Friday, December 30, 2011

Better Late Than Never

Okay so the never before seen hairpin lace project was completed just in time to be on the tree on Christmas Eve, and it may not be so festive to post it now, but at least you'll get to see it.  I made garland for my tree out of the ribbon yarn on the hairpin lace tool.  It has the same construction as hairpin lace, but not the same appearance.
And I am finally done with the scarf pattern as well.  It turned out beautifully and I recommend it to everyone!  If you know the basics of knitting, you can knit this scarf.  Check it out! Hopefully I'll have more to post soon.  The holidays have been crazy, but don't worry, I am already working on a new pattern.  This one will be a mohair shawl.  That is the only hint for now.  Have a Happy New Year!

Friday, December 16, 2011

A Busy Week

Well, last time we spoke I promised two things, a new pattern and something never before seen done with hairpin lace.  Well the pattern is done, minus identifying the yarn I used, but the hairpin lace project, not so much.  Here's why.  I worked every day this week, and when I wasn't at work, I was working on the sample for the crochet scarf class I'm teaching next month.  If you live in the Elk Grove, CA area, come to Knitique and sign up for the class.  It is a beautiful scarf, even if it isn't quite done yet.  However, the mitts pattern is done, and you can find it for sale on Ravelry here!  I appreciate the support from anyone who buys the pattern.  I'm thinking of doing an ebook collection of all my mitts once I get them all done.  I have two more mitt patterns to work up.  Also in progress is a new knitted scarf pattern.  It is more complex than my previous patterns, but its worth it!

Friday, December 9, 2011

With Pom Poms on Top

Yes, I put pom poms on my boots.  No, it doesn't look tacky!  I used bright red on black boots so they look very festive, but there are so many colors of this yarn, you could easily style them to wear all winter long!  These are my latest pattern, and I really hope you enjoy them.  They are quick and easy to make a pair of, and they only take one ball of each yarn.  They are very affordable.  Make some for you, or make some for the kids.  These are sure to be a hit with everyone!

Also coming soon are a new mitts pattern, as well as something you never thought you could make with hairpin lace.  Both of these patterns should be out by the end of next week, so just hang tight and customize your boots while you wait!  Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

New Patterns

Now that I have gotten settled and found employment here in Sacramento, I have had more time to develop patterns, and to begin spending time on the computer again.  I am excited to tell you that I have new patterns available for download on Ravelry.  I have just listed a couple pairs of mitts, and some fabulous boot toppers.  You absolutely must check them out!  All my patterns are reasonably priced.  I am thinking of publishing an ebook soon if all goes well.  Please support me by favoriting my patterns and downloading them for your use and enjoyment.  I love getting feedback as well!
All of my patterns can be viewed here!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Recent Yarnventures in Sacramento

So I am now pretty much settled in Sacramento, although I find myself in my car typing this post because we don't have internet at home quite yet.  And I find myself low on battery as well, because my car adapter refuses to work.

So far my yarnventures have been to unpack all my yarn and decide where to put it all.  That was no easy task mind you.  My Grandma recently sent me all her yarn and that was a lot of yarn.  I 5 shelf bookcase, a 3 shelf bookcase, and a desk devoted to my yarn, books, and tools such as loom, knitting needles, knitting machine, and embroidery machine.

Now I find myself meeting yarny people in Elk Grove, a half hour drive away, but totally worth it.  There are yarn shops closer, yes, but this one takes the cake, or gives it as the case may be.  I went to their Knit N Nosh event and boy was it great!  I had so much fun, helped new knitters when they got stuck on projects, and worked on my newest soon to be pattern for sale.  Knitique is well worth the drive, and has a great selection.  I know I will be going back there soon to buy a beautiful set of interchangeable needles very soon.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Balancing Act: Crafting and Moving

Wow..... I am likely moving cities a month or so from now.  That is the scary part.  I know what city.  I know my fiancee will have a job.  I don't know if I will have one.  We don't have a place yet.  And we don't know exactly when we are going.

And then there is the not so fun part....  Packing!  Ugh!  Its even less fun when you don't know exactly when you are moving.   What do I pack first?  How am I going to deal with the pets?!  I have to have everything out of the house for the inspection of the apartment, but if its hot they can't exactly hang out in the car...  I have things like candles that don't appreciate getting hot either.  Uhaul trucks aren't air conditioned....  Will they melt?  I'm hoping it is going to cool off enough before we go that I don't have to worry about that too much...

Oh my gosh.... There is so much to do....  I am giving stuff away, throwing stuff away, donating stuff, all to have to pack less.  Am I going to regret getting rid of some of this stuff?  Where do I donate my Hot Topic coats?  Not very many people are into trench coats and leather....

