Monday, April 18, 2011

Grampa's Legacy Lamp

Well, I should be knitting an i-cord to finish a baby gift I need to get in the mail tomorrow, but instead I'm posting on my craftyblog.

Here's a recent finished crafty which I really love. Many years ago, my dad gave my daughter (who was probably 3 or 4 at the time) a globe that he had had for years. Now, this globe is not really all that helpful, since it's so old it has the USSR and some of the countries in Africa or Asia have since changed names, but it was a lovely tan, old-world-looking globe. It was on a pedestal and had a light inside. Sadly, my dad passed away New Year's Day 2003, but my daughter has kept his globe as a reminder of the time they had together. Flash forward to the last holiday season. . Over New Year's holiday my daughter was cleaning her room, trying to find a place for all her stuff. This globe was sitting on her dresser, taking up space, but not really serviing a purpose. She said she didn't want to get rid of it, because it was given to her by her Grandpa, and made her think of him, but she also really wanted to have some space on her dresser freed up. She also really needed a reading light over her bed. So I took the globe into my craft room, and removed it from the stand, and removed the inner light workings (they would only hold up to a 15w bulb), drilled the hole in the top of the globe bigger so that I could drop an IKEA hanging light into the hole and voila...

Grampa's Legacy Lamp

Grampa's Legacy Lamp

Now Grampa's Legacy Lamp can light her way. This solved both problems, how to keep a gift from a loved one who is no longer with us, but have something useful, too. I love the warmth that it exudes, and it makes me smile whenever I see it.

And now I keep looking for other things around the house to turn into a lamp or shade...

Monday, March 28, 2011

Finally, a crafty post!

When last I wrote, I was feverishly trying to finish two items for donation at the March Project linus meeting. I joined one of the local chapters of Project Linus in February. We meet the second Saturday of each month at the Manzano Mesa Multigenerational Center. At that first meeting I started a grannyghan with yarn leftover from a baby gift I gave in January. Below is the finished grannyghan, which was done in time to donate at the March meeting. These grannryghans are a great way to use up leftover yarn, I basically just go with one colorway until that ball runs out then start the next colorway, even if it's in the middle of the round. It still comes out looking like it was planned that way all along.
March 2011 Project Linus Donation - Grannyghan
In my last post I showed a 20" x 24" rectangle that looked more like a flag than a baby blanket. Someone else donated it to Linus the day I attended my first meeting, and I offered to take it home and make it at least baby, if not toddler sized. I wove in ends the night before the March meeting,  and below is the finished blankie, which basically was enlarged by at least 6" on all sides.


March 2011 Project Linus Donation - "Operation Make-it-bigger"
I told the ladies at the March meeting not to expect 2 blankets from me every month, the only reason I finished two this month is because I had a major head start on the "Operation Make it Bigger" one.

I've got some more finished crafts and pics to show, but I think I'll save them so I can post a little mopre frequently over the next few weeks.

I enjoyed myself much more at the March meeting, there were quite a few more ladies present, and the entire mood and vibe was friendlier and more fun. The person I had thought was in charge was actually just filling in, and the real chairperson is friendly and inviting. Sadly, none of the other yarncrafters I invited showed up, so it was just me and one other person working with yarn again. I won't give up until I increase their ranks. *evil laugh*

Monday, March 7, 2011

It's been how long?

Oooops! I haven't updated here in a couple of weeks. darn. My goal was weekly crafty updates. Ok, so what's been happening in jewells' crafty world?

Stashbusting, the recipient of which will be Project Linus. Someone donated this tiny 20 x 24 inch blanket which I am crocheting around granny-square style in a project I lke to call "Operation make-it-bigger".

I'm using complimentary multicolored brown/black/cream yarn first, then just solid cream (which I've nearly finished my skein) and I'll border with either black or brown.

I also started a grannyghan (basically a granny square that you just keep going on until it's blanket-sized) with leftover pinks, purples, and purple multi at February's PL meeting that is very nearly finished. This Saturday is the March meeting, so I'll be sure to take pics of these two finished so I can post two more FO (finished objects) here.

Haven't yet made the last two PoDBoW blocks, but I'm on sweet sweet vacation next week so I plan to get caught up on everything then.

There, a short crafty post. More pics next time, I promise!

Monday, February 21, 2011

What UFO?

