August 30, 2011

Reason #1 why everyone should know how to sew

This is a picture of a cute little sun dress that one of my coworkers brought in. She does not know how to all. I have sewn on a button to a blouse she was wearing before, while she was wearing it. The button was on the back, and she wore the shirt in without the button so someone could fix it. So after that I guess I am now her seamstress/mender.

Anyway, this cute little dress's strap had come out on the front side. The front facing edge had frayed a little, but was not awful. With a quick five minutes, which most contained of trying to find a thread and bobbin to match and then threading the sewing machine, I had this thing ready for her to rock dancing again. I even put a little fray check on the edges just to be sure things wouldn't go sour on her when she is on the dance floor doing her salsa or cha-cha.

I can only imagine how many gorgeous clothes are tossed out due to a simple repair that the owner did not know how to fix. Granted not everyone has a sewing machine, but this one could have just as easily been done with a needle and thread.  At least one little dress was saved.

August 29, 2011

Another pattern from ravelry

Photo by Pinkleo on Flickr
Another pattern on Ravelry that I made foe Christmas gifts was the Luna Lovegood Scarf by Melissa Helton. I don't remember why I chose to make this one, but I still haven't forgotten about the pattern!

I remember using Red Heart Satin on this beautiful Christmas red. The pattern was fairly easy once I realized you crocheted the length of the scarf first with your chain stitch and then started working on the width. I don't remember how long it took me to make one, I ended up making two and gave both away, but I don't think it took me more that a few hours for each one.

I do remember when I was done blocking them by steaming the with my iron. I read somewhere this is called "killing" the acrylic when you do this method. I fell in love with how the scarf felt and draped after this, and how the pattern evened out and showed off so well.

With fall fast approaching I may have to make a few more. This time I willl be sure to keep one for myself!

August 28, 2011

Grandma's Christmas shawl

Photo by Interweave Press
Sometime in the fall of 2009 I joined Ravelry. I was amazed at how many people were also on there. I also was in awe of all the different patterns they had available. I know some you see you just know that you will never add that pattern to your queue but there are some designer that just make you drool.

One of the ones I found on there was this beautiful shawl, Chanson-en Crochet by Mari Lynn Patrick. My grandmother lives in an assisted living place and the room they go for lunch is always cold. I thought this shawl would be easy for her to wear without worrying if it will fit over her blouse, having it match to her outfit is another story. So I made it for her for her Christmas gift.

I used Caron Country in  Renaissance Rose color that I found on clearance at Joanns. This was the first time I had crocheted with anything other than acrylic' and the first pattern that was created by something other than single, half and double crochet stitches in a mathematical progression. At first o found the pattern confusing but determined it was just from being used to Lion Brand pattern writing and that they were more difficult directions.

I bought an antique looking button at Joanns and attached that at the top. I thought the shawl came out beautiful, I fell in love with the yarn, my grandma loved it, but I just regret not getting a picture of it.
Later, my mom told me that my grandma doesn't wear it to lunch since she had trouble keeping it out of her plate when she leaned over the table. I still wonder if she wears it at all but am too scared to ask. Is it bad that I would gladly take it back and wear it myself?

August 26, 2011

Mitchell's penquin amigurumi

I have two step children, Mitchell is 10 and Breanne is now 8.  I love them dearly and they always seem to find a way to entertain me or keep me busy.  After they saw me making the other little amigurumi animals they spoke up and said they each wanted one.  I let them pick out the pattern, and Mitchell (then 8) chose Lion Brand's Penguin for his.  I think I had some extra yarn from something around and let look to see what color he wanted.  He chose a dark blue instead of black (of course now I can't remember what yarn it is), the One Pound Caron yarn in Azure for the light blue, and I don't remember what the white was either.  Either way I thought this guy came out cute and so did he.  It was the first project I did that I changed colors.

I still like him even if Mitchell may not be so interested in him so much since the penguin lives with the cat toys.  Sad thing really, the cats don't really seem to be interested in the little penguin either.  Poor fella.

August 25, 2011

My little animals

I don't remember why I started making these amigurumis.  I know I used Lion Brand pattern Heloise Hen and Tiny Turtle.  I used Caron One Pound acrylic yarn in possibly Azure.  The label has since long been gone. 

I liked making these little guys.  They are stuffed with Polyfil.  They are quick to make and are always great for the kids.  Young kids really like to play with them, even if no one can tell if what the hen is.  I think most adults guess it is a dolphin.  Even though the kids try to get the cats to play with them the cats just look at them clueless.  The kids also have gotten into throwing them at each other recently.  Luckily I don't have to worry to much about them hurting each other or breaking a window with them either. 

August 24, 2011

Attempting to crochet again

I learned to crochet when I was around 7 years old from my great grandmother.  She would babysit me and my sister quite often, and she was the crochet afghan queen.  So, one day she taught me the basic chain stitch and maybe a single crochet.  I just remember being fascinated about how a single string of yarn can be looped together to form something more.  However, being a child, that was the extent of my crocheting lesson and interest.  I was off to play with my Barbie and My Little Ponies.  There was once during a high school summer that I found my mom's old "Learn To Crochet" type book, and I think that too lasted only one or two attempts.

In college I did manage to start an afghan.  It made it to a point of a throw when school got too busy for me to continue for a while.  Once I pulled it back out (after graduation, two moves, and a job) I realized I didn't like my made up pattern or the combination of colors.  So off to Salvation Army it went. 

I didn't pick up crochet again till about three years ago when I had an office desk job that was really quiet, dull, and not creative.  I needed something to do that wasn't expensive since our budget was very tight.  So, I purchased a cheap set of plastic hooks and whatever bulk yarn was on sale at the local big craft store.  Having found out that offers free patterns and also stitch explanations I was all set to start back up.  One of my first projects was to make a grocery produce sack since the reusable bags were really starting to come out big then.  I found a pattern online, can't remember which one it was now, and started to crochet.  I kept going and going following the directions but it seemed to be a lot smaller than what I thought it was going to be.  So I kept started to make up the pattern a little to make it bigger.  Once I had the diameter I thought it was going to be I started to make the increase for the sides. 

I went a little farther and then had an epiphany.  I was using a slip stitch instead of a single crochet stitch!  No wonder it seemed so small!  I decided to stop since it was taking forever to get anywhere with it. 

I kind of liked it as a bowl form and so it stayed like that.  Now it holds cat toys, some of which I have made.  When younger kids come over it always seems to become a hat or a frisbee.  I believe there was an occasion or two where a kid to hold a cat in it like a hammock which always did not succeed to well. 

Even if it is not a produce bag or a successful cat hammock it has become quite useful.  I don't worry about what the kids do with it, and after play time it serves a purpose to hold the cats' toys. 

Again, I don't remember which LionBrand pattern it was, but I do remember it is Caron 3/4 Pound acrylic worsted weight yarn.  I loved the ombre color combination but have now found out they no longer make it in this colorway.

Hi there!

For the past two or three years I have done various projects, even though a few still seem to be on my hook!  I wanted a place where I can keep a record of them, how long they take, the stories behind them, and all the fun that goes with completing something that you make by hand.  Not only have I wanted to just document it, but also be able to look back over time and see if there is any progression of my skill, style, and what I seem to be focusing on or learning when.  So I created this blog for me but maybe I will even inspire a few people to try something new.