23 Feb 2014

It's all coming together rather nicely.....

Yes my Retro Flowers Softfun blanket is coming along well! I had planned on joining squares in the evening last week...well best laid plans and all that! Work was a little busier than anticipated so by evening came along all I wanted to do was sit and stare at the TV!!!!
So this weekend I made a concerted effort to get those squares hooked together!

And the Scheepjes Softfun love continues! I'm loving how this is turning out :-)

Being the obsessive Virgo that I am, I join in stages....little squares joined into strips...and then hooked together. Obviously I couldn't resist having a little play and lining up the rolls of squares!

Like woolly Swiss Rolls!!!

Ah, this blanket is giving me much much joy! I'm finished joining now and onto the border. Im hooking quickly as I can't wait to show you all what it looks like...and, of course, share how I made it in a step by step tutorial!

I received a rather yummy parcel in the mail this week! Some new yarn!!! Ah nothing better than receiving yarny goodness in the post! Especially when it looks like this!

Check out that glorious blue! Now doesn't that remind you of summer blue skies??? This is Icelandic yarn from a company called Istex (English version!). It's the lace weight version called Lopi Einband (German version!). They have a delightful range of colours in the lace. If you remember, I made my bag from this yarn! Well this bundle of Summer Sky goodness is destined to be made into a lacy scarf/stole. This colour is called Vivid Blue. I'm using this pattern :

It's by a very talented crochet designer. Her patterns are easy to understand and hook up nicely. They look very complex but are, in actual fact, pretty straightforward! 

This yarn has amazing stitch definition! A 50g ball gives approx. 250 metres. The recommended hook size is dependent on the finished size you're after! When I made my bag I used a 3mm hook and then washed the squares to felt them. This time I'm using a 4mm hook as I want a lovely lacy look to the finished scarf. I would recommend making some swatches and seeing which size hook fits with your project and desired effect. Because this is pure Icelandic wool, it does feel a little rougher to the touch until it has been rinsed and blocked, but once that has been done, it's much softer :-) Oh and I should mention....gentle 30 degree hand wash!!! NO AGITATION...or else this little beauty will felt!

As you can see, I've made good progress already! This weekend has been a hooky frenzy!!! Now to concentrate on finishing off the Retro Flowers border. I think a glass of wine might be in order to help the process along.... ;-)

Til next time

16 Feb 2014

Teeny Squares Scarf....

I finally got around to taking some photos of the finished scarf. Please excuse the photo quality...today has been a little trying light wise!
Ok so this scarf was a real labour of love. If you remember, it was inspired by this gorgeous Sophie Digard creation:

I had some of the stunning Invicta yarn from Scheepjeswol to play with. It's a beautiful yarn which comes in some of the most gorgeous colours ever!!! And...because it's a wool/polyamide mix it means it's soooo hardwearing and washable. Win win I say!

I had this stunning colour way to play with and wanted to make something that would showcase all the stunning colours within one ball of yarn. 

Hence the idea of teeny squares and circles within squares was born! I chose a very simple pattern so that attention would be focussed on the yarn rather than the design... ok....enough rambling...and without further delay....I give you the completed article!!!!

Did I mention how soft this yarn is? Well it is! Perfect for next to skin contact!

I love how it turned out! All that hooking together of teeny squares was well worth it!

It can be worn folded in half lengthways....and one end casually slung over a shoulder!

Or as an extra warm snuggly collar under a coat.

A simple ruffle border makes it very special! Can you tell I'm pleased with it??? 

Soooo my week off work has flown by. I've managed to get loads done though which is good. No doubt by lunchtime tomorrow the break will seem like a distant memory!

I'm making great progress with my softfun squares...they're all blocked and ready to be joined.....

This shall be my evening hooky for the week ahead! Ah happy times!

Til next time

9 Feb 2014

Enjoying the process...

Ah yes! The Scheepjeswol Softfun has stolen my heart! I am seriously loving working with this yarn. It is a complete delight. No nasty splitting whatsoever.... which is always a bonus in my eyes! And it's soooo so soft!

I debated long and hard about what to make with this yarn. I desperately wanted something to showcase the stunning colours (check out the full range here!) 

I finally settle on a simple Starburst Granny design. Simple but oh so effective!
Being a Virgo I like to hook squares in some sort of order. So I set about making the circles with a 4mm hook....in both colour ways... ah yes! Piles and piles of 3 round circles...

Is it just me who enjoys stacking their WIP and admiring the colour combinations???
Once I've got a nice pile of circles it's time to add the crisp white border...

Ah yes!!! Now doesn't that just make the colour POP!!!

The purple colours look just as good! I'm very happy with how this is progressing

I simply cannot wait to see these squares hooked together

Even the tiresome task of weaving in those pesky ends isn't bothering me so much...
I tend to weave them in as I go which saves hours at the end of a project!

Once the ends are dealt with it's onto the blocking board
Blocking gives finished squares a lovely finish. It might be time consuming but it's a step I would NEVER miss out. But maybe that's the Virgo in me appearing once more :-)

I now have around 100 squares made ,with a queue waiting for the blocking board. Thankfully, I have a whole week off work so I can concentrate on finishing this beauty! On that note... I'm off to hook up some more square whilst watching the Winter Olympics and drinking tea!
Happy days!

Til next time

2 Feb 2014

Softfun Love!

Well good afternoon from a sunny but blustery Northumberland! Thank the lord the rain has stopped falling... for now anyway!

A little while back I was lucky enough to be given some yarn from the lovely people at Scheepjeswol to play with. Not just any yarn, I'll have you know, but some utterly gorgeous Softfun in the most stunning of colours!

A delicious assortment of blues, purples and of course a lovely crisp white.

Soft by name and soft by nature! Boy, this yarn is soft and snuggly! It's a cotton (60%) acrylic (40%) mix, is sold in 50g balls and has a recommended hook/needle size of 4mm. Want to take a closer look?

The yarn twist is good so none of the dreaded splitting!

I just LOVE the colours

There's something very satisfying about arranging playing with new yarn and seeing how the colours work together!

Whenever I'm starting a new project, I spend a little time working out what order to place the colours. You wouldn't believe how much this can change the overall feel of a project. I urge you all to try this!

So playtime important arranging time over. What are these colours saying to me? What shall I make with this gorgeous yarn?

A blanket most definitely! With a Retro feel......

I saw this saucepan and loved the design. It reminded me of my Softfun colours (even though they're not really alike!)

I think it's the bright flower design against a crisp white background. It made me smile! 

So out with the coloured pencils to do some rough sketching.....

An idea was born! Ooooo this is going to be one bright and funky blanket! 

Have any of you used this yarn before? If so I would LOVE to see what you've made! Leave a link in the comments section and I'll have a peek :-) Let's share the Softfun love!!!!

Til next time