Monday, May 29, 2017

Patriotic Crochet

It is Memorial Day today, so I thought I would share some of my patriotic projects that I have done over the years.

I combined a couple of patterns to make this Patriotic Wreath. I love using patterns by Repeat Crafter Me. She has a great basic pattern to cover a foam wreath. I did it in white, and added some red, white, and blue details to make it perfect for Memorial Day or 4th of July. The patterns for the details are below.

I came across this heart pattern on an old web archive and I fell in love with it. I added some stitches to make the stars of the flag to really make it look like the flag.

For the stars, I did a variation on another pattern by Repeat Crafter Me HERE. Then I slip stitched the letters on the stars. Also using this pattern, I made a star headband for my baby girl. It made a perfect patriotic accessory.

I braided some ties to hang the wreath, and my new favorite decoration piece was done! I really should do some more patriotic pieces, but with 3 kids, my time is hardly ever my own. Maybe someday.

Happy Memorial Day, and Happy Crocheting!
-Sarah Liz

Monday, May 22, 2017

Baby Flip Flops - Crochet Pattern

Is there anything cuter than baby toes? I could just eat them up. My favorite season is summer because those sweet baby toes aren't covered up by the socks or booties that they wear in the winter. A lot of the cute sandals and flip flops wouldn't stay on my baby girl's feet so I designed my own. These feature ankle ties to help keep them on your baby's feet. And the little ties look so cute around their ankles!

Here are some of the details you will find in the pattern that is available to purchase on my Etsy shop HERE or Ravelry shop HERE:

Use hook size to adjust the pattern for multiple sizes. Based on the tightness of my tension, here is what I use:
E hook (3.5mm): 3 Months, sole is approximately 3.5 inches
F hook (3.75mm): 6 Months, sole is approximately 4 inches
G hook (4mm): 9 Months, sole is approximately 4.5 inches

Use hook based on sizes above. Adjust hook size if your tension creates a larger or smaller sole than my gauge.
Worsted Weight Yarn (I like Caron Simply Soft or Hobby Lobby I Love This Cotton Yarn) in 2 colors.
Large eye needle for weaving in ends

The sole is worked in a continuous spiral. DO NOT join at the end of each round.
Instructions are in US terms.

For those of you who have not taken up crocheting yet, you can purchase these little flip flops on my Etsy shop HERE.

- You are free to sell what you make from this pattern. I would appreciate links back to my blog to credit me as the designer.
- You may not use my photos
- You may not sell this pattern or claim it as your own

Happy crocheting!
-Sarah Liz

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Easy Cheaty Stroganoff

I have three children 4 years old and younger. To say that I am busy is an understatement. On top of the normal crazy that three young children bring, I also run my Etsy business. Naturally, I do not have a lot of time to cook for my family. So a lot of my personal recipes are cheater recipes. I take pre-made things like a jar of spaghetti sauce, and "doctor" it up to make my dish. One of my husband's favorites is my stroganoff cheat that I am going to share with you.

1 lb Ground Beef 
Half of an Onion
Sliced Mushrooms (I looooove mushrooms so I always put a lot in mine, but you can adjust it to your taste)
Splash of Worcestershire Sauce
Splash of Red Wine Vinegar
1 tsp Thyme
McCormick Stroganoff Season Packet
Beef Broth
4-8 oz Sour Cream 
In saucepan over medium heat, saute ground beef, onion, and mushrooms until beef is browned and veggies are soft.
Add splash of Worcestershire sauce and red wine vinegar. Add thyme. Cook for an additional three minutes.
Add season packet and half a can of beef broth. Lower heat and simmer for a few minutes. Remove from heat and add 4-8 oz sour cream to taste.
Add a little bit of broth or water to get the consistency you want.
Serve over rice or noodles.

What "cheats" do you use in your cooking? I would love to hear about your shortcuts.

Happy Cooking!
-Sarah Liz

Monday, May 8, 2017

Lacy Baby Headband - Free Knitting Pattern

I first opened up my Etsy shop with some baby headbands and booties. The headbands were a little knitting pattern I developed in my own head. I feel like it is time to write it down and share it with you. See pattern below, or you can download a pdf version on my Ravelry store HERE.

Size 3 knitting needles
Worsted Weight yarn (I used Caron Simply Soft)
Needle for weaving in ends

CO - cast on
RS - right side
WS - wrong side
K - knit
P - purl
YO -yarn over
K2TOG - knit 2 together
BO - bind off

20 sts, 44 rows, garter stitch = 4"

Instructions are for 0-3 months with (3-6 months, 6-9 months) in parenthesis.

