Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Random finishes

Two finished items here with nothing in common except that they are done.  Just a bag and a scarf, hanging out, waiting for me to use them.
First up..... a clothespin bag.  Don't get too excited.  I'm sure you have seen one before. I can't believe I have lived here ten years and never had one.  Little dog likes to chew my wooden clothespins, and I keep finding them shredded like toothpicks in the grass, the metal clasp spit out a few feet away like an old piece of gum.  I was keeping them in a small pot on the patio table, and one day I caught him up ON TOP of the table, his nose deep in the pot, choosing his next victim.  Yeah.  Time to make a bag.

The little blue crochet flower is from Annaboo's House.  Visit her blog for the tutorial and while your there, checkout the CAL, for her Monkey/Doll/Cat pattern. You might want to make that too!
 Anyway, if you have a clothespin eating dog like mine and need a bag, you can find the pattern here.

 I also finished the Scarf I Crocheted in Public.
I just need to block it, then put it in the closet until the fall, at which time I will have forgotten all about it.  When I pull it out months from now, it will be a nice little surprise, like finding money in your coat pocket that you haven't worn for a year.
Scarf pattern here or on this blog.

Now I'm off to eat more strawberries.  There are roadside strawberry stands around every corner, and I can't stop buying or eating them.  They will be gone soon, and I don't want to miss a day without fresh strawberries.  Tonight for dessert I'm dipping them in sour cream, then brown sugar.
Anyone else eat them like that?  A friend showed me this years ago, and I'm hooked on them. Warning!  Major sugar overload........
I'm linking up with Debbie's Tuesday at the table, on her blog A Quilter's table.  Nothing like just getting in under the wire on Tuesday night. There are some good foodie things going on over there every Tuesday, as well as a steady dose of awesome quilting and sewing!
Ta Ta for now.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

On the Edge

For a few years now I have been collecting little tea/cocktail napkins.  Here are a few samples....

I wanted to try making my own, similar to the little tulip one you see above.  I love the crochet edging!  I recently purchased a Sharp Crochet Hook, after reading a review on a blog post I had seen here, and thought this would be a good project on which to try it out.  I also discovered that Cuckoo was given a hook and was asked to write a review about it on her blog.  We coordinated our findings and you can read about her experience with the hook over here.
The hook is very sharp and tiny, made to poke through your material, so you can start a foundation of single crochets on your fabric.  Brilliant idea!  It is recommended that you use size 3 crochet thread.  Once the single crochets are completed, switch to a size E hook, and add your next rows of picot, shells, or whatever.  Just like those pretty crochet edged pillowcases!
 However, I tried it through two layers of cotton, and found it hard to get a nice, even pace going.   My stitches were a bit uneven, but I think this can be remedied with some practice. The picture below is the good side.  The other side which I'm not showing you, was poo.
The hook was so sharp, that it grabbed some of the cotton fibers on the way back through the hole. This led to little threads poking out, and the fabric bunching up.  I found that it helped to push the hook in further, making the hole bigger, so it slides back out easier.
Well, this is as far as I got.  Cuckoo actually went on to the next row with hers, so she wins.
I may go back and finish these little napkins when my post-operative hormones have evened out and I have more patience.  Anyone who enjoys making crochet edgings would probably like to add a Sharp Crochet Hook to their hook collection.  It seems to work out especially well on flannel baby blankets.

 In the meantime, I cut the rest of my napkin fabric into 9.5 inch squares. Then I sewed two different prints wrong sides together, leaving the edges raw.  I threw them in the washer and dryer and let them fray.


Friday, May 18, 2012

Ripple Ta- Dah

I really love this blanket.  The colors, the drape, everything.  I wish I had a beach house with a porch overlooking the ocean, where I could wrap this around my shoulders, lay on a deck chair, watch the sea birds, and smell the salty air.
In reality, it will keep me company in the corner of my sewing room, draped across my old chaise lounge chair which faces a messy closet jammed full of fabric.  If I open the window I can smell the dairy cows down the street. Hee Hee, Not quite the beach, but I call it home.  Oh well the blanket is DONE!  And did I say I loved it already?
We've had this chaise for nearly 20 years, and the only thing wrong with it, is the faded plum colored upholstery.  I would love to get it re-covered, or maybe make some slip covers, but for now I am covering it with an old white Matalisse bedspread.
The little pillow was a discount store purchase.  It's made out of orange corduroy, and the basket of flowers is stitched in french knots.  So cute!!  I made the quilt in the background about 3 years ago.
Pattern: Attic 24 easy ripple
Yarn: Cotton Ease in Sea spray, Snow, Terra cotta, Taupe, Maize, Berry and Lime
Hook: size H
Size: 60x48

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Crocheting in public

Yes I did it.  I whipped out my bag of crochet at the salon today when I went to cover my grey hair  get some highlights in my hair. ( I took these pictures with my iPhone.  Don't my feet look tiny and far away? )  I  have only taken out my crochet once before in public, and I was so self conscious, I barely completed a few stitches before stuffing it back in the bag.  Well not any more.
I knew I was going to be under the hair dryer for a while so I brought my project bag with me.  And the salon wasn't exactly crowded, so I felt brave.  But my stylist put the little foil thingies right where my glasses would go above my ears, so I had to squint and hold the hook out where I could see it.  Nothing like drawing even more attention to yourself.
Gosh  these pictures are first rate.  First my feet disappear and now my chin has left the building.  Anyway, my hair was successful, but I'm not to sure about the 5 rows I managed to crochet in braille on my scarf .

