My designs can be categorized in three groups: The Beasts, The Things, and The Other Stuff.
The Beasts are all massive, textured mandala blankets. Each of The Beasts is large enough to lay well on even king sized mattresses with overhang.
The Things are the polar opposite of The Beasts. Tiny doilies and lace work.
The Other Stuff are wearables, smaller designs, and experiments that worked.
All of my patterns, excluding those available for free under the Free Patterns drop down menu, are available in my shop or on Ravelry and Etsy.
An odyssey is defined as a long, wandering journey or an intellectual or spiritual quest. I found the name Odyssey fitting for my first mandala blanket pattern. For me, this was a journey in self discovery, confidence, and creativity. My dog, Ziggy, was prominently featured in each picture of the progress of the pattern, so I felt she needed a little recognition in the title as well. Welcome to Ziggy's Odyssey. I hope you enjoy the trip.
When you take your first peek, please don’t get intimidated. Work one stitch at a time, just one stitch. No matter how fast or slow anyone works, we all work one stitch at a time. While working you may get frustrated with the pattern, with my writing, or with yourself. Be patient. Remember that this was the first pattern I have written and all frustration should be aimed at my inexperience. I’ve grown since writing this. My writing has improved. Should you feel the need to scream in frustration, you should let it all out and then get in touch with me. I’m happy to help.
This pattern was born as a 2 foot table art mandala for a father’s day gift for a friend. Her description of her father was simply “an old hippie who loves hiking, the woods, and fairies. He has small fairy statues on his tabletop I’d like something to go with those.” The design went from the original “fairy garden” piece to a massive 8 foot blanket that needed four section redesigns, a “set it aside” pep talk from my mom, a two month hiatus, and maybe just a little fairy magic to finally be complete. I hope you enjoy your visit to my garden.
During the final phase of designing Kaleidoscope Garden I was approached by someone looking for a peacock design. The moment I read the words on the screen I saw in my mind so many bits and pieces of what could be something amazing. I was intimidated by my vision, and stalled the start of the design by researching. I spent hours upon hours looking at peacock pictures, picking and choosing different looks, shapes, and textures that called to me. The birds in flight being the most terrifying thing I have ever needed to create out of yarn. Those birds in didn’t just call to me, they screamed my name. I tried to bring all the different things those hours of research showed me together in a design that can be used to bring any majestic bird or fantasy creature, not just a peacock, to life with color and texture to achieve the look or feel each person would want in their blanket.
In the mid 1990’s strange, circular drawings were found on the sea floor off the coast of Japan. Beautiful, circular drawings in the sand measuring approximately 7 feet across. It was discovered that the artist behind these sand mandalas was a newly discovered species of puffer fish. The small, approximately 5 inches, male puffer fish would work days moving sand and constructing the peaks and valleys of the design simply by flapping his fins, then decorating his work with bits of shells. The laborious design is all to attract a mate. If the female puffer fish likes the design she will lay her eggs in the fine sand at the center for the male to then fertilize.
This design spent a few months floating around in my head. I discovered the art of the Japanese puffer fish not long after I designed Ziggy’s Odyssey, but became sidetracked with Kaleidoscope Garden, Midsummer Nights, and then Flight of Fantasy. The mandala was brought back to my attention toward the end of designing Flight, the rest is history. This design is delicate and flowing. The colors I chose help give the it movement and an appearance of depth without having to use too much texture, which I felt would take away from the design.
Based on a short video clip of the Halitrephes Maasi jelly.
The Halitrephes Maasi jellyfish, also known as the fireworks jelly, can be found 4,000 feet underwater near Baja, California. The jellyfish is almost invisible until illuminated where it then reflects the light in a bursting, fireworks pattern.
My goal for this design was to capture the still image of the jelly, and trick the brains of viewers into seeing depth and movement. Using dark colors as the deep sea background, the transparent jelly appears to float. The tentacles of the jellyfish in the design are "drawn" over the background with post stitches and capped with puffs or popcorn stitches. A fringe border adds the final touch of tentacles to bring the whole design together.
Designed with Paintbox Simply Aran yarn for a soft, squishy, and luxurious finish while still being affordable to work the pattern to the end.
