Saturday, May 20, 2017

temperature scarf

Bev over at Bev's Country Cottage is doing a temperature scarf-along to help "Manna of Life Soup kitchen" in the Bronx, NY. She has posted suggested color guide and instructions for a temperature  scarf. http://www.bevscountrycottage.com/temp-scarf.html  Note that some numbers appear twice on the chart. You need to decide which group you'll put them in and make a note to yourself so you use the same color each time that number comes up. For example 90 is under 90-100 and also under 80-90. So 90 can be either orange or yellow. Your choice. My personal choice is to do all the 90s in one color, all the 80s in one color etc.

Bev's project is running from May 19, 2017 to October 31, 2017.

You might recall that when I did my own temperature afghans I used Wunderground's historical weather search. If you want to make a scarf using the same process, head on over there and get your info. https://www.wunderground.com/history/ 

Here's how I got mine in the form I wanted to use. It's long and some might say complicated. I think I have all the steps here. I've done it so many times, it seems easy to me but writing it, I see it is maybe not intuitive. LOL

I use Microsoft Word. If you don't use Word then the details may not be the same for you.

Go to the Wunderground link above.

Put in your city, state or zip code. A box may come up with suggestions. Choose what you want.

It will give you the temperature for the day's date. Where it says Daily Weekly Monthly Custom, choose custom.

Put in the dates you want to include in your scarf or afghan.

Click on Get History.

Scroll down to Weather History and Observations

Set your cursor to the beginning (the year probably), press the shift key, and scroll down to the end of the history you're viewing. Click on the last day you want to include. That will highlight those days. (Be sure you have the shift key pressed or you'll have to start over.)

Control C to copy what you've highlighted.

Open Microsoft Word and click on new document. Choose blank document.

In Page Layout, choose page orientation and set to landscape. Paste your temperatures in there (Control V).

I used the high temperature for my afghans but you can choose whichever you want. High will be easiest to copy because it is the first column.

Set your cursor to right before the year or the first day you're saving.
While holding down the shift key, scroll to the last day you want, only the column you want, and click at the end. That will highlight that area.
Control C to copy.

Now you can either open a new document or control A to highlight the entire document you just created and then click delete to get rid of that because you don't need it anymore.

Open Notepad. Then Control V to paste the columns you copied into the notepad file.

Each day and temperature will be on a separate line. Get them on the same line. I do this by using tab, delete, then down arrow to go to the next line. I have gotten pretty quick at this.

When that is done, go back to your Word document and set the orientation to portrait. Then copy and paste your Notepad info into your emptied Word document. It will be double spaced.

To make it single spaced, go to Page Layout, Spacing and set to 0.

I put mine in 3 columns which you can do by going to Page Layout, Columns and set to 3.

I also like to number my pages which you do by going to Insert, page numbers.

Now you have the numbers that you need to work with. You're not done yet. LOL You need to determine how much yarn to buy so you need to know how many of each temperature you will have and in what colors you want to work those. This will entail a lot of searches.

I use "find" to search for each number from the 30s to 100 (because that is the range of temps in my area) and it will tell me how many of those it finds. I make note of that. When I know how many of each number I have, I determine how I want to space out the colors.

Tip: If you're making an afghan and doing the entire year, your total rows should be equal to 365 or 366 if a leap year. This tip has helped me to find numbers I missed.


Here's an example of the last sheet of a document when I'm done (not for this scarf but an earlier afghan). I added little pictures of the colors from Knit Picks as that was the yarn I was using.

I guess it's a lot of work and maybe there is some shortcut that I haven't discovered to get it in this workable format, but those are the steps I have taken for each year I've done.

For my afghan, I used sport yarn and a chain of 226. For THAT I could get 25 rows to a skein. For any other combination - worsted yarn, different chain, you'll have to figure out how many rows you can get so you can figure out what to buy.

For this scarf, the chain is 25. You can adjust that to the width you want, of course as it's just straight stitches. You will need much less yarn for a scarf than what was needed for an afghan obviously. But you'll still need 8-11 colors, depending on where you live, what your temps are like, and how much / what part of the year you're documenting.

Remember to account for any edging you want to use.

For my afghan, if a color was used for only one row, I didn't want to have to splice yarn in the middle of the row so if I hit a knot, I had to cut that out and start the row over. That was a personal choice. Since that happened WAY too often, I started winding the balls by hand so I could hopefully feel knots before I got to them and cut them out. This worked well for the most part. Only once did I get a knot I had missed.

I do hope to do a scarf. Not sure if I'll follow the 2017 idea and finish in October or do an earlier year so i can start and finish it more quickly. You can donate as many scarves as you want even if you do the one for this year. Just start several and have them in progress. Then in October you'll have many scarves finished.

Happy crocheting!
Sandie

Monday, May 15, 2017

squares

Here's a really quick post.

I made a few more 6" squares. These were made with Red Heart Super Saver Tea Leaf. I used my daughter's cross-stitch pattern once again.




