Leg Warmers

I found this free pattern for colorful leg warmers on Pinterest by B. Hooked Crochet.  I thought these would look cute with some leggings or jeggings and would bring me back to my childhood in the 80’s.

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Final leg warmers pulled up.

I started the pattern with Caron Cakes, because there is a sweater I want to make next that uses Caron Tea Cakes and I wanted the colorways to be similar.  I was doing pretty good with the pattern and I thought it was working out pretty well.  But my calves are a little larger than the pattern suggested, so I needed a few more stitches, it called for 35 and I tried 45.  Well a chain of 45 turned out to be way too large for me, plus the colors didn’t change often enough with the Caron Cakes, so I ended up buying the yarn that is used in the pattern, Lionbrand Landscapes.  I also ended up only doing a chain of 38 stitches and, while still a little loose on my calves, not bad.

I liked the Lionbrand Landscapes yarn.  It was so soft and easy to work with, which was funny because some people commented that they thought it was difficult to use.  Or more specifically, more difficult to pull apart.  I think as long as you yank gently, it’s pretty easy to pull apart if needed.

Anyway, this was a quick and easy pattern.  Once I got the right yarn and the right circumference, it only took me four days to make them.  I wore them to work today and got several compliments and requests to make them for others.  lol

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Pumpkin cuddling while I work on my first version of the leg warmers.

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Pumpkin cuddling with me while I work on the second version of the leg warmers.

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Final leg warmers, slouchy style.

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Spinning Yarn

A little over a year ago, my friend and I were at a Fall Festival at a historic house outside Pittsburgh.  We got to the festival and explored the house and checked out the vendors and exhibits.  While we were looking around, we saw a lady on a spinning wheel.  I stopped and asked her questions and asked if I could try it, and she let me spin my own yarn on the spinning wheel.

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Photo Op at the Fall Festival.

OMG!  I was hooked; it was so cool to sit there and pull wool and make yarn!  I was able to spin a little bit of my own yarn on the spinning wheel and I thought this was the most incredible thing ever.  I was ready to run out and buy my own spinning wheel, but common sense told me to slow down a little.

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A little piece of yarn I made at the Fall Festival.

I did however do a little research and I found some drop spindles that are a lot more affordable and I found a YouTube video with a tutorial on how to use the drop spindle by MegganERisk.  I enjoyed this video and some of her others, she’s fun and I found her  easy to follow, not too slow and not too fast.

So, I went and bought a drop spindle on Amazon and I bought some roving and I started to spin my own yarn.  As predicted, my yarn spinning days were short-lived, so I’m glad I did not invest in the spinning wheel right away.  lol  There is just not enough time in the day to do all of the crafts I want to do.  And I guess spinning took a back seat, but I have gained an appreciation of the art of making yarn.  I still want to spin yarn and I think I will continue to do it as time permits, but it is not my primary hobby.

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My first spun yarn on a drop spindle.

Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer

My husband and I were at Costco a few weeks ago and I found the Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer crochet kit by Kati Gálusz.  Too cute!  It has the supplies to make Rudolph and Santa.

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Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer crochet kit

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Kit comes with instructions to make Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, Hermey, Sam the Snowman, and King Moonracer.

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Also includes instructions for Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, Misfit Doll, Charlie-in-the-Box, Misfit Elephant, Yukon Cornelius, and Clarice.

Usually, I can finish one of these little characters in a couple of days, but I’ve been a little busy, so it took me a week.  These little guys could make cute Christmas tree ornaments.  Just tie a string loop to them and hang them from your tree.

The instructions were very clear.  I think my only complaint about these little kits are the eyes.  For some reason, the eyes in these little crochet kits are so difficult to get on.  But other than that, totally worth the money and fun to make.  This kit would make a cute Christmas gift for anyone that crochets, or could even be good for someone just learning.

I still need to make Santa, but I have a long project to-do list right now, so I’ll have to come back to him.  But now, I want to watch Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer.

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Sammy always wants to cuddle while I’m crocheting.

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Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer

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Bridgeville Library Mini-Con

My friend had a table at the Bridgeville Library Mini-Con yesterday, so I decided to stop by.  There were a couple of craft tables there, including hers, Dawn’s Mystical Menagerie.  She sews bags and blankets and sells other mystical items.  I missed seeing her at the last Steel City Con, so I wanted to stop by and support her.

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Dawn’s Mystical Menagerie photo by Dawn’s Mystical Menagerie

The other tables included Pickle bug Stitches, Grace DuhLee Designs, and Comfy Creations of Washington, PA.  I always like to support crafty ladies and I love to attend craft shows.  I have an appreciation for hand made items, I guess and the work that goes into them.  I bought a couple of star wars pillow cases from Pickle bug Stitches, a snitch from Grace DuhLee Designs, and a Wonder Woman blanket from Dawn’s Mystical Menagerie.

