beck's blog

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Autism wiggly trivet

This is a crocheted wiggly trivet using seven colors of size 10 crochet thread.
It's a "frame" of puzzle pieces surrounding a puzzled heart in the center.
(Please click on the photos to enlarge them).

Each puzzle piece is shaped like a person. (Except for some inside the heart. I couldn't make all those the person shape).

The last photo is of the back. If you make one of your own this will help you.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Woodstock Peace afghan

I finished my "So You Think You Can Dance" swap on Craftster and sent it out to Helen.
Here's the Woodstock Peace afghan. I saw a t-shirt online with this on it so I copied the image and uploaded it to knitpro to graph it.

It's tunisian crocheted with a size J cabled afghan hook. After it was done I outlined the word PEACE in black yarn so it would stand out better.

I added a flowered sequin necklace for Woodstock and crocheted four butterflies which can be removed and pinned anywhere she likes. (The butterflies represent the jet bomber airplanes in the Woodstock song by Joni Mitchell and sung by Crosby Still Nash and Young below). "bombers jet planes riding shotgun in the sky,
Turning into butterflies above our nation."

Here's the center of the flower Woodstock is holding.
Since this was a personal swap I wanted to make it especially for Helen who is an Orthodox Jew. So I wanted Woodstock to be saying Shalom which means Peace.

Well, since in the cartoons and comics Woodstock only speaks in various keyboard symbols, I thought it would be fitting for him to have his flower say Shalom in Hebrew.
I had to copy this onto paper which I then ironed onto fabric. Then I sewed that onto a crocheted snowflake that kinda resembles the star of David.

Here's the back. It's super-soft fleece. I used my sewing machine and it got kinda bunchy in places but I still think it turned out ok. I made my own label at the bottom there.

Well, that was my "large" project for the swap.
Next I made a kind of shrug that I am calling "Greensleeves" because, well, that's what it is really. Green sleeves. LOL!

Here it is laid out flat. It doesn't look like much. It's crocheted using three types of yarn. Decadence, Katrina, and a Paton's cotton with sparkly bits in it. It's pretty heavy.

When Helen got it she hung it on a hanger and it looks much better that way.
I loved making it so much I made myself a blue one with cheaper yarns.

I'll have to take some pictures of mine while wearing it so you can see how it fits. It's just sleeves and goes across the back like a shawl. It ill be nice to just have on while on the computer on cold winter days. But of course it would be fun to wear in public if you were brave enough.

So that was my medium project for her. Next I made her two wiggly trivets because I love making them.

The first one you will recognize is Susan Lowman's Fourth of July Hot For The Holidays wiggly trivet pattern. I made this for Helen because her husband is in the service.
The second one I designed myself. It was difficult to figure out how to make the star of david in wiggly grid format. It kind of got squished down a bit but I think it still works nice.
It's not exactly like the flag of Israel as I had to put the star overtop the two blue bars but even Susan Lowman's U.S. flag isn't exact as there are no stars on it. So both are really just representations of the flags.

Finally I wanted to  put one more thing in the package. I had sent her some seeds which were embedded in a card which said "peace" on it. I guess you are supposed to soak the embedded part in water and then plant it in the ground hopefully growing something. (I sure hope it's flowers!)

So I sent her this crocheted coke bottle. It's made with thread and had to be made by going around and around the bottle until the top and pulled up tight. I even saved the cap so she can use it for liquids or a vase.

So I had a lot of fun making all this stuff for Helen. 
I wanted to end this post by leaving you with the "Woodstock" Joni Mitchell song sung by   by Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young.



Well I came across a child of God, he was walking along the road
And I asked him tell where are you going, this he told me:
Well, I'm going down to Yasgur's farm, going to join in a rock and roll band.
Got to get back to the land, set my soul free.
We are stardust, we are golden, we are billion year old carbon,
And we got to get ourselves back to the garden.

Well, then can I walk beside you? I have come to lose the smog.
And I feel like I'm a cog in something turning.
And maybe it's the time of year, yes, and maybe it's the time of man.
And I don't know who I am but life is for learning.
We are stardust, we are golden, we are billion year old carbon,
And we got to get ourselves back to the garden.

