Tag Archives: crocheting

Book Review: Beyond the Square Crochet Motifs

Beyond the Square Crochet Motifs:

144 circles, hexagons, triangles, squares, and other unexpected shapes

Book By:  Edie Eckman


5 cupcakes out of 5

Review by Amanda McMillen

Over the holidays I was at a family member’s house and she had a copy of this book. She let me borrow it for a few days and I fell in love with it. After returning it I managed to get myself a copy for the Kindle.

The author Edie Eckman has written several books but so far I have only read the one! When it comes to the world of fiber arts she has done it all. After working in a yarn store she started writing patterns, and teaching. She is also an editor for yarn companies and independent publishers.

I have not read a lot of crochet books because I find that I tend to prefer blog posts. Many of the books I have read in the past end up making me feel overwhelmed. This book is far from intimidating. The patterns are easy to understand and she clearly explains everything about them. Noobs to the most experienced crocheter can gain something from this book.

One of my favorite parts of this book is that she explains how to use graph patterns. This is something that has alluded me for years. There is even recommendations on which patterns to to use, to help teach yourself how to read them. Each motif has a written pattern and a chart pattern. Like so many other craft books, this one is filled with amazing images. They are clear without taking over the content.

Although the only patterns in the book are the motifs themselves she offers creative ideas to use them. There is even a recipe on how to create your own designs.


  • Easy to read patterns and technique tutorials
  • Beautiful images
  • Good tips and tricks
  • Easy to use and well organized


No major cons. This books was better than expected! Although there are great ideas for uses of the motif, they are all drawings. I do kind of wish there were some photos of finished products using them.

You know I had to make some of these the first night I had it!

I have made a few motifs so far, but one really stands out as a favorite!

Motif 112

I like a traditional granny square but sometimes they get a little boring. This is a different take on it. I am planning on making an afghan for my daughter using this motif with a regular granny square done in two colors.

This book has so much to offer, so in between making squares I will be making a scarf from some of the more open round motifs, I just have not decided how I want to join them yet. Thankfully the book offers tips on how to join pieces!

Have you read this book?

What is your favorite motif? I am thinking about trying to host a crochet along this year and using this book for the projects.

Disclaimer: I am not being paid to do this review. I have not
received any compensation from the author or publisher.
I am a member of the Amazon Affiliate program, so if you buy this book through the links in this post you will be helping this blog, and my family.

Oops… My bad

So earlier today I posted a free pattern… I also made a PDF file of the pattern, and set it up for free download on Ravelry.

I forgot to activate the link…

So if you tried to download it  today and could not, I am very sorry.

Here is the link to the pattern for Basic Arm Warmers PDF file.


arm warmers resize

Basic Arm Warmers With a Thumb Hole

This is one size fits most, but you should check the size and make adjustments to fit the person it is for.

arm warmers resize

I used a chainless foundation when making this but if you do not know how to do that you can start with chaining 28.

If you do not know how to do a chainless foundation, but want to learn how I posted a video I found on youtube a week or so ago.

Using an H or I hook (use a larger hook for larger size)

Rnd 1 hdc 26 and join. Be careful not twist it when joining.

Rnd 2 hdc around.

You can add rounds if you would like the cover more of the hand.

Row 3 hdc 22 (21 for men) and turn. (This is the start of the thumb hole)

Row 4 hdc 22 (21 for men) chain 4 (5 for men) and join.

Rnd 5 – 21 hdc 26 around

You can add or subtract rows to fit.

This pattern is really easy to embellish, and easy to make. Get creative and add your favorite trim or applique.

For my daughter I will be adding cat prints to hers!

Want to download the PDF for free? Find it on Raverly! Basic Arm Warmers I made a nice pretty PDF so you can save this pattern to use later!

Week in Review

What a busy week this has been. Thankfully it is over now!

Monday was the first day of school! I got all the kids up early and of course I shoved a camera in all of their faces!

I am so happy that even the older kids are loving school. When I was their age I hated school, but they have way better classes than I ever did! Advanced Technology??? They build robots in that class!

Witch Hat resize

This is my mini witch hat!

I plan on stuffing this, and finding a way to attach it to a headband. My daughter is already trying to steal it!  I may even end up writing out the pattern. This one is different from my other witch hat pattern.

I finally have a day to myself. My love is at work, and the kids are with Grandma for Labor day! I have at least a few hours of alone time. So of course I am watching Netflix and playing the Sims 3!

Have you seen Orange is The New Black? The first season is on Netflix, and I am surprised by how addicting this show is!

I love The Sims 3! Have you seen a No Lama Cat?

Okay, well I am off to take care of my Sims new plant baby, and relax for some.

I hope you guys all have a great Labor Day!!!

Which Hat is Witch?

Halloween is looming, and I am very excited!

To celebrate I am releasing a pattern I wrote last year. I wrote this in October, so it was kinda late for a real release.


