Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Kindergarten Shawl

Kindergarten Shawl 1

A few strands of the striped afghan yarn went into this cool shawl. I have to confess something. I have knitted a handful of things. (Shhh, don’t tell any of my crochet friends!) The pattern I used for this was created by my friend Cass Carson (isn’t that the coolest name?). She created this shawl pattern by holding two and three strands of scrap yarns together on large circular needles. She named it the Kindergarten Shawl because as she says, “even a kindergartner could make it”. The colors were hard for me to choose, but Cass told me to bring all of my scrap yarns into the LYS, and she would help me. I brought all of my leftover yarns and spilled them out on the table, and we all laughed because they were all pastel colors that I love.

My Scrap Yarn

Since I didn’t have any novelty yarn, Cass brought some of hers and shared. She helped me start a ball of yarn that was a never-ending ball with all of the fuzzy cool colors that I love. This would start to get hard for me, and Cass would just say, “If choosing the colors becomes too hard, you’re thinking about it too much,” and she was right. Once I started relaxing and just picking up whatever colors my hand would grab, it was so much easier. The fun thing about the shawl is you never had to worry about tucking any ends in.

Cass and Her Son

This is a picture of Cass and her adorable son Josh.

Cass Shawl

This is Cass’s Shawl, and these are some of her favorite colors of yarn. Her sister made one also. It was so much fun seeing everyone’s yarn become shawls because their yarns looked like them because they were all the colors that they always use.

Cass Bag

Cass also makes these really cool bags out of wool sweaters that she felts, lines with fabric, and embellishes with really cool buttons. She sells them in the LYS (Twist) here in Wichita. She used to sell them on Etsy, but she couldn’t keep up with the demand and had to stop selling them there.

Thank you Cass for helping me with my Kindergarten shawl.

Monday, September 28, 2009


Doilies on Clothesline

I love hanging clothes out on the clothesline. I know some people will think I’m a really sick person, but I love how they blow in the wind and how the clothes smell when you bring them in. When I was growing up, I remember that I could hardly wait until I was tall enough to actually hang the clothes that my mother washed out on the clotheslines. I remember there were steel poles that were in the shape of a cross cemented into the ground with metal wires (that didn’t rust), and there were either three or four rows of these metal wires running to three of the cross poles. I remember playing on the cross poles and using them as chin up bars. My sister would climb up and sit on the cross bar (I was always afraid of heights). I remember when it was time for my sister and I to hang the clothes out, and my mother would send us out with the clothespin basket that was made out of a flower sack with a wire running through the top and bent just right to fit over the metal line where it would glide along the metal line until you got to the end, then you’d have to carry it to the next line. She would also send us out with a wet rag to clean the lines off with before hanging any of the clean clothes. I remember the smell of the laundry detergent and the smell of the air outside. It really didn’t take very long for them to dry, especially in the summer time, so we would go out and check the clothes to see if they were dry enough to bring in and then take them down as they were. Then back into the house to fold or iron them.


The first house that I bought had a wonderful clothesline just like my mom's, and I remember hanging my clothes out. I didn’t have a clothespin basket, but I used an apron that I would slide on with the clothespins in the pockets and wear it to hang clothes up outside. The home I live in now didn’t have a clothesline, so I made my own as there was not enough room in my backyard to put a metal clothesline up. I still hang out clothes every once in awhile, and it brings back really good memories. My clothesline is a rope, but you still get the same effect.

I was reminded of this whole story when I decided to freshen up the doilies that I found at the church store the other day. Does anyone else use a clothesline anymore?

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Charity Slippers Update

Charity Crocheted Slippers

I kept moving my slipper project out of the way to start something different for the last few months. I finally had about an hour last night and decided to pick them up and try to complete them. Man, these slippers were so fast and easy that I’m not sure why I put them off for so long. Oh well, they’re done and ready to add to the charity stash. I haven’t tried sliding on the floor yet, but I think the Lion Brand Suede yarn will keep them from being so slick. Now, I’m going to have to make another pair for me. Oh darn, now I have to go to the store to pick out some yarn just for my slippers. Ha! Ha!

