Thursday, December 29, 2011

Books #2

I finished reading a "Pride and Prejudice" re-write: Darcy's Voyage. I can't think of the author at the moment, but if you are really interested.... It wasn't too bad, and perhaps a bit of an inspiration- maybe I'll actually get to finished the real version in the coming year.

I have 2 non-fiction books on my 'shelf'- one about Britain's involvement in the Civil War, and another about WWII and the Nazis. I'll get to them soon, as I'm letting most of my year end crafting wind down slowly. (though I will get back on track for the new year, no worries)

I'm also laughing, because this is one of the first years that I can remember that I didn't receive any reading books for Christmas. I did get one book, a crocheting one from Older Brother Uno. Yay!

I'm going to try to make more time for pleasure reading in the new year- at least 1 a month, just to spice up life! (I actually have a few that are waiting to be finished- that will be goal # 1)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

WIP Wednesday! 7

Now that Christmas crafting is over for the season, I'm going back to a few works in progress that need to be finished to create a clean slate for the new year.
First, my navy Eva. I was planning on finishing it for my cousin's wedding back in November, but I still haven't finished it. Working on it is super easy- a simple crochet pattern that turns out beautiful.


There is also the vest of doom- a knitted cabled vest that I have been working on for my brother for nearly 3 years now. The pattern is great, but it is not a mindless project, making it a hard TV knit.

I'm also working on some small last minute gifts for the coming weekend, mainly some ornaments :)

For other, better examples of WIPW, check out Tami's Amis!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

I hope you all got to spend time with people you love! :)  
Christmas Blessings to you!

Friday, December 23, 2011

FO Friday 4

Only 2 days until Christmas! Fortunately, all my presents for Christmas days have been finished.

Yesterday, I finished the second mitt in a pair of fingerless for my mom out of some James Brett Marble Chunky-- I absolutely love this yarn, and I think I've found a semi-equivalent in Lion Brand Tweed Stripes. I haven't started a project with it yet, but after the rush of the season is over, I'm going to try it out.
This is a crappy photo of the first one:

I've also finished a few more infinity scarves, but unfortunately, no new pictures because I was rushed and had to get them to their recipients.

Here is another wreath (this is the WIP photo, but it is done!)

For more FO Friday, visit Tami's Amis

Friday, December 16, 2011

FO Friday! #3 (?)

I am super proud of myself, because I've finished a number of things this week.

I've finished 3 crochet infinity scarves- the first one was a trial run, the other 2 are commissioned. Well, actually, the 2nd one was supposed to be commission, but the color wasn't entirely want the customer wanted, so I just set it aside for another Christmas gift :) The 3rd one is actually spot on for what the customer wanted- I'm super lucky that most of my customers are people I know well, so I can go to them and say "Is this what you want?"




I finished my first wreath (it was finished last Saturday). I've been on pinterest quite a bit, and keep seeing all these cool DIY wreaths. So, going off this idea, I bought pipe insulation at Menard's (nearly 2 months ago!). It was on sale, in 4 packs, so I ended up getting 3 or 4 packages. I've just finally finished the first wreath out of it, and am working on a few more as gifts. It's hanging in our living room, because my dad thought it looked Christmas-y.

My sister also got several orders for flowered headbands, and those have been coming along quite nicely.

And lastly, a gift for one of my family members

Head on over to Tami's Amis for more FO Friday!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

WIP Wednesday!

I have so many FO from the weekend, and because of that, I've been able to start a few more projects.

I have a mostly finished infinity scarf, in a sage-y green, another commissioned item. I ended up winging the pattern, as I understand much of the theory.

I've been working on some more Christmas presents, in particular, a monster type hat for my brother. Basically, as I finish one project, I pick up another one.

My sister also managed to get a couple more orders for me- flowered headbands, which are super easy. After the Christmas rush, I'm going to start working on a pattern for a earwarmer-type headband, but right, it's just an idea.

For more WIP Wednesday, visit Tami's Amis

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Hey Look! A New Book!

I've finally been able to read a few books for fun now that the semester is winding down.

Just last week, I finished reading Seizure, a young adult novel by Kathy Reichs (she is the creator of the Temperance Brennan novels that inspired the TV show "Bones"). It was a fun read, a bit of a mystery/adventure type book.

I'm now working my way through the final novel in the Inheritance Cycle (or whatever it's called) by Christopher Paolini. You know, the Eragon books. It's another fun one, though I feel like I'm missing something because it's been so long since I read the other ones. I'll probably go back and read them all again for kicks and giggles (over the summer or something).

And that's all for now! (back to the boring old school books come January)

Friday, December 9, 2011

FO Friday!

