme and I ordered three packs without knowing how much I will actually need for the blanket. Seems I have miscalculated a little bit but Loveknitting was so fast delivering that I am not concerned about ordering more as soon as I need more. They missed to send one yarn ball though – you can see the missing dark blue in the top row – but resent it without any trouble. Really great support service!

IMG_0309I started of cause as soon as I had my yarn with the square called Begin the Beguine. It looks complicated but actually is really simple as soon as you have figured it out. It’s a little bit smaller than I expected – it will block to 20 cm – but this just means that I might have to make more of the squares. At the moment I am planning on doing 2 of each for a 6×8 sized blanket. I have not done the second one as I am not sure about the layout  of the blanket. I’ll make one of each square and then check out which fit together best. They are actually really nice and easy to fit in every evening – maybe because the are single color – so no weaving in of a million threads like the Nuts about Squares CAl. In case you want to try to create one too, make sure to check out Polly’s great video tutorial on Youtube. It is really very helpful in case you are not the pattern reading type of crocheter or if you want to clarify where to put a specific stitch.

Now I am off to do my next Nuts about Squares squares – I can tell you for sure that next week there will be some beauties showing up here!

Nuts about Roses – Squares, Squares and more Squares

What’s my favorite shape at the moment? Squares! Each week I am at least finishing three of them each week for the Nuts about Squares CAL. If you have not checked it out yet, you really should – it’s amazingly creative, fun, pretty and so out of my comfort zone :). In the meantime I have a neatly stacked little tower of squares that I love to look at. I hardly can wait to join them together. Maybe I am the only crazy one laying them out every week in different ways just to take a look at how they come along. Would be great if you leave me a message if you do that too, so I know that I am not just weird 😛

IMG_0305The next square I have not shown you yet, as it was on the blocking board last time, is Rachel by Melissa Green. It was the first square I actually considered changing. When I took a look at the square on Ravelry, it was so not my style. Not only am I definitely not a flower power girl but those color schemes in the pics really don’t work well with the pattern in my opinion. That’s really sad because the first impression is usually what counts. Now I am happy that I actually stuck with the original design – also due to the fact that I just don’t know which squares will come up and don’t want to accidentally change to a pattern that needs to be done later. To be honest I am a little bit in love with the treble border around the flower.

IMG_0304Last week then came Bavarian Beauty by Heather Gibbs. Now this is a square to my liking. Not only is it so much fun to make, I also love the geometric look.  If you ever had troubles with trebles – that’s the square you should consider making as you will get a LOT of practice ;). What I can highly recommend – and I have probably written it now several times already – is to watch Esther’s videos. In the beginning I was really used to written patterns and was thinking along the way of “I don’t need a video to crochet! I am an expert!”. Well, but Esther’s voice is so nice to listen too and it’s much easier to just crochet along to what she is saying than reading the pattern and figuring it out myself. I am a lazy girl, I know. But time is essential when crocheting – so many projects, so little time ….

Well, concerning projects I will be bugging you with progress pictures for another CAL pretty soon – to be precise as soon as the yarn I ordered from Loveknitting finally arrives. Postal service is soo terribly slow here. The CAL I am so urgently what to start with – but I promise, only after I have finished my Hygge – is the Stardust Melodies CAL by amazing designer Polly Plum. It’s a afghan that will challenge me with totally new texture crochet. But I love a really good challenge – and this year’s winter my husband and I will be kept really nice and warm with all the blankets I am creating 😉

Hygge – cutting the yarn

IMG_0296Hygge is fast approaching the end. It feels quite strange to me to finish one of the longest projects I’ve been continuously working on soon.  This time I really stuck with it and each week I did the pattern that was released. The final cross stitch part were beautiful diamonds – the picture just doesn’t show the subtleness of colour changes well. We still have not used our small goodies yet as you can see. I believe that they might be part of the border or the finish.

IMG_0297The last week was the second bobbles section. I considered at first to copy the bobble section of the first week but then I stuck with the original design. I just made a small ajustment – rather then working the bobbles from the back I added another row of single crochet and worked them from the right side. I just didn’t like the look from the back and I love the feeling of bobbling bobbles. And then there was this one moment – the one where the pattern says “cut of your yarn and weave in all the ends”. I captured this moment on the picture as it felt quite strange to cut the yarn after 11 weeks of securing it and continuing the next week from there.

IMG_0299I still have quite a lot of yarn left even though I still need some for the border. It is said that the border will take approximately 1 1/2 to 2 skeins of Sheepjes Stone washed but I still have 4 1/2 left. I heard rumors that there might be an additional pattern waiting on the last day for using that yarn though. But I might use them to create some bathroom accessory that’s been on my mind for quite some time though.

