Friday, 9 November 2012

Christmas Craft Ideas (CCI) - Part 1.

It's coming and there's no getting away from it and we're here to help. I'm going to show you some of the small bits and bobs I'm getting up to in the run up to Christmas. Basically it'll be interesting ideas and patterns that we see for presents and decorations. I'm dead excited.

Firstly, I want to talk about this little stunner of a scarf:

I got the idea from Debra who has her own little business when she did some fingerless mitts in the Riot Chunky.

I like the way the horizontal and vertical stripes look together. So the idea percolated. And then she came into the shop for a quick sit and crochet and while she was crocheting a scarf I decided to do the same and knock up a quick Christmas present. So here it is.

I think it'll be a great scarf for blokes, in some sort of boring colour of the Patons Diploma Gold or Cygnet Merino DK perhaps? For ladies, usually a little less conservative, I think it's a great idea to mess around with self stripers like the Riot Chunky or perhaps the Riot DK. I also think it would look marvellous in the gorgeous Regia Lace with a biggish hook like a 5mm but have we got time for that at this point??  

It would be a brilliant scarf for a beginner at crochet. Have you started just to make presents for Christmas? I've included links in the stitchionary to a lady called 'Crochet Hooks You' on youtube. I like her videos, they're clear and she's done two separate listings for the UK and US terms which I think helps a little. I quite dislike her voice but at least she's nice and clear - not like the usual speech impediments you encounter on how to videos on youtube...
I've got to say that I think it's imperative that the finishing and blocking of this scarf is perfect because it could look like you mistakenly made the scarf too thin and added to it rather than that you were following the trend for asymmetrics in knitwear.

I must admit, a pattern isn't particularly necessary, this is about as easy as it gets but I'll walk you through it. I'll call it my Strange Stripes Riot Scarf.


Two balls of King Cole Riot Chunky. (I used the wildflower colourway)
Stitchionary (UK Terms): 

Ch 15. 
Row 1: Tr into 4th ch and every chain thereafter. (13 trs including turning ch). 
Row 2: 3ch, tr into 2nd stitch from hook and every st thereafter.
Repeat row 2 until you've finished one ball and at the end of a row. Fasten off. I managed 87 rows but depending on your gauge you may get a few more or a few less. 

Choose your right side, and with that facing attach your yarn to the right edge, make 3 ch for turning and tr twice into each row along the length of the scarf. I ended up putting one tr into the top of each tr and one in the space between the first tr and the second of that row. I ended up with 175 sts, yours will differ according to how many rows you've done. 
Work back and forth in trs as before on these picked up stitches until you have around a third of a ball left. I managed 5 full rows. 

To finish off, work dcs all around, working 2 sts into every row end as before and one stitch per stitch as you come across them. Sl-st to join at the end. 

Sew your ends in. 

This will need a good blocking to make sure that the row gauge matches the stitch gauge - the pattern is very dependent on that. 

Hopefully, that'll be clear enough for you. I'm off to think about more Christmas crafting. I think because the shop's so cold already I'm really somehow in the mood. Wait till I show you my next creation!!!!!

Love Eleanor. :)

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