Sunday, June 26, 2011

Amigurumi T-Rex, Robot, Lobster, Dachsund, and sweater (crochet)

I'm baaaaaack!! We've been without internet for a couple of weeks (due to switching service providers and waiting for the new modem to arrive) and are finally hooked back up! In the meantime, I've been up to my eyeballs in crocheted goodies, of course. :D Tonight I finished the little green T-Rex and managed to get a picture snapped before it got too dark outside.

This little mini lobster is from a pattern on for "teeny lobster" if you'd like to make one. It worked up in about 15 minutes or so and used very little yarn- a nice way to use up scraps!

This sweater took up the bulk of my time. I would say spread out over about 5 or 6 days from start to finish. I made mine to fit size 8 child. The original pattern (which was from the latest Crochet World magazine) only uses one button at the top and has a different kind of button hole and closure. I decided since the yarn I used was looking like legos from far away that I would like to use legos to make buttons and have them all the way down!

These are the kind I stole from my hubby's collection... (okay, I got permission first...) and just used a Dremel tool to drill 4 little button holes in them each.

Last but not least... a special order that I completed a few days ago. A robot with tangerine, lavendar, maroon and white colorings...and a weiner dog with a pink collar (which isn't showing in the photo). They turned out so cute!! And BIG.. I was surprised at the size they were...I had expected much smaller but this is even better. :D

Monday, June 13, 2011

Rhubarb Bars (recipe!)

Tis the season for rhubarb goodies!!! At least you can get it in the produce stands around here, so that means it is in season for baking! :D Normally the rhubarb recipes I find have strawberries or some other accompanying fruit, but this one does not. So it is alllll about the rhubarb!! A couple of quick side-notes (only because some people perhaps haven't used rhubarb before): you do NOT eat the leafy part of the stalk (if you are picking fresh or buying from a farm/stand)- cut that off. Also you want it to be pretty red and not green like celery (even though it looks like celery a bit). Cut off the ends so that you are using the main stalk of the plant only. It is stringy like celery, so make sure to cut all the way through and not leave strings hanging.

Okay here is the recipe!!


1 1/2 cups flour, divided
5 tbsp. powdered sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3 eggs, well beaten
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 large stalks of rhubarb, chopped

Combine 1 cup of the flour, powdered sugar and butter, mixing to form crumbs. Pat into a 9x13" baking pan that has been lined with foil and foil greased (or use flour baking spray). Bake at 350* for 8-10 minutes or until dry but NOT browned. Do not overbake. In a large mixing bowl, combine sugar, 1/2 cup flour, baking powder & salt. Stir in eggs, vanilla and rhubarb. Spoon over baked crust, spreading to edges. Bake 30 minutes or until lightly browned on top. Remove from oven and let cool about 15 minutes on a wire rack, then gently lift out the foil "sling" and allow to cool completely. Cut into bars and enjoy!

**P.S. Rhubarb can be chopped and sealed in ziplock bags in your freezer for use during the off-season! :)

Friday, June 10, 2011

Amigurumi Vampire, Flower Girl and Owl (crochet)

I had been eyeing a site online for quite a while ( and wanting absolutely every one of the books I see on there...and finally broke down and bought a couple last week. They've arrived and here is what I've been making so far!!

To start ^^^ Dracula the Vampire! I love his little red cape. :) The "hair" part I think I would do differently next time so it looks less helmet-like. As it was, I had to make it twice because the first one, following the pattern, turned out enormous and went almost over his whole head. So I ripped it out and made it smaller with my own directions.

The owl caught my eye right away when I saw it on the cover. I wanted one in bright colors, so that is why I've chosen the ones I did. The "feathers" actually go all the way around and are worked in one piece that is slipped on like a skirt and sewn into place after the body is made. I think in the future I will try doing it by making long lines of feathers and wrap it around like a shawl and leave a gap in the front, so it looks like the owl is holding his wings in front of himself around his belly. Just an idea I have in mind for the next one. :) Also the feet were kinda confusing in the directions, so I just winged it (har har) and they came out fine by me.

I think she is my favorite of the three!! She reminds me of the singing/talking flowers from Alice in Wonderland. I couldn't tell from the cover of the booklet she was on, but her head is actually bald and the flowery petal part is the front of a bonnet that slips over her head and ties on. In the photo it looked like it was all done in one, but it's not. I like that it's not because the next ones can have hair, maybe, or little things like that. :)

Great books and designs... fairly simple to follow if you already have some basic crochet knowledge, and only need to make a change or two every once in a while. She has a lot of other designs I'd like to someday get and try, too, so we'll see how that comes along!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Huge Amigurumi Stegosaurus Dinosaur (crochet)

Check out this guy!! He is about 4 day's worth of crocheting and all completed today. I was trying out a new (to our store at least) skein of 100% cotton yarn by Bernat. It is pretty much the same, in my opinion, as Sugar & Cream, but it was a great big 12 oz. skein of it....over 800 yards. So a LOT bigger than the little S&C ones. I didn't even use the full amount to make this and it is approximately 20 inches long.

