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About SheilaSchnauzies, Indie Crochet Designer & Miniature Schnauzer Rescuer

Updated on January 12, 2015
SheilaSchnauzies profile image

SheilaSchnauzies is a Miniature Schnauzer rescuer, writer, crochet designer, gardener, crafter, wife, mom & friend living in Omaha, NE.

Crochet Designer & Miniature Schnauzer Rescuer... A Weird Combination, But I Love It!

I can't really talk about being a crochet designer without talking about being a Miniature Schnauzer rescuer. I've been operating Sheila's Schnauzies Miniature Schnauzer Rescue & Sanctuary since 1998 in Omaha, Nebraska. Four years of that were spent in southeast Missouri while my husband was transferred there. We returned to Omaha in 2010. Throughout those years we've rescued, rehabilitated, and placed somewhere around 50 Miniature Schnauzers and a few other kinds of dogs for adoption. (Eight of them were a starving pregnant Bassett Hound and her subsequent seven puppies)! All these years we have operated entirely on our own funds and the kind donation we receive here and there from friends of our rescue.

We are very fortunate to have all of our food donated to us but veterinary expenses are a big cost, currently $134 a month on the "doggie HMO" plan at Banfield. So I sell my crochet pattern designs to help offset those expenses. It's that simple. If you would like to know more about my work as a dog rescuer, I suggest you check out Sheila's Schnauzies Miniature Schnauzer Rescue at this link – it pretty much explains it all!

I started designing crochet patterns back in the 90's when my eyesight started to go nuts, due to one of the Muscular Dystrophies called Myasthenia Gravis. I have difficulty refocusing my eyes when I look from one thing to another â like from a piece of crocheting to the pattern and back. I was constantly losing my place, and it was very frustrating. So... I just started winging it on my own! I was very glad I did, and I've never looked back. I do have a huge collection of crochet patterns that I love to browse through and long to make, I call them my "eye candy." I'll probably keep collecting crochet patterns til the day I die, just because I love to look at them!

Probably my favorite thing to design is floral things in thread crochet, embellished with gemstones and crystals, sometimes handcoiled wire or other jewelry elements. Jewelry-making is one of my other passions. While I would love to make big projects like afghans and lace curtains, my arthritic hands simply can't handle it anymore. So I treasure the big pieces I have already made and focus on the smaller things I can still do.

I consider being able to crochet a huge gift, since I had a stroke in 2009 in my retina that caused me to become half blind in my right eye. I am hugely fortunate not to have lost all my sight. I've managed to retrain my eyes to see to crochet despite the double vision and missing half of sight in my right eye and am so grateful for what I still have!

Here is an index to most of my free crochet patterns. You can also search HubPages.com for "sheilaschnauzies" and you will find all of my free crochet patterns. You can find all of my for-sale crochet patterns at the link provided below to my craftsy.com pattern store under the name, "SheilaSparkles."

My e-book series, "Crochet With Sheila - A Lifetime Of Crochet" will be published in the near future! It will contain hundreds of my designs from my whole lifetime - many of them previously unpublished! The first e-book, "Floral Ornaments To Crochet," is sold now through my craftsy.com pattern store and on Amazon.com.

All the proceeds of sales from my patterns and the e-book directly support the furkids in Sheila's Schnauzies Miniature Schnauzer Rescue & Sanctuary, as explained above.

My Contest Winning Rosebud Doily

The Design Of Which I Am Most Proud! - My Backward Rose

Real & Crocheted Rose
Real & Crocheted Rose

I wanted to totally rethink how we usually crochet roses, and I believe I've accomplished that with this design.

Sally's "Dancing Angels" Doily - A gift for my dear friend.

I wanted to design a little doily for my BFF Sally, she's been in and out of the hospital a lot lately. She loves angels, and I thought this would be a cheerful sight for her. I'm doing it as a crochet-along. Here, my granddog Winnie models the doily for me!

"Girl's Got Skills!!" - How Do You Rate Yourself As A Crocheter?

Contest Winning Doily
Contest Winning Doily

Crochet Skill Level?

See results

My Favorite Things To Crochet

Some Of My Recent Projects

My "huge project" of Fall/Winter 2010/11 was a series of pocket pullover scarves crocheted in the most yummy yarns I could find, in themes of colors.

