Category Archives: Crochet Club 2011

And the winner is…

I got a phone call yesterday morning, of all times, from my Auntie En, of all people, during which I mentioned I’d entered stuff in the village show but I couldn’t bring myself to say I’d entered her doll in case she didn’t win.  Not because she would have been disappointed, because she is really modest and was embarrassed the time she entered some dolls in a St Johns Ambulance show and won the first three prizes, and certainly not because I didn’t think her doll worthy of winning but I didn’t know what would float the judges boat. And there had been an entry of two rag dolls of a more contemporary nature.  So I ended up wanting Auntie En’s doll to win more than anything else.  However not only did Auntie En’s doll win first prize win but I won a couple of things too…

Auntie Ann came with me in the afternoon for a shufty round at the other stuff eg, photographs, vegetables, flora displays, backing some of which have junior categories which I think is a good thing.  (B spied an opportunity to get out of it and jumped with both feet and without the aid of a safety net.)

In the interim I’d decided to get through the backed up ironing pile and this caused Bud a bit of a dilemma as in my sewing room he doesn’t have an allocated or even available comfortable area in which to lie down.  Yesterday he contemplated the clean laundry basket, with the laundry still in and despite my pair of cream linen pants being on top I had to see if he managed it.  However after getting his two front paws in he decided it wasn’t to be.  Let’s take a look at Bud and the basket together for dog to basket size comparison…

(Okay the basket it not really just three times the size of Bud’s head – the angle’s made it look that way but he could just about stand in it if he breathed in – enquiring facial expression is due to being posed for a photo – this has never really happened before (excluding trying to get him to wear antlers or a birthday hat) and being woman-handled to a suitable position got him a bit wary.  This was soon rectified by the consumption of a dog treat.)

Anyhoo back to the show – I was heard to say to B and Auntie Ann that I didn’t know if I would win the Handicrafts Trophy this year (jointly or otherwise) – not out of modesty you understand but just because there were two categories I hadn’t entered and after seeing the Handmade Toys I thought my Buddies and Bunny, although cute, wouldn’t cut the mustard.  However…

It’s mine, all mine!

And ‘we’ (B and Bud included I suppose) got a bonus prize.  One of our neighbours entered in the baking, flower and jewellery sections and also won things.  One of her winning entries was parkin (now we all know I love parkin – but not parking – and that my Auntie En makes the best parkin in the world, nay the galaxy) and I may have asked whether she was giving away samples while we were at the show.  And what do you know she turned up at our door today with a selection of apple pie, parkin and bread – mmmmmmm!

Needless to say I will not be available to comment on the deliciousness or otherwise of the parkin.

Let’s finish up with a prize by prize breakdown.

Category – Cross Stitch Picture

Third Prize – I’m ashamed to say I didn’t take note of what won third prize.

Second Prize

Carousel Horses in Cross Stitch – October

First Prize

Mirabilia – Mermaid of the Pearls #26

Category – Knitted Garment

Third Prize

Rowan Magazine 41 – Peony

Second Prize was an Norwegian style jumper in a muted palette with colour areas above the ribbing and a coloured yoke that appeared to be worked in the round – I didn’t pick it up and give it the once over like but when I saw it in the morning I thought ‘Ohhhhhhh – that’s nice!’

First Prize

Debbie Bliss – New Baby Knits – Aran Jacket with Large Collar

Category – Crochet Item

Third Prize was a lovely lemon baby blanket embellished with self coloured crocheted flowers.

Second Prize

Comfort Knitting and Crochet Afghans – Greenway

First Prize

Jane Crowfoot Crochet Club 2011 Mystery Blanket

I’m embarrassed to say, but not so much that I’m not saying it obviously, that when I went up to collect the trophy the show co-ordinator suggested that anyone who hadn’t seen this should take a look before they left.

Now I have to go as there’s a cup of tea wating for me and I have a big decision to make – Do I start with the apple pie, parkin or the bread with some butter on it?

My crafty entries

Here’s the stuff I’m entering in tomorrow’s Village Show.  You’ll have to excuse the doll’s somewhat un-chaste demeanour – I wanted you to see her underskirt (which is a full one) and her bloomers.  I have to admit I didn’t make her – she is my Auntie Eleanors’s creation.

Please bear in mind if you comment that I don’t want to read the words ‘over the top’!  I was going to cut it back and save some for next year but then I thought ‘Hey, seize that carp, you might get hit by a bus before then.’

