Becca’s Hooks n’ Books

Have you ever wondered to yourself “Gosh, I wish I knew where I could get a quality baby blanket for a last-minute shower gift or a signed book written by an awesome indie author”? Never fear! It just so happens I now have a Storenvy shop where you can find both of those things!

Right at the moment, it only has two items in it but I’m planning to put more in. I have a number of gorgeous, basic baby blankets in a variety of colors hanging around my closet, and some out of print paperbacks that need a good home. Eventually you’ll be able to buy signed paperbacks of my new work there as well! I’m excited to have a way for people to get their hands on signed books, and maybe get some blankets into cribs. Take a look and check back often!

Becca’s Hooks n’ Books

Scrapghan border

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Grand Lilies Doily

As promised, I have a beautiful new piece of filet crochet to share with you today! I went at a much slower pace with this one and it was very relaxing. This is the Grand Lilies doily from Hass Design.

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It’s quite a bit smaller than the Leipzig doily and much less complicated. This design was nothing but open and filled squares with very few increases and decreases and I definitely recommend it if you’re just starting out. I used a size 7 hook and #10 thread and I think it came out well. It’ll look even better once I’ve blocked it but I need to get some blocking board and starch.

I highly recommend Hass Design for filet crochet patterns. They’re very reasonably priced, absolutely gorgeous, and supporting an independent designer is always a win. They also have crochet-alongs so you can learn filet crochet – that’s how I learned, years ago!

I’ve got something of a surprise for next week that I’m extremely excited about. It was a surprise to me as well. See you then!

Cats in Sweaters

I’m still working on my current filet crochet project so this week I’m going to show you something else I recently finished!

A cat I know was getting a shavedown because he was so matted (he’s 19 and not grooming as well as he used to) and it’s strangely cold in Texas right now that I decided to make him a little sweater! He doesn’t like his feet touched and I couldn’t find a pattern for what I was looking for so I chose to wing it!This is my cat Strider modeling the finished sweater. My shaved buddy is significantly bigger so it’s kind of long. Strider was very patient with me as usual.

I wanted to make a more “sweatery” sweater for our paraplegic clinic cat’s birthday so I used this pattern from Ravelry and Min Pin Sweaters and some greens that would compliment her eyes.

Strider once again helped me out when my other cats fled because he’s such a handsome and helpful boy. This is before I attached the sleeves. Please excuse the mess, we’re cleaning.

The finished sweater! Strider looks so handsome in this sweater I was a little sad I had to give it away. I settled for making it my phone’s wallpaper instead. And now for the birthday girl!

She looked so cute! Unfortunately that was the same day I had to go home with the second half of my flu so I missed the party but I’d like to believe she appreciates it.

Next week I’ll have my new filet project to show off! And…today is MY birthday! Woo!

The Flu is Good for Something, I Guess

So this year I managed to get the flu. Not just any flu, the new one that’s making people super sick. Good old H3N2. I was so sick, in fact, that I was stuck at home for two weeks and spent another week attempting not to cough and terrify our clients. However, I did use my time wisely. I got addicted to Gotham, watched all of Romero’s zombie movies, and rediscovered my love of filet crochet!

If you don’t know what filet crochet is, it’s a type of crochet done with tiny steel hooks that are measured in millimeters, and thread. It’s actually easy once you get the hang of it and looks very pretty. The hard part is reading the patterns, if you have a short attention span like me. Thankfully they’re almost always symmetrical. This is an example of a filet crochet pattern:

I found this one on Pinterest and would love to try it at some point! This is the one I did, though, and it took me exactly 3 weeks to finish!

I also included one with my obnoxious but adorable teenage cat Lemondrop for scale. It was a beast! And also very educational. I learned that a) filet is like riding a bike and b) ALWAYS look at the size of a pattern before you buy the damn thing.

I’m working on a new one now with lilies that’s much smaller and plan to share some progress pictures here so if you’ve been missing my crochet updates, you’ll be pleased!

