Are you kissing the starry birds in the sky

Will you come and visit us down below

Dusting the old girl off.

Making plans to visit regularly.

I’ve been super busy, 35 designs in just over a year and I’ve got 5 or 6 more to give you before the end of 2012,  but I’m finally feeling a bit settled and finding time for things that have been neglected.

Also feeling slightly obsessed with the American west and Blue Grass.

Sneak peek!

Image

Toots

Hey man slow down, slow down

;) - That’s when you see sparks

As promised, a garden update and a freebie!

Garden first, well lets call it the Micro-farm cuz that’s kinda what were trying to do here. The apple trees are bearing up well and we discovered a surprise on the new pear tree, an actual PEAR!

I am so planning on doing this in a few years

The beans are climbing all over the fence, the peas are beginning to flower and the tomatoes are really beginning to take off. Over in the main garden we are almost done with the first bed of radishes, a few more coleslaws and salads and we’ll be ready for a second planting.

We also have a bunch of little berry patches that we hope to consolidate for next year.  Black raspberries, I feel a pie coming on!

The cockerels and pullets have been separated. The male Steves are living in the new “dude-coop” and the lady Steves have moved down with the hens.

We also picked up 5 Leghorn chicks, from Mr. Lipman’s 2nd grade again, whicj brings us to a grand total of 35 chickens. I know, but really, we’re pretty sure that 2 of the leghorns are male so that means that by the end of the summer we’ll be down to 21 hens. Holy shit, did I just say 21 hens?

Who needs eggs? You do, right? Right!

And how do we corral all these chickens? a Liberal use of chicken wire and other fencing which brings me to the freebie!

My hair is kind of a crazy thing to begin with and the summer humidity does terrible things to it. I often wear my hair in a ponytail but sometimes I just want it out of my face. So what’s a girl to do?

Chicken Wire!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a simple mesh kerchief that ties at the back neck to help corral your frizzy summer locks (it also doubles as a great neckerchief!)

Grab the PDF of Chicken Wire here or over on <a href="download now“>Ravelry

Toots

I’m fancy free darlin’

;) – So who shall I start with

New Summer patterns are up at Webs!

Math for Kathy, Hill Log Cabin blanket, Bartholomew’s Cobble vest and my favorite, The October Mountain cardigan.

This sweater went through SO many changes from idea to garment but I am thrilled with how she came out.

Rav links are all here.

I’m also really happy to finally show you my current favorite sweater. Kirsten was designing this as I was getting my feet wet with spinning. I decided to spin my own yarn so I could make one. I spun up 8 oz of Kangaroo Dyer Merino and 8oz of Louet Merino and Silk and plied them together.  I love the color!

I knit and knit until all that was left was scraps of yarn for seaming and sewing on the buttons.

I am over the moon for this sweater and I wear it all the time, I’m wearing it now.

I’m hip deep in Fall design work now but I reward myself with mini spinning breaks. The bag of sample nubbins that I got at the 2011 MSWF from Into the Whirled is filling this need perfectly.

Alright, I’ve got a pattern to get typed up and a class to finish packing up supplies for. Next time I’ll have a garden update and a free pattern for you :)

Toots

I have an ability It’s pounding at my door

;) - So fly one time

Here I sit filling in my June schedule on the calendar and updating my projects whiteboard and I realized just how much I already have planned for this summer. Then I realized how much of what I did this past Winter and Spring that I never told you about!

I had 4 design in the Spring 2011 Valley Yarns Catalog, the Old Sheldon House Capelet, the Pincushion Moss Shawl, the Carle baby sweater and a collection of Potholders.

Here is the Shawl blocking.

I’ve also been working on a series of small, round, animal, amigurumi with Webs Design Coordinator Kirsten Hipsky. She does the knit version and I work up the crochet. This project has been, at times, frustrating and hysterically awesome. Wait till you see what we come up with next!

I guess I should tell you a bit about this summer so you can get in on some of it if you’re local. I’m teaching another great series of classes at Webs.

We’re starting out with a Design your own crochet cowl class that runs for 4 weeks and really gives the students insight into what it takes to design something as simple as a tube! Yarn choice, hook/gauge choice, choosing a stitch pattern or several and deciding on the type of construction: flat and seamed or in the round.

Then we have 3, two week workshops for specialty crochet techniques.

Broom Stick Lace, Hairpin lace and Tunisian or Afghan crochet(which is already full but you could add yourself to the wait list if any seats open up).

As always, if crochet interests you but you’ve never picked up a hook or its been years since you have, I’ll be running the Intensive version of our Crochet 1 class the second week in August.

Today I’m finishing up with some editing of patterns that will be released in the Webs Summer catalog (soon my pretties!) and working out details for some fall classes up at Metaphor Yarns.

What have you been up to? Anything you like to see? Let me know!

Toots

So wipe that dirty smile off

;) - Who wants to be right as rain

Ah, week three. I thought I’d give you a bit of a break and let you get those thirty some-odd motifs done. It really does finish up much faster is you have everything ready to join when we get to Row 2.

So, how about weaving in ends? Awesome.

Here we have a motif all done through Round 3. Let’s get rid of some of those pesky tails.

I always work from the inside out. You’ll notice that there is no dark green tail. Since the stitched in the second round are fairly close together I was able to crochet over the tail from round one, eliminating the need to weave in that tail.

