I realize that Halloween is coming up pretty fast, especially for those planning to create costumes and/or decorations for this annual “ode to spirits that have passed”. However, in my wanderings around the internet I discovered that there is a National Ghost Hunting Day, celebrated on the last Saturday of September (this year, the 30th). This is a fledgling holiday, officially created in July 2016, but with a seemingly robust following (check out http://www.nationalghosthuntingday.com/home.html for more info). So in keeping with the “spirit” of the day, I have chosen to do a little of my own ghost hunting – of the crochet variety, of course!

Boo Ghost

Whimsical Boo Ghosts by Beverly Mewhorter, free pattern at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/boo-ghosts

CASPER1

I wouldn’t mind a visit from this Casper-inspired ghost! From Ophelie at http://www.ahookamigurumi.com/en/halloween-special-n1-one-pattern-for-two-ghosts-amigurumi/

 

BABY GHOST HAT

 Adorable baby hat inspiration from Soap and Stitch on Etsy – https://www.etsy.com/shop/soapandstitch?ref=l2-shopheader-name

dapper ghost

What a dapper fellow! Halloween Ghost free pattern at
https://amigurumi.today/halloween-ghost-crochet-pattern/

 

ghost afghan

Who wouldn’t keep themselves cozy with this on a Halloween night? By Maggie’s Crochet at https://www.maggiescrochet.com/products/halloween-ghosts-afghan-pillow-set-pattern-1

little miss spooky

If you’re looking for a sexy ghost, Little Miss Spooky is here!  https://de.dawanda.com/product/107163507-haekelanleitung-little-miss-spooky-geist-pdf

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Who could forget Zero – in a lovey form, no less! Free pattern from Jamie Hackford at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/zero-lovey

gIRL gHOST

And this little sweetheart comes from Gateando Crochet at
http://gateandocrochet.blogspot.nl/2015/10/la-fantasma-lola.html#english 
(I used this pattern to make the boy and girl ghost in the pumpkin below!)

Two ghosts in a pumpkin

 

I AINT FRAID OF NO GHOST

I ain’t ‘fraid of no ghosts! Classic “Ghostbusters” logo – free design by http://www.triflesntreasures.com/my-attempt-at-blogging/i-aint-fraid-a-no-ghostfree-crochet-pattern#.V5Ix7IMrKUl

I hope you enjoyed this little ghost tour and possibly found a little friend to crochet. Oh, yes – and happy hunting on the 30th!

Advertisements

We love teddy bears. I don’t believe I have ever known someone who didn’t at least like teddies, and many people had one as a “best friend” as a child (me included!). Ever since the shopkeeper Morris Michtom and his wife Rose made a stuffed fabric bear in honor of America’s 26th commander-in-chief (Teddy Roosevelt) and displayed it with a sign, “Teddy’s bear,” in their store window, these bears have been a perennial favorite. So in honor of this beloved creature that has given us so much comfort, let the love begin!

teddy with star

Have you ever seen such a sweet face?!!
Inspiration only at  https://jzamell.jimdo.com/teddy-s/

bear hats

What a delightful way to stay warm! Pattern for sale by Caroline Guzman at
http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/teddy-bear-hat-10

fuzzy bear

Fuzzy Wuzzy was a bear…and the free pattern is by Irina Nikolajeva; http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/little-bear-4

teddy-bear-booties-CH0429-000

Aren’t these booties adorable? Free pattern from Helena Asmu Lim at http://www.clearlyhelena.com/teddy-bear-booties/

sleep tight blanket

What child wouldn’t go to sleep with these friends? By Christins from Sweet Potato 3 at
http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/sleep-tight-teddy-bear-blanket—lovey

panda bear

My childhood teddy was a panda bear! Designed by
Kristel Droog and pattern available at https://www.etsy.com/au/listing/461552466/crochet-pattern-my-little-panda-bear

Teddy granny square

What lucky mother wouldn’t want to receive this beauty for her newborn?Teddy
 Bear blanket by MingazovArt at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/teddy-bear-blanket-59

