Thursday, January 28, 2016

Simple Pleasures

Life has been proceeding. It feels like I have somehow entered a time when the days just slip by me somehow without me being aware of where the time goes. I sometimes feel as though I am not getting anything done that I want to be doing, but in fits and starts, eventually stuff happens!

We have been having fires most nights. This is our main heat source, though we do have a space heater that we use at times when a fire woiuld be too much. There is a back boiler in the fireplace so the fire heats our hot water as well as the radiators around the cottage. I have discovered that at the end of a day, when I go upstairs to read or stitch, there is something very comforting about putting on a pair of bed socks that have been sitting on a warm radiator. This is especially true when the socks are made with a few strands of mohair and mohair blend yarn and are nice and cushy, as these are.
I started these months ago and set them aside shortly after starting the second sock. I finished that about a month ago now and have been enjoying the simple pleasure of warm, cushy socks on chilly nights. As a friend recently remarked, "It's a small bit of luxury, isn't it?" Indeed.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Hexagon Cardi

A few months ago I was clicking around and came across a blog post that described the blogger's experience crocheting a couple of granny hexagons, folding them in half so they formed an upside down "L" shape, and connecting them into a cardigan/shrug. I thought it was an intriguing idea and I made note of it to try sometime.

For my birthday a couple of weeks ago a friend sent me 8 balls of Lion Brand Amazing yarn. It is a beautifully soft, fuzzy, colour-changing yarn )blend of wool and acrylic) and as soon as I saw it, two things popped into my mind--the hexi cardi and arm warmers. I have to wear wrist/arm warmers most of the time now because my hands are so sensitive, often ache, and look pretty rough due to chilblains. Wrist warmers take care of the ache, so I wear them. I set aside two balls of Amazing to make a pair of simple ribbed arm warmers, gathered up the remaining 6 balls and some wool I'd gotten at the charity shop and started crocheting a hexagon. Although the original cardi I saw was done in a traditional granny design, I knew any hexagon would work and opted to make up my own so it would be a bit more lacy.

I finished last night and sat down this afternoon to weave in ends and sew on the button I'd decided to add. It is the last glass button I have left from several that a friend gave me years ago when we lived in southern Oregon. I am really happy with this! This is the front:

This is the back:

Here is a bit of detail--you can see where the beginning of the hexagon started under the arm.
I started the hexagon and as it started getting larger I stopped and folded it every once in a while to see how wide the sleeves would be--I wanted them loose, but not exceedingly so. When they were as wide as I wanted them, I pinned the sides together to be joined at the top later and I kept working around the remaining 3 sides of the hexagon. I did two the same way, added a couple of rows up the back, stopping just short of the halfway point to leave space for the neck, and then attached the two hexagons together. Then I just went around the bottom and both sides of the front for a few more rounds. Since the sleeves were not as long as I wanted them, I did some more rounds after I crocheted the sides together. I guess some people just make the hexagons, attach them and that's that--depends on how you want the garment to fit and what your measurements are. I just kept trying on half the cardigan (the first hexagon) as I went along and decided what to do next based on how it was fitting and what I wanted the end result to be.

The post that inspired me is here

She has in progress photos that show the construction details. As I was working on this, I would sometimes think I should take photos at various stages but I was too lazy! This was the project I worked on while sitting in bed at night listening to podcasts and I never did find the desire to leave my comfy spot in order to get the camera from downstairs. 

 I can see many possibilities for this and it would be great for odd balls and scraps. Different stitches would create a thicker garment. Lots of ways to just play around and end up with a funky, unique cardigan/shrug/jacket.

The first arm warmer is almost done--just a few more inches of ribbing left.