Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry, Merry

Just popping in to wish everyone a very merry, merry Christmas!  And here's hoping the day brings joy and happiness shared with friends and family. :)

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Just in Time . . .

Ends and bits trimmed off the hats
Dear friend, I have not crafted in a long, long time.  Hard to blog when there's no crafting to report.  Yeah, school got in the way (and work, and family life . . .  well you get the point, right?).  Thankfully I have finished all my courses for the semester.  So I finally have some free time.  And what did I do with this mythical free time?  I was industrious!  LOL!  I managed to finish the first of my Christmas gifts.

Check out my nephew's hats:
Angry Bird Hats
I really like how everything came together.  If you will remember from previous posts the hats initially didn't look like much without the face details.  Don't the finished hats look great, though? Just love them (If you're interested in the mods, check out my Ravelry notes for Angry Bird #2).

And I really like my niece's hat.  I decided against threading any ribbon through the eyelets 'cuz I was worried it might interfere with the fabric's stretchiness.  Besides, the pom pom adds a nice "pop" of colour (Too bad the yarn sheds a little).
Finished Zeebad Hat
I was nervous about making a pom pom 'cuz it's been a long time since I made one--and honestly I was never really good at it.  But I found this great tutorial on You-Tube from Repeat Crafter Me (I follow her Facebook page).
It really works!!  And yes, I did the thing using only my fingers!  Check out the finished pom pom before it was sewn to the top of the hat:
Pom pom detail
Now I'm off to wrap these hats so they can get mailed to my niece and nephews--just in time for Christmas!! :)

Saturday, October 22, 2016


Even though I haven't been good about posting regularly, I am trying ever so hard to craft on a regular basis.  It can be hard during the week 'cuz I've got lots of readings and assignments to work on (seriously, I have something due every week).
Stack of Christmas hats
Happy to say that all my Christmas hats are finally done (six in all)!  They're not completely finished, but all the knitting is done.  And that's something for me who has been lacking in the mojo and/or the time department. I just need a weekend to finish everything, as in weave in ends and make pompoms and such (Hoping to work on the ones that need to be mailed away first).
Last Angry Bird Hat

I managed to finish the last Angry Bird hat.  Even though it is the black Angry Bird, I decided to finish it in the same way as the red ones.  I'll just adjust the colours of the facial features so that the features will be visible against the black.
New amigurumi, but who could it be?

And I've started something new and interesting.  Can you guess what it might be?  I'll give you a hint.  It's amigurumi and it's something for which I have no pattern.  Yeah, that's right: I gotta wing it.

I'll give you another hint: I'm using a pattern for John Lennon and converting it into something else--or someone else.  Stayed tuned . . . . ;)

Monday, October 10, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving

Scarecrow courtesy of
Even though it's dark, dreary and pouring rain, I feel incredibly thankful. So hug your babies and enjoy time with your family and friends this fine Thanksgiving morn. :)

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Some Problems

Last Angry Bird hat
There is knitting--not that there's much to share (Actually, I'm farther along than picutred above--almost ready to start decreases with an inch to go).  At least I'm on my last Christmas gift.  I decided to work a black Angry Bird rather than a yellow one.  It'll be interesting to modify the facial features.  Hope this fits my oldest nephew.
School books with binder

Anyways I'm currently facing  a couple of problems with regard to lack of time for knitting.  The first problem is school--specifically homework.  There's lots of reading, especially since I'm enrolled in 2 courses.  Free time is limited.  After supper and the dishes, I'm doing homework.  When I'm done with that, I have little brain power or energy to knit.
Smartphone with Candy Crush Soda app

My other problem is my new phone.  My previous phone was a small flip one.  Very old school in size and function: small and no real internet access.  Now I have a smartphone--with apps! Oh the apps!  Specifically Candy Crush Soda.  That is my downfall.  At naptime, I used knit and now I "crush candy".  See the problem?  Welcome to my world.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Good Ol' Stash!

Nothing like rummaging through one's stash to get the mojo flowin'!  
Leftover bits of yarn
Over the long weekend, I decided to clean out my two yarn baskets--full of used patterns, misplaced (or "lost") needles, leftover yarn and almost finished items.  Do you have one too?  A bin, basket or other suitable receptacle where all the leftovers or WIPs collect?

Yarn, socks and lacy scarf

In re-organizing all those bits and pieces, I had to rummage through my stash containers.  Lo and behold, there was my mojo!  Hidden away in a plastic drawer filled with special yarns in pretty colours.  Funny how one's stash can inspire . . . .  
Almost there . . .

