Crochet Summer 2018: Plans and Progress

I found myself packing for vacation two weeks ago and somehow over the course of a very short period of time increased my in-progress crochet projects from one to three. A bit of startitis after a big deadline (specifically a sweater for publication at the same time as the release of a new yarn and collection) is something I am well-versed in, but the addition of planning for two weeks away from home and the always-ridiculous but ever-present fear of running out of projects and yarn while away from the office fueled this particular fire a little more than most. 1 / Babette-ish Blanket This one is still kicking, but is no longer particularly travel friendly, so it mainly stays home. We recently renovated our back playroom/den and uncovered two windows that make the room about 400% brighter, which has been amazing for crafting at night after the girls are in bed. Things have been so busy lately, though, so I don’t find myself back there as much as I would like. I did manage to bring it up with us on vacation, though, and am getting a round in here and there. Despite it being pretty repetitive, the project itself is still fun, as I made a little rule for myself in order to pick colors so that it is a little bit of a challenge. Each 6 round square has at least one shade of gray, no more than 2 rounds per color, and can only have 4 colors. I plan on making squares until I run out of yarn or ways to fulfill these parameters, whichever comes first, and that will determine the finished size of the blanket. I counted last night and I currently have 42 finished squares and 21 in various states of progress (I'll use one color at a time for a few days, starting new squares, adding to in-progress ones, or finishing them up), so I think I can easily get to 64 in the next month or two.

2 / Mojave Boxy Tee This little tee first began as an idea for a Crochet Summer / Summer of Basics dual project. Soon after coming up with the idea, I quickly realized a top like this isn’t actually a “basic” in my wardrobe, more of a novelty summer shirt, so I am going to stick to my plans to sew a few dresses and make a cosy winter sweater – much like my projects from last year – for my Summer of Basics.

For the tee, I swatched a bunch of different options (above, in the yellow), and ended up with a little textured stripe that I’m really enjoying. It took me a second to get a hang of it so the fabric didn't bias, but once I did, the stitch pattern became super easy and fast to work up. I am using Mojave in plum brown, a really lovely purpley-brown-gray. Working on it was perfect for hanging with the kiddos or socializing in the evening with a glass of wine, so it was an ideal travel/vacation project. So much so, I went “monogamous” on it the week we were up in Maine and blew through 2 skeins each on the front and back, so now all that is left is to sort out the neck and shoulder shaping and do the finishing when I get home! 3 / MCAL: Skimming Stones by The Crochet Project So, full disclosure: I dislike mystery anything-alongs, and I don’t wear a lot of shawls. But Cal Patch has a very specific power over me, and when I saw she was participating in the Crochet Project MCAL, Skimming Stones, I had to join right away. I see this project as being a learning experience, and one I am accepting with open-ish arms. I say "open-ish" because I'm really struggling with the concept of the "mystery" - even though I knew that was the whole point from the beginning - and have questioned both yarn choice and if the end result is something I'll ever wear! I'm using Navia Uno, a yarn I absolutely love, but after working my way through clue 2, I decided I didn’t like the colors – they were somehow both too dark and too high contrast, and switched from 5 to 3 colors and a lighter main. The Mojave tee took over at about the end of Clue 1 on #2, so I am holding off on this one for a little bit. Despite the self-induced setback, I have already learned a lot, especially as the stitch count is constantly changing and it is requiring a lot of paying attention to the edges and stitches. 4 / Distractions When it comes to crochet, I am basically Dug from the movie Up. I saw Meghan Fernandez decided to crochet a Judoka Bag out of BC Garn Alba, a genius move I am 100% copying as soon as I get back into the office and can pick colors. I also love Cal's Boxet bag from Making no. 5 and am toying with the idea of using fabric scraps in lieu of yarn, as I have quite the collection of bits and pieces I cannot seem to discard, so I'm going to go through those next week and see if I can't work something out. How are your Crochet Summer projects going?