Does anybody else put things off, and then, once you get back into the project, and it’s finished, you wonder why didn’t you do that sooner? That’s me almost all the time.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Free Pattern Friday: Kitchen "Drawers" Crochet Pattern

Kitchen Drawers Crochet Pattern

These Kitchen "Drawers" crochet patterns took me back to my childhood of visiting my Grandma Kingery’s house (my dad’s mom) and her sister, Aunt Erma. They both crocheted and sewed just like their sisters. Both of them worked. One worked and retired from one of the aircraft companies here in Wichita, and the other worked at a dry cleaner, worked for the Red Cross, and volunteered at the Food Bank.

The reason I bring this up is, I know how hard it is to find time in my day to do the things that I love to do, and a lot of times, I choose little projects to do as I know I can complete them. I’m sure they felt the same way. That’s what I love about crochet and small projects like these potholders. You can carry them with you to work and crochet on your breaks or just simply pick them up as you have time to crochet on them at home. I’m not sure whether my grandma or aunt made the little potholders that hung behind their stoves, but I do know that I inherited some of my grandma’s crochet booklets and some of these potholders were in her books. As I crocheted my "Drawers" potholders, I thought of my dear Grandma and Aunt Erma and how I miss them.

Grandma and AuntErma

I love this picture of my grandma with her sisters. Grandma is the one on the far left, and my Aunt Erma is the 2nd from the right.

Drawers Crochet Pattern

Check out my version of the Kitchen "Drawers" potholders.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Cloud-Soft Cover-Up Yarn Update

Yarn in a Box

Look what came in the mail on Friday. As some of you might remember, I started the Cloud-Soft Cover-Up free crochet pattern and ran out of the TLC Cotton Plus yarn I was using. When I went to get some more at the store, I couldn’t find any in Wichita. Thank goodness, Crochet Soiree had some right here in their store, and I was able to order it. I’ve only ordered yarn on the internet twice, and that’s because I needed more of what I was already using. I really like to pet the yarn before I buy it, but it’s fun, too, when you receive your yarn in the mail and get to see it all in its little wrapper. I know I’m crazy, and that’s just how I am. Does anyone else out there feel the same way? How often do you order yarn on the internet?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Friday Finds

The Friday before Labor Day, I decided to start off my weekend by stopping by a store that’s run by one of the churches here in Wichita. I always seem to find something in there. Some of the ladies from the church volunteer to run the store, and they are always so nice and helpful.

Friday Finds

I walked in and my eyes went directly to a table that had crocheted pieces. It looked like they had set them there just for me. Of course, I found quite a few things that I couldn’t live without. I even found some turquoise thread that had never been used and a portion of a ball of green thread. I have such a hard time finding both of these colors.

Friday Finds Hooks

Anyway, when I was looking in the glass display case at the register, one of the ladies asked if I would be interested in looking at some hooks since I had the crochet pieces in my hand. I told her of course I would love to look at them. Well I found some of those that I couldn’t live without, too.

Size I Steel Crochet Hook

Take a look at the very large hook. I have never seen a size I steel hook, but now I own one. Isn’t that cool? I can’t wait to actually try using it and see how long my hands will hold up to the weight. Ha! Ha!

Monday, September 21, 2009

My Dear Friends Visit


My friend Babs was passing through Wichita on her way back home from vacation yesterday. Since she’s a crochet friend, I decided I would invite Rosina to hang out with us all day. We decided to meet up at the LYS, and Rosina and I introduced Babs to all our friends there. Even Caleb, the LYS owner’s son pictured above, was there and had to tell us all about how he lost his top tooth. (He thaid that him and hith Dad were wrethilling, and it fell out. Ithin’t he cute?)


Babs had brought me some gifts, and I couldn’t wait to find out what they were. Since she knows that I love homegrown veggies and treasures, she brought me both. Homemade bread and butter pickles, and she shared some of her treasures from one of her treasure hunts.

We sat around and talked and crocheted for a while and decided to check out a new fabric store a few storefronts down from the LYS, where we met up with my sister. We found some fabric we couldn’t live without, and then we all went to lunch.

After lunch, we had planned on going to Michaels for a little light shopping. But on the way there, my eye caught a glimpse of something interesting sitting out on the sidewalk of an antique and second hand clothing store. So we were all game for it (I was driving so they didn’t have much choice). Ha! Ha!