So I finally got back to ripping out and finishing one of those Angry Bird hats.  Some of those itty-bitty face parts got made too. Excited to sew all those bits in place 'cuz then I'll be almost done (although I have to confess that I'm eyeing a special project for a family member, but it will require some "designing". . . ).
Yarn for last Angry Bird hat
Happy to report there's just one more hat to make!  This last Angry Bird will have to be a different colour.  There's not much red left.  So one of my nephews will get either a yellow or black Angry Bird--not sure which colour to use yet.  I promise to keep you posted. :)

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Almost Over . . . .

Pretty cone flowers
The days are getting shorter and the nights a little cooler . . .  In a few weeks, the fall fair comes to town and then school will start up.  Summer will officially be over. 

Tomatoes are getting big
Meanwhile I've been busy doing nothing.   That's right.  Nothing.  No crochet.  No knitting (hence no blogging).  Actually, there has been some knitting, but I've been distracted by family events, outings to the big city, games and technology.  Truthfully my knittin' mojo had been waning and now it's MIA!  I'm gonna have to find it if I want to finish those Christmas hats.
The beans that survived . . .
Hanging basket

Meanwhile I've been putterin' 'round in the garden: watering my flowers and veggies, pulling weeds and trimming over-grown bushes and trees.  There's something very primal 'bout planting seeds and watching them grow . . . 

Tomorrow I step back into the mundane ordinary life, and I'll have to re-focus my energies and prioritize my time. I'll keep you posted. ;)

Monday, August 1, 2016

While on Vacation . . .

Vacations are for sleeping in, relaxing and taking it slow.  And knitting.  On the downside, sometimes blogs fall by the wayside . . . 
One hat and a second almost done . . .

But there is progress!  I've got one Zeebad hat finished and the second one is almost done.  I should be further along, but there was ripping--followed by cursing (or maybe it was the other way around?  Expletives were shouted and there might even have been some growling).  In a fit of exasperation over size, missed yarn overs and dropped stitches I ripped it all out and started again.  Twice.  Once for each hat.
First hat awaiting ribbon and pompom

The hats have to be perfect 'cuz they're gifts.  So when I was done cursin', I knocked some sense into those stitches.  And I promised myself to only work on the hats when I am well-rested and have time to concentrate.  (Don't rest and time go hand-in-hand with vacations?).   
Second hat in progress

In any case, my goal: finish the second hat within the week and then look for ribbons.  These will get threaded through the eyelets.  There are pompoms to be made too!  Haven't made those in a long time.  I might have to peruse some how-to videos.  I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

About the Boys' Hats

Since I'd shared details about the girls' hats, I thought it only fair that I also share more about the boys' hats.  There were lots of options, but I decided on something related to Angry Birds (my older nephews really love Angry Birds).

I decided to use Red Bird with Attitude by Heidi Yates (free download at Ravelry) because the facial features looked great and didn't protrude from the hat (Also, I wanted my older nephews to wear their hats. Y'all know how older kids get about hand knits if they think it looks silly).
Finished hats before facial details are added
Here's the thing:  I needed to make some mods.  First off, the hat sizes tended to run on the small side.  I started with the child size, but that looked more like toddler size.  So I knit the next size up (teen size) to get something in a child size (sounds confusing, right?).  Also, I really didn't like the "tail" as written in the pattern.  I wasn't sure my older nephews would go for it.  What do you think (see version #1 pictured below)?
Hat version following pattern exactly as written

So for version #2, I made some mods:
1) Used 3.75mm circulars to work the brim for a more snug fit
2) Used K2P2 instead of K1P1.  That's just a personal preference.  Besides, I think my choice looks better.
3) Switched to 4.5mm circulars for body.
4) For decreases, worked them as written until row 16 where I made some minor changes in how the decreases are worked:
Row 16: K1 K2tog (18 sts for teen size)
Row 17-18: Knit
Row 19: K2tog (9 sts for teen size)
Row 20: Knit
Row 21:  K2tog till last st, K1 (5 sts teen size)
Row 22-24: Knit each round as I-cord
Row 25: K2tog K1 K2tog (3 sts teen size)
Rows 26-28: Knit each round as I-cord
Leave long tail and thread through last 3 stitches.  Fasten off.
Version #2 following modifications to "tail"
I think the modified version looks so much better than the first--so much better that I may rip out the first version and re-do.  Hey, I've got time. ;)

Thursday, July 7, 2016

About the Girls' Hats

So here are the details on Christmas for my nieces.
Finished beret--aka Meret #2
First off, the beret.  The yarn was bulky (it's James Brett Marble Chunky--which incidentally is a bulky yarn, similar to Bernat's vintage Softee); so I settled on Bernat's beret from their Urban Weekend booklet.  Having made this pattern before (here and also here), I remembered that the brim was a little shallow.  I referenced another pattern I had recently made in which the brim was less shallow, the Meret (aka Mystery Beret) and lo and behold, it had the same number of cast-on stitches!  So I switched gears and worked the Meret instead (by the way, I just love my own Meret !).  
Under side of beret

