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A rug for a bug

I can’t tell you how long I have had this yarn laying around. It has sat so patiently in my yarn stash just waiting to be picked. I bought it with good intentions months ago and as life goes I found myself not having enough time. That’s the thing with hooking, you go into a store and find so many wonderful yarns and ideas come flooding in making your soul smile. You cave and decided okay what’s a few more going to hurt? Plus, I don’t have one like this and I need it….. not sure for what but I just do! You excitedly take it home and then it sits, the longer it does the more it looses the twinkle it once had. The inspiration quickly fades.

I have never worked with such chunky yarn before but I was in love. Plus I had purchased a jumbo sized hook months prior and it had been waiting for this size of yarn. I had originally bought this yarn with the intention of making my little Oliver a rug for his room. He likes to sit by his stuffies and look at his books. I thought a rug would be the perfect accent to complete his reading corner.

I found a very helpful pattern on pinterest. The pattern provided some of the basics on how to crochet a rug, as well as different variations depending on what stitch you wanted to use. It also gave some really good pointers such as, did you know if you are hooking away and your rug starts to curl up you just have to add an extra stitch or two to make it lay flat?! I love helpful tips like this! The pattern had this and a few other helpful pointers that will come in handy should you choose to make yourself a rug.

I worked on this rug while my little bug slept, above is my work station. Gone are the days of an organised craft room and here are the days of crafting anywhere you can, while you can. I was quickly interrupted but I didn’t mind ūüôā

The great thing about using a jumbo crochet hook is that it makes for a quick project. I was able to complete this rug all in one day, which made me wonder why I didn’t just get it done from the start, sigh oh wells! The important thing is that I was able to put this beautiful yarn to good use.

It’s perfect for little toes and little bums to sit on while they read or snuggle with their favourite stuffy.

A basket full of love, most of them crocheted for my little guy. My heart is a flutter every time he snuggles one of my creations or sits on the squishy rug I made for him. This is a great project for any level and a perfect way to add a little handmade love to your home. Keep crafting ūüôā

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Tied in knots

At the beginning of the year I made three crafting goals, one being to learn how to knit, second to macrame all the things and lastly to become friends with my sewing machine. Like most goals you have to work slow and steady to achieve them. I feel like I’m going at a snail’s pace but better late than never, I guess. I finally finished a plant holder that I am excited to show you all. It’s true I can’t yet macrame all the things but I did manage to macrame this beauty.

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I started off trying to follow a pattern and quickly became frustrated. I just couldn’t figure out what knots were required to get the pot to sit nicely. I frantically untied knot after knot but kept reminding myself not to give up. After hours of attempting to figure out exactly what the pattern was asking of me I decided I would venture out on my own. I put aside the pattern and untied the knots for the very last time or so I hoped. I sorted out the macrame rope and divided it evenly. I then just let my hands do the work and cleared my mind of all judgements, I just went with what I was feeling. No pattern, no rules, nothing but the simple act of tying knots here and there and all around.

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I think that’s the secret with this art. With so many craft projects we are accustomed to following nicely laid out patterns to get to the end piece. For me, macrame is so different and doesn’t follow the same rules. I found it worked best when I freed my mind and let my hands do the work. Sure, in order to know how to make the knots you do need to follow some what of a guide but in order to design and make various wall and plant hangers it’s best to just make it up on the spot. It’s so much fun to see what you can come up with, one knot leads to another.

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In the end I am proud of my first macrame hanging plant holder. I came up with my own design and it all came together as it was meant to be. I am so eager to keep working on this craft. I have also seen a lot of other crafters using yarn instead of macrame rope which is so inspiring as I love me some yarn.

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Just because it’s not the new year doesn’t mean we should set aside our yearly goals until it’s time to celebrate yet another passing year. We need to keep at it and do what makes our hearts’ happy.

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Renewed inspiration

Every once and a while we lose sight of our path in life. We are humming along “la la la” minding our own business and look down only to find the path we had assumed we would still be on is no where to be found. A quick turn to the left and then the right still leaves us bewildered as we struggle to see where we went awry. Life is funny that way, we are chugging along and then boom!!!!! we are on our assess wondering which way is up. Recently this has been my life, between adulting, being a mom, and trying to do renos around the house I slowly started to lose sight of my path. My path had become covered in baby food, poo, dirt, negative energy, I mean you name it and it was probably somewhere on my now unrecognizable path. Sometimes we are meant to take the road less travelled and maybe that’s why life interferes but every now and again it is our own doing that leaves us astray. Between my daily routine and daily fixing around the house I put down my hook in order to get things taken care of. Whenever this happens, as it often does, I start to lose that creative energy. I love being creative especially for self care purposes, it makes me feel whole and restored. I didn’t know how lost I really was until our recent trip to Vancouver;

The combined smells of the ocean, the soil and the delicious foods flooding the streets brought me back to life! It was exactly what I never knew I needed at that moment in time. I needed to feel alive and inspired.

