Monday, October 3, 2016

New Pattern: Midwinter Headband

This Monday morning in October, the temperature is barely 60F. What a perfect day to release my new pattern, the Midwinter Headband!
It's crocheted in bulky weight yarn (the sample uses about half a skein of Berroco Vintage Chunky), featuring simple cables and a button closure. 
Finished size is 2.5”/7cm wide x 21.5”/54.5cm long, unfastened. 

And it's available for sale in both my Ravelry and Craftsy stores.

Happy Monday!

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Rocking Chair Rehab

My parents offloaded a lot of their old house to our new one. A fantastic maple dining table and chairs, a chest of drawers, most of my dad's tools (a lot of which were actually my grandfathers' tools...which makes them even more awesome).

And this.

It's a child-sized rocking chair. It was my dad's, when he was a kid. The seat cover is crocheted, we don't quite remember which relative made it (either my Gram, or my great-grandmother), we only know that it was very dingy from years spent languishing in a Michigan basement. 
See what I mean? 

As much as I love crochet items, I thought it was time to bring this little rocking chair into the 21st century. 

This was one of the easiest projects I've done. All it took was a bit of patience, some batting, some fabric, and a staple gun. And the patience was truly optional, it took about 20 minutes altogether. But sometimes you get interrupted by a toddler. 
(Bad lighting, had to use the flash, see? Sometimes you just have to stop.)

So, first step was pulling all the old staples:
Someone has done this before.

And then pulling off the old padding:

And then I forgot to take a picture, but I replaced the padding with a double-layer of quilt batting, and a piece of plain muslin on top. And stapled everything to the underside of the seat.
No one sees the underside, anyway.
Notice how that munchkin has a different shirt on? That's one of those interruptions I mentioned.

And now for the top layer:
 This is not an exact science.
And, as I said, no one sees the bottom.
 See how pretty it looks from the right side?
Yes, that is Dr. Who fabric. I found it on Spoonflower. 

And that's it. Less than 20 minutes of hands-on time, under an hour with toddler interruptions. Pretty awesome! Added a bit of furniture polish, and you'd never know this chair is older than the television show that inspired the fabric. 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Happy Birthday to Me...

Yes, it is my birthday! And the weather is gorgeous! At least, it is here in Las Vegas. I'm not so sure about the rest of the country...

Anyway, yesterday I released a new pattern on Ravelry:

This is the unimaginatively (yet descriptively) named Ribbon Scarf. It is a one-skein project, using 100g/215 yds/197m of Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece yarn (or whichever worsted weight yarn you choose).

Oh, also, since it's my birthday, I'm having a pattern sale. 36% off patterns in my Ravelry store. (Why 36%? Because it's my 36th birthday!)

And now, I'm off to go adventuring with my boys...

Friday, January 15, 2016


Well, I've opened the test for my Ribbon Scarf.
I'm still not decided on a name, and I'm still trying to get the final photos, but neither of those are needed for the test phase. The pattern itself is completed, and that's the important part right now.
(If anyone is interested in helping, I'm running the test on Ravelry here.)(And if you're not, that's cool; I'll still announce when it's officially released.)

I took the boys to the park today. Part of this was an excuse to visit Starbucks, as it's right on the way and has a drive-thru, and I haven't had a pumpkin spice latte in a while. Part of this was a genuine need to get Clinton outside and running around. And part of it was an ill-fated attempt to get some decent photos of the scarves.
One of the nice things about living in Las Vegas is the very mild winters that make playground visits, in January, wearing sweaters instead of snowsuits, possible. It's also very, very sunny. That becomes a problem when you're attempting to take photographs of crocheted items that show off the stitches. I tried finding the areas of the park with filtered sunlight, but there weren't many. There was a park bench covered in bird poop (I wouldn't even sit there, I'm certainly not draping a handmade scarf over it), and the ground (again, I'm not going to use it as a display for my crocheted scarves). So the whole photography portion of our trip was a bust.

