Monday, August 17, 2009

Bag Brag

Another Crochet student of mine has finished her it is time to Brag!! Angela finished her oversized bag in record time. She simplified the pattern on her own. Instead of two front, two back and one bottom panel, She made a front and a back and incorporated the two side panels into the bottom panel. She was able to save a few steps as she was joining the pieces together. I love the colors! Angela is super creative and makes beautiful quilts. She has also taken my knitting classes....she is one multi-talented lady!!
Visit Angela's Blog at

Everything But The Kitchen Sink Bag!!

As a crochet and knit instructor I just love getting to see the completed projects of my students.

I want to take a few minutes and brag on one of my students, Stephanie. She made this wonderful crocheted bag with a double strand of cotton yarn. I believe it was made in seven separate crocheted pieces that she joined together. It is one big bag that will hold everything but the kitchen sink....maybe even that too if you just squish a little. I love the tassels she made to individualize her bag. She added a bit of bling and some flip flops which I found out she is a bit partial to. Stephanie is a busy lady...Wife, Mother, Sister, full-time teacher, and friend. Despite all her obligations she finds time for her "Crochet Therapy."....Way to go Steph!!

Crochet On my friend!!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Yarn Sculpture Bowl

Yarn Sculpture Bowl

This is a wonderful way to use up those scraps of yarn!
I am teaching a kids craft class this week at the Community Center and this is what we are making....a yarn sculpture bowl! This is such a fun activity for anyone age 2 - 92! You really get to get all sticky with glue and just make a real mess! Isn't that half the fun of creating art?
This is really easy to do: Materials needed are a blown up balloon, 2 disposable bowls, yarn, scissors, and glue (I used Elmer's Glue)..
First, blow up the balloon and set it tied side down into the bowl. (This just keeps the balloon in an upright position and allows your hands to be free to create your magic.)
next, cut many pieces of yarn, at different lengths...cut more than you think you will need.
Then pour a good amount of glue into the remaining bowl. Dip each piece of yarn into the glue and place over the top of the balloon in any pattern you choose. Just make sure that the pieces of yarn overlap eachother.
When you have completed your design...allow the glue to dry overnight. After glue is completely dry pop the balloon and remove it .....and your masterpiece is complete!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Crochet Creations of one of my Students

I wanted to highlight one of my student's work she has completed. Marsha and I have been meeting now for several months at least a couple of times a month. She and another student, Ella, and I meet at a local Barnes & Noble and make many fun items.
The first item is an afghan that she made using 3 different neutral colored yarns held together and crocheted at the same time.
This afghan is made from multi-colored yarn ...I believe she used 2 strands at a time...I love the Autumn Colors.
This is a cream scarf made from chunky weight yarn....very warm!

Another chunky weight yarn scarf in a beautiful rust color.

A trio of scarves...these make lovely gifts.

A close up of one of her afghans.

This was a fun little project. Ella brought a completed toilet paper cover to class without instructions for how to crochet it. We figured out how to make them just from looking at the example that she brought. This is the one Marsha crocheted. This turned out so cute....I just love the flower and ribbon she added.

I just love sharing my love of crochet with others!! What a great way to
meet people and make lasting friendships...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Cupcake baby set

The newest addition to one of my Etsy Shops....

The bib is backed with recycled denim and trimmed in hand crocheted lace. Onesie is appliqued with matching cupcake, sprinkle beads, and a button cherry. Socks are trimmed with hand crochet beaded lace. This would make a wonderful baby shower gift for any "sweet" baby girl!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A little Quilt piece....of love

This is a little quilt block I made to send to Spirit Jump. What is Spirit Jump you ask? It is a non-profit Charity that helps Cancer patients to receive a little Spirit Jump of their own. This block is for a quilt that is going to be made for a lady named Karen Jo. 40 individuals are making a 7" x 7" quilt block, (each their own design), and sending them to an individual who has offered to sew them together into a quilt. Anyone who is artsy or craftsy can make an item for someone and send it to them. Even if you aren't artistically talented, you can purchase an item and mail it or make a monitary contribution. This is such a wonderful program to help others get through the trials they are facing with cancer. All "Spirit Jump" purchases from my Etsy stores will receive a discount.