Well, here are a few of the things that I found. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with the fabric, sweater, or skirt, but they are projects that are still to come.



I love the old sewing basket and collect them whenever I can. It’s so cool when you find neat things inside. These are the things that were inside. Grocery stores just don’t give these promotional items away anymore, do they?

We wrapped up the day by going to Michaels and then dropping Babs off at her hotel. We all had a great time just talking about family, friends, crochet, and upcoming projects. Tell me about what you and your friends do when you get together. Thanks Babs for coming to visit.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Update on Crocheted Edging on Mexican Linen


I was so proud of finishing another one of the KS My Stitch guild August program pieces this morning. I think it just gives the dresser scarf the pop of color that it needed. What do you think?


I crocheted onto a length of rick rack that I had and ended up with a little extra left over. Of course, I can’t throw it away. So it will go into my stash of edgings and trims for either scrapbooking or covering boo boos.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Free Pattern Friday: Table Linen Crochet Pattern

Table Linen

When I saw this Table Linen crochet pattern, I thought of Thanksgiving coming up. But you know I can’t choose the traditional colors for my table linen.

Table Linen Crochet Pattern

When I was sorting some of my many unfinished projects, I found this piece of linen that my husband bought me. I haven't used it before because it doesn’t have any color to it, and my dining room table is brown already, and it just blends in with it. I think this brown scarf would be the perfect thing to embellish with some colorful little crochet motifs. These are the colors that I chose for my table linen. What colors are you going to use?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

My Sister's Crochet Project

September 2008

My sister Jackie decided to take on a crochet project. She wanted to make her soon-to-be-born granddaughter a quilt, and then she wanted to poke-a-hole-in-it and crochet around the edge of it. The quilt part of it came together easily for her since she is a quilter, but the crochet part seemed to be more of a challenge.

March 2009

I tried to help her out by telling her about a tip that I had received about placing a wing needle into your sewing machine and simply running stitches along the edge of your quilt, just to make a little hole in the fabric. But I don’t think I mentioned to her that when your hook goes into the fabric, it doesn’t always go down into the second layer of fabric in the same place. Anyway she called me one day and said that she had broken her steel crochet hook, and she now had a neck ache and shoulder ache so bad that she couldn’t raise her arm above her head. I asked her how she managed to break a steel crochet hook, and she said “I don’t know, but I did.” I asked her if she wanted me to finish the crocheted edging for her and she said, “NO, I’m going to do it myself.” So I said ok. Her shoulder and neck healed, and she continued on.

July 2009

Jackie brought her crochet project with her to every crochet guild meeting that she attended since that’s the only time that she had time to crochet on it. I would talk to her about it each time she would bring it out, and she would ask me for directions each time because it would be one or more months between times, so she would forget how to work the shell pattern. And I would tell her again each time.

August 2009

One meeting about two months ago, one of our crochet guild members sat down with her, watched her crochet, and diagnosed the problem. She told Jackie that her hook had a big scratch in it that kept getting the yarn hung up on it. She needed a new hook. Well, at break, they told me about it, and I went right over to my hooks and pulled out a new hook for her to use, and she completed her granddaughter’s quilt with crocheted edging all by herself at that same meeting.

Baby Ava will be a year old next month, and maybe, she will get a pretty quilt made by her Granny with crocheted edging for one of her gifts. I’m so proud of Jackie for sticking to it and finishing the quilt. Congratulations Jackie!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

My Daughter's Crocheted Animal Projects

My Daughter's Crocheted Animal Projects

My daughter Jennifer invited me over for dinner the other night and look what she had been working on:


In an earlier blog, I mentioned that Jennifer had raided my stash for some green yarn, and I wanted to show you why. She crocheted Nestor Lochland!


Here’s Millicent Rose made all in one color.


Isn’t Scooter Pup cute with his little felt ears?

