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Archive for August, 2013

Hi everyone! It’s Millie here to tell you about some new bandannas our mom made for us. Okay we said this week would be all about us and not her crafting, but these were special and just for us so we will let it slide this time.

You see Walter didn’t have a bandanna he could wear when we were out and about so mom decided to make him one like my Rescue Bandanna.

Millie - pink rescue bandana

 

Recently we both got new collars so mom and dad decided to choose colors to match. Walter has a peacock feather collar from Lupine. He looks great in those colors! Below is Walter’s collar and new bandanna to match.

Rescue Bandannas - Walters - green with collar

 

Here is a close up of the embroidery on this one.

Rescue embroidery on green - detail

 

After that was done dad said that I, Millie, needed a new one because my old one didn’t match my collar any more. So here is my new and improved bandanna.

Rescue Bandannas - Millies - pink with collar

 

The colors really match my collar well. Mom also picked some fun fabric for the back sides and we could even wear that side out if we wanted a change of pace.

Rescue Bandannas - back side

 

And now for the modeling shot of us in our new bandannas.

Rescue Bandannas - Millie and Walter model

 

We wore these out to a special occasion that we will tell you about soon. I love the way the pink is set off against my jet black furs don’t you? If you are interested in your very own Rescue Bandanna just leave a comment for my mom. She will be adding them to her Etsy shop soon.

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Hi everyone! It’s Millie and Walter here! We know we have been missing a bit from our blog but we thought we would let our mom show you all her crafty stuff last week. This week is going to be all about us. We have a lot of things to catch you all up on what we have been doing the past few weeks.

wrestle mania still

One of the things we love to do when we are out in the yard is wrestle. Of course I, Millie, usually have the upper paw in these bouts, but Walter gives it a good shot.

Here is a little video of some recent wrestling action for you to enjoy.

If you can’t see the video you can go here to view it.

We sure do have fun playing together!

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Okay just one more day of alliteration, but this time it’s not about crafting. I thought I would give you an update on how are garden has been blooming lately. Since my last few posts have been a bit wordy I will keep this one to a minimum.

View of perennial garden

View of perennial garden

Helenium

Helenium

Pink Cone Flower

Pink Cone Flower

Black-eyed Susan and Canna Lily

Black-eyed Susan and Canna Lily

Yellow Canna Lily with Green Striped Leaves

Yellow Canna Lily with Green Striped Leaves

Tall Red Canna Lily

Tall Red Canna Lily

Red Canna Lily

Red Canna Lily

Yellow Canna Lily with Green Leaves

Yellow Canna Lily with Green Leaves

Mrs. Robert Brydon Clemetis

‘Mrs. Robert Brydon’ Clemetis

White Gayfeather and Pink Lythrum

White Gayfeather and Pink Lythrum

Rose of Sharon

Rose of Sharon

I hope you enjoyed this stroll through our garden this week.

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Cindys Thread Craft 175  x 175 banner

Continuing on the crafty and alliterative theme (for the blog titles) I thought I would tell you about a few of my recent orders from my Etsy shop. In case you didn’t know I had an Etsy shop I will let you know that I sell custom and ready made pet toys and various bags from tote bags to clutch style. All of my creations are embellished with machine embroidery to personalize it for the buyer. So without further ado here are a few of the recent purchases made from my shop.

First up is an order I received a couple of months ago from my blogging friend Samantha at The Quilting Doberman. As we get older so do our parents and when it comes to birthday and holiday presents we struggle with what to get them because it seems like they already have everything they need. Well Sam had the great idea to get her mom’s pets some special toys and ordered them from me.

pet toys for sam

Her mom has two mini Australian Shepherds and two cats so the dogs received personalized small squeaky bones and the cats got the mouse and clown fish catnip toys.

pet toys for sam - wrapped packages

Sam had me ship them directly to her mom and since it was a birthday gift I wrapped them up and added a little card.

Gypsy with dog bones

Gypsy quickly claimed both dog toys for herself and even enjoyed using one of the bones for a pillow. What a cutie she is.

Gypsy uses dog bone as pillow

The next order I want to tell you about is a clutch style bag. After a few conversations via email with the buyer she settled on a pink micro suede clutch with an “I Love My Dachshund” embroidered on it.

I Love My Dachshund - clutch

The buyer is a knitter and told me that her dachshund GingerSue liked to steal her balls of yarn like a cat and play with them so I picked a special fabric for the lining.

I Love My Dachshund - clutch - interior

The embroidery on the bag turned out perfect. If you are interested there are a variety of puppy and kitty breeds of similar embroideries that can be embroidered on any type of bag. You can check them out at the Embroidery Library where I get most of my embroidery files. The buyer also let me know that she was buying this bag as a birthday gift to herself so when I packaged it up I added a few special things.

