It’s been since November that I last posted and I’ve been trying for ages to make a new post but it keeps not happening. I’ve been getting past a yarncraft slump, where for months I didn’t want to do anything more than give some of my softer skeins an occasional squeeze. I’m past that now though, and have knitted a few things, and am currently working on the Good Vibes shawl from wonderful French designer. I’m almost done with the big main color section and I will start the first stripe tomorrow when my other yarn color arrives.
Speaking of yarn, I’m currently cold sheeping. I’m hoping to make it through the end of the year without falling off the wagon, but we’ll see. My big goal is to get down to only 38 miles of yarn in my stash- I had 52, I donated 4, and now I just want to use up another 10. There are a few exceptions of when I can buy yarn, though for the most part, no new yarn is kind of the rule.
- I can use gift cards to buy yarn.
- I can accept yarn from swaps or as gifts.
- I can buy additional yarn to finish a project I’ve started.
Its pretty simple, but if you buy yarn like I tend to, its not easy!
I rearranged my craft room yesterday, and picked out another 3 bags of stuff to donate. This included all the sewing patterns I previously had listed for sale, so those are gone now, and I have more room on my shelf. Of course that shelf is mostly filled with large skeins of yarn… LOL.
The website also underwent a physical change a few weeks ago, getting a complete makeover. I like to think it looks more modern and on trend with what’s good today… Of course the 3 dozen emails I get in spam every day offering their design services seem to think otherwise! Ha!
As some of you may know, I am a member of the Ravelry community. Ravelry.com is a fantastic community that brings together people who knit, crochet, weave, and spin. I’ve been a member for a bit over a year, and it seems like every day I am on the site, I discover something new and wonderful. Last night I discovered the Random Acts of Kindness group. What is this you ask? Its a group that pairs people’s wants (often small things) with people who might fulfill them. I was able to find multiple people looking for just the thing I’ve had laying around for some time and was so happy to ship out a few small packages this afternoon to people who were asking for things I’ve been wanting to get rid of. I used to be part of the BookCrossing community years ago and I participated in the RA(Bookcrossing)K groups there too. Its always no nice to bring a smile to the face of a stranger!
Today I shipped out several skeins of embroidery floss, a skein of fun fur yarn, and a package with several of the little zippered pouches I made so long ago along with a bonus pair of earrings. There are a few other small packages I hope to send out as well- I’m just waiting to hear that what I have suits what the person really wants. 🙂
If you are a member of the Ravelry community, you can find me here. I’m inkdork. 🙂
Saturday night I will be at the Antelope Valley Indian Museum selling my makes at the craft fair and chili cook-off. There will be a campfire, cowboy singer, chili cook-off, coffee, and cocoa! You can download the flyer for distribution and more details here, HotH Flyer 15.
Chili, Crafters, and Cowboy Songs at “Holidays on the Homestead”
Visit the Antelope Valley Indian Museum on Saturday, December 5th from 5 p.m.-8 p.m. for an old-time country Christmas celebration! Originally a 1930’s homestead, the historic grounds will be decorated in vintage holiday style with live acoustic music around a campfire, a chili cook-off, tours of the grounds, a country craft boutique, real cowboy coffee brewed over the fire, and hot chocolate or cider for the kids! Explore the unique hand-built museum and whimsical grounds at night with soft lighting and the smell of fresh greenery, and the wintery sky sparkling over the desert.
Stay warm around the blazing bonfire while cowboy singer Michael Tcherkassky, “The Saddle Serenader”, croons the romantic poetry about life on the range that cattlemen composed by day during their journeys across the old west, and was then shared around the campfire when the sun went down. Michael has performed traditional cowboy songs and poetry for many years at the Santa Clarita Cowboy Festival and other events around the country.
