I write stuff. Sometimes. Not very often. Also: knitting and bunnies and books. Random tangents are likely.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Adventures in T-shirt Transform & Felted Soap

I've had t-shirts on the mind. I can't shake it, so there's only one thing to be done...

T-shirt Transform!

Now, if only I were cool enough to wear it.

In other crafty news, I also made these here felted soaps.

I tried to make that one look like a present . . . :/

For those of you interested in making your own felted soap, which will be undoubtedly more fab than mine, here's a pictorial, pieced together from pics from my knitting group's summer picnic, unbeknownst to them (until they see this post). 

Shhhh! No talking. Artists at work.


Ta-da! Easy and fab, right?

Not to be left out, here's our test kitchen where Deb and I figured out how to make felted soaps after we promised everyone we'd show them how at the picnic. 
Check out my misshapen bunny! Deb made the flower one. :)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

I'm sick today. Here's a plesiosaur.*

Sometimes, seaming can be worth it.

*This plesiosaur was brought to you by iPhone's auto-correct feature.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Warm 'n Fuzzy - Yarn Love

I got off work a little early today, so I moseyed over to our new Triangle-area yarn shop: 

and bought some yarn!


That there is some Quince Chickadee in Peacock and String Theory Merino DK in a gorgeous copper colorway called Canyon. 

It's okay to be jealous.

It was nice to see some different yarns, yarns I haven't knit with before. I don't know if it works this way with everybody, but when I first became a Knitter, it was about the things I wanted to make. Now, having been a Knitter for nearly a decade, it's all about the yarn. I still have a queue of patterns I'd like to make one day (and it's a very large queue), but my yarns-I-absolutely-must-knit-with list is the big dog. And she's bitey if I don't feed her.

Anyway - new yarn shop! Absolutely lovely. It's very cozy, and I love all the little nooks, like secret yarn hide-aways. And, like I said, lots of different yarns to try! 

Here's a truncated tour, courtesy of my yarn...

Now I just have to figure out what to make...decisions, decisions.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

I love pumpkin hats!

Every year my knitting group makes pumpkin hats for October babies at Duke Hospital, and I never get tired of making them.

How stinkin' cute are these hats?! I'm not really a "baby person," but I want to knit every baby in the world a pumpkin hat.

I knit two hats this week, using up all the orange yarn in my stash -- yay, stash busting! -- and then I bought some more -- stash-busting fail. But this is okay because it's technically not going into my stash because I will just knit more pumpkins.

Here's the pattern I use:

Newborn Pumpkin Hats

Needle Size: 8 US
Yarn Weight: Worsted (orange for the main part of the hat and green for the “stem”)

CO 64 with orange yarn and join to work in the round.
Knit 2 x 2 rib (k2, p2) for 2.5 inches.
Knit around (stockinette stitch) for 2.5 inches.

(Hat will be 5 inches total from cast on before beginning decreases.)

Decrease for crown:
R1: {k6, k2tog}; repeat around
R2: {k5, k2tog}; repeat around
R3: {k4, k2tog}; repeat around
(switch to green yarn)
R4: {k3, k2tog}; repeat around
R5: {k2, k2tog}; repeat around
R6: {k1, k2tog}; repeat around
R7: {k2tog}; repeat around

Stem (8 stitches):
Knit 4 rounds and bind off.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Tiny Bunny of Doom!

 Be afraid. Be very afraid.

 Tiny Bunny of Doom says,
"Abe's got nothin' on me. I will DESTROY you!"

Oh Noes! His reign of terror is already starting!

P.S. Hi, y'all! It's been a while.

P.P.S. If you would like to help the Tiny Bunny of Doom build his army for world domination, you can find the pattern here. I used the tiny bit of Madeline Tosh DK leftover from the Honey Cowl (which is bound off after months of sitting on that last row. But I still need to weave in the ends. :/)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

WIP Wednesday - Ascots

Update on previous WIPs:
  1. Honey Cowl: just need to bind off and that baby is done.
  2. Karin Fingerless Mitts: about halfway on the second glove.
Current status: Craft Fair Mode

I'm in mega-crafting overdrive making things for a couple of craft fairs coming up to benefit rabbit rescue. I have a list of things to make, but my obsession this week is these crocheted ascots/scarflettes.

The yellow was my first attempt, and I decided that it was too long and the opening too wide. I remedied this on the second attempt (red), and it's much better.

I'm trying to use up some yarn in my stash, and didn't have enough of either of these colors for an entire ascot, so I striped them.

While pretty, the downside of that is now I have a massive amount of ends to weave in (which is not quite as annoying in crochet as it is in knitting, so I'm not overly bothered).

I think on the next striped version I'll crochet one row per color and carry the yarn up the side. I don't imagine it'll be terribly visible given the ruffle around the edge.

I'm having way too much fun making these. They're almost as addictive as pom-pom scarves. Almost.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

WIP Wednesday - Honey Cowl

Proof I've actually made a decision recently:

That's no small thing. Decisions are my nemesis. (I'm lumping "decisions" together as a singular threat to my day-to-day life, so I'm justifying the number agreement there, despite the verb, in a weak attempt to appease the grammar gods. And I don't know what the plural of "nemesis" is. Nemesi? And can you really have more than one nemesis? I don't think so, Johnny Snow.)

I decided on the Honey Cowl, because it seemed to be the easiest to cast on at the moment I was deciding. And, I got the chance to pet Melanie's honey cowl that weekend, so that was incentive. I'm already halfway through the second ball, so it'll be time for another decision before too long...sigh...

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

What I Did on my Christmas Vacation - Part 3: Presents and Lace

This is the last Christmas post, I swear.

