Last Dance With Mary Jane

On da Hook: February 10, 2017
Off da Hook: March 27, 2017
Pattern: Erigeneia by Silke Terhorst
Hook: US E – 3.5 mm
Yarn A: New Hope Alpacas (Fiber Content: 100% Alpaca; Fleece of: Brickfielder; Yarn Weight: Suri Fingering, 0)
Yarn B: New Hope Alpacas (Fiber Content: 100% Alpaca; Fleece of: Brickfielder; Yarn Weight: Suri Fingering, 0)
Yarn C: New Hope Alpacas (Fiber Content: 100% Alpaca; Fleece of: Vanilla Chip; Yarn Weight: Suri Fingering, 0)
Yarn D: Near Sawrey Farm Alpacas (Fiber Content: 100% Alpaca; Yarn Color: Yellow Onion w/Accents; Yarn Weight: 1, Fingering)
Dimensions: 58 (W) x 27 (D)
Price: USD $300.00

I am so glad to be done with this project: Last Dance With Mary Jane by Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers. I had originally bought this yarn back in 2014 and was going to try and improvise a crochet design along the likes of Merging Ripples Shawl by Kyoko Nakayoshi. I had a hard time getting started and ended up putting the project in hibernation.

Last Dance With Mary Jane
© A Hooker’s World

When I found the pattern, my first thought was the alpaca would be perfect; my only concern being whether or not I had enough yarn. Surely 900 yards would be enough!

Famous last words. My first problem was interpreting the instructions, which I blame for an uneven stitch count encountered after section three. fortunately, there are charts with the pattern, which made the rest of the pattern simpler. The next problem was that I ran out of Yarn A at the last seven double crochets in the second section! I fudged a solution by de-plying a matching acrylic yarn. Next: ! ran out of Yarn B in its second section by one row! Solution: Skipped last row. Lastly, I ran out of yarn before finishing the final row of the border.

Last Dance With Mary Jane
© A Hooker’s World

Last Dance With Mary Jane

I’ll admit I’ve been dragging my feet with this project since about the third section when I discovered my stitch count was uneven. This is not a good thing for a symmetrical design.

That simple fact is the cause for my delay because in my mind I am dreading the adjustments I will have to make when it comes to the border.

AND I ran out of a yarn color twice now, the first time for 7 double crochets…AIYAA! My solution was to go through my stash and find a matching color. I found – what I would call – a 3-ply acrylic, separated on ply and used that. The second time, I did not have enough to finish the last row of whole section!

Luckily, I managed to fudge the border to make it around the corner…there may be better clientele and the other side of the block. Ha ha ha ha ha!

Satori

In the Zen Buddhist tradition, satori refers to the experience of kenshō, “seeing into one’s true nature.” Ken means “seeing,” shō means “nature” or “essence.” Satori and kenshō are commonly translated as enlightenment, a word that is also used to translate bodhi, prajna and buddhahood.

This is a stitch pattern I created back in 2010. Recently, I received an inquiry from a customer, which prompted me to update this handout on my Ravelry account. This stitch pattern is available for free; you may download from my Recipe page.

I have used this stitch pattern for two afghans, but it could also be used for pot holders, wash cloths, etc.

Just What I Needed Cowl

On da Hook: February 14, 2017
Off da Hook: February 14, 2017
Project Name: Just What I Needed by The Cars
Yarns: Unknown (Fiber: Unknown/Wool; Yarn Colors: Navy Blue, Teal, Lavender, Multicolor; Yarn Weight: 4, Worsted)
Hook: US J
Dimensions: 16 (D) x 7 (W) inches

I received some dryer balls(?) a few years ago as a gift. I think they were supposed to remove lint and wrinkles from clothes while in the dryer. I never use a dryer so I had no use for them.

One day I unraveled them and was going to use the yarn for something. The other day I came across the magic ball I had made and today I decided to re-purpose the yarn into something I could donate during my next visit to my clinic, as there are many homeless in the area. My plan is to leave the cowl in a public place with a gift note.

Because the original dryer balls were a felted item, I presume some if not all of the yarn is wool. The teal certainly maintains some of the scratchiness associated with some wools.

The stitch I used is commonly known as Griddle Stitch and the cowl was made flat and seamed.

Just What I Needed Cowl

Just What I Needed Cowl

Last Dance With Mary Jane

My current project – Last Dance With Mary Jane by Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers – will be a crochet shawl. Coincidentally, it will be in a similar color way to the Erigeneia (by Silke Terhorst) pattern sample. I was going to break my yarns up by sections, by I want to use it all so I think I will just repeat sections until it is gone, reserving the gradient yarn for the border.

