Saturday, February 25, 2012

Yay! Another Crochet Project Done!

Last night I finished these for my daughter.  Both patterns are from the Lion Brand website.  They have a lot of free patterns for crocheting and knitting.   And the thing I like in particular is that there are often many reviews of the patterns posted by others who have tried them.  I find the reviews very useful since besides rating the patterns, users often include tips on how  they may have adjusted the pattern if it didn't seem to work for them.  Sometimes photos of finished projects are even posted.  You do have to register with the site to access the patterns, but it's free.
Here's my model, Beatrice, wearing the Morning Stroll Hat  and the pattern can be found here.  The instructions were simple and easy to follow.  The only two changes I made were adding a couple additional decreasing rows, since it seemed it was going to be a little large for the size of the band I needed to fit my daughter;  and I also added a row of double crochet to the band itself.  I thought it would give it a little bit of a softer stretch and feel around her head.
And here is Beatrice again, wearing the lacy Scalloped Cowl,  which can be found at .   I was happy with the way it turned out but I did adjust this pattern by adding to the foundation chain.  The instructions say to chain 56, but after doing so, that seemed a bit small when I put it around my neck so I added 16 stitches figuring that it probably needed to be a multiple of 8, and it worked out fine.  These instructions were also fairly simple and easy to follow.  (These photos make it look more yellow-y than it's more of an off white, creamy color.)   The nice thing about this cowl is that because of it's lacy-ness, it will be a great one to wear in the spring.  I think I might crochet more in different springy colors.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Vintage Sewing Patterns

Remember when sewing patterns were only 65¢?
Apparently, that was the going price in the late 60's when I was just a wee lass.  I'm not divulging exactly how  wee.  Howie?
I found a bunch, which is more than some but less than loads, at a second hand store and I picked out several to take home with me.  Boy, looking at these is making me feel like I want to grab a ginger ale, plop down in my orange vinyl bean bag chair and watch an episode of Gidget.

And how could I resist this pattern for such cool threads?  Let's see, who do we have on here?  It looks like it could be  Lee Majors, James Gardner,  and Roger Moore.   I haven't figured out who the guy with the mustache is yet.

Real men wear embroidered shirts. 
Can you dig it?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Dollar Store Warrior

Another project I just recently finished.....
That's my youngest, suited up for battle while we were at the Dollar Tree.
I originally was going to use this photo for a different project I wanted to try - stitching an outline onto watercolor paper and framing it.   But, I quickly realized that this was just too detailed, especially for my first go at it.   All those creases in that tube toy thing....what was I thinking!?   So, I just decided to finish sketching it instead.  
 My little hero.  :)

Love Is All You Need...

On a day when our American world is consumed with the idea of love, I can't help but think of the love our gracious Father and beautiful Savior show to us eternally and infinitely.

Just a few expressions for the day:
"There are three things that amaze four things, I cannot comprehend:
the way of an eagle in the sky,
the way of a snake upon a rock,
the way of a ship on the high seas,
the way a man loves a woman. "
                ~Agur, son of Jakeh (Prov. 30: 18,19)
  "A bowl of vegetables with someone you love is better than steak with someone you hate."  ~Prov. 15:17
"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends."  ~John 15:17 
"...and above all, love each other earnestly because the love shall cover a multitude of sins."  ~1 Peter 4:8 
 "Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law."  ~Romans 13:8
"Dear friends, let us love one another for love is from God and anyone who is loving is born of God, and knows Him."  ~1 John 4:7 
 "I have found the paradox that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love."  ~Mother Teresa
"A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as the sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world.  It was a perfect act."  ~Mahatma Gandhi
"This is how God loved the world, He sent His only Son..."  ~the apostle John

"And now these things remain, faith, hope, and love -- but the greatest of these is love."  ~the apostle Paul

 And now one of my all time favorite expressions of love:
This is from a card my son made for me and gave to me after I was out of town visiting my daughters....

