Friday, August 28, 2015

 Considerations ................
I keep thinking I need to get back to my blogging. 
But every time I come in and start writing, I end up feeling like I am ranting. Not sure that is what I really want to be doing. 
But I have a hard time being chipper, chirpy and cute.  
Not  really my style.
It feels fake to me anyways. 
Whose life is truly like that?
So what is a girl to do?
There is a lot of things I feel passionate about. 
My crocheting. 
The crochet world as a whole.
Designer frustrations. 
Pattern theft.
Respect, or lack there of.
And I definitely don't want to start in on politics or religion. 
That is can of worms I will leave unopened. 
I know my beliefs and I act accordingly. 
I will leave the soap box to others. 

Oh I can post pictures. I am good with pictures. Me and my camera are good buddies, But I post my flower pictures on face book where they get enjoyed by a whole lot more people. 

Should I post what I am doing. Can't really say too much since I am a designer. Can't post pictures of pieces in progress, and how many times can you hear I spent the morning working on such and such piece, or writing up a pattern. 

But that is how my day goes. It's not glamorous, It's not earth shattering. It's a job, like so many others. Don't get me wrong. I love my designing. But most of it is just the slogging along putting one stitch in front of another. Or writing it up in as concise manner as I possibly can. 

I don't want to do how to pieces. There are a ton of them on U Tube and one more in the pot won't make that big of deal. Besides it is not where I want to put my energies, just to attract more followers.

Not that I need the followers like the blogs that rely on ads to bring in income. So you won't find free patterns here on my blog. 
Oh shut up Kathy!
That is a rant in the making. 
See I do have a problem. 
Kathy!
you should be charming, chatty and chipper. 
Okay who is that stranger...... I would ask.

I think I will be me and you will get my rants. 
Because truly this is my blog and it's where I can share how I feel about things. Things I care about. 
Like where  crocheting it going,  
And you will have to put up with me telling you I spent the morning in the frog pond. 



Saturday, March 21, 2015

National Crochet Month Designer Blog tour..... My Day!!!!!!!


Once again the National Crochet month designer blog tour is in full swing and it is finally my turn.
Thank you Crochetville for making it happen once again. Thank you Amy and Donna for all your hard work that goes into putting this on each year.
This year they have chosen the Halos for Hope as the official charity, so if you are into charity crochet here is the link. 
HalosofHope  
To help celebrate the joy of crochet with everyone I am providing the patterns for my Poinsettia
 
Link Removed 3/29/14
and sunflower pincushions.
 
Link Removed 3/29/14
I will kept the links on my blog for a week starting on the 21st. I have now removed the links. I hope you had a chance to get them and enjoy.
Photo Courtesy of Interweave Crochet
 I do want to brag a bit as my Roslind skirt and shrug are in the Spring Interweave Crochet 2015 issue. Proud of this as it proves I am slowly making my way into designing more garments.
I am also releasing my Secret Garden doily this weekend . I am doing an introductory price
and will raise the price a dollar at the end of the week.
SecretGarden
Website link
or in my
CrochetnbeadsEtsyshop
for an instant download.
 This one allowed me to check off one item on my bucket list. The one where I wanted to create doily worthy of the 1st place prize in that division. I cried tears of joy for that one. It really meant a lot to me since thread and doilies are my all time favorite things to create and create with.
Well enough credits, bragging and sharing.
 Here are my thoughts about crochet at this time.
This year I moved from Phoenix Arizona to Muskogee Oklahoma.
 What this brought home to me was how much environment plays in our crochet choices. 
I went from an environment that I was lucky to wear my light shawls 1-2 months out of the year to an environment that I will be really glad to crochet me more hats, scarves and gloves this next year.
It really did get me thinking about the things that influence our choices in what comes off of our hooks.
Environment
In our homes for example a cook might be more inclined to crochet hot pads, dishcloths, place mats and cookware totes.
Someone like me who collects antiques might want to crochet more doilies, tablecloths and the like to accent and protect my treasures.
Or maybe you are more contemporary and pillows, rugs and throws to accent your furniture.
A busy parent might crochet toys for their children or clothes for them. Or maybe some great crochet beanbag chairs. Not to forget those whom have become grandparents may well choose the same sort of item.
Climate
Where it is hot most of the year one does not feel very inclined to make sweaters, heavy shawls, warm hats, gloves and warm scarves. No, you are more inclined to make light lacey shawls, Airy sun hats, and scarves that are more air the thread. The lighter the better. Not only does it influence the type of items you crochet, But the colors and the type of yarn you might use. When the sun beats down on you head you don’t want dark colors. But light colors. White, soft baby blue, yellow, and creams all are more what you would be inclined to use in this type of enviroment. Laceweight, sock yarn and thread would be more appropriate to this type of work and the big bulky yarn wouldn’t hold the same appeal to you in this sort of climate. Cotton and silk would seem a better choice over wool too.
Where the winters are decidedly cold and you have transitional months all those things would not have nearly the charm. Instead sweaters, vests, warm shawls, gloves, mitten, and fingerless mitts would hold more charm. Not to mention cowls and scarves. Things that can be layered on as needed and still be fashionable would appeal more to you. Darker colors that absorb the heat from the sun would be seen more often. The fibers would have more bulk and most likely have more wool content than in the warmer climate.  
So as my environment has changed I know what will call to me to make will change a bit also. I will be curious to see how this changes the things I design. Maybe, just maybe I may even design a cowl someday. Okay, don’t hold your breath on that one.
Regardless though of who you are and were you live as long as there is something on you hook that brings you pleasure and satisfaction it is all good.
I can not imagine a world where crochet isn’t needed or wanted. 

