Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Where Were You?

We had a great time last Friday night, with a group of ladies working on many different projects at our Crop and Craft Night .  Some of them scrapbooking, some card making, some falling in love with Distress Inks for the first time, some creating invitations, but above all, they were all enjoying a lot of laughter together.

Our Friday Crop and Craft Nights afford you the opportunity to learn new areas of crafting, so don't miss out simply because you don't commit to the night.  Jeanetta enjoyed the opportunity of taking cards down from the wall displays and learning how to create them.  Elaine was able to catch up with some cards from previous classes she'd missed.  Jill worked on her Basic Grey pages.  There wasn't an idle hand around the tables as everyone worked, chatted and simply enjoyed being with people who like to create.

I don't think I've shared with you that this year I'm working on my PhD did I? It's going to take a lot of dedication, a tremendous amount of focus, but I've set my sites on the goal and I don't plan to fail. I'm sure once I'm further along the road, I'll find it easier, but right now I tend to become distracted, however I don't plan to fail!  

Have you ever considered the lofty goal of working on your PhD?  I know, I've heard it all before.......I don't have time, I have a full-time job, a household to run, children to raise.  I'm sure though, like me, you meet the criteria and have the supplies to work on many "projects half done," don't you?   

That's where the Crop and Craft Nights work so well.  All you have to do is say every other Friday, I'm going out to work on my PhD. That's my commitment to myself this year and I went to the Crop and Craft Night with a project, but of course I became distracted.  Helped instead with some invitations, some Distress Ink samples....focus!
So tell me, how do you focus on your PhD, or UFO's, or whatever you call them?  I'd love some suggestions to help me focus.

Today I finally finished my husbands double hand mittens.  He was really pleased with the fit of them and figures they'll keep his hands lovely and warm, though hard to pick up a coffee cup whilst wearing them. 

Can't please everyone can you

Though these mittens take a little longer to make, they're well worth the effort for the additional warmth. I showed you the pair I made Linda here.  Just scroll down to the third photo and read how I make them.

Do you recall that Linda knitted "Minion Slippers" for her two girls?  I have been meaning to add that pattern for you, but always seem to run out of time, so here it is this week.
This is a photo she took of the one pair of slipper's and then realised she forgot to embroider the smile on the face, but don't they still look great.
The basic pattern is easy and you can change it up to be whatever you'd like, even adding a crochet flower to the front for decoration.
You need a ball of thick yarn, or two strands of double knitting yarn.  One pair of size 5.5mm needles

Basic Pattern 
Instructions are for Child's size with changes for Women's and Men's in parentheses
Cast on 27 (29 - 35) sts

Row 1: this is wrong side - K9(9-11), P1, K7,(9-11), P1, K9,(9-11)  
Row 2: Knit all stitches
Repeat these 2 rows for 5 (6-8) ins., or 2 (2 1/2-2 1/2) inches less than the desired finished length.  
Row 1: P1, *K1, P1; repeat from * to end  
Row 2: K1, *P1, K1 repeat from * to end  
Repeat these 2 rows of ribbing for 1-1/2"(2-2)ins ending on wrong side  

First Decrease Row: work ribbing over 7(7-9) stitches, *slip next st onto needle, K1st, then pass the slipped stitch over (psso), K1, K2tog.*, work 3(5-7) sts in rib, repeat the instruction between* once.  Finish row in ribbing:  23(25-31) 
Next Row: Work 7(7-9) sts rib, P3, work 3(5-7) sts rib, P3 finish to end of row
2nd Decrease Row:  Work 6(6-8)sts, * K2 tog, K1, slip 1, K1 psso *, work 1(3-5) sts and then repeat between * once, finish row.  19(21-27)  
Break yarn leaving about 12" for sewing.  Thread yarn into yarn needle and weave through remaining stitches on needle. Pull yarn tightly to close and secure the toe end. Sew from toe edge to ankle about 3(4-5)inches or just enough for your foot to go inside the slipper.  Re-attach the yarn at the heel and sew the back heel seam in an upside down "T".  The two sides stitched together and the sole piece squished to make upside down "T" and sewn up.

When our daughters were young, I made an extra pair of soles for each pair of slippers.  Sewed them on, removing them when they wore out, and replacing them with another pair.  The body of the slipper never wore out, but of course the soles did, so this increased the life of the slippers for them.

If you plan on making a "Minion" slipper then just follow the basic idea in the photo. Changing from blue to yellow just in front of the ankle, and part way along the front, knitting 2 rows of ribbing in black for the strap. The eye was a crocheted circle with a black button sewn on.  Consider too a Googly Eye for added interest.

Are you coming out to Card Class this
Thursday night? There are a few places still available and a warm spot at the table for you to learn something new.  Here's a peek at a little of what we did in the last card class.

