Sheepjes CAL 2017: Hygge – the first two weeks

Are you up for more Hygge time? Well, I have definitely had my share in the last two weeks.

It all began a little bit before the official start with a kind of teaser. We were supposed to work on a gauge square to assess if the suggested crochet hook size would lead to the expected result of the real product. I have never done a gauge square before as I was always telling myself “What do I need that for? What will come out of it will be fine with me. No need to be all perfectionist about the size…”  But then people started to complain or worry about their square sizes and I began wondering how mine would end up. I was just curious from a scientific point of view – really, I did not fall victim to peer pressure …

So I “watched” the video instructions – which was mainly skipping through to the trouble shooting part. It’s not that I am new to crochet and need to see what a single crochet looks like … However I really did learn something even though I consider myself to be a crochet veteran:

  • There’s a difference between UK terms and US terms. A US single crochet (sc) is a UK double crochet (dc), whereas a US double crochet (dc) is a UK treble (tr). A US triple crochet (trc) – which would sound almost like a treble – is a UK double treble (dtr) instead. Confusing, I know, and you really have to make sure to know where your instructions are coming from or you might actually crochet wrong! Luckily the pictographs are the same all around the world though. Seems that I have always worked with US style patterns until now.
  • In case you are lacking in width or are too wide, you need to adjust your hook size.  I had to go down from the recommended 4,5 to a 4 in order to get the width correct. This will not help with a difference in height though!
  • Difference in height comes from the so called “golden loop” which is the last loop of a crochet stitch and defines the way you crochet. Crocheters are either yankers (golden loop too tight), riders (golden loop just right) or lifters (golden loop to loose). In case you are a yanker or a lifter you might need to work more focused on loosen up or tightening your golden loop for the needed height. Luckily I am a rider and therefore have gotten a perfect square.

img_0199We also had to stitch a heart on our gauge square which was easy for me as I am stitching for over 25 years now. Stitching on crochet is just like stitching on Aida fabric – you only have a certain way where the stitches have to go. I really love how easily the ends can be woven in so that they are hidden completely in the crochet stitches. I pimped up the square in the end in order to use it as a coaster – otherwise it would have been a waste of yarn and I would hate that 😉

After a short wait the real race was off – and how off it was! You would have thought that the survival of mankind was depending on how fast the part of the first week was finished. The instructions were hardly posted, the first finished pieces appeared on Facebook. Some people have definitely way too much time :P.  What even surprised me more was the number of perfectionists and the effects of peer pressure – it was like watching as social compatibility study taking place right before your eyes.

It was all about bobbles – and the first part contained a lot of those. The instructions were pretty clear but soon people started to complain about non-popping bobbles. The number of “I’m not happy with what I created” people really increased fast – and most really had nothing to complain about because their work looked great. Then someone started to experiment with different ways of doing bobbles and it felt like everyone jumped right in. It actually mostly ended up in not making bobble stitches as designed but other stitches instead. Don’t get me wrong – everyone has a right to crochet their work as they like it but it felt weird that they didn’t stuck with what the designer intended. I mean there’s a difference between a popcorn stitch and a bobble/puff stitch. The designer intended it to be a little bit puffy, not popping. Some added additional stitches to the bobbles to make them bigger, some added more rows to the design. I really wonder why so16831061_1262985983754631_4894572479788695305_nmeone participates in a CAL when in the end they are designing their own piece anyway? I am a little bit torn between seeing it as being creative or as a slap in the face of the designer.

Well, I for my part stuck with the original design and I am really happy with the result. I love the texture of the bobbles – if you stroke them they really feel great. And I for sure enjoyed the process. In the end that’s really what matters – it’s all about the joy during the process of creation and of the final result. Don’t let group pressure ever ruin that for you!

Now enough rambling – I’m off to work on part 2 of the pattern ❤

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