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

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Victorian Romantic Pineapples Centerpiece

With Christmas far in the rearview mirror… Valentine’s Day, you’re up. 🙂 Here’s a sweet centerpiece project that I completed last year. The Romantic Pineapples Doily is a lovely textured project by Jo Ann Maxwell. (And currently available for free!)

Victorian Romantic Pineapples

My thread of choice was Knit Picks Curio in Victorian. As with most shades of Curio, I found this thread to be darker in person than it appeared on screen. In the case of this project, that was a good thing. I will say that I’m ready for some new color options, pretty please.

Victorian Romantic Pineapples 5

The pattern includes large openings, so there’s no chance to hide uneven stitches within dense fabric.

Victorian Romantic Pineapples

Reviewing these photos now, I definitely could have spent more time on the blocking – or at least straightened it up a bit for the photo shoot!

Victorian Romantic Pineapples

Cluster stitches add texture to the piece. I especially like the ones that outline the pineapples. Just be sure to count carefully. Not that I, er, discovered that by experience. Ahem.

Victorian Romantic Pineapples 2

The stitch pattern that makes up the hearts (and adds the “Romantic” element) are simple yet clever. Again, I think a bit more blocking is needed here to smooth out the top curves of the shape.

Victorian Romantic Pineapples

It’s a lovely pattern, and one that I’ve actually made twice so far. I’ll share pics of my second one in a later post!

Fair Contest Report

I’ve mentioned it before, but the main reason I enter my local contest is to get inspired by others’ projects. It’s fun when I even recognize some of the patterns and yarns that were used.

Of course, the competitive aspect of the contest is also part of the fun. I was completely shocked – and extremely flattered – to receive Best of Show for crochet, among other honors. But mostly, I’m lucky to have access to such a large and impressive display of talent – the picture below doesn’t even include half of the exhibit space for fabric and threads!

Fair Contest

I’ll show pictures of my projects (with as many construction/materials details as I can remember) in future posts. But first, I wanted to show my photos of a few projects that inspired me at the exhibit. The most visible names on the projects have been clumsily Photoshopped out to protect privacy – I’m sensitive to the fact that not everyone wants their name displayed online. But on the off chance that one of them is yours and you’d like to claim credit by name, let me know! 🙂

If you happen to recognize a pattern for one of the projects pictured, feel free to mention it in the comments – I’d love to add it to the post so others can make it too!

This first project was in the baby blanket class. I loved the abundance of texture in the pattern. It’s definitely one of the most beautiful in-the-round baby blankets I’ve seen. I kind of want to make it as a doily, too!

Fair Contest

Lately I’ve been loving lacy knit shawls in white/ivory yarn. It’s tough for me to pass up colorful yarn in favor of the simplicity of white yarn, but after seeing so many stunning results I’m going to have to give it a try.

Fair Contest

I can’t confirm the pattern for this crocheted afghan, but it does remind me of the Popcorn Ripple Afghan pattern that I’ve had in my Ravelry favorites forever.

Fair Contest

I took several photos of this shawl – I just have to make it! Any leads as to the whereabouts of the pattern would be greatly appreciated. 🙂

fair3

This crocheted cardigan appears to have been made from Loops & Threads Payette. I have bunch of that yarn in my stash for another project (in another color way), and it was nice to see that it works up so beautifully.

Fair Contest

Look at those tiny perfect stitches! The shawl below has great colors, a lovely, simple design, and wonderful technique. An all-around winner in my book!

Fair Contest

I swear I just saw the pattern for this gorgeous square doily, and now I can’t find it. I’m thinking perhaps it’s adapted from a table runner, but that’s a guess. In any case, it’s another one I want to make myself.

Fair Contest

This yarn. It’s beautiful and I would want to get some ASAP… if I knew what it was. The crocheter showed it off to advantage with this swirling fan pattern. (Update: I figured out that this is Red Heart Boutique Unforgettable in Sunrise. And yes, I bought some. 🙂 )

Fair Contest

Finally, here’s one I recognize – it’s the famous “Bigger on the Inside” shawl! I’ll be completely honest – this awesome TARDIS-inspired shawl pattern is one of the key reasons (in addition to cables) that I wanted to learn how to knit in the first place. As a beginner, I looked at the pattern, sighed at my lack of skill, and filed it away for future use. But I just bought the yarn to make it and hope to get started in the not-too-distant future. I wonder which stitch markers I’ll use…

Fair Contest

Thanks for sticking with me through this post – I hope you enjoyed looking at these inspiring projects as much as I did!

Beaded Cutie Pie Doily

I’m getting back into the swing of things after an amazing and much-needed vacation. I somehow managed to schedule this trip for the busiest time I’ve had in months (which is saying something), but I left it all behind and had a great time. And now, reality has set in.

While I sort through my daunting pile of photos that need editing, here’s an oldie but a goodie: one of my first doilies. This one, like my unkept house, could use a little TLC. Perhaps I’ll do a “before and after” to demonstrate the importance of blocking?

Beaded Cutie Pie Doily

The project is the Cutie Pie Doily,which is available for free online. My version doesn’t really do it justice – isn’t it tough to look back on past projects when you know you can do better?

Beaded Cutie Pie Doily

I added beads and that took forever. I was so proud of myself at the time. 🙂 I’ll be back with photos of my trip soon!

Sunburst Pineapple Doily

The second part of my “mini” and “mega” doily challenge was to use the Sunburst Pineapple Doily pattern for its original thread crochet purpose. For this one, I used Aunt Lydia’s (Size 10) in River Blue.

Sunburst Pineapple Doily

You’ll notice that I took some liberties with the pattern, so it looks a bit different than the doily blanket. The points of this doily don’t overlap, but rather stay flat. The overlapping points are made by finishing off the doily on one of the rounds, then crocheting each point individually. But here, I continued crocheting in rounds.

Sunburst Pineapple Doily

I chose to make this change for practical reasons. The first was that the doily was getting too large for its diameter category in the crochet contest. The second was that I was running out of thread, and the store didn’t have any left in stock. So, I improvised the edge as I frequently do. How cheap resourceful.

Sunburst Pineapple Doily

For such a simple, repetitive design, it really does have impressive results. And what a great colorway! My thread crochet version got a fourth place honor, and the judges commented on the nice shade of the thread.

Doily Blanket

I challenged myself to a task for the contest last year: make two versions of a doily in different sizes. The “mini” version was to be made of thread, and the “mega” version was to be made from yarn. Here’s the final result of the larger version: a doily blanket.

Sunburst Doily Afghan

The pattern is the Sunburst Pineapple doily, which is a rather large doily even when made with its intended thread. My blanket version was made out of the lovely Antique Teal shade of I Love This Yarn from Hobby Lobby.

Sunburst Pineapple Doily Afghan

No awards for this one, but I do really like it. In fact, it’s one of the few crocheted afghans that I have out on display. It’s draped over the living room loveseat at this very moment. 🙂

Sunburst Pineapple Doily Afghan

Why Didn’t Anyone Tell Me…

…about Elizabeth Hiddleson? I had never seen her designs before, and they are amazing. I need to make this Wild Rose runner ASAP. I learned about her from the Linda Crochets, which I had also never seen. (She does beautiful work!) Check it out – I’m off to track down some patterns. 🙂