Unfinished WIPs, Part Two

Since I finally finished my edits (hooray!), I am finally about to start working on my coworker’s baby gift. Hopefully I’ll be able to show it off to you next week but for this week it’ll be another WIP post.

Lacy Shells 1

This one was supposed to be a baby gift for my friend as well, but I was halfway through it when the baby decided she was going to come early! I spent my time visiting her and the baby, figuring I had plenty of time to finish it later. Her daughter is almost two now. Oops.

Lacy Shells 2

I went with this pretty sage green because it was one of the colors my friend went with during her baby decorating phase (she’s not a fan of pastels), and I was actually a little surprised the store had this color. I do intend to finish it one day, I’m just not sure when.

Triple Wave

This second one I started when we still lived in San Antonio. I picked it because it was a simple ripple that looked a lot more complicated with all the color changes. Unfortunately it was all the color changes that made me give up on it. It’s hard to zone out and watch a movie while crocheting when I have to weave in ends and switch colors every row.Yarn and Cat

 

I chose these colors because they looked so pretty sitting next to each other at the store, and I would love to go back to it one of these days. I have all the yarn already, but I don’t know where the pattern is and I can’t remember what size hook I used. Maybe it’ll end up being a project for when I get rich and retire. I didn’t win the Powerball drawing last week, though, so it’ll be a while before that happens.

I’m all out of WIPs in my closet now, so I’ll have to get on the crocheting ball again! The Spring Bouquet crochet exchange is coming up next month, though, so you’ll get to see my attempt at squares with pretty flowers on them. I’m brainstorming right now but I hope to come up with something good!

Unfinished WIPs, Part One

I’m still hard at work on edits of Detective’s Brother, so I haven’t gotten much crocheting done lately. Hopefully I’ll have time this weekend to start my coworker’s baby gift! She said her shower would be sometime in January but she didn’t specify. Pressure!

Anyhow, here are a couple of unfinished things I have laying around in my closet.

Pastel Baby Squares

These are a bunch of pastel granny squares that I intended to turn into a blanket at one time. The problem was that once I got finished making them all I was super disinterested in finishing the blanket. This is where the yarn I’m making the second baby sweater out of came from, in case you couldn’t tell.

Handwritten Pattern

Here’s the oh-so-professional pattern I scribbled down on an old work schedule. It was supposed to be a basic checkerboard pattern with a colorful edge and I do have plans to go back and finish it…someday.

Random Blue Squares

These squares were for some project I had in mind that I can no longer remember. I think I was going to make a bunch of them and make a blanket but I’m not sure. There were a couple more but the cats got into them and, well, no one wants a blanket made of chewed-up squares that smell like cat spit. I probably won’t go back to this project but I may use the squares in a random scrapghan project.

That’s it for this week on the crochet front. Hopefully I’ll have something more interesting for you next week!

Roundup!

Once more I have slacked off this week! I almost finished the scarf I was working on for the gift basket but that’s not terribly interesting. I didn’t finish the baby sweater and haven’t started on my coworker’s gift, which basically means I need to go hide in a corner until they’re both done.

The main reason I slacked off was because my editor finally sent me half the edits for Detective’s Brother and I’ve been working on those. She has some great suggestions and I’m glad to have her input. I really feel like she’s helping me polish my work into the best possible story, and I hope my readers feel the same way.

I’m also trying to work on an outline for a new Yeah Write series. I’ve got the idea, I just don’t have the time to work on it right now. Maybe after I send back these edits I’ll be able to do it, but for now it’s on the back burner.

And in the last piece of writing news, I found myself a new cover artist! She’s really great and her portfolio is amazing. We were bouncing some ideas off each other and I think she’s a great fit for the team. I can’t wait to see what she comes up with.

That’s pretty much it for this week. Hopefully I’ll have more to report next week, but for now it’s head down and back into the edits!