Visit,, and for the details.

To join or learn more about Spirit Jump you can go to

Saturday, June 13, 2009

A Tisket a Tasket....a little Easter Basket!

This is a super way to use up scraps of yarn left over from completed projects!!
Using 5 different strands of yarn at one time ,(I used 1 chunky yarn, 2 worsted weights, 1 baby weight, and a novelty fun fur yarn), I used a really large crochet hook and started at the base of the baskets and worked in a circular pattern using a double crochet stitch. When the bottom was completed, I worked into the back loop for one round which allowed for the basket to form a rounded shape. Then I started decreasing toward the top and stitched the handle right into the basket. I have 4 kids, but could only find pics of 2 baskets...go figure...the other two were done in oranges and purples....They are now nicely packed away to be used again next Easter!!

2 years ago this month I moved the the beautiful Valley of the Sun. I met my good friend, Jennifer...a.k.a. Jenn, through a mutual friend. I was so excited to meet someone who had such a passion for yarn and fiber as myself. She not only creates beautiful things through crochet, but she even dyes and spins her own yarn....(I wanna be just like her when I grow up!!) Shortly after we met she gave me the most beautiful little crocheted basket. I use it to hold small projects I have in the works. This last Easter I thought it would be fun to make some baskets for my kiddos.... the basket she gave me being my model and inspiration..... As a yarn junkie I have oodles of yarn just sittin' around waiting to be made into something decorative or useful.....these baskets fill both of those categories.

Jenn's websites are listed under sites I love on my blog (hers are the windrose sites)....check out her Etsy Shops!!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Aly's Cream Puffs

My daughter, Aly, had to do a report on Iceland and make a traditional food to share with her 5th grade class. In Iceland they have "Bun Day", which is a pastry like cream puffs made from egg instead of yeast. She did a FABULOSO job!!!


Woman can not live on yarn alone.......

Woman Can Not Live On Yarn Alone
Sweet Roll Dough
1/2 C warm water (100 - 115 degrees)
2 pkgs active dry yeast
1 1/2 C lukewarm milk
1/2 C sugar
2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1/2 C shortening
7 to 7 1/2 C sifted gold medal flour (add 1/2 of flour at a time.)
For excellent eating and keeping quality, keep dough as soft as possible, almost sticky.
Mix all ingredients with spoon until smooth. Add enough remaining flour to handle easily; mix with hands. Turn onto lightly floured board, knead until smooth and elastic (about 5 min.) Round up in a ball into a greased bowl, grease top of dough...Cover with damp cloth. Let rise in warm place (85 degrees) until double (about 1 1/2 hr). Punch down; let rise again until almost double (about 30min). Divide dough for desired rolls. Shape, let rise, bake according to following directions.
Makes: 2 Christmas Tree Breads
(Fun for kids to make and great gifts for friends at Christmas time)
After dough rises, divide dough in two (one for each tree). Form each into 17 (1 1/2 inch balls) Arrange on slightly greased baking sheet in a 5,4,3,2,1 pattern and with 2 balls rolled together for the trunk. Let rise until double (20-30) min.) Bake until golden brown. Decorate with Quick White Icing, candied fruit, and decorating candies
Bake 350 degrees for 15-20 min.
Quick White Icing:
Sift confectioner's sugar into bowl. Moisten with milk, add vanilla flavoring. Drizzle over warm rolls.
Cream Cheese pull-aparts (Makes 2)
Use 1/2 sweet roll dough. After dough rises, divide dough into 30-32 1/2" balls. Flatten, and fill with 3/4 tsp cream cheese filling, pressing edges to seal. Dip in melted margarine or butter, roll in mixture of 1 C sugar and 1 tsp. cinnamon. Place in greased bundt pan. Let rise (covered) until double. Bake at 350 for 15-20 min or until done.. (For the ones pictured, I didn't use a bundt pan, I used a mini muffin pan and they turned out great...reduce baking time to 10 min or so....
Rich Cream cheese filling:
Mix together then whip:
(2) 8 oz. pkgs. cream cheese (softened)
3/4 C sugar
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla
Bohemian Braid
Folow recipe for Sweet roll dough except, with first addition of flour add 2 tsp grated lemon rind
1/4 tsp. mace
1 C raisins
1 C chopped almonds
After dough rises, divide dough into 2 portions to make 2 braids. Divide each portion into 4 equal parts. Shape 3 of the parts into strands 14" long. Place them on lightly greased baking sheet. Braid loosely fastening strands at one end, then tucking under. Divide remaining portion of dough into 3 parts and shape into 3 strands 12" long. Make another braid and place second braid on top of the large braid.. Repeat for the other braid. Cover and let rise until double (45 - 60 min.) Brush with egg yolk. Bake until rich golden brown. Ice while warm with Quick White Icing.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 - 40 min
For special holiday touch decorate with candied cherries and pecan halves.

