Sunday, December 13, 2015

Football Day!

Today is cloudy, on and off, and wet.  It hasn't rained since early morning but you can tell it wants to again.  This is the perfect day to watch football and be indoors.


I have two dogs.  The puppy (that is an exaggeration) wants to be outside playing but this home has a small spongy yard that gets really really muddy if the dogs run around on it too much.
At least right now they are sleeping. I feel bad that we aren't in the huge yard in the other home where they can run around like crazy!  Even with all the rain, it is sandy loam so the water sinks in and no puddles or squishy yard.  Easy to dig in, though!

I'm almost unpacked and settled in for the time being, but really need to get some things put up away from my baby. He is only 4 months 3 weeks old and loves to get into things.  The problem is I can't put anything up…it has to be away.


He is taller than my 10 year old Border Collie!

I hope your day today is a fun, relaxing "football" kind of day, even if you aren't a football fan!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Cowl for a gift to someone…??? Astrantia

This is the beginning of the Astrantia, a cowl pattern I found on Ravelry. Simple stitch and works up quickly

I am using Cobblestone which is a Sport Weight, size 3, superwash merino yarn.  I really like it!  I have had it for ages and gave most of it away instead of making something so this year I am using the left overs to make some gifts.
This is color 301 - sort of a light lemon & cream with a sagey green & grey.

I think if I just looked in a stitch book I could pick out just about any simple pattern and make a lovely cowl or scarf without buying a patter.  I do, however, like to support the people who go to the trouble of writing up patterns and trying them out.  

This is the original made in Ficolana Cinnia by Nanna Gudmand-Høyer.  It's beautiful. The yarn is a DK weight and comes in many many colors.
The pattern is free so I suggest you try it out! You can find it above, or on Ravelry.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

POLKA HAT: Hat/Cap for Little ol' me!

I am making the Polka Hat for myself, but it isn't getting the polka dots on it. I decided after all those stockings that I have zero desire to wear in lots and lots of ends again, at least for now.  Therefore, after two rows, I had decided to leave out the 'dots' and have made the rows just plain. Suite me just fine! It was basically the shape of the hat/cap that I truly loved. 
Now, let us hope it will fit.
I did not see the top of the hat in the magazine (Interweave 2012) but on Ravelry the photos show the top.  I think it looks better in those photos that mine will, but then I'm pretty critical of my work, so maybe not!

Prior photo

and now photo!

I am using a sock yarn that is all wool, Merino Superwash….Schoppel Zauberball, 400m, 100g

Friday, November 27, 2015

New England Patriots Christmas Stocking

The foot is leaning a bit which makes it look skinny.  I was going to add more stars, but thought it looked kind of cute like this, so left it.  Hope John loves it!

Now I am finished….except I do want to make one more for their doggie, but have a couple of other projects to finish first.

I am working on a  hat for myself…it is in an Interweave Accessories magazine and is called the Polka Hat.  I am not making the dots, just doing it plain with a colorful yarn!

The first photos don't look that colorful, but the green hasn't show up yet…The first photo shows just the purplish brown which is on the left of the second photo.   The hat is worked top to bottom, so you can see in the second photo the top of the hat at the left and the bottom is the head band part. Looks great so far!

Of course, never let it be said that I am not sharing photos of my doggies!  This is 10 year old Maggie, the Border Collie, and Brodie my 4 month old puppy! Oh, my….good thing he is so sweet and wants to be a lap dog!

Hope your Thanksgiving was super wonderful, and that you are enjoying the weekend with family and friends!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Similar but different stocking….

Although the colors look the same in the photos, they are not.  These are two different yarns from the one in the last stocking…more cream and the red is a little more rusty looking.  Of all the Christmas Stockings I think I like this one second next to the ZigZag one.  It has a smoother look to it.
I hope my sweet darling niece loves these!
Only one more to show you.
I hope that you are all getting ready for Christmas in your own way and are enjoying yourselves doing it.  Giving is such a joy!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Another Christmas Stocking!

