When it comes to yarn scraps of almost any size, I am what is technically known as a gazillionaire. So when I was making a list of self-imposed rules of engagement for this year’s state fair project, I decided that I would “limit” myself to yarns I currently own with a goal of reducing my yarn scarps.
I am also fairly time limited this year. While I am starting 12 days earlier than I usually do, I need to have the finished project turned in seven weeks earlier than what I am accustomed too, so my crochet season is a little over five weeks shorter than usual, so while I have generally had 70 days to complete my project from start to finish, this year I have 33 days to complete my project.
Fortunately for me, the guidelines for entry also have some limits particularly as they pertain to size. Adding to my good fortune, I actually read the guidelines and know what they are and am planning accordingly.
Initially, I toyed with the idea of re-making the Better Homes and Gardens Granny Square Sampler Afghan which I have made twice before:
I set aside this idea rather quickly because each square is different, and because of the limited window of time, a single motif is the more efficient way to go.
But I still wanted something with a retro flair to it, because coming to New Mexico is really like traveling back in time, and I offer as Exhibit A, this BelAir DeLuxe parked on Central Avenue last week:
To that end, I was looking for a one motif pattern that would be interesting, but would not be too taxing, and I finally settled on a pattern known as the Flamboyant Afghan.
First published and popularized in the 1970s, the pattern is very evocative of the times. I have played around with the pattern before, but today was my first full-time foray into the intricacies of the pattern. I started by making two squares with hooks that differed in both size and brand. The squares were, to my mind, adequate, but not awesome:
I knew that part of the problem was the colors I had chosen, but I also felt there was something not quite working with the gauge, so I got out a favorite 5.0 mm hook and tried again:
I liked this square a bit better. Using the same color for two rounds instead of changing as often as I had seemed to give it a better look, and then, when I put it next to one of the squares that had more color changes:
the two squares, while of different gauges, seemed to strengthen each other.
I do not have time this year to second guess and reframe things, so I have to make my gauge decisions by Saturday morning, and then I will move forward, one stitch at a time.
And if you are interested in the difference I see between Art and crAft, I wrote this piece at Medium.