So, it wasn't my crochet skills that caused the failure of the Lacy Leaf Shrug. I found out that it is entirely possible for me to crochet something and not completely screw it up. Here's the proof:
That's the Chanson en Crochet, from Wrap Style. Also available as a free downloadable pattern from Interweave Crochet. The yarn is the absolutely heavenly Briar Rose Grace (60% merino/30% bamboo/10% nylon) that I purchased at The Fiber Event. I love this yarn and the pictures absolutely do not do it justice. It glows because of the bamboo content, but the colors are much more complex than what my camera is able to capture. Here's a closeup:
And another (the colors are closer here, but still not exactly right):
Note that this is all before blocking. I'm planning to block it tomorrow and wear it Saturday afternoon to a meal out with friends. I love it so much. And, I have enough yarn left over for some nice fingerless mitts...or sock cuffs....or something else I haven't thought of yet.