So this past week, during the season premier of Survivor: Redemption Island, I finished another UFO. That's right, 2nd month of the year, 2nd UFO complete.

The story of the Crocheted Amish Afghan begins in March 2010. Having recently taught myself to crochet I embarked upon an afghan in a book I had on my shelf, Better Homes and Gardens' Afghans to Knit and Crochet. I was going to link here to my original blog post, but I was blogging so sporadically last year that apparently I only ever posted about it on my livejournal.

Suffice it to say I started on it, had some trouble early on, and picked it up sporadically throughout the year. Since it was really just an exercise in crochet to learn new stitches and practice what I'd learned so far there was no deadline, so often it would sit ignored for months at a time while I worked on gifts and swaps.

Having determined that I was coming up on the anniversary of having started this throw, and having not finished, I decided to make it my next UFO to conquer... Finish it I did, and BEFORE it was a year-old UFO, so there! Due to working on it so sporadically and the changes in my crocheting skill and technique throughout the year it seems a bit wonky, mainly the brown triangles of shells. My original idea was to donate it to Project Linus, but I'm going to wash and dry it first. If it's still kind of poofy there I think I will maybe give it to my mom for Mothers' Day; she's always cold and likes to have this size throw near her recliner. Maybe I'll just throw it on the back of my loveseat. If the washing fixes the weird poofy corners a Project Linus blanket it will be.

Here's the pictorial evidence:

Finished Crocheted Amish Afghan


Closeup to see different types of stitches

Now I think I just have one major UFO languishing in the living room, which I'l be dragging out next, the infamous Scrappy Log Cabin (play scary music here). Don't expect it finished too soon, though... it's big and all garter stitch, so I'll mainly only be working on that when watching a movie or something kinda long. I sure hope I finish before it gets too warm, though...

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Where are the Crafts?

My goal in 2011 (well, starting in February at least) is to post to this so-called crafty blog weekly what I've been up to craft-wise...

I've been working on finishing up UFOs that are scattered throughout the house, one of which is this:

12" swapghan
My Swapghan!
A couple of years ago I participated in a 12" knitted/crocheted block swap hosted by Ofenjen on Livejournal. I got a few made and sent, and received the same amount back, but it wasn't enough to do anything with, really. So when my birthday rolled around later that same year Ofenjen sent me a bunch more squares. I kept them safely in their box until I could learn how to crochet so that I didn'tnhave to sew them all together. Well, last year I learned how to crochet, but didn't remember where I had stuffed this box. D'oh!

When I was cleaning my project room in December and January, I came across the box and said, "This is it. It's time these squares acheived their true purpose." Ok, maybe that's not exactly what I said, but I crocheted them together and then crocheted a border around them. Now it's sitting on the back of my sofa waiting for someone to get chilly.

Hurrah for Finished UFOs!

I've also been plugging away at hpopaperpiecing's Project of Doom Block of the Week Mystery Quilt. I'm finally caught up through Block 5 and Block 6 is released tomorrow. So, huzzah!

Having a cleaner project room is DEFINITELY adding to the productivity. I'm really looking forward to the coming Presidents' Day 3 day weekend for more craftiness to abound.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Is this a blog?

So, wow, I just came over here and realized that I hadn't posted since June. June! This is a perfect example of how hectic and unorganized my life has been, be it personal or crafty or work. It's a New Year and while I won't go so far as to say it's a new me, it is a slightly more organized me... at least in the sense of crafting, that is...

Many things have happened in my crafty life and my personal and work life since that last post in June. Probably the biggest, craft-wise, is the effort I've been making to no longer be a "crafty hoarder". I have been purging my project room of supplies I've rarely, if ever, used, and rearranged a bit and made it more friendly to "drop-in" crafting... meaning I don't have to clean in order to craft anymore. I still don't have every craft supply I own in the project room, which is my ultimate goal. I still have my yarn and hooks and needles and such in other rooms, but my goal is to have all my supplies in my project room by the end of this calendar year. It's definitely doable without sacrificing all my spare time to make it happen. Purges throughout the year will help it happen.

Another thing that will help me reach my goal will be to finish my UFOs and WIPs and use up more yarn stash. On that note, I definitely need to do more charity crafting, so I'm visiting a Project Linus meeting for the first time next weekend and once I realistically look at my crafting time and how I spend it, I will set myself some goals as far as how much to finish for Linus and by when.

