Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Comfortghans I designed for friends and family

I have had a busy year crochet- wise, but not for my business. I designed comfort-ghans for a dear friend going through a health crisis and his new wife, both VERY dear friends. I loved the one I designed in an ocean theme so much that I then made one for my mom and Grama! Lol. They were freeform crochet in each person's favorite color.  

A comfort-ghan is an afghan crocheted or knitted for someone going through a difficult time such as a health crisis, divorce, death of a loved one, etc. Its intended to bring them some comfort in a difficult time and to let them know someone cares and is thinking about them. I make mine more of a lapghan size so they can use it on the couch watching tv if they want.
This was the one I made in our friend's favorite colors, turquoise and brown. When he was diagnosed he said " I've got this. I'm a miracle." So that's what I had stitched on the centre square :0)
Here are some close ups.
I crocheted a large square, then sewed the fabric square on by hand.


Here is his wife's.
The shells and beads were pre-strung on the yarn. NOT a fun time! Lol.

Here are a few close ups.
This was to symbolize the unending love and support she has from all her friends and family.

I liked this one so much and had so much fun making this that I made my Mom and Gran each one!
Here is my Mom's.

Mom loves bright colors!

Her favorite flower is a Frangipani, but she also likes Hibiscus. The centers of the hibiscus have glass beads in them.

I loved making the cute little jelly fish! :0) The white streak above them is a white cap. I used a white acrylic yarn with opal metallic sequins on it.

I was especially proud of the job I did designing the volcano! 

Here is Grama's.
She loves more autumn colors; greens, oranges, and browns as well as pink.

The volcanoes are slightly 3-d. The streams of lava are fuzzy yellow yarn stitched in place and a bright pink yarn with a metallic thread in it. It actually starts in the top of the volcano which is a raised open hole. I used black for the fresh lava, then into brown and green to represent the dirt and vegetation that grows on an older volcano. 

The comfort-ghans were ALL very well received and cherished! :0)


Thursday, January 26, 2012

I just finished another little girl's crocheted felted Flower purse! (all except the liner:) This one is a Fairy House Flower:)  Most of it is made using the Kertzer Persian tapestry yarn I bought (the big blue bag:)

 It started out like my other flower purses, then took on a mind of it's own!! Lol!

Here are some pics of it before felting.  
I didn't care for the petals so added to them a bit. Now it reminded me more of Tinkerbell!

 Once I got the idea for the handle, it made me think of a Fairy House! What's a Fairy house without a toad stool or 2? A Fairy decided to move into one of them:0) The unattached toad stool on the right is just an experiment. I might put it with the purse as a key chain or something or just keep it to use as a decoration for my plants....
The handle one one side was made to look like the stem and roots of a flower but made me think of a tree trunk and roots.
 Here's the curly vine like tip of the stem, just like in the Fairy books:)

 Here it is after felting in my front load HE washing machine.

 Here's a close up of the lone toad stool. I may have to make it some friends:0)
 Here's some beautiful batik material I found that will look great to line it with! The bright pink matches the purse and there's a hint of orange in it to match the purse. The curly lines remind me of Fairies. I'll line it as soon as it is dry.
Once it's lined it will be posted for sale either on my fb page: (Crochet A la Carte (Deidre Eyles) or on my etsy page: (

Saturday, January 7, 2012

yarn haul of the century!!

This is my yarn haul!! My lys "Andjareena's" in Carrying Place near Trenton, Ontario, had some Kertzer's Persian tapestry yarn that I used for the first 2 little girl's flower purses I made. Being Persian yarn, it is in 3 lace weight strands that can be separated. I use 2 strands for the felted purses. They are 40 yd skeins and usually cost $3.99/skein. Andjareena's called and offered them to me for $1/skein IF I took the entire lot of 107 skeins! My Mom bought it for me for Christmas!! Happy dance, happy dance, happy dance!!

Look at the SIZE of the bag!!!!

 All the colors of the RAINBOW!!!!! (and you can't see all of the colors:0) I have so many ideas for cute little girl's purses that I can't keep up!!! LOL!!

These 2 are reserved for a very special Flower purse. I took a picture of a very unique plant/flower at the zoo a couple of years ago.

Here are some more skeins. The bunch in the left bottom corner are being reserved. They will be made into a special purse for ME:) The comp doesn't do justice to any of the colors. The one color is a gorgeous teal green color!
 Did I mention, I love my Mommy? :*) Thanks Mom!!

The drawback to the Persian yarn is separating it. The full skeins have to be separated a foot or 2 at a time, unwound (untangled? untwisted?) and wound into balls or it tangles dreadfully!! VERY time consuming and you get very sore arms and shoulders!

The other skeins come pre-cut in 3' (I think) lengths, which has it's own problems. Much easier to separate, but far too short to crochet with! Therefore it has to be separated then joined and rolled into balls. I tried tying them together, but it was not very secure and I'd have TONS of ends to trim after felting. I was also worried that the ends might come undone before it felts, leaving a large hole in the purse! Yikes!

I tried crossing the ends a tiny bit, then turning them back the way they came and pre-felting them a bit with a felting needle. I held the very fine strands over my left index finger, then VERY carefully used the needle to try to "felt" the yarn together without poking myself! (I kind of poked it into the yarn from the side, then kind of "sawed" at the yarn) It worked, kind of, but again was very time consuming and not always the most secure:(

A friend of mine on fb, Brenda Bourg, reminded me of the "Russian Join" method. Thanks Brenda! :0) I had thought of it earlier, but decided against it as the strands are so thin I didn't think it would work. When she mentioned it I decided to give it a try (anything had to be faster than the needle felting method!) So far, this has turned out to be the fastest method. I leaves bigger loops than I like, but it seems secure and I don't use too much precious yarn (some colors only have a skein or 2, not really enough for a purse, so has to be worked into the design very carefully).

Here are photos of my Russian joining.

The ends are first crossed over each other and the needle is at the very end of one end. Because it is 2 very thin strands held together I can't just go straight up the yarn. I have to weave the needle back and forth through both strands very carefully.

Here's a better photo of the needle going through the strands of yarn.

And this is the finished "Russian Joined" yarn strands! I'm not fussy about the loops it leaves, but I can work with it and it should felt so you don't even see it.

Voila! The finished, joined yarn wound into a working ball of yarn! :0) I already have a Flower purse design in mind for this nice bright salmony pink color:0) (it's a lot brighter in person:)

Friday, January 6, 2012

These little girl's Flower purses were my 4th order. The customer also requested 2 little girl's matching berets to go with them. They were for a 3 and 5 yr old.

When the polar fleece liner is tucked into the purse, it not only keeps things from falling out, but I think it looks like a rose bud:0)

The hat was lined as well so the wool wouldn't be scratchy.

I always try to add a little Lady Bug button or something else whimsical for decoration to all my purses. After all, Lady Bugs eat nasty aphids:0)
Here's the lighter pink one. I couldn't have made the pattern match any better if I had actually tried to do it! lol What a happy coincidence:0)

Close up of the liner. The wavy part turns up. I just wanted to show that it can be folded down for easier access. This one looks crooked. It looked much better when it was blocked:0)

 Here are the matching berets. The little tiny one was my first attempt...a bit too tiny I think! It would fit a doll!! lol. Maybe I could sell matching dolly hats and purses? :*)

This is a tulip that was growing in my garden a couple of years ago. This was the inspiration for the coloring style used for the purses.