Knit and Crochet Blog Week, Day 7

Finaly post of Knit and Crochet Blog Week! It’s been fun (though a bit harder to fit into my suddenly-busy househunting schedule that I’d originally thought) and gotten me really to think about my knitting in ways I haven’t done before. Thanks to EskimimiMakes for putting such a lot of work into this event!

4kcbwday7 Looking Forward One year from now, when the 5th Knitting & Crochet Blog Week rolls around, where do you hope your crafting will have taken you to? What new skills, projects and experiences do you hope you might have conquered or tried?

I kind of had to have a think on this one, as normally I just decide on the fly what my next project/s will be.

Item the First: I’d like to make a cardigan using a steek. It’s something I’ve never tried, but Tasha of ByGumByGolly.com uses them for her fair isle cardigans, and her work is just lovely. Did you click that link? Can you even BELIEVE how amazeballs that is?

Item the Second: I’d like to knit socks. I’ve never tried it, in large part because you have to use insanely tiny needles to do it. Another part is that I’ve got these giant monster feet, and I don’t want to put effort into a sock that I can’t wear. BUT Bek does a magic loop, two at a time, toe up thingy that I’m willing to learn, so that would hopefully compensate for being BigFoot. I’ll just have to find some tutorials or books.

Conference knitting

Conference knitting (Photo credit: looseends)

Item the Third: I want to learn to spin my own wool.  I have a cousin who does it using a hand-spinner, and I’ve seen bloggers who use a wheel. No idea which way I’ll go, but I think it’d be a really fun thing to learn- make the yarn, then knit it up! The only way it’d be better would be if I had my own sheep to shear- but yeah. No.

Have you tried spinning? Which method?

Raffle Spinning Wheel

Raffle Spinning Wheel (Photo credit: polyartgirl)

Candy Cane Yarn : First attempt at hand spinning

Candy Cane Yarn : First attempt at hand spinning (Photo credit: Andrea Black (Lacuna))

 

Hopefully I’ll be able to get these accomplished, but if not, I’m not going to worry about it. It’s supposed to be a FUN hobby and if I get stressed out, what’s the point?

 

 

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Knit and Crochet Blog Week, Day 6

Well, once again I’m a bit late. The Hubs and I were looking at houses yesterday, then we ran some errands and went out to eat, and then I felt really nauseous for several hours (which was awesome.) So I fell asleep early and didn’t do Day 6. Whoops.

4KCBWDAY6 – A Tool To Covet Write about your favourite knitting or crochet (or spinning, etc) tool. It can either be a tool directly involved in your craft (knitting needles or crochet hook) or something that makes your craft more pleasurable – be it a special lamp, or stitch markers.

So far, I’ve really enjoyed using my Knit Counter Lite app on my Miette cardigan.

knit counter01It’s available on iTunes, and it’s FREE. It only tracks one project at a time (it’s the lite version), but I’m usually only knitting one thing at a time so that’s fine. The regular version (which tracks multiple projects) is $3.99. I may buy it at some point, but I’m good with this for now.

It’s a pretty simple thing, but I really like it. I don’t have to worry about the numbers getting all janked up on me in my knitting bag, which has happened before with a regular stitch counter. I also prefer to have fewer doo-dads hanging off my projects, so this works pretty well! Plus, it makes me feel like my knitting is all high-tech and fancy- FUTURE SPACE KNITTING.

What are your favorite tools for yarn-work?

Knit and Crochet Blog Week- Day 5

Day 5- something a little different for blogging. I’d have liked to try a podcast or a video, but…

no timePlus, you don’t want to hear my voice. I have allergies and it’s pretty nasal! So in lieu of videos, I give you haiku.

1)

Oh House Manatee

Therein Dwells My Spirit Beast

Let’s Craft Together

2)

Trying to Knit Well

Can Really Drive Me Crazy

Time to Have a Drink

3)

Ravelry, You Jerk.

So Many Patterns to Choose

So Little Time. Gr.

4)

Scratchy Acrylic

Why Are You So Damn Cheap, Yet

So Flippin’ Fugly.

I could go on for days, but Hey, it’s Friday. Time for a glass of vino! 😀

Knit and Crochet Blog Week Day 4- Color Review

Colour Review: What are your favourite colours for knitted or crocheted projects. Have a think about what colours you seem to favour when yarn shopping and crafting.

Well, I don’t have an awful lot of completed projects (at least, not on ravelry.) I’ve made my fair share of scarves and hats. Thinking back on them, I seem to be drawn to bold colors (that aren’t necessarily flattering to my skin tone, eeps!) When looking for yarns, I love mustard yellow, raspberry, teal/peacock, and deep blues and purples.