2011 is also the "Year of the Quilt" for me. I have vowed to complete a quilt (no size specification) from beginning to end this year. Helping me along with that is my participation in the Project of Doom as a member of the Harry Potter PaperPiecing group on Livejournal.

Photobucket

Go ahead, click on the banner and check it out! It's a Block of the Week Mystery Quilt designed, organized and run by my awesome bff Jennifer, and all the squares are paper-pieced. I am very new to this, so it's slow going for me and I'm already behind, but I'm looking forward to Presidents' Day Weekend to get caught up. So far I have finished Block 1 and Block 2 and I've barely started Block 3. Block 4 was released this past Wednesday, so that tells you how far behind I am. but that's ok. It's helping to make me a more confident crafter.

  After getting a bit more organized in my craft room I was able to do some gift crafting this xmas. I'll leave you with a small picspam of my favorites:



 





Stenciled pillowcase for my DH. "He Sleeps Well"

Stenciled t-shirt for my DD


Stenciled t-shirt for my BiL

Monday, June 28, 2010

June "FO"s

June is almost over. I finished several crafty items in June. First to be finished was my awesome bff Jen's birthday gift which I posted about earlier this month. Actually I think that was done late in May, but I gave it to her the first weekend of June, so I'm going to count it!

The next thing  I finished was my girly ghan, which I started in March or April, and which I donated to the Linus Connection of Central Texas. Super bff Jen donated a couple of quilted wall hangings to my old boss' JDRF auction a couple of years ago, and I had promised a blanket to Linus Connection, a charity very close to her heart, as a little extra "thank you". The pattern for the grannyghan is from Lion Brand Yarn's Birds' Nest Throw, but with a different sequence of colors and # of colors and different border.


Finally, this morning I wove the ends in on another crocheted blanket I started a few weeks ago. My friend and long-time co-worker (14 years working together!) Doreen lost her dad to a heart attack late in May, and when I went to his funeral her mom just looked lost and so very shrunken up and sad. She had a stroke a few years ago and is in a wheelchair much of the time, and on the side that did not suffer from the stroke, she has been hit with Parkinson's disease. She's lucid, coherent, but has pretty much shut down since his death. It was hard to see her this way, it seems like not that long ago she was quilting up a storm and competing on the Senior Olympics basketball team, but the last few years have really taken a toll. I asked Doreen what her mom's favorite color was, and was told blue, "country colors" she said. I found a few places online telling how to make a granny a rectangle instead of square, but I didn't like how it was coming out so I modified the corners until I liked how they looked. Then it seemed to still be coming out fairly square, so I added about 5-6 inches to opposite ends before adding the border so that it was the rectangle I wanted. I looked through my stash and found the perfect two complimentary skeins (they were GIANT skeins), one of a dark country blue (Caron One Pounder - colonial blue I think?) and one that is variegated in country shades of pink/blue/lavender (Bernat Bulky Super). After one time around in the blue with just single crochet, I bordered it with the multi, single crochet through the back loops. It's now washed, dried (it came out so soft from the dryer!), and gifted, and Doreen thinks her mom will really love it. It's a bit skewed hanging there, but actually came out a  perfect rectangle. You would be able to see it if I had something to hang the hanger onto a little farther away from the other hanger.


So that's June's finished objects.

As for my self-imposed "yarn embargo", the only yarn I have bought since April was to send to other people. Also, after the fright of finding an infestation in some wool, and throwing out an entire bucket of wool and alpaca and mohair, I checked all my other wool/natural fiber yarns and they were not showing signs of anything wrong. Since i knew a charity was coming around last Friday, I bagged them and donated them. All of them. Kind of like ripping off a bandaid. They will perhaps make some poor knitter's day who is on a budget and shopping at the thrift store. I feel the better for it, and no longer feel like my yarn is controlling me. I have about a half a big bucket of cotton, and quite of bit of acrylic and novelty yarns left, but about half my stash is now gone. And I'm ok, really. I'm still stashbusting and am now working to finish the Crocheted Amish Afghan I started months ago when I first learned to crochet. After that, I'm not sure what I'll tackle next... but it will likely be from stash. I still have a ways to go before I'm down to what I feel comfortable keeping "on hand". My "stash-building" days are over, and it's a good feeling.

About Me

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Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States
This is my place to talk about crafting, what I make, and maybe even why I make it.