Eyelet Crochet Baby Blanket with Scalloped Edge

I found this great, free pattern for an eyelet crochet baby blanket. I really like the crisscross eyelets and the scalloped edge. The pattern is very easy to follow.

Eyelet Crochet Baby Blanket
I used a 5.5 mm crochet hook. The yarn is Plymouth Yarn Encore Worsted Solids & Heathers: 3 skeins of off-white and 2 skeins of peach. The finished size is 39.5 x 39 inches wide. I did not complete the 9 rounds of single crochet stitches around the border. I only stitched 5 rounds before adding the scalloped edge. I felt the blanket was large enough.
Eyelet Crochet Baby Blanket with Scalloped Edge

I followed the advice of the pattern designer and blocked the blanket after I completed it. I think that is an important step and it really helps set the square shape of the blanket. I look forward to giving this blanket as a gift.

crochet baby blanket with eyelets and scallops

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Free Knitting Patterns for Dog Sweaters – Six Options

My mother asked me to knit a dog sweater for Dougie, their pug-bulldog mix. So, my search began and I found several free knitting patterns for dog sweaters that I like a lot. There may be something here that you’d like to knit for your dog.

Key to the free knitting patterns for dog sweaters:

  1. Drops Design Knitted Dog Sweater
  2. I-Matey Dog Coat
  3. Turtle-Neck Dog Sweater
  4. Rainbow Dog Sweater
  5. The Boyfriend Dog Sweater
  6. Dog Hooded Coat

I have never knitted anything for a dog, so this will be an interesting project. Dougie has a really wide chest. I think I’ll have to adjust whatever pattern I choose. Also, I’ll need to choose a durable and washable yarn. I like the sweater with the hood; it’s funny to think of a dog wearing a hoody. Once I’ve completed my project, I’ll be sure to post a picture of Dougie in his new jumper!

Happy Knitting!

free knitting patterns for dog sweaters

 

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Granny Square Baby Blanket Pattern

I really like the final outcome of this granny square baby blanket pattern, but I learned something about myself in the making of it. My true limit for making granny squares is about 20. Originally, this was going to be an afghan with over 400 squares (original pattern requires about that many squares). I had to force myself to crochet the 110 squares for this blanket. I’m so happy to have completed this project. This will make a very nice gift for a new baby!

granny square baby blanket pattern

The pattern for the blanket/afghan is from Cute & Easy Crochet by Nicki Trench. It’s a book with a lot of wonderful patterns. The squares are seamed on top with single crochet stitches (squares into rows and then rows are seamed together). After all the squares are together, the blanket is stitched all around with one row of single crochet stitches.

I used Plymouth Yarn Encore Worsted Solids yarn. There are many colors of this yarn available so it’s a nice choice for making a highly colorful blanket. I crocheted the granny square baby blanket with a 4.0 mm (G) hook. The final size of the blanket is 33″ x 37″ (10 squares x 11 squares).

If you like making granny squares, this is a project for you!

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Easy to Knit Lace Shawl

easy to knit lace shawl

I finally finished this easy to knit lace shawl that I plan to wear when I go to the symphony / opera / theater. Of course, I won’t be able to wear it until fall because the yarn fiber makes one very toasty. The Magic Shawl pattern was designed by the Knitting Fairy and you can find it on Ravelry. I knitted the large shawl (gauge will differ, depending on the yarn). I love its length and how it wraps around me so nicely.  I added glass beads down the center knit stitches (crochet method). Since I was using stash yarn, I did not have enough to knit the trim indicated in the pattern, but I did have enough yarn to crochet a picot edge (3 chain picot and single crochet in every stitch around the edge).

The pattern is very basic and uses yarn overs at each end and in the center of each row. I knitted the shawl on size 10 needles to add air to the pattern. You can use smaller needles if you want a tighter “weave.” The yarn I used is S. Charles Collezione Ritratto. It’s really a beautiful yarn (53% Rayon; 28% Mohair; 10% Nylon (Polyamide); 9% Polyester). I really like the color.

easy to knit lace shawl with glass beads
Glass beads were added to the two knit stitches at the center of the shawl (used crochet method to add beads).

 

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DIY Bird Feeders – How to Make a Bird Feeder

DIY Bird Feeders
There are tutorials available for all of these bird feeders.

With the weather cooling in many parts of the country (I’m still waiting here in Texas, but it will happen eventually.), it’s time to think about our feathered friends. Construct one of these DIY Bird Feeders and make it a little easier for birds to find nutrition.

I think all of the examples are elegant. These bird feeders will not only make the birds happy, you’ll enjoy them too. Who doesn’t like watching birds in their garden? I bet you also know someone who would appreciate one of these for their garden. Make one as a Christmas gift. That’s what I’m thinking of doing. I have wine bottles on hand, so I’m leaning toward that design. I also have terracotta pots that I could re-purpose. All of these great designs use recycled materials.