Monday, March 9, 2015

Hey we moved.

Surprise!!!!!
 I know, it's been forever since I wrote on my blog. That is because a lot has been happening in my life.
I no longer live in Arizona
We sold our house and moved.
Where you ask.... Why Muskogee Oklahoma.
Why you ask....... Because.
actually for a lot of reasons.
Decent climate. Not too hot.... Not too cold.
Oh I know they get both. But not to extremes and not forever and a day.
It's green and my soul was crying for green growing things.
Nice people. We visited the area last summer and everyone was very friendly. So far everyone has been wonderful since we moved. Not so small town that we feel like outsiders, but not such a large city that we feel like we are just another one of the masses. Nice balance.
Easy access to lakes and hiking. Lots of subject matter for my camera later this year. Once we get the house just the way we want it.
Green Leaf state park
I am almost as close to a major airport as I was in Phoenix, But the drive is now lovely.
The sky changes more often. I love looking at clouds and their play across the sky.  The day after day of blue in Phoenix actually was hard on me at times.
The house the day of inspection
We have found a wonderful house for us. We actually upsized. Which gives us the family room and a room for each of us to have our own project room. Marv is thinking about trains. he tried it years before, but with no space large enough to set up a nice layout he set it aside. Now he can.
family room before transformation
You know what my room will be for. Thread, yarn, craft and more thread. Oh and my beads, sewing and what ever else my fingers want to play with.
Pip has his own fenced yard that he can go out and just wander in anytime he wants. He loves to sit on the brick wall around the patio and watch the squirrel in the trees. Should be interesting this summer. And I will have room for a garden. Already starting to map it out.
Garden layout
The cats now have their own little fenced yard they have access to from my craft rm. So they can sit in the sun and be cats while being safe.
My hook seems happy here and I am full of ideas and have done some nice work so far.
Hopefully once we get the house the way we want these beauties will be put to use.
Though my hook is definitely not idol.
What a wonderful new world for us.


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Vacation

I can't say I have ever taken a vacation just for the fun of it. Normally we go see family, or such. Oh we do the occasional weekend. But 5 days of being treated to good food, wonderful scenery and great conversations made my trip to Maine exceptional.
Michele Maks of Mainly Crochet invited me to come stitch by the sea after convention. Promised me a lobster dinner. Now who in their right mind could say NO to that.
It was wonderful. I got to wiggle my toes in the Atlantic ocean, Eat ice cream while watching sail boats come and go in Camden Harbor, see the awesome view from Camden Hill, walk the Giants steps, eat more ice cream in a flower garden, wander a secluded cove.
Then there was the fabulous food. If Michele ever decided to quit the crochet world. she would make an awesome chef. We had our lobster as promised and I can now say I have ravaged a whole lobster on my own. Then there was crochet talk, photo shoots, picture taking and my hook was happily creating when ever I got the chance.
Loved all the beautiful green.
and would love to visit Maine again.
Of course Michele's dog Mika made a point to make sure I wasn't too dog deprived without Pippie.
 



 




 






 

 

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Convention

Well I have been home a few days now and my mind and body are beginning to slide back into my normal routines.
Not that anything is normal these days, but more on that in another post.
I had a grand time at convention. Enjoying what I like best about the whole thing. Talking, sharing and rubbing elbows with fellow crochet addicts.
I was very pleased with how I did in the design contest.
I finally took a 1st place in the Thread division. So I get to cross an item off my bucket list.
 