If you’ve worked any of my patterns before you may have noticed my introductions usually include the inspiration for the design and fun facts I found interesting while researching that particular project. I give everyone the backstory to the design. This one has a longer story than the rest:
In the spring of 2018 the eruption of Kilauea was all I saw on the nightly news. Around the same time California began burning. Every evening while I worked on Strigidae Bubo I saw fire consuming countryside, homes, lives. Pictures and videos were being shared on social media of hillsides burning, driving roads surrounded by fire, lava flowing, smoke, explosions, everything burning. The night photography captivated me. I saw the beauty in all of the destruction.
I spent months researching volcanoes and wildfires. Lava lakes, lava flow, the temperature of molten rock, wildfire damage, burn rates, cost of destruction, anything and everything associated with these types of disasters filled my search history. I was armed with knowledge, pictures, and statistics to create this volcano/wildfire inspired design.
I started this one in September 2018. My life took a hard turn that early fall, and I was full of anger, resentment, and hurt. I was overwhelmed. I was scared. This design became less about the volcano and wildfire and more about finding some way to give my inner torture a voice. When I look at it now I see the anger, the insecurity, and the fear in the design. I see a picture of my emotions put on display for everyone to see. As a very private person this one is difficult to share.
Luca, my boy, my heart, was at my feet the whole time. The gentle giant gave me comfort and warmth while I exorcised my demons. He is, in fact, at my feet at this very moment offering warmth and comfort while I type this intro.
Thank you for your support, especially with this one.
Nymphaea Capensis, or the cape blue waterlily is native to Africa, but grows as an introduced species in other tropical regions. This bulb of this aquatic plant is able to survive long periods of time without water. It lays in dry riverbeds until rain and runoff fill the beds. When this happens the bulbs sprout leaves and bloom.
This design had no plan, no theme or color palette. The yarn I used called to me as I was cruising online retailers looking for something new, natural, and luxurious to play with. The colors that jumped into my cart screamed my name. Rich jewel tones and earthy greens with a few neutral tones. All colors I use quite often, but never all together.
The Storm simply translated to Italian. Dark, hectic, building in strength and intensity. La Tempesta can be a story of so many things, while being a story of absolutely nothing at the same time.
This pattern is available free as a CAL. Visit the Strigidae Bubo page to get started.
I am super excited about this short adventure we are about to start. This CAL done my way has been in the works for MONTHS! I knew it was coming, but could not for the life of me decide on a design I felt was an accurate representation of my work without being overly complex or simple. When what was known as The Owl during designing was coming together I knew I had it.
I don't follow rules well, and I've always done things my own way so I decided to put together a release for Strigidae Bubo in a CAL done my way. This design is written and published in "Sort of CAL" format. I've been asked may times to do a real CAL and this is as close as I am bound to get. This pattern is a good place to begin if you would like to try one of my large designs, but find yourself intimidated by how complex they look.
Toward the end of 2019 I was struggling with designing. I spent the first part of the year in a creative frenzy that all came crashing down in September. Nothing worked. I hated everything that came off my hook. It was all so tired and done before. I lost every bit of my crojo. I was adrift in my fog of zero creativity. Christmas rolled around and I felt the need to get out my hook and try again. This time I was going to try something new.
This design played on my feelings that everything was tired and done before. If I was going to be stuck in a rut I was going to use it to my advantage. The plan was to take my favorite, most visually appealing design elements from my previous designs and make them play together in what my mind wanted to call a square dance.
This dancing square grew and grew. It pleased my eyes and settled my mind. It helped me find that passion for the big, ultra textured crochet blanket designing I fell in love with. While this one is nothing new or groundbreaking in my little niche of the crochet world, it is not the same old same old flowery mandala piece. There are no loops, no swirls, no curves, no picots. Only sharp angles and crisp lines.
New pattern update includes Coddiwomple integration instructions.
Coddiwomple has been in the works for some time now. First as a little tickle in the back of my mind every time I had my hook in hand. Slowly it grew from a vague idea of taking all of my other designs and creating match points where they could all be swapped and blended with each other to a fully interchangeable and completely customizable design of its own. Coddiwomple is not just a design, it is a journey with no set destination.
Each person... each coddiwompler begins their journey with choosing how they would like their piece to start from one or more of six blocks and one mandala. From that beginning they must then choose their path of shape changes through their piece. Will it start with a single block, change to circle, change to octagon, then back to circle, and finally finishing as a square? Will it start with a mandala, change to a star, finish as a circle? Will it grow to be an enormous 8 ft beast, or finish as a modest 50 inch throw? There are options for combining multiple blocks, adding block edging, and different borders for an almost infinite number of possibilities for each person’s finished piece.
