Monday, April 29, 2013

Your crochet hooks

I was reading about crochet hooks on a blog site and I kept thinking: what am I looking for in a crochet hook? When I first picked crochet as a hobby, I would crochet with steel hook only. Why? Well for basics reason:
- I did not have a list of yarns where to choose from. The only place to dig into was my grandma´s basket and she not only crocheted with only 100% mercerized cotton but also the list of colors were not very long.
a) white
b) beige
and that was it. that was the list. No blue or red or pink or let alone variegated. I never saw her uses other color but these two.
The hooks were all steel. But it is not like you could find more choices in the stores either because even the stores where grandama could buy her hooks came down to be less than the 5 fingers in a hand.
Time went by and once I was cleaning my mothers stash and she had some very nice 100% wool from years back that she never uses and there were some pretty nice colors too. This specific wool called for a much larger hook and she had one big wooden # 6 hook and only than I discover there were other material than steel. So I get more involved in crocheting and knitting I started digging and I was not only amazed but also overwhelmed about the plethora of crochet hooks available in the market:

and much more

 The list is endless....

So I started a real quest about crochet hooks and I discovered they come in different materials as:
Steel, bone, ivory, aluminium, plastic, bamboo, wood, acrylic, resin and the list goes on...
It became more difficult too with so many different brands such as:
Boyle, Susan Bates, Yellow Gold, Clover, Tulip, Brittany Birch, Lion Bran, Crystal Palace, Create for less...
Then someone thought it was not hard enough to have so many categories and they added simple hooks, intercheangeable, ergonomic....
I even discovered hooks for pepople that suffers Carpel Tunnel Syndrome.

It was amazing what I discovered during my journey into the world of crochet hooks. Th more I slooked the more I learned and I fall into the trap barehands by becoming particular about my hooks although not picky at all about the brand I uses and by that I also mean that quality is not a necessity for me however I need to feel comfortable If I am crocheting a big project as a bedcover or afghan, a blanket etc. For a quick doily I may be not so picky but again...I do not crochet doily as often as I used to during my younger years.

Each project may call for a particular kind of hook depends on the yarn that you will be using
My first choice goes to steel over anything else (maybe it´s force of habit) but I don´t mind using the aluminium ones although they are king of heavy and if you have sweaty hands they are not the right choice for you.

I stay away from plastic, resin and acrylic at all cost because of the annoying snags and squeaks and I think plastic hooks tend to leave burrs on the hook. I totally refuse to use them on any project no matter what.

Some people favors the bamboo and woods hooks because they address they weight issue. They are very light and comfortable and they do not transfer heat versus steal or aluminium. I don´t use them often unless the pattern calls for it.

My conclusion is that you have to feel comfortable with the hook you choose so no one will know what right for you but yourself. Now, go crochet something beautiful.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Chamara azul

Sigo tejiendo para una hospital de niño. Me gusta tejer para los pequeños. El patron de esta chamaritta viene con cuello pero opte por quitarselo. Me faltan todavia pegar los tres botones y listo.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Great bedspreads

I have bought a magazine that is full of Blanket and afghan and these are lovely and I wanted to share few pictures with you from this magazine. I have yet to make the first one but most of them are in my to do list as bedspread.
This is the cover of the magazine. Isn´t this cover incredible! A lot of work to put in it but the result should be a great reward. Such said, I have to confess this is not my style. Stripes and I are far from being lovers and so many colors spook me out.

and I am showing only few of them. This is a wave stitch bedspread.
Teresa from the art of crochet shows with much details how to do the Larksfoot stitch on you tube. It´s a go for this lovely purple and blue bedspread
I think this one may be a shell stitch but I am not sure as it look also as a wheel stitch. Will have to check the magazine that I do not have handy as we speak but these are my favorite colors though.
Another keeper. Is this a ripple stitch crochet aka weave basket stitch? or is it a lazy wave or Chevron stitch? So many names for this stitch that I am not gonna stretch much about it. When time comes I will know he!he! I love it!
And then one of my favorite. I will probably change these baby colors but´s a keeper. oh! by the way this is a...oops! Got the name of the stitch on the tip of my tongue Can´t remember!
And...keeping them coming. This one I will do to and not as a blanket for sure. I might keep the same colors as they look claming and refreshing.
...and of course they would not leave this simple but yet beautiful granny square out of their choices. And I have to say that what I love the most with theses grannies is how they alternate two different sizes and yet manage to have a darning result.
Keep seing them in More bedspreads to enjoy!