On the other hand, Clinton ran off a ton of energy and Grant had fun on the swings again, and I enjoyed coffee while it was still hot. So it was still a successful outing.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Names are hard.

Well, they can be. Sometimes it's a really important naming, like when I was pregnant, and Tim and I were trying to decide on names. Naming your child is pretty important. That baby is going to carry his or her name for a lifetime.
Sometimes, it's a fun, frivolous naming, such as a particular meal that someone likes and wants to ask for when Tim dubbed one of my casseroles, "Chicken Nummies".
Sometimes, it's naming a pet...Buddy found his name because he still a kitten when I got him, and the "Papi" that his previous humans called him just did not fit. But, I was too tired to come with anything clever, so he was just "the cat" to others for weeks, and I called him "little buddy" directly...and then I realize, he was Buddy.

And then there are the times that I'm sort-of naming a pet...but it's not a pet. It's a design. My DNA Scarf was pretty easy to name, since the cable design actually looks like a double-helix. My Harvest Splendor Cowl was easy to name, since it was fall colors, and using the Wheatsheaf stitch pattern.

But the newest one? I've been calling it simply, "Ribbon Scarf", since it looks like an awareness ribbon. That doesn't seem quite accurate, though. Neither does "basketweave scarf" or "toddler scarf".

Oh, I remembered why I chose pink yarn now.

Anyway, I still need to re-shoot the photos.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Another Sneak Peek

I've been working on this scarf pattern for a while. The hardest part, putting the directions into words, is done. Right now I'm working on a simple chart for it, and crocheting another sample.

Yes, in pink.
Why pink? I'm not entirely sure; while I know that something must have influenced the decision to order a single skein of pink yarn, I cannot recall what that was. (I did order it over a year ago.)
Anyway, once the second sample is done, and the chart is finished, I'll just need to take decent photographs, and then we'll be into the pattern-testing phase.
Ok, now that I've seen the "to-do" list typed up, it seems a little further away than I thought. That's ok, though. We'll get there in the end.

posted from Bloggeroid

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

What I'm working on...

I have a few projects I'm working on at the moment, a few of which are actual patterns that will actually be published this year. I just need to kick my butt into gear every now and then.

Hey, remember how I mentioned that one of my patterns will be included in a print book? Funny enough, Amazon keeps sending me "you might be interested in..." links for the book. Anyway, the book is Crochet One-Skein Wonders for Babies, and my contribution is a toddler hat. The hat has a matching cowl, which isn't included in the book, but I'll be self-publishing that one this spring.
I really wish I had a picture of it to show you, but I don't. The submissions were sent out just as we were leaving Japan, and for some reason I didn't think to snap a picture before sealing the mailer and dropping it in the box. (Yes, I absolutely did think about it within minutes of leaving the post office. Whoops.)

I have two scarf patterns I'm working on, too. One is mostly completed, and should hit testing soon. The other...I love, am I fighting to put directions into words. It's a challenge, to be certain.  (But a fun one. I get a thrill every time I finish writing for the day.)

Here's a sneak peak of the scarves:

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Slugging along into the new year

I don't like making resolutions for the new year. I seldom meet them, and it's kind of depressing when I get to December and realize, " Yep, failed at that, failed at that, might have made that one if I hadn't done this instead..."
So instead I just think about what good stuff is going to happen this year.

2016 is a leap year! And it's the year of the Monkey - so was 1980, the year I was born. So this should be an auspicious year for me.

Of course, when the first hours of the new year are spent trying to console this guy
because his first tooth is trying to erupt, it can be hard to see the good stuff. (Two days later and it's barely broken through.)

But, still, there's a lot to look forward to. Such as, Clinton

starting preschool. (Ok, maybe that one comes with equal doses of excitement and apprehension.) And seeing one of my crochet designs in a book. (I'll have a separate post about that later.) And hopefully getting some more designs self-published.
Plus, it's an election year, which should be...interesting.

Anyway, I do look forward to a lot of good things happening in the months to come. Maybe I'll even manage to blog about them!

posted from Bloggeroid