I have one other finished I need to post. Luckily, I finished this before my wrist hurt so bad that I could not crochet for several days. Feels better now. Already had on operation for carpal tunnel and don't want another one.
In crocheting 5 stockings, all in singl crochet, and as quickly as I could, all led me to a painful episode…BUT…it was so worth it!  I can now get them shipped out as promised three years ago! Hah!
 When I finished the stocking I had LOTS of ends to weave in (which makes up the seam in the back). Unfortunately, I did not account for the red not being as heavy as the doubled white in this one, so the stripes are not so even as I would like.  The white is a white yarn and a skein of Glamour so that it sparkles.  Next time I will put a Glamour red sparkle with the red yarn, too!
This is the Waiting For Santa pattern from Red Heart again.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Christmas Stocking #2

Fair Isle Christmas Stocking by Katherine Stuart

This is the second stocking I finished.  It is a Fair Isle pattern, BUT I only did the two bands in the pattern.  The rest of it was one color PER ROW so weaving in 100+ ends was not going to be my cup of tea.
The pattern was listed on Ravelry, but as out of print. I finally found it at Barnes and Noble, Crochet Worlk's Christmas in Crochet - Holiday 2013 by Annie's Publishing.  It is in an ebook now, so you have to have the Nook or the Nook app to get it.  The app is free, so not a problem. 
As far as the ebook goes, there are quite a few really cute patterns, so well worth the $9.99 to have it if you are a holiday crocheter.
So, not doing the rest of the Fair Isle pattern makes this one look a little dowdy, but at least it is finished.  I think it is about 26" long, maybe a tad longer.
Thanksgiving is almost upon us! I'm not a Thanksgiving crocheter, but might find something do do.
Have a great day! 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Christmas Stockings!

I have started to make Christmas Stockings for my niece.  These were promised several years ago, so guess it is about time!  

The first one is a zig zag pattern from Red Heart…called, amazingly enough, Zigzag Stocking!

It is pretty large, so a great pattern for an adult.  I was not fond of the "patch" for the heel as there are so many good patterns that you can work the heel in at the same time. 

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Slippers not finished….

Again I am so far behind…I took time to work on the heavy afghan for my nephew, but had to quit.  I ended up getting a puppy to keep my older dog company.  He makes crocheting on my lap impossible…like a cat grabbing for anything that moves.

Fortunately, I have a pub style dining table that is now set up as my crocheting spot.  The only drawback is my comfort which is sorely lacking on these chairs.

I am going to go backwards (or should I start start where I left off?) as I put together some posts to update my crocheting for the last few months.  Not THAT much to report, but some cute things.

I'll start with what I have so far on the afghan I can't seem to finish…I'd say it is about 1/3 finished. Again, this is a pattern from the book "Vanna White: All Through The House."  I don't remember the publisher, but it is all Lion Brand yarn so most likely THEY are.

I now have to show you the puppy I adopted. He was one of a litter of four pups born to my two nephews.  One had the male and one had the female, and she had four puppies.  Mine is the one in the middle with his ear turned back.  His sister is the brown one and she looks like her mom and my niece has her so I get updates.  Brodie's ear constantly turns back like that!

This was taken about four weeks ago showing how much he had grown since the puppy photo was taken by my nephew.

He is 1/4 each of Lab, Boxer, Husky, and Bullmastiff.
These are his parents…weighing in at 85 or so for mom, Athena - she is boxer and bullmastiff.

and 110 for dad, Jackson Brown and he is Husky and Lab

As you can see I will have my hands full for years to come.

He is taller now than when this was taken two weeks ago, but can't find a better more recent photo. Black dogs are very hard to photograph. Fun to watch them grow and see how uncomfortable they are in their own "teen" bodies. An author of dog books once called this the "ugly puppy stage" but I think they are adorable!
We suspect from his weight at 14 weeks that he will be about 115 to 118 at adulthood. Oh, my! He is just about as tall as my Border Collie but isn't quite at long - yet. 
I am so thankful that Maggie has accepted him into the family and plays with him.  It takes a lot off my plate with both of them as I had been Maggies only playtime mate. This is supremely better for them and me.


Sunday, August 2, 2015

Slowly but surely….

I hope to add the crocodile scales by the end of the week, then finish up the other bootie. They should be quite cute. I love this coloring!

I'm getting close to finishing the crocheted tote, too.  Just have one side and the handles and I'm done, done, done!

The side is wider than the pattern says, and two toned. I was running out of yarn and had to pick a way to use another skein of a different color. Not the best way, but workable.  It's larger than it looks and quite roomy.  I plan on trying my hand at "slightly" felting it so the stitches are tight.