Peacock

Peacock (Photo credit: stewartmorris)

English: Raspberry

English: Raspberry (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’d like to say that I’m drawn to colors from nature, but I’m not that deep. They’re just pretty.
Only after writing this part of your post should you then actually look to see what colours you have used in your projects. Make a quick tally of what colours you have used in your projects over the past year and compare it to the colours you have written about. Compare this, in turn, to the colours that are most dominant in your yarn stash – do they correlate?
_01
When I look at what I’ve got on ravelry, I don’t seem to be all too far off. I’ve also made scarf/hat sets (wayyyyy pre-ravelry) in bold, variegated colors. Looking at my stash, I seem to have quite a rainbow of crappy acrylic- mostly bold and bright, some more muted and calming.
Now think back to your house animal – do the colours you have chosen relate to your animal in anyway – if you are in the house of peacock, for example, are your projects often multicoloured and bright?
Nope- I seem to just like bright and bold colors for certain projects. Hard to see much relation to the schlumpy gray of a manatee with some of my project colors! But I do have some gray acrylic pleading to be made into little amigurumi manatees…
Do you find that your House reflects the colors you choose?
p.s. Big Ups to CGCoutoure for recommending Picasa for photo editing. It’s super sweet!

Knit and Crochet Blog Week Day 3 (delayed)- infographic

Eeps, sorry for being late on this one! I was working on a powerpoint presentation of my trip to Belize as part of my travel scholarship, so yeah. Poo to priorities!

infographic

My camera is still at a friend’s because I left it there after Match Day, so this is courtesy of the Hubs’ phone. My infographic is self-deprecating, just like me! I’m working on new skills slowly, but eh. I knit because I like it to be relaxing, not because I want to drive myself crazy with hard projects. I’m usually fairly content to just drool over difficult projects.

Do you like to dive into projects you don’t think you’re ready for, or do you dream about them from afar?

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Knit and Crochet Blog Week Day 2- Mascot Project

#KCBWDAY2

Today’s theme is to think of a mascot project that would fit into the House you’ve chosen. As I chose House Manatee, I needed to troll ravelry for some suitably cuddly manatee projects, because I didn’t know of any offhand.

manateeLook how cute! Also, now you see all my toolbar bookmarks.

Then I looked at etsy for other projects. And then I almost died of Da Cutes, finding this pattern in Eluneth‘s shop. Seriously squee-worthy.

Photo Property of Etsy User Eluneth.

Photo Property of Etsy User Eluneth.

I also think that, given the cuddly, relaxing nature of House Manatee, that anything large, square, and cozy that one could knit whilst curled up on the couch with a book (if you can knit/crochet while reading, which I can’t. Sadface.) or watching a favorite movie, would count. That increases the project options considerably!

What would you craft for your House mascot project?

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Knit and Crochet Blog Week- 2013

Woot! I’m taking some time off from my bitching and moaning about sewing to bitch and moan about something else!

4th knitting and crochet blog week

It’s the fourth annual Knit and Crochet Blog Week, hosted by Eskimimi Makes. Clearly, this blog is not just for knitting (and hasn’t even featured crochet!), but I thought I’d take part. Seems like fun, and maybe I’ll gather some inspiration along the way. Each day’s post has a different theme, so I don’t even have to work to hard to think of something to write about, bwahaha.

4KCBWDAY1– picking my house. Options (copied and pasted from Eskimimi Makes) are:

The House of Bee: Bees are busy and industrious, but can flit from one interesting project to the next as bright and shiny things capture their interest.

The House of Manatee: Manatees are gentle, calm and cuddly. Relaxed and unflashy they represent the comfort and soft side of knitting and crochet.

The House of Monkey: Intelligent and with a fun loving side, Monkeys like to be challenged with every project presenting them with something new and interesting.

The House of Peacock: Peacocks take something good and make it brilliant. Buttons, embellishments and a bit of sparkle prove that perfection lies in the details – like a Peacock’s Tail.

Can you guess which I fall into? Here’s a hint- I’ve only got three knitted projects on this blog, and one is a potholder.

house manateeHouse Manatee, wooot! I’m generally very relaxed (and as I’ve said a million times on this blog, slooooooooow) about my knitting.(Also, I totally swam with a manatee in February, and it is now my spirit animal.) I pick up my needles when I feel like it, but generally don’t stress too much about getting any one project done. Most of my past projects have been hats and scarves- simple, uncomplicated, and square things. I like stuff that requires little counting and allows me to watch The Hubs play video games, and help him find all treas-uhhh! (You guys watch South Park, right?…)

This past year or so I’ve branched out a bit (one sweater, two christmas stockings, and a cardigan in the works), but I’m still learning.I  guess in a way I could also be part House Monkey- I like a bit of a challenge, and learning new things, but then I get bored when the fun part is over! So maybe a bit of House Bee in there as well. I scan ravelry for new projects and inspiration, but rarely actually START anything.  I’m probably least likely to fit into House Peacock- sparkly, flashy knitting is beyond me at this point!