I have completed several "lifetime dream" projects over the past few years! One was a pink thread filet shawl that took two months, doggie theme filet curtain valances for several windows took up one summer... then I worked on some really fun designs in thread for Christmas in a poinsettia theme. One winter I spent working on a new set of luxury yarn doggie sweaters.

Crochet Is The Thread of Remembrance

A winning essay I wrote for a crochet group contest long ago...

Crocheting, to me, is the thread of remembrance. It is the means of joining me to my late mother, who taught me so much. I hold her old doilies and remember watching her make endless, perfect tiny stitches.

I leaf through her pattern books and remember her many gifts of love to family and friends - intricately edged pillowcases and starched doilies made. It makes me proud that I do the same as an adult. It is the primary way in which I can hope to emulate her.

It is "my thing," a talent that others in my family do not share nor have patience for but admire. It is so exciting to see them open gifts knowing they will be thrilled with whatever little treasure they have come up with. It is that excitement, the joy of sharing with others, that inspires me to keep creating.

But the biggest thing crocheting means to me in this part of my life is the ability to accomplish tangible creations, despite disabilities that have taken away my career and many things I formerly enjoyed in life. Somehow, miraculously, I can still crochet and I have taken an unbelievable measure of comfort in it! It relaxes me no matter how tense I am and gives me an unlimited source of things to continue accomplishing in the future!

Crochet thread is the ink with which I will sign my life with my hook as the pen.

What Do You LIke To Crochet?

Valentine Doily
Valentine Doily

What Is Your Favorite Thing To Crochet?

See results
Me & My Adopted Mom Isabell
Me & My Adopted Mom Isabell

Thanks, Mom

Me & My Adopted Mom Isabell, Who Taught Me To Crochet

Whenever I smell someone ironing, it instantly takes me back to lazy summer vacations from school and my mother, Isabell, "doing up" her doilies. (And hand embroidered pillowcases, tablecloths, and more...) while I watched TV. It was somewhere around my 11th birthday that I asked to learn how to crochet. Mom dutifully took me to the Benjamin Franklin to pick out a pattern to learn from and a LOT of bright purple yarn!. I actually have the tiniest scrap ball of that yarn in my stash as a memento. Can't seem to part with it. I don't know if I still have the pattern, but it was for a crocheted hot pants outfit!! (Hey, it was the early 70's...) Mom taught me the chaining and somehow the other stitches I'd need. One of my grandmother's best friends, Mrs. Pearl, was someone I hung out with a lot back then and she had a hand in my instruction. So did my Mom's mom, grandma Ethel. Between these three ladies I was turned into a crocheter. I don't know if any of them can read my website from Heaven, but if you can, a big thanks to you ladies for a lifetime of enjoyment! OH - and I never did finish the hotpants outfit. We had to go back for another pattern, for a crocheted vest! (And the pattern acquisition syndrome is born...)

Tips For Disabled Crocheters!

Crochet Anyway!!

This topic grew so much that it deserved its own lens! For tools and tips on crocheting with disabilities, please check out "Tools To Help You Crochet Despite Disabilities" here on HubPages.

And be sure to check out the Clover Soft Touch hooks I feature here! They are the "magic" tool that allows me to keep crocheting despite severe arthritis in my hands!

My Crochet Supports My Schnauzer Rescue!

These kids like to eat...

I have been rescuing miniature schnauzers since 2000. The picture shown is at our former farm in southeast Missouri, in 2009. At that point we had SIXTEEN little mouths to feed:) My Scrappy Jack and SueSu (a former rescue) plus rescue kids Bailey, Koby, Whizzer, Monty, Harry and Sammy. Then there was Sissy the Basset Hound who showed up one night at our door in late September nearly starved to death, dehydrated, raw with flea dermatitis... and pregnant! We nursed her back to health and she presented us with SEVEN little basset hound babies! Oh my goodness.

With some kids going to Rainbow Bridge over the last few years and others finding forever homes, now we have only three rescues living here – Whizzer, SueSue and Ladybug.

Sales of my patterns and finished objects help support the ongoing expenses of food, veterinary care, and the occasional new toy.

Crocheters, Clean Those Drawers And Help Rescue Dogs!

Did you know that the thousands of dog and cat rescues across the U.S. would LOVE to have your old crocheted afghans that have been loved to death? In many rescues doggies have to be in outdoor unheated buildings. Older dogs especially tend to appreciate soft, warm blankies. If you just do a quick Google search, you can locate your nearest dog rescue. Or you can email me at sheilaschnauzies@gmail.com for my help to locate one. The rescue doggies say thank you!!

