Baskets…My Favorite Home Decor

Hello followers and people stopping by…today my post is about baskets. I started a feature over on my Facebook page in which I post a link to one of my favorite patterns on Ravelry. Well in perusing Ravelry, I came across these beautiful nesting baskets, Elodie Basket Set.  They just make me happy. I will say my first set didn’t come out the way I wanted so they are not available yet in the Etsy shop. I used a 100% acrylic yarn (bulky yarn) and it just doesn’t hold it’s shape for me. I’m looking for the right yarn to make these in.

scalloped Basket5Since I can’t find the right yarn for those baskets, I decided to try another basket pattern that I just had sitting in my library, the Scallop Edge Crochet Basket. This one is truly my new favorite basket pattern. It’s made with 100% cotton yarn (worsted weight). The advantage to the cotton yarn is that it truly holds its shape. scalloped basket6

But I like to take things a step further, ssssooooo, hello leather handles! Yes you read that right. REAL LEATHER HANDLES! I found some leather pieces/remnants at Michael’s Craft Store.  I also purchased some leather tools, a hand punch and a rotary punch. It’s still a work in progress but I just love the way the handles accent the baskets.

If you’d like to purchase a finished basket, head on over to my Etsy shop. The size of the basket is 7″ in diameter, 5″ high, 27″ around. This basket is the perfect size for the entry way table, shelf, or anywhere really. This can be used in the living room, kitchen, even the bathroom.

As always thank you for your support in this little adventure of mine.

Blessings

~Mel

New Year, New Pattern

The year 2016 has come and gone. 2016 saw five new patterns from me, and lots of finished items. Last year was really the year that I feel my little pattern side gig, to my finished items, really took off. Five patterns may not seem like a lot but it was for me because each pattern was very different than the next. Not to mention that three out of the five were published patterns to either Happily Hoked Magazine or The Pattern Pack. It saw my love of Tunisian crochet explode. The three published patterns were all Tunisian items. Here is a quick look back at those five before I show you the new pattern.

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The Rustic Ridgeline Wrap as seen in Happily Hooked Magazine

View More: http://littlebelliesphotography.pass.us/baby-rug

The Bee’s Knee’s Honeycomb Rug as seen in The Pattern Pack

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The Tunisian Mop Cover as seen in Happily Hooked Magazine

As you can see each pattern is very different from each other. I’d like to think of 2016 as a growing year, not just from the difference in patterns, but in terms of retail. For the last two years if you live in Troy, NY you could find cowls at Blue Bird Home Decor, an amazing shop, check out Nicole’s little gem in the heart of the city. I was looking to branch out to boutiques in the Buffalo, NY area and found a shop called Thin Ice Gift Shop Another awesome shop in the Allentown district of Buffalo, NY, where amazing local artisans are featured. Toward the end of the year another Buffalo based business, Nickel City Designs, reached out and wants to carry some men’s and woman’s scarfs and of course Buffalo Pillows. It’s safe to say 2016 has been a big year and I’m going to work hard to make sure that 2017 is another year in which the business grows.

With the holiday season behind us, I started to focus on the request of the last shop. I have one scarf currently for sale but it was definitely not a unisex or manly one so, I got out my trusting stitch books and set off to create a scarf that was pretty enough for a lady but manly enough for a guy. Five or so stitch patterns later, the Cobblestone Scarf was created. This is the first pattern of the new year and another scarf is on the hook right behind it. Here is a look at the new design. You can find this one and the all the rest of my designs on Ravelry, Etsy, Craftsy, or Loveknitting.

Wishing you and yours a wonderfully happy and prosperous new year!

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Anchor’s away…

If you’ve read any of my previous blogs, you know a few things. crocheting is my passion, i’m from Buffalo NY and I’m a DSCF4092slightly loud Italian. I created my original buffalo pillow and expanded the buffalo line to include the three most prominent heritages in the Buffalo NY, Italian, Irish and Polish. Ok well the Polish one is in graph form not yet made but the intent is there. The next thing to remember about me is I’m obsessed with pillows and graph patterns. I took that obsession and turned it into two more pillows.

