Saturday, November 3, 2012

Swatch, swatch, swatch...

I hate swatching. I'm so damn impatient and I feel like I'm wasting valuable yarn (even though I know that having my sweater come out wrong because I didn't search is a much bigger waste in many ways.) So I swatched (and washed!) with the recommended needle size, and boy am I glad I did! My stitch gauge was an inch too big, and the weave of the fabric was a bit more airy than I like. I decided to go down two needle sizes since an inch seemed like a lot to me. Well, now my swatch was way to small. ( do you sense a Three Bears story unfolding?) So I went with the needle size in between and it was juuuust right. The row gauge is a bit short but that's easier to adapt your pattern to than stitch gauge.

It's late, so I'll be casting on tomorrow. I feel like I already have too many wips but I don't care, I'm so excited about this sweater! I'll just have to make sure I don't completely neglect my other wips.

So glad I swatched!

Friday, November 2, 2012


I decided that for my 20lbs loss reward(still 4lbs to go) I was going to purchase yarn for a sweater. Well, when I heard that Tempted was offering a sale on custom orders of sweater quantities of yarn, I convinced Mom to get it for me as an early Christmas present! Stacey of Tempted is such as sweetheart and a pleasure to do business with. I told her what I wanted color wise and she hit the nail on the head. It's gorgeous! I'm going to knit the Calligraphy Cardigan, which has been in my queue for at least a year. I'm going to knit a size smaller than what I wear now, as motivation to keep up my weightless efforts.

Tonight, we swatch!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween

Finished these with plenty of time to spare. Started a second pair but didn't get them done in time.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Slacker 2.0

So much time has passed since I last posted! Home life has been crazy (not in a good way) and I just haven't had time. So, quickly, just to bring things up to speed:

- Tour De Fleece: I spun EVERYDAY like planned, but I didn't finish anything, and I haven't really spun since. It's been too hot here. Fiber felts.

- Camp Loopy: FINISHED! I got my yummy prize skein in the mail last week. It's finally cooling off here so I'm thinking about making some fingerless gloves with it, and possibly a cowl depending on the yardage left.

- Weight Loss: is going. I'm not gonna spew out any numbers just yet.

-Stash Dash: FAILED. I probably would have finished if it had counted by yardage, not weight, since I used mostly fingering weight yarn. Oh well, it still motivated me to get a lot done.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


I know it's been a while since I posted.  I've been having serious internet issues and my provider can't seem to figure out what the problem is.  Anywho, let's get caught up!

  • Weight Loss - sucks. I've been up and down and am pretty much where I started.  Not giving up though, just have to try harder I guess.  I started using with a few friends, and I really like it so far.  It's free, you can find friends via their email address and comment on each others progress and such, and there's an app for the iPhone (not sure about android) that allows you to track food, look up food, scan bar codes with your phone to get nutritional info, and reminds you at meal time to track your food.  Awesome.  Feel free to look me up and friend me.  I could use all the support and motivation I can get at this point.  
  • Camp Loopy - Project two is due in the less than ten days!  The challenge for this project is to knit in a color from your country's flag with at least 800 yards. I decided to knit the Tempest cardigan in Cascade Heritage sock yarn in a navy blue.  About 1600 yards. I must have been insane when I decided to knit a fingering weight cardigan in a month.  All I have left to do on it is both sleeves, the button band, and seaming.  In 9 days.  Oh, and this is my first sweater.  The next challenge is 500 yards, two different colors, and a pattern you haven't knit before.  I'm debating on knitting my first fair isle socks, or an illusion scarf that I've been wanting to make for YEARS.  I'm leaning towards the scarf.
  • Stash Dash - I had nothing this check in!  I've been working solely on my camp loopy 2 project.

  • Tour de Fleece - I finished and played the Storybook SW BFL that I was complaining about last post.  I have to say, it's growing on me.  At first I hated it, but either way, I definitely learned a lot from it.  I'm not sure what I'll do with it yet.  I don't know the yardage or what weight of yarn it is because I don't have a niddy noddy or wpi tool. Yet.  I'm guessing it's about a worsted weight. 
So far I've been successful in spinning everyday for at least ten minutes during the tour.  I'm spinning my merino super thin so it's taking a long time.  I'm not sure if I'll be able to finish it by the end of the tour, which was one of my goals.
  • Various Other Junk - I've been messing around with dyeing yarn and I hope to open my own Etsy shop very soon, I just need to come up with the initial investment.  This will be a joint effort with my mom to help us both recover from the serious financial blows we both experienced last year.  I plan on selling hand dyed yarn (semi solid, variegated and self stripping), stitch markers, project bags in three sizes, and possibly solid lotion bars. So keep an eye out, I'm very excited to get this going.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Let the spinning begin!

