Somewhere I can let out my inner crafter without being labeled as even more insane.

We all know the basic split- process or product crafter. Where process means that you make (predominantly) for the sake of crafting, and product means that you mainly want the finished product.

For a long time now, I’ve been firmly in a subset of product. Although I have many things on the go, and mostly don’t mind working on them on-and-off, my aim has always been to ‘use what I make’. So I won’t make the lacy beaded shawl that’ll just get dumped at the bottom of a drawer and ignored (although I do have one of those…). Instead, I’ll make the blanket I’ll use to keep warm, and socks that I wear every day (you can’t have too many pairs of socks. Fact.)

I suppose that another subset of product crafting is ‘that looks pretty, I want one’. I suppose that my lacy shawl falls firmly in this category. I saw the yarn, wanted to make something from it and Glitz at the Ritz was the first pattern I thought of. I made it, I was happy with making it, and then I very rarely wear it. It just isn’t ‘me’ enough to wear.

I can’t think of any other product crafting traits, anyone else want to weigh in???

 

Then there’s process crafting. Where you make something because you want to learn a new technique, or figure something out.

My dad’s scarf falls into ‘learning a new technique’. I gave him a choice of 4 scarves, 3 of which involved double knitting… Learning new techniques is always fun, and I am loving knitting this up, but (in my mind, at least) it can’t be a product knitting thing because it’s not going to be mine, so I can’t get attached to it.

Figuring something out in my mind is trying to reverse engineer something (I saw an amazing hand-knitted jacket last week and want to recreate it), or design a new pattern. Expecially if you don’t have a clear idea in your head. If you have a definite pattern, then I guess it might be more of a product thing…

 

I also keep thinking that there’s a third sort of crafting. Where you convert something to something else, but then plan on re-crafting with your finished object. Such as spinning fibre, if you’re then going to knit/crochet with it. Or dye fibre which you’re then going to spin. And it’s not really ‘finishing’, so I don’t want to call it process or product crafting. In my mind, it’s more ‘converting’, but I can’t think of a word which starts with p for it.

One thing I want to start doing, is weaving ribbon for the inside of button bands. I saw a post recently which suggested sewing ribbon onto button bands, so they won’t stretch so much. Which is a genius idea. And with my mind currently screaming ‘make all the things’, it made perfect sense to look up inkle weaving again, and how to weave ribbon so I wouldn’t have to find the right size ribbon. Yes, reigning my mind in sometimes can be hard. Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I don’t!

So, what do other people think about these crafting methods? I’d love to hear what you think, both about crafting methods and what you think about my thoughts on them. And later on, I’ll do another post about my kntting (I’m at 6 hours now!)

So the Rohan scarf has begun! This is it about one and a half hours into the third attempt (we will not discuss the first two…)

rohan1a

And the back

rohan1

I have recently started recording how long projects take me. Mostly for curiousity, but I expect that I’ll find a way to analyse it! Which is how I know that this is 1.5 hours work. I have an app on my smartphone (I can’t believe I actually just typed those words…), which can have multiple stopwatches on the go, and name each of them (very useful!). So all new projects from here on out will be recorded. (If I remember!) Fingers crossed that I remember to start/stop each time!

The scrappy blanket continues. This will be the last row of hexagons to be attached (finally!), so I’m trying to get through them. This is my take-around project, as the colourwork on the Rohan scarf is very complicated, and I can;t take it anywhere!

scrappy1Eek! I can’t belive this thing is nearly finished!!! And then I’ll start a new one! Gotta use up all those scraps!

Not the modifications post

So, it turns out that I need to think more about the modifications I plan to make to cockatoo brae…expect that post later. Maybe a couple of weeks. Because…

I got more yarn! This has a plan. A very solid plan. Working out presents for my dad has always been awkward. So, this year I finally did the sensible thing, and asked him to pick from a small number(4) of scarf patterns. I offered:

1)A star wars double knit scarf. This one apparently was too busy for his tastes

2)Fellowship of the ring iconic scene scarf. I really thought that he’d like this one, but the fact that it’s sideways put him off

3) One ring scarf. This was a firm favourite, until I showed him the one that he did pick. I’m not quite sure why this one loses out to it but I must admit to being pleased. As well as already having knitted this, there is a LOT of stocking stitch. In the round. I’m not sure how long I could do that for!

4) Riders of Rohan scarf.(edited to provide correct link)This one won. I’m not sure exactly why, maybe he fancies himself a rider of Rohan in a different life…

I tried to not influence his decision at all (after all, I do want him to wear it!), however, I am happy that he chose this one. I haven’t knitted it before, and it seems interesting, but not too complicated. (I may do the star wars one for me later, just for the challenge…). I’ve never tried double knitting before, so I’m looking forward to giving it a go on something fairly straightforward 🙂

The problem is, I asked him what colours he wanted (homestly expecting the iconic green and white. How could he not want that???) to be told brown and brown. *sigh*. Well, he didn’t tell me, he showed me the shades he wanted from his current (shades of brown and brownesque) scarf. The first two shades he suggested were brown and a reddy brown almost exactly the same when viewed on greyscale…not going to happen. So then he suggested a sandy brown and a darker brown, which I agreed to.

