giant granny goodness entire

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She is finished!

It’s a nice feeling of accomplishment, when you consider the piles of WIPs everywhere around here… actually completing something…

It started here: 

https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2015/06/16/giant-granny-goodness/

And then grew to here:

https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2015/07/22/giant-granny-goodness-part-ii/

Inspired by the lovely colorwork of this dear designer:
http://lemondedesucrette.com

She grew, and grew, until it was time to join…

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/flat-braid-joining-technique

And now she graces a place of honor, our marriage bed.

“A thing of beauty is a joy forever.” ~Keats

My color tips:

She started out as a stash-buster, so I used various odds and ends and combined as I liked. After ten rounds, I needed a significant amount for each round, so had more limited options. I also wanted to bring the colors together somehow, without looking too contrived.

So the final five rounds match the first five, in each square. It gave nice continuity but didn’t appear overly planned.

Nothing easier than a granny square! And I love the vintage look.

I used worsted weight yarn and an h hook.

Happy hooking!

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O Glorious Pinpricks of Light

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Happy Wednesday!

The sun has come out again, after days and days of flooding gray clouds, constant dripping, and dank, bleary chill.

Perfect crochet weather. πŸ™‚

A sweet friend requested today’s featured project. She spotted it online and simply had to have one for her mother.

I finished just in time​, as Mother’s Day is right around the corner!

The best part? Her mother’s name is Star. ❀

The pattern is a dream. Simple enough to remember after the first few rounds, but such a clever desgn: both the peak and the valley stitch are the designer’s personal creation. I love it, and will definitely be making more.

http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/chromium-star-blanket

Just starting out:

Growing larger:

Too big to shoot:

Almost finished:

Pretty rainbow colors:

It was a delight to make and my friend loved it. 

I loved discovering a great new pattern.

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!

The Long Road Home

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It has been a season of change.
My school year has ended and I’ve started my summer job.
My beautiful daughter has graduated high school and started working as well.
The little ones have their last day of class today.

Add to that some glorious late spring weather
and you might imagine I’ve had neither the inclination nor the hours
to crochet.

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I did find the time to work on this a bit, as I mentioned in my previous post.
My stash-buster, Flowers in the Snow: I just love all the scraps of color on a white background.

Now I need more projects, as I am out of scraps and it isn’t nearly big enough yet. πŸ™‚

I also found a bit of time to make this cute set:

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For a new baby and sweet big sister…
Patterns can be found here, at http://www.repeatcrafterme.com
I adapted them for my purposes but the basics are there.

And finally, FINALLY, I found my cro-jo yesterday (read crochet motivation)

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and started a little something.
Find the pattern here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/paw-print-cardigan

I modified the pattern in two ways…the first ten rows of hdc are in the back loop only, and after skipping the stitches for the sleeves, I changed to a v-stitch, for a lacy look.

Sigh.

I get so sentimental through these rites of passage.

My babies have grown so tall and beautiful.

It seems just yesterday they looked like this…

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And now the eldest is working and we count down to college in the fall.

My precious girl.

Now off to more sorting!
I am making good progress digging out my home office while school is out of session.
Of course the first thing I tidied was my yarn collection. πŸ™‚

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Happy crocheting!

Just Horsing Around, Part II

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It’s been a busy few weeks! Spring is in full swing here, and just lovely.

I’ve finished the horse scarf! A fun, well-written pattern.
Find it here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/horsin-around-scarf

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Here he is, before mane and tail.

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And after! Fun, fun.

I was concerned about the level of difficulty, and assembly; I can never seem to get things sewn evenly. Fortunately it went well!

I did sew the white face accent on upside down at first…thankfully it came off cleanly and I was able to remove it without damaging the stitches underneath!

As a reward for completing this order, I treated myself and returned to an old favorite, my sunburst scrap-ghan.

