I used to be a predictable crafter, a seasonal crafter. In the winter I would knit and crochet, in warm weather I would embroider, and in hot weather I would draw and paint. Now I'm all mixed up. It's the middle of summer and I want to crochet! Specifically, I want to make myself a shrug (or bolero, if you prefer). I never used to like them very much, but now I've realised they are my friend. I have a purchased one that I wear all the time. I can wear it to work when the weather's cool in the morning, take it off in the office when I've been moving things around, then put it back on when I've cooled down and am feeling self-conscious about my arms again. I love my shrug, but a girl needs variety, so I decided to make myself another one. I trawled through Ravelry until I had a short list of patterns. It took me quite a while. The vast majority of them were too long, too short, arms too long, no arms, front wrong shape, too lacy, too solid, too wierd, too many dangly bits, etc etc. The modular patterns with crocheted squares seemed to appeal to me the most, perhaps because I've been working on the baby blanket in modular form recently.
Still, none of them were quite right. Perhaps if I chose a stand-alone square block pattern and used the joining method in these patterns to construct a shrug? I can do that! I can use my existing shrug to work out the measurements! So then the process of choosing the right block began.
My long list consisted of about 15 blocks on Ravelry, not to mention any that might be in my 200 Knitted Blocks and 200 Crocheted Blocks books! I let things sit while I was waiting for my yarn to arrive - my first order from Bendigo Woollen Mills - yay!!! It arrived yesterday and now I want to get to work! I logged on to Ravelry today to record my new purchases in my 'stash' section, and then I decided to see what other projects had been made with the same yarn. (Ravelry is great like that!) Well, I just happened to come across this!
It's perfect! The body is made all in one piece, with the arms added by working along the armholes. So no sewing up or joining pieces. And the pattern is really pretty. There's only one drawback - it's not available for free on the Ravelry website. I can't have instant gratification, dammit! It's from Debbie Stoller's book The Happy Hooker. (Get it?) I'd borrowed it from the library some time in the distant past, so as soon as I got home, I went through my half-organised stash of photocopied patterns. But I didn't find any from The Happy Hooker in there! How strange! And how frustrating!
So I logged onto the Library website and put a reservation on it. There are 3 copies, and they're all out! How long will it be until I can have my shrug?
All images thanks to Ravelry.