Saturday, December 31, 2016

What Knitting or Crochet Patterns Have You Enjoyed Making In 2016?

This year, I've enjoyed making the following three patterns:

1. Sandy's Rasta Cowl ~ I picked this easy knit pattern up for free at a local yarn store when I purchased the yarn from their store. It's easy to make and with circular knitting needles.

2. Adventure Circle #Scarfie ~ I've knitted eight of these cowl scarves (maybe more of them) this year. They are easy and quick to make for yourself and to give as gifts to give others.

3. Ruffle Scarf ~ I've crocheted eight ruffle scarves using sashay yarn. Again these are cute scarves that are easy and quick to make for oneself or others.

So, which knitting or crochet patterns have you enjoyed making this year?

Yarn Haul December 2016

Okay, I kind of went NUTS buying yarn this month due to all of the great sales through online retailers! I ended up with 48 skeins of yarn in all.

3 Skeins of Loops & Threads Charisma Yarn in the Northern Lights Colorway.
3 Skeins of Loops & Threads Charisma Big! Yarn in the Red Colorway.
5 Skeins of Rozetti Bamboo Glam Yarn in the Poolside Colorway
9 Skeins of Lion Brand Yarns Wool-Ease Thick And Quick Yarn in the Hudson Bay Colorway.
1 Skein of Lion Brand Yarns Landscapes Yarn in the Amethyst Colorway.
1 Skein of Lion Brand Yarns Landscapes Yarn in the Tropics Colorway.
6 Skeins Loops & Threads Charisma Yarn in Bright Pop Colorway.
6 Skeins Loops & Threads Charisma Yarn in Lakeside Colorway.
4 Skeins Alana Universal Yarn in the Hula Colorway.
6 Skeins of Patons Cobbles Yarn in the Blue Shadow Colorway
6 Skeins of Patons Cobbles Yarn in the Moon Rock Colorway.

Alana Universal Yarn 
Loops and Threads Charisma Yarn

So, now it's official, I'm buried in yarn!! Not that that's a bad thing. It's just that
 I already have a ginormous yarn stash, but my yarn stash has truly exploded with all the yarn I've purchased in the past two to three months. 

I think I may have to put a stop to buying yarn in 2017 and stick to using the yarn I currently have on hand for the time being. The main problem is that I am not a fast knitter. And as we all know, life happens and we need to take breaks between knitting projects to do other things. 

Anyway... Now that I am thinking about buying yarn, I'm not sure if I'll be able to stop buying yarn completely in 2017. Especially, if I come across a great sale going on from a favorite retailer. However, I'll definitely slow down on the amount of yarn I purchase during 2017 though for sure.

Monday, December 19, 2016

Traveling For the Holidays?? Here Are Some Stress-Free Travel Tips for Knitters and Crocheters!

I discovered an informative post on Lion Brand's blog titled Stress-Free Travel Tips for Knitters and Crocheters by Liz Eckert. In the article, Liz Eckert writes the following:
With the holidays looming ever closer, many of us are planning to travel. That can lead to tons of stress. You probably want to take a knitting or crochet project along with you so that you can unwind a little. Of course, the logistics of doing that can be even more nerve-wracking! But we have some tips for you, whether you're traveling by air or land.
There are several wonderful tips offered that make this article well worth the read. So click on the top link to read the entire article.

Happy holidays and safe travels to you and your family this holiday season.

Until my next post, happy crafting!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Another Prayer Shawl Complete!!

About 6.5 months ago, I began knitting a prayer shawl to give to my mother-in-law after my father-in-law passed away from an aggressive form of lymphoma cancer at the end of May of this year. 

I've worked on the prayer shawl off and on while working other knitting projects. I am very happy now that I've now finally completed the prayer shawl and will be able to give it to my mother-in-law for Christmas this year. 

I knitted the prayer shawl using three skeins of Lion Brand's Homespun Yarn in the Vintage colorway. I love the color of Lion Brand's Homespun Yarn in the Vintage colorway. Unfortunately, I didn't pay attention to the dye lot of each skein to make sure they matched when I purchased the skeins!! So, two of the skeins of yarn match exactly and the remaining skein of yarn is totally off, which sucks big time!! Call it a lesson learned and (hopefully) one I will not make again in the future.

As far as Lion Brand's Homespun Yarn, I am not thrilled with this yarn in general. Sure it's soft to the touch, which is a plus. And it's a very nice looking boucle yarn at a good price point... But, it frays easily. Additionally, I found knots in several places in each skein as well as a few major variations in thickness in a couple of spots in two of the skeins. I still have about five skeins of this yarn left to use for other knitting projects, but I won't go out of my way to use this yarn again for future projects.

Dimensions for the prayer shawl are as follows:

Approximately 53.5 inches in length.
Approximately 23.5 inches in width.