Surprisingly, I am finally using the alpaca yarn I bought back in 2014 when my sit ‘n’ knit group went to Alpacas at Windy Hill to support one of our members:

New Hope Alpacas Suri Fingering; Fleece of Vanilla Chip; 200 yards
New Hope Alpacas Suri Fingering; Fleece of Brickfielder; 200 yards
New Hope Alpacas Suri 2 ply; Fleece of Brickfielder; 200 yards
Near Sawrey Farm Alpacas Fingering; Color: Sweet Onion with Accents; 200 yards

I can’t believe it’s been so long and I am glad to finally have found a crochet pattern for this yarn. I had previously tried to improvise a pattern, but was not happy with my difficulty in maintaining tension with such fine yarn. Today, I seem to have a handle on it. According to the Craft Yarn Council, US hooks B-E are recommended; I am opting for the larger.

I just realized this is my third triangle shawl; I think I will make a concentrated effort to make the next one a crescent or half circle.

Learn To Crochet

Life circumstances have forced me to seek out additional avenues of income. Fortunately, this is one of my most favorite. In addition to my experience, I have plenty of patience. My teaching experience includes teaching adults, as well as children, and teaching at yarn trade shows.

Finally, you won’t find a cheaper price for crochet classes at any local yarn store. I live in Culver City, and have a pleasant back yard full of plants and flowers. Since I am male and am very aware of people’s caution/concerns, I am willing to meet at a nearby coffee shop for instruction.

I Say A Little Prayer Shawl

On da Hook: December 23, 2016
Off da Hook: January 15, 2017
Pattern: I Say A Little Prayer Shawl by Hooker Leo
Yarn: Newton’s Yarn Country Nevada (Fiber Content: 100% Rayon; Yarn Weight: 3, DK)
Hook: US F – 3.75 mm
Dimensions: 56 (W) x 19.5 (D) unblocked; 68 (W) x 23 (D) blocked
Price: USD $95.00

The project name – I Say A Little Prayer by Dionne Warwick – represents my hope that the shawl shape would be what I hoped it would be, and thankfully, I was successful.

This is the first time I have used the Moss/Granite Stitch and the use with this yarn created a fascinating southwestern feel to the woven-like fabric. I tried to use complementary colors from the primary gradient, and think I could have done better, but am happy with my results. My stripes consist of two rows and occur every twelfth row.

Bonus: Discovered that rayon can be blocked!

I Say A Little Prayer Shawl

I Say A Little Prayer Shawl

More Prayers Needed For I Say A Little Prayer Shawl

I Say A Little Prayer

Aiyaa! These damn meds are really screwing me up. Even this morning I was having a hard time staying awake. I suppose the I should be grateful the fog cleared enough for me to notice my error. I had to frog eight rows because my symmetry became askew. Two rows down, need to re-crochet six.

I think staying up late watching Grimm and Emerald City did not exactly contribute to focus on my crochet. I blame super hot David Giuntoli, Sasha Roiz and Oliver Jackson Cohen. The good news is that I slept through the night for the first time in over a month…no dreams, nasty or otherwise.

Must crochet faster!

Project Change

I blame my meds and poor lighting for the constant fuck ups on International Bright Young Thing. It is simple knit: only garter, six increases every other row, three on each side. Yet I keep getting uneven stitch counts on either side. Aiyaa!

Maybe it’s time to do some crochet on I Say A Little Prayer. I am using – what I have come discover is called – Moss Stitch, also known as Granite Stitch, and I am loving it. It reminds me of knitted linen stitch, but much faster. By chance I happened to check inside the cone to see if I had stored the yarn label in there..voila! The yarn I am using is Newton’s Yarn Country Nevada (Fiber Content: 100% Rayon).

I Say A Little Prayer
© A Hooker’s World

Pineapple Princess Shawl

Click and image for slide show / enlaregment…

On da Hook: November 8, 2016
Off da Hook: January 8, 2016
Pattern: Sidewalk Shawl by Kimberly K. McAlindin from Red Heart North America
Yarn: Unknown: (Fiber Content: Unknown [Natural Fibers (per burn test)], Yarn Color: Unknown [Grey]; Yarn Weight: Unknown [0, Lace])
Hook: US H – 5.00 mm
Dimensions: 144 (wingspan) x 40 (depth) inches (including fringe)
Price: USD $75.00 (25% discount for friends and family)

Very simple pattern, which I am man enough to admit I was all ready to criticize because I was not a fan of the flat bottom, even while blocking. However, I am here to say that it is most appealing after blocking, revealing a more shallow recess.

My project name – Pineapple Princess by Annette Funicello – was inspired by the date I began, near xmas…Mele Kalikimaka… Anyway, the yarn to me is very medieval grey with a shallow sheen of glitter and flecks of pink and blue. It was a little difficult handling the fine yarn with my old hands, but got through it. Towards the end got a little frustrated with having to frog a couple rows every three rows due to lack of attention; especially considering the fringe afterward, which I hadn’t done in so long, I forgot how time consuming it can be without short cuts. In the long wrong it really pays off. I am glad too, to have mad this with a lace weight yarn versus the aran weight for which the pattern calls.

I think I have enough yarn left to make a knitted shawl, something with a solid stitch pattern…yeah, that’s what I’m’a gonna do!