And then there is my knitting.  How long can I put off packing it?  Should I get rid of some of my stash?  How do I take the time to work on projects when I should be packing?  I have a new scarf pattern in progress to put up on Ravelry.  I am in a hurry to get lots of decent patterns up for sale so that I can supplement my income.  Especially since I will possibly have a loss of income....  I know I'm probably not doing any more weaving until I move...  How do people do this?!

So... the thing I'm most excited about?!  There is a Stitch N' Bitch group where I'm moving.  There isn't one here!  And there are tons more yarn shops there!  I'm sad to go because I have friends and family here and no one I know there, but its an adventure!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Back from Vacation/A New Pattern

I just got back from a week long vacation to visit my Grandma in Boise, Idaho.  I went to a yarn shop up there called Puffy Mondaes, and they were awesome!  I came back with some beautiful burgundy and sparkly fingering weight yarn, destined to be a shawl.  I am thinking something lacy and airy.  I also bought some beautiful fiber dyed in green, gold, black and white.  It is 80% New Zealand Merino and 20% Silk.  That shop was actually in Nampa, about a 15 minute drive down the freeway from Grandma's house!  Oh how I wish my local yarn shop was as amazing.
I almost finished a tee style sweater while I was there, and I just finished it yesterday.  And today, I finished some new slippers and published the pattern on Ravelry.  They are my Keep It Simply Squishy(K.I.S.S.) Slippers.  They are the perfect weekend project and last minute gift.  Hopefully my Etsy and Ravelry sales will pick up soon so I can support my habit a little better.
Oh, and I just started a pair of Toast for my Grandma.  Her skin bruises easily, and she hates to go out with her hands showing, so I am making a light blue pair of simple fingerless mitts to hide the bruises.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Okay..... Break over.

My rabbit is now a happy member of my family, although he did not enjoy getting his first haircut.  There was lots of squirming and kicking involved.  I had lots of scratches.  I am still working on him being willing to lay on his side or back without freaking out.  He is getting much better.  He has a snobby attitude and is a bit bossy.  He has been deemed Admiral Twist.
 I also added some new things to my Etsy Shop!  There is a scarf and a shawl.  Both are handwoven.  New patterns coming soon.  I can't publish my most recent pattern because it is meant to look like Toothless from How To Train Your Dragon, and Dreamworks told me no.  Pretty sure I am allowed to offer it for free though.  If so, I'll put the link up on Ravelry.
I also started spinning the hair from the first bunny haircut!  Not sure what I'll make out if it yet.  I am blending it with wool.  The picture is the single of Angora and wool on the spindle, and a cop of plain wool on a needle.  The two are destined to be plied together as a two ply yarn.  I am thinking of doing the Wisp out of it, if I have enough, or maybe a scarf with a similar stitch pattern.
I just finished weaving some hand towels for my bathroom.  I had to seam them by hand, no sewing machine, so it took forever to do the hems.  But, they look pretty snazzy for the fact that sewing is not really my thing.
I am almost done test knitting a pattern for some quick to knit slippers as well.  I have the first slipper done.  I will list the pattern on Ravelry and Etsy as soon as its ready.  More patterns are coming soon!  All in all, I have been a busy beaver lately, so I didn't get to blogging much.  Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

A Break From Fiber

Okay, don't freak out, but I am taking a break from fiber temporarily.

Just kidding!  I am getting a Satin Angora bunny!  I have spent the last couple days redoing my old bunny cage for him.  The drawer pan had rusted, the food cup was trashed, and there was no longer a water bottle.  So.... I bought a water bottle and food cup, and then got on to the hard part.  I scraped off old paint, sanded, and used The Must For Rust on the pan.  Once I got it fairly smooth, I spray painted it with a beautiful dark green.  The inside of the pan doesn't look perfect, but it will be covered with a pan liner anyway.  The goal is no more rust.  I decided to use Rustoleum, as it will still bond with metal that has some rust, and it will protect it from rusting again.

Now all I need is the bunny!  Talk about fiber, I can harvest his beautiful fur four times a year and spin him into some beautiful yarn.  I will be picking him up either today or tomorrow.  Pictures coming soon!

For now, enjoy a picture of my spray painting fail.  Now.... off to take a shower.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Ways to Waste Time

So....  I wasted so much time today.  I did get some knitting done.  If I had been diligent, the test knit for my next pattern would have been done, but I was lazy, so it is only almost done.  I still haven't bothered to seam my Celebration Tunic.  I think it is because it was 107 degrees today and I just didn't feel like putting a sweater in my lap.  Oh, I did get a fair amount of weaving done today too.  I was working on my customizable scarf that I plan on putting on 

In other news, I did some of the usual boring household chores, like dishes and watering the garden.  Not really anything fun there, and sadly, those things don't make me feel productive.

