Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Back in a week-ish....


I'm taking some time off from blogging for a week or so, I'll see you around Jan 3!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Chief's new scarf

So Chief's first knitted scarf didn't quite measure up, and so I made him this one! It is made of Caron Simply Soft and it's tiny squares in Cincinnati Bengal colors, crocheted together. He likes it!

I got the best compliment the other day.... I was chatting with Chief's preschool teacher, I had missed a school party :( and I asked her how Chief did without me there... and she said he "did fine, he's so well-adjusted" I just beamed. My boy is "well-adjusted". Of course, I already knew this, but it is nice when someone else who knows kids says it!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Congratulations! and Christmas for Chickee

First.... Congratulations to Haley! Who won the drawing for the first ever E's favorite Things! Haley, e-mail me with your mailing address at: Ellen at GoCrochet dot com
and I will send you your prize! Thank you for participating!

Do you remember that I had planned to make Chickee her own crochet bag including yarn and hooks? Well, I adjusted the Spa bag, made twin handles, didn't taper it, so that it would hold more, and moved the flower to the handle. Here's a picture before felting with a big pair of scissors to show scale (sorta). I hope she likes it, I'm coveting it myself...

Friday, December 21, 2007


UGH! I'm so glad to be done with this scarf...well, not exactly done...I ran out of yarn. I had only planned to use the yarn I had without buying more. I was making the scarf to learn how to cable, and I gave it a try since it's a free pattern from Lion Brand called "Learn to Cable scarf". (Clever, huh?) Anyway, Chief wanted it and I think it is way too wide and still really not long enough, it's about 24" long. I might still have to make a different one for him. Several times in the middle of this exercise, I wanted to quit and just knit the rest, but I persevered. I'm glad I did, still I'm not convinced that cable knitting is "my thing".

Thursday, December 20, 2007


Don't forget, read yesterday's posts and leave me a comment to be entered in a drawing for "E's favorite things!" you have until 10pm Eastern tonight!

I'm in a good place, the past week, I have been steadily finishing off WIPs and feeling a little more organized, sent out some submissions, thinking about doing a couple more...

sometimes I am overwhelmed by the possibilities. I walk into my crochet office and I am bombarded by possibilities. The yarn practically calls out to me, and I feel strangely guilty when I leave yarn unanswered.... I said, "practically" calls out to me, not "really" calls out to me...

Now, for a photo for you....

Yep, it's Crochetville.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

E's Favorite things!

Have you noticed some of my favorite things popping up in recent posts? It's time for a GIVEAWAY!!!!

This Neutrogena Hand Cream is awesome! It's around $4.00 for this tiny bottle. I keep one in my glove box in my car, one in my purse, one by the bedside! I used to have terrible hands, but my dermatologist recommended this stuff and it's really great. It is a little greasy, so I only use a little and I wait until I'm done crocheting before I use it. I have extremely sensitive skin and this lotion doesn't burn when I put it on like so many other "pretty" lotions do. This says 'Cream' on the bottle, but it's really more of a cross between a 'cream' and an 'ointment'.

Here's the rules: Leave me a comment about one of your favorite things here on this blog post, before 11:00pm Eastern on Thursday night 12/20. Everyone who leaves a comment, will be entered in a drawing and will receive a gift bag containing all the favorite things that were featured since Thanksgiving (except the food, you'll get recipes instead). I'll announce the winner shortly after the drawing and ask you to e-mail me with your mailing address. (Do not put your mailing address in the comment).

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Quilling Part 3

Chickee was so excited about quilling, that she promptly taught Chief and Captain. I couldn't believe that DH was interested! He found the "Gallery" section of Malinda Johnston's book very intriguing. I think it was good for him to see the artistic possibilities. I have been joking/serious about teaching him to crochet for years, but he's really not interested. As an architect/wood worker/one-time sculptor, though, he is very artistic and appreciates art.

Our 17 yo niece came over to babysit the kids last night, and Chickee even taught her how to Quill! Dear Niece, is very talented in art and music. She made a pretty little flower with a curly stem that was very creative!

Here's a favorite thing! You're going to think I'm crazy! My guilty pleasure/comfort food/quick and easy dinner: Do you remember "Creamed Beef"? Well, I put it over the top of Cheese Tortellini instead of Toast, YUM. (I never said that I could rival the Barefoot Contessa!)