I don't know how long it's been since I've remembered to participate in a FO Friday. But I did get some projects done this week, and I'm very proud of them.

My Thick'n'Quick mittens are completed and wearable (though I'm still thinking about adding embellishments). I'm going to tweak the pattern a bit, and then maybe upload it here, if anyone is interested.

I've also finished 4 child sized hats, well, one child, 3 baby. They have all been finished!
child compared to baby!

One adult hat commission is done- a white hat with a blue and green flower for my co-worker's younger sister.

I still have one hat commission left to finish, plus all my Christmas gifts (which include 2 or 3 hats) and a dozen or more cupcakes. But honestly, with the semester winding down, I like having something to do.

Edited with pictures!

Please check out all the other FO Fridays at Tami's Amis!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

WIP Wednesday! 6

Christmas is getting closer, and I feel the "crunch". The semester is nearly over, which is giving me more time to work on several Christmas commissions. The list grows longer as people remember that I make handcrafted gifts that would be great for Christmas.
For the past week, I've been working on a pair of crocheted dinosaur hats, in sizes child and baby. I managed to finish the child sized one, but the baby one is giving me size problems.

half finished hats!

One of my sister's friends commissioned a pair of thick warm mittens, and I was able to wing the pattern, making the first one in an hour or so. Because of school, I'm stalling on the second one (and the thumbs). But I do like working with Lion Brand Wool-Ease thick and quick, because it works up so easily (on a 'N' hook, no less.)

mostly finished mittens

I've been working on an idea for an infinity scarf/cowl. I've seen them in the stores, and figure I can jump on that bandwagon. I started one yesterday, but it is not to my desired width yet. I'll probably get back to it when the homework has disappeared.

infinity scarf

I still have 3 more hats to make, plus a large number of gifts. Is 18 days enough time?!

As my last real class is tonight, I hope to move all of these projects into the FO category. Hopefully this will happen by Friday.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Monday, Monday

Good things about today:

  • field work finally completed!
  • I have a job to go to
  • I have a car again (though its a family car...)
  • I finished nearly all my homework!
  • I'm trimming down my list of orders!
Tomorrow is Tuesday, which means it's my last full day of class, which is GREAT for several reasons: I will have time to finish Christmas orders and presents, I might have time for a life again, I will have some spare time to work a bit extra!

I'll leave you with something fun:

My younger sister, modeling my finally finished Elise #3
it grew!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

WIP Wednesday! 5

I've been working on some crocheted cupcakes- a bit of a promo for my hat business. My dad wanted to show the ladies at work what I was doing, I showed him a cupcake, he commissioned a dozen so I could put promo tags on them and he could distribute them to the ladies for Christmas, while also supporting me! I have 9 good ones done for him, and was fooling around with some photos.
9 cupcakes

I also have orders for 3 dinosaur hats in smaller sizes, so I've been working on getting them the correct size. I've actually had to frog back on 2 of them (still need to get the yarn for the last one), so that's a bit frustrating.

But in fun news! It snowed through the night, but then became sunny this morning, so it was perfect to go outside and take some pictures.
snowy day
princely bear
purple cupcake

That's all I have for WIPW! Visit Tami's Amis to see people who have way more imagination than I do.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

My brother modeling one of the hats I made him, because he felt that my page needed more creative pictures.

WIP Wednesday! 4

Sorry, I've been out of the loop for a while.
I've been filling orders and setting up a page for my stuff, viewable here.
This week, I have in progress two child sized dino hats, some cupcakes, and a few other bits and bobs.
As soon as I get my orders filled, I will be working on Christmas presents, hopefully that will be this weekend.
And when the semester is finally over, I will go from being a full time student to a part time crafter. Yay!

View more WIPW at Tami's Amis.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Yay for mail!

Today, after waiting nearly a week, I received my copy of the Crochet Stitch Bible in the mail! Although I bought it used on Amazon, it looks bascially brand new. I'm spending my evening flipping through it, looking for some inspiration. I found a couple ideas for adding embellishment to my hats, as well as a few idea stems for shawls. :)
these are the mini skeins I dyed today. I have a whole sweater of this yarn, and I knew that I wanted to make it a bit different. So I tested 5 different colors to see what I'd like best.

The end results, from left to right: Watermelon Cherry KA, Wilton's Violet, Berry Blue KA, Lemon-lime KA and Wilton's golden yellow. I used about 10 yards of yarn to one packet of KA, which might have been a bit too much. I'll definitely test this one again with 1/2 a packet over the weekend. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Everything except the dog and cat scarves--- made by me!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

It's a new Month!

crunchy leaves! by mmwitch
crunchy leaves!, a photo by mmwitch on Flickr.
November in the Mid-West means all the leaves are mostly gone, but here's a glimpse of my leaves :)

I enjoy the fall, but this year, I didn't enjoy it as much as I normally would've. Still, my sister and I got out and dressed in our scarves and hats and mitts and walked through town.

