Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Crochet Mag, workshops etc.

Hi Everyone,

It has been another busy week for me.  I am trying to finish my latest book, which is due at the publishers by June 19th.  I am almost done, but the last minute rush is on.  I am trying to finish sooner, as I am headed to TNNA in Indianapolis in a little over a week. 

I am doing workshops at the Yarn and Craft Box in Pawling NY on June 3rd and 4th.  Marie Stewart tells me that she is having a huge sale starting June 1 and continuing through the 4th.   There will 25% - 40% off all Merchandise.  For more information call the shop (845) 855-1632.

The workshops will be Finishing your UFO's, Spectacular Squares (Knit or Crochet) and Adjusting Patterns to Fit.

Hope to see you there.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Workshops, deadlines etc

Good morning everyone,

Sorry that I have been quiet for so long.  I have been working like a mad person for the last week, trying to meet design deadlines, that are looming on the horizon.  I normally do not let things get this close to the wire, but with my trip to England and several workshops in between, things did get a little backlogged.  I  managed to get a little fun into the long weekend, but a lot of the time was spent getting organized.

I will be doing workshops all weekend at the Yarn and Craft Box, 24 Charles Colman Blvd, Pawling, NY On June 3rd and 4th.  The workshops will be on Spectacular Squares, both knitting and crocheting and finishing your UFO's.  The shop, which is not usually open Sunday's,  will be having sales all weekend. For more information you can call the shop directly 845-855-1632. 

In the Spectacular Squares workshop, a student learns to make squares into great items, such as sweaters, pillows, bags and more. The squares are not your usual "grannies" but really wonderful, different ways to make squares.  If you like "carry along" knitting or crochet, than you will love this method.

Finishing your ufo's class, helps students to finish items that have been sitting, waiting for the final finishing touches, to be complete. If you need help on setting in sleeves, crocheting a border, sewing a garment together, this is the workshop for you.

Hope to see some of you there.

Have a great day!


Thursday, May 25, 2006

More from England/more from NYC Crochet Guild

Good Morning Everyone,

It has been a very busy week, and  I have not had a chance to get back to my blog.  Prudence sent me a few more pics but they were attached to my e-mail, and it has taken me all week to figure out how to transfer them here.  The first one is me (again) in front of the Castle at Lancaster.  We were not allowed to take pictures inside, the night of the tour, so Prudence and I went back the next day, to see it in  daylight, and to take some photos.   As I said before, Prudence took about 400 photos, and I think that I am in at least half of them :-).

The second one is me being interviewed for the local radio station.  It was interesting because it was live, and I was talking to the announcer on a cell phone. The gentleman sitting at the table was the station's field person and thats Pauline Turner, the event coordinator, standing next to me.   Prudence and I took turns, talking about the craft fair and exhibits going on that day.  It was definitely a "first" for me.  Later that same day, we were riding in a cab, and the driver told us that he had heard the broadcast.

I have received some very nice feedback from the women of the NYC Crochet Guild, who attended my workshop last Saturday.  Those that wrote to me, said that they learned a lot in the workshop, and also had a great time.  I love those e-mails. 

Have a great day!


Saturday, May 20, 2006

New York City Crochet Guild Workshop

Hi Everyone, 

Today was a fun day doing a workshop for the New York City Crochet Guild.  They are a very enthusiastic group, which makes teaching a joy.  I tried to put up a few pictures of the workshop, but my computer is not cooperating, it keeps telling me that the pictures are already there, but they are not.  Only a few are.  Anyway, I am so tired right now, so I will try again tomorrow.

Back again this morning, (Sun) still trying to add the other few pics.  I managed to get one more in, but feeling totally frustrated right now.  I will be attending a Happily Hooked on Crochet Guild meeting this afternoon, and hopefully  Dee will be there and she can help me out.  The pics are not great as the workshop room had huge windows, with light flooding in, and it washed out my pictures (a photographer, I am not).  You can see that every one is busily working away.   I discovered later, that several of the woman were working on preemie hats and blankets, which they donate to local hospitals.  By the end of the day, they had quite a pile of completed items.

