Thursday, 27 October 2011


My sus het nou die dag op Ons Hekel vertel van 'n ou gehekelde tafeldoek van my ma, fyn-fyn gehekel met bruinerige garing, gedoen deur gevangenes van die Kroonstad Vrouegevangenis, doer seker in die sewentigerjare (ons ouers was albei in die destydse Gevangenisdiens).

Ek het 'n soortgelyke tafeldoek, seker dieselfde patroon, maar in wit garing:

My sis posted the other day on Ons Hekel about a crocheted tablecloth that belonged to our mom, finely crocheted with a natural-brownish colour thread. It was done by inmates of the Kroonstad Womens Prison, sometime in the early 70's,I think (our parents were both officers at the then Dept. of Prison Services).

I have a similar tablecloth, with the same pattern, I think, but in this white thread:

Julle!  Kyk hoe fyn. 

Die motief is 6 cm.
Daar is 19 x 19 motiewe...=361. 
Die eerste rondte lyk soos 20 (twintig!) langbene (ek probeer dit tel met 'n naald se punt!). 

Hoe groot is die hekelpen waarmee hierdie gedoen is?  En hoe lank het dit geneem?

See the fine detail??

The motif is 6 cm.
There are 19 x 19 motives...=361. 
The first round looks like 20 (twenty!!) (UK) trebles (I tried to count with the point of a needle!). 
Imagine the size crochet hook needed to do this.  And how long it took?

As kind was ek nie erg oor die tafeldoeke nie, maar nou dat ek leer hekel, kan ek waardeer hoeveel ongelooflike moeite daar ingegegaan het. Vakmanskap.

As a child I didn't really like it, but now that I'm learning to crochet, I can appreciate the beauty and absolute workmanship that went into it.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

One-A-Day (8) or, The Recovered Ripple

Joy, oh Joy, I've made it through 1 set of rainbowish colours and managed to suppress the rebellion!

Am going to use these 14 colours throughout.  Some look a bit funny here...the slushy grey beneath the cerise is actually a light dusty pink. Anyhow.  I'm happy so far, but I need to take a little break from this Ripple. For one whole week I'm not going to touch it and just get on with a few other things and ponder the following...

How To Continue?

Shall I go all random now, as planned from the beginning, and end with another rainbow band, mirroring this one?

Or shall I just repeat rainbow bands?

OR shall I mirror each band as I continue?

Meanwhile, I'm going to finish this:

Flowery Squares for a little something for a Curly Girl's room.  It's so quick and easy and a lovely thing to do while watching the World Cup Final ;-)

And I want to share these oldies:

My friend Stel got a box full of doilies and other crocheted thingies, made by her grandmother, even a crocheted apron!  What to do with all of these?  My Little Beach House got lucky and got the two round little table cloths, as well as the apple green place mats. I'm trying to convince Stel to use the white doilies with purplepink edging on pillows for her Ballerina Girl's bedroom.  Nice to re-use these old pieces.

Enjoy your week!  Have a look at the others' posts over at Gingerbread Girls's blog and I'll join in again in two weeks' time.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Pop Quiz, Crocheter

Have you crocheted on an aeroplane?

We were talking about it the other day over on my crochet FB page "Ons Hekel".   

Quite a few years ago I could still cross stitch on an international flight (KLM), but that was pre-2001.  Sharp, pointy scissors and all.  Was refused knitting needles in Kenya in 2003, had to repack before I could board.

So - the last couple of months, I tried with a cheapo plastic crochet hook that I didn't mind to loose if necessary.  Also had success with a bamboo hook.  My sis saw someone crocheting on KLM, if I remember correctly (mine were local flights, South Africa).  And this weekend I went live and prepared to sacrifice my steel hook, on a local BA flight...


It went through security, they didn't pull an ear, none of the stewards said/asked anything, so in future I'll be hooking on the plane, a great way to while away the time (with a spare hook in my luggage, just in case...)

Have you tried it?  Will you?  Have you had different experiences with different airlines?

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

One-A-Day a.k.a. The Rebellious Rainbow Ripple

Tuesday again!  Time for a One-A-Day progress report (slow).  We were away for the weekend and I crocheted on the plane, on the beach, on the verandah with a lovely view towards a lagoon (that made up for my snail's progress)*.

Weeks since I started :  10?

Numbers of times frogged : 1 (whole blanket), 3 (some rows)

Rows completed now : 19

Colours : 10, ±5 more

I am now aiming to just. Get. The. Sides. Straight.

That entails finishing and starting with only 3+2 stitches (as opposed to 4+2 in the pattern) and following the peaks and valleys as I get to them. Sometimes with 4 stitches between them (as per the pattern), sometimes with 3 (as not per the pattern).

As long as the final row remains more or less in place and semi-straight on the previous one. 

