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Patchwork Santa Ana – Spring 2018

Back in May, I vended at my third Patchwork show. The first one was sort of a disaster. The weather was terrible, the attendance was terrible, and I was horribly sunburned due to a faulty sun-umbrella. The second one was a lot better. I broke even and learned a lot.

This third one was great. I was actually in a new location, so a fairly low traffic area, but still managed to walk away ahead. Which is sort of a first for my shows. Plus, I sold a few items I wasn’t expecting to, so that was pretty amazing. I also sold out completely of my ice cream cones, so they are next on the list of things I should work on before the fall/winter show after Thanksgiving.

The festival was really expanded this year, it even included a fashion show put on by student designers at the local college.

I am still trying to figure out the perfect booth layout, as I sell such a huge variety of products that I have no idea how best to display a little of everything! Ideas and suggestions are totally desired. 🙂

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House Scarves

I am a self-admittedly huge Harry Potter nerd. I have read the books about 5 dozen times. I have seen the movies about 10 dozen times. And now I have happily and joyously been to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal California.

When I found out the L.A. Dumbledore’s Army was having a massive dress the 9 3/4 day event at Wizarding, I had no choice. I had to go. It combined my intense love for Harry Potter with a theme park AND dressing super fancy like the pin-up diva I am.

Fortunately, I had finally gotten in part of my order from Pinup Girl Clothing that contained one item in each house harlequin color…2 dresses and 2 men’s shirts. (I now have 4 men’s shirts, 2 dresses, and 2 skirts…so that I have something for each house, as does my husband 🙂 )

We did not have my younger daughter that day, so it ended up just being a Ravenclaw, Gryffindor, and a Slytherin roaming around all fancy like.

 

What does this have to do with crochet? Well, obviously something. It is my life after all. It was November, so it should have been cool, correct? Nevermind this crazy 80-90F winter LA has been having. So, I decided to whip up some house scarves to match our outfits. Well, sort of match.

I am running out my stash of Hobby Lobby yarn, as I no longer shop there, so I had a few stash problems while making these scarves. But, in general, I used 1 full skein of each main color and about a third of a skein of each aux color. My tassels at the end really depended on how much of which color yarn I had left. My Gryffindor scarf used the yellow, my Slytherin used the gray. However, I had enough blue to use for my Ravenclaw, and my Hufflepuff scarf (not pictured because I only wanted fancy pictures) is both black and yellow.

I did the later series scarves, along with the movie colors, not the book colors.

And it is the simplest scarf ever…

 

I do not count my turning chain as a stitch for this pattern. I used HL brand I Love This Yarn, with a J (6mm) hook.

in main color Ch 22
1)          HDC in 3rd chain, HDC across, ch 2 and turn (20)
2-5)       HDC across, ch 2 and turn (20)
6-7)       in aux color, HDC across, ch 2 and turn (20)
8-9)       in main color, HDC across, ch 2 and turn (20)
10-11)   in aux color, HDC across, ch 2 and turn (20)
12-26)   in main color, HDC across, ch 2 and turn (20)
repeat rows 6-26 until you are at the length you want then continue
repeat rows 6-11
final 5 rows) in main color, HDC across, ch 2 and turn. (tie off and weave in ends for last row)

 

Essentially, the pattern is all HDC, 20 across. 5 rows of main, 2 of aux, 2 of main, 2 of aux, 15 of main. Repeat the 2/2/2/15 until you want to end. Then do your 2/2/2 for your final striping, then 5 rows of main. Tie off and weave in ends.

My scarf was 5 large colored sections of 15, plus the striped sections and the 2 sections of 5 rows.

Tassels were easy, I did 11 tassels on the end, two pieces of yarn folded in half for each tassel, then looped through the last row on either end. You can do more or less, depending on how full you want your scarf to look.

 

So, here is my husband doing his best pinup pose.

 

My older daughter blowing kisses for extra love and wisdom.

 

And like the true Slytherin I am, I can’t even be bothered to look at the peasants taking this photo. 🙂

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So Fluffy!!!

​I have been seeing this really incredible, super thick wool roving for the longest time. Arm knitting (and even easier, arm crocheting) have been this huge trend that I was afraid to jump on. However, when Pink Unicorn Studio had a summer sale, I knew it was time. Her shop had great reviews on this roving, and even though it was coming from Poland, it definitely seemed worth it to see what the fuss was about.

So, I ordered 18lbs of this yarn, 4.5lbs in 4 different colors, and set to waiting very impatiently for it to arrive.

Well, it showed up yesterday, and I dropped everything in my entire life to start playing with this incredible, amazing ball of fluffy goodness. And let me tell you, this is the softest, smushiest, heaviest blanket I have ever made. And I am totally in love.

The biggest problem is, it is wool roving…so it is absolutely not machine wash/dry. It also can be picked apart or snagged and torn if you let animal paws on it, or drag it around the house.

Of course, I made the blanket (and the other 3 I have planned) as lap blankets for my nieces and nephews (ages 2-6), so I am sure my sisters will be grateful for their children to have heavy blankets that aren’t easily cleaned and need to stay on the bed. But, hey, they are fun and squishy and soft and wonderful.

I arm-crocheted this using a HDC. It is 8 HDC across, and 11 rows high. This used 2 skeins (2.2lbs each), and is great for younger children as a lap blanket. For reference. I am 5’0″ and 17″ across at the shoulders.

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July

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July has already been a crazy, disappointing month for my business-wise. But, personally, it has been great. The first week, I was in Italy. The second week, I was sick as a dog, so I didn’t do much. The third week has consisted of getting registered and set to start college in the fall. So, this entire thing is sort of back burner.