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She’s been sitting on my shelf for what, two years now?
Yep.
See her start here: https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2014/02/14/snow-bound-stash-busting/

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Evening pictures, sorry…but here is a great shot of the join as you go technique I’m using. I do it a little differently, inspired by this post: https://babylovebrand.net/2013/08/27/continuous-join-as-you-go-again/

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I now have two sections of four (by ten) rows finished and a third piece with two rows joined!
Time to make more circles. πŸ™‚
Contented sigh. Crocheted loveliness.

May all your joins lay smoothly and your families be peaceful and blessed.
Until next time!

Oh, Nativity

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Hello and Happy…!

I know that I promised you a mini-stocking this week.

But I gave them all away and forgot to take a picture. My hope is to make more, and do a cute photo shoot– but it IS Christmas week and I will have to see how the time goes.

In the meantime, my husband and I ran away to our favorite BnB (bed and breakfast) this week for a little RnR (rest and relaxation). πŸ™‚Β  I have found that a short get-away significantly increases my enjoyment of the holiday season and finds me much more peaceful during the inevitable stress and family squabbles.

We had a fabulous twenty-four hours, and capped it off with a little antique-ing, browsing several local shops and enjoying the time spent.

And I found something so marvelous! I entreated my sweet husband to capture it on film so I could share it with you. Well, digital, anyway, since he has a smart phone…

The most fabulous crochet nativity! And in such colorful thread…I love nativities, and every year I browse patterns and consider making one. I haven’t found the time yet, but one of these years…

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I had him take several close-ups so that I can reverse-engineer the patterns. I love Mary’s braids!

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I think the angel is my favorite. I love angels.

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A detailed close-up of the angel halo and wing. A simple wagon wheel and shell.

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And the sweet babe, wrapped in a solid granny square, on a double granny cushion.

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Not crochet-related, I also had him capture the lovely embroidery on this old lampshade. I often add a bit of sewing detail to my projects.

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And last but not least, the special project I have been working on instead of making more mini-stockings– a last-minute request for a one-of-a-kind Christmas dress for a real-live little angel.

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I used this Bernat pattern as a base

http://www.yarnspirations.com/patterns/i-heart-my-dress.html

but worsted-weight yarn (Caron Sparkle) and an H hook (5mm). Since the pattern called for an E hook and sport-weight yarn, it ended up coming out as a size 18-24 months when I followed the instructions for the 6 month size. Perfect!

For the trim (hem and sleeves), I used the edging found here:

https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2015/05/27/mais-oui/

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I also made the flower pattern listed in the blog above for the accent rose. I gave it a Christmas-y twist by chaining 2 or 3 stitches mid-petal (3hdc, ch-2, 3hdc) for example. This made the petals a bit pointy, more like a poinsettia.

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I can’t wait to see pictures of her in it! I love making dresses.

May you have a blessed Christmas, and be surrounded by love, regardless of circumstances. I am grateful for the Babe that came.

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Until then, happy hooking!

Oh Dear and Aha!

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I’m having one of those moments.

A bit sheepish and disgruntled.

I just had the most marvelous idea…about a project, of course…but the beauty of sheer simplicity means I have wasted dozens of hours crocheting work I will now proceed to rip out.

I can do it.

I will forgive myself and move on…

I mentioned in this post

https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2015/10/31/the-perfect-all-hallows-eve/

I was planning to rework this afghan

https://thesparklytoad.wordpress.com/2015/09/23/the-lovely-african-flower-afghan-part-iii/

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And then tonight, sorting pictures, I realized that THIS photo (below) looks exactly like the blanket I was making in my head.

 

Instead of adding rounds of granny color

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All I needed to do was single crochet the strips together.

Argh.

 

I shall do so directly.

Let the holiday season begin.

Please feel free to chime in your opinion as to colored granny stripes or no…

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I have the most fabulous mini-stocking ornament pattern to share with you next week.

On a personal note: my beloved grandmother passed away last week and we will be celebrating her life with family and friends tomorrow. I thank you for your thoughts and prayers.