The beginning of a menagerie

June 8, 2017 § 7 Comments

All winter I have been having fun making these cute crocheted animals. I’ve made a few more that aren’t pictured here. They are from the book Edward’s Menagerie by Kerry Lord of Toft Yarn. There are other books as well: a bird book, a monster book, and in the fall there will be a doll book.  So fun!

I have been using Plymouth Encore worsted weight yarn (and leftover wool quilt batting torn up for stuffing) so that they can be washed. With the worsted weight yarn they end up being about 13″ tall, but the book gives approximate measurements for other weights of yarn so you can choose the size. On the Toft Instagram feed, they have been making a giant sized giraffe with many strands of yarn held together! (scroll through to find the many pics of the giraffe parts)

These are all intended to be gifts. Someday, it would be fun to make a zoo for myself. Why I need a zoo of animals… I have no idea.

Bridget the Elephant

Benedict the Chimpanzee

Edmond the Fox

Douglas the Highland Cow



Fabric by day, yarn by night

April 24, 2015 § 6 Comments



By day I may play with fabric. But at night the yarn is calling my name. A few months ago I finished this Owls sweater (Ravelry link) and have been wearing it ever since. I had made it once before in a different yarn that didn’t wear very well. And I realized that the back shaping of the pattern didn’t suit my body shape. So, on this sweater I moved the shaping to the sides like the sweater vest I picked up in Iceland.



This Icelandic vest (Ravelry link) I finished knitting earlier this week. I have loved wearing the one from Iceland so much that I wanted to knit another for myself. It’s perfect for our dreary weather. It is a free pattern straight from the Lopi web site.  Today, it is cold & raining so I am going to wear it!


Yesterday I had a crochet fest and worked on this adorable Red Riding Hood outfit for My Crochet Doll that I couldn’t resist making for my great niece. But crocheting is a lot more hand & wrist movement than knitting. My hands ached by the end of the day. Hand & wrist exercises, anyone?

Like quilting, this is just a sampling of my many UFO’s.  Oh how I wish I could constrain my many projects a little more!  But, I am working on reducing the many piles. It sure does take time to whittle them down!  My personal goal (and my hubby is also on board with this across the whole house) is to reduce & simplify.  Awhile ago I joined a local Buy Nothing group where trades, give-aways, and requests are shared so that we all can reduce the things we need to buy.  My no-longer-used item may be just what someone else has been looking for.  It’s a great way to make use of things long after you are done using them.

What did you do over the weekend?

September 6, 2010 § 8 Comments

Between going to the fair (I LOVE going to the fair) and working, I did a little of this… and a little of that…


A little sewing on the binding of the Wild Geese quilt.  Still a bit more to go.

Liberated Wedding Ring blocks

A few more string blocks for a total of 11. Once I get started, it’s hard to stop.  It’s tempting to do a bunch all at once!

Pinwheel BOM

A few more pinwheel blocks in a new pattern that I’m working on.  A block-of-the-month.  I’m pondering what color to put around the center block. More blue? Or more pink?


And, in the evenings a little crochet.  This has been a challenge for me.   A couple of weeks ago, Linda and I took a crochet class because we only know how to make granny squares.  This sweater is from the book Rowan Summer Crochet and the British terminology is completely different than the American.  I think I’ve got it now, but it took me 4 swatches before I really “got” it.  Finally, I’m working the actual sweater.

What have you been doing over the weekend?

On The Crafty Front

August 6, 2010 § 9 Comments

Crocheted Mobius Scarf

When I am working on projects for Clothworks time seems to evaporate into thin air and before I know it another week (or two) has flown by.  I just finished up 3 big projects and now I can focus my attention on things at home. (side note for those who may be new around here – I freelance quilt designs for those free patterns that come out with new fabric lines. The ones I’ve been working on aren’t posted on their web site yet.)

Linda and I went out for some retail therapy last week and came home with some pretty yarn and a pattern for a crocheted Mobius Scarf.  I have to say… quilting I totally get/understand, knitting makes sense most of the time, but crochet is like visiting another country where I just don’t know or understand the language. It makes no sense what-so-ever, most of the time.

To solve that, Linda and signed up for a crochet class at a new yarn shop that just opened up in our neck of the woods, Serial Knitters. If you live near me, you will want to check this one out. It’s a BeaUtiFuL shop!  And we even came home with some press-on tattoos today.  Giggle.  Their Grand Opening is this weekend.

Liberated Wedding Ring blocks

It’s high time I got started on my doll quilt for the Doll Quilt Swap, what, with less than a month to the shipping deadline.  This is one idea, which I think I am liking. But just in case it doesn’t work out. I have another idea. Stay tuned…  Seems like that hot pink/fuschia is big in my life right now.  Maybe because there has been a serious lack of summer in our part of the country?  I’m not complaining. It’s better than the recording breaking 104 that we had last year.  And I’m not envious of the hot temps across the country this year.  But we could count on one hand the number of hammock-worthy days this summer.  I miss my hammock.

Wild Geese blocks

So, after I cleaned up the sewing room a wee bit, I put my flying geese blocks on the design wall.  All the blocks are finished. Now I just need to work on the rest of the geese sashing.  I’m getting excited!!  Can’t wait to see this one finished!  It’s been my therapy sewing this summer.

