Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Little Christmas

I know its not even Halloween, but if you walk into any craft store, which is a place that most of us tend to shop in, all the Christmas stuff is out and ready for us to start creating. So what the heck?

I wanted to make some potholders for someone and I came across this one....

Christmas Rose Potholder

I called it Christmas Rose Potholder but the actual pattern is called Copycat Vintage Rose Potholder and can be found on Freepatterns.com. I used Sugar N Cream yarns in Sage and Red and Bernat Handicrafter Cotton in Cream with a G hook. It's very pretty and if you don't want to use it as a potholder, you could hang it on the kitchen wall as a holiday decoration. And if you are adventurous, you could use cotton thread and make a miniature of this to hang on your tree. Its not a hard pattern but beware one part of the instructions which tells you to do 3dctog. That's misleading, as that is a decrease. What you have to do is a 3dc cluster. Also, the back of the potholder (which is plain) tends to come out larger than the front. Don't let that worry you. I still joined the 2 pieces, hand flattened the finished potholder and let it sit overnight....that allowed the yarn to relax. That was really all that was needed to get it to lay flat. You can certainly wet block it you want but I find that wet blocking cotton yarn makes it stiff. Still, that may not concern you.

I am working on other crochet projects for the holiday season...I will be back with those soon!

Crochet, Away!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Stitch N Pitch

Last night I attended the yearly Stitch N Pitch event at Citizen's Bank Park, the home of my favorite MLB team, the Philadelphia Phillies! It was warm but not oppressively so.....a great night and a chance to meet stitchers from all over the area, coming together to crochet, knit, chat and cheer on our team. I made a sign for the event...

I brought a knitting project with me to work on (so I wont discuss that here) because the afghan I am working on is too big and too warm for doing outside at a baseball game. But there were other ladies there that were crocheting and sharing their projects. Lots of fun! 

And I took a photo of our little group....

And we didn't go home empty handed...we got a Phanatic (mascot) bobblehead figure, a tote bag and a sipper cup! And our team WON!!! All in all, it was a great night!

So if you live in the states and have never heard of Stitch N Pitch and you are interested, check out their home page HERE for more information and consider attending one in your area next year. Its worth it!

Till next time....

Crochet, Away!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Starting on Christmas

Only 157 days till Christmas....don't shoot the messenger...LOL!

VERY early this morning, I completed my first gift...this toddler afghan....

Country Star Afghan

I have had this pattern for many years in its original form of the Rainbow Afghan from the cover of the Leisure Arts booklet #191....

As you can see, the original pattern was for a baby afghan using pastel colors. Nice but a bit tame. When I saw a similar afghan to mine on Pinterest, I was intrigued. And when I found out it was the same pattern updated, I was excited. I pulled out that old booklet, went yarn shopping and got started.

I used the new United yarn from Caron for all the colors except the green....that I had to use the Caron One Pound. I used the Caron One Pound in white, too. The colors are great....but the yarn? Not so much. I have vowed, after having sore fingers, that I will NEVER make this afghan with cheap acrylic again. Its not as soft as I would like. And, just as bad, I had a devil of a time weaving in the ends...the darn tapestry needle did NOT want to go into the strands. And having to use a size F hook for the corner motifs made that job even worse! So if you have a desire to try this afghan and you want to use acrylic, do yourself a favor and buy a better brand...you'll be glad you did.

You don't have to search for the booklet...the pattern itself is available for sale on Ravelry or HERE on the Leisure Arts site. Since I wanted a toddler sized afghan, I used an H hook for the body of the ghan and an F hook for the motifs. You could even use a larger hook if you want. This is a striking afghan in person and despite the sore fingers, I am glad I finished it. It is, or course, for Lillith.

Crochet, Away!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

It's a Hoot!

Which is the name of the pattern for this whimsical little basket/container....

