Crochet it AINT SO

Have you ever started a project and not finish it? I am sure you haven’t heard of this concept, let alone has it ever happened to you or anyone you know, < WINK WINK >. I have fallen victim to this for many years and as a younger me, I didn’t complete quite a few knitting and crocheting projects specifically. In fact, in a period of 7-10 years, I started 5 or 6 completely new and separate projects and never finished one of them. Some I barely started! My husband kindly asked for a scarf that was started in 2013 – and packed away in our move last year.

moving gave me something that I hadn’t had for a while – a time to review what I HAD and decide if I was actually going to USE IT. Crochet and yarn made the cut and as our quarantine process with COVID 19 started, I began to youtube it up; Crochet uses about 30% more thread than knitting but has many quick projects that can be done with a tutorial or so (to created granny squares and learn a variety of stitches). I had a few crochet hooks lying around so I started with Lion Brand THICK AND QUICK from JoAnn’s and Michaels and got to hooking! (I don’t think that’s right but go with me here). The kiddos got a fancy hat – I made a (you)tube and cinched it at the top! They said it looks like a “king hat” or a crown and again, just a bit too warm for a thick wool hat so that also got put away. Throughout all this, to note, the cat has been more interested in me than ever before, staring at the yarn as I pull it from each Skein and batting at it occasionally as well – to which I may have batted back since my claws aren’t as sharp as hers!

Learning granny squares (bottom left above) is a right of crochet passage – and the tutorials can be found all over youtube – they help you learn counting stitches and keeping your yarn the perfect tension which are foundations for all crochet. The history of Granny squares can be found HERE and they can be the building blocks (literally squares) of so many other projects! I took the first few I made and thought – this would be a pretty blanket! After I made 4 granny squares however, I got stuck; I couldn’t figure out in my head how to make the colors work and with the shelter in place, I wasn’t able to casually get the specific yarn I wanted or bargain shop like usual SO it became a WRAP (to be used in the fall/winter of course). I simply joined together each granny square with a simple single crochet and its ready when I need it!

I had a left over granny square from that wrap and decided to add on so that I could make it just big enough to cover this pillow! Just an old accent pillow that has been washed quite a few times, I think it looks great with two options for some texture! I was very happy with the results and just crocheted the two squares together around the pillow for this look. You can see the granny square bottom right and in the middle is a very simple ribbed stitch!

next on the pillow docket was this color blocked upgrade which used to be a hunter green fringed chenille pillow that was old and lumpy. Now it has new life as a cozy textured pillow that has the same stitch as the above pillow but with oatmeal and a dark gray strip! I am still perfecting that granny square technique and you can see that above, I was following a tutorial and then veered off to my own style whereas below, I winged it (slightly more imperfect, HA!)

Next project I decided to tackle was a blanket. MY FIRST blanket. That said, THICK and QUICK bonus bundles were on sale from Michael’s so I cleaned up on this ivory yarn and found this fun deep blue color. I love lines and playing with thickness of lines so once I got 2/3 of the way through this bad boy I started up the blue! This pattern was my own – 1 row dc, turn, 1 row dc, turn, 1 row sc, repeat! That’s how I got the super thin blue line and the thicker blue lines too! (dc = double crochet, sc = single crochet!)

Chicago springs are notoriously “non-springlike” and thus – a 3+ inch snow storm mid March! Perfect for crocheting a heavy blanket to keep you warm.

There you have it! An entire blanket. My FIRST ever blanket! That said, I missed a few stitches and sometimes were extra chains (as seen by the various holes) and and it is slightly imperfect with its width and length. Typical crochet patterns call out counting stiches and I totally winged it – so if I lost a few I had to make up with some creative bordering ha ha!. When you sit under it, it keeps you warm and cozy and I think thats the point of a blanket!

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Another quick project was from PINTEREST .This lilac beanie was for my daughter – it wasn’t nearly cold enough for this hat at this point as it was getting warmer by the day – BUT I was just crocheting away! I didn’t trust the pattern and added too much yarn so not only does it have weird white stripes (since I ran out of lilac), it’s too big as well, haha! Not a Pinterest win but not tooooooo much of a fail either- it still works as a hat – enjoy!

After this ole cap was finished – I started a newly found pattern on the LION Brand website for a specific type of afghan with stitch counting and everything! I thought I printed it out but I can’t find it for the life of me so once I do I will update this post. I really love the wavy look of this stitch combo and you know I didn’t make it up myself 🤣🤣.

More color blocking here – I actually tried 3 or 4 different colors in an attempt to do an ombre type pattern and settled on this more “blocked” layered look. I am still working on keeping my rows even and not dropping stitches, this sure has been a labor of love! After a month or so, Cream, Oatmeal, Dark Gray, and Black blocked Afghan is finally complete! This picture doesn’t do it justice, and it has a nice weight to it and will keep us cozy for years to come!

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The world of crochet has so many possibilities! Once I get my “counting” stitches down I will attempt more specific patterns like booties (like my Oma used to make me as a child) and more baskets – here are some more of my efforts in the past 2 months (during the time I have been tackling the blankets of course, I find that some smaller, quicker projects keep you motivated to go back and return to larger, more intimidating ones, like massive blankets!!).

That Caron one pound thread became the white basket (thanks pinterest!) and some left over shiny gray yarn (that I have had for 8+years) became a little chalk caddy for my boys in their new chalk board room. I am sure much of this activity is related to the odd but typical spring weather that we had coupled with the COVID 19 shelter in place, but this skill WILL come in handy I am sure!!

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