The Rose Bag

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Rose Bag

The Rose Bag crochet pattern is now available for sale ($3.50) as a pdf download by email. I’ll put in on Ravelry later this week. This bag is a perfect small purse, Bible bag, or netbook case. Construction is one-piece for durability and features my unique corners that help the unlined bag hold its shape. Center rose is an applique and smaller rosebuds are an easy embroidery technique.

I also offer completed Rose Bags for sale in your choice of colors for $10 plus $2 shipping US. Have to research shipping outside US for international orders. Don’t forget to specify both bag and rose colors.

Today’s recipe: “Ocky’s”

“Ocky” is a family word for enchiladas. When the kids were younger the older ones told the young ones these were “Ocky” so the little ones wouldn’t eat them and there’d be more for the big kids. It didn’t work. One of the little ones tasted them anyway and said “These aren’t ocky, They’re GOOD!”

1 pound hamburger, browned (can also use chicken pieces)

1/2 white onion, diced

1 can refried beans

10 flour tortillas

8 oz package finely shredded mild cheddar

8 oz can tomato sauce

small can enchilada sauce or red sauce

Spray (or line with foil) a 13×9 pan. In each tortilla, place a spoonful of meat mixture, beans, and cheese. Roll up tortilla, and place side by side in pan. Pour sauces over top. Top with remaining cheese. Bake at 350 until cheese melts.

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Hats,Gloves and Pinterest

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Trying to tidy up my work area a little. So I’ll be uploading LOTS of pictures this week! Also, am finally starting to figure out how to use my Pinterest boards. Pinterest is a really cool way to share pictures. I’ve found craft ideas, recipes and organizing tips along with a few funnies and decorating ideas that make me drool!

Finished my Angry Red Bird hat this morning.

Red Angry Bird Hat

I’ve also made some knit stocking caps. I’ve noticed how hard it is to find quality handmade gifts for guys so three of these hats were made with guys in mind.

Cactus Rib Hat

Ocean Wave Hat

Hothead Hat

Told hubby he should wear the orange hat when we’re driving in traffic to warn other drivers he’s a hothead (stitches look like flames). He didn’t think that was funny. Maybe because we were driving in traffic at the time…

I just love lacy knit patterns. So I made the snowflake hat with matching fingerless gloves.

Snowflake Hat

Snowflake Gloves

So what do you think of fingerless gloves? Maybe its because I was raised up north where you need nice warm mittens for below-zero wind chills, but at first I didn’t get the appeal of fingerless gloves. But they can be really cute, like my black lace crocheted ones with the flared cuff.

Black Lace Gloves

It’s hard to see in the picture but these have ribs of front post doubles to add texture.

Making pineapple upside-down cake for Valentine’s Day.

1 can pineapple slices

maraschino cherries

1/2 c or so of brown sugar

cake mix (yellow or pineapple)

ingredients required by cake mix

In a 13×9 pan, lay out pineapple slices

place a cherry in the center of each pineapple ring

sprinkle brown sugar over pineapple slices

mix cake as instructed on the box. Pour batter over fruit and bake as directed.

Hats, hats, and more hats

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I spent most of the weekend making hats. I really like how the simple features bring out the personalities of the character hats.

Pikachu

A couple of the grandkids are really into Pokemon, so my first character hats are Pokemon. The smaller grandkids like SpongeBob.

SpongeBob

Great-grandson has claimed this one without even seeing the picture. Finally, my favorite SpongeBob character, Patrick Starr.

Patrick

 

I can make almost any character into a hat as long as I can see a good picture of the character. Hats are machine washable and can be made in any size from baby to adult. Reasonably priced at $10 (plus $2 for shipping).

Experimented a little more with the slipper pattern. A circular needle does NOT work for the toe. Thought about trying dpns but I don’t have any 8s and walmart quit carrying dpns. So it will be awhile before I can try that.

Uploaded my Caribbean Star hat pic to Pinterest and got several likes and re-pins. The pattern (with 7 total color variations) is for sale on Ravelry.

Caribbean Star Hat

This is a really neat pattern because simple color changes make the hat look totally different. Using one color brings out the texture:

Aran Star Hat

White and any color, especially ombres, are a stunning combination:

Ombre Bright Star Hat

The hat is also stunning with ombre yarn and two coordinating solids:

Sunset Star Hat

Several granddaughters got these tone-on-tone variations for Christmas:

Shadow Star Hat

 

Free knit pattern: 2 needle slippers

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Free knit pattern: 2 needle slippers

Judy Cox

One of the greatest joys of crafting is being able to create beautiful and practical things. Being able to follow patterns is important to recreate other peoples’ designs. But it’s even better when you develop the skill and confidence to take that basic pattern beyond the starting point. A great way to do that is to look for ways to either simplify or improve the pattern. Today’s post gives an example of that process.

I have probably made 100 pairs of these knit slippers following the original 60s era pattern (online at http://www.knitting-crochet.com/tvsli.html) for a simple garter stitch slipper with ribbed toe and purl texture stitches. I’ve tried other slippers but they don’t look right. Not that this pattern is perfect. In fact, there are a few things that have always bugged me.

So this time, instead of blindly following the old faithful pattern, I decided to tweak it a bit. The original pattern instructed to seam the heel. A straight seam made an ill-fitting point at the back of the slipper. I tried scrunching the seam into 2 l-shapes, but it still didn’t look right. Wait a minute. A rib-stitch “tab” at the back would fit better and make a more neat appearance. AHA!

original slipper with heel tab

But why stop there? The best feature of this pattern is the stretchiness of the slipper. It’s not real clear in the picture, but you can see that the ribbed toe, while stretchy, doesn’t look very nice. Would the toe be just as stretchy if I simply continued the garter stitch? Maybe added some more purl stitches to define the toe box? AHA2! (In all fairness, the original 60s pattern covered the ribbing with a big fluffy pompom. Not really today’s style. But hey, an amigurumi character head . . .note to self–experiment with that next. Right now you have orders for 4 pairs of plain simple slippers!)