Today is the first day of Tour de Fleece! I'm excited as its my first time participating. I have two simple goals: spin everyday, and finish the merino I've been slowly working on. A few posts ago I was talking about spinning a superwash BFL in the "Story book" color way. Well I started that and it's been...disappointing. Only because I bought this braid for the screaming bright colors. Well when I went to split it I found that it wasn't dyed all the way through, so there's big chunks of white in the middle. This is toning down the color a lot when I spin it. Now, the listing may have mentioned that, I don't recall and I'm too lazy to go look. I'm not enjoying this at all. I don't know if it's the actual fiber or the color, but I catch myself trying to rush through it. I also decided to spin on my heavy spindle, an I'm having a hard time keeping my singles consistent. Oh well, if anything it'll become a monster.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Dusting off the stamps

It's been a good 3 years since I did any paper crafting. It used to be my number one hobby before I really got into knitting. So today I decided to break out the rubber stamps and ink, and make a few cards to throw in some swap packages. This is the first card I've made in three years and i must say, I'm very pleased with it. I didn't struggle or have any artist block at all. It's as if that three year gap never happened. I'm not going to list dimensions or instructions for this card because I'm pretty sure I don't have many paper crafters following me anymore. However, if I get enough requests I might start doing tutorials again.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Weigh-in #2 and Camp Loopy

I know, I didn't check in last week and I said I would every Sunday. I got on the scale last Sunday, hoping to be at 250 lbs, and I was back up to 253.4 lbs, exactly where I started at the week before.  I was seriously discouraged and felt like all my efforts were for nothing. On top of that I got hardly any knitting done, so my stash dash "weigh-in" was less than impressive also.  So I just didn't feel like posting. However, I am happy to report that this week was much better.

  • Weight loss - despite the blow that came last week I did not give up, and today I weighed in at 249.2!  WOOHOO!  I did a little dance in my bathroom, I'm not gonna lie.  That brings me to a total of 4.2 lbs lost, which is 14% of my 30lbs goal I'm trying to reach by September.  Still behind what I had projected, but I am very happy to have lost this much so far.

  • Stash Dash - I finished another swap square, two hats for charity, and my Camp Loopy #1 project, bringing my running total to 418g.  That's 16.7% of my goal.  Don't worry, Camp Loopy project #2 is going to put a big dent in my stash dash efforts.  I think I may be insane.

  • Camp Loopy - Finished project #1 this week!  I should have finished it long before now, but I hadn't been working on it.  I did the Little Pumpkins sock pattern out of Lorna's Laces Shepard Sock in the Woodlawn color way. I LOVE them.  This pattern had been in my que for a long time, and when the challenge for the camp was to knit 400yards in a pattern by a designer in another country, this was the first thing that came to mind.  I hate the summer, and can not wait until the fall. This project brought a little bit of that fall feeling into my 100 degree days.  I had a hard time getting a good shot of the pattern, but you can check out the pattern page on Rav.

I'm really enjoying the Camp Loopy Challenges.  This colorway is gorgeous (all of Lorna's Laces are) but it's not a colorway I would have grabbed off a shelf in a shop just because.  However, it is PERFECT for this project.  The colors are different shades of orange with a little olive green here and there, but all beautifully muted. I also ended up making them a little taller than usual in order to meet the 400yard requirement, and I really like them.  I think this will be my new sock length. For the second camp project, we have to knit 800 yards in a color that's in our country's flag.  After much thought I decide to go with a 1750 yard cardigan in navy blue.  I know, I'm insane. I normally would be drawn to knit my cardi in black, so this camp is pushing me out of my comfort zone by going with navy blue.  I think I'll really like it.

Monday, June 11, 2012

"We're all mad here...."

I got this fiber from Woolen Mill St Yarns on Etsy.  The colorway is called "Storybook" but I instantly thought of the Mad Hatter from Alice in Wonderland when I saw it, and just had to have it.  It is 4oz of a super wash BFL.  I have no idea what I want to do with it.  It's the dead of summer here right now, and most days are too hot to spin because my hands end up felting the fiber a bit, so I thought I should start spinning this super wash.