I Love My Dachshund - clutch - gift wrapped

I had some left over yarn from a skein so I used it for a bow and added a birthday card. I also included a skein of Lion Brand Bonbon yarn as an extra treat. After the order was delivered I received a lovely message from her that read in part:

My beautiful doxie bag and surprise contents arrived. I picked it up at my apartment clubhouse yesterday afternoon and immediately took it with me to my knitting group. Another knitter who have a precious doxie too immediately had tears pop into her eyes. I am sharing your Etsy link with my galfriends.

It’s notes like this that make the work so fun.

The last order is the one I received a week before I had to finish the crochet baby blanket and it was a big order. The buyer ordered 7 different custom dog bones in all three sizes that I make.

Large - Medium - Small dog bones - order of 7

The buyer did a great job communicating her choices for the order and let me know what color, size and embroidery she wanted on each toy. There are three large and two each of the medium and small bones. I really wonder what “Itchy Richie” thought of his bone. Do you think he used it to scratch his back? 😀

As you can see in addition to the baby blanket and bandannas I have been keeping busy with other crafty things. A couple people wanted to know if I sold the bandannas in my shop. So far I haven’t added them, but would be curious to know if there is a genuine interest among my readers.  I have a few cute embroideries that I think would look great on a bandanna like the ones you can view here (check out the “Kisses” and “Queen/King of the Dog Park” embroideries). You might remember that I also embroidered a bandanna for Millie with a cool “Rescue” tattoo style embroidery. I could make the bandannas in almost any color you would like.

Millie with rescue bandana Millie - pink rescue bandana

The price would vary by size, but they would probably start at around $17. Let me know what you think. If there is enough interest I will add a custom item in my shop. Thanks for visiting and checking out my craftiness.

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I thought I would continue on a crafting theme this week and show you another project I completed recently.  First I want to thank everyone for the compliments on my baby blanket. The baby is due in mid-October and hopefully I can get a picture of the baby with the blanket after then.

To answer Madi’s mom Cecilia’s question I might guess that it took me about 100 hours to complete the blanket, but that is only a wild guess. It took a long time, but some of that was figuring out the pattern and some of it was wrestling with the yarn. Do any of you other hookers (or knitters) have a problem with your yarn turning into a snotty mess when you pull from the center? Sometimes it goes smoothly, but it seemed that when I was in a hurry that purple yarn would just become a big tangle. Oh well, hopefully things will go better next time.

Now on to today’s subject. A couple of weeks before the baby shower there was a surprise birthday party for the father to be. They said that gifts weren’t necessary but I thought I would make something special for him and his four legged family members. The birthday boy is a graduate of the University of Texas and a big sports fan so I decided to make a couple of bandannas for their two dogs so he could show his school pride while walking them. Currently they are living in Ithaca, NY where Cornell University is which just happens to be the birthday boys wife’s alma mater.

Texas Logo detail

 

I started by digitizing the Texas logo and stitched it out on black fabric.  Joann’s sells logo fabric for many colleges, but I couldn’t buy any for Texas locally. Lucky for me just before I wanted to start working these they were having a sale on the fabric and also had free shipping so I picked up some of both the styles of Texas fabric (I also got some West Virginia University fabric – my alma mater – no sense in wasting a good sale).

Texas bandana - with border - back side

 

Above you can see the back of the bandanna. Since the bandannas have embroidery on them I like to line the back so it can’t catch on anything.  I was really glad I got the Texas fabric because the orange color is not what I thought it was. With the fabric as my guide I was able to match the thread for my embroidery with the fabric.

Texas bandana - with border - front detail

 

My original plan was to make two of the same style, but while I was cutting the stabilizer from the back of one of the embroideries I nicked the black fabric. I put my thinking cap on and decided to trim the black to remove the cut part and then add the border shown above. The fabric had the perfect pattern to make a border and I really love the way it turned out.

These colors look great against my furs.

These colors look great against my furs.

I haven’t received any pictures of the birthday boy’s dogs with the bandannas, but before I wrapped them I had Millie and Walter model them.

 

Does this bandanna make my head look small?

Does this bandanna make my head look small?

Both of the recipient dogs are a little bigger than my two so the bandannas might look slightly big for them, but I think the colors look great on my two.

Now my plan was to just make these two bandannas, but Charlie, being an alumni of Cornell too, insisted that I make at least one Cornell bandanna. “After all,” he said, “they live in the town where the school is and the birthday boy’s wife is an alumni so it is only right.” So it was back to the computer to work on digitizing a Cornell logo. I didn’t want to just use the big C as I thought that would be too boring so I picked one with the Big Red Bear on it.

Cornell Big Red C logo

 

It took a few tries and there was still a little problem with the stitch out, but for a dog bandanna I think it turned out very well. Here is Walter modeling that one.

Hey mom, dad says you need to make one of these for us too.

Hey mom, dad says you need to make one of these for us too.

Unfortunately being a hoity-toity Ivy League school logo fabric is not available for Cornell so I settled on red for the backing. Someday I will make Cornell and WVU bandannas for our pups to wear too. Needless to say the birthday boy was surprised and pleased with the unique gift. I hope to get pictures of his dogs wearing them someday and when I do I will share them with all of you.

