Quality Crafting Time

I've got two pieces of extremely exciting news! First of all, my wonderful Mr. Dennis asked me (You heard me!) to teach him how to sew a while back. So I busted out some felt and he used the kitty ball pattern from Toys to Sew and designed a little Kirby plush toy for his chubby old cat Buddy! He picked it up really quickly and seemed to enjoy it, and now he wants to design his own plushies and start sewing more! *Dreamy sigh* First the scarf, now this! We've also been cooking a bit more together and he's been talking about making a manly apron. He must be a little jealous of my rediculously large apron collection that includes not a single man's apron. So for Christmas I got him a Japanese craft book completely dedicated to men's aprons. I can't find it online or I would link to it, it's so cool. It has patterns and ideas along with awesome old black and white photographs of men in their working aprons. I also got him a Baby Yetti plush kit from Love and a Sandwich's etsy store. He made it over a weekend and it came out so awesome! His stitchwork is beautiful because he's very detail oriented and I know it's going to get even prettier the more he does it. Sometimes he makes fun of me saying I want to turn him into a woman, what with all this cooking/sewing nonsense, so I thought it was a good idea to stop myself before I tried to get him to do someting like cross stitch or embroidery, lol. Such a shame though, his stitches are so nice. Oh, and we're halfway done making a quilt together, but more on that later!!!On to the second big announcement! I have started a meetup group for fiber artists. It's called the Lakeshore Stitch n' Bitch Meetup Group, and it's every tuesday evening at L'Amyx tea bar from roughly 7:00 pm till 10:00 pm, but you can come and leave as early or late as you like. I'm so excited, I got the page looking really nice and a bunch of my friends and even a couple strangers have RSVP'd for it! I have dreams of making crafty friends and starting a fiber artist's collective so we can have a big craft fair where we all sell our stuff and blah blah blah... Delusions of grandeur I'm sure, but you never know what might happen! Anywho, if you're local and want to come and hang out, you can find all the info you need right here at the group's homepage. Hope to see you around soon!


New Year's Cleanse

I'm working on reorganizing my craft stuff, and this includes getting rid of as much of it as I can bare to. And instead of sending it off to a thrift store I thought I could give some of it away on here to my readers who need it. With money being tight for most everyone these days I'm sure there's someone out there who will love to have these things. So, up for grabs to good homes on a first-come first-serve basis are:
*A copy of The Country Store by Stephanie Donaldson. I absolutely adore this book. It has chapters on everything from gardening, to preserving, giving, aromatherapy, hebcrafts, and medicinal herbs. It even shows you how to store fruits and vegetables without canning to last thru the winter. My mother got me the paperback version of this book for Christmas, which for some reason is now published with the title Country Traditions. Since the paperback is slightly thinner and I need every millimeter of bookshelf space I can get I decided to let the old one go.
*A big pile of Chinese satin materials. Some are large scraps, but most are fat quarters or larger. I just don't ever use satin for anything and I don't enjoy sewing with it; too slippery for my taste. So to gain some space I'm letting it all go.
*A book of folk art animal applique designs. It's cute, but I rarely applique so I figure someone else out there can put it to better use.
*And lastly, I've got a stack of halloween cotton quilting fabrics (sorry no pics). They're mostly 1/4 yards and large scraps, but I know I'll never use them even though there's some really cute ones in there. Lots of blue, orange, and black designs featuring cartoony and folksy ghosts, skulls, cats, etc.
*Alrighty then. Leave a comment as to what you'd like to have and a way to contact you and the first one to claim it gets it!


A Mug Cozy Tutorial

Another year is over-and-done-with and a bright, shiny new one is ready to go. I can't wait! I always make really broad new year's resolutions so that I usually accomplish at least one. One thing I want to make sure to do this coming year is more giving on ye olde blog. I'm going to post more free tutorials and patterns, (I've been hoarding a few in hopes of selling them in my etsy store but I figure it's way more fun to have people stop by my blog to see them for free instead!) and I want to do a couple giveaways here and there. I feel silly sometimes because every year I mean to do a "blogiverssary" post and give something away in celebration, but I end up missing it every time. Come this next July my blog will be 4 and darn it I'm going to celebrate! This thing is by far the longest running project I've ever done and I love it so much! Anywho, on to the start of my new year's resolution, a mug cozy tutorial for you all!

Crocheted Mug Cozy Pattern
Fits the common "souvenir" style mug, 3 inches in diameter and 3 3/4 inches tall with straight sides. Makes 4.
Skill Level: Intermediate: Knowledge of basic stitches and crochet in the round is needed.

US size I9/5.5mm hook
1 Skein Bernat Softee Chunky in Natural
4 1-inch mismatched vintage buttons

3 rows of 5 dc = aprox. 1 1/2 inch square

Begin with an adjustable loop, the tutorial for which can be found at this website.

Row 1: Chain (ch) 2, this will always count as the first stitch. Crochet 11 double crochet (dc) into the loop, join last stitch to beginning chain stitch with a slip stitch (slst), and tighten the loop. (12 dc)
Row 2: Ch 2. 2dc in each dc, join with a slst. (24 dc)
Row 3: Ch 2. *2dc in first dc, 1 dc in next.* Repeat from * until end of row, join with a slst. (36 dc)
Row 4: Ch 1. Single crochet (sc) in each stitch around, join with a slst. (36 sc)
Row 5: Ch 2. Dc in the back loop only of each stitch around, join with a slst. (36 dc)
Row 6: Ch 2, turn. Dc in next 33 stitches. Do not join. (34 dc)
Rows 7-8: Repeat row 6. (34 dc)
Row 9: Ch 2, turn. Dc in next 33 stitches. (34 dc) Chain 9 and attach the end of the chain to the bottom of the dc with a ss. This will create the loop for the button closure.
Row 10: Slst. Remove hook from yarn and insert it thru the front top of the last dc. Draw yarn loop through top of stitch. For decorative edging: *sc in first dc, ch1, slst in next dc.* Repeat from * until end of row.
Bind off and weave in ends. Sew a button to the corner opposite the loop. Use mismatched buttons to help tell the mugs apart.

And just a reminder, the original set of cozies is up for sale in my etsy shop if you don't feel like making any. ^_~

If you have found this or any of my other free patterns useful and would like to help me keep creating them I accept PayPal donations!