Lee Mac. Twenty-eight year old fibre artist. Crochet portraits = Obsession. I am surgically attached to my Ipod and crochet hook. Pop culture addict. M&ms are as important as oxygen. Einstein hit the nail on the head with "Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere."
The first major prize winner of Totallee.net Bingo!!!!!!!!
Pat has filled her card and now I can't WAIT to make a start on a picture of her choice !!
I want to say a MASSIVE "THANK YOU!!!!" to everyone who participated!! Thank you for having a bit of fun!!
Now I had better get cracking on dreaming up a new game!
Side note - my apologies for not announcing the winner via Totallee Telly! Sadly it is almost 11pm here and man trust me when I say that I am saving you from a sight for sore eyes!
AKA i'm in my jammies
But for now 3 cheers for Pat and a massive group hug for everyone who took part!!!
Numbers so far: 6, 21, 36, 13, 26, 31, 18, 45, 20, 16, 27, 38, 48, 10, 37, 2, 23, 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
I know what you're all thinking...
Lee = sex symbol right here...
Oh. How awkward.
The Numbers, they are a dwindling!!
Tuesday, 23rd July, 2013
Numbers so far: 36, 13, 26, 31, 18, 45, 20, 16, 27, 38, 48, 10, 37, 2, 23, 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
Now I will try my hardest to pop up another draw either tonight or tomorrow, because I just received a call from the hospital and it looks like they will be bringing my surgery forward from Friday to tomorrow afternoon !
Don't get me wrong, i'm totally happy it's finally going to happen but when you've already organised time off work and got everything sorted out and planned in your brain, to be then told it's actually going to happen in less than 24hours, grrrr it grinds a few gears !
So my apologies if i'm off the air for a few days! What timing! Just as we are closing in on a winner! Life is a stinker sometimes ain't it ?!
Now we cross live (pfft!) to Lee Mac with today's bingo numbers...Lee?!
Numbers so far: 18, 45, 20, 16, 27, 38, 48, 10, 37, 2, 23, 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
Ouuuuuuuu some cards are starting to look mighty full!!!
It's still anyone's game!!! Just depends how those numbers fall....or rather, decide to come out of the mug...
Friday, 19th July, 2013
Numbers so far: 20, 16, 27, 38, 48, 10, 37, 2, 23, 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
Thursday, 18th July, 2013
Numbers so far: 27, 38, 48, 10, 37, 2, 23, 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
Seriously guys!! Liz's pattern is totallee GORGEOUS!! It's going to be fabulous watching it come to life! So stay tuned, because I will post any progress shots I receive so you guys can join in the fun !
Winner winner, chicken dinner!!
Tuesday, 16th July, 2013
Numbers so far: 48, 10, 37, 2, 23, 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
Winner Winner, Chicken Dinner!!
Monday, 15th July, 2013
GASP! Could it be?!?!?! Could we have a winner?!?!
You know the rules people!! Yell out the magic word line-winner!!!
Stay tuned my mosh of bingo players! You are STILL in the running for another prize!!!
B-i-n-g-still no 'o'!
Friday, 12th July, 2013
Numbers so far: 2, 23, 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!! STILL no winner!! Agh!! We now have SIX sexy bingo players who are one number away from a free pattern!! Dear bingo gods, I beg of you, deliver our first winner soon!!!
COME ON ONE LINE WINNER!
Thursday, 11th July, 2013
Numbers so far: 23, 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
We now have FOUR beautiful people who are one number away from a horizoontal line!! Yeeha!!!
Tuesday, 9th July, 2013
Numbers so far: 15, 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
I can let you all in on a little secret, THREE people are now one number away from getting a horizontal line and therefore a pattern of their choice !
However, don't lose hope! There are loads of sexy buggers with two numbers to go! So hang in there!! It's anyone's prize !
Note to self - don't film first thing in the morning
Sunday, 7th July, 2013
Now, I must beg for forgiveness for being a little bit AWOL this week !
I haven't had time to scratch myself let alone get near the computer long enough to update! I feel terrible especially to all the bingo players, so time to fix it!
