Finished Objects

Crocheted Gingham Baby Blanket

Remember that contest I mentioned, and the post in which I promised more photos and descriptions? Well here I am, making good on that promise. 🙂 This first one is a crocheted baby blanket, which I made from granny squares.

Crochet gingham baby blanket

I loved the idea of creating a gingham pattern out of two shades of the same yarn color, plus white. I had also been (and still am, really) obsessed with the turquoise-white color combination. Hence, the inspiration for this afghan. This baby afghan pattern from Bernat served as the inspiration for the granny square color layout. But I wanted to use granny squares with  more interest and texture…

Crochet gingham baby blanket

..so I found three different granny square patterns that I liked, all by Aurora Suominen. The six-inch-wide square patterns were rather hard to find – many patterns are 12 inches wide, which would have made a HUGE blanket once I had created the gingham pattern I desired. But I loved the ones that I picked – all different from one another, yet bearing the similar textural hallmarks of the same designer.

Here are the squares I used:

Crochet gingham baby blanket

I didn’t win any awards on this one, but I’m quite happy with the result. The only hiccup? The centers of several of the flower squares unraveled horrifyingly in the wash. I thought the entire thing was a lost cause when I saw the damage, but the repairs turned out to be relatively easy. The photos you see here were taken after the washing mishap and subsequent fix-up.

See this project on Ravelry: http://www.ravelry.com/projects/BabycakesCreates/framing-a-flower-6-square

Fun Stuff

Contest Recap

The contest is done, the results have been tallied, and my FOs are once again in my possession! The preview night was wonderful – I thoroughly enjoyed being able to tour the display with my fellow knitting and crocheting (and sewing and quilting) enthusiasts.

All the cool kids head upstairs.

Contest

I’m planning to assemble a series of posts to highlight my entries, provide pattern/inspiration sources (if applicable), and give tips and tricks for creating each one yourself. In the meantime, here is a quick by-the-numbers glimpse of how I did, plus a peek at some of the exhibits.

My Contest Entries, by the Numbers

  • 20: Number of my total entries
  • 17: Number of my crocheted entries
  • 3: Number of my knitted entries
  • 13: Number of my entries that received an individual award
  • 0: Number of my award-winning entries that were in knitting categories 😉
  • 3: Number of Honorable Mentions received
  • 3: Number of Fourth Place awards received
  • 1: Number of Third Place awards received
  • 3: Number of Second Place awards received
  • 3: Number of First Place awards received
  • 1: Number of Sweepstakes honors

contest

I am so honored to be recognized. The displays are lovely, and the check-in/checkout process is incredibly smooth. How fortunate to have such a wonderful contest where I can display my own work and admire the amazing work of others! I’m already organizing my Ravelry queue with project ideas for next year’s contest. Okay, full disclosure, I had a couple of pieces done before the beginning of this year’s contest. It’s never too early to start! 🙂

contest

Finished Objects

Contest Turn-In

Tomorrow, I’ll be packing up all of my crochet and knit entries and turning them over for judging. The ends are woven in, the FOs are blocked, and the tags are labeled and carefully pinned in place. Nothing left but to actually transport them. Twenty pieces (eek, I know!), which I have been working on all year. I can’t wait!

Projects like this:

Erin Shawl

and this:

Sinead Throw

and of course, who could forget this:

IMG_4269

I’m so excited to share more about these projects and my other entries. I realized after I uploaded these photos that I picked neutral-colored pieces, but rest assured that I have plenty of colorful entries, too. In the meantime, I’m frogging my Haruni shawl (in Chroma Lollipop) yet again and starting over. Fingers crossed that this attempt is the one to keep!

WIP

“Mini” and Mega Doily Progress

You know what I love about cooking? I love that after a day when nothing is sure (and when I say nothing, I mean nothing), you can come home and absolutely know that if you add egg yolks to chocolate and sugar and milk, it will get thick. That’s such a comfort.

“Chick flicks” are hit or miss with me, but I do love Julie & Julia. (In no small part thanks to this guy and this lady, who also made this movie a favorite of mine.) The quote above really resonates with me, because it can apply to any hobby or passion. If you love something, then it can provide a lot of comfort to you when everything else is unpredictable.

Sunburst Pineapple Doily

With that being said, you don’t always get the results that you expect – even with your favorite hobby. The chocolate cream pie that Julie makes in the film may turn out beautifully 99 percent of the time, but not always. Likewise, my craft projects don’t always come out exactly how I envisioned. But that doesn’t make the process any less rewarding.

I’ve had to make some modifications as I have worked on my latest projects, for example. The “mini” and mega doilies that I am making for an upcoming contest were originally supposed to be identical. But circumstances (the store running out of thread, and a diameter that was quickly surpassing the contest guidelines) have forced me to reimagine how these will turn out.

Sunburst Pineapple Doily

I’m still excited about the idea, though, and every modification helps me get better at improvising and will (hopefully) ultimately help me to design my own creations one of these days (years?). As much as I am enjoying the projects, I am also looking forward to the next big thing. It’s way past time to get out the knitting needles again.

WIP

The “Mini” Doily & Mega Doily Challenge

My next projects are the product of my overachieving nature. I am getting ready to enter some knit and crochet items in a local contest. Last year was my rookie year in this contest, and I had some beginner’s luck. Just enough to get me fired up to go again this year. 🙂

Sunburst Pineapple Crochet Hooks

Part of the entry for this contest involves paying for tags. The thing about the tags is that you buy them in increments of 10. You don’t have to use 10, but you have the tags. I had 18 items (I know) to enter, and just under a month until the contest. Two unused tags. Sitting there smugly. Mocking me.

I looked through the remaining categories and came up with an idea for an experiment that would be interesting and give me two more entries in categories that I hadn’t already entered. While perusing Ravelry, I have seen quite a few blankets that have been made from doily patterns. They’re elegant and unique, but I haven’t really had a reason to make one. Until now.

Aunt Lydia's & I Love This Yarn

Presenting my own personal “Mini” Doily & Mega Doily Challenge (mini in quotation marks because the finished doily is actually a decent size), to be made from the Sunburst Pineapple Doily pattern. Using #10 crochet thread (Aunt Lydia’s in River Blue) and Aran-weight yarn (I Love This Yarn in Antique Teal), I am making two versions of this pattern: one an afghan, one a centerpiece.

Sunburst Pineapple Doily Challenge

I picked this pattern because it is relatively flat, and isn’t too lacy to be an effective afghan. Plus, it’s also pretty in its original thread crochet form. I crocheted the first few rounds on each one separately, and am now proceeding round by round, switching between projects. Let me tell you now that this makes every round seem ridiculously long.

Here’s the project after ten rounds. Fingers crossed that they both turn out!

Sunburst Pineapple Doily Challenge