Friday, October 28, 2016

Snappy Fedora (3 Sizes) | New Crochet Pattern

There is such a satisfied feeling I get when I finish another crochet pattern. It starts out as an idea and blooms into a finished product, one that I can share with all of you. And here I am, ready to share another. I hope you will be as enthused over it as I am!


May I present to you my latest crochet pattern: the Snappy Fedora in 3 Sizes! (Free pattern available below)

While making the little fedora for the Secret Agent Doll Clothes the first try was too big for a dolls head. But I realized how adorable it would be on my little nephew! Little kids in cute hats only get cuter.

My first try at a human-sized hat was too small so I ripped and tried again. I divided the design into three parts: crown, body, and brim. The first design was to work the crown without turning, work the body with turning, and the brim likewise, in an effort to keep the seam as straight as possible. I used a size I (5.50mm) hook, I believe, and went as far as adding a hatband to the hat, but I just didn't like it. Ask my family, I spent some time stewing over just what it was that I didn't like. I finally decided that the gauge was too loose, causing the hat to be too floppy instead of a stiff fedora. This little failure wasn't for naught though for I was able to zero in on an adequate size.


In an effort to create a stiffer hat, I looked for a hook that was much smaller and chose size G (4.25mm). In foresight, I could have gone another size or two smaller but at least this provided me with a good, stiff gauge.

Since my niece and nephew differ in head size I decided to use the child size for the oldest, my niece, and the baby for the youngest, my nephew, obviously. The hats are the ones pictured. I ended up foregoing the original plan to keep the seam straight since I wasn't all too happy with the resulting texture, and did not turn throughout the pattern except for the ending row where I slip stitched to reinforce the brim.


The hatbands are simple strips of ribbon glued on with fabric glue. I'm very pleased with the Dritz fabric glue I use (you can read my review of it here) but this time the glue can be seen through the lighter ribbon. I do not like that, but at least it is not too noticeable.

After finishing both hats I was about to say, "Mission Accomplished," when I realized there was a lack of glitz. Whoever wears a hat with a plain hat band? I sometimes wonder about myself.

So I added a frilly bow to the one for my niece and a flat bow to the one for my nephew. I considered feathers, but feathers on a hat for a small child? Not a good idea. If I make one for myself I plan to add maybe a button and feathers.

So without further ado...


Snappy Fedora Crochet Pattern in 3 Sizes


Skill Level Easy

Finished Size
Baby – 17-18” circumference
Child – 19-20” circumference
Adult – 21-22” circumference

Materials
Medium Weight Yarn (approximately 200 yards)
Crochet Hook G/4.25mm
3/4” ribbon, (measure 1” more than head size, plus some for bow)
Fabric glue
Stitch markers

Gauge
7 sc = 2’’
8 rows = 2’’
Gauge Swatch: 2’’w x 2’’h (5 cm x 5 cm) ch 8.
Row 1: sc in second ch from hook and in each ch across: 7 sc
Row 2 – 8: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc across: 7 sc
Finish off.

Stitches and Abbreviations
Ch (chain)
Sc (single crochet)
Sl st (slip stitch)
St (stitch)
Sts (stitches)
Beg (beginning)

Pattern for Baby
Crown
Round 1: make an adjustable ring, ch 1, 6 sc in circle, sl st in first sc: 6 sc
Round 2: ch 1, 2 sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 12 sc
Round 3: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 18 sc
Round 4: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 2 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 24 sc
Round 5: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 3 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 30 sc
Round 6: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 4 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 36 sc
Round 7: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 5 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 42 sc
Round 8: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 6 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 48 sc
Round 9: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 7 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 54 sc
Round 10: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 8 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 60 sc
Round 11: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 9 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 66 sc
Body
Rounds 12 – 20: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 66 sc
Round 21: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc,  sc in next 32 sc, repeat from * once, sl st in first sc: 68 sc
Rounds 22 – 27: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 68 sc
Brim
Round 28: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 10 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last 2 sc, sl st in first sc: 74 sc
Round 29: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 14 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last 13 sc, sl st in first sc: 79 sc
Round 30: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 15 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last 14 sc, sl st in first sc: 84 sc
Round 31: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 16 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last 15 sc, sl st in first sc: 89 sc
Rounds 32 – 33: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 89 sc
Round 34: ch 1, sl st in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 89 sl st (not counting joining sl st)
Finish off.

