Friday, April 19, 2024

Mandala Sparkle Draco afghan

Wordpress is giving me fits trying to put a picture in so I'm back at blogger today. 

Yarn: Lion Brand Mandala Sparkle in color Draco

Hook:  G/4.0 Furls Odyssey

Size: 30"

Foundation chain: 118

Pattern: Call the Midwife (I followed Fiber Spider's version on YouTube)

On a personal note, I have been diagnosed with breast cancer and will be having a lumpectomy May 2 (current schedule). Prayers appreciated.

Happy crocheting!


Sunday, October 1, 2023

26th anniversary

I can't believe another year has gone by! October is the Crochet Cabana anniversary month. 26 years! It's been a lot of fun to share my work with you all. I'm not doing anything special to celebrate. Just noting it here for posterity. :-)

As you may remember, I keep the Wordpress site up to date but I thought I'd come by and share a few pics here as well. 

This past year was the year of the scrap afghans. I wanted to use up some of my extensive stash and created a number of afghans, scarves and various other things to that end. Here are a few of the blankets.

I hope you enjoy this brief peek of what I've been up to in the past year. Perhaps it will inspire you in some way to jump into your own stash.

Happy Crocheting!

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Hooks and squares

In the WordPress blog I've been posting squares. I set myself a challenge to make a square (or some project) with each of my hooks. The squares are mostly the Cross Stitch Square designed by my daughter, Kate Smith. I've made thousands of these squares. I know some people don't like to make the same thing over and over but I don't mind it. It's mindless.

I warn you that I collect hooks and I have a lot of them! I have quite a few hooks from Polymer Clay Shed. She sells both Boye and Bates style hooks and I have some of both. After my hand surgery, my crocheting style changed for a while in that I went to the knife hold rather than my usual pencil hold. Also, though I had always been a "Boye" gal, I found the Bates style hooks worked well for me during that transitional time. Now I can use both!

Here are some of the pictures I've posted. It's only interesting if you want to see the different hook styles. I'm still working on this project, currently using my Furls hook collection. In the WordPress posts I have additional info on the hooks in some of the pictures but I thought it would make this post too long if I included all that. 

These are glow in the dark hooks

Happy crocheting!


Saturday, October 1, 2022

Crochet Cabana 25th Anniversary


It’s that time again. Crochet Cabana is having another anniversary! I am celebrating 25 years online.

As I did for the 15th and 20th anniversaries, I ordered hooks for myself with the dates on them.

The top one came from Engraving for You at Etsy. The other one is from M and M Laser Works at Etsy.

Here are the previous ones. I know the wooden ones with the lighthouse/dolphins are from Craft Designs for You. They don't make those anymore or I would certainly have gotten another one.

The bottom one is from Engraving for You at Etsy. I was happy with that hook which is why I got another one for my 25th.

The two blue ones are from Polymer Clay Shed. I've bought many hooks from Carola and she is wonderful to work with.

Please indulge me while I do a bit of reminiscing… Way back in October 1997 I started a page or two about crochet as part of my personal site (Sandra’s Backyard) and put it out there on the Internet. I hardly knew what the Internet was at that point. LOL I had to coax my husband to help me create those pages. I just wanted to have something I could easily access. I did it to help myself remember things and find them quickly! How times have changed.

The Sandra’s Backyard logo was created for me by my son for my personal site.

After those first months, I was able to do most of the site work myself on Sandra’s Backyard. The crochet pages had expanded so much that I had to separate them from the personal information which consisted of mostly homeschooling information. My kids are long graduated from school now so I let Sandra’s Backyard go a while back. It was a difficult decision and hard to let it go though.

I created another site – Crafty Corral – for crafts not related to crochet. I’ve since let that one go as I really don’t do a lot of other crafts anymore.

Here are the dates for those who like details.

Crochet Cabana began in October 1997 (domain name was purchased March 2001)
Crochet Cabana’s Crafty Corral began November, 2004. Now discontinued.
The Crochet Cabana Blog began May 11, 2010.
Previous site overhaul was in November, 2012.

Current site overhaul was in September 2017 which combined the blog and website in one location. The reason for the overhaul was that the program I was using then was discontinued and I couldn’t do updates.

The last major site overhaul in 2017 forced me to learn WordPress. WordPress, of course, updates and changes things all the time so it’s a constant battle to keep things in order. While sometimes it is frustrating, overall it’s been okay. I particularly like having the blog and the website together.

The logos have been redone a few times through the years as well. Here are a few of the logos I’ve had.

My daughter designed those beauties. The one I have now I did myself and it’s not great but it serves.

