Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Toad Hollow Day of Encouragement and CALs

Toad Hollow Day of Encouragement

This is a day that I had never heard of until searching around the web last week, but it's a pretty cool idea.  This is a day to give encouragement and kind words to all around you.  

The day is based on the legend of Toad Hollow written by Ralph C. Morrison. This Bugs and Bunnies blog post provides a great overview of the history of Toad Hollow and the creation of the day of encouragement.  

I think it's easy to forget to say kind words on a daily basis, especially when you're operating in a stressed and over programmed environment.  One place that I've found an overwhelming amount of kind words and encouragement is in the fiber arts community -- particularly in the knitting and crocheting communities.  It's fun to share photos of completed projects and ask questions in various virtual groups and also provides immediate feedback as well as longer term inspiration.

With that in mind, here are three CALs that I'm participating in over the next few months:

CALs or Crochet-a-longs

Each of these projects is a virtual crochet-a-long where a piece of the project is revealed on a schedule and people post progress pictures throughout the CAL.  Each are in their early stages and it's already been very interesting to see how the same pattern looks in different colors/yarns and made by different crocheters.  

Scraps of Yarn CAL Mystery Scarf

Creative Crochet Workshop created a scraps of yarn mystery scarf CAL that is published in four parts.  I was drawn to this project because I have a lot of scraps of yarn (where do they all come from???) and I love the flower theme.  

My first week's completed motifs are pictured above.  I'm purposely using as many colors as possible.  I'm looking forward to the next set of motifs being revealed tomorrow morning.  

Crochet with Me CAL 2016

Beatrice Ryan Designs is hosting a crocheted afghan crochet-a-long over a 12-week period, with new sections available each Saturday.  It's only been 3 weeks and I've already learned a few new stitches and techniques that I'm sure I'll use again in future projects.  Her directions recommended that the afghan be made using 1-3 colors, so I've selected white as the main color, with red and black as contrasting colors.

Again, the end is a mystery.  I do know that there will be edging and a border, which is great news because the different stitches are creating a jagged edge.

Wonder Crochet Blanket CAL 2016

American Crochet has created the final CAL in which I'm participating right now.  The Wonder Crochet Blanket CAL is unique because every two week, a different designer creates the next section of the blanket.  As with the Crochet with Me afghan, I'm learning new stitches and enjoying seeing the various version crocheted by fellow CALers.

So far, I crocheted the first section with white and blue and the second in a bright orange.  I don't know if I'm going to stick with these three colors or incorporate more throughout the afghan.  I kind of like the idea of changing colors with each section to highlight the fact that the piece has been designed by numerous artists.

This one is a long CAL -- a new section is announced every two weeks, so I won't have the completed work done until the end of the year.  I hope that I don't lose momentum!

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