3 easy steps to weaving a tail into a stitch (or group of stitches)

1.) Back through the tops of the stitch(s)

2.) Down through the body of the stitch(s)

3.) Through the “feet” or bottom of the same stitch(s). I try to g through the feet of at least 3 stitches in this step.

Trim that tail and call it done!

Now, chains are a little bit harder to work a tail into but it is possible.

You’ll need to get the tail up t the top of the chain by working up through the body of the stitch.

Then you’ll meander through the chain stitches. following the yarn through to mimic the stitches as close as you can.

Once you’ve reached the next stitch, head down through the body of the stitch. I like to double back through this stitch once more.

All trimmed, no tails dangling, ready to join everything together!

Next week we’ll tackle the tricky part that pulls the whole thing together.

Pop me a question if you’re stuck. Till next week Chicadees!

Toots

 

For a while I held your hand

;) - Honey, it’s ok

So, ready for the 2nd installment of the crochet along?

For this week you needed to have 3 pieces ready, 1 done all the way through Round 4 and 2 through round 3.

Let us get to the joining! Begin round 4 on the next piece and stop after the first 5 dcs.

Here is where the magic of joining while you go happens. There are 3 chains that you have to make here in the corner. If we exchange that 2nd chain for a slip stitch we keep the style and length of the corner the same but will will connect it to the previously finished square.

Chain 1, then slip stitch into the chain 3 corner space on the finished square

Chain one more to finish the corner space and then complete the next 5dcs in the same ch5 space.

You should join in the middle of this side as well as at the corners for stability. Sc in the next ch5 space, ch2, slips stitch to the corresponding ch 5 on the finished square, ch 2 more and sc in the next ch 5 space.

Now repeat the corner – [5dc, ch1, slip stitch to ch3 space of finished square, ch 1 5dc] in next ch 5 space

The joining is now finished, complete this square by finishing Round 4. 2 squares joined.

Follow this sequence once more to join the 3rd piece.

Thats it for this week. Next week we’ll join the second group of 3 which gets a little bit tricky because it puts the whole scarf on the bias! But if you can follow along this week you’ll do fine next week.

Remember to pop me an e-mail if you have questions and if you’ve got pics of your progress send those along as well. I’d love to see how you’re doing :)

Toots

The moon maybe high

;)  Maybe millions of people go by

So, I’m a few days late. Better than months! Lets get to it, shall we?

Two years ago my daughters both got geometric coloring books and in the midst of coloring in a page with my youngest it hit me how much that page was beginning to look like a granny square blanket, so I changed the color palette and crocheted myself a scarf.

Then I taught a class at Webs based on that scarf but I always have people asking about this scarf and how I put it together so I thought I’d share :)

We’ll do this as a crochet-along for the month of January. I’ll post each week until we’re all done. This is a fairly easy square motif, its the joining that’s tricky since the scarf is put together on the bias.  Have fun choosing your 3 colors!

Join as you go square motif scarf.

You will need:

400 yds each of 3 different colors of worsted weight yarn. (I have used Cascade 220 in colors A -9451 Lake Chelan Heather, B – 9461 Kiwi Heather, and C - 9421 Blue Hawaii.

Size G/6/4.00mm Crochet Hook

Special stitches:

dc2tog =  double crochet 2 together, (Yarn over, insert hook into next stitch/space, yarn over and bring up a loop, yarn over and pull through 2 loops) Twice. Yarn over and pull throughall 3 loops

dc3tog =  double crochet 3 together, (Yarn over, insert hook into next stitch/space, yarn over and bring up a loop, yarn over and pull through 2 loops) Three times. Yarn over and pull through all 4 loops

First Square

To begin: With yarn color A, ch4 and join with a slip stitch to form a ring.
Round 1 – Ch4 (counts as 1dc and 1ch), *1dc into the ring, ch1* Repeat *to* 10 more times. Slip stitch to the third chain of the ch4 to join. Cut yarn A and fasten off.
Round 2 – Join yarn color B in any ch1 space. Ch3, 2dctog into the same space (counts as 3dctog), ch3. *3dctog into the next ch1 space, ch3* Repeat * to* 10 more times. Slip stitch to the top of the 2dctog cluster to join. Cut yarn B and fasten off.
Round 3 – Join yarn color C to any ch3 space. Ch1, 1sc into the same space, ch5. *1sc into the next ch3 space, ch5* Repeat * to * 10 more times. Slip stitch into the first single crochet to join. Cut yarn C and fasten off.


Complete all squares to this point. Finish with Round 4 for the first square.
Round 4 – Join yarn A to any ch5 space. Ch1, 1sc in same space, ch5, 1sc into next ch5 space. *Ch1, [5dc, ch3, 5dc] into the next ch5 space, ch1, 1sc into next ch5 space, ch5, 1sc into the next ch5 space* Repeat * to * twice more. Ch1, [5dc, ch3, 5dc] into the next ch5 space, ch1.

You will need at least 2  squares ready through Round 3  and 1 square through Round 4 for next week.

You will need 36 squares in total for the scarf. Work 35 through Round 3 and only 1 through Round 4 until next week. Yes, I actually do think you could get all that done in one week! Do 36 Round 1′s, the Round 2 on all, then Round 3. Totally doable.

Next week we’ll start Joining! Wheee.

Drop a comment here or e-mail me if you get stuck or have any questions ChickenBetty^at^Gmail^dot^com

Toots