These are all patterns from Amy Gaines’ Cute Little Animals book, and Jennifer used my tip about stuffing panty hose with stuffing so the stuffing doesn’t hang out of the crochet. She already has many orders from the nurses that she works with for these adorable amigrumi animals.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Another Saturday at Tamara’s


My Saturday’s are packed with fun and lots of things to get done. This Saturday was no exception. Some of the things to do:
Laundry and Ironing
Walk with Rosina
Pick up veggies and cantaloupe at the Farmer’s Market
Charity Workshop-Crochet
Write Blogs

Things I accomplished:
Some Laundry-No ironing
Walked with Rosina
Picked up veggies and cantaloupe

Pig Bag

Crocheted for charity and got to hang out with some of my friends at my LYS. Our LYS owner; Shelly Stilger was so excited to show us some of her new crochet patterns for pig and cow bags. She’s so sweet and so caring about all the needlearts--including crochet. We just love her so much.

Susan Pig Bag

Susan is a diehard knitter who has decided that she wants to learn to crochet just so she can make these bags. How fun is that?

Amy Gaines book

Then it was back home to work on my blogs, but before I arrived, my daughter called me and wanted to know if I had any lime green yarn in my stash, and I told her yes, so she wanted to come over to raid my stash and to show me the little animals that she has been making from Amy Gaines' book, Cute Little Animals.

Crochet Pendant

When I arrived home, my son wanted me to listen to some music that he purchased for his iPod. (Sorry Joshua no picture of your music!) My husband wanted to show me the pendant that he had and wanted my advice on what kind of chain to hang it on. He had tried a leather cord, but it seemed a little flimsy, so while my husband and son were challenging each other to a jalapeno eating contest, I crocheted around the little leather cord and showed him. He couldn’t believe that I just crocheted it while he was eating his pepper.

Now at the end of the day, I still don’t have my blogs written, my craft room is still a mess, and my husband is off work tomorrow. I have a feeling that I’m not the only mother that spends their Saturday’s like this. Tell me about your weekends.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Things with Holes in Them

Leather Belt Pouch

I found this cute little leather belt pouch during one of my treasure hunts. I put it away and found it again the other day when I was looking for edgings. It seems like I never can stay on track.

Pouch with Crochet

I remember why I bought this pouch, but I haven't had a chance to get to it. Can you guess what I had in mind? First, I had to take out the laces, and that’s always a pain. But you know what? If you start something like this in front of your husband and act like it’s too hard for you, he’ll usually jump to the rescue. It worked, so he continued to pull the laces out for me, and I told him I needed to get a picture of him for the blog, but he said: "No!" So you can’t see him helping me. Oh well, maybe next time. Stay tuned for more on this………

Friday, September 11, 2009

Free Pattern Friday: Spiderweb Doily Crochet Pattern

Spiderweb Doily

I thought I would choose this Spiderweb Doily Crochet Pattern for today, so that you all would have enough time to make everyone on your trick or treat list one of them. Ha! Ha! I decided to make three.

My Doilies

Here’s my take on the Spiderweb Doily. They are really fast and easy (except when you crochet with black). You could make them into suncatchers or hang them on your door for that added touch to your Halloween decorations. I think I’ll give mine to my daughter as she loves Halloween.

Have fun with this pattern. Make sure you tell me what you’re going to do with your Spiderweb Doilies.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Striped Afghan, Pillows, and Bunny

Striped Afghan

I found this pattern in my Crochet Today a couple of years ago and set out to find just the right yarn. The pattern called for different novelty yarns and fuzzy yarns. Well, since I always want to make it my own, I found this Lion Brand Cotton-Ease yarn that I thought would look cool in the afghan. When I came home and started the afghan, I found that I really liked working with the yarn and decided to continue to make the afghan with it even through I knew I didn’t purchase enough yarn for a full-size afghan. So it was back to the store to purchase more yarn, and, of course, I bought too much.

Then, when I started crocheting the colors on top of each other, I realized that I didn’t like it so much. I decided that it needed more contrast and thought that brown would look good between the colors. That meant another trip to the store where to my dismay the Cotton-Ease didn’t have a dark enough brown to satisfy me, so I found a cotton dishcloth yarn that had a dark brown.

At the time, that’s the only cotton yarn that came in brown. Now we have more choices. Thank goodness a lot of the yarn companies are now doing a dark contrasting color in their groups. I placed the brown between each color and voila! That was just the thing to make all the colors pop. I made the afghan big enough to cover me and still had quite a bit of yarn left over.


I made up patterns for a square and two circle pillows, and there was still yarn left. I placed it in my stash for a rainy day or until just the right pattern came along.


