Tag Archive | Rainbow Ridge Ripple Blanket

Anoka County Fair Result Time!

This is my second year competing as I mentioned in a previous teaser blog post. Last year was more of a rushed throw together what I already had and make a few smaller items sort of thing. This year I started after the previous fair and among my gifts and commissions and other pieces I threw in some category specific projects. The result was 15 pieces to enter myself and a few among the 4 older kids. Echo simply wouldn’t settle down and make anything. Maybe next year.

I was actually rather surprised at my results. Ken and I splurged on a date night and went out on the Wednesday and visited the fair (for the first time ever) ourselves. There was “Quebec style poutine” so how could I resist? Seriously, HOW? It has been 4 years since I have had a decent poutine… WORTH IT!

Note the stand in the background.

Note the stand in the background.

Anyway, Renee had sent me some images from her visit to the fair with her kids days previous but I had balked a finding out all of my results with the hope we would make it there in person.

We started with the kids’ stuff where they did relatively well. Emanuel only got a participation (which he loves – RAINBOW RIBBON) and Zander and Gavin’s large perler bead didn’t place either. We figure they may have assumed parental assistance… which we DIDN’T… but the rest placed. Two lego pieces and a much fought over bunny drawing. Not bad, not bad.20160801_151854

20160801_151950The lovely surprise was Gavin’s shawl taking first in his crochet item category. We ran out of steam at the end of this project and didn’t trim our fringe which was the comment on the back of the tag BUT FIRST PLACE!! WOO!! His first COMPLETED project really!20160801_152607

Then it was time to wander around, seek out Renee and her kids’ stuff and see how I did. To my surprise 13 out of my 15 entries placed. And, the two that didn’t both had great comments on the back and the statement that it was tough competition. I was not surprised on my maple leaf dishcloths… first off all, red-white and no blue (blue could have put me in the running as patriotic) in a general category that I am sure was full of variety. The other, my purse was much more “purse like” than the ones that placed. I think they were just looking for more… crochet? The winning purse was granny squares and highly colourful. Not my thing.20160801_15284420160801_152246

Onto the 2nd place pieces – TWO. And tough categories because they are super popular baby gifts – booties and blankets! Well, I am very proud of both – in fact have gifted versions of both in the past. Again favorable comment on the blanket just… the first place ones had more detail (booties) or were a different style (blanket) BUT certainly something to be proud of.IMG_20160801_172315

For first place standing alone I had NINE pieces! Woo!!! I cannot tell you how proud I am of them. This is a wonderful cross section of this past year’s creativity. TWO of these pieces will be sent to new homes in the coming weeks – the rainbow ripple blanket which I have blogged about previously) and the evil sorceress doll. Seriously if you have the knowledge and ability and the urge, it is a GREAT pattern and when I got stuck the designer talked me through it on Facebook… check her out! This piece was posted under the storybook character and though the JUDGE didn’t comment on it on the slip, the people working there said MANY of the people who came to see the exhibitions loved it.IMG_20160801_172207

Let’s see… Monkey – as in year of 2016. I did it bigger than the original and am TOTALLY KEEPING IT. Yup… my monkey, not your monkey, MINE! Ken helped me with the frame work on this little beauty. The designer is doing up all the Chinese Zodiac over the years and I totally plan to go back and do the years she has already designed for eventually.

Apparently the biggest suggestion was blocking. We THOUGHT we had that done right, but apparently they figured we could have done better. So back to the drawing board on that one. BUT that is a finishing thing and not a crucial crafting issue. So there is less worry about time and such. I did make a second of the wedding gift from this summer – that would be the off white doily. Crocus doily.

Other than that… well I am very proud of these 9 pieces! Super proud!

And now for the BIG surprise to me… 2 plus 2 plus 9 equals 13… so two more to come… and both of those first place PLUS Reserve Best of Show. Now no one could completely explain how that was chosen or anything. But what it does mean is that these are pieces that stood out to the judge. What made me laugh is that I tossed that hat in there on a whim. I had made it after I made Emanuel’s for Halloween this past year and still had enough yarn left over for a second smaller version. Go figure!IMG_20160801_172452

So all in all… we did good. We placed, we showed off skills that we will continue to nurture and next year will have a whole new batch of creative ventures to exhibit! I know I am already brainstorming how I can make newer and harder items in duplicate – one to gift/sell/etc and one to show… why not? Just getting the judge’s feedback made it all worthwhile!! And now I have some ribbon winning pieces to sell if I ever get the chance to have that craft table I want to try out. Or gift of course! EXCEPT FOR MY MONKEY! That little guy is already on my bookshelf guarding his monkey!

