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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Merry Christmas

Can you believe Christmas is only a week away? 
Have you crocheted anything for Christmas this year, either gifts or items for your home? 





I have been in such a design slump lately; I started a set of Christmas doilies way back in the summer, and they still are not finished. I hope I will have them finished in time for next year!
But I hope you are doing well and enjoying this lovely season, and please know that even though I have not been posting much, I think of you often!
Merry Christmas!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Winner Is...and Happy Halloween!

The winner today is Susan.
Susan, if you will send me an email and let me know which one of my  patterns you would like, I will get it right out to you. 
I used to love scary movies, but I could never handle the gory ones. Now days, my favorite 'scary' movies are older ones that combine humor with just a bit of scare. Here are some of my all time favorites:
'Arsenic and Old Lace' with Cary Grant
'The Ghost and Mr. Chicken' with Don Knotts
'I Married a Witch' with Veronica Lake
'Murder He Said' with Fred McMurry and Marjorie Main
'It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!'
I hope your day is filled with lots of treats and no tricks! 
Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Winner Is...and Why Not?

The winner of yesterdays contest is Pam S. 
Pam, if you will send me an email and let me know which one of my  patterns you would like, I will get it right out to you. 
I loved reading your favorite scary stories (but believe me, I understand those of you who do  not want to read them, too!) 
The scariest book I ever read was called "Cold Moon Over Babylon" by Michael McDowell. It was so terrifying and sad that I could never read it a second time, even though  it was a really good book (if that makes any kind of sense- this is why I don't do book reviews on Amazon!) It is certainly the kind of book that will give you nightmares!

But I was thinking, since it has been so long since I had a contest, why not go ahead and have another one today?
So, let's have another contest! 
I will give one person their choice of any PDF pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 
I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns in the morning (Thursday.) I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back in the morning to see if you won. 
Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)
To enter, just leave a comment answering this question:
Do you have a favorite scary movie or tv program? (I know some of you answered this yesterday, it is okay to repeat your answer if you want to.)
This contest is now closed. 
Please check back soon for my next contest.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Trick or Treat!

Well, Hello there! Remember me? I am the lady who used to write this blog. I am sorry I have been absent for so long, but hopefully I can get back into the swing of blogging regularly. Since Halloween is right around the corner, let's have a contest. 





I will give one person their choice of any PDF pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 
I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns in the morning (Wednesday.) I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back in the morning to see if you won. 
Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)
To enter, just leave a comment answering this question:
What is your favorite scary book or story? Or do you not like scary stuff?

This contest is now closed. 
Please check back soon for my next contest.

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Stephanie's Cozy Cape

One of my great customers, Stephanie Mensch, sent me pictures of her Cozy Cape she recently finished. She made it from Homespun, and it turned out beautifully!
It really does look cozy, doesn't it?

Stephanie modified the pattern by making  chain spaces for buttonholes on the last row of the cuffs. 
Then she sewed buttons to the other side of the cuff; I think it looks great!


Are you thinking about fall yet? Now that August is here, cooler weather is right around the corner!
(First three pictures used courtesy of Stephanie Mensch)

Friday, June 21, 2013

And The Winner Is:


Darlene Smart (Darlene in Mobile)
Darlene,  if you will send me an email  and let me know which one of my other patterns you would like, I will get it and the "Dainty Little Doilies" pattern set right out to you. 





Do you like having the contests run for a longer amount of time, or do you prefer the one-day contests that I normally have? I got a lot more entries on this one.
I hope whatever you do this summer, you enjoy it, and try to squeeze in some crocheting whenever you can!
Thank you so much to everyone who entered! 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Win It Before You Can Buy It: A Contest!

