Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Tit for Tatt

My lovely Aunt Brenda recently told me about how she used to shuttle tatt and really loved it.  She recommended that I take up this dying art form....  so, I did!  And guess what, it's really fun!

I bought a kit on etsy that contained a tatting shuttle, an instruction book, and some thread to get started... then I made a totally amazing discovery - Craftsy has a shuttle tatting class!  Yay!  We all know how much I love Craftsy, so this was an awesome find.  It's like I was destined to tatt, ha ha.

I have already learned the double stitch, rings, and picots....  the picture below is my first little tatting experiment.  (I used two different colors to make it easier to see if my thread flipped correctly).

It's not too difficult once you get used to making the yarn flip correctly when you pull the knot.  I finally became confident enough to practice in a single color:

I just need to learn how to join rings and then I will be ready to try out the first project in the class - some pretty earrings!  Stay tuned!

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Monday, April 28, 2014

Maybe Monday: Giraffes!

Ugh.  Is it Monday already??  Well, on the bright side, this means I can post another "Maybe Monday" blog post!  Yay!  I have been thinking about crocheting a giraffe lately and I have two adorable patterns to choose from.  Below, on the left is Gigi Giraf by Marike van Loo and to the right is Stretch the Giraffe by Stacey Trock.  At first I thought it was a no-brainer that I would crochet Stacey's giraffe, but I saw Gigi on Pinterest and I am quite enamored with her, so we'll see....

Why I want to crochet a giraffe:  Why wouldn't I??

Why I may not crochet a giraffe: As with any stuffie....  I really have nothing to do with the FO.....

What will I do??  OK, who am I kidding?  I already bought the yarn to make BOTH!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Crochet Coffee Cup Cosies Galore!

I was using Pinterest's new "explore interests" feature and it suggested that I might like to see some pictures of coffee cosies.  Oh, boy, did I!?!  I have been creating some cute coffee cosies out of felt lately, but I couldn't get enough of all the darling crocheted cosies that came up in the Pinterest search.  Here are a few of my faves:

** I apologize for my inconsistent spellings of the words cosies and cozy... and cozies and cosy....  Everyone seems to spell these words in their own way, so I just picked a method and stuck to it!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

FO: Russ the Chick in an Egg

Last month I received my very first installment of the freshstitches kit club!  Stacey assembles these darling kits once every other month and sends them to you with the yarn, pattern, and anything special you will need to create one of her cute creations!  The pattern you get in the kit club is exclusive to the club, so it's either a fresh pattern or a modification of one of her existing patterns, so this month it was one of her regular patterns but we felted it!!  Yay!  There is a special thread in the freshstitches Ravelry group for the kit club so it's kind of like a mini CAL.  The only catch is that you have to keep the pattern a secret for about a month after you get the kit (so you don't ruin the surprise for people who haven't received theirs yet).  So...  I've been holding my tongue, but I can finally talk about what I made!

Just in time for Easter, it's a felted Russ, the Chick in an Egg.  Russ turns inside out so he is either a chick or an egg... however, I felted mine pretty thickly so he doesn't turn inside out very easily, so I'm just going to leave him as a chick.  This is the first time I have ever felted crochet and it doesn't get as smooth as knitting does.  I wanted it to be as smooth as possible though, so I ran it through the wash and dryer three times!  lol.  I finally got the look I was going for:

Here is Russ in his (slightly lumpy) egg:

And here he is posing with his stamp in my freshstitches passport!

And now the details...

yarn details
worsted weight 100% wool yarn that came in the kit

a tiny bit of stuffing and sew-on craft eyes

pattern details
pattern: Russ the Chick in an Egg by Stacey Trock... with super secret modifications from the Spring 2014 Kit Club #4
finished size: 4.5 inches tall
hook: J (6mm)
duration: March 24-April 6, 2014

Monday, April 14, 2014

Evergreen Lake Mittens: To Be or Not to Be?

I enrolled in the Craftsy class Stranded Colorwork: Basics and Beyond which (supposedly) teaches you how to work stranded colorwork by using three pairs of mittens as example projects.  I was somewhat disappointed with the colorwork basics portion of the class - she does a good job teaching how to trap a float, but other than that, there wasn't a whole lot of useful instruction on how to knit with multiple strands. However, I also enrolled in the Simple Sweaters: Stranded and Steeked class which has a much better intro to stranded colorwork, so I was able to pick up enough to fill in the gaps and make the first mitten in the course: the Evergreen Lake Mitten.

I'm pretty happy with how this turned out.  The colorwork doesn't pucker too much and the strands on the inside are smooth.  It also has a cool hem that I really dig.  I'm not so sure about these colors though... I bought the yarn on sale and had a limited selection of colors to choose from and I wanted something that would be high-contrast, so this is what I went with.

Anyway, the thing is that I don't really wear mittens and I can't think of who I would gift these to, so I'm not sure if I want to bother knitting the second mitten.  I did it just for the colorwork practice, but now I think I've got it down and I'm ready to apply it to a pair of socks I've been wanting to start.  But I hate leaving a project half-finished!!  Maybe I'll just think of it as a really elaborate swatch...?

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Maybe Monday: Footie Socks

It's no secret that I love knitting socks... so it should be no secret that I have tons of leftover sock yarn!  I often think, "Gee, I could probably knit a pair of footie socks with the yarn I have left here...."  And today as I was browsing the Ravelry Top 20, I found a pattern for footie socks!  Yay!  I don't know for sure if I would wear these myself, but I can think of a few people who would probably go crazy for them (like my mom, for one).

So, will I knit these?

I may not knit them because... I don't know for sure if I would actually wear them, I'm more of a full sock kind of gal.

I will probably knit them because... They would make great gifts and I can probably use leftover sock yarn to make them!  Plus, you get the satisfaction of knitting a sock without all the time involved.... sounds kind of neat!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Secret Springtime Spectacular Swap: What I Got!

Hooray!  Last night I got my package in the mail for the freshstitches Ravelry group's Secret Springtime Spectacular Swap!  I love everything in it - Briggie totally nailed it!

So, here's my haul:

Why yes, that is my very own copy of Crocheted Softies!!  Can you believe it?  I have been coveting this book for a long time but just never got around to purchasing it.  I can't wait to crochet Stretch the Giraffe and Zork the Alien.  You may have also noticed that giant bag of delicious gummy worms in the back.  Yum!

Of course, the "main event" was the adorable stuffie that Briggie made me - one of my favorite freshstitches designs - Cliff the Brontosaurus - all striped out in my favorite colors.  (Plus she gave me the leftover yarn!  It is super soft!!)

And, in case you were wondering what that thing is that looks like a keyring... it's actually a set of awesome Colorado-themed stitch markers!  Groovy.