I am prepping for the only festival I plan on doing this year, which means straying from this path, as it is something I hadn’t intended on doing, so I am trying to tailor my product. I do need to try and make a few Halloween photoprops, as it is my primary business income. But, I am hoping that what I am planning for the festival goes over well.

 

Jul 3 – Halloween Props

Jul 10 – Free Week

Jul 17 – Skull Shawls

Jul 24 – Halloween Amigurumi

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June Review

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June was a very busy month. As evidenced by the fact that it has been over a month since I’ve blogged, and that I am not closing June out until nearly the end of July. And July was just as busy, so no high hopes there.

 

It is pretty safe to say that I have given up on my plan for the year. I have fallen so far behind, and I have so much else going on, there isn’t time for it.

I have changed directions with product for a brief moment in time while prepping for the one and only festival I plan to do this year. And, unfortunately, it looks like I will be giving up my major money maker, as I have not had time to sufficiently prep for Halloween this year, as I have in previous years. Plus, I am officially a full time college student again, and still working a full time job. So, being that this business wasn’t exactly raking in the cash to support my family, it is sadly going to sit on the back-burner, smoldering.

 

June Plan

 

May 29 – Halloween Props
Nope

Jun 5 – Amigurumi
Nope. Though, I did have a couple of orders that were amigurumi…does that count?

Jun 12 – Photo Props
Not for the shop, but I did make a really cool princess blanket for my niece, and a really bad airplane blanket for my nephew. Oh, and I also made a photo prop for a customer order. Does that count?

Jun 19 – Christmas Props
Nope. I was scrambling to finish an airplane.

Jun 26 – Hats
Nope. I actually didn’t crochet at all while I was in Europe. Except for maybe like two hours on the plane.

 

 

Yarn Purchased in June

10,955 yards total (YIKES!!)
1,775  yards of Crafter’s Secret (for the photoprop and amigurumi orders)
9,180  yards of Pound of Love(for the blankets for the kids and because I had a minimum to spend for my coupon)

 

Yarn Crocheted in June

3,315 yards total (Not too shabby considering I spent a week out of the country and not working)
1,065 yards of Crafter’s Secret (orders)
2,250 yards of Pound of Love (gift blankets for my family)

 

Sales History

  • 2013
    • 0 sales for 0 items
  • 2014
    • 0 sales for 0 items
  • 2015
    • 12 sales for 12 items, increase in revenue
  • 2016
    • 16 sales for 18 items, increase in revenue (includes Patchwork Festival)
  • 2017
    • 5 sales for 5 items, large decrease in revenue
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May

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May should make for an interesting month. Personally, I have a lot to handle this month. However, I am only out of town for one weekend, so it should be more feasible to get some serious crocheting done. We shall see.

 

May 1 – Charity

May 8 – 4th of July Props

May 15 – Free Week

May 22 – Pinup

May 29 – Halloween Props

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Skull Shawl (Pattern Review)

This skull shawl pattern , is one of the more difficult patterns that I have worked through. Don’t get me wrong, the pattern is fantastic! The finished product is beautiful! The technical aspect is wonderful. However, the original pattern is in German or Dutch (I am not sure which) and the translation can make it a little hard to follow.

 

So, at the end of this post, I am going to include some of my notes to make the pattern a little easier to follow. I will not, however, post the actual pattern due to copyright concerns.

 

For reference, I used Lion Brand Ice Cream Big Scoop and a J hook for this. I love the self-striping, it just turned out looking so cool.

 

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I made some mistakes…which is why I shouldn’t let myself get so lazy and complacent when I am crocheting in the car. So, I frogged an entire section of skulls. :-:

 

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My finished shawl. I ended up keeping this shawl for myself. I loved the colors and I so rarely keep anything I make. I did make 2 more, one in pinks and one in grays, that are smaller – child size.

 

Now, for a border on this one, I am not a huge fan. I just did a DC across for the border, and it make it really lumpy and lay funny. Which isn’t a huge deal, because it is just mine, but yea…I didn’t like how it looked. For the other ones, I just left them once completed…

 

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So, as you go through the skull shawl pattern , feel free to reference my notes, or even leave your own in the comments to help out!

(1)           1DC in the 9, 10, 11, 12 CH stitches

(2)           You are make your double treble crochet (DTR) in the ch right below where you are at, from the first row you did. This should leave you with big loopy gaps on either side of your 4DC. This concept had me jacked for the first few attempts…

(3)           Your DTR will again be in the first chain from the previous row. This should leave you with 3 big gaps with 4DC between each. Your DTR at the end of each row will continue to go in the first chain from the previous row here on out. You should always end with a big gap on either side of your row, to make your shawl wider as you go.

(4 & 5)     Continue on with the same pattern…however, on this pattern, there are two row fives written out…so pay attention to that.

(5 & 6)      This starts your skull, easy to follow.

(7)             Complete your 1DC, 1ch across the 4SC from the previous round, not onto the 4th.

(8)             Follow as expected

(9 & 10)    EYES – I did the alternative eyes, which is found way at the bottom of the blog. So, I skipped the entire eye making tutorial and the regular rows 9 & 10. I followed this version because I am super lazy and hate to sew things, so I didn’t want to make separate eyes and try to slip stitch them in.

(11 & 12)     This finishes your skull, and starts your gaps to begin your next skull in.

 

The rest was pretty easy to follow. You just have to remember that any time you have 4 groups of the DC clusters in a row (on the sides and in the middle), then you should be creating new skulls the next round. The skulls go up by one each round, and should stagger. So, your 1, 3, 5, 7 group of skulls should line up in the center, while your 2, 4, 6, 8 should line up on the sides. 🙂

 

The way she ended her pattern was pretty simple, just don’t make the new skulls, continue adding the DC clusters with the chain 2s. As far as a border, well, good luck. I will probably just leave mine from now on ended like that.