Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Poinsettia Proliferation - 4 Monster Crochet Holiday Patterns for You!!

It's been months in the works, but I've finally finished it. What, pray tell, am I referring to? My holiday eBook, Poinsettia Proliferation!

My book is a part of Malabrigo yarn's Freelance Patterns Project and contains four holiday patterns composed of or adorned with poinsettia motifs.

The poinsettia motifs range in size from small to large and are crocheted using a combination of traditional and Tunisian crochet techniques. The shawl above is composed of medium size motifs.

The apron and oven mitts above would make a lovely gift for the holiday hostess in your life! Both mitts and apron are an easy weekend crochet.

Finally, dress your table with a festive table runner made from one large and two medium motifs.

The motifs in the book are really versatile and can be used in a multitude of projects outside of the ones detailed in the book. Think holiday afghan, a funky holiday vest that would put any holiday sweater to shame or appliques for holiday napkins or guest towels (thinner yarn or thread would have to be used to create motifs for this purpose). Literally, the sky's the limit!

So, are you ready to get hooked on poinsettias? If so, you can obtain your own copy of Poinsettia Proliferation! in my Ravelry or Etsy stores.

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


One of my all time favorite type of hats is the beret. At this point, I've made more than my share. The one pictured below was thrown together with scrap yarn, while watching a 2012 documentary on Bob Marley.

I totally free-formed the entire thing in a few hours.

It was an enjoyable crochet AND a stash-buster to boot!

Now I have something to pull about my ears when sitting around the campfire next week in Yosemite! Okay, I have lots of hats to choose from for this purpose, but I am definitely bringing this one with me anyway.

I think I may need to crochet a few dreads to pin to my head...

Many thanks to Heather for modeling and Steve for snapping the pics!

Happy Wednesday, everyone!

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Woven Star Shawl

I love small loom weaving. Weaving on a small frame loom is portable, allows me to use up small amounts of leftover yarn and it gives my wrists and fingers a much needed break from crocheting and knitting. As such, here's my latest small loom FO...the Star Shawl!

I love my Hazel Rose Diamond Looms. You've seen my diamond loom shawls before and I've got a diamond shawl schematic that seems to work for me, but this time I decided to vary it up a bit. I am a big fan of this shawl on the "Knitting in Tuscany" book cover by one of my fave designers, Nicki Epstein. So, I figured why not try a star shape with woven components! Using my 3.5" loom, I wove 8 diamonds and arranged them into an 8 pointed star. Beautiful. Now repeat (and repeat again)! I used lots of my own homespun as well as some commercial yarn scraps on the individual diamonds.

I also wove a few squares and triangles to fill in the open spaces between the stars. All in all, I am pretty happy with the results.

Oh, and even more exciting that this FO is the fact that my loving boyfriend and very talented photographer, Steve, has been elected the Head of Photography at Monster Crochet. And thank god for this! His photos are heads and tails above my own. In addition, the lovely lady in the photos above? Yes, that is Heather. Hi, Heather! She will be modeling a lot of my wearables now. Another thanks be to god for this development. Yay! Thank you both for helping me!!

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

In other news...

In addition to my one-off designs, I've had a few patterns published recently in books as well. Firstly, this lovely little motif bag...

The pattern for this cool crochet can be found in this publication:
Secondly and thirdly are these homey items: flowering trivets and color block ottoman...

These two patterns can be found in this pub:
I have made a lot of major life changes recently (new job after nearly 13 years at the old job AND new large loft/studio living space after a handful of years of residing in a space the size of most people's closets) that pretty much put my ability to design stuff for publication on the back burner. However, having settled a bit, I am now back in the game, but with a different focus. Sure, I will still be doing a bit of work for books and magazines, but mainly I am trying to concentrate on creating designs that really make me happy and keep me interested in designing in general. Over the years, I've felt less enthusiastic about designing and I think that this due to the fact that I accepted commissions that I really should have passed on. I really love crocheting, knitting, spinning and weaving. I mean LOVE. As such, I want the things that I design to reflect this depth of feeling first and foremost. In addition, I have the added complexity of being a single mom and the sole breadwinner for my twosome. So, because of these two factors, primarily, I've decided to just focus on having fun when designing and not worry about making a living from it. The moral of this long-winded treatise is that you all should expect to see some wackier creations coming from this blog again. Okay, my stuff may not appeal to the masses, but it definitely has it's place in the pantheon of crochetdom/yarndom and that's the way I like it!

Thanks for hanging in there with me, peeps. You all have made this whole crochet blog journey worth the effort! xoxo ~ LL

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Crocheted Raffia Fedora - Free Pattern!

Everyone likes to sport a bit of fun atop their heads during the summer months, whether at the beach or just running errands about town. So, I figured I'd get my fingers working on a quick crochet that looks great under the summer sun...

Yes, that would be a lovely green fedora, crocheted from raffia ribbon, with a stylish white daisy adhered to its side. Literally peeps, I made this hat in one evening. That being said, I need to make another one in navy, one in natural and oh, maybe one in a lovely shade of coral. Ooooh, and one in turquoise! The raffia color selection is vast...Must. Take. Advantage.

You too can take advantage and make your own pile o'fedoras. Just download ye olde pattern link here. Happy summer crocheting kids!


