Well I said I’d space out the Christmas reveals, but didn’t mean for them to be this spacey. But here we are, the second instalment of the Christmas reveals. This time, we’re looking at boots.
These were for one of my favourite families. The mum is one of my oldest, closest, bestest friends, and she’s managed to produce some seriously spectacular children. My favourite of all the little people. There’s a beautiful little girl of 6 and a bouncing (I’ve never understood where that phrase comes from?) baby boy who is 10 months currently. As with all babies, I haven’t gotten to know him yet – language barrier etc – but he’s always got the biggest smile on his face when I see him. But the little girl! What a gem she is! She’s clever, courteous and creative. Affectionate and ever so kind. She’s a real credit to her mum, I’m really proud of both of them. Things haven’t been the easiest for them, but they’ve pulled through and managed to raise a corker of a human. I’d be ever so lucky if I manage to do half as good a job with my own.
Last year they were the recipients of one of my few handmade gifts. I decided to create a family of hats. At the time the baby wasn’t even born so I was crossing all my fingers that it wouldn’t be too small for him.
Warm woollens seemed to work, so I set about trying to find something that I could adapt for all the family. I came across this pattern from Yarnspirations . At a glance they looked fairly simple, using big yarn so quick to do, but also had child to adult sizes so would fit everyone.
It uses Bernat Softee Chunky, which I’ve never used before. I tried to find a swap for something I’d used before and was cheaper, but everything was actually coming out more expensive, so decided to plump for what the pattern said. They have lots of lovely colours so had fun choosing. So much fun I decided to get some for myself! This was also a tactical move as it meant I could test the pattern on my size and test sizes. It was a good job I did…
.. because it wasn’t as easy as first anticipated. Not that the pattern wasn’t easy, it is, and quite enjoyable too. But I had a serious problem with sizes. Looking at the pattern properly when I set off I realised that it was all in American. Crochet terms in American is fine, but it was the sizes too. I’d (not so) subtly acquired all the sizes I needed, but they didn’t seem to equate to anything. I did some research and came to the conclusion that even the smallest size listed was going to be way too big for the baby, even with adding grow room. I knew I was going to have to look for another pattern. More on that later. I decided that I’d use the largest size on there for me as I’m a huge size 8 and it sort of worked out about right. So I set off..
For a while I was quite pleased with myself. The pattern calls for the sole to be constructed first so I happily went along, especially as this was turning out to be my first go at colour pooling. Doesn’t it look good!
I began working on the upper but I had a sinking feeling as I was going through it. It wasn’t going to fit and I knew it in my soul (pardon the pun). I tried fitting it over my foot and while it looked ok, I knew it wasn’t. I ploughed on with joining the sole and upper together for a proper test. The moment of truth arrived. It was as I feared. Well, sort of. It fit, but not comfortably. If it was a solid shoe my toes would be crushed at the end, it was only because it was soft and flexible.
My heart sank at this point, and I’m sorry to tell you that I nearly gave up on the idea. I don’t like giving up on things. If I’ve put time and effort into something I don’t like to see it washed down the drain. But I felt defeated. I put them away for a month out of sight where they couldn’t torment me. I worked on other things.
Once I finished most of my other gifts I begrudgingly started to think about what I would do. I got my wool out and looked at it in despair. The crochet fairies hadn’t come to magically fix it. It was then I made the big decision. Time was running short. While the larger sizes weren’t working, I could at least do the ones for the kids. I could always go back to the adult sizes later if I had time. 6 year old size was fine, but I’d have to come up with something else for the little one. Lots of searching ensued and I found this pattern. Obviously the bow wasn’t appropriate so I left that off, but they still looked really good without.
So there we are. I always feel disappointed with myself when things don’t work out, but it’ll teach me to look into a pattern properly before I start. Also it taught me to keep going with things and find other solutions. Everything is a lesson isn’t it.
If you’re interested in past reveals, please see below.
A1 – Complete!
A2 – Complete!
B1 – Complete!
B2 – Complete!
C1 – Complete!
C2 – Complete!
C3 – Complete!
C4 – Complete!
C5 – Complete!
C6 – Complete!
C7 – Complete!
D1 – Still unfinished
D3 – Complete!
D4 – Complete!
Much love xx