And under the picture he wrote, "If there was a love-o-meter it would go all the way around the world from me to you."  :)  Heartmelting

Oh, and I almost forgot this last little tidbit of wisdom...


Monday, February 13, 2012

Head To Toe

WooHoo! I've finally finished something! besides dessert  I don't know what's been going on with me but I've been in some kind of weird funk when it comes to my creative side. It seems like lately, the past 6 months worth of lately, that no matter what project I've started it's been a big fail, for one reason or another. And boy, can that be discouraging. Hmm, maybe I've been in a persistence training program for which I didn't even realize I signed up.   Anywhoo...I've made progress, thank The Great Spirit of creation!

In the last couple days, two of the projects I've finished are for my out-of-state daughters. One is a crocheted beanie. I've only completed one other crocheted hat in my lifetime and that was an earflap hat for my son. For a long time now, I've been searching for a simple beanie for my girls with no success. I've tried several different patterns but none seemed to work, the problem being my inexperience, I'm sure. So, after a gazillion attempts I put the hat-crocheting-madness to bed for a bit. Well, with holidays and birthdays approaching, the alarm went off and I woke the monster!  This time I had an acceptable result.

The directions said to be careful not to let the foundation chain twist while joining the ends.   I tried many, many things to keep it straight but as soon as I'd get close to finishing the 1st row I could see it had twisted.  Which would have been great if I had been crocheting an infinity scarf.  I ripped and stitched more times than I care to say.  I have no idea how most people manage this but I ended up pinning my foundation chain to a bolster pillow form that I had in my closet.  It worked!  Ahh, yesss, relief.

I found a very easy flower pattern here at Anne Marie's Crochet Blog.  She has so many cute things there that I'm getting a cup of coffee and going back there after I finish this post.  For my first flower, I was happy with the way it turned out.  

I decided to use my friendly bolster as my beanie model.  I think she's quite photogenic for a wad of stuffing.  :)

I'll have to give her a name.....Beatrice!   Yes, Beatrice Bolster.  That'll do.

Now for my slippers, yay!  I found an easy, easy, pattern here on Hectanooga1's YouTube channel.  I used her basic pattern and changed just a couple of things.  I made the sides a little taller and added a trim to the top edge.  
They look like booties in this photo, but they're not.  They stretch out on the foot and look more like the shape of a Mary Jane without the strap.  I wonder if the strap is the Jane part?  If so, then these are just Mary's.  :)  I'm planning on adding an embelishment to the top, but haven't picked one yet.  Flower, button, foofie fluffy ball?...I can't decide...too many choices for my over-crowded brain at the moment.

Ohh, it feels so good to finally finish a project!  Yippie Skippy, I got my groove back!  Now onto the next project.    

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Right Words...

     While cleaning and reorganizing my sewing/craft space I came across this booklet titled, "The Right Words for Any Occasion" distributed in 2001 by Publications International, Ltd.
 If I remember correctly, I got it along with a bunch of old stationery that a friend was getting rid of and passed along to me.  As I was flipping through it I was thinking this could really come in handy!  Sometimes I find it hard to express the right sentiment when I'm sending off a note to an individual, especially if it's someone I don't know very well.

     There are 13 categories listed filling up about 20 pages in this booklet.  Here are a just a few samples that I thought were nice:
"Hoping your birthday is wrapped in smiles."
"May your birthday make you feel as beautiful and special as you are."
"A kind gesture lasts a lifetime.  Thank you!"
"I hope it lightens your burden to know I'm here for you."
"Memories are the legacy of love."
"Good friends are the rare jewels of life--difficult to find and impossible to replace."
"Congratulations!  You have a brand-new reason to smile."  (for a new baby)
"Hold tight to the dreams you have today, and walk boldly in their direction." (for graduation)
 Hopefully, none of the people I write one of these to will have read my blog.  ;)

Not a Survivor

(I originally wrote this within the first 6 months after my daughter's death. I didn't post it then, I don't remember why.  I...