Thursday, August 18, 2011

My Favorite Things.

I received my swap box today from my awesome swap partner, and by far my favorite thing in the whole box were these cute little scavenger stuffies!

Meet NightShade. He's kind of the wild man of the bunch. I'm pretty sure he may spend a little too much time down at the other end of the bookshelf with the owl candle.

This is Digitalis. He's a little on the "flamboyant" side. Digitalis loves his new digs and is particularly happy Anias Nin lives on the same shelf, and hopes Henry Miller comes to visit!

And this is Calendula. She's the prim and proper one of the bunch. She's spending all her time right now making sure their new home on the bookshelf is just right. And cleaning up after NightShade's nest making catastrophes!

Okay, either I have too much time on my hands, or the pain meds still haven't worn off from my trip to the ER yesterday! Either way, I find myself HILARIOUS! Thanks, Ruby for the fun I've had already with my new friends!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Craft Swap Goodies!

So, rubylynns received my package yesterday! Pictures have been posted on Craftster, so I can now post it here! Her verb was "stitch" and I took the quote "I'd rather be stitchin' than in the kitchen" as my inspiration.

Here is the "in the kitchen" set:

These are the potholders and dish scrubbies that I sent to her. She loves pink and all things girly, so I went with the pink and purple with a dash of yellow to mix it up a bit. The African Violet granny potholder turned out so well that I'm making one for myself. (that's the one with the yellow in it):

And the apron. rubylynns told me she's decorating her kitchen in vintage owl prints, and I had this awesome fabric that has been waiting for the right pattern. I also made her a little flower pin with a vintage button on it, since there was a necklace with one on her wist:

Now for the "I'd rather be stitchin'" portion... mug cosy and bracelet:

It's hard to tell in the pictures, but the yarn is covered it sequins, making it totally girly, despite it's neutral color.

You can see it a little bit better in this close up of the bracelet:

The bracelet actually was the starting point for the whole box. rubylynns had a similar item on her wist and I thought it was so cool, but wanted to make it my own, so I used this funky sparkley yarn (which was very strange to knit with and a total departure for me!) and some awesome vintage buttons that I had taken off an old peacoat i found at the thrift store. I thought the idea of a bow bracelet was really cool, but I couldn't really find a pattern that I loved, so made it up as I went along, button holes and all!

I've been informed that rubylynns LOVES all of her pressies, and I'm so happy that I had her as my first craft swap partner. It was so fun to craft things that I really love for someone else and know that they would love them too. I may now have gone from a Craft Swap Virgin to a Craft Swap Junkie!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

I Love My Granny

I love a granny square. There is something really cathartic about the repetitive nature, but also the speed with which they grow. So, when my mom asked me to make a granny square pillow for a wooden rocking chair in their living room, I was all about it. The thing with granny's is they can be started and stopped easily, there's a definite end to the row, and you know right where to start when you pick it back up again. I love things that I don't need a pattern for, that I don't have to think too hard at. So, that being said, here is the granny pillow:

Mom basically told me she wanted a granny pillow with yellows and browns, but mostly to use up any leftover yarn I had. So, I had a bunch of half-skeins of Paton's Wool Ease (I'm obsessed with washable wool) so set to work. I had the least of the yellow, so made it the bright pop in the middle and then used a left over coordinating yellow fabric I had used on an apron and a tote bag:

I made the body of the pillow twice. The first time I measured, and it came out completely too small. The second time I just hacked into the fabric, and it was the perfect size. What's with that? I'm telling you, I am not meant for patterns. I'm a much better eye-baller. :)

And here's the finished product nestled happily on my grandpa's blue Grover chair. I'm emotionally attached to furniture. I make fun of those people on the t.v., but secretly am one of them. I love that chair, and the pillow looks so nice there. Maybe I'll have to keep it for myself. Just kidding... I definitely do NOT need another pillow in my life!

If you too would like to become obsessed with the granny square, may I suggest the tutorial over at the Purl Bee. Also, it's an amazing site with lots of free tutorials and projects for those of us craft-obsessed.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Craft Swap Virgin

I have never done a craft swap before. The idea of them always intrigued me, but every time I read through the rules and protocol, I felt like it was too much to deal with. But a month ago, I bit the bullet and signed up for my first craft swap. If you are not familiar with the concept, it is a way for people who make crafts to share their crafts with others across the country (sometimes even internationally) and to receive a fancy schmancy package of goodies in return! Frankly, I like presents and make way more crafts than I will ever need or use, so this concept is perfect for me!

My first swap was a verb swap. Each person picks a verb and when they are partnered up, the partner has to make items inspired by that verb. I picked scavenge due to my slight obsession with thrifting and re-use. My partner, rubylynns, picked stitch. Seriously the best verb for me since everything I do is "stitching." It turns out that she loves hand knitted items, but has not had a lot of luck learning to knit or crochet herself, so I loaded her up. We also apparently love all the same things-- owls, skulls, pin-ups, retro, crazy colors, vegetarian food, folk music-- we are seriously so much alike, so crafting things for her was totally fun! Pictures of everything I made for my "separated at birth" craft companion will be posted as soon as I receive word that she has received the package I'm sending today!

Long story short: I am no longer a craft swap virgin!