Sunday, October 28, 2012

Boot Cuffs Preview

An actual new design?! Well...not really a new concept, but I'm seeing these everywhere and wanted a pair of my own. So I created my own version of the boot cuffs. Three different varieties too! From very basic to a little more advanced (but still easy). I'm teaching a beginner crochet class soon and needed fun project in the most basic pattern that could be completed quickly. I thought the boot cuffs were the perfect item and wrote up a basic pattern. I will be offering this pattern for free. NGOZI BOOT CUFFS
The boot cuffs pictured below were going to be used, but I thought that the technique may be confusing for a complete newbie and that something more basic was more appropriate to teach in such a small time frame (3-5 hours). Nonetheless, I loved the way these turned out and started making some for sale in my Etsy shop and a craft festival I'll be doing in about a month. OBIUTO RIBBED BOOT CUFFS
The last pair of boot cuffs I'll preview here is my favorite. Love the stitch pattern and the versatility of being able to wear them either way up and using two colors. It's really like creating 4 cuffs and only actually working 2 cuffs. I think everyone likes the idea of an item that is multi-functional. I've been making these for sale also. They take longer to create than the other two pair, but it is still a quick proejct and your friends will LOVE you for making them a pair! ADAKU CONVERTIBLE BOOT CUFFS

Friday, September 14, 2012

Yarn Bombs Galore!

Okay…it’s been another long hiatus between blog entries, but this definitely merits mentioning here. I’m still recovering from last week’s events. What events? Well…I had the largest yarn bomb that I have created featured at the Birmingham Museum of Art. An entire car…well, probably one of the smallest cars available, but still! The event was called Art on the Rocks, which is a fun event that they put on in the summer months. It was the last Art on the Rocks event, right before the Andy Warhol exhibit was scheduled to leave. The design of the yarn bomb was inspired by Andy Warhol’s vibrant use of color, and The Rainbow Fish. To my surprise, I even ended up on the FRONT PAGE of The Birmingham News! You will rarely see my photo, since I’m horribly unphotogenic (is that a word?)…and I even tried to convince the newspaper reporter that he could focus on the car and that I didn’t really feel comfortable being photographed, that I would end up being embarrassed by it and I didn’t want to feel that way after all of the work that went into the piece. Long story short, two of my friends that were there convinced me to take the photo with the car, and I did it quickly just to get it over with and hoped for the best. I didn’t HATE the photo, which is saying a lot. I took the entire week off work so that I could focus on this project. This was my "week of living like a full time artist". I thought it would be relaxing, but I was so filled with anxiety and stayed so stressed trying to finish everything. There were nights where I didn't get more than a couple hours of sleep and I still feel like I'm exhausted, but have been on a crochet break this week. I've never felt so under the gun, but I was so pleased that so many people got a chance to see it.
There were a few other pieces sprinkled around the museum the entire weekend, and I did a live yarn bombing on Thursday installing the “CREATE” piece on the stairwell and a really long installment on the hand railing. I also got to display my “CAROUSEL HORSE” yarn bomb that I completed last year for the first time in public. It was featured on a Fox 6 News. JeJe Pruitt wanted to speak with me on camera (live), but I just could not bring myself to do that. I felt like I would have said something stupid, or become overwhelmed with emotion and just started crying…I just had a feeling I would have embarrassed myself and asked Carrie Montgomery to speak on my behalf. She is so at ease in front on the cameras and she did a great job.
I also need to add a photo of the yarn bomb I did to Miss Fancy in Avondale Park (Birmingham, Alabama).

Monday, June 25, 2012

City Neckwarmer - free crochet pattern

I use this pattern to teach a 2 session class. Leaving the students with homework, the practice of repeating rows and becoming comfortable with crocheting. This pattern teaches the students to begin and create a new row, and basic increasing. Much more fun than the standard scarf or washcloth for beginners. Feel free to try it for your beginner crochet class, makes a great first project. FOR PDF DOWNLOAD CLICK HERE Copyright © 2012 Donna Rutledge-Okoro, all rights reserved. No pattern or other material may be reproduced or distributed – mechanically, electronically, or by any other means, including photocopying and posting to websites – without written permission from Donna Rutledge-Okoro. Pattern is for personal use only, however, you may sell finished items made from this pattern but please reference pattern source in ALL online listings. Do not post photos of construction. For email assistance and/or corrections, please contact Donna Rutledge Okoro at:

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Chez Lulu Yarn Bomb

In celebration of Sugar's birthday, Ordra and I took her to our favorite place to dine...Chez Lulu in English Village. If you live in Birmingham, AL and have never been there (or neighboring Continental Bakery), you have to try it. We shared a variety of favorite dishes, wine and just laughed and enjoyed each others company. That place never disappoints. The waiter didn't even seem to notice when I was yarn bombing one of the chairs, not even when I was holding the chair between my ankles at a 45 degree angle. We were kinda tucked away in an alcove so, none of the other patrons noticed either. I think he was pre-occupied with how much fun we were having, he was an awesome waiter. I felt compelled to leave a yarn bomb there, since it's been a favorite spot for over 10 years now...AND it was Sugar's birthday. I thought about this at the last minute and was totally unprepared, not even a scrap of yarn in the car or a hook. Stopped by the Walmart on the way over though, their hook selection was pathetic, actually had to get a Tunisian crochet hook (always wanted to learn that anyways). Did the trick though. At least they had yarn in her favorite color.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Crochet update

Now that was a long stretch without a blog update. I've been extremely busy though and felt the need to update. The most recent being some of my yarn bombed chairs are being exhibited at the Jennifer Harwell gallery. I love the way that she has them displayed in the front of the gallery. I've also been taking in custom orders and preparing for the Craft Bazaar (18 days from now). I don't feel as prepared as I should be, it's definitely crunch time at this point. Oh...last month, my friend Tracy and I did a yarn bomb in support of Race for the Cure. I can't get enough of the yarn bombing. My aunt (2 year survivor) has one of the larger pieces I made, and my mother and grandmother also rescued a piece as well. The rest were gone by the end of the weekend. I did get a few pics. I have realized that I haven't created any new designs all year. There actually were a couple of designs created that ended up jotted down in a composition notebook. So eventually, I am hoping to have them typed up, tested and available at some point. I will admit it is liberating to create something completely artistic, with no rhyme or reason and no rules to adhere to. I'll try to update with better pics soon. I'm really glad to see the weather changing, this is my favorite time of year. For those of us who knit and crochet, its the busiest time of year.

Monday, November 14, 2011


If you are here for the free pattern offer, here's how it works...very simple.
For a limited time, I will offer ANY PATTERN IN MY ETSY SHOP FREE WITH A $10 PURCHASE from my husand, William's shop!

Here's what you do. Any purchase made, simply include your pattern selection in the NOTES TO SELLER, or an Etsy convo. Your pattern will be delived via email (email provided in Etsy invoice) in PDF format. Limit one pattern per person, not including pattern bundle ($5.99 value only).

I'm still enamored by the buttons he creates and feel lucky to have them at my choosing (usually). This is perfect for this time of year! You could shorten your Christmas list by making the Ziela Cowl (offered together with the Uchenna Cowl), and select hand crafted wood buttons to make them even more special. The toggle buttons below are by far my favorite type for the Ziela cowl:

Or, you could select a beautifully hand crafted set of hair sticks, which are also nice worn as a shawl pin. This would go perfectly with an extra long Amarachi scarf handmade by you.

There are hoop earrings...

and stud earrings...



all types of buttons...

shawl pins...

hair forks...


Something for everyone!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Preparing for another yarn bomb. A bit last minute and only a week to prepare! This one has a color theme, which is kinda nice because all of the smaller pieces seem to go together as one large piece. Even though this is already a busy weekend, I'm trying to make as many in the color theme as possible since Friday we will assemble everything. I can't wait to see how it looks together with Tracy's pieces...hopefully pretty amazing. I've had to put a few things on the back burner to get this finished by Friday. I'm under a deadline to finish some yarn bombed pieces for a gallery showing next month, just glad that the largest piece is covered and only needs a little embellishment, but still a lot of smaller projects still undone. I'm a little worried about it, good thing I work well under pressure. I'll be able to make up for lost time next weekend, a serious marathon planned, new audiobook downloaded and looking forward to it. As far as today, it looks like I'll be out of the house the entire afternoon, so not much will be done as far as crocheting. The possibility of having some photos taken (which desperately needs to be done for the Etsy shop)is promising though, so not a total waste precious down time on my last day off before the event.