A (Mostly) Finished Project

24 11 2009

Sorry it’s been so quiet around here lately.  I’ve got a TON of projects pulling on my time and mental capacity.  Here’s one that I hit a major milestone on last night!


The top is finished, tonight I’m going to sandwhich with batting and backing fabric and finish the edges.  The quilt is 72 inches square (so sort of queen sized).  It’s a much belated wedding gift for a family member.


This Weekend’s Project

27 08 2009

First off I’d like to point you guys in the direction of my Finished Projects page up there.  I finished an afghan this week that I’ve been working on for a very long time, on and off for about 5 years, it’s at the top of the page.  I’m very proud of it, it’s very soft (which I credit to my yarn choice, Caron Simply Soft) and it’s very warm.  It’s not quite the proper dimensions, needs to be a bit wider but I started it before I really understood how these things work.  I love it to death.

Secondly, if you didn’t catch it from last week Ms Tami is our first winner of the Trivia game.  We are in the process of selecting her prize and I will update you guys when it’s chosen.

Now, my project for this weekend comes from a wicked cool website – Instructables.  It’s a site where people can post step-by-step instructions on doing or making just about anything.  The project I’d like to do is a cryptex.  If you’ve seen or read the DaVinci Code you know what I’m talking about (I believe that the author actually made up the term).  It’s a kind of lock box with a password made of concentric tubes that’s meant to hold a piece of paper.  The one in the story has a self-destruct feature that will destroy the contents if you try to open it with the wrong password or simply break it open.  Mine won’t have this feature, mostly because it seems like a pain in the butt and I don’t need it.  If you search for cryptex on the site there’s a couple of Instructables ranging from very complex to very simple.  Mine will probably be somewhere between the two.  I like the way the more complex one works but I have very little experience working with metal and have even fewer resources for it so mine will probably be made of all PVC piping.  I’ll post pictures when I finish!


“What makes you think something bad is gonna happen?”

“Because! Nobody gets everything they want! Look at you, look at [her]. You’re good people and you two both got shafted. I’m so happy and… something bad is going to happen.”

“Sweetie, you sh!t your pants this year. I think you’re done.”

Crafts Galore

18 06 2009

In case you haven’t noticed I haven’t been talking about books much lately.  Basically I got stuck in a rut with a few books and now most of my free time has gone back to crafting instead of reading.  Today I thought I’d share a few things I’ve been working on.

Hat & Booties

A very good friend of mine is having twin boys in a few months.  I don’t think she reads the blog so I’m going to share the Hat & Booties I’m making.

hat and booties

I’ve only completed one of the booties, but the whole thing has come together very quickly.  The hat took 2 evenings and I finished the bootie in one night.  I plan on making a set in blue for the other twin.  If there’s time I’m also going to make a matching blanket for each, we’ll just have to see how that goes.

The pattern comes from BabyKnits Hats & Booties.  The “Look Inside” thingy on amazon actually has the complete pattern for this set.


I posted this picture on Twitter yesterday, these are for Tami

tami's socks

I my only concern with these is the fit.  Tami is several states away so I’m not positive they’ll fit… everyone keep  your fingers crossed 🙂

The pattern is from You Can Crochet Socks

Purple Wave Afghan

I think I might have talked about this afghan before, I can’t remember now and I’m too lazy to go look.  I’ve been working on it for a long time.  I’m actually almost finished with it.



I’ve added on to it substantially since I took this picture, it’s probably 2.5 feet long (the picture is taken from the side so the “length” is the horizontal axis in the picture) and I’ve doubled that now.  I’ve got about 1.5-2 feet to go.


That’s about it for today, short post.  I’m also going to be working on the “Works in Progress” page too, adding pictures and updating it a little.

Anyone who read my WoW blog may remember the movie quotes trivia I had.  Is anyone interested in starting that up again?  Maybe I could give something away if you answer several right…  a handmade item, maybe a $10 Amazon gift certificate…   If you guys would like to participate in something like that leave me a comment.

I Has Socks

5 02 2009

Well, almost.  After many, many, many… many false starts, I finally got the hang of knitting on double pointed needles.  It actually took me giving up on socks and trying a hat to figure things out.  Side story: every year around this time I make baby caps for the NICU at a couple of local hospitals.  I made this hat for that occasion but shortly after starting got an email not to use green or yellow as those colors would be unflattering on sick babies.  I was using the same yarn that I am using for the sock pictured below so I decided to give that hat to a friend who recently had a baby.  Hopefully the hat will fit him as he is a couple of months old and the hat was made with newborns in mind.  Alas, I do not have any pictures of the hat.

Anywhoo, back to the socks.  It felt like it took me forever to get the leg part made, but I finally finished it yesterday.  Then I went back for my pattern to learn how to make and then turn the heel flap, then how to pick up stitches from the side of the heel flap to make the gusset and decrease down to the instep.  No, it’s not as complicated as it sounds, I only screwed up in one place and was able to fix it with out ripping anything out.  I’m working the instep now after that all I have to do is the toe decreases and then learn how to graft the toe closed.  I think I’ll have it finished by the weeked.  Then I’ll have to start all over to make the other sock 🙂



It’s actually inside out so you’re seeing the purl side.

