Friday, 6 June 2014

The Crochet Crowd Market Bag Challenge: Complete!

Hello there!  How've you been?  Me?  Well, I had been experiencing some technical difficulties which were preventing me from updating my blog, but I am happy to announce that they have been resolved!  Now to get back to sharing the hooky goodness with you!

As many of you know, the wonderful folks at The Crochet Crowd are almost always running one type
of challenge or another.  These challenges give everyone an opportunity to try a pattern maybe they wouldn't have chosen to do on their own, learn a new stitch or technique, use a different type of yarn than you are used to, or simply provide just a fun project to complete along with others.  This month is The Market Bag Challenge.  You can read all about the challenge as well as obtain the link to the free pattern from there. Basically, you don't have to sign up, you just make your bag!  Then you fill out the easy to use form from their website along with a picture of your masterpiece, and presto!  They give away a fabulous Red heart bag filled with yarn and Crochet Crowd swag to one lucky contestant at random.  Do you live in a country that isn't this one but still want to participate?  No problem!  As long as that country is on Earth, you are eligible!  Do you want to use different yarn or a different colour from what is shown on their site?  Also no problem!  In fact, my bag is not made with the yarn that was suggested for the pattern, as I chose to use some yarn from my stash.  Lets talk some more about that yarn!

One of the purposes listed for this challenge was to use thinner than usual yarns.  The yarn suggested was Red Heart Luster Sheen.  I considered picking some up to keep with the spirit of the purpose for the challenge.  However, I felt hungry for colour.  I wanted to make something bright and bold with lots of colour, and the ten shades that this yarn is available in just weren't doing it for me.  Heigh ho, heigh ho, off to my stash I go!  What did I find?  A yummy, luscious skein of Red Heart Boutique Unforgettable in the shade Parrot.  I hadn't ever made anything with this yarn, and to be honest, the yarn itself scared me.  It is beautiful in a skein sitting on the shelf, full of possibility and wonder.  I just wasn't sure that I was the one to turn it into a wonderful yarnwork. It is technically a weight 4 yarn, but the girth varies throughout the skein and for the most part it is very thin.  I won't deny it- I'm a worsted weight sort of hooker.  Give me a skein of Red Heart With Love any day of the week, and you'll make me a happy hooker!  But I wanted to challenge myself a little.  How else can we grow?  So I decided that I would use this for the body of my bag.  I was still a little distrustful of the strength of it though for a bag. I thought that maybe for the base and handles it would be a better idea to use good ol' worsted weight yarn for strength and stability.  
For the base I used Loops & Threads Impeccable in Arbor Rose that I had left over from another project.  The handles I made with Red Heart Soft in Deep Sea.  All my worry was for nothing!  As you can see, my bag turned out beautifully!  Not only is it a pleasure to look upon, but it is functional, and has a fabulous stretch factor too!  For my bag's maiden voyage, I took it yarn shopping!  Just look at all the balls it held!  Honestly, I could have gotten at least six more balls in there!  Now that's a ball sack!  You should really pop by The Crochet Crowd's new site and take a look around.  Mikey has really outdone himself with challenges (there is even a video tutorial for the challenge pattern if you so desire to go that route!), yarn calculators and more!  I adore their site, and was pleasantly surprised last week when they featured my bag on their Facebook page!  Last I looked it had over 5100 likes!  I never dreamed that 5100 people would ever see my work, let alone like it, so a big thanks to them for that boost of warm yarn fuzzies!
"Hey everybody, have you seen my balls?!"

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