Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Sneak Peek

I know, my sneak peeks are getting even more sneaky. Sometimes it's even hard to figure out what you are looking at. This one is significant, however, it tells you the yarn and the colors... this is the book object that I'm trying to get done by Friday so that I feel like I'm back on track... sorta. In this business, I have learned, that I cannot afford to get discouraged. When I am discouraged, I stop working...then I fall behind. Luckily this doesn't happen too often, but unfortunately it happened twice already during this book. I'll chalk it up to a learning experience. (Of course feeling discouraged only 2 times in the past 13 months is pretty good!) Still, I'm excited that the end (for the this step!) is in sight. I know there is much to do even after I turn the book in.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Chickee in Doris Sweater

So we had this old laptop that just was dead. The Captain thought it might be a fun learning experience for the kids to open it up and see what was inside. I don't think he thought the kids would take a hammer to it like a Gallagher show. They did learn a great deal though and both of them took the computer and it's innards to school to show and tell. (Yes, Chief has his own workbench and tools).

As you can see, the latest fashion in computer demolition-wear is a Doris Chan original. Chickee is wearing the Chloe Cardigan from the latest issue of Interweave Crochet.
This model was made by DORIS herself! Chickee wears it constantly. It's in Caron Spa and has already been washed 4-5 times. It still looks great. What a lucky little girl!

Now, back to the glamorous life of the crochet designer. I think I have crocheted 10-12 hours everyday for the last week. Trying to rest my joints in between marathon sessions. Carrying my stitch bag everywhere I go. Treating my family to convenience foods because I don't have time to make a meal of which I am proud... maybe next week. With a little creative thinking I might actually have this project done by Friday like I had hoped... but I still have a few more 12 hours a day days before I get there! Don't feel sorry for me though, it's arduous, and I don't want weeks like this every week, but I LOVE it.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Weekend and Whisper Wrap CAL

This past weekend was the Girl Scout Mother/Daughter dinner dance. Here we are, posing in the bright sun (again, me squinting). Chickee is so gorgeous she takes my breath away.

I have not made any progress on my Whisper Wrap since I last wrote about it. How about you? How is everyone doing? Instead, I have been working feverishly on a book project that I'm trying to finish by Friday. I'm crocheting while I wait for my Jazzercise classes to start, I'm crocheting while we drive, I'm crocheted sitting in the car waiting for Chickee to come home from a field trip. It's a real full-on press to get the book done. Speaking of hooks are calling... have a great day!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Sneak Peek

I haven't done many sneak peeks lately because many of the projects I have done lately are the "not-allowed-to-sneak-a-peek" kind! It doesn't mean that I haven't made any projects, in fact, I've made MANY! I've worked with Alpaca, I've worked with Bamboo, I've worked with acrylic, I've been using purple and green and teal and brown and bright green.... not all together, but a bunch of projects, at least 5.

This is a very distinctive yarn. There's no mistaking it! But still, I'm not saying it. It turned out really, really fun.

Now, back to the BOOK projects. I'm going to crochet like mad and hope to have the next one done by next Friday! Wish me good stitching.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Whisper Wrap CAL Update and Ravelry party

It sounds like the Whisper Wrap CAL participants are doing well. A few people have mentioned that the wrong side rows with the Back Post Treble Crochet are a little slower to stitch, perhaps a little more awkward. One possible solution, is to not do the wrong side rows. When you turn the work, just repeat the instructions for the Right Side rows and use only Front Post stitches. It will change the look of the pattern. The pattern will be more reversible but it may lose a little of the look. If however, it is faster and/or more fun. I'm all for fun. :) Do what works for you and let me know how it goes!

As you know, I have a new group on Ravelry. Just type in 'GoCrochet' in the group search box. (Did I mention Ravelry is free?) We just achieved 100 members to the group so we're having a little '100 member party' on the group's LIVE CHAT next Wednesday night, 9:00PM Eastern to celebrate. Come join in the fun. The group forum is available for messages at any time, but live chat is scheduled for Wednesday night.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Weekend Cardigan

BeverlyGoulet on Ravelry gave me permission to post her photo of the Weekend Cardigan she made for her daughter. Didn't she do a great job? Making this pullover into a cardigan is easy. It's worked from the neck down anyway, and when it's time to join the front halves in the middle, don't. Beverly added a lovely crochet button and Viola! If you are on Ravelry go find BeverlyGoulet and favorite the project or leave a nice comment.

The original Weekend Pullover pattern is found in Crochet Today magazine March/April 2009.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Raspberry Knit Ascot!