More bedspreads to enjoy!

...And more bedspreads in the Filati magazine. Tell me if this isn´t one of the most beautiful cover ever. I will loose these colors but I already imagine the same in different shades of brown or beige or even gray.
And for those wanting a little bit more of a are well served with cables and bobbles
...and more bobbles for you. I can only picture this one as a shawl or a scarve as it does not strike me as a bedspread or even and afghan or a small blanket.
The same as this one, but hey! I may cheer myself and do and afghan with it. After all these panes are very quick to make and I imagine it would take no more than 32 of them or 36 at the most. Maybe making the panes double in color will save you time.
More granny squares
This one in particular is not only too busy for my taste but further more in my opinion certain mix of colors does not let the stitches shine for themselves. So I wil pass on this one.
What about these lovely knitted panes with different textures. I just love them and I will probably change the colors to blue, pink, brown and yet have to decide on the last color.

 Definitely not for me
See Part one of this post Great bedspreads!

Friday, April 12, 2013

BonBon vest

The patterns is found in a spanish magazine called Tejidos. I did alter the pattern slightly because I did not like the stitch it called for.
Bonbon is how they called this yarn and it is 100% polyester made in China. Nothing fancy but right for a border.
then a variegated yarn to crochet the vest. Unfortunately it cannot be blocked but still it needs a good steam to keep the stitches where they belong.
I am not a particular fun of sleevless but sometimes they come handy on top of long sleeves. I love the stitches I used for this one.
Of course I had to use more yarn than the pattern called for
I love how it turned out. it is a functionnal little vest. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Mi primer intento

Algunos dias despues de empezar a tejer, decidi hacer un sweater y sin darle mucha lata pues compre los estambres, busque un modelo y me lanze. Of course I decided I could do it - and worst- I beleived it. La experiencia fue muy grata aunque el resultado no tanto y por varias razones con las cuales no les voy a aburrir pero le dire que tengan lo siguiente en mente:

1- No haga tu primer intento con un estambre de fantasia ( it was a really bad moove).

Claro no tenia que ser un genio para saber todo esto pero tengo la mala costumbre ( happens with each and every craft I pick) de saltar las etapas y empezar con lo mas difficil o por lo menos con el nivel de intermediario. ( encuentro los niveles "easy" and Beginners"" un tanto debilucho...pero hey! esta soy yo hablando plepla porque el que invento los niveles de experiencia sabe lo que estaba haciaendo. Anyway, back to the subject at end.

2- Elija un modelo sencillo (again- un modelo para principiante) but I went for the not so easy one

3- Make a swatch - lo que en realidad nunca hago - por lo menos not when I am crocheting. Never did and probably never will. Tengo tal vez demasiado tiempo "crocheting" y me complace a mi creer que soy una pro when it comes to crochet ( i might be wrong) in fact I know I am wrong...but still I do not swatch (which is very stupid on my part by the way)

Again slipping away from the subject.
I would love to say the result was majestic but again I would be going way over my head. El cuerpo del sweater en si esta bien cuando lo miras a primera vista.

The cables (las trenzas) estan hechas unas al reves y unas al derecho. Ahora yo se (por la practica y el resultado) que se hacen de una u otra manera pero hay que mantener una constante, which I did not do. Well I didn´t know it had to be done a specific way.
Las mangas salieron bien claro despues de varios frogging pero entendi como hacerlas y coserlas al cuerpo del sweater.
The sleeves on this sweater are extremely tight on the armholes and it was not an error made during the knitting itself but while sewing the seams.

 The ribbing was perfect though but I was tired of it at the end I decided to double crochet the neck and the sleeves. I would say it was a good idea but most would beg to differ that point of view as it was uneven and done (i admit!) in a sloppy way.

Overall, no es un sweater que le daria de regalo a nadie a menos que esta persona te caiga mal pero de toda manera yo me lo voy a poner, claro despues de cortar las mangas. Me mentendra calientita durante las noches de invierno.

Yarn Shopping

I went yarn shopping yesterday and I bought Patagonia yarn which is extremely soft. The earth tone  color definetely caught my attention. I have yet to decide what to knit to do with it. 
The only downsize is that it comes in polyester which means my choices are very limited. Either a scarf or a vest and this is a closer look to of the fiber. It looks like braids.
Then I also got some 100 % wool in a variegated color. Unvortunately I could not buy more  because it is a bit pricey.
Maybe I will mix it with a thin fiber...or not
It is a variegated yarn
And last but not least
 In two different color, beige and dark brown. I am and earth tone fan. Fot this specific yarn I alreacy have a pattern in mind for a small vest all in brown with a beige border.
I love going to the Filati store. They have the best yarn in town in my humble opinion and the service they provide is out of this world. So far it is my favorite LYS in Mexico.

