This winter certainly had more than its usual share of sunless days – the darkest winter for over half a century they say. Flowers fighting the cold and frequent heavy snowfalls are brightening up one’s mood and winter blues. The lovely Helleborus niger (also known as black hellebore) is faithfully returning this year as well. 

Picking up its color, pink and black (who says that black is not a color….), I made a small pull-string bag called Granny meets I-Phone with just enough space for a cell phone, some keys and a tissue. The tiny granny squares are sewn together on two sides only so it is less rigid. Each side is different from the other accentuating either the pink or the black DMC 5 yarn. Hook size was 1.5 mm. It is lined with a separate hand-stitched soft jersey bag. The cords were easy to make, using one of the hooks of the attachment to an electric blender. No more tiring twirling of a pencil…

The Malus Floribunda, also called Japanese crabapple, competes with the black hellebore in drawing the focus on its fuscia-colored blossoms. But can there ever be enough colorful flowers?

And finally, this post includes a useful list of collected links for knit and crochet people: tips and tutorials, information and patterns you might want to copy and use when needed: Some links might become obsolete, thank you for letting me know so I can delete them from the list.
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http://www.kasa-amend.com/2010/01/anleitung-sunburst-flow…(crochet, in German)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmgLyLA5yNA (crochet, in German language)
An excellent collection of very useful links is provided by Sarah in her HandStitch Blog. Short rows, a pdf converter for knitty patterns, two wonderful links for providing a breaking a picture into a color palette, a graph paper pdf generator…
http://www.bevscountrycottage.com/grannies.html (crochet)
http://www.crochetcabana.com/tutorials/granny_square.htm (crochet)
The Royal Sisters Crochet Tutorial
Color Change Tutorial (crochet)
Chainless Double Crochet Foundation
Alice Merino: Futuregirl: crochet instructions
DROPS DESIGN has great “How-To-Videos”: in English and in German
Clear and simple: Provisional Cast-Onexcellent picture tutorial by the experts, The Purl Bee
Knitting Help is as close as this link
Moonstitches typepad has a great tutorial about joining hexagons
Attic24 – shows how to crochet a hexagon
Bavarian Twisted Stitch / Wool Eater Stitch also called Crochet Wheel Stitch Square and Catherine’s Wheel Stitch – Blanket – a tutorial video on YouTube and Sarah London’s blog with an excellent description of the stitch, Sarah on Ravelry; also see this information by CrochetDad on how to make different shapes with the wooleater stitch.
If you wish to know how to add beads, here is a great tutorial from Vogue Knitting.
Hyke kindly made a wonderful picture tutorial of her crocheted starfish and leaf which she used in her amazing baby blanket.
Life-long learning process:
Stretchy cast-off/ bind-off:
http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEfall09/FEATjssbo.php
http://tichiro.net/?p=563 (Elisabeth Zimmerman sewn cast-off, description in German, but with many excellent photos!)
Several helpful video tutorials (knitting) can be found on
http://goldenapplevideos.blogspot.com/
Knitting abbreviations:
http://www.sewingitall.com/knitting-abbreviation.html
http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEw11/patterns.php#ksbbb
Crochet a button:
http://www.twistcollective.com/collection/index.php/blog/…
The Magic Loop: (Knitting)
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BtBSmxGomPk
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oP3si7KrA9I
and a
Cat Bordhi tutorial for casting on a moebius project
and an
invisible cast-on of magic loop.
How to crochet the bullion or roll stitch
Video Tutorial
On Ravelry
bullion stitch instructions
And a very good description for the bullion/roll stitch is found
here
Gypsy Dancer The Art of Notions Group
A Treasure Trove for Freeform crochet ideas and instructions, some Video-supported!
Double Crochet, Treble and Double Treble Crochet, Fan Stitch, Bobble Stitch, Puff Stitch,
Filet Crochet, and many patterns.

HeirloomKnits is a treasure trove of tips, free patterns and interesting background information:
Heirloomknits: Free Patterns, Techniques, Abbreviations, Knit Bits, Handspun Yarn, Useful Links, Library (History in 3 Parts).
Crochetology Net: A very helpful CROCHETsite, with interesting links, a stitch-a-day gallery, very helpful crochet-related instructions, and a fabulous and generous supply of free crochet patterns! Thank you Kokakora – now reached via this link.
Blocking Lace – a perfect and time-saving way to block lace is shown on the Yarn Harlot blog, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee.
Lace Buttons – A How-To blog and list of interesting books regarding beadwork and lace, incl. lace buttons, information on a Lace Museum
Fitting Freeform to a Template – many photographs made by LisaCarney in the process of making a Freeform Purse.
Paddingcord Cheat A great way to introduce 3d arches and flowers etc. in Irish crochet pieces by Hyke – also see her blog! Thank you Hyke!
Learn to Knit – basic techniques demonstrated in animated Tutorial Clips – provided on Sasha Kagan’s blog. Thank you Sasha Kagan – visit her on Ravelry.
Crochet Geek – Free (Video) Instructions and Patterns – really useful!
MyPicot is a site chock-full with information on crochet, be it symbols and terms, techniques such as Irish or filet crochet, an amazing number of edgings for free downloading, there is a knitting section and more free patterns.
Super-easy and very neat turning method of a dc crochet chain – you wonder why you never thought of it yourself! Check it out here.
Looking for those REALLY SUPER BIG KNITTING NEEDLES? They are sold by this company, called Bagsmith.

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