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1  CROCHET / Crochet: Discussion and Questions / Can you help ID the stitches in this beautiful rug? on: September 01, 2017 10:39:38 AM
The following link is to a long video tour of a very funky gypsy caravan (but quite nice if you care to watch it all), at 11:27 there's a shot of a lovely rug on the floor that looks like crochet but I can't be sure. If you take a look please let me know what you think, I would like to recreate it if I can.

Also, apologies for the cultural insensitivity of using the term "gypsy", I hope not to inadvertently offend anyone. I would not choose that myself but it's what they have titled the video.
2  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Rainbow octopus baby toy. on: August 24, 2017 07:29:16 AM
We have a couple friends with new babies so when I saw these curly tentacled octopi for infants I thought I'd try making some.
I did them in a variety of ways, starting the tentacles attached and separate, stitching them onto another disk then applying that to the circle, making them before closing the ball. Not sure which technique I prefer but for appearance the lightbulb shaped one is my fave. They have a little jingle inside, it's a small round pet toy covered in fluffy stuffy so it's safe and the sound is very muted for delicate baby ears. We've given the blue one away already.

This pale blue one was first.

This little striped one was last, I remember that babies like contrasting colours and patterns as well as bright colours so I used black and white for the others.

I call them Diversity Octopus. Just a quiet little crafty reminder to love all the shapes and colours the world has to offer Smiley.
3  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Chicken Lips, with pattern link on: August 18, 2017 11:47:24 AM
Yeah, you heard me.

LOL, ok, not really. I'm just showing how I made the faces of these here chickens.

Using 3 colours you can get 6 variations.

I couldn't sleep last night so I finished them all up then strung them this morning. I gave them a little squeeze in the middle to puffy them out so they are a bit more 3-D and crescent shaped instead of half circles.

Here they are in the kitchen for size reference.  

And another strand hung vertically.

With a matching tassel.

I got the idea from a photo online. I looked for a pattern but didn't find one so made it up, as usual. And, as usual, I repeated it over a dozen times trying to do it the same way twice so I could share the how-to with you here. Failure, lol.
Then I found a pattern!

I tried it their way, sort of.

Crochet chickens method

Skill: Easy
Materials: Crochet Hook Size F, Assorted Scrap Yarns, Craft Wiggly Eyes ½ inch

This is the perfect project to use up all those left over scraps that we all have in our stash! It is easy to adapt this pattern to your favorite colors. Be creative and have fun!

Rooster Body: (You do not have to change colors each row. These look very cute in a variegated yarn or solid for all three rows.)

First row: With color of choice ch4 and 17dc in 4th ch from hook, join to make a closed circle
Row 2: With color of choice chain 3, 2dc in each dc of row 1, join to first ch3
Third row: With color of choice chain 3, 2dc in each dc of previous row, join to first chain 3.
Row 4: With color of choice, ch1. Fold circle in half to form a “crescent” shape, join the edges of
crescent shape by working a sc into the dc of front and back of crescent. Finish off and weave in
Note: I simply leave the tails of the previous rounds encased in the middle of the crescent shape.
Beak: (use color of choice…I prefer an orange or bright yellow)

At the right point of the crescent, insert the crochet hook and pull up a loop and chain 2. Turn and work a hdc in next sc and then cut yarn leaving a tail of about 7 inches and thread through a tapestry needle and weave in the end into the body of the rooster. Weave in beginning tail of beak as well.

Rooster legs: Use the same color as you used on the beak. Locate the center bottom of the rooster’s body. You will work the front leg first and then the back. Pull up a loop in the stitch that is to the right of the center and chain 8 (for longer legs ch 13). Slip stitch in 2nd chain from hook and next chain, Chain 3 and slip stitch in 2nd chain from hook and next chain, chain 3 and slip stitch in 2nd chain from hook and next chain. (you will now have 3 chicken toes formed!) Join to the first chain of the first toe and slip stitch all the way up the leg, Turn and sc in next stitch of rooster body and work the second leg in the same manner. Cut ends and weave them in.
Comb and wattle

The comb and wattle: At the top of the beak where it meets the tip of the rooster body, in color of choice (red or orange, or rust) pull up a loop and chain 5, sc in next st, ch5, sc in next stitch, ch5 sc in next stitch. Weave ends into the body of the rooster. At the bottom of the beak, pull up a loop and chain 8, sc in same stitch. Using one of the ends tack the inside part of the loop to the rooster body and weave in the end, weave in the remaining end into the body of the rooster.

And finally…the tail: On the opposite point of the crescent, pull up a loop and ch 12, sc in same st, repeat 2 more times. Cut ends and weave them into the body. Glue a craft wiggly eye on each side of the rooster and attach a hanger for the ornament. I suggest a hanger by making a chain of 45 and attaching it to the top center of the rooster and weaving the ends into the body.


One thing I did differently was to leave a long tail on all my working strands, those I used a crochet hook to pull through at the tail of the chicken/rooster for a shaggy rainbow mess of feathers which I love. If that's not appealing to you follow the pattern above. You can find a photo of the finished chicken in the link I included Smiley.

4  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Livin' la vida mushroom! on: August 09, 2017 11:05:40 AM

I tried to write a pattern, I really tried. As you can see I am just no good at all at repeating anything exactly, lol.

