About Ballytrehy

Ballytrehy is where I go to create: hand-crafted crochet, from-scratch cooking, etc. Here I share my creations and my journey of creativity.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Looking Forward

Looking forward, I hope to have converted my hobby and passion into a money-making venture.  
This item available on Etsy

To date I have opened an Etsy shop and populated it with one item.  Yes, one and only one - a coffee cozy.

I have more to post, but I need to take good pictures and make sure the items are completely finished (ends woven in, etc.) before making them available.  

Perhaps it will make enough money to fund my continuing yarn crafting.  :)

Items I expect to sell include:


Stuffed Toys
Blankets (maybe!)


Saturday, April 27, 2013

A Tool To Covet

I absolutely love my crochet hooks! 
I have a full set from a size 12 steel hook through a size K aluminum hook, with additional hooks in size N, P, and S. 

And I have used all sizes in my possession at one time or another. 

I have a couple of items that I have not fully explored their use, and that is 1.  A drop spindle and 2. The Martha Stewart Kint and Weave Loom.  

IMG_4996I have made one spinning project – a super super bulky yarn with a sample of roving, and I have made a couple of weaving projects – one a pot holder / trivet I still use rather frequently.

The only tool I regret buying is the set of knitting needles sitting neglected in my closet for the simple reason that I have never used them.  I once tried to learn using a booklet and YouTube videos.  I managed to cast on, but then I couldn’t figure out what to do next!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Colour Review

My favorite colors to work with are #1 green, #2 black, #3 brown, #4 other natural and/or neutral colors, #5 red.

IMG_5475When left to my own devices, I will choose a sage green for bags or garments I intend to wear.  


However, when I am making something for others, I will choose colors that suit that person.  For example, when choosing colors for the autumn wedding afghan, I chose shades of blue that I felt were too bright, but they were perfect for my friends.  Also, the afghan for Becky was made in brown because my sister likes brown in her house.  (Brown also matches my cat!)
When shopping, I gravitate towards muted colors or neutrals. 

photo album of my stash - you will find many similar colors represented there!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A Mascot Project

What does it mean for me to be a Bee?  How does this affect my creative process?

When I sit down to choose my next project, several factors come in to play. 

First, I choose a new project based upon my working circumstances.  Will this be a commuting project?  Then I must choose a portable and monochromatic project.  Will I work on this at home in front of the TV or when hanging out with friends?  Then it must have a simple repeat pattern.  Do I want to sit and really concentrate on something?  Then I will choose a thread lace pattern, whether a bookmark or a doily depending on the time I wish to invest.  (pineapple shawl)

IMG_5771Second, I might be inspired by some new yarn.  The weight and texture may lend itself to one type of project or another.  For example, I recently purchased some DK and fingering weight yarns that are fated to become light-weight shawls.

IMG_5766Third, I might be come across an innovative pattern that looks like a worthy challenge.  I tend to enjoy lace patterns for the mental challenge they present.  Similarly, I participate in an online crafting competition that provides 5 challenges monthly, and these will often inspire my pattern choice  - or my own design. 

IMG_5451Finally, a project may be chosen out of need.  I may need a gift for Christmas or for a birthday, or a friend may be expecting her first child.  In these cases, it is the taste and preferences of the intended recipient that will inform the choices involved.  

Monday, April 22, 2013

The House Cup

As a participant of the 2013 Knit and Crochet Blog Week, I will start the week by declaring my "house":
A bit like Harry Potter, but not quite, this year’s Knitting & Crochet Blog Week is split into 4 houses. 
The four houses are:

The House of Bee: Bees are busy and industrious, but can flit from one interesting project to the next as bright and shiny things capture their interest. 
The House of Manatee: Manatees are gentle, calm and cuddly. Relaxed and unflashy they represent the comfort and soft side of knitting and crochet.

The House of Monkey: Intelligent and with a fun loving side, Monkeys like to be challenged with every project presenting them with something new and interesting.
The House of Peacock: Peacocks take something good and make it brilliant. Buttons, embellishments and a bit of sparkle prove that perfection lies in the details – like a Peacock's Tail.

I am 
a Bee

IMG_5449I am not usually content to work on only one project to the finish.  My attention span needs regular stimulation, so I often have 2 or 3 active projects at any one time, and I’ve got at least a dozen WIPs (works in progress) that are sitting in my closet waiting for me to turn my attention back to them. 

Additionally, I don’t focus on only one type of project or yarn.  I have made things from materials as small as sewing thread and as large as super bulky yarn, household goods to garments, tiny bookmarks to bed-sized afghans. 

In a nutshell, I love diversity!  The "My Creations" photo slideshow to the left gives a flavor of the range of my projects.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

I am getting ready to embark on a new project:  Knitting and Crochet Blog Week 2013!

This is the 4th annual event, organized by eskimimi makes, a prolific craft blogger (unlike me!).

This year we are being asked to choose which "house" we belong to out of four possible.  Tomorrow, the first day of the week, you can find which house I have chosen and why.  You can find descriptions of all four houses on eskimimi makes' blog here.

Stay tuned to see a different approach to my blog!