Wednesday, 29 July 2015

More beanies, blanket work and new yarn

We're a week into the new school term after three weeks of a super-lazy winter holiday.  The season has already turned here, the first blossoms have appeared on the fruit trees, but we have also just seen the first light dusting of winter snow on the mountains and suddenly it's the coldest it has been the past couple of months!

Winter = beanie time, so I set myself a target of a beanie a day for one week, which would then be delivered to one of the many Madiba Day projects country-wide.  The idea was to work quickly, with thicker yarn, so I tried out this Kartopu Cotton Spray yarn, a beautiful, smooth cotton/acrylic blend.

Although the yarn was lovely to work with, it didn't really deliver on the colour promise
and looked like vanilla ice cream with 100's & 1000's that melted :-0

See ?  Oh well, it is soft and snuggly and will keep someone warm.

While I had my tidy little plan of 7 beanies, my dear darling husband promised his associate office in Cape Town a BAGfull of beanies for their Madiba Day contribution to a home for disabled children in Gugulethu...and he juuust remember to tell me with a few days to go.  Luckily, the helpful hooky ladies  of George and some in Cape Town heard my sudden, hysterical plea for help, and after the weekend I had these to send off:

To this was added a bag from my CT friends and together we delivered more than
the hastily-made promise :-D

Holidays also means roadtrippin' time, and we went down the N2 to a farm stall complex (comprising La Bella Deli, Die Rooi Aalwyn, Bali Trading and a couple more) outside Riversdale, where I spotted these beauties:

A cotton pouch/purse 

I totally loved this beanie, but the yarn -though beautiful - is quite hard and scratchy

Granny throw for your chair?

Beautiful cushion covers (and a clever plan for all those loose motifs)

 While my boys were off hunting (we had one family hunting weekend and one only for The Men - that is the dads and cousins) - I worked on the Cheap & Cheerful blanket.  
All of us had success!  My two boys and their cousins shot their first blesbok - very proud of their contribution to the deep freeze - and I at last finished with the blanket, with only a few ends still staring me in the eye.

Early morning hooking in bed

I must confess that I really had to motivate myself to complete this one! For all that I do understand people preferring or being limited to this type of acrylic, it really isn't a joy to work with.  That said, I do hope to show with this little challenge that cheap yarn does not have to be nasty looking.

I was also treated to a sample of Moya Yarn's new Bulky Plush, a thick, soft cotton!

These came in the mail - the soft, muted colours perfect for a prezzie that I need to hook up quickly
for MIL's birthday one of these days.

Of course I had to try it out immediately. I love to sit and hook over a coffee, and took my hooky with me to this tea garden in the mountains. When my boys took off with the proprietor to chase away baboons at a nearby house, I took my chance to get in a few rows :-)

Hooky with a view at Over the Mountain

I might have halfway caught up with my laziness at posting now...

I fell smack bang into the trap of Instagram, when I KNEW that it would be an abyss of utterly beautiful images on the one hand, and the ease and convenience of a quick upload plus three words and a couple of hashtags on the other (but have you seen the lists of hashtags getting longer and longer? It looks more like advertisements that anything else).  So after 7, 8 months there I decided to drastically cut the accounts I follow and clear my feed a bit (and the blog feed!) and I must follow up my own posts there with a blogpost here, because that's the other thing I realised - I miss writing about the process, the idea and the progress and the mistakes made and lessons learnt until the end.*  I also miss reading about other bloggers' processes**, because more and more we see beautiful images, styled beyond belief, but less about the how and the why. And that is why I, for one, started to blog - to document my own, and read and learn from others.   

*And as I write and want to add labels, I realise there are no labels because I forgot to write about the Cheap and Cheerful Blanket's progress!  A next post then.

**Sandra of Cherry Heart wrote a recent post about her first project - and she thinks of it as a failure :-) and that's what I really liked about Blogland from the beginning - to see how and what others learnt, because that's how I then learnt. That might be what got me thinking.

So there.  Off to the couch I go to end with the ends of ends of the C&C.  I'm still not saying anything about the Summer Throw, notice?  It will come :-D  Ends an'all. 


Anonymous said...

Ha ha, that's the fun part of the internetz, you meet new people all over the world. You said goodbye to your winter holiday, I'm preparing myself for summer holiday ^_^.

Although (as seen on your last picture) your winter is much greener than ours (Germany) ^_^.

Anne Schueler said...

I can understand how you decided to follow less blogs. I LOVE reading every one of the blogs on my list but sometimes it is hard to keep up with all of them if life is really busy.

Enjoy the rest of your winter - we are still having summer here (and it finally returned with some sun today). :)

Take care
Crochet Between Worlds

cristina said...

Their hats certainly be well used and will make children happy!
I am happy that you continue with your blog. And millions of thanks for your comment! I feel your hugs that came from far ... thanks ..... hope you have a nice day.......... and thanks................ thanks.............

Jodiebodie said...

Wow! You covered so much in one post!
Please excuse me being a little late in reading this post of yours - as Ann mentioned, when life gets busy, it can be hard to keep up, but I do love to read all the blogs on my list.
I love your photos of your country - to see the landscape and natural beauty is amazing.
I am glad you have returned to blogland and not totally left us for Instagram. You make an interesting point about the IG photos being styled to the hilt but no context. Like you, I like to read about other people's experiences and thoughts and learn from that or take a new point of view.
How charming of hubby to let you know at the last minute. You have a marvellous network of generous & crafty friends - the way they all came to the rescue to help with the beanie bundle. The beanies look great and I bet each and every one will become someone's favourite, special hat.
That hat for sale that you loved: do you think it might become softer after decent washing? Was it lined? If not, you could always make your own soft lining for a hat like that os the scratchy parts are on the outside and not next to your skin.
Again, I hope your Cheap & Cheerful blanket might soften a bit with some special treatment but from your lack of enjoyment in handling it, the chances might be slim. Even if it isn't the softest yarn, that blanket can still be very useful, adding an extra layer of warmth over sheets or other bedding, or become a very sturdy floor blanket for sitting on or making a room warmer or homely.
Love your work, Stel. Hugs to you xxx