This yarn is just so gorgeous! It's Scarlet Fleece in the color "Coffee and Raspberry Pie". I love raspberries. This would only be better if it were named, "Chocolate and Raspberry sorbet" because I don't do coffee and I don't do pie... unless it's chocolate pudding pie or the occasional piece of pumpkin or apple pie... Graeter's Ice Cream in Cincinnati makes an incredible 'Black Raspberry Chip" ice cream... oh, I'd better start talking about the scarf...

It's an intermediate (because of the increases and decreases) KNIT ribbed scarf edged with garter stitch and it has two narrow spots at either end for convenient tying. I think I have worn it everyday since I photographed it. I told you awhile back that my latest favorite color is Magenta... this definitely feels magenta to me.

It's my first knit pattern, but never fear, I had it professionally tech edited.
$2.99 USD for the PDF pattern. Adobe or other PDF reader is required to view the PDF on your computer.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Whisper Wrap CAL Update

I haven't received any questions on the Whisper Wrap, so I hope that means you all are doing well. I've made 4 rows so far! If you haven't already begun, now's the time! Feel free to give me an update or post a photo on your project page on Ravelry. The discussion on the 'GoCrochet with Ellen Gormley' group on Ravelry is that the first two rows are a little fiddly then it gets much easier and the pattern is memorize-able.

It's not too late to join in!
$5.00 for the PDF

Friday, March 19, 2010

Fiction and odds and ends

Where has the week gone? I keep hearing that a few more reveals are coming but they haven't popped up yet. I'll keep you posted.

Here is Chief with one of the "chicks". Not so little and fuzzy anymore is it? The Captain says they are "pre-teens" now. We had them outside yesterday for a little while in the sun, but they went back in the basement overnight. They are not quite old enough to be outside full-time.

I went from having a very slow January and February to being booked through July. All the stars must have aligned. Because of this crazy crochet schedule it's not likely I'll do much reading for a while. I am currently reading the 5th Harry Potter book. I have read and own them all. But recently (before I got busy) I found myself without a book, so I picked up #5 (having already read 1-4 numerous times, but having read the last 5-7 only once). Before that I read:

The Help by Kathryn Stockett
I feel like I may have already written about this one. I know I have talked about it many times. It's set in Montgomery, Alabama in the late 50s early 60s. This is a first novel by Ms. Stockett and she writes it from the perspectives of 3 unique and colorful women. Much of it is written from the perspective of Skeeter, a middle-class young white woman who returns to her childhood home after college and is hoping to be a journalist. Another perspective is of a maid who works for one of Skeeter's friends. She adores the child she his hired to raise, though she has already raised and liberated her own child. The third perspective is another maid who has trouble not speaking her mind in a culture where it is expected that she keep her mouth shut. It is fascinating how these three women encounter many different relationships within the same community. Intricate loving relationships and awkward abrasive and sometimes abusive relationships. You can't help but cheer for these women as the strive to tell their stories. It's a really fabulous read.

Ok, I'm trying not to read until I get some serious crocheting done... I even returned unread books to the library. I need to start a list of all the books I'm going to read when I have time to read again. Do you do that?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Blossom Trio revealed

The new issue of Interweave Crochet, Spring 2010 is going to mail this week! I think the bigger headband would look great on an older girl, like 12 or so. The Baby headband is my favorite though, what a beautiful baby and a great photo.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Measuring a hat

I always feel a little uncertain about how to measure the circumference of a crocheted I enlisted the help of a few of my designer friends. A few of them chimed in with their methods...

In the past, I have lain my hats flat, measured across the inside at the crown and multiplied by 2, but this didn't feel accurate enough. Also in the past, I have blown up a balloon to the desired measurement and made the hat fit! But this requires some trial and frogging to get the hat to fit the balloon just right.

Amy O'Neill Houck, author of Crochet for Bears, author of the Hook and I Blog, replied to my question saying:

Hi Ellen--I measure the diameter of the crown, then work the formula for circumference which is c=πd (where π is 3.1416). It's much easier than trying to measure around the circumference of something!

I tried Amy's method and it works! I had to remember that the hat opening is a CIRCLE, the diameter is the distance across the hat when it is in a CIRCLE, not when it is lying FLAT, which makes a difference!

Amy offered a longer and more delicious to view blog post about the subject on her blog.

Linda Permann, author of Crochet Adorned, contributor to CraftStylish, and author of agrees with Amy and you know Linda makes great hats! Make sure you read Linda's comments below this post for some more great tips!

