Many, many months ago, Lucy from Attic24 made an advent garland for the festive period using the Grandma Twinkle pattern from the lovely Royal Sisters blog. I ahhh-ed and sighed over it's loveliness, and filed it away in the back drawers of my brain as a Future Project.
Last week the Future became the Present, and after a month of hooking (a toddler, a part time job and various other projects mean things take slightly longer than I'd like them to...), I finished my very own star garland! It's nowhere near as long as Lucy's, but it fits in exactly where I wanted it to just perfectly. Happy days!
I hooked everywhere, in every spare minute I had - I found it was the perfect way to spend a quiet half an hour before work, with a mug of steaming coffee beside me...
The stars slowly began to pile up, and pretty soon it was time to get the blocking process underway - I've heard you can use corrugated cardboard and cork as a makeshift blocking board, but being short on space to store such a bulky item, it was a bit of a non-starter. So I improvised with.... a 99p garden kneeling pad from Wilkinsons, covered with an old towel! It works a dream, although if I ever need to block large pieces, I'm not entirely sure how it'll fare!
The stars came out wonderfully soft and drapey, all corners flattened and no curly edges at all - just right to sit nicely on a long string of chain stitches... (The photo below hints at my next project - crochet bunting! I'm desperately trying to think of a way to give it that extra little something, though.)
I love the colours in this little garland so much - the yarn is Sublime cashmere merino DK, and I can't get enough of it. It sits beautifully, has minimal splittiness when being hooked, and is super soft. The only problem is that at £4.55 per ball, it's not exactly economical on the purse strings!
After they were all blocked and finished, I had the dreaded task of sitting down to weave in all the yarn ends - I absolutely detest doing this, it's dull and it takes far too long. I should probably start doing it as I go, but I'm always eager to move on to the next bit. A bowl of cherries, the soaps on TV and my favourite blogs on the laptop made things a bit more bearable!
I slowly chain stitched them all together and hey presto! The garland was FINISHED! I was beginning to think it might never get there, I'm so bad at starting projects and never completely them (I'm actually sitting on a half painted chair to write this, would you believe!)
The only thing left to do was pop some nails into the wall to hang it from - after a lot of balancing on the arm of the sofa and leaning on the bookcase, the star garland finally had it's home!