Basic Sweet Bread Dough Let rise and then punch down

Separate dough into 3 different types of bread:
1. Christmas Tree Bread
2. Bohemian Braid
3. Cream Cheese filled mini muffins

So I don't always crochet or knit....sometimes I like to have another creative of which is baking. I think I come by it pretty honestly. My Grandma Urban was an awesome baker. I use to love to watch her bake. She never measured anything...just went by look and feel. She made the BEST kolaches in the world!!! (A Czech pastry) I have her kolache recipe and a few others that I hold dear to my heart :) The above are not her recipes...but they are yummy just the same.....

bAby BoOties.....

I teach crochet lessons each week to a couple of ladies at a local Barnes and Noble bookstore.
Although my student Ella is a beginner, she wanted to make a baby hat and booties for a friend of her daughter who was expecting her first child.
The pattern said it was a beginners pattern, but as we got into the construction we soon found out that it was not so......
the top of the hat and the sole of the booties
were fairly easy. The lacy edges
were really a bit confusing even
for me and I've been crocheting for
30+ years....We eventually figured the funky little stitch out and
she completed a lovely project.
She made another set just like it
in pink for another friend.
I think she did a superb job!!!

Way to go Ella!!!

bloom where you're planted

Just a little twist on the plain knit and crochet dish cloth....

I made these for Teacher Appreciation Week......

They make great gifts for just about anything.....

Made from 100% cotton yarn they are very absorbent and are just the
best dishcloths ever....

I wrote a little poem to go with the flower and attached as a gift tag.....

I almost always have a little ziplock bag in my purse filled with cotton yarn and a crochet hook......

Just the perfect project to carry along wherever you go....

Chain 25 with size G or H hook,
single crochet across first row,
then single crochet into back loop only
creates a dishcloth that has ridges....the texture help for scrubbing dishes....

Have fun creating your own flower garden!!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Felting Fun 101

Although this wasn't actually my first felting project it was just
as exciting as if it had been.
The anticipation of what the project will look like after
being felted is half the fun.
I used 100% worsted weight wool that I had hand dyed with kool-aid.
I crocheted cuff bracelets that were large enough to slip over my wrists easily. (Allowing for shrinkage during the felting process.)

The first thing is giving the bracelets a hot bubble bath in the sink.

I let them soak just a bit.

The next step was the agitation process.
I just rubbed the crocheted bracelets between my hands and fingers
squishing water and bubbles through the wool fibers. The water turned the
color of the kool-aid dye, as I did not rinse the yarn after I dyed it.

The next step is to rinse in cold water and squeeze out the excess water.

Let the projects air dry. Then they are ready for wearing!! They can also be
embellished with almost anything you can imagine....
embroidery, beads, pearls, crystals, or buttons
just to name a few.
These are so fun to wear and go with just about any