This is a tote/bag designed by RubraCrafts on Etsy.  Her's is prettier than mine, but my hands started cramping so quit making the stitches in the blo and the flo.  She also designed a pattern for fingerless mitts that I posted about early this year.  I love those soon much!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Window Panes Afghan

This is from the old book Vanna's Afghans All Through The House.  My two favorite afghan projects are made from patterns in this book.  Some day will try another one, but need to stretch my imagination as am not as fond of the look of most of them. I think it is the colors chosen. 

This one, however is my favorite!!!

I have finally returned to working on this afghan for my nephew and his wife for their new house.  I hope I get it finished before they move again!!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Finished the gauntlets and booties and on to the next booties!

This is the beginning of the new booties for Val.

 I have actually finished two soles and am up 1/2 way on one side.  Should be done in a week with both I hope!

I have not been as diligent on the tote, but am making progress.  Probably about almost 1/2 finished.  Looks great! 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Crocodile Gauntlets again, and my delightful gifts!

Well, well, well….having completed one crocodile gauntlet (pattern by Bonita Patterns) for the youngest granddaughter, and a set for the oldest, I realized something was wrong.  In finishing the bootie pattern the "scales" were flat and beautiful.  In the other two sets they curled and looked pretty awful to me (the girls don't know the difference and liked them any way, but I was curious as to why.

After going over the instructions I realized that one phrase - do not turn your work - is where I went wrong.  I did turn it.  However, that isn't even a fair statement.  The instructions are not quite exacting.

Can you see the difference between the two?

What the pattern should have said for me (knowing I need more info than most) is to begin my next row to the right side (not right side of the fabric) and not the left side.  Making the scales going right to left.  That makes a difference in the way your 'scales' lay (or is it lie?).  When made, the right side the scale (as in RS) is laying flat on top of the fabric.  The part that will be viewed is actually the BACK of the 'scale.'  You can tell by the way to top of your stitches look. As you all know when you crochet, the last loop will be in a position of "looking at you" and so when you turn your work, you can't really see the top of the stitch too well…just the back loop.

I knew when I finished the booty that something was different about the way I was making it, but could not put my finger on it until I messed around with "dissecting" the 'scales' to see how they looked.  If you make it backwards, like I did for all the gauntlets, they curl upward. Especially with the type of yarn I was using (Vanna's Glamour).

I have already started making the new gauntlets for the little one and will make another set for the older one.  They most likely won't even notice that they are different, but as they grow like weeds by the time I am finished, the first set I made will be too little for Amy Jo!

My DSD (their mom) brought back some lovely gifts from Sitka, AK for me. That is where she and her hubby grew up.  They take the girls every year and the little ones are getting to where they want to stay there, too! :o(

I am going to make a cowl with this lovely yarn.  She and I seem to like the same color ways!  Yay!

The tote is from the yarn store there in Sitka, called Knitting with Class.  I am not sure about the lotion and essential oils.

Then there is the bath ball…one of those super delightful things that fizzes in the tub while you soak!

Am looking forward to using it after the bathroom is refurbished.  Can't use the old tub now. Too little, too short, and the tiles surrounding it are coming out.

Lots of work to be finished!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Finished…on to the tote!

I plan on making this tote for my next project in the group…the thread is Bags, Bags, Bags.  

The tote is designed by Elitza Chernaeva…I made her lovely fingerless gloves earlier this year so know that the instructions will be well written.  

I won't be putting the handles on simply because I am lazy.  I'll make rope or braid of some kind.  

These will be my colors. The darker teal color isn't that dark, and they are all pretty!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Bonita Pattern's Crocodile Booty #2 & Greece

I am on the last of the booty rows and have just started the bottom crocodile scales.  Silly me, ripped out a whole row of the scales as thought I was on the wrong side of the booty.
I should finished this up today if things stay on track!


I wondered what had happened to the stock market this morning when checking my accounts.  They took a huge hit.  Hmmm, I say…what's going on.

Greece is going on.  Greece owes 1.8 billion dollars and can't pay it.  So, their banks are closed and they are going to go bankrupt.
They have 11+ million people.  If each person gave the government $100 they would have nearly all the money they owed and could pay their debt.  The rather over paid politicians could each donate $500 as they seem to have been the ones voting in the welfare payoffs and the income increases for the government workers plunging them into this debt crisis!  It just doesn't make sense to me.

I would even would donate $100 to them in a Go Fund Me account to recover my $$$$ of plummeting funds!  Come on people, get a grip!!!

And after the payoff, they would, of course, owe more…but that would surely get them on their feet, give them some breathing room, and allow them to make some changes to their social services and other areas (like politician pay) to get things going in the right direction.  A small change goes a long way over time.

