Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Introducing Bobica!

I am SO excited about this! I guess you could call it my first 'proper' crochet design. It's got a bloody chart and everything... 

First and foremost therefore, here's the Ravelry link. Buy my pretties, you're paying for my coach trips! :)

If I remember rightly, I drew this on the toilet whiteboard on Love Your Local Yarn Shop Day.

I had an idea about a plump round thing in the middle of a lattice as a shawl and I started swatching. That's about as far as I got because then there was the Great Flood of 2014 and of course I went gallivanting with the oldies. I really got going with the pattern on a Tuesday - I know this because I was at knit group and I nearly drove them mad because I didn't reveal what or why or for whom I was doing it. It's the first time I've kept a proper secret I reckon (about myself anyway, I'm relatively good at other people's secrets...).

It started off  that evening looking a little like this:

Which morphed into this:

And I've got an idea for that, don't worry... But that had worked it's way by the end of the evening to looking an awful lot like this:

That's the image I sent to Vezza to ask if she wanted me to write a pattern for her Grad Club. She LOVED it because she trusts me, god only knows why. She was as excited as I was, so the next day I started on the 'proper' thing - crocheting a bit, writing a bit, taking photos.

And then came the holiday bit. I did take the pattern as written, and a gorgeous Truly Hooked Seafoam grad with my on holiday but I got caught up in doing something else which will appear on the blog at some point just as soon as I've sewn in ends and worked out how/when I should wear it/if it needs something else. 

I'm pretty proud of myself that I got back on it and didn't leave it languishing too long. I think part of that is that Verity was so excited and had already started dying the yarn. I need a deadline/somebody that I like relying on me for shit to get done apparently... Look:

In my head the pattern was always going to be called 'cherries' and we discussed  the colourway she was going to make with reference to yarn in my shop. We gathered together a little collection of Bamboo, Cottonsoft, Pricewise, Patons' Diploma and Merino DK and it looked a little something like this: 

Can you see that's a little more 'berry' than 'cherry'? On top of the fact that by now I'd blocked the first full version of the shawl and the 'cherries' were much longer and less round than they'd originally been.

I still love them. I love the way that they look like they're hanging by a thread - like plump and delicious berries waiting to be picked by greedy fingers. Nom nom nom. I haven't shown you these have I? They're the very first strawbs from Boyf's garden - honestly the most delicious thing ever apart from the mushroom croquette thing at Verity's wedding.

 'Bobica' means 'berry' in Bosnian and Croatian. I like the jaunty sound. :)

Anyway, less about food (I think it might be lunchtime). It took me four full days to write the chart. It took a lot of the stuff that I've learned about internetting, patience and bloody steady fingers to do. I first drew all of the symbols and scanned them, then I cropped and saved the individual images. Then I had to 'rub out' the background of each bit so that all that was left was a see-through background and the symbol itself. I did this because in order to lay the symbols near enough to eachother the background of the individual ones were definitely going to overlap therefore they needed to be see-through. To save see-through things on a computer they have to be 'pngs' rather then 'jpegs' which is fine and I knew that. BUT if you save one that points right as one thing and then flip it so it points left and save, the left hand one turns into a bloody jpeg so it no longer has a see-through background. GAH! I lost about another half day to that, but I won't be doing it again, I can tell you that for free. 

 Each layer of the chart is then worked painstakingly on top of the last one. Making sure everything lines up is like trying to herd cats. Speaking of which:


I must admit, I am dead proud of this pattern. I think it's interesting - certainly, I didn't get bored doing three of them. I think it's neat - I love the way the body moves into the edge. I think it's a perfect size - more than a shawlette, less than a shawl so perfect for using as both - ta dah! YEAR ROUND USE! I think it's adaptable - looks great in Verity's Grads, looks just as good in the Truly Wool Rich 4ply. And most of all it's written with love. 

It's been tested a couple of times and we've ironed out some problems, but as always, let me know if you get stuck - it might well be you but it could equally be me and if you're having a problem then somebody else will be too. 

Apart from that, ENJOY!

Once again, click here for the pattern.

Love Eleanor. xxxxxxxx

P.s Since I wrote this yesterday (it was released with no fanfare because the Truly Hooker's were getting their boxes but not all of them had turned up so I didn't want to spoil the secret...) I've made the top ten Hot Right Now crochet patterns on Ravelry. THIS IS MY MOMENT! HA! It doesn't get better than that. :):)

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