Which House do you think best fits your knitting/crochet style?

I’m not insane! My mother had me tested!

Not a whole lot going on in the crafting world for me lately- I’ve been on a rotation that is MUCH more mentally draining that I had anticipated, so things have been going slowly. I *have* been doing some knitting almost every day (but it’s slow going because I’m pretty sure I’m the world’s slowest knitter). I’ve been working on the Miette cardigan in a really pretty peacock blue color.

DSC03949I’m not sure if the design near the edges is going to look right, as I’m not entirely sure if I’m doing some of the stitches properly, but meh. We’ll see how it goes. At least the act of knitting soothes my harried soul at the end of a hard day.

I’ve also purchased and cut out the fabric for lining my pencil skirt. I realllllllly wanted yellow, but all (the TWO) kinds of yellow lining fabric at Joann’s made my skin crawl when I touched them, so I went for red. I asked the Hubs to wash it for me whilst I was at work one day so I could cut when I got home. I came home to this–>

DSC03945It’s a hard to see photo, but I think you can see the splotches on the material (my cutting board is the plaid bits you can see through). They weren’t there before the washing, so I’m not sure what happened. The washing machines in our apartment building are always suspect, but who knows. It’s just the lining, so I’m not super concerned; more like mildly annoyed.

The only other thing I’ve done has been mending some pants using Suzannah’s tutorial on mending jeans. I know what you’re thinking- “WHOA, MacStabby, this shit is TOO EXCITING.” Hey man, you chose to get on this train- you can’t just get off because the ride is a little bumpy.

Anywho, these are my crummy Old Navy jeans-

DSC03951Can you handle this? There’s no going back now.

I also fixed two pairs of the Hubs’ pants.

DSC03955Look at this! He seems to routinely blow out the crotches of his jeans. He only wears these really old ones around the house or up at his parents’ land when he’s like, moving dirt with a tractor or whatever, so it doesn’t matter that the color doesn’t match. Speaking of not matching, for his second pair of pants-

DSC03957PURPLE. But see the other parts that were patched by his mom (using denim patches, not the method I used). He has literally blown out all four cardinal directions in the crotch of these pants. Da fuq? Anybody else’s Dood have this problem, or is he magically destroying these pants in some mysterious way?

Anywho, he’s probably good for another 10,000 miles now, so GO ME.

In closing, here is a picture of Mr. Bojangles looking cranky-pantsy.

DSC03950

It’s a Saturnalia Miracle!

And by miracle, of course, I mean that The Nugget’s dress ACTUALLY FITS. WHAT?! But I’m getting ahead of myself…

So, I’m newly returned from a whirlwind adventure in the Twin Cities and to Western States with Mountains, got sick, and have been pooped. Gah! No time for blogging when coughing and sleeping! Anyhoodle, right before we left, I finished knitting my christmas stocking, which is the same one I made for The Hubs earlier this year, but in cream. I added hangy loops when we got back and WAH-LA (as they say on etsy.)

017I used a pattern I found on Ravelry. Both stockings are on my personal Ravelry page. These stockings are my first experiences with stranded knitting, and honestly, it’s not that hard! It takes a little fiddling to figure out how not to have holes when changing colors, but it’s pretty easy. These were a joy to make- important in a hobby, amirite?

Next, onto Nugget’s Birthday Dress, aka I Totally Lucked Out that This Thing Fit, aka I Totally Bit Off More than I Could Chew Here, People. I think I said in a previous post that if it didn’t fit, I wanted to burn it. Prior posts on the subject showed that slippery-ass fabric stinks for newbie sewasauruses like me (term from CationDesigns.) Putting in the zipper was a mess to do and it’s a mess to look at.

Monstrous.

Monstrous.

Have you ever seen anything as hideous as that? Like I said, I’m a newb, and this project with this fabric was just too ambitious for my current skills. Oh well, on with the show…

Front

Front

Bodice

Bodice

Ribbon roses to cover fabric snags/flaws

Ribbon roses to cover fabric snags/flaws

So, with this….thing that I had before me, I was a little nervous. With much trepidation did I wrap and give this….thing to the Nugget. Luckily, she, as an almost 5 year old, adored it.