Crocheted Fedora

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Hand Dyed Goodness

I was showing my mom how to dye fabric (silk to be specific) last weekend. We dabbled in a range of techniques including painting, dipping, dripping and some good old fashioned kettle dyeing. I even tested my hand at dyeing silk ribbon! So much fun!

I purchase my nekked silk (in scarf and ribbon form) and acid dyes from Dharma Trading Company (which has been one of my favorite supply sources since college...uh, a long time). I'm really loving the ribbon. I will definitely be dyeing more of that for weaving, knitting and crocheting projects. Fun!

Monday, June 03, 2013

Raffia Granny Rug

I know what you’re thinking…she reappears and then disappears again! Well, I do have good reasons for my latest absence. Firstly, Steve and I moved from our Westside apartment to a loft in Downtown LA. This was a huge adjustment, but I’m happy to report a positive and much needed change. In addition, virtually simultaneous to the move, I decided to take a new position at another firm after almost 13 years of working for the same company. Talk about turning one’s environment on its head! Okay, so the transition(s) was a bit trying, but I’ve come through all the change no worse for the wear. New job at a place that doesn’t really rank on the drama meter and a spectacular new space in which to live and work my creative fingers to the bone, a winning combo to be sure!

Studio stuff organized and easily accessible, I have begun working (needleworking that is) again. As such, what does one need when moving into a place with lots of wooden floor space? Rugs of course! So, I made one...

Raffia Granny Rug 1

Sure, I could buy a rug or two (and I have), but I thought it would be really fun to carpet my naked floors with floor coverings made by my own hands.

Raffia Granny Rug 2

As I already have several wool rugs, I wasn’t necessarily interested in making more woolen floor goodies. Nonetheless, I knew that I wanted my floor art to be fun, colorful, relatively lightweight and able to stand up to foot traffic.  Enter, synthetic raffia…

Raffia Granny Rug Detail

This stuff comes in a wide variety of colors, can be spot cleaned with water and a gentle detergent, takes the heat of an iron with no problem and will withstand a plethora of feet atop its worked surface. Oh, and it’s pretty nice to work with too!

Obviously, I’ll have to do a bit more experimenting, but so far I’m pretty happy with my raffia floor grannies...

Friday, January 18, 2013

New Pattern Available! Flower Power Shawl!

And so it begins...again...


I'm so excited! I haven't published anything on my own for some time. However, I am breaking my no-patterns-for-you streak by offering what I am now calling the Flower Power Shawl (formerly That 70's Shawl) on both Ravelry and in my Etsy Store.

Come on, you know you want to make tons of these lovely flowered hexagons:

Me thinks that I need to make more of these and fashion them into a bedspread. How cool would that be???

Happy Friday everyone!

Monday, January 14, 2013

That 70s Shawl: The Second Movement

So, my original design went from this...

...to this...

This is what I was aiming for to begin with. I just didn't know it at the time!

 Big, bee-you-ti-ful 70's flowers encased in handy hexagon frames!

Thank you to my gorgeous offspring for modeling my newest creation. She's a doll!

Anyhow, I like this version of the shawl MUCH better than the first pass. I am especially fond of the overall shape of the wrap. It's difficult to tell in the pics above, but shaping looks like this:

This wrap looks just the way I had envisioned. So excited! Oh, I will be making this pattern available for sale both in my Etsy store and on Ravelry.

Happy Monday everyone!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

That 70's Shawl: The First Movement

So, although I've been silent lately, I have, nonetheless, been creating. In fact, I am working on two eBooks filled cover to cover with quirky crochet patterns, loads of one-off patterns as well as lots of paintings and drawings (revisiting my existence as a visual artist). Literally, I am having a personal creative renaissance as I haven't been this productive in years (and that's saying something because I'm generally pretty productive, even during life's darkest times). At any rate, I realized that while enveloped in my creative fervor, I have simultaneously been depriving the world of my nutty design sensibilities due to my state of quiet. However, I just felt like I needed to sequester myself away for awhile in order to allow myself the freedom to make lots of stuff far from the eyes and opinions of others. This "girl in the crocheted bubble" state of being has been very different from my traditional processes of making, as I was trained in art school where pretty much everyone saw everything I made everyday. So, holding up in my yarn cave felt a bit strange, but "right" by the same token. Anyway, I have pushed the skeins out of the way and I'm ready to show you all what I've been working on. As such, I bring you all the first version of what has now morphed into three versions of this delightful retro accessory I'm calling "That 70's Shawl":

Basically, I've turned those iconic 70's flower stickers we (we as in those of us alive and kicking in the 1970's) used to see plastered across the sides of VW buses into crocheted motifs.

While I'm not completely unhappy with the final result of the motifs and subsequent shawl, I don't LOVE it. Why, inquiring minds would like to know, do I not LOVE it? Okay, for starters I am not a fan of flower motifs that connect on four sides. Call me crazy, but I'm into hexagons, man (woman and child)! Give me six sides to connect away any day!

Uh, yeah, moving on. Second, the green leaf-like motifs are fine, but again, I'm not IN LOVE. Third, the edging bugs me. Just bugs me. So, in the end I blocked this puppy and threw it on my photography pile, knowing that I would take another stab at this effort another time (which I have completed). Stay tuned for the Second Movement of That 70's Shawl. I am blocking and photographing tonight...

Happy New Year, Peeps!