An Abundance of Blooms

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Happy Sunday, all!

Supposedly tomorrow is the first day of Spring here and while the temperature may not reflect that, the amount of sun has definitely improved! It makes me think of green grass, warm breezes, and flowers. Fragrant blossoms arching toward the bright light, full of color and beauty. It’s a bit early for them, though, so what’s a girl to do? How about we make some of our own? I’ve always admired the colors and realism achieved when creating coffee filter flowers:

With a little swipe of essential oil around the sides, these could also give off a delightful scent!

During my spring cleaning, I found an awful lot of stray buttons. We could always make some button flowers:

Perhaps to be made into badges or hair clips?

Or maybe you still have some fabric scraps laying around from other projects and rather than the roses in our Spring Cleaning tutorial, you want some cute little flowers for embellishment:

These would also be great for hair ornaments!

Of course, there is always room for a little bit of crochet so why not some pretty petals of yarn:

These could be placed on a bag or blanket or whatever catches your fancy.

Oh it just makes me think about all of the warm days to come! I sure hope they show up soon.

Stay crafty!

~Laura


‘Bad Weather’ Days

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Happy Wednesday! Across many parts of the United States, we are being hit by bad weather towards the end of our winter. Trees had begun blooming, grass growing, and in rolls the storm. Suddenly you are stuck at home, with or without power, wondering what to do with your day off…

As long as I am warm and there is power, I try not to worry too much. Relaxing on my favorite chair with a book or movie and drinking some coffee or cocoa is a great day for me. Some people like to keep busy, though. This may be the perfect time to bring out some crafts or games you’ve been waiting to try.

  • If you like to crochet, this fun PDF pattern of an Octopus Scarf looks great!
  • If you like knitting, maybe some fingerless gloves!
  • If it look like there might be power issues, a candlemaking project might be a good one. Check here for a recipe!
  • Some people love to cook, especially a one pot stew or recipe. I’ve found some great ones on Epicurious, or you might open up one of your cookbooks- I have several from family members.

Whether it’s a project or a lazy day, stay warm and safe this week!

 


Making Your Own Luck

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Happy Sunday, all!

This coming week includes a very special day of the year for me – St. Patrick’s Day! I have a rather large affinity for my Irish heritage, always having been obsessed with stories and images of the island, it’s music, and the knot work that is often incorporated into Irish art. One of the most prevalent symbols of the particular day, though, has been the shamrock. This humble little plant, found in grassy knolls across the world is a symbol of pride and tradition to those of Irish origin and descent. It’s considered lucky to find a four-leafed clover but the three-leafed shamrock (origin of the word in Irish Gaelic simply means “little clover”) is also a source of luck, inspiration, and spirit, especially on St. Patrick’s Day. It’s usually a bit too cold yet here in the Midwest to find a field of clover so we’ve been forced to make symbols of our own. I’ve found some great ideas all over the web for “greening up” the place!

First up is for those with a rather large stash of washi tape:

If this inspires you to start a washi tape stash, I am so sorry.

Or how about something for that big tin of buttons (or maybe raid grandma’s?):

Everyone still plays the cookies or buttons in the tin game, right?

Do you perhaps have some Scrabble tiles from other projects? Then this may be the project for you:

Or maybe just a game of Scrabble that happens to be missing some pieces?

I’m a rather large fan of this burlap and felt wreath, especially for the little rainbow that’s included:

Those super cute shamrocks could be used for other things as well.

Lastly, to adorn yourself in a bit of greenery, there is always a bit of crochet to be had:

Cute and easy with a little safety pin on the back!

I wish you luck and light this week and all the rest of the year. We’ll see you next week wherein I’ll start digging up some spring inspired projects!

Stay crafty!

~Laura


DIY Crochet Owl Blanket

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Returning to my love of crocheting today, I’ve found a super cute and fairly simple pattern to share with you all!

It’s a super bulky Owl Imitation afghan! Designed by Ravelry user MJ, this afghan is one of many designs they’ve released but one of my absolute favorites. 😀 The pattern includes instructions for Child or Adult size for only $6. Besides looking super cute and comfy though, I love how it looks when it’s all folded up.

They’ve also included lots of info about hook and yarn yardage required to make, as well as estimation for yarn substitutions. Overall it’s designed to be worked up in about a day for an advanced/experienced crocheter, with some possible extra time for working on the owl hood part. If you’re intimidated by the hood, fear not! MJ has included a video tutorial for how to sew/attach it all together on her youtube account. I’m definitely considering making some of these as gifts for my nephews this Holiday season. ^_^


Learn to Knit

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Back when I was but a child, I was actually horrible at crocheting, but was able to pick up knitting. While I don’t find the medium as versatile since I’ve become proficient at crocheting, it’s still a great skill to learn if you’re looking to make clothing. I’ve always stood by that knitting is superior for several clothing items, most notably: socks, sweaters, gloves, and dresses. Crochet does alright in these areas, but man, the tubular nature of the weaving really lends it’s self to superior socks. Crochet is just way too thick.