Okay, so you are wondering, how did I waste away the hours?  TV of course.  Oh and I watched the latest episode of True Blood online because I don't get HBO.  And.... the real time waster = Facebook games!  I feel rather silly saying it, but it is true.  I spent way too much time playing Dungeon Overlord, Cityville, Happy Aquarium, and my favorite, Collapse.

I do hope to get back to more knitting and weaving soon.  I have a couple weaving projects that I would like to complete and post for sale on Etsy, and I have another knitting pattern in mind to work out and post for sale on Ravelry.

I am really trying to come up with ways of gaining more income.  The current job market in my area is sadly lacking, so I have resorted to online things like selling used items on Craigslist, and my patterns and projects on Ravelry and Etsy.  Oh, and there are the ads on this blog.  If you click on them, I get some change, so if you feel like helping a girl out, it is appreciated.

Okay, enough complaining, begging, and feeling sorry for myself.  I promise to be more positive in my next post.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Ups and Downs

Well since my last entry, things have been rather erratic.  I guess maybe I have gotten a little too excited about selling patterns, as no more sales have occurred since my last posting.  Hmm...  Well my next pattern should be a major improvement.  This first one was rather basic to test the waters in selling patterns.  I figured I better start to make something off my hobby, as my regular job isn't a very big paycheck.

However, life is good.  I have finally finished all the pieces to my Celebration Tunic done in neutrals instead of rainbow.  The pattern was in issue 100 of Knitters Magazine.  I still have to assemble the sweater and weave in more ends than anyone can ever be thrilled about.  And you know what?  I just don't want to do it this week.

In other news, I have started weaving.  My second project came out pretty fabulous.  It is a shawl in rainbow colors and black.  I am thinking of selling it, as I have no idea what I will ever wear it with.  My third project is coming along rather nicely, and I think I will be selling it as well.  Actually, it is probably going to be a demo from which I sell custom versions of the same design.  No pictures of this yet, as I would like people to see the finished design first.
I have finished a fun hand towel for the stepdaughter who wipes toothpaste on all my towels so she can be free to smother it in toothpaste to her heart's content and I won't dry my hands on something sticky.  I think I'll make a couple more of these.

Oh, and...  that is probably enough for now.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

I Hate To Brag

I hate to brag, but I just have to share because I am so excited.  I listed my first pattern for sale on Etsy and Ravelry for $1.00 per download.  And guess what?!  I have sold it twice already and it has been less than a week!  I realize two sales isn't a lot of money, but it is definitely a start to being a successful designer/shop owner, and I am very happy with it so far.  My Etsy shop also has things other than patterns.  I currently have some 4x6 photo prints for sale as well.  I hope to have some art prints of some of my paintings available for sale on there as well.  Oh my gosh I am so excited!!!!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

A Bad Spinning Day

So, day four of spinning this week went terribly.  I couldn't draft.  The single kept braking.  The roving kept tying into knots.  I wasted a bunch of wool.  And the singles I did get are  very thick and thin.  Ugh.....  I should have stopped as soon as I started to get frustrated, but that is just not my style.  I am determined to overcome and get it right.  It got better towards the end, but after half an hour I said oh forget it, took pictures, and cleaned up the fuzz off my couch and clothes.  A lint roller is my best friend.  I am finally including pictures.

First Picture:  Wool and spindle ready to be put away.

Second Picture:  Close up of the very thick and thin, and very fuzzy wuzzy single.

Third Picture:  All the wasted fluff.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Tour De Fleece: Adventures in Spinning

Well.....  So far so good.  I made a goal to spin 4 times a week for a minimum of 15 minutes on my top whorl drop spindle, because I am still learning.  I have one natural white cop of a fairly even single.  No idea the yardage.  I plan on making three cops of the same size and plying them together.  It is Thursday and I am on day 3 of spinning this week.  I will get in my fourth day tomorrow, and be true to my goal for the first week of this year's Tour De Fleece.  I am hoping that my goal of 4 days a week will result in three cops ready to ply before the end of the Tour.  I have actually been doing about half an hour a day instead of 15 minutes, so I feel very productive.  After I removed the first cop today I went ahead and spun a little bit to get started on the next single, so that tomorrow I can just pick it up and go.  I am still having plenty of problems with breaking, tangling, uneven singles, but I am getting a lot better.  I don't know what I will make out of my yarn once it becomes a yarn, but I can't wait!

Here is the first cop of spun singles.  Ready and waiting for two more to be ready to ply.  Somewhat thick and thin, but not bad.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

My First Pattern!

