Vroom, Vroom II: The Afghan

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Remember the darling car diaper set? 

https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2017/01/10/vroom-vroom/
The sweet mother loved it so much she queried whether I would consider making an afghan to match. It was before Christmas, so I said I be delighted, after the new year.

I had a field day with the design. I do love that part of the process!

I wanted the grid look, but on steroids…So I started with this:

http://www.redheart.com/free-patterns/roadway-throw

It was relatively simple and fun to make! Mine is slightly different from the pattern linked above, I sort of winged it. 🙂

Oh, dear, the picture is so dark…We had such a stretch of rainy gray days. All the better to crochet!

I love those playmats for little toy cars, you know the ones? 

My blanket needed a town. And a beach! I could see it in my head…But would the yarn cooperate?

Adding the sky worked out pretty well. So far so good!

A simple shell stitch in browns, then blues created a beach. Sigh. I could almost smell the salt air.

A few dozen ends, and the mat was complete! Now for the applique.

The first house!

Ends, ends everywhere…Time to sew!

And the finished product:

Success! At times like this I feel like a true artist and it feels so good.


Happy hooking!

Maddy’s Dragon

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And now for a trip down memory lane…

It was the dog days of summer. Hot and sunny. We loaded up the in-laws minivan and headed south, then east, to grandpa’s old stomping ground.

His cousin has spent the better part of two years planning afive generation family reunion!

And here we were.

Each branch of the family tree had been assigned a color, so we topped ourselves off in red t-shirts and headed to the hall to help set up.

My husband’s sweet cousin was expecting her first child. ❤

She had messaged me months ago with the cutest little dragon Ami picture, and asked if it was something I could make?

How could I refuse? I love a challenge, and I love taking requests. 🙂

Imagine my delight when I discovered the pattern was free, on Ravelry, and my further delight when it was one of those rare gems of pattern that one so rarely finds: well-written and of the “it looks so complex but is really quite easy to make” variety.

It was a triple blessing at that point– a new baby, and a free, quite do-able pattern.

Add in a trip to actually visit relations and deliver the gift in person, and life is good!

She wanted a little dragon in pink and green…And here it is.

It turned out just darling.

Here’s the pattern link:

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/bb-dragon
Now for those of you who are curious, I love the in-process photos, as the creature is becoming…

We begin with the parts:

And then a few more…

Now to sew. I love this little ridgeback!

And then the arms, the legs

The eyes were amazing. I really didn’t think I could do it…And then I couldn’t believe the difference they made, once attached, in bringing the little guy to life. I confess, I hot-glued them in place… Usually I hand-stitch everything, so the item is washable.

Now for the rest: ears, horns and… nostrils! Again, it was truly amazing as this character took shape in my hands. Each detail added so much.

And finished!

What a marvelous fiber adventure.

May you be blessed and crafty today.

Happy hooking!

Sunny Days

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What a difference a few days of sunshine can make!

We’ve had an ice storm nearly every week this winter, and spring seems farther and farther off, instead of nearer.

It has been nice to stay indoors and crochet, I miss that in the summer months!

I took advantage of a break in the storms yesterday, and gallivanted off to town with a friend. 🙂

I had heard there was a new yarn shop in town…

We browsed a lovely collection of artistic goods

It was a fun little place

And I came home with a few new friends for my collection. More yarn! 😀

Then we found a lovely, sunny spot and had a delicious lunch.

It was the perfect outing before my evening shift.

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I had been “busy as a bee” crocheting orders this month! I look forward to sharing cute new designs with you as soon as they have been delivered and/or gifted. ❤

Sweet Lacy Goodness

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I made the most beautiful little blanket for a baby gift.

Using self-striping yarn, there were almost no color changes and few ends to weave in. Such a good thing!

I used the most delicious new yarn, even the name is yummy…Lion Brand Ice Cream.

I think it was a 5mm hook, though it might have been a 6.

The free pattern is all the rage: it is simple, but looks complicated.

My favorite traits!

It started out as a triangular shawl, and someone clever adapted it into a square.

Here is the link to her blog:

http://www.jonnamartinez.com/2015/11/blanket-pattern-and-worked-up-by-jonna.html?showComment=1458925569857#c873061720421579173

Once you have the center made, there isn’t a need for the pattern, as the repeats are quite easy to remember.

