Sunday, January 26, 2014's cold outside!

photo credit: ehpien via photopin cc

Weathermen said the country will continue to experience cooler days until the end of February, when the northeast monsoon or “hanging amihan" weakens. The northeast monsoon is the cold air from China that starts blowing into the country every mid-October. It usually peaks from early January to mid-February.
Metro Manila recorded its coldest morning on Saturday with the temperature dipping 16.9 degrees Celsius. Not really bad...but I cannot imagine living in freezing temperatures in other countries!  
Anyways, here you can simply add layers to your clothing, and outer clothes don't have to be so thick. Time to make use of old cardigans and jackets , since most of it don't go out of style ;)
If you crochet or knit, now's the best time to wear your creations and make some more! I'm looking at my handmades to see what can be worn and also what needs washing. 

my crochet stuff
my crochet stuff
Even cotton scarves will get a lot of use now...since I normally don't wear them during the dry season.

I reminded my son of the scarf I gave him last's the time to try it on ;)

hdc rib scarf
modelling the scarf

crochet hdc rib scarf
gray ribbed scarf

This is approx. 60 inches long and 4 1/2 inches wide. Made from a cotton blend yarn (its unlabled yarn from Baguio City), worsted weight. I used 4mm hook with hdc ribbing for the main pattern. There's an sc ribbing in the middle part, which is unintentional...since I forgot where I left-off for a while, then I continued with sc ribbing. Then I went back to hdc ribbing ;)

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

From imagination to denim crafts and other projects

Imagination grows by exercise, and contrary to common belief, is more powerful in the mature than in the young. - W. Somerset Maugham

At the start of this year, I resolved to use my imagination crafting and in everyday life. For us crafters, we use imagination before we start projects. We imagine the color, texture, shape and size of our would-be creation. If we are using a ready-made pattern with photo or sample, we can almost be sure of how our project would look like...and if we use our imagination, we could see how it can be altered or modified.
So here's the story behind my first project for this year...
I volunteered to make the souvenirs for my baby nephew's christening on Jan.12...even if I didn't have a design in mind yet. I wasn't going to crochet it, since that would take a longer time...I already planned on using the denim scrap materials and other recyclable fabrics that abound in my stash, and was looking for inspiration. Soon as I saw the Christmas ornament below (while window-shopping after Christmas), I had a clearer idea of what to make.


As usual I overestimated myself and thought I could do at least 30 pcs. :p I managed to make 25, but that was enough ;). They all liked it, btw... :)

I predict I'm going to make more baby stuff soon... I'm very thankful for the new baby in our extended family ;) I'm always happy with each new addition, but this time it will be sweeter, since baby and his parents are living right next to our home :)

On to more projects...
I was working on some recycled denim bags, before I made the above souvenir items. I finished a sack bag and a tote, both of which I already used for shopping ;)
Here's the sack bag...front, back and inside. The lining is also recycled denim, which is wonderful for the built-in pockets...but makes the bag heavier than your usual fabric bag. The cord is crocheted using 3 strands of cotton thread (combined thickness is similar to that of worsted weight yarn). I used the crocheted cord in my pattern for Stylish Sack Bag.

And here's a simple tote lined with a lighter fabric, for use as a grocery shopping bag.

I also finished a Romantic Shrug in red cotton thread, a custom order for a friend. I modeled it here...its a bit big for me though ;)

That's all for now. Thanks for looking! If you have questions on the above projects, please let me know :)

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Crochet and Other Stuff in 2013

Hello, Happy New Year everyone! Starting off this year with my usual year-ender post ;)
First of all, a big THANK YOU to all my friends, crochet buddies and followers, for the inspiration and support the past year! Hopefully a lot of new stuff and surprises will be seen here in 2014. Meanwhile, please take a look at what crafty stuff I managed in 2013 :)

I started with 524 crochet projects in my Ravelry notebook this year, and ended with 554. Not really content with the additional 30 projects...I have to catch up in 2014! However, not much crafting time was lost since I was able to finish a custom order for a total of 70 handcrafted placemats (for The Breakfast Table) made from recycled denims. And I've yet to make some more for them... I also made other small recycled denim projects, mostly coasters :) I'm so looking forward to creating more projects using scrap denim fabrics :)
Here are some of my projects in 2013 (view on Ravelry):

Mimi's crochet stuff
2013 projects

I just realized that I added only 4 new designs on my Ravelry page. Hmm...other designs have remained unfinished or unpublished as of now. I vow to release more designs in 2014!
And I've got no excuse now, since my son bought me my own computer! And with a Starbucks planner, I should really be on my way to organizing everything (positively thinking!)

Starbucks planner
Dell Inspiron 14

So here are the 4 designs added in 2013:
Mimi Alelis Designs
2013 designs

Going around in circles scarf - free pattern here in my blog.
Hemp Tote - free pattern
Hibiscus Tunic - pattern published in Interweave Crochet Summer 2013.
In-a-jiffy belt - free pattern.

I did purchase a bit more yarn than I was able to unload from my stash by selling or using it. Hmm...I should be taking an inventory of my stocks soon! I do remember mistakenly buying a few acrylic yarns from Dreams shop in Makati when we had a crochet group meet-up, because I was in a hurry and thought it was cotton :p Anyways, more about yarns later ;)

The group meet-up in Makati was the only one we had last year. Thanks to our crochet buddy, Gerry, from Cebu. She took the time to see us last April 9, while here in Manila on a short visit :)

We also had some random meet-ups with Bheng (handmade by Bheng), which includes yarn and pattern sales/exchanges. And I've met-up several times with my crafting buddy, Catyanna, here in Quezon City. We all hope to have more meetups and vow to be more crafty and productive in 2014 :)