“Earth to Granny” Blanket

Here are some pictures of my completed granny blanket in some beautiful earth tones. I made the blanket for a couple of my photographer friends so I hope to see it in use one of these days soon 🙂 Until then, here are some quick snaps of the finished blanket. Isn’t she beautiful? 🙂

Earth Tone Blanket 2 Earth Tone Blanket 1Earth Tone Blanket 4

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A Little More Light

A Little More Light

I found this floating around on FB after the tragedy at the Boston Marathon. It’s truth rang so strong in my heart that I had to share here as well.
It also goes along with a post that I have been meaning to write for several weeks now, but as life would have it, I have been extremely busy with my own projects, and have put this idea on the back burner. Time to bring it to the front.
In the last month, I have made yet another couple of hats for someone who recently found themselves having to begin chemotherapy. I hadn’t thought about it too much prior to this point, but I have made nearly a dozen hats this year for friends, family, family of friends, and children who were undergoing chemotherapy.
So here’s my call. Thanks to a friend of ours (whose son has recently gone into remission, thank God), I have found a clinic that accepts hat donations. They have them in a big box in the clinic and the children can go pick out hats from that box. You may put your card on the hat so they know where it came from or you may leave it blank and know that you are bringing some light to a child here in Charlotte, NC. I would like to be able to bring in a BIG box of hats, but I can’t do it all by myself. If you would like to offer up your time and talents to a very worthy cause, please contact me at joyfulmamadesigns@gmail.com and I will give you more information as to where these hats are going and when I plan to deliver them. Thank you all! Now go on and share some light today 🙂

Below is one of the hats that I made for a family member of a friend who has just begun chemotherapy. You can find this free pattern at www.playinhookydesigns.com under “Brain Waves Beanie”. It worked up quickly and, as seen below, can truly be made for both male and female.

Joy's Hat-corrected 2

Here is the second hat that I made (for the same person). This one is my design and if I could get my act together, I would write a pattern for it! Both hats were made from I Love This Cotton. I figured the cotton was a lighter, more natural fiber that would be good for spring and summer. These hats were made for adults and I used just one skein of yarn for each hat.

Joy's Second Hat 1

Baby Shower Gift Order

A friend of mine called me up one Wednesday afternoon, asked if I had any available baby items for her to purchase for a shower that she had forgotten about (she’s pregnant too, so we all understand how that can happen!). Unfortunately I usually just do custom orders on baby gifts, so instead, she dropped off some yarn 🙂 Here’s what I had for her by that Saturday.

Once again, a huge shout out is deserved for the wonderful www.thegreendragonfly.wordpress.com who offered the adorable pattern for the little bunny just in time to use some of the leftover yarn to add a special little friend to the gift 🙂 Since it was a baby gift and I didn’t have any eyes like what she uses in her tutorial, I just sewed on some eyes with some thinner black yarn that I had. I think it turned out ok 🙂 (see my previous post for a link to the pattern).

Since this time, I have made a couple more of these bunnies. I forgot to take a picture of the one that I made and brought into my preschool class. We’re using that one to practice listening during our sharing circle. The kids named him “Taco”…or “Chacco” (sometimes it’s hard to tell with 2 year olds!). I definitely see myself making a lot more of these in the future.

Annnnnnnd…a St. Patty’s day inspiration, I made a 2-tone hat in my favorite design of the season.

Two tone green hat

*Also, once again, thank you to my dear friend at www.beeskneesphotographync.com for the beautiful pictures.

“Pinspirations”

If any of you are like me, then you have been sucked into the world of Pinterest over the past year or so, pinning more than you will ever have the time to actually attempt. I’m not on there much anymore, but occasionally I will get on to be inspired.
One day earlier this winter, I saw a pin by a person who had seen a hat in Anthropology (a store that I love the style of, but can’t bring myself to justify the price tags). I too loved the hat and liked her take on it, but thought, “I think I’ll try my own version of this.” And I did…and LOVED it. I have made this hat for myself and a couple of friends and have even sold a couple.
Anyway, thought I would share 🙂

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Awesome Free Tutorial Site!!

I found this wonderful link on Pinterest! Yea!!! So many adorable free patterns/tutorials. I had been trying to figure out what to do with some vintage fabric (yes, really vintage leftover fabric from one of my mom’s old dresses) that was in my stash. This little Snappy Toddler Dress used up the perfect amount and turned out so cute!!! The pattern on the site was for a baby (12-18 months), so I just used the back neckline from the pattern as the front neckline for my 5 1/2 year old and created a new back neckline to fit her. The rest was easy! What do you think???

Next on my list is that adorable Snap Wrap Dress that’s on there…and probably a few more of these tops 🙂 I’m sure I’ll have to adjust a little to accommodate for my daughter’s age/size, but that is a simple fix.

Loooove these simple tops! Thank you Prudent Baby!!!

New Twist on the Classics

I am a fan of vintage design. I love the way that the classics look and the way that I feel when I put them on. Over the weekend, my husband cleaned out some bins that had been stored away and found some of his old shirts from high school and his youth. I have adopted one of them as my own 🙂 It reminded me of those old baseball shirts, you know, the ones with the different colored 3/4 sleeves and collar? Love those. I remember having a few when I was young and loving them back then too. Now if I can just get my hands on some vintage tube socks (My Miami Dolphins colored ones were my favorite back then, what I wouldn’t do to have a pair of those right now!)…

So I started thinking about my crafts and the projects that I’ve done that I love the most. I realized that those projects that are the most fun are ones that have that vintage inspiration OR ones where I take a classic and add a little something to it. Here are a couple that I’ve recently done.

1. Classic Pillowcase Dress. Sooooooooo many of these are around these days. You can find them in stores, on etsy (or other handmade store sites), and pretty much everyone I know (that can sew) has made a pillowcase dress. It is simple and beautiful and–best of all–very versatile. A true classic. So I still love to make these, but what I like even more is adding just that little touch of unique by crocheting a simple trim embellishment. Here is one of my latest that was a custom order and I just love the way these 2 dresses (for sisters) turned out.

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Adding this trim is very simple. My only advice (if you want to try this on your own) is to make sure you crochet a length of trim slightly shorter than the length of the hem of the dress. The crochet trim does stretch and the last thing that you want to do is finish the entire trim, go to pin it and sew it on and find that you have an excess…trust me, getting to that point and having to start over is no fun! So about 1/2″ shorter than the hem is good.

2. Classic #2 and so simple to make is the dishcloth. In this day and age, people are starting to get back to being a little more earth friendly. I think for a while everyone just wanted easy and disposable and forgot that we had to take care of our earth (that is my very gentle tree-hugging reminder to everyone: reduce, reuse, recycle). So if you wash as many dishes as I do and are sick of throwing away those stinky old sponges every couple of weeks, consider making your own (or if you know me, asking me to make you some) dish cloths. I hope that the Red Heart Yarn people will forgive my next comment, but this is about the only thing that I will use their “super saver” yarn for (it is far too rough for me to ever use on a hat or anything else that someone will wear). It is cheap and just the right texture to do an absolutely wonderful job as a dish/pot scrubber. So thank you Red Heart for that 🙂 The best thing about these is that they last SO much longer than sponges. You just throw them in with your towels once a week and wash and dry on hot and you can reuse these things for months and months! I love to make these little scrubbies instead of “dishcloths”, but that is just a personal preference.

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So these are 2 of my favorite takes on the classics. What are some of yours? I would love to hear!