31 December 2020

Let It Be (Gone!!!)

29 December 2020

We Get By...

We couldn't stay at my company party in 2017, before we knew about Lizard's Parkinson's, because he was too overwhelmed by the crowd. We didn't even try the last two years because he was so miserable. This year, the gathering was virtual. The office manager thought it would be cool to bring us all together in a virtual performance of an old Beatles classic because we got through 2020 literally helping each other.

It was kind of fun! I would do this again!









28 December 2020

Snowflake Monday

I think everyone in my neighborhood must know how much I love snowflakes! Just look at all the glorious inspiration left on my porch, mostly in secret, throughout the last two weeks!





















Can you guess which flake I tried to create this week?

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

Let It Snowflake I Instructions

Make magic ring.

Round 1: Ch 2 (counts as 1 dc), 2 dc in ring, [ch 1, 3 dc in ring] 5 times; 1 hdc in 2nd ch of starting ch 2 to form 6th ch 1 sp of Round. Pull magic circle tight. 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 2: 1 sc over post of hdc directly below, [ch 7, sl st in 2nd ch from hook and each of next 2 ch (Branch A made), ch 5, sl st in 2nd ch from hook and in each of next 2 ch (Branch B made), ch 8, working back down post 1 sc in 4th ch from hook, 1 dc in each of next 3 ch, 1 sc in next ch, ch 4, sl st in 2nd ch from hook and in each of next 2 ch, sk Branch B, sl st in next ch, ch 4, sl st in 2nd ch from hook and in each of next 2 ch, sk Branch A, sl st in each of next 3 ch, sk over next Round 1 3/dc group, 1 sc in next ch 1 sp, ch 12, sl st in 4th ch from hook and in each of next 8 ch, 1 sc in same ch 1 sp] 6 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st in starting sc; bind off. Weave in ends.

Finish: 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 December 2020

Oh, Christmas Card, Oh, Christmas Card...



Trying to coax wildlife into cooperating for an award-winning Christmas card photo requires a degree of patience. And a hefty supply of unprocessed, chemical-free treats!























21 December 2020

Snowflake Monday

Today's snowflake originally was designed in about 2010. I didn't like the center, and the points were too much of a pain to try to write. (They are proving a challenge to write today, too!) If you can make it past Round 8 without losing your marbles, perhaps you should be writing snowflake patterns in my place. Huge grin!

Looking at the old snowflake center now as I write this post, I do kind of see a flower in the center. I guess that changes my perspective a tiny bit!

I reworked the snowflake and wrote the pattern one night last week when I couldn't sleep. After finishing, I finally fell asleep, and I slept until ten minutes before I had to begin working! Kind of cool to get up that late and still be "at" work on time. Ha ha!

When I began working, I discovered one of my bosses also had experienced a sleepless night and had sent work to me throughout the night. Not the best conditions for a sleepless night to occur! But I made it through the day, I got this pattern done, and it's almost 2021. Reasons to celebrate!

I'd already named a snowflake Sleepless after Lizard's total knee replacement one year ago. In French the word for sleepless could be Éveillé.

While Lizard and I were walking last weekend, I realized I went through some of the same challenges he is enduring now when I had my emergency back surgery a decade and a half ago. He gets pretty discouraged some days because he thinks he will never be back up at the level of fitness and sharp-wittedness he sported prior to our uninvited guest, Parkinson's, and before his two major surgeries in an eight-month timespan.

It is entirely possible he never will reach that level again, but I'm not letting him give up, and we're still seeing tiny little progress every day. Now, when he gets discouraged, I can remind him how he had to keep motivating me to never give up when I went through slow gait, lack of balance, pain so bad there often was no position that brought relief, sleepless nights, high blood sugar, weight gain, impatience, absence of courage, non-existent hope...

I've already named a flake Hope, too. In French, the word for home is Espérer.

Both of the French words begin with E. The first English word that popped into my head when I realized that means bubbly, vivacious and enthusiastic. That's what our world needs a ton more of right now!

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: 7 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

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.

Effervescent Snowflake Instructions

Make magic ring.

Round 1: [Pc in ring, ch 10, 1 dc in 4th ch from hook and in each of next 2 ch, 1 sc in each of next 3 ch, ch 1] 6 times; sl st in top of starting pc. Pull magic circle tight. Pull magic circle tight.

