Friday, 30 June 2017

Guessing Game Answer

A ball of rainbow coloured yarn on the right hand side with two small samples linked to it by a dark section of yarn. The largest sample starts with light blue to green to yellow horizontal striped ribbing above which are two rows of broomstick eyelets in light blue and dark blue.  Following on from that sample, attached by a length of dark yarn, a sample of darkest blue post stitch ribbing. The crochet hook is still inserted into the active loop at the top of the dark sample. The hook is powdercoated aluminium with a red plastic handle. There is a white label attached with the size '2.50 mm' printed on the label. The size '2.5 mm' is also embossed on the side of the red handle in fine white lettering.
Crochet ribbing and broomstick lace together.
Can you guess what it will become?

Last week, I shared this project prototype and invited everyone to guess what it would be.

Did you guess what I was crocheting with those circular knitting needles?

Crocheting with knitting needles?  
That seems a bit peculiar but it's true!

Two sets of grey plastic circular knitting needles on a dark background.  The cables are coiled at the top and the needle ends are pointing down. The set on the left are smaller and thinner than those on the right: 12 mm and 15 mm wide respectively.
Circular knitting needles
Here's a clue: I am using knitting needles and a crochet hook together to make something using the 'broomstick' crochet technique. 

Thank you everyone who guessed. It was great fun to read your logical and creative answers.  You have given me more ideas for things to make with broomstick crochet.  The blogosphere is truly a fabulous forum for fun, friends and new ideas. 

Regular visitors to Lupey Loops may have seen the broomstick lace scarves I've been making since getting a basic template from a craft show workshop.  After finishing the latest continuous scarf in broomstick lace, I've been designing a hat to match.

The correct answer is:  A broomstick lace beanie!

(How timely too for the Port Noarlunga Arts Centre to host a "Beanies to Berets" exhibition to inspire me just when I needed it although I did not see one item of broomstick crochet there. Maybe my new design will be good enough to fill that gap next time?)

Cowl displayed on wooden coathanger as if it were around the neck. The cowl has one twist in it and two layers around the neck. Rainbow stripes are in the following sequence dark blue, light blue, green yellow, orange, red, and then in reverse.  The background is a wooden trellis of diagonal slats.
Broomstick lace
continuous scarf
It's been a happy week working on my test pieces and prototype.  I received a note from Gallery M that made my day–all of my silk mohair scarves are now sold and the rainbow-coloured broomstick lace scarf sold within days of delivery! This encouraging news has boosted my motivation to prioritise crochet in my days and hurry up with my latest design efforts.

There isn't a lot to show so far because there has been much crocheting and much undoing.  

On a light brown wooden table top, a printed pattern is laid along with a green beanie in progress. The broomstick lace pattern is in the form of a diagram printed on white paper.  Next to the pattern (top left corner of picture) is a loosely wound skein of dark green 8 ply acrylic yarn. It is the source yarn for the beanie which is made in broomstick lace and unfinished.  The top of the beanie has a 12 mm circular knitting needle holding the unfinished broomstick loops. The needle at the other  end of the cable is resting on top of the hat near the bottom of the photo. Above that empty needle the hat is worked in broomstick lace; below the needles one can see the band of the hat worked in a crocheted cable pattern.  The top of the hat also has a crochet hook inserted. The hook is grey aluminium and the handle is yellow plastic with a white label stating its size (3.5 mm).
Making Kristin Omdahl's
"Cables and Lace Broomstick Hat"
in 8 ply acrylic.
I began with an existing pattern: Kristin Omdahl's "Cables and Lace Broomstick Hat" (Interweave, 2010) to examine Kristin's approach and familiarise myself with broomstick crochet worked in the round.

Kristin Omdahl's pattern uses DK weight yarn (8 ply) but my design will be with 4 ply (sock, fingering) weight. I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of stretch to be found in her cabled band.

I plan to use a different technique for the band on my hat. I've been experimenting with post-stitch and single-loop-only ribbing techniques instead because I think the cable pattern will get lost amidst the rainbow colours. Ribbing is simpler.

The colour change intervals in the rainbow yarn will also influence the design.  The scarves were designed with just the right number of broomstick eyelets (also known as 'peacock stitches') so that each new row coincides with a colour change.  Discovering the way the colours fall in the hat is exciting and fun.