Crocheting with Hugh Grant

Thanks to Hugh Grant I finished my Mystery Blanket on Tuesday morning.  Okay let me expand on that.  No, he didn’t call round for a cuppa and say ‘Here pass that over I’ve have the edging done in no time’.   Basically I think he is a horse’s ar…er, rear end and avoid films with him.  I know he appeals to some people, obviously, and I pass no judgement on your mental state if you are one of these poor, sad individuals.  I however find him extremely irritating.  That said last Wednesday I found myself watching a film with him in completely by accident.

I needed to stay up until quarter to twelve to take some tablets and some visiting friends left at eleven because one had to work the following day and one had to golf so I found a film (Extreme Measures) to watch which wasn’t my usual cup of tea.  It was medical (something I tend to avoid on the telly and always have) and Hugh Grant – he was a surprise as he wasn’t mentioned him on the information.  Having taken my tablets we retired to watch the rest in bed, well to be honest Bud wasn’t too interested in it since there was no barking, growling, etc.

As it turned out it was actually quite good and I ended up watching it all before I nodded off.  So Gene Hackman (who I like) tells Hugh that he’s paralysed due to a fracture at his sixth vertebra severing his spinal cord.  I’m lying there thinking ‘There’s more than one number six in the spine, it’s not necessarily C6’ and then Hugh tells Sarah Jessica Parker (who I can take or leave) that the fracture is at C6 – DOH!

So what the heck has this got to do with my crocheting.  Well on Saturday afternoon I started getting a pain in my left shoulder/back area made worse when I attempted to iron.  On a scale of one to ten let’s just say it was noticeable.  I popped some paracetamol and 60mg of codeine and in light of watching said film and having some loosening at C6 I sat down on the settee and took it easy for the rest of the day by crocheting.  It was tons better on Sunday though I stuck to the crocheting and when I went for a free massage on Monday (four free massages at the local oncology centre with every relapse – there has to be some perks) the aromatherapist did say that there was a knot in the muscle.  From my experience with L3 which started 10 months before it actually collapsed I still currently have full range of movement and no ‘Help, I can’t get off the toilet.  I hope B is home from work soon’ muscle spasms.  It’s not bothering me enough that I would make a specific trip to the Royal but I will mention it when I go on Tuesday.

 And that’s how Hugh Grant helped me get my blanket finished and here it is… 

Would I do a mystery blanket again?  No.  It was a bit pricey to do more than once and while I do like it’s more decorative than snuggly and a bit smaller at 89cm/35″ wide x 142cm/56″ long  than other blankets/throws I’ve previously made and a tad heavy, in my opinion, to display on a wall.

If I had seen the completed design as a pattern would I have attempted it?  No.

Am I glad I did it? Yes, my crocheting has improved a lot and there are a number of different techniques in there that I probably wouldn’t have tried like beading – which I really, really liked and would do again.

The designer, once again, is Jane Crowfoot and next year’s blanket, although I haven’t seen the hint shots yet, will be more feminine and lacy and involve less sewing up and presumably less ends to weave in.  I lost count after 100 but I don’t think there can have been much less than 1,000!

Other Creative Spaces can be found here – don’t know if Hugh helped anybody else out.

Creative Space Crochet Club 2011

 

The craft project of choice that I took on my surprise ‘get a bug in your blood – get a free holiday’ trip was the Crochet Club 2011 Mystery Blanket – basically because it was to hand and was in a little storage box.  B loves putting things in carrier bags when we go anywhere so was slightly put out when we left for the hospital and I wanted to keep my crochet box au natural.  (I loath to admit it but he gets it from his mother – ‘Do you want a carrier bag for your knitting?’ ‘No.’ ‘It would be better in one.’ ‘I managed to get it here without one.’ ‘We’ve got this one, it’s a nice one!’ ‘NOOOOOOOOOO.’ – well you get the idea fortunately B has learned not to be so insistent but the urge to bag things still lingers.)

Now I didn’t feel like I got that much done considering I was in for six and a half days but with popping our for a wedding, visitors and general chatting with fellow inmates, I mean holidaymakers, in retrospect I don’t think I did too bad..

I had real trouble with one of the half circles and had to undo several rows several times.  When the second one was a doddle and I analysed the first it turned out that the problem was me, I had five spokes in the centre instead of four.  Since the outside measurement was the same, due to some severe tweaking I’ve left it.  (The old adage about it not being spotted by a man on a galloping horse applying.)

I waited to do the outside of the semi circles until last Friday when I was feeling more compos mentis as I thought it was doing to be really, really hard – it turned out to be so simple and the string of interlocked circles just curved round with a simple row, mostly of double crochet (single crochet – US) either side.

