Monday, May 4, 2009

Birthday Bolero

I received Blueprint Crochet by Robin Chachula. I have been busy making two of the projects in there. The first is the "Katie Bolero" I used some Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool, which I purchased from an awesome online yarn shop Sonny and Shear. After hearing wonders about blocking wires, and the suggestion that coated floral wire could be used as a substitute, I decided to give it a try. I used 16 gauge wire, it came in a pack of 12 at JoAnn's. Now the tips had some burrs on them, but they were easily sanded down by rubbing on the grout on our floor. The scratches are hardly noticeable, and the grout was a lot more convenient than the sidewalk. Using the wires made it so much easier to block. It was very easy to adjust to the correct size, only having to move a few pins instead of hundreds. Plus, I got straight edges where I wanted straight lines.

The project itself went quite smoothly. I tried it on after all the motifs were joined together. The fit looked good. I proceeded to follow the directions to change to a larger hook to do the edging. I did this, and then was disappointed with the fit. The larger hook made the edging too big for my body and gave it a sagging fit.

I let it sit for a couple of weeks and then on Saturday, I pulled it all out and redid the edging using the same size hook as the squares were made in, as well as reducing the number of chains from 6 to 5, and stitches in them from 5 to 4. These changes gave me a much closer fit, and I am very pleased with how it has turned out. I haven't purchased buttons yet, but I left a decent length of yarn on the inside panel for sewing them on. It is loosely woven in on the underside. In the meantime, I am closing it with a pin. When I followed the instructions as written I needed 3.1 skeins of yarn. After adjusting the band, I used less than 3, about 2.95 skeins.

The only other thing I would change on this if I were to do it again, is to turn at the beginning of round 6 and put the seam on the inside instead of on the outside. I realized this after I had already joined most of the motifs. You can't really tell on the last round because it is all sc, and I'd rather have had the ridge from the joined motifs inside instead of outstide.

The second project I am working on is the "Courtney Corset" using two strands of Misti Alpaca Lace held together. I hope to have the project done by the end of the month, so as to enter it in the County Fair. Right now I have the three top portions done, and I am trying to decide if I need to alter the sleeve, and how I would do that. Just a photo of the swatch.