Is this a recipe for disaster?  No, I say.  A thousand times no!!  First off, the yarn I used for the original Meret was on the aran side--thicker than most worsted weight.  The marble chunky yarn is listed as bulky but it's more on the thinner side--close to an aran weight.  See the confusion?  I also used smaller needles than would normally be used for the yarn weight (4.5mm and 5.5mm).  Finally I worked the smallest size listed in the pattern directions.  My oldest niece is 9 and rather tall for her age, so a child-sized hat was probably not gonna work for her anyways.  I figure better it be a wee bit bigger than too small.
If there's enough yardage, I'm hoping to make a matching beret (with purse and shawl) for my niece's 18" doll.  Won't that be cute?  I'm certain she'll love all of it. :) 
Yarn and pattern are ready to go . . .
For my younger nieces, I'm hoping to get them some storybooks along with some pretty hats.  How does Zeebad look?  Cute, right?  I've got some lovely Patons Classic Wool in orchid (more like a lovely raspberry, in my opinion) for one niece.  There's lots more pink in my stash, so if I run out of orchid, I can use a different colour for the second girl.

Very excited about getting started . . . 

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Makin' Christmas in July?

Yup, that's right!  I'm makin' Christmas in July.  Hoping to make hats for my 3 nephews and 3 nieces just like last year--except this time I'm getting an early start.
In progress beret
The plan is to make angry bird type hats for the boys, a beret for my older niece, and eyelet- ribbon hats for the younger girls.  I've got plenty of yarn in my stash (it really is nice to go "shopping" in the stash, especially when funds are tight).
In-progress hats for nephews

Hoping to get most of the gift knitting done by the end of the summer.  If I can stick to "my plan", I may have time to make a scrapbook for the grandparents.  Haven't really scrapped in a while, but I've got lots of paper and it would be nice to use it.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Canada Day

Happy Canada Day!! :D
Photo credit: Nick Kenrick. via Source / CC BY
It's been a long week for me, especially since I've been fighting a bad head cold (I know: who gets a cold in the middle of summer?  Personally I blame my wee toddlers--many of whom have been sick over the past few weeks).  Happy to be able to rest and drink lots of tea.

Wherever you are in this fine country, I hope you are surrounded with family and good friends.  Enjoy the long weekend! :)

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Lovin' It!

After finishing my Keyhole Bow-tie Scarf, I cast-on for another bow-tie type scarf.  With only 109 yards in the one skein of's Peruvian Alpaca, I needed something small.  Problem: not happy.  The yarn is just lovely, but not loving the curl which is intregal to the pattern.  What now?  Rip out?  What else to make with such a small amount of yarn?  The yardage got me thinking about different types of small projects, which in turn got me thinking about dolls.  That's right: dolls.
Not loving the curl
Flipping through Ravelry's search engine, I found loads of cute patterns for 18" dolls (if you don't already know about Ravelry, get thee to the website post-haste 'cuz it is awesome!!).  Perusing patterns always gets me looking through the stash.  And I found a nice pattern to marry with some DK weight leftovers.
Top/dress in progress
The pattern is a little ensemble (Ravelry link), but I only made the top.  The top length is perfect as a dress, especially as my doll has leggings and pink booties.  Pattern is straight-forward, but I tweaked parts of it because of personal preference and because I couldn't get gauge.
Front view of dress

Back view

What do you think?  Pretty?  I love it, especially the bright colours.  Also love that I used leftovers.  And my doll finally gets a nice outfit.  Think she needs a matching cardigan?  Maybe in green?  I'll keep you posted. ;)

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Father's Day of Sorts . . .

Over at my place, all the fellas in our household are sick.  To be fair, it has been a cool June and feels more like autumn than spring.  So I'm playing nurse-maid today, making sure everyone has hot tea, vitamin C, blankets and fluffy pillows.  And of course Netflix is playing non-stop (animated flicks aren't a cure-all, but it sure helps pass the time when you can't do much else).
Sick teddy courtesy of

So hope you all enjoy happy times with the fathers in your life.  Be well.
Later  ;)

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Life Is Like . . .

