Crafting Swap

So recently I participated in a crafting swap hosted by Margaret Bloom from the blog We Bloom Here. I was super excited about this as I have never participated in a swap before. We were each grouped into triads so that every crafter made two gifts and received two gifts.

Here are my gifts that I created:

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In return, I received this super cute apron from Anne (blog: Itty Bitty Love)

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Ellen from MD sent me wonderful handmade stationary.

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Overall, this experience was great! It is always amazing to see what others are crafting out there ūüôā

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Knit Tip

I really hate buying knitting supplies other than needles. I find that most of the commercial stuff one can DIY. Here is a good one from Lion’s Brand:

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Just make sure you use a porous cork and not those new ones. The new ones are very dense and are hard to puncture a needle through (especially if you are using wooden or bamboo needles. )

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Camping Project

While hanging out in the wilderness , I had the chance to start a new project. Picking out a new project is always exciting, however, there are special considerations when traveling.

1) Is it portable and or compact? – You don’t want to bring intense colorwork projects with multiple ball of yarn. Not only does it take up too much room, but there is high risk of a ball or two ending up in the dirt. ūüė©

2) Is it easy to work?– Most of the time, you will want to knit as the day is winding down. Since you won’t have much light, it is better to bring something easy to work (i.e, that garter stitch blanket you are working on for someone’s baby). Plus you will probably want to sit and chat by the fire. Something easier allows you to participate in the conversation and not make as many mistakes.

I decided on a Rainbow Shawl. This shawl was inspired by the Nix shawl on on Untangling Knots. I am really feeling the way it looks like a modern bandana. I decided not to go with the pattern as I felt the rainbow striping and the lacy effect would be a little much. Here is what I have so far:

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I love this yarn! It was one of my purchases on my trip to Taos, NM. The colors are rich and the feel of the wool blend is amazing! The only bummer is that now my project smells a little like campfire. Hopefully a quick wash will fix it.

Looking for Adventure

“I have this desire to explore.”

Thanks Pinterest! This quote sums up where I am in life right now. I need to, have to, want to explore the world around me.¬† Recently, I was¬†thinking, “Why I was feeling so “blah” about everything?” ¬†Work was¬†blah,¬†school was blah,¬†and my social calendar was blah. Nothing was bad, yet it¬†wasn’t super¬†duper¬†awesome¬†either. ¬†I¬†have been¬†doing the same thing day after day and it¬†is becoming¬†bland.¬† This weekend it hit me. The reason that everything has become “eh” is because I am not taking the time to¬†bring a little adventure to my life. Anytime that¬†has been ¬†a great moment¬† was because I was taking a risk and exploring.¬†Don’t get me wrong, I am not flipping off dirt bikes or skydiving. I am simply pushing myself toward novel experiences.¬†Adventure can be right outside your door. It is seeking out new cultures, food, music, hobbies…etc. This is what brings me joy. It also motivates me in other¬†areas in life. If I feel excited about life, I want to be better version of me, whether it be at work, school, or when just hanging out with friends.

So the quest for adventures begins! This weekend we took a risk and went camping. I haven’t been since I was 8, so this was like going for the first time. We went to Del Valle Regional Park outside of Livermore, CA. I am not super outdoorsy, but camping wasn’t too bad.

One of the funniest moments was when we woke up and notice we had had some night time visitors:

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Despite our curious friends, we had tons of fun hiking, climbing trees, fishing, and riding bikes. All in all I would say camping was quite successful. Who knows maybe another camping adventure in the future?

Headband/Wrap Bracelets- Free Pattern

Hello all!  Last week I needed to take a hiatus. Work was crazy and to keep up with crafting and blogging was  impossible. So I am back! This weekend I worked on some jewel-tone headbands/wrap bracelets. My goal was to create a simple and practical  accessory that could be worn by several age groups. As for crafters, this is a cute and quick gift that can help use up some of your stash scraps :).

Skills you need: Making an I-cord, knitting with beads (click links for how to videos)

You need: Fiber of your choice in sport weight, 2- size 3 double-pointed  knitting needles, 22 bead small beads, crochet hook (2.0mm), tapestry needle, 1 button.

Finished Length: 17″ (44.5 cm)

To begin:  Thread all of your beads onto your working strand.

CO 5 sts. Make sure you leave at least 5-6″ of a tail in order to create a button loop in the finishing process.

Rows 1-4: Knit all sts to create an I-cord.

Row 5: Knit 2. Incorporate 1 bead into I-cord with slip-stitch method. Knit 2.

Repeat rows 1-5 until you have used all 22 beads. After you have completed the last row with a bead, knit 3 additional rows.

Next Row: Knit 1, K2tog twice.

Last Row:  Knit 3 sts together and tie off your work.

Finishing: Use your crochet hook to chain stitch 12 stitches (or however many you need to fit around your chosen button). Attach the loop to the I-cord and sew in the ends. On the other side, use your tapestry needle to sew the button to the I-cord.

Enjoy!

-Whitney

Devils and Details: America’s Knitting Underbelly

A little late with the Friday Funnies (sorry!). Here is a quite humorous article about Knitting. I would like to thank the author for shedding light on this serious issue (haha).

Covered in Beer

A growing obsession overlooked by the mainstream is plaguing suburbia at an cat-wearing-sweater--large-msg-130592658314alarming rate: knitting. I guess it begins harmlessly enough, darning a sock when nobody’s there like Eleanor Rigby. But then it grows into a debilitating illness. Take for instance Deloris Clark. She’s 52 and her cats have a bigger wardrobe than most American children. Or take Norris Berkowitz who is allergic to wool but can’t stop knitting. His hands and face swell up every day beyond the point of recognition. These are just a few of the stories I uncovered as I delved deeper into the corrosive world that is knitting. It’s not just for your Granny anymore.

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Weekending in San Francisco

Me: “Let’s do something.”
Boyfriend: “Like what?”
Me: “I don’t know. Let’s just get out of the house.
Boyfriend : “We should go to Coit Tower. ”

And so our adventure began. Coit Tower is a lovely site in San Francisco with a great view. However, one must ascend a crazy amount of steep stairs to get there.

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Not my idea of something to do on a relaxing afternoon, but I ended up on the trolley headed out toward the piers. The first matter of business was to climb the Filbert Street stairs. The cool thing about these stairs is there is a possible chance of sighting parrots. Parrots in San Francisco?! Yes indeed. Check here for more info. Allegedly, back in the day people would try to domesticate wild parrots. It ended up the parrots hated captivity so people released them into the wild. Hence the wild parrots of San Francisco.

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Unfortunately, no parrot sightings ūüėĒ, but there were many beautiful flowers on the way.

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Good news: We made it to the top without suffering from a heart attack! Bad news:

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Ugh! All this way for nothing? Eventually we figured out that you could take in some views from the parking level. A little bit obstructed by the bushes, but still a great panorama of the bay.

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The storm clouds started to roll in so we headed down the hill to North Beach (aka Little Italy). We stumbled upon a cute restaurant with a covered outdoor patio. It was perfect. I felt almost a little European with my glass of wine and pasta just watching people stroll by. All and all a perfect afternoon. Sometimes it is great acting like a tourist in your own city.