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Bloglovin and the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern

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Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket and Bloglovin

Today is the first day for the  release of the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern. Perfect for any rainbow lover the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern is a simple intermediate pattern. Chocolate Dog Studio is now included in the Bloglovin blog roll.

Being Creative

Sometimes being creative is elusive- like chasing lightning bugs on a summers night. You chase it around, stalking it and just when you think you have the idea or a good handle on the topic POOF. It’s gone and you are stuck in the dark without a flashlight and you stumble around until you get back on the path. The past several months have been like this as stumbling around on crutches has been about all I can do. There have been some flashes of insight and 2 definite crochet ideas that I can’t wait to share. The crutches and pain meds have kept these two projects under wraps longer than they should have been. I have not been at my best and writing patterns has been beyond concentration.

It has been a struggle. Things are looking up-even though the weather is overcast and gloomy. I am here in the studio for the first time in 2 1/2 months. So all is right and work is happening, finally. The yarn has all migrated back here as well and will soon be filling the shelves of Yarntopia and the yarn annex/doll houses again.   The alarm keeps going off to remind me to stand up and put weight on my feet to keep them limber.

 the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern

 

I am so glad that life is going to be getting back to normal.   The colors I have been working with keep showing up in the little yarn balls that I rolled up on Saturday. Aren’t they pretty and this is just a few of them. As usual, here at Chocolate Dog Studio there are even more colors used than were pictured here.

 the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern

 

 

The Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket

The first new pattern for 2018 is the Sunshine and Shadows crochet blanket pattern. It reminds me a bit of the Rainbow Granny Stripe crochet blanket from several years ago. There aren’t many colors that aren’t included in the Sunshine and Shadows crochet blanket pattern.

 the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern

It started like this. Beautiful ombre stripes of yellow and pinks and red.

           the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern     the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern

Soon it had purples added to make it  a little wider. It just grew like magic from the yarn. I couldn’t put it down long without adding another row to it.

The longest it sat alone was about 8 hours while I decided which color to add next; the blues or the violets or overnight when I was sleeping.

The border needed to be simple and neutral as there were so many colors already in this crochet blanket. It would be so easy to change the border to blue or purple and emphasize a favorite color range. The beautiful rainbow stripes reminded of the good times and harder times in life and the rainbow that comes out after a storm. This is why it is named Sunshine and Shadows. It crochets up fast and makes a great gift for family or close friends. Imagine what a lovely blanket this would make for someone with a serious illness. How cheerful it would be! It is twice as warm as usual due to being crocheted with two strands of yarn. This pattern is available now here in the shop and then also on Etsy.

the Sunshine and Shadows Crochet Blanket Pattern

 

Coming up soon

There are several other patterns in the works and they are close to being finished.

Bloglovin and the Sunshine and Shadow Crochet Blanket Pattern                                            Bloglovin and the Sunshine and Shadow Crochet Blanket Pattern

 

 

 

The weather is beautiful  here this week. Lovely weather that makes you want to work in your garden and set out plants. It is still too early here for anything other than bulbs. While I am wishing for gardening. I am also ready for a little more snow it makes me want to spend time crocheting. What is going on at your house? Snow? rain or just cold weather?

 

talk to you later,

Karen

 

 

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Business Boutique and Chocolate Dog Studio

Business Boutique

If you have ever wanted a little behind the scenes look at the how and why I started Chocolate Dog Studio, today is your chance. A couple of years ago I attended a Business Boutique seminar in Nashville Tennessee. Business Boutique is a wonderful conference for women  that have ever thought about starting, wanted to start, or are entrepreneurs. There were women there from all walks of business from the Multi Level Marketing groups to women starting businesses in everything from gluten free crackers (that were delicious), to physical therapists. Everyone is so encouraging and nice. Just plain nice and interested in why you are there and you business idea. It was amazing.

There was an opportunity for a podcast interview and I seized the opportunity.  I was so very nervous during this interview. It was really way outside my comfort zone. Now two years later hearing it for the first time this morning, I was totally overwhelmed. I sound so confident and in charge and I must admit that many times as a creative person; I am more of a mess than organized but there is a method in my madness.  If  you only want to hear my bit of the interview it starts about the 39 minute mark and last for about 4-5 minutes, not long at all.

https://www.businessboutique.com/podcast/how-to-use-storytelling-in-your-business/

This podcast interview was recorded by Christy Wright at a Nashville Tennessee Business Boutique conference. If you are a woman starting a business then go and soak up as much information as you can. I highly recommend the conferences and her book. It is uniquely tailored to fit women and their needs in running and starting a business.

Yarn

I intend to spend it crocheting and patterrn writing, so I’ll leave you with an inspirational photo or two of  yarn! I have to confess that I did buy yarn at the post Holiday sales and drastically increased my stash, but that means that I can crochet more!

Business Boutique and Chocolate Dog Studio

 

 

Some new stash that came in after Christmas

 

Business Boutique and Chocolate Dog Studio

 

And then there is the old stuff that keeps hanging around no matter how much I use it, it never seems to decrease in mass. It never ever goes away, the more you use it up the more you have left over.  I think a scrap afghan is in my not so distant future.

