Saturday, July 26, 2014

San Diego Seaport Village

Happy summer!  I hope you are enjoying your summer.  Here's some pictures from my visit to Seaport Village in San Diego from last week.
Isn't this tree amazing?  I love the design of the tree trunk!
Ducks are so much fun to watch and here they are having fun in the water.
Here's Mama Duck and her three little ducklings making their way across the sidewalk.
Here they are again - aren't they the cutest little things?
The duck pond at Seaport Village is so tranquil.
It's located right on the water so you can see the ships coming in and out.
Here's a picture of the Coronado Bridge.

We had a great day in San Diego.  I will leave you with some picture from my garden (actually it's my husband's garden!)
The fig tree that has figs!
Tomatoes which have taken over the whole area.
 
Strawberries from the strawberry patch.

I wish you all a wonderful week.  Please stop by and say "hello".  I'd love to hear from you.  And, remember to stop by Handmade Harbour and meet some great crafters.

Have fun in the sun,
Pat










Saturday, July 12, 2014

"Martha's Ripple Blanket" My Version Completed

Hello everyone.  I hope that you are enjoying your summer.  Down here in Southern California we are having a heat wave.  It's been in the high 80's and that's a bit too warm for me.  I sometimes long for the gray, cloudy skies and cooler weather but I shouldn't complain.

This week I finished my version of Martha's Ripple Blanket.  This was such a fun blanket to make.  I found this lovely blanket here on Mrs. Brown Makes.  Here is her tutorial on how to do this beautiful ripple stitch.

I used Stylecraft Special DK yarn which I bought from Deramores.  I originally bought this package of 17 skeins and used 12 skeins for my Grandson's stripey blanket.  I saved 5 skeins of the pink/purple colors and used an additional 5 skeins of white to complete this blanket.

As you can see, it turned out quite large.  It will easily fit a single bed and allow for it to hang over the sides.  It's such a fun pattern to crochet and is easily memorized since it's a repeat of one row.

I made the bobbly edging and I think it added an extra design element to the finished blanket.  (As you can see, each edge of the blanket has a different color for the bobbly edging since I didn't have enough yarn to do it in one color)

I'm a bit sad that it's done since I had such a great time making it.  I am putting it away for now and will probably give it away as a baby gift.  I want to thank Claire at Mrs Brown Makes for creating such a wonderful blanket pattern.  Please visit her blog to see some great ideas.

Lastly, I will leave you with this adorable picture of Lilly.  I had set this "large" basket on the floor and she decided that it would make a good place for her afternoon nap!  I love that cat so much.....

Have a wonderful week and please remember to stop over at Handmade Harbour where you will meet lots of talented crafters.  I'd love to hear your comments and know what you have been creating.  Feel free to comment and/or sign up on my blog. :)

Happy Summer,
Pat




Monday, June 23, 2014

Laguna Beach and Crochet Mandala

It's been a busy weekend here at Lilly My Cat.  My dear husband and I celebrated our 39th anniversary on Saturday, June 21!  We had a lovely dinner with the family and on Sunday we continued the celebration with lunch at the Montage in Laguna Beach.
It was a lovely day with the sun shining bright and no marine layer.  Our children surprised us - they told us to be ready at 12:30PM and they brought us to the Montage.  It's a lovely resort in Laguna Beach right on the ocean.  It has sprawling grounds that also includes a public park.  We had a lovely lunch overlooking the ocean.
When the server asked what we would like to drink, I saw a Pimms cocktail on the menu and had to order it.  I didn't realize that Pimms is available here in the US.  It was very refreshing and not sweet, just right.
It was such a nice time sitting together and reminisicing about our 39 years together.  It really doesn't seem that long but when I look at my picture, I know that I'm old now and no longer 21 years old!
At the end of the lunch the wait staff came by our table and wished us Happy Anniversary and presented us with this lovely apple tart.  It was a wonderful afternoon.
As to my creative craft these past couple of weeks, I'm sure you will remember the stripey blanket that I finished a couple of weeks ago.  Well, after 12 balls of yarn, this was what I had leftover.  I didn't know what to do with it until I ran across a blog post at Attic 24 which inspired me to make a mandala.
Here is the finished product.  It's call Starflower Mandala and the pattern was created by a very talented artist names Zelna.  The pattern can be found here on her website Zooty Owl.  It's a very large mandala with the diameter measuring about 20".  It was fast and fun to make.

In closing, I would love to hear from you if you have any pattern ideas for me.  I want to make a blanket out of cotton yarn.  I haven't bought the yarn yet and I don't have a pattern.  If you know of one, please leave me a comment.

Have a wonderful week and I hope to hear from you soon.

take care,
Pat

P.S.  Please remember to stop by Handmade Harbour to see some great ideas!





Saturday, June 7, 2014

Crochet Along As We Go Stripey Blanket - Finished at Last!

