Saturday, June 7, 2008

Frog, Froggier, Froggiest

The past week brought a new low in my knitting adventures. I cast on a variety of designs, frogged them, cast on a few more experiments, and frogged those as well. Finally, I cast down my knitting needles and went off in search of Something Different.

As you will see, Something Different turned out to be crochet. Many years ago, my mother gave me intensive instruction. However, my crochet exercises revolved around floofy stuff like doilies, pillowcase edgings, and a few mohair shawls that were foisted onto elderly friends who were always complaining of the cold.

While I was going through my piles of lace that were ultimately donated to the Lacis Museum, I ran across a ruffled doily (shudder) that I made when I was about 12 years old. I sneaked it into the donation pile and shipped it off to San Francisco (ha, ha Mary Francis! You're stuck with it now!).

I hadn't touched a crochet hook, other than to bind off a knitted edging, until this week.


This adorable pattern was perfect for a refresher--each one took about an hour to make. You can find the superb, detailed instructions here, should you decide to follow in my tottering footsteps.

The green yarn is Noro something-or-other, and the rest of the frog was made with pink and white Cascade 220. I have to say that three minutes into working with Noro, my hands started to itch with a ferocity usually reserved for a terminal case of poison ivy. I also wasn't thrilled with the knots that appeared every 10 yards. Yes. No kidding. No wonder the yarn was relegated to the Whatsis Bin.

As I brushed away the weird vegetable matter that continually shed from the yarn, I was reminded of a little episode that took place a few years ago in
Yuzawaya (a Japanese craft store). I was poking at a small pile of Noro and I heard a voice behind me whisper "tatami," followed by a spate of giggles. After a few minutes, I deduced that the saleslady was trying to tell me that the yarn was made from old carpet remnants and discarded tatami mats!*

I admit that the colors are so lovely that they almost make up for the texture, which is why I have three skeins of the stuff in the Whatsis bin.

While I was indulging myself in utter silliness, Harry was beavering away on his Bling shawl. He flipped me the bird a picture of his progress as he pranced off to his hip-hop dance class. Much as I hate to say it, the border is coming along nicely.



*Tatami mats are a type of Japanese floor covering made from tightly woven rice straw.

23 comments:

z's momma said...

I love your frogs. Gotta love the frog pond.

That border, Harry's pretty awesome.

Oh my goodness, in my haste to find out about Lyra, I forgot to go check out your exhibit at Lacis. This Saturday is the knitting group, so I'm sure I'll get a chance to see it then--and I'll surely look for the ruffled doily.

BadCatDesigns said...

Jane already outted you, so I looked at your lace earlier today. I didn't notice the ruffled number you mentioned...I will go have a second look! Such a lovely donation to all of us. Thanks! Nice frogs too...

Dave said...

Oh dear, she's gone over to the dark side. I mean, croquet. Really. What's next? Petanque?

Although, they are cute.

Laritza said...

Cuteness!

Opal said...

Those frogs are darling! I've always wanted to try my hand at amigurumi. (Did I spell that right? :)

Soo said...

I am also working with the hook this week. Nothing quite so adorable as those frogs though!

Melly said...

The frogs are just so cute!!

Makes me want to make some too!

Wonderful work!

love and hugs
Melly

Saralyn said...

Really cute!

Carol said...

Ha! You turned to frogging.....*gigglesnort*

Jane said...

I love the frogs! I confess I recently bought a small book on crochet. I have no idea why since I barely have time for what I do already. Harry's Bling Shawl looks terrific but I keep trying to imagine Spider Hip-Hop!

LittleBerry said...

Love the frogs especially their toes.... I'm also like Soo working with a hook on and off at the moment but not quite as exciting as frogs :o)

Love the edging of the bling shawl :o)

KnitYoga said...

I love those dear little froggies! That's what I need at the moment - some instant gratification. The thought of that might tempt me over to the dark side!

--elf-- said...

Ha ha, I also taught myself to crochet a week or so ago! I'd been avoiding it, precisely because of the possibility of endless adorable frogs like yours--I figured they'd find my body under an avalanche of little amigurumi.... I started with a hat, in an attempt to keep the madness at bay!

--elf-- said...

Ha ha, yes I immediately went and downloaded the frog, and the elephant, and everything else (eagerly awaiting the hedgehog!) and now I'm trying to decide if tonight I should study for my PhD defense (which is Friday morning) or instead crochet a cute little something to carry in my pocket during the defense!

smittenknitten said...

I'm learning how to crochet again and these seems way more interesting than a dish cloth.

EGunn said...

Those frogs are adorable! I don't love crocheting, but it does make for fast, cute projects.

Kristina said...

Fabulous frogs. But aren't they scared off by Harry's many fingers? :-)

domesticshorthair said...

Cute frogs! Very pretty border.

Jane said...

The frogs are darling! Noro is made out of tatami mats & carpet remnants? I recently bought 20 skeins of Vinca which I've heard called the "poor man's Noro" and it's working up nicely into socks.

Batty said...

Frog can be a good thing. Who knew?

I just bought a couple of amigurumi books. I, too, will be exploring the dark side with cute little critters.

madonnaearth said...

Harry may be rude, but let's face it: He's a champion knitter.

Love the frogs! Where'd you get the eyes for them? They're so cute, I think I may spring them on a friend of mine who wants me to teach her to crochet.

missalicefaye said...

adorable froggies--worth the pain of the Noro, I hope? :)

tanyaa said...
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