Crochet Hooks Review: Addi Swing and Comfort Hooks

Back in March, I did a series of crochet hook reviews and giveaways as part of National Crochet Month.  The generous folks at the Skacel Collection were also kind enough to send me some hooks to review, but I haven’t had a chance to post the review until now.

Crochet hooks donated by the Skacel Collection, including Addi Swing (left) and Addi Comfort Hooks (right).

You may remember that I first tried an Addi Swing hook last year, during my trip to Philadelphia.

Philadelphia Loop Addi Swing detail 2012-05-15
My first Addi Swing.

I’ll admit that at first, I was kind of wondering what the big deal was all about.  It turns out that I just needed to get used to the unusual shape of the Addi Swing, and then I found myself crocheting with it more and more.  For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Swing, it has a heavily curved handle made with two different textures of plastics.

The Addi Swing in US size A, donated by Skacel Collection.
The Addi Swing in US size A.

The hook handles are color coded, so if you have more than one, it’s easy to find the size you want.  (As you can see from the detailed picture above, the millimeter size of the hook is also clearly displayed on the end of the handle.)  Although the handles are large, they are lightweight.  The hooks feature a not inline point and throat.  Because the handle covers most of the hook, the shaft is very short.  This would be a great comfort hook for someone who likes a curved hook shape or a thicker handle along with a not inline hook.

I find that the large, brightly colored Addi Swing handle makes it much more difficult to lose than other hooks, which helps for those of us who crochet on the go!  On the downside, the relatively short shaft makes it difficult to form bullions and other stitches which require a longer shaft with this hook.

The Addi Swings are available in US Sizes A through L, and generally retail for about $13-$14.

Addi hooks

The Addi Comfort Hooks are another option for the crocheter who needs a longer shaft for forming different types of stitches.  Like the Swing, this hook handle also features two colors of plastic, making it easier to find the right size.  As with the Swing, the hook itself is a not inline shape with a curved point and throat.  The plastic handle is hardened but provides that extra thickness I look for in a comfort hook handle.  The more conventional shape of this handle means that it is easier to adapt to than the Swing.  These hooks are available in US sizes A through I, and typically retail at about $7.

You may be wondering if I will be offering a giveaway of these great hooks.  The answer is that I already did :).  I actually included these in the prize pack I mailed to yarnpumpkin for the Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL.

Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL prize pack, including hooks provided by Skacel Collection and yarn provided by Galler Yarns.
Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL prize pack, including hooks provided by Skacel Collection and yarn provided by Galler Yarns.

Yarnpumpkin was kind enough to share the picture she took of her wonderful prizes.

Full disclosure: Four free review samples of this product was provided by Skacel Collection. Although I accept free products for review, I do not accept additional compensation from the distributor/manufacturer, nor do I guarantee a positive review.  My reviews are based entirely on my honest opinions. You can read my complete review disclosure here.

FO Friday: Pineapples for Everyone Shawl & CAL winners

It’s been three months since I last participated in FO Friday, and it is great to be back!  This FO is actually quite a few weeks old, but I haven’t shared these pictures yet on my blog.

This is my second version of my Pineapples for Everyone Shawl pattern.  I made it during the crochet-along back in February and March.

Pineapples for Everyone striped

Once again, I must credit MC with taking beautiful pictures.  These were taken on a Sunday afternoon, when we took a stroll outside of the Ziegfield Theater.

Pineapples for everyone striped 3

I used Galler Yarns Inca Eco in Denim and Raspberry.  I had a lot of fun making this striped version.  I like the contrast between the two colors.

And there were many other really great versions made during the CAL!  These fourteen were completed during the CAL and entered into the giveaway.

Blacky67

Blacky67‘s Glamorous Pineapples

yarnpumpkin pineapples for everyone shawl

yarnpumpkin‘s Pineapples for Everyone Shawl

yarnpumpkin Pineapples for Everyone

yarnpumpkin‘s Pineapples for Everyone Shawl

vibeskat purple pineapples shawl

vibeskat‘s Purple Pineapples Shawl

donnaknitsdolls pineapples for everyone 5 for 13

donnaknitsdolls‘s Pineapples for Everyone 5 for 13

ramhist pineapples for everyone

ramhist‘s Pineapples for Everyone

izybit pineapples for everyone shawl cal

izybit‘s Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL

bjclark63 pineapples for everyone shawl

bjclark63‘s Pineapples for Everyone Shawl

abhall76

abhall76‘s Pineapples for Everyone Shawl

jaye-yarns

jaye-yarns‘s Pineapple Blues

shhshh

shhshh‘s Pineapples for Everyone CAL

cherublace

cherublace‘s Pineapples for Everyone

Adele from South Africa

Adele from South Africa’s version

Aria Swiftwind

Aria’s version

It’s great to see the different versions and how the choice of yarn, or the degree to which you block the edges, or the number of repeats can create so many looks.

