naturedance: crafting joy (crafting joy)

I learned to crochet precisely two stitches while in college, the chain and the double crochet. A few years later, I picked up a few more (it’s all your fault, Janis, and I will get even! *grin*). I do mostly yarn crochet, but have tried thread crochet just a tiny bit.

As always, more works are in progress… and I don’t seem capable of creating small projects for myself.

Afghans are portable hugs. Many of these afghans use a star-stitch pattern I learned from Leisure Arts A Year Of Q-Hook Afghans Book 2, the June pattern.

Now, if I can just untangle my fingers from all this yarn strewn about, I can tell you about my crochet projects… or you can go see them in my Crochet set on Flickr.

yarn barnage

This is a list of all of my completed projects, plus a few which are currently in progress.

  • The Forest Green Baby Blanket - for friends R&J, begun summer 2007 and hopefully completed Real Soon Now

  • The Cream/Navy Afghan - for cousin R for her wedding, begun spring 2005 and hopefully completed Real Soon Now

    • (Unfortunately I’m a couple years late finishing this; there was some confusion about which colors she wanted and my career chaos intervened…) Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick-n-Quick yarn, similar to the Poodle Afghan, but in cream and navy.

  • The Jewel Green Lap Afghan - for friend R, begun winter 2004/2005 and hopefully completed Real Soon Now

    • Using Lion Brand Jiffy yarn.

  • The Purple Scarf - for friend R, completed for New Years 2005

  • The Purple Baby Blanket - for cousin R, completed spring 2005

    • One strand of Bernat Baby Coordinates, very lacy.

  • The Yellow Baby Blanket - for D&S, completed summer 2004

    • I managed to get this one done on time, unlike their wedding blanket. One strand of Bernat Baby Coordinates, very lacy.

  • The Green Baby Blanket - for J&N, completed summer 2004

    • N’s been crafting a lot himself lately, but I wanted to make a blanket for their new little one. Two strands of Bernat Baby Coordinates, very fluffy.

  • The Green Baby Blanket - for Mom’s friend, completed spring 2004

    • Mom made a matching knitted baby hat with a little tassle on the top. They turned out beautifully.

  • The Purple Baby Blanket - for H&D, completed spring 2004

    • Of course this one had to be purple. Two strands of Bernat Baby Coordinates, very fluffy.

  • The Wedding Couch Scarf - for D&S, completed spring 2004

    • Yet another friend from college is now married… they couldn’t seem to decide on colors, so I chose a variegated yarn and ended up pleased with it.

  • The Housewarming/Wedding Throw - for M&L, completed year unknown

    • This one is very similar to the Winter White afghan I made for Mom, but used only two strands of Red Heart. The yarn is flecked with black, brown, and tan bits, so it has a bit of a more rustic look to it. Turned out nice and thick, but drapey rather than as heavy as the three-strander I made for Mom.

  • The Lavender/Turquoise/Blue/White Baby Blanket - for J&B, completed year unknown

    • Three strands of Bernat Baby Coordinates, cozily thick for Colorado.

  • The Creamsicle Throw - for myself, completed year unknown

    • Started because I really did want one small enough for the couch.

  • The Creamsicle Afghan - for myself, completed year unknown

    • Three strands of Red Heart again, and a throwback to my first orthogonal pattern which turned out very airy and soft when done with my huge Q-hook. This one is pale yellow, white, and peach, which when done together look, well, creamsicle-like. I was inspired by a beautiful cuddly foofy couch throw of S’s which is wedgewood and rose variegated and multistrand and just lovely and wonderful. But mine kind of… grew… it’s big enough to use on the queen-sized bed.

  • The Water Bottle Carrier - a birthday present for my friend J, completed year unknown

    • This was my first non-doily attempt at thread crochet. I’m pleased with it.

  • The Set of Navy Winter Scarves - for Mom & Dad, completed year unknown

    • I don’t remember which year these were, but I used two strands of a soft acryllic and they turned out beautifully. Dad’s is very, very long because he’s tall and likes to be able to wrap a scarf a few times around his neck and then tuck in the ends into his winter coat.