New and improved slipper

And just when I thought I had the pattern tweaked to perfection, I realized that garter stitch can be worked in all purls just as easily as all knits. I don’t know about you, but I purl a lot faster than I knit, so the final experiment was worked in purl–and fixed a minor annoyance in the bargain. When working in knit, the purl texture stitches show on the wrong side and I couldn’t begin to estimate how many times I missed one of those and had to go back and fix it. But in purl, the knit texture stitches are on the RIGHT side where they can be seen.

Finished slipper (child size)

Finished child's slipper

So here’s the new pattern: (adult size medium)

Worsted weight yarn (red heart)

Size 8 needles

Cast on 35 sts. Row 1: purl

Row 2: purl 11, knit 1, purl 11, knit 1, purl 11

Repeat these two rows for a total of 40 (20 ridges)

Row 41: purl

Row 42: purl 5, knit 1, purl 5, knit 1, purl 11, knit 1,purl 5, knit 1, purl 5

Repeat these two rows 9 times (10 ridges)

Shape toe: Row 61, *purl in 1st 2 stitches, purl next 2 stitches together* repeat across

Row 62: Purl purl stitches, knit knit stitches

Row 63: *purl in 1st stitch, purl next 2 stitches together* repeat across

Row 64: repeat row 62

Row 65: *purl 2 stitches together across row. Cut yarn, leaving a long end for toe seaming. Thread yarn end back through last row of stitches and removed from needle. Draw up tight to gather toe.

Now go to the back of the sole and pick up the 11 stitches in the middle. Work 10 rows of knit1-purl1 ribbing. Bind off.

Sew heel and toe seams.

I can see all kinds of possibilities here–add straps for a mary jane…shiny coins for a lucky penny loafer…and of course the aforementioned amigurumi heads. Maybe even use a circular needle to get away from the toe seam…Gotta go for now–I have 4 pairs of slippers to seam for delivery Saturday!

Thanks for liking my blog!;-)

Alicia’s Dishrag Sweater

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Alicia’s Dishrag Sweater

I usually prefer to make small things, but a few weeks ago my friend Alicia asked me to make her “a sweater”. I had just crocheted a mint green dishrag with a new stitch that I really liked, so I showed it to her and asked if she liked the stitch. “Yes,” she said ” and I like that color too!” She was a little vague in her description of what she wanted–long, oversized, but  not too bulky.

The sweater is crocheted in one piece from side to side (remember how I said I hated piecing things together?) with just 2 seams to sew. I picked up edge and cuff stitches and knitted them, but it could also be bordered in crochet. Yarn is Lion Brand Pound of Love. 4mm hook, size 4 knitting needles.

Alicia's Dishrag Sweater

Alicia's Dishrag Sweater

It took extra time to finish because I had to go back to Walmart for more yarn and they were out. So I went to a different Walmart and found it. It’s really aggravating that it takes so long for them to restock yarn.

That’s all for today. I have an order for slippers and I’m tweaking my old faithful slipper pattern.

Beaded Necklaces

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I like all types of beadweaving–especially Dutch Spiral stitch.do Here are some samples of my beadwork:

Spiral Necklace

Spiral Rainbow Necklace

 

Crystal Hearts Necklace

Here are some tutorials to make your own spiral rope. http://www.beadinggem.com/2009/01/spiral-stitch-bead-tutorials.html

Of course, you can always order the finished spiral necklaces from me! 😉

Next major step on the agenda is to set up my Etsy shop for finished crafts and do the pattern pdfs for the crochet and knit patterns.

Since I came home from the nursing home, I see all kinds of things here that need to be done. But it seems that almost everything I think of involves moving things or rearranging that I can’t do yet. I did manage to re-organize the grocery cupboards–while I was gone the guys just shoved things wherever there was room. Never noticed there was a “vegetable place, a fruit place, a sauce place, etc.” To them, it was all a “can place”. Now I can once again open the door and see what we need before we go to the store and end up with 45 cans of green beans and no corn!

But at least I can feel like I accomplish something with my crafts! And the extra money helps too!

More crocheted purses

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Finally feel like we made it through the Plague. Tim and I have been sharing the Cold from Hell all week! Kept Nyquil in business for a few more months, anyway!So now I have to play catch-up with everything–crafting, blogging, cooking, the House. . .in that order, of course! #1 grandson requested a hat of his fave Pokemon character. The basic hat is done, just need to add features. I’ve also designed a few 2-needle knit stocking caps, and still going strong on purses. I did the Rose Bag in black with red roses. Then I did a diamond design and a heart design (Hearts, flowers, and diamonds for Valentine’s day!) Both patterns and finished bags will be for sale–email me for info! Also trying my hand at fingerless gloves.

Heart Purse

Heart Purse

 

Diamond Purse

Diamond Purse

Yay! hubby got me an early Valentime’s present–a new digital camera! So hopefully I can start posting better pictures since I’m not limited to the webcam!

Later this week, I’ll post pix of the 2-needle knit hats as well as some of my beadwork.

 

What types of patterns would y’all like to find here? Let me know!

Recipe: Simple fruit salad

1 banana, sliced

1 can pineapple chunks

1 can mandarin oranges

1/2 bag miniature marshmallows

Mix together, chill, and enjoy!