New Colourway

Mere Curiosity

I have spent the last days with translating the Mere Curiosity pattern into German. Oh dear! Since German is my mother tongue I actually thought this was a good idea. Well … I hadn’t considered how long it had been since I had worked with a German pattern! In some places it was really difficult for me to find the right terms. I hope I have done it well! Any feedback is welcome!

However … To check the German instructions I made a new square. Originally I had planned to use four colours. After 10 rounds it looked too much like 70s for me, so I decided to add another colour. So now there is a new colourway available using 5 colours!

I used yarn from my stash, the brands are a bit mixed.

Schachenmayr Catania
# 206 – Honig
# 254 – Taupe
#+392 – Lime

    Scheepjes Catona
    # 520 – Lavender

    Uschi Wolle Superglanz
    # 63 – ?

    Uschi Wolle is a German brand and unfortunately I only have the colour number and no name. I’d call it ‘Lachs’ which means ‘salmon’ in English. It is a little bit lighter than # 427 Scampi from Catania.

    If you are interested you can download the new colour chart here.

    Have a nice weekend

    Mere Curiosity is live

    Phew, I finally managed to set up the Ravelry store and Mere Curiosity is uploaded! I am really excited!

    The pattern is now available here.
    As already mentioned, we will donate the proceeds for the Ukraine aid to Unicef.

    You will find some more details about the Mere Curiosity Square either on Ravelry or in my previous post.

    Although all special stitches used are explained in the pattern: if you are not familiar with some stitches or e.g. the technique of working in the 3rd loop, have a look at the ‘Good to know’ section. I have put together some explanations there in the last few days.

    Have fun crocheting Mere Curiosity!

    Mere Curiosity

    What was your biggest crochet adventure last year? Besides testing all these lovely patterns mine was Mere Curiosity!

    In the last year Pam Knighton-Haener from A Yarn of Serendipity has started a design group within her group of testers. Late last summer, I finally started to develop a design together with her. The result was Mere Curiosity.

    What an adventure and what fun! Each of us designed a few rounds and then passed on the design to the other to continue.
    Most of the work – I knew that already – was writing down the pattern with all it’s details like abbreviations, stitches used etc. Finally the pattern was tested in Pam’s test group in December. I’m just making the last little changes and then the pattern will be available in my Ravelry store, stay tuned!
    We will donate the proceeds from the sales to Unicef to help Ukraine.

    The finished square has 39 stitches per side and fits to Pam’s other squares. The final size of course will depend on the yarn and hook size you use.

    For our samples we had the following results

    Pam’s square from the pattern

    Aran / Worsted Weight / #4

    4,5 mm hook

    24 cm / 11”

    My sample from the pattern (the blue one)

    DK / Light worsted / #3

    3,5 mm hook

    24 cm / 9,5”

    The two samples shown below

    Sport weight / #2

    3 mm hook

    21 cm / 8,5”

    Fingering weight / #1

    2,75 mm hook

    20,5 cm / 8”

    Mere Curiosity in Colourway 1

    is made with Hobbii Rainbow Cotton 8/4 , a 2,75 mm hook and measures about 20,5 cm / about 8”.

    Colour A – Hobbii Rainbow Cotton 8/4 – # 64 Dark Powder Rose
    Colour B – Hobbii Rainbow Cotton 8/4 – # 50 Light Coral
    Colour C – Hobbii Rainbow Cotton 8/4 – # 02 Natural White

    Mere Curiosity in Colourway 2

    Is made with Schachenmayr Catania, a 3 mm hook and measures about 21 cm / 8,5”.

    Colour A – Schachenmayr Catania – # 427, Scampi
    Colour B – Schachenmayr Catania – # 263, Soft Apricot
    Colour C – Schachenmayr Catania – # 437, Sunkissed
    Colour D – Schachenmayr Catania – # 402, Reseda

    For this square I followed Pam’s colourway and only swapped colours C and D for rounds 7 and 8.

    I hope you like Mere Curiosity as much as we do!

    Looking for some Christmas crochet ideas?

    Are you already busy with your Christmas preparations?

