Friday, February 5, 2016

Winter Project Link Party



Welcome to February's Winter Project Link Party! I hope you'll want to share your current crafty projects. As for me, Hensfoot is still in progress. I'm sort of struggling with it right now. I still like the project just fine, and I have every intention of finishing, but I'm not sure it will happen before spring. This is really okay with me; it's not like we don't have numerous blankets to use, and the weather will warm up before too much longer. If it takes me a little longer to finish, no biggie. But there are other things I'd like to work on, including cross-stitch, and my guilt complex makes that difficult. I like to think of it as a work ethic, but let's face it - it's mostly a feature of my guilt complex. The fact that it extends to crocheted blankets might seem a little weird, but there you go.


When I started, I was looking forward to a mindless-crochet sort of project and I definitely got one. It's mostly a good thing - I find it relaxing and soothing to work on, especially in the afternoons when I'm either in the midst of home school time, when it keeps me calm and benevolent, or afterward, once we're finished for the day, when it repairs some of my frayed nerves. I don't mean to complain (about the blanket or the home schooling); I've actually made a fair bit of progress with Hensfoot over the past month. It's now about 42 inches long and more than halfway finished. I think I'd like to add another 30 inches or so, so the tall person (and other eventual tall person) can enjoy it fully.


I'm very pleased with the way this blanket eats up yarn. I've started hand-rolling balls of yarn lately because the yarn-winder cakes are collapsing on themselves. Do you have this problem too? I have the standard red-and-white winder that clips onto the edge of a table (mine came directly from China, in record time; seriously, I think it was at my doorstep four days after I placed the order. It was cool, but strange). I like the winder a lot but the cakes don't always hold together very well. It's entirely possible I'm doing something wrong. I recently received an umbrella swift as a present and I'm looking forward to using it next time I wind yarn, but I know I'm going to wrap myself in yarn the first few times. My family will unravel me like a mummy in "Scooby Doo" and I'll twirl across the room as the yarn comes off. I should probably clear the furniture out of the way first.


Just writing about this blanket has me feeling a little more chipper about it. I'm glad to be crocheting it; the design is new to me, and it will be warm and snuggly to use. I love the colors. It's hefty, but not heavy and not stiff. I've been flagging a bit lately, but the end is in sight now. Onward and upward!

How are your winter projects coming along, now that we're in the heart of winter? Are you still beavering away eagerly, or have you found yourself in a rut too? I'd love to hear how you're doing. Join in by adding a link to a blog post about your current projects. Anyone can join, even if it isn't winter where you are. Please read the rules and make sure to link back to this post to spread the word about the link party.


29 comments:

  1. It's looking really lovely. My blanket is taking a while to complete too and I don't think mine will be finished before winter's over either, but I don't mind, there's so many other things I want to have a go at, I've decided not to restrict myself. Things will get finished when they get finished, I'm not going to force myself to work on something just so that I can start something else, they'll all get done in their own time. I haven't got a yarn winder so I can't help with that, sorry.

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  2. I love your blanket, lovely design a bit different from the norm of granny stripes or ripples. xx

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  3. The blanket is looking gorgeous -- I need to make one. The umbrella swift will help immensely. In fact, I can't imagine using a ball winder without one. :)

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  4. Your hen's foot blanket is looking fabulous; you have great colour sense. I finished the last row on my Dorset blankie yesterday (I started it in June last year!),so just a lot of darning in of numerous ends and then the border to go. I have one of those winders too and the balls really aren't that stable are they? Do let me know if you come up with a solution. Have a lovely, relaxing weekend. xx

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  5. That blanket is so bright and cheerful, Jennifer! I also like to have a mindless project to work on, but this is their downside. The very fact that they are mindless means they can also get a bit boring to work on after awhile. Hang in there. You'll soon be finished! As for your ball winder, mine does the same thing. Even worse is often when I am pulling the yarn out of the centre a whole tangled gob of yarn often comes out. I'm about ready to give up on the thing.

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  6. Lobe your colours and your blanket is coming along so well! I think we all flag a bit in the middle of a big project, and our minds drift on to the next thing we want to be doing X

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  7. The blanket is looking lovely Jennifer, even if you have slowed down. It's nice to have a big project tucked away somewhere to work on when you need to. I know what you mean about something soothing to do while the little people are doing homework. I draft my eldest in to hold yarn while I wind it by hand. He's very good, but I know he'd rather not be doing it. Especially after about 20 minutes! A swift sounds like a wonderful thing, I shall look forward to seeing how you get on. Photos please! CJ xx

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  8. I've put my November quilt on hold until my head is a bit clearer. I know the placing and sewing together of 42 x 10 inch squares will need maximum concentration as well as space. In the meantime I'm starting a couple of small pick up/put down projects to do when I need soothing! Your blanket colours are simply gorgeous Jennifer.

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  9. I really like your hensfoot blanket colors.. very rich. I actually did finish one of my projects that I stated when I joined your Link Party when it first started. I could link to my "tada" post but it was a few weeks ago.. would I need to go back to that post and put a link to your party on an old post? If that would work let me know. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  10. Your blankie looks lovely, Jennifer. In answer to your question, yes the balls of yarn that I wind on my wool winder do collapse after a while. If they start to annoy me, I just wind them on the winder again or even by hand as there's usually not that much yarn left on them by that time. :o)

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  11. Your project is lovely! Way to go, Jennifer!

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  12. I've enjoyed this blanket since you started it. I love the colors and the pattern!

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  13. I think it is nice to have a slow burner project in a basket, to turn to whenever you feel like it. I do so love the colours of your blanket, soothing and happy at the same time. This February link-up has come around quickly, it took me by surprise. Luckily I have time and daylight today to take some photos of makings in my house. Thanks for the link-up. Have a lovely restful weekend. x

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  14. Your blanket looks so squishy and cozy. I just love the random colours you work into it and the pattern makes it look very plush. I wind all my yarn by hand - no fancy winder - so can't help with the crumbling cakes.
    I'm afraid I'm at a complete fail with this winter project :( Normally I knit and sew all through the winter, but I took on the decluttering task and I just canNOT work on anything else until I see this thing through. It's more than just tidying up, there's all sorts of mental things I'm working through at the same time. I do hope you do this again next winter because I hope to be free of decluttering by then. I almost didn't want to visit you today when I saw the link-up, but thought that wasn't fair at all. Enjoy your weekend Jennifer!
    Wendy

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  15. The colours are lovely, it's looking very cosy and warm xx

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  16. Jennifer I just love that blanket. I, unfortunately, have not even picked up the blanket that I first intended to finish this winter. It is boring because it's just garter stitch the entire thing, but that's not the only reason. I've been completely consumed by mittens. Mittens until they're coming out of my ears! As for the ball winder, mine does the exact same thing. It's gotten to the point where I just hand wind most of my balls of yarn too because I don't like the way they collapse in the center and then get into a tangled mess. I hope you have a lovely weekend my friend.
    Blessings, Betsy

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  17. I really love the look of that crochet stitch! I know what you mean about projects going on and on and on. I have a scarf at the moment that is just miles of stocking stitch in horrible orange yarn that a friend chose...just can't work on it!

    I had the same problem with centre pull balls too - I posted about the problem on Ravelry and someone said they had one that was brilliant, that they had just replaced with a newer one, and sold it to me. It is genuinely fantastic, and I'm so glad I went on someone else's experience. But, there's nothing wrong with hand wound balls, there's something beautiful about them!

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  18. Oh, how well I recognise this condition. I call it Blanket Fatigue, and it's a terrible affliction that hits the best of us. Pausing progress for a month of two while you work on something else might be just the boost you need. I find I like to have a few things on the go - something that mentally stimulates and challenges me, then something soothing and mindless - totally depending on my mood and energy levels. Hang in there!

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  19. Your blanket is really pretty, Jennifer. I'm still in the novice-stage of crochet and always look for "Easy" patterns, and the hensfoot does not look easy! For awhile, every night I was working on little caps for myself and for the Gift of Hope wagon that strolled around the waiting area. I have plenty of caps now and want to move on to a bit larger project. I'm thinking some colorful throws for the guest room, but I still want an easy pattern. I think having something to do with your hands is very therapeutic, and I like to believe it means I do less snacking....not for sure about that!

    Warm hugs,
    Carol

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  20. I must join in the party soon! I have lots of projects on the go, as always. Your benefit is fab, I love the design :)
    Jillxo

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  21. Lovely stitch, looks cozy and warm...my kind of blanket!

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  22. Your blanket is lovely. I hear you on feeling pulled by different projects its hard isn't it?

    I borrowed a friends winder and swift they are amazing, I really must invest in them for myself.

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  23. It's coming along great Jennifer and yes I suffer from feeling of guilt too when I don't work on certain projects, I think the secret is little and often even if it just a row it's still growing. Thanks for hosting. :) xx

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  24. what a beautiful link up.. love to see the so many other talented knitters and creations.

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  25. Your Hensfoot is looking beautiful. The colors are very pretty. I hope you will do a post about the ball winder and umbrella swift. I don't have one yet. I was afraid I'd make a tangled mess. I already have several skeins the cats have attacked that need to be made into balls. I'm so happy to have linked up this month. I hope to have progress made for next month. :-) Lisa

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  26. Your blanket will be great, Jennifer. I like the colouring of them. Very nice.
    Have a good time,
    Jitka

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  27. You are making great progress, even if not as fast as you hoped to, Jennifer. I have had the same experience with my ball winder and wondered if I just did not understand how to use it properly...which is still possible...but at any rate, I have been winding center pull balls by hand as a friend in Northern CA taught me how to do, and I am happier with that. I have tried to make net ball holders with left over net bags from fruit or avocados which helps to keep the balls of yarn from falling apart when I transport them in a project bag. I have not found the nets on sale at a local store yet, but might order some on line because my homegrown version is not very sturdy. Or I may crochet a loose netting in a cup cosy shape and see if that works better. I get grumpy when I have the time to crochet and knit but have to spend most of that time untangling a ball of yarn! :) xx

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  28. Your blanket is coming on really well and looks amazing. I love making blankets too.

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Thank you for leaving a comment. It's so good to hear from you! I don't always have time to reply but I try to answer questions when I can.

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