I have been working very hard to get my newest doily set, "Dainty Little Doilies" finished up. It is a set of 13 different mini-doilies, none of them more than 6" across. They have been a lot of fun to design, but I have been ready to have them finished for a while now. 
Happily, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and the pattern should be available for purchase on my site very soon. 
But, in the meantime, let's have a contest!
 I will give one person a copy of the "Dainty Little Doilies" pattern, plus their choice of any other PDF pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 
This contest will run from today (June 17th) until next Friday, June 21. I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns on Friday morning. I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back to see if you won. 
Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)

To enter, just leave a comment answering this question:
Do you have any special plans for this summer (a trip, a special project, a reunion, etc?)

This contest is now closed. 
Please check back next Friday for my weekly contest.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

And the Winner Is:


Lauren LaFleur
Lauren, if you will send me an email  and let me know which pattern you would like, I will get it  right out to you. 


My daughter Amanda and I had several long discussions trying to decide if these ears belonged to an elf or a fairy.
In the end,  she  became the Woodland Fairy. 
 
I forgot to mention "fairy ears" when I was listing unusual things that I have crocheted yesterday. I am almost embarrassed to tell you how much time I spent trying to get the ears on this fairy just the way I wanted them, and then I covered most of them up with her hair. But, I like how they turned out. 
Thanks to everyone who entered!



Friday, May 17, 2013

Friday Contest and Bizarre Crochet

Many years ago, when I was just starting out as a free-lance crochet designer, I got a letter from a publishing company. They were asking for submissions of quick and easy crochet designs, items folks could make to sell at craft shows or bazaars.  My daughter Robyn watched me reading the letter, then asked me what it said. "They want me to come up with some  bazaar designs," I told her. 
"Hmmm. How about one of those things people make to cover up their toilet paper," she said. "They are pretty bizarre!"
I don't remember now exactly what I ended up submitting for that book, but as the years went by, I have designed my share of 'bizarre' items, including several toilet paper covers.
One reason I love doing my Lovely Ladies Doilies, is that they give me an excuse to create tiny little creatures and accessories, something I love to do, but wouldn't have much reason to design otherwise.
Snail from Woodland Fairy
Dragonfly and mushroom from Woodland Fairy
Bat from Stella Luna
Cat and pumpkin from Harvest Moon
Scottie dog from Lucy and Jack
Turkey from Angel of Thanksgiving
A cro-tat pattern set I did for Annie's Attic.
The little doll's skirt covers up a roll of toilet paper. 

But,  it is Friday, so how about a contest? I will give one person their choice of any PDF pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 
I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns in the morning (Saturday.) I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back in the morning to see if you won. 
Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)

To enter, just leave a comment answering this question:
What is the most unusual thing you have ever crocheted?


This contest is now closed. 
Please check back next Friday for my weekly contest.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

And the Winner Is:


 Koni

Koni, if you will send me an email and let me know which pattern you would like, I will get it  right out to you. 


This is a cover my daughter Bethany made for her Kindle. She not only crocheted it, she designed it, too. Can you tell what a proud mama I am?

Thanks to everyone who entered, and thank you to those of you who shared your memories.


Happy Mother's Day!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Happy Mother's Day, and a Friday Contest

Even though we crocheters are a diverse lot with different personalities and preferences, when it comes to our crocheting  I think there is one thing that we all agree on. We love  crochet, and want to pass that love on to future generations. So many folks have told me that they learned to crochet from their mother, grandmother, aunt or other family member. So many put in the time and effort it takes to teach their children or grandchildren to crochet. It is a link that ties the generations together. 
I learned to crochet from my mother, who did not have a lot of patience when it came to teaching (I like to think that she just had a high opinion of my ability to learn!) I wrote about this experience a few years ago:

http://bellacrochet.blogspot.com/2011/05/learning-to-crochet.html

I have 6 children and 15 grandchildren, and so far, the only ones that have learned to crochet anything more than a chain are my youngest daughter, Bethany, and my granddaughter, Ana.
But, I have hope that more of them will learn someday. 

My daughter Bethany, learning to crochet by making granny squares.

