• Handicrafts

    Creative Endeavors Besides Knitting

    A couple months ago I made a few items (a hand embroidered table cloth and a necklace) to send in a birthday package my mom was preparing for a family friend. I had recently been purging and organizing craft supplies, and I also finished another project, my reticule from a class at a Jane Austen festival like 5 years ago, but I will probably figure out some way to rework it into something else, a quilt maybe because I would not use the reticule (or maybe I could offer it in a giveaway for another blogger’s regency blog event although I haven’t seen any for a while).

    More recently I completed these pages from my art journal. I kept putting off the painting, so I ended up doing a stylized type painting and I’m pretty happy with it. I got a watercolor paper journal, so I could use a variety of mediums without worrying about bleeding. And the ring binder allows for adding thickness. I know this is juvenile; I want to improve my efforts, but I need to start and not procrastinate until I’ve attained perfection (lol).

    I bought clothes pins a couple months ago and then in a crafting mood made these.

  • Handicrafts

    Everyday Knitting Project Photo Dump

    December 8, 2016: All of these I finished well before Christmas, but I am in the midst of Christmas posting and don’t want to lump that many together, so the Christmas ones will be first.
    I knitted this L’Enveloppe for Mom. I want to knit one for me, but I’m very particular about what type and color of yarn I want.
    I knitted this Standing Stones Cowl for me. I got it as an e-book with another cowl with a discount provided to readers of Ginny Shellar’s blog.

    I used a garter ridge chevron stitch from a knitting book in the round for this cowl that was a birthday gift.

    This is another birthday gift, and I think that it is cute, but don’t buy any pattern for it. I bought a pattern (and I think there was a cheaper pattern!) for this because I thought the top is knit in the round and was more intricate than it was. Don’t buy, you can figure out how to make it yourself; I should’ve known that because so many posted the same pattern. The top is a diagonal garter ridge or diagonal rib rectangle that you seam and gather. I bet you could knit it in the round in some way and have more professional finish (you need the cherry to cover the heavily gathered top in this case). I shouldn’t have had to pay $5 for that; its legal to charge, but its unethical. I should have known better; I feel cheated. 
    I’ve had copyrights and patents in two classes this semester (after the first I went through and removed all photos that weren’t mine from the blog). Any work is automatically copyrighted, but what that means is that the actual physical work or wording cannot be copied; the design or idea or pose or plot can be (can you imagine how few books there would be otherwise? lol). So the physical pattern cannot be scanned, typed out, etc. So, a person’s particular rendering of an unorignal idea is protected but not the idea. For good reason, many ideas aren’t that unique and could be created by many people simultaneously. Like this one.
    Patents are far more serious; they are to protect serious innovation. Patents have many requirements and must be registered. I highly doubt any knitting pattern will be patented (I don’t know if any would even qualify) and any detailed, original design will be super hard to copy anyway. And no patent would ever protect something as unorignal as this. 
    I didn’t want to pay for the Holden pattern because it wasn’t original enough in my mind (it isn’t), but I couldn’t find the plain pattern stitch (I did find a scarf with it) until after I purchased it, and figuring out the pattern stitch for a shawl is beyond my interest-skill balance (actually, it might not be that hard), so I am less dissatisfied with that purchase, but I need to be careful. Most patterns are around $5 and you can buy a book with several liked patterns for less than a few Ravelry patterns. And many of the patterns for sale aren’t intricate enough even in books and knitting magazines to be worthy of a purchase. Make sure you look really hard for free and try it yourself if it isn’t a complicated pattern or you could spend a ton of money for little creativity. Only really intricate lace designs or unique patterns (like the first listed) are really worth it. Others are somewhat worth it if they do a lot of the calculations for you or you could not find the stitches (like the first cowl).
  • Handicrafts

    Christmas Knitting

    I forgot to take a photo of the $1 gift; it was a cream version of the twist headband in this post. The beret is this pattern, and I love it as it looks like a real beret instead of a beanie when worn. I’m going to use it as a base for all other berets I make because it is the only true beret I’ve done. Also, I blocked it with the opening on the bottom of the plate and drew it up tighter with yarn stitched around, and this may have helped with the shape a bit. I think that mine looked better than the photos on the pattern page, so don’t be worried to try it.