I am trying my hand at becoming a designer!  I will be selling the pattern for $1.00.  The pattern is for a stylish belt with a pocket for your cell phone or keys.  The purpose was to create something for when you are without pockets.  It works great and can be easily adjusted to fit you and your style.  Please let me know what you think.  You can find the pattern on Etsy or Ravelry as the Weave It Knit It.  I hope to see lots of purchases!  My next project will be a fun hat!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

And Now... The stash

So.... I have officially become a true knitter.  I have a huge stash of yarn now!  Up until today I have had one box about 1ft by 1ft by 2ft full of yarn leftovers, not really any unused skeins or balls.  The only other yanr I had was/is dedicated to works in progress.  Recently I have bought several balls of yarn from Big Lots and my local yarn shop.  Yes I am a fan of cheap synthetics, so that is most of what I have.  Occasionally I splurge at the yarn shops, on Etsy, or Ravelry.  And today, Craigslist made my collection of yarns officially a stash.  I bought an entire storage tote box of skeins and balls of yarn, as well as needles, books, and circular looms.  Most of it is partially used skeins, but much of it is untouched!  And yes, most of it is the usual cheap synthetics, including novelty yarn.  And yes I know, all the yarn snobs are cringing right now.  Well, I don't care.  I cannot afford to be a yarn snob and all yarns have their place.  Most of it, is also mystery yarn.  There is only one ball in the whole box with the label, a lone ball of pastel variegated Patons Stretch Sock.  Much of this I consider to be my beginner knitter education yarn.  This is because..... I have a couple friends with kids who want to knit.  This way I can afford to give them yarn, and needles.  I paid $30 for the whole lot, and the great part about that is I am also selling an item to someone tomorrow for $32, so I am ahead by $2.  I love not actually spending any money.  I promise, pictures to come once I finish sorting!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Entry One: A Story to Spin

I have been an off and on knitter from somewhere around Junior High/High School age.  Things always manage to get in the way and I drop it for a while, and then I come back again, more addicted than the time before.  I really think it is here to stay this time.  My current adventures began with a book at Barnes & Noble called Sensual Knits.  I just had to make the halter tie tunic in that book.  So I bought it, and some cheap yarn from my friendly neighborhood Walmart, and got started.  For some reason, this project has never ended up on my Ravelry page.  Now I didn't have ravelry when I started, or completed, this project, so that might be why.

Next comes my discovery of Ravelry and all the amazing free patterns.  And to Walmart I went for more cheap yarn.  I don't really remember what came next.  But eventually I went back to Sensual Knits, and then got yarn from Michael's Arts & Crafts, I guess you could call it an upgrade, and made the vixen camisole.  I have also made the cowl tank out of this book as well.  I love this book!  Thanks to Ravelry, I eventually discovered other yarns, but not until after I purchased my first issue of Vogue Knitting.

Oh my goodness!  That magazine is amazing!  And of course, and advertisement led me to my first "real" sweater from Bergere de France.  Once I found the pattern and ordered it, I checked my mail like a crazy woman until a brown paper envelope showed up from Europe.  My heart sank as I realized the pattern didn't come small enough.  I am petite!  So, on a trip to visit my Grandma in Boise, Idaho, I bought some superwash wool sock yarn!  With that gauge, my sweater turned out just right, if not very slow going.....  And now I knew what something other than acrylic felt like.

On to Ravelry leading me to new yarns.  I eventually got a koi fish inspired sock yarn that became a second, more wild, Vixen Camisole.  I also tracked down a hand dyed yarn from Jill Draper called Hudson in the colorway Lower East Side, that almost reminded me of my favorite fish.  Oh yay!  That became a very altered Pinkerton Shawl from Interweave Knits.  One great thing I can say about Walmart, is I discovered great knitting magazines.  Back to my yarns.  I also discovered Black Cat Fiber Arts on Etsy.  Again, thanks Ravelry.  I talked the dyer/begged her into dying second skeins of two sock yarns I just had to have but needed more yardage.  One became a second Pinkerton Shawl.  Turns out, the pattern suggests a lot more yardage than necessary, so I still have to make the second ball into something.  And the other color is turning into a Citron Shawl.  I am doing an extra repeat because I want it a bit larger, and I am barely going to cut into the second ball of that color.

My koi sock yarn leftovers are currently turning into some fabulous slipper socks from Creative Knitting Magazine.  My leftovers from my Bergere de France sweater, Pinkerton Shawl, and Citron Shawl, may all become some of these cute little socks as well.  Or... maybe some wristers.  I particularly love Toast!

Well...  that seems to be a good intro into my knitting world.  I'll delve more into my knitting, and eventually my spinning, as the urge to write arises.  And hopefully, I am not talking to myself.