What's in Your Wallet?

If I were able to spell it out to all of you, I'd say this:

Watch out….the same tune is coming to the state near you!

We all need to work on lowering government spending on frivolous things, and stick to building the infrastructure, keep the workers working for fair (not exorbitant) wages, and get people back to work and on their feet.

It's a WE thing, not a THEY thing.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

New Book to me….

Designer Crochet: 32 Patterns to Elevate  Your Style

I just ordered a book on Amazon.  It isn't that I need a new crochet book, or really want a new crochet book…it is more that I just have to have it!!

I didn't know that several of the designs I have loved were from this designer, Shannon Mullet-Bowlsby.  He has many of his designs in Crochet! (which is where he has the Hinterland Throw I have loved and had NO idea where the pattern was located!  I had seen the photo and that was all: May, 2011).

His latest patterns in his book are very nice - livable!  One thing that surprised me is that there is a great look in his designs which make them appear more knit.  

Another wonderful thing?  There are THIRTY TWO designs in the book…Designer Crochet: 32 Patterns to Elevate Your Style.    

The link, as usual, is to a Ravelry page.  Not all his designs are for the skinny-minnie either! Most, perhaps, but not all!

I'd like to list all the photos, but did not ask permission, so check out the links. You won't be sorry!!

Or better yet, look on Amazon.  Only $15 for 32 fab designs!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Finished….on to the booties and a new tote!

The shawl is crescent and very lovely.  The sequins are only on the border of lace.  This version won't block well so that the lace won't show how pretty it is.  The last photo is the true color.  I used Lion Bands Baby Soft for the shawl, and used String Me Along to add the sequins with it on the lace.

Tunisian crochet, done in two panels, join as you go with the lace.  Edged with a picot.

I only did 30 repeats of the body as my DGD is small and it was pretty large just with those repeats.

I'm also making her a gauntlet set just as I did for her sister. It's small, dark blue, made with Vanna's Glamour by Lion Brand.  Unfortunately it makes the "scales" pucker and curl.  Might try another pair later with a larger hook and less scales to see if it will keep it flat.  She loves them any way!

The group is going to do a CAL/KAL on a purse or tote for July. It's a pick your own pattern and everyone crochet or knit along together.  I am thinking of doing a pattern in wool and felting it.  ???  We shall see.

I'm staying inside again today.  Never did cool off lower than 73 last night, which under normal circumstances would be fine, but humidity is almost as high and the air is stagnant…with clouds keeping the humidity down.  Better than 115 though!!

Friday, June 26, 2015

The Pax Shawl and more helpful hints!

I am working on the Pax shawl, a design by Aoibhe Ni, from Ireland. The link is to her Ravelry page.

This photo is in the beginning of the portion of "lace" for the border.  I used a DK weight instead of lace as wanted to be able to see and understand what I was doing for my first completed Aoibhe project.  I, unfortunately, do not find the way she describes her work or writes her charts to be easily translated into crochet.  It took a group of ladies in my Ravelry group, explaining it all to me in normal Tunisian terms, for me to be able to "get it".

Her are three repeats finished.  I used a lovely thread lace weight called String Me Along that was the same color and had sequins attached ever inch or so.  

This is for my 7 year old granddaughter so none of the errors matter all that much as most are not noticeable and the sparkle is what counts!

These buttons are from the Mitchell Larsen Studio in Christiansted, Virgin Islands.  Hand made and unlike any other!  I am planning on using three of the sets for the crocodile stitch booties I am making for my three adult nieces.

Only one bootie finished, though!

STAY COOL!  The hints I received from friends are first, don't use your oven.  If you HAVE to bake, use the small toaster oven.  If you run the dishwasher or wash clothes, do it in the EARLY morning hours when you first get up.  The use of electricity in the afternoon hours (even lights) is to be discouraged so that the running a/c's will not over load the system.  

Also, you could sprinkle your lawn early for just a few minutes in back so if you do have animals that have to go out, the evaporation will help keep them cool (or coolish, or not at all in AZ!).  Put up shade cloth, umbrellas, etc. to offer some shade (after about 93 or so degrees shade and wind don't matter much, wet T-shirts do! Perhaps a wet dog would be appreciative?)

One other friend said NOT to put ice in the dog's or cat's water bowl.  It can cause cramps and make them throw up.  Ugh.

~ ❄️  Stay Cool  ❄️ ~