By the time we got to Woodstock, we were half a million strong,
And everywhere there was song and celebration.
And I dreamed I saw the bombers jet planes riding shotgun in the sky,
Turning into butterflies above our nation.

We are stardust, we are golden, we caught in the devil's bargain,
And we got to get ourselves back to the garden.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Autism Awareness Puzzle Piece Vest

I decided to try out making a vest with the Autism  Awareness Puzzle Pattern I drew up a few years ago.
I also decided to make it in wool, tunisian crocheted, and then felt the whole thing in the washer to make a nice thick, soft, colorful vest.

Here it is. I think you can click on the photos to enlarge them.


The front upright on the bench and lying flat.


The back on the bench and then lying flat.

Here it is with the outside showing opened up.

 I still need to trim up some of the ends.

I only had so much wool yarn. I thought I had enough but could only make it to fit me pre-washing and shrinking stage. So, after the washing and drying it is an adult size small.
 I am a XXL and this will never fit me. So I am sad.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Batty For Nora - Nora Batty Crocheted, Felted Vest

I made a tribute vest to the late Kathy Staff who portrayed Nora Batty from the British comedy " Last of the Summer Wine"

I used a stencil I found on the web which was made from this  photo of Kathy Staff  in character as Nora Batty.

Here's the stencil...

I uploaded the stencil to the knitPro websight to make it into a graph.

I decided to use 100% all wool yarn and felt it after I was done crocheting it.
I used Cascade wool yarn in Heather and White. Also, lighthouse brand of Ocean Sunset Ombre Orange and some old Rochelle  labeled yarn in eggshell. For her curlers I used Persian wool tapestry yarns from left-over needlepoint kits, (in strands of three to equal that of the thicker yarns mentioned above).

So, here's the front and back after I tunisian crocheted the picture and made the front panels. (These are pre-felted.

Front panels. I just used all four yarns alternating them row by row. Since one is an ombre it gave the panels a random look.

Here's the back. I decided to create eyes because the stencil above only shows shadow. She looks a bit scary and quirky too. I also drew in on the graph where I thought curlers would be. I wanted her curlers to really stand out because that is how I most remember her character. She mostly wore those, (unless she was at tea with the ladies at Edith's home. Then she wore those ridiculously wonderful turban-type hats!)

Here's the back of the front pannels. I really liked how this looked and had a hard time deciding which side, front or back, to use for the front of the vest. But, in the end, this became the inside of the front of the vest. Hope that makes sense.

I crocheted the pieces together to form the vest and went around the whole thing with the ombre yarn.

So then, just to make sure people could tell who this was, I free-handed the name "Nora Batty" onto the back just next to her portrait with a needle and tapestry wool thread. (I did this after my husband saw my Nora picture and thought it was a man). LOL!!!!!!

Then, I put it into the wash and then dryer and it shrunk up to the final shape.
So, here's the vest now.

The back. It feels like all one solid piece of thick felt but you can still see the stitches. The name I sewed in kind of shrunk up too and it's not as legible as it was when I first added it. But I still think you can read it.

Here's the front. The red and purple bled a little bit but not too badly. It's so soft and thick.

And if you open the vest, here is the insides. Remember, this is the beck of the back of the vest. (The reverse side). I'm not going to line it. It's already warm and soft. 

Finally, I put on the vest and had my son take some photos.

The back.

A side view. 

And the front.

Here in Indiana I have only been able to catch a few Last of the Summer Wine episodes sporadically on our local PBS station. But, thanks to You Tube and the internet, I've been able to watch most of the episodes.

What a great show with a fantastic cast! No wonder it is Britain's longest-running comedy show ever with over 30 years of episodes! It's sad that most of the original actors have passed on. (I cried my eyes out when Compo, (Bill Owen) died and they had that wonderful few episodes dedicated to his passing.).

I've also fallen in love with the beautiful scenery that is Holmfirth, England, (where Last of the Summer Wine was filmed.) It's like a silent cast member always appearing with the rest of the crew and keeping you amazed at it's beauty!

I'm hoping some kind folks will upload the last couple of seasons so I'll be able to finally see them all.

