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1  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Multi-Generational Afghan on: March 22, 2014 02:12:25 PM

I have a box of my Grandma's old granny squares (including her signature flower ones), and decided to piece some of them together into a full afghan. Only the center heart square is mine, and the rest were my Grandma's that I enlarged and crocheted together. I added a purple and white border, with a row of hearts.


The original squares, or varying sizes.



Using yarn of the closest color match I could find, I worked a few extra rows on each square until they were all the same size.

Afghan completed!

I used this awesome tutorial/method for a seamless joining of the squares:
http://carinascraftblog.wardi.dk/2009/06/granny-square-joining-tutorial.html


A close up of the heart edging. I made all the individual hearts (132!) and crocheted them on. I'll probably never do that again, as it was a lot of work.

I got the idea from this site, but didn't follow their method:
http://www.rainbowknits.co.uk/free-pattern-line-of-hearts-crochet-edging/



Thanks for looking!
2  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / Freddie Spaghetti! on: November 10, 2013 05:48:13 AM
My husband and I were out of town for Halloween this year and didn't get to dress up, but I did have some fun dressing up my dog Freddie!

I present: Freddie Spaghetti!



I took one of his old tshirts (giraffe print) that sadly is falling apart.  For the spaghetti, I simply used an off white yellowish skein of yarn.  I used the end of the yarn skein to weave it through the holes of the shirt with a yarn needle until it was secure.  For the meatballs, I crocheted varius sized spheres and stuffed them with fiberfill, then sewed them into the "spaghetti".

So cute! Smiley



He refused to pose with our pumpkin!

3  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / Lalaloopsy-type Doll on: September 22, 2013 12:54:34 PM
Here's my finished Lalaloopsy crocheted doll!  I made her dress and bow/headband OSU themed.  Go Bucks!





A few notes:
 - The entire body is done in cream - all clothes - dress & shoes - are made separately.

 - I crocheted button eyes, as I didn't have any actual buttons that looked right.  Also the headband is removal and I made the bow only 2 rows wide, and used two strands of yarn held together for the multi-colored look.


 - I used a size G hook, so my doll is 17 inches tall.



I love her hair!  Super soft curls!


Here's some in progress pics:

Legs & body


Q-tips I bound together and placed in neck to provide support for the large head


Completed legs, body, & head


Arms


Dress - I made this removable with the back laced up and the underskirt done in a contrasting color.


Thanks for looking!

4  COOKING / Dessert / Chocolate Zucchini Bread (pic heavy) on: August 10, 2013 12:44:26 PM
To me, Craftster's about trying new things and sharing with others!

My parents' garden has an overabundance of zucchini this year, so I've been trying to find new ways to use it, as I seem to be getting a never-ending supply. Smiley

While searching for something new to make, I came across this recipe for Chocolate Zucchini Bread (http://movitabeaucoup.com/2011/09/22/chocolate-zucchini-bread/), which sounded delicious and non-zucchini tasting.  Therefore, I decided to try it out and document the process for this challenge!

This recipe creates a really yummy baked good - with a vegetable (that makes it healthy, right?  Wink )- it's definitely a recipe worth sharing!


My zucchini inspiration

The dry ingredients - flour, baking soda, baking powder, cocoa, salt, cinnamon & allspice

Grated zucchini - this is most of only 1 zucchini

The wet ingredients, prior to mixing - white sugar, brown sugar, oil, eggs & vanilla

The grated zucchini is folded in - this is really the only time this looks really disgusting!

Time to add the chocolate chips!

I both Pammed and lined my loaf pan with parchment paper for easy removal once baked.

55 minutes later:

Time to cool

And finally, a slice to try!  This tastes like a combination brownie and chocolate cake.  You can't even tell there's zucchini in it.  Even my husband, who was very skeptical about the outcome, loved it!


Once again, here's the recipe: http://movitabeaucoup.com/2011/09/22/chocolate-zucchini-bread/


Thanks for looking, and enjoy!
5  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Crocheted Portrait on: August 08, 2013 04:39:44 PM
What does Craftster mean to me?  It's a place of inspiration, to learn & share techniques and ideas. Plus, it's a place to share the cool things we make with other people who appreciate and understand the time & effort involved in making these pieces.
 