  • The Hexagon Throw - for my friends J&B, finished Fall 2001

    • I obviously bought way too much Red Heart at once, but I adore the Grape Ivy vareigated colors, so I decided to make giant overgrown granny hexagon. It turned out to be a lap-sized throw.

  • Winter White, Navy and Maroon Oversized Afghan - for Dad, finished Christmas 2001

    • I used Red Heart for this one, too, but it’s done with two strands rather than the three I used for Mom’s lap afghan. It’s a huge ripple afghan, made wide enough to wrap around two people or cover a queen-sized bed, and long enough that my 6′2″ Dad can tuck it under his toes and still pull it up to his chin easily. The blue bands are two strands of navy, the maroon and winter white bands are one strand of each.

  • The Poodle Afghan - made for my cousin S for her wedding, finished Fall 2001

    • No, it doesn’t have poodles on it. Nor did I use poodle-fur yarn. Nope, it’s the poodle afghan because one of the colors is a dark grey that looks, well, poodle-colored. This one is the same basic pattern as Mom’s winter white lap afghan, but made larger and with Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick-n-Quick yarn. I love this yarn. Mom made a pair of matching quillows to go with it.

  • Adele’s First Thread Crochet Project - a doily for Mom, started in 2000 and still in progress

    • It’s a spiralling pattern, and it’s still not done. Pheh. As of spring 2008, I’m still poking at it sometimes. I find thread crochet to be harder on the hands than yarn crochet.

  • Winter White Lap Afghan - made for Mom, finished Christmas 2000

    • Once again, Red Heart. Of course, I chose a pattern which called for much thicker weight yarn, so I used the recommended Q hook size, but worked with three strands at once. The resulting lap afghan is quite heavy and very warm.

  • The Granny Flower Garden Afghan - for myself, started in 2000 and still in progress

    • More Red Heart, this time a whole lotta lotta hexagons. This project is kind of stalled at the moment, but I haven’t given up on it yet.

  • Adele’s First Big Honkin’ Afghan - for myself, finished sometime in 2000

    • Or, “Adele learns a new stitch and how to read a pattern.” I used Red Heart because it is the beginner yarn. Durable, no dye lots to fret with, forgiving and inexpensive. I started out making a granny square, and well, it grew. A lot.

  • The Jeweltone Couch Scarf - for Janis, completed… year unknown, sometime prior to 2000ish

    • I don’t remember which year this was, but I used a beautiful variegated acryllic and a pattern of double crochets and chains similar to my white shawl, and it ended up big enough to curl up under on a couch, or to take to the office to sling around shoulders when office AC was too enthusiastic.

  • Adele’s First Ever Crochet Project - a yarn shawl/throw, started in 1992 and finished sometime… later.

    • I have no idea what kind of yarn it is; some sort of acryllic with a pearly strand running through it. I knew precisely one stitch when I designed the pattern… it’s all double crochets and chains, and is almost painfully orthogonal. But I still like it.

naturedance: crafting joy (crafting joy)
I've spent enough time with my fingers entangled in yarn lately that it's appropriate I add an icon for my crafty posts.

Whee, yarn! Crochet and knitting and acrylics and cottons and wools and alpaca!

Oh, speaking of handspuns and textiles and things... I keep losing this link for the Renaissance Pleasure Faire... April 16-May 22, Santa Fe Dam Recreational Area.
naturedance: crafting joy (crafting joy)

Mom tried to teach me to knit three times, once as a young child, once as a young adult, and again within the past few years after my friend Janis tried to teach me once. The lessons never seemed to make sense or stick in my mind. I have a handful of books about knitting; I have friends and relatives who knit; I tat and crochet and sew, and my roommate spins and colors yarn and crochets with yarn and thread and tats and quilts and knits the most absolutely amazing things… so we pretty much constantly have textile goodies and books everywhere around… but I just didn’t get knitting.