I'ts a Hoot Owl Container

This is a free Red Heart pattern you can find HERE. I had this mauve yarn sitting around...mill ends from one of the craft stores. Instead of making a small, crocheted circle for the pupil of the eye, I bought acrylic jewels and glued them in instead. I actually made this larger than the pattern said, adding 3 more rows to the base. It uses a double strand of yarn throughout and a K hook. This will be a gift for my DD, probably for Christmas. 

Bought more yarn today for afghans...one for Lillith for Christmas. And some cotton yarn for bathroom/spa sets for gifts. Gotta get started soon. 

Crochet, Away!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Lacy V Market Bag

I saw this bag on Pinterest (I seem to be finding a lot of things there). I needed a project to take with me to Boston to work on and I figured this would be perfect....

You can find the pattern HERE. It makes a nice BIG bag. I used Bernat Handicrafter Cotton in the "Nautical" colors of Ahoy and Seabreeze, Was an easy project and would make a great beach or project bag as well as market bag. Give it a try!

Hope everyone is enjoying their summer...or winter, depending on where you are on this little planet. I will be back soon with more projects.

Crochet, Away!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Dress for Lillith

With all that has been going on lately, I forgot to post about this cute dress that I crocheted for little Lillith and gave to her on my recent trip to Boston to visit my family....

The pattern is called Roses and Lace and is available on e-patternscentral. I used factory mill ends in a baby weight and an E hook.This is a really pretty pattern, although the roses gave me a bit of a fit. They weren't lining up properly (and I found out that others were having a similar problem). They are supposed to be staggered but it wasn't symmetrical and it just didn't look right so I adjusted my stitches so the roses lined up below one another. The mesh in the bodice is supposed to be open but I decided to thread ribbon in it for a different look. Fits Lillith perfectly, although I didn't get a photo. Perhaps my DIL will take one and share it.

I also made Lillth a knitted, hooded cape which also came out great. Its on my project page on Ravelry, if you are curious.

More crocheting to come very soon.

Crochet, Away!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

On My Soapbox

I just need to address this situation.

I never spent much time on Etsy except to look at yarn bowls. And I never used Pinterest. Until recently, that is. I found it to be an extensive resource for free crochet patterns. But I also found it made me aware of something troubling.

I recently found a pin of a photo of a pattern that I recognized. The reason I recognized it is because I made the same garment (for Sydney when she was a couple years old). It was the same photo as in the pattern book that the pattern was originally printed in. I own the book so I went to my personal library, looked it up and confirmed it was the same pattern. Then I followed the link to an Etsy shop where the owner was selling copies of the pattern for $5 a piece! And there were 2 other patterns from the same book she was offering for sale. First I was shocked....then I was livid. I found out who published the book the pattern was printed in and I shot off an e-mail to them to alert them. Then I reported the Etsy shop for copyright infringement. In less than a day, the shop was gone.

But I was curious. So I began perusing through Etsy looking at crochet patterns. I was floored as to how many people are scanning patterns, creating PDF's of them and selling them! Even patterns I have found online for FREE are being sold! I can believe that some people may be ignorant of the law....but not all of them. A lot of them know they are doing something illegal, but they are getting away with it...and have been for YEARS. And are making decent money at it. Doesn't Etsy realize what's going on? Or are they simply turning a blind eye until someone reports a shop? I couldn't report EVERY shop doing this...would take me forever. Many of these shops try to cover themselves by selling copies of  "vintage" patterns from the 50's, 60's  and up...like that makes a difference. They are still copyrighted....even if they are out of print. One woman  made me laugh....she retyped her copies so you can see the text better and cleaned up the photos....and she has the NERVE to put at the bottom of her listing that her copies are COPYRIGHTED because she retyped them!  WTF???

Now I know there are a lot of nice, vintage patterns out there and lots of people would like to make them...me included. But you don't break the law just because you WANT something. It may seem like a victimless crime but its not. If you crochet...or knit...imagine how you would feel if you put work into creating a pattern and some person came along and started selling digital copies of it....stealing YOUR work. I bet you would be pretty mad. I have to say that I have literally HUNDREDS of patterns I have purchased over the 45+ years I have been crocheting. If I opened a shop and started selling copies of them, I could make a pretty good income. But I would be committing a crime...and I am not a criminal. And that's what these people are.