Say Hey On Your Way By!

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    • SheilaSchnauzies profile image
      Author

      Sheila 3 years ago from Omaha, NE

      @bgrn: Thanks so much Viki, you made my day! I hope you will enjoy expanding your crochet abilities!!

    • profile image

      bgrn 3 years ago

      Your flowers are gorgeous! I'm disabled, but love to garden as I'm able. I'm starting to crochet more than scarves, so it's inspiring to see someone as dedicated to the craft as you are. God bless! Viki

    • kavalonthatsme profile image

      kavalonthatsme 4 years ago

      *.(*..*).*

      Great Post.`

      ..*(.*`*.)`*.

    • Cynthia Haltom profile image

      Cynthia Haltom 4 years ago from Diamondhead

      I like to crochet and invent my own patterns, I can appreciate all your beautiful handy work.

    • lbrummer profile image

      Loraine Brummer 4 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      So many beautiful designs. I love your turtleneck dickie. Will send this site to my sister who loves to crochet and make gifts. Blessings on your lens!!

    • sheilamarie78 profile image

      sheilamarie78 4 years ago

      Really lovely designs, Sheila!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Beautiful works; they inspire me to keep learning.

    • SheilaSchnauzies profile image
      Author

      Sheila 5 years ago from Omaha, NE

      @GentlemenGogoVEVO: thanks! Now I'll have to go and check out what kind of art you do!! Thanks again.

    • profile image

      GentlemenGogoVEVO 5 years ago

      you're an artist like me :)

    • BuckHawkcenter profile image

      BuckHawkcenter 5 years ago

      Yeah, for you Sheila! Your designs are more than wonderful and supporting those lovely pups is plain awesomeness!

    • KayeSI profile image

      KayeSI 5 years ago

      Loved your lens! And getting to hear about your

      Lovely family , rescue dogs and

      Granddog! I'm lookin forward to checking out more of your lens after I get back from walking my own granddog! ;)

    • VeseliDan profile image

      VeseliDan 5 years ago

      You are very creative! I would love to learn how to make these beautiful creations!

    • profile image

      getmoreinfo 5 years ago

      These are some really nice pieces I enjoy crochet.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Such awesome designs from crochet, they are gorgeous. I can feel your passion for chrochets.

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 5 years ago

      My dear, it is heartwarming to see what crochet means to you! I learned from my grandma, who meant the world to me. Priceless memories. Delicious designs!

    • yourselfempowered profile image

      Odille Rault 5 years ago from Gloucester

      Great lens, lovely designs. My 15 year old son became addicted to crocheting believe it or not! Lol. My mum taught him just before Christmas, and it was so funny to see a 15 year old boy (who usually loves climbing, kayaking and World of Warcraft) sitting on the sofa crocheting - and while his peers were addicted to Xbox games, my son was saying "Can I just finish this row" when being called for supper! Lol. He made a lovely scarf and a great mug cozy for friends for Christmas. Bought the needles and wool himself (with guidance from my mum). A really fun experience. He still picks up the wool and crochet hook every now and then. Lovely lens. Blessed. :)

    • SheilaSchnauzies profile image
      Author

      Sheila 5 years ago from Omaha, NE

      @nightbear lm: Thank you so much, NightBear!

    • nightbear lm profile image

      nightbear lm 5 years ago

      Beautiful work, great designs, and I love your animal rescue cause. Blessed!!

    • Linda Pogue profile image

      Linda Pogue 5 years ago from Missouri

      You have some beautiful work displayed here. I haven't had time to crochet in so long...Now I have the urge to find a hook and some thread! Blessings!

    • ArtByLinda profile image

      Linda Hoxie 5 years ago from Idaho

      These are wonderful, I admire your talent! Happy Holidays, Blessing this lens!

    • LisaAuch1 profile image

      Lisa Auch 5 years ago from Scotland

      Fantastic! I saw thins in your signature link and had to check it out, now you got me interested in your rescue doogies....off to visit them too ad beautiful crochet work! I am just beginning ;-)

    • sagebrushmama profile image

      sagebrushmama 5 years ago

      Beautiful designs! Congratulations on the purple star for this lens!

    • sagebrushmama profile image

      sagebrushmama 5 years ago

      Beautiful designs! Congratulations on the purple star for this lens!

    • cdcraftee profile image

      Christine Larsen 5 years ago from South Australia

      Lovely lens Sheila. Congratulations on your creativity...really well done.

      Wanted to vote on your polls, but couldn't for some reason? I was going to vote 'Thread & Yarn, Anything and Everything, because my greatest love is beaded knitting....and in the second poll - I am an advanced crocheter (and knitter), but quite lacking in humility, it would seem! Love seeing others' beautiful 'goodies'. Thank you.

      Christine

    • profile image

      myraggededge 6 years ago

      I'm just a baby crocheter. I learned a little bit and then forgot again. This year I've been determined and have crocheted six scarves as gifts. I have a leeetle problem as UK crochet is different than US crochet and there are so many great YouTube vids so I have abandoned the UK terminology altogether.

      This is a wonderfully inspiring and very well put-together lens. Many thanks for sharing your awesome skills. xx

    • lilymom24 profile image

      lilymom24 6 years ago

      I love to crochet but haven't picked up a hook in almost a year. I was crocheting some tote bags and burned myself out.lol. I need to start back up again as its an activity I really enjoy. Very nice lens and beautiful projects. =)

    • fionajean profile image

      Fiona 6 years ago from South Africa

      Wow, I really feel like an amateur since looking at what you can do - you're a real artist.

    • Nancy S Oram profile image

      Nancy Oram 6 years ago

      You are so talented. I loved looking at every inch of this lens.

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 6 years ago from Arkansas USA

      This is a truly great lens, from the heart with passion, pictures, and a message to boot. Blessings to you, your projects, and to your little schnauzies!

    • Wednesday-Elf profile image

      Wednesday-Elf 6 years ago from Savannah, Georgia

      I love to crochet, so always enjoy meeting fellow 'hookers'. :-) I agree with you that crocheting is relaxing -- it's almost like a form of meditation! Your crochet story and lovely items are great.

    • seashell2 profile image

      seashell2 6 years ago

      Nice work... I just recently started crocheting again, (okay not that I did much before) but just finished some simple scarves and tried some flower patterns ... it's fun!

    • Kailua-KonaGirl profile image

      June Parker 6 years ago from New York

      I taught myself to crochet but the only things I make are afghans (yarn) and kitchen rugs out of strips of old sheets.

    • SheilaSchnauzies profile image
      Author

      Sheila 6 years ago from Omaha, NE

      @anonymous: Thank you VERY much! You made my day:)

    • SheilaSchnauzies profile image
      Author

      Sheila 6 years ago from Omaha, NE

      @marsha32: Marsha, I would love to hear about your online parties! I have been gone a long time as you can see, but I'm BACK!

    • SheilaSchnauzies profile image
      Author

      Sheila 6 years ago from Omaha, NE

      @anonymous: Thank you Ellen! I know you commented a LONG time ago but hey - I'm back!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Hello my name is veronica and me too are crochet addict,Ive been crochetting since I was 9 I learn from watching my mother crochet and sometimes when she puts down her hook I am there to pick what she left and I will continue not telling her that Im helping her finish it until Im 16.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      that;s art ! Admirable work you do.

      Ethnic Eastern Bedspreads

    • SheilaSchnauzies profile image
      Author

      Sheila 8 years ago from Omaha, NE

      [in reply to Hope] Hi Hope! I accidentally overlooked your post, I'm sorry! Please email me at sheilaschnauzies@gmail.com and we'll talk about the doilies you are interested in ! Thanks!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I am looking for doilies crocheted in several sizes. Do you sell your doilies?

      Thank you.

      Hope

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      how i wish i could be as expert as u are in the world of crocheting

    • profile image

      marsha32 8 years ago

      I love to crochet too! I'm working on hotpads right now for a gal that won them as a prize in the last online party that I did.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      I wanted to participate in the survey about what is my favorite thing to crochet, but there wasn't an "everything" choice.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      great idea Sheila, very easy to access too!!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      I enjoy your site it is so friendly and has lots of info on it..it is also fun...I enjoy the dogs and what you are doing...Keep up the great work

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      I love your new site! It works well with AOL, too.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      I like this site, it loaded well for me.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      This seems to work out great!! Love your site!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      Nice website and came up perfectly. I have an 8 yo Schnauzer who is our furbaby.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      Sheila,

      I love your new web-site, it pops up quickly no waiting like the other site, and having to wait for 60 sec. Your new site is easy follow, and very organized.

      Thanks,

      Ellen