Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Death and Rebirth

No, this is not a religious blog - this is about crafts!  I am an avid crocheter.  When I first came to the island I put all my crocheting away as 1) I was way too busy to find time to crochet and 2) it was too danged hot to work with yarn.

Over the years my crocheting was put on the back burner, so to speak, and everything was tucked away in boxes and stored out of sight.

A few years ago, in the "cool" of our winter season, I took up the art once more and through the magic of Internet was able to find fantastic patterns.  You see Honduras has women who crochet but they are limited as to what they can make.  The few businesses that do sell crochet items only sell are small steel crochet hooks and only fine crochet thread, which one generally uses for doilies.  You can find some wool-type yarn occasionally on the island but it is of poor quality (as is their thread) and only in black, red and white with an occasional green appearing.

Lucky for me I had a lot of yarn and all my various needles to tackle most any project.  I am not one to make what I consider those "tacky" toilet roll dolls or lots of dollies or clothes for dolls.  I like unusual items, things that are useful, pleasing to the eye and look like someone cared enough to really search for the right item to give as a gift.  I know I may offend those long-time crocheters who love those little doll items and tea towels, and they have their place.  However, I don't like to waste my time on those type of things - I like things that can sometimes be considered a real challenge and be useful.

Over the past few years I have made coasters, scarves, Christmas decorations, afghans, a doily (for myself in an unusual pattern), hanging items from filet crochet patterns, hats for my step-daughter who was undergoing radiation for cancer, stocking caps for my Grandsons, baby clothes, dish cloths, ponchos, eye glass cases, bowls, and the list goes on.  Sometimes I have posted a photo of what I am doing.  For example, last December on my Busy End of the Year post, I published many photos of things I had been doing all year long.

This year my friend, Annette, requested a sweater for her Christmas present.  She had wanted a Granny Square sweater as she had seen one of various multi-colors several years ago.  I could not find an appropriate pattern on the net and as I'm not really fond of putting a bunch of granny squares together, I checked out other various designs.

I found a nice jacket-like item which was a copy of a pattern that was popular in the '70s.  It was about the style she wanted so I ordered yarn on-line.  Unfortunately, the yarn she wanted was to be in bright rainbow colors which I could not find.  I found a reasonable facsimile and ordered this.  A week later I was surfing the net and found exactly what I wanted for her and ordered that too.   I then waited for my DIP box to arrive.  Both yarns arrived a few weeks later and I was set free.

Well, I must say, I've never attempted a sweater/jacket before but this pattern was fairly straight forward and, as luck would have it, was worked from the top down with no extra setting in of sleeves.  I finished the project in record time only to find that it was too large for Annette's tiny frame. I revised the pattern down two sizes (from small to tiny to petite).

So, I tore the sweater apart and re-did it.  The result is what you see above.  This time the item fit her but was a terrible style for her.  I refused to let her keep it and tore it out again, determined to find a better pattern.

I did find a pattern I felt suitable and made it out of the first softer colored yarn.  This time it fit her, was better suited to her body style and she was warm and happy.  So, this would be her Christmas present.

This is a close up of the sweater.  The first picture is not the actual color as I took it without a flash.  The photo of the close up of the hand-crocheted buttons shows the true coloring.

I then proceeded to crochet her another sweater, this time using a pattern that has set-in sleeves and would compliment, I hope, her body style and I was back to working with the bright colors she wanted.  This will be a birthday present for her was her birthday is in January.  So, in record time (I felt), I finished the major part of the sweater and now only need to put it together and then make the cuffs and front collar.

But, Christmas calls and I am forced to put this aside until next week and complete my Christmas gifts:

These are tea light holders for a few of the various people that help me out during the year.  I have other gifts, but cannot post them because then it would take away the surprise for those who surf the net and read my blog!

Merry Christmas to all!

1 comment:

  1. Now that's dedication!

    Have a wonderful Christmas and a happy New Year!

    PS: When I posted my last article (which was the first in a long while), the editing page seemed to have no options! It was crazy. I thought it must have been a browser problem so I opened it in Firefox and it seemed that all was well there. I hope Blogger gets the issues worked out.