Saturday, July 31, 2010

Attack of the Snoods!!!

I've made 3 snoods in the course of about a week:
The first two snoods, I used the same pattern, a vintage pattern from 1942. This pattern was required me to learn a new stitch, the "long triple crochet". To tell you all the truth, I love learning about crochet - the more skills in my repertoire, the more creative I can be!
Okay, here are the snoods:

First, the plain black snood, good for everyday tasks (black goes with everything, ya know):

Snood 1 by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

And then, the beaded snood. I decided to use wooden beads because they're lighter than glass. They look terrific with this brown yarn I chose from my stash:

Beaded Snood by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

And lastly, my Cotton Snood! :

Cotton Snood by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

This one is my first improvised snood. The pattern came from a hat pattern in this book:

Stitch 'N Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker
by Debbie Stoller

I just continued doing rounds until I thought it was long enough, and then I single-crocheted on an elastic band.
I was really surprised when I put it was quite snug, with very little give. A snood is held in place with pins around the front, and the pins seemed to be much more stable in natural fiber than with acrylic. With acrylic yarn, hairpins tend to slide and not hold very well - I use quite a lot of them - almost 2X as many as the cotton snood required, in fact, to get a good hold with an acrylic snood.
And it held GOOD. Absolutely NO slippage, and it didn't require me to readjust it at any time. A quick spray with hair spray, let it dry, then put on the snood and pin. It's as easy as that, and takes less than 5 minutes.
The only downside: weight. It is a bit heavier than acrylic, and I'm tempted to add pins along the crown of my head to better distribute the weight. My scalp is a bit sore where the pins were the day after wearing it.
But all in all, I am quite impressed!

I think that this was a definite eye-opener. Women in the Middle Ages definitely knew what they were doing, making snoods from natural fiber (well, that's all they had, but still). I can't wait to try making a snood out of thinner yarn - fingering yarn - or even #10 crochet thread! In theory, any hat pattern or doily pattern can be altered to make a snood. Oh, the possibilities!
If you'd like to buy a snood, there is an awesome lady that crochets and sells them, to the Renfaire/SCA set:
Lady MacSnood
I love my previous two snoods and will continue to wear them, but I think that I will stick to natural fibers from now on when it comes to making crochet hair accessories!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Crochet Dice

These were a pain in the butt, but they were definitely worth the attention I got when I wrapped them around the knocker on my door:

Crochet Dice by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

These dice are 3"cubes, a bit bigger than normal "fuzzy dice". I just made 6 3" square panels, and sewed them together. I put in a panel of thin cardboard on each side for stability (they were about 2 3/4" square, and adding just enough stuffing to keep them in place.
After I sewed them up, using a die for reference, I hot glued the felt spots on.

They came out really good - but too big for wrapping around the rear-view mirror. Perhaps I'll just wrap them around my neck when I go to Vegas!

Friday, July 16, 2010

A Gift Basket for the newlyweds!

Here is a gift basket that I put together for a couple of my friends, Dan and Brianne, who've just gotten married and moved into their first apartment. Unfortunately, they live 2 hours away, and have yet to receive it, but I made sure that anything in the basket would be welcomed as a duplicate. We could all have used a backup set of measuring spoons/cups at one time in our lives, right?!

Photobucket beautiful! This basket includes my homemade towel toppers, some homemade strawberry jam, a couple of coffee cups, spatulas, an oven mitt, chip clips, and other assorted kitchen goodies. Black and red are the colors that Bree said she would like in her kitchen, and I tried to get as many things in black and red as I could. Honestly, I think I should get bonus points for stuff I found that is both black AND red. :D

Both of them are terrific friends...I wish them a happy, love-filled marriage. They bring out the best in one another. *glass clink* CHEERS!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A glimpse of what is to come...

Dear Loyal Followers,
I'm working on several projects now, and I'd just like to give my viewers an update on my progress with these (and other) endeavors. My goal is to do 10 posts per month; since I have started out this blog slow, I felt that it would be a good idea to give myself a goal to achieve every month. If I go above and beyond ten, fine, but for now, the MINIMUM amount of postings per month will be ten.

Projects that I have yet to post:
1. Gift basket for Dan and Bree

In the works:
1. Crochet dice
2. Lovely BBW drawing
3. 3 paintings, all dealing with Norse Mythology
4. Crochet snood

On my to-do list:
1. Cross stitch birth announcement for my new niece
2. Crochet fruits and veggies, complete with cornucopia
3. Crochet socks
4. Crochet granny square blanket (just needs sewn together!)
5. Crochet snuggie!
6. Amigurumi Frog

Random ideas:
1. Hammer cozy
2. Small BBQ cozy (our apartment thinks that Charcoal BBQ's are the devil, so I'd like to crochet a cozy to make it more covert)
3. Random street art, to get my 'Crochet Valkyrie' blog up and running again
4. Make tags for The Crochet Valkyrie, so I can attach to street art.
5. Making (or bribing my friend to make) pillow forms, so I can crochet covers for them.
6. Cross-stitch Buddhism stuff - 4 Noble truths, 5 precepts, 8 fold path
7. Havamal samplers
8. More sushi sets, to sell on Etsy, or wherever I feel like it.
9. Do a felting project! But first I have to find the right color yarn. This has proven a challenge - I have a project in mind, and have been unable to locate the specific color yarn that I need for the project in the immediate vicinity. Looks like a jaunt to Portland, OR is in order, to cruise the yarn shops!