Have a great day everyone


Friday, May 19, 2006

More from Morcambe/London

Good Morning Everyone,

I am really happy this morning, even though the skies are dark and it is raining again.  Everything is finally "greening up" and the heavenly scent of the lilacs fill the air.  Flowers are every where.

I am particularly happy, because Prudence, has taken time out of her really busy schedule, to send me some photos.  I warned you that she took a lot of photos with me in them.  I won't bore you with them all, I promise, but I thought the above ones were great.

The first one is Prudence, James Walters  and I, at the Craft Fair and Exhibit in Morcambe, the Saturday after the workshop.  Prudence and I look like bookends for James.  James looks like a gentle giant, compared to us. 

The next one is me in front of St. Margaret's.  I could not resist taking that photo.  I am going to send it to all my friends who jokingly call me "St. Margaret" (they know why)!  Next,  me again in Hyde Park, and ditto, with the guard.  Notice even the horse is totally ignoring me. 

The first time that I went to a crochet convention, it was Chain Link, the Crochet Guild of America event, in Chicago.  I was truly amazed at the events, the fun of meeting so many people who really "get" what you love, and the friends that you make.  That first trip, I never left the hotel.  I boarded the hotel bus at the airport, attended the convention, got the bus back to the airport.  Since then, every time that I travel to one of the events, I plan a few extra days to see the surrounding area and that has been such fun.  So, that is why I planned some time in London, while visiting Morcambe, and Prudence, Mel and I, had some fun time while there.

Have a great day


Wednesday, May 17, 2006

My New Books etc

Good Morning Everyone,

It has taken me a while to get back on schedule after my trip.  My body refuses to adjust to NY time. 

While I was in England, I ran out of space in my camera for taking photos.  Prudence had her lap top with her, and every night she would download her days photos onto her lap top.  We would then review the photos, and enjoy our day all over again.  Prudence took a lot of pictures with me in them, and as soon as she gets a chance she will send them, and I will share a little more of Morcambe with you. 

My new books have started to ship, and I am already getting nice comments from readers.  It was very gratifying to me, that the first two e-mails both said the same thing.  Both stated that they loved both books, but the bag book was the first book that they had seen in a very long time, that they wanted to make every project in it.   That made my day, because it is rare to find a book that you want to make everything in it.

I am so busy meeting my design committments and getting ready for a workshops this weekend.  I will be teaching in New York City, for the New York City Crochet Guild.  The workshop that I will be teaching is "Adjusting Patterns to Fit".  So many people have trouble getting a proper fit when they knit or crochet a garment, so this workshop has become very popular since I introduced it last spring.  The NYC Crochet Guild is a great group and I am looking forward to seeing them all again. 

Have a great day, the sun is actually out!


Sunday, May 14, 2006

Sylvia Cosh Memorial Wall Hanging

Happy Mother's Day Everyone,

I forgot to mention that one of the photos in my first post about Morcambe, is a photo of the wall hanging that was created by many members of the International Free Form Group.  This wall hanging was made in memory of Sylvia Cosh, who along with James Walters, did so much to promote this creative  process that we call Free Form. 

Sylvia and James were pioneers in the craft, having written many books and taught in venues in several countries. 

The picture does not do the wall hanging justice.  In person it is spectacular.  It is made up of "scrumbles" ( a word that Sylvia and James coined to describe all of the little pieces of crochet/knitting),  that were made by many people on the list, then assembled into one magnificent piece.  One of the members, Veronica Peck,  then fashioned a huge wooden crochet hook, used as the bar to hang the piece from.  A lovely tribute to Sylvia. 

Have a great day.




Friday, May 12, 2006

More from Morcambe

Good Morning Everyone,

Its a gloomy, rainy morning here, but I guess the flowers need the rain.  Not great for driving though, as it is quite stormy and windy, or any outdoor activity for that matter.

