Star Anise hat ta-da!

Not quite like I expected but I’m happy.

Star Anise knit hat

This was made with 131 yards of Arroyo yarn by Malabrigo (100% merino, sport weight) in the Coffee Toffee colorway, which is one of those colors that’s oddly difficult to photograph accurately.  The yarn is so soft — I’d had it forever and forgotten about it, and I love it!  Have to get some more sometime.

Despite my love of the yarn, the needles called for (US 3 & 4) were not quite right — my hat is not slouchy or loose at all like the ones in the pictures on the pattern page.  Of course, maybe that’s my fault — I could have been knitting way too tightly, and I didn’t make a gauge swatch.  Even so, I like the hat:

Star Anise hatIt turns out it’s hard to take pictures of the top of your own head.  Well, the KBLs that go up the whole thing are a little wonky — maybe because I didn’t block it — but I’m hoping it will all straighten out with wear.

The cast on was difficult because it was my first [successful] long tail tubular cast on, but I love how it turned out!  Might start using it for things that don’t even call for  it.

Star Anise hat knitted

Anyway, I think the pattern is worth the $6.  It was enjoyable to make and I do like the end result.  Let me know what you think, and if you’ve made it, how did yours turn out?

Well, that’s all for today.  Thanks for stopping by!

crochet tutorials

Did you know that there are many crochet (and knitting) tutorials here on NYAC?  Check out the menu bar for the full selection.  A few have had photo updates!  Click the photo to be taken to the tutorial.

squares and rectangles:

example of simple crochet square


how to crochet circles

granny squares:

example of a crochet granny square


And last but not least, the shell stitch:

example of the crochet shell stitch

Check out the menu bar for more basic shapes and many more decorative stitches to try!

top 4 yarns of winter ’14/’15

top 4 yarns of winter

There are a few wooly faves for this past season, and since the last day of winter is in 2 days I thought it’d be a good time to share what I very happily used.  In no particular order, my top 4 are as follows:

KnitPicks Hawthorne Fingering in Ladds Addition colorway:

Gentille cowl - lacy chevron sectionThis yarn is absolutely gorgeous (both the colors themselves and the way it made a pretty zigzag pattern in my Gentille cowl).  Soft to work with and wear next to the skin.  It is a fingering weight/4 ply yarn made up of 80% wool, 20% nylon and comes in skeins of 357 yds/100 g.  Pick it up from KnitPicks for a really good price.

DyeForYarn Fingering Merino/Babycamel in Dyeing Rose colorway:

Closeup of Phoenicia shawl/wrap on NotYourAverageCrochet.comThis super-soft fingering single ply yarn is made of 55% merino, 45% camel and comes in skeins of 525 yds/100 g.  I’d say it’s really more of a light fingering.  Very strong for a single ply yarn!  It made a great Phoenicia crescent shawl (and a Plume beanie from last year), and while this colorway is no longer available you can pick up a gorgeous array of colorways at the DyeForWool Etsy shop.

Berroco Vintage in 5176 colorway (a heathery autumn orange):

Gothic Lace Cowl

The Gothic Lace Cowl I made was pretty quick to work up using this  worsted weight 10 ply yarn.  Made up of 50% acrylic, 40% wool, and 10% nylon, it is soft enough to wear against the skin and can be washed in a machine (if you want to slightly felt your work it will do so if you use hot water and put it in the dryer, too — this is an advantage when you make blankets that dog claws might snag and you want to avoid that problem).  It comes in skeins of 217 yds/100 g.  This was purchased at a yarn store in North Carolina.

Malabrigo Yarn Arroyo in Coffee Toffee colorway:

nara mitts

These Nara mitts were made in 2013 but I’ve made something with the leftovers this winter that will be posted next week.  Made of 100% merino, this sport weight 5 ply yarn is very soft and comes in skeins of 335 yds/100 g.  The Coffee Toffee colorway is hard to capture properly in photos — it’s a purplish brown with a hand dyed look and is very beautiful!  I purchased this also at a yarn shop in North Carolina.

So that’s it, my top 4 yarns of this winter!  I’d recommend them all.  All beautiful, all soft, all fun to work with!  Thanks so much for stopping by, see you soon!

top 5 iOS apps for knitters & crocheters

Even aside from craft store apps that give you coupons, there are tons of apps out there for knitters and crocheters.  These are my personal favorites.

top ios apps for knitters and crocheters

Knit: a row/stitch counter that can keep up with multiple projects at once.  The developer doesn’t speak English that well, but the cuteness of the app makes up for that.

Wooly: If Ravelry had developed an app, it would be like this.  You can add projects, add stash items, and queue patterns, you can add photos (which is great if you’ve experienced the frustration of trying to add photos to Ravelry on a mobile device), check your messages, and more.  Super handy.

wooly ios appYarnPro: Like a reference book in your pocket, and this screenshot says it all (or almost — I should add you can customize the units of measurement):

yarnpro ios appGranny Square (by Simply Crochet): Free granny square patterns!  A variety to choose from.

granny square ios appRaglanify:  Haven’t acually used this yet, but it will generate a custom raglan sweater pattern for you if you imput your desired measurements, gauge, etc.  It thinks of everything!

raglanify ios appSo those are my current top 5!  Give ‘em a try if you have an iPhone!





giveaway winner announced!

Congratulations Cathy from, you’ve won the prize:

giveaway prize on notyouraveragecrochet

Thanks to everyone who entered!  Stay tuned — I may have another giveaway coming up soon!  ;-)

how to knit a neater edge in garter stitch

how to knit a neater edge in garter stitch

There is now a permanent page here in the menu bar with these instructions (click here for that).

This method works in plain garter stitch as well as lace patterns that do not have purl rows.  The example shown is the Gentille cowl.  This does not work in stockinette stitch.  Look at how the edge looks finished:

how to knit a neater edge in garter stitch


The trick is simple: slip the first stitch of every row purl-wise with your yarn in front.  Then move your yarn to the back and continue knitting!

Now you know!  Use this tip from anything like scarves to blankets!

what are you reading?

Today is Read Across America Day!  To celebrate, I’m sharing the books that I’m into right now.

First up is “Wide Sargasso Sea” by Jean Rhys.  It’s a short novel from the perspective of the mad wife in “Jane Eyre,” and it’s very interesting.  The back of the book says: “Set in the Caribbean, its heroine is Antoinette Cosway, a sensual and protected young woman who is sold into Marriage to the prideful Rochester.  In this best-selling novel, Rhys portrays a society so driven by hatred, so skewed in its sexual relations, that it can literally drive a woman out of her mind.”

Read Across America Day - what are you reading?Next on my list is “Longbourn” by Jo Baker.  This novel is similar to the one above in that it adds to an already existing novel, but in this case it’s a new view of “Pride and Prejudice.”  Focusing on the servants in the Bennet household, it gives a refreshing perspective to Regency England.

Read Across America Day - what are you reading?

My dad got me both of those books and I’m loving them (thanks Dad!).  I’m also listening to an audiobook as I knit/crochet/surf the Internet: “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.”  I know that’s not very new for me — I’ve read and/or listened to it a gazillion times — but it never gets old or less magical!

So what are you reading on this Read Across America Day?  People in countries besides America, I’m asking you, too!  :-)