Besides they published their own crochet and knitting magazine although I have to mention that nethe patterns are far from being for beginners level. In fact, you need more than the basic skills to execute their patterns. Sometimes they may give a chart but mostly they give you and overall explanation . The good thing is if you are stucked at some pon t knitting/crocheting a pattern you just drop by their store and you will find someone to tell you exactly what to do.

If only I could have more money to go yarn shopping more often...sigh*

Saturday, April 06, 2013

For girls

Dos ropitas adicionales para bebe para envio a un hospital en Australia. Son modelos de revistas de crochet mexicanas.
 I am not sure if I have to add some ribbons for closure or leave it as is. Pondering...pondering.

Friday, April 05, 2013

Baby blanket

I always resist from doing granny square and swatches. Waste of time. At least that what I used to beleive for a long time till the day I had the urge of making a small pouch for my cell phone and I knitted mini squares of 4x4 stitches and I discovered that not only it was therapeutic but I loved the fact of sewing them together. Right then and there I started a granny blanket for to giveaway as charity work. I am a convert to grannies and that is why I started the Octagons and squares bedspread. Blanket is made out of Bernat Soft and a cotton yarn for the border. I totally love the swirls of the border. Size 17x17 inches



Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Ganchillo o agujas

De niña, en el colegio, hacer las manualidades eran actividades extracurriculares pero obligatorias. Me habia naturalemente dirigido hacia las telas e hilos. No tan solo porque habia aprendido a bordar desde muy pequeña pero tambien y mas precisamente porque  mi mama y mi abuela eran apasionadas de las agujas tambien y les veia incansablemente bordar pañuelos para mi papa y mi abuelo, manteles que ocupariamos en las grandes ocasiones y las sabanas que eran de uso diario.
Ademas admito que mi eleccion de bordar se basaba tambien del susto que tenia a la vista de estos dos palos largos que entrelazaban hilos. Veia unas compañeras pasar mucho trabajo en aquel oficio. Me preguntaba porque no elegian entonces el crohet o el punto de cruz o el bordado hasta que me di cuenta que dichas muchahcas no sabian como tener ni siquiera una aguja de coser. No tenian el alma en este tipo de manualidaes. Otras sin embargan llegaron a dominar las dos agujas o "tricot" y secretamente yo las admiraba por ello. Los años pasaron y me olvide del "tricot" por completo aunque nunca deje mi ganchillo de corochet.

Todo esto iba a cambiar cuando en septiembre del año 2012, mi oficina me traslado a vivir en Mexico City. El invierno es muy intenso en Mexico, no hay nevada pero la temperatura baja considerablemente hasta a dos grados lo que es demasiado para una persona que nacio en una isla donde el sol esta siempre muy alto y el mar muy azul. Fue durante una fria tarde de esta que me meti en una LYS en busqueda de unos botones para poner a una Cardigan que me habia hecho en crochet y la dueña de la tienda y yo empezamos a conversar sobre un tejido a dos agujas que estaba haciendo con un hilo de seda color cobrizo que fue justamente lo que me llamo la atencion. Pues ella me ofrecio enseñarme a tejer con la condicion de comprar el hilo y las agujas. Me sente durante dos horas en la tienda y el resto es historia...
Como el horario de mi oficna chocaba con el horario de la señora, no llegue a tomar mas que dos clases adicionales de una hora. De ahi con la ayuda de y de algunos yahoo groups he podido dejar el miedo a las agujas atras.  En otro mensaje posteare el primer abrigo de color azul que hice en tricot pero por lo pronto he hecho estas dos ropitas de bebe para regalar a un hospital.
That is too bad I can´t rememeber the lady that offers this particular free knitting pattern online. I wish to recall her name or her site so to give proper credit to her.
I executed the pattern as is but the only thing I changed was the sleeves. I made them shorter because I did not have enough Blue in that Red Heart Super Saver Worsted yarn to make the long sleeves. I have no idea why this picture came out as a greyish color but it is really a skyblue color.
This one is from a mexican magazine for baby knits and crochet

Esta ropita is a Christenning gown but the only yarn I had on hand to make this quickly was a green baby yarns from Bernat. This gown actually opens in the back all the way down so I have to put at least 4 small buttons for closure.  It is made in crochet.