Adieu, adieu, parting is such sweet sorrow – NOT!

As I pack up my minivan for the last show of the season, I am loathe to admit that, yes, I am glad that it’s over, and yes, I’ll be doing it again!  I went all out this year, purchasing a canopy, lights to illuminate my wares for night time shows, a cool pink chair that has a lot of gee-gaws, including a fold out side area for my lunch, electronics, etc.  I am pleased to say that my endeavors were able to cover the costs of the purchases I felt necessary, even though the money earned managed to disappear in the general household fund.  How does that happen?

Anyway, with all this industriousness, I was able to write up a few of my own patterns and will be sharing them as soon as I can.  The first one I have is very popular and doesn’t stay around long.

 

California Little Quail Messy Bun Hat

California Little Quail Messy Bun Hat

I named this hat after the California Quail because it’s little curved crest reminded me of the bobble stitches on the hat.

This pattern is worked in rounds with joins.  When joining, sl st to the first st, and work first st in the new round in this spot.  Here is a link for the method.  It reduces the gaps when joining, giving the finished work a much neater look.

Abbreviations:

Yo = yarn over

Ch = chain

St(s) = stitch(es)

BLO = back loops only

Sc = single crochet

Dc = double crochet

Tr = treble crochet

FPSC = work single crochet in the post of the stitch directly below from the front

FPDC = work double crochet in the post of the stitch directly  below from the front

Materials:

1 skein worsted weight yarn

Crochet hook size I or 5.5 mm

Definitions:

Bobble stitch: work tr EXCEPT leave the last two loops on hook; yo twice, and repeat, leaving three loops on hook; yo twice, and repeat.  There should be four loops on hook; yo, draw through all the loops.

With I hook (5.5 mm), ch 20, join with sl st to first ch to make a circle.

Round 1:  ch 1, 24 sc into the circle.  Ensure the sts are lined up so as not to twist them; join

Round 2:  ch 2, dc in each st = 24 dc

Round 3:  ch 2, *2 dc in first st, dc in next st* around, join = 36 dc

Round 4:  ch2, *2 dc in first st, dc in next 3 sts* around, join = 45 dc

Round 5:  ch 2, *2dc in first st, dc in next 5 sts* around, dc in last 2 sts, join =  53 dc

Round 6:  ch 1, FPSC around, sl st to first sc, then sl st to first st in back row

Round 7:  Working in the back round of sts, ch 2, *work 2 dc in first st, dc in next 6 sts* around, dc in last 3 sts (the last st will be half hidden because of the unusual join at the beginning of the round – don’t despair, it’s there!), join = 61 sts

Round 8:  ch1, sc in BLO around, inc. 3 sts evenly, join =  64 sts

Round 9:  ch 3,*Bobble stitch, 3 sc* around, join with chain on top of first bobble cluster

Round 10:  ch 2 , dc in same st as the join, dc around, join

Round 11:  ch 2, FPDC around, join

Round 12:  ch 1, FPSC around, sl st to first sc, then sl st to first st in back row

Round 13:   Working in the back round of sts, ch 2, dc around, join

Round 14:  ch 1, FPSC around, sl st to first sc, then sl st to first st in back row

Round 15:  Working in the back round of sts, ch 1, sc around, join

Round 16:  repeat round 9

Round 17:  repeat round 10

Round 18:  repeat round 11

Round 19:  repeat round 12

Round 20:  Working in the back round of sts, ch 1, sc in BLO around, join

Round 21:  ch 2, dc in BLO around, join and end off.

Optional earflap extension variation:

Row 1:  Using last round as reference, DO NOT CUT YARN.  ch 2, turn, hdc 30 BLO.  Check at this point for position and comfort; if you need to go further, add a few sts at a time, if less, remove a few sts at a time.  If more length is needed, repeat the row as you see fit.  If you like what you see, follow next step.

Finishing:  sl st into next st, turn, sl st across the row plus one.  End off.  This should round out the squared edges and give the hat a less “home made” look!

Work in any ends, tuck your hair up and enjoy!

Goofing around

 

 

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Pulse. Wow!

A few of you who follow me may be aware of my photography sideline, in a peripheral sort of way!  I used to be a professional photographer, but every time I got a good rhythm going with business and clients, we always seemed to be moving.  That meant every time we relocated, it was back to square one.  Several moves ago, I gave up.  In a fit of pique (meltdown combined with a sense of despair), I donated all my backdrops, studio lighting, and a bunch of other costly photo equipment.  I was done.

My advice to anyone who feels that way – don’t do it!  A year after the great purge, I found myself really missing all those costly items that were tossed away like so much detritus.  Do I want to return to professional photography?  Nowadays, it’s not so much a matter of want, but more like a matter of “can’t”.  My eyes are doing that thing called presbyopia (you’ll learn when you get there, if you haven’t already) and it really bites.  I imagine I could continue to take pictures, but I find myself more and more at the mercy of automation, especially when it comes to the focus feature on the camera.  I don’t like losing that control.  So, as of the last five years, my photography has been more personal or commercial stock photography of items.

Do I still buy gee-gaws for my old Nikon D-90?  Nope.  I get by with what I have right now, that is, until you see this on Kickstarter…

I’m a big fan of low-light assists and remote control.  I may have to climb a mountain or go hiking to get that special selfie!!!  And yes, they have my email to let me know when it’s ready for retail sales.  Can’t wait!

