In my mind's eye, I have a picture, as if it's a memory or a dream. I'm in a boat (I think, or I might be swimming), looking over a sea of blues and greens towards a beach and dunes, under a blue sky with a few clouds. It's a calm, warm, summery picture which is completely different to the currently awful weather. I want to look at the view, lie on or snuggle under it, so for a little while now, I have been planning how to create that picture as a crochet blanket.
At first, I thought about knitting it, using a drop stitch pattern to create waves. I did a test swatch, but decided I didn't like the single strands of yarn created by the dropped stitches.
I wondered about a crocheted wave pattern, and realised that I didn't know how to do the various lengths/heights of crochet stitch, so I would need to learn those first.
I found a book listing them and did a little sample using the various stitches. Easy enough. I took some of my double knitting (dk) stash and did a little bookmark, stepping up through the stitches on each row; slip stitch (ss), double crochet (dc), half treble (htr/htc), treble (tr/tc), double treble (dtr/dtc), triple treble (ttr/ttc). (These are UK terms - I noted that they have different names in the USA, but I decided I could only handle one set of names at a time! Thanks to YarnOverChicago blog for her helpful table!)
I rather liked the resulting texture, so I did a quick sample of a wave pattern. I found it difficult to keep track of which stitch to put on top of which to keep a regular pattern. It was going to be a big project (double bed size, roughly five foot wide by six long, I think) and I could do without the stress. I happened across a tutorial on free-form waves from The Wench's Crafty Corner blog (thank you!), and decided that would be the way to go.
The first couple of rows were in dc and htr, to create a solid base to work from. Then I started on rows, loosely following a sort of long wave pattern: 3 dc, 2 htr, 2 tr, 2 dtr, 3 ttr, 2 dtr, 2 tr, 2 htr, 3 dc. If I lose track and start drifting from the pattern by adding an extra double treble or triple treble, it's not a problem. It's probably why I thought of the name Longshore.
I was feeling like the only person on earth who hadn't seen Game of Thrones,
so I've been working on Longshore while catching up on seasons 1 and 2,
borrowed from next door. I'm on my third colour, and have done about a foot so far. It's quite relaxing, although I can't work without looking at it. (So I might have to watch GoT again as I've probably missed something significant to the story line!) I find myself stroking it flat, looking at the rippling texture and musing on how different makes of double knitting yarn are all slightly different thicknesses, as I drift back and forth across the greeny-blue sea.