(Finishing instructions at end)

Pattern for Child
Crown
Round 1: make an adjustable ring, ch 1, 6 sc in circle, sl st in first sc: 6 sc
Round 2: ch 1, 2 sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 12 sc
Round 3: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 18 sc
Round 4: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 2 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 24 sc
Round 5: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 3 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 30 sc
Round 6: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 4 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 36 sc
Round 7: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 5 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 42 sc
Round 8: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 6 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 48 sc
Round 9: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 7 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 54 sc
Round 10: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 8 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc:  60 sc
Round 11: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 9 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 66 sc
Round 12: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 10 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 72 sc
Body
Round 13 – 22: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 72 sc
Round 23: ch 1, *2 sc in next sc, sc in next 35 sc, repeat from * once, sl st in first sc: 74 sc
Round 24 – 29: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 74 sc
Brim
Round 30: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 11 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last 2 sc, sl st in first sc: 80 sc
Round 31: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 15 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 85 sc
Round 32: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 16 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 90 sc
Round 33: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 17 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 95 sc
Round 34: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 18 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 100 sc
Round 35 – 36: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 100 sc
Round 37: ch 1, sl st in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 100 sl st (not counting joining sl st)
Finish off.

(Finishing instructions at end)

Pattern for Adult
Crown
Round 1: make an adjustable ring, ch 1, 6 sc in circle, sl st in first sc: 6 sc
Round 2: ch 1, 2 sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 12 sc
Round 3: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 18 sc
Round 4: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 2 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 24 sc
Round 5: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 3 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 30 sc
Round 6: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 4 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 36 sc
Round 7: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 5 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 42 sc
Round 8: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 6 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 48 sc
Round 9: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 7 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 54 sc
Round 10: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 8 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 60 sc
Round 11: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 9 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 66 sc
Round 12: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 10 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 72 sc
Round 13: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 11 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 78 sc
Body
Round 14 – 24: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 78 sc
Round 25: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 38 sc, repeat from * once, sl st in first sc: 80 sc
Round 26 – 31: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 80 sc
Brim
Round 32: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 12 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last 2 sc, sl st in first sc: 86 sc
Round 33: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in 17 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last sc: 91 sc
Round 34: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in 18 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last sc: 96 sc
Round 35: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in 19 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last sc: 101 sc
Round 36: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in 20 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last sc: 106 sc
Round 37: ch 1, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in 21 sc, repeat from * around, sc in last sc: 111 sc
Round 38 – 39: ch 1, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 111 sc
Round 40: ch 1, sl st in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 111 sl st (not counting joining sl st)
Finish off.


For All Hat Sizes
Cut a length of ribbon that will wrap nicely around hat, with a little overlap, and secure with fabric glue. Adorn with a frilly bow, a flat bow, or your choose of design, by gluing to right side of hat.

Crease down the center of the crown with the side of your hand, turn back up and front down to shape.


You can purchase a PDF copy at Ravelry or Etsy and you will receive all three sizes, without ads, but more pictures.

If you run into any snags along the way just let me know and I'll try my best to unravel them for you! And don't forget to leave me a comment letting me know what you think!

I already have another finished pattern to share with you. I whipped up a turtleneck cowl with a ball of Landscape by Lion Brand rather quickly and can't wait to share it with you!! So come back soon to see what I've done.

This is an original pattern created and designed by Amy Yarbrough of Ginger Peachy. You are welcome to copy the pattern for personal use but do not sell the pattern, distribute, or reprint it. Feel free to share a link to the pattern. You can sell products made from this pattern but please credit me, Amy Yarbrough of Ginger Peachy. Do not mass produce or factory manufacture using my pattern. Thanks for respecting the wishes of the designer, and be sure to ask me if you have any questions regarding this copyright.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Snappy Fedora Crochet Pattern in 3 Sizes -- Coming Soon!


Thrilled to be able to finally announce my latest project: Snappy Fedora crochet pattern!

I will include instructions for three different sizes, adult (21" - 22" c.), child (19" - 20" c.), and baby (17" - 18" c.). It has taken me some time to get the pattern just right, but by the nth try, I am finally satisfied. I plan to post the pattern this Friday, so be on the lookout!

A PDF will be available on Ravelry and my Etsy shop, Ginger Peachy Store, soon after!

Friday, October 21, 2016

On Moonlight Bay (1951) | Movie Review


As part of my list of fall favorites, today I am reviewing On Moonlight Bay.

I have watched this movie so many times, I can't begin to count. There are at least four reasons why I like this one so much. The first two are the stars, Doris Day and Gordon MacRae. Doris Day has been my favorite actress for a long time. I have seen nearly all her movies, and many of them are ones I grew up watching. I love the way she acts and I love her voice. As a young teen it was my aspiration to sing like her, and I have heard people say that I sounded like her, which is truly a compliment. Gordon MacRae on the other hand --Whew! Talk about good lookin'. I've said, he can sing to me any day. My absolute favorite movie of his though, would have to be The Desert Song, as illogical as the story may be. He makes a good hero.


