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My Crochet Journey 2020

Monday, December 28, 2020

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I enjoy crocheting. There's a number of reasons. I find it relaxing. It keeps my hands and mind busy while my body rests. For me, it is much like meditation except when I get done, I am not only calm and peaceful, I have a tangle object. It's just fun to me.

I have always liked to make doilies and afghans. Usually very simple patterns. Normally a single color so I am not slowed down by fastening off one color and starting the next color. While most of works are simple in color, many have some advanced stitch sequences. After all, I do love a good challenge.

I have decided to slow the stitching down and add more color and more variety. So I am focusing my efforts on two goals:

1) Use up my stash (creatively)
2) Add unique projects to my portfolio that have a bit of "wow" factor

Goal #1 is progressing well. I won't go too far back in history, so let's just consider progress this month, May, 2020.

In November, 2017, I bought a bunch of red, white, blue, and gold Yarn Bee skeins to make a series of Corner-to-Corner (C2C) patriotic afghans that I had designed. I did complete two of those quickly, but the third one sat unfinished all this time. Eventually, I decided not to make that third design and searched out other patterns. I found a couple and designed a new one. Still, it sat unfinished. Then, in April this year, I stumbled across Patriotic Pride Throw by Katherine Eng. I had a color she did not use and I was missing a color she did use. So I swapped out a blue for a gold. I did get to exercise my engineering skills to figure out how big I could make the afghan with the yarn I had on hand. By the way, I am not an engineer by trade, I just always wanted to be one. So this is my outlet to fill that gap. This month I finally used that yarn and finished a version of Patriotic Pride pictured below.

As it turns out, there was still some of that yarn left over. So I pulled up a simple shell pattern and attempted to use up the remaining making a small lapghan. Or is it a baby blanket? Who knows. This is a version of Lovely Shells Baby Blanket by Olga Poltava.

I failed as an engineer. I still had a little bit of that yarn left over. Too much for me to just toss out. So I began working Modern Granny Afghan by Jeanne Steinhilber. It did not turn into an afghan, but more of a placemat and coaster. Not my best work, but it is a stash buster project, so when one color ran out, I attached the next color.

I am actually using that placemat as a laptop mat to protect my new craft table (and work-at-home desk). It was an anniversary gift last month that just arrived this week. It is oh so much nicer than the wobbly card table I was using before.

While goal #2 (adding projects to my collection with some awe-inspiring characteristics) is showing promise, I am regressing a bit. However, for good reason. I pulled this little charm I designed and made back in December, 2016 from the completed album to a Work-In-Progress (WIP). This one was inspired by my love for running which started in 2013 with my first half marathon with the Air Force Marathon series in Dayton, Ohio. I recently found instructions on a unique way to add a wooden dowel support rod to wall hangings. So I plan on giving that a try to get rid of the bows across the top.

I also have another, more colorful, wall hanging up next in the queue. I am very eager and excited to get going on the five projects following that wall hanging. One of the five is my design inspired by Dutch painter known for being one of the pioneers of 20th-century abstract art.

I have not hammered some of the finer details on several queued projects. So there is some engineering to be done before yarn hits the hook. I will post updates here in the coming months as the queue plays out.

Mission accomplished. I think this is much better.

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Another WIP complete. This wall hanging was made with cotton yarn. It was a quick, fun project. This is not the best in photography with little natural light, but it will do for now. Perhaps I can get better quality on a sunny day.

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I received my final package Saturday (or maybe it was Friday...they all run together these days) and my next project is queued up. I can't wait for the work day to end so I can bring out the hooks.

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Beginning day 5 on an incredible project. I cannot wait to see how this turns out. I am very pleased with the progress quite well so far. This one is going to be a lot of work, but I think it is going to be well worth the time invested.

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Beginning day 9 with 232 Granny Squares complete and 104 to go.

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Day 16 on my current project. I am pleased with the progress so far. I have completed 288 squares with 48 more to make. Then I will begin putting this puzzle together.

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Day 19: Today I finished the final square for this project. 336 squares complete. Now it is time to start connecting the mini Granny Squares. First, I must decide which method I wish to use to connect the squares. I believe it is down to whip stitch or slip stitch. I am leaning towards slip stitch, but tomorrow I will experiment before making a final decision. Once that is nailed down, off we go.

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After a series of test samples, I chose the slip stitch method to connect the squares. Today I completed the first Ohio Star panel.

First Ohio Star without border.

First Ohio Star with border.

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Day 33: All 12 star panels and borders are complete. It is time to make the final connections.

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Day 34: 3-star panels connected.

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07.12 Su

Completed the Ohio Star Crocheted Quilt. It was a lot of work with all the color changes, but well worth the effort.

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07.13 Mo

The completion of one project means it is time to focus on the next project in the queue. I actually started on this one a few days ago since the Ohio Star Crocheted Quilt is getting too large to travel easily.

This one is called Isometric by Solveig Grimstad. I'll be working with some rhombi in shades of green.

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07.30 Th

It is time to start building.

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08.06 Th

Today I broadened the path of my crochet journey. I joined the Crochet Guild of America.


At this early stage, I am not sure where this step will take me, but I can certainly get in step with their mission:

To create an environment which provides education, networking, resources, and a national standard for the quality, art, and skill of crochet through creative endeavors which preserve the heritage of crochet.

If nothing else, I will be networking with professionals that can help me advance my skills while preserving the art of crochet.

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08.12 We

Isometric is complete. It was an interesting project. A lot of work with all the connecting, but not as much work as the Ohio Star Crocheted Quilt.

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08.13 Th

Today I hit pause on my 5 queued projects to add 3 new projects to the top of the list. I will be making 3 lap blankets to donate to a Veterans Assisted Living Facility in North Carolina. The target date is on or about 11 November, Veterans' Day. Should time permit, I will make more before resuming the queue.

First up is Caron Crochet Texture Lap Blanket by Yarnspirations. I will make 2 of these. Unfortunately the colors I wanted were not available, so there will be one in Royal Blue with an Off White border and one in Off White with a Royal Blue border.

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08.18 Tu

Here it is at 18" long, about 40% complete. Sorry it is not the best picture with the sunlight washing it out.

A close up:

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    I love your quilt afghan BEAUTIFUL
    68 days ago
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