I'm excited for the winter- more hats, mitts and scarves!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Free yarn!

Win 10 skeins of cashmere

FO Friday! 1

SO it's Friday (cue Rebecca Black song)
I've managed to finish 3 items since last week, but nothing of great awesomeness. I'm totally failing at posting pics, and I feel super bad about it. Hopefully next week I'll have some to share.

I finished another scarf for the show next week- Lion Brand Homespun in colorway Harvest- I love the greens and oranges- nice and fall-ish. I also finished a shawl  in the same yarn, but in colorway Golden. One  more hat out of the way- a lovely red with yellow spines and blue spots. I love how the color combo turned out- very bright and cheery.

I'm looking forward to craft show season being over, even though I do love the rush of trying to get enough stuff done for a show. As I say every year, I definitely plan on trying to get more inventory prepared ahead of time, but no guarantee, especially with school getting busier with each passing semester. But, if I do plan on continuing with these shows, I will need to have inventory ahead of time, as next fall will be super busy.

Pictures on Monday!!
for more FO Fridays, head over to Tami's!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

WIP Wednesday! 3

Yarnberry over on Tumblr always has her post bright and early, and when I'm browsing Tumblr, I always am reminded to post my WIPW.

This week I've been working on my inventory for my Nov. 5 craft show. (Dont worry, I'll be done talking about it in a week and a half). I am currently working on 1 shawl, 1 scarf and 2 hats. I only work on all of these simultaneously because the hats I can keep in my bag when I'm at school and work on them to help me focus on the lecture. I have 2 green hat bases finished, waiting for their embellishments.

I'm planning on finishing the last batch of hats this weekend so I can focus just on the shawls and scarves all next week. I've definitely got plenty of yarn, as Michael's had a sale, plus a 20% coupon for 4 hours on Sunday.
For more awesome WIPW, head on over to Tami's!

Hats Galore!

john deere dino by mmwitch
john deere dino, a photo by mmwitch on Flickr.

This is one of the hats that I've made for the Nov. 5 craft show.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Sunny Saturday!

   It's the first clear sky-sunny day we've had here in almost a week, and I'm stuck inside, being responsible and working for 6 hours. But I can be thankful that I have a job. And I'm at a library, which is probably one of my favorite places in the world. I just love libraries. I could go on for ages, but I'll spare you.

   Today, my goal is to finish the rest of my hats for the craft show I'm selling at in 2 weeks, and yesterday's power outage has gotten me on the right track. I just have to keep reminding myself to prioritize my craft projects, and finish the 'important' ones first. (important meaning the ones that will help me pay for college) I have high hopes for this last craft show, as it's in November, and my fall/winter accessories might actually sell well. And I'll be there this time, and be able to talk up my products. (the last show I sold product at was the weekend of my annual women's conference, so my aunt was kind enough to sell my stuff without me) I'm still trying to come up with product ideas to sell at a spring craft show, so if you have any suggestions... :-)

   Luckily this weekend my homework load was not super heavy, so I can work on other things. I have a couple books at home that I should start reading, as well as all my craft projects. And I still want to enjoy the weather. Humbug! Such is the life of a busy working college student.

Friday, October 21, 2011

FO Friday 1

To view more FO Fridays, go to Tami's blog!

I'm quite proud of myself, as I did actually manage to finish a few things this week.
(Most of them were finished today, as no power keeps me off my computer, etc)
2 hats for the craft show in 2 weeks are now finished: baby blue with a pink flower and purple with a white flower.
I've finished the Cloudburst shawl test pattern, and it's currently blocking in my basement. I feel bad because I don't have any pictures right now.
So, if you come back between now and WIP Wednesday, you should see my pictures as I get them uploaded! :)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

WIP Wednesday! 2

So, sometimes I forget about WIP Wednesdays. Today is not that day :)

 I'm currently working on a shawl/scarf test pattern through the Crochet Shoulder Wrappers group on Ravelry- I'm nearly done with it, but am making a few adjustments so it's more to the size I had hoped for.

 I've got an orange hat for the craft show pile- this is the last skein of this old-ish Mary Maxim yarn in hunter orange that I got from my aunt- she was going to make a hunting sweater (obvi) but it didnt happen, so the yarn got passed on to me. I dont mind orange that much, but 8 skeins of it is a lot.

I'm also still working on my 3rd Elise shawl, as well as a handful of craft show headbands.