The other two reasons why I like this one so much is the story and all around homey feel. I love a good "In the life of.." story and this one plays out in a beautiful middle-to-upper class neighborhood in the early 1900's. Others like it, in my opinion, would be its sequel, By the Light of the Silvery Moon, and Meet Me in St. Louis


This is one of a handful of movies the two made together, and in this one, they both act like a couple of impressionable teens. It is hilarious what a goof MacRae is with his radical theories and beliefs, and then Day comes along and believes every word of it, just because he said it. Silly, but too cute.

Day and MacRae are not the only highlights of this film. Billy Gray plays Wesley, the Winfields trouble-making boy, who is hilarious in his wild antics and tall tales. Despite his spoiled attitude, I like how well he and Margie get along.


In this post I am going to give a quick bio and then talk about a few little things like costume and decor. I hope you are as excited as I am!


Synopsis

On Moonlight Bay is about the lives of an average family during the mid-1910's. The Winfields have just moved to a new neighborhood but the only one who is very pleased about it is Mr. Winfield, whose intentions, among other things, is to expose his tomboyish daughter, Margie, to more grown-up company. Margie's only interest is in playing a good game of baseball, that is, until she meets the boy-next-door, William Sherman. Bill is a senior in college and full of impressionable and radical ideas about the way the country should be run. At first, Mr. and Mrs. Winfield are pleased with Bill, but when one of his radical ideas offend Mr. Winfield, the vice-president of the First National Bank, Margie's father tries to interest her in Hubert Wakeley, her brother's stuffy piano teacher. But Margie loves Bill and believes what he says, including his theory that marriage is a enslaving institution. Meanwhile, Margie's little brother, Wesley never ceases to reek havoc. In an attempt to get himself out of trouble with his teacher, he tells a fantastic story about how his father had been drinking and beating his mother and sister. When Bill comes home to take Margie to the school dance, Wesley's teacher informs him of the terrible news. Bill bursts in and once again makes a fool of himself. Fortunately, the family realizes what Wesley did and Mr. Winfield accepts Bill once again.


On graduation day, Bill announces that he and half his class have joined the army but Mr. Winfield, upon hearing of Bill's stance on marriage, forbids Margie to see him again. Margie runs away to be with Bill, and just when he proposes, her father finds her and takes her home. Weeks later, Bill comes home on leave before being sent out overseas where the war is going on.  (Spoilers) Margie is once again prepared to leave with him but Bill sensibly tells her that he will be gone a while and she will have to live with her parents for that time. They part in tears, and Mrs. Winfield finally decides to straighten her husband out. After a few reminders of times past, Mr. Winfield has a change of heart and gives his approval for Margie and Bill to continue their relationship.

Doesn't it sound like a great movie? The musical numbers are beautiful, and there is just the right blend of comedy and drama. I really can't say anything bad about it.

Now let's look at costumes.


In this somber moment, Margie wears a lovely muted blue outfit that, coincidentally, matches the blue ribbon on the beloved Kewpie doll. The blouse is patterned in light blue and dark blue while the calf-length skirt is solid blue.

Her hairstyle in the whole movie is pretty much variations of the same: pulled back and secured with a bow, with barrettes on either side of the head. Her bangs are short and curled under.


I love how often they put her in plaids. This lovely green and red plaid jumper is paired with a light yellow blouse and red heels. Her hat matches her dress and sits back on her head to compliment her hairstyle.

Wesley's outfit is signature of the time, with his high socks, short breeches, brown suit coat and newsboys hat. A great outfit for boys.


Here is another plaid that is perfect for winter. Even though I do not like red personally, I think red is the perfect color for wearing in the winter, especially in the snow. Also, I just love her tam-o-shanter.


Wesley looks adorable with his hair so neatly combed and wearing a tie and green cardigan.


Rosemary DeCamp plays Mrs. Winfield and I like how she does it. Her husband is a strong, controlling man but she is no doormat. She is respectful and lets him lead, without squelching her own personality and occasional difference of opinion. Only when she feels he is being to harsh toward Margie and Bill does she say something, and when she does, it's to remind him that he was young once too.

By the way, don't you just love the dainty embroidery on her blouse and her pearl drop earrings?


I love the soft springy colors and materials the designers used for Margie's clothing. The yellow dress she wears at his graduation and this one both look soft and feminine. And doesn't he look dashing in his olive drab uniform.


And that concludes this post. What are you thoughts? Have you seen this movie before? Leave me a comment!

I will be reviewing the sequel soon, By the Light of the Silvery Moon. In the meantime, have you checked out my list of fall movies?

