Purple Baby Alpaca Scarf – DONE!!

Before the End of 2013, I will finish...this lovely lavender, 100% Baby Alpaca scarf.  75grams of super warm, squishy softness in varying shades of lavenders, has been my train companion for the past several weeks. Whenever I can get a seat on the train, I pull out a special crochet project. One that is small enough to not disturb my neighbors and yet simple enough so I don’t need to keep referring to a pattern.

At a completed size of 130cm x 14cm (51″ x 5 1/2″) IMG_0074this beautiful scarf has been the perfect train project. So lightweight and compact it easily fit into the airline regulation ziploc bag to keep it safe as it bounced around in my bag as I bounced around Tokyo.

A month or so ago I completed a big yummy, chunky infinity scarf and have since sadly discovered I really do not like infinity scarves. They look great but I need a super warm scarf that wraps ’round and ’round like a mummy to keep the chill from seeping down my neck. IMG_0073This lovely scarf will fit that need and is super compact in my bag.

Not sure what to do with my beautiful super, chunky infinity scarf…maybe when it’s a bit warmer I can wear it as a fashion statement. sigh.

 

“Leap and the Net Will Appear” – Julia Cameron

After decades of deliberation, finally in 2010, I decided what I wanted to be when I grew up: an Artist!

Then came the hard part; The Leap! Where do I start? How do I begin this new journey that I really felt like I was coming in late to the game?

Just as I made my leap, My net appeared in the form of The Artist’s Way being facilitated by Rachel Moore. As a self-described Adult-onset Artist, my biggest hurdle to moving forward was ME! My fears and insecurities were many along this new path as an artist.

Working through The Artist’s Way chapter by chapter with Rachel Moore really helped me tackle these issues and focus my way forward into the new me as an Artist. I feel like the course helped me grow a stronger connection with my creativity.

There have been many successful endeavors since with my latest success being a group gallery showing I had with friends in the Art Byte Critique Group here in Tokyo. Seeing the culmination of the new skills I’ve learned, the wonderful new friends I’ve met, and gaining the experience of showing my work has been phenomenal!

I have moved 4 times since 2010, but my focus to move forward as an artist has remained steadfast and my creative work continues to flourish. Strong friendships have been forged with those I met for the first time in the class, through which I have met yet more amazing people.

Starting in January, Rachel Moore of San Diego Creative Connection will again be facilitating The Artist’s Way. Providing both a Daytime and an Evening class at Hera Hub in San Diego area, I highly, highly recommend anyone interested in improving their creative life to leap on the early bird pricing offer! 

Hey! What’s this button do?

As much as I prefer to play with yarns and fabric, I find that if I don’t set aside time to learn the popular advances in the internet/tech world, I will be left behind and become that cranky curmudgeon who complains about all those ‘new fangled’ whosawhatsits.

So here I am, slowly, step by step, playing around with my WordPress Website. You will see a few successful changes and you will see quite a few Ooops! that I will have to diligently research to figure out how to fix.

At the moment I have no idea where my “home” page went and why are my blog posts are on both the front page and on the blog page??

I appreciate everyone’s patience while I learn, maybe there will be a good laugh in there too :)  Off to figure out thecurrent posting issue!

When I get too frustrated, I grab a bit of yarn and destress a few more rows into my Purple Baby Alpaca Scarf. At this rate, I’ll be done soon!

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What are you hoping to learn in 2014?

Pizzelle Beret = Done!

Another item on my “Before the end of 2013, I will finish…” is completed! During the Tokyo Yarn Crawl, I picked up a lovely milk chocolate brown lace yarn with a coppery sheen from Avril to crochet the Pizzelle Beret by Linda Perlmann.

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This is one of the first patterns I’ve done that isn’t charted so I was off to a difficult start. Despite the well written pattern, my counting incompetence made it a challenge as I mentioned in this progress post.

I’m calling this oops the Sand Dollar Variation as having only 5 ‘petals’ instead of the 6 as called for in the pattern.

