Doily Blanket

I challenged myself to a task for the contest last year: make two versions of a doily in different sizes. The “mini” version was to be made of thread, and the “mega” version was to be made from yarn. Here’s the final result of the larger version: a doily blanket.

Sunburst Doily Afghan

The pattern is the Sunburst Pineapple doily, which is a rather large doily even when made with its intended thread. My blanket version was made out of the lovely Antique Teal shade of I Love This Yarn from Hobby Lobby.

Sunburst Pineapple Doily Afghan

No awards for this one, but I do really like it. In fact, it’s one of the few crocheted afghans that I have out on display. It’s draped over the living room loveseat at this very moment. 🙂

Sunburst Pineapple Doily Afghan

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Snowdrop Treetop Angel

This past weekend, I got it into my head that I wanted to make a tree topper angel. (Nothing like waiting until the last minute!) We have one on our tree that I purchased on Etsy before I got into thread crochet myself. It’s nice, but I thought it would be much more meaningful to have one of my own creations atop the tree.

I perused Ravelry and Google’s image search to find a pattern that I liked. I found plenty of lovely designs, but the ones that I really liked were published in now out-of-print books or otherwise not available. The only logical solution: create my first original design! Presenting the Snowdrop Angel:

Crochet Snowdrop Treetop Angel

To say that this is my first original design isn’t strictly true. I have done a few other projects that were essentially my own design – I just didn’t write the pattern. In an effort to create something that I could reproduce, though, I took the time to write down coherent steps. And it was HARD.

Crochet Snowdrop Treetop Angel

The process of writing down the pattern certainly slowed things down. When I designed this angel, I knew what elements I liked, but I actually closed all of the programs on my computer except Word so I wouldn’t be influenced by other projects. It was mostly trial and error. For many of the rows/rounds, I tried and frogged several different possibilities before getting one that gave me the correct look and shaping.

Crochet Snowdrop Treetop Angel

I even created an entire wing assembly design and decided that, although it was nice, it didn’t really match the style of the other components. So I tried again.

Crochet Snowdrop Treetop Angel

This angel is made with Rustica Eclat crochet thread, which you can purchase at Hobby Lobby (see link). It has iridescent strands that give the Snowdrop Angel the appropriate glistening effect.

Crochet Snowdrop Treetop Angel

I was worried that when I stiffened the angel (with a mixture of craft glue and water), the iridescent strands wouldn’t show through enough. But they do! I’m so glad. 🙂 The finished angel is about 8.5″ tall – perfect for our smallish-sized tree.

Crochet Snowdrop Treetop Angel

I really, really, really want to make this pattern available, and I certainly intend to. I had thought I would publish it along with the finished photos, but it’s still rough and there’s a good chance there are errors. It’s important to me that people who want to try it be successful, so I’m going to wait until I have a chance to polish the pattern and test it myself. (After some time has passed so I’m not just remembering how I made it!) Plus… who is going to be making more Christmas decorations at this point?! (Besides me, of course.)

I hope you have a great Christmas! Much love for all of your encouragement on my projects throughout the past year. 🙂

Crochet and Knitting Tote Bag

I’ve already shared where I store my knitting and crochet tools, so here’s a peek into my knitting and crochet tote bag. It’s a Thirty One Gifts Organizing Utility Tote in the same Turquoise Cross Pop pattern as my Timeless Beauty Bag.

Thirty One tote for knitting and crocheting

Just look at those pockets. It’s majestic, I tell you. My favorite part is that a drink cup fits perfectly into them. I know that a lot of people use this bag as a diaper bag because bottles fit in those pockets well.

Thirty One tote for knitting and crocheting

But for me, this bag is all about the crafts. I keep the essentials in those pockets, such as my pink “women’s” measuring tape. (I’m not kidding, it really is labeled specifically as a women’s measuring tape. Because… it’s pink… I guess? I got a kick out of that and now I use it all the time. It also keeps the husband from stealing it, so that’s a plus.)

Thirty One tote for knitting and crocheting

Ahem. Above, you can see how nicely my project supplies – my hook and needle bag, a few skeins of yarn, and a couple of doily pattern books – fit inside. It’s good stuff! I don’t sell these products, but I do know a couple of consultants so it’s dangerously easy for me to order. 🙂

Why Didn’t Anyone Tell Me…

…about Elizabeth Hiddleson? I had never seen her designs before, and they are amazing. I need to make this Wild Rose runner ASAP. I learned about her from the Linda Crochets, which I had also never seen. (She does beautiful work!) Check it out – I’m off to track down some patterns. 🙂

The Power of Making Things by Hand

Today was a difficult day. It’s tough trying to get back to “business as usual” after saying goodbye to a loved one. The experience is one that everyone faces, but it feels so raw and unfamiliar when it happens to you.

Rose doily

I learned a lot of things from my grandfather, things that I can see have trickled down through generations and that I know will have an unseen impact for generations to come. Things too numerous and too personal to explain here and now. I can tell you that he was a man who appreciated the value of hard work, and of doing things right. Often, this meant making things with his own hands. I’m happy to know that, in some small way, the things I love to do reflect his values.

Cobweb Scarf

I don’t know about you, but I just can’t stop creating scarves. For someone who likes to try different different types of patterns, stitches, and yarns, there’s no better project. Plus, they’re awesome gifts. And to keep. A girl just can’t have too many. I made this one almost a year ago. (Wow, has it been that long?!) It’s the Cobweb Scarf by Joan Barnett.

Cobweb thread crochet scarf

I used Aunt Lydia’s Classic Crochet Cotton in the Monet (930) variegated colorway. I’d loved this thread for a long time (still do), and was looking for an awesome way to use it. The stitch pattern, which was pretty easy to memorize, and the beading are lovely.

Cobweb thread crochet scarf

I modified my version slightly by adding more “cobweb” square repeats (six across instead of just three), and incorporated more beading on the edges.

Cobweb thread crochet scarf

I’m not going to lie – the beading was such a pain on this project. I used a thumbtack to shove the thread loop through the tiny beads. Every. Single. Time. Lots of poked fingers, and my patience was definitely tested. I wouldn’t recommend using such small beads if you don’t have lots of time to get this project done. For me, the result is worth it. It’s a little heavy, but I like wearing it.

Cobweb thread crochet scarf

This was one of my projects for the contest last summer… I’m pretty sure it got an Honorable Mention in the accessory category.

In My Stash: Knit Picks Chroma in Autumn Day

Around Halloween, I picked up a few skeins of Knit Picks Chroma (fingering weight) in Autumn Day. On sale. Pinch me. 🙂 It’s lucky that I took some photos of the yarn quickly, because it has already been transformed into a shawl and is pinned to the blocking boards as I type.

knit picks chroma autumn day 1

Having purchased this yarn in the Lollipop colorway, I knew what to expect this time. Although I have to say that, after working with angora yarn, this wasn’t quite as soft as I remembered. 🙂 Check out the lovely, slow-transitioning colors.

knit picks chroma autumn day 3

This yarn reminded me of something when I placed the order, and when it arrived I had an opportunity to compare. The colorway makes me think of the cover art for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. It’s a closer match in person, but you get the idea. Love it!

knit picks chroma autumn day 2