(Oh, if anyone is interested in any of these pieces feel free to ask me – minus the two mentioned above that are on their was to new homes of course)

2000 and 1 Posts

Well, that snuck up on me! Quite the number! And here I am, starting the next thousand posts with crafting and creativity. Appropriate, no?IMG_20160219_195739

This week is a rainbow week (well, week plus a few days), but with a difference. I decided, being the multi tasker I am, to have my secondary activity vary along with my colour changes. So I started with Monday and that beautiful bright red. What better to pair with that then catching up on some excellent murder mysteries in ANIME form. I had two full mysteries to enjoy with one being two double length episodes from the new year. Case Closed is one of my favourites (though I am still confused as to the reasoning behind the de-aging of the main character’s body as a long term plot twist). It is on its 20th year! And while I have only watched what has been posted on Crunchyroll (seriously worth the monthly subscription for an anime addict like me) I would love to get my hands on the beginning of this series… or the manga it was based on (in English of course) and dig in!IMAG2548

Tuesday brought on orange, with it being the focal colour of this piece I figured I would sit back and enjoy some music while I did my three rows. Spotify is an app I newly loaded to the iPad when I wanted to listen to music while I read in the tub. I use the free portion of the app and go with Evening Chill. Suitably relaxing which seemed to go well with the brightness of the orange.IMG_20160217_001949

For yellow I paired it up with a newer family favourite movie – Home, and my very best cuddly movie watcher Miss Echo. We can’t help but smile our way through this movie. Echo has her favourite parts when she simply cannot help but narrate along. Sitting together on the bed while I added this bright colour was so lovely.IMG_20160217_201122

Green is, of course, a special colour. In honour of the Kelly our Kelly green represents I went with a hefty dose of nostalgia with a continuation of my Murder She Wrote marathon. Something familiar and comforting with a bit of excitement and humour. Perfect…IMG_20160219_192720

And then… we got hit with the plague! For goodness sake, we homeschool so are not constantly surrounded by kids, but apparently the combination of basically living at the YMCA on three different occasions a week and Sunday School was enough to put us over. And I refuse to work on such a special project when I am under the weather… that is when mistakes are made! So instead I puttered… recuperated and lost a prep week for schooling. Oh, well! So I figure, it has been too long between posts and I need to share some colour now that our snow seems to be FINALLY melting… so I am going to post this as it is. Red through Green!

I promise a colourful rest of March. I need to kick it up a notch as I certainly do not want to be working away on this way into June if I plan to make the fair! I hope enjoyed my 2001 post! In the meantime here are some of the completions from the past couple weeks! 

A no roll flower I tested out! So awesome, Sick Lil Monkeys!

A no roll flower I tested out! So awesome, Sick Lil Monkeys!

Awesome how the back works out.

Awesome how the back works out.

Double Ruffle Blanket!

Double Ruffle Blanket!

Baby booties from a book sent by a friend

Baby booties from a book sent by a friend

Cupcake blanket!!! My first new classroom only completion!

Cupcake blanket!!! My first new classroom only completion!

Busy Busy Fingers

I know I haven’t posted much in the way of an update on the stitching. The time just seems to dart away with you. BUT I do have progress on the Rainbow Ripple Blanket… I am still in love with this project, though the orange in my third rainbow gave me all sorts of trouble. Progress has been spotty on it, thankfully I am not even close to out of time!IMAG2463

However, I did have OTHER completions come and go these past weeks. 13 Valentine themed tiny bags were done up in no time flat. Some for our family and some for the kids to gift. HERE thanks to Blackstone Designs.IMAG2315

I also finished some of the most adorable baby sweaters that were quickly posted in the mail to the newest twins of our acquaintance. I am making a third of this pattern for the county fair! I will share the pictures of that one too. HERE thanks to Sinead Deegan.IMAG2462

A one day free pattern from Snappy Tots HERE has me hooking up a Valentine’s themed scarf.IMG_3086

A special SUPER late birthday present was also completed and finally posted in the mail. A bag we (Ken and I) converted into a backpack. Perfect for toting a few things for school or home. HERE thanks to Red Heart.IMAG2479

What else, what else… well with the donation of yarn from a friend who was downsizing I was finally able to finish a shawlette I started ages ago. It reminds the girls of Frozen (colour scheme I guess). HERE thanks to Crochetspot.com … though NOT a free pattern.IMAG2515

The same wonderful gift has me FINALLY starting a cupcake blanket in baby pink. This is a classroom only project, for when I have down time between lessons or the kids are presenting or crafting. They love the cupcakes and I love the repetition. I have opted to have a single colour as the bulk of the blanket with the border in a second colour. Here’s hoping that there is enough of the colour in my stash now. HERE thanks to Roseanna Beck.IMG_3096

In honour of Chinese New Year (year of the monkey) I made a lucky orange tree. The pattern is thanks to Little Mee Creations. We made a few alterations… we put a plastic canvas base and instead of the suggested straw used a wider dowel with thinner dowels for the branches. This did alter my stitch count around both the trunk and branches but it worked. I also made mine a taller tree, which the kids LOVE. Either way… if you are a crochet enthusiast give it a go. So worth it! HEREIMG_20160208_101910

I have decreased my unfinished work pile and am staring temptation in the face to add more to it. 6 gifted skeins of a specific colour of Homespun sitting in a pile in my room… I swear it is taunting me… and I have, perhaps, found a pattern that I would not mind making… so let’s see if I can add that to my schedule!

That is not to say I haven’t been working on the rainbow. I am hoping to put some good time in on it during the second half of February. Short month, but lots of time to sneak away and stitch. If I am careful!IMAG2520

As a matter of fact, my Etsy store HERE has not been a rip roaring success these past months… I have done very well at Christmas time but not so much over the rest of the year. SO, my plan is to stop renewing my adds over the next few months and revamp my Facebook It’s a Hoot page HERE. Hopefully, over the next few weeks I can sort it out so you can view anything I have for sale there. Feel free to check it out, share the link… put someone who may be interested on the path… I would love to send some of these finished pieces on to a new home!!!IMAG2464