Good lord! Filming first thing in the morning really needs to be outlawed...Ugh....
Numbers so far: 22, 47, 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
Are we still waiting on our first winner?! Wow, I really thought this little game would be over after like 5 draws lol. Way to put everyone through misery Lee!
Quick Draw McLee
Monday, 1st July, 2013
Saturday, 29th June, 2013
Now guess what time it is!!!
Numbers so far: 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30, 25, 7 and 4!!!!
Thursday, 27th June, 2013
Numbers so far: 9, 50, 5, 3, 1, 35, 33, 30 and 25!!!!
Sixth Draw!! + Sixties Chic!!
Tuesday, 25th June, 2013
Here's to breaking out of the single digits!!! Number 35 welcome to the party my friend !
Ouuuuuuuu things are getting exciting!! I can report that one player is just ONE NUMBER AWAY from completing a horizontal line thereby winning a free pattern!!!!
Sunday, 23rd June, 2013
Double shot! 3 and 1!!
My teapot has clearly devoured the 20s and 30s...
I hope these numbers go a little ways to filling in your card !!
Totallee bingo draw #3!
Friday, 21st June, 2013
Third number = 5 !!
Ouuuuuu I hope you have it !!!
Totallee bingo draw #2!
Wednesday, 19th June, 2013
Ouuuuu getting exciting!!!
Totallee bingo draw #1!
Monday, 17th June, 2013
I FORGOT TO MENTION!!! - Not everyone will have every number drawn!! If you don't have the number drawn, sit tight and hope one of yours comes up next time
Q's needing A's!
Monday, 10th June, 2013
I gotta hand it to you guys! 17 bingo players have already signed up!! Phenominal!!!
I've been busting a move like this guy -- > all day!
If you are yet to sign up, for the love of God don't stress man!! There is still loads of time! Just read up on the rules and regs on the bingo page (link to the left there) and shoot me an e-mail of interest and i'll get your lil card to you asap!
Now there is a teeny tiny bit of admin to cover!
I've received a couple of great questions from some awesome people regarding the comp! Why does my card have blank spaces on it?!
Don't worry! Everyone's card has 12 numbers on it, with four numbers on each row. The spaces are to make it easier for me to jumble up the numbers and make sure I don't have any double-up's. Although most of you would be happy with double-up winners, my fingers would leave on vacay permanently
If I win the runner's up prize (am the first one to complete a horizontal line on my card) does that rule me out of winning first prize (a full card)?!
Definitely not! You will still be eligible to win first prize!
I have my card, now what do I do?!
Sit back, relaaaax and wait for the first draw on the 17th June!
If you have any questions regarding the competition, please don't hesitate to ask either via e-mail or the tagboard there on the left hand side menu
Chances are that someone else will be wondering the same thing!
TOTALLEE BINGO COMPETITION!
You gotta be in it to win it! xox
Welcome to the first ever session of Totallee bingo !!!
What's the deal?!
I've wanted to do a bit of a competition/give-away for ages now and finally the lightbulb came on!!
How is it going to work?!
If you decide to enter and play along, you will receive your very own Totallee.net Bingo card like the one shown here:
Twice a week, I will draw a number at random on a little vlog to show that it's totallee legit and your mission is to mark off the corresponding number on your card!
You may like to pop your playing card on your blog to keep track, or even print it off and keep a pencil handy to mark off your numbers. I think most people have a 'paint' type program in their computers, so you could even mark off your numbers using that
To ensure fairness - I will be keeping a log of everyone's cards to ensure no cheating! (sorry guys!)(If you're anything like me, you were already brainstorming how to beat the system )
What do I win?!
There will be two chances to win a goodie!!
Runners up prize
In order to win the runner's up prize, you will need to complete one line on your bingo card before any other players.
Using the example card above, this means that you must be the first player to complete one horizontal line.
Eg. 5, 13, 20 and 31 = one complete line.
Or 3, 36, 44.
Or 8, 11, 27, 43.
