Thursday, January 31, 2013

Newsletter Day!

Tomorrow is Newsletter Day!  Have you signed up for my FREE monthly newsletter?  It's delivered right to your inbox and contains tips for Business, Design, and Crochet that I haven't put on the blog, Ravelry group, or Facebook page.  To sign up.... (do it by tomorrow to get February's issue)....

or, on the right sidebar of this blog page... there is a dialog box under the Annie's Ad for you to input your email address for the newsletter.

Tomorrow... I have a good photo for Photo Friday!  I can't wait to post it.  In the meantime...
Here's the Star Power motif from my book Go Crochet Afghan Design Workbook.  I still have a few copies left here that I can sign and ship to you!  $20 (free shipping in the US).  The Paypal buy Now button is on the right sidebar, at the top.  The DIGITAL Kindle version ($11.99) is also available through Amazon. Amazon only has FIVE harcopy books left in stock right now for $16.49.


Saturday, January 26, 2013

A little Psychology for you.

I have decided to re-frame 'discipline' as 'courage'
If Courage is doing something that you don't really want to do because it is the RIGHT thing to do... then it is not far off from discipline where you do something that is the RIGHT thing to do even if you may not want to do it.

So, from now on, it takes "courage" to choose good habits, not discipline.

Being courageous sounds more fun than being disciplined.

Don't get me wrong the Courage that soldiers and firefighters and police officers display is way bigger... like VALOR.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Photo Friday: Clean (sorta) Crochet Office

My husband has never been more proud...

My office is sorta clean...
I thought it was clean until I saw the photos....

Anyway, you can see carpet and can tell that the desk is wood.  That's clean.

Yep, I don't have a chair.  Chief keeps taking it because it is a "spinny" chair, and really, if I'm in the office I'm generally on the floor and not sitting at the desk. 

You can't see the book shelf and cabinets behind the door.

To the left of the desk is a closet that runs the length of the house, half of it is full of yarn and projects, the other half is usual family storage stuff.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


My knitting is deserves Wrapture. 

Brought to you from my friend, Kristin Omdahl and her partnership with Euclan Delicate Wool Wash. Kristin worked with the folks at Euclan to create a scent that is unique and intoxicating.  Literally a few weeks ago, I did a little hand-dip soak of a swatch in a bucket with cool water and some Euclan... later that day, I was still receiving compliments on my "perfume".  HAHA, it was just the sweet, delicate scent of the Wrapture.

Today, I fastened off a little procrasti-knit project.  (I used knitting to procrastinate from another project I should have been doing....)  And I thought that the interesting little project deserved some sweet blocking.  I put one drop of Wrapture in the water reservoir with the rest water in my hand-held steamer. I pinned my project down, spreading it gently and steamed that Wrapture right into it!

Wow, it's going to be so luxurious to wear!  Love it, Kristin, I really love it!  

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Crochet Today Motif Monday

In case you have been missing it, Crochet Today magazine has been doing "Motif Monday" on their blog,  They are currently featuring the motifs in my Whimsy blanket. See yesterday's post and previous Monday posts for more. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Crochet: Art vs. Craft

It's flurrying on this Martin Luther King Jr Day.  The kids are home, it's cold outside. It's a great day to crochet for me, sew for Chickee, and I don't know what Chief will do? Play Minecraft and TempleRun? 

When I was in college, my friends, Aimee and Becky and I had a little apartment. One Martin Luther King Day we were off of school and it snowed something crazy like 22" of snow the night before. Their boyfriends came over and they were sled-riding behind the apartment building on whatever homemade sled they could find in our kitchen.  I think more than one cookie sheet got mangled that day.

Well, we are all grown-up now!  Aimee is an award-winning illustrator for the Cincinnati Opera.  Here's her Illustration for La-Traviata

The Illustration was done by Aimee Sposito Martini and is owned by the Cincinnati Opera.

Yesterday, Our Alma Mater opened an art show with a reception for distinguished Alumni. Aimee's work was on display and I was thrilled to go give her a big hug and congratulations!  I dragged Chickee along too.  I made her look at all the classrooms where I took ceramics and figure drawing (I'm still terrible at drawing).  She met ALL my professors! I can believe ALL of them were still there!  It was so much fun.  I wore a rather eye-catching wrap that is going to be in a publication in the next few months. 

I'm rambling, but I'll go on.... It made me think again of the old Art vs. Craft debate.  If it is yarn, is it Art or is it Craft?  What about quilt-making? I've seen some one-of-a-kind quilts that are clearly ART.... but is a yarn project where the instructions are given freely so others can make the identical item (and therefor not a one-of-a-kind) ART, or does the element of instructions make it CRAFT? Does it matter?  I'd like to think of myself as an artist. I'd also like to think of myself as a craftsperson. To me both and artist and a craftsperson work deliberately with effort and skill to create something that wasn't there before. Any thoughts? Is Crochet ART, CRAFT or both?

Friday, January 18, 2013

Come visit!

Crochetville is organizing a HUGE Blog tour of crochet designers in March for 'National Crochet Month'.  My Day is March 2!  Click on Crochetville's post HERE for the current list of all the blog stops. (More are being added daily!)

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Sequestered in Crochet

I have barricaded myself in my office and I'm trying to stay away from all outside distractions until I make some serious progress on the projects on my desk.

