March Nor'Easter and Checking In

Wednesday it was about 70 degrees and sunny outside and I had spring fever like you wouldn't believe. Today we're in for a nor'easter and expected to get 8 to 14 inches of snow. Does anyone else find this odd? I guess I should be used to it, because this is a pretty typical weather pattern for NH in the springtime.

Started a scarf last night and within an hour I was half way done with it. What a great scarf it is. Not really all that practical for cold weather since it is so lacey, but it's lovely looking. I used Lion Jiffy, which I really love, in a bright red (I frogged the bright red beginning of a scarf I posted the other day). I'm trying to practice my math and my logic in terms of different stitches and patterns, i.e. how many chains to make at an end of a row to maintain the right height of a particular stitch, how many chains to skip at the beginning of the row, how long the foundation chain needs to be in order have it come out right, etc. I'm at a point where I can follow a pattern alright, but I don't ever really sit there and think, "why did they have me skip 2 st here?" and things like that. The math of it isn't quite sinking in just yet, and I would like it to (and fast). Maybe I'm a little slow on the uptake or something, but I find that if I figure something out on my own I tend to retain it and understand it better, so I decided I would figure out how crocheted pieces work in relation to number of stiches, etc. And quite frankly, I get it now. I feel confident that I could make something without use of a pattern and have it come out the way I want it to come out, with just a little bit of thought about how to create a particular shape. Learning is fun. So anyhow, I played around and did this, and though it's basic, it took some thought for me to figure out how long to make the foundation chain, etc.:

Foundation: Chain a multiple of 2 plus 3 (I did 13).
dc in 3rd st, ch 1, skip 1, dc, ch1, skip 1, etc. across the first row. ch 3 and turn.
From the second row on, dc in first space, ch 1, dc in next space, ch 1, etc until the end.
At the end of each row, ch 3 and turn.
Continue until you have your desired length.

Piece of cake. It's working up so nicely. Crazy fast. In an hour's time I should be done with it. And surprisingly, the edges look alright, not bumpy and nasty. Regardless, I may sc around the edges when I'm done, but I haven't yet decided.

I'm also still working on two other scarves all in hdc and a striped taupe and teal scarf all in sc. So I've got 4 scarves going right now and I hope to finish them up this weekend so I can move onto other things. I did frog that rose scarf I posted the other day. It really needs a much smaller hook than I was using and it seemed stupid to continue on.

I think I am going to continue to make scarves until my yarn supply is somewhat depleted. I have so, so many single skeins of yarn, or at most 2 skeins of the same yarn. Which is great, but it's not enough yarn to make, say, a blanket or a shawl or what have you (unless I do it out of different colored squares), but it's the perfect amount for making a scarf or a hat. So I would like to use a bunch of it up before I buy more. I have a huge plastic tote bin that I put all of my finished "unclaimed" items in when I'm done with them, and I will use that around Christmas time for gifts. I think right now I've got about 10 hats in the bucket and maybe 3 scarves or so. I am waiting for the American Cancer Society in my area to get back to me on the hats though because I'd like to donate them as chemo caps.

I'm coming to have a fondness for certain hook sizes and yarn weights. I still love myself a super bulky or bulky weight yarn, I can't deny that. I love the way it feels, I love the weight of it, I love how it seems to have this protective quality of a thick armor. I like a 100% wool yarn, but don't like a wool and acrylic blend. There are some yarns that are 100% acrylic, which I sort of shudder at, or at least used to shudder at, but I find that I really enjoy them. Bernat Softee Chunky is one of them. Talk about a really lovely, comfortable yarn for making a soft scarf. I cannot fathom a more comfy scarf. But to think it's acrylic just blows my mind. I also like working with boucle, which also surprises me because I used to scoff at them. But the finished products are soft and cozy and thick.

I will take a plastic hook over an aluminum one anyday. I'm finding that I'm more fond of an N hook than a P hook as far as large hooks go. But then, strangely, I really have to say that I love the S-hook (I think it's 19mm? It's huge!) with a super bulky yarn. Conversely, I have a real fondness for a J hook. I haven't used anything smaller than an H and I find that going that small is still hard for me. I think what it is is that I'm still learning, and therefore it's hard for me to see the stitches well. For instance, for a few weeks I've been trying to figure out where to properly put my hook when I'm working on something. They'll say front loop only, or back loop only, and I just can't really see it easily. When I work larger, I start to see things more clearly and I can identify what is what and where things need to be. And I also find that as I am learning and progressing and getting more knowledgable, I'm becoming much more comfortable with smaller hooks. So I suppose it will all balance out in time so long as I don't give up on it. But I can see myself spending more time with bulky yarns and larger hooks in the future because it is what I enjoy most. However, once I finally hit my LYS and come across better yarns in smaller weights, maybe that will change my mind. We'll see.


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