Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Linus, Game Inspired & Vacation!

These couple of weeks have been pretty productive i must say. I worked up two Linus shawls(free pattern via Ravelry, you can find the links in the vid description). One in the called-for sock yarn and the other in Bernat Mosaic yarn, a worsted weight. Both came out pretty great, i'm so glad i tried out this pattern; It's on the top of my faves list for sure. 

I also worked on a couple of video game related items, it seems like i ran with the Mario game theme this time. Actually, i started the 'panel' last month i believe(could have been earlier than that!) and have just finished the second row featuring the ghost, 'Boo'. Not bad! Am i right? :) The next will be in green(s) and will feature my fave baddie of the Mario game series, the Goomba. 

The mushroom blanket was a feat on its own. I have a page on Ravelry for this as well, it took a lot of my time and hard work lol(seriously, it did). It's made with half-double crochet, except for the border(which is simply single crochet). The hardest part to figure out was the swatch and how many stitches/how many rows would make a passing pixel(aka square, which is what this mushroom is made of!). Once that's calculated, it's just counting stitches and making sure you don't skip(or add) any. 

The lined bag was another feat this time around. I actually managed to work the sewing machine without much of a fuss. I messed up on the zipper and had to re-do, but that was easy enough(although time consuming). Overall it gave me a chance to give sewing another try; i should really start incorporating this into my crafting. 

Last but not least, vacation time! It's been a while since i went on my last and am pretty excited to be going someplace new. It'll be my first time to the west coast. The heat is probably the only thing i'm dreading(ok, and the plane ride), but otherwise it should be a fun experience. I'm planning to hit up some tourist attractions surrounding where i'll be at in San Diego, and plan to visit LA one of the days. As far as yarn goes, there's a few shops scattered throughout, i may(or may not) be visiting them. I am however, in the process of choosing what projects i'll be taking with me. :)

I also mentioned the book Amigurumi Toy Box!! I'm working on a horse inspired by Epona from the Legend of Zelda games. I'm super excited about this will be awesome when complete!! I also musn't forget my hand-spun. It was enjoyable yet a challenge all at the same time. I'm really thinking(and re-thinking) the purchase of a spinning wheel, and if i could justify the grand purchase.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Yarn Organization Before & After

I have finally finished organizing most of my yarn stash. I must admit there's a few skeins still floating freely here and there, which tends to happen when there are WIPs to account for, but the majority now has a set place. It took a weekend of work overall, but was well worth it! If you have seen my previous yarn stash videos then this one pretty much says it all.... however i'm posting a few more pics here for your enjoyment. 

 These is my before and after. It began with a chaotic mess. Skeins where stashed places simply because they fit, with no sense of belonging at all. Having two layers to each cube didn't help either, since once a yarn was stashed behind the others it was more than likely forgotten... :(

Before it came to organizing i had to empty everything out and i decided it to sort it by types of fiber...and then by colors(somewhat..). It made me realize what i actually had, which is A LOT, and most of it is good quality yarns. Why or how did i come to get this stash? I don't know, but because i 'found' so much i decided to go on a yarn diet until November, Thanksgiving season(i can't see myself passing up black Friday deals). I also found i had more than enough in my library, specially when it comes down to knitting. Add ravelry and/or free patterns online and it's totally endless. I'm including books/mags in my 'diet', of course.

I found i have a lot of cotton which isn't my preferred type of yarn. All though i never worked with it much honestly, i now have plenty to work with. I'm unsure if cotton yarn stretches or shrinks. I remember reading about it before(not very lately thou) and i got mixed reviews. The safest thing to do is make a swatch and see for myself i suppose. Not to mention the large amount of acrylic and acrylic blends. Red Heart is by far the most used yarn in my stash, but once i learned how to knit i've acquired a taste for the finer(and softer) ones.

I know there's a saying that goes somewhere along the lines of 'Life's too short to use acrylic'... and i think they're right! Even though nowadays acrylic isn't all bad, there are some very soft and amazing yarns which i would definetly keep on using. More recently i found that Vanna's Choice and Michael's Loops and Threads brands are some of my favorites. I also have a lot of colorways which are only 'one skein'. There's so many things that would only take that amount, yet the yardage(or lack of) does limit you somewhat. I can only make so many cowls or hats, right?