I can't decide if I want to spin it on my heavy or light weight spindle (which will help determine the weight of singles I get, which will determine what I end up making with it.)  I'm leaning toward the heavier spindle and making a beanie of some sort.  I'm not sure a shawl would look good in this colorway, and I am in no way prepared to knit hand spun socks, so that's why I'm shying away from the lighter spindle. 

These colors are just so crazy I would probably never where them, but I HAD to have it.  You know how it is.

Nevertheless it's going to be a 2 ply.  I did something I little different with this one as far as prep goes.  Usually I split the roving length wise down the middle, so I have two really long pieces of fiber.  Well, when I was about to split this particular roving, I noticed that the color repeats match up PERFECTLY if folded in half.  So instead of splitting it length wise, I just cut it in half smack in the middle, so now I have two identical mini braids.  (I did not cut the braid in the middle, I unraveled it, cut it, then braided them separately.) As a new spinner, I am very interested to see how this will look once it's plied.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Weigh-In #1

I had mentioned in last Sunday's post that I was going to try and tie in the KnitGirllls Stash Dash for this year (which being measured in weight, not yards) with my actual weight loss goals  So every Sunday I will post progress for both.

  • Stash Down - This week I am down 155g, which is 6.2% of my goal.  Not bad considering this weeks knitting was minimal.

  • Weight In - I'm down to 251.8 this week, which is 1.6 lbs lost.  Not bad since I wasn't trying to my full potential, but not good enough.  I won't meet my goal at this rate.  Although, that's 5.3% of my goal, and when you look at it that way, it doesn't seem as bad.  Stupid numbers.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Free Pattern: Checkers Afghan Square

I came up with this simple square for a swap.  This can also be used as a simple dish cloth pattern with different needles and cotton yarn.  Please leave a comment on this post and let me know how it works for you.

Checkers Afghan Square
Blocked size : 12in x 12 in *To adjust size for your requirements, just cast on in multiples of 5 plus 8.
Gauge: about 5sts per inch
Worsted Weight yarn (I used Berroco Comfort)
Needles to obtain gauge (I used size US 8 /5.0mm

CO 48 sts
knit 4 rows
Next row: K4 *K5,P5. Repeat from * to last 4 sts, knit last 4 sts.
Repeat last row for 8 rows.

Next row: K4*P5, K5. Repeat from * to last 4 sts, knit last 4 sts.
Repeat last row for 8 rows.

Repeat  the last 16 rows until your piece is half an inch from desired length.
Knit 4 rows.
Bind off loosely and block to size.

I hope those are easy to follow instructions.  If you have any questions please email me or leave a comment below.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

And I shall call him...Roger!

I made three of these little guys yesterday. I gave two of them to my best friend and kept one. We ended up taking mine to the bar with us. He was quite popular.

He may have a bit of a drinking problem.

(Psst.  I have a small crush on this boy)

This picture makes me laugh every time.
It's ok.  He's a skeleton.

Running the Karaoke

This guys is a fireman and asked me to make him one for the fire truck!

We had a blast.  I highly recommend bringing FOs to the bar :)

Monday, June 4, 2012

Vodka Orange Creamsicle Drink

One of my favorties.  It's a sweet one, so it makes a great dessert!
  • one part vanilla vodka*
  • three parts orange juice
  • add ice and whipped cream, shake
*you can also use whipped cream flavored vodka instead of vanilla. Or, if you're feeling fancy, you can check out this blog and make your own vanilla vodka.  I've never done it, but have friends who infuse their own vodka all the time and love it. Skittle flavored vodka, anyone?

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Things have been crazy...

I haven't knit (or crafted) at all since early March.  Life got a little overwhelming for a minute there.  But things are calming down and I've picked up my needles again.  So let's get down to business, shall we?

  • Stash Dash - TheKnitGirllls Stash Dash 2012 has officially begun. This year you set your own personal goals in grams (not yards) and check in weekly with your progress.  Think "Biggest Loser" style.  My goal is 2500 grams.  I hope to BEAT that goal actually.  I'm using this challenge to help motivate me to finish up some WIPs that are long over due, and after that I hope to eat through some of the junky yarn that's hogging up valuable storage space.

