Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Loving Box Cards!

I know it's been ages since I posted.  I'm sure you know how easy it is to let the stresses of life get in the way.  I haven't been crafting as much as I'd like...but I have enjoyed making what I have had time to work on.  My co-worker just had a birthday and the office got together for wine and laughs.  So I whipped up this little card to put a smile on her face.  I used the SVG Cuts file for a picnic and left off the plate and silverware.  Presto...a wine-inspired little piece of cuteness!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Shark Week!

 I'm a fiend for Shark Week! Every year for a week the Discovery Channel has all new shark-themed programming focused entirely on sharks.  My family and I love learning about sharks...and you may remember I love a theme...so a few years ago when I saw this pattern for socks called Shark Week...I knew I would have to knit them.  But unfortunately the pattern wasn't available for purchase.  As part of a club the designer posted that the pattern would be available in 2013...and then when it did become available (only as a kit) it was only if you could make it to a Northern fiber festival.  And then... the week before Shark Week...I received an email from the designer's mailing list.  At high noon, she would open up a flash sale of a limited number of kits that were available for purchase and would be mailed in time to start knitting for Shark Week.  It was a dream come true!!!  I set the alarm on my phone and was ready exactly at noon to snatch up a kit.  After some technical glitches I scored my very own Shark Week sock kit. (All the kits sold out in less than an hour) YES!!!

My huge pattern booklet, custom yarn dyed just for this kit, and misc other required items arrived in a package with everything bundled in a net-like bag.  

While at the beach...while watching Shark Week and Jaws I started them..over and over again.  This pattern is unlike any I've ever encountered.  I had to restart 4 times and get help from kind knitters on Ravelry in order to make it past this section...

to get to this section...

for every section I hold my breath hoping I get it right and don't run into any more issues.

but every night I've tried to knit a little further.

And while the fit isn't perfect

Sock #1 definitely is looking like a sock! Wish me luck!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Getting Ready for Shark Week

Next week is my favorite week of television all year...it's SHARK WEEK on Discovery Channel!!  Lots of fun shows and learning....we watched it when I was a kid and it's still something I look forward to, maybe more now than then.  Anyhoo....loving a theme the way I do...I ordered these little shark charms to make some stitchmarkers for shark week.

Stay tuned for the next part of the theme ;)

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Mary Poppins Goodies

If I had ever shared photos from our amazing first trip to Disneyworld you'd know that we met Mary Poppins in like our first 10 minutes there and were completely cheesing it up in the photos we took with her.  My sister Doozer and I had both agreed that the only character we HAD to meet was her!

I love Mary Poppins (maybe even more after seeing Saving Mr. Banks and learning there was more to the story than fun songs) and so when I saw that Little Skein in the Big Wool was doing theme knitting accessories and would have Mary Poppins, well...I was just one of many knitters who was stalking her page until she uploaded the goodies to purchase.  I didn't score a bag ready-to-ship so I waited for a few weeks to receive one that I was able to pre-order.  Yes, it's that serious folks, it's a fight to get some of her fantastic items!

When my package arrived (after I stalked the US Postal Service tracking site all day to see when it was delivered) I found the above items inside.  The bag is called "Practically Perfect" and I love the little shop touches.

The print is super cute.  The bag is flat here so you can see Mary flying over the London skyline with Bert cleaning a chimney.  Too fun!

The loops and drawstring are all well-done and sturdy and the bottom of the bag is made with a heavyweight canvas.

The inside of the bag is lined with a teabag print fabric...too perfect!

In the other included package were the stitch markers I had ordered.

Little Skein ships her stitch markers in 1 of 3 ways.  You can order them on a card backing with a coupon attached for a future order, or in a little tin, or, my favorite...in these teeny-tiny glass vials.  Love them!

I got two different Mary Poppins looks to use.  Now, to figure out a "practically perfect" project to make while using my new project bag and stitch markers!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014


Eeek! It's been way too long since I posted! I swear I've been crafting! Here's some proof! I made an under the sea castle for a friend's little girl.  The box card files were from SVG Cuts and I used colors and stickers to make it look like a mermaid castle! The best part of these box cards is that they fold easily to slip into an envelope!

I'm hoping by the end of the week I'll have my Jiro Dreams of Noro Sweater finished, and I'll be able to show you that, as well as some Mary Poppins knitting goodies that I've picked up!

Until then, look at the gorgeous colors in my sweater!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Mr. GQ Jr

My son has a style all his own.  He loves a good hat, and he loves certain colors...especially orange!  
Last night,okay, it was really this morning (2 AM) I finished hand-stitching the zipper into the hoodie I have been working on for him.  I told him I'd need him to wear it for a photo and he jumped right into model mode.

It takes so much longer to make a sweater for a 9 year-old than it did to whip one up for him when he was smaller.  I see the sweaters others have made for their grown sons and wonder how fast they knit! Did you know that all of the sweaters that Mr. Rogers wore were knit for him by his mother? She must have been fast! Or started knitting years in advance! 