    We are currently in the process of insulating the staircase in our house. One of the last major works – hopefully. Originally, we just wanted to insulate the ceiling and the outer wall. But in the middle of it all, we thought that since we had already started, we could also renovate the rest of the walls and the hallway. We have never liked the plaster… Looks like it will take a little longer now …

    Besides I have redesigned this blog – you have probably already noticed that : D. It took me some time to decide about the layout and everything. And I am still working on some pages and revising some posts. Needless to say that my crochet time is very limited at the moment.

    But maybe you are still looking for a little something to crochet? A few things I have done in the last few years are

    Snowflakes and Stars

    Some lovely little stars or snowflakes by Renata Saj. Easy and quick to make. And all are available for free in her Ravelry shop. I made

    The Flower Star Snowflake, The Frosted Lace Snowflake and the Sun Star Snowflake

    Hopefully I will find the time to make some more this year.

    Or what about

    The Xmas Dudes

    One of the more Christmassy patterns from the Dudes Series by misssBerlin. The pattern is available in her Ravelry store.

    I had the pleasure to test this pattern in November 2019 and loved it so much that I made some more in December.

    The Yule Dudes

    Also a cute pattern from the Dudes series and also available via Ravelry.

    Here some pictures from my test project from September 2020.

    You can read all about my ‚Christmas Dudes’ projects on my Ravelry pages

    The Yule Dudes TEST, The Xmas Dudes TEST and Xmas Dudes

    And last but not least the

    Origami Star Ornament

    You may have seen these beautiful stars on my old homepage. At the moment I am still looking at how I can integrate them there again, because it was my very first test – back in 2019.
    Oh dear, I was so nervous at that time! But all went well!
    I didn‘t make them as Christmas decorations but I think you can use them very well for that!
    I am still in love with this pattern although it takes some focus and concentration to make them! I made mine with a sport weight (#2) yarn but you can also use a thicker yarn to make them a little bigger.

    The pattern is from Goolgool and available in Galit‘s Ravelry store

    I am just trying a new app with which you can isolate objects (just in case you wonder about the logo). Not bad!

    Have a great time

    What’s going on right now…

    The last month was a really busy one. Besides work on and in the house – we now have solar panels on the roof – I was suffering from a cold and had a severe conjunctivitis. So my cochet time was a bit limited.

    Meanwhile it is autumn here in Germany. Last week we were on the road when suddenly the temperature gauge of our car went crazy. So we went straight to the garage. They wanted to keep the car there to check what the problem could be. To start with, they found nothing, probably it was due to the humidity – it was often foggy the days before – nobody knows … However, it gave us a nice walk home! It was a pleasantly warm day and we found lots of chestnuts on our way.

    In my little crochet world

    Ana has released her new pattern, Hope. She designed it as a homage for her father who lost his fight against cancer.
    I decided to make a nice shawl / wrap with this lovely pattern to keep my shoulders warm in winter. Hopefully I will be able to finish it the next few days.


    Besides I started testing Ana’s new design for a winter Cal. But this is still a secret. I am planning to make a wall hanging with separate panels and all in different heights. Ana uses a yarn with a colour gradient, that much I think I can reveal. I have to go with my stash and couldn’t decide on a colour that suits the theme. So I will make it colourful. I am still struggling a bit with my selected colours and their placement but I hope that everything will work out in the end and it will look nice.

    Pam from A Yarn of Serendipity also has released a new pattern: Sage Advice Square. Lovely and rich in texture as always. I will show you all details of my test version in some days.

    And I started a little, more private, design challenge together with Pam. Some weeks ago she “founded” a little designing group in our test team. Now we are designing a square together. Each of us designs some rounds – absolutely exciting! I am curious to see what comes out of it and hope I can show you more soon.

    That’s all for today – stay tuned!

    My first traditional Granny Square

    Can you imagine that I never have done a traditional Granny Square? I only noticed this in summer when I was looking for a project that could be easily done in the heat. I was thinking about finally starting the Beach Walk Blanket by Marion Mitchell. I purchased this pattern over a year ago but never started.