  • Camp Loopy - Camp Loopy started May 27th.  This is my first time participating and I really hope I can pull it off.  So far so good.  The first project challenge is to knit at least 400 yards in a pattern from a designer from a country other than yours.  I went with some cute socks that have been in my queue for years. Here is my first week's progress:

  • Personal Bits - I've been exploring different avenues of spirituality recently.  Mostly for educational purposes; I find it fascinating. Tonight I'm going on a nature walk/full moon picnic with a small group of ladies that find their spiritual beliefs through nature.  Should be fun.

  • Weight Loss - Anyone who knows me knows I've struggled with this my entire life.  I should count it as one of my hobbies.  If I can lose 30 lbs in 3 months I will be happy.  My birthday is in 3 months, and I'm going to be 30.  I want to look like I did 5 years ago.  30 lbs should get me there. June first I checked in at 253.4.  Ugh.  That's still 20 lbs lighter than my worst, but still terrible. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Wednesday Recap

I'm going to try and do a weekly update of my works in progress and finished projects every Wednesday.

Works in progress:

The Dunwich Socks - I got the fist one finished and the toe of the second one started.  I hope to finish these this week so I can finish Beetlejucie.

Beetlejuice - has been on my needles since October.  I haven't touched them since November.

Penelope - is making progress.  I started her this last week and have one foot and assembly left to do.  This is my first one and will be mine.  I plan on making two additional Penelopes for two sweet little girls I know, and about 5 other Rebecca Danger monster for friends.  So expect lots of that in the near future.

Snowflake Blanket - hasn't been touched since December.  My goal was to finish it by Christmas.  I WILL finish it soon, hopefully this month.

The two log cabin blankets haven't been touched at all this year simply because I haven't been home.

No finished object this time.

Apothecary Yarns

If you are a member of their Pure Imagination sock club and don't want to be spoiled, don't read any further.
I've been wanting to join a sock club for years. I'm so glad I picked this one.

First I have to say how sweet and awesome Sarah is from Apothecary Yarns! To make a long story short: I had signed up for the club in December. We had some invoicing issues with PayPal, and when that was resolved, I had some other issues and was ready to drop from the club(nothing at all to do with them, all me). Well, the day before club shipments go out, Sarah emails me, I tell her my situation, and she was awesome enough to work something out with me so I was able to keep my club spot. Super amazing customer relations.

About the club. This is a Tim Burton inspired sock club. Each month you get two different color ways (yes, you get two different skeins per shipment ) inspired by the movie for that month. You also have the option of signing up for the full six months, or just one of the three month rounds. You also have the option of either all super wash merino bases or various bases, including some luxe. I went with all super wash. Each shipment also includes stitch markers from Velvet Hippo inspired by the same movie. Price for the first three months with the sw merino base was $165. That comes to $55 a shipment. And to recap, each shipment includes 2 skeins of yarn, stitch markers, and shipping. Oh and speaking of shipping, she shipped on Friday and I got my package Monday. Super value, super customer service, and the best theme ever.

The first shipment movie inspiration was The Nightmare Before Christmas. She even included an excerpt from the movie and her inspiration for the color ways.

This color way is called "Jack and Sally".

The second color way is called "Jacks Lament". This has to be my favorite of the two, absolutely gorgeous.

Finally, the stitch markers from Velvet Hippo. They were inspired by all the colors of Sally's dress, and a little spool of thread.

I could not be happier with this club, and I can not wait to see what else she has in store. I will be receiving all 6 shipments. I don't remember all the movies she'll be drawing inspiration.from, but I'm pretty sure she included Alice in Wonderland, Beetlejuice, and James and the Giant Peach.

I realize this is a very lengthy review, but I was just so darn excited! Future blog posts regarding this club will have pictures and the inspiration. Much shorter, I promise!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Is it February already??

Well, I came close to my loosely mentioned goal of a single sock a month goal! I started this sock Jan. 27th, and by the end of the day Jan. 31, I had only part of the heel left to do. I tried, but I just didn't have it in me to finish. I had been knitting most of the day and had a pretty bad headache by bedtime. Since I got so much done in such short time, I'm gonna go ahead and consider it a success for January. You can find project details HERE.

On the topic of goals, I stumbled across a great group on Ravelry called "12 in 2012." Basically, you go through your Rav Queue, pick 12 projects and tag them 12in2012. Your goal is to complete them by the end of the tear with stash yarn. I will be attempting to use as much stash as possible, but will end up buying a lot of yarn for my 12 because I just don't have anything suitable.