It's just processed/packaged Carl Buddig "Beef" cut up into 1/2" squares, in a "gravy" of butter, flower, milk, and a dash of Worschershire and put over the top of cooked cheese tortellini. Chief eats the Tortellini plain with no beef, Chickee eats the beef, but no Tortellini. (Isn't that always the way?) Be ready to have a gallon of water next your bedside after this dinner though! The salt content must be astronomical!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Interweave Winter

Have you seen it? It's in stores now... it's Interweave Crochet's winter issue! In this issue, you will find several phenomenal crocheted pieces including the "Stone Path Hat" (photo above) designed by Lisa Naskrent of Crochet Garden. Lisa has been wow-ing crocheters for a long time on her website and is now taking the plunge into publishing. With her first published pattern in Interweave, you might as well start at the top, right? Remember her name, because by the end of 2008 you will have seen it in various places numerous times.

In this issue there are also fabulous projects by Pam Gillette, Dora Ohrenstein, Doris Chan, Annette Petavy, Robyn Chachula... All of their websites are listed on the right hand side under "Great Sites to See". There are several other talented designers in this issue, check it out for yourself. Congratulations to you all!

Here's a favorite thing!

4 Ingredients to a yummy appetizer, gotta love that! And... an appetizer that doesn't use cream cheese! I don't know about you, but when I throw a party, it seems like I have to buy 20 cream cheeses for all the appetizers. Here's one that doesn't use cream cheese. (but it does use butter and cheese!)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Sneak Peek

I totally have lost track of what you've 'peeked' and what you haven't.... how about this one? Have you seen this? I sold this one, gosh, it must be a year ago, and I don't know when or where it will pop up! If you spot it, let me know!

Here's another favorite thing! It's a Susan Bates, aluminum crochet hook with a BAMBOO handle! Very cool. I found this at Hobby Lobby for around $2.50.

Friday, December 14, 2007

E's Favorite Things- Knit Simple

Published by SOHO (the same group that brings us Crochet Today), KnitSimple is my favorite knitting magazine. For a couple of reasons, I buy this magazine, first, I am a new knitter and like the title says, many of the patterns are 'simple' and elegant, and cute, and do-able. Another reason I like this magazine is that there is often CROCHET in it! For years it has been the other way around, crochet magazines infiltrated by knit designs! Now there is a knit magazine with a few yummy crochet designs. So, even if you don't knit, the one or two crochet designs in every issue make it worth buying for the inspiration.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Quilling Part 2

Here's an hour worth of beginner quilling! Chickee and I made this heart together! I did the white and yellow, and she did the purple and red. We were just trying to learn how to make different shapes from rolled thin strips of paper. Then we assembled them to make a heart-ish shape.

Then we got really bold and tried to make flowers. Chickee made the blue flower with the yellow center, and I started the daisy. But, my hands got tired and I had to go make dinner, so I didn't get mine done. Chickee was proud of her accomplishments and the fact that she finished before me! We learned something new and Chickee was happy. When Chickee's happy, all the world is in harmony....

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Chickee's new dress

The dress is finished. Chickee chose the color from my stash, and since the shirt was so busy with stripes we decided to keep the skirt plain. I would have liked to put one row of yellow near the bottom, but Chickee wouldn't have it!

Of course, now that I finally got her to put it on to take her picture, she still doesn't like it and said that I could put it on Etsy, so I'm thinking of listing it there. She is 6, the shirt is a size 7, that's why it is big on her. Now, I wish I had put on the yellow stripe!

She just lost her 5th tooth! She currently as 3 "holes"! The Tooth Fairy has been very busy. Tonight, Chickee thought she saw some "sparkles" on her bed and that must mean that the Tooth Fairy must be near by. I reminded her that maybe the 'sparkles' are leftover from when the Tooth Fairy was just here a few days ago!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Quilling Part 1

I caught a few minutes of a scrapbooking show the other day... and they had on a woman demonstrating "quilling". Quilling is a way of rolling thin strips of paper into shapes to make a picture or design. I was really intrigued. It looked easy enough that it wasn't intimidating, though I knew that they always make it look easier on tv than it is in real life!

I got a book from the library, by Malinda Johnston, "Paper Quilling, Beautiful paper filligree to make in a weekend" Lark Books, 1998.