If there is anything that you'd like to see here, feel free to leave a comment.

To all of my awesome followers: I may have mentioned to one or many of you that I may be moving to TX- but this is looking less and less so. My husband was given a phone interview, and it's been more than a week...and we haven't heard anything. Both of us are starting to get a bit nervous about the way this new warehouse is being run - it looks to be very disorganized and chaotic. I could not ask my husband to trade a good job for a bad one for my comfort - so it looks as if we are going to make western WA state our permanent home.
But believe will not be easy. Our lease is up on October 1st, so we have to figure out where we're going. Meaning: house hunting! We're looking at doing a VA home loan in a county where land and property taxes are cheaper. I think that I would "weather" the weather better if I had room to roam out here - this tiny apartment is driving me crazy!
Anyway - I may be busy, but I will attempt to keep my 10 post a month commitment. Things might get a little hairy in the months to come, but I'm sure that we'll get through it fine...and I'll make sure to update you all on things concerning my life and art.
Thank you so much for taking an interest in what I do!

Monday, July 12, 2010

BBW Angel

As you may know, I don't draw a lot anymore - It seems I've headed into "Crochet-Land" and never looked back. I suddenly had an urge to draw a few days ago, found a terrific stock photo, and did this in two days:

BBW Angel by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

Well, I could have done it in one day, if I wasn't so "artistically cluttered"! Okay...I procrastinated a little. And I couldn't find my good (NEW!) drawing pad, so I was a little upset about that. I mean...I just bought the DARN THING! And I can't find it! AHHHHHHH!!!!!

Okay, I'm back now. I'm cool... :D

Anyway, when I saw her pose in the stock photo, I had to draw her and make her an angel. I don't know why - I don't even think that I've EVER drawn an angel before. I don't even LIKE angels...but it's best not to argue with the creative mind. You'll lose. And it won't be pretty. :)
For the uninitiated or just plain clueless, BBW means "Big Beautiful Woman."

Medium is pencil on paper. (c) 2010

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Crochet eggplant!

Crochet eggplant by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

I got this terrific pattern at Lion Brand Yarn

You have to make an account to see the pattern, but as you can see, the results are well worth it!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Fabric Yarn Hobo Bag

Jean Hobo Bag by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

This hobo bag was adapted from the pattern in this terrific book:

Kooky Crochet
by Linda Kopp

If you're a crocheter, then you need this book in your crochet pattern library.

So - how did I alter it? The pattern in the book was done with polypropylene monofilament support webbing (or, silver duct support strap). With mine, I cut up pairs of old jeans into strips and joined them together, like so: Laughing Purple Goldfish Designs

I wound them into a (VERY HEAVY!) ball and waited for the perfect project to come around.
This is a simple pattern, made up of only slip stitches, single crochet, and double crochet.
I used a size Q plastic crochet hook. I also didn't make the bag as deep as the pattern said - I think I shaved off 3 rounds.

I imagine that it would also look cool crocheted with 3 strands of yarn instead(adding a strand of eyelash yarn would look really groovy too!)
I think I'll save this pattern and attempt it again in the future with different materials. This is a great pattern for a beginner to try out their new skills!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Two-Liter Purse

I found this pattern in the book 'Kooky Crochet' by Linda Kopp:

2 liter purse by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

This book is a must for a modern, quirky crocheter - it has some awesome patterns that you can twist to your own unique ends! (Such as an interesting hobo bag - I'll be doing a few versions in the near future).

So - buy it, or check it out from your local library. It's great!

All you need is a two-liter plastic bottle, a single hole punch, and a bit of yarn.
I made this for a daughter of a friend of mine for her birthday - she just turned 5!
Happy Birthday, Mika!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Crochet Bottle Gift Bag

Here are three bottle gift bags that I made: One for my mom, one for my friend, and the last one for HER mom. They are on bottles of lotion that my husband got free from work.
I did take down the pattern while I was crocheting them, and when I have the desire and the time to type it down next week, it will be up here for you to enjoy!

Bottle Gift Bag by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

I got the instructions for the crochet cord here (Technique 2) : How to Crochet a Cord
The directions are a little bit confusing, so I may do a picture tutorial on my blog on making this cord.


Thursday, July 1, 2010

Happy Little Raindrop

My neighbor mentioned that she liked the weather out here in Western WA state - so I made her this happy little raindrop to celebrate her love of all things precipitation!

Happy Little Raindrop by ~audreydc1983 on deviantART

I used the Bob the Blood Drop pattern.
Of course, it was designed to be a blood drop - but I decided to modify it to my own purposes. I know that I'm scary smart, but don't worry - I use my powers for good, and not evil. Well, most of the time! :D