Have you photo hounds found any new technology that’s fun?  Let me know! 😉

Donner Pass Beanie Pattern

One of the hats I made to sell this crafts fair season. Easy to knit up and comes in toddler, child and adult sizes.  The colors I used reminded me of the leaden skies and snow that we get in the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range.

Enjoy!

https://nittinninja.files.wordpress.com/2017/10/donner-pass-beanie1.pdf

 

 

Good Times, a Parking Ticket and Farewell to a Dear Friend

 

On Worldwide Knit in Public Day, June 10, I made the 100 mile round trip trek to the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento to knit with a friend of mine that I hadn’t seen for awhile.  Last Knit in Public Day event I had been to was in 2015, and we were outside where I had to sit on some hard ground. Well, it was the well manicured lawns around the capital building, but ground is ground and it can be hard on these middle-aged bones! Being indoors with air conditioning during a heatwave was a welcome relief and I didn’t have to constantly shift my weight for pressure compensation.  It was a pleasant affair and I did enjoy myself immensely.  We closed them out at 2:00 pm, and my friend and I walked to our metered parking spots where I discovered –

A parking ticket.  I had been very careful to choose the time I wanted and paid up with a debit card and was unhappy.  I’ve disputed the ticket, and now I’m in ticket limbo.  Fun.

On a sad note, I had to put down my beautiful baby boy, my chocolate labrador retriever who was 12 years old, on June 29.  We were there with him at the vet’s office when he passed peacefully.  I’ve been crying on and off for the last few days – in fact, I just finished a crying jag.  I have a Queensland Heeler and a Chihuahua mix rescue doggie, and they’re adorable, but they’re not my Mario.  He was my 24/7/365 companion.

I’m not having a good year.

What’s happening with everyone else?

Purses and Baby Blankets

Every time I have to jostle around in my designer purse, frantically searching for my keys, I have a big jones to make another purse, but I hate the idea of having to sew. There are a few of you that will be thinking “Wait. Aren’t you a knitter/crocheter? Why the sewing?”  This question would also lead me to believe that you haven’t made a knit or crochet purse before.  For a good, sturdy purse that will take the daily beating I give mine, I must sew a foundation.  The knit and crochet part is merely the icing on the cake.  I do have some old blue jeans in my sewing project box….that have been in there for at least two years!  This may be the opportunity I’ve been looking for.  Just this evening, after my

daughter had taken me out to a lovely Thai dinner in Nevada City and we were walking the half-mile or so back to the car, there it was.  I had to stop everything I was doing to find my damn keys and it made me so furious!  I was thinking of using the jeans material for the sides and bottom, then crocheting some funky designs on the front and back.  Any further input would be welcome!  The faster I make it, the faster I can get started on…

Baby blanket.  A friend of mine wants me to incorporate this:

somewhere onto a knit baby blanket.  Not the writing, just the skull and circle.  Now how am I going to do that?  Any experienced stranders out there?  Or am I just going to need to do duplicate stitching?  I have two other friends that are expecting, but not as far along, so, hopefully, I’ll be finished with this in time for their baby showers!

Any and all suggestions for the skull head would be greatly appreciated.

The Wonderful Thing about Tiggers…

Yea…this post has nothing to do with A.A. Milne’s wonderful creations…

2016-03-31 17.59.19I’ve been having trouble with my FB page.  It appears that I can’t properly access it, because I’m still in my personal profile.  Is this happening to anyone else?  I am a huge fan of progress and improvements to my digital environment, but I sometimes the changes that are effected feel like they are done just for the sake of change.  I got enough damn change in my life without having to deal with superfluous modifications that don’t actually help!

Ok.  Rant over.  I promise.

I hope everyone had a great Easter.

For myself, my latest and greatest pattern still sits atop my yarn tray, still unfinished. Something that should have been done in 3 days max. My problem? I am sooo not in the mood to crochet! I want to knit!!! And you’re probably thinking, Grow up!  Just knit something or pick up the damned hook and finish this alleged wonderful project so you can knit!  (Umm….I hope you’re not really thinking that.)  I don’t like more than one project going because it starts feeling too chaotic, but in instances like these, my whole creative process gets in a bottle-neck because, again, I refuse to have too many thing going at once.  Oh, well.  It’ll be done, I’ll show it off, and on to the next one!

Do you have any rules about your crafting?

Freebie Purse Pattern for Christmas

I had removed this pattern from circulation quite awhile ago because I wanted to make revisions.   During that time, I used this purse for months and was continually complimented on it.  One of the revisions in the pattern I made was to use plastic (which can be purchased at craft stores) instead of using cardboard.  You can do either, but I used cardboard and now I can’t wash my purse, which is in great repair after much abuse, because the bottom will be ruined, and that was a big focus for me while putting it together.  This sucker is made to carry a a lot, and without a decent base, it loses its charm for me.  In the meantime, the pattern was languishing in my portable hard drive for well over a year; I made the changes that had required my attention and felt this would be a nice gift for the hookers in the crowd for the 2015 season; so, for a limited time, go to my Ravelry Store and use the code Free2015 to download it for free until January 2, 2016.

Enjoy!