Monday, October 31, 2016

Yarn Haul October 2016!!

This month I purchased the following skeins of yarn:

2 skeins of Red Heart Boutique Rigoletto in Sequins Jade
2 skeins of Red Heart Boutique Rigoletto in Sequins Periwinkle
5 skeins of Red Heart Grande Yarn in Apricot
1 Skein Red Heart Boutique Sashay Sequins Yarn in Panda
Skein Red Heart Boutique Sashay Sequins Yarn in Champagne
Skein Red Heart Boutique Sashay Metallic Yarn in Aquamarine

Additionally, I purchased a new pair of Boye 29" Circular Aluminum Knitting Needles-Size 15 for a knitting project I'll be knitting using to knit the Red Heart Grande Yarn.

I also purchased a Boye Aluminum Crochet Hook 6-Inch, Size J, which I will be using to crochet a sashay scarf.

Did you add yarn to your stash this month?? If so, please share with me in the comment section below, which yarn you've added to your collection this month!

Join the 30-Day Commit-to-Knit Challenge from Knit Om!

The main object of the 30-Day Commit-to-Knit Challenge from the Knit Om website is to "cultivate a daily knitting practice to reduce stress and boost happiness". 

The following information below explains the objective of the 30-Day Commit-to-Knit Challenge from Knit Om's website:

The knitting challenge is simple:
Sit and knit every day for 30 days.
Self-care is the essential antidote to stress; it’s the simple secret to a healthy mind, body and soul. 
And that's why it's a necessity, not a luxury. 
A daily knitting practice gives you the chance to step away from your busy life to reconnect with yourself and the present moment. 
It is a radical act of self-love and a critical part of your stress-busting strategy.
So, let go of the guilt and kick stress to the curb with a daily knitting and wellness practice.
The interesting side note here, is that I've pretty much begun cultivating an almost daily ritual of knitting during the month of October. I have most definitely noticed that making knitting a near daily practice has helped boost my mood and given me a sense of inner peace. I love the creative process of knitting and also turning skeins of yarn into something usable, fun to look at and use. I also like learning new knitting skills!

Sign up to take Knit Om's 30-Day Commit-to-Knit Challenge. By signing up for Knit Om's 30-Day Commit-to-Knit Challenge through Knit Om's website, "you'll also get 5 FREE lessons and a challenge calendar to guide and enhance your daily knitting practice."

So who wants to take this knitting challenge with me?

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Another Ruffle Scarf Crocheted!

Teal Blue Metallic Ruffle Scarf
I had another go at crocheting a ruffle scarf with Red Heart Boutique Sashay Metallic Yarn in the Aquamarine colorway! The ruffle scarf was easy to make this time around, which was wonderful. I like making projects that work up quickly.

I love the color of this ruffle scarf as it has various shades of dark blue with metallic threads that run through it. 

I made the ruffle scarf for my Aunt Mary for her birthday next month... So, happy birthday, Aunt Mary!! I hope you enjoy wearing the ruffle scarf I made especially for you.

Until my next post, happy crafting folks!

Monday, October 24, 2016

3D Bubble Knitted Stitch

OMG, I so want to make the 3D Bubble Knitted Stitch pattern for a project I knit. It looks really cool! But I readily  admit that I am slightly intimidated by the prospect of knitting the 3D Bubble Knitted Stitch because it looks like it is for an intermediate knitter... Not a knitting stitch for an advanced beginner like myself. I will not be deterred though in trying to make the 3D Bubble Knitted Stitch. Perhaps, I can use the 3D Bubble Knitted Stitch to make a hat, scarf, or poncho for myself?

What do you think of the 3D Bubble Knitted Stitch?

I Crocheted My First Item Ever!

Crocheted Ruffle Scarf
I've been intrigued with what one can make using sashay yarn. After watching a video on YouTube earlier this month, I learned that one can use sashay yarn to crochet (or knit) a ruffle scarf. I decided the crochet version looked easier to make than the knit version even though I've never crocheted before (famous last words, right?). 

So, I went ahead and purchased a skein of Red Heart Boutique Sashay Sequins Yarn in the Panda colorway (black, white, and gray color scheme) and a size J crochet hook last week. I then went ahead and spent the better part of last Friday crocheting the ruffle scarf throughout the day.