But,  it is Friday, so how about a contest? I will give one person their choice of any PDF pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 
I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns in the morning (Saturday.) I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back in the morning to see if you won. 
Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)

To enter, just leave a comment answering this question:
Did you learn to crochet from a family member, or have you taught any younger generations of your family to crochet?
This contest is now closed. 
Please check back next Friday for my weekly contest.

Saturday, May 04, 2013

And the Winner Is:


Jena


Jena, if you will send me an email and let me know which pattern you would like, I will get it  right out to you. 

When I was posting pictures of birds I have crocheted, I forgot to add a picture of my little turkey. He is part of the 'Angel of Thanksgiving' doily, and one of the more unusual things I have ever designed. Maybe next week, I will do a post on the strangest things I have ever crocheted!

Friday, May 03, 2013

Crocheting Birds and a Friday Contest

My granddaughter Ana sent me a letter a few weeks ago. She is in the choir at her school, and they are selling subscriptions to magazines in order to raise money for a trip. While I was trying to make up my mind what to order, one title caught my eye; "Birds and Blooms." I seem to remember my mother used to subscribe to this magazine years ago, so I ordered it (along with another year of 'Southern Living') hoping it will give me some inspiration for a new set of doilies.
I have been really wanting to design more doilies featuring birds and flowers (with some butterflies thrown in  for good measure.) I will call the set 'Birds, Blossoms, and Butterflies' or "Flora and Fauna' or something like that.
It kind of surprised me when I went back through my patterns and realized how many doilies featuring birds I have already made:





But,  it is Friday, so how about a contest? I will give one person their choice of any PDF pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 

I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns in the morning (Saturday.) I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back in the morning to see if you won. 

Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)
To enter, just leave a comment answering this question:
Do you have a favorite bird? If so, what is it?

This contest is now closed. 
Please check back next Friday for my weekly contest.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

And the Winner Is:

Pam S

Pam, if you will send me an email  and let me know which pattern you would like, I will get it  right out to you. 
I entered this afghan in a contest Annie's Attic held back in the 90's. It was for crocheted quilts and afghans (I am still not sure what a crocheted quilt is.) It did not win, but they bought the design anyway and published it several times. 
If anyone knows of someone who ever entered the national contest I wrote about yesterday, I would love to hear from them. It doesn't matter if they won or not, I just think it would be interesting  to hear about the experience!
Thanks to everyone who entered!

Friday, April 26, 2013

My Friday Contest (and some Crochet History)

A window display in Perry's department store in Gilmer, Tx, circa 1956.
Photo credit: "Growing Up Gilmer" Facebook Page. 
Back in the 30's,  40's and 50's, there was an annual National Crochet Contest (it was not held for 6 years during WWII, due to  shortages of crochet cotton). It was sponsored by a group called the  National Crochet Bureau, and thousands of crocheters entered each year. There were special divisions for teenage girls, women over 65, and a division for men. To qualify for entry in the contest, each item had to have already won a blue ribbon at a state or local fair. There were categories for tablecloths, bedspreads, luncheon sets, doilies and scarves, chair sets, household accessories, hats and bags, and edgings or insertions (I believe the categories changed somewhat over the years.)
The winners received cash prizes, and an all-expense paid trip to New York City, where they appeared on a radio program and were given a tour of the city. 
I found several newspaper articles about the contest by doing a Google search for 'National Crochet Contest', and I found this article from the Talking Crochet Newsletter about the very first contest:
The picture above was taken in my home town of Gilmer, Texas in 1956, a year before I was born. It shows a display in the window of Perry's department store which features posters advertising the national contest. Don't you wish it was in color so we could get a better look at all of that thread? I miss Perry's, which closed down several years ago; I bought my first balls of crochet thread there back in the 70's!

But,  it is Friday, so how about a contest? I will give one person their choice of any PDF pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 

I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns in the morning (Saturday.) I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back in the morning to see if you won. 

Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)
To enter, just leave a comment answering this question:
Have you ever won a crochet contest?

