Mrs. Blane Crochets

just a yarn loving girl, fueled by jesus and coffee

Friday Faves

Episode 1.1

One of the things I wanted to accomplish when starting my blog was to share some of my favorite things. I absolutely intend for these to be crochet related, but who knows, maybe one day I’ll finally find my perfect coffee drink at Starbucks and just want to share! Favorite patterns, designers, notions, hooks, yarn…the list could go on and on and on…
So without further ado, my favs of this week!

The Cosmic Cowl by evolvecrochet

I just love this cowl!!!

Talk about popping colors! This cowl uses a gorgeous dyed marino wool by Montana Crochet in a variegated yarn with a pop of bright color that is just so eye catching! I wasn’t fast enough to order a kit, but I do have a somewhat similarly dyed variegated yarn from one of my Hobby Lobby yarn clearance trips that I want to try with this pattern. I just love the combination of the ribbed edge with the camel and puff stitches! As soon as I saw it on Ravelry, I knew that I had to feature it! It is just so eye catching! It also has me itching to try my hand at dyeing! Time to add that to my crafting goals for 2019. Check out the pattern here and look for shop updates from Montana Crochet here. The next one is set for February 11th!

Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick

My new go-to yarn for any bulky projects

Who doesn’t like projects that work up quickly? No one I know! I had always oohed and aahed at this yarn while walking down the yarn aisle, but I always just passed it by. I don’t use a lot of super bulky yarn, because I often feel like it’s not a lot of yardage for the price. But before Christmas, we were planning a trip to my mom’s in Tennessee and my husband asked for a new hat. While I was drooling over clearance yarn (a favorite past time of mine), he found a skein of Thick & Quick and decided that’s the yarn he wanted, because he liked the color. From then I was sold.
I like that it is an acrylic/wool blend, with 80% acrylic, so it has warmth from the wool, but easy care of acrylic. It’s really the best of both worlds. Lion Brand’s website says that you can wash it in temps up to 105 degrees F, and machine dry on the hottest setting, just don’t try to use an iron or it will melt the acrylic! I used this pattern for the beanies I made my family for our trip, and everyone loved them! Plus they kept my Florida kiddos warm in the brisk Tennessee weather.
One trick I have to making this yarn worth the price tag is to never buy it at full price! It runs at a fair price at Walmart, but if you wait for a sale at Joann or Michael’s, you’ll get a great deal. Normal price is around $7.99, but I got mine for $4.53 a piece with a sale and a coupon. I’ll take that savings any day!

Locking Stitch Markers

Such bright colors!

I just love a big pile of stitch markers! I bought these on Amazon last year, and they have been amazing. It always seemed like no matter what I did, I would lose my stitch markers. I finally just decided to spend the 6 bucks plus change and get a lifetime supply to never have to worry about it again. Does anyone REALLY need 200 stitch markers? Probably not. But it makes me happy, and they’re kept in a nice little drawer, so Marie Kondo can keep her hands off! I’ve also tried many types of stitch markers – homemade, bobby pins, bits of leftover yarn, flexible ones – and these ones are the best by far. I keep a small stash for traveling in my crochet bag, but the majority stay in my organizer. The bonus is I can take my drawer out, so if I need them with me on the couch, they have a place to stay instead of falling into the abyss.

Huckleberry Scarf by Meghan Makes Do

Swoon!

I am proud to say that Florida participated in Winter this year. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to finish my scarf in time to wear it for our version of the polar vortex because I was laid out sick, but I hope to finish it in the next few days. I just loooove this pattern. It looks like it would be much harder than it actually is by using half double crochets in the back loop to create texture and interest.
Another thing I LOVE about this pattern is it allowed me to use another clearance yarn I’ve had sitting around waiting for a rainy day. I used Yarn Bee Andes Alpaca in Ocean and oh, it is so squishy and dreamy! It sheds a bit, but it is absolutely a dream to work with.
This pattern was made for a Furls crochet a long (CAL), and the can be found on Furls blog and Ravelry. The last installment was updated on the 29th, so you can make it from start to finish without having to wait for the next part! Which leads me to my final fave this week…

Furls Alpha Series Hook

Words just aren’t sufficient. Go buy one now!

I will never hide my love for Furls products. They truly saved my ability to crochet when I was diagnosed with tendinitis in my right wrist. The doctor put me in a restrictive brace and told me to rest it for a month and come back. When it was time for my recheck, they added an anti-inflammatory, and told me to wear the brace around the clock for another month. And on it went. I was miserable. I couldn’t pick up my children with ease, I couldn’t carry anything in my dominant hand, I had trouble typing and writing at work, and I couldn’t crochet. I had a run-in with wrist problems before that caused me to put my hooks down for months at a time, but I was saddened that my creative outlet was stifled. I tried Clover hooks and they helped for a while, but my wrist pain came back full force. I finally ordered my first Furls hook, and it was a night and day difference. I was hooked, and I haven’t looked back. I gradually bought Odyssey hooks until my collection was complete. I had always wanted to try an Alpha Series hook, but the thought of paying $80 for one hook was just inconceivable to me. I have always been happy with my Odyssey hooks, so why rock the boat?
I found out why I should have rocked the boat a long time ago! I received a promotional email from Furls and jumped at the chance to save 33% on one of these beauties. I decided on a 6.5mm K hook in Tulipwood, although Cocobolo was a close second. I received my hook within a few days, and sat down with the Huckleberry Scarf pattern to try it out. I could not put my hook down. It was just effortless. I’ve heard some people say that they have to adjust to the lightness, or the size, but when I was using it, it was like it was made for my hand. I still love my Odyssey collection, and I never thought that I would find a hook that I liked more, but I think I have. My stitches on the Huckleberry Scarf are the most even tensioned I think I’ve ever crocheted. My tension is normally a bit on the tighter side, but not so with this hook. If you ever have the opportunity to use or purchase an Alpha Series hook from Furls, don’t hesitate. I can’t wait to eventually add to my collection!

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