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A Fantastic New Craft – My Freeform Crocheted Carpet Project

Freeform Carpet

It all started when I was sorting my wool the other day. I love how a bunch of wool can create a whole chain of thought and inspiration!

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I’ve got tons of textured yarns which I’ve accumulated over the years and lots of basic acrylics that I use for blankets and toys. I had the idea to create an area rug for my son with various textured yarns held double with a strand of the base acrylics (worsted weight) in all the shades of beige that I had in my stash. The flat/untufted areas are base acrylic held with a strand of cone cotton and strand of cone rayon with a golden sparkle to it – each about fingering weight or less. It compliments the sparkle in the main ‘bling bling’ yarn I’ve used for texture. It’s the multicolour found in all the circles – pictures just don’t do it justice.

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I had so much fun with this I’m planning to invest in some rug yarns to try to make a more durable/long lasting rug. This one is tightly crocheted and seems strong but it is just blanket strength acrylic I’ve used so I can’t wait to see what I can create with real rug wool and my tufted texture yarns! It will take away the machine wash option though if I decide to go with wool rug yarn (and I’m leaning to that option – seeing a guy with a factory full of partial cones which he needs to clear out later on today and there are a few different materials to choose from).

We all knew I needed a new hobby, seeing as I have nothing to do lol 🙂

Oh wow, almost forgot to post this pic…

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It’s my new Polonaise! Yes, finally, I have been blessed with the one wheel I’ve wanted forever-since-I-thought-of-spinning!! A totally excellent early Christmas present 🙂

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She spins like a dream and is just beautiful. The lady I purchased her from was excellent and her husband was even kind enough to deliver the wheel.

And a very cute grandson pic…he loves to jump!

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Freeform FUN

Happy Friday!

I have something new to show today 🙂 Or at least the beginnings of something new…

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I was inspired by a picture of the stained glass window blanket (for which I don’t have the pattern) and thought the technique looked fairly straightforward.

I am just working this freeform for now and waiting to see what it wants to be when it grows up!

Bringing Baby Home

Good morning 🙂

I’ve finished my latest crochet portrait…created from a photograph from 20 years ago, of me holding my eldest daughter on the day we came home from the hospital…

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The original photo…

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A bit closer up….

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Perspective makes a huge difference with these fibre creations! Up close, they look so much like nothing but when you step back a few feet, the picture is so clear.

I’ve also finished the first pair of crocheted and felted baby boots. It’s a pattern of my own which I’m working on, off and on, here and there. They are fastened with velcro at the sides/backs of the booties.

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I attached the velcro with the same wool (fishermens), sewn on by hand. The velcro is sewn along the back of the ankle section and the edges of the front flaps. I’m unsure, at this point, if I chose correctly when I put the ‘hook’ section on the fronts and the other section on the back.

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These have been given to my husband’s friend for his new baby boy. He’s going to be my first test wearer 🙂 On a side note, his little daughter has a pair of my felted slippers (the pattern I made late last year and am still working on) and she LOVES them…they are the only slippers she’s ever worn!! 🙂 She calls them her ‘ballerina shoes’ and was QUITE impressed with them! I single stranded my ladies medium size and felted them down for her little feet.

I also made the grandchild to be a couple things…

Some braided balls to play with;

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I found the pattern, free on ravelry. It’s called the gevlochten bal.

And, a little improvised sweater, in sock yarn, on 3.25 mm needles;

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I have a few ends to weave in and some blocking to do before it’s completely finished.

A Change Of Pace!

I needed a change of pace – was going CRAZY with the repetition of the portraits (though I DO love them) and needed a nice continuous project to clear my head and let the creativity flow a little.

My grandbaby is due in a short while – only 2 months to go now!! I went looking at all the felted baby booties/slippers that there are on ravelry and I really like the sort that look like little boots. I noticed one pair had a genius idea of making the ‘tongue’ (which tucks inside) be at the back, from the heel up with the front sections tying in the back, around that ‘tongue’ type piece. Genius! And also a pattern I don’t have.

