27 February 2024

An Early Spring

On one hand, I'm looking at the calendar and thinking how in the heck we got to March so quick. On the other hand, holy cow, it looks like we are going to get an early spring!

Over the weekend, I saw my first robin of the year. It may have been here longer, but it was the first time I've seen one in quite a while.

The reservoirs and ponds nearby never truly froze all the way across this winter, except for the three-day negative double digit stretch back in... I can't even remember now! Mid-January, I think.

Although I love winter and can't wait for the next opportunity to shoot snowflakes, it's really awesome to see spring coming on full bore. Indoors, my new amaryllises are all putting up blossoms, but in the garden, my goodness, all the volunteer sunflowers and larkspur trying to come up!!! Woohoo! Unless we get a hard freeze that takes them all out... (There should be plenty of volunteer and bird-scattered seeds still on or in the ground to constitute a whole new crop!)

26 February 2024

Snowflake Monday

Leave it to me to be snowflake-inspired by a six-pointed object!

You may do whatever you'd like with snowflakes you make from this pattern, but you may not sell or republish the pattern. Thanks, and enjoy!

Finished Size: 5.5 inches from point to point
Materials: Size 10 crochet thread, size 7 crochet hook, empty pizza box, wax paper or plastic wrap, cellophane tape, water soluble school glue or desired stiffener, water, glitter, small container for glue/water mixture, paintbrush, stick pins that won't be used later for sewing, clear thread or fishing line

Odysseus Snowflake Instructions

Ch 24. Taking care not to twist chain, sl st in starting ch to form ring.

Round 1: Ch 2 (counts as 1 dc), [1 dc in each of next n3xt 3 ch, 2 dc in next ch] 6 times, omitting last dc of final repeat; sl st in 2nd ch of starting ch 2.

Round 2: Ch 9 (counts as 1 dc and [ch 7), sk next 4 dc, 1 dc in next dc] 6 times, omitting last dc of final repeat; sl st in 2nd ch of starting ch 2.

Round 3: Ch 1 (counts as 1 sc), [1 sc in each of next 7 ch, 1 sc in next dc] 6 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st in starting ch.
If you're not reading this pattern on Snowcatcher, you're not reading the designer's blog. Please go here to see the original.

Round 4: [Ch 7, sk next 3 sc, 1 trtr in next next sc, ch 4, sl st in 4th ch from hook, 6 sc in ch 3 ring just made, sl st in top of trtr (ring picot made), ch 7, sk next 3 sc, sl st in next sc] 6 times; bind off. Weave in ends.

NOTE: This snowflake might be adorable worked with six large beads on the points instead of the ring picots or perhaps even glued onto the ring picots after stiffening.

Finish: I've been stiffening my flakes with undiluted, full-strength water soluble school glue for quite a while now, and I've been squishing the glue onto and throughout each flake with my fingers (yucky mess!!!) instead of gingerly painting the flakes with glue. Yes, it's a mess. But it's faster. And stiffer.

Tape wax paper or plastic wrap to top of empty pizza box. Pin snowflake to box on top of wax paper or plastic wrap.

If using glue, mix a few drops of water with a teaspoon of glue in small washable container. Paint snowflake with glue mixture or desired stiffener. Sprinkle lightly with glitter. Wash paintbrush and container thoroughly. Allow snowflake to dry at least 24 hours. Remove pins. Gently peel snowflake from wax paper or plastic wrap. Attach 10-inch clear thread to one spoke, weaving in end. Wrap fishing line around tree branch (or tape to ceiling or any overhead surface) and watch snowflake twirl freely whenever you walk by! Snowflake also may be taped to window or tied to doorknob or cabinet handle.

22 February 2024

Late, late, missed a very important date...

The baby beat the blanket. I'm almost done with the (very basic) quilting, but I'm late in getting this gift to my newest little niece.

Nevertheless, I think it will be as cute as she is!

