Crochet project #5: FINALLY done!!

Wow, this hat took a shockingly long time to complete. I am terribly sorry, fellow crafters: I’ve just been so busy and it’s been difficult for me to find time to crochet. I hate to say it, but I think that I’m only going to be able to get 6 hats done this summer. I’m panicking too badly about my work load next semester, so I am trying to get as much of my comps reading done in the next three weeks as I can… My next (and probably last) hat will be the cute baseball hat I posted about several weeks ago.

Despite the fact that I am falling short of my crocheting goal, I am proud of everything I have done so far, and hopefully this winter– and definitely next summer– I will be able to make even more stuff to give away!

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Ravelymp… I mean, crocheting during the Olympics!

Crochet project #5: Baby girl’s flower hat

I would have loved to have gone to an Olympics crafting party last night, but working on my hat at home was very nice too. I know that I was thinking about starting the baby’s baseball hat the other day, but my antsy feeling to try a new kind of stitch overwhelmed me (not really, but you know). Here, I used a back post double crochet stitch, which creates a nice texture for the brim and will be flipped up. The Olympics Opening Ceremony is a great time to get some crafting work done, because a) it’s long, b) it’s entertaining television, and c) I can’t read and watch TV at the same time because TV is usually more stimulating.

I have to admit that when the Opening Ceremony for the 2012 London Olympics was just getting started, I was a little unimpressed. Granted, I may be biased because I don’t think that the opening for the 2008 Beijing Olympics will be topped for a long, long time (and Danny Boyle himself said that he was glad that their opener was better because he knew he couldn’t top it, meaning he could do whatever he wanted). I get that it was meant to trace London’s history from egalitarian to industrial revolution to modern day, but the history geek in me was like, “Where are the medieval castles??” I also thought that the beginning part of the industrial revolution segment was a little, well, dumb, but once the drums came in, it got a lot more entertaining. The appearance of Voldemort and other villains was very cool (especially given that JK Rowling was one of the cast and I’m a huge Harry Potter nerd), and I did love the dancing in the “modern era” segments. There were a few parts that were a little odd, like the giant baby in the middle of the stadium, but overall, I ended up being impressed. So kudos, Danny Boyle, ya did good.

I wish I could do nothing but crochet for the next 2+ weeks and watch the Olympic games, but unfortunately it is almost August and I am feeling a little anxious about my current state in relation to comps. While I have my 5 major questions decided upon, I only have 2/3 minor questions solidified. I also need to start writing 3 page papers on each of my questions so that I’m not in full-on panic mode when school starts. Too bad I’m not inspired to do a read-athon or something– that would be awesome to do while having the Olympics on in the background (if I were capable of such a feat). Oh well. I’ll make do with crocheting a bit while watching the Olympics on occasion.

Next idea for a crochet project

Spring Training Cap, by Linda Permann

Pattern from the March/April 2012 edition of Crochet Today (which I’ll either need to go find or make up on my own, because all they have online is the supply list and a basic picture of the pattern sized for a child).

My lovely coworker sent me a picture of this via Pinterest. Some of you probably know that I have been having trouble thinking of a good hat for a 6-12 month old baby boy. Where would an uninspired crocheter be without a fashionable friend with a Pinterest account?

I apologize to my crafty friends for my absence from posting about crocheting. I sadly have not been working on anything lately for a variety of reasons: my need to read more books for school, last week’s shooting in Aurora, and my birthday are the big ones. But I am hoping to start on this hat soon! If I want the main body of the hat to be made primarily out of my Grandma’s yarn, I may have to opt for off-white. The red that I have is the same gauge, and I don’t think there is enough pure white in her stash at that size even for a baby hat.

I have also made a test swatch of that pale pink yarn I posted about previously for a 6-12 month old baby girl hat (this is the yarn that will nicely complement my currently unused dianthus flower). I am going to try something new with this hat: I want to use back and front post stitches for the brim so that I have a nice textured fabric that I can flip up. Hopefully that experiment goes well (and thank god for Youtube!).

Crochet project #4: Irish rose or dianthus?

