Tuesday, April 03, 2007

This is not a democracy -- it's a yarnocracy

I swatched for Thermal, and I think I will knit it after all -- but later. I really do have a ton to do in the next three weeks, so it's just not a good time to start a sweater. Instead, I need a project I can easily pick up and put down, and one that involves lots of quick gratification. And I have just the thing...

While thrifting a few weeks ago, I came upon something very exciting: a giant collection of old tapestry yarn. You know -- those little 15-yard bunches of colour-fast, moth-proof 100% wool. (I don't even know what it's meant for. Needlepoint?) If it had been a proper thrift shop, the whole pile would've been in a garbage bag for five bucks, but it was V@lue Vill@ge, so the huge amount of wool had been separated into a hundred separate little overpriced bags. I spent about fifteen dollars on five different colours.

I knew I wanted to crochet another blanket, this time with a vintage (1940s-ish) palette. Lots of bloggers have been crocheting granny squares, but I didn't want to use my 1930s/1940s colours in squares that make me think of the 1970s. I looked online at various afghan squares and settled on a pattern called Cluster Flower Square. I was very excited to find fifteen little skeins in the perfect shade of Depression-era jadeite green, and I want that to be the main colour. So I crocheted a few squares, using the green as the border around the centre circle. I think if I also use the green to join all the squares, it'll look a bit like a green blanket with multicoloured polka dots.

So far, I'm very excited about this. My first crocheted blanket -- which is this close to being done; it just needs a border -- was a great project for using up leftovers, and it's bright and colourful and cheerful, but I adore the colours of this vintage tapestry yarn. However, each crocheted square uses just over one little skein of green, and I only had fifteen. Only one thing to do: I went back to le boutique V.V. hoping there'd be more.

Good news: there was plenty of my green left -- about twenty wee skeins, plus (jackpot!) a big ball of the stuff. So I'll be able to make a green blanket after all, plus I grabbed a bag with single skeins of pink and a darker green, which I can throw into a few of the circles. Plus, I had a visit from the thrift fairy, who confirmed my crafty choices by leaving a special treat for me in the kitchen aisle:


Yep, a little FireKing jadeite bowl ($1.99), which is filled here with the contents of another $1.99 bag: a dozen nice old wooden spools of cotton and silk thread, and two strips of antique crochet tatted trim. Oh, I love it when a thrift comes together.

27 comments:

Stacey said...

the color of the jadite is so pretty! a perfect spring green!

meegiemoo said...

Excellent VV score!

Adrienne " A little dramatic at times" said...

Beautiful!!!!!!!!!! Love the squares!

Michelle said...

It's already gorgeous. You are my hero.

Joan in Reno said...

Love the bowl and wooden spools. I would have a ton of those spools if I had saved all of the ones I used. I think the lace in back may be tatting, without looking too close.

kris said...

ooh this is going to be a beauty! stop tempting me with the crocheted blankets!

Veronique said...

Oh, what a lovely green color! You are going to have 2 great blankets :)

maryse said...

those little squares are so pretty. nice work.

carolyn said...

dude. i love what you are doing with those. but those little flowers? don't say 40s to me. anymore than granny squares say 70s to me. they all just say "ooo pretty little crochet" to me. :) plus maybe since it looks like a very similar green to what alicia is using on her granny squares, they remind me of them whether they're actually a different pattern or not. :)

wow you're becoming quite the crocheter!!! impressive.

PCR said...

I absolutely love "Bring it on" and that is one of my favorite quotes. Thanks for making me laugh out loud!

The crochet squares are beautiful. I'm very impressed with your thrifting skills.

djb said...

Blanky is gorgeous! Wish I was better at using a crotch, as the first cool Autumn night have arrived. I think I actually needed my doona last night, but it was packed away, and I was too tired to get up so I just suffered...Boo hoo!

the girl with the bamboo sticks said...

hey! i've been reading your blog for about a month or two (ever since i started mine) and its really beginning to hit home. your entries i mean.

oh, the days that i could knit and read endlessly without worry or concern. but alas, they are gone (at least until summer) due to papers upon papers and hours upon hours of class work.

i admire how you keep on knittin'!

Nicole said...

I let out an audible sigh when I saw that Fire King bowl. Someday I will photograph and blog my Fire King bowl with spout and what we around here call the "pretty plate."

Loving the crochet. Someday, I, too will get around to picking up the hook.

Chris said...

I am so jealous of your little bowl! And wishing I wasn't so busy at work, so I could've gone thrifting over lunch...

vanessa said...

that blanket is going to be beautiful!
there's not a lot of good thrifting to be had around here. although once i found 7 or so balls of le gran mohair but another shopper literally took it out of my hands for herself! i should have fought her for it...

Steph said...

asdflj
Scuze me. Just wiping the drool off my keyboard.

You are my VV hero - Fire King? Sweet. Yarn stash? even sweeter.

Did you watch the Juno pre-show? One of the nominees said his outfit had been supplied by "Valooie Villahgie". Heh heh.

Mariko said...

FIREKING! AGHHHH!!!!!! I haven't seen my collection since we moved. Soon, my little jadeite lovies, soon!

claudia said...

Waffle stitch got the best of you?

;-)

jennie said...

lady, we've got the same taste, 'cause that blanket and the little jadeite bowl? Love. true love. :)

www.twin-knit.com

Protagitron said...

What a fabulous, optimistic shade of green. Great thrift!

Tish said...

Heehee. Were you chewing on a big ol' cigar when your thrift came together? My kids all have names that start with M (it just sorta happened..really..). Anyhow, if my husband had had his way my son Murphy would be named Murdoch and called Mad Dog. Such is the hubsters love for the A Team (and my oldest worships at the boot-clad feet of Mr T). Love the retro colors and the little Fire King bowl.

Adrian said...

You are a evil, tempting crocheted blanket genius, putting that bright red with that soft green.

Perfect perfect perfect. Now I want one of my own.

La Cabeza Grande said...

Your vintage finds are so terrific! And hooray for you on finding your crochet mojo. I so enjoy the way you pull these colours together!

meg said...

Wonderful! I love your squares, they're beautiful. Your blanket will be just gorgeous!

chez shoes said...

Wow - the goddesses of thrifting were certainly smiling on you this week!

ali said...

Those squares are looking wonderful, love the vintage color scheme!
I clicked over from a comment you left on another blog after seeing your name was Alison, spelled the same way mine is (only I've gone by ali for years...) Anyway, just thought I'd say 'hi'!
Happy knitting,
ali

Tarilyn said...

Sweet! I love all of those colors together! Lucky gal. I agree, those blocks are much more suitable for that era. Just lovely.