Have you ever taken part in a crochet along (or CAL as they tend to be called)? If you haven’t and you feel like trying something new then it might be something worth considering.
I started the Stylecraft Carousel CAL a couple of weeks ago when it first came out and it has been good fun so far. This CAL, designed by Sue Pinner whose book ‘Granny Squares’ recently won a British Knitting 2016 award, is to make a small blanket. Although photos of the completed blanket were posted before the start of the CAL, the pattern is released in parts over a couple of months so you have to wait before you can start each part. There is an active Facebook group for people to post photos of their work and to ask for help.
This CAL certainly is eye-catching. As the official blurb for the CAL says, the design was:
Inspired by the sights and sounds of traditional fairgrounds and circuses, Sue has incorporated all the fun of the fair into her beautiful design, and it’s easy to imagine the merry-go-round, helter skelter and coconut shies just waiting to be enjoyed.
As soon as I saw the photos of the finished blanket my fingers were itching to get started. But first I had to wait a couple of weeks. Normally I would find that irritating but it was fine as it gave me chance to look at my stash, work out what yarn I needed to order and to get it delivered.
It is the Facebook group which has really made this CAL enjoyable for me. The group has over 5,000 members now and it has been inspirational to see how others are tackling this CAL. Many people are using one of the colour schemes suggested by Sue, the designer, but there are others who are making up their own, me included. I find this so refreshing as some of the other CALs I have seen require you to stick quite rigidly to the colours in the pattern. But not this CAL and Sue has been brilliant at suggesting other colour schemes and encouraging people to experiment with their own colours.
It was Sue’s colours that first attracted me to this CAL but in the end I decided to try my own colour scheme which will go better with the colours in my living room as I want to use the blanket to keep my legs warm when I am sitting crocheting in the evening. I’m sure the colour scheme I chose was influenced by the season as it is very autumnal. I am using Stylecraft Special DK yarn and the colours I am using are Meadow, Cream, Mustard, Claret, Tomato, Stone, Lime, Spice, Saffron, Citron, Pistachio, Gold and Copper.
Whilst I was waiting for part 2 to be released, I experimented with some rainbow colour schemes, inspired by Heather of the Patchwork Heart’s rainbow colour recipes as I thought the stripes in part two would look great done as a rainbow. I’m not sure if I will work any of these up into a full Carousel blanket instead I may make more of these centre octagons and join them together to make a small blanket.
The CAL started on 13 September, with 6 installments posted over 3 months, the final one on 15 November. All the pattern parts will stay on the Stylecraft website for the foreseeable future so why not come along and join me making this fun blanket.