I am a firm believer in owning up to my crochet mistakes.
I can’t deny I love showing off a finished, perfect project – who doesn’t? I’m proud of my successes and I enjoy sharing them with you all.
But as a more experienced crocheter, I also feel it’s good to share the mistakes, the cock-ups, the catastrophes – even just the ‘ugh, I wish I hadn’t done that’ moments. Because we all have them – even those of us who have been doing it for a long while and who seem to produce perfection every time. Well, I for one do not. I am not perfect. I am gloriously imperfect, and sometimes ingloriously imperfect, too.
In that spirit, I have just made an unbelievable cock-up while washing a crocheted blanket. I feel like an absolute numpty, and I am more upset than probably I should be. Because yes, I washed a blanket, as I do every now and then. I washed it with something else (a couple of pillows) which probably explains why it came out of the machine wetter than normal. Too wet to just hang up anywhere, so I put it into the tumble dryer on a low setting that I have successfully used many, many times before with my blankets.
Yeah, you see what’s coming, don’t you?
Acrylic yarn is great. It’s wonderful. It’s versatile, it’s washable, these days it’s often very soft, and of course Stylecraft Special DK comes in a huge range of colours. I love acrylic yarn, especially for blankets.
Acrylic yarn doesn’t like heat.
It’s not the worst case of killed yarn I’ve ever seen, but it’s there. It’s lost stretch, the stitches have hardened and shrunk a little, and although it’s not bad enough that anyone non-crafty will ever see it…I will. I will always now see it.
Why, I am berating myself, did I wash and dry it while absolutely exhausted and not thinking clearly? Why did I do that? Why didn’t I clock how wet it was, and at the very least put it on a spin cycle before trying to dry it? Why, why, why? This serves no purpose and yet this evening I have no way out of the cycle of self-recrimination :S
It could be an awful lot worse. I do know this. Why am I so sure? Because it’s not actually a particularly complex blanket. I adore it, it’s one of my very earliest blankets, but it’s just (ha, just!) an awful lot of small granny squares arranged in a beautiful pattern. It’s an ‘Around the World’ crochet quilt, in cream and shades of blue and purple, and I have loved it ever since I made it.
It’s a lot of squares. 729 three-round granny squares, to be precise.
It was the first blanket I made for me. The ten blankets before then had all gone to other people. This was MY blanket. Made just for me.
The thing you have to bear in mind is that I’m on the autistic spectrum – what used to be called an Aspie, before the name Aspergers was merged with autism into ‘autistic spectrum disorder’ – and I will never, ever, ever be able to unsee the damage done from this blanket getting too hot. Not ever. And this is the blanket that lives on my bed. Even in summer, it’s over the end of the bed.
Hands up who can see where this one’s going?
I made meticulous notes in Ravelry at the time. I know how many squares to do in each colour. I know how much of each colour I used. I know what hook I used, I know how long it took me. I know that I crochet looser now than I did then, which may mean it works up faster. It will mean the blanket will end up being a little bigger than the first iteration.
I have nearly finished a cardigan I’ve been working at off-and-on for a few months (just pockets to do, and ends to sew in). I have Under the Sea to keep going with. And I was looking for my next project.
Last time it took me three months to make the blanket, without working on anything else at the time.
Let’s see how long it takes me this time, shall we?