Round 2: Ch 6 (counts as 1 sc and ch 5), [1 sc in next ch 3 sp, ch 5] 5 times; sl st in 1st ch of starting ch 6.

Round 3: 6 sc in each ch 5 sp around; sl st in starting sc.
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 4 (counts as 1 sc and [ch 3), sk next 2 sc, 1 dc in next sc, ch 3, sk next 2 sc, 1 sc in next sc] 6 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st in 1st ch of starting ch 4.

Round 5: Ch 5 (counts as 1 sc and [ch 4), 1 dc in next dc, ch 3, 1 dc in same dc (V-st made), ch 4, 1 sc in next sc] 6 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st in 1st ch of starting ch 5.

Round 6: Ch 6 (counts as 1 sc and [ch 5), in next V-st work (1 dc, ch 3, 1 dc, ch 3, 1 dc), ch 5, 1 sc in next sc] 6 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st in 1st ch of starting ch 6.

Round 7: Ch 7 (counts as 1 sc and [ch 6), in next V-st work (1 dc, ch 3, 1 dc), ch 5, in next V-st work (1 dc, ch 3, 1 dc), ch 5, 1 sc in next sc] 6 times, omitting last sc of final repeat; sl st in 1st ch of starting ch 6.

Round 8: [5 sc in next ch 6 sp, 3 sc in next ch 3 sp, in next ch 5 sp work (1 sc, ch 2, 1 hdc, ch 2, 1 dc, ch 2, 1 tr, ch 2, 1 dc, ch 2, 1 hdc, *ch 4*); turn; 1 hdc in next ch 2 sp, ch 2, 1 dc in next ch 2 sp, ch 3, 1 dc in next ch 2 sp, ch 2, 1 hdc I next ch 2 sp, ch 2, 1 sc in next ch 2 sp, ch 1; turn; 2 sc in each of next 2 ch 2 sp, 2 sc in next ch 3 sp, ch 2, 2 sc in same sp, 2 sc in each of next 2 ch 2 sp, ch 2, sl st in 2nd ch of *ch 4*, ch 2), 1 sc in same ch 5 sp, 3 sc in next ch 3 sp, 5 sc in next ch 6 sp] 6 times; sl st in starting sc; bind off. Weave in ends.

Finish: 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.

17 December 2020

Denim Doodah


Six years ago, I wrote tongue-in-cheek about denim whiskers. It's even bigger a thing now than it was then!!! Websites have pages dedicated to the fad!!!

Whiskering

What are "whiskers"?

Denim Hunters

A denim vocabulary?!?
(Turns out I'm a denimhead...)

More denim than you ever thought possible

Fashion Statement

I've saved old jeans for ages. At one point, way back in the early '80s, I was making a puzzle quilt from Ragtime and Elephant Ear jeans I'd worn as a teenager, along with straight-leg jeans from my four younger brothers handed down so many times, I had just about every shade of super pastel indigo you could imagine.

Alas, my first (and former) husband ignited the entire project (along with many other WIPs) in a burn barrel back in about 1987 because he thought the grocery bags I stored everything in were trash. There was a rainbow sweater in there I'd been knitting for my youngest sister for about three years. There were T-shirts from all my siblings' band and choir days. All my concert T-shirts were in there. Even my prized Fleetwood Mac T-shirt. (No, that's not why we divorced, but it was pretty traumatic!)

I started a new jeans collection immediately after, and I've made a good many projects since then. I'm always on the lookout for new ideas. And old jeans!

I no longer have the first (or second or third) denim skirt or the one-of-a-kind classic '80s blazer (each pattern piece came from a different pair of jeans) I fashioned from old jeans back in the '80s, but I do still have the vest I made in approximately 1995...




... and the jean jacket I made from three different pairs of ice-wash jeans in about 1998.






I've had four or five denim reindeer bodies ready to be assembled since about 1999. I finally finished one last weekend because I decided our electric fireplace needed one. And because it was a WIP, and because it's nearly Christmas, and because it felt good to play with denim again.






And look what I found when I was looking for buttons I could use for eyes for the denim reindeer! Remember these?!? Remember prices like this?!?


Here are some wonderful ideas for denim rugs. I might have to get creative and do something floorish with all the jeans hems one day after I get done cutting up the next batch that's destined for a quilt. (No more new WIPS until I get a few done, but I'm dreaming about a flannel and denim rag quilt!)


Linking up with Alycia Quilts and Confessions of a Fabric Addict.
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