I consulted with quilling author, crochet designer, crochet tech editor, and general all-around helper, Susan Lowman. Susan is the author of "Quilling for Scrapbooks & Cards" available on Amazon.

I bought this beginner Quilling kit from Whimsiquills and Chickee and I gave it a try. The cat was intrigued too, all that curling, flopping paper, he was curious! I show you the results of our beginner foray into quilling another day, in Quilling Part 2!

Monday, December 10, 2007

2007 Goal Review

This is a funny photo, it's my legs, covered by Chickee's Care Bear blanket (designed by Carolyn Christmas), Charlie on my lap, my knitting on my lap, as I watch Knit and Crochet Today.

It's that time of year again! In the middle of the year and then again at the end, I review my personal and business goals as they relate to crochet. In 2007, for example, some of my personal crochet goals were to: make at least one item for charity, make at least one gift, make at least one item for myself, etc. Some of my professional goals were: submit to a couple of specific places I hadn't submitted yet before, to improve specific skills, and address financial goals.

In the past, I make a decision about each goal: Did I accomplish it? does it need to be on the goal list for next year also? Was the goal unreasonable now that I look back on it?

I usually have 15-20 goals per year and when June or July comes along, I try to just look at them again and "track" my progress. I keep my goals written down on my bulletin board next to my computer.
These questions help me make goals for the next year. Goals for 2008 will be in another post.

Do you have goals for yourself? Are you organized to a fault like I am, or can you just "go with the flow" with a general idea of what you want/need to do?

Here's one of my favorite things:

This awesome foot cream is the perfect solution to tired, crunchy feet. In just a few days this lotion will make your feet feel like new again. It's at all the grocery stores in the foot care section. (not the lotion section) and costs about $9.99 a bottle.

Lastly, here's a "HELLO" to new reader, Denise! Hi Denise, Welcome!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

New hat for me

Yep, it's a functional wool hat! It is perfect for hanging outside waiting for the school bus, which is what Chickee and I were doing when I made her take this photo, early, in the morning, with the frost on the ground, and no make up on my face, the sun in my eyes... ugh.

Here's one of my favorite things....

well, two of my favorite things! Milky Way Midnight candy bars (yum) and Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate squares with Raspberry filling. (oh my).

Friday, December 7, 2007

K K's bag

Our niece KK, saw my grey and pink spa bag (at right) the other day and said, "I want one of those in brown and blue!" and then I promptly pulled her name in the gift exchange, so...Viola! Of course, I forgot to put the flower on before I felted now I have to see what I can do. KK is 9, so I made the bag a little smaller for her. I can't imagine her carrying a purse, but she might use it as a little tote. Such a sophisticated color choice for such a little girl!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Sneak Peek REVEALED!

I just got my copy of Crochet Today Jan/Feb 2008! In it, is my "Sunny Spread" on p. 68. Of course, I know it as "cables squared", but I think it really looks like sand dollars, don't you?

How are you all? Did you get any snow? Our local weather people are all in a happy tizzy with the snow yesterday. It wasn't much, but it was enough to delay schools and send the newbie reporters out onto the streets to make them do updates with a ruler and a car scraper. Really, I think they do the same exact report every time it snows!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Silent Auction Update

Here's plan B:

I'm donating one SPA bag (the grey and pink at right) also for sale on Etsy and this little tote, which I became rather fond of, but it's little, like 7" square.

Keep reading, because there is going to be a "Giveaway" when you least expect it... :)

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Lazy Day Throw

Did I really forget to show you this one? It's the "Lazy Day Throw" published in Crochet Today.

And I am thrilled to announce that at least 2 people on Ravelry are currently making it! If you are on Ravelry, under the "Patterns" tab, type in Ellen Gormley or "Lazy Day Throw" and you should see the different colors that people are choosing to make this throw! Too fun!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Silent Auction

My husband's company is sponsoring a Silent Auction to benefit those in need. Apparently, last year they auctioned off handmade items with other donated items. I say apparently, because DH forgot to tell me about the auction until it was already over! So, this year, I was pleasantly surprised when I got the e-mail requesting donated items for the auction. So, I am planning on donating a few crocheted/felted items for the auction.

Uh, the small felted tapestry items I had planned, didn't work out real well...

Now, on to Plan B....

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Chief's funny story

I don't get to talk about Chief much, since he doesn't crochet, or wear crochet... but this cracked me up tonight....