Anthozoa - a class of marine invertebrates which includes the sea anemones, stony corals and soft corals.
Yarns available from Get Knitfaced in CO. Dyed to be florescent under black light. This design was inspired by and played with the textures and sights you would see in a reef tank or coral reefs in the wild. It was a lot of fun playing with florescent yarn.
This standalone pattern is also an expansion of Coddiwomple.
a luminous halo around a shadow projected by the sun onto a cloud or fog bank.
This standalone pattern is also an expansion of Coddiwomple, bringing even more interchangeable options to the table, including a new finishing shape and border for the largest size.
Covy, our covid puppy, is a silly, sweet, snorting, snoring, slobbering, shedding, basketball loving bundle of pure happiness and joy. She is that sappy saying “live, laugh, love” in dog form. She is not, however, a cuddler. Covy gets hot easily and quickly and spends most of her summer sleeping time in front of a fan on our bare hardwood floors or on one of our preschool cot dog beds to stay cooler.
Something about this design was a magnet for Miss Covy. I couldn’t have it anywhere on or near the floor without her flopping down on it for a nice, long, loud, drooling nap. When I first noticed her habit I thought maybe it was a fluke, she just wanted to be closer to me and the other two dogs while they relaxed on the couch as I worked. As the days went by and she continued to flop down on any piece of the design she could get ahold of I knew this was her design and the title would reflect that.
This is another standalone design that is also an expansion of Coddiwomple.
When designing this piece the most common comments I received on the pictures posted were along the lines of “magical, witchcraft, sorcery.” As usual, none of those words felt like they fit the feeling of the design. When this happens I start plugging words into translate to find something that feels right while still using the theme of the comments. This time most of the commonly used words translated to Magji or Magjia.
This design DOES NOT work with Coddiwomple.
Names for my designs come to me fairly easily. This one was no exception, it spent most of the designing process named Shit Storm. Every time I sat down with the plan of designing for a few hours or a whole day some kind of shit storm blew up that I would then have to spend days dealing with or sorting out. It got to be where I would have panic attacks every time I sat down to work. Naming it Shit Storm brought a smile to my face, but I knew I had to change it ever so slightly to soothe the spirits of those that find spicy words offensive. I turned to Google Translate to help me. As I was plugging away looking for a translation that had the right sound and messaging with my admin team the words we each liked I tried to type out paskamyrsky, the Finnish translation of shit storm. My phone’s autocorrect decided I meant to say pasta mercy. The amount of joy and laughter that word combination brought me made every homeowner’s catastrophe that happened while designing almost worth it. From that moment on Shit Storm lived on as Pasta Mercy.
Another standalone design that is also an expansion of Coddiwomple.
Photo courtesy of Jennifer B. Allan
I wanted to play around with the idea of making a smaller afghan and a wearable piece out of the same design. The idea in my head was to release one document download with two variations included. I thought it would be a fun little twist to the worked in the round mandala designs I love so much.
Naming this design Morphed Madness was an easy choice. The design morphs, or changes, from a lapghan to a shawl. The madness came in to play when it took way longer than I expected to get the shawl section written. The whole thing made me a little crazy.
This is my most basic design, lacking a lot of the overlay and intricacies I have become known for, but it still impresses.
Using any bulky yarn makes this a quick project to work.
A section of La Tempesta stuck with me after I finished that particular part of the design in the late spring/ early summer of 2019*. The lace section with solid “spades” and chains wouldn’t leave my mind. I played with the shape and layout a bit at the end of Thing 5, but I knew it had something more to give. These “spades” were calling to me and begging me to make them into a shawl of all things.
The story for this design is told in positive and negative space as opposed to using texture and contrasting colors to give the design its voice. As the design was unfolding I worried it would fall flat and end up being just another shawl among an endless list of shawls. I worried even as I completed my final stitch and sewed in my ends. I worried every single step of the way until I pinned it to the mat to block. I stood up and looked at the design for the first time as a finished piece and all of my worries were gone.
Eruption is the only design I have ever completed that looks the same as a finished piece as it did in my head before it was started.
When I finish a design I often give members of my group the opportunity to suggest names for the design. There are always a lot of great suggestions and I occasionally pick one of them or a variation of one. This is one of those occasions.
Arianrhod is the Celtic goddess of fertility, rebirth, and weaving cosmic time and fate. Her symbols include the silver wheel and weaving implements.
Every year at work we draw names for Christmas gift exchange. This year I drew Stephanie’s name. I spun up a beautiful alpaca and angora blend yarn and whipped up a quick scarf design as a part of her gift.
