Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Ladies Who Lunch

Dr. Emily Roben, proudly displaying her first flower pin

Just yesterday I went to the beautiful home of my dear friends, Matt and Emily Roben, to have lunch and crochet with Emily. She is a first-year resident at Children's Memorial Hospital, so she doesn't get a lot of free time. When the good doctor told me she had a weekend free and wanted to spend some of it with me, I jumped at the chance! Matt and I became friends when I was dressing him for "The Scottish Opera" at the Lyric. You know which one I mean -- don't make me say it!! Matt and the other gentlemen I dressed for that show were very sweet and
supportive during my Michael's illness and after his passing. Through Matt, I met Emily, and I have good friendships with them, together and separately.

So anyway, Emily invited me over for lunch and crocheting, and Matt offered to cook for and wait on us. He's really a lovely man, as I suggested above! So while Emily and I were sipping tea and stitching away in the living room, Matt and his friend Josh were slaving over a hot panini press in the kitchen! The menfolk prepared paninis with turkey, pastrami, salami, provolone cheese and horseradish mustard, accompanied by a green salad with honey-mustard dressing, bread and butter pickles, and habanero pickles. Everything was delicious!! Then we girls went back to our crochet projects and the boys went to clean up the kitchen.

Emily asked me to teach her how to make my signature flower pin, which I was more than happy to do. She worried when her stitches came out tighter and curlier than mine, but as you can see in the photo above, she had nothing to worry about -- it turned out beautifully!!

The flower pin came to be because several years ago my good friend Ruth Hoekwater wanted a crocheted hat with a flower on it. So I found a hat pattern and found a flower pattern (both from Chicks with Sticks Guide to Crochet by Nancy Queen and Mary Ellen O'Connell) and put them together. My Michael thought it would be great if I made the flowers and sewed pin backings on the back. He was right -- they've always been my most popular item!! I look heavenward and smile at him every time I sell one!!

One time I was getting ready to work at the opera and I needed the pattern to take with me but I didn't want to carry the whole book. I asked my Michael to do me a huge favor; to copy the pattern. I said, "Please don't try to think about it, don't try to figure it out; just write this down for me from here to here." Michael, being a brilliant and analytical man, said that copying down this three-row pattern was one of the most difficult things he'd ever had to do!!

So here's the pattern for the flower:

Using a Size-G hook and baby-weight, sport-weight or worsted yarn

Ch 42
Row 1: 1 dc in 4th ch from hook, *ch 1, 1 dc in next ch*. Repeat * to * across -- 40 dc.
Row 2: Ch 1 and turn. In the first ch-1 sp work (1 sc, 1 ch, 5 dc, 1 ch, 1 sc), *1 sc in next ch-1 sp; in next ch-1 sp work (1 sc, 1 ch, 5 dc, 1 ch, 1 sc)*. Repeat from * to * across (20 petals made). Fasten off, leaving 18" tail.
Finishing: Thread tail through finishing needle to sew flower. Begin at tail end and sew 2 petals together at base to form center of flower. Spiral the remaining coil of petals around bud to form a flower, sewing together layer by layer at the base. Using remainder of yarn, sew pin backing to back of flower. Fasten off and weave in end.

I'll be back on Thursday. As always, Peace, Love and Yarn, my friends!

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