Saturday, October 11, 2008

Progress x 17 Months

Finally, an update on my Mangoes For Breakfast afghan.

This afghan has been in the works for at least 17 months. I wasn't happy with my first conception which used multiple other yarns of various colours. At that time I planned to crochet it in squares. The previous squares are pictured back in May 2007.

From the start I wanted a colourful piece with squares within a square. I consider intarsia and mitered squres. In the end I chose the log cabin approach.

Each square measures 18" x 18." I finished 20 squares to cover a double bed. It will be 4 x 5 squares for a finished size of about 75" x 90"

I tried top seamed crochet join, but didn't like the added lines. Instead I am working on a mattress stitch join.

This is a mammoth, heavy project. To help with its structural stability I am making it into a quilt. I have the cotton batting and the cotton fabric for backing.

The fabric I chose was on sale from Fat Quarter Shop dot com. The print is Malibu Monkeys by Erin Michael for Moda Fabrics. The backing fabric is the one with the white background. I think it is a better backing choice and will make the overall finished piece a little less bold. The all yellow fabric is a deeper yellow than the Melody Sunny Yellow of the log cabin squares. I may use the yellow fabric for binding.

I am not certain how much quilting I will have to do to keep this piece together. I planned to use buttons to help with the sandwich process. I will have to see how this works. This is uncharted territory for me!

I likely will sew 4 pillow cases from the remaining fabric to send a long with the finished piece. It is exciting getting near the finish line with this enormous project. The finished result is still a fuzzy image in my mind's eye.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Team Scarf Pattern

Here we have a scarf I made for a die-hard Mets fan. It is a bit sad that we are in the Post Season and had to say good-bye to the Mets, at least until next year. This scarf gives tremendous comfort in the off season. The bright colours of a royal blue and orange scarf in the dead of a wet, damp, dark, bone chilling winter does the soul good. Spring is coming, and baseball will begin anew.

Now you don't have to be a New York, Metropolitan Baseball fan to enjoy such a scarf. This snugly neck warmer can be made in any colour combination you choose. You may prefer your school's colours, or the colours of some other team. So here are my very easy instructions for your very own Team Scarf!

Team Scarf Pattern

Yarn: Filatura Di Crosa Zara, 4 balls of primary colour, 3 balls of secondary colour.
(here the PC is 2382 Royal Blue, and the SC is 1762 Bright Orange)

Weight: DK, 8 ply (11 WPI)

Content: 100% Superwash Merino Wool

Weight: 50 g - 124 m

Care: Machine Wash

Needle: 4 mm, 4 DPN

In main colour (i.e., the colour for both ends - here blue) do a provisional cast-on of 60 stitches over three DPNs (4 mm).

Knit 25 rounds in blue, then Knit 25 rounds in orange, Continue for desired length ending with the main colour.

Graft the end closed.

Then remove the provisional stitch from the beginning and graft this end closed, making certain the scarf will lay flat for its entire length.

Then steam block the scarf.

Ta Da! You have made a lovely team scarf!

So long Billy Wagner, so long Mets. 'Til we meet again.