 

 

Business Boutique and Chocolate Dog Studio

 

talk to you later,

Karen

P.S. I have to say that I am not paid by Business Boutique either for the interview or this blog post today.

 

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Tiny Squares and Long Ombre Stripes

Tiny Squares and Ombre Stripes

The tiny squares are a tiny bit frustrating. Like really, really frustrating but they come out so beautifully in this lovely pillow cover. Here is a quick look at it before the ends were sewn in and it sewn together. This pattern will be released next week. It isn’t difficult just time consuming.

Tiny Squares and Long Ombre Stripes

They are not my thing. They are fussy and time consuming and there are so many, many ends to sew in. It is fun to see how the patchwork look does show up as I thought it would but The ends will drive you to distraction.Tiny Squares and Long Ombre Stripes

Tiny Squares and Long Ombre Stripes

They are also boring, but I’m finished with this pattern and idea, for now. It seemed like a great idea at the time but sometimes you need to rethink your plans and go back to the basics long ombre stripes. This was pure joy to crochet and took a little over two days to complete. The pattern is in the process of being written and will be in the shops soon!

Tiny Squares and Long Ombre Stripes

Time Flies

Time flies, but not when you want it to. Have you ever noticed that time is scarce when you need it most and overwhelming when it you are forced to do something you do not like. I have been sitting around for the better part of almost 8 weeks and it might as well have been 6 months. It feels like 6 months but it has only been 8 weeks. Christmas and New Years have come and gone. The family gatherings are over and we are deep into winter, here. Crocheting has just started here after the forced sabbatical due to foot surgery. Here it is the middle to the end of January and I had to tell the kids to take down the Christmas tree and also the Christmas lights outside.

More Little Squares

These little squares have also been filling my time.  You will see more of them in a later project.

 Tiny Squares and Long Ombre Stripes

 

We are doing well and time is passing by, I should get the go ahead on walking with boot next week (I hope). I do feel rather like Daisy. I have my fort do you! Mine is filled with yarn and pillows, while hers is filled with dog beds. The comfy chair in my room is surrounded by yarn, tiny squares and ombre stripes,  and pillows for my foot.

Tiny Squares and Long Ombre Stripes

Talk to you later,

Karen

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Old Year and New Year 2018

If you prefer my crochet posts, then you should stop reading right about now- this blog post is about the Old Year and New Year 2018. The Old Year and New Year-2018 a stark contrast, one has the pages all scribbled on and the 2018 is sitting fresh and clean waiting for the pen to make the first mark. I thought I was going to reminisce and set some goals but I have decided to write what I am thankful for on this last day of the year. Maybe it will set the theme of thankfulness for 2018. There are so many blessings that just pass us by without any acknowledgement or even just a passing nod. The Old Year and New Year 2018; how many days rushing around being busy or overloaded last year and how many will be similar in the new year.

I try every year to plan out the year to be calm and orderly. I used to think that I was just unorganized and that if I paid better attention I would travel a straighter path and the plans I make for the coming year would happen. The years have added a smidge of grace to this as I now know that there is NO WAY to plan for the future and have 100% of what you plan actually happen.

When I started writing this I thought a list of everything accomplished would be the thing for this post. There really isn’t the a person  alive really that interested in what has happened this year, besides family. So, no brag board. No giant list of everything good and bad that has happened.

Just a smattering of photos of what was the best.

Old Year and New Year 2018 These little people that call me Grandma! What an incredible blessing that they are in our lives.

Old Year and New Year 2018 The ability to have good medical care where and when you need it. The family that has baby sat me for 6 + weeks while I have healed. It gave me the opportunity to sit and think about the future. Lay some plans and spend time thinking. I rather like taking all of December off from the business and crocheting. My hands thank me and the creativity is starting to generate more ideas.

4 distinct seasons and dogs that think I am the world’s best human, the ability to see every color in the rainbow.

The opportunity to take time off and spend family time, to be there when I am needed and free to crochet whenever I want.

 

The New Year 2018

Studio Goals

Here is the to do list for the coming year. This is all subject to change.

  • 2 full sized afghan patterns
  • At least 3 blog posts a month, averaged out over the year.
  • 12 patterns – 1 a month or something like this
  • Seasonal decor
  • Hats,
  • More Baby patterns
  • Some patterns for kids, toys and things… or something like this.
  • A book or two… we will see.
  • Increase the free patterns
  • Start up the You Tube videos again.

Personal Goals

  • Be more intentional about faith and exercise.
  • Declutter 3 specific rooms/storage in the house- you know- the rooms filled with junk. I am sure you have one too! If you don’t, send me some tips about living clutter free.
  • Cook at home more and in advance
  • Garden a little bit.
  • Take a trip without kids
  • Vacation with the kids

That is a great list and I know that it will be a good thing to get even ½ of it done!

What is on your list this New Year? Leave a comment and let me know.

Talk to you later,

Karen