Hmm, is this any hint about what's been on my mind lately? LOL.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

My visit with the Dayton Crochet Guild

The lovely members of the Greater Dayton Crochet Guild invited me to join them for their annual all-day event. I missed the first few hours but they had a few speakers on outlets for charity projects. But I made it in time for lunch! GDCG member, Mary Jane Hall, did a talk on her 'Graduated Stitch Method' that she taught in her second book, Crochet that Fits. That's Mary Jane, pictured below in the middle. On the right is the GDCG's chair of the event, Pam. Thanks Pam! This is the only photo of me from the event where my eyes appear a little bit open. I squint too much. I have no idea why, but in every other photo, my eyes are closed. Sigh.

I'm wearing the Weekend Pullover sweater and my latest design that I show a close-up photo in a few days, the Raspberry knit Ascot. (my first knit design...Squee!)

The photo at the top I'm showing a Broomstick lace blanket that my Mom made for me when I was about 10 (I think). I talked about how crochet is love in yarn form. How crocheted gifts were made for me, I make crocheted gifts for others, and now you, can make crocheted gifts from my patterns for your loved ones!

This is me demonstrating the stretchy-ness of the Whisper Wrap and why I'm going to add a little more length on the new model in purple! (The pattern reflects the longer length).

I had a great time. Thank you Greater Dayton Crochet Guild for hosting me!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Whiper Wrap CAL Question 1

I have a new group/forum on Ravelry called, "GoCrochet with Ellen Gormley". To get there, log on to, click on the "groups" tab, search by typing in "GoCrochet" and near the upper right will be a button to "join this group".

On this group, I have a thread for the "Advanced Shawl CAL - Whisper Wrap". You may leave your questions and discuss the pattern there OR you can leave comments on this post or any post related to the CAL. I will answer questions here in blog posts so that everyone can learn! Ok, hooks ready? here we GO!

Question 1:
Diane writes:

I’m excited too and I also have a question. Since it has to do with gauge, I’m going to ask it now!

Using the I-5.5mm hook, my swatch measured 3.5 inches. Is this gauge “close enough” or should I swatch using a 5mm hook?


Thanks for joining us! gauge is not critical as it is not a form fitting garment, however, you don't want a blanket or a napkin either. Our proposed gauge is

13 sts and 4 rows = 3” in pattern

With your gauge, you will likely end up with a shawl that is a few inches bigger. If you are ok with that, then you can just continue. If you want to get closer to gauge, go down a hook size. This is a very stretchy pattern, by the way, gauge is taken with the swatch laid comfortably on the table (without being stretched).

The purpose of the practic
e swatch is to familiarize yourself with the pattern and the stitches. The practice swatch is more than 13 sts, so it will not end up being 3" wide. If you want to make a bigger swatch that will give you a more accurate picture of your gauge, use the multiples instructions at the beginning of the pattern to make a bigger swatch. If you are adamantly anti-swatch and you just begin the project, you will not see your true gauge until you are several rows into the pattern and all the stitches "settle" into place.

Your goal for today might be to get the practice swatch done. I'm going to make my goal for today to get the first and second rows established (then the rest will be easy!)

Chaining on such a large number of stitches can be difficult. I will likely place a marker every 25 sts to help with counting. I also will likely work in the back ridge of my chains because I like the finished edge it will leave and it will help me visualize the chains so that they don't get twisted.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Vote for the Crochet LIberation Front Crochet Awards

The Crochet Liberation Front (CLF) is holding it's 2nd Annual Crochet Awards. The award given is called the "Flaming Hook of Justice" or "Flamie" for short.

This year, I am nominated in the Best Crochet Blog category. Please consider voting!

Vote Here

Of course the voting is happening now, when I'm SWAMPED and haven't had time to properly entertain you! But never fear, the Advanced Shawl Whisper Wrap CAL begins MONDAY! Woohoo! I'm looking forward to it!

*note to Martina and all our German speaking participants... Martina, please feel free to translate any questions and post them to the comment section. You also have my permission to translate my comments about the Whisper Wrap that I write on this blog, into German. If you give me the question and the translation side by side, I'll try to publish them for all our followers to read. Thank you!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Baby Bottle cozy and Bib revealed

I didn't know this pattern was out, but it is, and it's FREE! Thanks Coats and Clark! See the free pattern here.

My Debut in Knit N' Style Magazine...

The crocheted Striped Shoulder Bag

I can't seem to get a photo for you, but it's there!

Also, my CAL yarn arrived yesterday. Thanks Yarnsandmore!

Today I'm off to Crochet and Chat at the library and I'm shipping project #7 of the book off to the publisher! Woohoo. Another day closer.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

How much does a designer make?

The Today Show interviewed the author and knit designer, Betsy McCarthy, who reports she made around $5000. last year. Here's the link to the video of the interview. And here's a link to Betsy's book, "Knit Socks".