20 February 2024

Naughty

Yuppers, I did it again. I cannot be trusted when amaryllis bulbs go on sale after Christmas. I MUST rescue!

No regrets! Two of the four new babies should be new colors I've never had before. Two should replace bulbs that are no longer flowering.

I also received a brand new amaryllis bulb at Christmas, and the first of its eight blossoms opened on Valentine's Day.

Another brand new color for me! I have never seen one so velvety deep maroon! Isn't it spectacular?!?

19 February 2024

Snowflake Monday

I've been slowly working through my Snowflake Directory to most non-white snowflakes with freshly created white versions. During a recent editing session, I noticed I called my 2010 Lanterne Rouge electric candle holder a snowflake. The tips of the lantern top and bottom are indeed snowflake points. But I hadn't created a standalone snowflake pattern. Well, fixed that!!!

You may do whatever you'd like with snowflakes you make from this pattern, but you may not sell or republish the pattern. Thanks, and enjoy!

Finished Size: 4 inches from point to point
Materials: Size 10 crochet thread, size 7 crochet hook, empty pizza box, wax paper or plastic wrap, cellophane tape, water soluble school glue or desired stiffener, water, glitter, small container for glue/water mixture, paintbrush, stick pins that won't be used later for sewing, clear thread or fishing line

Lantern Rouge Snowflake Instructions

SPECIAL STITCHES:

Popcorn Stitch (pc)

Work 5 dc in designated st, take loop off hook, insert hook through top loop of 1st dc and replace loop on hook, pull loop through top of 1st dc.

Make magic ring.

Round 1: Pc in ring, [ch 3, pc in ring] 5 times; ch 1, 1 dc in top of starting pc to form 6th ch 3 tip of Round; bind off. Don't pull magic circle too tight.

Round 2: Ch 5 (counts as 1 dc and [ch 3), in next ch 3 tip work (1 dc, ch 3, 1 dc)] 6 times, omitting last dc and last 2 ch of final repeat; q1 dc in 2nd ch of starting ch 5 to form 12th ch 3 sp of Round.

If you're not reading this pattern on Snowcatcher, you're not reading the designer's blog. Please go here to see the original.

Round 3: Ch 2 (counts as 1 dc), 2 dc over post of dc directly below, [3 dc in next ch 3 sp, ch 3, 3 dc in next ch 3 sp] 5 times; 3 dc in next ch 3 sp, sl st in 2nd h of starting ch 2.
Round 4: 1 sc over sl st just made, [ch 1, in next ch 3 tip work (1 dc, ch 1, 1 tr, ch 1, 1 dtr, ch 1, 1 trtr, ch 3, 1 sc in 3rd ch from hook, 1 trtr, ch 1, 1 dtr, ch 1, 1 tr, ch 1, 1 dc, ch 1), 1 sc in next gap between 3/dc groups] 6 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st in starting sc; bind off. Weave in ends.

Finish: I've been stiffening my flakes with undiluted, full-strength water soluble school glue for quite a while now, and I've been squishing the glue onto and throughout each flake with my fingers (yucky mess!!!) instead of gingerly painting the flakes with glue. Yes, it's a mess. But it's faster. And stiffer.

Tape wax paper or plastic wrap to top of empty pizza box. Pin snowflake to box on top of wax paper or plastic wrap.

If using glue, mix a few drops of water with a teaspoon of glue in small washable container. Paint snowflake with glue mixture or desired stiffener. Sprinkle lightly with glitter. Wash paintbrush and container thoroughly. Allow snowflake to dry at least 24 hours. Remove pins. Gently peel snowflake from wax paper or plastic wrap. Attach 10-inch clear thread to one spoke, weaving in end. Wrap fishing line around tree branch (or tape to ceiling or any overhead surface) and watch snowflake twirl freely whenever you walk by! Snowflake also may be taped to window or tied to doorknob or cabinet handle.

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