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Weekly Gathering: 10 Dorm Room Essentials!

Hello, friends! I hope your week is going well and is filled with lots of makings! This week’s pattern collection is one that I have been wanting to put together for a while now, and I am so pleased to share it with you. This collection of free crochet patterns has been put together based on my first-hand dorm experience, and each one of these items were or would have been very useful to have! Something about handmade items just makes a dorm room feel more cozy and homey, in my opinion.

On with the show!

10 Dorm Room Essentials!

1. Cat Schoolbag by Sayjai, at K and J Dolls: Pencil cases are so handy to have when you’re rushing off to class! She also has a pencil case variation with flowers, if you don’t like cats. (But how can you resist such a cute face?)

2. Women’s Loafer Slippers by Bethany, at Whistle & Ivy: If you don’t want to freeze your toes on cold floors, slippers are your best friend!

https://handmadehandmaiden.files.wordpress.com/2014/10/35963-upclosewm.jpg

3. Mug Cozy by Lisa, at Bubblegirl: Mugs are in high demand when you’re hanging out with the girls. A cute cozy like this one will help to distinguish between mugs!

http://bubblegirlknitandcrochet.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/il_570xn-250173290.jpg

4. Dorm Organizer Square Baskets, at AllFreeCrochet: Storage, storage, storage! In a small space, anything that is both small and practical is necessary. Work up these baskets in neutral or vibrant colors, according to your preference!

Dorm Organizer Square Baskets

5. Rainbow Days Afghan, at PurpleKitty Yarns: This afghan is great to work through your yarn stash, while also giving you a lot of color to cheer up your room!

6. Canyon Shrug, at Lion Brand: When you’re at the mercy of a roommate who likes to pretend that your room is Alaska in the dead of winter (note: my roommate loved hot weather, so this didn’t apply to me!), a nice cozy shrug is perfect to keep warm.

Image of Canyon Shrug

7. Dorm Room Throw Rug, at Better Homes and Gardens: I had a crocheted rug that I had made that sat right in front of my bed. Every time I saw it, I was reminded of home!

8. Colorful Throw Pillows by Bobbi Anderson, at Red Heart: Pillows of any sort are a must-have when it comes to movie nights or sleepovers when your friends come to visit!

Colorful Throw Pillows

10. Reusable Crochet Face Scrubbies by Jamey, at Dabbles & Babbles: At the end of a long day of classes, homework, and friends, it’s nice to be able to relax, slip on your pajamas, and wash your face before bed. Big plus: these are so easy to make!

Reusable Crochet Face Pads

That’s all for this collection, friends. Happy makings!

Any requests for pattern collections? What would you like to see on my Weekly Gathering?

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All The Makings: Container Completed!

Hello, all! I just accomplished my first crochet challenge ever, and I am so very excited! It was a great project overall, although I accidentally made a small blunder in my yarn choice. This basket is made using the basket weave stitch, but it is hard to tell because my yarn colors are so bold. Oh, well. [You can find the pattern for this basket on my last All The Makings post here.]

basket2014

I like the sturdiness, and I know the handles look rather thin, but by the time I was ready to make the handles, I was ready just to finish it! I’m thinking of designating this basket as my “WIP” basket, which translates to “work-in-progress,” for those of you unfamiliar with craft lingo. đŸ™‚

close up of basket2014

I might even make the letters “WIP” to put on the side; that would be a neat addition, I think. As Christmas gets nearer and nearer, I’m trying to put together a list of what gifts I’ll be making for my family, so my next project will probably be one of those. I can’t say what that might be right at the moment, as I know my family reads this blog, and I want them to be surprised!

(I’m actually halfway participating in the Mystery Adventure Scarf KAL & CAL over at Yarnspirations; I say halfway because I’m not actually using Caron yarn, and I haven’t been closely following the clues. Crochet rebel, right here. It is fun, though, and you should get started, too, if you’re feeling ambitious!)

Hope y’all have a great week; be on the lookout for this week’s Weekly Gathering and possibly a Doctor Who post, too!

Have you ever done a crochet challenge? Would you like to? Tell me about it!

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Heartspeak: On Poetry

Nor moon, nor stars were out;
They did not dare to tread so soon about,
Though trembling, in the footsteps of the sun:
The light was neither night’s nor day’s, but one
Which, life-like, had a beauty in its doubt.
And silence’s impassioned breathings round
Seemed wandering into sound.

– Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Recently, I’ve discovered the beautiful poetry of Elizabeth Barrett Browning and that of her husband, Robert Browning. It is so interesting for me to read their poetry, and compare the similarities and differences between them. Personally, I like Elizabeth’s better, but that is mainly because the elegant emotion in her poetry speaks to me, in a way.

Poetry has always given me great joy and pleasure to read; the way the words are crafted in such odd and unique ways as to show the reader a beautiful picture has always fascinated me. Oftentimes, my library books consist of collections of old English poems or volumes of an individual poet. Currently, I’m reading Tennyson, and a rather hefty tome of poetry from the Victorian era; I already finished the collection of poems from the Brownings.