I know this won't be the last time I collaborate with Little Man to make something for him that he'll love to wear...but it was the first time I feel like we worked together to make it perfect...and I'm happy that he wore it right away!

I combined different design elements to make exactly the sweater Little Man said he wanted.  It has a hood, which was pretty easy to do.  After the body was knit from the top down I picked up stitches around the collar and knit up for the hood.  I then seamed the top together with the kitchener stitch so the seam would be invisible.

The sleeves were picked up from stitches that were placed on hold while I knit the body.  There were a couple of tricky things I encountered with the sleeves.  First, I wanted the stripes to line up with the stripes from the main body of the sweater.  That I was able to do by paying attention as I knit.  The second part required Little Man to constantly try on the sleeve to ensure a proper fit.  He wanted fingerless glove cuffs.  In order to achieve the affect (which I didn't have instructions for) I knit in rib stitch, going down in needle size, and knit until I reached the base of his thumb.  I then cast-off five stitches (the width of his thumb) on the next round, and then on the round after that I cast back-on four stitches (taking into account that his hand circumference was a tiny bit smaller at this point.  Because I wanted a snug fit I had him try on the sweater often during this process.  For the 2nd sleeve I followed the same steps and didn't have to have him try it on as much.  I did need him to try it on just to get the placement for the thumb opening.  If he doesn't want to wear the fingerless gloves he can turn the cuffs up too.

The fingerless glove cuffs required carefully thinking through how I wanted to accomplish them.  But the zipper...oh the zipper...that took hours of hand-sewing.  I saw online a tip to use blocking wires along both edges of the sweater where the zipper would be placed to keep the fabric straight to prevent puckered fabric...and I do think that helped though it was awkward to sit with the sweater on my lap with the blocking wires in it.  I had a wire right at the edge, and then another one about 3/4 of an inch in where the edge of the zipper was.  So in total I used 4 blocking wires at once.  Tricky!  Each zipper half required 2 rows of stitches too..and I had to use smaller pieces of thread as I had issues with knots and tangles when I tried to use longer thread.  I think it was the last row of stitching that I got into a groove........of course....when I was almost done!

I used some new techniques and Little Man has a custom sweater created together...a win-win project!!

Monday, May 12, 2014

A Sweet Spring Card

While I knit away on Little Man's sweater (I just started the striped portion on the 2nd sleeve) I thought I'd show you the sweet little strawberry basket box card I made my mother for Mother's Day.  I love SVGCuts, and when I got their email with a set of box cards, and saw the strawberry card I immediately thought of my Mom, and a great memory from last year when she and I went with the grandkids to pick strawberries...and then we made yummy jam.  Little Man looked over my shoulder and actually said I should make it for Grandma...because he's looking forward to hopefully pick strawberries again (or at least enjoy some strawberry jam)!

I sat down with my cutter and fed different colors through the machine until I had all of the pieces cut:

I used my handy sticker maker to feed the tiny pieces through so they'd have adhesive (I thought I'd give it a try since glue can get messy when the pieces are so little).

After folding and gluing, the cute little card was complete...the best part? It folds flat to mail!  I may need to come up with an excuse to make the super cute castle card ;)

Thursday, April 24, 2014

We Have A Hood!

We now have a hood!  Here Little Man is holding the hood closed while I checked to make sure it fit properly.  I just started on the first sleeve.  I really hope he loves it when it's done.  Hopefully this weekend we'll head to Jo-Ann Fabrics to find a zipper so I'll have it for when I'm ready to put it in.  And I look forward to starting the project with the fabulous Noro yarn that I was able to get for a steal from a kind woman on Ravelry!  Wait til you see it, it's totally different from what I would usually choose for myself, but I'm excited to see how it turns out! More about the yarn and project to come!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

We Have Stripes!

Little Man danced around acting silly when I had him try on his sweater now that it has stripes and armholes!!

I'll have a few days off from work over the next week so I'm hoping I can make some good progress!!  I'd love for him to be able to wear it during the cool spring weather!

Oh, and did I tell you how he makes sure I call it a "hoodie" and not a sweater...somehow hoodie apparently sounds cooler!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Little Man's Hoodie Progress

I'm knitting Little Man an orange hoodie that will have some royal blue accent stripes.  We looked at patterns together and then I picked the type of yarn and he chose the colors.  It's been a collaboration.  I hope that means that when it's done he'll love it and grab it whenever he wants to be cozy.

I took this photo of him trying it on a few rows before it was time to set aside the sleeve stitches.  It's knit from the top down in one piece and I will pick-up stitches for the hood around the neckline.

As I was knitting Little Man was happily making bracelets on his Rainbow Loom.  A fun crafty time before the craziness of the week starts!