Tuesday, March 7, 2017

OK. A Little Crochet

I love yarn; almost as much as I love fabric. I love the texture, the colors, the multitudes of things I can create. And I discovered that I can collect yarn as quickly as I collect fabric. Who says I have to have a plan to buy it? It just looks so pretty sitting on my shelves. And my coffee table. And the stool in my kitchen. And . . .

Sometimes I'm given samples and that's the case with this set of four skeins of Fair Isle. I'm not sure how they found me (I'm a quilter, OK?), but I am a serious crocheter and you can't crochet without yarn!

Four skeins of Fair Isle yarn
This is not the high end yarn you find in specialty yarn shops (though I truly love that, too). This is quality yarn that feels good in my hands, plays nice with my hooks, and is very affordable (which means I can buy more of it!)

Let me show you what I made with that green and gold variegated Barclay (195 yards). The color is called "Surf." (Surf? It's the middle of winter here!)

There are 10 different colors shown at the Fair Isle web site. It's a light DK weight (ie, size 3) and the fiber content is one of my favorite combinations: 42% superwash merino wool, 35% acrylic, and 23% bamboo. I would have been happy with ANY of those 10 colors. It did recommend I use an H hook (which I did).

Super soft Barclay yarn becomes a toddler hat
I finished it off with a small scallop. I have to say - this is SO SOFT! Certainly not a scratchy wool, by any means.

Toddler hat made with Barclay Surf
I have enough left over to make my granddaughter a cowl. I have a basic size (4-1/2" x 18") for her. She's only 3!

Now let's talk Madeline. I absolutely LOVE this color. Anything in the pink family makes me smile. I got this crazy idea to crochet a hat from one end of the skein and a cowl from the other. But, as you can see, things got a little out of hand. But things aren't really tangled as much as my granddaughter got ahold of one end and walked away with it in the park. I put my crochet away after that. It's just that she loves pink, too!

Toddler hat and cowl using Madeline yarn
Madeline skeins have 176 yards and it's suggested I use an E hook. I bumped it up a size (just my preference). What I really like is that there is a slight sheen to the 100% acrylic. And, another soft yarn! There are 50 - yes, 50 colors in Madeline and this is Dahlia.

The big skein of Liberty reminds me of a soft kitty cat (or a large elephant). Very soft (like a kitty cat is soft). Glacier is the color and I plan to make some hexagons (like Granny Squares, only they have 6 sides). 

And kitties? Did I say kitties? I (the quilter) have a kitty cat quilt (of course)!

Fat Cats in the City
Sorry. Back to yarn!

The hook size is K. Really? But that's what I'm using and it's working out ok.
Liberty. Glacier is the color and there is a LOT of yarn here!
I have been on a search for making a perfect crocheted hexagon for several years. I've been so disappointed with many. You can always see the seam where the rows join and it's typically crooked or on the diagonal. NOT THIS ONE! I found this on the Make and Do Craft blog site. I was so excited that I immediately took a picture of my first successful crocheted hexagon and sent it to my daughter (the crocheter) to show her. She knows how I feel about perfect hexagons!

First crochet hexagon that hides the seam! (Isaac Mizrahi superwash yarn)
And look who was giving his approval using my Liberty yarn!

The Elephant checking out my Liberty hexagon
I've had to make this THREE TIMES. Either I can't follow directions or I'm still not a good crocheter. Rip. Rip. Rip. Good thing this isn't that large. The key is: Always count. Count. Count your stitches!

This is my 3rd try. The elephant approves!

Crochet Hexagon using Libery yarn by Fair Isle. 7" from flat side to flat side.
Here is the link: Basic Crochet Hexagon

Wait! Let's make this quilting related, too. Do you remember my blog post about the Safari Animals? And the elephant I made using my pattern and Windham Skins fabric?

Safari Animals Elephant - FREE pattern for this and monkeys and giraffes HERE
Back to yarn!

And then there's the lovely Nantucket. This color is Day Spa. Another blend of superwash wool and acrylic. A variegated yarn always gets my attention. But there's something odd about the size of hook recommended. First, this is labeled a super bulky. What? It's thinner than Liberty. And they recommend a size L hook. WHAT? I think I'll stick with a J or K.

Nantucket in Day Spa color - not really a super bulky!
I'll keep you posted on how things turn out with Liberty and Nantucket. Since I basically can only make things that are squares, triangles (shawls), circles (pot holders and hats) and rectangles (scarves, cowls), I'm not aiming for making garments. Though, in retrospect, the VERY first thing I crocheted in college was a short sleeved sweater. That's because I didn't know any better!

You can read more about Fair Isle yarn at their web site: Fair Isle Yarn

I'm not a yarn snob and love all brands, so I will be sharing some other creations in future posts using other vendors. (And more Fair Isle, of course).  For now, I hope I've inspired you with some lovely color and new possibilities for your hooks or needles (you knitters love yarn, too).

8 comments:

  1. so exciting to find another quilter/crocheter, when i can't do one of them, i can usually fit in the other!!!! last year i made a wall hanging and added some beautiful yarn for an extra, sooooo nice!!!!! i loved making your seven sisters pattern, thanks for sharing!
    shoshana

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    1. Yes. I love yarn and fabric the same!! And so glad my 7 sisters pattern was a hit

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  2. Yep, I can buy yarns as much as fabric. But I'm trying to hold back because I have boxes of yarn and I don't really want to add to it. I need to start using more. Love the items you showed.

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    1. Use it up! Our kids won't keep it after we're gone!

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  3. Debby, I enjoy this post so much! I haven't crocheted in years but I did teach my sister to do it and she is as big of a yarn lover and I am of fabric. I can SO understand the draw of yarn . . . and that Day Spa color by Nantucket really is calling to me. LOL I think that is a perfect hexagon you crocheted! Your daughter should be very, very proud of you!

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    1. It was about 35 years between my first crochet to when I took it up again. It's the texture and awesome colors. Yes that Barclay is beautiful!

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  4. Hello Debby. I believe you may have talked me into trying crochet once again. I mainly made afghans while I was crocheting, but I began developing (the words have slipped away) but a severe pain and swelling in between my thumb and first finger. So I have not crocheted for years. Yet, I am always looking at the lovely gorgeous and soft or shiny yarns of today. So, I may try a small project. Your hats are adorable and look so warm and definitely soft. Thank you for sharing and have a great day.

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  5. I love yarns, too, but I quit crocheting because of my hands. I've had the urge lately, but hadn't found anything soft enough - just want to make simple baby afghans. I'm going to check out the Fair Isle an appreciate your softness report. They should be happy with what you did with their yarn!

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Thanks for stopping by Debby Kratovil Quilts! If you had a question and don't get an answer from me, please feel free to email me at: kratovil@his.com