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!

Jingly the Christmas Elf

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I’m always so pleasantly surprised when a project turns out. You would think I might have more confidence in my skill at this point, wouldn’t you? Ah, but you haven’t seen the totes-full-of-failures in my basement, now have you? This blog is a bit like Facebook, just the best ten percent of my successful work.And here is today’s featur:e

My darling girl said we needed an elf. I’ll save my anti-Santa rant and dislike of the threatening-repeating parent (cf. Love n Logic) for another blog, or even another lifetime…Let’s just say our elf is NOT a spy. 🙂

So the elf. We perused Amazon, Pinterest (holy hilarious antics!) and, as usual, I found my answer on ravelry. Love that site.

Here’s the pattern: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/elf-on-the-shelf

I thought PINK, but my sweet girl wanted red. So it began.

Fortunately, I had some cute colored eyes left over from an Etsy order I placed eons ago! I really like the blue.

We began the hair.

One of my favorite parts of the pattern is the white picot collar! I decided to use it on the hat also, instead of leaving it plain.

Added a little pink mouth, and began to sew…I used a needle to separate the strands of yarn and give her pretty curly locks.

Decided I REALLY liked the picot collar and added trim to the sleeves as well. 🙂

Then, she sat in waiting for a week or two. It gets busy this time of year!

Finally, I found the time, and motivation, to stitch on those cute, skinny arms and legs.

And she was darling!

At my daughter’s request, I even found time to make her a little baby elf friend. 

The hair is a bit comical, and she didn’t like the eyes, so perhaps I will redo those…

But still, cute n all!

Have a blessed week-before-Christmas, and may you be surrounded by much love, now and always.

Happy hooking!

The Messy Bun Hat

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Brrr! The temperature has dropped with a vengeance but the sun is shining bright.

The most recent snowfall has left us looking marshmallow-topped and sparkling under said sun.

This week’s blog is a project less than twenty-four hours old, and includes a free pattern! Pretty good turnaround, considering the timeline of most of my work. 😂

A sweet friend posted to my timeline yesterday and asked if I could make her the hat that is all the rage right now– it has a hole at the top for your hair and is much sought-after by those blessed thick-haired creatures of the north.

I checked out a dozen free patterns on the web, and at least as many pics, and decided to just try my own thing.

Any hat pattern could work, you would just make a ring and start about the third round.

You can use an elastic band to crochet over for the first stitches, or chain a ring and crochet around.

I used about 20 chains to get the diameter opening I was looking for.

Bulky yarn #5 and a 9mm hook

Here it is:

The Sparkly Toad Messy Bun Hat Pattern

Ch 20, join with sl st 

Rnd 1: make 24 hdc in ring, ch 1.

Rnd 2: crocheting BETWEEN each st, make 2 hdc between each st around. Join w sl st to first hdc, (24 vStitches made)

Rnd 3: ch 2, crochet 1 hdc in same st as join (counts as first v stitch). Make 2 hdc in each v stitch around. Join with sl st to center of first v stitch.

Continue to just short of desired length (I made about 12 rounds), then make two rows of alternating fpdc and bpdc to create ribbed edge.

My friend was thrilled! It fit perfectly and the blue and rust are her colors. 🙂 

The first few rounds started out pretty full and wobbly but it evened out nicely as I crocheted down. 

Her wonderful hubby took this pic for me:

Made last night and delivered this morning. ❤

If only all my project went this well. 🙂

Happy hooking!