Vancouver will always feel like home to me and be very close to my heart for it was the place that truly inspired me to start crocheting and expressing myself creatively. When we first moved there five years ago I thought I was on top of the world, I was so excited for this new adventure. It didn’t take too long for life to knock me over and laugh it’s evil laugh “bahahahah”, the excitement had been wiped away and I was left wondering what the hell I was doing in this unknown city. I was stuck at a job I hated and I felt so alone. I eventually found the courage to do something I had never done before which was up and quit a job before I had found a new one but I did it and it felt gooooodddd!!!!! Though after my last pay cheque dwindled away and the reality of the job market sunk in I wasn’t feeling as good but I had no regrets. I was at my lowest moment in life, jobless in a new city and feeling even more alone than ever. I’m not sure where I got the initial idea from but one day I decided I needed to try something new…..something soft and snuggly….I walked around Micheals with my last few bucks in hand and found the yarn isle. It was like it was calling my name, like Golome to the ring, I found myself petting all the yarn saying “my precious”. Okay, maybe not that creepy but I was in love and I knew I had to make all the things.

From then on I was hooked. I found that I got a lot of my inspiration from nature, especially when we would get lost in the forest. I loved the colours, the smells, the dampness and the feeling of being so small is something that was so wonderfully mysterious and bigger than myself. I was so happy with my new found creative outlet as it would allow me to create some warm cozy goodness for my loved ones at Christmas. By the time I knew it I had landed a great job, had started a blog and was creating all day every day. My circle of friends had grown and I was finally feeling at home in a place I so desperately wanted to be part of. Not only did the city accept me but it brought out the best in me. Through being on an unknown and messy path I had found so much more than I would have if I would have stayed on the one laid out in front of me, you know that clean one that is safe and never changes. It was comfortable but I was only existing and not truly living until I had been thrown from my safely net to my new found path. Being back in Vancouver this past week has got me feeling all kinds of inspired and I feel like me again and ready to put time aside to create.

Life can get messy but we need to set time aside each day to feed our souls, whatever it might be, find it and remember it when you are feeling lost. Hold it close to light the way back home because we all get a little lost every once and a while.

I have to share this picture and for those who have read my “about me” page and for those who know me personally, you know that our son Oliver was born in this beautiful city. We had the pleasure of touring around with him and I have to say my new favourite part of visiting our second home was seeing it through his eyes;

 

 

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Think spring

I’m not sure where you are located on the map but if you are close to the prairies you will have felt my pain this week. On Monday morning the snow graced us yet again with her presence. Like that clingy friend who just won’t go no matter how direct you are, oh and better yet this time she brought her friends; windy, cold and cloudy. Ugh, it’s been a long week trying to stay positive but try as I might it always takes me back a couple steps when we get our clingy friend in the spring. Unfortunately, it’s not that uncommon to get snow this late in the game and yes being a prairie girl I should be used to it by now but I don’t think I ever will. That’s why when the weather gets me¬†down I¬†need to find my happy place, that being cozy on the couch¬†with a ball of yarn. I decided to make my own friends to fight back against the snow and her gang, meet; cactus, succulent and flower cactus (okay not original but I am still recovering from the white out).

Thankfully as I write this the snow has melted leaving only a few patches of white as evidence that she was just here. Her friends got the memo as well and left so it’s blue skies and sun all around. It truly does make a difference when the sun is shining and you can once again dance the happy dance while you daydream about all the spring things you can’t wait to do. Having my new friends also helped me get my groove back, I just love them and all their tiny goodness.

So you might be wondering how you too can create some friends of your own, well don’t you fret because I’m about to share all the things. Lets start with friend number 1, Cactus;

I found an easy to follow pattern on Pinterest from a site called la casa de crafts¬†(on my crochet Pinterest board). The pattern, as stated above, is simple and easy to follow. The only thing it didn’t provide was the brown base, aka dirt, so if you are looking for that part it can be found with my second friend, succulent;

5 Little Monsters¬†is where I found this awesome pattern. I know you aren’t supposed to say it out loud but this is by far my favourite friend ūüėČ The blog post shows some really great variations as well it¬†provides a pattern for the the dirt, so you can add that extra touch. I made an extra dirt patch and gave it to my third friend, flower cactus;

This cactus is fun to make as it allows you to add a splash of colour. I love greenery as I am sure you all know but I also love putting flowers on things! I have a matching one that sits on my night stand, it’s the perfect house plant as you never have to give it anything but your admiration. I posted a pattern for this crochet cactus¬†a while back so if you haven’t yet checked it out now is the time. I wrote it myself so if you are struggling or have any questions please let me know (my email is along the side).

