Crafty Rantings

I'm Crafty. I Rant. These are Crafty Rantings!

Thursday, December 24, 2037


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Monday, March 25, 2013

Picture Time

OK it's been forever so now it's time to post up a few pictures.

This is a shoulder wrap that I made with a pattern from the Red Heart website.  It's really kinda like a shawl.  I made this for ME.

This next project is totally addictive.  I loved this pattern from my crochet pattern-a-day calendar (for 2013) so much that I have lost count of how many I have made.  I have one for my daughter, mother, brother and for my ex-sister-in-law but they have to be mailed.  Instead I am posting the picture of the one I made for myself.  I adapted the pattern by adding an extra two rows to make it a bit taller but either size is great!

 I found the pattern for the log cabin washcloth and have made a few of those.  They don't take a lot of time and are fun to look at.  Here's the first one I made.  I eventually made myself one to match the bowl above, yes, both for ME.

So I am still crafting away.  I have another lapghan started but lost steam after making two.  I just want small projects at the moment.  I just found a new pattern today for a washcloth that I want to try and it will use up my scraps although I know I could probably use any pattern for that.  I am just looking for an excuse to try something new.

Right now it's time to go finish the oblong bowl I am making.  I am making it to give to Amy's father in a couple of days when we go to Reno for a little two day mini-vacation.

Anyone know why it feels so weird to sit and watch tv without having something in my hands to work on?  I know that when the weather gets really hot that won't be a question I'll be asking but right now I like that it's still cool and I can ask it.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Still Ranting, Still Crafting

Yes, I am indeed still ranting and definitely still crafting.  I am working on a project right now that is a big one for me - a lapghan.  I made one for Amy for Christmas but I'm not sure the picture is good enough to post.  Hers was done in variegated green, tan, brown colors and now I am making one in just a buttercup yellow.  I am hoping to finish that so I can mail it to my mom for her birthday which is February 2nd.

For Christmas my daughter Ally gave me a wonderful gift - a yarn winder!  I have already used it twice and love it!  I found that I do NOT need a swift and the easiest way to feed the yarn into the winder is this:  I have a flat-bottomed tote bag from a local bread company.  I put the skein of yarn in there and it just twirls around as it unwinds from the skein and winds into the ball.  It keeps it far enough away that I can manage it as well as keeping it CLEAN.

I made very long wrist warmers for Christmas for my friend Tammy, my mom, my ex-sister-in-law Lynn AND a pair for me!  I had seen this pattern with scalloped edges that I liked but when I tried the pattern, found I really didn't like the pattern.  So I searched the internet and found a pattern for long wrist warmers and modified the pattern so that once I was done, I went around the edge for the hand and made a scalloped edge.  They are very pretty.  I will get the pictures off the camera some day and post a picture.

I love winter because I can work on something all the time.  So I will try to get a few presents done ahead of time.

Hope everyone had a good 2012 and keep crafting in 2013!  Even if nobody reads this blog any longer, at least *I* know it exists!

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Look What Busy Hands Make!

This pink popcorn scarf (there is fringe which you can see at the top of the picture) was crocheted for my mom.  It was easy to do and didn't take an awful lot of time.  Ally liked it so much that I made one in burgundy for her.

To go with her burgundy popcorn scarf, I made Ally this popcorn water bottle cozy.  Interestingly enough, I had this pattern from my crochet calendar which has a pattern every two days (except Friday/Saturday/Sunday) and bonus patterns.  I had wanted to try this anyway and as soon as I figured out it was a perfect match to the scarf, I made it for her.

Here is my infamous model showing off the grey crochet cowl I also made for Ally.  All of her items will be shipped to her tomorrow together with pictures I took while I was on vacation in New Hampshire during October.

Yes, I have been doing tons of crochet.  Two hat patterns did NOT turn out the size I wanted even after changing hook sizes UP 2 sizes.  Those are more for children and so I will donate those in December at the Legal Secretaries Meeting when we have a local battered women's shelter speaker (annual event).  So I gave up on a crochet hat for the moment.  Later I will post the picture of the KNIT hat I made Matt yesterday while I was sitting around waiting for work from my employer.  Oh, and then I started ANOTHER hat which I will work on and eventually send to my mom to give to a local charity there.  Actually I may make a few other items and send for her to give, too.  I also completed a knit scarf for my mom for Christmas.  She will wear scarves a lot which is why I make so many for her.

Oh, did I mention that I completed ALL of these projects in the month of October and that with the exception of the popcorn scarves (mom's was finished prior to vacation and Ally's during vacation) I have made all these things since I returned from vacation on the 14th!

I have a baby afghan I need to get back to work on so perhaps I will take that with me when I go to Reno with my friend Amy on the 12th.

The wonderful thing about winter and cool weather is I can always be working on something crafty when I am sitting in front of the television.  Once I finish the hat to send mom I will have to see about starting other Christmas projects, all small, of course.  Perhaps if things are going well and I get enough hours at the beginning of the year to go completely off unemployment then I will splurge and buy yarn to make an afghan.  Yes!  An afghan!  Ambitious, I know.  So only time will tell.  I may lose my motivation.  It's happened before!

