The Learn to Crochet Project CAL Final Week – WIN 10 balls of Willow & Lark Ramble!
Welcome to week four! This week, you’ll learn all about the magic of blocking, and have the chance to win some delicious Willow & Lark yarn!
Blocking is a process that creates a beautiful, smooth appearance, and for some projects it’s used to enhance shapes and sizes, opening up lace motifs and designs.
Perhaps you haven’t yet heard about the wonder of blocking? Perhaps you have heard about it but aren’t quite sure how or why you would do it?
Here is our quick guide:
What is blocking?
Blocking is the process of setting your stitches in place, sometimes also known as dressing. It can be as simple as washing and drying flat, or can involve pins and wires to get the right shape and size.
What do you need?
- A bowl of hand-warm water – about 85 to 100°F / 30 tor 40°C – large enough to submerge the shawl in.
- A non-rinse wash – this is optional but I recommend using a specially formulated no-rinse wash solution such as Eucalan in the bowl as it cleans, adds fragrance that is off putting to moths, smells amazing, and because it is no-rinse, you don’t risk felting the wool when rinsing.
- A surface that is large enough to lay your project out flat, ideally one that is non-absorbent so that it dries quicker. You can do a little test to make sure no colour or dirt comes off the surface when wet. It would be a shame to ruin your hard work when the varnish comes off your floor. You can buy specialist blocking mats that clip together like a jigsaw to make a variety of shapes that are easy to store.
- Non-rusting pins. The non-rusting requirement is non-negotiable though! Do not use dressmaking pins, many hard hours work will be ruined with little rust marks.
- Blocking wires – these are for bigger projects such as shawls, but if you are using them they need to be bought for the purpose so they have been treated not to rust.
What do you do?
Start off with a good soak. Washing the finished project gets rid of any dirt or oil from the fibres that may have been put there in the industrial processes or from your hands as you worked. Fill a bowl with hand-warm water and about a teaspoon of the non-rinse wash (if using). Place the shawl in the bowl and leave to soak for twenty minutes or so, long enough that all the fibres get wet through. This not only gets the project clean but prepares the fibres ready to be stretched if desired.
Take the project out of the bowl and gently squeeze the excess water out. Be careful not to rub or press too hard as you risk felting. Place onto a clean towel, and roll the towel up to squeeze out the water.
Pat your project into shape so that it dries exactly how you’d like it to look. If you’re blocking a shawl you might want to pull the edges into shape and open out any lace motifs, pinning them into place.
Leave it until it is completely dry. Easy, job done!
If you’d like to make the last gorgeous pattern in the Learn to Crochet Project collection, you can buy the Crochet Project book with all of the patterns you’ve made so far plus lots more helpful information! Buy the book here.
Once you have mastered these fabulous crochet skills, why not try another Crochet Project pattern? We have lots of helpful information about how to make the gorgeous Acer shawl right here on the blog, and there are some beautiful patterns to make from The Crochet Project in our patterns section. Explore new patterns here!
WIN 10 balls of Willow & Lark Ramble yarn!
If you’d like to win 10 glorious balls of Willow & Lark Ramble yarn in the colour of your choice, all you need to do is upload a your Learn to Crochet Project CAL projects (we don’t mind if they are finished or not!) to the Community, and paste a link to the project in the Comments section below by 11:59pm EST Feb 15th. Your project must have an image, a description, and a link to the yarn that you used. See full Terms & Conditions here.
We’ll choose one lucky winner and send them 10 luscious balls of Willow & Lark Ramble yarn!
Which colour would you choose? Rose? Lemon Drizzle? Sea Green? Ox Blood? Bluebell?
(Choose from 30 delicious shades!)