(UK Terminology is used for this blog).
What hook size did I use?
There are plenty of ways to forget - or should I say, remember, which hook size you used to make the fabric. OMG it's sooooo frustrating to go back to your swatch later and your notebook, and....... nothing. I have forgotten too many times, so now I sacrifice my stitch markers for the purpose. (Because I'm worth it - lol!)
I used to think I didn't need stitch markers, but after I used a safety pin style stitch marker for the first time, I realised I had been so ignorant! They can mark stitches in a pattern, sure, but they can also pin pieces together while you sew them, they can assemble a garment so you can drape it over yourself to check you are on track, AND you can get your permanent marking Sharpie out and write the hook size on the marker and leave it permanently attached to your swatch. Like - forever!
That few cents to a dollar's worth of marker just saved me an hour of re-swatching because it will still be there when I go back to it. Very much worth it. And if colour coding is your thing, you could add that extra level of organisation! Go nuts :)
(I have also been known to use the larger safety pin style stitch markers as wine glass charms to keep track of who's glass is who's when having friends over for drinks.... so useful!)
And now to Tails...
One of the benefits of edging pieces of fabric in double crochet then using that edging for seaming is that it is a great place to hide your tails! I like that this method keeps the decorative fabric itself clear of loose ends, but it doesn't suit every situation, and there are plenty of other techniques to deal with tails that are also very awesome. But this is my fave....
When you start the edging you can trap and carry the beginning tail within the dc stitches, in which case, step one is already complete. When I complete my Secret Sew Finish (See Blog entry CT#3), I turn my piece over and do the following:
Like I said, if you already trapped you beginning tail for 4-6 stitches as you edged with dc, this part is already done)...
Stretching the fabric before and after sewing back is very important because you don't want it to gather or pucker your fabric. (If it is going to be hidden, this part of the fabric should ideally move like the surrounding fabric and not be very stiff.) Please note: It works very well if you have a slightly fuzzy yarn as the tail will grip on to itself when you sew back into the fibre, but if it has slippery sheen to it, this "sewing in" is not likely to be enough. (For slippery yarns, I may go over 8 stitches or so, and go back and forth a couple of times over part of its length.)
I was going to talk about blocking, but blocking is actually quite a big topic - so I will save that for next time. I hope my little tips may help you in your crochet adventures,