 I am so excited to share this post with you.  I have had so much fun making this blanket for my little grandson, that I was a bit sad when I finished it because it was such a joy to make.

Here is my grandson with his finished blanket.  He was so excited to receive this gift from Grandma!

Maybe you remember a few weeks past when I ordered this package of yarn from Deramores, which is my favorite online yarn store.  I received 17 skeins of 100 grams each, in assorted colors.  When you go to Deramores website, you can choose which country you would like for your preference.  Their shipping prices are extremely low ($6.95 to the US for 17 skeins).

I found this fun blanket on Love, Lucie, a wonderful blog that I follow.  The original pattern can be found here as it is a pattern created by Hannah Davis of notyouraveragecrochet.com.

Here's my additional notes to the original pattern:
1.  I used 12 skeins of yarn; 11 for the body of the blanket and 1 for the border
2.  I had a total of 193 working stitches across each row
3.  I crocheted a total of 142 rows
4.  I used a size H crochet hook
5.  For row 8, Catharine Wheel, I skipped "two stitches" instead of 3 stitches, thus eliminating the need to crochet this row loosely as stated.  This worked out perfect.  The only glitch is that you will have to skip "three stitches" one time only in the row.
6.  For row12, Catharine Wheel, I did the following:  With new color, ch 3, turn.  Make 2 dc around the chain below, make 1 dc in the "eye of the wheel below, make 2 dc in chain, 1 dc in sc, repeat. DC at end.
7.  For row 27, Bobble row, I did a hdc in  2 sts instead of 8 sts, and then continued the hdc over 5 sts instead of 8 sts.  I ended the row with 3 hdc.  This way you will have more "bobbles".
8.  I used stitch markers every 32 stitches, with the last group of stitches being 33 stitches.  This helped me tremendously as you will attain straight edges while keeping the stitch count constant.

Now for the fun part of finishing off the blanket and making the border.  I tied the ends of each two pieces of yarn twice.  Then I left the ends hanging and started single crocheting around the entire blanket.  I crocheted a total of six rows for the border: Row 1, sc with 3 sc in each corner; Row 2, sc with 3 sc in each corner; Row 3, sc with 3 sc in each corner; Row 4, sc and decrease* in each corner; Row 5, sc even; Row 6, sc and decrease* in each corner.

*To decrease in each corner, sc three stitches together as follows; sc in first stitch, sc in 2nd stitch but leave loop on hook (you will have two loops on hook), sc in 3rd stitch and leave loop on hook (you will have 3 loops on hook), yarn over and pull through all three loops on hook.

You can see how the corner turns by itself after doing the decrease in each corner.
As you can see, this made a "rolled" edge.  I found this idea at Little Woolie blog, who was the original inspiration for this pattern.  Anyway, as you fold over the edges, you tuck in all the loose strands of yarn and then stitch the edging closed.  I used one complete skein for the edging and ran short of some yarn to stitch it closed.  I used the other blue color in the afghan that blended in quite well.
Here's a photo of the edging after it has been completed.

You can see the finished blanket here - it turned out huge!  It's about 72" long and 54" wide.  The yarn I used is machine washable and tumble dry so it should be hassle free.

I hope you have enjoyed this little foray into my crocheting project.  Until next time, have a great week and don't forget to stop by Handmade Harbour where you will meet lots of gifted crafters!

Have a great week,
Pat

P.S.  I will leave you with a photo of my lovely lily bouquet. I found these flowers at Walmart, of all places!! (Oops, can you see Lilly in the background, on the carpet?)






Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Cats of Istanbul

It's been a few weeks since I posted anything on this blog.  I was away on vacation with my family.  This time we ventured to Istanbul, Turkey.  I had never been to Turkey before and it did not disappoint!  I won't bore you with travel photos.  However, I will delight you with these wonderful pictures of the cats of Istanbul.

Istanbul inhabitants love their neighborhood cats and they take very good care of them. 

Here is the lovely little white kitty that lived next door to the apartment we rented in the Cihangar district of Istanbul.  Her owner indicated that this little cat is deaf.  It warmed my heart that it had a good home and was loved.

As you can see, there's all colors and kinds of beautiful kitties. 

These two kitties found a quiet place to take their cat naps!

As you walk through the neighborhood, you can see the shelters along with food bowls and water bowls that the people set out for their neighborhood cats.  According to the people we spoke with, the people of Istanbul really do love their cats and care for them.

Here's a photo of the neighborhood "cat house" that was at the end of our street.  Don't you love the design?

Here's another lovely little one, watching everyone from her perch.

This little tuxedo cat is beautiful with it's long fur.

During the ten days I spent in the lovely city of Istanbul, I saw many many cats.  And, there was only two that that some medical problem.  It warmed my heart that these lovely, innocent animals are being cared for by their community.

As to my own cat, Lilly, well she is a handful.  At 16 pounds, she keeps me very busy.  She was home alone while we were away and she did get into a little bit of trouble. Her latest activity is to shred paper.  She was so happy when we returned. She purred all night!

