So, here's what I've managed to crochet so far. It's from a pattern called "Zen and the Art of Stash Diving" by designer Robin Chachula. I wanted a pattern that appealed to me and would use the practice yarn that i already had. I was able to buy some cashmere blend yarn on sale for only $0.99 so I couldn't resist buying the yarn. Cashmere! 99 cents! There was a limited range of color so I just chose the most neutral one I could find.
I'm on the second and last skein of yarn, so this will be done when I run out of yarn. I'm actually looking back at the original photo in the pattern and I can see that the stitches in the original are so much more open than mine. Maybe that's why I'm having a hard time with one particular stitch (the 3rd sc after the chain 5) where the stitch I'm trying to crochet into is sooo small! That's also probably why I haven't finished with this yet because that particular stitch is a huge pain.
I also ran into yarn issues. I was wondering why the yarn didn't really feel all that different from what I'd previously been using (50% cotton/50% acrylic) given that it was a cashmere bend, so I looked at the label and it was 3% cashmere/97% acrylic! Joke's on me. :) Looking at the picture above, it actually almost looks like chenille to me. Feels like chenille, too.
The other yarn issue was that as I was watching game 7 of the Celtics-Orlando game, the yarn became extremely knotted! I had to figure out how to untangle and unknot so I ended up unwinding the whole thing and then rewinding it into a decent ball of yarn. You can see what it looks like now the background of the photo.
Still, I'm having fun. I'm excited to see what this looks like after it's completely finished and then blocked into shape. Maybe it will relax a bit. And I'm also so looking forward to experimenting with softer yarn pretty soon.