Until one day in spring 2005.

Suddenly, out of the blue, It All Made Sense.

I picked up a mess I’d started years before, and just started making motions with the needles and thread that felt right. At first the stitches were twisted, but within a few moments, after Janis showed me what “the stitches are twisted” meant, I had an “Oh! Aha!” moment and I’d gotten it. I set aside the mess, picked up a circular needle and some yarn waiting to become part of one of my crochet projects, and after a quick check in one of the books to make sure what felt right (which I think I remembered from watching Mom) was actually one real way of casting on, I was off and running. It took Janis and I a bit of flipping through our books to figure out that there’s a name for the method that came naturally to me; it’s not the way most folks poke the needle or wrap the thread, apparently. But suddenly, she can show me a stitch once and I understand it, try it a time or two, show it back to her to make sure I’ve got it, and then I can just run with it.

So I’m knitting.

I can’t seem to put the needles and yarn down, actually.

I’m knitting!!

online resources

brick-and-mortar resources

my projects

  • The Red Hat - started Christmas 2006

    • For Mom.

  • The Purple Fluffy Scarf - started Thanksgiving 2006

    • For someone who likes purple.

  • Lots of Ladder-Yarn Sparkle Scarves - started (and some completed) during 2005, 2006, 2007

    • For myself and others.

  • The Red Scarf- completed Christmas 2005?

    • For Mom.

  • The Brown Scarf and Hat - completed Christmas 2005?

    • For Mom.

  • The Felted Carry-Bag - started spring 2005, still unfinished

    • In progress. Three colors of Lambs Pride worsted weight.

  • Adele’s First Knitted Socks - started spring 2005, still unfinished

    • In progress. I’m still figuring out how to deal with sock-weight yarn and small double-point needles, but the socks Janis has made for me are oh so very comfy that I must be able to make my own.

  • The Purple Hat - started and finished spring 2005

    • My second knitted project. Lots of knits on round needles, with help from Janis to finish the ends and make the pompom for the top.

  • The Small Felted Party Purse - started spring 2005, still unfinished

    • My first knitted project. Lamb’s Pride worsted weight plus sparkley bits. The knitting is done, but I haven’t attached the strap yet or felted it.

naturedance: my foot, in my boot, on Mount Rainier (spring valley)
Blueberry bagels. Naked Juice Immunity Well Being blend. Nice yarn and smooth needles... yeah, I've started knitting.

Can you say "uh-oh", boys and girls? I knew you could... -- oooooooh... there's a review of some of Knit Picks' yarns!

Elegance Designer Yarns in Pasadena, CA
Skein in Pasadena, CA
Needle in a Haystack in Montrose, CA
The Patchwork Penguin in Tujunga, CA
Unwind in Burbank, CA

The Needlecraft Cottage in San Diego, CA

Sheep Street Fibers in Morgantown, IN
Massachusetts Avenue Knit Shop in Indianapolis, IN

Stores in California that carry Plymouth yarns - I'm addicted to socks made of Sockotta, and there's so many neat colors... and sometime soon I hope to be able to make my own...
Even more yarn stores in California

Hmmm. At this rate I may need to redo some of my LJ icons to include one of yarn. Whee, projects!
naturedance: my foot, in my boot, on Mount Rainier (Default)
I've finally gotten around to updating my crochet projects page, and uploading a few photos of some of the more recently completed projects.

Wow. Counting the lap-sized throws and the baby blankets, as soon as I finish the edging on the one I'm currently working on... I've made fifteen afghans.


Of course, I have enough yarn for goodness knows how many more in my storage tubs just waiting for my time and my Q-hook...

I spent some time tidying up the front and back container gardens today. Put in some pansies in the front, and an ivy geranium with blossoms the color of a really good merlot or cabernet. Geraniums seem to really like our front walkway; this one's the fifth one I've put there now, and they're all thriving. The succulents are doing great, and the irises seem to be doing OK. The marigolds never recovered from the leaf miner bastard bugs, so I pulled them out of there. They looked depressing. The tomato plant I had out front got overheated a few days and just didn't recover, but I count that experiment as a success. I might want to get another one of those half-grown plants again rather than the little seedlings I tried on the back patio... as soon as I eradicate the whiteflies on the back patio. Little bastards.

