Wednesday, December 16, 2020

It's Been a Long Time

It has really been a long time! As a matter of fact, it's been over seven months since I posted. Wow, how time flies! No, I didn't fall off the edge of the earth; I am still living with and taking care of my mom. I did have a terrible case of "lost cro-jo", though, and this is why you haven't heard from me.

If you recall from some previous posts, I was in the process of creating stuffed animals for my sister's grandchildren. All of them had been done except Riley's dragon, which was the most complicated and detailed. You will be glad to know that he is finally done and is safely in my sister's hands for Christmas gift-giving. You have no idea how relieved I am. I was beginning to have nightmares about giving these stuffed animals to college-age kids, and although they are a little bit older than what I was planning (the gifts were supposed to be given at Easter), none of the children have officially hit puberty yet. (All right - maybe one. But he was tall to begin with.) 

So here they are (horn tooting) - the long awaited grandchildren's stuffed animals! 

                                                  Emily's Ballerina Bunny, bunny pattern here; bow pattern here


                                                                        Sophie's Black Cat, pattern here


                                                              Abbie's German Shepard Puppy, pattern here


                                                                  Riley's Magnificent Dragon, pattern here


                                                                         Paden's Fiery Dragon, pattern here


                                                                             Lorelai's Toy Owl, pattern here


A little side note about Riley's dragon - the original design was meant to go over a sphere-shaped lamp. I just wanted the dragon to be placed on a table or shelf, so there were adjustments to the pattern that I had to do. Just FYI, in case anyone is daring enough to be up for the challenge of making this behemoth!

 As always - stay safe, stay well, and happy crocheting!


Saturday, May 9, 2020

Yarn Chicken

I certainly hope this post finds you and yours healthy and not going too stir crazy from stay-at-home orders. At the time I'm writing this, a few states are lifting the orders, which makes some people very happy and some people very apprehensive. I just wish the best for everyone, no matter what your personal decision may be.

Things have just been going along here. I'm appreciating the warmer temps, and I can't wait to plant my spinach. That is, if the seeds ever get here. (I think they're sitting in some abandoned postal warehouse - I'm expecting a ransom note any time now!) I'm still working on Riley's dragon. My, that thing has so many parts; obviously I won't be showing you any photos of him yet. Who would want to see a bunch of dragon pieces?

I did take a slight detour, though. My son's fiance's birthday was March 28th, and I did send her a card, but I told her she'd have to wait for her present. I can't recall how I came across the pattern, but I found the Tendril Shawl by Annie Design Crochet and I felt it would be just perfect for her. The pattern is free but the suggested yarn was the most expensive yarn I've ever bought - ah, but what a yarn! It was 60% superwash merino wool, 20% silk and 20% yak, soft as butter, beautiful drape, subtle sheen, and fantastic color. Plus it was a dream to work with. Thank goodness it only took one skein!

The pattern called for a 4mm hook and I didn't have one, so I chose to use a 3.75mm instead. Mine turned out about 60" long and 26" deep on the picot side, smaller than the designer's version, but that's ok. I did have enough yarn left over to do scs across the top edge, which I think gave it a little more finished look. I was definitely playing yarn chicken, but I won with about a yard left!


Trust me when I say the photos I took don't do this yarn justice. I even took the pictures in natural light, but I just couldn't get it to look as good as the real thing. Oh, well.

Everyone please take care and stay well - and happy crocheting!

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

I Know I Promised

Yes, I said I was going to post once a month. I also realize I blew it for March. However, on March 15th (beware, right?) my mother and I both came down with the coronavirus. We haven't been tested, so I can't be absolutely positive, but I'm pretty sure. Luckily it was fairly mild for both of us, although my mom still needs a little more recoup time. My heart goes out to all of you who have had this horrible virus, and especially to those who have lost someone to it. Plus a HUGE THANK YOU to all the healthcare workers, front line people, and everyone who work to keep society's necessities available and stocked.

There is so much talk about people going stir crazy dealing with the "stay at home" order. It must be very difficult for people who don't have an inside hobby, or at least something they can do within the vicinity of the house. I have never been so glad that I have crochet! From what I've seen online, many others feel the same way. So many WIPs, and now the time!

I'm still working on the amigurumis for my sister's grandchildren, and I've finished Paden's dragon. (Actually, it was supposed to be Riley's, but I feel it's a little too delicate for him, so his big brother is going to get it.) The pattern is from Megan Lapp of Crafty Intentions, and I would consider this to be for experienced crocheters well versed in amigurumi. I'm very happy with how mine turned out, but there were some parts that I found difficult. Maybe that's because I'm not that experienced with amigurumi!

Eventually Paden's Dragon

Earlier this year my niece posted a pic of a crocheted Baby Yoda and stated that she NEEDED one. Yes, NEEDED. She is a married woman in her forties with a lovely little girl. I LOVE IT! But alas, many patterns for Baby Yoda had to be deleted due to copyright infringements. Eventually I did find one and it is still available from Albina of AmigoRoom Toys. Perhaps I'm very picky, but many of the patterns I saw were not very professional looking. Albina's version is very cute and quintessential amigurumi. But I couldn't help but fiddle with it.

My Version of Baby Yoda 

And fiddle I did. I wasn't happy with the first one, so I had to make a second. Then I wasn't happy with the height or collar, so today I took it apart, made adjustments, and put it back together. Now I'm happy. Oh, what we do for the love of crochet!

If you recall, all of these amigurumi were supposed to be done for Easter. The grandchildren are not aware that I'm making anything for them, so not making the deadline is no big deal for those. However, it was my niece's husband that commissioned me to do Yoda and I promised him an Easter delivery. So it's off to the post office and keep my fingers crossed it gets there in time!

To all - please take care and don't get sick. But most of all, happy crocheting!

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Just a Little Late

I said I was going to post right after Christmas to show you what ornaments I made for my family. Well, it IS after Christmas...almost Valentine's Day...but let's not get picky. The fact is that I have been pretty busy with things to do, not only for myself, but for my mom too. Plus I've started a really neat dragon (one of the six presents for my sister's grandchildren) that's been giving me fits! I usually don't have such problems with patterns, but the yarn is black and I do most of the work in the evening. Bad combination, I guess.

Anyway, I had found a super cute snowman pattern from Repeat Crafter Me and I knew it would be this year's ornament. I used sport weight yarn instead of the recommended worsted weight, so I had to add a couple rows in the head and body to keep the size. I didn't have any cute buttons to use for the hats, or any orange yarn for the nose. I used red yarn and wrapped it around the hat like a ribbon, and cut a strip of cardboard and rolled it to fill the inside of the hat - I felt it gave the hat more definition than fiberfill. I really lucked out for the nose. I found Purple Pirate Studios on Etsy, and she makes half inch polymer clay carrot noses! They were perfect! All I did was rub the flat end against an emery board and put a generous amount of tacky glue on that end, place the nose on the face, hold it for 30 seconds and then let it dry. My snowmen with the hat were about 4 inches high, and the half inch noses were just right. I also gave them thicker multi-colored scarves. Maker's Note - Snowmen's eyes look better if they're a little close together. I don't know why, but they do.

I have also finished the German Shepard for one of the granddaughters. It's the best one I could find (pattern by AmberCraftStore on Etsy); however, the pattern could've been better written and there could've been more/better photos for clearer explanation. I figured everything out, but this pattern is definitely for the intermediate if not advanced amigurumi crocheter. The only thing I'm really not happy with are the front legs. I feel they should have an extension to create a shoulder that would blend better into the body (the dragon pattern has this). If I have time, I'll rework the front legs so they look better.

Well, I'd better get going - that dragon isn't going to make itself! Then I still have an even more advanced dragon to make (I saved the hardest for the last), plus I offered to make a Baby Yoda for my niece. Everything has to be made by Easter.

And then I will exhale.

Happy crocheting!