As soon as you mark off one complete line, shoot me an e-mail yelling "BINGO!!" and you will win.... A FREE PATTERN OF YOUR CHOICE**
I will convert your fave family photo, or fave celebrity, movie, music star, landscape, etc into an easy to follow pattern for free !!
** CONDITIONS - I have the right to refuse to make a pattern that I find offensive, vulgar or disrespectful. I will try to create a pattern to the winner's specifications as best I can, however desired final colour choices etc, may not be available. However I shall try my hardest to create a great pattern!
Okay, if you thought the runner's up prize was cool, wait till you hear this...
In order to win first prize, you will need to be the first player to mark off ALL the numbers on your card first!
Using the card above as an example, you would need to have marked off..
5, 3, 8, 13, 11, 20, 27, 31, 36, 44 and 43! A full card = first prize!
Once you have a full card, send me an e-mail screaming "BINGO!!!" and you will win.... A CUSTOM MADE PIECE OF YOUR CHOICE!!!**
I will personally make a piece based off a photo of your choice, up to the size of 120 x 120 stitches! (That's a little bigger than a Potter panel for example!)
If there is a piece I have done up to that size that you love, you could choose that! If you have a fave family photo, it could be that!
** CONDITIONS - I have the right to refuse to make a pattern that I find offensive, vulgar or disrespectful. I will try to create a piece to the winner's specifications as best I can, however desired final colour choices etc, may not be available . However I shall try my hardest to create a great piece! AGGHH!! EXCITING STUFF OR WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Rules and Regulations
For those wanting to participate, please e-mail me @ firstname.lastname@example.org - with an expression of interest.
Over the course of this first week, I will create a bingo card and e-mail it to you, ready for the first draw that will take place Monday 17th June (Aussie time)!
A number will be drawn via a vlog (video) twice a week here on Totallee.net.
Once you complete a single line or complete your entire card, e-mail me and I will announce that the corresponding prize has been won!
Please only enter this competition if you are prepared to send me your postal address. There will be no costs to you, as I will take care of postage costs, etc. However, if you are not prepared to give me your postal address upon winning the first prize, then please do not enter, as I will need it to send you your custom piece!
All in all this is a bit of fun! It is not to be taken too seriously and if all goes well, we may have another session! So don't despair if you don't win a prize
I will not be placing any time limits on the delivery of prizes. Of course I will do my best to make the pattern and final piece as quickly as I can, but please understand that a 120x120 piece may take 4-6 weeks worth of work to complete. If you are not a patient person, please do not enter.
So what are you waiting for?!?! Shoot me an email! I'll post you your card and on the 17th, be here or be square for the first draw
Side note - this is my first attempt at a competition. I am a scatterbrain. So I reserve the right to add or change the rules, regs and prizes. Although I can't see it happening!
Frequently Asked Questions
This is the place to come to ask your burning questions !!
I get asked a LOT of questions about my work and whilst most can be answered with one sentence, I really would like to help peopple out as much as I can !
Before submitting a question please be sure to have a quick scroll down to see if it has been answered.
If you have a question relating to the kind of crochet I do (because quite frankly I SUCK at any other kind !), please feel free to send your questions to
How do you make your patterns?
I first began crocheting portraits when I discovered Todd Paschall and his incredible CBN technique in late 2008. I was gobsmacked (and continue to be) by his outstanding work and did not hesitate in paying for his services in creating patterns for a few special pictures I had until I figured out a way to generate my own patterns.
The last thing I would want to do is take business away from Todd's website CROCHET BY NUMBERS, where he has worked so hard to get CBN off the ground. Which is why I won't go into step-by-step instructions about how I convert my pictures. I figure that if folks are that desperate to figure it out, they can do it on their own like I did, then I won't feel like i'm intruding on Todd's hard work.
Todd has been nothing but kind and supportive of my work, so I think it is the least I can do to support him.
Do you back your pieces?
I have made a lot of attempts at backing my pieces. I say attempts, because i'm still yet to find the perfect way, however I think it comes down to what the piece will be used for as far as choosing the right method goes.