Teddy Lovie

Delightful lovey by Natalya Birina at TillySome – https://www.etsy.com/shop/TillySome?ref=l2-shopheader-name

winnie the pooh

Oh so cute Pooh Bear Diaper set by Olivia, free pattern at http://www.hopefulhoney.com/2015/11/winnie-pooh-inspired-hat-diaper-cover.html?spref=pi

teddy zombie

There’s even a Halloween Teddy – Frankie the Zombie Teddy by Krawka at
https://www.etsy.com/listing/472432946/crochet-pattern-frankie-the-zombie-teddy?ref=shop_home_active

I have to admit that there were so many teddies and teddy-related items that it was really difficult to decide what to include in this post. Trust me, this is only a fraction of what I found on Pinterest!

I remember as a kid I would kind of dread August. First it meant that I only had one month of summer vacation left before school started (in Chicago school starts the day after Labor day). But second, August usually had the worst weeks of summer heat, and without any AC it generally meant I spent a whole lot of time in the basement, or when I could, at the local public swimming pool.

Now that I’m into crochet, however, “dog days” has an entirely different meaning. So in honor of National Dog Day being on 8/26, I will devote this blog entry to our four-pawed, tail-wagging, tongue-drooling best friends, and to all the wonderful crochet they inspire us to create!

Schnauzer

I couldn’t resist! This Schnauzer puppy reminds me so much of my own Mickey! Inspiration only by Lemowan – https://www.instagram.com/p/BCptrRojjqM/

Dalmation1-728x556

Adorable hats for kids (or the young at heart!) Free pattern at http://www.repeatcrafterme.com/2014/01/crochet-dalmatian-dog-pattern.html

Crochet-Dog-Bowl-Mat-Pattern-Free-1-1-768x768

Cute dog bowl mat by Bauta Witch, free pattern with translating on page – https://bautawitch.se/2015/12/14/diy-virkad-matskalsmatta-till-din-hund/

dsc00523

Remember the Slinky Dog? Here’s the crocheted version, but will need translating – http://stranamasterov.ru/node/105178

e89c99d3d09833de5e2d05a525416d0e

Exquisite hound dog, inspiration only by amiguru_mi —https://www.instagram.com/p/9_comrlFrQ/

20140127-213134

Wonderful dog toy bones, free pattern by Lime Green Lady – https://limegreenlady.wordpress.com/2014/01/27/23/

DIYHowto-DIY-Crochet-Amigurumi-Puppy-Dog-Stuffed-Toy-Patterns-07

Pretty in pink Pomp-a-Poodle by Red Heart – free pattern at http://www.redheart.com/free-patterns/pomp-poodle

b1af9d6e567ab9754e26fcf9658addc5

These dog-face cup cozies are just fantastic! Created by HookedbyAngel, you can buy the patterns on Ravelry http://www.ravelry.com/designers/hookedbyangel  or her shop – https://www.etsy.com/shop/HookedbyAngel?ref=l2-shopheader-name&section_id=16355592

56db8e3fe162e73c3e9d26d18d34f078

And now, from the “Waaay Back” machine, it’s none other than Mr. Peabody from “Mr. Peabody and Sherman” (there is a new cartoon version out!) Free pattern available from K. Godinez at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/mr-peabody

1.27.12_105_medium

Ah, yes – the iconic dog sweater! Above is actually an adorable hoodie from Jenna Wingate at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/dog-hoodie

d154bcf50cbae8edf505714fdbc2dcea

Of course we can’t forget one of the most famous dogs! Snoopy with his friend Woodstock – https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=424990.msg5057883#msg5057883    I couldn’t find the photo’s pattern, but this very close version is for sale by Amanda L. Girão: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/snoopy-inspired-dog-amigurumi

As always, all photos have been procured from Pinterest, and I try my best to link to the original designer. I will be glad to post any corrections in future posts.

When I lived in Illinois, I had managed to develop a bit of a green thumb. Since moving to California (7 years ago now), that thumb has turned cold and dead – even with plants that I should be able to keep alive. At least I think I should be able to!

I love violas. I have bought several violas over the past few years, with no success. I thought I’d try again this year, just because the plants at the store were soooo pretty and healthy and thriving. Please see pic below.