I love the look of the finished ruffle scarf and really look forward to wearing it as a way to dress up an outfit during the next few months for special occasions.

I used the entire skein of Red Heart Boutique Sashay Sequins Yarn to make my ruffle scarf. The pattern itself is really easy to make, but I am not that coordinated in crocheting quite yet... So, it took me quite awhile to complete the ruffle scarf. I think a more experienced crocheter would be able to complete this project in a much shorter time than me for sure. The Red Heart Boutique Sashay Sequins Yarn feels really soft to the touch, which I love. I dislike scratchy or rough feeling yarn against the skin. Plus, the sequins add a nice touch of elegance to the piece. Unfortunately, you can't see the sequins in the above picture. My completed scarf measures 56 inches in length.

The Yarn Still In A Skein & the Crochet Hook I Used For My Scarf!

Even though, I wore my Thergonomic Hand-Aids Support Gloves while making the ruffle scarf, I still ended up feeling quite a bit of soreness in fingers, wrist, and forearm. I made sure to take frequent breaks from crocheting, but it looks like I may have overdone things a bit or perhaps not held the crochet hook ergonomically (???). I do try to be thoughtful about my crafting activities. But in this case my fingers, wrist, and forearm felt mildly sore, stiff, and achy for a few days afterward.

Until my next post, happy crafting!!!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Knitting Quote of the Day!!

10 Northern American Knitting & Yarn Stores Worth A Visit!!

I discovered an article on USA Today's website titled 10 great knitting and yarn shops across North America by Larry Bleiberg. In the article, it says:
Knitting and yarn stores aren’t mere retailers. Many are also cozy waystations with classes, supplies and a place to relax and work on your next scarf, afghan or fiber-art masterpiece. Some have even become travel destinations in their own right, says Amy Singer, editor and publisher of “The ones that are thriving have found ways to provide something unique.” She shares some of her favorite shops with Larry Bleiberg for USA TODAY.
I was pleased to learn that Oakland, California based yarn store, A Verb For Keeping Warm, has made the list!! I have yet to visit this yarn store, but it's basically in my back yard, so I need to make a visit.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Thergonomic Hand-Aids Support Gloves

I sometimes have issues with pain in fingers, hand, wrist, and forearm of my right limb off and on... The pain in the mentioned areas is due to an injury I had a few years ago. The pain may flare up when doing things like typing, writing, and crafting and certain chores.

In an effort to help reduce any potential pain flare ups while knitting, I've resorted to trying support gloves to minimize any stress/fatigue from the repetitive motion of knitting. 

I began using Thergonomic Hand-Aids Support Gloves in the past 3-5 months. These gloves are well constructed and have held up nicely with use. I would say that I have noticed an improvement by wearing these gloves while knitting. I wouldn't say they have kept me completely pain free by a long shot. I am learning that it's really all about balance. By wearing the gloves while I knit, taking frequent breaks, and working with different yarn weights, has helped me keep from being into major pain for the most part. I'd like to learn some stretches and incorporate other methods to help reduce any pain and other symptoms I do end up feeling from knitting.

What have you found helpful in avoiding stress, fatigue, and pain from knitting?

Friday, October 21, 2016

Sashay Ruffle Scarf

I don't know how to crochet, but I'm going to learn how to crochet as this Red Heart Sashay Yarn Scarf looks pretty cute. I'd love to make this scarf for myself and others as a gift. 

The video above makes making this scarf look really easy... But that may not be the case when I actually get around to making the sashay scarf for myself. I'll just have to wait and see, won't I?

Have you made anything using sashay yarn before? How did it turn out? And, is crocheting with sashay yarn pretty easy?

Saturday, October 15, 2016

I Love Yarn Day 2016!!

Happy yarn day to Y-O-U!!! I hope you have a fabulous day of crafting, whether it be knitting, crocheting, weaving, or spinning today!

So, what do you love about yarn?? For me I love the vast variety of yarns out there in the world in different weights (from lace to super bulky and everything in between), the different colors and materials that yarn is made from, how yarn feels to the touch, and all the different things one can make by using yarn.

I love knitting with yarn. I am a relatively new knitter and consider myself an advance beginner. I love the creative process of knitting and making something with my hands, a pair of knitting needles and skeins of yarn. I have found that knitting is a great way to relieve stress. Plus, knitting makes me very happy. I love how portable knitting is as you can knit just about anywhere, which makes knitting such a wonderful hobby for me.