My hair was so shiny I had to wear sunglasses!  And I crocheted in public!  By myself, not in a group!  And it only took 53 years!  Sometimes it's the little things that get me excited   : )

So moving on to a normal camera in the privacy of my home, here is my latest quilt that I started over the weekend.
I'm using a fat quarter pack of Daisy Cottage and a pattern from Happy Zombie, that was featured in the spring issue of Quilts and More.  I like it because it uses big pieces of the material and really shows off the prints.
Who am I kidding.  It's a really easy pattern.

Yep, there's that scarf again trying to get in all the pictures.

A special thank you to Sara at Tangled Happy for including my coasters on her wonderful blog!  And as a result.....Hello to my new followers!  Nice to meet you :D

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

What! More coasters?

Still making coasters over here, this time in some pretty Filatura  di crosa cotton yarn.  I love the colors and how absolutely soft it is, so of course they no longer make it.  I bought it on sale last year, and the "lovely' line seems to only come in denim colors now.  Go figure.

Apparently this pattern dates back to 1893, and this is just the center of a bigger motif.  I wonder what it was originally?  Maybe a doily, or bigger table topper?  Anyway you can find the pattern *here,(SEE EDIT BELOW) and take a look at the original publication it was in.  It's a no brainer, so grab your G hook, and some cotton yarn and you can have a stack of these ready to go by Mother's Day.
In case you were wondering about the pretty piece of material they are sitting on, it 's Hello Luscious by Basic Grey for Moda.  I may have also bought a charm pack or two.........
I'm also sewing my little hexagons together and decided to make some mug rugs.  I know mug rugs are so last year, but they are also so much fun.  I used this tutorial and some Robert Kaufman Essex Linen.

Speaking of last year, I have officially been blogging for 1 year.  Yay Me!!  Thanks to all who have been following and leaving comments!  You have opened the door for me into this wonderful blogging community, and made me feel welcome.  I am grateful :D

*EDITED TO ADD:  I guess the original link to the coaster pattern is no longer available!  You can try here, for a blogged version.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Linen coasters with a little salt

I spent all weekend making coasters.  You know sometimes you find a pattern or get an idea and you just want to make a gazillion of them because they are so fun?  This was a coaster making kind of weekend.
Linen, fabric scraps, machine applique and a little hand quilting.  Everything I love!!
I found the pattern here, but changed the flower and drew my own purple cone flower.
In my next post I'll show you the other coasters I made.  I couldn't stop at fabric, there had to be some out of yarn too!  Here is a peek.......
Meanwhile here is a new product I found on this blog.  These are seasonings from The Spice Hound.
So far I have tried the Tabil( a Tunisian blend) and Seasoning sea salt, and they were great.  Tonight I'm going to make  taco salad with the Fajita and Taco seasoning.  Yummy.
When I received my order, they had included a small complimentary bag of Alaea Hawaiian sea salt.  Here's what it looks like.
I sprinkled this on radishes, and then avocado slices.  It's amazing!!  I will definitely be ordering some of this, because the sample will be gone soon.
This weekend went by too quickly.  In between sewing, I stayed on the couch and watched movies.  There was a new mini series on television called Treasure Island, which was very good, and then I watched Man on Fire with Denzel Washington.  I needed a drink after that one.  I love Denzel, but there was too much violence and killing for me.  I think I will stick to some lighthearted comedy for a while.  Enjoy your week :D

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The colors of May

For some reason these colors are haunting me.  Pinks, apricot, yellow, peach and orange.  They are in my sewing.....
My crochet......
New things I have bought recently....
And some very old things...
 Even my garden is contributing to the color scheme....

What about you?  Any special color combinations catching your eye lately?

Also, May is extra special to me because tomorrow is the birthday of my oldest.  When she was little I always tried to imagine what she would look like as a grown-up.  Well here she is 32 years later, and I couldn't be prouder.
Her middle name should have been "Fun", because she has a wicked sense of humor, is always the first one to cannon ball into the pool, and her smile can light up a room.  She's a helluva teacher, and the kids love her, because she's still a kid at heart!  I hope she never looses that quality.  Happy Birthday Danielle!