Without further ado, according to Random.org, the winner of the CAL giveaway is #3…

Nancy L. Drew, also known as yarnpumpkin from Stitchin’ and Stuff!

She is the winner of several skeins of yarn, courtesy of Galler Yarns, and crochet hooks courtesy of Skacel Collection!  Thanks to everyone who participated.  I will be announcing the next crochet-a-long soon.

For more finished objects, visit Tami’s Amis!

Year of Projects, Year 2: Charity washcloths and other updates

YOP2 This post is part of

It’s been ages since I posted a Year of Projects update, but I have been working towards several of my goals for this year.

This post contains affiliate links.

Scrappy mitred square washcloths.
Scrappy mitered square washcloths.

My latest series of quick projects has been to make mitered square washcloths for the April Crochetlist charity challenge, which will benefit Mothers and Infants Striving for Success.

You may remember that mitered squares (also known as domino knitting) were on my original list of new (to me) knitting things, and I learned the basics for making them from Modular Mix: 12 Knitted Mitered Squares to Mix & Match by Edie Eckman late last year.  Since then, I’ve been exploring Domino Knitting by Vivian Hoxbro and have picked up the formula.

Making these washcloths has been a fun way to use up stash.  I’m currently working on a jumbo square, where I cast on 109 stitches to start.

MISS washcloth 2 in progress

I’ve also made some progress on another new (to me) knitting skill, which is entrelac.  Once again, a book has been my guide.  This time, it’s Entrelac: The Essential Guide to Interlace Knitting by Rosemary Drysdale.

Entrelac 3 rowsThis swatch will probably eventually turn into a block for charity, too, and then I will make a new one in cotton for this washcloth challenge.

And I also finished hosting my second crochet-a-long of the year in the Underground Crafter Ravelry group.  (We’re now voting on the pattern for the next CAL, which will start in May.)  I made a striped version of my Pineapples for Everyone Shawl.

Pineapples for Everyone stripes on couch

I’m not sure yet if I can claim that this will be a project for me.  I like it a lot, but it seems to be telling me it might end up as a gift.  Or maybe it’s just because I haven’t taken a picture wearing it, so it doesn’t quite seem mine yet…

For more Year of Projects updates, visit Come Blog-a-long on Ravelry.

NatCroMo13 in Review!

If you’re like me, you have been following along with many special National Crochet Month features and may be behind on your blog reading.

Here’s a quick roundup of my NatCroMo13 posts.

Free Wednesday posts!

blog Rectangular Sampler angle view

Crochet Book Reviews

NatCroMo13 Book Collage

Crochet Hook Reviews

Favorite Online Crochet Resources

Interviews

Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL

Pineapples with Underground Crafter CAL

Vintage Needlecrafts Pick of the Week

 

Now, I’m off to recover from posting daily for a month!

Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL: Finishing Off

Pineapples with Underground Crafter CAL

Welcome to the Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL!  If you’re just joining in, you can find the free pattern here.  Ravelry members can join our CAL chat here.  Our tag is 2013PFEcal.

As I mentioned last week, I finished my shawl but it was in need of some blocking.  Confession time: I hate blocking.

It may be the fact that I live in an apartment with a cat, or perhaps it is the delayed gratification aspect.  It might also be that I’m not so great at it.

I’ve arrived at a comfortable halfway point with my crocheted and knit projects.  I agree that blocking is a necessary evil.  I will block them, if necessary, but only if I can figure out a way for spray blocking, my favorite method, to work with my project.

Blocking Pineapples for Everyone Shawl

I’ve mentioned before that I use children’s play mats, rather than “blocking boards,” for blocking.  I found these on sale and it has worked for me so far.  Above, you can see my shawl pinned out on my mom’s bedroom floor (thanks Mom!), waiting to be sprayed.  I decided to accentuate the points a bit more by pinning those in place.

The amazing thing about blocking is that my shawl already looks better, and I haven’t even blocked it yet.  Otherwise, it has a rumpled appearance.

If you’re new to blocking, here are some of my favorite online resources to help you get on your way:

I hope everyone has had fun with the CAL so far.  I’ve been seeing some amazing projects on Ravelry.  Remember that if you’d like to be entered to win prizes, you’ll need to share a picture of your finished shawl by next Friday, March 29.  You can follow the links below (The big reveal) to show off your shawl.  Good luck!

Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL Schedule

Friday, February 15: Start your chains: Pineapples for Everyone Shawl CAL kick off!  

Friday, February 22: Laying down the foundation: Rows 1-8

Friday, March 1: The first repeat: Rows 9-14

Friday, March 8: The second repeat: Rows 15-20

Friday, March 15: The third repeat: Rows 21-26

Friday, March 22: Finishing off: Edging and blocking

Friday, March 29: The big reveal: Flash your shawls on RavelryFacebook,Twitter, and/or your blog for a chance to win prizes from Galler Yarns!