Acrylic? Achoooo!

Me again, I know it’s been a while.  You could probably hear the bouncing of yarn from your corner of the globe, and couldn’t have missed the huge amounts of sneezing.  Of all the allergies and intolerances that I have, not being able to use acrylic without coming over all hayfeverish is perhaps the most galling.  I have accumulated a lot of it over the roughly 3 years that I’ve been yarncrafting, and first became aware that it was a problem when I made myself a shawl that I felt feverish as soon as I put on.  I then switched to a thicker wool wrap, and the pain was gone!

So I have been trying to use this yarn up recently, but when I was sneezing my head off while making granny squares for a challenge (89 in as many days, and made it), I decided that I had had it.  So I am finishing my WIPs that use it, and have so far amassed 1 small shopping trolley, 1 suitcase, 1 tote, and a carrier bag full of allergen-inducing acrylic for my knittens.  I suspect that I have the odd bit tucked away still and I’m still using some, but the bulk of it will have left the building soon.  And so the largesse of my stash is in three matching tote bags: one for mercerized acrylic and blends that I can use painlessly for short amounts of time but will not purchase/accept again, one for cotton and similar, one for wool and similar.

The latter two bags were swelled last month by an order to, which I will be doing more of in future.  With no LYS or anywhere else that sells anything other than acrylic here, their distribution centre is the quickest that I can get yarn near me.  Within a week of the first order, one of my crochet hooks broke and a coupon code on my invoice made that free and allowed me to order yarn to start on, which I had intended as a reward for sorting the acrylic out.

Apart from availability, one reason why I relied heavily on acrylic was its cheapness.  I’ve worked out that I have no problem with a 50% acrylic blend and enjoy being able to fit all of my stash into a relatively small space (yarn, kits, felting and dyeing supplies, tools, and stuffing all fitting into a cupboard no wider than a single bed and about half as deep), and so I will plan ahead and order yarn accordingly in future.


Have you ever put up with an allergy for the sake of a project?  Let me know below


I am in love with this pattern


So I finished that version of (the neat link text is failing at the mo, sorry) on the 27th, a day before round 2 of Nerd Wars closed.
I proper love it, it is surprisingly warm. I was excited to get the yarn and ribbon to make a second in that size, all red, for my mum. I asked if she wanted the top and bottom ruffle white to make it festive since it’s Christmas red, but she vetoed that. FYI, you know I’m serious if I volunteer to do anything white, as that’s my least fave colour due to having trouble seeing others against it. Anyway, I’ve only worked any pattern a maximum of twice (blanket squares don’t count), and typically with a bit of reluctance the third time, but it makes my heart wiggle with joy to be making this a third time in a row.
I want to get a load of black and find a way of making a hooded cloak based on this, I love it so much. I also want to make versions in every single colour, to wear with everything. Have you ever felt this way about a pattern? Answers below, please

Claire’s Adventures in Ruffleland

I got bored working the base layer on my second forget-me-not, so started adding the colours for the ruffles.

The original pattern uses 17 rows, one of them expanding from the neck and half of them dc with gaps to provide easy ruffle attachment. See my last post for the first collar, which was worked true to this. This time, I’m using the remaining yarn from that for the base and working that until I run out, and have done a second expansion row for more capelike proportions. On last count, there was to be 15 ruffles and I still have quite a bit of the yarn left. This was hopefully going to be completed for this round of nerd wars, but I somehow doubt that now.
I got fed up with my flesh plug being concealed, so am trying a new hairstyle today. What do you think?

Those are a couple of the Art Deco pictures that I make behind me. I have class today, where I will hopefully receive my mounted Taj Mahal. My current picture is a festive lady, and I hope to fit in a Christmas tree for my friend after that.

Attack of the Ruffles

Me again. Sorry I haven’t been about, I have a sick net from my Doctor. Note the capitalisation there, the only doctor whom I trust is an alien. And with good reason; according to human medical professionals, I should’ve died four times already.
I finished the first of three planned projects for Nerd Wars, forget-me-not

I dragged my heels somewhat on submitting, so once again used a soft toy as a model. Suits him, don’t it?
The odd thing is that I’m sure I bought 200g of yarn, and I worked a little looser than tension, and the pattern calls for approximately 150g and urges you to buy an extra ball just in case. And yet, upon weighing the remainder, it showed that I had 160g left. Weird!
I am currently making a second collar with the remainder. I’m working the base layer with an extra increase row, and will keep going with the charcoal until I reach the last possible solid dc row. And then I’ll make the ruffles using one colour per row of Colinette Jitterbug, which I bough two creative packs of recently.

I am also in the process of finishing a blanket for my mum, which I’ll hopefully get done in time and work out how to do a crocodile stitch border on. If not, I’m bound to finish it next round.
I’d been hoping for some red or orange yarn in my packs, as we’re honouring hug-a-ginger day for team unity, but this is what I got in one pack:

The only colour other than blue or green in the whole thing was one hank of pink, which is my least favourite colour.

If you can’t be bothered writing clear instructions…

…then I can’t be bothered making these socks! I have been busting my hump on the Chancery socks, but it just got to the point where I saw red.

Spare me the deconstruction of a character whom I know intimately, and tell me why just that section of the lace chart is highlighted. And when will the heel start looking like the pic? Because mine sure doesn’t! I flung my work down in disgust, and decided to frog.
I rarely frog, and this is literally the second time where I have done so with no intention of making that design ever again. The only other time was when I couldn’t yet ssk, and couldn’t work out how to. And now that I know how to, I would happily try that pattern again (if it hadn’t mysteriously been pulled from the site), but I’ve had nothing but trouble with this one.
I firmly believe that this is a work of evil that, like the court itself, will give you nothing but misery. To check that I’m not being biased, I will just have a look on Ravelry whether anyone has successfully made this. Apart from the sample (which doesn’t count, as you know shortcuts in your pattern that you may not have written up), the only project is pretty much at the cast-on stage. So I will assume that this is evil, and implore you not to try it.
I’d had a use planned for the yarn leftover from the socks, and so I frogged safe in the knowledge that it would not languish for months. I am chaining for the forget-me-not collar as I write this (having just got gauge) and will either make it all charcoal, or go with my original plan to make the ruffles in leftovers. It depends on how sick of charcoal I am at that point. Since the pattern calls for 150g of sock yarn and I have 200, I’m highly unlikely to run out either way

*ding ding* Round 2

Tournament Nine of Nerd Wars has started and, as the title suggests, is now into the second of three rounds. For the first, I make a headband the colour of clouds, finished a “gaudy” black-and-orange shawl, made a crocodile stitch necklace, and made my second pair of socks.
I am currently working on my Chancery socks for the flexible schedule challenge, as I started them in August and they also fit the description. The goal is to create a tall tale relating to it. So I will say that I am making these socks for Dickens, and will hop in my time machine to deliver them.
The hard part will be linking socks related to Bleak House in with a team to do with Buffy and Angel. Idea below, please

For one day only

Today, you can get my ebook the book of seven for free. If you do get it, please leave a review, and please tell me if you like it. I started writing this when I was eighteen, after I was amused that an episode of Buffy had a vampire called Sunday in it. It isn’t fanfic, but there are a few references in there. It took me a little while to get it in this form because firstly I had a very discouraging writing course tutor (the woman wrote maths books, and was released from the job after a number of complaints) who made me lose heart for many years. Then I went with the ebook distributor Bookbyte Digital, whom felt that I should pay them for putting errors into my work. After getting suitably angry about that, I chose a nom de plume (that tickles me, it sounds like you’re eating a feather), and launched it myself. I am, as of today, thirty-one, so it has taken quite some time.