Thursday, October 20, 2016

My List of Classic Fall Movies

I don't know why but it makes the season all the better when I can accompany it with my favorite seasonal movies, movies that have a good cozy, homey feeling.

Growing up we've always had a Christmas list of movies (many of which I have reviewed), and I've contributed by putting my personal favorites in. When it comes to autumn I guess you could say we have some we like to watch, but they mostly consist of a small handful for Halloween (and naturally, It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad are one's we never miss). This year we've actually compiled a list of Autumn movies that I would like to share with you.

Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)

When you look up classic fall movies on the internet the selection each person recommends is all the same, and hardly what I'd call "classic". For autumn, these are the movies I recommend:



The Woman in White (1948)

Even though we don't officially celebrate Halloween, we have our own traditions, and watching a good "scary" movie, or mock scary, is one of them:




We are constantly discovering new ones to add so I'm sure by next year the list will have grown. In fact, The Enchanted Cottage is a lovely story we just recently saw. If you are interested, I hope to do a review on it soon.

But speaking of reviews, tomorrow I plan to post my review of On Moonlight Bay, and later, its sequel, By the Light of the Silvery Moon. In the meantime, check out my movie review page!

What classic movies do you like watching around autumn? Have you seen those in my list? And what do you think about them?

Come back soon for more!!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Give Thanks Wall Plaque Tutorial | A Mixed Media Project


(Update: Now you can buy Give Thanks Wall Plaque at GingerPeachyStore on Etsy!

I am so thrilled to be able to present to you my latest mixed media piece for Autumn!!

Actually, you could call this my first 'official' mixed media piece ever, since previous projects I still put under the scrapbook heading, such as The Dutchman and the Condesa picture.


Years ago I saw this piece in Hobby Lobby. I loved the idea and made sure to get a picture so that I wouldn't forget it. And I am glad I did because after all this time I would not have remembered.

My own idea for this came together rather well and I sketched it out to give me a visual of what I wanted and would need. You can see my sketch in the picture below. It took me a bit to get all the supplies I needed but I was excited to get started.

The crafting knowledge you might need for this project is:

  • crocheting
  • scrapbooking


Here's how I did it. And for a happy change I have step-by-step photos for you! If you are interested in making your own, you can follow along exactly, or as I tend to do, add your own little tweaks and changes.


This is the basic list of supplies you will need:

  • 12" x 12" wooden plaque (I used Mix the Media by Jillibean Soup)
  • 2 pages of scrapbook paper (the one for your base needs to be 12" x 12")
  • 10" x 10" of burlap
  • 2 - 6" doilies
  • wooden buttons
  • medium weight yarn in orange, green, brown, beige
Other crafting necessities
  • scissors
  • ruler
  • pencil
  • Mod Podge (fabric and all surface)

Let's get started!!


My thought was to frame it like I did The Dutchman and the Condesa, but after careful thought, I realized something open might be better. I saw this wooden plaque by Jillibean Soup while ordering the other supplies and realized it was exactly the thing I needed.


I was disappointed when I received it though. The wood was extremely rough (what I call a little too much "character") and one of the planks did not match up, leaving a large gap between the two. My concern was that the paper I planned to put over it would dip there. So I took some sandpaper ahold of it.


There was still a gap even after all my hard sanding but I figured it would work out anyway. As you can see I sanded more than just the gap. I like wood with character but I don't like too much character, and too much is when it pricks while working with it.


After sanding I was ready to start designing. I selected a page with a red pattern from my Old World Winter scrapbook page book and cut about 1/4" off of all four sides. Using a heavy layer of the all surface Mod Podge, I glued the paper to the plaque. First layer done.

There is a bit of a dip in the paper where the gap is but it doesn't show much, especially after adding all the elements.


I ordered the smallest amount of burlap I could, one yard, and only used about 10" square. But that's alright, now I have some on hand for future projects. The frustrating thing was that it smelled to high heaven of chemicals. My Grandma said it is what they use to stiffen it. Either way, the smell did not air out even after leaving it outside on the line for about 24 hours. It is good that I only needed a little.


Next I glued the burlap to the paper with Mod Podge all surface. In this picture the glue is still wet and white; I am so happy it dries clear.


Now, I have to admit I fudged a little with the doilies in buying them instead of crocheting them myself. But I had some good reasons, and really no regrets afterwards. My first reason is that I am not all that good at doilies. I have created some doily patterns in the past, yes, but I am not super impressed by my work so far. I figure I need a little more training in that area. But even so, since this was a mixed media project my focus was on more than just creating another crochet pattern. So I gave myself permission to buy them (this was necessary for me to do).


If you take a look back at my sketch you will see that I intended to use only a portion of the one doily. With this intention in mind I worked at stiffening the doily with Mod Podge fabric. After it dried I began to position it and realized that I could simply wrap it around the sides of the plaque instead or cut it in pieces. Pleased with this idea, I glued both doilies.