All In One Week

April 24, 2009 § 26 Comments

Lets Celebrate!!

Let's Celebrate!!

Woohoo! Let’s celebrate.  Champagne all around!  More importantly than my knee feeling better is the fact that Miss Babette is finished!  Finished!!!  And my knee is feeling better, much better.  Thank you for asking! The doctor says I should be about 90% back to normal in roughly 3-4 weeks.


Babette is finished!!

It’s amazing what one can accomplish while being banished to the couch. Maybe even learn how to fly an airplane?  So the story goes, my husband’s Uncle Joe learned how to fly a plane (by reading a book) while in prison for moonshining.  And certainly half of Miss Babette can be crocheted in a week if you have absolutely nothing else to do.  I’m feeling very proud of myself for just finishing it.  I don’t care about the mistakes made.  I’m just SO happy to have finished it!

Im so happy!!

I'm so happy!!

The crocheting of the granny squares was fun enough. But the sewing together and weaving in of the ends was a daunting task, and I mean daunting in the most extreme sense.  What else could I have done while laying on the couch with my knee on top of two pillows and an ice bag on top of my knee?

Now… what should I fill up my cool Trader Joe’s bag with next?

Whats next?

I think I might need to take a nap!

Project Stats:

Finished size ~ approximately 49″ x 54″

Pattern ~ Interweave’s Babette Blanket

Yarn ~ a mix of Cascade 220, Elann Peruvian Highland, and Knit Picks Wool of the Andes.  I preferred working with the Cascade 220 the most and the Elann Peruvian Highland the least.

Crochet hook ~ mostly 4.0mm.  Started with a 4.25 mm metal hook that made my hand hurt after any substantial amount of crocheting.  Then, discovered Clover’s Soft Touch crochet hooks and the 4.0 seemed the closest in size.  So much better for hours and hours of crocheting!  Edging done with 3.5 mm.

Blocking is essential ~ I struggled with determining just what was the right amount of tugging on the yarn while seaming. Sometimes it was a little too tight and sometimes a little too loose.  I think I was getting the hang of it towards the end. But blocking certainly took out most of the wonky wavyness that was quite visible before hand.

From the Sofa…

April 21, 2009 § 14 Comments

Babette posing with the Posies

Babette posing with the Posies

Still here. Gimping around.

Thank you SO much for all your thoughts & prayers & well wishes!  They all mean a lot to me!  The surgery went fine. It’s the recovery that is miserable.  I will get around to answering email… soon.

It seems that I was basing my expectations on my last knee surgery five years ago.  A lot can change in five years.  That surgery I got the so-happy anesthesia. (As in, Audrey Hepburn in the beginning of Roman Holiday when she’s  “so happy”)  This time I got the feels-like-a-fuzzy-headed-NyQuil-hangover anesthesia.  The whole rest of the surgery day was spent fighting off nausea.

Once the anesthesia wore off, my knee decided to swell to the size of a melon, which is what happens to 72% of knee surgery patients, so the doctor says.   Little did I realize that my last knee surgery fell into the other 28% with very little swelling and that I was in the minority. Sigh.  I guess I’m more “normal” this time ’round.

So… I’m still here. Doing all those things good patients are supposed to do, ice, elevation, meds, yada, yada, yada. Babette is coming right along.  What was previously several months worth of progress has now been done in just the last few days while being sofa-bound.  I’ve noticed a lot of mistakes.  I’ve also decided to not look that closely and that done is better than perfect.  Maybe I’ll actually finish the silly thing.

Granny’s Hexagons & Squares

February 5, 2009 § 9 Comments

After that initial January shot of energy to work on unfinished projects, I’ve come to a screeching halt in an unmotivated mid-winter funk. How does this happen? It’s not as if I have a lack of things to do.  And I’m sure you don’t want to know all the unruly details of life.  So… let’s try to distract this blue mood for a moment.

a future Grannys Flower Garden

a future Granny's Flower Garden quilt

I picked up this hexagon ruler by EZ Quilting at Fabric Depot on our way back from the Sisters Quilt Show in Oregon last summer.  I’ve been hoping that it would provide an easier (and by easier, I’m thinking FASTER) method to making a Grandmother’s Flower Garden quilt.  I have giant 4-inch hexagons cut.  But I feel guilty wanting to sit down and sew them when I know that I have so many other things that should and need to be finished first.

More Grannies for Babette

More Grannies for Babette

Surprisingly, my Babette blanket has been calling to me. I actually sat down and sewed two sections together and crocheted 4 of the larger granny squares.  I am feeling a little less guilty about Babette’s neglect.  I figure, if I work steadily on it for the next few months, I could potentially have a finished Babette by the end of the summer. Now wouldn’t THAT be a pleasant surprise.

44327 While flipping through a distributor catalog at work last week, I came across this recently published book, Sketching Embroidery of Kazue Sakurai.  It’s been ordered and I’m fidgeting with anticipation to see it!

It was a quilt like this… and I don’t even know if it was done by Kazue Sakurai… that inspired my Little Acorns quilt, which inspired my Purple Coneflowers quilt, which led to my For The Birds quilt for the DQS5 swap.

I love, love, love the look of this style of applique/embroidery.

Does anyone have anything else that might pull me out of the mid-winter doldrums?  The Northwest Flower & Garden Show is coming up in a couple of weeks.  That might help!

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