So there you have it folks, another great way to fight through some of life’s set backs while¬†creating some beauty with your own two hands.

For some added fun you can mix things up and paint the ceramic pots in a simple white or add a splash of colour. I painted two of mine, one white as you can see and the other white with a hint of green. I have to say it was relaxing to paint for a change and I can’t wait to paint a few more. If you aren’t a hooker and you are in need of some new friends then check out my Etsy shop, BBCraftlandia, as all three are on there and looking for some TLC.

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I say a hip hop….

I’ve been dying to try this jersey style yarn for a while now. I finally got around to picking some up but then it came to deciding what to make. One simply can’t¬†waste good yarn so there it sat for a few weeks as I pondered and dreamed. Then one day the perfect idea hippity hopped into my brain. Yup, it was settled, I was going to attempt to crochet an Easter bunny basket for my baby boy.

I eagerly got on Pinterest and pinned my fav patterns, the only problem being I was using a different weight and style of yarn then recommended by most of the patterns so it would take some patience and thinking to make it work. After several different attempts with different hooks and patterns I finally found one that would fit which I will now share with you. I used the following Easter Bunny Basket Pattern (you can also follow my crochet board on Pinterest) but I changed a few things along the way which I will explain as we go so you too can create this hippity hoppity bunny basket.

To start with I used hook size 8mm instead of the recommended 5mm hook as the yarn I was using was¬†much thicker than what the pattern called for. With my hook in hand I began to¬†follow the pattern starting with the base. I only made one base not two, with the thicker yarn you shouldn’t need to make two bases for the basket. The yarn should be strong enough to hold all their goodies but do what works best for you. I followed the pattern until round 7, I stopped here¬†as the base of my basket was around 9″ which I thought was¬†big enough.

I then moved to the next section of the pattern, the body. Instead of following round 1 (1 sc around) I 1 sc only in the back loop to give the basket a nice edge. I followed round 2 through round 10 but stopped after that. The pattern suggests you go until round 13 but I felt I had enough height in my basket to stop after round 10. The great part of working with thicker yarn is that it tends to builds quickly and really holds its shape.

Are you still with me? If it’s not making sense please send me an email and I will be happy to help. I was really impressed with the jersey yarn and would highly recommend it. It makes a beautiful basket and could be left as is, if it wasn’t for the Easter bunny coming I would have done just that.

Next up are the handles, I opted to only make one handle. Instead of finishing off your yarn at round 10 keep the hook in and proceeded to stitch 3 HDC, turn and do 3 HDC. Continue going back and forth (3 HDC each way) until you get a long enough handle for the basket.

Once you get the length you prefer you can attach it directly across to the other side of the basket using a SS. Then you can finish off the ends and start on the bunny ears. For the ears I followed the pattern¬†and they turned out perfectly. You can attach them once you are done with a SS at the top. I used yarn for the eyes instead of the buttons as I didn’t want my little to try and put them in his mouth. I added a cute yarn nose to match using Charisma Loops and Threads for both.

For the bunny cheeks I followed the pattern with the same yarn, Charisma Loops and Threads, but stopped after round 1. The yarn is a bit thicker then what’s suggested so I found them to be the ideal¬†size after just 1 round.

I was really happy with how it was coming together¬†thus far but something was missing….something fluffy. I decided I needed to add a squishy¬†tail because what’s a bunny without the cute poof. I made a pompom for the tail and here are the end results.

So there you have it folks, a hip hoppity bunny basket. I hope ya’ll have just as much fun making it as I did. You can even add in a cute bowtie or bow, really anything to make it your own and special for your littles.

Happy Easter friends ūüôā

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You are 1

They say when you have a baby that time will no longer move at the same speed,¬†that it will start to quicken its pace and before you know it your newborn baby will¬†be turning 5 and heading out the door to their first day of kindergarten. I remember rolling my eyes when I would hear other moms tell me¬†this and think “yes, I know time will move fast just let me know enjoy this and stop telling me how fast it’s going to go by”. Looking back I see it less as an¬†annoyance and more of a warning, a warning to hold them as long as you can, enjoy every struggle¬†and every snuggle. For it’s true, before you know it time will escape you and your newborn baby will be 1. It still amazes me that a year has passed since I got to experience the greatest moment of my life, that moment being when I got to hold my beautiful baby boy for the first time. It was an incredible feeling that I can still feel every time he looks at me and grabs onto my shirt. That’s the first thing he did when the doctor gave him to me, he grabbed onto my robe and held on tight. In that moment I think I felt every human emotion¬†possible, I was scared, excited, happy beyond words, relieved and again scared but as soon as I felt his grip I knew everything was going to be okay and all those emotions turned into pure love. I am now one of those annoying moms that will tell all the other new moms to hold them as long as you can, enjoy every snuggle and every struggle because the struggles will change and the snuggles will fade as they grow so quickly in front of your eyes. It’s honestly unbelievable how fast it all goes, just as soon as you think you have caught up to them they are already onto something new.

