Tomboy Lace

Lace Embrace Shawl

You know it’s really quite the question.  How did such a tomboy end up being a designer who loves to create lacy crochet projects?

Alpaca Hug Neck Cozy

Those who have known me for a significant portion of my life are a bit surprised when they see some of my designs.  Afterall, as a girl and young woman I was quite the tomboy.

I grew up in the middle of Kansas farm country and hard work was the watch word of the day.  My dear mother despaired of me ever staying neat and ladylike for more than 10 minutes.  She has been known to tell folks to this day that if there was a mud puddle to be found I would find it.

Most of my days were spent trying to keep up with my older brother.  Tramping about “exploring” the wooded areas around our pastures.  Climbing trees or on to the roof of the barn.  Horseback riding, bike riding, later on a bit of motor bike riding.

Somehow in the midst of all of that I did manage to learn to crochet, embroider  and sew.  I even grew to have a fondness for feminine and pretty clothing, though wasn’t much of a frou-frou person.  I’ve always loved draping flowing looks in garments though.

When I moved to Colorado in my early twenties I was in heaven.  There were lots of opportunities for a gal that likes the outdoors to stretch her wings.  I dressed during the week in appropriately feminine attire for the office, but my weekends were filled with hiking or skiing.

Fast forward nearly 20 years and I am living in a houseful of males.  Husband and 2 young sons manage to fill the house with a great deal of testosterone. Add to that our pets, a Pomeranian dog and a domestic short hair cat, are both males I am definitely needing more estrogen.

So it is fitting actually that I now seem to gravitate toward designing crochet items that use Lace and Open-work as a main feature.  Part of it is I have a love of creating fluid garments and lace or open-work is a good match for that, as well as being very yarn economical.

Little Wing Shawlette

I’m sure that over time there will be many other stitch styles I’ll utilize, but I’ll always enjoy exploring my “Tomboy Lace”.

A Hook Named Houdini

This is my Favorite Hook these days, but it has some very bad habits.

I have named this hook Houdini because….it is an escape artist.

There is not a project bag, work-basket or work-table that this hook has not escaped from.  The number of times I have torn apart my work area and my car looking for it are past counting.

This is where Houdini is supposed to live.  But I get clever and I think if I keep the hook with the project of the day it won’t go missing.

Yesterday evening I finished a project with Houdini.  During the 3 days I had been working on the project, this particular hook had gone missing 4 times.

When I finished the project I set Houdini down on my work table and was counting my last row to make notes in the pattern I was writing.  I heard a mysterious thump. Houdini was off and running again.

After a lengthy search today involving the moving of my work chair and all the surrounding project bags and baskets I located Houdini this evening wedged in the edge of a basket.

Now, my usual rule of thumb for my favorite style and size hooks is to have more than one. Of course this was before I fell madly and utterly in love with the Tulip Company’s Etimo hooks.  Which used to be very difficult to obtain in the US.

My first Etimos were purchased at the August 2009 Chain Link show in Buffalo, NY at the Tulip Company’s booth.  Then I purchased my set in the case above from Ms. Julep on Etsy in October of that year. 

I’m thrilled to bits that Caron is now the American distributor of these hooks. I love their yarns and the hooks. 

Currently they have the Etimo hooks on sale and I am sorely tempted to go purchase more size I hooks. I have a duplicate J-hook and it always stays put.

Though I have to wonder. Harry Houdini was an Escape Artist as a form of entertainment and personal challenge.  Does this mean that Houdini the hook will continue to make escapes to entertain its self?

The 11th Day

Today is the 11th day of 2011. Being I like alliteration and I have not managed to blog yet in this New Year I thought I would try to get something in here today.

It’s been very cold and snowy up here on my mountain since the beginning of 2011.  In fact, due to the crummy weather, we chose to stay home for New Year’s Eve.  I was up all on my own til midnight, the rest of my family having gone to bed hours before.

I ushered in the New Year the way that I’ve been spending it ever since. Crocheting.

In fact, so far, 2011 has been all about crocheting and writing crochet patterns.  I knew that it was going to be a busy year, but this is even busier than I had expected.

As always happens when I am so busy, my brain seems to go into overdrive with ideas for crochet designs.  The cold weather is helping in some ways as I am really wishing I had finished the Alpaca mittens and hat that I have planned for myself.

I find Alpaca to be one of the warmest fibers I’ve ever worn. Even living on a mountain it is often too warm for me to wear.  So when the thermometer drops below freezing it is a great opportunity to get out the extra warm fibers.

Of course, all is not lost.  This is only the beginning of the freezing cold temperatures this year, so I’ll have other chances to wear my Alpaca goodies.  Now, all I have to do is find time to make them.