Using thumb method, CO 72 (80, 88) sts.
Row 1. WS - Knit across
Row 2. RS - Knit across
Row 3. WS - K 2 sts, *yo, k2tog*. Repeat * * until 2 sts from the end. K 2 sts.
Row 4. RS - Knit across
Row 5. WS - K 1 st, *yo, k2tog*. Repeat * * until 1 st from the end. K 1 st.
Row 6. RS - Knit across
Row 7. WS - K 2 sts, *yo, k2tog*. Repeat * * until 2 sts from the end. K 2 sts.
Row 8. RS - Knit across
Row 9. WS - Knit across
Row 10. RS - BO using a loose bind off or you can use the alternate bind off below
Alternate Bind Off - Elizabeth Zimmermann's sewn bind off HERE.

Using needle, sew ends together. Attach your favorite flower or bow at the seam to help hide where you sewed it together. See below for my favorite flower pattern to go with this headband.

-Crochet Flower Pattern
I modified a version of this pattern HERE

Using G hook (4mm)
Ch 4 (Magic circle does not work with this flower pattern)
Sl st in 1st chain to form a circle
Prep: Ch 1
Round 1. *Ch 3, sc in circle* Repeat 3 more times (you will have 4 loops at this point). Ch 3, sl st into Ch 1 in prep round (now you have 5 loops)
Round 2. In first ch 3 loop, (sc, ch 1, 3dc, ch 1, sc). Repeat in the rest of the loops. Join to the first sc of the first petal.
Round 3. Fold the petals toward yourself so you can work behind them to make the next layer of the flower. Still working in the circle made from the ch 4 at the beginning, *sc, ch 4*. Repeat 3 more times (you will have 4 loops at this point). Ch 4, sl st to first sc. (now you have 5 loops)
Round 4. In the first ch 4 loop, (sc, hdc, dc, 3 tr, dc, hdc, sc). Repeat in each ch 4 loop around. Join with sl st to the first sc of the first petal of the round. Cut yarn leaving a long tail for sewing to headband.

Sew a pretty button in the center of your flower. Sew the flower to the headband, weaving in any remaining ends.

I would love to see your headbands! Tag me on instagram @craftsbysarahliz so I can see your work!

- You are free to sell what you make from this pattern. I would appreciate links back to my blog to credit me as the designer.
- You may not use my photos
- You may not sell this pattern or claim it as your own

© Sarah Gross - Crafts by Sarah Liz

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The Face Behind the Posts

It is now the month of May. As it is my birthday month, I thought I would share a bit of a personal post with you so you can see that there is indeed a person behind these posts.

A little bit about me:

 I am a nerd. Here are some shocking nerdy confessions: I grew up watching Star Trek: The Next Generation. Yes, I am a Trekkie. That upbringing brought about a love for all things nerdy from Star Wars, to Harry Potter, to The Lord of the Rings, I love it all. I have even played Dungeons and Dragons. Eek! I can't believe I just admitted that! Alright, moving on. Before 2015 I worked as an administrative assistant for a franchise of Taco Bell. So every once in a while I get an insane craving for it. Cheesy Gordita Crunches, to be exact. When I'm not having a fast food craving, I love to cook. I learned how to cook from my mom. My favorites are soups. But as often as I try, my soups never turn out as good as my mom's.

A little bit about my family:

I have been married to my awesome, encouraging, and loving husband for eight years now. We have three beautiful children. Our son is the oldest. He is now 4 1/2 years old. He is growing up so much this year. He is such a big help to me with his little sisters. He also loves helping me in the kitchen, and with my chores. Our middle child is a little firecracker. She is now 2 and is the funniest little person I know. Her comedic timing is already fantastic. Her favorite things are books and her baby sister. My favorite thing right now is when she comes up to me and asks for "nuggles". Our youngest is 6 months now. She is a little redhead with the brightest blue eyes you have ever seen. She loves squealing at her big brother and sister and rolling and crawling around.

A little bit about my business:

I was taught the basic knitting stitch in 2010. I expanded on that, and in 2012 I taught myself how to crochet. I am a yarn addict, and just a little bit of a yarn hoarder. That addiction led me to open my Etsy shop in 2013. I have learned so much in the years since opening shop. I still have a lot to learn, and I don't think I will ever stop developing my shop. I look back at where I started and I am amazed at how it has progressed. I look forward to reminiscing again in a few years to see how far my shop has come.

A little note to you:

I am not in this business by myself. I have the most amazing support system around me. That support system includes you wonderful people. You who have ordered products from my shop. You who have read and shared my posts. You who have tried my patterns or recipes. None of my success could be done without your support. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

-Sarah Liz