Yes, the back garden is still plagued by whiteflies. I need to pay more attention to that... if I were keeping a more regular eye on it, they might not be getting the upper hand. The antibacterial soap spray and the spray water bottle seem to actually work, but I have to do them on a regular schedule and I haven't been. Work craziness...

The basil and oregano are getting kind of spindley, but the mint is doing OK and some of the pepper plants are doing better than others. The tomato plants really need more level moderation of watering than I've been able to provide, but two of them are hanging in there. The chives that I had thought were dead may be making a comeback, and the lemongrass is doing great. The biggest problem other than the insect infestation seems to be construction dust from the building going in diagonally across the street from us; I'm going to be very glad when that settles down.

On Saturday Roommate and I made various excursions to thread and yarn shops in the area.
- Elegance Designer Yarns in Pasadena - website
- Skein in Pasadena
- Michaels in Pasadena
- Quilt 'n' Things in Montrose
- Needle in a Haystack in Montrose
- The Patchwork Penguin in Tujunga
- Michaels in Burbank

None of them are quite like The Needlecraft Cottage down in San Diego, nor are they quite like Sheep Street Fibers (website) in Morgantown, Indiana. Hey, that reminds me... next time I'm in Indianapolis I want to poke my nose into the Massachusetts Avenue Knit Shop.

And then there's always the catalogs, which seem to arrive just when willpower to resist their siren song is waning... Patternworks and and Lion Brand Yarns and Keepsake Needlearts can be rather addictive.

Ahhhh, projects.
naturedance: crafting joy (crafting joy)

Back in 1999, while visiting in San Diego with my favorite craft-cross-pollinator friend Janis, I bought myself a Bernette machine and a walking foot. Prior to that, I had been struggling along with a 1960’s White machine that I bought used from another student in college for ten bucks. Needless to say, I now have the tools to make real sewing projects… but still not enough time to do everything I want to do!

Meanwhile, I have a slowly-growing collection of quilts that others have made or purchased for me. This is descriptions of them… if you’d like to see photos of some of them, please visit my Quilting set on Flickr.

Grandma Schesel’s Hawaiian Quilt - completed by Mom in December 1999

This is a rescue quilt… my father’s sister Lucy purchased three quilt tops from her mother’s mother, sometime in the last few years of Great-Grandma’s life. She saved them for a while, and then, when she and my Mom were chatting about some of Mom’s other rescue quilt projects for her coworkers, Aunt Lucy brought them out. My Mom put backing fabric and edging on them but didn’t quilt them, and now each of Lucy’s daughters and I are the curators of these little pieces of family history.

The quilt top was done in little pieces with backing fabric sewn behind each one of them (I’m still trying to find a good website describing the technique that was used). Some of the fabric pieces look like striped men’s shirt material, others little calico apron prints, and some pieces still show previous sewing-holes where they were part of some other garment in their other life.

One of the newer fabrics used was called “the Hawaiian fabric” by Great-Grandma, so she dubbed this quilt “the Hawaiian Quilt”, and the name stuck, although I’m sure that Great-Grandma never went to the islands… Because I majored in GeoChem in college, I went on a weeklong senior field trip to the big island in 1996 and fell in love with the place. Mom and Aunt Lucy thought it would be appropriate that I be given care of this particular quilt for that reason.

Grandma Walker’s Iris Lap Quilt - purchased in 1996

Grandma Walker din’t quilt. But when she and her friend Doris came out to California from the East Coast for a visit in 1996, they saw me admiring a sample quilt of purple irises in the local quilt shop window. The store didn’t normally sell those samples, but rather keeps a rotating display of them. Grandma talked them into selling it to her anyway, and gift-wrapped it for me. Once I get better at narrow points, I’m planning on using it to create a pattern for my own irises quilt.