So I ask you all.....please....make sure when you purchase a pattern its from the designer of the pattern OR its an ORIGINAL hard copy that has to be sent through the mail or buy the book or booklet its published in. Don't give these thieves any of your money. Seek out the original pattern (I find a lot of them on E-bay) or even check vintage pattern sites online....some very old patterns from the beginning of the last century are no longer copyright protected and are available for free. And if you still can't find it, move on....there are a LOT of gorgeous patterns out there....you will find another you can legitimately purchase.

Thanks for reading and, as always,

Crochet, Away!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Quick Cardi

Sydney is having another birthday.....number 7. I always make her something so I went a search and found this on Pinterest....

Girls Playground Cardigan 
You can find the pattern HERE. Its a cute and easy worked layered cardigan. I made the size 8. The hardest part was the set in sleeves but I think if you wanted to avoid that you could probably find a way to work the sleeves right on the cardi. I used a different yarn....leftover Caron Spa from one of the previous baby outfits. As a result I had to go up to an H hook to get the proper gauge. I also created a matching slouchy hat using the same pattern stitch. I like how it all came out and I hope she likes it.

Crochet, Away!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Sweater for Lillith

I was anxious to try adjusting the One Piece Wonder sweater from my previous post for a larger child since the pattern only goes up to 6 mos. I chose a worsted weight yarn (Red Heart With Love) and an I hook and this was the result....

Hot Pink Pullover

Its a very warm sweater so it wont be for now, but I am not even sure it will fit her yet, as I don't have her measurements. I am supposed to visit my kids next month so I will be able to try it on her. If it doesn't fit, not a problem....I'll just make her another one.

The only change I would make in any future pullovers would be to start with the back rather than the front so the seam is in the back. Still, I can't complain. It didn't take much figuring to change the design. I bet with a little more figuring I could make something like this for myself.

Crochet, Away!

Monday, May 19, 2014

A Sideways Sweater

I came across this sweater on Pinterest. Its not new but I had never seen it before. Its one of the most clever patterns I have ever seen.

One Piece Wonder Sweater and Diaper Cover

You can find the pattern for the newborn size HERE. Both sweater and diaper cover are made in one piece sideways. For the sweater, you start by crocheting one side of the front, then one sleeve, then the back, then the other sleeve and finally the other side of the front. You finish by sewing the side/sleeve seams and add a few buttons.

 I used Bernat Softee Baby and a G hook...came out perfect. I made the sweater in one afternoon and the diaper cover the next day. I can see where this pattern would be very easy to adjust to just about any size needed. Give it a try...its amazingly easy! 

Be back soon!

Crochet Away!

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Back to the Beach

I am really into making the baby stuff. I made THIS pattern before....for Sydney for her birthday last year....in a larger size. I originally wanted to make this for Lillith and tried to adjust the pattern down but I adjusted it TOO much and it came out small. But it looks great on Cherish...

Peachy Pinafore

I used Bernat Softee Baby yarn that I had in my stash and a G hook. I alternated 2 different colors and just carried them along up the back rather than end off each row and have to weave in a lot of ends. I made up the hat myself and found a diaper cover pattern online which I changed a bit to match the pinafore....

I like that the pants have an elastic waistband...I don't care for drawstring pants for babies. This one is ready to sell!

I am working on a sacque made from sock yarn that is coming out terrific! And the baby snuggly is coming along, too. I should have enough things made soon to start my shop. I will be back real soon with more.

Crochet, Away!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

More For Baby

I just finished this little 2 pc set.....