Well, the right pattern came along, and the rest of the yarn became this "adorkable" bunny that all my son’s friends love. I know as soon as I can get to the bottom of my craft room, I’m going to find just a little bit more of this yarn that will need to become something else. Stay tuned for that.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Sewing Notions

Sewing Notions

When I started on some of the last few projects that I have been working on, I knew sewing would be involved. I said earlier that I have to drag out my sewing machine, but it’s more like dragging things off of my sewing machine because I never put my sewing machine away. I just pile things around it. Anyway, it’s that dreaded thing about cleaning out my sewing/craft room, and there is just always something more important to do. (Like crochet!)

The other day when I decided to finish up some of my UFOs, I thought about all the things that I need when I sew, and I wondered if it’s the same things that all of you use, too. I love my turquoise scissors that my sister gave me and my old pair of snippers that I cut threads with (the same pair that I used in Home Ec when I was in junior high and high school).

Chopstick and strap

If you are wondering about the chopsticks, they are fun things to have. When my sister and I were in Houston at the last quilt show, we were finishing up eating our dinner of Chinese food when my sister asked the waitress for a set of chopsticks. I didn’t know she ate with chopsticks and asked her about it. She said that she used them to turn her loops and push into the corners of sewn things. I decided I needed a set of chopsticks, too, and found they came in very handy when I was turning the straps for Megan’s top.

What are some of the notions you need to have by your side to sew with?

Monday, September 7, 2009

Update on Megan’s Outfit

Megan and Her Capris

It’s back to the drawing board on Megan’s crocheted top and embellished capris. I guessed wrong on the straps and made them too short and evidently Megan has grown since her momma tried her jeans on her, but she still wanted to wear them anyway. Now that I tried the top on her, we realized that the straps should be wider (thank goodness I bought a yard of the fabric because I don’t how many times I will have to alter this outfit). I’ll keep all of you updated on my progress.

Isn’t Megan about the cutest little granddaughter you’ve ever seen? Ha! Ha!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Labor Day Weekend

First Stay At Gran Grans

My memory of most Labor Days is that I had an extra day off of work to catch up on all my chores at home. I do remember one Labor Day weekend that stands out though. Seven years ago, my daughter Jennifer was placed in the hospital a week before Labor Day weekend because she was suffering from preeclampsia. She was so swollen she was unrecognizable. Her hands and feet were like balloons blown up, she had trouble walking, she couldn’t hold onto a pen to write. I would go to the hospital every evening after work and give her a shower and make sure she was comfortable before I would head home, crying most of the way. I didn’t know at the time that my daughter was in danger of losing her own life as well as the baby, too. I just coped with the day-to-day living, made sure that she was comfortable, and worried about her all day while I was at work.

Then came a call on the Saturday of Labor Day weekend. Jennifer said, “Mommy, they’re going to induce labor.” She was so excited, and I was so terrified for her. We waited all day Saturday and Sunday as my daughter's condition deteriorated. I couldn’t leave the hospital and slept in the recliners in the waiting room. Finally on Monday, Labor Day, my daughter’s kidneys were shutting down, she couldn’t breathe, and she was having a hard time answering questions. After a week and two days, my granddaughter, Megan Paige, arrived into this world via C-Section at 3 lbs. 3 oz. and fighting for her life. She fought the nurses as they tried to put oxygen on her, slipping her little tiny fingers under the tubes and pulling them out. Her hand was no bigger than my little finger. I didn’t get any crocheting or laundry done that weekend, but as soon as I knew my daughter and granddaughter were going to be ok, I went home and crocheted some really tiny booties for her.

2nd Set Studio Pictures

Megan grew and can you believe those tiny piggytails?

Growing up with megan

Megan's still hasn’t figured out that she can get away with anything with me. Maybe I should be a little harder on her. Nah, I like being able to spoil her and send her home.

7th Birthday

Megan’s still attached to her Uncle Joshua. They’ve grown up more like brother and sister than uncle and niece, and he doesn’t let her get away with anything. She runs right by me and goes straight to him. It will always be that way, and I’m ok with that.

Happy Birthday my Megan!!!! I hope all of you have a safe and wonderful Labor Day weekend.