For this challenge, I tried out a new technique I'd been wanting to try for a long time - a crocheted portrait.  I'd seen a few done and they always look so cool, but super complicated.  The only actual patterns I'd found were either of things I didn't want to make, or cost money to get.  I wanted a free pattern and to use my own picture!

My picture to completed crocheted portrait!

So I did a little internet research, and came across this really neat site from which you can create your own patterns for free - Stitchboard.com.  It's free to use, all you have to do is create an account.  From there, you can upload your own picture to create the type of pattern you want.  You can choose the type (crochet, cross stitch, etc), colors, number of colors, number of stitches, etc.  You definitely need to play with the settings a few times to get what you're looking for.
 
For my crocheted portrait, I started out with this picture of my dog Freddie.  I found with my random picture testing on the website that a really close up picture works the best.

I used the following pattern creator settings:
Crochet
50 stitches
3 colors - in shades of gray/black/white
 
This is how the pattern turns out.  I had it emailed to me as a pdf, which ends up being multiple pages.  So I printed a copy and cut and pasted all the parts together into one big color coded chart.  You can see where I've marked my progress and modified some of the color choices.

I pulled out black, gray, and white yarn from my stash and set to work using a H hook.  I worked the pattern starting from the bottom left hand corner of the pattern.  I used single crochet (sc) stitches, turning at the end of each row, working each row left to right, turn, right to left, turn, left to right, turn, etc.  I carried each unused yarn through my stitches as I worked, so there weren't any hanging tails that needed woven in or new color to be added.  Doing so definitely used a lot more yarn, but I wasn't concerned given the size of the piece I was making.
 
For a long time during the "creating" of this piece, it looked like nothing - just a swatch of colors in random places.  It wasn't until about halfway through the pattern that I was able to see the picture I was creating.  Overall, I was really pleased with the way it turned out, and it ended up much bigger than I had anticipated.
 
Here's my finished product!


Side by side with the original picture and pattern:

For now, I actually have this hanging on an empty wall - I hung it to try to get a decent picture.   I'd like to make a few more of these portraits and piece them all into a big afghan - maybe a family portrait blanket!
 
Another technique I considered trying is the Tunisian crochet style.  I decided against it due to the way the back would have looked - really messy.  But you could use this method and then just add a backing to hide the messy yarn ends.  Plus, I think this would give the pattern a slightly more uniform look.  Maybe next time!
 
Thanks for looking!!
6  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Crocheted Flower Bouquet on: April 04, 2013 04:23:53 PM
I made this bouquet as a centerpiece to use both for Easter and my sister's upcoming bridal shower.  I've come across a few items on Pinterest that were my inspiration:
http://pinterest.com/pin/238690848973033705/
http://pinterest.com/pin/238690848973033703/
http://pinterest.com/pin/238690848972902091/

Here's the finished product:


What you will need:

Yarn - whatever colors you want to use.  I used leftover scraps I had on hand from other projects.
Crochet hook, yarn needle, scissors
Styrofoam ball
Styrofoam cone (if you want to make it into a bridal bouquet)
Ribbon
Hot Glue Gun



1. Make a bunch of crocheted flowers.  I made two different kinds for a variety in 5 different colors.

Flower #1:
Make a chain of 18 stitches.
 
At the end of the row, turn, and in the 3rd stitch from the hook, make 2 double chains (dcs).  In each of the remaining stitches, make 3 dc in each stitch.  Once you've made all the stitches, fasten off leaving a long tail.  Your flower will look like a spiral.



Next, roll the entire piece into a spiral flower.  Using the leftover tail of yarn, thread the yarn needle through the entire piece so all layers are bound together.  Continue until the piece is fully intact, or, if you are like me, until the entire tail is gone (less clean up of messy ends!).



Flower #2:
Make a chain of 46 stitches, turn.
Single chain (sc) in the second stitch from the hook, skip a stitch,*double chain (dc), chain 1 (c), dc 1, ch 1, dc1, ch1, dc
Repeat until to you reach the end of your stitches and fasten off, leaving a tail.  Your work should look scalloped and curve a bit.



Next, roll the entire piece into a spiral flower - it helps to keep the bottom flat.  Using the leftover tail of yarn, thread the yarn needle through the entire piece so all layers are bound together.  Continue until the piece is fully intact, or, if you are like me, until the entire tail is gone (less clean up of messy ends!).