What if we still ride on, we two
With life for ever old yet new,
Changed not in kind but in degree,
The instant made eternity, —
And heaven just prove that I and she
Ride, ride together, for ever ride?

– Robert Browning

I’ve written several poems, and in fact, poetry is one of the ways that I love to tell a story, to capture a moment in time. Words sound beautiful to me, and the emotion that can be evoked in a single sentence makes me love them all the more. Sometimes, I believe that in this world of texting, tweeting, and yes, even blogging, that the eloquence of words and speech has been lost. To me, how someone uses words tells me a lot about them, and all too often, the words I hear today are such poor facsimiles for the words they’ve replaced.

A feeling of sadness and longing, that is not akin to pain,
and resembles sorrow only as the mist resembles the rain.

– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Poetry speaks for me in the words that I wish I could say, and I suppose that is why I shall always treasure it, search for it, and love it. In parting, let me add just one more poem for you to enjoy:

They parted–ne’er to meet again!
But never either found another
To free the hollow heart from paining!
They stood aloof, the scars remaining;
Like cliffs which had been rent asunder!
A dreary sea now flows between;
But neither heat, nor frost, nor thunder,
Shall wholly do away, I ween,
The marks of that which once had been.

– Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Do you like poetry? Have a favorite poet? I’m always looking for new poetry to read, so comment and tell me!

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Weekly Gathering: 6 Free Crochet Pouch Patterns!

Hello! As you can see from the lack of blog posts this week, I have been quite busy. I hate it when I can’t get my posts out like I should, so thank you for your patience! (And for not boycotting me for missing blog posts – that’s always nice.) This week, I decided to make pouches my focus, and for good reason: loose change.

In my world of college vending machines and printing fees, I need all the change I can get, but if I just put it in my wallet, it falls out into my purse or on the ground. A pouch is a great way to keep that loose change from escaping into the dark depths of a purse, or even to keep other little items in a nice, safe place where they hopefully won’t mysteriously disappear. So, without further ado, here are 6 free pouch patterns just for you!

6 Free Crochet Pouches!

1. Simple Pencil Pouch by Linda, at Craftaholics Anonymous: Isn’t this pouch just perfect? You can make it with stripes or in a solid color; great for pencils or other items!

crochet pencil pouch

2. Little Pouch by Elisabeth Andrée, at About Crochet: Drawstring pouches are the best. The end.

little pouch by elisabeth andrée

3. Hundred Yen Pouch by Melissa, at Inner Child Crochet: I’m not the only one who needs a pouch to carry their loose change! No matter your currency, this pouch will do the trick.

Hundred Yen Pouch by Melissa Mall

4. Travel Tissue Holder by Yenny Gunawan, at CraftAndMe: As someone who lived in a place where you had to carry your own tissues and even toilet paper, this is the perfect pouch to have with you anytime.

5. Bonbon Kisses Pouch by Moogly: The colors are so vibrant and fun! This pattern also has a full video tutorial for those that have trouble with reading written patterns. (I want to eat some candy now.)

Bonbon Kisses Crochet Pouch! Free #crochet pattern from Mooglyblog.com

6. Key Ring Pouch by Kathleen Sams, at Red Heart: What a cool idea! I never thought about having a pouch on my key ring, but it would be great to hold chapstick or a few dollars.

Key Ring Pouch

Hope y’all enjoyed this week’s pattern roundup! Happy makings!

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Weekly Gathering: 10 Free Crochet Vest Patterns To Suit Your Style!

I’m on time this week, friends! Happiness abounds. I don’t know about you, but my wardrobe would not be complete without a vest (or two or four). They are the perfect accessory to practically any outfit in my book, and I’m always on the lookout for new vests in different styles and colors. One day, I will get around to actually making a piece of crocheted clothing, and when I do, you can bet that it will probably be a vest.

I never knew there were so many crocheted vests out there! These are just a sampling of the neat patterns that I came across, so I hope you enjoy them. Happy makings!

10 Free Crochet Vest Patterns

1. Fan Waistcoat, at DROPS Design: Anything light and airy seems to magically find a way into my closet, so I have a feeling this delicate vest would, too! Also available in UK terms.

2. Stunning Vest by Kimberly McAlindin, at Red Heart: I never thought about using a bow as a vest closure. What a neat idea!

Stunning Vest

3. Unique Shell Vest by Lorene Eppolite, at AllFreeCrochet: If you haven’t visited Lorene Eppolite’s Web-home (Cre8tion Crochet), you should as soon as possible! She designs gorgeous patterns, and I am very pleased to include her vest in my pattern roundup.

Unique Shell Vest

4. 60’s Style Vest, at Free Vintage Crochet: My style in clothes ranges from classic to feminine to vintage, and this vest has the kind of vintage flair that I enjoy.

5. Elliot by Maureen Basher, at Berroco: I have never seen a vest like this, ever. It is so cool! A perfect fit for someone with a flair for modern or tailored clothing.