I cleaned up the design a bit while I made it a second time with a commonly available yarn. This simple and quick design is now available as my gift to you.
This pattern is available for free under the Free Patterns drop down menu, or hit the button below and go there to get started.
Unicorn farts has been in the in the pipeline for some time. I struggled with this design more than any of the others. The small size and the extra cute theme were a challenge to my dark and twisty nature. The hearts and corner butterflies are worked in the round as a part of the pattern, none of that pesky stitching and joining for me.
This design is perfect for the little, or not so little, girly girl in your life. The size is perfect as a large baby blanket or lapghan for adults.
The Fried Egg Potholder was the first pattern I ever wrote. It is a very simple design with a very short list of supplies. All you need is 20 yards of 100% cotton yarn (I used Lilly Sugar n' Cream yellow), a full ball of 100% cotton yarn (I used Lily Sugar n' Cream soft ecru), an H hook, scissors, and a darning needle.
The construction is simple. You make two copies of the same pattern worked in the round. There's nothing fancy to it, and no tricky stitches to slow you down.
The final round is worked through both layers to stitch them together for a thick potholder to protect your hands or counter tops. This is a single sitting project start to finish. If you're new to my designs this is a perfect place to start getting familiar with my writing style and the layout I use in paid patterns.
I had big dreams for this design when I was planning it, but this one had other plans. It wanted to stay at a manageable size and keep a fun hexagon finish. Despite multiple shape changes it still remains relatively simple and fun to work.
In the beginning this design was going to be ripples, broomstick lace, and pineapples. I was so excited to finally design something with broomstick lace I was positively giddy. About a week into the design Covid 19 took over everything. The country shut down, my state went into lockdown, and the only thing everyone was talking about was protecting yourself from the virus. The design started speaking to me, it wanted to be the graphs and animations of viral spread with and without social distancing. As always, when the design speaks to me I listened and let it do what it wanted to do. I am thankful I got to keep the ripples and pineapples, but sad it took away the broomstick.
While working with tiny yarn and tiny hooks is stressful for some I do hope this design is not half as stressful the past few months have been for the entire world. Please enjoy and stay healthy.
A vesica piscis is a mathematical shape formed by the intersection of two circles with the same radius. It is found in Christian art, Freemasonry, Gothic Architecture, and sacred geometry. This unique shape has called me for a few months begging to be made into a wrap that wears easily around the shoulders or pulled over your head as a shoulder wrap and hood. Using a lightweight yarn allows it to easily be used as a scarf as well.
My Vesica Piscis was designed using angora, merino, and silk blend yarn from my animals and then dyed after finishing. Any light sport or heavy fingering weight can be used for this design.
Simple but elegant slouchy hat and matching fingerless gloves.
This design project was a birthday gift for my mom. For her birthday I told her she had to come over and pick her fiber, or her yarn, and I would design something just for her. My plan was a hat or something small, but she was so excited talking about a lacy shoulder wrap/scarf deal... not the direction I had planned but, hey, what momma wants, momma is gonna get. She liked a lot of the colors of my on hand rovings and enjoyed the feel of my hand spun but nothing had the perfect combination of feel AND color... what momma wants, momma's gonna get. So, she picked her fiber blends for the plies, her colors, and now she has her own design in her own colors.
This was a fun challenge of building the yarn for the project, except I was building the yarn for the project I was building for the yarn. I’m excited to play with this whole build the entire piece from thin air again in the very near future.
Another design in my series of projects of building the yarn for the project I built for the yarn. This design was built for a very special yarn, my handspun angora and cashmere two ply. This yarn was made from Betty’s 2022 show coat where she went undefeated on the show table and brought me my very first Open Best in Show title.
Undefeated spent a while simply sketched in my notebook with small modifications here and there while I worked on other projects. When it came time to finally work on it, I completed the first two drafts in Hobbii Sultan Deluxe yarn while I worked out the kinks of the design I completed on paper long before. Version 1 was a much smaller mesh that ate yarn I didn’t have to spare with the final version. Version 2 reworked the design to include 3 layers of the “arrows” while still falling within the limits of yardage I needed for the final handspun version.
I’m pleased with how this pet project of mine has encouraged me to spin with much more purpose than I have in the past. I had always made the pretty yarn then found something to make with the hank that fit what it was. Building these projects from every angle from the ground up has been a refreshing challenge I plan to continue for as long as I am able.
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