Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Yarn Along :: The Exorcist

~Started in Fall 2010 by Small Things, every Wednesday we share what we're knitting or crocheting and reading on our blog/Instagram (#yarnalong)/Flickr, and link up on her blog.~

❝ Like the brief doomed flare of exploding suns that registers dimly on blind men's eyes, the beginning of the horror passed almost unnoticed; in the shriek of what followed, in fact, was forgotten and perhaps not connected to the horror at all.  It was difficult to judge. 

Currently reading: The Exorcist, by William Peter Blatty. 

Currently working on: I haven't touched my dad's Christmas blanket this past week, as I've been sick, but after I finish this post I hope to put on a movie and get comfortable and start on it again; I'm feeling much better.  The black yarn for my temperature blanket hasn't come in the mail yet, so it's missing a hexagon, but I've started the second row, with light green, Pistache.  It's a yellowish-green, I'm not too sure why I went with this color, especially when it's such a sharp contrast to the dark green (Light Sage) but I don't dislike it enough to kick it out the blanket.

Once again, let's see if I can finish my dad's blanket by next Wednesday.  


Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Temperature Tuesday II

17 days in, my first strip is (almost) complete on my temperature blanket!  I'm just waiting for my black yarn to come in the mail, and I'll put a black one to the left of the dark green hexagon with the stitch marker, the black one being the place marker for January.

It's too long to take a decent picture of without showing tidbits of my messy room.  I would have taken it downstairs and gotten a picture on the floor (standing on a chair most likely), but I've been stuck in bed, sick with a stomach illness for almost a week and had to catch up today.  That alarm going off at noon everyday can get annoying, especially when you're exhausted from not having eaten in days (except for Pepto Bismol) and are exhausted, but I still faithfully recorded the temperatures, even that weird yellow day where it was in the 60s!

It fits across my full size bed already, so it's a perfect size.  It'll also have a border.  I'll have measurements as soon as the black yarn comes in (where is it?!) and I'm feeling better.  I'm excited to start a new row tomorrow!


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Yarn Along :: Trout Fishing in America

~Started in Fall 2010 by Small Things, every Wednesday we share what we're knitting/crocheting and reading on our blog/Instagram (#yarnalong)/Flickr and link up on her blog.~

❝ Everything smelled of sheep.  The dandelions were suddenly more sheep than flower, each petal reflecting wool and the sound of a bell ringing off the yellow.  But the thing that smelled the most like sheep, was the very sun itself.  When the sun went behind a cloud, the smell of the sheep decreased like standing on some old guy's hearing aid, and when the sun came back again, the smell of the sheep was loud, like a clap of thunder inside a coffee cup. 

Currently reading: Trout Fishing in America, by Richard Brautigan

Currently working on: you think I can finish my dad's Christmas blanket by next Wednesday?

💗  OPH

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Temperature Tuesday

I've been so excited for today's first Temperature Tuesday! I finally get to blog about my blanket again! Honestly, I could take a picture and update every day, but that'd be overwhelming, and I'd probably get tired of it, but so far every day I'm staring down the clock, willing it to move to noon faster.

So here is 10 days in:

If you'll notice the white fluff on the ground, we did get snow!

That means one day gets sparkly thread.

For the day it snowed and the day after I was in Dover, Delaware at the Dover Downs Casino Hotel eating plates and plates of good food and playing slot machines where I won a total of $407.75! Lucky for me it's a complex, so I didn't have to go outside in the 18° weather (the grey hexagon), but it makes for a nice colorful first row.

Speaking of, I really like the way the first row is coming out.  The beginning is where the stitch marker is, and will have a black hexagon to the left of it to mark the beginning of the month.  My yarn is currently in transit, and will definitely arrive before February, but hopefully before January 18th, when I start the next row.

As for the color combinations, we might dip into the yellows, which are the 60s! The forecast is predicting 63° F for Thursday.  Right now it's a chilly 37° F.  Having yellow (60s) so close to pink (20s) would be fun, and not surprising for winter in Northern Virginia.

Oh, I should note,  I messed up in my explanation of my numbering system.  I chart I found was for 2016, a leap year, which is why I had a black hexagon for the first of the first row and the chart did not, but all the days after March came out okay.  I finally realized this year doesn't have a February 27th, so that extra space is marked for the first black hexagon.

I've also drawn up a new schematic for the blanket as well.  Instead of being 14x27 hexagons, it'll be 18x21 and look a little more square than rectangular.  It also gives it a finished measurement of around 4.5x5.25 feet instead of hitting the almost-7-foot range.  Mine's on the small side!

Along with working on the blanket, I've been very busy, and am excited to show you things, one of which is my "thermometer," a mandala with the colors going from low in the middle to highest around the edges

12-Round Mandala by Marinke Slump

Yarn: Hobby Lobby I Love This Yarn in Greybeard, Pink, Amethyst, Orchid, Stonewash, Soft Blue, Light Sage, Pistache, Sungold, Yellow, Desert Glaze, Burnt Pumpkin, Orange, Fire Red, Red
Hook: US H - 8 (5.00 mm)
Date started: January 3, 2017
Date completed: January 4, 2017

Please check out my page on the right sidebar for information on this project, and my Instagram and Facebook for updates on days in between Tuesdays.