Way back in November I broke my favorite coffee mug and I was very sad about it. But it's all better now because I got an extra special one for Christmas! Check it (but don't wreck it):

Also, got this super snazzy shawl pin from Designs by Romi - so much love! And now I have to knit dozens of shawls so I have plenty of excuses to wear it.

(Thanks for my super awesome presents, Barb! Love you!)

I also knit a lace shawl - Summer Flies with an alternate ending. More on this little guy in another post.

P.S. I should get around to committing to some resolutions. I've been taking my time to think about it, considering my massive resolution fail last year. I am determined to decide what about me is most broken and what knitting projects need love the most by the end of the month. 

P.P.S. I hate the new Blogger interface. And I think I might need to jazz up my blog.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

WIP Wednesday - Karin, still & bunnies

I'm still working on the Karin Wristwarmers. I haven't done much knitting since I've been home from holiday. Any progress made has been at the two knitting meetups I've been to in 2012. I have managed to finish one of the gloves, sans thumb:

I think my issue is that these gloves are literally painful to knit, but I don't know what to start next so I don't have a project to flip to when I need a break from cotton unless I want to spend 5+ hours on a repeat. I've been thinking about what I want to cast on, but I can't seem to make a decision. One option is the Helix Scarf from Jane Austen Knits 2011. I have one skein of Malabrigo Lace in a pretty brown that would be perfect. Option two is the Honey Cowl that everybody I know is knitting, and I'm incredibly jealous that they are knitting it and will own it and I'm not. My friend Mel bought me Madelinetosh DK in the Composition Book colorway for my birthday and I really want to try it because it will be my first tactile experience with MadTosh. But, I've been a little itchy to knit another lace shawl since I finished one over the holiday (more on that in a later post), so option three is Lazy Katy in this gorgeous skein of Meilenweit Solo Tono that my stepmom bought me from Coordinated Colors in Yorktown, VA:

I have the yarn and patterns for all three and I just need to pick one.

What I should be working on is stuff for the rabbit rescue craft fairs coming up. I have a few balls of the newish trendy mesh yarn to knit up, and I thought I'd mix in a few pom-pom scarves because I just can't help myself. I also made this little guy as a prototype:

We're planning to make these as part of the Make Mine Chocolate campaign at Rabbit Day 2012, so I needed to play with it to make sure it was actually going to work. I used some scrap felt I had on hand and drew a bunny template on paper. He needs a face still. His grand purpose in life is to hold a lollipop by sliding the stick through the loops in the back.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

What I Did on my Christmas Vacation - Part 2: Food

Christmas vacation at my family's house largely consists of two things: crafting and sitting around the kitchen table. And while we sit around the kitchen table, we are either crafting, playing marbles or cards, or eating.

We tried a couple new recipes this year. One was a "cookie," for lack of a better word. I don't know what they're called and I think the recipe was on the bag of something, but I don't know what, but it doesn't really matter because they are so simple but so good. Here's what you do:

Line up a bunch of those square, grid-like pretzels on a baking sheet. Put a Rolo on top of each pretzel. Put them in the oven so they get melty, but take them out before they really start to melt. They should still look like Rolos sitting on top of pretzel squares, but now they're shiny. Once they're out of the oven, you take half a pecan and smush it down on top of each Rolo. Put them in the fridge to set. I wasn't expecting much when I tried one, but they are so yummy and so addicting.

The second thing we made was Avocado Fries. These were so incredibly good that you should make them right now and invite me over.

I also tried my very first pistachio. It's hard to imagine I've gone thirty-three years without ever eating a pistachio, but they're weird looking and I wasn't exactly sure how you were supposed to eat them. Now I'm in love.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Monday Bunday - Chillaxing

This is how Goose spent his Monday, when he wasn't begging me for treats.

I really need to wash that blanket. He just finished a molt and it's covered in Goose fluff.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

What I did on my Christmas Vacation - Part 1: Operation Doggie Dress-up

Meet Maggie.

Maggie was sad because she had to spend her New Year's with her aunt and grandma while her mom and dad went to DC. I decided to cheer her up with a new sweater. Her grandma crocheted the rose.

Being so cute is super hard work.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

WIP Wednesday - Karin Wristwarmers

I bought this beautiful green Noro Shirakaba last month at Admit Ewe Knit when I spied it sitting oh-so-prettily in the Wall of Noro, and finally got the chance to start knitting it into something. It's a cotton/silk/wool blend in gorgeous saturated colors that's much softer than other Noro yarns due to the cotton content. I decided on the Karin Wristwarmers since I've never knit a pair of fingerless gloves for myself and I love fingerless gloves. Love, love, love.

The picture really doesn't do the color justice. I found the pattern to be a bit wonky to start. To get gauge I had to go up to a US 10 needle when the pattern called for a US 7, only for it to be way too big. I went back to the seven, ignoring the gauge and it's knitting up perfectly. The take away: gauge swatches are for chumps. This is not a good lesson.

Also, while the cotton makes the yarn really nice and soft, it's hard on the hands. Well, at least my poor, arthritic hands. I think I can manage it through this project and will just have to take a break from cotton for a little while to recover.

P.S. I was curious what "shirakaba" translated to, and best I can tell is "white birch." From wikipedia:
"The Shirakabaha (白樺派, literally ‘the White Birch Group’) was a Japanese literary movement centered on the magazine Shirakaba, first published in 1910. It also refers to members of the group who share the same ideas and literary style." I don't know what that has to do with yarn.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

House Cup

Playing around with beads and wire today. The "Rip It, Sip It!" wine glass is from Yarn Tree Studio. My friend Deb bought the glasses for the members of the "Frog Team." Deb, Mel and I go out and listen to frogs - for science and stuff. :)

Also, I made these today for a craft fair coming up to benefit rabbit rescue: