New Year Resolutions. I think it might be fair to say that we all make them. Whether it's the resolution you make when you wake up after a BIG NYE party ("I'm never drinking again!"), or you look inside your fridge at the remnants of the silly season ("Time to shape up!"), or something like I did last year ("I'm blogging something new Every Day!"), we all state something around this time of the year.
Last year's got me right on my blogging track again, and even though I didn't end up blogging Something New Every Day, I did manage to keep it right into August, which is a pretty good result. I'm happy with that :)
This year it's a little more reasonable. I'm going to have a schedule! Shock! Horror! Expect a blog post every (and I mean EVERY) Monday & Thursday. So this week, we've already seen that! Today is Thursday, here's the post, and we had my 2012 round up on Monday. I want to maintain that schedule all year, and if I want to post something extra, then I will do. Perhaps a weekend project? Or a link-heavy post mid week. I'm also eager to keep working on Eaton's 200 Crochet Blocks.. book, which a few of us over on the Krista Crochet Group on FB have stated intention of doing. Good for us :)
Personally, I decided to improve my fitness (the best of intentions, and one that is hardly ever kept, but we all mean it in early January), keep trying new recipes, and keeping a money jar.
A money jar? Like a piggy bank, but not something gross and plasticy from some branch of a bank, but simply a jar with a hole in the top, that I can put a dollar a day into, or when I'm feeling wealthier, all my change :) But look at it - it looks so ugly. So, I decided to make it prettier :)
Here you can see how it's bell shaped. Just a little, just enough that it bulges slightly around the middle and comes in at the top and the bottom. I also decided to try out the idea of putting a line of white in-between the changing colours, since it seems a little popular and gosh darn it I LIKE it. It does indeed make each colour individually pop. I originally started off with the four colours, and after the line of green thought I could add an extra one, or two. But I ended up unravelling the extra colour and sticking with my original idea, and it worked a treat.
So, how did I make it? Well, I had to measure out my jar to see how round it was. The way I did that was simply crocheting up a chain row first, and wrapping it around the jar. Then, when I decided to use a tr stitch to work up the colours in (the white rows are a simple dc), I had to figure in the fact that trebles tend to be a bit stretchier when made up that double crochet's. I ended up with a row of 43trs.
So first of all, get a nice clean jar (I used an old mayo jar I'd used up over xmas). Work up a chain and wrap it around your jar. If you pull it tight around the biggest part of the jar and it just meets, that should work well. Even better if it's just a little too small, because you'll be working your increases in during your third row. My pattern is just a GUIDE because your jar will be a different size from mine, so this is a good exercise in adjusting a pattern to fit as you go. The other thing I must note is that I worked my entire cover from the SAME SIDE. So from left to right (end of the ch being left) for every row. I never turned it. It was an experiment, feel free to turn each side if you like, but I wanted the white dc row to look like it does, and not in reverse.
Base row: chain 46 (43 + turn of 3ch)
Row 1: Work a tr into the 3rd chain back, and tr into every chain. (I ended up with 43.) Fasten off if you're changing colours.
Row 2: Grab your white yarn and join into the first tr: ch, dc into same space, then dc along your whole row of tr. Fasten off.
Row 3: Time to change colour. Grab your next bright colour, and join into that first dc. ch3 (creates first tr.), 3tr. (time to increase) Work two tr's into the next stitch, 4tr, 2tr into next stitch. (As you can see, I increased at every 5th stitch). Continue until you approach the end of your row. (My last increase finished 3dc before the end of my row.) Fasten off.
Row 4: White yarn, join, ch, 1dc into same space, dc along the row. fasten off.
Row 5: New colour, join, 3ch (first tr) & tr into each dc. fasten off.
Continue this way until, holding your work up to your jar, you can see that the top is approaching where it curves in again. If your jar is more straight up and down, just keep going. If it's more bevelled like mine, I ended up decreasing for two rows.
I did the top orange row with a decrease every 5th tr, and I didn't decrease in my white rows. To Decrease, you 2trtog (2 tr together, into the same stitch). Start to work a tr, but instead of pulling the yarn through the second time to finish the stitch, leave the two loops on, and start another tr in the next stitch. You end up with four loops on, and then yarn over, pull the loop through all four loops. Work a plain dc row in white next, and then for your final row, I decreased at every 10th stitch. This just helps to bring in the cover at the top of the jar.
I joined my two pieces together on the inside using a slip stitch, and when I approached that top orange row, I slid the cover onto the jar and joined on the outside. I don't recommend you do that - I was an idiot. *laugh* Just join it together, turn it inside out and slip it onto the jar. It might be a bit of a pull & tug, but it should fit :)
PATTERN (please adapt the size for your jar!):
For a jar that is 26.5cm around it's widest point and 11cm from bottom to just-under-lid,
Foundation Chain: Using yarn A, ch 46
Row 1: 1tr into 3rd ch from hook, 1tr into each ch to end. Fasten off.
Row 2: Join white. 1ch, 1dc into each tr of the previous row. Fasten off.
Row 3: Join Yarn B. 3ch into first dc. 1tr into next 3dc, 2tr into next dc. 1tr into next 4dc, 2tr into next dc. Continue until you reach the end of the row. Fasten off. (inc into every 5th dc)
Row 4: Join white. 1ch, 1dc into each tr of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 5: Join Yarn C. 3ch into first dc. 1tr into each dc of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 6: Join white. 1ch, 1dc into each tr of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 7: Join Yarn D. 3ch into first dc. 1tr into each dc of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 8: Join white. 1ch, 1dc into each tr of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 9: Join Yarn A. 3ch into first dc. 1tr into each dc of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 10: Join white. 1ch, 1dc into each tr of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 11: Join Yarn B. 3ch into first dc. 1tr into each dc of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 12: Join white. 1ch, 1dc into each tr of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 13: Join Yarn C. 3ch into first dc. 1tr into next 3dc, tr2tog (decrease), 1tr into next 4dc, tr2tog. Continue until you reach the end of the row. Fasten off. (Decrease every 5th tr.)
Row 14: Join white. 1ch, 1dc into each tr of previous row. Fasten off.
Row 15: Join Yarn D. 3ch into first dc. 1tr into next 8dc, tr2tog (decrease), 1tr into next 9dc, tr2tog. Continue until you reach the end of the row. Fasten off. (Decrease every 10th tr.)
Join edges together, keeping watch that the rows match up. Slide onto your jar. Put a dollar into the jar every day :)