Monday, March 14, 2011

Droid Mouse

     The Droid factory was under attack!  It would seem, not surprisingly, that Zija (and to a lesser extent Gurr) really enjoys the Droid head pieces and will go to great lengths to retrieve them.  Although she is horribly adorable when she takes off with a piece and tries to stash it somewhere I have to keep her from doing it, otherwise the Droid heads would be full of cat hair and other miscellaneous fluffs from the carpet and kitchen floor.

     In response to this series of attacks I created a decoy diversion.  Enter Droid Mouse!  Designed to grab and hold kitty attention and divert it from the factory storage unit (an upper shelf near my crochet chair).  Droid Mouse was very successful and has so far kept the Droid parts safe for nearly a week now.  

Zija keeping a close eye on the Droid Mouse
   I made this mouse 'off the cuff' as they say, with no pattern.  I did use elements of the Droid pattern and just crocheted till it looked decent. However, I will attempt to piece together a pattern so that anyone interested can make their very own Droid Mouse.

     I used the same shade of green I've been using to make the Droids (see previous post) and the same hook (5.0 mm).

{Pattern Documentation still in progress}

Start: Ch 6.
Rnd 1: Ch2 in 2nd chain from hook, sc in next 3 sc, 2sc in last sc, continue working to other side of chain, 1 sc in next 4 loops (back of the first chain), 2sc in last loop, join to beginning with sl st.
Rnd 2:  Chain 1, 2 sc in next sc, sc 

{Pattern Documentation still in progress}

Zija and Droid Mouse

     For more photos of Zija and Droid Mouse click here.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Kenny's Droid Army

     While in Ottawa, Ken sent me a link for a pattern and said that if I could make said pattern it would be so cool.  Although at the time I wasn't really sure what it was, I have since been educated on the importance and awesomeness that is the Google Android.  The next day I proceeded to make one in the only available colour I had (variated brown).  Ken loved it and there were many giggles of joy.  I promised to make him more of the correct colour. (Click here for the patter/link Ken sent me)

Droid 1.0
     Later that week we went to the store together so that he could pick out the appropriate shade of green for his family of Droids.  I offered to make mini ones as well as the size the original pattern created.  When I returned home from Ottawa I asked Ken how many Droids he actually wanted.  His reply was simple: "An army?"  How could I refuse such a cute request!  So now here I am, a Droid factory in the making; preparing an army for Ken to use in his plans of world domination.

And so it begins...

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ottawa trip: Spinning

     Although I grew up in northern Ontario I had spent the last 7 or so years living in Ottawa before moving here to Fort Frances last summer.  Having so many friends in Ottawa I decided to go down for a visit and ended up spending nearly a whole month there!  I had a great time visiting with friends and got to learn some new skills.

     While in Ottawa, Becky brought me to this great place on Bank street called Knit Knackers (  The entry from the street is a tiny doorway wedged between buildings/shops but once you go up the stairs and through the big door on your left: BAM!! A plethora of colours and textures!  I was impressed with the organization and the ample space that is so often missing from these type of shops.  Although I think what stuck with me the most was the little angora rabbit they had wandering around.

Knit Knackers on Bank St.
      They had lots of spinning wheels, spindles, various wools, yarns, carders; you name it! Of course, they had lists of classes on all kinds of hobbies pertaining to yarn. There were hand dyed skeins from local spinners and dyers which was nice to see and the lady behind the counter kindly showed Becky how to card her wool with the new hand carders she bought that day.  (For more photos click here).

Becky and an adorable angora bunny (to her right)

     I bought myself some raw, washed wool (and later a spindle of my own) and we headed to Becky's with our goodies.  That evening we were carding and spinning machines!  She gave me a quick crash course on spinning (and I was with her when she got her quick hand carding lesson) and off we went.  By the end of the night I had learned a new skill: carding and spinning by hand.  I had a fabulous time with my friend Becky and learned so much in the process.

Becky (carding) and I (spinning) enjoying our goodies
     Sure it's nice to cozy up at home under a nice blanket and have a hot cup of tea while knitting or crocheting one's latest project, but there is just something about hanging out with your friend(s) in silence, or excited chatter, while you each busily tackle your own projects.  These are the kind of memories that last a lifetime and never fail to bring smiles!  That's the joy of knitting! .... and spinning  :)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Welcome to Hook, Needle & Spindle's Blog.  My name is Monica and this is my very own tiny, cozy corner of the internet.

A little bit about me

I was born and raised in northern Ontario, isolated on a small stretch of highway 11 as it hits its most northern point in the province.  Crafting and resourcefulness was a way of life.  Whether it was at my grandmother's, my friends' or at home, I was always around crafts and crochet/knitting was as much a part of my childhood as was school or snow storms.  
Despite learning to crochet early I didn't really get hooked (no pun intended) until my teens.  I took it up again around 16 and haven't stopped since.  I mostly enjoy making large heavy weight blankets but have made and continue to make just about anything I can think of.  I have recently gotten into hats and cowls (thanks to my friend Becky) which is quite fun.

A little bit about Hook, Needle & Spindle (HN&S)
Over the years I've always toyed with the idea of selling my creations, it was always just a matter of time, effort and motivation.  With the proper tools (internet) and inspiration (friends and family) in place HN&S was born! At the moment, HN&S consists of an Etsy shop (, a Facebook page ( and this blog.  I'm hoping to soon add an official website and have a small catalog out over the next few months.

HN&S is about more than just about crochet, knitting and spinning.  It's about all crafts and arts; from knitting and crochet, to cross-stitch and sewing, to painting and drawing, to metal works and carpentry to even cooking and gardening. The sky is the limit.  Join me in this blog as I plow through projects, learn new skills, perfect old ones, get crafty in the community and of course endure the ups and downs of a small crafty business.

As a final note in this brief introduction I'd like to say a few thank yous to some important people:  

On the crafting side, there is of course, my mother who was always a busy crafting bee and a very resourceful woman.  I now draw on my childhood memories of her and her crafting to help inspire my works.  She patiently waited and tried to teach me crochet as a little girl though it didn't really take until I was in my teens, which leads me to Charlotte, my first boyfriend's mother.  I spent many evenings at their home and became interested once again in crocheting as I watched her make more and more blankets.  She taught me some basic crochet and gave me a big ball of yarn which eventually became my first project: a mini blanket.  These two women gave me my first tastes of crochet and the tools I needed to further the passion.  

Chan with her Cross-stitch
Becky with some newly spun yarn

I'd also like to give thanks to my friend Chan (Lori) who introduced me to Cross-Stitch and Becky who introduced me to Spinning and Carding Wool.
Another special thanks goes out to Becky who has and is inadvertently teaching me humbleness and motivating me to 'get up and get to it'.  She has accomplished in mere months what I have thought of for years.  Much of my start up networking is simply following her lead and walking in her footsteps.  She, and many like her, serve as a great source of inspiration and encouragement to me.

On the support side, my thanks go out to my parents for their love and encouragement and a big special thanks to Ken whose faith in me and my dreams has always been beyond reproach or question. Any faith I have in myself comes from him.

Ken and I at one of his hockey games

My last (but not least) thanks is of a spiritual nature.  Though I may not be close to my Creator I hope to be one day.  If God is indeed watching over me and helping to guide me along to a more fulfilling and satisfying life then many thanks are owed, and many thanks are given.  Without this help and guidance I would surely fail.