The pattern book I’m using is I Can’t Believe I’m Knitting SocksI really like the book, the instructions are very clear and they have lots of pictures.

Hope everyone out there on teh intarwebs is having a good day!!

People! Please THINK While Writing Patterns

7 01 2009

If you don’t crochet or knit most of this post will be gibberish so feel free to mark as read and move on.

I get e-mails from Joann’s about sales and stuff.  I got one today that had a couple of free patterns advertised.  Since I’m all about free stuff I moseyed on over to check them out.  Here’s the hat pattern that I think is abysmal.  It’s fairly clear to me that this pattern was simply converted from a knitting pattern by someone who doesn’t crochet.  It’s worked from the bottom up (like most knitting patterns) instead of from the top down (like most crochet patterns).  The bottom part is worked flat and then joined.  The top is worked in rounds from there.  I can’t immagine how awakward it is to crochet along the inside, working towards the point, of a concave piece.  Crochet is much smoother to work from the point outwards.  Knitting is exactly the opposite.

There’s a note at the botton that this is an adaptation of a Lion Brand pattern and if memory serves the pattern is knitted.  In my mind Joann’s is a reputable source and it makes me really mad when they spit out patterns just to get more hits on their website.  There was obviously no thought as to how the piece would come together.  It seems very clear to me that the pattern writer doesn’t actually crochet.

Anywhoo, that’s enough of me ranting.  Maybe I’ll re-write the pattern in a way that makes sense… in my spare time between 3 and 4 in the morning!

A New Craft

23 12 2008

I was killing some time on Friday afternoon and decided to peruse Joann’s.  As I always do, I wandered through the fabric section (looked for some UT fabric and found none as usual), perused the patterns and books, then passed the scrapbook section because I can’t bear to pick up that hobby, passed the beads because I have to be in the right mood for that particular craft, and wound up in the yarn section.  See I crochet… never liked knitting but I also never really gave it a fair shake either.  I got some kind of wild hair and decided to give knitting one more try.  Not quite sure what inspired me to try knitting again, but I purchased some needles and a book (I have plenty of yarn at home and bought some needles the appropiate size for some yarn that I know I have at home).

Allow me to side track a little here.  Most crafters (that I know at least) will either like knitting or crochet… but not normally both.  They are similar crafts but the execution is very different and whichever you learn first will make learning the other harder (although I think knitting -> crochet is easier than the other way around, I had a hard time getting used to the lack of a hook).

In retrospect I the book I bought probably should have been my second book.  It’s a great resource but has way too much detail for the beginer.  I was competly overwhelmed by all the details.  Another sidetrack about the difference between knitting and crochet.  I knitting there is 1 (arguably 2) stitch and the differences (between American and English styles) are in how you form them.  In crochet there are many stitches and they are always formed the same way the differences (between the American and English styles) are simply nomenclature.  In this knitting book I was presented with 4 ways to cast on and 2 ways each to knit and purl.  When I learned to crochet it followed a logical progression: chain stitch (which forms the base for the first row), single crochet (the basic stitch), turning the fabric, double crochet, trebble crochet, half double crochet, ect.  Knitting is more subjective.  For example, if you asked a knitting expert “How do I cast on?” the answer is “It depends.”  Each method has it’s advantages and disadvantages and has situations where it is appropiate.  If you ask a crochet expert “How do I chain stitch?” the answer is always the same, “Form a slip knot on the hook, yarn over, and pull the newly created loop through the one already on the hook” 

Anywhoo, I tried out each of the options I was given and through tiral and error figured out what would work for me.  I was suprised that the American style worked much better than the English.  I’m used to holding the yarn in my left hand from crochet, but I found that holding the yarn in my right hand much easier in knitting.  I played around a little while with my stash yarn and then decided to start the first example project in the book.  It’s a triangular shawl that is started from the point and worked up from there with one increase at the start of each row.  This is different from chrochet where something like this would be worked from the long side down to the point.  Then yesterday I decided to try making a scarf.  I went back to Joann’s and bought some yarn that I’ve never been able to crochet with but I’ve been told is fine for knitting (it’s Lion’s Brand Homespun, all the extra threads get caught up in the hook, I’ve tried several times and never been able to crochet with it).  I needed a slightly larger needle so I got that (this one’s plastic instead of metal and I don’t like it quite as much but it gets the job done.)  I decided to just use a garter stitch, the yarn is such that you won’t really see any fancy stitches so I decided to go with what would be simple.  Since a stockinette will roll I went with a garter stitch.  I made it about 8 inches wide (it’s a little too wide but it’ll be ok) and I’ve worked about 4 inches so far.  I’m hoping to have it finished by Christmas but that might be a little too ambitious.  I’ll let you guys know whether I finish it or not.

Hope everyone is having a great holiday!