Fragrant lilacs in bloom
. . . . Knitting.  N'est pas?  Yes, life is very much like knitting.  You think you've found the most wonderful yarn or the best pattern.  Full of enthusiasm, you cast on and soon realize something is amiss.  Gauge?  Dropped stitch?  Wrong size?  Ignoring the nagging doubts, you continue working on the piece until you realize the "mistake" needs addressing.  Your options?  Well, some of us will throw the whole mess in a cupboard and try to forget; others try something entirely different, while others just give up altogether and declare knitting (or crochet) to be too difficult.  Then there are those of us that either tink back or frog the entire thing, but they do not give up.  Maybe you need a different pattern for the yarn or different size needles.  Maybe you modify the pattern.  Maybe you ask for help and continue forth.  Either way, you persevere.

Dainty bleeding hearts in bloom
Life is like that.  Stuff happens that shake you to the core.  You wanna give up.  But you don't.  You persevere.  You find a way.
Detail of pretty lungwort
And truthfully, thank heavens for the knitting (or crochet).  It can ease the stress and give your mind a place to focus when you feel like crumbling into a small ball in the corner.  So while my absence has been much too long, my thoughts and heart were not far.  Complete immersion in all things crafty (and all things garden-wise and plant-like) kept me sane and functional.
Finished keyhole scarf
By the way, I finished that keyhole scarf.  What a lovely quick knit--and satisfying too.  Then I cast-on something else, but before I finished that, I cast on a second project.  Then I had this crazy idea to start making Christmas early . . . but that's for another post.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

About Ennui . . .

Progress of Keyhole Bow Tie Scarf
I must confess that when ennui sneaks up on me, I peruse Ravelry or rummage through my stash (especially the special yarns).  Something usually "speaks" to me so much so that I print off a pattern and immediately cast on.
Mainly garter stitch
Such was my mood last week. Not happy with my current WIPs, I cast on something new.  It's a keyhole bow tie from Knit Simple, Fall 2009.  It's been in my queue for ages.  Instead of worsted weight, I'm using chunky weight.
Detail of keyhole
Instead of the 30 sts indicated in the pattern, I cast on 20 sts. The finished width is supposed to be 5”.  Mine works out to just over 5” with 20 sts. And I'm loving the way the colour is mixing in the garter stitch.  Here's hoping I have enough yarn.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

A Day for Moms

Photo credit: bambe1964 via / CC BY-ND
Here in the Maritimes, the lobster fishing opens about a week or so before Mother's Day.  So in many communities, there are traditional lobster meals served on Mother's Day.   This afternoon, I will partake of this maritime tradition with family.
Photo credit: garryknight via / CC BY
As I enjoy my buttery crustacean with freshly baked rolls and green salad, I wilI give thanks for all that I have, modest as it seems.  There are those who have much less.  And although my own mom will be miles away, I want to extend a heartfelt thanks to all the mothers out there.  Thank for you for your time, your kind words, your hugs and most of all, your love. :)

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Happy Birthday

To me!
Photo courtesy of
We're gonna celebrate tomorrow night 'cuz one of my boys had band commitments. It was still a happy happy birthday. :D

Feeling thankful and very grateful for all the good people and all the good stuff in my life.  Also thankful for you.  Thanks for reading my thoughts and reflections on all things crafty.


Saturday, April 30, 2016


Oh yeah!  After a busy week with little knitting (Who am I kidding?  There was no knitting.), I finally scored some crafting stuff.  Seriously!
Cute crochet kit
First off, a cool crochet kit.   Isn't it neat?  There's enough yarn for one Beatle, but the book has patterns for all 4 Beatles in their early years AND patterns for the Sgt. Pepper versions (I know, right?).
Sgt. Pepper's version
Besides the kit, I got my hands on two knit books.  One is a book on children's top-down knits (check out some of the patterns over at By far, top-down is my fave way to construct a sweater.  There are some cute items (and I dare confess that I've photocopied a pattern or two in the past . . . ). The only drawback is that the photos in the book are all B&W--but that's a small drawback.
Book on top-down kids' knits
View of more patterns
The other book is a re-working of vintage knits (check out more over at  And while I might admire the patterns more so than make them, there a few accessories that caught my eye (scarves, a hat, bolero and 2 shrugs).  It'll be a neat addition to the crafting library.
Vintage Knitwear book
Circular knit vest/bolero
Cute bolero
At a dollar a pound, we made a steal!  In total my husband and I spent about $37.00 for over 25 books (including the crochet kit, 4 gardening books, half a dozen kid's books, quite a few paperbacks and over-sized hardcovers.  All the items had been donations from the local community).  Seriously, we scored big time!  And all the proceeds go to funding our local library (seeing as our provincial government has frozen current funding, local libraries need as much as they can get in the way of fund-raising.  See CBC news for more details).

Now I'm off to peruse my finds.  
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