Waiting Rooms

Waiting Rooms

I love keeping projects on hand, in rare cases of waiting and being able to practice patience it is so nice having something ready to pull out and zone out with. The newest iphone update includes ‘Screen Time’ monitoring, and I was only slightly horrified to see how many hours a day I was staring at my phone. Yarn over screens any day.

While in a waiting room yesterday a woman came out of nowhere to ask what I was making (a triangle shawl/wrap, but it is too small currently for that to make sense). She followed up with a “Look what I’m making!” and pulled an adorable hand stitch quilt in progress – which, showing all my quilting ignorance, I had no idea could be a mobile project! It is the 9th quilt she has made this year for her friend’s grandchildren, “my friends are populating the world, and thats fine, it keeps my hands full too.”

She told me she crochets, knits, quilts, and has tried machine knitting but it bored her. She told me crocheting and knitting were created by fishermen to make nets, and each fisherman family had specific stitches they’d use on sweaters to help identify bodies that washed up on shore. Sounds creatively morbid, right? “Well, they didn’t have phones back then, honey.”

My increasingly new favorite person sat down next to me and pulled out an envelope of 4x6s, flipping through her crocheted blankets, her knitted sweaters, her sewed American Girl doll dresses. She has made over 300 American Girl outfits, including outfits to match the entire cast of Star Trek (I would love to see the cross section of American Girl doll collectors and Star Trek fans, by the way). When I told her I was impressed she said “When you get as old as I am, you need things to occupy all the time you’ve lived.”

I didn’t get much crocheting done, but if I didn’t have it with me the lady with wild hair and a New Zealand t-shirt wouldn’t have sat next to me. I would have missed out on a crafty history lesson and the opportunity to see a crafter’s personal photo album. Crafter camaraderie is one of my favorite parts of learning new things, and I hope those Star Trek American Girl dolls are making someone very happy.

Seeing blankets in use

Seeing blankets in use

My sister and niece visited this week, and they brought the blanket I made for her baby shower with them.

I was looking at the blanket and chiding myself for unwoven ends and for the sewing between the fox faces coming undone, for uneven stitches and things I think I could do better now, two years later.

Then my niece picked up the blanket and burrito’d herself in it, she inch-wormed across the floor, stretching and kicking the blanket out from beneath her.

Just like done is better than perfect, a blanket getting used is better than a blanket staying pristine.


Pattern: MyCrochetStories
Yarn: Caron Simply Soft

Cypress Textiles Seafoam Blanket

Cypress Textiles Seafoam Blanket

These last few months have been sloooooowww.

It has been a ridiculously hot summer, which doesn’t bode well for unfinished blankets. I’ve had wrist pains that I’ve been working on with stretches. I’ve had mountains of excuses and plans dragging me out of the house and a million other reasons not to go back to my yarn.


Luckily for me, pattern testing for the incomparable Cypress Textile will always draw me back to crocheting. Rachele’s patterns are so well thought out. She is a master of eye tricks and patterns that look complex, but her talent for writing makes the inconceivable simple. I also need to mention her gorgeous color choices before I can finish raving about her crochet wizardry. The blues and greens of this blanket are some of my favorite shades, and the very reason I signed on to test this pattern.


Scheepjes Stone Washed is absolutely gorgeous. The depth of the color and sturdiness of the yarn made this blanket a joy to crochet, even when I wasn’t in crocheting moods. Stone Washed comes in perfectly portable skeins, just over 170 yards in each. This blanket is made of ever-expanding motifs, making it perfect to tote along to doctors appointments and car rides (my favorite crochet question is when working with motifs – “That little thing is going to be a blanket???” You have to start somewhere!). Just watch this thing grow!

While this pattern isn’t available yet, go browse through Cypress Textile’s impressive catalog for inspiration and to see crocheting at its most artistic form.

Hating a pattern, loving the product

Hating a pattern, loving the product

Have you ever made something and hated it every step of the way? That has been my experience for the last 5 weeks trying to make my sister a birthday present crop top. This is the Lazy Days of Summer Top, something I have ogled for years on Ravelry.


For whatever reason, every step of the pattern was a confusing mess – I read things wrong, the pattern was blasé and unhelpful, no stitch counts, anything.


I can see a glaringly obvious mistake in this picture – but that is part of the fun of progress pictures, right?

I really do love the top! I love the Mirasol Nuna yarn, the color Campfire which is gorgeous. I love the shape of the sleeves, even if they made no sense while I was making them. The rising sun half circle makes me excited for summer and for the fun I know my sister will have wearing it. But 100% never again.

