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. ❤

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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!

Softee Splurge

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Yes, I spent over six dollars of my profit on this skein…no, I am not sorry. 😀

Time to make a little something for me, after all the holiday orders. Thinking I’d like an infinity scarf like this one:

http://www.hopefulhoney.com/2013/10/basic-chunky-cowl-crochet-pattern.html

Or maybe

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/chunky-winter-infinity-scarf

I’d like a longer length so I can double it, we’ll see!
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Finished one! It was super-quick, too with the simple pattern…yay!

And the Bernat…one skein in about an hour with this basic hdc, ch-1 pattern…and I figured out a twist while crocheting in the round! Truly an infinity scarf. 😉 Looking foward to making a pic tutorial for that one! It won’t be my last, I love this yarn.
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Completely ELF-ish {{30 Days of Christmas Crochet Cuteness}}

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I confess, I love Christmas. In fact, it would be hard to find anything about the holiday I don’t like…and I work retail!

And as much as our family strives to keep Christ at the center of our home, I confess to be an absolute Rankin-Bass groupee, too. Frosty, Rudolph, Kris Kringle…I can take only so much claymation cuteness and I start craving my yarn and iPod! Now that I have developed adequate amigurumi proficiency I can actually make those adorable creatures, and more. And if I can do it, so can you! Here are my favorite ELF patterns of the season:

1. Superb ELF socks

ELF SLIPPERS!!!!!

These socks are the best thing I’ve seen yet for Christmas novelty! LOVE the slightly aztec design, and bulky yarn means they make up quickly,soft and warm. Here’s the link:

http://crochetforfree.blogspot.com/2011/11/chunky-i-hook-adult-female-adult-male.html

2. Stripey ELF Hat Rage

crochet elf hat free pattern  Long Tail Stripey Hat Pattern - I made up mine for Zander but I'm glad to have a starting point if I ever want to make another.

Elf hats are all over the internet! And so cute. Here is a free pattern from which you can make just about any of the designs you find online…or can dream up!

http://alemondropplife.blogspot.com/2010/09/pattern-as-promised.html

3. Throwback Elfy-Darlings

crochet elf ornaments

I love spirals! I remember playing with something like this as a child and loving the feel. What a great idea to make elves! Also available: Santa, reindeer and a snowman…so cute!

http://www.craftelf.com/christmas-ornaments-crochet-curly-elf.html

snowman crochet pattern - curly snowman ornament

4. Best Baby Dolly Elves

lilleliis - world full of amigurumi and cuteness : Kaisu-Märt, Kaisu-Kärt ja Õie-Beebi

These darlings are so precious…and you don’t even have to be able to read Estonian, thanks to Google translate! What an amazing age we live in, that we can share creativity effortlessly across language barriers. This design would make a sweet spring dolly, too.

http://lilleliis.blogspot.com/2012/01/kaisu-mart-kaisu-kart-ja-oie-beebi.html

5. Best Classic Elf Cuteness

Love these guys! She has a great balance and color in the design, and several varieties with the same simple, elegant look.

http://www.etsy.com/listing/86367190/ernie-and-erline-elf-crochet-amigurumi?ref=listing-shop-header-3

If you are like me, and refuse to pay for patterns…at least not until giving it a go on my own and learning quite a bit in the process!…here is the link to a basic rounded-limb amigurami– I love this pattern, and have made an entire zoo of animals to give as gifts. Lengthening the limbs will give you the dimensions you need for elf-ishness. She also has some great tips for sewing and lots of helpful pictures.

Little Big Feet :

http://www.amigurumitogo.com/2012/06/hippo.html

grey amigurumi hippo

http://www.amigurumitogo.com/2012/06/hippo.html

6. ELF Slippers! Or Are They Chili Peppers? 😀

So cute! Learning the crocodile stitch is on my to-do list for this winter. Can’t wait to give it a go. She provides a link for a good tutorial with this pattern:

http://jeereparip.blogspot.com/2012/09/tutorial-for-chilielf-crochet-baby-shoes.html

Happy Hooking! May you be blessed this busy season, and find time to rejoice in life, and family. More Christmas Cuteness next week…All About Nativities!

Craft-tastic Evergreens {{30 Days of Christmas Crochet}}

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It’s TREES! Everywhere I look, I see Christmas trees. It started this weekend, when the entire community (except us, hee hee) came out en mass to purchase their spruce or fir. Nearly every car on the interstate sported a fuzzy green mo-hawk last Sunday. But not ours!