So we get a ton of junk mail including credit card offers that come with plastic, "faux" credit cards. Well, Chief wanted to keep one and his Dad told him, he's too young for a credit card, but Chief wanted it anyway. I told him he would need a job, if he was going to have a credit card. Chief says, "I already have a job!" "You do?" "yeah, I save the world!" (He's really a superhero in disguise, but "world" doesn't come out as "world", it comes out more like "woirld". ) And his superhero name is "Pony Top Top the Coolest Man"

Friday, November 30, 2007


At the right, you can see "another favorite" it is a FREE PATTERN on Coats & Clark's Website. Get it HERE. If this link doesn't work, go to: choose "needlework" "crochet" "free projects" "tv projects" and I think it is on page 7.

Have I ever told you the story of this afghan? I made it when we were still living at our old house, it was August, it was hot. The only place I had to lay out the whole thing to assemble it on a diagonal the way I wanted, was up in the third floor attic of our mid-Victorian home. I had one big fan on me, but the little triangles were too light, and were getting blown by the fan, so I assembled the thing with NO FAN. Whew! I can still feel how hot it was up there! You know, the kind of hot where you feel like your lips are swollen with burning by just breathing!

Here's photos of the whole thing.

This photo is some of the other color schemes that Coats and Clark thought might impress. This project was first seen on NeedleArts Studio with Shay Pendray.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Sneak Peek

Do you want another sneak peek? I have no idea if and when this one will show up, but it's a "done deal" (several months ago) so hopefully it will hit the crochet world soon. I will give you a couple of clues: Clue #1: my Niece (who's 3) got one of these for her birthday, and Clue #2: It's a first for me.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A friend of a friend...

A friend of mine requested this blanket for her to give her new grandchild for Christmas. It is "Rock-a-Bye Plaid" by Rose Marie Brooks and was published in Leisure Arts "a year of afghans, book 3"1998. I made one for Chickee when I was pregnant, on jury duty, during the riots, (it's a long story). Anyway, this one is now finished and ready for gifting!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Quotes to inspire

“No longer forward nor behind, I look in hope or fear; But grateful take the good I find, The best of now and here.”
John Greenleaf Whittier quotes (American Writer, 1807-1892)

I think this needs to be my new motto! Awesome, I need to memorize it!
This stack of yarn arrived today, ready to be whipped into crocheted creations for upcoming publications!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Chickee's other dresses

Here's a couple other dresses that I have made for Chickee, taking store-bought shirts and adding skirts. Necessity is the mother of invention, and since she is a 99% of the time dress-wearer, at times I have had to improvise. Many of the dresses in the stores are too fancy for everyday wear. I made these last summer for her:

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Baby Goat

Look at this adorable Baby goat! (it's probably not even a baby, but some tiny variety. I know nothing about goats!) I keep teasing (sorta) my DH that I want to raise goats (cashmere ones) for multiple reasons! First, they'll eat our grass so my DH doesn't have to mow it, if we raise goats can't we take a tax deduction for being 'agricultural'?, and of course, I could spin the hair into yarn! It's a win-win-win! Of course, I'd have to learn how to spin...

We saw this goat, and a variety of other animals at the petting zoo portion of our local Thanksgiving Day parade. Then the kids got photos with Santa and hot chocolate and cookies. It's a fun family tradition!

Friday, November 23, 2007

knitting, cables

It looks like my knitting projects are destined to all be UFO's for awhile! I get excited to learn a new skill, then I get busy with crochet and then I lose interest in the knitting, or worse, I make a mistake and don't know how to fix it. This is the "Learn to Cable Scarf" in Lion Brand Thick and Quick. It is a free pattern on the Lion Website.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Gift for Chickee

Chickee is way more picky about clothes than I thought she would be at age 6! I bought her this long-sleeve t-shirt from Target, but, she wouldn't wear it. So I asked her, "if I add a skirt to it, will you wear it?" She assured me she would and helped me go through my stash to find the color she wanted. So here is a photo of the prep for the skirt. I poke holes with a tapestry needle, (I just eyeball it), then I put stitch markers or seaming pins through the holes to keep them open. I put a row of stitches in with Red Heart LusterSheen. Then I'm going to make the skirt in Red Heart Super Saver. I have done this with her shirts in past, and the Red Heart just gets softer every time I wash it. She loves these dresses and actually wears them. I'll post a photo when it's finished.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007


