Posts Tagged ‘crochet’

Series of challenges

October 5, 2011

I started this week with energy and a long to-do list. Mom went back to Maryland on Friday, I had Saturday to miss her, and Sunday to get started on my deadlines. Sunday went well enough, but Monday . . . didn’t. Somehow the cough that I thought was on its way out turned itself around. By Tuesday night it was back in full swing – along with a scratchy throat and strained vocal chords, to the extent that this morning when Mom called she thought my husband had answered the phone. So I said a prayer of thanks that Sunday was productive, because I did manage to get finished with my absolutely-must-accomplish-now list.

This first project, however, is not from that list. This is one of the boxes Mom and I made for the crocheted angels. Mom glanced at the soda carton and thought it might be the right size if we cut it down a bit. I pulled out the scissors, hot glue gun and some Christmas fabric.

We made the lid from poster board. Mom was delighted to find a way to recycle the soda carton. I was thrilled to have another use for the stack of Christmas fabric that never seems to get smaller no matter how many projects I make.

Another item on the list was the Challenge Group project. Our assignment was to take a garment-related phrase and turn it into something else. My phrase was “she pursed her lips.” As it happens, my friend Ann Anastasio and I are working on a series of patterns (loosely) based on our novel, Death by Chenille, and its sequel-in-progress, When Chenille Is Not Enough. I decided to use the Challenge project to play around with purse designs.

This inside pocket is made from chenille (like I said, loosely based on the book).

Last on the list is “do something with the rest of the apples.”

I’ve made enough apple crisps for the season, there is no more room in the freezer for applesauce, and I’ve filled three containers with dried apples. Recipes are welcome, but I should tell you I’m a vegetarian so your German grandmother’s pork and apple bake won’t work for me. Here’s one for you, however:

Potato-apple tart

1 large potato, sliced paper-thin

1 large Granny Smith apple, sliced thin

3 oz Gruyeres, sliced thin

2 onions, sliced thin

1 tsp butter

1 tsp olive oil

tsp flour

1/2 cup milk

1 sheet puff pastry

Slice the potato, apple and cheese and set aside. Melt the butter with the olive oil over medium heat. Add onions, and cook until caramelized or until you run out of patience stirring the rascals. Add flour and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, add milk. Stir until milk stops bubbling, then return to very low heat and cook until thickened.

Spread puff pastry on a buttered baking dish. Layer potato, apple and cheese slices in center, leaving an inch of pastry all around to turn up. Pour onion mixture over top (you may want to spread it gently if it is very thick). Turn up edges of pastry. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.


September 21, 2011

I spent a lot of time messing up the sewing room this week. Aside from the usual detritus from my projects, there were kits to cut, and embellishments to unearth for Mom’s craft project. She brought five crocheted angels to finish.

Two of the gang of five

Her local craft stores hadn’t stocked wired ribbon in the patterns she wanted for the angels’ skirts, but she knew it was only a matter of days before the holiday displays would appear. Sure enough, the day after she arrived we went shopping and found exactly what she wanted.

Last year we worked on the Christmas ornaments together, but attaching the angel skirts is really a one-woman job:

Lily dressing angels

These angels can be used as tree toppers, but I might just use mine as a table decoration. If it’s up at the top of the tree, you can’t seen the cool use of a party hat to make her stand up:

Mom also brought another topper:

She decided to use up the half-skeins of yarn left over from other projects through the years. She planned to donate all the hats to a local charity, but apparently my nieces snagged the first two she made, and she thought I would like the blue one (which I do). The charity will still have plenty of hats, however, because Mom was a prolific crocheter in years past – and she never throws out anything.

And you thought my pack rat tendencies just came from being a quilter!