I decided to dive in to my new 100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet book and make two flowers to see how they would look with my hat, and I can’t choose which one I want to put on it.

The Irish rose is nice, big and pink– perfect for a little girl’s hat (I know I would have loved it). I actually messed it up a little bit and gave it an extra petal in the two outermost rows, but it’s still round.

The dianthus is just beautiful, and it is a little bit smaller than the Irish rose. If I go with the dianthus, I would make a few apple blossoms to put around it. Ordinarily I would make a couple more dianthus flowers and put the bunch off-center and closer to the ear. However, this hat is going to have ear flaps like the panda hat, and I don’t think that a large bunch of flowers would look very good on top of an ear flap.

When the body of the hat is complete– ear flaps and all– I am going to go around all the edges with the Watermelon yarn, kind of like I did with the panda hat, and then I’ll braid all of the strings together.

The hat should be done within the next couple days. I really have discovered how great it is to crochet on the stationary bike, because not only do I stay on it longer, but it is all kinds of awesome multi-tasking.

Crochet project #4: Flower hat

I had been thinking about doing a flower hat for a toddler for some time since I started this hat-crocheting frenzy, and I had seen many examples of flower hats that people on WordPress have made themselves. However, I have never made a flower before, and I could only find a couple patterns between my Stitch ‘n’ Bitch and The Crochet Bible books. I started the hat yesterday while sitting at the DMV and was only thinking about the colors that would go well for a to-be-determined flower.

But then I was at Barnes and Noble last night, and lo and behold, I found this: 100 Flowers to Knit and Crochet. Angels sang and grown men wept tears of joy.

Leslie Stanfield is absolutely amazing: the designs are based off of actual flowers! One could create their own yarny garden, if they wanted! Unfortunately, many of the flowers I like are knitted, and maybe when I get more confident in my flower-crocheting abilities, I will modify the patterns (or I’ll relearn how to knit). For now, I am particularly partial to the geranium, auricula, Irish rose, helenium, and dianthus patterns. The fuchsia flower is really beautiful too and would make for good tassels, though that may be going a bit overboard. I’m debating if I want to put one giant flower on the hat (Irish rose would be perfect) or if I want to put several smaller flowers. I am going to have to delve into my own yarn stash for this, since I have a wider variety of vibrant colors than my Grandma’s stash has, but I’m not breaking my self-imposed rules: the bulk of the hat is made of her own lovely Caron Simply Soft No Dye Lot yarn.

Crochet project #3: Finito! …mostly

I wish I was a kid again, I would totally rock this hat. It is just about done, though I am trying to decide if I want to add eyes, or if I want to use a slip stitch with black thread around the ear flaps so it looks more uniform. If I do add eyes, I don’t want anything that can fall off or be swallowed.

And now it’s back to the academic grind. I figured if I finished the hat I would have no excuse not to get back to the reading I seem to keep avoiding. 🙂

Crochet project #3: Panda hat

Panda hatI am so stoked to be working on this hat at last, not only because I’ve been anticipating it for two weeks, but also because I am finally using a thicker yarn again. I’m using Caron Simply Soft No Dye Lot for the main body and am using a size I hook (as opposed to a size H which the yarn ordinarily calls for). I’m also using a double crochet stitch. Again.

It is so lovely and soft, and according to the size chart it should fit a toddler (it is about 18″ around). It is shocking how big a toddler’s head is, but I say that as someone who has never spent any significant length of time around toddlers since being one myself. I sure hope it will fit. It’s going to be about 7″ high before I add on the ear flaps. I’m worried that I started decreasing the stitches too soon– the 9th row would have been the first row of dc2tog– but it seemed to make sense. I don’t want the hat being too loose or awkward-fitting. I wish I could invest in something that I can actually put the hats on to make sure they fit. Maybe I should just ask my co-workers to bring in some of their toddler’s hats so I can compare them, though it seems to me that a hand-crocheted hat seems to be a lot bigger than a store-bought hat for the same age range, since the latter type is often much more stretchy. We shall see…