Before I had my son time just moved at a different pace, I think because I set the tone of how fast I wanted things to move plus I was way more awake during it so I could remember a lot more. It’s amazing how somebody so small can completely change how you see and feel about everything in your life, your whole perspective on life changes. On March 23, 2016 at 9:47am my life changed for the better and one year from that date I can honestly say it has only gotten better even though time has escaped me.

Here we are one year later, you are 1, my baby boy and I can’t imagine life without you. You have taught me how to truly love, to be patient, to live in the moment and¬†to appreciate every day for every day being your mom is the greatest gift. I never knew how badly I wanted to be your mom until I first held you in my arms, you grabbed on tight as if to say you weren’t going to let go and I gripped back just as tightly to let you know I wouldn’t either. You are such a gentle, kind soul who loves to laugh, fittingly your middle name means “the one who laughs” and it couldn’t be more true. You dance to every musical beat you hear and Sesame Street is your jam. You truly are our greatest adventure and I look forward to making many more wonderful memories as we go along this journey together. I will love you always and forever my little beautiful boy who is now 1.

I chose to make you a gift from my heart and one that will keep you warm¬†and cozy. If you should ever miss your mom you can give your sweater a squeeze and I hope you feel it squeeze right back as it’s made with these two hands that love you so.

*Pattern by Thevelvetacron

*Buttons purchased from Brickbubble

Just when I think you can’t get any cuter I see you in this sweater and my heart melts. I wish so many good things for you my beautiful boy but if I can just speak of¬†a few it would be that I hope you always know how loved you are and that no matter what life throws your way you¬†will know that I will be there holding your hand saying proudly¬†“you got this”. Love mom.

*Photos taken by David Evanochko

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DIY: Floral Wall Hanging

Hello friends, I hope ya’ll are having a fabulous week. Not having a great start to the week? Still feeling those winter blues? Will spring ever come? Whatever it is that is bringing you down I have the cure for you in the form of some good old fashion crafting. Getting your craft on might just be the fix you need, so take off those grumpy pants and put on¬†your creative ones because I am going to share some tips on how to make your very own floral wall hanging. For those who would like the fix but don’t want to do the work you can head on over to my Etsy shop, BBCraftlandia, as I have a few for sale.

Materials needed;

  • ribbon
  • metal hoop (same kind¬†used for making dream catchers)
  • greenery
  • flowers/decor
  • floral tape
  • hot glue gun
  • floral wire cutters
  • scissors

Lets begin with the most tedious step which is attaching the greenery to the hoop using the floral tape.

Using the wire cutters, cut two long strands of the greenery that you are wanting as the base of the hoop. You want both pieces to be similar in size as they will be laying on either side of the hoop. Once you have them cut take the pieces and lay them on opposite sides of the hoop ensuring they are where you want them to be as you will be attaching them to the hoop using the floral tape. Take the floral tape and start to wrap it around the hoop to secure the greenery in place. I find it easier to cut a long piece of the floral tape instead of leaving it attached to the spool.

It can get frustrating as the hoop may slide and the greenery may shift while attaching the tape, just breath and be patient as you go. Remember that once this part is over it’s smooth sailing, this is by far the hardest part. Also, don’t worry if the tape is visible as this will eventually by covered. Continue working the floral tape all the way around, once you have attached the greenery you can cut the floral tape and use some hot glue to ensure it stays attached¬†(I usually do this in two separate pieces and not one long continuous one).

Okay so now that the hard part is over¬†you can relax and have some fun with these next few steps. If the greenery¬†isn’t laying exactly how you would like (for example poking out in some spots instead of flowing with the shape of the hoop) don’t stress as this can be fixed once you attach some additional greenery and decor. The next step I like to do is to attach the ribbon.

Cut the ribbon in as many or as few pieces as you would like and at the desired length. For mine I chose to do four pieces around 6′ in length. I like to put the ribbon down the middle but again depending on how you attach the greenery you can add the ribbon wherever you would like or don’t add any at all, you can really play around with it¬†and make it your own. The picture above shows how to attach the ribbon, simply pull the ends through the loop to attach the ribbon to the hoop.

Okay, things are looking good and the hard part is definitely over, now it’s time to fill in the rest with some greenery and decor. I added some additional greenery to fill in and cover the floral tape. Once things were filled in and flowing better I added some crochet flowers. I chose to make some crochet flowers instead of felt ones as I wanted to match the texture of the ribbon.

There you have it, your very own floral wall hanging! I am so proud of you and I hope it adds a little pep in your step this week and every week. It may be miserable outside but it doesn’t mean you need to carry it inside with you. Add a little sunshine in the form of crafting, it’s guaranteed to make your day a lot brighter ūüôā