Mrs. Borgess’ Lap Quilt - completed in 1996

Grandma Walker’s friend Doris Borgess brought this one when they came to visit me. It’s machine pieced and tied, backed with a lovely lace fabric, and is just big enough for me to curl up under.

Mom’s Project-Scraps Nine-Patch Quilt - completed sometime in the late 1980’s or early 1990’s

Mom made this quilt for me from leftover fabrics which she had made clothing, costumes and projects from as I was growing up. Most squares on this quilt have a lot of meaning for me. It’s machine-pieced and edged, and tied on a medium-thick batting. Mom’s put new batting in it once already for me, because the original batting didn’t hold up well in patches.

Mom’s T-Shirt Quilt - completed in 1990

Mom made this one for me while I was in high school, and used many of the T-shirts I had accumulated over the years by participating in all sorts of activities. Of course, there were all different sizes of T-shirts, since some of the summer camp shirts came from when I was in elementary school. It’s machine-pieced and edged, and tied on a medium-think batting. One important lesson learned from this quilt: if you have red fabrics, make sure you wash them and wash them and wash them before putting them into a quilt.

Mom’s Months-of-Flowers Quilt - completed in 1997 or 1998

This is another of Mom’s rescue quilts. She found the squares all sewn together with no borders at the Bargersville Flea Market in Indiana, washed them up, separated them, and put them back together with machine-stitched borders, edging, and a thin batting.

Mom’s Lace-Penguin Quillow - completed around 1990

Mom made this quillow for me a while ago… all while I was growing up, I adored penguins. The quillow pattern is a nice little piece of engineering. This one’s machine-pieced, the pillow front is machine-quilted, and the blanket part is tied on a medium-light batting.

Mom’s Print-Penguin Quillow - completed around 1990

This one’s machine-pieced, the cotton-print pillow front is machine-quilted, and the blanket part is tied on a medium-light batting.

naturedance: crafting joy (crafting joy)

My grandmother taught me to tat, and I have met very few others who practice the craft. I was thrilled to find other sites on the web related to tatting!

I taught my friend Janis to tat, and she’s done amazing work! Go see! We take turns cross-pollinating each other with projects and fascinations…

Information, background, and generally useful pages

Online Suppliers

  • Lacis - Located in Berkeley, California, Lacis offers an extensive online catalog of tatting supplies, as well as other lacemaking-related information and products. They sell tatting shuttles made of most any material: plastic, metal, horn, shell, etc.

  • Tatting Shuttle Links - links to many different amazing shuttle suppliers.
  • Snowgoose - Online catalog of hard-to-find lacemaking supplies with a snail-mailable order form. They also offer an extensive range of tatting shuttles made from most any material.

  • Lace Bobbins by Chris Parsons - Offers hand-painted wooden tatting shuttles.

  • Nordic Needle - Supplies and information, specializing in Hardanger Embroidery, but with some tatting and other fine embroidery as well.

Guilds, Organizations and Mailing Lists

  • The Lacemaker’s Home Page - Arachne’s Web Server is simply a great resource.

  • I.O.L.I. Home Page - International Old Lacers Home Page, dedicated to people who love lace, who like to study, to make, to collect, and to use lace.

  • The Lace Museum & Guild - non-profit organization in the based in the San Francisco area.

  • Tat-Chat Mailing List and Forum. For those interested, sign up for the mailing list is at and there is a forum which can be accessed from the same place. This list is based in the US and is moderated by Maus (a.k.a. Etha Schuette). (submitted to this resource list by Elisa Green.)

Please note that my mention of these sites is by no means an endorsement.

I have been so busy lately that I haven’t even had time to order anything from my wishlist of tatting supplies from any of them. If I hear of bad service from the suppliers, or if a page stops being supported, I will remove it from this page.

If you know of links that should be included here, please comment or email me. Thank you!

February 2017

   123 4


RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 23rd, 2017 01:53 am
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios