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Archive for the ‘shrugs’ Category

Voila! The perfect summer sweater. This is modified from the Smoky Quartz Tunic Pattern in Interweave Crochet Fall 2006. I already made a longer, cap-sleeved fitted sweater version as the Black Quartz Tunic. Materials: Lion Babysoft, 1 ball cream; 4.5mm crochet hook.

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After fussing with different lengths, waistbands, etc. (click here for longer version), I decided to keep it short and sweet. The bottom edge is bordered with a row of linked double crochet–which gathered the bottom edge a bit, but without any puckering. Two rows of single crochet along the inside edges one row along the neckline add stabilization.

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Other modifications: For most of the top, I alternated 6dc clusters with 2dc-ch2-2dc shells (click here for stitch detail). That made the increases kind of tricky, but I just faked it. I’m particularly proud of how I handled the armpits in the sleeves. When separating the body from the sleeves (this is a top-down raglan pattern), the original pattern calls for you to add one extra shell stitch (2dc – ch2 – 2dc) at each armpit. That also adds one shell stitch for the sleeves.

To prevent a gaping hole on either side, I added two v-stitches (dc-ch1-dc) on each side of the new shell stitch, 4 v-stitches total . The next row, for each v-stitch pair: 2 dc in first v-stitch, ch1, 2dc in next v-stitch. The row after that: a normal shell in each ch-1 space. It worked perfectly: no bunching, and no gaping holes in the lace pattern either.

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FO: Short n’ Sweet

Voila! Short n’ Sweet at last. In Caron Simply Soft, it’s very comfortable to wear.

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Nearly done with Short n’ Sweet! Made the armholes larger than the pattern for size M, but put in the same # of sc’s as the foundation for the sleeves. Worked out fine, though there’s a bit of bunching behind the armpit. Alternated hook sizes to keep it fitted. The sleeve looks better this length; a cute cap sleeve. Just one more sleeve to go, and I’ll put up a model shot.

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One thing I’d do differently: on the first row of the sc border, do fewer stitches along each half-shell fpdc/bpdc motif to make the edge straighter. Given how long my torso is, I’d also wait four more rows before doing the neckline increase.

Took a little break from writing Chapter 5 (which is killing me, I tell you–killing me!) and hung out in the kitchen over-dyeing a ball of Woolease for fun. One packet Grape (purple), one packet Black Cherry Kool-Aid (blackish red). It was fun to see the water change color as different pigments got absorbed at different rates. The yarn was dark rose heather; and the tone looks much richer now.

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Undyed, on the left; over-dyed batch on the right. I don’t think the near-boiling on the stovetop was good for the acrylic; it definitely made it scratchier. So next batch, I’ll try the steam basket method.

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It’s been a very busy couple of weeks. The highlight was leading my students on another architectural tour. The most eventful part was 10 butt-and-thigh-burning minutes of chugging up the scenic Berkeley hills stairways. Evidently the students at the back nearly mutinied. Geez, you’d think a bunch of college students could tolerate a little exertion. Hehehe.

Short n’ Sweet (again!): Okay, on to crafting. Bailed on the teal cotton Short n’ Sweet, started on Cupcake, got bored. So I bought some Caron Simply Soft in Rubine Red, a lovely pink/fuchsia tinted red, and dove into Short n’ Sweet again. This yarn is so nice to work with, especially in the brighter colors.

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Short n’ Sweet’s lace pattern holds my interest, but I’ve had hair-tearing fit issues requiring multiple froggings as I experimented with alterations.

Prezzies! Brightening my days, two packages arrived this week from Renee (lllvllliss.ll3itch over at Craftster) with these goodies. Stitch markers, a crochet hook keychain, a row counter, suede yarn, and …. purse handles! I’ve got some recycled silk yarn coming in that will make a lovely bag with these handles.

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If anyone knows good stuff to make with the yarn, I’d appreciate suggestions.

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Mission Aborted

Waaaah. Short n’ Sweet bombed. I’m most of the way down the body now, but it’s just too chunky and unflattering. Could be solved through blocking, but… I’m about to run out of yarn! 😦

Meanwhile, the Knit Picks shipment arrived with Options interchangeable circular needles (yay!). Also a ball of Shine worsted. (more…)

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Short n’ Sweet Progress

My Short n’ Sweet Bolero (from The Happy Hooker) has been languishing for a few days now. This is my progress so far:

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It’s turning out a tad small at the shoulders. I delayed the armpit join a few rows; hope that doesn’t cause havoc when it’s time to do the sleeves.

You know, I don’t really like working with 100% cotton. This stuff is Debblie Bliss DK Cotton, but it’s still a bit hard on my hands. I’m also getting worried that I’ll run out of yarn, even though I bought an extra ball! Blame it on my long torso. Since this is turning out to be a fun pattern, I’m going to use Caron Simply Soft next. The gauge is perfect; no muss, no fuss.

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