So – being me – I wondered why I cant make them up in crochet?! (I’m a little caught up with the crochet hooks at the moment)

Here is my first attempt – I looked at the shape, noted some foot sizes from a good baby size chart, calculated how much bigger they should be to felt down to a newborn size and then WENT FOR IT.

Here is my first attempt;

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Obviously pre-felting 🙂 I made the pattern to be constructed as one piece with NO sewing up whatsoever. I think in the end I will use velcro as fasteners though – instead of any sort of tie.

Post felting;

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Pretty cute, huh?

I’m trying a second pair with a slightly smaller hook and no other changes except using doubled fingering weight wools instead of fishermans wool (as I used in the first pair)

I’m starting a baby pullover/sweater as well. I wanted something for a tiny new baby and there isn’t a lot out there, free pattern wise. I ended up using the Cirrus pattern from petit purls but I’m modifying it somewhat.

So far;

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I’m letting the colour do the ‘design’ work and skipping the textured pattern though it does look great in the pattern. Also switched to sock weight yarn and smaller needles for a smaller sweater. I think 18 to 20″ should be more than wide enough.

Off with me – ’tis my daughter’s birthday and I have a cake to bake!

I’m Hooked!

Another portrait to show today…and I do apologize, since it was done on the 16th, but I’ve been so busy with the NEXT project in the row!

My parents in law…a picture from 45 years ago…

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Not bad, considering that I accidentally made the pattern with seven shades of colour rather than the 8 I planned on!

I’ve found out that choosing the ‘right’ picture means choosing one with good contrast between the subject(s) and the background. Too much of a similar tone results in a lot of ‘blend’ between subject and background, like in the Luke portrait which I did first.

I’ve learned that I’m likely going about pattern making the super slow way, since I use photoshop and a good old pencil and paper to create a pattern – along with hours of work. I looked at the ‘knitpro’ site and though it looks like it makes things easier, I’m just so comfortable with my ‘hands on’ approach. I believe, for now, that I’ll stick with it since I like the results and I (at least now) can spare the time.

I’ve been wondering about the whole ‘pulling through the ends’ thing that I’ve seen people who are working on these patterns mention. I’ve always been taught to place an end where you want it BEFORE you move on which eliminates all that pulling through business.

Like this;
-you are working on the wrong side and are ready to change colours-

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-I attach the new colour with a slip knot-

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-pull the slip knot tightly down to where it meets your work and cut the original colour and tie a square knot to fasten-

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-now, pull the knot to the back and hold it, down and out of the way while you work the first stitch. The knot will be held by the first full stitch and you won’t have to pull through ends, anymore!-

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I have my own (possibly used by many others though!) way of dealing with the frog pond. I’ll take some pictures of that and talk about it in the next post! I’ve found a way to waste very little wool and very little time when mistakes happen. And, inevitably – they do! 🙂

Have a great day 🙂

So Much Fun!!

This is my latest portrait in crochet – and I love it!

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It turned out awesome 🙂

Here’s the original picture;

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I was nervous until the eye appeared…and then ‘voila!’, it looked like my girl. I like how it looks in the blue palette too – as always, I agonized over the colours for about three quarters of the project, lol. This was another of my own patterns and I always worry about how they’ll turn out. I think I’ve got it pretty close to perfected though and I’m getting faster and more accurate at pattern making.

Next up is a picture for my inlaws – actually, their wedding picture. I do believe they’re on to me, lol. I did try to have the picture stolen secretly from the house and put back but that’s nearly impossible. Also nearly impossible was explaining why I suddenly needed that picture!

Ok, must go – my crochet hook is calling!

A Bit Of Searching…

I was searching for freeform crochet links and found these…I wanted to put them here so I have them later when I may want them again!

http://www.crochetpatterncentral.com/directory/flowers.php

http://home.comcast.net/~gandal195/freeform/freeformtutorial.htm

http://www.myrawood.com/pages/demo.html

https://home.comcast.net/~gandal195/3dpuffflowermedallion.htm

http://www.healmyhands.com/how_to/bullion_stitch.html

http://crochet.about.com/od/learnmorestitches/a/bullion.htm

http://crochet.about.com/library/weekly/aa052398.htm

http://crochet.about.com/od/freeformcrochet/Explore_Freeform_Crochet.htm