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

2017 Temperature Weekender Blanket

What better way to begin the new year than by starting a temperature blanket!?!

What's a temperature blanket? A temperature blanket (or scarf, shawl, or snake) is an example of conceptual knitting or crochet.  There's also sky, mood, and even weight-loss projects.  In all of these you assign different colors of yarn to your chosen variable and knit or crochet a row or round or motif a day in the appropriate yarn color.  At the end of the year, or how ever long you've chosen, you have a visual representation of the temperatures or your moods. Fun!

For the past three days I've been researching and planning and making charts and finally have everything set in stone and my blanket is in progress.  I'm so excited to get to the next day to record the temperature, and have never been so interested in the forecast as now.  This is a fun project, and I hope the momentum I have going into it will stick around.

I'm going to split this into three parts, guided by the excellent series Demystifying Temperature Blankets by Stitching in the Woods, which I highly recommend if you're going to try and make one.  There are three main pieces to the puzzle that need to be figured out before you dive in: picking a temperature range, picking yarn, and picking the pattern.  I've given this a lot of time and thought, and am very happy with my choices.  So let's get to it!


First, I had to make a temperature gauge.  I live near Washington D.C., and we have all four seasons, but we rarely get temperatures under 19° and over 100°, so those were my limits. I had a scale composed of 10 colors at first, in the ROY G BIV scale, but wanted more colors. I decided every ten degrees would be its own color range (30s in purple), and then it'll be split in half, with a darker and lighter shade representing the higher and lower temperature ranges. (30° - 34° light purple; 35° - 39° dark purple).

Here is the finished chart:

In case that picture doesn't work, here is my chart again:

  • under 19° » greybeard
  • 20s           » pink
  • 30° - 34° » amethyst
  • 35° - 39° » orchid
  • 40° - 44° » stonewash
  • 45° - 49° » soft blue
  • 50° - 54° » light sage
  • 55° - 59° » pistache
  • 60° - 64° » sungold
  • 65° - 69° » yellow
  • 70° - 74° » desert glaze
  • 75° - 79° » burnt pumpkin
  • 80° - 84° » orange
  • 85° - 89° » fire red
  • 90° - 100+ » red

I decided I will take the temperature at noon, or as close to possible to noon every day, and that's what shall be represented in my blanket.


The yarn was the most fun!  Picking yarn is always my favorite part, and I'm really happy with all the colors I've chosen. I knew I was going to use worsted weight acrylic because it's cheap, good for blankets, some come in no dye lots, and there's almost every color imaginable.

I received a gift card for Hobby Lobby for my birthday (thanks uncle!) so yesterday I voyaged through the rain and terrible DMV traffic to the wonder that is Hobby Lobby and their glorious wall of I Love This Yarn worsted weight acrylic, holy cow!  I didn't know they had so many colors!

Here are my colors:

From right to left: Greybeard, Pink, Amethyst, Orchid, Stonewash, Soft Blue, Light Sage, Pistache, Sungold, Yellow, Desert Glaze, Burnt Pumpkin, Orange, Fire Red, and Red


Little did I know, choosing the pattern would give me the most trouble.  At first, I was set on doing rows and was 100% against doing motifs.  I didn't want to do a granny stripe, as I have one going, and I wanted this to be different, so I decided on a ripple.  But I still wasn't happy.  I tried the box stitch, but I couldn't get it right, and even though it's lovely, I know there's going to be some days where I'm ill or don't want to crochet so I wanted something that would be easy.  Something I'd like coming back to.  Then after hours of scouring Instagram and Pinterest I found this chart:

Source unknown.

Motifs?  But 365 is an odd number?  Ah, they added 12 blank squares for the beginning of each month, plus one extra for January 1 of next year for a total of 378 squares.  So then I switched to motifs, except the extra for January 1 of next year will be blank with '2017' embroidered on it. So, forget stripes, we're doing motifs.  But which motif design?

Yesterday, I finally settled on the Weekender Blanket pattern by Sandra Paul of Cherry Heart.  Hexagons are my favorite shape, and these are quick and easy.  They have an easy join-as-you-go method, and her pattern provides for filler hexies to make the blanket square, plus a border.  I also think this will be interesting; I haven't seen very many hexagon temperature blankets.  I've decided to use black yarn for the first hexagon of each month, the filler hexies, and the border.

Here are my hexagons from the 1st (53° - light sage), 2nd (44° - stonewash), and 3rd (45° - soft blue).

Since this will take up all of 2017, Tuesdays will now be known as Temperature Tuesdays, and that will be when I update with progress.  I don't want to spam ya'al with daily pictures!

Also please check out the Temperature Blanket Yarn-Along on Facebook for help and pictures!

Hope everyone had a great New Year!