Thursday, September 20, 2012

More Reno Fun

Good Morning Everyone,

Woke up to the sound of my heat coming on, its really cool this morning, and I am so not ready for the cold weather yet.

I took so many photos at the Reno conference (I should say that I kept handing my camera to any one passing by) that I am having a ball going over them again.

My friend, Prudence Mapstone, found a copy of my first book (long out of print), and carried it all the way from Australia so that I could sign it for her. Now that is a true friend!

Laurinda Reddig's beautiful vest won the grand prize in the Crochet Contest.  The pictures do not do it justice.  The detail is incredible and the vest is completely reversible.  Truly a work of art.

Back view of Laurinda's vest.

One of my students from the New Hampshire Conference (sorry I forgot her name for the moment, maybe it will come back to me).

 Myra Wood, Me and Melba at the dinner and fashion show.

Jennifer Hansen and me at the dinner and fashion show.

 Myra Wood, Melba, Me, Jorel, Mirtooli, Prudence Mapstone, Barbara Wunder Hynes and Jennifer Hansen at the "Ball".

The "die hards" who do not want the party to end gathering in the lobby. Tammy Hildebrand, Ellen Gormley, Doris Chan, Jenny King, Vashti Braha, Laurinda, Barbara Wunder Hynes, Mirtooli, Marty Miller, Melba, Me, Linda Dean, Jorel, Kathleen Sams, Amy Shelton.

Still more to come, have a great day.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

More Photos from Reno Conference

Good Morning Everyone,

Stormy weather all around yesterday, spent the day pouring over yarn colors. I am starting another new book and I have to start ordering yarns for all the new projects. I love this part of my job.

More photos from the Reno Conference

 Amy Shelton from Crochetville, Nancy Nehring and Cari Clement, editor of KNIT 1-2-3 and CROCHET 1-2-3 having fun at Professional Development Day.

Patty Lyon and Zontee Hue from Lion Brand, enjoying a morning snack before heading to the Lion Brand Booth in the market.

 Jorel, Prudence, Me and Kathleen Sams from Red Heart at the Red Heart- Crochetville's very busy booth in the market.

 Me, book signing at the Red Heart/Crochetville Booth.  Met lots of enthusiastic crocheters.

 Kathleen Sams, me and Josie.

Myra, Jennifer and Me.

Have a great day!


Monday, September 17, 2012

Reno Nevada Conference

Hello Everyone,

I just returned from the CGOA/TKGA conference held in Reno, NV. It is always such a fun time for me.

I did not teach classes this time but I was there speaking at Professional Development Day, and doing a few book signings.  One of the high lights of the conference was the attendance of quite a few of the west coast free formers. Some that I have met before and several that I had never met.
We belong to an online group that consists of members from about 14 countries, a very diversified, fun group.  It was so great being able to gather with them and have some really fun times together.

As I was not teaching, I had lots of free time. and was so happy to be able to spend that time with  
old friends and new. It will take a few blog posts to get it all in, so you will be seeing photos for quite a few days.

Fellow Free Formers, Fermin, Prudence, Jenny, and Me

Dinner with more Free Formers, Me, Jorel, Melba, Mirtooli, Prudence and Fermin.

Jan, my buddy from the Texas Group, (they made me an honorary member)

New friend, discovered that she grew up in NY now lives in Reno, was fun meeting you Vikki!

Carol Alexander, Editor of CROCHET! magazine, me and Kara Gott, editor of CREATIVE KNITTING magazine. 
More Photos coming, just running out of time today. Enjoy the rest of your day.


Sunday, September 2, 2012

Good Morning Everyone,

I cannot believe how fast the days go flying by and how long it has been since my last post.  I have been very busy, just finished two books in the past year. The first one, LACE FOR ADVENTUROUS CROCHETERS, will be out soon and is already available for pre order on The second one, is still under wraps, but I will be able to talk about it very soon.

I had a little down time, before thinking of starting another book so I decided to work on some unfinished projects that have been sitting around for way too long.  Of course I cannot sit still for too long, so new design proposals and a new book proposal are already in the works.

One of the projects, some of you may remember, is the jacket made from a collection of old doilies. I started it about 18 months ago, on a cold winter day, with snow coming down like mad. I was really excited about it and made a great beginning and even blogged about it - then life got in the way and I put it aside. It is definitely NOT your weekend project. Well I finally finished it and plan on wearing it while at the conference in Reno. I got the idea for the jacket from my friend and fellow designer, Prudence Mapstone. While we were on a trip, Prudence was buying up all these old doilies at thrift shops etc. When I asked Prudence what she was going to do with them, she told me that she had planned to make a skirt. I thought that was a great idea, and I had quite a few doilies myself, but then I thought that I would probably never wear a skirt. After thinking about it for awhile, I thought maybe I would try to do a jacket. I am really pleased with the results.

I really did not know how to begin my project, but I got the brilliant idea (even if I say so myself) of combining two different craft ideas. I used Makuba water soluble solvy as a base, cut my pattern before i even started playing with the doilies. Once I had the pattern cut, I started placing the doilies, moving them around, constantly changing placement, until I got them in a pleasing design.

I started with the sleeves, thinking that would be the easiest way, and it did work. This stuff is really easy to work with, not like the original water soluble stuff that I worked with several years ago.
Sewing the sleeves was fairly easy to do.

I had bought a lovely old crochet collar at a flea market, and I wanted that to be the whole neckline of the jacket back and front. That was the trickiest part of the whole thing. Sewing the body, which is made in one piece, was a challenge, but once I got going it became easier.

When I was all finished, I gave the entire jacket a dye bath to try to even out all the different shades of the doilies. Did not work out exactly as I planned, but I still love it.