6. Two-Tone Vest, at Yarnspirations: This is the vest that inspired me to make this pattern collection! The motif, the stripes, the style, everything about this vest embodies something that I love about crochet: anything you create can be a reflection of your personality.

7. Loop-Cable Vest by Kristin Omdahl, at Red Heart: Cables; I’m a sucker for cables on vests. A lovely vest that can complement any style!

Crochet Loop-Cable Vest

8. Medallion Vest, at Grandmother’s Pattern Book: Anything to do with vintage crochet, I’m there. The combination of stripes and circles is a fun design, and you’d be the center of attention when you put on this vest!

9. Rococo Waistcoat by Jane Howorth, at Willow Yarns: Simple, stylish, and great for any time of the year, this pretty vest is sure to become a favorite.

10. Lovely Lace Vest by Kimberly McAlindin, at AllFreeCrochet: Purple is one of my favorite colors, and this vest has a delicate, feminine quality that I love.

I want to make a vest now, but if you know anything about my crochet method, that would be a little much at the moment. Anyway, I hope that y’all enjoyed this week’s Weekly Gathering, and thank you for taking the time out of your busy lives to get a little crochet inspiration!

If you were going to make a vest, what color(s) would you use? Stripes, motifs, or something entirely unique?

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All The Makings: Container Challenge Accepted!

Hello, dear friends! I hope this Monday has been going well for you; it has been for me, despite the ragweed currently making my eyes water and itch. I can’t believe that September is already half over! *starts frantically counting the weeks left to finish making Christmas presents* Only 16 and a half weeks… and so far, no gifts have been made. I need to get on that.

I suscribe to lots of fellow crocheters on Facebook, and at the beginning of September, I kept seeing all these shares about a crochet challenge that Red Heart Yarn is sponsoring for the month of September. I read up on the challenge, and decided to do it using what Red Heart yarn I had left in my stash, which is decreasing little by little.

Want to take the challenge yourself? You can read all about the Basket Weave Container Challenge here!

container1

I have made decent headway with my container. Currently, I am just about to start doing the basket weave stitch, and I really love the way my Red Heart Fiesta in black & gold looks with my soft red Red Heart Super Saver. I am so happy that I finally found a great pattern to showcase the Fiesta yarn; it’s so bold that it needs to stand out, but I like mixing colors, so I threw in a little red yarn to complement it.

containerside

I can’t wait to finish it up! Rest assured, I’ll post pictures when I do. In the meantime, get cracking on those containers! (Or check out some of my Weekly Gathering pattern roundups for some more crochet inspiration and free patterns!)

Ever tried the basket weave stitch before? I haven’t, so this may be a first time for both of us if you decide to try crocheting a container of your own!

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Heartspeak: On Family & Loving One Another

When I was away at college, I tried to prepare myself for the homesickness that everyone said would come. Well, it came alright. Right after my Mom and Dad and Little Brother and Little Sister left my dorm room, got in their car, and drove 3 hours back to the house I no longer occupied. I sat down on my bed, crying softly so I didn’t make my suitemate come bursting through the adjoining bathroom door, asking me what the matter was. After a while, I got up, straightened and put away the rest of my things. I knew that this was a new chapter in my life as an adult, living in a dorm, making my own decisions, and having that “college experience” that everyone spoke of so fondly.

I visited home every two weeks for the first and only semester that I lived in that college dorm.

My family was my comfort zone. They were the people who I knew inside and out, all their little quirks and idiosyncrasies. They were a-ok, as my college roomie (one of my dearest friends) would say. Sure, I still made lots of great friends, had a few interesting experiences (late night breakfast the day before final exams), and learned a lot about myself that semester, but my family were the ones who helped me to stick it out for one whole semester away at college.

Some people might wonder why I love my family like I do.

Well, to be perfectly honest, I don’t quite know why myself.

I suppose a lot of our love for each other comes from actually being together long enough to get to know one another and build memories together. While we lived overseas, we were pretty much some of the only friends each other had. At the end of a long day speaking and thinking in another language, we enjoyed coming back together and talking in English. Slowly, our family no longer was just a group of people all stuck together by the same blood; we became a single unit, and that’s how we like it.

All of us kids are getting older, and even now, I feel the tugging of being drawn to serve in other places and live my life with the Lord. For now, however I’m content to be at home now while I’m finishing up my degree. Every day, I keep learning more about adulthood from Mom and Dad, and my brother and sister keep on amazing me with their growing maturity and thoughts about life. Boy, I just can’t thank the Father enough for the family he gave me.

We’ve been through quite a lot. Seen a lot of things. And I couldn’t have asked for a better family to share my life with than the four people that never fail to make me laugh and see life in entirely new perspectives.

 

Recent family adventure to Colorado.

Recent family adventure to Colorado.

P.S. So sorry that I didn’t get out a Weekly Gathering this week! Homework and allergies (I hate ragweed!) caught me off guard. It’ll be up next week, I promise! đŸ™‚