My First Crochet Scarf

It seems we are having several “firsts” around here lately (first plum, first apple, first egg) and now I have finally completed my first crochet scarf (although it did take me 3 trips to WV and 1 to SC)! Technically this is my 4th crochet project as I did the Beginner’s dishcloth 3 times before it all clicked and I got it right (mostly). I am very excited about learning news skills even if it is taking me longer than anticipated.

Back in March we were driving to West Virginia to pick up Jon’s boys to stay with us on their spring break from school. I wanted to get a new project picked out and started before our drive up so that I could work on it on the ride. I  made a goal that with each new crochet project I would learn 1 new stitch or crochet concept. It can be quite difficult to search for a new pattern that only has 1 new thing rather than 3 or 4! I was worried about getting overwhelmed so I kept searching until I found just the right “simplify scarf pattern” on ravelry. This pattern uses the chain, single crochet, turn, and the double crochet (my new stitch to learn). Some crochet patterns can be a bit confusing to read, but Sally’s pattern was simple and concise, just what I needed.

I got on youtube and reviewed several examples of the double crochet until I had figured it out.

Double Crochet

I got a few good rows and foundation started while I had access to my computer for assistance a couple of days before our trip. Then I worked on it all the way up and part of the way back until it got too dark. This is a 7 hour drive one way. I of course did have to take breaks as my hands will eventually cramp, but I felt I was making some great progress until I saw how much yarn was left on the skein. Although this pattern did not say it could be completed in one evening I did come across another one very similar that did. I had in my head I’d have this whole scarf knocked out on this WV trip. Oh well, no such luck. I was still pretty darn proud of myself because it was actually looking like a scarf.

I worked on it for a few minutes one or two evenings, but it really got neglected. Then in May my oldest was graduating from college in South Carolina. This is about a 3 hour drive one way. Jon drove (he always drives) and I crocheted intermittently between yakking it up with my Mama and my son’s girlfriend. I made a little bit of progress, but must admit I did more talking than crocheting. It was dark on the way back so I didn’t get any more accomplished.

Then just a week later we went back up to WV to pick up Jon’s boys again for them to stay with us for the summer (he had taken them back by himself back in April). Again, I worked on this scarf. But I had also brought a book with me that I had started and gotten engrossed in and well I did more reading than crocheting. But still I did get right much done, or so I thought until I wrapped it around my neck and saw it still had a ways to go.

Then finally on our latest trip to WV on June 29th to visit Jon’s Mama and family in from FL I schlepped it with me again. The drive to his Mama’s is only about 4 hours one way. At this point I had made it my mission that this darn scarf would be finished that day, do or die! I brought a book with me just in case I finished it earlier, but refused to crack it open until I had completed this scarf. And that is exactly what I did!

Ta-Da! Completed Scarf

So, I started this scarf March 23, 2013 and finished it June 29, 2013! Eek! 3 months! That was way longer than expected. I don’t care, I’m still quite proud of myself. I think it turned out really well too. I tried hard to check the gauge regularly and to stretch it some when I was starting to make my stitches tighter. Overall, it was quite consistent. The last little bit of the scarf I did start to make my stitches tighter and the overall width did draw in some. This was probably due to my determination to finish it and forgetting to diligently check the width. Even so, it isn’t off by much.

Difference in Start and Finished Width

The side where I turn to start a double crochet row is not as smooth and clean as the side where I turn to start a single crochet row. I guess that will just take practice. Up close you can see the stitch detail and consistency.

Stitch Detail and Consistency

Now, I am off to search for my next project. Will it be an afghan or a cute little matching hat? Only time will tell. Have you learned or practiced any new skills lately?