One of the greatest parts of attending the many knitting and crochet events that are offered throughout the year, is the people that you meet.  In our workshop, we had people from England, Scotland, Wales, Australia and the US.  The comradery and exchange of ideas cannot be matched.  One of the attendees, Sheila (who lives in England) met me while attending my workshop at Stitches East in Atlantic City, last year.  Sheila said that the meeting of fellow enthusiasts, sharing ideas etc, was very special to her, and that she loved attending these events.  Every one felt the same.

The first picture is Prudence Mapstone and me, on a lovely hillside in the Lake District.  Prudence has been my guardian angel in my travels.  It was Prudence who encouraged me to go to Australia to The Fiber Forum in Geelong.  She helped me so much with all the arrangements and  made my stay a very enjoyable one. 

The second picture is, back row, Sasha Kagan , Bonnie (also a US visitor) and Pauline.  Sitting in front is Prudence, and Dorothy B. from England.  Third photo is of Sheila, Marie and Helen J, a member of our International Free Form group, who lives in England and was Pauline's assistant at this event.

I will continue to add more bits and pieces about Morcambe in the coming days.

Have a great day !


Thursday, May 11, 2006

Expect the Unexpected at Morcambe, England

Hi Everyone,

I am home from my trip to Morcambe, England, where I participated in a crochet event that had a two fold purpose.  It was the "baby" of Pauline Turner, who does a distance learning course in crochet, and it was also the 25th anniversary of the Crochet Summer School in Morcambe.  Pauline would like to bring crochet back to Morcambe, so she arranged this event, to coincide with the 25th anniversary celebration.

I arrived at my destination at 7 am Monday, on a cold, misty morning, the first to arrive.  I was greeted at the airport by a driver who took me to my hotel in Morcambe, where I was met by Pauline .  When I checked into my room, and looked out the window, the view was breathtaking.  I was looking at this  very large expanse of beach, the tide was out, and it was  so stark and beautiful.  I rested for awhile,  then I  walked down to the lobby, just as Susan and her Mom, Barbara were checking in (Susan is the list moderator for the International Free Form Crochet List).  Prudence arrived shortly thereafter, then we were 4.  Mel, another list member, from Ct, arrived shortly thereafter.

The workshop was not to begin until Wednesday morning, so on Tuesday, the 5 of us took a day tour of the Lake District, and had a spectacular (but cold) day. 

On the first day of the workshop, we walked into a room all set up with tables and lots of "stuff", we were told where to sit, then instructed to read our assignments for the day.   My partner and I looked at our assignment - "oh my" - said I, we were to go out to the beach and collect three items.  Then we were to crochet a piece inspired by what we had collected, and use all 3 items in the piece.  I did not venture out too far on the beach, so I did not collect very exotic pieces, but I managed to find a few interesting rocks. 

My rocks inspired me to start a piece that reminded me of the sea, so I chose a turquoise yarn, crocheted some swirls and twirls, catching my rocks into my work.  In the afternoon we progress to a new table, and a new partner.  This was very interesting, because we really got to meet and talk with each workshop attendee.  For this assignment, we had to pick a name out of a bag, depict the word in our work, and work with very fine cotton yarns.  My word was "Dolphin", so it seemed as if I was going to continue with my sea theme.  I decided to work with that idea in mind.  I had the beginnings of a project by the end of the first day.  Pauline had lots of surprises for us each day, as we progressed around the room, working on our assignments.  One thing that we worked toward was making different shapes that were going to come together to make one big piece.  Very interesting and lots of fun.  The first pictures above are the view out my hotel window, the second group of pics show all the things that students made during the workshop, the last few photos are from the event that took place on Sat and Sunday.  There were some great pieces on display.  The last two photos are works of Jeanne Taylor from New Zealand, whose work is so amazing.  You can see some of Jeanne's work at  There will be many more photos coming soon.

Have a great day.