I wish each of you the very best and I hope to share with you next week my completed stripey blanket.  Please drop by Handmade Harbour and visit some wonderful blog sites where you will find lots of ideas to inspire you.

take care,
Pat






Friday, May 2, 2014

Churchmouse Yarns & Teas in Bainbridge Island

It's always nice to go home again and last month I was able to go back for a visit to my beautiful home state of Washington.  I went to celebrate my brother's 70th birthday.  It was so nice to see family and friends.

So, today I will share with you some photos of that visit.  As usual, the wonderful spring rain greeted me when I arrived in Seattle.  There were "sun breaks" so that I could see the Cascade mountains and also the Olympic mountains.  When the mountains appear, they are beautiful.  A friend of mine said they had never heard of "sun breaks" in the weather forecast until they moved to the Seattle area! 

I arrived at the perfect time since trees were getting their new coat of lovely leaves and the flowering shrubs were in full bloom.
Monday was such a picture perfect day that my friends and I drove to Bainbridge Island.  Bainbridge Island is part of the peninsula and is a short ferry ride away from Seattle.  However, since we were in the south part of the Puget Sound, we drove across the Narrows Bridge and enjoyed the beautiful scenery along the way.

 Above is a photo of my beloved Narrows Bridge.  I used to live on the high bank directly to the right of the bridge.  That side of the bridge is Gig Harbor and the picture is taken from the Tacoma side.

Here's another picture of the sound taken from Tacoma and looking across to Gig Harbor.  In the background you can see the Olympic Mountains.

On the plane ride up to Seattle I sat next to a lady who was a knitter like me.  She was going to Bainbridge Island and I told her about a wonderful yarn shop there.  It's my all time favorite yarn shop.  I think I first found out about it from a magazine article that I googled.  I have gone there many  times over the years.  So, when it was such a beautiful day, I and my friends drove to Bainbrige to visit Churchmouse Yarns and Teas.

Isn't it a quaint looking shop?  And when you walk inside there's all kinds of yarn and pattern samples that you can chose from.  I love to go and see what I can make with the yarn and if you purchase the yarn, they give the pattern to you for free!  Here's the link to their website.

And, best of all, there is a wonderful display of fine teas and accoutrements in a part of the shop.  I bought this fancy tin of South African tea from Ireland (my cupboard is full of tea from my England trip!)  Just what I needed.....

 The shop is located on a cute little street called Madrone Lane.  Here's a photo for you:
We ended our visit with a delicious lunch at the corner Blackbird Bakery.  They have amazing homemade soups and bread.
I had such a great time.  To reconnect with my family and friends and also to visit my beautiful Washington state.  I love the weather down here in Southern California and I like the palm trees and red tile roofs but I will ways be a Washingtonian at heart!

I hope each of you are doing well.  I have been having so much fun making my stripey blanket.  Hopefully I will share the finished product with you soon.

Please drop by Handmade Monday and see what other crafts you can discover.

Until next time, 

Pat





 
 

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Round Ripple Afghan

It's good to be home again.  I was away last weekend attending my brother's 70th birthday party.  It was a fun time to see family and friends.  But, it's always good to get home :)

I finished my round ripple afghan.  I had run out of yarn and the yarn finally arrived and I finished it in a couple of hours.  Here's a photo of my round ripple afghan:

It was a fun project and it was very fast to make.  I used Red Heart Super Saver yarn which I ordered from Herrschners.  This is the same company that my Grandma used to order yarn from way back in the early 1960's!  Your local craft store probably carries Red Heart but Herrschners has an amazing range of colors to choose from.

Here's the pattern link which I found online from a very talented fiber arts artist named Doris.  Her designs on truly amazing.  As you can see, I changed the schemetics of the colors.  I did two rows of each color, followed by three rows of each color, followed by four rows of each color and ending with three rows of dark green (the white was added as needed for highlight). 

I
I made a rose motif for the center of the pattern.  It is a six petal rose motif. After making the motif, I started with row three of the pattern.  

I also made 12 smaller rose motifs (five petals) and attached them to the points as I was crocheting the last three rows.

The final design turned out fine but I wish my yarn colors were more subdued.  They look a little too bright (and old style).  I used the following Red Heart Super Saver skeins: 1 skein light raspberry, 1 skein baby pink, 1 skein light sage, 2 skeins dark sage, 2 skeins soft white.

As to to the "two" skeins of dark sage and soft white, I had to buy these extra skeins although I needed only a little bit of each of the second skein.

Anyway, I would love to hear your comments.  And, I would love to hear what you have been working on.  I will leave you with this picture of Lilly (who sends her love to each of you), sitting next to my stripey blanket I am currently working on.

Have a wonderful week and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Happy crafting,
Pat

P.S.  If you have time, stop by Handmade Harbour where you will finds lots of lovely things!