(If you notice the change in lighting or location in these pictures it is because I took at least two weekends to do this project. If I did it again I could probably do it in one day, but you know how long it takes to work a project out in your mind.)


Now came the appliques. A few years ago I designed some fall appliques for Crochet Spot and I intended to use them for this. (Don't you love my Spunky Soul eyeglass case?!) Here are the patterns I used (click link to view free patterns):

Pumpkin Applique
Acorn Applique
Fern Leaf Applique

I used two different sized hooks for these, the one called for in the pattern and one a whole size down. After crocheting the pumpkin in the picture above I decided to enlarge my pumpkin. Here's the extended row and redesigned stem:

Round 4: turn, sl st in next st, sc in next st, 2 hdc in next st, hdc in next st, 2 hdc in next st, dc in next 3 sts, 2 hdc in each of next 3 sts, sc in next st, sl st in next st, (other side) sc in next st, 2 hdc in each of next 3 sts, dc in next 3 sts, 2 hdc in next st, hdc in next st, 2 hdc in next st, sc in next st, sl st in last st: 35 sts
Finish off.

Stem
Row 1: ch 11, sl st in second ch from hook, sc in next ch, 3 sc in next ch, hdc in next 2 ch, ch 5, sl st in second ch from hook, sc in next ch, hdc in next ch, sc in next ch, sl st in side of hdc, hdc in next 2 ch, sc in next ch, sl st in last ch: 16 sts

After I was satisfied with the pumpkin, I crocheted two acorns using the smaller hook, and two leaves, one with the smaller hook and one with the original hook.


I positioned the appliques where I wanted them but wasn't ready yet to secure them. This is always the absolute last step for me. I want to be perfectly sure before I make something permanent. (Don't you like my coffee cup? The words inside say in French, "Chat sur un coussin jaune," which in English means, "Cat on a yellow cushion." Too cute, huh?)


Second to last was the words. I decided on my gold foil scrapbook page that I have been saving for an extra special occasion. My first attempt at tracing the words "Give Thanks!" was a bust as I was using a black Sharpie to write out the template myself.

My second try was much better. I got into Gimp and found a good bold font, FreeSerif Bold. I saved it as an image and put the image onto a Open Office page, sizing it up on the paper until it was as large as it could be.


After printing the bold words, I laid the page on the back of the scrapbook paper I wanted to use so that, although the tracing would be backwards, the actual cut letters would be forward. I planned to use my steel tapestry needle to merely make the indention of the letters on the back of the page. I was pleased when it instead worked as a transfer.


This is what the letters look like when cut out. Lovely and gold!! Have I told you how much I love sparkly gold? If you need proof, check out my Pinterest board, Color Appeal: Gold.


I glued everything and the beautiful wooden buttons, and voila! My finished mixed media piece. What do you think?!

I took it outside this morning and gave it a little photoshoot. By the tree, by the other tree, on the fence, on the house wall, on the brick divider, etc. They actually turned out better than I thought they would. My only difficulty was in getting the lighting right so that the words showed up.

All in all though, I am pleased. Now the question is, where do I put it?

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Let me know if you try your hand at this project, I would love to see your version!

Leave me your thoughts in the comment section below! I am dying to hear them!

My next scrapbook/mixed media project to share will be the one I have been promising for a few months now, Scooby-Doo Mystery page, just in time for the spooky season! Come back soon!

Friday, October 14, 2016

Dressing Up | 50's Fashion

There is quite a bit I love about the fifties. Home decor and furniture always catch my eye when I watch movies or TV shows of this period, and any period really. But of course, the fashion of the time is so remarkable. I love the full skirts and the way everyone seems to look nice even when scrubbing the floor.

I've watched a couple of episodes of Life with Elizabeth this week which was produced in the early to mid fifties. If you have seen them you know what I mean when I say Elizabeth is hilarious. If you have not seen any, let me suffice it to say she never ceases to find ways to exasperate her husband, Alvin. This show is about little things in the life of an average couple. Though I would hardly call them truly average.

I'm going to show you some of my favorite costumes from the shows.


Here Elizabeth, or Betty White, is wearing the casual button-up blouse and skirt with a belt. Only this full skirt is exceptional. I wish I could tell you what material it is actually made of, but instead I will describe it as stiff satin. Today a skirt like this would be considered formal. Very unique for the modern, every day housewife to be wearing at home, I would think, but lovely all the same.


