Monday, March 29, 2010

What's In My Crochet Bag - Doily Edition

I would like to hereby recommend to the yarn crafting community of the entire world, that we do away, permanently with the term: doily. I mean, first of all, it's a horrible sounding word. Doily. It makes me want to spit. And in the second place, is there a person in all of creation that doesn't think immediately of a little old lady and teacups you're not allowed to use when they hear the word doily? Hmm... Is there.

Personally, I love doilies, or, as I will further refer to them, Whatsits.

Whatsits are all about the math, baby. They are an exact science. There is no fudging in a whatsit. No, "Hm, I don't understand that part, so I'm just going to do this and get past it." No making stuff up. I mean, conceivably some people make up doily patterns, I assume. People better than me who enjoy all the freakin' math. Not me. I don't like the math, I just like to look at the math.

I have never before altered a whatsit pattern. At all. In the least. So, understand when I tell you what I am about to tell you, what it took from me, emotionally. I was nervous, nay, a nervous wreck. It could have gone badly, very badly.

Suze sent me this lovely yarn. It's Bamboo by South West Trading Company and the color is Fiery Red. It's lovely. Absolutely a dream to work. So soft and smooth and shows every little stitch perfectly. (Which is sometimes absolutely not what you want, but sometimes you want the world to see just how amazingly skilled you are. No, I'm not bragging, why do you ask?) Anyway, I was so happy to get this lovely yarn, I had no idea what to make with it, but I wanted to get started right away! So, I made something for Suze. Something I still haven't sent her, because I am a horrible blogger and friend.

Anyway, when the newness wore off and I really started to think about what I would like to do with it, I began to think about this chair I have. I began to think about how well the color of this yarn coordinates with said chair and how the cat loves to sharpen her claws on the top of the chair and has made a place that I cannot fix right on the arch of the wingback. I started to think about how a doily would fix that. I mean a whatsit.

So, I got out my thread crochet book. And I found this one. I really love it. The pattern is "Delicate Doily" and it is designed for #20 crochet thread. Which I didn't want. I wanted bamboo sock weight yarn. I cogitated. After a while, I decided to give it a go. First of all, I wanted the doily much bigger than the pattern called for, so using a heavier weight yarn and a larger hook made perfect sense. Secondly, I wanted it to have a slightly chunkier, significant look than most doilies. The pattern says delicate, but I didn't want delicate. I wanted weighty. I wanted something that didn't look like it was about to float away.

And, here it is. It definitely doesn't look like it's about to float away. The good news is it worked perfectly. There was a tiny bit of puckering around those pineapple looking parts, but I thought they would probably come out with blocking.

Unfortunately, I never block anything but whatsits and I have never made a whatsit this big, so I had nothing to block it on. So, I just washed it and hung it up. Which could have been disastrous, but I figured I could always re-block. I hoped. But, it wasn't disastrous and the the puckering came right out.

The size is perfect. Just perfect. Exactly the size I imagined, when I dared to imagine this thing completed. The cat hasn't bothered it, yet, but my hope is that it will freak her out and she'll just move on. If not, I'm pretty sure I'll have to kill her.

*Please forgive the photography today. I was in a hurry and it was early in the morning and there was NO natural light to be had. Also, just ignore the Christmas wrapping paper propped in my corner, I had no idea that was there. Also, whatever that red thing in floor next to the chair is. Furthermore, I had never noticed how dirty that arm is. I may have to crochet something to cover the arms.


Suze said...

That is so gorgeous! You totally need to get that bad boy into some natural light for pictures where we can see the whole thing.
I love chunky lace. Love it.

Jenn-Jenn, the Mother Hen said...

You and Suze are both so talented with the yarn-y things. Everything I attempt to make with yarn, thread or material looks like ass. Total ass. I give up trying to be crafty in any way. I'll stick with baking. Well, except that I STILL haven't made (nor sent, obviously) the goodies I promised you last year. I'm going to that special place in hell reserved for bad friends. I really am. You guys will get your goodies.... eventually. You really will. Much love.

Jessi said...

Suze - Thanks!! I'm hoping to get some better shots this weekend. I was in such a rush to get this in time for Monday!

Jenn - Oh, honey, don't quit. Have I told you how many years I did nothing but churn out granny squares, or how I had been crocheting for 9 years (!) before I figured out why everything I did in the round started unraveling from the middle after a few weeks? Or about the ill-fated rainbow blanket that turned out to be too big to use for carpet? Or the dishrags I made from acrylic? Or the booties that were all different sizes? It's all trial and error and getting better a tiny bit at a time. I am always shocked when something works out this nicely, I promise.

Mrs. Allroro said...

Gorgeous! Like those curtains! ]

I love that chair too. Perfect solution. Try a scrub brush with a dab of dish soap and a little water on the arm before you cover it up. It might come right out.

I think I love your house, based on teh curtain and teh chair, and of course the whatsit.