In backing the Hogwarts Bunch Blanket, I hand-sewed black jersey (or stretchy t-shirt material) onto the back of each panel. It was tricky to keep the fabric flat, however I didn't want to add fleece or another bulky material to the back as I wanted to avoid adding weight to the final blanket. Thing thing already ways 6000 tons.
In the case of the pieces that were featured in my first public exhibition, I needed to back them onto solid boards in order to suit the needs of the hanging system in place at the cafe.
Here's cold-ridden me with a naughty labrador to try and explain how I went about it
I recently made my first commissioned pillow, which was backed differently again!
For this piece, I made the front panel, aka. the pretty 'Erika' panel, then crocheted a backing piece for it, using the same number of stitches and rows. I then hand stitched this onto the back of the pretty panel. The effect it had on the front was FANTASTIC!!!
It smoothed and stretched it out perfectly!
In the past, including the pieces featured in the exhibition, I had attatched the jersey material to the backs of the pieces before wrapping and stappling them to the mdf boards. Crocheting a back produces MUCH better results!
After attatching the crocheted back to the front, I then crocheted a third piece to be the BACK of the pillow. Attatching it on three sides, before filling with polyfill, before stitching up the final side!
I think THIS will be the way I back my pieces in the future! Whether they are intended to be hung on the wall, used as cushions, blankets, etc. if they have a crocheted back attatched to them first, you will get a flat, flawless frontage!
Naturally I would have preffered to of professionally framed most of my pieces, but having already shelled out to frame my Freddie Mercury piece ($500 Smackers!!), short of winning the lotto or putting everything I own up for sale on Ebay, including the house and possibly a kidney, I wouldn't be able to afford it! Therefore, D-I-Y Lee to the rescue!!
Can I have a copy of your patterns?
As you've proabably noticed, most of my pieces center around Musicians/Actors/Actresses/Film and Television. I am a pop culture Freak . I do not sell any patterns or pieces I have made that fit into these genre's as in most cases I do not know if the image I have used is under copywright. Any pieces I have made, I have NOT profitted from. Any patterns I have made I have NOT profitted from. Therefore any patterns I generate will not be made available to buy.
However, if you take a stroll over to the Pattern Archive on the left-hand side menu, you will find a selection of my patterns that I have popped up for free!
How many colours do you use in your pieces?
I have used as little as 4 and as many as 15
The more colours you use the more definition and detail the piece has. However it is a good idea to have a good look about at the colour range available to you in your local area before falling in love with the idea of doing a piece all in greens, only to find that there are only really 3 shades that go well together! (I have learnt this lesson the hard way people!! lol).
What yarn do you use in your pieces?!
The wonderful Kate has put forward a question I get asked quite a lot, so I thought I would make it numero uno! Cheers Kate !!
QUESTION: "What brand/type of yarn do you use??"
The MOST IMPORTANT aspect of yarn choice when it comes to colourwork is the colour !
The CBN technique relies on you choosing progressive shades in the colour palette of your choice, be it greys, blues, pinks, etc...
Typically a pattern will instruct which brand of yarn to use, and for those folks who find it frustrating or get a little overwhelmed when it comes to choosing colours, Todd has A LIST of blue and brown shades that work in the Red Heart range which may make life easier for you !
As for my yarn choices - they do tend to change with every piece!
After much browsing I have found a palette of greys that I am very happy with, however it does vary depending on whether i'd like the piece to have a black & white feel or a slight blue tinge running through it. It really does come down to trial and error for me!
I have never made a piece using the same brand of yarn for all colours. I always use many different kinds!
I get yarn from craft supply stores, discount stores, Kmart, Woolworths, my Mum's accumulated stash over the past 30 years, freebies from friends old stashes, etc...