In this episode, Elizabeth wears a striped, short sleeved gown. Notice the three little buttons on the sleeve. Also, the striping pattern of the dress. Normally, stripes are kept in the same direction when designing the sleeve or skirt. Not so with the dress. I wish I was a more experienced sewer so that I could tell you how it was done. Either way, it is something that caught my eye.


On a more wintry note, the bodice and skirt, or jumper, of this dress seems to be made out of a material like wool while the blouse is obviously a lighter material, like cotton. What I love most is the design of the back with the ties and what looks like short fringe. Simple but unique.

It is interesting that, although for that decade, Alvin is dressed casual in a polo shirt and slacks, were he to be in the modern age, we would consider him dressed up. This is what I mean about always looking nice.


And here we are, back to warmer weather. If this isn't my favorite dress, then it is definitely at the top of my list. Like all of her skirts, this one is full and about calf length. The neck is square and the bodice is designed with ribbons down the front. You may not be able to tell from the picture, but I believe she is barefoot. For some reason, I find that amusing.

Alvin once again wears a polo and slacks while working around the house. At this point, jeans were still for the trend setting teens. At this point, jeans had been available for quite some time, but they were still not commonplace in the average persons wardrobe, and definitely not everyday wear like today.

And that does it for a 50's fashion highlight. Thanks for reading and don't forget to share your thoughts with me in the comment section below!

Monday, October 10, 2016

A Godly Woman is a Strong Woman


Our culture has encouraged the misconception that the definition of a godly woman is weak and quiet, and it is a shame that this flawed mindset pervades the understanding of Christian women today. It is no surprise that women recoil from such a demeaning idea of womanhood. We thought the days of walking five paces behind the man went out with the corset, and yet it is supposed to be the essence of a godly woman? The truth is, the strength of the godly woman far surpasses that of the worldly woman and this is exactly what the world doesn't want you to know.

The Strength of the Worldly Woman

The worldly woman bases all her strength upon her individuality. She is strong if she can prove that she doesn't need anyone else to succeed in life. As Holly Elliff, an author and speaker, said during a Revive Our Hearts program, “What’s applauded for younger women, or for any age woman is to be aggressive, to be in charge, to be in control of the situation regardless of who is around you.” If the worldly woman is going to show the world that she is strong then she has to take matters into her own hands and make things happen. She will have to push until she achieves and continue pushing to achieve more. The strength of the worldly woman depends upon herself.

The Strength of the Godly Woman

On the other hand, the godly woman believes scripture when it says that Jesus is “the way, the truth, and the life.” She is peaceful, confident in her abilities, and patient in her actions and dealings with others because she knows that in the end it is God who is in control and not herself. How does this make her strong? They say there is power in a smile, or an act of kindness, but there is also power in the ability to do the right thing no matter the cost.

When dealing with any issue, the first place we should look is the word of God.


The Woman Judge

Judges 4 tells the story of Deborah, a judge during the period when Israel was not yet ruled by a king. When I consider what it means to be godly and strong I immediately think of this courageous woman. In my study of her account in an attempt to better understand the biblical role of the woman I have had to ask myself a great deal of questions concerning her actions. Such as why she was in this position (during this time) instead of a man, whether she was overstepping her role, and how did this effect her role as wife. All of which is a topic for another article. But one thing is clear, Deborah was not acting in disobedience to God; no, God Himself put her there for that period. What I find most inspiring about her story is that she chose to use her power, not to build herself up and gain more control, but to build others up. She didn't personally command the army to go out and fight the enemy, though I'm sure she could have. Instead she challenged the rightful leader to step up to his responsibility. She was a strong leader who encouraged others to rise up to the occasion and thus be strengthened themselves.

The Jewish Queen of Persia

Then there is Esther, the young Jewish girl who suddenly found herself in a very powerful position as queen of Persia. When trouble came for her people she could have sat back in comfort and played it safe. But she was a woman of faith and valor who risked her life in order to save her people in speaking  to the king on their behalf.

There are many women of strength whose stories are recorded in the Bible; Abigail, Sarah, Ruth, Hannah, Mary the mother of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and so on. These accounts are incredible because each of these women showed the strength necessary in each situation. But the most important thing to remember is that these women all drew their strength from God. They believed His word, obeyed His laws, and received the power to act in return. And yet these are not the only examples of women portraying godly strength.

Missionary to India

The story of Amy Carmichael never ceases to inspire me. As a young woman she went to India and ministered to the lost, living among them as a faithful servant of God to the very end of her days. She had a passion for God and lived it her entire life.

Widowed By Natives

And last to mention, but hardly the least, is the recently departed matriarch, Elizabeth Elliot. Only a few years into their marriage, her husband was killed at the hands of those he ministered to. Elizabeth returned to continue her husbands work and God saved her husband's killers through her.

