I’m so glad to be sharing with you my book for the month of April and my personal crochet project. This was actually the first month I selected a fiction book and created a new pattern design.
If you are wondering about the other books and projects I have done this year, I will do another post to catch you up.
In January I got motivated to try new things. First would be to read at minimum 12 books this year and to explore new pattern designs; be my own or someone else’s. Second, I realized sharing this information with you could help you in trying new things and keep me accountable for my goals. I hope you find these items helpful and encouraging.
Let’s dive into my April selections.
Monthly Book Review: “The Bones at Point No Point” by D. D. Black.
Let me start by saying, “I didn’t want to put this book down”. It can be hard to find a book that keeps my attention like this one.
I learned about this author through a newspaper article I read and I was excited that he was local to Washington and that he uses actual Washington locations in his story. Starting with Point No Point. On my first trip out to Washington I went to this exact location. Plus I wanted to see what other locations he would share so I could later go and check them out.
In fact, I did this past weekend drive to the cafe he mentions throughout his story where the lead character lives and works. It’s a place you would need to hear about to even know it exists.
My husband and I drove out for my Mother’s Day breakfast. It was a little bit of a drive and by time we got there I was so hungry I forgot to take a picture of the place. It’s a very small local cafe with charm. The staff was nice, the place was very clean and the food was your traditional American cafe style with eggs, toast and bacon.
The cafe is located near the town’s beach with an amazing view. We went on a beautiful, sunny, warm Washington day. The first of many to come after a long winter. Spring has finally arrived.
After breakfast we took a walk along the public beach and I did get a shot of it (see below). There are very few public beaches in the area since much of the beach is privately owned by homeowners. One of Washington perks in having a home on the water.
Ok, back to the book. “The Bones at Point No Point” How do you catch a killer who’s already behind bars? It’s about a detective, now retired, trying to overcome the loss of his wife.
It’s an easy read of 250 pages and the characters have a lot of personality and the murder story is written to keep you wanting more. You’re never quite sure how the murder will be solved but at times you think you’ve figured it out. It makes it hard to put the book down.
The author has written 3 more in sequence to this one and as my Mother’s Day gift my husband bought me the next 3 books. But don’t expect one of them to be my book for next month. Maybe in the future but I want to explore more authors this year.
I hope you check this one out and let me know what you think. If you can’t find the book in a local bookstore or library here is my affiliate link. By clicking my link I earn a few pennies and it lets me know you enjoy this content.
Crochet Project: My dining table placemats
For my crochet project I wanted to do something for my home. This winter my husband made our dining room table with lumber from a local mill. It turned out beautiful so I wanted to create my own handmade placemats to go with it. The colors for my home have already been selected so it was easy to know that red would be the color for the mats.
Crochet was my method since it is quicker and I really needed to get it completed in order to share with you.
I will include the pattern below but if you want a nicer version of the pattern to use or gift to someone it will be posted in my shop soon.
I selected to use cotton and since I already had the yarn in my large stash, I got started right away.
This may be my favorite cotton yarn so far. Simple because it’s easy to find at your local yarn store and it comes in a number of different colors. Sugar’n Cream by Lily. Like many cottons you want to wash on cold or better yet, by hand and let it lay to dry. I did use a different blocking technique on this project to see how it would turn out. More on this later, possibly another post where I can go into more detail.
I worked two threads at once for this piece to give it a bit of bulk and density. I used the basic double crochet stitch and 2 puff stitches in the same st. (To work the puff stitch you will yo insert into the stitch pull up a loop and repeat until 5 loops on the hook, yo and pull through all loops, then chain one. Repeat this for the second puff stitch in the same stitch)
My hook was a 5mm but you may want to use a 6mm based on your tension sitting. I wanted my mat to measure 19” x 13.5” as this size allowed space for a plate, a cup and utensils to be placed on it. The size of the mat can be adjusted to whatever size you would like.
To begin you will chain 51.
Row one starts with a dc in the 4th change from the hook, 1 dc stitch in the next chain, then in next chain work your first double puff stitch. Continue with dc across the row until you have 6 chains left. Here you will skip a chain, create your second double puff stitch in the row, skip a chain and finish with 3 dc stitches.
Make sure your tension is set for the project after the first row. Meaning, you don’t want this row to be too tight or too loose. If either occur you may want to start this row with a hook size down or up depending on what is needed. For me I usually go down one hook size for the first row. I tend to be a loose crocheter so this helps even my edges.
Now for row two, ch2 (counts as a dc), work 1dc in the back loop of the next 2 sts, work two puff stitches in ch-1 space of the previous row, dc in the back loop across to your last 6 stitches. Skip a chain, work two puff stitches on ch-1, sk ch and dc in the back loop of next 2 sts and finish row with a dc at top of ch3.
Row three is worked like row two but this time you work the front loop of all the dc stitches.
From here you repeat rows two and three until you have worked 21 rows or to your desire size.
Don’t forget the key is counting!! You have a total in each row of two double puff stitches and 48dc (includes ch2) . So important that your edges line up nicely. Working the back and front loop of the stitches will give a ridge look to the pattern. This is a placemat you could use on either side, just depending on the look you like.
I do recommend you block your piece to straighten out any imperfections. I would also wash by hand to reduce shrinking your placemat.
Please let me know how your placemat comes out and even share on Instagram because I would love to see. Use hashtag #jpaveydesignscollection
For the pattern, once it is released you will find it in the shop tab on this site.