The country craft boutique features one-of-a-kind handmade gifts. The crafters carry on the artistic spirit of Howard Arden Edwards, who built the Indian Museum to house his collection of American Indian artifacts. The Craftsman-style building is decorated with his colorful representations of Indian culture and creative hand-made furniture. This is a great opportunity to support local artists and find unique gifts!
Rose Edwards was known for her tasty rib-sticking chili and cornbread feasts at their holiday celebrations. Try Rose’s original 1930 Christmas chili recipe and the chili cook-off entries, complemented by delicious cornbread generously provided by The Lemon Leaf Café. Our 2015 judge will be ranger Colin Daxon, who recently joined the department.
Event admission is $10 for adults, $5 for ages 6-12, and ages 5 and under are free. This event is a fundraiser for the non-profit Friends of the Antelope Valley Indian Museum, which provides funding to help keep the museum open.
Gifted & thrifted yarns don’t count, right? Totally not like buying more yarn.
Monday night I took my crochet work to pool league with me to work on between games. It was getting close to the end of the night when Jean, the lady who runs things, asked me if I’d like some yarn. Would I like some yarn? Sure! She ended up giving me a huge bag of yarn from her car, mostly Red Heart Super Saver, but a few skeins of Lion Homespun and some Jiffy as well. There was also another skein of a brand I can’t think of in there as well. Unfortunately, the yarn had some smoke odor to it, but that turned out to be easily remedied.
I ended up packing 4 or 5 skeins into each of four pillowcases, tied them in a knot, and threw them into the washer on delicate with some Arm & Hammer detergent and some white vinegar. After that I put them through a delicate dryer cycle, which would have gone really well except two of the pillowcases came untied, which created a huge mess.
I ended up losing an entire skein of yarn to the dryer, becoming one huge tangled mess, but 1 skein lost from about 20 is pretty minor, especially when it was all free to begin with. I was able to slide all the labels back onto the skeins and since the odor is gone, I can stash them with my other yarn now without worry of contamination. There were multiple skeins of several colors, so I just put one into my wall stash of each, and the rest are being stored in a tub for now to be cycled through as I need them.
And I might be getting more yarn from her again later! Hopefully if there’s a next time, I won’t have any pillowcases come undone!
Saturday night Mattie and I were at friends’ and I was chatting with my friend Tracy via messenger. Tracy is a fellow crafter and all around brilliant creative mind. I’d say this conversation was divergent from the norm, but that would be a lie because all of our conversations go kind of like this.
Me : I bought some novelty buttons today that look like bees. I’m not sure why. They should be here midweek.
Tracy : Do you need bee buttons?
Me : No, but maybe I can make a beehive hat? Lol
Tracy : Beehive hat… Never thought you would be interested in something like that.
Me : There is a hat pattern on ravelry.com called Wurm that I think in the right colors would look like an old cartoon style beehive with some small modifications.
Tracy : Um…what occasions do you plan to wear this too?
Me : Haha I have no idea. To the beekeepers convention?
Tracy : You don’t keep bees. Lol
Me : Um… Erm… I… Uh… I honestly have no good answer.
Tracy : I think you are getting as bad as me. Lol
Me : Craft daft?
Tracy : Yes. And buy supplies with crazy ideas in mind for no good reason.
I’m positive that we are not the only crafters out there with this problem, and lots of you are also buying up random supplies with a wild idea vaguely in mind or just because the impulse struck, and you were sure you could use them one day. I personally now really want to make the beehive hat and saw some yarns at Joann’s which would work perfectly for that I had in mind!
As someone who only a few months ago had never even read the yarn labels on a skein of yarn, much less purchased and used one, the label was a baffling thing at first! However, much like the link I shared a while back on reading the back of a sewing pattern envelope, there’s a link with clear illustrations that explains the symbols on that skein of yarn you’ve been eyeballing!
I’ve reposted the graphic here, but you can see the site where I found it here.
I’ll let the pictures do the talking this time!
