Category Archives: crafting

Town and Country Tote

My latest bag design…..a sassy little tote for city girls or country girls. These totes are made in one piece, so they’re easy peasy. And, depending on the choice of yarn, they can be made extra dressy or laid-back casual. The bag shown in unlined (I don’t have the patience) but would be simple to do so.

Click on that big ‘Etsy’ button in the sidebar to see my listings ūüôā


Tahiti Tote

Crochet has been showing up alot lately in stores. One of the current trends I’ve noticed are crochet purses and totes. I love the look and the added texture adds lots of interest.

My latest design is a handy tote that’s small enough to be manageable while offering plenty of room for the essentials like keys, phone, lipstick and wallet. While the purse shape is relatively simple, the colors and stitch pattern kick the design up a notch to become a sassy fashion statement. It’s a quick project that can be completed in 8 hours or less and requires intermediate crochet skills. You can create totes to match different outfits simply by changing the colors…the possibilities are endless.

I named it ‘Tahiti Tote’ because it reminds me of summer breezes and tropical beaches. The finished size is 9 1/2″ x 9 1/2″. The pattern is for sale at my shop, Crochet Cottage.

Don’t Bother Me, I’m Counting

Before I have to enter one of those posts that says, ‘Gosh, I haven’t posted for months, sorry’, I figured I’d better check in ūüôā

With the advent of warmer weather, I’ve been doing some more much needed yard work…pruning, mowing, planting, etc….so that’s distracted me somewhat from blogging. But I’ve been busy hooking, too.

wips-and-fos-008-small.jpg¬†FO – I finished my shawl and named it ‘Provence’, not because it has anything to do with France, but because I’m a Francophile and the colors remind me of the french countryside.


wips-and-fos-014-small.jpg¬†WIP – A baby project I’m working on. I’ve wanted to do something in these colors for awhile but never had the inspiration for what exactly I wanted to make. This one makes me smile; I love the stitches & I love the colors.


wips-and-fos-017-small.jpg¬†This is a test swatch for my latest obsession…spirals. The spiral shawls, aka Carnival shawls, popping up around the ‘net are absolutely gorgeous/fascinating/mesmerizing/addicting. Check these pictures on Flickr to see why.


So, see, I have been a busy little hooker. There’s one or two other WIPs sitting in the wings, but those I’ll save for another post. Hope everyone has a great week. Keep those hooks a’smoking.




Looking For Some Cheer

After a few days of Spring-tease weather, it turned windy and gloomy again today. The rain was blowing nearly sideways as powerful thunderstorms passed through. I had to bring my little garden seedlings indoors so they wouldn’t get beaten to death. Thankfully, the storm passed quickly and did no harm but it’s put a damper on outdoor activities, at least for today. In the meantime, I’ve been doing some blog browsing and thought I’d share a couple of things that caught my interest.

¬†Are you getting a little tired of winter gloom and want to see something bright and cheerful? Check out Laura’s Flower Garden motif blanket. She found¬†the pictures¬†buried in her Flickr collection while doing some Spring cleaning. And don’t miss her handy Tutorials page. We love tutorials ūüôā

For more bright cheer, check out Alice’s Rainbow Blanket. The colors will surely bring out the kid in you and put a smile on your face.

Don’t miss¬†Kim Guzman’s latest designs¬†in her¬†Kids Collection. She’s offering the patterns at a special pre-publication price¬†through February 20. These designs are done in traditional crochet (rather than¬†Tunisian crochet) and her talent clearly shows in her pieces.

Here’s wishing for sunshine tomorrow and an early Spring, in spite of what a stupid groundhog says.

I Got An Award!

ymmd.jpg¬†Laura, of A Whole Load of Crafts, gave me this nifty award….and made my day! It’s encouraging to know that others find this little blog of interest, which is what I hoped it would be. Thank you to everyone who visits here.

The rules of the award are as follows:

‚ÄúGive the award to up to 10 people whose blogs bring you happiness and inspiration and make you feel so happy about blogland! Beware! You may get the award several times!‚Ä̬†
So I’m passing this award to the following bloggers¬†that make my day:

Faye at Crochet by Faye¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†Marty at Not Your Granny’s Crochet

Megan at Loop-De-Doo¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†Kim at WIPs ‘N Chains¬†

Vashti at Designing Vashti                                      Alice at Future Girl

Drenka at Drenka’s Crochet¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†Heather at From Heather’s Hook

Designers and Fair Trade

An interesting read on Amy O’Neill Houck’s¬†blog about designers/artists trying to make a living. Don’t miss her link to Kim Guzman’s blog for an eye-opening¬†perspective. Check it out at The Hook and I.

Foundation/Base Chain

Crocheters are all abuzz about this ‘new’ technique for creating the base chain and foundation row stitches at the same time (instead of making a chain, then going back across with foundation stitches). I emphasize the word ‘new’ because apparently the technique has been around for many years, although not widely used by most hookers.

Besides shaking up the designing world with her fabulous crochet work, Doris Chan has brought this method for creating a foundation chain to the spotlight. It’s worth taking notice when the hottest designers are converting and singing it’s praises.

There are several advantages for using this method, but the one that stands out in my mind is that it does away with having to count the traditional starting chain…over and over and over….which is something I always have trouble with when starting a new project. Using the foundation chain method, you just complete the required number of stitches….the starting chain and foundation row are all done in one fell swoop. Brilliant!

Oddly, there are¬†not many sites that have visual tutorials on the method. I found several sites that give written instructions, but I’m one of those that sometimes needs visuals to help me ‘get it’. It took some digging, but I managed to find a few. The best, in my humble opinion, is on Serendipity Crochet, where there are tutorials for not only¬†single crochet,¬† but half-double crochet and double crochet base chains as well. Check it out and let me know what you think.


I woke this morning with designs¬†clamoring in my head. “But I don’t want to get up, it’s so snuggly warm here in bed and I was sleeping so good” I fussed at them. “No, you can’t go back to sleep. You must get up and write us down before we get lost in your memory. You must get up, now.” they insisted.¬†So, I slid my feet to the floor, put on my slippers and shuffled into the kitchen to start a pot of coffee. Being the internet junkie that I am, I decided¬†to first check my emails while awaiting my caffeine fix. And what awaits me there but the Elann newletter…..with new yarns! At 50% introductory prices! Sock yarn, sport weight yarn…..oh, where’s my checkbook??

Do you suppose these are indications of a prolific new year? Who can say, but I’ll take it as a sign that good things await on the crochet front.

Oh, and my New Year’s Resolutions?

  1. I pledge to build positive character traits; integrity, honesty, patience and compassion.
  2. I resolve to be more aware of my actions and the impact they have on those around me as well as to future generations.
  3. I will live by my own convictions and not be swayed by the majority.
  4. I will appreciate every day and the opportunities it holds.
  5. I will not take my loved ones for granted.

Here’s wishing¬†you a contented and fulfilling New Year. May your hooks be smooth and your yarn be soft. Happy New Year!!