After the multi-coloured ones I started a series of white bottomed rainbow caps.

The trim is all different, there's yarn grass around the bottoms of most, some teeny flower beads, seed beads, flowers and leaves of crochet, felt, buttons.

I got a little carried away  Roll Eyes. We'll have to choose some favourites and then give a few of them away.
5  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Discussion and Questions / Stumpwork, gold work, ribbon embroidery and MORE! on: July 27, 2017 10:07:06 AM
This beautiful piece of work is an interpretation of a pattern by Cecile Vessière, I understand this is "spring" of a four seasons quartet but since the blog is in french with a poor translation and I can't find much via googlie I'm really not sure about the details.
I am sure however that this is some of the most gorgeous embroidery I've ever seen and just the sort of thing I'd like to conquer someday.

The original pattern, I think it was a kit.

Found on this french blog where there are many more photos of her delightful interpretation, they're mostly tagged with "spring":
6  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Pie! on: July 22, 2017 10:30:39 AM
I looked over a couple patterns but didn't really follow them, just made it up as I went along.
The cherry pie was a bit problematic to join but I learned some things.

The blueberry pie is made with 4 dbl crochet bobbles instead of the usual 5.
7  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / White rabbit costume accessories on: July 12, 2017 06:51:45 AM

We're travelling. Last night we stayed at an incredibly beautiful B&B close to Dartmouth/Halifax the lovely hosts of which invited us to a Wonderland themed tea party this weekend which we'll sadly be leaving just before. We of course started chatting about costumes & decor. There was a piece of fun fur & a loose idea for ears... I had felt & thread in the car... they let me have my way with it, lol. Too fun.

He had these fun socks that I added a small panel of stuffing to the end & thread shaped some toes.The rest of the fur was stitched into a big poofy tail.

It was thoroughly enjoyable for me but they still wanted to trade for the night's stay. How lovely, right? What a great time!
8  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Sweet treats for my sweetie on: June 28, 2017 06:09:12 AM
We are really busy getting ready for summer stuff coming up next week and I'm wrapping up a swap but that hasn't stopped me from continuing to crochet at every chance I get!

A couple more strawberries, no pattern

A slice of cheese I made previously curled up and reminded me of a canoli so I made another in tan. When I stitched in the cream it ruined all the curvy edges so they are only tucked into the canoli and can be removed to put on other food. My daughter's had the bright idea that she can use the canoli shell for a veggie wrap with all those lovely vegetables I made her previously. Clever monkey!

I sort of followed the cupcake wrapper pattern here:

And Twinkie Chan's frosting "recipe" here:
(pretty long video, I skipped to the part I wanted).

The frosting didn't look right on the cupcake I made so I tried another frilly sort of topping with a cherry and saved this one for a pancake.

For an ice cream cone I looked over this pattern here but didn't follow it exactly:

9  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Extra special birthday picnic basket full of goodies on: June 24, 2017 05:44:17 PM
I've been working on this for 2 months for my little girl's 10th bday. We have a tradition handed down from my mom's side that each year is a just simple celebration with only family, a favourite dinner, and one simple but very nice gift. For ages 5, 10 & 15 friends can be invited for a bigger celebration and the nice family gift is a big one. We had a fancy dress tea party and did some fun crafting and I gave my daughter this "secret" that she's seen me working on every day.

The top fabric is a picnic blanket, inside there are 2 cloth napkins that match the lining I sewed for the basket.

When I went to the fabric store for gingham they had FOUR kinds! So of course I bought some of each, ha ha!

Inside the basket are so many sorts of food.

I have been posting them as I made them:
Salad, bacon and eggs. https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=452487.msg5447503#msg5447503
Burgers. https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=452543.msg5448494#msg5448494
Garden veggies. https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=452566.msg5449063#msg5449063
Pizza. https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=452580.msg5449297#msg5449297
Berries, broccoli and more. https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=452617.msg5450433#msg5450433
And finally these 2 pieces of bread I've been working on for ages. The "recipe" calls for 3 slices stitched together but I opted for 2 slices per piece because each one takes at least an hour so 6 of them would have been WAY TOO LONG!

She loved it all, we had such a nice time. Here's the party snack table, all the mamas sat around chatting while the kids played, it was lovely Smiley.
10  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Chicken and veggie stock incorporating juicer waste on: June 22, 2017 11:18:09 AM
I'm fasting this week and wanted to make juice but I never like disposing of the pulp, it feels like such a waste. I thought I'd make up some stock that could incorporate the dry cellulose.

I used kale, beet greens, parsley, carrot, apple and cucumber. I did the apple and cucumber last and composted that pulp thinking it might not be so excellent in soup. If I'd been more energetic today I could have baked with it but maybe next time.

I promise the juice tastes much better than it looks, ha.

Here is the pulp in with all the other stuff.

For the soup I roasted chicken bones (breast and neck) at 450 for about 30 mins.

Those went into pots along with the drippings, a bunch of chopped parsley,and roasted carrot, celery, and onion tossed in some olive oil, a little salt and pepper.

Here it is simmering away in 2 big pots.

When it's finished I'll strain it and add in some potato cook water (for potassium) then reduce it all to about half the volume so it will be very rich. Cooked down enough it becomes nearly as thick as gravy, it's so tasty even without any more salt added. The celery is high in organic sodium which lends enough of that anyhow.
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