The pattern was from an old Annie's Attic leaflet that features 4 dinosaurs and I lucked out and found the leaflet in a second-hand shop for $.50 the other day. Love those kinds of finds! A lot of times if you dig deep enough, you can get a lucky find that is typically either hard to find on Ebay or really pricey.

Lastly for tonight is a question...does anyone know how you can go about getting a Chinese crochet pattern book translated into English? I am fairly sure it is Chinese. It does have charts that supposedly anyone who can read it can follow even if they don't speak/read the written language the book is in... BUT I am not yet there with being able to read those charts. So I'm looking for a way to get a written pattern in English from someone who knows Chinese OR can read the chart and make a written pattern from it. :S :S Throw me an email (address in the upper right corner of this blog) and let me know any suggestions!! :D Thanks!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Dutch Apple Pie Recipe

Dutch Apple Pie

You will need:
1 single crust pie dough, fitted into a 9" pie plate and chilled

for streusel:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tbsp yellow cornmeal
6 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

for filling:
2 tbsp unsalted butter
approx 7-9 medium to large granny smith apples (peeled, cored, sliced 1/4" thick)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup half & half (or you can use heavy cream)

1. Heat oven to 375*. Line chilled pie crust with foil and fill with pie weights. Bake until dough looks dry and is light in color (approx 20 to 25 min). Place pie plate with crust on a wire rack and remove weights.

2. For streusel: mix the flour, sugars, and cornmeal together in a med bowl, then add in melted butter and stir with a fork until combined and crumbly-looking.

3. For filling: Melt the butter in a large pan (that has lid). Stir in apples, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Cover and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until apples begin to soften. (About 5 min). Stir in raisins and continue to cook, covered, about 7 minutes longer.

4. Drain apples through a colander or sieve, reserving the juice. Spoon the fruit into the waiting pie crust. Mix the reserved juices with the half & half in a saucepan. Bring to low boil and cook, while stirring, about 3 minutes. Drizzle over the fruit in the crust. Sprinkle the streusel over the filling. (This will be piled rather high in the center, and is tricky to not make a mess everywhere while adding streusel...resist the urge to pack it down).

5. Bake at 375* for about 25 minutes or until browned. Remove from oven and let rest on wire rack about 2 hours for the filling to set. Serve warm with vanilla ice-cream if desired! :)

Enjoy this recipe particularly when apples are aplenty! Also very good with fresh whipped cream instead of ice-cream. :)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Tiny Amigurumi Monkey and Owl Hat with Green (crochet)

Made another owl hat like the last post, this time using a neutral "earthy" colored yarn and accented with browns and green!! I love this color green :D :D

And this reminds me of either Curious George or a Sock Monkey (maybe a combination of both?) is tiny, too. About the size of my palm. :D I did start out with a pattern for the head and going into the body, then realized how small it was working out to be and decided to try making up the rest on my own. I'm pretty happy with how he turned out. :D Hopefully with any luck, these will both go into my Etsy shop one of these days. :) In the meantime if someone wants to give them a new home, drop me an email!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Owl Hat in Blues (crochet)

I've had this blue earflap hat laying around for a couple months (originally intended to become a Grover hat) and I finally decided it has been blank for too long! So an owl hat it has become. :D I used light blue for the iris part of the eyes, and a turquoise for the eyelid. They looked nice together...many shades of blue. :D Then added tassels and "ears" to the top..and of course a beak!

This one is sized to fit teen/adult, but I can make them for child also and in any other color combination!! If you're interested, send an email and we'll work out the details! :D

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Amigurumi Snowy Owl and Jellyfish (crochet)

Good evening! What have I been up to today?? I made up a new jellyfish in a Sugar & Cream color called "royal crown jewels" (new to our store and I LOVE it)...and a snowy white owl!! The jellyfish is perched on top of my paper towel holder, in case you were wondering. :) I had to find somewhere to get him to hang out for a photo!

Lastly is a photo we took candidly at the Folk Life Festival over the weekend of Schnitzel & Boo's craft booth (which included some of my crafts as well). It was a lot of fun...saw every walk of life you could imagine and a lot of happy people who loved browsing our little booth. :) Good times had by all! S&B's tote bags are *amazing*, not to mention the wallets and messenger bags...she really does a great job, so if you're after any of that kind of stuff (and who doesn't love bags??) head over to her shop and check it out. I even managed to snag one for myself that I couldn't stop oogling over the whole time I was there!