Then came the hunt for the right yarn. I knew I wanted tweedy (I considered Rowan felted tweed DK but ditched it because of how expensive it would be…). I went around all the yarn shops in York (Ramshambles is closing if anyone reading this is also in York. They don’t have much left, but there may be a few nice things), and found this:

rohan(The white is more off-white, something akin to cream). This met with my dad’s approval, and so the knitting can commence (this will delay the cockatoo brae plans more, but oh well. I think I need to spend more money and work out how to fudge dye lots for that one, so we’ll see…). I’m planning on using a 3mm needle, because I knit loosely, and double knitting is loose as well. My current projects are on 1.5mm needles and 2mm needles. This is going to feel large my conparison! Knitting can commence as soon as I find a set of 3mm needles (either straight or circular). If I have to go into town again to find a set, I will be rather annoyed…now, do I have any other needles than my interchangeables, and those that are being used already??? (And if so, where are they???)

Which one of those scarves would you have chosen? And why? If you have any alternatives from other fandoms, I’d also love to know about them. It’s too late for my dad though, he’s getting this one.

Stocking the first et al

So I finished this month’s cross stitch 🙂 I kinda cheated, since it was already half finsished, but I also didn’t have the full month to work on it (I came back to York on the 4th), so I’m calling it quits 🙂

stocking1a(Ok, I just realised that I forgot the star which is supposed to go just to the right of the baby’s head. I’ll add that in later when I can find my gold sparky thread…)

I also finished the first sock, which I put a rush on because I needed the needles to…gauge swatch!

manly2

The gauge swatch is also done, washed and dried. I get gauge of 28 stitches to 4 inches on 2.5mm needles. More on this on Saturday, when I’m going to do a post about modifying the pattern I’m using.

oxford

And finally, I’ve done a few more hexagons on my scrappy blanket. One more stripe and I’m going to call it done, although I’ll still add hexagons from time to time. I will however, come up with another blanket. And I think I change dmy mind about designing my own pattern, it just seems very complicated right now, when I need to be concentrating on other things. Maybe later. Does anyone have any good free scrappy blanket patterns?

scrappy

This has to be my favourite hexagon. The yarn is regia hand-spun effect, and the colour runs are longer than this, I just started at the best spot ever! I’m not putting another hexagon in with this yarn, it’s that perfect!!!

scrappy2

Rethinking my SMART goals

So, I realised something the other day while pondering my goals for the year. One of them was to cross stitch about 28 small stockings, and then finish them as stocking ready to be used as an advent calender. Now, as I was thinking about this, I suddenly realised that meant I had to have 25 of them done (and finished) by the end of October, in order to free up November for NaNo…this is massively unfeasable, and therefore getting changed. Even if this was feasable, it would result in this blog showing nothing but Christmas stitching and gift crafting and I think that isn’t reall ideal…So now, rather than stitch 28 of them, I’m knitting 9. One a month up to September. Then I have October to make them up (not that they really need makng up until I have 25, but let’s stay on top of it all…), November for my NaNo project, and December for the frantic Christmas making (a shawl, a scarf, two hats, a seagull, a pair of gloves, a pair of socks, two pieces of embroidary, an advent calender, and something as yet undecided). Not all of this will be done in December…On that note, what do you get a friend who is instantly knitworthy, and you’ve made him a blanket, a pair of handwarmers and an advent calender, and he’s loved all of it??? (No, he’s not getting socks. I don’t think he’s that knit-worthy.)

 

Have a picture of my current cross stitch, because otherwise there aren’t any pictures, and that would be a shame:

stocking1

This won’t actually be on my Advent calender. I have an idea as to who may get it as a Christmas ornament, but that sort of relies on one of them still being alive, and they’re both on palliative care, so… Otherwise we’ll see

Oh, and a sock! I started this on Wednesday, on the train coming back up to York. It’s great fun, and I’ve started increasing for the heel already 🙂

manly

Hello 2017!

So, who’s looking forward to 2017? Can we say it starts tomorrow in order to protect David Attenbrough???

I have compiled a list of goals for next year, a variety of crafting/learning new skills/personal development. I’m really excited to start!

There are three crafting(ish) ones I’m aiming for:

1)Have birthday/Christmas presents planned by the end of February

This one is actually mostly done. I need to come up with something for my dad’s birthday, and I currently have a blanket down for my parents Christmas, but I’m not sure about that one… I’ve started a spreadsheet with everyone’s birthday/fav colour and what they’ve had from me previously to make this much easier, and it’s definitely working! I can do a larger post on this later if people are interested?

2) Stitch and finish my Christmas stockings.

I want 24/25 of them to become an advent calender for me, the others I’m not so sure on. Maybe Christmas tree decorations? So far I think I have about 3 done (but they’re currently up in York so I can’t check!)

3) Complete the November crafting challenge. Either NaKniSweMo, or NaCrossStitchMo.

I have a couple of options for this. There’s a butterfly fairy cross stitch I’d like to do from a couple of issues of one of the cross stitch magazines I’ve got. Alternatively, I still have Cockatoo Brae to do (because doing NaKni with a 4ply yarn is such a great idea…). Or I could figure out how many hexagons on my scrappy blanket that would be and do that (this would be the easiest to keep track of whether I’m on track…). Or just a generic blanket, as I totally want a proper blanket for myself!

 

So what do you think? Any thoughts will be gratefully read! Are any of you planning on anything similar???

Merry Christmas Everyone

The hat is basically finished (I have a few more repats to do, then darn in 2 ends, but it’s downstairs and I’m upstairs in bed and I don’t want to get up to photograph it!)

So all that is left for me here is to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year, and may your WIPs go smoothly!

Here’s a Christmas cracker joke my aunt gave me: What do reindeer have that no other animal does?

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Ready for it?

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Baby reindeer!

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