Make a bunch of these flowers.  I ended up with around 50 in varying colors.  You might need more or less depending on the yarn you use, hook size, size of Styrofoam ball used.  

2. Next, take your Styrofoam ball and slice a flat edge on the bottom.  This is done so your piece will sit flat on a surface.  I don't have a picture of this step, but I just used a simple kitchen knife on top of a plastic cutting board - FYI - this makes a mess, so be near a trash can!

3.  Before gluing, I tested out my arrangement of flowers by using stick pins to attach them to the Styrofoam ball.  I set the piece on top of a nice vase to get an idea of what my interpreted would look like.  This step also helped me visualize if I needed to make more flowers.  



4.  Begin gluing on your pieces!  I alternated colors, making sure 2 of the same color never touched.  Just hot glue the back/flat side, and stick it on your Styrofoam ball.  It dries rather quick, but is really easy to remove if you don't like how it sticks on or want to change your pattern.



Continue gluing until the entire sphere is covered, except for the flat bottom. You may find that you need to make a few extra flowers - I know I did!





5.  If you are making a bridal bouquet, slice a flat end on the Styrofoam cone.  Using your ribbon (I used some leftover from a wedding gift), wrap the cone until it is fully covered, hot-gluing it in place.  



To attach the cone to the bouquet top, you can hot glue it together.  I wanted to be able to have the pieces as separates, so I unfolded a large paper clip and poked it into the center of the flat sides to connect the bouquet and 'stems'.  

6.  You're finished!  Here's some pics of the final piece:

Bouquet & stem in vase:


Close up of flowers:



The top portion in a cute old tiny bucket:




Additional fun facts:
I finished this in roughly a week.
Each flower weighs 0.1 ounce, which at 50 flowers, is roughly one skein of Red Heart yarn.
I really only had to buy the Styrofoam items and I used my coupons - only spending $6


Thanks for looking!!
7  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Potholder on: March 23, 2013 07:32:18 AM
Here's my latest finished project, I finished it in an afternoon.

I used leftover yarns I had on hand.  I'm not sure I'd use acrylic yarn again, I'm not sure how well it will hold up to heat if I actually use this as a potholder!



I used this tutorial I came across -
http://magic-thread.com/index.php/2012/03/01/crocheted-potholder/

Thanks for looking!
8  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General / Keepsake wedding card book - pinned it, tried it on: March 03, 2013 07:42:00 AM
I have a bunch of cards from my wedding that I want to keep, but have just been sitting in a box.  I kept coming across pins on Pinterest for greeting card books, and decided to give it a try. 

I love how I can now have all my cards together in one organized book, it's a neat keepsake.  I used ribbons leftover from wedding gifts (too pretty to toss) to bind them all together.  I used one of my favorite cards we got as the cover. 



I also created one for our RSVP cards that I had saved!



Thanks for looking!

My full blog post:
http://stephanysstitches.blogspot.com/2013/03/wedding-card-book-pinned-it-tried-it.html
9  HOME SWEET HOME / Pet-Related Crafts: Completed Projects / Dog T-shirt Upcycled from a men's polo (link to tute) on: February 24, 2013 11:20:19 AM
Please read my blog for a complete tutorial: http://stephanysstitches.blogspot.com/2013/02/dog-t-shirt-upcycled-from-mens-polo.html

My pup loves wearing clothes, and my husband has a few old shirts he doesn't want anymore.  So, I decided to try making a new tshirt for my pup!  I'm pretty pleased with the results.

The final product, as modeled by my pup Freddie:






I started with this men's polo shirt:

This was a lot easier, and quicker, than I anticipated.

Thanks for looking!
10  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / My very own Tardis key! on: February 23, 2013 04:41:36 PM
I found this neat tutorial on Pinterest and decided to try it out!
http://www.thezenofmaking.com/2012/05/tutorial_painted_tardis_keys.html

I simply used nail polish as my paint.  To make the "Police Box" and windows nice and neat, I printed it from an Excel sheet I made with the words and outlined boxes.  I used clear nail polish as my glue to hold the paper pieces in place. 

Pretty cool!  Here's both sides of my finished key. 





This was a super quick project!
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