    The pink shawl is my third Holden, and my first attempt at knitting with beads (I improvising the number and placement). The photos do not do the crystals justice. This was for my grandmother.

    The L’Enveloppe was for my sister, and I didn’t do the decreases correct (I think the seed stitch version instructions were confusing, if not wrong in keeping the pattern, so I improvised it to my detriment), so it is far longer than the pattern. Now, because of the asymmetrical nature, I don’t think it looks wrong, but I thought I would note this for anyone who might try the pattern.

     

     

     

     

     

  • Handicrafts

    Yarn Along: Entrelac and A Little Taste of Poison

    I am linking up again after a period of laziness here at Ginny Sheller’s Yarn Along. You will have to forgive the iphone photo. And the junk at the bottom; my room will never stay clean.

    Since I am knitting two items and reading two books (just kidding, I have several books and knitting projects started, this are just the most diligently pursued at the moment). My sisters and I enjoyed the first Uncommon Magic book, A Pocket Full of Murder, and we are happy to finally read the second installment, A Little Taste of Poison. Don’t you just love the titles? The covers, especially the first, are adorable. If you haven’t read any R.J. Anderson, you definitely should. Her Faery Rebels trilogy and Swift duo are amazing (they are connected, but not a series). Unfortunately only the first two titles are available in the U.S.; I ordered the others via Amazon.uk. Worth it.

    I’ve been making my way through Mildred Taylor’s Logan family saga. I meant to read the stories chronological order, but I got mixed up a little although not in the “main” story. I am working on my first entrelac project, a blanket. I mean for this to be slow since it is so huge and to complete other projects at the same time. I am knitting a cashmere blend scarf with this gorgeous textured triangle stitch also. I really need to stop the scarf and shawl deluge a bit and work on sweaters. I am aiming to work through “Handknit Garment Design” class on Craftsy to design a couple sweaters.

  • Handicrafts

    Riley Blake Anne of Green Gables Fabric Collection

    I was searching for fabric prints by designer, and I saw an Anne of Green Gables Collection by Riley Blake. I don’t think most of the colors suit me, but it you love Shabby Chic colors (soft, muted blues, creams, pinks, and greens) and bookish stuff (there are QUOTE print fabrics!), you ought to check this out here. And each print appears to be available in a few colors.
    Also, I found out awhile back that Sullivan Entertainment produced an Anne of Green Gables Wedding Dress Pattern, and here it is (you can probably also find it on ebay and etsy from time to time). Now, this is for the movie, not the book, so the wrong time period for book,* but the 1910’s had some lovely styles (think of Downton Abbey). 
    *What is it with messing with the time period, what was wrong with placing Anne in the correct time period? Her sons fought in WWI; Anne was born about 1965 (the books keep track of her age and Jem’s, so you can count back from 1914 to see how old), so Anne of Green Gables occurs in about 1976, which is far earlier than the first miniseries . . . and the new miniseries sets the story . . . why? And oh, my will I have more to say about what I’ve heard about the miniseries . . . actually, I really need to describe my issues with the first miniseries.

  • Handicrafts

    Yarn Along

    I am linking up here again.
    I actually finished this book yesterday. Wow. Read it, but prepare to feel the horror. The descriptions are not graphic, but between the style of writing, cruelties mentioned, my previous WWII college classes, and my imagination, I really got the feel of cringing fear. I still don’t think it is Book Thief level in my liking, but as for understanding the spirit of fear in WWII, I think it is far more accurate. (Yet another reminder, that most Americans, even the British also, really don’t understand the horror of events in which we are only partially involved; we are so insulated. The war was not on home soil, and the wars fought on U.S soil did not destroy daily life for the entire nation). Quite unlike the rather silly Code Name Verity. Mentioning hard things does not evoke the proper tones, the touch of horror the protected and pampered need to feel.
    Anyway, I am working on Standing Stones Cowl in fingering. I bought two patterns with a reader’s discount offered via Ginny Sheller’s blog several months ago. I have finished knitting another medium size accessory, but I still have some finishing work to do, perhaps blocking. I finished a scarf except for buttons, but I want to wait until I get the “perfect” ones before I picture it. One of my mom’s friends had preemie, so I knit a preemie hat (that one is not pictured), and then a baby shower at church caused me to knit a regular baby hat, so I decided I would start stocking up on small baby knits. The cream one below was for the shower, the top two are preemies, and the bottom is for a normal baby. I would like to add socks, headbands, and booties to my stock as well. 