The masculine ship was created using the ever popular distress inks changing the kraft paper to look like two entirely different papers.  
One coloured with Walnut Distress Ink and one simply shot through the Cuttlebug embossing it.

With some easy cutting and patterned paper we were able to create two similar, and yet uniquely different cards. Certainly Elaine much preferred these chevrons to some we've presented in the past...easy peasy...done!

We  had a customer in this week in need of help working beads into her crochet project.  She had threaded all the beads onto the crochet cotton, but was having trouble working the bead into the design so that they were visible. Though I'm not a cotton crocheter, with some trial and error we were able to figure it out and she happily went on her way to continue a very beautiful doily with a pineapple design on it, similar to the one on the right.

I mention this because I stood in awe of this crafter's determination.  She had begun to crochet with a very fine cotton, but found it too difficult for her at the moment and had switched to a heavier cotton, though still fine.  My hat was, as I said, already off to her because I find no pleasure in working with such fine cotton. More than that though, I have to dub her with the title of "Crafter of the Week".  Why, you say?  Well she had sliced the ring finger of her right hand (she is right handed) and it was splinted, but she was crocheting some beautiful fine work, only conceding to go to a slightly heavier cotton.  How deserving of a title is that?

Our customers often amaze me with their ability and their willingness to not only ask for help, but to share the projects they are working on, or have completed.  You never know when I may make mention of a conversation that I've enjoyed with one of you as you share with us.

Did you know we have one customer who filled over two hundred shoe boxes last year for the Christmas program.  She constantly knits all year small teddy bears and dolls to add to these boxes.

And now for the embroiders in our midst, here'a a lovely Jacobean design which could be worked in a variety of embroidery stitches.  There are more free designs here for your personal use.  Drop into the store and pick up a booklet with embroidery stitch instructions.

And of course our words for the week.....

Until Later Happy Crafting......



  1. Hi Lilian - thought I would share this free pattern for mittenettes... not as warm as your double hand mittens, but good for those coffee drinkers and texters! I have been using Patons Shetland Chunky (available at the Craft Nook ;) ) with good results! http://www.moonarts.com/blog/free_patterns/pages/potluck-mittens-print.htm

    1. Hello there,
      I'm taking a wild guess here, and I'm thinking this is Margaret. Thanks for the link, it's great. The only issue I have is that they're knitted on double pointed needles, and as I knit with one needle under my arm I have a problem! No seriously an excellent pattern and did you notice that there's a link for the full mitten too.
      Thanks for sharing this pattern with all of us.

  2. Hi Lilian
    I love your suggestion of making an extra sole. I also wondered about another slipper pattern you had written about last year. It was the one you knit for your mother-in-law. The pattern called for LOVE yarn, however I have not been able to find it, what yarn, adjustments, and/or needles did you use to make them?


    1. You're very welcome Marilyn. It was not only a great money saver as I didn't have to re-knit the entire slipper, but the extra sole provided them with a lovely cushion underfoot.
      The slippers I knitted for my Mother-in-law used Red Heart "With Love" yarn and we can get it at the store. It comes in about 40 colours I believe. Some are Solids-198 grams (390yds) and some Multi-141 grams (230yds.) Both are the same price at $6.99 a ball, even though the solids have a greater yardage. I used 5.5 mm needles as the pattern suggested.
      Give us a call at the store if you'd like us to order in some yarn for you.

    2. Just as an addendum Marilyn,

      I checked, and the link for the slippers wasn't working, so I have fixed that for anyone who may like to look.
      I have also added the link to the right side bar under the PAGES subtitle, as March 12th 2013 - Red Heart Knitted Slippers.

      This should make it easy for anyone to find now.

  3. Hello! I always look forward to Tuesdays to read the latest. Thanks so much for all the ideas and instructions. I really enjoy the quotes.

    judi : )

    1. Hi Judi,
      So glad you look forward to Tuesday and what we have to say. We often doubt that what we have to say can possibly be of interest to anyone else, so thanks for the encouragement.

      It's great to know too, that some of the ideas we offer appeal to you

      I have said before how much I like Gingers House for the words she posts regularly. Some don't appeal to me, but about 90% do, so I visit her blog frequently.

      Here's another for you........
      I'm on the Hunt
      For the Person
      I've Yet to Become............Lilian

  4. We received this via face book from the crafter I dubbed as
    "Crafter of the Week"

    "Thanks for all your help! It was much appreciated. I have a big smile on my face , I'm able to finish my project.
    ( My finger is doing much better) "

    So pleased to hear your finger is improving Carole. We're looking forward to seeing your daughter-in-law's doily when it's finished, or a photo of it perhaps.