Monday, June 4, 2012

Emergency Crochet

On Friday I looked at the weather forecast for Sunday in dismay - cold, wet and windy.  Not really what we wanted for the day celebrating the Queen's Diamond jubilee!  Nor was it what we wanted for our village meal.

With a theme of red, white and blue I had chosen a long tee shirt dress bedecked with union flags.  This would have been perfect on a lovely sunny day but not so comfortable in the cold and wet.  So I had a mooch around online to find a quick crochet pattern and found this super quick and easy free pattern for Kirsty's Granny Shrug

Jubilee bolero
So I rummaged around in my not inconsiderable collection of yarn and found 4 x 100g balls of dark blue acrylic yarn for the main body of it.  This yarn is the remains of a batch that was given to my mum by a neighbour for her to knit my school cardigan when I started at Grammar school which means it is at least 44 years old.  See how good it can be to hoard?!!!  You never know when things will be of use.

The white yarn is another really old treasure - a really thin, bobbly terylene yarn left over from a summer top I knit.  I had to really search hard for the red though as I don't use it often.  Thankfully there was a full ball of Rowan cotton glace from a Jean Moss intarsia cardigan I knit years ago.

The pattern uses a chunky yarn so I just worked with 3 strands held together.  As I had such a limited supply of red and white I started with a hexagon knit it all three colours and then did the main body in blue.

It's such a simple idea  with simple construction - it's just 2 large, floppy granny hexagons which you fold in half then seam up the top of the sleeves and join in the middle back.
Back view
To finish off I edged all round the bottom, sleeves and neck in double crochet then did 2 rows of trebles on each centre front.  I attached to sets of ties; one at the neck for decoration as I liked the top folded back, and then one at the bust to hold the edges together as it gaped a bit otherwise.

It really was  a quick and easy project (it took no more than 4 hours in total over a couple of evenings) and I'm going to share it at our next knit and natter in the village as one of our group is just learning to crochet and it would be a great project for her to try.  I'll probably donate it to a charity shop because it isn't a colour combo that I wear but I think I will crochet another one in a summery yarn as it's a pretty little cover-up.

Classy hey?!!!
So here's my finished outfit complete with stripey tights and boots (in case the ground was muddy).  Sorry, I don't have the software to turn it round so you'll have to crane your neck to see it.

Young at heart
On the way home we stopped for a swing.  The seats were wet and I so got  wet bottom but I didn't care!

In garden news, I was annoyed to discover that my beautiful prostrate rosemary had been attacked by something.  Half of the foliage was all brown and crispy.

Prostrate Rosemary
Then I spotted this this little beetle nearby on a sage leaf.  The culprit was a Rosemary beetle.

Rosemary beetle
He may look pretty with his metallic body with beautiful stripes but they are a pest that can devastate crops of rosemary, sage, thyme and lavender.  I'd never seen one before although I knew that they had arrived in the UK, specifically London, in the 1990s but obviously they have spread.

Now I know why one of my sage plants died right back last year and why sections of my large rosemary bushes went all brown and crispy last autumn.  I'm now doing a beetle patrol each morning but the grubs are just starting to appear now too and they aren't as easy to spot.

27th May
To finish off, as I haven't posted a sky photo for a while, here's a lovely sunset from the end of May.

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