To learn more about I Love Yarn Day, please visit the Craft Yarn Council website. There's even an online scavenger hunt with an opportunity to win prizes!! For further details about the I Love Yarn Day Scavenger Hunt, click on the link that highlights I Love Yarn Scavenger Hunt.

How will you be celebrating I Love Yarn Day 2016?

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

My First Attempt At Dyeing Yarn With Tea

I used one skein of Lily's Sugar N' Cream 100% white cotton yarn, which I unwound from the skein into a long loose strand. 

I then soaked the entire amount of Lily's Sugar N' Cream 100% white cotton yarn in eight cups of hot water that I used to brew 11 bags of black tea in advance prior to adding the yarn. 

I left the yarn to soak in the black tea for 92 hours. The yarn color turned out nicely. My only minor issue/complaint is the unevenness of the yarn color after dyeing it with black tea. The color of the yarn turned out slightly variegated instead of one even overall color.

I plan to use the ball of yarn I've dyed with black tea, along with the ball of yarn I dyed last month with the Country Time Strawberry Lemonade, to knit a tea cozy.

Until my next post, happy crafting!

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Red Heart Boutique Rigoletto Yarn

Just watched the above video on how to make a scarf with the Red Heart Boutique Rigoletto Yarn. The Red Heart Boutique Rigoletto Yarn looks easy to work with and also a very unique yarn. I may have purchase a few skeins and knit a scarf or two to give as gifts!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Knitting Gifts For Others!!

Not only do I love knitting and improving my craft for fun, creativity, and knowledge, I also enjoy knitting gifts for other people! 

My mother-in-law will be celebrating her 73rd birthday later this month on October 13th. With the cooler months swiftly approaching, I've made her a cowl neck infinity scarf using circular knitting needles in a neutral cooler palette. I also finger crocheted her a necklace in a neutral color palette as well. 

May my mother-in-law enjoy wearing these items in the months to come!

Do you knit or crochet items to give as gifts? Until my next post, happy crafty!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Knitting Update!!

Last month, I wrote a post about a prayer shawl I'm working on for my mother-in-law. This month, I'm still working on the prayer shawl to give to my mother-in-law as a gift and it's a labor of love. I have made quite a bit of progress on the prayer shawl during the past month.

In case you haven't read my post last month, I am making the prayer shawl using the garter stitch. I'm making the prayer shawl with three skeins of Lion Brand's Homespun Yarn in the Vintage colorway. I've knitted  a total of 32 inches of the pray shawl so far and am close to finishing the second skein of yarn. Yay, I am so happy that I am finally making some serious progress on this prayer shawl!!

If I were to work solely on this prayer shawl, I may be able to finish knitting it by the end of the October... However,  I have abandoned knitting my very first cardigan sweater about six months ago due to a mistake I need to still fix. My goal this year is to make my very first sweater. If I even have a remote chance of finishing my cardigan sweater before the end of 2016, I'd better starting working on it now!! Additionally, I plan on starting a new knitting project soon called the Painted Zig Zag Scarf

The goal, for me, is to finish making the prayer shawl before Christmas to give to my mother-in-law and finish my cardigan sweater before the end of the year so that I can start wearing it as soon as possible. I'd also like to start and finish the Painted Zig Zag Scarf by the end of the year as well.

So, what knitting or crocheting projects are you working on??

Until next time, happy crafty!!

Saturday, October 1, 2016

25 Knitting Tips To Help Improve Your Knitting!!

I really want to improve my knitting skills and take my knitting skills to the next level. So, when I came across an article on Knit Om titled, 25 Knitting Tips That Will Instantly Make you a Better Knitter, I read it to learn how to improve my skills.

Great tips are mentioned in this article on how to improve one's knitting!! Some of them I learned the hard way by making mistakes on my own... Like not making a gauge swatch and the having my project turn out way too large!! Or by not using skeins of yarn with the same dye lot number and and having the colors not evenly match throughout the entire project... And lastly, not reading a knitting pattern all the way through before beginning a project and having difficulty with the project while making it.

Other great tips include: keeping detailed notes on the project you are making, learn how to fix mistakes, work with quality yarn, using the correct knitting needles for the yarn being used, and so much more!!