Don’t get me wrong, I am crazy about Christmas trees. The first year we were married, my husband disappeared for the opening weekend of deer hunting, and when he returned, out apartment looked like it had been shot with a Christmas glitter canon. Being the realist he is, this didn’t sit well with my honey. He pointed out that it wasn’t even Thanksgiving. And that decorating our home for Christmas was something he wanted to do TOGETHER. How could I argue with that? In short, I didn’t. I made a note that my new spouse was not a six-weeks-before-Christmas kind of guy, and he learned that it was unwise to leave me alone for too long; who knew what I might come up with? 🙂

Over the years… nearly twenty now… I have gravitated more to his preferences when it comes to the Christmas season. While I do have a wonderfully gaudy fiber-optic tree that we break out on Thanksgiving (my eleven year old put it up this year, such a treat, complete with several crocheted chains she made mid-process), WE  literally wait until days before to hunt down our evergreen. We look for soft needles, and avoid balsam (the eleven year old gets a rash). Sometimes all the local lots are sold out. But we get a great deal, and almost no needles all over the floor, since we keep it for, oh, five days?

To me, the Christmas tree is one of the prettiest parts of the season. The decorating schemes are endless, but always sparkle!

Here are some sweet and stunning patterns I love:

1. Pretty Tree Ornament

http://koalakidsfashion.blogspot.com/search/label/patterns%202011

This one (above) isn’t free, but I just love it. Looks like a single crochet and shell stitch combo to me, not too difficult to imitate. Then lots of beading and embroidery. My sewing skills have increased exponentially with learning to make amigurami and some of the more complex crochet items. Who knew?

Now onto those of us who have joined the Granny Square Craze:

2. Gorgeous Granny Square Tree

http://sewritzytitzy.blogspot.com/2012/12/i-spy-vintage-granny-square-christmas.html

I love the sweet story on her blog as to how this design came about. If you love grannies like I do, go for it! It will make up quickly and would be a wonderful gift.

3. Adorable Christmas Tree Hat

No tree collection is complete without a hat! This is my favorite hat this season: beads and all…

crochet christmas tree hat

http://www.crochetspot.com/crochet-pattern-christmas-tree-hat-5-sizes/

Using a basic coned-shaped increase (like the unicorn horn from Repeat Crafter Me) add a row of sc, ch-3, sc around, every other row. To crochet in the beads (you can also sew them on after), you would slip them on the yarn before starting. An adventure, to be sure, but very cute! I have a lace-look infant hat sitting here with bead work worked in the stitches that has been staring at me for about a year, lol.

4. Pretty Paper Trees

How to Fold a Fir Tree by krokotak #DIY #Crafts #Christmas #Paper_Tree

http://krokotak.com/2013/11/fold-a-fir-tree/

Such a simple idea, but so pretty, and fun for the kids, too. Lots of different colors would be fun, and GLITTER!!! You can never have too much glitter, just too many two-year-olds…

5. Easy Country Garland

http://www.crochettoday.com/crochet-patterns/tree-garland

I love the possibilities! This simple garland could be made to match any decor or color scheme. Monochromatic, brights, earth tones…choose your own adventure! Add buttons, beads, bells…

6. Pretty Beaded Ornament

Ornament

http://www.etsy.com/listing/61765650/christmas-ornament-beaded-christmas-tree

While I am not as artistic as this lovely piece, a less intricate version would make a wonderful craft for older children. I know we have plenty of beads in our collection, and quite a variety, too! I’m looking forward to having a go at it.

So there you are, lots of pretty trees on this chilly day. Off to make more reindeer hats here, just two more weeks to get those finished in time for delivery!

Giving Thanks and Baby Hats

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Hellooooo Monday! Always nice to get back to my routine of cleaning and cooking after a weekend busy with outings and retail. The holiday shopping is picking up, for sure! I am busy with custom orders for the holidays and loving every minute.

Today’s feature is two of my favorite designs from my Rescue Hero series: the police officer and firefighter photo props. So cute! And their recepients were delighted. While the actual patterns are not yet written up for publication, I am including several tips below that will have you whipping up your own version, in no time!

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The Little Police Officer uses a standard diaper cover pattern (basically an hourglass shape with one end wider than the other to overlap for buttoning). The donut– so much fun to make!– was a free pattern I googled…sorry, I don’t remember which blog or I would share the link! Maybe next time…there is so much cute crochet food out there, enough for an entire series, fun!

The hat. Ah, the hat. I spent several hours researching police issue shapes to determine just the look I wanted. I ended up using a pentagon top, increasing each round until reaching the diameter I wanted. I then began the sides by crocheting in back loops only, and decreasing at each corner. Once I achieved my desired height, I switched to black and did 4-5 rounds of sc. The design of the brim I borrowed from a free newsboys cap on ravelry.

The shield is just a circle crocheted in the round with a second round of well-placed triple crochets and slip stitches for shaping. A little felt for custom lettering, and there you have it!

Screenshot_2013-11-23-00-24-03 So sweet!

 I think he likes it! Now…

 

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The Little Firefighter: the hat is an octogon with fpdc at the corners for ridges, increasing proportionally each round. I switched to triple crochet at the back for the elongated brim, turning for a last row or two just on the back.

I used acrylic worsted weight yarn and an H hook.

I hope this inspires you to try your own designs!

Happy Thanksgiving! I am excited to post my tabletop turkey later this week, I hope I finish in time for the holiday! 🙂