It looks a bit like a baby jogging suit. I used more mill ends that I bought at A.C. Moore. A nice acrylic that feels like soft cotton. A bit splitty but for the feel, it was a trade off. You can find the pattern HERE. A hat and booties are part of the pattern but I opted not to make them. I am selling this outfit, too. Its a bit big for Cherish, as its a 6 mos. size. I like that it has an elastic waist band on the pants. I much prefer that to a drawstring or ribbon. I may make it again but using a different yarn. I think it would be better with a stretchier fiber.

I am currently working on a baby sacque, a baby afghan (using the same yarn as the outfit above) and a baby snuggly using a vintage pattern. Will have these up on the blog when I finish. Till then...

Crochet, Away!!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

For the Boys...

...although there is no law that says a girl can't wear blue. But this jacket has more of a masculine look to it...
Popcorn Set
This set is from a vintage book I purchased new back in 1978. It was worked from the bottom up in one piece until the sleeve opening.

The sleeves were crocheted separately, set in and sewed in by hand. The bucket hat is my own design based on the pattern stitch of the jacket.  I had to go down 2 hook sizes from an E to a C to get the proper gauge. Although I used a fingering weight yarn it was probably a bit thicker than the baby yarn the pattern called for but it was nice yarn to work with. Just acrylic mill ends from JoAnn Fabrics, but it feels like cotton. I also made a bonnet style hat in case someone prefers that style.....

I couldn't model it on my doll because its a 6-12 mos size and it is just too big, but I think the photos show well. The name of the book I got the pattern from is Caron Baby Knits and Crochets -Book 534 in case you are curious and want to see if you can find it. I saw there was one that sold on Etsy awhile back...there may be more floating around. This set will also be listed in my soon-to-be Etsy shop.

Crochet, Away!

Friday, April 25, 2014

A Beginning..

I have been hearing for years about how I should be selling the things I make and have resisted because of a fear of not really being good enough. Well, I have decided to take the plunge and start creating some things to start an Etsy shop. This is the first baby item I am going to list...

Newborn Baby Romper Set
This was a fun project to make and it came out pretty cute. I used the discontinued Caron Spa, which is a great yarn for summer season garments, and a G hook. You can find the pattern for the romper HERE but I made up my own cap and used a baby sandal pattern I found online. And I think Cherish (my new doll model) looks great in it, too....

I am going to be making a lot more things to sell in the next month or so. I will post more info about the Etsy shop when it becomes active.

Crochet, Away!

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Victorian Spring

I just finished this afghan that I had entered in the Ravelry olympic games but didn't complete it in time to get my award. But no matter...this was worth the extra time and effort....

Fans and Pansies Ripple Blanket

You can find the pattern HERE. Its so pretty...

Fans and Pansies Stitch Closeup
The pattern can be memorized (its a 6 row repeat) but is interesting enough that you wont get bored with it. All double and single crochet. I used the now discontinued Caron Spa and Country...has lovely drape and just enough warmth for a spring evening. A little steam blocking was all it needed. It measures 60" x 38". As much as I LOVE this afghan, I am going to sell it. I will make another one for myself. 

Got more afghans in the WIP pile...will be back with them soon!

Crochet, Away!!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Birthday Gift!

My granddaughter just celebrated her first birthday! I will be seeing her in a couple weeks and I wanted to make her something special. I thought a teddy bear would be nice but it had to be a certain kind. Not the kind that just sits in a crib or on a shelf....but one that a child will hold and drag around with them like a buddy. This little bear seemed perfect....

Buttercup Bear

Buttercup is a very easy pattern...you can find it HERE. I used O-Wool Balance (which is an organic merino/cotton blend) and an F hook so she is about 15" long...a little longer than the pattern indicates. But a nice size for a child to grow with. I added the scarf made of Patons Grace in a blo stitch leaving the ends for a fringe. And I put a jingle bell ball in the body just for fun. I am hoping this little bear will become a special friend to Lillith. She took me a little over a day to make. Give her a try. You can use different colors on the body parts to look like clothing, if you want. But I think her simple look is very classic.

Crochet Away!

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