This contest is now closed. 
Please check back next Friday for my weekly contest.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

And the Winner Is:


Vee

Vee, if you will send me an email  and let me know which pattern you would like, I will get it  right out to you. 
Annie's Tea Room in Big Sandy, Texas.
Picture Credit: 

Upshur County, TXGenWeb
Someone wrote and asked me if the tea room in Big Sandy I that I mentioned yesterday was the one run by Annie Potter, who founded Annie's Attic. It was indeed; I worked in the editorial department of Annie's Attic for several years, and then as the in-house designer. The Tea Room was right across the street from the office I worked in, and it was always a treat to have lunch there. It closed several years ago, and I am not sure if it has reopened or not. But it was a lovely place to have a glass of tea!
Thanks to everyone who entered!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Tea Time and a Contest

I love tea pots, even though I seldom use one. Living in the south, I prefer my tea iced, and make it by the gallon in a pitcher, although I don't drink sweet tea anymore. In my neck of the woods, making sweet tea meant adding 1-2 cups of sugar to a gallon of tea; I don't even want to know how many calories that would be per glass! So, even though I loved it and drank it daily when I was growing up, I now stick to unsweetened tea (I don't like the taste of artificial sweeteners.)
When I worked in Big Sandy, Texas it was a special treat to go to Annie's Tea Room for lunch; I loved their special flavored teas. They had hot tea available, but we always ordered iced. When it is 95 degrees in the shade, a cup of anything hot just doesn't appeal to me.
But, my point was (can you believe I had one, lol!) that even though  I don't use them very often, I do love tea pots, and have several designs featuring them.

One of Grandmama's Favorite Potholders
Tea Party Doily
Time for Tea Set
And it is Friday, so how about a contest? I will give one person their choice of any pdf pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 
I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns in the morning (Saturday.) I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back in the morning to see if you won. 

Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)

To enter, just leave a comment answering this question: 
Do you drink tea, and if so do you prefer it hot or iced? Sweet or unsweet?

This contest is now closed. 
Please check back next Friday for my weekly contest.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

And the Winner Is:


 Kaylene


 Kaylene, if you will send me an email  and let me know which pattern you would like, I will get it  right out to you. 
Thank you to everyone who entered!

Friday, April 05, 2013

Pink Roses and a Friday Contest

When I was in second grade, everyone in my class made cardboard Easter Bunnies to hang in the hallway of our school. My teacher had brought several books of wall paper samples for us to use, and we were allowed to pick the samples we liked best to make clothing for our bunnies. Mine had a blue dress, a yellow bonnet and lots of pink flowers all over it.  When my mother came to the school for our Easter party, I proudly showed her the bunnies lining the hallway and asked her to guess which one was mine. She immediately pointed at mine and said "This one is yours." I was amazed and thought she must have some kind of special psychic powers that allowed her to pick my bunny out of the dozens on the wall. Years later, when I asked her how she knew which one was mine, she said "It was easy; I just picked the one with all of the pink flowers on it."  
Because, it seems, I have always had a thing for pink flowers; especially roses. 

I would really love to put them on everything I design, but honestly, I do try to use some restraint.
                     But still, I add them whenever I can. 


I guess if I had to pick just one thing that defines my style, I would say that it would be pink roses. I just love everything about them. 

But, it is Friday, so how about a contest? I will give one person their choice of any pdf pattern on my site, bellacrochet.com. 

I will select the winner at random, and send out the patterns in the morning (Saturday.) I will post the name of the winner here, so be sure to check back in the morning to see if you won. 


Also, if you post anonymously, please be sure I have a way to identify you (at least give your first name or a nick name in your comment; I have no way of knowing who is posting.)
To enter, just leave a comment answering this question: 

Do you have a favorite style element that you like to use when it comes to crochet? (Irish Roses, pineapples, textured stitches like popcorns or clusters, etc?)


This contest is now closed. 
Please check back next Friday for my weekly contest.