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Mushroom Blanket & Back to Spinning!

Surprise surprise, it's a vid update! I did say i would do once a month, yet i kind of missed the weekly vids. So, perhaps i'll be making them biweekly instead... :)

This month has started off pretty well i think. I've been trying to really put some time into the mushroom blanket which i admit, is looking awesome... Not to mention it's reversible and looks exactly the same on the other side. All i gotta say is that crochet is amazing! It truly lends itself to so many things.

Talking about mushrooms, i'm still working on the Nintendo inspired knit panel that will hopefully become my future banner(or part of it). That's the plan anyway.... regardless i think i already know what it will become... which is a cover for my sewing machine. It will be pretty awesome once complete. I did a row of mushrooms, am about halfway done with the row of 'Boos'(aka ghosts lol), i'm a little torn as
far as what character i want to do next. To stay in theme, probably something Super Mario Brother related; i'm kind of leaning towards Goombas(one of my favorite baddies).

I also finished a couple of misc. projects, like the cute baby hat which i love in the Lion Brand Amazing yarn. The cowl i did with left over yarn of previous projects which worked out so great 'cause i got to use every little bit. I also started on the Linus shawl; i'm using sock yarn and love the stripes. The only thing i'm a little concerned about is when it gets to a certain point the stripes won't be stripes anymore, i'm unsure as to how they will muddle together as it grows bigger. Because of that, it may be on the smaller side... just have to see how it goes.

Shopping from my stash...i finally did!! I only got 3  projects picked out so far but as i browse through my books and mags(and ravelry) i'll be picking others out. These will come handy when i'm done with something and don't know what to make next, or perhaps i'm just in the mood to start something new.

Last but not least, this week i finally broke down and took out my drop spindle! I'm working on a 2 ply yarn, one ply will be white/natural color(which you see here) and the other will be a dark blue. Overall i can't wait to see how it turnes out. Will keep you guys updated! :)

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Lion Brand - Envelope Flatware Holder Tutorial

It's finally complete! The pattern is super easy and super quick. It's also pretty easy to adjust the size of your project as well as change up the stitches(if you don't happen to like single crochet). The pattern calls for a G hook(4mm) and Vanna's Choice(worsted weight yarn), but any type will do...great stash buster!

I made a few, including a super small one and it turned out adorable! The concept of the pattern is very simple; all you're really making is a square(which you then fold up into an envelope) so really, any yarn or stitch regardless how big or small will work as long as you end up with a square piece of fabric.

If you check out the projects on ravelry for this pattern,  you'll also find many other different closures others have done. The heart is a very cute idea, however i would suggest taking a browse there to get more awesome ideas.

Check out my i right?! They're pretty cute! You can find the pattern on the Lion Brand website here: 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Another Yarn and Book Haul!!

This is the last one in a good long while...or so i promised myself. I have to work on downsizing the stash!! All these new books & mags only means i have plenty of patterns to use it up, just got to get to it. I think a post about that would actually be ideal....This been a holiday weekend(July 4th in the states)
 it would be the perfect time to shop from my stash(go through your stash and pull out yarn rather than purchasing for specific patterns). Gives me something to look forward to; how exciting!

Now for the haul, i purchased a number of yarns - various skeins per colorway. Enough to make a project(i told myself), all though i didn't have anything specific picked out for any. Ideally the place i purchased from also had a special going on - spend $50 and they throw in a goodie bag. It wasn't my main reason for purchasing, but it was definitely an incentive. Was it 'worth' it? Hm, perhaps?

During my last haul i listed all the books/mags along with links for those interested. I didn't purchase quite so many this time but i think i'll do the same. Here ya go!

Fabulous Felted Hand-Knits
Knit Simple - Winter 2012
Knit Simple - Holiday 2011
Knit Simple - Holiday 2012
Knit Simple - Holiday 2010
Creative Knitting - Fall 2009(wasn't able to find this one :( ..)
Itty Bitty Nursery 
New Knits on the Block