Look at this cheeser!

Look at this cheeser!

I tried to get pictures of her twirling, but….

Funny, but fail.

Funny, but fail.

It’s kind of hard to corral a young child who just got a giant stack of presents from her grandparents, even if it is to take a photo of her in her birthday dress whilst twirling (she’s a New Year’s bebe.) Everytime the flash went off, she’d take off back to the living room to her pile of loot, haha.

Anywho, it’s certainly not a grand success, but not quite a failure either.

In other news, I won a Pattern Pyramid giveaway from CharmofMagpies, woot! She’s located in NZ, so whenever my goodies get here, I’ll host my own! (and probably add a pattern from my stash that I’m clearly never going to use.) Thanks, Joy! I hope she got my email… 🙂

In OTHER other news, I got two great gifts related to crafting for Christmas.  Sew U Home Stretch by Wendy Mullin was from my BIL, and my dearest Hubs gave me a pair of Gingher dressmaking shears (for lefties!) Pretty stoked about these two gifts! I also got some video games, nail polish, and the game Cards Against Humanity. Pretty awesome Christmas!

Coming soon- the gift I made for the Hubs for Christmas, and one of our Christmas traditions (late- I wanted to post during my trip, but I was just too busy!)

Hope everyone is have a lovely end-of-the-year!

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When two dynamic people get together, it’s like a whole lot of dynamite.

Well it’s been a couple weeks since I posted but I was interviewing for residency and furiously working on finishing my 3 Hour sweater.  (The pencil-skirt sew-along has taken a backseat for now.) I’m using modifications from Ravelry user Foxfire. The directions were pretty easy to follow- the few derps I had were totally of my own doing.

I was doing SO WELL when I first started it, but after I got down to the body, I got bored. It sat for several months over the summer, until I finally decided I wanted to be able to wear the damn thing while it was still fall. I finished it on this past Wednesday and blocked it on Thursday whilst at my MIL’s. The first few pictures are from my iPod touch, so the quality is a bit less than my camera.

Before blocking

I wasn’t sure how to block acrylic (this is Vanna White’s line that you can find at Joann’s.) I found this tutorial. Apparently, acrylic yarn needs to be steam-blocked. I pinned this puppy to within an inch of its life and went to town with my MIL’s steamer. An iron with a steam setting will work as well, so I’ll be able to do this at home. I had these funny poochy parts that looked like elephant ears on the sides of the sweater- here, I had them pinned in, but I took them out and steamed them in what I hope is the proper configuration.

Post-blocking

It’s far from perfect, but a lot of the wonky parts have gotten smoothed out. I didn’t have a lot of luck weaving in my ends in a way that is inconspicuous, but I was trying to finish the sweater the “right” way, and not just tie knots and chop the ends off.

Close up of the button

I used a yellow-ish, clear-ish plastic button in the shape of a flower from my MIL’s extensive collection of buttons (she has about three tins FULL of them.) I couldn’t get this darn photo to rotate around…

Anywho, I got to wear the sweater today when The Hubs and I went to see “Skyfall.” Hooray for James Bond! Daniel Craig is dreamy! Judi Dench is amazing! Javier Bardem’s wig is a masterclass in Awfulness! And I only had a Sad Feel ONCE. I highly recommend it.

On the whole, I’m happy with how it turned out. It’s only the second sweater I’ve ever made. The first was for The Hubs when we were dating (the Stitch n Bitch Skully sweater, with the Punisher logo on it instead. He’s never worn it, but we got married, so the maybe the curse is backwards somehow?) and I made it like 8 years ago.

Anywho, back to THIS sweater- I didn’t use the short-rows necessary for bustiness, and I think that was a good choice. I’ve got these funny flaps on the sides though.

Funny side pouches

I’m not quite sure what to do with them. I feel like the sweater doesn’t “need” them, because I don’t need the extra fabric for my size…but do I just leave it? Do I take the sweater in from the inside? If I do, what then- do I leave the extra fabric, or cut it off? Sew it up with yarn as if I knitted it in two pieces, or use my sewing machine? For a future make, would decreasing more at the sides help with this issue? Any suggestions or tips would be greatly appreciated!

So, first big knit project for myself completed! It’s on my Ravelry page, but most of the photos are the same as here. The knitting bug is back in full force- I’ve got yarn to make a Miette cardigan, but I’m currently furiously working on a Christmas stocking to match the one I made my husband. I’d like to get back to my pencil skirt, but I don’t see the point of forcing myself to make it if I’m not feeling it- it’ll get done, but just whenever I get my lazy butt around to it!

Have you completed a new project lately?

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