Which Hat is Witch Pattern

For those who can crochet I have the pattern for sale on Ravelry right now. I also list it on Listia from time to time. You can check my Listia Profile to see if I have it for free!

My daughter with her Witch Hat

 For Those Who Do Not Crochet:

I love doing custom orders! If you want a Witch Hat for your very own feel free to ask. Rates very based on size. I use flat rate shipping, and charge real shipping costs. I would be willing to use a cheaper shipping but at your own risk.

Coming Soon:

I want to make some mini witch hats and attach them to head bands!! Depending on my arthritis I may start that tonight.

Not much on my hook, but there will be!

I have been so busy dealing with life that I have not had time to work on much. I am still not very comfortable with knitting and I make lots of mistakes. So the Key Hole scarf I recently posted has turned out harder than planned. I am still not far into it, because I keep taking it apart and starting over.

I did learn one very important thing though, it is very hard to knit in the dark while watching a movie at the theater. My sister who was with us, commented that she wishes that she thought to bring her knitting too.

Here are some things I hope to to have on my hook:

Mallory Walleck’s Star Wars squares (Free Patterns from Ravelry) I really want to make my boyfriend an afghan with them. I am sure this will lead to some for my sons as well.

My middle son saw this on Facebook:

Now he wants one. I am sure I could work out the pattern for that, and may even do a ninja variation of it as well.

I also found a really cool pattern for a travel blanket that can be folded into what looks like a pillow with a handle. I subscribed to Crochet! magazine just to get that pattern. I think I NEED a bunch of these! I am the kind of person who carries blankets everywhere. I would have loved to have it at the movies the other day!

wed hookWell it is Wednesday, What’s on Your Hook?


Things I want to make (free Patterns)

Since I was thinking of looking into craft shows, I decided to look for some simple projects to sell.

I was thinking of putting together sets. I was going to do one of cleaning things, and some bathroom sets.

When I was a kid we used to go camping a lot. When I was learning to sew I made little bags to hold soap out of wash cloths. They were simple draw string bags that fit a full size bar of soap. Once wet they would lather up easy and it was washcloth and soap in one, and you could easily hand dry them.

So while I was looking up bathroom set patterns I was pretty excited to find these:

Get the free pattern for this at http://www.sugarncream.com


Get the free pattern at L.A. Is My Best

So I will be experimenting with these patterns soon and see how I like them.

This pattern from Red Heart is really cool too and I plan on trying it out too!

Looking for a craft show

Participating in a craft show is something I have always wanted to do. It would be fun I think. I love to crochet, and when my hands are working right I can do it pretty quick.

I don’t know any local ones, and really do not know enough about them. I have been to plenty and know what I like to see, but I do not know what sells. How many items do you make? I would hate to run out of something.

I am looking this kind of information up today. If any of my readers have done something like this I would love to hear about your experiences. Do you have any tips? What about flea markets? If that worth looking into?

Little Black Wrap (With Pattern!)

I get cold REALLY easy. I also live in Texas. If you have never been to Texas in the summer I can’t explain to you the heat. It is hot enough to kill people. This means you have to use the AC. Something I have learned in life it is hard find a boyfriend who like the same temperature as me. I am most comfortable in 78-80 degrees. This often means the AC set to 75 and me with a blanket.

I LOVE shawls. My step-mother made me one once that I adore! I love the colors but it often does not match what I wear. At home this is no problem I will wear it anyway. Every now and then, when I want to wear one out though, I always find myself wishing I had a black shawl. So I decided to make one. I may end up making a wrap at some point too.

wed hook

While searching the vast resources the internet has to offer I found a free pattern for Sezession I on Ravelry. I have fallen in love with this, and it is such a simple pattern! I am sure I will finish this soon. I do not normally do things like this and have never done a pattern that called for blocking. Mainly because I have avoided them. It seemed like a complicated processes, but this pattern includes information on how to do this. I decided to give it a shot and I am kind of excited to try! It may be a couple of days before I get to that though.

I do like that this is a simple enough pattern that I can crochet while reading. I may end up making a few of these in different colors and use them for gifts too!

The pattern page shows the finished and blocked piece, and it has such a lovely drape!


I have to finish up a baby blanket that I made. The blanket is finished, but I have to weave in LOTS of ends. I need to get that done, because it is a gift for a very pregnant girl at work. The doctor says she has a month but every one says it is any day now. You can just see that baby is ready to come. I want to get that finished tonight so I can wash it and take it to her tomorrow.

What is on your hook?

Feel free to share your current projects or free patterns of things you are working on!

Granny Circle Table Runner

The other day when reading other blogs I saw an amazing crochet table runner!

I found this on joyfulwise and fell in love right away! I decided I wanted to make one but with my own twists. I want to make them with Granny Circles.

I have never made them before and I found this Great Tutorial, from Crochet with Raymond.

So today, I am making a bunch of Granny Circles to make a runner.

This may take me a while. I will be working on it with scrap yarn while watching TV.

This is what is on my hook today! What about you?