Another thing I joined this week was The Knitgirllls Afghan Square Swap 2012, from here on referred to as KGASS. Sign ups close Feb 20th I believe, and partners are assigned March 1st. Check out the thread to official details and to join.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Comparison: Addi Lace Turbos vs Knit Picks Nickel Plated Circulars

For this review I used 32 inch US size 2 from both brands, and attempted magic loop socks.

Price. The Addis were around $16 and the Knit Picks were around $6.

Points. I'd have to both sets were about equally pointy.

Cable. I like the Knit Picks cable better. It felt like the Addi cable was too stiff, making magic loop a pain. The Knit Picks cable was much more relaxed and easier to manage.

Join. The join on the Knit Picks is a little rougher than I'd like, but it's ok. The Addi join is just a tad smoother than the Knit Picks.

My opinion. I have to go with the Knit Picks. The price of the Addis just is too high for what you get. In my opinion the Knit Picks are just as good, if not better. Also, the Addi US 2 isn't a true US 2, it's actually a US 2 1/2. That kind of annoyed me.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Yay, More Yarn!

Socks are my favorite thing to knit. And self striping sock yarn is my favorite yarn. So I was beyond excited when a fellow Raveler offered to sell me her skein of Bad Amy in the "Electric Mayhem" color way!! I've never tried Bad Amy simply because her stuff is always sold out. Always.

But wait, there's more. I purchased this skein from Tiffany and about a week later I hadn't received it so I dropped her a note on Ravelry to see if she had shipped it yet. She replied right away explaining she in fact had not sent it out yet due to some unfortunate real life stuff. She apologized several times and promised to send it out ASAP. I told her not worry, I totally understand, no biggie. Well, not only did she mail it out right away, but she sent it priority so I'd have it a little quicker(which was awesome, but totally unnecessary) AND she saw on my Ravelry profile that I want to attempt toe up docks someday, so she sent me FOUR toe up sock patterns by Wendy Johnson!! What a sweetheart!! I'll be keeping an eye on her destash page for sure.

Friday, January 27, 2012

2012 "Goals"

I use the word goals loosely. It's more like things I want to do this year. Goals sound so serious, and these things aren't top priority in my life. Never the less, it's a new year so naturally I've been thinking about the crafting things I'd like to accomplish this year.

1. I'd like to craft consistently this year. The last year and a half was absolutely terrible, and I didn't craft at all for most of that time.

2. Knit 5 miles worth of yarn. I'll be posting a counter from on here shortly to keep track.

3. Use up all of the cheap acrylic crap yarn I've accumulated over time. I said in my last post I don't really have a "stash." I guess I mean good stash. Plus using up all the junk will free up a lot of valuable storage space.

4. Learn needlepoint.

5. Learn to spin.

6. Finally set up an etsy shop for all my handmade cards.

7. TRY and knit a sock a month. Not sure I'll be able to pull this off, but it would be nice. I'd be happy if I could finish a sock a month, not even a pair. That'd give me six pairs in a year.

8. Knit myself a sweater. Something I've wanted to do for years.

9. Utilize my books more. I have tons of pattern books that I've never made anything from.

10. Knit a shawl. It'd be my first one.

I know those are mostly fiber goals. I have some more personal goals that have priority over these, so we'll see how many of the craft ones I can achieve. Should be fun! If you have any fiber goals, feel free to share them in the comments below. And Happy New Year!

A Little Stash Enhancement

It's been a long time since I've treated myself to anything, and I usually don't buy yarn just because without a specific project in mind, but when I saw this for sale on Ravelry, I had to have it. (And sock yarn doesn't count as stash anyways, right?) This is Tempted's Glam Girl base in the color way "Gothique." It's a merino, silk, nylon, and silver blend, and it is absolutely gorgeous. Ive been wanting to try Tempted for a while, so I'm super excited to get my hands on this little gem. I can't decide whether I want to knit socks or a shawlette with it. Either way it will be a while before I cast anything on with it.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

New Begginings

So I decided to combine all my blogs into one. My beauty, knitting, and paper crafting blogs will all be in one place. This makes it easier on me to update, and easier on my readers to keep track. It's been a good two years since i updated my beauty blog, and even longer for my paper crafting blog. I hope by combining everything into one, I will be able to stay current. As always, please let me know what you like, don't like, and would like to see. Thanks for everyone's support through the years!