I cast on a new project (that's what knitters say!) it's from KnitSimple magazine, the summer 2007 issue. The designer is not listed but is a pattern from Needful Yarns. I thought this would be simple enough for me...until I started! Do you see those needles in the photo? Those are 14" needles. See how the yarn is squished on those needles, as if the project is actually much bigger than the 14" needles? The sweater is supposed to be 9". Yep, that's right, my gauge is off by 5 inches! On the upside, I really enjoy the bamboo Takumi needles. They don't click as loud as the aluminum ones, though the yarn doesn't slide very well on the Bamboo. It's a toss up which ones I like better. I haven't decided if I am going to start this baby sweater over again, or if it is doomed to the UFO pile. (That's un-finished object to all of you new-bies out there). No, it's not for us, I have a friend having a baby in March.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Growing about waiting...

It wasn't too long ago, that I would agonize, waiting for a response to my submissions. It seemed like an eternity between sending in a proposal and hearing back. There were two times (two different buyers) that I submitted items only to wait a whole year to get a response. A WHOLE YEAR!

It used to be that I would mail a submission and immediately start watching the e-mail and post box to see a response. Now, I send it and forget about it, I get on designing other things. All submissions I send through the mail I send with Delivery Confirmation, so I know it was received to their address. Every once in a while I go back to my charts, where I plot the progress of every design and I take stock of what I have submitted where, how long it has been, and what my next step will be when a response comes. (maybe I'll share that chart with you if you're interested).

I once did a post about how I didn't know if it was harder to wait for a response, or upon getting a "yes" is it harder to wait for the yarn to arrive to get started. Now, I'm at the point that when I get a "yes" I'm grateful for the 2-3 day wait to get the yarn because then I know that I have 2-3 days to clean the house, do laundry, get as many chores done as possible, organize my office, finish up the crochet projects I'm working on, because when the yarn arrives, I know I will do nothing but crochet!

So, in conclusion, waiting used to be excruciating, now, not so much :)

Do you see that silly cat sitting right in the middle of our puzzle? I guess that's the best sunny spot he could find. I tried to get a photo of him batting the pieces off the table, but he would behave as soon as I turned the camera on him.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Act Surprised

I've decided to make crocheted washcloths from Bernat Organic Cotton for Christmas gifts this year. I'm making them mostly for the kids' teachers, but if you are reading this, and you get one, act delighted, Ok? I'm going to package them with a pretty bar of soap (any suggestions?) I already have 6 made! WooHoo! (if you count the Sunday school teachers, the kids have several teachers altogether). What are you making for Christmas/Holiday giving?

Friday, November 16, 2007


WooHoo, I have just sold my 55th design! Wow. I'm so thrilled. It's really, really fun. Now, it feels real. And to celebrate, here's a sneak peek, though the colors are likely to change:

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Fall has come!

I thought I'd better get this fall photo posted before fall is over. I don't understand why Summer and Winter are soooo loonnnnnggg, and Spring and Fall are each so short. Maybe it was all those pictures in grade school where they split the seasons into four equal parts of the poster. Clearly, Spring and Fall are not equal (in time) to Summer and Winter. I need to remember this when I buy/make clothes and I say to myself, "this would be perfect for Spring or fall" because in truth, in Ohio, Spring and Fall are so short, I shouldn't even bother with clothes that I can say are appropriate for Spring and Fall. From now on, only fashions for Summer and Winter. I realize not everyone reading this is in the same predicament, but still, I'm no longer going to waste my money on clothes I don't get an opportunity to wear.

The photo above is at a County park about a mile from our house. The kids and I went this past weekend to see "Thanksgiving on the Frontier" which had people dressed in period costume and using butter churns and stuff.

And here's our side yard. I was worried with the drought that we wouldn't have good colors this fall, but here they are!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

City Backpack

Check your mailbox for the new issue of Crochet! The January 2008 issue just arrived in my mailbox and my City Backpack is in it! on page 40 and 43. It is a felted backpack that uses both Lion Wool and Moda Dea Sassy Stripes. I also made this bag and gave it to a friend for her birthday this year.

This was the sneak peak I gave you:

And here are some full photos:

This one, I'm looking forward to getting back, so I can use it! I was hoping to have a photo of the new cover for you, but it's not even posted on their website yet! Get Crochet!