So, as I always say, I'm still being crafty and I'm still ranting.  May your crafty rantings bring you as much joy as mine do me... well, ok, the crafty part anyway!

Thursday, August 09, 2012

A Few Things

Last year I made a scarf for Susan for her birthday out of Triana ribbon yarn.  Yes, it's beautiful but horribly expensive.  And it appears it has gone up in price again this year.  I had one ball left of the purple I purchased last year when it was on sale and right before I became unemployed.  No way I could afford that now.  But I like the idea and wanted to make something similar for Ally for her birthday.  What a nice surprise in an email from Joann's that they were going to be carrying versions by Red Heart and when I saw it in the store in the various colors, combined with the incredibly affordable price, I bought the blue version to make a scarf for Ally and a rose/pink/burgundy to make for me.  I have since bought other colors and have one that's been sitting on my needles for quite some time.  It's just too hot to do much.

Anyway this is what I sent Ally for her birthday.  She likes it.  It's fashionable, not practical.  But I haven't made anything for her since Christmas last year and even though the postage was expensive, to hear how happy she was made my day.

I have made her a couple of potholders for her new apartment (well new in March).  I've made some crochet tote bags which still need pictures taken.  They were incredibly cute.  After making the first in the same pink/white/orange yarn when I made the second I used a solid color for the gusset and handles (purple) to compliment the purple/blue/light blue ombre I used for the body.  The really didn't take that long and since I had experience with bags from the knitting classes years ago (remember the Knitting Circle?  I miss that group!).  Perhaps this winter I will be doing more crafting as I have the ambition and some yarn and perhaps the budget will allow for new yarn although I have plenty of it and am starting to use up small amounts.  I am no longer depressed about being unemployed because I have a part time job (only 10 hours but it's a start) which should eventually work into enough to get me off unemployment and to make a decent living.  I was hired at the end of June and the good news is I work from home!  Anyway, last winter while I was so depressed I couldn't make anything even though I had a lot of yarn.  Oh, I made things.  But this year I have more ambition.

Anyway, there is something I've made which I can't post a picture of because it's a birthday present.  And another thing I am working on but due to the 100+ heat this summer I just can't work on for more than a few minutes because it's hot to handle.  Waiting for the weather to cool down.  My hands are itching to make something so I think I will pull out my patterns and needles (or crochet hook) and make a washcloth or two to keep my hands busy.

Hopefully I can bring myself to take pictures off the camera more often and to post!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Why So Quiet?

Well, 5 days after I wrote my last blog post I was laid off after only 5 weeks of employment.  Yes, that's correct.  Laid off for the second time in less than a year.  I am very actively looking for work but it seems worse this year than last even though the unemployment percentages have gone from just about 14% to 12.8%.

I have been doing some knitting and crochet.  I have pictures but have not taken them off the camera.  I have not felt like blogging.  I have been very unhappy.  If I do not find a job soon things are not going to be nice, not at all.  My unemployment runs out in January.  I have enough money saved to stay until after the payback date in March for the first time homebuyer's credit.  But if I do not have a job I will have to give my house back to the bank, sell as much as I can and have my brother come out here to help me drive my car back east and I will become a financial dependent, again, on my rapidly approaching 80 year old mother.  A very sad prospect.  So here's hoping I can find a permanent job that will pay my bills so I can stay here.  And keep blogging.

Life is hard when you're a single income who suddenly has no income.  And for a crafty penguin who likes to rant but has lost her spark, for the moment.  If you're so inclined, a prayer on my behalf would be appreciated.

Sunday, April 01, 2012

Something for Me

This afghan is crocheted and I made it for me!  I almost never make things for myself but I saw this crochet pattern and thought it was cute and wanted to make it.  Took a lot longer than I thought for various reasons.  I decided instead of being one color I would make it pink and burgundy stripes.  Each section is 20 rows long and there are 3 pink and 2 burgundy.  I had purchased (don't get upset!) a one pound skein of each.  Sadly I was just starting row 15 of the last pink section when I ran out of yarn.  I had to go buy more.  Oh well now I have a lot to make scarves or hats or cowls or something. Hope people like pink!

Here's what the pattern looks like up close.
 It's a combination of shells and post stitches.  Makes like a running border.  Anyway it is beautiful.  In a way I wish it were wider because I'm a big person but it's still wide enough to cover me.

Next on the project list... I am going to start a crochet tote bag for myself.  This will be the project I work on at home since it's for me and just for fun.  The project I'm going to take to work is for Ally and I'm not talking about what it is just yet.  Wait until she gets it in the mail.

Now that my computer is running very well, even better than when it was new, I can blog again! It's just finding time.  And remembering to do it.  But rest assured that I am still being crafty and still ranting.

Crochet on!