Then it really is a case of mixing and matching to get the right degree of shading
The size of the ply I use also varies! For instance, in my GWTW piece, one of the lighter blues I really really wanted to use only came in 5 ply, much thinner than all the other colours that were 8 ply. So I bought 2 balls and worked two strands of the colour every time I used it, in order to balance the thickness. The important thing was that it was the RIGHT COLOUR for the job
Hence the reason as to why I cannot give brand names of the yarn I use in each pattern as it really is an eclectic ever-changing mix!
I guess the biggest barrier a lot of people have in giving work like this a go is the risky business of choosing colours and being afraid that they won't work as well as they want them too. Trust me, i've had my fair share of disasters! Exhibit A
I thought I was on a winner with my choices for a piece featuring Danny Jones from McFly I attempted a while ago...
So far so good...decided to keep going...
Yup! Loving that shine on the retro microphone! Kept going...
WAY TOO DARK!!! BIGGEST BUMMER!!!
So the best advice I can give is to take your time in comparing and contrasting your shades! Sometimes projects will fail, sometimes you may have to put a project on hold until the right shade turns up in stock, sometimes you may have to change your entire palette depending on the colours you have available to you. Ply size you can work around, brands you can mix and match, but it's the colour choices that will be the difference between a good piece and one that POPS!
Aching Hands and Wrists?!?!?
The lovely Donna sent in a question!
QUESTION: " You work on so many different projects and seem to get them
out uber quick, do your hands hurt? The muscle around my thumb hurts
and I'm actually noticing rub marks from my hook on my fingers. What do you do for your
Ah yes! The dreaded hand cramps ! When I first started crocheting properly at the end of 2008, I noticed that my hands started to cramp up quite quickly! I searched every forum you can imagine to get some tips on how to prevent my fingers seizing up after only half an hour of crocheting, so quickly tried them out. Some worked for me, some didn't. Some made perfect sense, others were perfectly ridiculous !
Here are some tips that help me BUCKETLOADS when it comes to hand cramps!
Take a break ! Over time I have learnt to rest my fingers before going overboard. I start to get tingly sensations in my fingers and my wrists start to click, which is my flashing warning sign to give it a rest The worst thing you could do is try to push through the pain, even if you only have one row left! I was so eager to finish my AC/DC piece, I remember pushing through the clicks and cracks to knock off the last 12 rows and by god, I could hardly bend my fingers without searing pain for the next week, rendering me useless!! Pretzel-finger syndrome!!!
I now crochet in 15 minute blocks. After 15 mins, I stop, stand up, and do some basic hand exercises
Hand Exercises - after a quick search for "finger stretches, hand stretches, etc," I compiled a series of finger, hand and wrist stretches that I do in between 15 minute blocks of crocheting. First I tend to splay my fingers out, stretching them as far as they can go, before then curling them up to form a fist (repeat x 10), I then gently massage the palms of my hands, working from the middle of the palm out to the end of each finger. That usually takes about 5 mins for both hands. I then bend my wrists backwards and then forwards using my other hand like this...
Funnily enough, I don't tend to get too much pain in my crocheting hand. I actually get the most pain in the index finger of my left hand ! I tend to stick out my index finger as I hold my working yarn, which leaves it a bit stiff and sore! Which leads me to think that maybe trying a different grip on your hook may alleviate any pain your experienceing in your crocheting hand.
I've also noticed that MY NECK gets extremely stiff!! After I complete a row i'm finding that I have to do a few simple neck exercises (which make me look like a pidgeon...so attractive...)
I must get into the crocheting zone and look like a bloody statue sitting there cause my neck is completely set in stone sometimes! Very strange!
So as long as you don't push yourself too hard and you take lots of little breaks, hopefully some simple exercises should help ease the pain and it'll be smooth sailing from here on in !
Totallee Vlog Archive
This is the place to watch old vlogs!
Proceed with caution - as they're bloody awful!