Happy crocheting!
Sandie

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Etsy disappointment

I do a lot of yarn shopping as you know. I like to support crochet and knitting artists and don't mind paying for patterns and supplies. I have shopped many times at Etsy and Ebay with great results.

I recently, however, had a disappointing experience with an Etsy seller. 

I wanted some Knit Picks Brava sport yarn in Canary but didn't want to wait a week or two to get it from KP so I went over to Etsy and Ebay to see if anyone had this for sale. I found what I thought was two skeins on Etsy and purchased them.


The package arrived in quick time but to my surprise there was only one skein. I contacted the seller and she said the listing was only for one skein though the picture had two skeins. I asked my hubby to look at the listing (through the link in my confirmation email) and he thought it also was for two skeins. 

The listing had a picture of two skeins, one without a label. The caption was "SPORT - Knit Picks Brava Sport Yarn, Premium Acrylic, color - Canary, 1 no label". In the Overview, it said "Number of skeins: 2".

I explained our reasoning. The seller essentially said sorry you were confused. Now, I can't say I remember if there was a drop down box to choose number of skeins but the link from the order confirmation email did not show one. If there was one, I can understand her thinking.

I could have purchased the second skein (which was available but she said was not included in that listing) but would have had to pay another $5 shipping so I decided not to do that. I couldn't even be sure the one I received, since it had no label, was a full skein. I did check the second listing and it still says 1 no label. Clearly I received the one with no label so unless she removes the label from the second skein that listing is also wrong. 


I did suggest she might reword her listing but she said that nobody else had a problem with her listings. Very disappointed in that purchase experience. This seller certainly doesn't follow the old time premise of the customer is always right. I never want to cheat someone, of course, and if it was my error that's my problem.

People who sell through Etsy and Ebay and others who are not associated with a retail business are usually the best folks to buy from. They want a good rating and they are willing to work with you so both you and they are happy with the outcome. 

If you choose to shop at those venues, maybe save a bit of disappointment by messaging the seller even if you think you understand what they're saying. I know I'll be perhaps overly cautious in future.

Happy crocheting!
Sandie

Friday, May 12, 2017

Bridget's Cradles

I've begun a new project. I joined a group called Bridget's Cradles. From their web site:
Bridget's Cradles™ is a 501c3 nonprofit organization incorporated in the state of Kansas. The mission of Bridget's Cradles™ is to provide hospitals with knitted and crocheted cradles to hold babies who were born into Heaven in the second trimester of pregnancy.
This group is different from other volunteer groups. Before you are given the pattern instructions, you must submit an application and be approved, then sign a legal document. That document lets you know what to expect. For example, you promise not to share the pattern. It's pretty straight forward. 

One thing I like is if they find your pieces not up to standard they will let you know what they found wanting so you can improve. I actually love this. Of course I hope my work will be acceptable, but I always wonder if I'm providing what is needed. That is probably one reason I don't often sell finished objects. I never think my work is good enough. I always appreciate suggestions as to how to improve.

In this case, I'm pretty happy with the little squares I made, but think I could improve my little blankets. I followed the patterns sent with acceptance exactly. The Facebook group, which is only for accepted volunteers, gives other pattern options so I look forward to trying those out. I am going to send in a few things first and see if they are accepted, then decide how to proceed.

This might seem like a sad project, knowing that tiny babies who have died will be placed in these, It is indeed sad that these little ones have died so soon, but having lost a baby myself, I think seeing their little one respected and placed lovingly in their own soft little bedding will bring comfort to the parents. It's difficult to find things for a healthy preemie baby much less a baby weighing just a few ounces. 

This is a great project and is run professionally. If you read through the web site, you can feel the love. Each correspondence with them is kind, respectful, and professional. 

Here's what I've done so far.  



The colors used are DIY yarn in Peach, Aqua and Sky Blue and Knit Picks Brava Worsted Cream.

If you want to learn more, over and above their web site, you can check out the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/bridgetscradles/ 

Happy crocheting!
Sandie

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

squares

Since finishing the last temperature afghan, I have been working on squares.


I used one skein each of I Love This Yarn Light Taupe, Ivory, Mixed Berry and Greybeard. The yarn was a delight to work with. The Mixed Berry was a little thicker than the other colors. The Ivory was the thinnest. They were all the same yarn, same worsted weight. These were yarns I had purchased when I was looking for yarns for the Osgood scarf. They didn't make the cut. :-)

I used an I hook and once again I used my daughter's cross-stitch square pattern. You can find the square pattern at Crochet Cabana pattern page under Kate Smith. It is my favorite go-to square pattern as you can probably tell since I use it all the time.

I was able to get 12 squares in the Mixed Berry, Greybeard and Light Taupe and 11 squares in the Ivory. I'm not sure why the difference but maybe I used the Ivory for something else and don't remember. I did make a swatch of the colors for the Osgood so a little of each skein had been used.

Each square is approximately 6".


Happy crocheting!
Sandie