Saturday, February 27, 2010

Resistance is Futile

I share a studio space with my friend, Cara, called the Community Crafts Studio. It gives us a space to work on our own projects while having a communal space where we can hold "open studios" where folks can come together to work on...well, whatever! Some crochet or knit...others paint or write...might get a scrapbooker or two...others come purely for the, I mean, conversation.

Sometimes during these "open studio" events, we will have a guided workshop. Last month, Cara led a class on folded paper boxes. Was a big hit! Everyone has leftover holiday cards that they can't bear to throw out, but what do you do with them year after year after year? Make boxes! Then you can string them up as a holiday garland that you CAN reuse year after year after year.

But I'm getting off track. Assimilation.

At today's "open studio", I led a group in making crochet Moebius scarves. (And learning FSC.) I had been getting lots of compliments and questions about the ones I've been wearing lately. Seemed like the perfect event! Even some gals who hadn't picked up a crochet hook in years were ready to learn.

The assimilation into yarn hoarders is almost complete! Resistance is futile.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Got Minerals?

I am enamoured with rocks.

I think it all started with a trip to Chicago when I was a little girl. I don't remember which museum we were at, but we were standing in some big long line to see some famous doll house or something. The line was so long that they had it queued through another exhibit. A rock, mineral and gemstone exhibit. I was a goner...

I remember having to look up to see the display cases and maybe at that level, the lights shone through the gems and made them look even more spectacular. I don't know. There were rocks that changed color under black light. There were faceted stones. Rough cut stones. A diamond unlike anything I've ever seen. Stones from outer space. I was IN. LOVE.

How could I obtain such amazing things? Easy. Grow 'em myself! Thus, a science fair project was born. Not just boring old "rock candy" - although that was made, too. Copper sulfate makes beautiful aqua blue crystals. Alum makes crystals resembling quartz, but cloudy. But what more could I do?

As I got older, jewelry became the next logical step. Walking into a bead store or a new age store and picking up stones that have been buried deep in our earth for millions of years is humbling. You get to touch something that holds all the secrets of our creation...but isn't telling.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Unexpected Creaminess

So I set out to make ANOTHER Moebius scarf/cowl in a more neutral color.

I thought, I'll just use all the yarn. Make it bigger than the others. What the hell, right? Right. Anyway, I ended up with one that is a little too big to wear doubled up as a cowl BUT looks great as a shoulder wrap. Thus, the unexpected creaminess!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Birthday Bash

A week ago, we went out for The Boyfriend's birthday. (Fritanga is a FANTASTIC restaurant BTW. And Nicaraguan rum rocks!)

Made Chris a new hat. Was a bit small, so I had to add a couple of rounds. Fits much better now. And he looks so cute! Thank you, S&B Happy Hooker!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Felt Up



Woo hoo! I finally finished my felted bag about a week ago.

This was one of the first projects I started on. Then quit because I got frustrated. Not that the pattern was that complicated. But because the book - for beginners, mind you - is full of errors! Sheesh! Okay. It's not CHOCK full of errors, but the first 3 patterns I looked at had errors of some sort. Not cool.

Anyway, I realized it wasn't the bag's fault. So why should I punish it? Finish it already!

So I did. And I like it. I "felt" it up real good! Tee hee hee. (I slay me...)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


I wanted another Moebius cowl since I've been wearing the crap out of my other two. Well, the one more than the other. I think one is going to get frogged and redone. Anyway, I found this GREAT hot pink and red chunky yarn. So soft. And another Moebius was born...


Christmas...In February

Finally got out to Em's yesterday. With the Christmas gifts. At least they were popular! (But who doesn't love presents in February?!?!) I'll post pics of the gifties later since I still need to download them from the camera. AND I got Em into crocheting. My evil plan to crochet the world is beginning!

Oh. I bought knitting needles. Might give it a go. But hopefully I won't end up in the ER with some weird knitting one might expect from someone as "weird accident"-prone as I.

Friday, February 12, 2010


My jewelry designs tend to, we'll say...BOLD.

What can I say? I like stones! The bigger, the better! Chunky, chunky, chunky! But I know there are times when simplicity is called for. Not everyone is as brazen as I. Heck, even I'm not always that brazen (GASP! It's true!) So every once in a while, I surprise myself...

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Math Geeks, UNITE!!!!!!!!