I am still uncertain what I am going to do with my Hygge. The wrap feels to me quite stiff and heavy – I know I am a tight crocheter. I am used to lighter wraps like my lovely cotton yarn Seychelle wrap I made last year and love to wear now that it’s getting warmer. Maybe it will become a wall hanging. Or a table runner. I just need to figure that out soon as it influences if I line it or not. My backside is quite nice so there actually is no need for a lining.

But guess what – the end of a CAL means always that you have now more time for a new project. Therefore I ordered myself some yarn for a – well actually 2 – new projects. And there’s also still the Nuts about Squares CAL going on which is now halfway finished too. Time is flying by so quickly, it’s quite scary.

Want to laugh instead? Check out the blog post of a very good friend of mine about our gaming session of “Stille Post extrem”. We had such a hard laugh that I still feel my belly muscles – guess I’ll they will be quite sore tomorrow 🙂

Nuts about storage and roses

59D58C14-8BFC-4121-8F87-2DF7CA1A9A70This week I hwave been busy with my spring cleaning so I am not well prepared for my writing. Actually it’s more like a total throw out type of cleaning as I work myself through everything checking if I really need it. It’s quite amazing how much gets accumulated over time – things that I have put away because I might need them someday or I want to look at it at a later time. I really believe that every couple of years you need to do such a big clean up and am happy that I do not live in a huge house :). Now I am almost finished and guess what – I found out that there is still some space free in my appartment :). Maybe that’s the reason I brought home some nice IMG_0279addition to my working space recently – a storage for my current WIP, Nuts about Squares. I picked it up at Zara Home and it actually stores my yarn for Nuts about Roses and Nuts about Earth next to each other. It’s now very easy to pick up the yarn I need for a certain row as they yarn is sorted by the letters in the colour chart.  It can be carried outside easily so that I am able to work on my squares in the sun.  And even my hook set fits in with my yarn.

The next squares of my NAS I have been working on have been quite a challenge as  IMG_0291they have been so outside of my comfort zone. Le Vesinet by Sigrun Hugoey starts with nine circles that are then linked by sewing them together and then squared of by crocheting around. As you can see in the picture they really neeed blocking as they came out a little bit wonky. I actually already have blocked them by now and they look really pretty – just been too busy to take a picture of them blocked yet. I even finished this weeks squares too, but they are still on the blocking board, so sadly you have to wait until next time. But I can tell you at least that much – they are really lovely even though I thought about substituting them in the beginning.

Hygge and Running

IMG_0288Here’s another update on my Hygge. As mid time is past, every week is kind of short in comparison. The first part was a group of nice green flowers which were fun to make. And I even now get the separator right from the start without any help. Its kind of weird to know that there will only be two more of them to do after this week …

IMG_0292The second part was some bright green squares. I love the contrast of those two parts – they really pop as much as I like then to pop. Now only two more panels until the final bobbel part – not sure yet, if I stick to the design or copy week one for an even look. I am not even sure if I’ll wear it as a wrap as honestly it’s pretty heavy by now. And I still need to go shopping for some fabric to line it with – oh dear, as if I would need an excuse to go fabric shopping :).

The rest of the weekend I spent with something totally different. I have started to run again last year together with a friend and a colleague of mine convinced us to join in the relay marathon. Due to several illness related breaks in training, I was way behind my training plan but the great atmosphere at the Vienna City Marathon really kept me going. Personal best for a distance of 9,5km – and even a glimse at the elite runners as they past me by while waiting for my friend. Together we were better than we expected – we only missed the 5h by some tiny seconds. Now we have a new goal for next year 😜

Hoppy Easter!

IMG_0287
pattern by lalylala

It’s this time of the year again, when young ones go outside in order to search for bright and colourful eggs and sweets. I become sentimental every year as I remember how eager I was watching my mother each easter when I was a kid in order to catch her hiding our sweets in the garden. I was never successful though – it must have been some mother-superpower.

This year however I caught something – it was hopping past my window and was looking to hide some bright eggs in my living room. It had a fluffy tail,  some really long ears and a wiggly nose. I gave it a carrot and it dropped some chocolate eggs as an exchange.

IMG_0280Additionally I was working on the next two squares of my Nuts about Roses blanket. The second design was Spiro Star by the fabulous designer Helen Shrimpton. This pattern really looks so beautiful when finished but it has some nice challenge in it. I will never be a fan of a triple treble that’s for sure. I was uncertain until now about my color choice – especially that really bright pink is usually so not me. But I love how it all comes together. I think that it really depends on how you arrange the squares next to each other to make it work. I can’t wait to have all squares finished so that I can arrange them.

IMG_0286The third one was called Denna by designer Polly Plum.  This one is currently my absolut favourite design. Not only do my colors work perfectly together in these squares, they were also easy and fun to make.  But every time I see those squares now, I have this song line creeping into my head – x-ses and o-s ……

Now I have to wait again until Thursday for the next pattern to be released. In the meantime I’ll finish the next parts of Hygge and there might be some time again to work on my Sophie.

Until then – happy hoppy easter everyone!