Friday, March 24, 2006

Lewiscraft Closing? What about the kids?!

So its sad enough that Bentley group is closing all 80 Lewiscraft locations across Canada. It is also sad enough the Peterborough location was the only still-standing original retail store in our downtown mall. To be honest, I was ecstatic about the discounts on existing stock. But, I was nearly heartbroken when I realized that Lewiscraft was the other half of the Salvation Army's Knit for Kids program, which pays for the yarn for local knitters and crocheters to create hats, mitts, scarves, sweaters, etc, to be included in the Christmas hampers every year. Last year alone, the program collected over 40,000 items across Canada, a goal achieved after two decades of the program.
The Salvation Army fears that this program may see its demise this winter, without the co-operation of such a huge retail partner. But I call on all knitters and crocheters (especially the small business owners) to take up the torch. Continue to create these much needed items and donate them directly to the Salvation Army. Or donate your time to the collection and delivery on behalf of the program. You can also donate any yarn from your stash that can be used by others to help offset the cost of the program. Anything can help! But its up to the individual to continue this incredible program.
If you need any ideas, or have any other suggestions, please contact me. I'm doing my best in my community to get a couple of local shops on board for this coming winter. It may be a few months off, but the earlier we get started the better.
Let's try to beat the total from last year, despite this major setback!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Michael's Bunting Bag

A friend was due back in December and I know how great bunting bags are for newborns in Canada. I used a sweater pattern of my own, altering it to a bunting bag. I also used a skein of sari yarn (a little pricey to buy more than that, alas...) combined with a skein of good ol' Red Heart!

2 skeins of Red Heart Super Saver in Soft Navy (or colour of your choice)
1 skien of recycled sari silk yarn (or silk/rayon blend)
size 5.5m crochet hook
2 (1" - 1 1/2")buttons

Fits size 0-6 mos

Yoke (using RH)
Row 1: Ch 42, dc in 3rd ch from hk and in next 5ch, inc (2dc, ch1, 2dc) in next ch, dc in next 6ch, inc in next ch, dc in next 12ch, inc in next ch, dc in next 6ch, inc in next ch, dc in last 6 ch.
Row 2-6: Ch2, turn. *dc in each st to ch1 sp, inc (2dc, ch1, 2dc) in ch sp, repeat from * across ending dc in each st to end of row.
Row 7: Ch2, turn. *dc in each st to ch1 sp, inc (1dc, ch1, 1dc) in ch sp, repeat from * across ending dc in each st to end of row.

Row 1: Ch2, turn, dc in 19 sts, dc in ch1 sp, sk next 32 sts for sleeve, dc inn ch1 sp, dc in next 38 sts for back, dc in ch1 sp, sk next 32 sts for second sleeve, dc in ch1 sp, dc in last 19 sts. Fasten off RH. Join sari yarn with sl st in last stitch.
Row 2: Ch2, turn, dc in each st across. Continue until sari section measures approximately 6 inches (you'll need to reserve some sari for trim). Join RH with slst and continue in pattern until piece measures approximately 24 inches from neck to bottom. Fasten off RH.

Row 1: Join RH with slst to front right edge of neck. Ch2, dc in same st and in each st around entire edge of neck.
Row 2-?: Ch2, turn, dc in each st around. Continue until hood measures approximately 8-9". Fold hood in half. Ch1, slst through both thicknesses in each st to back edge of hood. Fasten off.

Row 1: With wrong side facing, attach RH with slst through the ch1 spaces at each end of sleeve. Ch2 (does NOT count as stitch), dc in each st around, join in top of first st.
Row 2-3: Ch2, turn, dc in each st around, join in top of first st.
Row 4 (decrease round): Ch2, turn, dc2tog, dc in each remaining stitch to last 2 sts, dc2tog.
Continue for a total of 12 rows, decreasing every 4th round. Fasten off.

Join sari yarn with sl st in last stitch. Ch1, working 2sc in end of rows and 1sc in stitches, sc evenly up right front edge (making spaces for buttons), around hood edge, and down left edge. Fasten off. Join sari yarn on sleeve ends and sc evenly around edge of sleeves.
If there is any remaining sari yarn, make 2 tassles and attach in bottom corners of bag.

Sew on buttons to correspond with button holes.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Sirdar Camisole

So, I'm working on a camisole for my mom (didn't have enough for the cardigan that I'd started for the Olympics, ARGH!) and I'm confused by the pattern. I've posted a new thread at the Crochetville Forum and hopefully I can get some help from someone there. This is the camisole.When I do finally get the piece done, I'll post a picture.
In the meantime, I'm also working on a metamorphosized skirt. I bought a pale blue sweater (cable knit) at Y's Buys in Peterborough for $6. I ripped it apart at the seams and I'm going to reassemble with the front as the front and the sleeves as the back (works well because of the increase working down to flare the skirt). Then I'm going to weave a thick satin ribbon for a gathering belt at the waist. In my mind, it looks great, but we'll see.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

The Hooker is In!

You know how they say that things always happen for a reason. I have always been a firm believer in that sentiment (and that it all comes out in the wash, which I guess is pretty much the same thing?!). Anyway, my mom and I experienced grave disappointment upon discovering that the college instructor strike in Ontario would preclude us from enjoying our biweekly massage at Fleming College! After confirming that in fact NO ONE was going to rub us down, we proceeded to Chapters, our usual post-massage destination, and sat with our Starbucks and chatted, flipping through magazines. When it was time to go, we took a quick stroll to the crochet section to see if there was anything new. Its been a while since anything new appeared on the shelf, I was absolutely delighted to see Debbie Stoller sitting on the second shelf in all her funky glory! And because I hadn't spent the money for the massage I could afford to finally get my copy of the Stitch 'N Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker.
After returning home, I pulled out the 5-drawer wheeled cabinet where I keep my stash, pulled out two skeins of Red Heart Super Saver in light fuschia and proceeded to make the YeeHaw Lady, the cowboy hat pictured on the cover. I finished it in two days and my daughter loves it! I'm definately going to make another for myself and I can't wait to try another pattern, if for no other reason that to deplete my stash!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Crocheted Felted Diaper Bag

My husband's exwife (my kids' biomom) is expecting another baby and in the name of being the 'bigger' person, I made a felted diaper bag as a gift. It turned out so well that I think I might make one for myself (it doesn't have to be a diaper bag). I was inspired by the knitted felted bags on Knit Kit Web Page, but designed this one myself. The picture shows my finished one in grey and blue, but have fun with the colours. Do one in one solid colour, or do something in rainbow stripes!

You can find the pattern here.