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Hi everyone! We’re back in Blogville after a self imposed exile. We were able to catch up with everything that has been going on, but want to apologize for not being able to comment for the past week. So now let me explain the absence.

Those crafty types out there know how it is sometimes when you pick a project to do for a gift and realize that it might me a little more than you anticipated. Well that is sort of what happened to me. A few weeks ago I received an invitation to a baby shower and started looking for crochet patterns to make. I found a really nice blanket and liked the way it looked and the colors in the pattern were just what I wanted to do. The yarn was purchased and I started working on it.

Baby Girl Smith Blanket - fan panel

There are three different panels in the pattern and I started with the easiest one shown above. It is a simple fan stitch and was fairly easy, if not a little boring, to complete. I needed to make two of these, but decided to work on the bobble panel next since I knew that one would be a bit more difficult.

Baby Girl Smith Blanket - bobble panel

One of the things I really liked about this pattern is that there is a lot of texture to it, but being a fairly naive crocheter I didn’t recognize the amount of work a panel like this would require. You see there are two different yarns used and each row is a different one. There was no easy way to accomplish starting and ending each row without cutting the yarn. Sometimes you can carry your yarn up the side as you work, but I couldn’t figure out a way to easily do that so i ended up with a panel that looks like this when you are done.

Baby Girl Smith Blanket - bobble panel - with fringe

The problem is that when it gets to this stage you still have to sew all that fringy stuff into it. I tried to crochet in the ends as I went along, but it was too loose and didn’t look very good.  Since this was going to be a baby blanket I wanted it to be more secure. I’m hoping that this could be one of those blankets that will be carried around for years so it has to last. It took countless hours to sew in all those ends and it was making me a bit crazy. Oh yeah there were also two of these panels!

Baby Girl Smith Blanket - Italian square - fan panels

The center panel is made up of 9 Italian squares shown below.

Baby Girl Smith Blanket - Italian square - yellow

It took me a few tries to understand the pattern and get the first one of these blocks completed, but after that they went fairly quickly. These also have a lot of nice texture to them that I like. Before I could start to assemble the blanket I needed to crochet the borders on the fan and bobble panels. That was fairly easy and went as quickly as it could.

In the middle of the last week of working on this I received an order for my Etsy shop that took about a day and a half to complete (more about that later this week). By this point I was working into the wee hours of the morning as fast as my fingers could work. The shower was this past Saturday (starting at 11 am) and by Friday night I was starting to worry that I wouldn’t get it done in time. I got up Saturday morning, ate a quick breakfast and started hooking as fast as I could. I only needed to complete the border, but it was a long way around.

Baby Girl Smith Blanket

At about 10:45 am I finally finished the blanket! I still had to take some pictures, wrap the present, shower and drive the 25 minutes to the shower. Oh well I figured it would be better to be a little late and give a finished project than to be on time and bring my hook to finish it while the rest of the gifts were opened. A few people at the shower were beginning to worry about where I was, but the mom to be said, “she is probably just finishing up whatever it is she is making.” She knows me a little 😉  I figured that all I would miss were a few appetizers and some silly shower games and I was right.

Of course I don’t have a picture of the mom showing everyone the blanket because in my rush I forgot my camera, but it did get the loudest ooohs and aaahs of anything she received and it was the only hand made gift. I am very happy with the way it came out and the colors are perfect for the pale purple nursery.

For the hookers out there that are curious the pattern is from the June 2007 Crochet World magazine and the yarns I used were Bernat Softee Baby for the purple, Sensations Cuddle Muffin for the multi-color yarn, and the yellow is Lion Brand Baby Soft. I guess the moral of this story is next time work harder and faster in the beginning and don’t pick a pattern with alternating rows of different yarn. It truly was a labor of love.

P.S. Just want to give a shout out to Lynne for starting me on my hooking path. It was just over a year ago that she posted her tutorials that taught me the basics of crochet. Thanks again Lynne!

P.P.S. I’m linking up this post with

Moogly

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Today is Sugar the Golden Retrievers’ 12th BarkDay and she wants all of us to smile with her.

Millie - Smiling with Soccer ball

Hi Sugar, it’s Millie here! I love playing with my soccer ball. My dad kicks it so I will chase after it. I bring it back to my favorite shady spot under the tree and give a big SMILE to my dad to thank him for playing with me. Happy BarkDay Miss Sugar!

Walter - I Wuv My Wubba

Hi Sugar, Walter here to tell you about what makes me smile! I wuv my Wubba and playing with it always makes me smile. I get one of my pawrents to throw it for me and then I chase it down and bring it back to the shade and give it a good chew. I’m glad Millie and I could help you celebrate your big day. Happy BarkDay Miss Sugar! Smile on!

Note from Mom: We haven’t been blogging much lately because I have been working on finishing a craft project for a gift that must be done by next Saturday. Most of my free time has been spent working on that project. We are still visiting all our friends blogs, but might not be commenting on all of them.  Regular blogging will resume after August 17th. Thanks for your patience.

 

 

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