I am SO not frogging again :-)

(I actually like the colours, it looks sooo nice, the rainbow.  If I can just finish this thing! I do like the blanket, I know it will be pretty, on the back of the denim-covered couch at The Little Beach House).

Next week I'm going to blow you away with my mindboggling speed and accuracy ;-)

For other lovely projects and some real progress, have a look at the Tuesday Tallies over at Carole's blog, Gingerbread Girl. There are some looovely things to behold (good luck with your ripple, Barbina...).

* If you're in the mood for some on a map, for Kenton-on-Sea in South Africa. What a beautiful place. 
Hint: Eastern Cape, halfway between Port Elizabeth and East London.
Or just Google!

Monday, 10 October 2011

One-A-Day (6)

"I don't know why they call this frogging", I moaned to my husband, as grrrrrr grrrrrr grrrrrr went the 32 rows (ROWS!) of my Ripple. 

"Grrrrrrr grrrrrr grrrrr" went my Little Man, just like a frog.  I got it. 

Yes.  I frogged ALL of my Ripple. *

From this:

Tried to save the first two rows, so I wouldn't have to go through The Foundation Chain of Hell I promptly made a mistake and had to restart. From scratch. 

Not once.

Not twice.

FIVE times.  Five times I chained and rechained before I got it right, and can proudly now say that I've GOT it and The Ripple II is going along just fine. 


I am so far now:

(Blood-red, burnt orange, light peach.  Looks a bit funny here.)

I am just so happy that this time I GOT it, and I'm getting my valleys and hills in place and managing my last two stiches in the top chain etc. And I got to discard the olive green that was bothering me, plus the very pale dusty pink and two of the cheap superacrylics, so now I'm continuing just with Pure Gold.  Nice and soft.

SO I need to ask - how do you manage the foundation chain? I followed recommendations from both Lucy and The Happy Hooker - first hooked a bit loose, then tried using a bigger hook, and then, big revelation, hooked in the Back Loop of each stich, and it was just so much easier, and neater, and Easier.  Took me the whole of "Source Code" (watching the dvd with husband) to get through 199 stitches, and absolutely happy with it. (Loved the movie. Love Jake. He'll probably get a fit when hearing that somebody hooked through the movie :-).

Also got 30 African Flowers in the mail, off on their way to Potchefstroom :-) where they'll be waiting for more flowers from here, Cork and Potch:

Thank you for sitting through this rambling.  Thanks for the lovely comments on my previous post.  Hilly T, I did see you green edges as well, and its looking so nice and fresh.  This CAL is really worth it, doing some hooking every day, writing up a post, and then sharing in the progress. I love it.  Thanks for participating and sharing your ideas, feedback, support etc. 

(Have a look at other participants in One-A-Day at Gingerbread Girl's blog every Tuesday.)

*What was wrong...I  somehow missed the loast two stitched in the top if the chain and the end of the row, somewhere (hooked one day in the beginnig without my instructions).  Then couldn't get my peaks and valleys aligned, and the one edge of the work ended up looking ...rippled, while the other side was perfectly straight.  Couldn't fix it, it just got worse. Had to throw in the towel/blanket.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011


Partykeer tel ek nog 'n breipen op, maar net as iets maklik gaan wees en ek nie sommer gaan steke verloor of weke aaneen moet brei nie.

Dis nou soos serpe, vierkante, sulke maklike goed...

Tot Alice nou die dag op haar blog 'n MONSTER wys!  Harriet the Homespun Monster, op die patroon van Baldwin the Bathroom Monster (die patrone is te vinde in hierdie boek).

Kyk net:

Aaaarrrg, ek doen nie sulke goed nie! 

(Sê sy, en het nou al drie gebrei!);

Die patroon kon ek nie op internet kry nie, en brei toe sommer "so na gelang", soos wat dit lyk die vorm moet wees. Kan eintlik nie verkeerd gaan nie.  Sommer net so reghoekerige vorm, met bene aaneen, vou dubbel en werk vas. Arms kom later aan. 

Die Mannetjie het self sy monster se oog (oë!) en naeltjie gekies, en wou die tande inkleur:

Bulkalf s'n het twee oë maar geen arms (dalk later):

Die present-een het gloeiende groen oë en hekelarms:

Drie monsters later.  Who would have thought. 

(Die boek het ek intussen opgespoor in Exclusive Books, maar eh...duur.  Wil nie soveel betaal net vir monsterpatrone nie.)

Sometimes I will pick up my knitting needles, but only if the patterns is easy and quick and I'm not going to lose stitches.  Scarves, squares, things like that...

Until I saw the MONSTER on  Alice's blog the other day!  Harriet the Homespun Monster, following the pattern of  Baldwin the Bathroom Monster (patterns to be found in this book 
I don't do things like these! (She said, and then knitted three).

