Monday, May 25, 2009

The Triumphant Return of What's In My Crochet Bag

Okay, so I know I promised this on Friday, but I've decided to move the special to Mondays, because 1. it gives me all weekend to get around to taking pictures and 2. it means that I don't have to think as hard to come up with something to write about on Mondays.

So, with no further ado...

What's in my Crochet Bag!

My church group chooses a mission each year to help the community. In the past, we've made blankets for displaced kids, collected suitcases for foster children, painted memory boxes for grieving parents, and painted a women's shelter (but that was before I joined). This year, we are making chemo hats. There are a few goals to a good chemo cap. 1. Warm, or not. One of the cancer survivors in our group tells us that she really needed a warm cap to sleep in, but a lot of the patterns I've found were kinda lacy, so I'm guessing that some (women especially) like pretty ones for day wear. 2. Tight. Because of the hair loss during chemo, the caps need to fit those of us with hair fairly snugly to ensure that they will fit those without. 3. Cheery. No one wants a depressing hat to make them more depressed.

I know the gray and white doesn't seem to define cheeriness, but I think it's happy looking. And very warm and slightly snug. For those of you who are experienced in the fiber arts, you may have said, "Hey, that's knitted. I thought Jessi couldn't knit." You would be right. On both counts. This fabulous chapeau was created using a complete cheater tool known as a knitting loom.
These are my looms. It's basically a very methodical method of wrapping and hooking and in the end you have a hat. This is my second try and I'm sure any experienced knitter (or shopper) can look at it and pick out at least 30 mistakes (that's when I stopped counting). But trust me, waaaay better than my first attempt. Now, I know that these looms will not sate me for long. I mean, I still think that sooner or later I'm going to end up with "I Can Knit, for Dummies!" But in the meantime, I'm knitting hats. Sort of.

The flower is crochet. Lion Brand newsletter has been featuring some crochet flowers and it's very exciting and all, and I made a chrysanthemum. (I have since lost it. I swear I was going to post a picture and share the hilarity.) It looked like a big yellow yarn ball, but without the balliness. It was kinda sad. So, I made this flower up. It's my first original pattern. If you are interested, scroll to the bottom. It's not like I've invented the wheel, but I am quite proud.

On a side note, I have felt a good deal of guilt about calling this (periodic at best) feature "What's in my Crochet Bag," because of my complete lack of crochet bag. I have a crochet basket and a few project bags that are holding half blankets and such, but last week, I dug frantically through my closet at 7:25 a.m. to come up with a bag to hold my scrap yarn to take to the hat-making-meeting. And I'm pretty excited to announce that it worked out quite well and while I'm keeping my huge crochet basket and my handful of project bags, I know have a general crochet bag. For things like this. The looms even fit.

For some reason, in this picture all you can really see is yarn, but it's a cool bag. It's last summer's purse, (which makes me think my purses are too freakin' big) but it's working out really well.

Crochet Five Petal Flower (by Jessi)
Ch 4. Slip stitch to first chain, forming a loop.
Rnd. 1: Ch 1. Sc 15. Slip st to first sc.
Rnd. 2: In first sc, 1 sc and 2 dc. In second sc, 2 dc and 1 sc. *Slip st in next sc. In next sc, 1 sc and 2 dc. In next sc, 2 dc and 1 sc. Repeat from * three more times to form five petals. Slip st. to last sc. Fasten off.


Suze said...

Kee-yoot! I would think that another criterium for a chemo hat would be that it be made from something hypoallergenic like cotton or other soft plant fibers or acrylic blend. I mean, I don't know if chemo makes your skin extra sensitive, but I wouldn't be surprised.

Did you know that my brother's girlfriend is in chemo for Hodgkin's? She's 2/3 done, and they're pretty optimistic that she'll recover fully, but still. It sucks right now. I skipped the hat and made her a blanket (partly b/c I don't know what size head she has!)

Jessi said...

We were just told "soft." My understanding is that everyone has different reactions, so you never know, but that's a really good thought. I've been using scraps of baby yarn, mostly, but I bet the organic stuff would probably be better.

I had no idea about Josif's girlfriend. That's rough. I'm going to add her to my prayer list at church. Thanks for telling me.