Friday, February 15, 2013

Love to Love You Baby...

A heart pillow for my Honey
Happy Valentines Day, ya'll!!

I hope that you all had an amazing Valentines Day! I was going to post this yesterday, but I decided that Valentines Day is best spent away from the confines of my computer desk.

Homemade Chocolate Strawberries...
Because my Honey had the entire day off of work, we were able to make it the best Valentines Day, ever! It was a day filled with love, laughter and lots of delicious food. We dipped our own chocolate-covered strawberries (and a slice of bacon! OMG), had our favorite Southwest Flank Steak for dinner... and our first-ever Chocolate Molten Lava Cake with vanilla ice cream for dessert. I poured the Lava Cakes into little ramekins and they were absolutely amazing! The day was totally worth looking the other way as I added all of the butter that was called for in that recipe. hehehe

Ever since I was a little kid, I have loved giving hand-made gifts to my loved ones. I enjoy putting time and thought into a gift. It's so easy to just run to the mall and pick up a present for someone, but I have always preferred the warmth of something made with love. This past Christmas, I created something special for every member of my family. I put a lot of time and thought in to each gift... and the payoff was amazing. Watching everyone open their gifts with excitement and then pass them around the room to show them off... the "Ooooh"s and "Awwww!"s made my day AND my Christmas.

This Valentines Day was no different! I knew that I wanted to make something for my Honey, but I wanted him to be able to enjoy for more than just a day. I found the perfect idea and pattern on one of my favorite websites, Ravelry . Ravelry is a website dedicated to free crochet and knitting patterns. You have to sign up for a free account, but it is SO worth it. Ravelry is where I will eventually post all of the free patterns that I have designed, so that I can share them with you. The pattern that I chose for my Honey is for a Crochet Heart Pillow by DROPS Design. You can find the pattern here: Heart Pillow- DROPS Design 

I love to start every project with a tasty snack!
Because of the pattern, I had so much fun making this project that I decided to share my experience with you. I love to test out a new pattern and this one was written so well! I'm a stickler for details and usually end up making corrections on patterns, but this one was spot-on from beginning to end. No corrections necessary. I'm not exactly sure how long it took for me to work up because I was working on it a few hours at a time while my Honey was out of the house this past week.

Before I sat down to work, I gathered all of the necessary supplies: pattern, yarn, H hook, a snugly blanket... and a Little Debbie Star Crunch. Good work requires good snacks! I decided to use Red Heart Super Saver yarn in Red for this project. I like the durability of the acrylic yarn, plus it is stiff enough to hold a good shape. 

It's starting to look like something...
This pattern really reminded me of an amigurumi pattern. Lots of tiny single crochet (SC) stitches and lots of counting. I am notorious for losing count so I am sure that entertains my Honey when I am working on the couch next to him. He has figured out that it is useless to try to talk to me if he can see me counting. He will start to ask me a question and then say, "Oh, sorry. You are counting." Hilarious! The first part of the pattern calls for making the top two "humps" of the heart and then sewing them together like a figure-8. After those were finished, I started wondering if this pattern was for a bra instead of a pillow. Ha!

Seriously, did I accidentally print a pattern for
an old school torpedo bra?!?

After I linked the two humps  cups  sides together, the pattern called for a few rows of even work to really solidify the heart. After those rows were complete, it really started to look like a bra  heart! From that point, all of the work was slowly and methodically making the opening smaller and smaller. This gave my project the tell-tale shape of a heart. It was really fun to watch it work up!

This project also taught me a lesson about taking pictures for my blog. When I got to the "ready-to-stuff" phase, I got so excited and finished up my work without taking any pictures. This whole blogging process will take some getting used to. I am not accustomed to photographing every step of a project just yet.

I remembered to snap a picture right
before I cut the yarn. LOL
Instead of pulling out all of my hard work to snap a few pictures, I decided to just charge forward. I used a ton of stuffing in this pillow, probably half of a Fiber Fill bag. I used more than it called for, but I wanted it to be very firm and not flatten out over time. After everything was filled and the bottom tip was properly sewn over, I sat with the pillow for about 5 minutes to smooth out any lumps or stretches. I noticed a few loose stitches around the "cleavage" area and used some extra thread and a large needle to sew them closed. I can be very particular about my work. *wink* My Heart Pillow ended up being 10" x 10" when finished.

A surprise Valentine just waiting on the couch...

Overall, I am very pleased with the end result! My Honey loves it and keeps throwing it around or using it as a neck pillow while watching TV. I didn't want to wrap it, so I hid it in the closet until Valentines Day morning. I woke up really early to sneak it out of the closet and put it on the living room couch and then I crawled back in bed. He always wakes up before me, so I knew it would be a nice surprise when he was still rubbing the sleepies out of his eyes. "Hey, where did that come from?" hehehe

I'm so glad that my Honey appreciates a homemade Valentine. He deserves to be given the world... for now, I give him my heart. In my house, every day feels like Valentines Day. I hope that you all try to make your house feel the same way!

Warmest Regards,

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