Until my next post, happy knitting!!

Monday, December 12, 2016

How To Make Your Own Wool Dryer Balls

I love making easy DIY Projects and making my own wool dryer balls sounds like a very easy DIY Project indeed!!

I came across an online article titled HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN ENERGY-SAVING WOOL DRYER BALLS by Jillee at One Good Thing by Jillee website. In the article, Jillee writes:
How would you like to never buy another fabric softener product again AND cut your laundry drying time in half??? Would you believe me if I told you these little woolen gems can do that?
Wool Dryer Balls save you money, energy and time by cutting the dryer’s drying time and by eliminating the need to buy softeners. When you use 4 balls in your dryer, you can cut your dryer time by 25-50%!
I'm interested in making these wool dryer balls and see if they cut my dryer's drying time! Plus, I like the idea of not having to buy and use fabric softener ever again.

Click on the above link to read the full article and learn how to make your own wool dryer balls.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Holiday Gift Giving Ideas For Knitters!

Here are some fun holiday gift giving ideas to give the knitter in your life!

1. Post Stitch ~ The Ultimate Knitting Subscription Box.
PostStitch is a monthly knitting subscription that delivers new yarn, knitting patterns, and notions to subscribers each month. No matter if you have been casting on for years or are picking up a new hobby, the PostStitch team strives to introduce you to new, hard-to-find, and/or trendy fibers, patterns by prominent knitwear designers, and notions to take your knitting tool kit to the next level.

At the beginning of each month, subscribers receive a new knitting project handpicked by the veteran knitters of the PostStitch team. The 1 -2 skein projects are beginner to intermediate skill level and are fun for both veteran knitters and curious new knitters. All you have to do is choose between our BigStitch, BigStitch Lite, or our SockStitch subscriptions (learn more about our subscriptions below) - then sit back, relax, and get ready to cast on. See some of examples of our past subscriptions here.

2. Yarn Box  ~ Yarn Club For Yarn Lovers.
When you subscribe to Yarnbox, you are joining a community of others just like you. Every month you will receive wonderful yarns, patterns and more from carefully selected sources. Lots of suppliers want to be included each month but we carefully choose the best for you. Only yarns and patterns we love get included. Just the quality stuff. We work with suppliers that provide us yarns at or below cost. They get free advertising. You get an amazing value...and great yarn too. Yarnbox will be fun to receive, we promise. In fact, if you find Yarnbox absolutely no fun at all then we will give you your money back.
3. Knit CrateBe Inspired With the World's Finest Yarns.
KnitCrate was started in 2012 to bring premium and unique goods to fiber artists - both new and experienced - around the world with a touch of fun and surprise! Our curated subscription packages and standalone kits (anyone can order in our online store!) can ease fiber artists' discovering new projects while promising premium products. KnitCrate is a subscription box service and online store for fiber artists around the world.

KnitCrate delivers a surprise package to your doorstep with a fun knitting project.Our subscribers receive a package of premium yarn, a pattern for a project to complete, a sweet or soothing extra, and a fun extra – these are not just samples. We source our yarns from both well-known brands and emerging gems. We also partner with indie dyers to offer our subscribers and non-subscribers KnitCrate exclusive colorways. Whether you are a beginner or an advanced fiber artist, there will always be fresh and fun ideas to be discovered in your KnitCrate package (and it you don't know how to knit we've got you covered with KnitCrate Newbies!).
4. A Gift Card from a local yarn store or a big box retailer like a Michaels Store or a Jo-Ann Fabric & Craft Store. I prefer to give a knitter (or crocheter) a gift card from a local independent yarn store to support local business owners.

5. A Knitting Class ~ Local yarn stores offer a plethora of knitting (and crochet) classes for all skill levels. If you don't live near an independent yarn store, then check out the online knitting classes offered through Craftsy! There are a lot of fun looking knitting classes to choose from through Craftsy.

6. A Knitting Needle Case ~ I have one of these. I love having it to hold all of my knitting needles in an organized fashion! 

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Ruffle Scarf

I've crocheted my eighth ruffle scarf using sashay yarn!! I've crocheted six ruffle scarves to give as Christmas gifts this year and the remaining two scarves were given for other occasions.

The latest ruffle scarf I crocheted, was made from Red Heart Boutique Sashay Sequins yarn in the Champagne colorway. 

View the photograph to the left to see what a ruffle scarf looks like in the Champagne colorway. I love the Champagne colorway as it is a lovely winter white color with small sequins added in for fun.

Unfortunately, you are unable to see the sequins in the photograph I've taken. The sequins themselves have a lovely iridescent look to them adding a sophisticated look to the completed ruffle scarf itself. I think this ruffle scarf will be lovely to wear for special occasions.

Until my next post, happy crocheting and/or knitting!!

Monday, December 5, 2016