As someone who once thought about being a math teacher (did tutoring in college and realized "I don't care if people don't like math! I'm tired of arguing about it!") I love when math meets art. Or craft in this case. The Moebius Cowl. Also seen as Moebius Wrap. Or Moebius Scarf. Whatever. The point is, IT'S MATH!!!!!!! Or geometry or something. You can also call it an infinity loop. (If you can't Google it, try this: cut a thin strip of paper. Twist one end 180 degrees and tape the ends together. Grab a pencil and start drawing a line down the center of it. You'll see that you never have to pick up your pencil! It's only got one surface. Nifty, eh?) Mom & Dad got me this pretty yarn for Christmas and I was thinking of things to make with it. Realized it would be so pretty as a Moebius. Now I didn't have a pattern, but I got the general idea. Hence the past life experience as a math geek. Anyway, worked out fine! See?!?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Watery Wanderings

This is a piece I did sometime last year. As much as I love making jewelry for gifts, I was wishing I had a few more for myself! Selfish, I know...

I had been holding onto these vintage beads for quite awhile. I just didn't know what to do with them. Honestly, I didn't really want to put them on a piece that I was going to give away. I liked them too much! I went digging through my stash and realized I had this fantastic Amazonite that would look great with these turquoise, vintage, Lucite beads. I added some black, Japanese glass beads and a hand-forged sterling silver clasp and VOILA!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


Have I mentioned that I don't have a lot of tolerance for the cold weather? Like, none. Zip. Zilch. Nada. You get the idea. I WANT SPRING!!!!!!! NOW!!!!!!!!!!!

Even though, logically, I know we can't have a true Spring without a little Winter (some seeds need to lie dormant in order to bloom, etc.) I'm ready for Spring so I can sit out on my porch, basking in the warmth. My plants need fresh air and sunlight. More than they get inside all winter. Hell, I need fresh air and sunlight!

Until then, I guess I'll have to make due with my photo reminders of what Spring looks like and what is to come...

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Manly Men & Their Hats

These were some of the things I made for Christmas Gifts. Well, I guess Chris got his hat earlier than that. (Had to try out the pattern on someone..."Skully" from Get Your Crochet On! Hip Hats and Cool Caps by Afya Ibomu. Great book, by the way. Lots of "hip hats" and "cool caps.")

I really loved the yarn I found for his hat. It was an inexpensive acrylic, but it had a really nice, almost sueded feel to it. Worked up nicely. Em's husband is getting one, too. He just doesn't know it yet...

And this was a hat/scarf set I made for Dad. (Why do all men pose for pictures like they're posing for a mugshot?!?!) Of course, I had to be sure to tell him it was made with "Vanna's Choice Yarn". Yeah, like she spun it up herself.

Anyway, the hat is the same pattern as the one above. I used a similar stitch to get a ribbed pattern for the scarf. The hat works up super-fast once you get in a groove with it.

Now. If only I could get Mom to pose in her Christmas hat...

Friday, February 5, 2010

Hopin' and Wishin'

Wouldn't it be nice to own a Chihuly? Or several? Like these onions or whatever he calls them. Of course, I guess I would need a pond to float them in. Wouldn't exactly work in the bathtub. Although, I did once see a bathtub he did. Clear glass filled with smaller, brightly colored objects.

Or a ceiling. He does these fabulous ceilings. Clear glass, back-lit, supporting lots of his pieces so you can view them from below. Yeah. How much does THAT cost?!

I'll start saving my spare change now. Maybe I can pick one up in, say,, better make that 2199...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Wishing for Spring

Sigh. I wish Spring was here already. I'm not a big fan of the cold and this Winter has been rough on me. (I don't want to see my doctor again until at least 2011!)

I started working on this flower motif the other day. The plan is to stitch a bunch of these flowers together to make a pretty, light-weight scarf. Perfect accessory for Spring! I love this yarn from Berroco (Vintage, Lilacs) - it's so soft! And the color is just dusky enough to make it not so frou-frou. I've already made a pair of lacy, fingerless gloves out of it. The scarf will be a great match!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Daily Distractions

Is it truly a distraction from your work if your 23 pound cat SITS on your work? I mean, it's not like he's merely distracting me. He's actually TAKING my work. He reaches out and grabs it. (He likes to sit on soft, squishy things.) And let's face it...a 23 pound cat gets his way. Move him, you say? YOU move him!

Sweetie Pie is very stubborn (I believe he's a Taurus.) Heaven forbid I deviate from his feeding schedule. Anyway...most of the time he ignores my yarn when I'm working. He's only interested in the finished or semi-finished product. To sit on. This is a little hat for Lily. I have since finished it, but at the "almost-there-point" I was forced to stop. Now you see why.