Head over to Tami's Amis to see more WIPs!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

WIP Wednesday! 1

WIP= work in progress

  1. I have another Elise shawl on the hook. This one is in recycled wool. I dyed it myself, this time using the stovetop method.
  2. Still working on that stubborn knitted vest for my brother- but I'm calling it a WIP because I actually had a chance to work on it this week.
  3. I'm making lots of hats- right now I have 5+ hats that still need decoration- flowers or dinosaur spines- They are to be completed for my next craft show- November 5.
That's all for today- for more WIP Wednesdays, see Tami's Amis

On the Hook

I finished my Elise #2, and am working on a 3rd. LOVe LOVe LOVe this pattern.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

this is totally unrelated to anything.

Currently: On the Hook

I was so thrilled with my Spots of Sunshine Elise that when I had a spare ball of yarn in my bag this weekend, I started another. I winged the beginning a bit, but the pattern becomes habit, so it flew out off the hook.
The yarn was another hand-dyed adventure- a pink wool/cashmere sweater that I dyed with Berry-Blue and Grape Kool-Aid (inspiration here)- but upon reaching the 20th row or so, my yarn was running out ( I have a tendency to dye yarn on a whim, never making the same color twice). Luckily I still had the un-dyed collar from the sweater waiting to be unraveled hiding in my closet, so I pulled it out and kept working. But, yet again, I ran out of yarn (me, being brilliant and forgetting that crocheting always uses more yarn than knitting). Fortunately, I still had more yarn from this recycled sweater (though it wasn't dyed the same color...) and I was able to continue. So now, my second shawl is nearly done, and has 3 different colors in it: the blue/purple/pink that I started with, the original pink of the collar, and my final color of red/purple/pink.
We'll see if it needs to be over-dyed.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Dyeing adventures!

I've been on this awesome yarn dyeing kick. Kool-aid, Wilton's and some wool are all you need! :)
I bought a few sweaters a week or so ago,  both in a weird shade of green- one was kinda mottled, and the other was green with grey stripes. I knew I couldn't take them apart, but I couldn't pass them up because they were both wool. So I brought them home.
Today I decided I needed to change their color, but I knew I couldn't dye them in the microwave because they are both huge sweaters and they won't fit in my little pan in my little microwave. So, this is my first attempt at stovetop dyeing. Fortunately, my brother recently made soup, so there was a clean large stovetop kettle/pan/thingy out and stuff.
Half filled with water, 2 packets of Berry Blue Kool-aid, 1 of Lemon-lime, plus some Royal Blue Wilton's- heated up not quite to boiling. Stirring occasionally, watching for the dye to all take. So my grey/green striped legwarmers are now blue-green. (I forgot to say: I've chopped the arms off these sweaters to make quick and easy and cozy legwarmers!) (I'll dye the rest of the sweater later, and cut it up and felt it for a cool patchwork felt bag)
So that's today's adventure. Sorry I'm not feeling top notch today, so its a bit like reading word vomit...

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Books on my Reading List

  • The Dragon's Apprentice
  • War in Heaven
  • The Pirate King
  • Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
And this is just the list of ones that I'm borrowing from the library currently.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Currently: Just started Hooking!

My Elise Shawl has finally started! I'm using a reclaimed Old Navy sweater - its an odd blend, but it yielded a massive amount of yarn that I was able to dye. I love this pattern! It's a very simple 2 row repeat, and I love how the yarn turned out. I didn't know how the yarn would come out when I dyed it because it had enough acrylic in it to keep the colors from being super vibrant.
It's coming a bit slower than I expected, but only because I've been working on more stuff for a craft show in 2 weekends.
Pictures to come soon!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Currently: On my Needles

So, there's a back story to this: I learned how to crochet first, so when I took up the needles to start knitting, I was slow. And I've nearly always been slow. I got a bit ambitious a few years into knitting and I wanted to try a vest. My brother loves sweater vests. I figured it'd be easy- no sleeves, minimal shaping, etc. It's been on my needles for nearly 3 years. It was supposed to be a Christmas present.
I love the yarn, a creamy colored Simply Soft. I love the pattern, a basic cable that still manages to look awesome. I just can't sit long enough to finish that thing. Sometimes I need projects that go quickly, so this vest has been in a bag for a while now. My current goal is to finish it this year. I have less than 3 months until Christmas. Can I do it?

Currently on My Bookshelf

I've been reading James A. Owen's Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica, and I'm on book 5, the last of the currently published books (According to his website, Owen has at least 2 more in the works).
I've loved reading this series, however, The Dragon's Apprentice has been sitting on my shelf since last Monday, waiting to be read. And it keeps sitting there. I hate that I've been neglecting it, but school has gotten very busy, and it still sits. Hopefully next week, when my mini lesson plan project has been turned in and present, I will have a bit of time to read on it.