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 Because of my earlier Oops, Row 38, the first row of the headband, became the most difficult area to complete. I just needed to adjust the pattern for the Sand Dollar Variation but it was easy to see where the pattern maker wanted to go with it.

After all the unintentional pattern modifications, the few intentional modifications and the quick thinking to finish it off as recommended by the pattern it came out beautifully. Exactly as I had hoped and (almost) exactly as pictured.

Flutterzags and Puddles

The most beautiful yarn, colorway inspired by the Ulysses Butterfly in Australia, has been crocheted into a scarf for my MIL. Lovingly dyed under the Australian sun by Solar Flair Fibres it creates the most amazing pattern using the Pavement Infinity Scarf stitches. Starting out it was creating nice diagonal stripes but the zagged for a bit before zigging and zagging in the most erratic butterfly way as it flits from flower to flower. The colors move in the newly named, Flutterzags, way until meeting collectively in puddles of butterflies as they are want in a patch of sun, then flutterzagging off for more flowers.

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Find me on Ravelry as StudioDeanna  and check my Project Page for complete details on my pattern modifications.

In a yummy soft SuperWash Merino Wool, the Flutterzags and Puddles scarf is now flitting off to my MILs in cold northern New England. Hopefully it will fly straighter than a butterfly. Now I can cross this item off my list of accomplishments before the end of 2013!

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Pattern Modification:
At the beginning of each row, the pattern calls for “ch 3″. Instead I chose to do the (CSDC) Chainless Starting Double Crochet found on Moogly’s Blog, for a much nicer edge.
Free Video Tutorial for CSDC:
http://www.mooglyblog.com/chainless-starting-double-crochet/

Butterfly Poem I thought of while crocheting this scarf:

Flying Crooked

The butterfly, the cabbage white,
(His honest idiocy of flight)
Will never now, it is too late,
Master the art of flying straight,
Yet has — who knows so well as I? —
A just sense of how not to fly:
He lurches here and here by guess
And God and hope and hopelessness.
Even the aerobatic swift
Has not his flying-crooked gift.

Robert Graves

Before the End of 2013, I will finish…

With just one month left in the year, I feel really good about all I have accomplished this year so far. I just have a few loose ends to tie up or finish off before the new year: several works in progress I’d like to accomplish before the end of 2013:

Ulysses Butterfly Cowl: An absolutely lovely yarn from Solar Flair Fibres in tropical Cairns, Australia. Perfect to make a scarf for my MIL, thought I’d make it a cowl but I really think a basic straight scarf with the ends folded for a single large tassel on the ends will be best.

I’ve decided I do not like cowls….that’s a whole ‘nother post for another day.

Pizzelle Beret: Purchased the yummy yarn from Avril at the Tokyo Yarn Crawl last month. This pattern did not start out well for me, who is horribly counting impaired. Still slowly stitching away on my Pizzelle Beret, which I call my Sand Dollar Variation, because I erred in the pattern and it only has a total of 5 ‘petals’ vs. the 6 clearly stated in the well-written pattern. At about 60% complete, it looks great and I’m really happy with both the yarn and the pattern.

Purple Baby Alpaca Scarf: My easy train knitting, no rush to finish, but it is starting to get large enough to no longer be a convenient piece in which to work on a crowded train. Soooo yummy soft and so super warm I would like it finished soon for the coming cold winter.

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Hanging Scrolls (3): ideas and materials are put together, just the embroidery design work needs to be added, hanko signed and then post them on Etsy!

That’s enough to finish for December in addition to all the other long term projects in which I am also working. Such as the editing of my Tako Like Cookbook, some bookbinding homework, and the boring task of decluttering the house a bit for the New Year.

Waaay in the back of my mind I am currently mulling…Camping indoors with Granny Squares…I remember a childhood experience of being sick at my grandmother’s house, of her helping me build a fort in the living room in front of the tv in which I stayed until I felt better. Long bouts with chicken pox, childhood flu, and colds were spent under that living room fort covered with Granny Square blankets.  I have no idea why I’m remembering this, but I still don’t have the urge to actually make a granny square blanket so your safe :)