  • Handicrafts

    My Quilt

    I started a sloppy patchwork quilt as a child and finished it sloppily as a teenager. The patches came apart, and I sewed it into a bag; I think I still have it, and if I do I might redo the entire quilt.

    My second quilt I started at seventeen or younger. I finally finished off the binding this year. Everything is hand-stitched. I will not do that again as I have my preferred handcrafts, and no one has enough time to pursue absolutely every handcraft.

    My room is not properly decorated, and I needed a new bed-cover, so I have the quilt on my bed for now.

    Isn’t the binding cute? I bought blue binding originally (I have a blue border that you cannot see in this photo), and then used some of it and could not match it. Then I realized such packaged binding isn’t 100% cotton anyway. I decided to make some but could not find a good match until I went to a local quilt shop. I was under the impression that I needed bias binding, and I am so glad I asked about amount of fabric I needed because I was informed that for a rectangular quilt regular binding with strips sewn diagonally is the appropriate choice. This information saved me money, time, and frustration.
  • Handicrafts

    Katniss Cowl

    Well, I finally finished my sister’s cowl that I promised like a year or so ago.  I left out the triangle piece because it did not fit after I sewed the rest of it together. When I showed my mom my accessory and the original, she liked mine better, but I am not super thrilled with it. Of course maybe it will fit my sister better than me. And rustic has never been my look anyway.

    I found photos of the back of the original as well.

    Here is an article regarding the original which costumers hand wove rather than knit.

    I used tutorials/patterns including this, this, and this for the top cording. I am left-handed, so I found this part somewhat difficult. I did only two rows rather than three and mine ended up too short in length. I should have done that part last.

    I used a couple tutorials for herringbone, and here is one (for this stitch I needed some videos).

    This is the pattern I used for the body. I think I did a little extra on the top piece and I decreased two stitches every knit row (slip 3, rather than the usual 2, knit decrease and leave one on left needle as before) for the second piece.

  • Handicrafts

    Yarn Along


    I am linking up here again.
    I usually have several books going, but I do not always read them at the same pace or evenly split my time between them. Recently, I have given the same attention for this stack although I will probably speed up the Patricia St. John book (Rainbow Garden; you can barely see the book). I am re-reading Jane Eyre  for this read-along which is averaging about 2 chapters a week. I need to speed up my reading of Albion’s Seed: Four British Folkways in America, a 900 pages (not counting end extras) historical scholarly monograph about early America, because it is a library book.

    I have finished all the knitting on my sister’s Katniss Cowl, and the pieces are drying on my blocking boards. I will have more details about the patterns and tutorials that I used once I am finished. That bit of fluff I am currently knitting is another Holden Shawl.

  • Handicrafts

    Pinterest Success

    One of my long cherished Pinterest projects, turning my saved Izze bottles glass bottles to metal, I finally completed. I had wanted to use foil, but decided to just go ahead and use Krylon spray paint which turned out gorgeous. The project is super simple.

    Of course shortly after I snapped this photo, I put flowers with vinegar and sugar water into the bottles and splashed the outside which resulted in discoloration, so I will have to paint them again.

    I have some more bottles which I want paint silver and gold to go with these copper ones.

  • Handicrafts

    Yarn Along

    I am linking up here.
    I actually have 7 projects on the needles. I dread the casting on and counting, so I decided to cast on quite a few projects and put some aside for later. Shown above is a Katniss cowl for my sister.
    I am re-reading N.D. Wilson’s 100 Cupboards trilogy. I love them, and I have forgotten them enough to enjoy the re-read nicely. I also finished his newest novel, Outlaws of Time: The Legend of Sam Miracle, this week. My other recent reads include the rest of The Giver trilogy (I liked Messenger and Son best, Jonas is annoying when he is older) and several Patricia St. John stories.

    Oh, and I finally finished that baby blanket. I am thrilled to be done. I really need to plan size and time and pattern more carefully because this really burned me out, and I wasn’t pleased with it aesthetically, too boring and common.