Do any of these women look like the downcast doormat of a woman that the world implies is the character of the godly woman? On the contrary, each of them displayed what God considers godly strength and He gave us the accounts in scripture so that we as women could learn the true value of His kind of strength. The fact is, I am sure none of these women would have considered themselves wise women of God, but because of their faith and readiness to act God was able to bring about great things through them.


The Results

It is not easy to exhibit godly strength because it is not natural to us. The natural way is the worldly way and the easier way, but never is it satisfying or fulfilling. The woman seeking to please the world and find strength in herself alone will forever be searching and never finding.

A strong, godly woman will find the fulfillment she seeks and is in turn essential to the church, the body of believers. Like Deborah, she has the power to build others up and encourage them in their God-given roles. Her strength doesn't lie in being able to do it all, but in being the prod to encourage others to do more. Paul Maxwell says in his article Real Men Love Strong Women, “Strong women are as vital as strong men to God's church,” going on to say, “Godly femininity requires being strong, even intimidating,” in reference to the courage of Jael in taking the life of Israel's enemy when her husband would not.

There isn't a truer saying than “Behind every great man is a great woman.” This does not imply, as some would have it, that the woman deserves all the credit. It simply means she has the potential to encourage and build others up.

Now that you have had a look at both kinds of strength, which is more appealing to you? Which would you consider more profitable to yourself and those around you?


References
Real Men Love Strong Women, by Paul Maxwell on DesiringGod.org
It Takes a Lot of Strength to be Soft, a radio program from Revive Our Hearts
Judges 4:1-16
The Book of Esther

Friday, October 7, 2016

Secret Agent Doll Clothes | New Crochet Pattern


Doll clothes can be great fun to make. In fact, I made at least 3 doll outfits for Crochet Spot (Doll Blouse and Jumper, Doll Peasant Dress, and Vintage Doll Bathing Suit) and many more doll accessories. Granted, I don't play dolls anymore but then over half the fun is being able to give it to someone that does.

My youngest siblings' equivalent to playing dolls are stuffed bears. She has collected them practically from birth and consequently, each of them have their own personalities. Believe me when I tell you that you would never guess the far-fetched stories she creates. In making this outfit for her, I have only aided and abetted in another one. 

Let me introduce my latest crochet pattern: Secret Agent Doll Clothes! 


This is, in essence, a trench coat and fedora. I wanted something straight out of a 50's cop film, you know, the film noir with the dark figures, shadows of shades across the suspects fearful face, damsels in distress, and loads of mystery.

Okay, so I've been watching Peter Gunn. But anyway...

I carefully recorded the bears measurements for future reference. Then I started with the coat and began brainstorming how I wanted to do it. Many of the doll clothes I've made in the past I began with the top down method so I knew what kind of shape it would give me, and in a way, I wasn't sure if I wanted it. But I also worried the method of crocheting separate pieces (back, front left panel, front right panel, sleeves, etc) would cause lumpy seams, too lumpy for a small piece like this. I could have tried it, and maybe next time I will, but I decided to go with the circular, top down method.


My plan was to afterward add a collar with sharp tips and a belt closure instead of buttons (though I love buttons dearly). I measured the "first draft" on the bear and made some adjustments, but I really didn't have too much trouble here. I considered giving the coat a border to soften the lapels but due to fear of not enough yarn, decided not to.

I began making the collar by building on the original foundation chain and increasing, giving extra stitches to the tips of the collar. After the coat was finished I blocked the one collar to keep it down, but the other stayed down naturally.


The pockets were an afterthought. I felt that the coat needed something and I finally realized I hadn't thought of pockets. I really quickly sat down and added two square pockets to the front of the coat. I really love how they look, plus they actually hold little things. My sister put little "bottle cap" coins in them.

Back view with belt

I considered stitching the belt to the coat to keep the pieces together but that thought somehow didn't make it into my notes (I try to make notes of everything) and so I ended up forgetting until later. But it is a nice idea.


The hat was something else. It's really easy and simple to make, and frankly, it is all about the shaping afterward. As long as the hat is long enough you can put a large crease down the middle and turn the brim up in back and down in front, and right away you have a fedora look-alike hat. I adore its cuteness! After making this one I realized I really wanted to make one for my niece and nephew. So larger sized fedoras are coming soon!


I cut a 14" strand of black ribbon and glued it to the hat, then stood back to survey my work, so to speak. I was satisfied. For once I didn't have any regrets.

Of course, now that I look at it I can think of a few things that could use tweaking...

And that is how I made this adorable little Secret Agent outfit. When I gave it to my sister for her bear, she was quite pleased, only I know she already knew it was for her because she saw me crocheting it. I always say, it is hardest to keep a gift a secret when you are making it in the open.

Here's the pattern!