The parents-to-be were quite delighted with the lovely gift.

I so look forward to meeting their new little blessing!

Just a few more weeks. ❤

Happy crocheting!

That Winter Chill

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Don’t you just love the New Year? 

My distaste for monotony thrills to the idea of a fresh start.

I’ve tidied, purged, sorted and organized to my heart’s content these last few weeks. In between all my usual tasks, of course!

I had heard about the project I am sharing with you today before, but hadn’t considered making one, for several reasons. As you know, I have plenty of WIPs (work-in-progress) as it is!

But after I saw all the fun links and ideas in one of my many crochet Facebook groups, I had to make one too. 🙂

The basic premise of a temperature blanket is this: you crochet a row a day, basing the color of the row on that day’s temperature.

You can immediately see my issue: I’m not the sort of person that can do ANYTHING once a day for a year…Goodness! And only one row at a time? No, thanks! And how to remember to record the daily temperature? And do you write the high or low? And which color chart should I choose?

So how do you plan a project when the rules don’t work for you? Why, you break the rules, of course. 🙂

First, I needed a color chart. A quick Google image search revealed many options. I surveyed a few and created my own color/temperature key.

Then I chose my pallette. That’s my favorite part!

There are some fun websites available to help you with temperature readings. I used this one:

http://weatherghansite.azurewebsites.net

At first I thought it didn’t work…You have to click on “see more”, or something like that…After you enter your country and date range. The neat thing about this site is you can make a blanket for any year! Several people were making the a “birth year temperature” afghan for a child. What a lovely idea. 

There are also plenty of patterns to choose from. I fell in love with this one, from the Crochet Crowd:

http://thecrochetcrowd.com/spectrum-afghan-pattern/
Now, where to start? Since I began on the 4th day of January, I was in a quandary. I wanted to crochet a lot of my blanket! Not just four rows…

I thought back over the past year. We had an especially nice November, lots of lovely warm days. Cheery yellow would be just the color to start my blanket. And so I did!

I was eager to see how the first few rows came along. I crocheted six weeks in one sitting.

You can see how quickly the chill moved in! Lots of purple in my future, with a bit of blue.

I have no illusions about completion. One oft-mentioned issue with these blankets is that they become very skinny and long! 

I went with  starting chain of 153. When it is as long as I like, I’ll stop. 🙂 I’m quite curious how many months that will be!

I’ve several orders to finish in the next few days, but I eagerly look forward to making more progress on this one.

Happy hooking!

Vroom, Vroom

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And a happy Tuesday to you!

It’s always so wonderful when our projects are appreciated, isn’t it? When they are used, delight the recepient and become well-loved, even to being worn through.

It’s the best.

A while back, I made a little diaper set for a handsome young chap. Something with cars, she said. 

It wasn’t much to go on! So I designed it to please myself and hoped for the best.

The family was thrilled. Unbeknownst to me, I had matched their nursey decor EXACTLY. 

Hurrah!

So just before Christmas, I got a sweet second request. Could I make a blanket to match???
But of course. 🙂

Now comes the fun part! Choosing a design. 

Here’s a composite of my inspirational photos so far…

I shall keep you updated!

Here is the pattern I used for the diaper set: 
http://www.repeatcrafterme.com/2013/01/crochet-bunny-hat-pattern.html

May you stay warm and dry today.

Happy hooking!

English Garden

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It is sunny today, but dreadfully cold.

Days like this make me thankful I can create my own sunshine with yarn, or at least some flowers!

Lover of granny squares that I am, I collected a soft pallette of pink, green, cream and brown and followed my heart.

It began with a log cabin center, something I have attempted several times with mixed success.

I’m not convinced that crochet lends itself well to this motif…

Nevertheless, I forged ahead, dreaming of roses and diamonds.

The log cabin edged with cream to set it off. Then diamonds, first, one round of one color, two of another…the variations possible by adjusting color and round delight me! The more she grows, the better I like the center.

Another band of cream, then rounds of ombre stripes.

Next…A round of posies in pinks. I can’t wait!

May you be safe and warm this January day. ❤

Happy hooking!