We were only there for a few minutes, but the mini-con was cute.  We were there for the costume fashion show, so it was cute to see the kids showing off their cosplay.

I also had a nice time talking with the crochet ladies.  I was talking to the one lady that was working on the elephant from the Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer crochet kit.  I had just finished Rudolf from the same kit that morning.  We also talked about Lucy Ravenscar’s Star Wars Crochet kit.  She was also a fan of that kit.  She also gave me a great tip!  For those little crochet books that come in the crochet kits, it can be difficult to keep the books open while you are crocheting.  She uses binder clips to hold the book open.  I usually have my phone holding the book open, but her tip may work a lot better.

Skull Scarf

I found this free skull scarf pattern on Pinterest by Amanda Pants.  There are actually a ton of various skull patterns on Pinterest for hats, gloves, scarves, etc., but I just loved this one.

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Skull scarf #1 made w/ tc stitch and super long

The pattern is actually pretty easy.  The first one that I made, I admit, I was a little confused so I used a triple crochet (tc) instead of a double crochet (dc).  How could I make such a silly mistake?  I guess I had been doing a lot of British patterns at the time and I just upped the pattern from what I was reading.  Mt first attempt at this pattern came out really long as a result, which I love for scarves, so no probem.  And this yarn matched the color of my hair at the time, which was super fun.

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My scarf matches my hair!

I also bought some angora yarn to make some more.  I thought about making them to sell, but as I’ve said before, I get bored if I keep making the same thing over and over again.  So I only made one and kept them both versions of the scarves for myself.  This time I followed the pattern closer and made a smaller version of the scarf.  I love the angora yarn for this second scarf;  it’s the juxtaposition of soft pink angora yarn and skulls that amuses me.

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Super sweet and soft angora yarn

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Grrr. I’m a skull. But I’m also soft and fuzzy.

Project Graveyard – Stellar Patchwork Crochet Blanket

I found this Hufflepuff blanket pattern on Pinterest and I thought it would make a nice house warming gift for my co-worker and his fiance (both Hufflepuffs).  The pattern is labelled easy, and well it is easy in that it’s all single crochet (sc) stitch.  It also uses super bulky yarn, so I figured it would be quick AND easy.  But instead I found it to be confusing and frustrating.  This blanket is a royal pain in the ass.

While reading the instructions, I couldn’t for the life of me figure out how the color change was occurring between blocks.  I thought maybe the yarn was carried through or maybe it cut between blocks?  And that would really suck because I hate weaving in ends.  But this method just confused me.

I started this blanket several times; I just couldn’t figure it out until I found some online help on Ravelry.  I learned on there from other users that did the pattern that you need to keep eight balls of yarn going at the same time in order to change colors for each square.  I thought I had a pretty good system devised.  I balled all of my yarn and kept them in plastic Ziploc bags that were numbered (2 balls to a bag), so I could flip them over when I turned the pattern.  I saw other users used boxes to keep their yarn and other methods.  But overall, keeping that many balls of yarn going at once was a mess.

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In the end, I think I’ll just pull this all out and make a zig-zag blanket instead.  It will be much easier.  But I’ll pick this blanket up a little later.  Maybe as a wedding gift?

Bride of Frankenstein

My Halloween theme this year was Bride of Frankenstein.  I’ve been working on this theme all year, so it was great to see it finally come to life.  Many of my props I’ve been posting over the past week, but there were plenty of decorations as well like the Mad Scientist Lab Combo and the Frankenstein and Bride of Frankenstein wall decals.

My costume I made following the Little Miss Monstrous Costume pin on Pinterest and I also tried another pin to erase my eyebrows.  I’m not great at makeup, but overall I think my makeup came out pretty decent.  Also, my friend did the eyebrows because I knew I would mess those up.

For the costume, I followed the directions for the drape and arm wraps.  The wig, I crocheted.  I also made some gloves to cover my hands as well.  If I were to do it all over again, I would not have used ace bandages for the arms wraps.  They were not comfortable and kept slipping all day.  I think I’d probably just make wraps from rags.  Perhaps using a cheap bed sheet?  But I do love the final costume.  This pin has also been re-pined from my board probably at least a hundred times by now.  I hope there were a lot of Brides of Frankenstein out there this year.  And yes, this costume is much better and more authentic than the one I saw at Target.

So, my cubicle won 1st place at work and my costume won 3rd place.  I’m very happy with my results.  And I have at least two more Halloween ideas in my head to keep me going for the next couple of years, although it would be pretty difficult (and expensive) to top this one.