    It is a blanket made of Granny Squares and I was caught by the colours she used which reminded me of my holidays at the North Sea. Due to all the different colours you need a huge pile of yarn. So before putting the whole yarn together I wanted to try a Granny square first to see if I like it at all.

    Of course the technique of doing Granny Squares is explained in the pattern. Nevertheless, I was a bit hesitant because the work was turned after each round and I normally don’t like that. I always think that the stitches look much neater from the front side . That’s why I love mosaic crochet or working in the round without turning. So I wondered whether it is really necessary to turn the square after each round and searched the internet.

    I was amazed by the result. I didn‘t know that there are so many variations of making a Granny Square! You really find a lot of different ways: starting with a chain and forming a ring or starting with a magic ring. Turning the square after each round or working in one direction only. Starting a round always in the same corner space or starting in different corner spaces Starting a round with a 3 dc group or starting in the middle of a 3 dc group. Working a ch2 in the corner spaces or working a ch3. Working a ch1 between the dc groups on the sides or not … and so on – phew!

    So I had to try some of the different ways myself to see what works best for me. The results were astonishing.

    Normally, when working in the round, I start each round with a standing stitch and end with an invisible join, regardless of what is written in the pattern. Surprisingly this doesn’t work for me in a Granny Square. So I start with a chain 3 and join with a slip stitch to the top of the ch3. Except for the last round, there my invisible join works perfect. Also a chain between the dc groups doesn’t work for me, neither does a ch3 in the corner spaces.
    And the main point, turning the square after each round or not? Well … The reason for turning the work is to prevent the stitches from leaning to one side. And damaging the shape. This easily happens when you only work in one direction. I don’t think turning is necessary for a four round Granny or even the smaller ones. It might cause a problem with bigger ones tough – I haven’t tried it yet. Of course the look is different, depending on wether you turn your work or not. The left one in the photo below is made with turning the work after each round, the right one without.

    And guess what? I never thought I would say this, but somehow I like the left one better.

    So here is

    My way to do a Granny Square

    (US Terms)

    Round 1:

    • In a Magic Ring: ch3 (as first dc), 2 dc, (ch2, 3 dc) 3 times, ch2 and sl to 3rd ch of the first ch3; cut yarn, turn

    Round 2:

    • start in any ch2 corner space, ch3 (as first dc), 2dc in same corner space
    • (3 dc, ch2, 3 dc ) in next corner space, repeat 3 times omitting the last 3 dc
    • slip stitch to the top of the ch3, cut yarn, turn

    Round 3:

    • Start in any ch2 corner space
      ch3 (as first dc), 2 dc in same corner space
    • *skip 3 dc, 3dc in the little space between the dc groups of previous round, skip 3 dc
    • 3 dc, ch2, 3 dc in next corner space*
    • repeat from * to * 3 times, omitting the last 3 dc, slip stitch to the top of the ch3, cut yarn, turn

    Round 4 and ff.

    • Start in any ch2 corner space
      ch3 (as first dc), 2 dc in corner space,
    • *skip 3 dc, 3dc in the little space between the dc groups of previous round, skip 3 dc; repeat until next corner space
    • 3 dc, ch2, 3 dc in next corner space*
    • repeat from * to * 3 times, omitting the last 3 dc, slip stitch to the top of the ch3, cut yarn, turn

    Repeat round 4 until you reach the desired size and finish the square with an invisible join. Bring all yarn tails to one side and work them away. Depending on the join you are going to use this should either be the right or the wrong side.

    Be careful – it can be addictive!

    When Summer turns into Fall Make along

    Ana just started a new Make along (MAL) with her fabulous When Summer turns into Fall blanket.

    I fell in love with this pattern the first time I saw it and knew immediately that I had to make it. I started it in January 2021 and no, it is not finished yet. Why?

    Well, it all began with the photo above. I was writing a blog post about the projects I am working on besides testing. Mainly the Seashell Dudes by misssBerlin and When Summer turns into Fall. Since both of these projects were not very far along, I had the idea of using the cover photos of the patterns to show how they will look when finished. I therefore decided to contact the designers and ask for permission.
    Having worked with Dana (misssBerlin) several times before, I was sure she would agree. But I had no idea how Ana would react. Nevertheless, I simply wrote her an email. And that’s how it began! Her answer was not long in coming and of course she agreed that I could use her photo. But she also asked me if I would like to test for her once. Guess what I answered! So I found myself testing her Gretchen, the Geometrics and many more …

    It is an amazing journey and I have made a wonderful friend! Only my When Summer turns into Fall has slept peacefully in a bag so far. But I will now take the opportunity of the MAL to finally get on with it! It is such a relaxing pattern and fun to work on. Wish me luck!

    Here my progress so far

    Happy hooking 💕

    Midnight Snowflakes

    Finally!

    Finally I was able to start this pattern. I fell in love with it when Ana published the pattern about one year ago. Since then I have promised hubby to make him a blanket with it. When Ana lately announced her MAL I thought it was a good time to start with it.

    The colours

    It is always hard to choose the right colours for a blanket. At least it is for me. It is very rare that I see a pattern and immediately know which colours I want to make it in. For Midnight Snowflakes I instantly had white combined with a grey tone in mind. White for the background with grey snowflakes! But something made me hesitate. I probably knew instinctively that hubby wouldn’t like it. And so it was!

    After he told me that this is much too bright (???) my idea was to switch the colours and do the snowflakes in classic white and the background in a dark grey. Looking for a yarn that might be a bit more special than my standard acrylic yarn I came across Cookie from Järbo. The colour Cloudy was exactly what I was looking for, off white changing to a soft, light grey – and on sale! From what I saw in the photos this would go great with Rotterdam from Scheepjes Colour Crafter. (Rotterdam is a dark grey, very similar to Graphite from Stylecraft Special DK.) So I placed my order.

    My disappointment could not have been greater when the yarn arrived. Rotterdam was what I expected, but … You can already see it in my photos. Instead of white with a little bit of grey my Cookie is grey with a little bit of white. Much too dark in combination with Rotterdam – even hubby agreed.

    I have to say, the yarn itself is great. Nice and soft with a great stitch definition. I didn’t send it back. It will be used in another project. It would certainly look good in a Winter Wonderland.

    Since I did not want to order online again on suspicion I had to find another match with colours I had. Combinations with Stylecraft Special DK in A Hint of Silver or Parma Violet looked nice but were not what I had in mind. I liked the contrast with white, hubby didn’t. I even tried to create a gradient myself but either the contrast between my colours was too low or there was no gradation in between.

    Finally I found Duck Egg in my stash. I like the combination of Duck Egg and dark grey and hubby agreed. This is how my choice of colour came about. To be honest, I still don’t know if hubby really likes it or if he was just so annoyed that he said yes.

    The MAL runs util 28. February 2022. The pattern is available via Ravelry. Until the end of February there is a 50% discount (code on Ana’s Facebook group).

    Midnight Snowflakes pattern by One Skein of Love, hooked by ELeni

    Have a nice week!

    When Summer turns into Fall

    is one of the projects I am working on besides testing crochet patterns.

    When Summer turns into Fall – Pattern

    The pattern is by Ana Morais Soares from One Skein of Love and is done in Overlay Mosaic crochet. It was published in November 2020 and for me it was love at first sight. I already wrote about it in a previous post.

    I really love Mosaic Crochet! Incredible that I only got to know about Overlay Mosaic crochet a year ago. Sometimes I still get scared when I see all the tails but I like the fact that it is only worked from the front. I think this way the stitches look so much neater. And an envelope or double border is such a great finish!

    When Summer turns into Fall – Colours

    As I said, I fell in love with When Summer turns into Fall at first sight. The warm, autumnal colours Ana has chosen go so well with the name of the blanket and they remind me on autumn leaves in the sunshine on one of the last warm days of the year.

    So no doubt that I would make this blanket in the original colors:

    Parchment, Walnut, Gold, Copper and Lime, all Stylecraft Special Dk.

    The only change I planned was replacing Lime with Pistachio, one of my new favorite colors, that I bought but never used. 

    Unfortunately that didn’t work at all!

    In the original design Lime is combined with Parchment and the pattern comes into its own. If Pistachio is combined with Parchment there is no contrast at all, even in best daylight. Unfortunately I had crocheted almost the entire pattern 3 until I was really convinced that it wouldn’t work. So I had to redo this part of the pattern completely.

    Instead of Lime I am now using Nijmegen from Scheepjes Colour Crafter. This shade is (nearly?) identical with SSDK, Lime. I chose Scheepjes as meanwhile I am able to order some of their yarns here in Germany –  that goes so much faster. Stylecraft is mostly shipped directly from UK and nowadays it takes nearly two weeks till it arrives.

    Although my progress is VERY slow, I am happy how my blanket turns out! Originally I had planned to have it ready When Summer turns into Fall again. But I’m afraid it won’t work.
    When I need a break from testing every now and then I crochet a few rows – it’s a very relaxing project.

    By the way, my Pistachio now has also found its destination: I am just testing Ana’s new design and I am using Pistachio and Meadow. Don’t they look great together?

    When Summer turns into Fall

     

     

     

    Stardust Melodies

    Stardust Melodies –

    An almost forgotten project

    April has gone, May has come and my days are still busy …

    Although the weather is too chilly for this season, some of our perennials are starting to bloom. I did some gardening, pulled weeds, cut back and planted some lettuce and herbs in the cold frame.

    And besides the usual housework I finished some crochet tests.

    Pam Knighton-Haener from A Yarn of Serendipity designed another lovely 12inch square. Her tests are always run in different phases so I am afraid it still will take some time until the pattern will be released and I can show the results.

    Also worked on a test for another blanket designed by BebaBlanket. The pattern will be released somewhere in August.

    And I am still working on the last rows of a beautiful test for Moi-Raya. It‘s a square made in Carreaux Crochet and – as soon as I’ve finished it – I will tell more about it in another post.

    When I had a deep dive in my craft corner to find a suitable Aran yarn for Pam‘s test I came across some squares made from a pattern I bought 5 years ago

    Stardust Melodies – the pattern

    Stardust Melodies (pattern by Polly Plum)

    Stardust Melodies is a design by Polly Plum – 24 beautiful, textured afghan blocks.

    All are named after famous old songs like Dream a Little Dream of Me, Fools Rush In or It Had to Be You, just to name a few of them.

    Sometimes I like to listen to this old music, sung by Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Elvis, Cole Porter and all the others …

    Stardust Melodies was released in 2017 as a Cal, consisting of 12 free squares and the option to buy an eBook with 12 additional squares. The skill levels vary between easy, intermediate and advanced.

    I liked both, the designs as well as the idea of naming them after old songs. So I bought the eBook 5 years ago, not knowing that this will become one of my long-time-projects.

    Stardust Melodies – my project

    I always have some WIPs around me as I like to switch between different projects. I finish most of them in a reasonable time, but there are some that stay with me for longer. They sometimes disappear to live in a drawer but only to reappear when the time has come. And so it happened to Stardust Melodies.

    I originally started this project in 2017 but put it aside after making a few squares. I wasn‘t happy with the color I had chosen and I also have to admit that I found some of squares quite difficult to make at that time. So I‘ve probably lost interest a little.

    About two years later I stumbled across the pattern again and was fascinated again by the varied but matching designs. So I had a second start. I tried different yarns to see what works best. And the break also showed me, how much I had learned within the past two years – the squares weren’t difficult at all.

    Stardust Melodies – my yarn

    My yarn choice was King Cole Cottonsoft DK, more or less leftovers from another project. I still like the result very much.

    I think now the time has come to finally end this project! I will have to sit down to work out how far I can get with my leftover yarns. As far as I have seen two of my colors are meanwhile discontinued and the other two are currently out of stock. Hm….. we will see…..

    Stardust Melodies – some impressions

    Here a selection of the squares I already made. I will have to take fresh photos when the weather and the light are better …

    From left to right:

    • Begin the Beguine
    • Just One of Those Things
    • Don‘t Fence Me In
    • No Moon at All

    From left to right:

    • Fools Rush In
    • Mack the Knife
    • Where or When
    • I‘m Beginning to See the Light