There are two inspirations for these pillows. One I received an email for pattern submissions to a magazine and some fabric I saw at JoAnn’s, when buying what else…yarn. I read through the email and with the image of the fabric stuck in my head, and when I read the theme for the July issue I knew what to do…a pillow! So I began the arduous process of drawing and three graphs later I had the vision Anchor's Away Pillowin my head on paper. That spiraled into a whole line of pillows. What is you ask? Well if the title of the post, and the pictures weren’t a give away I’ll just tell you, its a beach theme, and the fabric was dark blue with white anchors.

So the first pattern had to be an anchor pillow. I responded to the email and the editor loved the idea, so I took my graph and went back to JoAnn’s to get just the right shade of blue and red. I loved how that pillow turned out not even a third of the way through. I set out to create a whole DSCF4102nautical theme. I did a lot of Googling and tried to see what would translate into a graph, most of the nautical items I found were round and round is not  an easy shape to translate into a graph. I settled on a sail boat as my second pattern in the line. I would like to add a whale and possibly a captain’s wheel if I can figure out that pesky circle.

I submitted the anchor pattern to Happily Hooked Magazine and they loved it! This for me is a big accomplishment. Way back in January one of my goals for my business this year was to start writing and publishing patterns. I had achieved that with several published patterns in Ravelry but I never imagined in January that I would have a pattern published in a magazine. It is so beyond the goal that I set. I wont be stopping here though I have several ideas for upcoming issuesLet's Sail Away of the magazine so stay tuned.

Back to the anchor pillow, if you would like to have the pattern you ‘ll have to subscribe to Happily Hooked Magazine. The publication date is July 15th. If you would like the sailboat it is available now in my Ravelry Shop, along with the Buffalo pillows and a few other patterns.

Thank you all for your support in this wild adventure!

Blessings

~Mel

Buffalo Love Irish Pillow

DSCF4020I wrote awhile ago about my Buffalo Love Collection. Well today I’m writing to let you know the first pillow in the heritage line is available! There will be at least two more pillows in this line but today we focus on the Irish.

If you live in Buffalo NY you know that Buffalo has three very distinct ethnic groups that the city was built around. The Irish, who still claim South Buffalo as theirs, have a strong sense of Irish pride. If you go into South Buffalo and visit the old first ward you can see the pride front and center. DSCF4022So when I set out to design pillows with our iconic Buffalo Silhouette the ethic lines came to me because in our house we are divided between two. My husband who is Irish and Scottish (kinda the same thing) and myself (Sicilian, not the same as Italian if you ask Nonni Piscitelli), and our son who is the perfect blend of both of us.

DSCF4017I started with the Irish not because my husband won out but because I was trying to get it done by St. Patrick’s Day which is a big deal here in Buffalo, there’s like three or four parades and what not. But alas my orders and life in general got int he way, clearly as I’m publishing in May….

So along those lines the Polish one was not published in time for Dyngus Day,11152341_989808077726321_1725952314445065653_n also a big deal here in Buffalo. But I still have hope for the Italian pillow which has the potential to be done before the Italian festival in July in North Buffalo, the area that is still primarily Italian.

The buttons on the Buffalo Love collection are going to unique also. I found a shop on Etsy that does custom buttons and I ordered Buttons that have the Buffalo Silhouette engraved in them. Check out All This Wood their shop is amazing!

DSCF4028I hope you enjoy these heritage line pillows as much as I do. If you think there should be another pillow in this line, let me know and I’ll see if I can put it together.

If you’d like to create your own Buffalo Love Irish Pillow you can find the pattern link to Ravelry here. Use IRISH to get $1.00 off, but hurry this is only good until Friday (5/15/15). If you’d like to purchase a Buffalo Pillow already complete you can do that too. Check out my Etsy or Facebook page. As always I appreciate all the love and support from you guys. ❤

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Blessings (Benedizione)

~Mel