A year’s weather in crochet – an update

In February this year (2021) I wrote about how I was making a temperature scarf.

Basic idea: crochet a line of wool for every day of the year, representing the weather in various colours (red for a hot day, blue for rain – that sort of thing).

I am sure that some readers thought: I wonder how long she’ll be doing that?

And indeed I wondered the same thing. Projects like these often fall by the wayside as real life rolls on.

However, I am pleased to report that my “scarf” is still going strong. I am up to date and strongly into the colours of mid-winter.

temperature scarf midwinter

The bottom pale yellow row represents July 1, a day when the temperature was between 16 and 20 deg C. The green row (the next one up) represents wind with an average speed of between 20 and 40km/h and and the blue row represents rainfall of between 11 and 24mm in a 24 hour period. Yep, that’s Cape Town in winter.

There have been some hiccups.

The process has revealed that I am really terrible at keeping to a straight edge when doing crochet, so the first six months of the scarf start out narrow and get wider over the months, meaning that my scarf now looks a bit like an ice-cream cone.

I took it on holiday with me and lost my favourite crochet hook between the slats of a wooden deck.

Then I discovered that the original colours I picked for rain simply did not do justice to full vagaries of Cape Town weather, so I’ve added another shade of blue.

Jan to July 2021

January to the end of June 2021, with January being at the bottom of the picture.

And the scarf got very long and cumbersome to work with so I finished off the last day of June and started a new six-month section.

But it is still going!

Lessons learned

I think that’s because I ditched perfectionism at the outset. I resolved that I would not go back and unpick for any reason except a mistake in the data. If I somehow got my colours mixed up, that would have to be fixed. But anything else (dropped stitches, peculiar lumps in the edges, dirty bits of wool, cats attacking strands and making a mess) would just have to be left behind as I crocheted on.

I am endlessly fascinated by the way the colours unfold. I am recording three sets of data: the highest temperature of any given day (in shades from pale lemon to red), the wind (in shades of green) and rain (in shades of blue). The first six months are to the right.

And I love the way the wool makes a graphic representation of actual events. Here, the red wool represents the hottest day of the year so far (36 deg C) – and also the day of the terrible Cape Town fire.

The red colour represents the day of the Cape Town fire.

I don’t think I’ll ever wear this as a scarf. But I have been wrapping the first six months around my shoulders against the chilly Cape Town weather in my icebox of an office. It got down to 1 deg C last night. I wonder if next year’s scarf needs to record low temperatures as well?

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  1. How clever. I think it’s gorgeous – and your should definitely wear it once it’s done!

  2. Ah thank you – I think it may simply be too long when it’s done. But the joy of it is that it is mystery that unfolds as I go along.

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