Here’s your key to the DIY Bird Feeders:

  1. DIY Bird Feeder using a Melamine Bowl and Plate
  2. DIY Wine Bottle Bird Feeders
  3. DIY Bird Feeder from a Flower Pot
  4. DIY Tea Cup Bird Feeder
  5. DIY Tea Cup Hanging Bird Feeder
  6. DIY Acorn Bird Feeder (site unavailable as of June 2014)

DIY Bird Feeders for the Kids

If you want a project you can work on with the kids, consider Bird Seed Feeders.

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Pumpkin Knitting Patterns

pumpkin knitting patternAutumn is here. Finally! Fall is my favorite season. I love the crisp air, the autumn colors, wearing sweaters, replacing sandals with shoes and socks, sleeping with the windows cracked, hearty soups and stews, and pies – especially pumpkin pie.

Autumn is also the perfect season to knit, wear knits, and decorate with knits. Here are six pumpkin knitting patterns (four are free and the other two are priced under $5.00). There are other patterns “out there in cyberspace,” but I thought these were the best looking.

All knitted pumpkin patterns are on Ravelry (login user name and password required).

Here is a key:

  1. Autumn Pumpkin
  2. Great Pumpkin
  3. Mini Felted Pumpkin
  4. Tosca Pumpkin
  5. Halloween Pumpkins
  6. Fall Pumpkin

 

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Pet Barrier – Make It Yourself

If you’re like me, you love pets, but you don’t like their hair and dirt all over the house. I wanted a solution! I looked at pet barriers in specialty pet catalogs; however, I didn’t find any tall enough to keep cats secluded to an area. Cats can climb or jump over almost anything.

Since I couldn’t find what I wanted, I started searching for materials that I could use to build my own pet barrier. I went to Home Depot and found everything I needed to build this 57.5″ tall x 135″ wide pet barrier.

pet barrier

If you want to build a pet barrier for your home, here is what you’ll need:
Trellis

  • Measuring tape – measure the area where you want to add your barrier. Remember, you’ll want the barrier to stand on its own; the total width of the pet barrier has to be larger than the width of the area you’re covering. You want a “folding screen.”
  • Trellises – these come in varying heights, widths, and patterns. Find what will work best for your project. I wanted something the cats could not climb through or jump over. I purchased 6 trellises that had legs.
  • Jigsaw – I used the Jigsaw to cut the legs off of each trellis. The blade has to be longer than the width of the leg.
  • Screwdriver – a power screwdriver is best. The job will be completed more efficiently with a power screwdriver.
  • Hinges – I used 3 hinges to attach one trellis to another. You want enough hinges to keep the pet barrier standing and make it easy to Hinge for Trellisfold. Also, you want hinges with at least 3 holes (for screws) on either side of the hinge. This will ensure that the hinges won’t pull away from the trellis.
  • Slideglides – I have wooden floors; therefore, I wanted something that would make it easy for me to adjust the pet barrier and protect my floor. After sawing the legs off each trellis, I added two slideglides to the bottom of each trellis panel.
  • Curtain hooks (used to hold back curtains) – I used these to hold the entire screen in place. Cats are smart. They quickly learned that they could push open the pet barrier with their noses or paws. I had to outsmart them and this solution worked. I attached the curtain hooks to wood molding. I could have attached them to the wall as well. If I had done that I would have used wallboard anchors.

slideglide

Once you have all of your materials and tools, you’re ready to build your pet barrier. It’s not complicated! The most important thing for you to do is make sure you attach the hinges as I’ve illustrated below. Don’t make the mistake of putting them all on the same side.

diagram

As I said earlier, I used 3 hinges to attach one trellis to another. I concentrated the hinges more toward the center rather than putting a hinge at the bottom, one in the center, and one on top. (You can kind of see this in the image at the top.) I used the measuring tape to distribute the hinges evenly across the entire pet barrier.

Well, that’s about it! I wish you success in your effort to build a pet barrier. It’s worth the time, money, and effort – your house will be cleaner and that will give you more time to yourself.

My kitties have a kitty door to the backyard and they run in and out of their special area all day long. I’ve heard no complaints.

curtain-hook

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Honey Bear Bottle Crafts – Recycling Craft

After you look at these clever honey bear bottle crafts, you’ll never throw out a honey bear bottle again. The thought of plastic in landfills and floating in our waterways gives me the shivers, that’s why I really like these recycling crafts projects.

honey bear bottle crafts - recycling crafts

I think these are all beary good ideas!

  1. Honey Bear Bottle Bubble Favors – what a great party giveaway.
  2. Gold Leaf Honey Bear Bottles – these are pretty enough to keep for yourself, but wouldn’t they make a nice gift?
  3. Honey Bear Bottle Lamp – it gives off soothing light, perfect for a baby’s room.
  4. Honey Bear Candy Favors – another great party giveaway
  5. Honey Bear Get Well Kit – yes, this isn’t a recycled bear, but I thought it was a good use of a new one. If someone gave this gift to me, I’d perk right up!
  6. Honey Bear Bottle Opener – use the honey bear as a mold to create something practical. Maybe you can use this idea and mold bears for some other purpose. Garden bears?

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