I'll let you know when it's time to mix up some milkshakes.  Keep up with the CAL!  Keep going!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Photo Friday

How's your Saturday Beret coming along?  I know of 17 of you are participating! There is still time.  The Bruges Style hat works up so quickly that you can make it between now and 1/26.  You even have time to order the book and THEN make the hat! 

Let's see if I can find an interesting photo for you...

Here is the Captain, Chickee, and her friend (I need to come up with a "C" nickname for visiting friends!) with the Captain's annual snow creature.  Last year he didn't make one though, since we didn't get any snow last year. This year, it snowed several inches over the Christmas break, so they helped him make this snow donkey.  I love the clever tufts of grass for the mane and tail. Now, back to crochet for me! 

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

CGOA Design Competition 2013

Along the lines of your crochet New Year's Resolutions:

True Story: In 2010 I entered a design in the CGOA design contest. It didn't win a prize. It didn't get an honorable mention. Fast forward, 2012, someone remembered my entry, my non-winning entry, in the CGOA Design Contest and passed my name along to a publisher who signed me to a book contract. Coincidence? No. Effort meeting opportunity. Get your effort together. Opportunity comes this summer.


Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Saturday Beret CAL

Crochet A Long! At least 14 Saturday Berets are in various stages of completion!  Are you one of them? There is plenty of time to join us in this CAL. The hat whips up quickly.  To get your finished photos up in time to be considered so I can show some here on the blog and on the new Monthly Go Crochet Newsletter, have your project completed by January 26. (Plenty of time!) Follow everyone's progress or ask questions on the Ravelry thread.  Don't have the book Clever Crocheted Accessories yet?  You can get it at Interweave or Amazon, or request it at your local library. 

Need more help with your Saturday Beret or are you bitten by the Bruges Lace bug and want to learn more? Instructional photos like this one are in my book Learn Bruges Lace. 19 pages of how-to Bruges Lace exercises before the 8 patterns. Available in softback book or on digital download at  You can learn Bruges Lace Crochet, it's really easy.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Saturday Beret CAL Starts NOW!

ArtLikeBread (aka Cami) on of my Ravelry group moderators is facilitating the Saturday Beret Crochet A Long. It starts today!  Here is a message from ArtLikeBread that she posted on Ravelry: 

Hello, GoCrocheters! I am thrilled and honored to welcome you to the Saturday Beret CAL, which will start on Monday, January 7, 2013. Yaaaay! Ellen was nice enough to entrust the administration of this CAL to me. I hope we all have a lot of fun!
This will be a casual, post as you go CAL. There’s no firm schedule, but lots of encouragement and fun! Also, if you have any questions about the pattern, this is the perfect place to get help. :)
We’ll begin on Jan. 7, which will be in a few days. Here are a few OPTIONAL things you can do between now and then:
  1. Grab your yarn, hook, and pattern. Read through the pattern, and do your gauge swatch.
  2. Recruit your friends and tell them to check in here on the thread.
  3. Set up your project page and use the tag “SatBeretCAL” so we can find you quickly.
  4. Show your enthusiasm by tweeting, plurking, and facebooking about the CAL. A sample post would be, ”I’m participating in the @gocrochet Saturday Beret CAL on @ravelry.”
Remember, the point of the CAL is fun and camaraderie, so enjoy every moment of crocheting this beautiful pattern that Ellen’s designed for us!
If you’d like a chance for your picture to be posted in Ellen’s newsletter, post your pics here by Jan. 26! Don’t worry, though, you can still post afterwards!!

ArtLikeBread is referring to the Ravelry group for questions and posting a project page.  Here's the link to the Ravelry thread.
You may also post comments here on the blog. 

Here's ArtLikeBread with one of her Saturday Beret's she made in advance of the CAL so she could help with questions. Thank you Cami!

Thursday, January 3, 2013


There were four entries in the 'Write a Review of Learn Bruges Lace' and be entered to win Giveaway,

and the winner is .... Darlene, aka Hummywinger! 

Thanks everyone!  Though the giveaway is closed, I still would be grateful for positive reviews of either of my books on Amazon.

It appears that the 'Buy Now' buttons for the books on the right side bar are being 'fickle', sometimes they work, sometimes they don't. I re-installed them yesterday. If you'd like to buy a signed book but are having trouble, just email me at and we'll work it out.


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Sneak Peek! Runway Crochet

Margaret Hubert has a new book coming out soon... I was honored to be included in Margaret's book!  The cover and title has been revealed on Amazon... here it is!

Ok, the 4th from the left... the gray/whitish looking cardigan... that's mine!  Whoo hoo!  I don't know what else I'm allowed to say except that in addition to Margaret's signature designs, there are other designers included that you will recognize. And, when you see one design of mine, you shouldn't stop looking at all the rest of the designs. ;) Here's the link to Amazon to put the book on your wish list.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Tunisian Crochet

Here I am teaching Tunisian Crochet at Silk Road Textiles. Let Terry or Amy know if you'd like me to offer the class again!  Coming January 16, I'll be teaching from my book Go Crochet Afghan Design Workbook, including a lesson on making half motifs.  February 6th, I'm scheduled to teach Introduction to Bruges Lace! Both classes are Wednesdays 9-12. Go to the Silk Road Textiles site and click on the 'Classes and Events' tab for more information!

Also, the new GoCrochet Monthly Newsletter went live today! You can subscribe in the box on the right sidebar of this blog page. Those of you who have already subscribed before today, it's in your inbox!