My skirt took a 2nd in the Fashion Division which of course thrilled me.
My Riviera Shawlette got an honorable mention. But when I posted it to my CrochetNBeads page on facebook it took off like a house on fire. over 24,500 looks, That was just mind blowing.
So the reactions to all my pieces have left me with a warm glow.
To be honest I was a little disappointed with the banquet. Being the 20th anniversary. I expected a celebration program. There wasn't much to be honest. Just a short program and the fashion show, Which felt a little rushed this year. I hated the half hour standing in the hall waiting to get in once they opened the door. It would have been much nicer to have set my things down at my table then wandered and visited. As was we just moved the line in a bit closer and we paid for that privilege.
I took 2 classes. One with Mary Beth Temple on Independent pattern publication to see if she had some ideas I hadn't thought of. She did and I will have to give some thought on how to incorporate them into my business.
The second was my fun class. Free Form with Margaret Hubert. She is such a dear and it was so fun to take her class. I made me a little needle case instead of the bag as I know me and a purse would sit in a drawer. The needle case will go in my work bag and I will think of the fun I had creating it every time I use it. 
Next year will be San Diego. Which was a surprise as it was my understanding the west coast just doesn't draw enough people. There will also most likely not be a design contest either. Oh well the ideas that are brewing for it will have a little more time to mature this time.
Then I had the fun and privilege of heading to Maine with Michele Maks for 5 days. I will share that experience tomorrow.  Lets just say my camera got a work out. Loved the green......



Monday, May 19, 2014

Secret Identity

Time: 3:14am
With my head pounding from the crud that will not let go and an idea that is just as tenacious. I decide I might as well get up and try and relieve both problems.
So after doing my Canadian goose imitation, I grab my clip board, pencil, and a throat drop, I head out on the back porch and the cool night air. Sitting comfortably for the moment, I start my sketch of the motif that was keeping me awake.
 I had it almost complete when I realized
I wasn't alone....................
 
..............scurrying across the floor was a mouse.
Apparently in a moment of relived youth one of the cats brought it in. Of course enthusiasm  probably waned quickly and they let it go.
So it's just me and the mouse. I quietly closed the door. The mouse wasn't going to get into my home.... No Siree!   
Armed with nothing but a clip board I start my attack.
Dodging first right,
then left,
 then right again,
Deftly switching my clip board from one hand to the other.
left then
right again,
the battle goes on.
 I finally prevail,
 and the mouse scoots out the door I had opened for him.
He turns around and slams back into the door I had just shut.
( not my fault he's not very smart, he did get up and run away )
So all ends well,
I feel like a super hero.
Preserving my home, protecting the innocent,
and being kind to dumb animals all at one time.
 
I look down and laugh
I do have my super hero suit on.
No spandex or leotards here, But
The one I wear all the time.
I am NAKED.....
See we all wear the same super hero suit.
We can all be heroes
In small ways,
Without being on U tube.
 ( Believe me I definitely don't want my little episode to go viral on the net.  This is not a young svelte body I am flashing here, but a woman nearing 60. Nor can my neighbors, or passing strangers can see onto my porch My super hero identity is safe )
Like Clark Kent though I hide my suit everyday under layers of clothing
So do you...
But under it all we are all heroes!
In small ways.
Let's celebrate our unique ability to be a hero everyday.
In small ways.
3:30 am
Sketch done,
snuggled back in bead, Bilbo asleep on my pillow, Elsie asleep in the crook of my arm. Marv snoozing peacefully beside me, and Pippie at our feet.
All is well.
My secret identity is safe..............
Until next time!




Friday, May 16, 2014

Into every life.............

Catalyst
Funny how disaster can also be a catalyst.
Yesterday afternoon I had a horrible moment when my tablet hit the tile floor in the kitchen. Tablet 0, Floor 1..... After the tears dried up, I was still a bit shaken to say the least. It's never a good time to have that sort of expense pop out of the clear blue. But I finally put things in proper perspective.
It wasn't the end of the world.
Just the tablet.
It could be replaced.
And we did replace it last night as I truly do need it. It keeps me mobile and in touch anywhere we go. Plus I can work on it unlike my smart phone.
Since my brain was whirling and twirling, I decided discretion was the better part of valor and put up my doily design I am working on. Figured anything I did yesterday would have to be redone. So why add to my frustration level. None of my projects that demand my focus was going to be a good idea.
So I found the thread I want to use for the Mariah Shawl. Chose my hook, and started crocheting.
Well of course I can't leave anything alone and within a half hour I was going OOOOH! What If...
So, ripppp....  and away I go in a slightly different direction. So much happier with it so far.
But now it's no longer the Mariah Shawl. I have decided to rename this version  Maria..... Because now the design is signing to me.

So out of disaster come success. You just never know what is going to set things in motion.
You will have to wait until I am done to see the Maria Shawl
Mariah Shawl in Paton's Lace
Like but not love
Thought of blaming all this on the full moon.
But lets be honest. I am a bit of a KLUTZ
I put in some Oleander this year. My first blooms in the evening light
 
I will be glad when May is over though It's been a rough month so far.