20170325_091815

I made the silly mistake of planting my beauty in an unlined terracotta pot. I believe the problem with that was the plant would dry out, I’d water it, the clay would absorb the water, I’d water it more, then the plant would be over-watered and the leaves would turn yellow and die. If I didn’t water the plant so much, the soil would dry out and the leaves would turn yellow and die.

Then I transplanted it to a plastic pot. The plant, though much smaller now, seemed all right. Then I gave it a little fertilizer. I don’t think it liked it. It started to wilt, continuing till it completely died. RIP, my poor little viola.

I felt very sad about the lonely pot, so I gave it a new friend. These gorgeous pom-pom marigolds are only supposed to be annuals, but I’m hoping that with a little TLC I might be able to nurture them through a CA winter. Hope springs eternal, right?

IMG_0605

As for actual crochet news, I’m still working on the wedding afghan, but it is getting close to being done. Here’s a little sneak peek –

IMG_0607

This is a photo of the side diamond panel with the cable/rope edging. I think the ombre effect turned out well; I’m pretty sure this one’s going to turn out great – keeping my fingers crossed!

I’m still in the process of making the afghan for my nephew and his soon-to-be new wife – I think I’m safe to say that because I don’t believe either one of them follow this blog! – and so I thought that doing a piece on dream catchers would be very appropriate for mid-summer’s reveries.

Black Lace DC, e7e9fb733b51ccd484e98e7e92122352 - Copy (2)

Black Magic Boho Dreamcatcher by CleanS18 at https://www.etsy.com/shop/CleanSl8?ref=l2-shopheader-name

DC feathers

Many dreamcatchers have feathers – why not make your own? https://poppyandbliss.com/2017/05/19/tunisianfeathers

Black and White DC

Monochromatic design by Marion van Kooten-Stok at http:// https://www.facebook.com/handmadebymarian

Red Star DC

Not a dreamcatcher, but wouldn’t it make a fantastic one? Starflower Mandala from Zelna Olivier, free pattern at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/starflower-mandala

3D DC

Dreamcatcher on steroids! By AGAAZRA at https://www.etsy.com/shop/AGAAZRA?ref=l2-shopheader-name

Granny Stitch DC

Even the iconic Granny Stitch gets to show off! Rainbow Granny Spiral Sun Catcher by Jaime Ramsey at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/rainbow-granny-spiral-sun-catcher

 

Pleasant dreams everyone!

Some of us have been blessed to inherit vintage doilies. Some of us still adore the delicate patterns so lovingly hand crocheted. Some of us just love all things lace! No matter what category you fall in, most of us succumb to the allure of these dainty pieces at one point or another in our lives.

But what to do with them? Our grandmothers used them as decorative protection on the backs and arms of chairs and as underlayments to centerpieces, but this is so out-of-date today. Never fear – the creative powers on Pinterest have come to the rescue!

WTDWATD's 3

Displaying them in frames seems totally appropriate for their beauty

WTDWATD's 5

Group doilies to make an eclectic table runner

WTDWATD's, 6

What an elegant place to store the remote!

WTDWATD's 2

Lovely way to brighten a room

WTDWATD's 4

Sooo cool – I want one!

WTDWATD's, 9

A diminutive sachet or pincushion, from https://www.livemaster.ru/topic/470805-kruzhevo

WTDWATD's, 7

Decorate a plain tablecloth – from http://ana-rosa.tumblr.com/post/31532747462

WTDWATD's, 10

Doilies make a stunning window screen framed in embroidery hoops; from Dishfunctional Designs

While wandering Pinterest, I also spied many other examples for doily use – mobiles, stiffened for bowls, gift bags, jar or tea light covers, decoration for scrapbook covers/pages, to create a banner, decorate a tote bag or throw pillows, use as a stencil, to press into clay for plates/bowls/ornaments, crochet together to make a curtain/lightweight throw, or as an insert for a room divider. And please don’t forget – doilies are usually made from cotton, which is a very dyeable material; you certainly don’t have to limit your creativity to the traditional whites and ivories. Vive le doily!

CS #5A

Finished Crescent Shawl – Ta Da!