I’ve changed hosts multiple times. I’ve used free hosts and paid hosts. We were on dial-up when I first started and let me tell you that FTPing 50 pages takes a LONG time! LOL I was almost dancing around the living room when we got rid of dial-up. It was amazing. I couldn’t believe how fast the files moved over. Now, of course, I am spoiled and constantly ask why the Internet is so slow. heh

Keeping up the site is a lot of work but it is a labor of love. Although I try to keep things current, crocheting has changed a lot in the past decade. I don’t mean the basics – those have been the same since its inception. Designers, however, are coming up with new ways to combine those stitches and that is a good thing. It keeps things fresh.

YouTube and other streaming services have also changed the way crocheters look for help and inspiration. It’s easy to watch a video. Fiber Spider is one of my favorites there for patterns. While YouTube is a great tool for the visual learner, anyone can post a video there. You can’t be sure how experienced and knowledgeable the person is. It’s a good idea to watch videos by several different people for the thing you’re trying to learn. At one time, I was able to make videos. I did enjoy it when I could do it, but I haven’t been able to do that for a while now.

There are so many wonderful teachers of crochet out there. They come from all the corners of the globe too! Most of the patterns I look at use American terminology – yes there are differences in UK and US terms. MarlyBird, Michael Sellick of the Crochet Crowd, Salena Baca of American Crochet Association, Toni Lipsey of TL Yarn Crafts, the Mother and daughters of Daisy Farm Crafts, Daisy Cottage Designs … I could go on and on and on listing them. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of wonderful designers and teachers in the U.S. Some of them specialize in a particular type of crochet. Toni Lipsey does a lot of Tunisian crochet work, for example.

A lot of designers do both crochet and knit as well.

Then there is Bella Coco’s Sarah Jayne Fragola in the UK, a designer I adore. Being across the pond, she uses UK terminology but always notes the American translation. There are other UK crocheters who I love as well, such as Sue Rawlinson. Her patterns are wonderful and I’ve purchased and translated many of them. Yes, it’s a pain to have to translate them but some things are worth the trouble.

As I get older I tend to look for things I can do in a shorter period of time and things that have meaning to me and those for whom I crochet. My first choice is rarely a complicated pattern though I so admire the beautiful creations I see on Facebook and other places.

Well, that ends my look back at the past and my thoughts on the present. I know some of you reading this have traveled this path with me for many years. I appreciate each and every one of you who visits Crochet Cabana.

Who knows where the future will lead? Perhaps I’ll see you back here at the 30th anniversary. 🙂

Happy Crocheting!


Sunday, August 14, 2022

Mid year update

So half of 2022 is gone - well, more than half now as it's August. I happen to think of this blog and thought I'd do an update. Of course, as always, you can see the posts as they happen by going to over at Wordpress. At the moment, that's where I do the regular posts.

This year has been the year of scarves. A young relative is fighting for her life at St. Jude and I am sending scarves for her to give to her caregivers. This is a way to both give back to those who care for others and to bring a smile to her sweet face as she loves choosing just the right one for each person and giving them out. I began making these at the end of April. 

Before I started on scarves, however, I completed a number of other projects.

In January 2022, I finished a Doctor Who afghan, an Eagle afghan, and a memory afghan .

You can find the blog post here

The blog post can be found here

The blog post can be found here

In March I made all the pieces for a Kitty Couch, as well as a wee afghan for the kitty. My daughter put it all together.

I also finished a huge afghan - the Lovely Lines CAL by Becca at Mayhem & Majesty. The CAL is free but you can choose to purchase the pdf if you are in a hurry - which I was and I did. It finishes in November 2022 so there are a number of parts you can get for free right now if you want to start it.  

You can find the blog post here

In early April I finished a musical afghan called Beethoven (blog post), also by Becca at Mayhem & Majesty.

I also made a unicorn (blog post) afghan. The pattern is the Celestia pattern at OwlBHooked.

Here are just a few of my favorite scarves. I set a goal for myself of 50 scarves and have surpassed that. I'm working on #68 now. They are still needed and bringing smiles. :-) 

Some of them are patterns from my scarf pattern page. Some became new patterns that were added to that page. Sometimes I make them horizontally and sometimes vertically. I try to make each one different but there are some repeats though in a different color. I favor the front post stitch and the front cross stitch so a lot of them use those stitches.

If you like making scarves, another site with loads of ideas is Kim Jiries blog. She made 115 scarves throughout 2011. I'm thinking I might like to beat that, just for fun. 

That concludes my update for January through mid-August 2022. I hope you enjoyed seeing what I've done. Check out the more recent updates at Crochet Cabana

Happy crocheting!