I couldn't find the pattern on internet and therefore just tried for something more or less resembling the shape.  Can't really go wrong there!  A semi-rectangle, with legs, fold double and stitch up. Add arms, eyes, teeth, belly button.

My Little Man chose his monster's eyes and belly button and insisted on coloured teeth.
My Bull Calf's has two eyes but no arms (maybe later).
The to-be-gifted Pink One has glowing green eyes and crocheted arms.
Three monsters later.  Who would have thought.
(Found the book, since, in Exclusive Books, but eh...expensive. Don't want to spend so much just for monster patterns).

One-A-Day (5)

Yeay! I'm back on track. 

Still left The Ripple in its bag, under the bag, in its new storage basket (got some inspiration from Lucy up there in Attic 24 regarding matters housekeeping ;-), he he).

But, out came the African Flowers again and I edged them all (30!) with green. 

Now, doesn't that look pretty!  All the time I was complaining because my AF's didn't look like the photo's Ive seen...I should just have added the edge.  There you go now.

Hooking away outside on the lawns with the Bull Calf Boy while waiting for the Little Man to finish gymnastics.

...and while having cappuccino at my favourite spot...

(I really should start using my camera for these pics, and not the mobile...)

This is going to be the final edging that all of us are going to do, and will join them with the same.  I am so looking forward to this blanket, it is going to look so pretty!  But it will take some time to finish, as we are hooking in Pretoria, South Africa (me), Cork, Ireland (Sis), and Potchefstroom, South Africa (aunty). 

I also tried out something for a new project that will have to stand over for the new year.  Stil haven't got it quite right, will work on my plans, in the meantime these can become  coasters for The Litte Beach House.

And so, back to The Ripple.

Ed. later..the African Flower blanket is going to my aunty. Me, my sis and aunty are hooking it as a team, all with our own stash, with the green edging in the same yarn.  The blanket will be going to my aunt, who took a Very Brave Step, and is in need of some new happy memories, of which the blanket will be one of the first .

Monday, 3 October 2011

September Photo Scavenger Hunt

Ah, Scavenger time, I really like this.  Going about my day with the list in the back of my mind, focusing a bit more on what's going on around me.

Some aspects of this month's Scavenger Hunt was a liiittle bit more difficult, being at the southern end of the globe, we don't do things like "Back to school" and "Harvest"...but look what I came up with.  As always, taken with my little old Nokia mobile.

1. Back to school

We're on spring break now, but when school starts again next week "Mam said these books MUST be covered!"... So there.  Back to school in a week's time!  

2.  The football/soccer season

Ah! Last year we had the SWC in South Africa, and what an event! Football...we don't really do, but then, we have...Rugby. Yes, in a capital letter, because for some it's an obsession.  And as I type, the Rugby World Cup is under way in New Zealand, and our boys have so far made it to the quarter finals where they wil meet Australia...eeew!  Quite ambivalent about next Saturday, will be a great match, but...not entirely sure how the Boks will do.  In the meantime, I'll be wearing my Bok T-shirt on Bok Friday, and my car is wearing this:

3. What's in you bag?

Uhm...a bit of an embarrasment, when you empty out the bag...the usual keys, wallet, tissues, diary, pens, lipstick, bubblegum...and then we get to inhaler (sinus), emergency stash of Mestinon (I have ocular myasthenia gravis), plastic teaspoon? Too many receipts for coffee, movie ticket (when to see 'One Day' and loved it), discount vouchers, plastic shopping bag, sweety wrappers, coin, Gautrain cards (oh, we love the's the first highish speed train in South Africa, between Johanneburg and Pretoria, and comparable to the train between Heathrow's T5 and the other terminals. We ride it like tourists :-D). And the bag, a love leather Fossil, gift from my sis.

4. Relaxation

Having tea in the back yard early one Sunday morning.  Yip, we have cookie cups for breakfast.

5. A pile of things.

This was almost going to be embarassing (again), but luckily I came up with a pile of hearts earlier this week!

6. Your desk

Ah yes. Left is mine, right, my husband's.  I could easily have done The Pile from here.

7. A public telephone box

This is not really a public phone, but it was in public :-), as I walked past a second hand shop the other day.

8. Something taller than you

Now this I love.  A new statue/sculpture-thingey that was erected in Hatfield recently, and I go around it's little roundabout on my way to gim.  It's made of iron, and if you look carefully you can see the tiniest figures in it. It's huge, easily 10 m tall. 

9. Apples.

In the supermarket.  With the Smurfs promotion (opened this weekend in RSA).

10. A road sign.

My Little Man brought these road signs home from school this week, just in time for me.

11.  A view from above.

The Gautrain and Metro-rail tracks, outside gim, Hatfield.

For some reason, these pics refuse to be turned in any way.  Makes for good neck-stretching :-)

Now off to look at everybody else's pic, you can find it on Kathy's blog.