Yes, it took me a while to screw up my courage and attempt to work out the problems with this “simple” scarf/shawl. If you remember, I was lamenting a bit ago about the neckline of this project (The “Simple” Scarf) and how I wasn’t sure how I was going to fix it. Well, first I found a way to fill in the scooped neck area. Then I created an inside edge, rolled it on itself, and with needle and thread tacked it down. I also tacked down those little bumps at the end of the rows. Voila! Now with any luck I’ll have the pattern posted  in my Bonanza shop (https://www.bonanza.com/booths/CrochetedButterfly) in about a week.

CS Blocked

Crescent Shawl blocked on pinning board

I am very pleased with how it turned out, despite all the trouble it gave me. I think I would change the yarn I used, though. Loops and Threads Woolike it a nice yarn, but I feel it was a little too soft. I would like to have a yarn with a little more body/stiffness to it so the ridges would hold better; perhaps a cotton/acrylic or wool blend. Or perhaps it’s just my OCD is showing again!

I am currently on a crocheting hiatus. I went to a rheumatologist yesterday and received a cortisone shot in my left thumb. I don’t know if any crocheters out there have had this problem, but I have had pain in my left thumb with crocheting for quite some time now, probably at least a decade. Up till January, however, I could always take a break for a couple days, the pain would go away, and I could crochet again. By January I was in the middle of making an afghan for my nephew and his to-be wife (Wedding Bells!) and sadly the pain became consistent in both thumbs. I finished the afghan but ordered new wrist splints that also had thumb splints. (I have been wearing wrist splints at night for over a decade due to carpal tunnel developed from crocheting – oh, what we do for love!) The splints have helped with the pain tremendously. My right thumb only hurts if I stress it, like carrying something heavy or opening a jar. I started an afghan for my other nephew getting married in September and the left thumb flared up again, hence the trip to the doctor. I have to get xrays and visit him in six weeks. Gee, who says getting old isn’t fun? Anyway, I have to take it easy for three days and I should be able to resume all activity in five, so that’s not too bad. I shall survive!

 

I certainly can’t speak for anyone else, but Father’s Day gifts were always a problem for me. My two siblings and I did the best we could, but I’m sure my father inwardly groaned at some of the presents we gave him! Anyway, I decided to check out what wonderful crochet gifts the creative people on Pinterest (and others around the net) might be suggesting for our hard-working dads.

3ce1c03f40e9e0c8750433336cc883e2

A sports-themed afghan could be perfect for many fathers! Manly Sports Lapghan by Crystal Porter from iyarny.wordpress.com; pattern found at https://www.allfreecrochetafghanpatterns.com/Lapghan-Patterns/Manly-Sports-Lapghan/ct/1
fd20e890dc7bc7da0b4c7fd14117f329
And what better to go with sports but a beer bottle cozy? A free pattern from Evermine Occasions – https://www.evermine.com/blog/fathers-day-beer-and-crochet-cozy-pattern/
Loafers
So comfy Modern Men’s Loafers by Lisa van Klaveren. Pattern available at https://www.lovecrochet.com/us/modern-mens-loafers-crochet-pattern-by-lisa-van-klaveren
static1.squarespace.com
For the periodic-table-inclined/”nerd” fathers, Megan of Left in Knots designed this clever “Dad, 24/7 365 days a year” tribute – http://www.leftinknots.com/home/2016/6/5/dad-247-365. This could also be cute done with crocheted versions of Scrabble letters.
GolfClubs1
And let’s not forget the golfers out there! Beautiful club covers by Sarah of Repeat Crafter Me – http://www.repeatcrafterme.com/2013/05/crochet-golf-club-cover-pattern.html?m=1
4260bbac76bed6fa5b1eaddc281802aa
Every coffee-lovin’ man deserves a great cozy, and Sharon of Table Top Jewels has a very nice variety available in her shop – https://www.etsy.com/listing/180433786/crochet-coffee-cozy-cup-sleeve-a-kelly?ref=shop_home_active_6 I could imagine other appliques to personalize the cozy even more (tool, fish, gardener, computer, etc).
e726be79dc5fb6d3a1f63c9ee70e3cb4
And now for the Star Wars fans (you know who you are!) – their very own adult sized Darth Vader crocheted mask! Pattern sold by My Little Chapina on Craftsy – https://www.craftsy.com/crocheting/patterns/darth-vader-crochet-hat-for-adults/275710
beard-hat-c_medium
Last but not least, for the dad who has everything, the Viking or Dwarven Beard by Melissa Campbell – free pattern with link to helmet at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/viking-or-dwarven-beard.
There was another crocheted item for dad that I decided not to list because I rather enjoy the “G” rating for my blog. Besides, that item would be much more appropriate for Mom to give Dad!