♥ Vlog #20 [1st May, 2012]
♥ Vlog #19 [12th Mar, 2012]
♥ Vlog #18 [2nd Jan, 2012]
♥ Vlog #17 [28th Oct, 2011]
♥ Vlog #16 [22nd Aug, 2011]
♥ Vlog #15 [17th Aug, 2011]
♥ Vlog #14 [30th July, 2011]
♥ Vlog #13 [18th June, 2011]
♥ Vlog #12 [30th Mar, 2011]
♥ Vlog #11 [29th Mar, 2011]
♥ Vlog #10 [20th Feb, 2011]
♥ Vlog #9 [25th Jan, 2011]
♥ Vlog #8 [15th Dec, 2010]
♥ Vlog #7 [10th Nov, 2010]
♥ Vlog #6 [17th July, 2010]
♥ Vlog #5 [9th July, 2010]
♥ Vlog #4 [8th June, 2010]
♥ Vlog #3 [8th May, 2010]
♥ Vlog #2 [9th Feb, 2010]
♥ Vlog #1 [2nd Feb, 2010]
Hogwarts Bunch Blanket
It's only now as I come to write this that I realise the first time I picked up a copy of 'The Philosopher's Stone' was in 1999. It's only now that I realise that that was 13 YEARS AGO. By God. I could really use that time-turning hourglass of Hermione's right now....
Anywayz! Mid way through 2009, I decided to have a crack at making my own crochet patterns and guess who I decided to do first?!? Young Mister. Potter
As far as first impressions go I was pretty chuffed! At least it looked like him and of course the bigger plus - it only used 4 colours (which therefore made it cheap as chips to make!)
At first I thought it would make a cute cushion for the lounge but then inspiration reared it's beautiful head! Why not make lonely Harry a couple of friends to accompany him on said couch?!?
It wasn't until I had them all lined up on the floor that I thought 'this screams Brady Bunch...'
So taking inspiration from the opening and closing credit's of "Here's the story, of a lovely lady..", I went about choosing 9 characters for a Hogwarts Bunch Blanket! NOT AN EASY TASK!!!!!
SOO many too choose from! So many faves! But as of December 2010, I managed to whittle the selection down to 9 and complete them!
The next step was to border and back them all individually before the daunting task of Hand Sewing (blurgh. )
I bordered each one with about 4 rows of black before sewing some cheap black jersey material to the backs. I then joined the panels together with black yarn by going in and out of the holes conveniently made by the single crochet stitches. This produced a lovely flat join that can hardly be seen ! (on the right side up of course -_^!)
The blanket has received an enormous amount of love so i'd just like to send vitual hugs , kisses and high fives to EVERYONE who has followed and supported me though the making of this project via the many places i've posted my progress! Major kudos to you guys
Our New Celebrity
Earlier this year I awoke to a little opportunity sitting patiently in my inbox. Adrienne the deputy editor of Let's Knit UK magazine had asked if they could feature the Hogwarts Bunch Blanket in an upcoming issue!!
I preceeded to freak-the-shiz out and accepted immediately!!!
Published in a magazine!!!!! From the other side of the freaking planet!!!!! AGGHHHH!!!
As you can see I handled the whole propsal extremely professionally....
Adrienne sent along some questions and I sent her some pictures and you can imagine my surprise when I first laid eyes on issue #44.....
I scored an ENTIRE PAGE!!!
I'd like to extend another massive thank you to Adrienne and her team for this opportunity! TOO TOO AWESOME!!
For those wanting different characters, if you're a member of Ravelry, have a search for a raveller named 'Candice' She has a BUNCH of character graphs for free in her patterns section Please note- I do not produce patterns on request. For reasons why, please see the Frequently Asked Questions Section
If you do have a crack at a character, please feel free to send me pictures to be featured here on Totallee.net! Like the beautiful angels below!!!
poprocker [@] totallee [.] net !
♥ Your Potter Panels!
Get ready to get your applause on whilst browsing this section!!
This section is to show off the incredible crocheting magic of those who have had a crack at the Potter Panels and have beyond succeeded !!
If you have sent me a picture of your potter panel and don't see it featured, first, please forgive me and secondly, please resend it! I'm a fully qualified scatterbrain and have clearly misplaced it!
Again if you would like to have your finished piece featured, please pop a couple of images into an e-mail and send it to poprocker [@] totallee [.] net!