Saturday, 25 April 2015

Borders, Bobbles and Procrastinating

You may remember that in January I launched into hooking two blankets at the same time for using in my up-and-coming retreat space, which is shortly due to become a reality in my garden. I don't know why I can't just do one thing at a time but, it seems, I can't. And although it was, may be, a little on the ambitious side, I haven't fallen by the wayside too much on getting on with them. In fact, the body both of my stripy Handmade Glamping Sampler blanket and my Painted Roses blanket was finished before Easter. Good news! And you'd think with the end in sight I'd have got on with the borders but, somehow, I've kept putting them off.

Borders intimidate me slightly. We don't get on very well for various reasons:
1 I am never quite sure I have enough yarn to complete them and dread having to frog a whole round on a big blanket;
2 because my arithmetic is so erratic, I have no idea whether my stitch count is going to work with a particular border;
3 while I find crocheting along the top and bottom edges of a blanket is quite easy, going down the sides of rows and trying to make sure the stitches look evenly spaced is not at all easy. "Cats' teeth" stitches anyone? Mine sometimes look less like cats' teeth and more like crocodile bites and dearly though I love crocodiles, and I do, (more on that idiosyncracy at some future point, perhaps), borders that resemble crocodile toothmarks are not quite what I am after, in my hooky endeavours;
4 my creative momentum seems to give out with the last stitch of the final row, or the final join of a block, leaving not much mojo left for a border; feeble, I know, but there it is;
5 I underestimate what a difference borders make to a blanket and secretly wonder if I can get away without bothering; "No, you can't, Mrs T!"

This is all rather foolish and I felt I really must get my act together. I began with the stripy affair because that was pretty big to begin with and didn't need much of a border - just something to enclose the stripy, bobbly rows nicely, and in which to hide all the yarn ends, so I filleted a few rows out of the border pattern as given in Handmade Glamping and kept it simple - one "granny row" of groups of three double crochet stitches (trebles in UK terms) and then a couple of rows of single crochet stitches (doubles in UK terms) to finish.

Done! And even in its simplified form, it's really pulled the whole blanket together.

What was so difficult about that, Mrs T?!

The border on the other one is still, ahem, in progress but in my defence I can at least say I have started on it!

Here is the finished one:

I love the bobbles!

... and the soft cosiness of the wool and cotton mix yarn* ...

... and the stripes...

Did I say, I love the bobbles? I really do!

But I love the colours, almost as much as I love the bobbles ...

... and the way it tumbles and riots cosily...

... I love the whole thing, in fact, border included!

*The yarn is Spud and Chloe's Sweater, if you're interested, which is expensive but an absolute dream to crochet with and the colours are amazing. It's an American yarn, but if you're in the UK, you can get it at Mrs Moon's wonderful On-Line shop here (where I see it's on special offer at the moment).  I wouldn't normally use such an expensive yarn for a blanket but this is an exception and I hope to enjoy it for many years to come, before handing it on to another Mrs Tittlemouse perhaps, to enjoy in a future generation.

The colours I've used are:
jelly bean
ice cream 
tiny dancer
and lilac

Can't think why I put off finishing it. Anyone else do this, get to within an inch of finishing a project and find the last lap a real effort, that you put off and put off and once it's done, wonder why it took you so long?!

Wishing you all a happy weekend 
with finishing-off mojo coming your way, 
if you're like me and have a tendency to procrastinate!

E x