There isn’t many things in life as uplifting as a pattern coming together perfectly, yarn matching beautifully and your vision coming to reality.

Although, to be fair, I’m only 6 rows in…

First, the pattern: the Goldenrod Sweater by Eleven Handmade. A cute sweater using puff stitches and featured in the most glorious gold color? I was immediately smitten.

Second, the yarn.

Still drooling

The variegated yarn is from a Michigan indie dyer – Iron Wheel Farms.
It magically matches up to Malabrigo’s Teal Feather, and these skeins have been sitting on my shelf for about a month before I said WIPs be damn, it is time for another project.

So the first six rows have been thrilling – hopefully this feeling will carry through the rest of the sweater!

Lucky Violet Top Update

Lucky Violet Top Update

I am so elated with how this color block lace top is coming together.


I cannot get over the colors together – I am already a sucker for golden mustard colors, but this baby pink and gray are a perfectly delicate match.


This older shot is just to show how pretty the stitch works with this perfect yarn. While a thinner weight, the yarn feels sturdy. It feels like it is working up to be a long-lasting garment.

Fuck Yeah!!! cardigan

Fuck Yeah!!! cardigan

In early January when the Michigan temperatures dipped to the double-digit negatives, I envisioned a giant scarf I could double-wrap around my neck where the end tails had “FUCK” and “THIS” in big bold letters to show the world how I feel about winter.

This still may become a thing, depending on how cold next winter is.


As is par for my course, once I started questioning how to combine these pieces while hiding the back with the tails, I changed direction completely. How about, rather than a scarf that I would be too afraid to wear in public, I make a throw pillow that says ‘FUCK THIS’ on one side, and ‘FUCK YEAH’ on the other? A sort of charming, cursing, mood pillow to show guests exactly how we feel about their visit?


Once I got halfway through the FUCK YEAH panel though, in all of its rainbow-y glory, I knew it needed to leave the house. The FUCK YEAH cardigan was born.


I made the FUCK panels in C2C crochet, using graph paper and basic block letters. I have since seen photos and patterns of people that crochet much prettier fonts, which is something I will definitely attempt in the future.

I found that changing colors for the background while only carrying one extra color was much easier than holding multiple strings to change colors for each letter, also less ends to weave in, so, bonus.

Once the back panel was complete, I added a few rounds of plain double crochet around it, then made two strips from the top, each just a few stitches short of being half as wide as the back. I sewed up the sides and added some sleeves with some rainbow stripes for extra panache.


I think the FUCK THIS panel may become another cardigan, this time for my husband, since FUCK THIS is probably exactly how he’ll feel about wearing it.

An Ode to Pretty Yarn

An Ode to Pretty Yarn

I never understood the hype over yarn snobbery – and I am honestly still a fan of cheap yarn, but MAN is it a slippery slope. A new yarn store opened up near me last summer – the Knitter’s Nest in Clarkston, Michigan, and I am eternally grateful for them. They let my knitting coworker and I visit on our lunch hour to play with yarn, they host weekly Sip N Stitch gatherings through which I have met many new local yarn friends, they help knitters and crocheters of all levels, and they have one of the most gorgeous yarn selections I have ever seen. My ‘stop shopping’ goals on the other hand have completely suffered, and my idea of reasonable spending limits has suddenly increased. It is a double edged sword.

The Knitter’s Nest has an incredible selection of Lucky Violet Yarns, and heavens to betsy am I obsessed.

The gray + pink speckled yarn reminds me of a Great Dane – the light gray with black spots and pink underbelly. It works up even cuter than a Great Dane too!


Working the Sea Lace Top and hoping it turns out as pretty as the finished projects on Ravelry. The pattern is addicting. More photos to come.

Osterburg Beanie

Osterburg Beanie

Lion Brand’s Wool-Ease in Hudson Bay is some seriously drool-worthy yarn. The colors are gorgeous and the yarn looks so squishy. So when I saw @crochet_on_my_mind looking for pattern testers for a hat using that yarn, I knew it was the perfect excuse to try some myself!


The Osterberg hat is adorable. The thickness of the yarn makes the hat so cozy. I made the hat during a week of negative temperatures here in Michigan and it couldn’t have been better timed.

The pattern is extremely really well-written. I did not have a lot of experience with treble and front post treble stitches, but the pattern explains both thoroughly so it was not difficult. The pattern was named for Dr Osterberg, and includes a brief introduction with information about his work. It was really interesting keeping him in mind while making the hat!

IMG_5237 (1)

After making the hat in Hudson Bay, I made a second hat in Mustard. It looks like caramel corn and I love it.