Enjoy the rest of the holiday weekend all, we have a beautiful, sun shiny day here, but believe it or not, we had two small power outages this morning. I really feel for all the hurricane victims and what they are going through, with no power for days on end.  I hope that they get help soon.


ps: photos were taken by my son Chris, he always makes me look good :-)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

More Chain Link 2012 photos

Good Morning Everyone,

I think that this will be my last post on Chain Link 2012.  Running into deadlines etc, no more time to play right now.  The conference was so much fun, and the photos will keep the memories alive for me.

My Free Form Combination Knit and Crochet Class is by far the most popular class that I teach.  The students are so enthusiastic and they come up with some great Projects.

Look at all the happy faces showing us their great projects.

Bavarian Crochet took some concentration but they all "got" it.

The Intermeshing class was really a challenge, but fun to learn.  James Walters taught me this stitch when I met him on a trip to Australia.  James gave me permission to develop a workshop in the US (as long as I told everyone that I learned it from him ;-). Thanks James. To see more of James work go to

Did you get it yet??

At PDD we were knitting scarves for charity. It was so cold in the room, Melissa Leapman was crocheting scarves so quickly, and wrapping them around herself to keep warm. That's KJ Hay, smiling for the camera.

Is that a knitting needle that I see :-)

So long to a another great conference, we are going to do it all again in September, in Reno, NV

Enjoy your weekend.


Thursday, July 5, 2012


Hi Everyone,

Here are a few more photos from the conference.

Me and Kathryn

Kathryn's Beautiful Bracelet

I was sitting at the Elegant Ewe booth, (Marci always invites me to do a book signing at her great booth) and a young woman came up to me and showed me a wonderful bracelet that she was wearing and that she had made. She thanked me for my book and said that she loved it. I told her that she must have had me mixed up with someone else, as I did not have anything like that in any of my books. She laughed and was surprised that I did not recognize that she used motifs from THE COMPLETE PHOTO GUIDE TO CROCHET.  I was so amazed that I asked if I could take a photo, Kathryn then took off her bracelet and presented it to me. I wore it for the rest of the conference, and got so many compliments. Thank you Kathryn, I love my bracelet. 

Kathryn is Kathryn Cortave of

Another high light of the book signing was sitting next to Doris Chan, My daughter loves Doris' work, and is fast becoming her # 1 fan. Victoria, a conference newbie, stopped by to chat.

                                                       Intermeshing Crochet Class

                                                     The finished bag, isn't it beautiful

More tomorrow, enjoy!


Tuesday, July 3, 2012


Good Morning Everyone,

Thursday, Friday and Saturday, were days filled with classes, book signings, visiting the market etc. I have a lot of photos, but not a lot of time, but I will post them all.  The Saturday Night festivities were truly the highlight of so many wonderful times. 

My son took a photo of Kimberly McAlindin presenting me with a beautiful handcrafted glass vase, with a plaque on the bottom stating that I had been inducted into the Jean Leinhauser CGOA Hall of Fame. I cannot even put my feelings into words, it was overwhelming.

 Following the great Jean Leinhauser into the Hall of Fame is a huge honor, and I was "almost" speechless.  I really did not think that I was going to be asked to speak, but I think that I managed to say "Thank You" several times. 

Bobbie Matela, Kathleen Sams and Me, my daughter in law had just presented me with a bouquet of flowers. It was so great having my family there.

After the ball was over, an "after party" took place in the hotel lounge, we are a fun loving group.  Marty Miller, Marcy Smith and Me, enjoying the fun.

Kimberly and Me.

Vashti, Diane Moyer and Me again.

My camera does not do well at the fashion show, but my son managed to get this photo of my long vest. the vest includes motifs from all the classes that I teach, and combines approximately 50 different yarns in shades of black, gold, bronze and many textures.

No more time today, still more photos to come.

Have a great day!


Monday, July 2, 2012

Hi Everyone,

Returned home last night from a really fabulous Chain Link conference in Manchester, NH. What a wonderful time, my daughter and grand daughter attended also, that was a first for us.  I was honored at the banquet by my fellow crocheters, by being inducted into the CGOA, Jean Leinhauser Hall of Fame. What a highlight for me, what a night. It is going to take several blog posts to get it all in, so I will try to take it day by day.

We arrived Tuesday afternoon, and it was a fun afternoon of catching up with people that I had not seen all year, there was lots of hugging going on. We had a very brief meeting to prep us for Professional Development Day, then lots of lobby socializing going on.

Bright and Early, and I do mean early, the next morning, Professional Development day got into full swing. It was a day crammed full  of speaking, sharing information, a luncheon, more information, and a huge array of prizes raffled off. I was the last speaker, so by then, I was a little wilted, but I think all went well.  Some attendees looked a little dazed, but I am sure that they recovered quickly.

One of the first people that I spotted was Yvette. Yvette was my inspiration for my Plus Size Crochet Book, (which she is very happy to let everyone know :-), and Yvette is fast becoming my number one fan, she sings my praises to anyone who will listen! I love you too Yvette.

Yvette introduced me to some of her friends. (sorry no names, if you can identify them please let me know)

As you can see, the day was well attended by a large group, all eager to learn about the different ways to become a Crochet Professional. Some of the topics covered were designing, contract crocheting, tech editing, and self publishing.

Karen Ratto-Whooley and Marty Miller checking out their raffle tickets- I won Doris Chan's book, which my daughter quickly claimed for her own.

Some of my favorite people - and fellow chapter members.
Above, Nancy (center), Contract Crocheter extraordinaire and published designer, Deb (right) fellow chapter member, contract crocheter and budding designer, who always makes me smile.

Below - Anna (left), Andrea (seated), also contract crocheter  (sorry there are a few people who I just do not remember their names, if you can help me out, I will add their names.)

That's all for now, lots more photos to come.
Have a great day!