by Robyn Chachula
Its 2 days before Christmas and I haven’t started the scarf for my mother in-law. Its 2 days before my niece’s birthday and I haven’t started her purse. OR its 2 days before my best friend’s baby shower and I haven’t started the baby afghan. Am I worried? Not at all, because I have mastered the art of STASH DIVING. Here’s how:
- First things first, you have to realize that with only 2 days you have your limits on what you can create. I always opt for small projects like scarves or purses.
- Second, you must accept the actual time you have to complete the project and choose a stitch pattern that you can complete fast. For me, it’s always openwork lacy patterns. The more holes the quicker it goes. That is one huge advantage we have over knitters. Crocheting openwork is so easy, and looks so gorgeous. So at this point, I go to my 300 Crochet Stitches book, by the Harmony Guides. Flip to the openwork, and choose a stitch pattern. You can do this too, or use my example below.
- Now comes the hard part. Go to your stash pile and close your eyes. Put out your hand. And without peeking, choose a yarn. Open your eyes, and start crocheting. I know, I know it sounds risky, but trust me. If you keep your eyes open, you are going to start thinking about the choice of yarn and the color and such for hours. This is no good; you have got to just get moving.
- Crochet at least three pattern repeats with this yarn. And if after that, it is not what you think will work, go back to step 3, and pick again.
- After trying two or three yarns, you are going to have a lot of swatches, and know exactly what yarn you need to complete the project. (You controlling types are just going to have to have faith in me that this really does take less time then planning out a yarn.)
And that’s it. That is really that is all there is to mastering your stash. It is all about trying different yarns (that you normally would not use) with the same pattern until you are so familiar you could rattle off the pattern. At this Zen level, no thinking is needed, and your whole being just knows the exact yarn for your project. What’s the great upside? You now have 3 half way finished projects for your next last minute gift. Below you will see my latest dive and the four very different and yet very gorgeous scarves it produced. One is perfect to keep warm, one is perfect for dressing up, one is perfectly funky, and one is MINE! Good luck and may the Zen be with you.
- Light Pink Scarf (pictured at right): 2 Skeins, Sirdar Primavera Double Knitting #840, (65% Cotton, 35% Acrylic), 250 yards, F hook
- Fuchsia Scarf: 2 Skeins, Berroco Mohair Classic Heather #9543, (78% Mohair, 13% Wool, 9% Nylon), 180 yards, I hook
- Orange Scarf: 2 Skeins, Spectrum Cotton DK Classics Panache, Color: Manderin, (100% Cotton), 250 yards, E hook
- Light Blue Scarf: 2 Skeins, Berroco Glace, Color: Work Shirt, (100% Rayon), 150 yards, I hook
Not critical. I would suggest a hook one size smaller then recommended on label.
Row 1: SC in 2nd CH from hook, SC in next CH, *CH 5, skip next 3 CH, SC in next 3 CH*, repeat * * across to last five CH, CH 5, SC in last two CH, CH 1, turn.
Row 2: SC in SC, *CH 3, SC in 3rd CH of CH-5, CH 3, SC in 2nd SC*, repeat * * across to last CH 5 , CH 3, SC in 3rd CH, CH 3, SC in last SC, CH 3, turn.
Row 3: DC in SC, CH 2, SC in 3rd CH, SC in SC, SC in 1st CH, *CH 5, skip (2 ch, 1sc, 2ch), SC in 3rd CH, SC in SC, SC in 1st CH*, repeat * * across to last CH 3 and SC, CH 2, DC in last SC, CH 1, turn.
Row 4: SC in DC, CH 3, SC in 2nd SC, *CH 3, SC in 3rd CH, CH 3, SC in 2nd SC*, repeat * * across, CH 3, SC in DC, CH 1, turn.
Row 5: *SC in SC, SC in first CH, CH 5, skip (2ch, 1sc, 2 ch), SC in 3rd CH*, repeat * *, across to last SC, SC in SC, CH 1, turn.
Repeat rows 2-5 until desired length is achieved.
Fasten Off and Tuck in Loose Ends