PlanetJune Craft Blog

Latest news and updates from June

Archive for January, 2009

crocheted socks!

I’ve never really been interested in making socks – they are so inexpensive to buy, and seem like they would take so long to make, it just doesn’t seem worth it to me (although I know many knitters would disagree). Also, sock yarn is normally made of wool, which I’m sensitive to, so I a) can’t make them without wearing gloves, and b) couldn’t wear the finished socks anyway!

And then I saw the new Patons Stretch Socks yarn, which changed my mind…
Patons Stretch Socks yarn colours

  • It’s elasticated! Maybe it would be the perfect yarn to crochet some non-bulky hand-warmers for when I’m working?
  • It comes in some really nice colourways
  • Although it is 39% wool, the elastic wrapped around the outside of the yarn cushions it from my skin and I can touch it with no problems
  • Oh, and it was on super-special at Michaels, and I can never resist a bargain

I decided to try Dorothy Hardy’s Ultimate Crocheted Socks pattern from CrochetMe.com. I liked the idea of the one-piece construction (no sewing!) and working from the toe end means if you run out of yarn, you just end up with a shorter sock – a nice idea. The first sock came together without too many problems, although the pattern has some unclear points and I had to unpick a few times before I figured it out. I also redesigned the heel shape a bit because it didn’t really fit the shape of my foot as written, and I added a couple of extra rounds and a crab stitch edging to the top of the cuff.

I decided to save the second sock as a travelling project for the plane trip to Hawaii. I made half the sock on the way out, but on the way back I was tired and didn’t want to have to figure out how to do the heel, so the second sock sat unfinished until this weekend… After a false start on Saturday (proof that even pattern designers can slip up: I was crocheting hdc stitches instead of esc – hey, I’m only human!) I raced through it, and now I finally have a pair of socks to wear around the house:

crocheted socks

It was hard to get a decent photo of my own feet, and Maui kept wandering into the shot too! Hopefully these will give you an idea though:

crocheted socks

They are comfy and cosy, and I really like the yarn and the colour. I don’t love the shape of the toe or the heel, but it’s not a bad design, and not having to sew anything was a definite bonus.

I can see why knitting is better-suited to sockmaking – crocheted socks just look a bit clumsy and bulky by comparison. Although, having said that, now I know how a sock is constructed, I’m sure I could design a more stylish crocheted sock… I’m just not sure I want to! I’m glad I have made a pair of socks, just for the experience, but I think I’ll use the leftover sock yarn to make those custom-fitted hand-warmers instead…

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African Violets crochet pattern

crocheted african violets by planetjune

A crocheted African Violet never needs watering, never dies, and is always in bloom. It’s the perfect thing to brighten up your office desk, or to give as an unusual and thoughtful gift. Everyone appreciates a bit of colour, especially in the middle of winter!

This is a very special pattern: it includes full instructions to mix and match your own lifesize crocheted African Violet. With two plant sizes, two pot sizes, and two flower patterns (single-colour and two-tone), you can create your own custom violets in your favourite shades.

crocheted african violet by planetjune

You can pick up the African Violets pattern today from the PlanetJune shop!

I also have a question for you – what would you like me to design next?? Would you like to see more flowers, more dogs, more wild animals, more PocketAmi sets, or something completely different? Please send me your suggestions (either as a comment here or by e-mail) – and remember, if I use your suggestion I’ll give you a discount on the pattern! I hope you’ll come up with some fun ideas for me…

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back in action

Phew, 24 hours of panic are over… Yesterday all my websites were suspended – I don’t know if it was a mistake or if, once again, I’ve grown too big for my webhost to handle (remember the disaster of last March when I had to switch hosts?!) Until yesterday, my new host has been fantastic, so hopefully all will be well from now on.

It was a scary day without my website, and not the best start to my new self-employed career! Thanks for your patience while I was offline, and I’m so sorry if you wanted to buy any of my crochet patterns while I was gone (for future reference, my Etsy store is a good backup for pattern emergencies).

I will leave you with some better news: a sneak peek at my upcoming pattern…

crocheted african violet by planetjune

More details and pics to follow soon!

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a fresh start for 2009!

The start of a new year is always a good time to begin a new chapter in your life; to try something new and make changes for the better. This year is a big one for me: I’ve decided to quit my day job to concentrate on designing, creating and writing, and see where that takes me. Self-employment is a big scary step, but sometimes you just have to take a leap and see what happens! I already have a couple of projects lined up, and I can’t wait to get started!

Take a look at some of the things I made in 2008…

PlanetJune 2008 roundup

Also in 2008, I had some of my work published in a book and a magazine, I taught a crochet class, and I co-founded Folding Trees. Just think how much more productive I could be without having to fit in a full-time job as well!

I hope to be able to post here more often too, although I’m still sticking to my policy of quality over quantity – I only post when I have something worth talking about 🙂

Thank you so much to all my blog visitors and friends – your support, comments and e-mails are what give me the courage to dream big. My New Year’s resolution is to give myself the chance to succeed, but to not beat myself up about it if things don’t go as well as I hope.

Please wish me luck with my new venture!

Comments (11)

  • Welcome to PlanetJune!

    June Gilbank

    Hi, I'm June. Welcome to my world of nature-inspired crochet and crafting. I hope you enjoy your visit!

    If you'd like to get in touch, you can contact me here.
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