Secret Agent Doll Clothes


Skill Level easy

Finished size
Coat – 7 ½” (19 cm) long, 12” (30.5 cm) waist, 6” (15 cm) armholes
Hat – 13 ½” (34 cm) circumference

Materials
Medium weight yarn (approximately 120 yards of color A (light brown in the photo) and 50 yards of color B (dark brown in the photo)
Crochet hook I (5.50mm)
14” (35.5 cm) of 3/8” ribbon
Fabric glue

Gauge
6 sc = 2’’
7 rows = 2’’
Gauge Swatch: 2’’w x 2’’h (5 cm x 5 cm) ch 7.
Row 1: sc in second ch from hook and in each ch across: 6 sc
Row 2 – 7: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc across: 6 sc
Finish off.

Coat

Row 1: with color A, ch 31, sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each ch across: 30 sc
Row 2: ch 1, turn, * 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 3 sc, repeat from * to last 2 sc, 2 sc in next sc, sc in last sc: 38 sc
Row 3: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, * sc in next 4 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * across, sc in remaining sc: 46 sc
Row 4: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, * sc in next 5 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * across, sc in remaining sc: 54 sc
Row 5: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, * sc in next 6 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * across, sc in remaining sc: 62 sc
Row 6: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, * sc in next 7 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * across, sc in remaining sc: 70 sc
Row 7: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, * sc in next 8 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * across, sc in remaining sc: 78 sc
Row 8: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, * sc in next 9 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * across, sc in remaining sc: 86 sc
Row 9 – 12: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc across: 86 sc
Row 13: ch 1, turn, sc in next 12 sc, skip next 20 sc, sc in next 22 sc, skip next 20 sc, sc in last 12 sc: 46 sc
Row 14 – 27: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc across: 46 sc
Finish off.

Collar

With inside facing, join yarn in last ch of beg ch-31,
Row 1: ch 1, turn, sc in each ch across: 30 sc
Row 2: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in first sc, (sc in next 6 sc, 2 sc in next sc) twice, sc in enxt 7 sc, 2 sc in last sc: 35 sc
Row 3: ch 1, turn, (2 sc in next sc, sc in next 7 sc) 4 times, sc in next 2 sc, 2 sc in last sc: 40 sc
Row 4: ch 1, turn, (2 sc in next sc, sc in next 8 sc) 3 times, 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 11 sc, 2 sc in last sc: 45 sc
Finish off.

Sleeves

Join yarn in any stitch on the sleeve opening,
Round 1: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc around (work sc2tog to close the gap at the base of the sleeve), sl st in first sc: 21 sc
Round 2: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 21 sc
Repeat for other sleeve.


Pockets (make 2)
Row 1: ch 6, sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each ch across: 5 sc
Row 2 – 5: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc across: 5 sc
Single crochet evenly around, leaving a long tail for sewing.
Sew pockets to coat front.

Block coat collar if desired.

Belt
Row 1: with color A, ch 61, sc in 2nd ch from hook and in each ch across: 60 sc
Row 2: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc across: 60 sc
Single crochet evenly around, skipping end sc for a rounder point.
Finish off.


Hat
(crown)
Round 1: with color B, 6 sc in adjustable ring, sl st in first sc: 6 sc
Round 2: ch 1, 2 sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 12 sc
Round 3: ch 1, 2 sc in next sc, sc in next sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 18 sc
Round 4: ch 1, 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 2 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 24 sc
Round 5: ch 1, 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 3 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 30 sc
Round 6: ch 1, 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 4 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 36 sc
(body)
Round 7 – 16: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 36 sc
(brim)
Round 17: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 5 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 42 sc
Round 18: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 6 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 48 sc
Round 19: ch 1, turn, 2 sc in next sc, sc in next 7 sc, repeat from * around, sl st in first sc: 54 sc
Round 20: ch 1, turn, sc in each sc around, sl st in first sc: 54 sc
Finish off.


Hatband
Glue or stitch ribbon to hat.

Shape hat with a crease on top, back turned up, front turned down.


I hope you like my pattern! It was great fun to make and I'm sure it will be for you too. If you are interested in purchasing a PDF version of this pattern, you can buy it at both Etsy and Ravelry! In the meantime, let me know what you think in the comments below!


This is an original pattern created and designed by Amy Yarbrough of Ginger Peachy. You are welcome to copy the pattern for personal use but do not sell the pattern, distribute, or reprint it. Feel free to share a link to the pattern. You can sell products made from this pattern but please credit me, Amy Yarbrough of Ginger Peachy. Do not mass produce or factory manufacture using my pattern. Thanks for respecting the wishes of the designer, and be sure to ask me if you have any questions regarding this copyright.