Showing posts with label wool. Show all posts
Showing posts with label wool. Show all posts

July 27, 2013

Crocheting Ponchos for the Spring Weather

Oh the Spring weather is the perfect time for crocheted ponchos. 

The weather is not cold enough for a coat (but if you count the last couple of cool Spring days you could even wear a mid length sweater underneath) but just to keep the chill off the poncho is just the right accessory.  Being a 60's child I remember wearing my crocheted ponchos a lot while I was in Junior and Senior high school even crocheting some ponchos for my classmates.

 This particular poncho is 100% wool including the edging. I got the inspiration for this poncho from a television commercial. Of course the favorite part for me was the cowl neck. I decided to give this crocheted poncho a different look in that it is not the hanging type cowl. Stiffer yet soft but can be worn up as a high collar. The cowl sits right on your shoulders. I placed a thin elastic inside right around the bottom of the cowl to keep it right on the shoulder or it can be worn off one shoulder as well. To be entirely crocheted in the rib stitch with 100% wool it is quite light yet warm. I had been dying to use this one skein of orange wool that I bought just to use as an accent. With the picot stitch I loved the way it added a uniqueness. To add even more flair I added two hand craved wood buttons done by the talents of  William of OruAka's Wooden Jewelry and Accessories. William's buttons caught my eye last year as I was searching for unique buttons. I have a shawl pin I'll be ordering soon for a new wrap. As a bonus  to the readers of my blog....... William is offering Free shipping for his items to ALL of my blog readers when they use  the coupon code "FREESHIP" . You are sure to find a lot of quality crafted wood items handcrafted by William in his shop.

Crocheted poncho accented with African wooden beads by Purple Butterfly Crochet Collection


Now for part of me that celebrates me as unique, and proud of my heritage. My rendition of an crocheted "Earthy type" poncho accented with African wooden beads.  I had a lot of fun choosing the beads which came from crafter: Nia Yaa on Face Book. I used the single crochet stitch and accented at the bottom with a row of Block Net crochet stitch.....* Just a little note: as a crafter I purchase for myself handcrafted items. I try to buy my items from those small business persons like myself. The beads were so assorted I changed my mind about which ones to use several times before deciding on the arrangement you see here. For orders I can add the same beads or I can add completely different beads (various colors, shapes or all the same color). This particular poncho is not as thick as the crocheted poncho above but warm. Just the accessory for the chill in the movie theater, train or airplane trip or a night on the town.
Both of the poncho are very easy to wear. They are also quite easy to carry right in your tote bag. For care both need just cold or warm water washing, roll out the excess water and lay flat to dry. I always recommend that crocheted items never be hung for storage.


Until the Next Time 
Keep the Faith and Plenty of Yarn

~ Cheryl

April 12, 2013

How To Block Crochet Pieces

Surfing the internet,the Face Book,Twitter and other artisan/crafter social networks I hear the question: “Ok, Is it really necessary to block my crochet projects.

What is the difference if you do or don't block your crochet?


A little bit of background,When I first learned to crochet I knew nothing about blocking probably because I was concentrating on learning the various crochet stitches and because crochet was not associated with the computer it was a “Come sit by me, let me show you how to crochet. Of course from there you learned to single crochet,double crochet, how to make a circle, a square then stitch them together. I didn’t learn about blocking a crochet garment/accessory until about say six years ago. Before then I washed the item laid it out by hand and it looked pretty good. 

I have some pieces I still own that I crocheted in my twenties. I am now 54. When my mother shared the art of crochet with me she didn’t go into the whole process of blocking your pieces but she did know that if you had an item made of yarn you needed to smooth is out and lay it flat to dry in good shape.

Two crochet pieces that have not been blocked.

Let’s  fast forward to today. Yes I absolutely agree with blocking my crochet projects better yet each piece as I finish them. What a difference in seeing how the crocheting project will look and most importantly fits together. Basically for me the same thing that my mother taught me when washing sweaters, pulling them into shape (well not exactly pulling) and laying it flat to dry. Never hang crochet on hangers. Blocking relaxes the yarn and gives that neat finish.

My crochet blocking board
This is my handmade blocking board. I explain what is made of and how I made my blocking board in my crochet video.  Can you guess what it is made out of?

                    This is a piece of wool before it was blocked and after. Wool for me (because I crochet so tightly wrinkles). Does this happen to you?

Crochet side handbag pieces after they were blocked.

 This is a worsted wool piece for a new handbag. - the same 2 curled crocheted pieces in the photo above. The crochet is quite tight(thus the other need for blocking),  but because they will be the sides I will be reinforcing these sides with a type of interfacing.


Until next time Keep The Faith and Plenty of Yarn!

~ Cheryl