Sunday, July 21, 2013

Knit & Crochet Show 2013: Part II

After I forced myself to put down the broomstick flowers, I got a night of sleep and was off again to a full day of class on Friday. This day held:

  • Aran and Traveling Stitches (Crochet)
  • A trip to the market
  • Lunch with hubby
  • Double Hook Crochet
  • Another quick trip to market

These samples are from the Aran and Traveling Stitches Crochet class. The very tip top sample was the instructors and the one below it in the picture and the blue pix right here was my attempt. As she said in class, crochet cables are much harder than knit cables. However, after learning a few tricks you can start zooming right along.

After working on cables for a bit, I gave the start of the Tree of Life a try. I have a slight blip in the bottom, but then realized I was making one stitch way harder than necessary. (I think I was fading fast by that point and I still had market to go before lunch!) One of the great things about taking national classes is that you get to see all the amazing designs that the teachers have dreamed up. In this case, Almost Amy had this gorgeous Aran Tote Bag (follow this link). I decided that would most certainly be my next full on aran crochet project. And, at the second round of market on this day, I settled on this custom yarn by River's Edge Fiber Arts. It is a lighter weight than the original design, so I will adjust my hook accordingly and end up with a smaller tote.

I tried so so hard not to buy this...really. :)

When I was signing up for classes I was really curious about the Double Hook Crochet. I found this technique to pretty relaxing. It really is a combination of knitting, crochet, and Tunisian crochet. Knowing how to do these fiber arts really helped in learning this skill. We concentrated on using two colors in each swatch. Each side of the swatch will have a dominant color and the opposite side with feature the opposite color. As part of the class, we got a booklet of 12 dishcloths. I can imagine making up some of these. If you want to give one of Darla's patterns a try, I found this one listed in Ravelry that is really cute.

I had every intention of only getting a few buttons and a sweater quantity of donegal yarn at market. (I'm participating in a KAL in October that requires donegal yarn.) Well, best laid plans and all that. I couldn't find ANY in the entire place. I'm guessing that most vendors just thought we wouldn't be interested in heavy yarns at the moment. It was in the 90s all week. Of course, I found other temptations. Making the deal with myself that I would knit up these two things right away for use this fall and winter, I picked up two kits. 

This sample was just beautiful on the show floor and it is a wrap that can be worn in a multitude of ways. It contained the pattern (Range Wrap), four skeins of yarn, and the JUL closure. I casted this on Saturday morning and I'm through one skein already. It is a simple and fast knit in mostly garter stitch. The kit I bought had Yarn Hollow Photograph and Malabrigo Rios. Oh la la! It is so pretty. I might have found my knit for our yearly pumpkin patch trip.

The other project I grabbed was the Woodburn Scarf. I have wanted to use Kauni for years and years, but I never found a project where I thought I would wear it very much. This pattern is a free download and is VERY easy (it would be a good one for beginners as you only need to knit and purl). However, Knitter's Mercantile had their Woodburn Scarf sample displayed wrapped as a cowl and buttoned up with the JUL closures. ADORBS!!! It goes great with my camel wool winter coat. 

So, as you can see, I have started both as I promised myself I would. Of course, this breaks my not more than one project at a time (outside of my afghan exceptions). I hope to wrap up these two projects, my Effortless Cardigan, an Ella Sack order, three Christmas gifts, 5 new designs, and a Celtic cables sweater by the end of October. Yes, you read that right. I am super committed AND I will still be taking custom orders from now until the end of the year. I will also be doing those hand exercises that we learned about on day one to keep my hands happy and healthy through this busy season!

It was a great conference where I made new friends, picked up some new skills, and walked away totally inspired and full of new design ideas and business expansion plans. I can't wait to share the exciting journey with you!


Anonymous said...

Oh, Gina. It looks like you had so much fun. I can't wait to see the kits made up. Loved the traveling cable. The double crochet is something I'm going to look up. I'm pretty sure I still have the big needle for a go at the broomstick. And, I really should try to figure out the Tunisian mistake that I keep making. Thanks for the inspiration!


Meg said...

Sounds like the conference was a big success! It's fun to read about all you learned and your new inspiration. Can't wait to see the scarf. I think that might be one of my favs :)