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Oh Deer!

Here's a lovely pair of deer in our front yard the other day. You can see the snow is almost gone! Unfortunately, I can't think of anything to say regarding to crochet today! I'm just stitching away. I had hoped to finish a project to mail it out yesterday, but here I am... still assembling today. I have 5 magazine projects and 3 book projects waiting for my attention, but I'm just not getting to them yet! Maybe the final push today will help.

Have a great day,


Monday, March 8, 2010

Book Sneak Peek

I think you deserve a book sneak peek. You've been so patient... so here it is... It's like a Where's Waldo puzzle isn't it? I'll give you a hint... there's a little... and there's a little more over there... and there's a little over here... Forgive me, I think it'll be worth it. I showed it to a friend of mine when I asked her opinion she said, "Seriously Beautiful". Words I'll cherish!

Do you have your yarn for the Advanced Shawl "Whisper Wrap" CAL yet? Mine is on it's way! The CAL will begin Monday, March 15!

Friday, March 5, 2010

FaveCrafts and Interweave Crochet

I'm quoted. today at FaveCrafts. They were asking, "What is your favorite craft tool?"

Also, a teeny sneak peek of Interweave Crochet Spring 2011 is up. It includes the cover of the issue and if you scroll down, the Table of Contents for the issue. The middle photo of the baby headband is one part of my Blossom Trio. I had originally called it the "Valrosa Set" after a town mentioned in the book, "A Long Fatal Love Chase" by Louisa May Alcott. I featured that book on one of my Fiction posts. Above is a sneak peek as I was experimenting with partial flowers.

Also on the Table of Contents is a beautiful Tunisian 5-points shawl by Vashti Braha. Vashti has been doing much experimenting with Tunisian.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Brocade'e new photo shoot: FREE CROCHET PATTERN

This old pattern has a new look! It got another chance at a new photo shoot. This advanced PDF is FREE! WooHoo! From Coats & Clark. But I have to tell you, there are more ends to weave in for this project than ANY other I have ever done. Is it worth it? You decide. I have to tell you, I LOVE this blanket. I love ovals and I love that there are oval shapes in this pieced motif blanket.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Adopt a Crochet Designer

Are you a reader of CrochetbyFaye, Robyn Chachula? you should be :)

Robyn has come up with a brilliant and positive response to a bummer of a situation. She, like most of us designers, have at one time or another had our work stolen or pirated. In response, she is asking for consumers to 'Adopt a Designer'. With little or no investment, show a crochet designer some love! Read all the details on her 3/2/10 post. She "adopted" the fantastic Kristin Omdahl, author of the new book Crochet So Fine.

I'm going to "adopt" someone you may not have heard of... Kimberly McAlindin!
Kimberly is doing some great work in knit and crochet. If you click on her name, it will take you to her blog. She's also a friend of crochet designer, Tammy Hildebrand, and any friend of Tammy's is a friend of mine. Her latest design just popped up in the Caron Newsletter, that you may have received yesterday. Here is the photo of Kimberly's Design, the Lobito Jacket:

ACK! I did it! Don't Leave me Hanging!

I started a new group on Ravelry. It's FREE! Come join me so we can TALK to each other. I'm going to keep the blog going, never fear, but it will be so much fun to hear from YOU!

If you are not familiar with Ravelry, it's like a visual database of all things knit/crochet/spin/weaving. Go to and sign up. Then you'll click on the "groups" tab and you can search for me using Ellen or GoCrochet and you should recognize my logo.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Crochet Love

Who would have guessed when I went to my parents' house this weekend to help clean out the garage attic, that I would find this adorable crocheted poncho... with my name in it. This red granny square poncho with the white puff-stitch middles uses the same on-the-top sc joins that I use so often!

On the inside, on the dried tape label was my name written in marker. It's small on Chickee, but I'm guessing my Mom must have made this for me when I was 5-6? I don't really remember it, but I only remember a few items that I either loved or hated.

There's nothing like a little crochet love from beyond to brighten my day! Happy National Crochet Month everyone!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Free Scarf PDF

Frothy Scarf!
A Google Alert found this free PDF of a scarf done some time ago! If you click on the link it automatically takes you to the PDF download page. It's offered by Coats & Clark. It's in Collage yarn in color Blue Wave. I originally designed it in Moda Dea Eclipse and here is my photograph of the swatch in Eclipse. (mauve)

I think I'm done with the Yarn Sale Mondays. I'm out of sets of yarns that I can part with that you might be interested in. :) Thanks to all.


Link to the whole Newsletter in which it appears