Ending like I began or beginning like I ended.

When I first taught myself to crochet most of my hooks, patterns and yarns were found second hand, so a lot of what I made had a modern granny feel, studying the patterns, memorizing the terms and learning the delicate movements of thread crochet gave me such an appreciation for the tools, the dedication of time and most of all the makers. The only sad thing with second hand is you rarely know the history of what you have, how much love was poured through it or how many hours of joy it gave, still to this day I have a hard time leaving any vintage hook, or booklet behind.

I can only hope 100 years from now someone finds my crochet hook collection as endearingly sweet as I find these old tools. đź’•

Getting better and better, and lightbulbs when you realize you’ve been working round 8 wrong the whole time, and now you’re not.

They’re basically crocheting themselves ..as long as it’s winter I can keep making these right?

Ending a decade like I began it, and heading into a fresh new one the same, with a deep love for handmade and history and crocheting snowflakes. đź’•

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Pattern: Inscribed Snowflake by Julia Hart

I’ve updated my starching method from homemade sugar slurry to a ready made spray bottle hard starch specifically for thread, yarn and fabric. Stiffy and Stiffen Quick are the ones I’ve used. (They smell like pva “Elmer’s” glue, and that has me curious if I could just water down regular glue and make my own?!?)

not so secret garden

The air is heavy, we’ve had a very stormy grey (dotted with lovely patches of sunny) beginning to spring. All the extra moisture has made my hair super fuzzy, but also brings out the lush gardens.

© AMANDA OCHOCKI + chalklegs secret garden 1
© AMANDA OCHOCKI + chalklegs secret garden

Off the side porch, the walking path to the backyard is almost completely swallowed up by lilacs. I don’t know if they are extra fragrant this year, but it seems every room in the house is filled with their sweet scent.

To add to the romantic cottage in the woods feel, I made a giant outdoor doily blanket using the utterly gorgeous Anya pattern. I mostly did this to hide the fact that (because my porch furniture is nut-brown) the a-hole squirrels felt compelled to chew off all the back cushion piping! (total jerks)

 Welcome to our shabby granny porch, in our not so secret garden.


Be Your Own Betsy Ross

Why not add some sweet old-time charm to the house front & crochet up your very own flag!

This Pattern is from an old 1942 Spool Cotton Company booklet entitled Gift Shopping with Crochet, Book 191.

I fell for this flag straight off! I love things like this, things that are a little quirky & perfectly useful! When I read into the pattern, I had a mini fit, it was made using thread & steel hooks (yikes)! This flag would take FOREVER, but I neeeeed it, so I modified mine just a little. Using good old cheap, colorfast, indestructible & fast drying (no mold here) worsted acrylic & a 5mm hook, I set off to be my own flag maker! 

Original pattern also has 50 small thread crochet stars all neatly in rows, again seriously involved, so I opted for an Americana type ring of stars. I used the patterns star instructions, but just made them with the acrylic.

If you’d like to have a go at being your own Betsy Ross, you can find this pattern for free right here! (P.S I linked it up on Ravelry Pattern Page too :)

Perfect for Memorial day, 4th of July or just for something different, be the only one on your block or in your town with a handmade flag!

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