The Crafter

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This week was super easy ~ just two rounds ~ one single crochet and the other a "bobble" stitch of Dc5tog.  Okay, the second round was a little bit challenging in that we had to work on the wrong side.  And man oh MAN did it hurt my hand.

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The second round of Week 8 was fairly quick too ~ Xs made up of treble crochets.  Amazing how much more TV you get to actually see when crocheting repetitive stitches.  Teeheeheee.  I quite like the purple border ~ brings a sense of calm to the chaos.

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Having frogged and added extra squares, it was time to begin the border again.  The first part of Week 8 is pretty basic ~ single crochet stitches in groups of three.  Boring, but thankfully fairly quick to get around even with the additional squares added.

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Despite having completed week 7 a couple of weeks ago, half way through week 8's clues I decided I was really unhappy with the size of my afghan.  (That, plus I found a mistake that I simply couldn't live with).  So I frogged one and a half rounds.

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Part 3 took me a bit longer than Parts 1 and 2.  Obviously, the stitch count is growing so each round takes more time to complete than the previous, but my indecision over colour placement within the Rustic Sophie is also proving time consuming.

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As mentioned previously, we were given two weeks to complete the latest clue.  It was hardly challenging enough to take two weeks, so after weaving the first four squares together I put it aside in favour of working on my Sophies.

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I'm loving making my Sophies.  They're so interesting to make.  Each row is different from the previous so there is no chance in getting bored.  And thus far I'm enjoying playing around with colour placement on the Rustic version.

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Oh. My. God.  This is SUCH a rewarding project ~ on so many levels!  Unlike the other crochet along, this one is challenging (both in colour placement as well as technique) and in Part 1 alone I have already learned something new.

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Hmmm... I've been procrastinating.  I took one look at this week's clue (which, I might add, encompasses TWO WEEKS, sigh), and lost the will to continue with this CAL.  It just looks too busy for my liking ~ there's way too much going on.

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I briefly mentioned last week that I'm about to embark upon a new crochet along.  This one actually began back in January and runs for 20 weeks.  Obviously, I'm starting late, but I'm not alone in doing so ~ and best of all, there's no cut-off date.

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As predicted, I whizzed through the last 11 squares in no time at all.  Please, please, PLEASE make the next step more challenging.  We're officially half way through the crochet along and I'm yet to learn anything new.

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Having read the feedback following the release of clue #5 I knew this week's task was going to be super quick and easy.  Disappointingly so.  The vast majority of the CAL participants were thrilled that they had time to catch up  Catch up?  Seriously??

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Once I figured out how to follow the crochet diagram for Week 4 I whizzed through the 20 squares.  Thankfully the two rows were interesting and challenging enough to keep me from getting bored and I didn't find it at all tedious.

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Ooh... it's growing!!  So this week we return to our main colour (MC) or as Yarnspirations refer to it, Contrast A (teeheeheee).  In some ways, this is definitely the trickiest clue thus far.  But still pretty basic stitches ~ nothing I've not done before.

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Part 2 of Week 3 was even quicker than Part 1.  Either it was easier or I'm getting faster at hooking.  Most likely a bit of both.  After all, each row in itself is pretty basic and I get to repeat the pattern four times per square on twenty squares.

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As predicted, Part 2 of Week 3 is pretty quick ~ just a whole bunch of chains with a few stitches in-between to anchor them.  Of course, I still have 19 more to complete by tomorrow to remain fully up to date.  Good thing we're off to the dance studio tonight.

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Part 1 of Week 3 was pretty quick to complete and I suspect Part 2 will be equally as quick.  Which is just as well as I no longer have as much time for crocheting now that summer break is over and university is back in full swing.

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So after the excitement of Wednesday died down (read: confusion was resolved), I was able to begin Week 3's instructions with my mind at peace.  Yes, I'm a Type A personality ~ an undeniable perfectionist.  So no, I can't just 'go with the flow'.

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I caught up!!  Well, I'm still one (err.. two?) day(s) behind, but that's close enough.  Go me!  Actually, it's rather fortunate that I was a little behind as there was a flurry of heated discussion  online following the release of Clue #3.

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I was rather excited to discover when clue #2 was released that the twenty granny squares from Week 1 were merely a base for more exciting things to come and yesterday I made a start on the next level.  What do we think of the colours thus far?

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I finally finished all 20 granny squares!  In the end, they didn't take all that long to make ~ I simply wasn't working on them.  I could easily have caught up ~ had I actually spent time on them ~ but I didn't.  So I remain a week behind.  Never mind.

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A week behind and the first component of the mystery afghan completed... a basic granny square.  No surprises there ~ several people complained as soon as the first clue was released ~ expressing their disappointment at the simplicity of the first task.

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I recently signed up for a Mystery Crochet Along where each week we're given 'clues' (instructions) for a project (in this case an afghan ~ aka blanket).  The idea is that over the course of ten weeks you learn new techniques as a part of a community.

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Last year I answered a request to crochet teeny tiny hats for angel babies.  The experience was at once humbling, healing, and incredibly rewarding.  I have just completed my second batch of hats, ready to donate to maternity hospitals.

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Like most children, Miss 11-going-on-101 has been given a number of soft toys over the years (including a few hand-me-downs).  She hasn't played with them in years, but holds on to a few for sentimental reasons.

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Bookmarks.  Of the physical variety.  You know, for that archaic dusty object in which printed paper is bound together.  Where pages are turned (as opposed to scrolled) and markers are required to track where you are up to. 

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One day last year I happened to turn the TV on to find Astar demonstrating how to make works of art using buttons.  I had never heard of Button Art before but with my experience of mosaics, I was immediately drawn to the concept. 

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Miss 11-going-on-101 loves crafting gifts for people and has done so ever since she was little.  Back in 2010 I taught her the basic crochet chain and she created bookmarks for her nearest and dearest as Christmas gifts. 

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With summer fast approaching it is becoming far too hot to wear a jacket whilst out walking.  None of my workout clothes contain sufficient (or any for that matter) pockets to carry the house key, doggie-do bags, and the all important mobile phone. 

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Okay, so this isn't exactly what one would categorise as Arts and Crafts, however, it did require a certain amount of creativity and of course the use of my hands. Besides, I'm highly unlikely to undertake a large enough volume of DIY projects to warrant creating a whole new blog section for it.

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Having only ever worked on counted cross stitch patterns, this printed kit seriously lacked the challenge factor.  However, where it fell short in grey-mater stimulus, it made up for in warm-fuzzies and was a great way to pass time whilst awaiting the birth of my precious girl.

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This cross stitch project was commissioned by my dear aunt for a very special man in her life.  The image clearly isn't something I would choose for myself, however, this labour of love was so rewarding knowing the joy it brought to the recipient.

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This is by far the most challenging cross stitch project I have ever undertaken.  The entire image is made up of stitching ~ thousands of tiny crosses ~ in a vast array of colours. 

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The minute I set eyes on him I fell in love with this stunning image of a Snow Leopard.  His piercing melancholy eyes speak to my soul and remind me of my faithful feline companion who had recently passed away.   Unsurprisingly, I named this picture 'Mici' in his honour.

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I honestly can't remember what inspired me to try cross stitch, but I do recall being drawn to this gorgeous image of a young girl Collecting Shells on the beach. 

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As the grand-daughter of a painter and the daughter of a seamstress, it is unsurprising that I have an appreciation for arts and crafts.

Admittedly, I may never become a celebrated artist, but that doesn't stop me from dabbling in pretty much anything creative from sketching to needlepoint; sculpture to crochet; mosaics to sewing.