About a month ago I found a beautiful Ice yarn, Air Baby Alpaca. It’s a mix of alpaca, extrafine merino wool, viscose, and polyamide, and it’s so soft. It has been made into a chain, and since I’ve enjoyed working with other chained yarns, I decided to try it. Plus it came in a very pretty shell pink (pink with an undertone of peach) that would look really good on my mom.

I wanted to make a shawlette for my mom – just a little something to go over her shoulders without being cumbersome or heavy. I found the Dawn in the Woods Shawl by Elaine Phillips (http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/dawn-in-the-woods-shawl) which was perfect because the length.can be adjusted. I was set!

While I was working on the last third of the shawlette I realized that it wasn’t going to be symmetrical. This bothered my sense of design balance (possibly a little OCD?) but my real problem was that when I tried it on it really looked “old lady-ish”. My mom’s style is more like Olivia’s in ‘Scandal’, not the Victorian lacy look, so I came to the realization this would be all wrong for her. I have come up with a Plan B, but this will have to be for her birthday because I ran out of time for Mother’s Day! Amazingly (or maybe not), the shawl ended up looking MUCH better on the dress form –

IMG_0554A - Copy

 

IMG_0557A - Copy

So instead of this shawlette, I decided to fall back on an old standby – pigs. My mom has a wonderful collection, mostly figurines, and told the family years ago to not give her any more pigs. I have chosen to completely ignore this directive. Hence, behold the sweet little piggy bookmark (pattern from Ashlea Konecny at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/pig-bookmark) –

20170506_145441A - Copy

20170506_151825-1A - Copy        

I also found a very unique present at Faerie Magazine that I thought my mom would like – Flying Prayer/Wish Paper (https://www.faeriemag.com/products/flying-wish-paper-mini-wishing-kit-dandelion-prayer). You write your prayer/wish on the paper, roll it up, put it on the platform card, and light it on fire. At the last moment “your wish magically lifts off the platform and rises to the heavens!”. How cool is that!

Flying Prayer Paper

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom – And to all of those wonderful mothers out there! We so deserve it!

As I’m sure with many of you, I’ve had Mother’s Day on my mind. It’s only a couple weeks away and I’m in the middle of making something for my mom (with luck it’ll be done in time!). Of course, I can’t show or discuss what I’m making because my Mom reads this blog and I wouldn’t want to give away the surprise. So that will have to wait for later. (Hi, Mom!)

The following are a gathering of what I would consider wonderful Mother’s Day presents – of the lacy variety, of course!

crown bowl

I love this bowl – it looks just like a crown! http://meninascrocheteirasemacao.blogspot.fr/2015/03/receitas-e-graficos-de-croche-endurecido.html (Many charts available at this site)

necklace

Elegant statement necklace/collar from http://www.silviagramani.com/search/label/Colar%20de%20P%C3%A9rolas (Patterns for purchase through designer’s books)

framed doily

Have a gorgeous doily already made? Frame it! http://crochet.postbit.com/photos/crochet-doilies/86620_1.html

tealight

Lovely tealight holder from http://www.soulouposeto.gr/2013/11/blog-post_5.html (No pattern but instruction on stiffening)

Scalloped basket

Such a pretty candy dish – or for sparkly trinkets in the boudoir? http://lanaecotone.blogspot.com/2010/05/scatolina-alluncinetto.html?spref=pi

You can find the pattern for the featured picture of ‘Mother’s Day Teacup’ by Marjorie Jones at http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/mothers-day-teacup. Now it’s back to present making for me….

%d bloggers like this: