Friday, August 12, 2011

Affordable Wonders Blog Has Moved back home

Hello Everyone
I have made a change to the blog. I have moved it back home to the Affordable Wonders Website I've decided to keep all of my pages on one website figuring that it just didn't make to much sense to bounce around to different web-pages to post different things and well most importantly I had already paid for the site and figured I may as well use everything the subscription has to offer.

Things that I've done while revamping the site is I've added a Video Tutorial Section which for right now only has The Basics of Crochet but I will add and Intermediate and advanced tab as I make the videos. I will also be doing a Basics of Knitting. All of my videos will be quick, short and to the point so you can go straight to crocheting/knitting.

I've also separated my into sections Affordable Wonders News which is pretty much a catchall for what is going on in my journey, Free Patterns for my members, Photo Tutorials, and Business or product reviews

Things that I still will be adding will include a written tutorial section for those that would like to print and keep in binder or on your ebook. More products in my commercial section that will include YARN! My favorite part I plan on actually keeping the yarn in stock and selling it at bundle rates. The yarns you will find are you favorite label brands that they don't keep instock at your local craft store. And priced to where you don't have to wait for a SALE! And for those of you that would like to purchase any of my handmade goods or patterns just visit my Etsy tab.

As usual if there is a product that you would like but don't see listed just contact me. I can get a hold of just about all crafting supplies I will happily give you a quote I just can't add them all it would take an army and I own run and operate Affordable Wonders by myself while being a mom and wife.

Well I think that is all that I have for now I sure do hope that you come on by to Affordable Wonders and check out the new layout!

Friday, July 29, 2011

FO Friday Classy Cabled Guest Book

Good Morning All!

Well I'm on a roll! This is my first FO Friday post!! I'm still pumped from my first WIP Wednesday. I want to thank everyone for being so welcoming I love this community and being part of it.

Well on to my FO I designed this because I wanted to achieve a couple of things in one design.
1) I wanted it to be easy enough for a beginner
2) Interesting enough for a beginner to learn a new technique and have some instant gratification
3) Something a more seasoned knitter could whip up quickly as a unique gift.
4) To me the most important lol not use up to much yarn (since I was using Alpaca)

So the story: I had a couple of skeins of Alpaca yarn. I have been caressing this yarn for months I didn't have enough to make anything big, which trust me I would have loved to make myself a sweater or even my daughter for that matter but that would mean I'd have to purchase some more yarn and right now I just want to work with what I have to chisel down some of my stash (borderline yarn hoarder). I knew I didn't want to make a cowl, or fingerless gloves, hat all these are so common out there and I just wanted to come up with something less common yet functional. And I also wanted something that could be gifted to Men and Women alike.

Well then it hit me some friends of ours have been house hunting. So my wheels started turning for house warming gifts. My Classy Cabled Guestbook is one of a "For the Home" series that I will be releasing.

The Classy Cabled Guestbook is knit in bulky weight (5) Alpaca yarn Less than 120 yards. It is a simple knit that works up super fast and has a pretty shell crochet border.

Things I didn't think about but in the end didn't really matter. Alpaca is too soft lol as if I didn't know. It doesn't matter because this notebook isn't meant to keep in your pocket book or anything. It is meant to keep at a table or buffet and for guest to sign and leave goofy notes about your dinner party. But if firmness is something that you definitely want then you may want to use a firmer yarn with less drape. I even knit this in much smaller needles than the yarn called for and it still turned out very drapey. I suppose you could knit or crochet a pocket to fit cardboard in I didn't because it didn't matter to me it still looks great in my eyes :)

So what do you guys think?!?!? Have a wonderful weekend all and don't forget to stop by all the other Bloggers participating in FO Friday!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

WIP Wednesday! Moses Basket

Good Morning Everyone!
I am so excited! This is my 1st EVER WIP Wednesday Post!! I feel like I am more a part of a community now instead of just a SAHM that loves to crochet/knit. I don't have ANY friends that like to and my area I haven't gotten to know anyone that does. The LYS here isn't really a friendly place to people that like to "dress" as casual as I do (I swear when I walked in everyone stopped what they were doing to look at me)

So anyway I'm excited to meet everyone! If even in just a Cyber atmosphere I feel like I belong! So on to my WIP

What is this you ask? Well it's a Moses Basket. :) I have been working on this for months! Lots of frogging to get it to where it's at. I'm writing this pattern up as I go. It was inspired by My very good friend Jennifer. She is pregnant with her  3rd baby! A BOY finally. I knew that I wanted to make her this basket immediately. I normally write up patterns for photo props but I wanted it to be more than that for her. If all goes the way I have it envisioned in my head this basket will be used by her for at least the first 3 months of her babies life! I picture her going to her friends house to visit and breaking out her Moses Basket and having baby comfortably laying in it for the duration of her visits instead of having to sit in a car seat/carrier. I will also be adding a pillow and blanket I can't wait to finish this set. I just hope it turns out the way I see it in my head.

Have a great day all! Now I'm off to hop around and see everyone's WIPs!!!!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Hookin' Up & Affordable Wonders Introduces the Fabulous Cult Grrrl

In a place far far away in a Country named Romania there is a province called Transylvania where the local Vampires Ghosts & Werewolves are joining together for the 1st time EVER to discuss their sudden loss of Food... I mean Tourists. Vampires have no fresh humans Ghosts have no one to scare and Werewolves are left with nothing but desire and leftover bones. Why you ask?!?! Well the answer is simple enough....

Thousands of miles away in the Great State of Texas there is definitely more to see but more importantly the city of Houston is now home to the New Age Ghouls, Goblins, Witches, Vampires, Zombunnies. The word has spread and for those that don't believe just follow this link to the fortress that keeps them all safe but not hidden CULT GRRRL!!!! <lightning strikes! Thunder Rolls!!>

Good Morning Everyone I sure do hope you enjoyed my opening! As I mentioned before I am participating in Hookin' Up which in short is a sort of pay-it-forward or should I say Blog-it-forward and each of us will blog about the person after us on the calendar. And I've loved jumping around thru the other blogs that are also participating. But most of all I have enjoyed Cult Grrrl's Blog!

Cult Grrrl was taught to crochet by her Grandmother and continues to crochet in her honor. Jess's (aka: Cult Grrrl) Blog is a wonderful Portfolio of her work. In it you will find her projects as she works on them her thoughts along the way and yes what all of us Crocheters LOVE to hear FREE patterns.  Cult Grrrl's Creations are the cutest SPOOKY things I've ever seen. Sorry Jess if your goal was scary you didn't quite meet your goal yet. I absolutely love her creations especially her Zom-Bunny!! Which is a Zombified Bunny rabbit. My suggestion to all of you would be to visit her Etsy Shop and secure your orders right away as you will have no problem finding something for you to display for Halloween. Decorate your bathroom Desk at work Kitchen. YES I can see her Amigurumi just about anywhere. She also makes the cutest little owls. Her prices are very reasonable and even though I crochet myself I would much rather purchase something like this from her where you can tell the amount of Love that goes into each creation.

But there is even more to Cult Grrrl the more I researched her Blog and Shop to more I learned about her. She is very active in charity. Namely Searching for the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. 20% of ALL her sales go to Avon Walk for Breast Cancer and occasionally she will list a few items where 100% of the sale is donated!

Jess is also having a Contest Giveaway to celebrate her 200th fan so don't forget to jump on over there and enter for your chance to win!

Well I hope you enjoyed this entry and we welcome and appreciate all comments! If you enjoyed this post and would like to be introduce to other great bloggers please visit Crochet Concupiscence for a calendar of postings! Have a wonderful day.CONTEST CELEBRATION

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Hookin' Up Project Please Show Support! :)

Good Morning Everyone,

There are a lot of Bloggers that are like myself in that no we don't use the big words and probably don't have the  best tags. But what we do have is a very serious passion for what we blog about. The World Wide Web is a huge place and it is easy to disappear in it. Some of the best blogs that I've read are blogs that I've found just blog hoppin around. Blogs that little to no followers.

Well Kathryn Vercillo from Crochet Concupiscence has organized a wonderful project for us Crochet Bloggers. It's project Hookin' Up. It is a form of "Blogging Forward". Where each person picks a date on the calendar. Each person will blog on the date that they picked about the Blog that follows their date.  I blog  because I like to and it's like my "Diary" when it comes to my crafts mainly Crocheting and Knitting. But also in hopes to start conversations as well I can't exactly speak to my husband about these topic before I see that far away look in his eyes where I know I've lost him lol! So what I'd like to get out of this project is new friends to interact with.

Kathryn has a wonderful blog I really can't say enough about. She not only blogs about her own projects but she also blogs about crochet news reviews books and featured projects of other crafters. Her blog is also so educational so if you are new to crocheting Crochet Concupiscence is a wonderful place to start. She is great at replying to questions fairly quickly. I know I've gone to some of the bigger sites and though they are friendly they have soooo many things going on that you kinda have to count on the followers to answer questions. On Crochet Concupiscence Kathryn does such a great job at making her followers feel like they are her number one priority.

So I humbly ask you all to show support and drop a comment or two to the people participating in Hookin Up in hopes that Kathryn will continue to host this project! Here is a link that will take you straight to the Hookin' up participants as well as taking you straight to Crochet Concupiscence.  Next to each day there is a Blog name which is hyper-linked to their blogs. Thanks for reading have a wonderful day!!

Friday, July 15, 2011

July’s Sponsor: The Awesome Affordable Wonders

Just a quick note from a very EXCITED CRISTINA!!! Kathryn form Crochet Concupiscence has written such a wonderful review about me and Affordable Wonders. Please jump on over to her site and check out the review!! We absolutely love and appreciate the comments. But not only that if you are not familiar with Crochet Concupiscence now is a great time to spend some time on her blog. (I will give a more detailed post on the next post) Believe me if you are a Crocheter you will absolutely love to hang out on her site (the 1st time I stumbled on her site I did not close out my window until after I read all of her posts. She makes her blog fun and informative. Well hope to see you guys over there! Have a great weekend!

July’s Sponsor: The Awesome Affordable Wonders

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Shell Tank Just for me....

Last week I started a super cute Tank that I decided I would make just for myself. The thought itself made me feel guilty because since I had the time to crochet something for myself in between orders I figured that time should surely be used to get started on my Christmas list. Well it started off way bad. I had purchased quite bit of bamboo/wool yarn that had just been sitting there I bought it on clearance so I figured now was time to use it. I guess that was mistake number one. Though the yarn met the weight requirement I didn't realize until much later (since I crocheted a good majority in the comfort of my Air-conditioned House) that the whole WOOL part of the blend would definitely make it to warm to wear in the summer here in very hot and humid North Carolina.

So then I checked my gauge all was good. I continued to work on the tank :) happy as can be I made the two triangles for the bra portion. According to the measurements on the pattern I was a size Large. The triangles were pretty big (for me anyway) but I thought it was just a conservative top which I liked. So I continued on the pattern. I join the triangles and was now working in the round. I got to the 3rd round and just thought it was looking fishy. So I tried it on (I was wearing a large t-shirt as I did this) It was HUGE!! So the frogging started. I started working the pattern in size small. It was a pretty easy shell and the set worked up quickly within 3 evening I was done (lots of interruptions from my three kids).  Ok no not done that leads me to the next paragraph. lol

Remember that clearance sale I got the yarn at?! Yeah well I fell short on yarn by 1 yes 1 shoulder strap!!! FRUSTRATIONS!! As the only other colors that I had in the same yarn were blue and grey. Well just to measure the set I made the other strap in Grey. Yup just to find out that even that was exaggerated in the pattern. Straps were way to long but not long enough for me to split it to make 2 straps. Well I've decided grey straps doesn't look to bad. I will just have to make some flowers or something to tie the grey into the tank. Well I will add photos later as I have to figure out how to get them off my phone or just take new photos with my camera.

All in all I am happy that for once I was able to make myself something guilt and all. I have a tank now that I can proudly wear and if asked where I got I can say I made it :) for myself. How about you guys I'm sure you have similar stories I'd love to hear them.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Homemade Yarn Swift Cheap and Easy!

Hi Everyone,
So my latest project was to make a yarn swift. I do sell them so I could obviously buy one fairly cheap. But a penny saved is a penny earned. So I just earned a nice little chunk of change to buy more yummy yarn with!!! A long time ago I had come across a site that gave instructions on how to make one and I bookmarked it and figured I'd get back to it when things settled down. Well then my computer crashed and I haven't been able to find the site again. So I went with what I could remember (which wasn't much) just that I needed a computer chair. You know the type with wheels/ casters. Well I had one in the garage that we haven't used in ages so here is what I did... oh first for those of you that don't know what a yarn swift is for. Some yarns mainly the ones that come from LYS (Local Yarn Stores) come in hanks instead of skeins. A hank is how the yarn comes after it is spun it is basically yarn twisted well you can't exactly work off of a hank as you will quickly end up with a big twisted tangled mess of yarn. So what you need to do is turn the hank into a skein or ball. So one way to do this is to have someone hold the hank while you unwind it and turn it into a ball. And the other way easier way is to have a yarn swift and a yarn ball winder ( LOVE MY WINDER) The swift will hold your yarn and spin while you wind or ball it. A yarn ball winder is great because it gives you a center pull ball of yarn. But I have a tutorial coming up on how to use an empty toilet paper roll to make a center pull ball of yarn so stay tuned :)
1- First thing I did just to make life easier for me was unscrew the chair from the base. If your chair doesn't come apart like mine did no big deal just move on to the next step.
2- Remove the casters (set aside you might come across another project that calls for casters!)
3- I used some majic markers that I had laying around to put in the holes that the casters left behind. My markers were to thin so to make them fit more snuggly I wrapped a bandaid at one end. So you can use anything really and modify it to fit snuggly (so the markers don't fly off as you are winding your yarn)
4- Then just place your hank on it and ball it up I used my yarn ball winder but you can wind it in whatever method you choose.
My chair ended up being to big so I only used 3 of the "legs" you'll see in the photos how I improvised. But hey it worked and my husband is super happy he doesn't have to hold the yarn for me anymore!

Well I hope this small tutorial helps someone save some money. Have a great day!

Friday, June 17, 2011

T-Shirt Yarn Tutorial

I know that there are several tutorials out there for T-shirt Yarn, but I am writting this one up for my wicked Step-Mother as she is being super awesome and making me some with her used T-shirts! Also I wanted to have this tutorial up for some future patterns/ projects that I will be working on and posting so I wanted to have a quick reference for you guys to have... Plus I didn't want you guys to have to leave my page to find instruction muaahahaha (supposed to be that scary laugh! lol)

Used t-shirts

List of Materials that make life MUCH easier:
Used t-shirts that do not have side seams
rotary cutter
self healing rotary mat the bigger the better
omnigrid ruler 6"x 24" works great
yarn ball winder

If you don't have the extra materials no biggy you can still make t-shirt yarn. The extra materials just make it faster and more accurate. As the self healing mat hat a measurement grid on it and so does the ruler so you can make all of your strips the exact same size. And it saves your hands I had so much to make that I would have gotten blisters using scissors for all of it. Ok so on to the instructions.

Lay your t-shirt out in front of you. Try to get all the wrinkles out and make it as straight as you can.

 And now cut straight across the top from right under the sleeves so that you are left with a tube (the torso of the t-shirt)
Now Cut the bottom seam off

With the tube you have left cut strips of about 1" but DO NOT cut all the way up leave about 1 " uncut so you end up with something that resemble a hula skirt :) (depending on how thick or thin you want your yarn to be) This is also where a self healing mat, ruler and rotary cutter come in handy.

Continue cutting in one inch strips all the way across. When you are done it should look like this
Here is a close up of the top of the shirt (where you should have left 1" uncut)
Now "open" up the top where it was left uncut so that it looks like this
Now here is another important part with a pair of scissors cut diagonally from the 1st strip on the right to the 2nd strip on the left. Then the 2nd strip on the right to the 3rd strip on the left. And continue in this manner to the end. Leave the 1st strip on the left uncut for now do that at the end to avoid confusion.What this will do is give you a long strip of continuous "yarn".

This photo is the 1st cut
This photo is the second cut

Now when you are done you will have a LONG strip of 1"inch fabric
Now the fun part. Grab your fabric and tug on it. Continue tugging to the end of your strip. What this does is curl your strip. To make it look like a long tube or "yarn". This also makes your already long strip into a LONGER strip of yarn.

Then all you have to to is ball it up! If you have a yarn ball winder it comes in handy here especially if you have a lot of t-shirts to do. (BTW I sell yarn ball winders manual and electronic just visit my website and I'll be happy to send one your way!)

And that's it. I hope you guys enjoyed and understood this tutorial. I'd love to hear your comments. Stay tuned for patterns using t-shirt yarn.

Mickey/ Minnie Mouse inspired Crocheted hat Pattern

Good Afternoon Everyone! Here is my Mickey/Minnie inspired Hat pattern. If you look thru my blog you will find matching diaper cover crochet pattern as well. Me posting these on a blog is so that people can enjoy my pattern for PERSONAL use only. Example of personal use Mom making set for her child. My only source of income is selling my patterns and my completed items so please if you plan on selling items made by any of my patterns do me the courtesy of purchasing it it is only $3.99 for the hat and diaper cover in sizes newborn thru 12 months or $5.99 for both Mickey and Minnie Patterns. Well enjoy and please leave comments I love to read them! and don't forget to make the matching Mickey Inspired Diaper cover! :) 

Designer: Cristina Barnes
Company: Affordable Wonders
Copyright, 2011, Cristina Barnes & Affordable Wonders
Size Newborn, 3-6 Months, 6-12 Months More sizes to follow
You may not sell your finished items. Permission is not granted to copy or distribute this pattern in any manner. Please do not post the instructions for this pattern on any blogs or websites. Small alterations are still considered part of this pattern.  Photos may be posted providing my website where the pattern can be purchased is included. You can also send people to my blog on where they can view the pattern. Pattern on website is only for personal use. In order to sell items made by my pattern you must purchase my pattern. I believe that is fair. Thank you for respecting my wishes.

Crochet Hook Sizes:  J, G6
NOTE: CH 2 counts as HDC throughout the pattern
Gauge for Mickey Hat: 2”x2”=8 Rows 7 HDC

Size Newborn

1)      CH 3 SLST to join, CH2 make 7 HDC in ring SLST to of CH2 to join. (8 HDC)
2)      CH2  1 HDC in same stitch, 2 HDC in each HDC around, SLST to top of CH2 to join (16 HDC)
3)      Ch2  1 HDC in same stitch, *1 HDC in next ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from * around SLST to top of CH2 to join (24 HDC)
4)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch, *1 HDC in next 2 ST, 2 HDC in next ST*  Repeat from * around SLST to top of CH2 to join (32 HDC)
5)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch,  *1 HDC in next 3 ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from* around SLST to top of CH2 to join (40 HDC)
6)      CH 2 HDC in next ST and each Stitch around SLST to top of CH2 to join (40 HDC)
7)      Repeat Round 6,  Five(5) times.
8)      CH1 SC in each stitch around. SLST to join (40 SC)
9)      Repeat round 9 one time and fasten off. Weave in ends

Size 3-6 Months

1)      CH 3 SLST to join, CH2 make 7 HDC in ring SLST to of CH2 to join. (8 HDC)
2)      CH2  1 HDC in same stitch, 2 HDC in each HDC around, SLST to top of CH2 to join (16 HDC)
3)      Ch2  1 HDC in same stitch, *1 HDC in next ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from * around SLST to top of CH2 to join (24 HDC)
4)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch, *1 HDC in next 2 ST, 2 HDC in next ST*  Repeat from * around SLST to top of CH2 to join (32 HDC)
5)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch,  *1 HDC in next 3 ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from* around SLST to top of CH2 to join (40 HDC)
6)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch, * 1 HDC in next 4 ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from * around SLST to top of CH2 to join (48 HDC)
7)      CH 2 HDC in next ST and each Stitch around SLST to top of CH2 to join (48 HDC)
8)      Repeat Round 7, six(6) times.
9)      CH1 SC in each stitch around. SLST to join (48 SC)
10)   Repeat round 9 one time and fasten off. Weave in ends

Size 6 – 12 Months
1)      CH 3 SLST to join, CH2 make 7 HDC in ring SLST to of CH2 to join. (8 HDC)
2)      CH2  1 HDC in same stitch, 2 HDC in each HDC around, SLST to top of CH2 to join (16 HDC)
3)      Ch2  1 HDC in same stitch, *1 HDC in next ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from * around SLST to top of CH2 to join (24 HDC)
4)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch, *1 HDC in next 2 ST, 2 HDC in next ST*  Repeat from * around SLST to top of CH2 to join (32 HDC)
5)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch,  *1 HDC in next 3 ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from* around SLST to top of CH2 to join (40 HDC)
6)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch, * 1 HDC in next 4 ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from * around SLST to top of CH2 to join (48 HDC)
7)      CH 2 1 HDC in same stitch, *1 HDC in next 5 ST, 2 HDC in next ST* Repeat from* around SLST to join (56 HDC)
8)      CH 2 1 HDC in next ST and each Stitch around SLST to top of CH2 to join (56 HDC)
9)      Repeat round 8 6 times (56 HDC)
10)   CH 1 SC in each ST around SLST to join (56 SC)
11)   Repeat round 10 one more time and fasten off. Weave in ends

Hook: G6 and Black Yarn, Stitch Marker would be very helpful here J

1)      CH 3 SLST to join CH 2 9 HDC in loop do not join
2)      *2 HDC in each ST* repeat  around
3)      *2 HDC in next ST, 1 HDC in next* repeat around
4)      *2 HDC in next ST,  1 HDC in next 2 ST* repeat around
5)      * 2 HDC in next ST, 1 HDC in next 3 ST* repeat around
6)      *2 HDC in next ST, 1 HDC in next 4 ST* repeat around
7)      *2 HDC in next ST, 1 HDC in next 4 ST* repeat around SLST to join Fasten off with long tail for sewing. Repeat for other ear.

Minnie Mouse Bow:
Hook: G6             Yarn: Red (or color of choice) Gauge 1”x1”= 5 HDC x 4 Rows
Measures approx 5” x 2 ¾”
1)      CH 12 HDC 2ND CH from hook and each ST across
2)      CH 2 turn HDC across
3)      Repeat row 2 for 16 rows (should measure approx 5” x 2 ¾”)
4)      Optional SC around the entire piece SLST to join and fasten off. Weave in ends.

With a long piece of yarn (approx 12”) wrap yarn around the middle of the rectangle and tie off. Then fan out the two sides to shape bow. You can then either sew bow to top of hat or put a snap barrette on bottom  to make bow removable.

Extra tips and Note!! Don’t forget to read J

Thank you for purchasing my pattern. I am attaching two PDF's the Mickey Diaper cover and  Mickey Hat pattern to complete your set. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me via email. Also to make the hat firmer you can make the hat using two strands of yarn held together throughout and J hook Increasing until the diameter measures Newborn: 4", 3-6 Months:5", and 6-12 months 6" then work downward until hat measures Newborn: 4.5", 3-6 Months 5.5" and 6-12 Months 6.5" and for the ears also holding two strands of yarn throughout and H hook 5mm work increasing until diameter measures 3" then add one last round to give the ears depth and bind off. This set of instructions is just to make the hat a lot more firm. Now my photos are using just one strand so it will look cute either way. Well I hope this made sense to you and again if you have questions or need me to clarify it more please just contact me.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Self Healing Rotary Matt

Good Morning Everyone,
I had one of these compulsive needs to blog about my latest buy. I just purchased a self healing mat. As expensive as they cost I just couldn't justify it to myself as I don't sew or really do anything with fabric in the volume that would call for a mat... Or so I thought!

After moving to our new house we of course did some spring cleaning and went thru our clothes that both my husband and I were hanging on to thinking yeah one day we would be able to wear it again. We both finally realized that if that day ever came we could just buy them again. So I started my mission of accumulating as many t-shirts as I could to make t-shirt yarn out of. 

I had been cutting it by hand with a pair of scissors and eyeballing the width of the strips but me being somewhat OCD couldn't handle that the strips weren't perfectly uniform. A friend of mine had given me a rotary cutter and ruler that she had extras of (thanks to a yard sale find) but me being a hook and needle girl I just didn't see what the big deal was with these items but I did take them I'm also somewhat of a craft supplies hoarder! In my mind though I just couldn't make the connection why not use a cardboard box or the floor. So I grabbed a t-shirt and tried using a cardboard box as my "mat" yeah that didn't work blade just cut thru the box and got stuck t-shirt was ripped and I was frustrated. I blamed my failure on the rotary cutter. Well I had a small 6 x 6 self healing mat with ironing board that I bought on clearance for less than $5. So I tried just cutting the sleeves and I was so surprised a perfect cut! So that lead me on a mission. I still couldn't see myself paying $55 for one but thanks to 50% coupon at Michaels I bought a pretty big mat for under $30!! 

When I got home with my new buy I ran to get a t-shirt to cut and timed myself. From T-shirt to t-shirt yarn it took 4 min 15 sec to complete!!!! It was incredible. So for this month that Mat is totally the best thing I've bought! If you are in the market for one I say go ahead and buy there is nothing like it! Save yourself a ton of money buy finding yourself a coupon for 50% off of one item. Michael's accepts competitors coupons so if Michael's doesn't have one for that week check AC Moore's Jo-ann Fabrics and Hobby Lobby's websites for coupons!

Well I just had to get that off my chest... Husband would never understand my excitement.  

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Angelika's Yarn Store

Everytime I come across exceptional service I feel that it should be announced to the world... Or ok to be more resonable my readers. A lot of you that end up on my site are knitters and crocheters so you may be able to appreciate this. The other day I was searching online for a couple of things well my search landed me at a Yarn Store in Oregon named Angelika's Yarn Store. I placed my order my order arrived way faster than I expected it I did have to contact her to make a few questions but what I didn't expect was the customer service that I recieved. Ok well let me give you a little background on me and my experience. Where I live we do have a LYS which will remain nameless I defineately wouldn't want to send any business their way. It is in an uppity part of town which is understandable considering the small town I live in. So it being a small business and above all a yarn store I went in. I guess I wasn't dress the part because everyone stopped what they were doing to stare at me (there were a group of ladies obviously regulars sitting at a table for social knitting hour) well determined to look at their stock I walked right past the table and started looking around then the owner asked if she could help. So I thought well ok at least the owners were nice. I mentioned what I was looking for and her response was that it was expensive! SERIOUSLY! I also asked if they had pattern books (can never walk out of yarn store without a pattern book) well I was looking for a crochet book it was like I said a dirty word. I hated spending one red cent in that place but I really needed the yarn so I only bought what I needed for the project and have never gone back... Ok so back to Angelika's she was beyond helpful and uber friendly and sooo accomodating that I will continue to order from her shop. Outside of yarn she also carries knitting machines and stands (totally on my must have list) software, wool wash you name it she has it.... ok ok maybe that was an exaggeration but if you have knitting or crocheting needs be sure to check her shop out and if you are in her local area I'm sure she's just as friendly in person. Just follow this link Angelika's Yarn Store.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easy Crochet Hairbow

As promised another super easy Hairbow this time for all the crocheters! Make these in every color. Great way to work on that scraps stash and have gifts on the ready! Or if you have a little girl of your own she will have a ton of hairbows to match everything she wears! In one of the Pictures you will see that The bow is on a rectangle. To make this one follow the instructions for the bow. But for one bow finish the instructions all the way thru and the other one crochet all the way to the end of pattern but don't do the finish then just sew the bow on the rectangle. I used worsted weight yarn but these can be made with any yarn just adjust a little on the beginning chain and how many rows you do.
Please don't sell items made with this pattern or the pattern itself. You are welcome to post a link back to my blog. I want to continue to post free patterns for everyone I just ask that you don't make a profit on my patterns.

I used WW yarn and H hook Guage is not important.

  1. CH 12 HDC in Second CH from hook and each across
  2. CH 2 HDC in each stitch across
  3. Reapeat Row 2 for 3 more rows
  4. Fasten off and weave in ends
Note: you can do a round of SC if you'd like for a more finished look.
Now fold rectangle as you would a paper fan and with a strand of yarn about 12" long wrap several time thru the middle of "fan" and secure with a knot (when I do it I start by "sewing" thru the fan first then start wrapping that way it never falls apart) weave in your end and slip an alligator clip thru the back and your done!

Uses: you can use this alone just as a hairbow in little girls hair. Or use it as an applique on a Hat, headband even scrapbooking!
Please leave your comments and I'd love to see your creations!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Mickey Mouse Inspired Diaper Cover Crochet Pattern

Mickey Mouse Diaper Cover Crochet Pattern

Posted by Cristina Barnes on March 14, 2011 at 7:18 PM

Hi Everyone,
Before we get to the pattern I wanted to say a few things. I started writing my patterns because as much as I have looked around there are very rarely good Free patterns. And I have purchased patterns that were great. So I wanted to offer what in my opinion are "good" patterns for free but there is a catch. If you use my free pattern they are for your personal use or for you to make as a gift or donation to charity. If you would like to sell items made with my pattern I ask that you purchase the pattern from me. I think that is a reasonable request and my patterns will never exceed $4.99. They will be emailed to you in PDF Format. A lot of work goes into writing pattern a lot of crocheting and pulling apart because it isn't looking great and restarting. So I just ask that you respect that and that way I will continue to post patterns for you guys :) I would like to ask that if you do make something to sell with my patterns to place a l link to my website. Also I do ask that you do not repost my patterns free or purchased. If you'd like to mention my patterns somewhere post a link back to my blog. Ok with that said here goes my rendition of Mickey Mouses Diaper cover! Please leave comments as I love to hear what you think.

To purchase pattern just go here :) Micky Mouse Diaper Cover Crochet Pattern

Mickey Mouse Costume
Diaper Cover and (Hat soon to follow)
Designer: Cristina Barnes
Company: Affordable Wonders
Copyright, 2011, Cristina Barnes & Affordable Wonders
Creative Commons License
Mickey Mouse Diaper Cover and Hat by Cristina Barnes is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at
SC = Single Crochet
HDC= Half Double Crochet
DC= Double Crochet
FPDC= Front Post Double Crochet
SLST= Slip Stitch
Size 3-6 Months More sizes to follow
Permission is not granted to copy or distribute this pattern in any manner. Please do not post the instructions for this pattern on any blogs or websites. Small alterations are still consider part of this pattern. Photos may be posted providing my website where the pattern can be purchased is included. You can also send people to my blog on where they can view the pattern. Pattern on website is only for personal use. In order to sell items made by my pattern you must purchase my pattern. I believe that is fair. Thank you for respecting my wishes.
Materials: Worsted Weight Yarn ( I used Caron’s Simply Soft) In colors Black, Red, Yellow
Crochet Hook Sizes: H 8, J, F and G 6
Gauge for diaper cover: 2”x2”= 6 Rows 8 HDC
Gauge for Mickey Hat: 2”x2”=8 Rows 7 HDC
1) Chain 30, HDC in second stitch from hook and each stitch to end
2) Ch 2 turn HDC in each stitch across
3) Repeat step 2 four times
4) Ch 1 turn SLST in next four stitches Ch 2 HDC across the row leaving four stitches unworked
5) Ch 1 turn SLST in first Stitch Ch 2 HDC across leaving one stitch unworked
6) Repeat step 5
7) Ch2 turn HDC in each stitch across
8) Repeat Row 7 five more times Then fasten off.
Repeat steps 1 thru 7 again for the back piece
Place right sides together and sew crotch and sides
1) Attach yarn at leg opening one stitch before the crease CH 1 then SC around the leg opening evenly.( I came up with 49 SC) SLST to join. View 1st Photo
2) CH 3 1DBC in next 9 SC, SC in next 30 SC, 1DBC in next 9 SC SLST to join
3) CH 3 FPDC in each DC (9FPDC) SLST in each SC (30 SLST) 1 FPDC in each DC (9 FPDC) SLST to join. Fasten off and repeat for other leg. See Photo 4 and 5
(TIP: If your numbers aren’t exactly like mine for the leg opening no need to worry  Look at Photo with Crochet hook across the cover. What we are doing in this round is Making HDC and FPDC to about that point then SC and SLST for the rest!)See Photo 2
Yellow “Buttons”
With F Hook and Yellow CH 2 Make 6 SC in second CH from Hook. Make 6 SC then continue without joining and make 2 SC in each SC (12SC) Fasten off leaving a long tail for sewing. Make 3 more circles then sew on Diaper cover View photos for placement.
With H hook and Black CH 40, SC in 2nd CH from hook and next 3, HDC to end and fasten off. Sew Tail about one inch below the yellow circles in the center.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Easy Knit Hairbow Pattern

I Have a ton of scrap yarn left from other projects. I sat there and looked at it and wondered what could I do with all this scrap. And of course a lot of little project came to mind well this is the first of many scrap projects. HAIRBOWS I have a daughter as you may already know. Well I thought I could just make her a ton of Hairbows to match just about anything that she has to wear. I will also post instructions for a crocheted version. So here goes!
Please do not post instructions to this project without first speaking to me. You may post a link back to my blog if you'd like. Please do not sell items made by my patterns. Thank you.

Knit Bow final measurement will be 21/2" x 3"
1) CO 17 and work in Garter (knit every row) for 4 rows
2) P 1, K 15, P1 Turn
3) P 17 Turn
4) Repeat rows 2 and 3 for 10 more rows
5) K 4 rows and BO
Weave in ends.
Fold a you would a paper fan and with a strand of matching (or non Matching) Yarn about 12" wrap around the middle several times to secure it at tie a knot and weave in the end. Then fan out and shape your bow and slip an alligator clip thru the bottom of your bow where you wrapped the strand of yarn. I don't do anything to keep the alligator clip permanently there so that I can use the same alligator clip on all of my bows.

And that's it your done! You can easily make this bow bigger by adding Cast on stitches and more rows. You can also get creative and sew buttons or beads to your bow. Well I hope you liked this short super easy project I look forward to hearing your comments!