Tag Archive | dry

“Blocking” Out Those Big Feet

P1020735When I decided to make Sebastian the bear a blanket, my reason for doing so was not really to hide his big feet but to try out another pattern I had found. This new pattern that I had found was a giant crocheted granny square that could be used to make a baby blanket. I decided that I wanted to make Sebastian a blanket from this pattern because I could add stripes in the blanket from the same yarn that I used to give him his sweater looking torso.

.

The pattern was very easy to follow and soon I had quite a few rows of the granny square crocheted. The pattern only gave the basic instructions for making the granny square and the creativity of colors and sizes was all up to the crocheter. So, I decided to do 2 rows of the variegated yarn after every 5 rows of purple yarn. This design seem to be working up great and I really liked the look of it.

.

P1020707The only problem I was having while crocheting the blanket was that it would not lay flat. I did not feel that my tensions had varied much while I crocheted it and I did not believe that the problem was in the different yarns I used. Because of this I decided that the blanket was going to have to be blocked when it was completed. Since I have really only crocheted amigurumi’s previously, I have never blocked a piece of crocheting but I had seen my mother and grandmother do it many times during my childhood, so I had an idea of what to do and I knew that this should fix my problem.

.

Luckily, I was smart enough not to just rely on my childhood memories and I did a quick internet search on how to properly block a crocheted item. After reading several how-to sites, I decided to use steam to block this blanket. I started with a towel and pinned the blanket to the towel, trying to get it to lay as flat as possible. Next, with the iron on high, I steamed the blanket being very careful not to touch the blanket or the pins with the iron. The last step was to let the blanket dry and see what I got.

.

P1020731After removing the blanket from the towel I was happy with the results. The blanket seemed to lay flat. After a day of being handled, I noticed that the blanket was not laying as flat as it had when it was first blocked. I debated about steaming it again or trying a different method of blocking, but then I decided that it is just a blanket for a teddy bear and it did not have to lie perfectly flat. This was probably not the correct answer. I should have tried to block the blanket again just for the learning experience, but I wanted to be done with this project and I wanted to move on to something else. I justified this decision by telling myself that this blanket was not the only thing that I would ever crochet that needed to be blocked, and that I would have other opportunities to block more crocheting projects in the future. I will try the wet method of blocking the next time I have to block a crochet item.

.

With that, I called the blanket finished and wrapped Sebastian up in it. He looks so cute in his blanket. I just know he will soon have a great new home and someone to hold him and love him in his new blanket.

The Interfacing Battle Continues

Interfacing… why did it have to be interfacing? I hate interfacing! (a quote from Indiana Jones wife, if she were a seamstress)

Having recently abandoned fusible interfacing for sew in interfacing, I stared at the yards of fusible interfacing in the stash and wondered what to do with it. Should I send in to the thrift store and curse someone else who purchased and used it? Should I attach a note with it when I send it off? A note about all the ways that I have tried to make it work and that have failed, so the next owner will not have to repeat my disasters with it? Possibly the new owner of this interfacing would be wiser than me, and know the secrets of applying fusible interfacing properly, making this a great find for their trip to the thrift store. Or, should I just throw it away for fear of cursing anyone else with this stuff?

While talking to my mom recently, I mentioned my latest interfacing dilemma and she suggested washing and drying the fusible interfacing before use, and thus making it sew in interfacing. I was ok with washing the interfacing before use since I had always preshrank this type of interfacing before I used it each time anyway. But putting it in the dryer after washing it seemed like a recipe for disaster, that I could not quite wrap my head around. My first thought was if I put the fusible interfacing in a hot dryer, it is going to fuse to something. Horrible pictures popped into my mind of interfacing being melted to the drum of the dryer and spending hours, if not days, trying to clean the interfacing out of the dryer. I mentioned my mom’s comments to the husband and he said to go ahead and try it, since he was the one that would be repairing the dryer if anything went wrong. And so now with two people encouraging me to do it, I went ahead and washed the fusible interfacing and then tossed it into the dryer.

Horror of horrors! Now I am currently at the local appliance store looking for a new dryer! Nah, not really!

Luckily, the horrible story I had seen in my mind did not come true thank goodness. The interfacing did not stick to the dryer at all. It did leave little dots of unglued glue all over the interior, but a quick vacuuming of the dryer and the vent took care of that. It did fuse to itself a little bit though. I had to pull it apart in spots to get it flat enough to fold. The white, a longer piece, did not stick to itself as bad as the two shorter pieces of black did. I don’t know if the length really made a difference or if one just had more glue over the other, or if it just did not lose its glue in the process.

Not being able to iron the interfacing at this point, it looks a little bit wrinkled and worn. And boy did it shrink! The pieces are now considerably smaller than they were originally. But, there is still a lot of glue on each piece. Enough glue, that on my latest project I decided to try using it again as a fusible interfacing. I cut it out and ironed it on the pieces of my project and it looks great with no bubbles! Plus, there was still plenty of glue to hold the interfacing on to the fabric while I sewed it together.

So, now what should I do? Do I abandon the yards of sew in interfacing I have just bought and return to the now usable fusible interfacing? So far I have decided to play it project by project to see which one I use with which project. So with this new process, I will see if this answers the fusible interfacing conundrum that I previously had.