On Sunday when I came to block the pieces before sewing another two strips together I encountered a problem.  I believe it’s spotable even to the non crocheter…

After checking the measurements of the straight piece and the zig zag it transpired I was only 1 cm out so after contemplating re-crocheting the zig zag I bascially stretched it until it fit – it would have to have been stretched a tad anyway so I just made it a tadddddddd.  This resulted in these…

which brought me up to the end of May’s instructions.

We have now entered into the realms of June…

and am up to adding to the second semi circle…

and this would be why I don’t do much knitting intarsia (colour knitting but not true fairisle which by law only has two colours on one row).  I find it really, really messy.  I’ve tried these…

I’ve tried wrapping it into tiny balls and even wrapping it round my thumb and little finger into small skeins that pull out from the middle and solve all this but nothing works well other than cutting the yarn off into lengths that you can just pull out of the surrounding mess but as you don’t know how much you are going to need that’s not really a viable option.

But hey, it looks like I will get it finished before the end of the month – famous last words!

Other Creative Spaces can be found here.

Crochet Club Tuesday – March Madness

I was intending on posting a picture of my Crochet Club 2011 progress stating that I’d finished the March instructions and wasn’t I good for doing that, etc, etc and then I realised that although I have finished the crochet bit of March there’s some sewing together to do – DOH!  DOUBLE DOH as it means I HAVE to weave some of those 60,000 loose ends in.

So here’s the crochet bit, which was photographed with the aid of my trusty assistant…

Speaking, or even typing, of ends I had my hair cut today.  It stopped thinning after the second lot of Doxorubicin.  Fortunately it had come back thicker than before my SCT so I could afford to lose some.  Since we have a very, very important event to go next week I thought I’d get it cut by a professional in a salon rather than me in the garage with the clippers – uh, that sounds like a solution from Cluedo.  I’ll post a pic tomorrow if I can get B to take a half decent one, Bud’s finding it a bit tricky to hold the camera AND press the button at the same time.

Creative Space with Crochet

I have a cold.  It started with a sore throat yesterday morning and worked its way up to include a snotty nose by the afternoon.  So today I am imitating an Alaskan sled dog, except not a large sexy one that could make extra money from an over 18 phone line, no, I got the runt of the litter – B has to turn the TV down to hear me (at least I know for once he’s listening) and I think Bud’s finding it really creepy as he keeps looking at me in a startled manner when I talk.

I also have this week a Creative Space on a Thursday – ohhhhhhhh!

Whilst my cross stitch was drying last night I got my Mystery Crochet Club blanket out, this proved a good choice for this morning too as I had a coldy headache and didn’t fancy attempting to concentrate on attaching the tiny beads to the Spring Queen.

So here’s what’s new since last time

and yes you may have noticed, and it’s not escaped me either, that those four corner squares have an alarming number of ends to weave in!

I thought the patterns were over 10 or 12 months however it turns out they are only over six.  Now I’ve just started March, by adding the last bit of the corner squares and starting the piece with the triangles on it on the top left, so I’m not too sure if there only being six means I’m more or less behind! Ermmmm, so if it was 12 and I’d done 2.27945 months that would be well, er, um, but it’s six so that would be, oh, if I just pick up the crochet hook instead I’ll have March finished by the time I work it out!

Other Creative Spaces are here.

To cut or not to cut that is the question

My hair is just about due another trim but since it is noticeable thinner, well it is to  me when I run my hand through it, but maybe yet doesn’t look it, I can’t decide whether to cut it or not.  It is certainly coming out more than usual.

This time however isn’t like during my stem cell transplant when it made a sudden emergency evacuation, this time is more like a leisurely stroll out of its follicles.  I don’t think it’s growing any more and I’d hate to give it a trim only to reveal general patchiness that isn’t obvious at its current length.

B is on bald patch alert in case it gets a bit patchy round the back where I can’t see it.  I’m not too sure how reliable he is going to be and probably need to sort out back up spotters.

I think I’ll give it another week and see how it goes – boom boom!

Last week during B’s holiday we spent 10.5 hours at the hospital (not the 15 B initially thought we’d stayed there for) and all I managed to get done was the beaded centre section of this crochet sandwich.

When we went on Friday I was able to have Velcade but my netrophil count was borderline.

Hb – 11 (oh er Mrs, highest it’s been since January)

Platelets – 135

WBC 1.3

Neutrophils – 0.6

I got tomorrow for a blood count but may not be able to have the Velcade and it could be a GCSF injection (to make me produce more of the little neutrophils) instead.  This Monday I aim to make sure I have two knitting needles with me!