A photo posted by Debra Leigh Wilson (@kittyloafdesigns) on
A photo posted by Debra Leigh Wilson (@kittyloafdesigns) on
I’m learning to #crochet! This is after about 2 hours on and off but I’m really proud of how even my stitches ate and how smooth my tension is! Knowing how to #knit already helped tremendously in that! This is triple crochet that I learned from YouTube after learning single from my friends Jenna! #crafting #madebyme
A photo posted by Debra Leigh Wilson (@kittyloafdesigns) on
My friend Christy on Twitter shared this link to this fantastic knitted irrational skirt! Using the digits of Pi, and working the rows using Fibonacci numbers, this skirt is so cool! She also did all of the prime numbers on the skirt in blue- how much math geek can you fit into a project?
Its worked as a long strip and then stitched into a spiral afterwards if I read the description correctly. Seriously, I absolutely love this, though I think its a bit much for me to take on right now.
Thursday Mattie’s Dad and brother came by for Thanksgiving dinner. We had tons of food, good things to drink, and lots of pie for dessert. Normally I am all for them visiting, but after five hours of the TV volume being really high, I ended up retiring to the bedroom, and shortly after slipping out to Michael’s to take advantage of their holiday shopping Thursday night sale. They had a 30% off everything coupon, and a lot of the store was marked down as well.
I looked up the regular prices of things after I got home, and I got out of there with what normally would have been $53 worth of stuff (yes, I know they are over priced) for $29. What did I get? All sorts of stuff. I walked out with….
- 2 strands of beads, reg price $3.99 at 60% off
- 2 5″ x 5″ stapled canvases, reg price $7.99, 70% off
- 5 2 oz blocks Sculpey III clay, reg price $2.79 each, 16% off for buying 5
- some weird plastic rings to use at stitch markers in my knitting, reg price $2.99
- 2 skeins Bernat Softee Chunky yarn, reg price $3.29, 31% off
- plastic 6″ embroidery hoop, reg price $3.99
- small pair scissors, reg price $1.79
Plus I also had a 30% off reg. and sale price items, so that brought it down to $29 and change out the door. I pulled the regular prices off of the website and I think some are slightly different than in the store, but it gives you an idea.
The yarn is a lovely orangy-brown color and the beads are green and purple. I grabbed some clay colors I don’t already have, plus black, because I always seem to be using black, and the one other thing I wanted was a very thin, fine paint brush, but I was 1) out of money, and 2) couldn’t find the ones I really like anyway.
I’ve also made some other trips to Michael’s in the last few weeks as well, and have come home with a few items each time. So many things I want!
Now, what have I been working on you ask? I finished a pair of fingerless gloves I will keep for myself for sure in black with rainbow eyelash trim. Right now I’m working on another pair in lettuce green that are longer, and without the eyelash yarn edging. After this is done? I’m thinking of doing a scarf- a scarf I will want to actually wear, not the scary mess I made when I was first getting the hang of things. Hopefully I will have photos of both soon.
I’ve got some cool stuff coming soon because I caved and ordered two things from Amazon this week. One is a photo light box, and I will be using it to retake all of my shop photos so there is a nice uniform look to all of my images. The second is a foam head to display my hats on for photos in my shop since I plan to make several beanies.
I’ll probably have to watch a few Youtube videos to get the idea of how to take nice photos, but it shouldn’t be too hard to do and it will make my shop look so much better. Of course adding all of those photos again and deleting the old ones is going to take ages, but I think it will be worth it.
I also finished up a new beanie for the shop today, which turned out really cute. I’ll be adding it after I get my new prop and set-up and start taking new photos. Its made for a girl, or a woman with a small head, and is dark grey with a hot pink fur trim. I kinda wish it would fit my big head, but I probably don’t need to keep all of my hats. I have that problem already with earrings I make- wanting to keep them all.
I did learn something in making it. Remember to count your stitches as you cast on when working with a fur yarn. It will be nearly impossible to count your stitches after you’ve cast them when they’re furry!