With all that in mind, I’d like to point you in the direction of Instructables user Carleyy. She has free online guides on teaching yourself to crochet, as she also learned entirely from online sources and adds increased awareness of how to translate some terms/actions better others. There are currently 4 Beginner level, and 1 Intermediate level guides/classes available, but you can follow her on Instructables to get updates on her next lesson/guide. 🙂


Kitty Ear Hats

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Happy Wednesday! This is Kim with Fantastical Menagerie. Apparently winter is still going strong across most of the US. If you need something warm to cover your head, may I recommend something cute yet functional? Ella of Blackie Cat Creations has been knitting proudly since 2003. While she learned the basics as a child, she picked it back up after an ankle injury in 2003. She was on bedrest, bored, and needed something to entertain herself. She also discovered that knitting needles fit really well down a cast to scratch. Based just outside of Chicago, Illinois, Ella sells online and in person at many geek themed events. Ella does Geek themed knitted hats, and kitty ear hats.

You can find her on Facebook and on Etsy here. If you want to catch her in person, her event schedule is on her Facebook Page.

 


My Princess

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I was born in 1976, 1 year before Star Wars and 3 years before the Star Trek movies.  I looked up to the people in both lines and idolized them.  My parents would make sure that we saw every Star Trek and Star Wars movie in the theater when it was released (yes, even when I was very little and didn’t understand what was going on).  I loved both Star Trek and Star Wars.  I remember when I was 6 I saw that Larva crawl out of Chekov’s ear and I had nightmares for weeks.  But I loved every minute of it.

I grew up learning it didn’t matter what race you were, everyone had strengths and weaknesses and you should only be judged on your actions.  I learned that women can be strong, carry a blaster, overthrow a government, and help destroy a death star.  I dedicate today and tomorrow to my princess, Carrie Fisher.

Crafting and creating can be therapeutic for a lot of people including me.  So today’s post will be about the things you can create.

FreudianStitch created this cool Cross Stitch pattern you can download for free!

If you Crochet, here is a Princess Leia Amigurumi Pattern.

If you are a quilter and can paper piece, here is a free design from Quiet Play.

Finally, if you sew or are a cosplayer, here is a step by step tutorial from Costumes and Artwork.

Tomorrow I will share some of my favorite artistic projects I have seen over the years.

-Toni

 


Crochet Block Stitch Tutorial

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It’s getting chilly in the Northern Hemisphere so it’s time to bust out your yarn and start making cool winter clothes. 😀 If a sweater or a scarf is on your to do list, I’ve got a really neat looking stitch to showcase today from the people at Dream A Little Bigger.

Once you get it set up, this stitch is super simple to do, and gives a nice visual texture to your piece; almost making it look like it’s two layers. Even if you’re not making anything this Holiday season, it’s still a fun and different stitch to learn by working up a practice square on. 🙂 The full tutorial can be found here at Dream A Little Bigger, and I’d be surprised if even a beginner crocheter couldn’t get in down in just an hour.

 


Cuddle + Kind

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I was recently introduced to Cuddle + Kind.

From their website:

We’re a family of five on a mission to help feed children in need.

There’s nothing we love more than being parents. We think nurturing our three children is the most important, rewarding and sometimes challenging job in the world!

With a background in health, we recognize the crucial role nutrition plays in a child’s development. As parents, we believe all children should have enough food to eat and the opportunity to thrive, so when we saw a documentary on the devastating impact of childhood hunger on millions of children around the world, it inspired us to help. On that day, we decided to start a company whose purpose is to help improve the lives of children and to make a difference.

We created cuddle+kind because we wanted to make beautiful hand-knit dolls that help feed children. So for every cuddle+kind doll sold, we give 10 meals to children in need.

Our goal is to provide one million meals a year.

We’re proud that our dolls are made with natural, high-quality cotton because it’s important to us that they’re safe, soft and cuddly.

We’re also super proud that every doll is lovingly handcrafted by incredible women artisans in Peru, providing them with a sustainable, fair trade income.

Our whole family is passionate about what we’re doing and loves every doll we make. We sincerely hope you will too.

I was excited to find a company that created hand made dolls (while providing fair trade income) that also supported such a worthy cause.  The company and cause are great, but what about the dolls?

At only $55 for the small and $75 for the large doll, the price is great too.  I know first hand the hard work that goes into creating hand made goods.  The price tells me that they are definitely hand made, but they aren’t charging too much.

Take a look at their entire line of dolls and see if there is something you can do to help.

-Toni

 


A Pumpkin a Day

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Hello Sunday readers!

I know I promised a wreath this week but unfortunately I find myself struck down by a terrible cold. So the wreath will have to happen next month but I still wanted to keep with the theme. Tomorrow is Halloween! What small crafts could I do while still resting in bed? Definitely not anything with glue or paint so I suppose we are back to our fiber crafts. I’m really feeling like pumpkins today so I went looking for some free patterns.

I’ve always fallen back on small cross stitch projects since my Mom taught me how to stitch so many years ago. This one is super cute and could still be completed before tomorrow:

It's positively boo-tiful.

It’s positively boo-tiful.

My newer go-to is definitely crochet as my skills continue to improve with every project I try. So how about some cute pumpkin coasters for the mugs of tea I’m dosing myself with:

Definitely an effective place to squash a mug onto.

Definitely an effective place to squash a mug onto.

Or perhaps I could learn something new and try out some knitting. Especially because this pumpkin tea cozy would be very useful for those gallons of tea:

A perfect warmer for those cold days.

A perfect warmer for those cold days.

While I attempt to recover, everyone else have a safe and happy Halloween!

Stay crafty!

~Laura