Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Christmas in July Mystery CAL: Part 3 - FINISHED!!

Up until this point, I was completely clueless as to what the final product would be.  I was happy to see that it's a stocking.  Part 3 was a little tougher than the rest - trying to figure out where all of the stitches along the sides was easier said than done at times.  After a few days of working on it - no, I was not able to sit down and knock this part out due to a crazy schedule - I finally finished last night!!

My final thoughts - I love the design of the stocking.  It was slightly time-consuming, but totally worth it.  I'm not a huge fan of how the heel turned out, nor do I like how the cuff appears too large, but those are adjustments I could easily make when I work the pattern again.  Yes, I will be working it again in the future.  I am hoping to have time to make one for each member of our family in the colors we're using to decorate this year.  I do plan to use a larger hook so I can make them larger in size - Santa only provides one "cool" gift and fills stockings for our kids, so we like to have decent size stockings. 

The pattern has received a name - the Winter Waves Christmas Stocking.  If you did not pick up an advance copy, you can now get the final version here.  Many thanks to the Design Wars team and Jennifer over at A Crocheted Simplicity... and I'm off to post the photos in my projects on Ravelry so I can get my chance to win a full set of Clover Amore crochet hooks!  :)

Monday, July 28, 2014

Pattern Review: Pretty Baby Barefoot Sandals

A few months ago I came across the most adorable pair of barefoot baby sandals while scrolling through Pinterest.  I hadn't had a reason to make any yet, but finally got an order.  YAY! 

I pulled up the String With Style blog and found the pattern for the Pretty Baby Barefoot Sandals  - a freebie, which is always a plus!  The sandals worked up pretty quick once I determined which size to make.  I had an order for a pair in 6-9 month size. Unfortunately, the pattern doesn't include much in the way of details for the sizes -  small, medium, and large are all you get.  That meant I had to work and compare each finished size against another pair of baby shoes I'd already made for the same order. 

In the end, I love how cute they turned out.  The flower was so much easier than I thought it was going to be, and because there are two different edgings to choose from, it's an easy flower even for a beginning hooker.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Christmas in July Mystery CAL: Part 2

The second part of the Mystery CAL was scheduled to be updated on Tuesday.  Because of where Jennifer lives, her internet was being a pain.  Needless to say, it was on the later side before the update came through on Ravelry.  No problem though - I updated Wednesday morning and completed Part 2 while it stormed yesterday. 

Honestly, this part was so much trickier than I expected it to be.  I love that the seam blends in so well with the rest of the piece.  The texture is so neat - and it could easily be used as a reversible one for some pieces. 

As far as Part 3 - it comes out today.  And I can't wait!  I am still clueless as to what the finished piece is going to be.  LOL  I guess we'll find out soon enough!!!  If you're interested in participating in the Mystery CAL, it's not too late.  You obviously won't get the "mystery" part of it, since I (and others in the Ravelry group) have posted pics of our work along the way, but the pattern is 40% off right now.  You can pick it up here.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Pattern Review: Dragon Hat

As you may or may not know, I LOVE Dragons!!  Ever since I was a child, I have been fascinated by all things fantasy - witches, wizards, castles, and especially dragons.  Yes, I know they aren't real, but I love them none the less.  I was fortunate enough to meet a man who shared the same passion for dragons - and he's now my husband.  LOL  When our son was born, we agreed to give him the middle name "Drago", which means dragon in Italian.  Keiran has always thought dragons were cool too, so when I came across the Dragon Hat pattern by Briabby Designs a few months ago, I knew I was going to have to add it to my collection.  After going back and forth about buying it - $7.99 is way more than I normally spend on any pattern - I finally gave in.  Keiran had been telling me he really wanted one, and since I hadn't made him anything recently, I went online and purchased the pattern. 

I have to admit that I didn't go into this with my eyes wide open.  In all honesty, had I read through the pattern in full before beginning, I may not have started it at all.  There are a TON of individual pieces to make and most of the hat is worked in single crochet.  I pushed through and after 1 full day plus another hour or so of crocheting, followed by almost a full day of assembly, the hat is finally complete... and I have a VERY happy 5-year old!!!

The pattern is very well-written, with photos to make things easier to understand on the parts that may need a little more explanation.  There are a ton of different hat sizes to choose from, so you could make a dragon hat for absolutely everyone in your life if you wanted to.  I do think that if I make another one I will probably attempt to stitch all of the pieces (aside from the wings and legs) onto the body before pinning it down.  I may even use linked double crochet in place of the single crochet in some places where it seems that it could work.  All in all, this is definitely a pattern worth the price!!!  If you are a beginning hooker, this is not a pattern I would recommend trying... and not because it's a complicated pattern, but because there are so many different parts, it can be discouraging. 

I love the way the final product turned out.  With the dragon being fully three-dimensional, it is going to garner a ton of attention when my lil' man wears it out of the house!!!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Christmas in July Mystery CAL: Part 1

Those who follow us on any of our social media sites, including this blog, may remember me telling you on Saturday about the Christmas in July Mystery Crochet-Along I'm participating in .  The CAL is being hosted by Design Wars and A Crocheted Simplicity.  There's still time to pick up the pattern and join here if you're interested.

The pattern was updated yesterday to add Part 1.  I jumped right in and got started.  Let me tell you that I am clueless as to what the end product is going to be.  LOL  Here's what my completed Part 1 looks like: 

The pattern may seem a little too much for those who are beginners - but then again, Jennifer has the pattern listed as being for Advanced Beginners/Intermediate crocheters.  Part 1 was not challenging or difficult so much as there were quite a few lines that were similar but just different enough that I needed to keep a close watch on what I was doing.  I was more surprised that it took half the day to finish this one piece. 

Part 2 will update on Tuesday, though it will be later day before I get to start working on it... I'm so excited to see what is still to come, and even more excited to figure out what the final product will be!!