In the meantime, I'll wear my Nora Batty vest proudly in honor of the show!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Wiggly Chair Pads - Chocolate Bunny and Peace

Just in time for Easter, I've finished my Chocolate Bunny chair pad project.

It's covering my library-turned-sewing-chair which never had any padding but is nice and wide.

I used Sugan 'n Cream all cotton yarn and a size H hook.
The bunny pattern is from Susan Lowman's "Hot Stuff for the Holidays" wiggly trivet and coaster book.
I've used that book to make some chair pads in the past but I don't think I ever posted about them.

Here's the jack-o-lantern one. Since it's all cotton, and you wash them, they will shrink. But this chair is a little wider than most so it would probably work fine for any chair anyways. Otherwise, don't wash them! LOL!

Here's my own wiggly peace design chair pad. I wish the yellow were darker but it's all they had in the stores I was in. Plus, no one had true blue! I had to use Sinfonia 100% cotton yarn and double up so it would be as thick as the Sugar 'n Cream yarn.

Here's a comparison shot of the chair pad with the original wiggly trivet on top. (That was made from size 10 crochet thread). I wanted the chair pad to be that dark yellow too but, oh well. (Mondrian colors always look awesome!).

I know I've made the Christmas tree trivet pattern into a chair pad too but I can't find where I stored it. Anyway, the trivet patterns work great for making chair pads. You don't have to use cotton yarn either. I just thought it would be nice and durable. Many people make cotton scrubbies with the yarn so it should last a while for just sitting on.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

March Madness Afghan

With so many left-over colors of yarn from previous projects, I created this wild and frenzied afghan I'm calling March Madness. 

It's fifteen squares, all tunisian crocheted, and joined together. There are six basic colors with - varying shades - of yellow, orange, pink, turquoise, green, and purple

Not quite as many chevrons as this year's Norwegian Olympic Curling team, 

but very close. 

I used black and white yarn for the square borders and joining. I made them zig zag as well.

Also, I wanted to post a photo of my Remembrance bear the people from my Mom;s hospice care made for my Dad, my sister, and I. (We gave them some of Mom's t-shirts and they sewed each of us a bear out of the shirts.) 

Here's the three of them. They arrived right around Mom's birthday in February. My sister then mailed mine to me.

The first is made up from a shirt of all Mom's great-grandson's hand prints. She loved that shirt. (Dad has a shirt just like it.)

The middle shirt, I think say's Chieftans which is their local school's mascot.

The last bear is mine. It's of a riverboat casino near where they lived. Mom and Dad liked to go gambling at the boat.

Casino bear is now in my craft room on my director's chair in the corner. He's sitting on a chair pad my sister made.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Close Encounters of the Crocheted Kind - Meep & Stella

I love to play Scrabble and joined an online gaming site a while ago just so I could play it without any of those dang annoying ads. I've learned how to play lots of other games at the site as well. 

When someone at the site made a graph with which she created a Perler beaded coaster, (out of one of the characters from one of the games), I knew I had to try and crochet an afghan by doing the same.

 I uploaded the character's photo to the knitpro graph generator site and made a graph I could crochet from.
Ta-daaa! It's Meep from Stellar Sweeper.

I used the left-over sparkly yarns from the Harlequin poncho a couple of posts ago, plus, added the ocean colored variegated I Love This Yarn for the background and some sparkly soft fuzzy purply yarn for trim.

I think he's supposed to be giving a sort of 'Spock-like', V-shaped, greeting with his fingers only he's doing it with both hands and has them touching at the fingertips.

I also crocheted a dress for a stuffed alien doll I found at Goodwill. I think the doll was originally made as a toy from that partially animated movie with Michael Jordan in it from a while ago; Space Jam.

The doll had a cloth basketball outfit that was red with black and white trim and a number 23 on it. (Like Jordan's Chicago Bull's outfit).
Anyway, I stripped that outfit off and crocheted this cute dress onto the alien.

I named her Stella.

The dress is made with 100% cotton Sugar n Cream yarn. I added a necklace which is just two green pop tabs strung on a metal bead link chain, (like for a key chain).

Here they are together. Meep and Stella.
The afghan is really small. It would fit into a baby crib.