Midnight Star Tablecloth

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted a project report, so I thought I’d share one of my more ambitious past projects. Lately, I’ve been working on shorter-term projects like scarves (and baby stuff), so it’s kind of fun to take a look back at some of the things that took me ages to make.

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This pattern is the Midnight Star crocheted tablecloth that’s available for free as of this writing – just follow the link from Ravelry.

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The tablecloth is made from a bunch of repetitive motifs, which I chose to connect with a join-as-you-go method. Before I began, I spent quite a bit of time figuring out how I was going to lay out the stars. I made the tablecloth especially for an oval table, which complicated things a bit. Once I decided that the tablecloth would be uneven, with slightly longer overhangs near the curves of the table, it all came together.

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Motif projects like this are enjoyable because once you’ve memorized the pattern, the process becomes almost meditative. This project’s motifs look more complicated than they are, so the pattern wasn’t too tough to memorize.

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I used size 10 Aunt Lydia’s crochet thread in natural since it’s available in huge skeins. As you can imagine, this project ate a lot of thread very quickly. For a long time, I avoided counting the total number of stars needed for my layout (soooooo many), but the final count was 123.

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My husband and I went on a trip while I was working on this project, and I took thread with me so I could continue making motifs during our travel days. I just stopped the motifs before the last round and left tails on the motifs that were long enough to complete the last round. Then I connected the motifs to the rest of the tablecloth when I got back.

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In this last photo, you can get a better idea of how the tablecloth hangs over the corners vs. the sides where the chairs are positioned. I’m really glad to have made this heirloom-type piece to break out for special occasions. When I entered it in the fair contest, it earned a first place ribbon. It doesn’t get much use (and with a little one on the way, I imagine it will remain in a drawer most of the time), but it’s one that I’m proud of.

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Knitting and Crochet in the News

Yarn-Tangle

Happy New Year to you and your families! I’m looking forward to a long weekend and hope you’ll get some time off to relax, too.

Over Christmas break, I finished up a couple of projects for the baby boy. I’ve posted a few photos of my work on Instagram, and will be sharing more about them once I snap some better photos.

I’ve noticed a lot of articles about knitting and crocheting in the past few months, and thought I’d share some of them here in case you have time for some reading this weekend.

Knitting and Crochet Projects for Baby

Crochet Quilt Baby Blanket

As you might guess from my little announcement over on Instagram, my Ravelry queue has shifted toward more baby-oriented items. First on my list was a crochet project for baby, the Baby Blocks Crochet Quilt, which I made from yarn recycled from a previous project. I think this will be a great play blanket for the little one!

I’m currently working on a small, square version of the Lover’s Knot Afghan to use as a stroller blanket. Here are a few of the other crochet and knitting projects for baby that have caught my eye:

What are your go-to patterns to make for the babies in your life?

Funny Knitting Tutorial Video

Happy Friday! I hope you have a chance to work on piles of projects this weekend. And if you need a quick refresher on just how quick and simple knitting is, check out this tutorial courtesy of The Daily Show. The next time someone suggests that you should try selling the intricate shawl you’ve been working on for a month, just remember how easy it is (and how cheap the yarn was). ;)

Knitting Crochet Projects

In My Stash: Knit Picks Curio (Silver and Ash)

Can you tell that I love thread projects? They’re 1) extremely portable, 2) easy to store 3) delicate-looking and visually impressive. Naturally, this love of thread projects means I go through a lot of thread – most recently, KnitPicks Curio.

Curio

It’s a two-ply, #10 cotton thread – a great gauge for doilies, centerpieces, and bedspreads. It’s soft when you’re working with it, but it definitely holds its shape well when starched and blocked.

Curio

I recently used up most of my stash of Silver (the lighter shade) and Ash (the darker shade) Curio on a table runner project. Pictures to come. I’m a big fan of gray – especially when used in multiple shades on the same piece.

Curio

The thread has a wonderful lustrous quality adds to the effect of a heavily textured piece. It just feels nice to work with, which is a pretty big deal when you’re spending months working on a single detailed thread crochet piece.

Curio

My only complaint is that there aren’t more colors to available – I’ve used most of them by now. Some nice turquoise/teal/aqua shades wouldn’t go unappreciated. :)

Curio

What’s your favorite brand of crochet thread? I’m always looking for new types to try.

Curio

Project Roundup

Wow, what a complete whirlwind! The past few weeks have been exhausting, but completely fulfilling from a goal achievement standpoint. I completed a major  project at work, it turned out fantastic, and now it’s time for a nap. :)

Because I’ve been so busy, I haven’t felt much like working on projects recently. I did gather up 10 projects to enter in this year’s contest, however. Here’s a sample of the entries:

Mother's Day Centerpiece

Monica Shawl Free Knitting Pattern

Endless-Love-Doily

Crocheted Lollo African Flower Bear

Donna-Patricia-Kristoffersen

Crocheted Granny Square Afghans on TV

Slate recently ran an article about the ubiquity of granny square afghans on American television shows. It was fun to read about the origins of some of those familiar set decor pieces. The article didn’t mention one of my favorites: the granny square afghan at the home of Parks and Recreation character Ann Perkins.

Parks Rec Crochet Granny Square Afghan

During the show’s first season, it was often seen in the company of Ann’s then-boyfriend Andy Dwyer (who spent much of his time on that couch while they were dating). No matter how you feel about basic granny square afghans, those TV couches would be pretty boring without them.