I'm also experimenting with different hook and needle sizes to vary the tension and the stretchiness of the fabric. 

There are so many variables to play with
–it's time consuming but I love it!

Multicoloured crochet ribbing in the round is attached to circular knitting needles by orange broomstick loops. The source yarn is attached, showing shades of red, yellow and green. Everything is laid out on a white sheet.
Prototype progress.

This blog entry is brought to you from the confines of my bed. Today has been named "Forfeit Friday" because if it were a sport, the score would be:  
Pain 10 : Jodie NIL. 
It is very frustrating to lose at least half a day being stuck in bed, unable to move, sleeping off the pain that heralded a flare this morning. Thank goodness things settled down enough to keep my promise of answering the guessing game today.
I hope you had fun!


Gallery M, Marion Cultural Centre,
287 Diagonal Road,  Oaklands Park SA 5046, South Australia:
Phone: +618 8377 2904

Omdahl, Kristin, "Cables and Lace Broomstick Hat", crochet pattern:

Related Posts on Lupey Loops

"Beanies to Berets Exhibition & Sale Now Open", 25 June 2017:

"Circular Broomsticks", 21 June 2017:

"Broomstick Rainbow Finished for You", 10 June 2017:  

"Get on your Broomsticks!", 31 October 2016:


  1. I would never have guessed that it was a beanie but perhaps I should have if I'd out two and two together with your recent blog articles. Kristen Omdahl is a super designer and I'm going to have to favorite that design for when I go somewhere cold!! It looks wonderfully challenging and like you I do relish a challenge. I love that your beautiful products are selling so well. Great news! Hope you beat the pain tomorrow!

    1. Don't feel bad Tamara. A sweater was a perfectly reasonable guess because of the ribbing followed by fabric. I have seen a few broomstick lace tops around.
      I'm also a fan of Kristin Omdahl's work. What other designs of hers do you especially like?
      It's now the day after and I am groggy but not in so much pain and the sun is shining. Thanks for your good wishes. Now on with the day... :-)

  2. Well I certainly did not guess a beanie, good for you! Hope you are feeling well my friend.

    1. But Merrdith. your answer was a classic and made me happy; lots of fun.
      I'm not so sure about my beanie results so far. I get the feeling it wants to be a beret or tam or maybe a slouch hat. The drape of the broomstick lace in the round is not as structured as flat in a scarf, strangely enough.

      I'm ok - just the usual winter aches and pains. I hope you are enjoying a good summer and that the heat and humidity are not too oppressive.
      Enjoy your weekend. :-)

  3. Sorry to hear about the flare-up. Hope you are feeling much better by now. Definitely would not have guessed a beanie. Good for you trying out some new techniques. That takes more patience than I think I have. :) Thanks for stopping by my blog. Best wishes, Tammy

    1. Hi Tammy,

      I enjoy visiting your blog very much. It is always interesting to see other places and learn about different cultures and lifestyles. The last time I was anywhere near the middle east, it was in Dubai many many years ago, before all of the huge development that it is famous for now.

      Regarding crochet, it is always fun to experiment with new techniques and create new designs. I find the documentation time consuming but necessary and I hope to share my patterns one of these days (this year with luck!).

      My health has been up and down on a daily basis - busy, productive days alternating with foggy days or days lost to sleep. At least crochet is something that is possible to do without taxing the body too much. It keeps me sane.

      The friends and connections made through the blogosphere have been a great help to my morale as well so I thank you and all my blog friends for the continued support. It makes a difference.

      Wishing you a good week, Tammy xx

  4. Wow, you are so clever Jodie, I would have never guessed you were making a beanie. I hope you are having better days now. Hx

    1. Thanks, Helen, I enjoy the design process - so many options - good fun!

  5. Well that is a new one on me. I have never heard of using circular needles and a crochet hook. Very cool!

    1. That surprises me Mary-Anne because you have so much yarncrafting experience.

      Through this broomstick-in-the-round process, I've made another interesting discovery: the circular knitting needles were much easier to handle and less tiring for my arms than the straight wooden needle because the shafts were shorter and, being plastic, much lighter. They were *so* much easier that I'm currently trialling the plastic circulars on a straight row scarf project. So far, so good. :-)