Archive for April, 2013

KaCBW Day 7: Looking Forward

Today’s post for the 4th annual  Knit and Crochet Blog Week is about the future, and sadly is the last in the week for this year. The question in the prompt is: where do you hope your crafting will have taken you to? What new skills, projects and experiences do you hope you might have conquered or tried?

This one is hard for me, I’m not really a planner in my crafting. I definitely hope to have finished the cardigan from Day 2. Although really, I have been known to have projects on the needles for several years before finishing them (I started a Dr. Who scarf for my brother more than 6 years ago, when I was still in highschool, which isn’t even close to finished) so that could be a bit of a challenge. I also want to work a lot more on my Fiber Catan board, which I’m pretty sure will involve lots of new needle felting challenges. But no matter what I plan now and whether I actually achieve these goals or not, I’m sure I’ll be doing lots of new fiber things and will definitely share them with you along the way.

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KaCBW Day 6: A Tool to Covet

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KaCBW Day Five: Something a Bit Different

Today’s post is in a different format than usual.

50 posts

Stupid program I used to create the graphic didn’t tell me they’d put their name *all over* my entire picture, grumble grumble

KaCBW Day 4: Colour Review

The prompt for today: “What are your favourite colours for knitted or crocheted projects. Have a think about what colours you seem to favour when yarn shopping and crafting.” I think I tend toward two different sets of colors when I’m just buying yarn because it’s pretty and when I’m making a project. (I think I’ll leave needle felting out of consideration for this one cause the colors I use in needle felting tend to be based on the colors of objects in the real world, not my own choices.) When I’m just buying yarn because it’s pretty, which is most of my stash, I think I tend to go with mostly blues and greens, and the occasional bright red or yellow, if it jumps out at me. Blue is the color I wear most, so I think that affects my yarn buying because there’s always that rationalizing voice in the back of my head saying something like I could make a hat out of this, or this would be great for that mitten pattern I found on Ravelry. Not that the theoretical projects get made very often.

So now I’m supposed to go look at my stash and see if I was right! *five minutes later* Ha! Just as I thought, mostly blues, although a surprising number of oranges, and lots of random single or pairs of balls of a big range of colors. There are especially a lot of partial balls of various jewel tones from the Hedgehogs.

Now in colors for projects, I think there’s a much bigger variation. Very few of my projects are clothing items, and of those even fewer are for myself, so I can be more adventurous and indulge my love of color. I really do enjoy bright colors, and will gladly put together a set of colors that make your eyes water but I think looks good, but I prefer not to call attention to myself so I don’t wear many bright colors. That just means I have to use all the bright colors in non-clothing items! Now let’s take a look at some of my projects and see if I’m right.

I’d say there’s a pretty good range of color there. The bright colors are mostly in the hedgehogs I guess, maybe that’s why I like them so much, but there’s even lots of colors in my first quilt! Yay for lifelong consistency!

So there you are, my color preferences, and a nice little review of my projects in the bargain.

KaCBW Day 3: Infographic

 

 

Today’s challenge is to create and post an infographic. Man did I have a hard time coming up with something for this one. I went with just a graph rather than a big fancy infographic, like some awesome ones I’ve already seen for today’s post, because I just can’t think of anything to make a full infographic about. Also I seem to have no drawing programs on my computer other than paint, I need to find a free one to download somewhere. Below is my graph/infographic, you can pretty much ignore the numbers, the program I was using to make the graph had to have them and I couldn’t make it not label the y-axis. The important part is the proportions of the bars to each other.
graph

 

As you can see, I’m a bit yarn obsessed, but slow to knit. Needle felting however, I’m very quick at and do a lot more of. But the yarn is just so pretty, and cuddly, and pet-able…shut up, I don’t have a problem. Okay, maybe I do, but I control my yarn buying, it doesn’t control me. I really mean that, I’m not just trying to justify, until I bought the yarn specifically for the sweater in my post yesterday, which I bought partially with a gift certificate remember, I hadn’t bought myself any new yarn in years. Although I may have occasionally weaseled one of my parents into buying a pretty yarn for me… 😀

Anyway, there’s my infographic. I don’t think I’ll be using infographics a lot on here, but it was interesting to play with.

KaCBW Day 2: Mascot Project

Today I am supposed to find a project that represents the House of the Monkey, either the animal itself or the characteristics. I considered finding a monkey project, I have always enjoyed sock monkeys, but decided that was too obvious and just not a challenging enough task for this monkey! We don’t have to actually make the pattern but really, it’s pretty easy to find a pattern online for a monkey or sock monkey, there’s just no challenge. So instead I am going to tell you about a pattern I do plan to make which is a challenge for me.

So I have the yarn for this pattern, but haven’t started it yet. I’m making a cardigan/sweater from the book Knit Kimono Too, which happens to be filled with lots of amazing looking patterns that I would love to make. I am specifically making the one called Tokai Tomoshibi, and even the name of the pattern is a challenge for me! Here’s the picture from the book.

It looks pretty simple from a distance but it has a fancy fan stitch that you can see better in the close-ups. The yarn I got for it is beautiful, pictures will be coming when I start swatching, and of course is hand-painted and ridiculously expensive. Luckily I had a gift card…which covered about a third of the cost :-/. Anyway, this will be the first project of this size I have ever made. Yes, you read that right, I have never made a sweater before. In fact the largest project I’ve ever made was a simple stockinette stitch afghan that ended up being about half the size originally planned and it useful for pretty much the top half of your legs. I’m just not good at sticking with a big project once it’s not challenging anymore. But I’m hoping the stitch pattern in this one will keep me interested enough to finish the piece, cause it’s a more complicated pattern than I’ve done before and should present a bit of a challenge.

This pattern is also interesting because it’s done completely in rectangles. All the patterns in the book are built that way, which just fascinates me. One reason I’ve been hesitant to try making a sweater is because they tend to be done at least partially in the round and with lots of increases and decreases, which won’t work if not done just right. And I’m just not precise enough in my knitting to trust that I would get the increases and decreases in just the right place, and I really hate pulling my work out, especially when I only want to pull it part way back. I just have so much trouble finding the right row to pull back to and then I tend to be lost in the pattern, and it’s all a mess. But rectangles I can do. Nice, simple back and forth, so the stitch pattern can be the tricky part, and  I can be reasonably sure my finished piece will look right. So now I just need to start the gauge swatch so I can get the right needle size.

This post was supposed to also be about my process of choosing a project, and I think this was a pretty good example. Generally it’s pretty much random, I look at patterns online or in books and make the ones that jump out and grab me. Other times I see things in life, animals, space ships, chocolate, etc, and it just hits me that I have to make that in fiber. Then I figure out which fiber technique it would work best with, although usually that ends up being needle felting because it’s what I’m most comfortable improvising in, and start finding every picture  of the object from every angle that I can. And then I just get working! Cause planning doesn’t really work for me when it comes to art stuff; once I have it planned it feels close enough to finished that I lose motivation.

Knitting and Crochet Blog Week

I discovered on one of the blogs I follow that it is Knitting and Crochet Blog week, where there is a theme/prompt for a post for each day this week, and I’ve decided to participate. You can find the details over at Eskemimi Makes, if you’re interested, or just read my posts this week and enjoy!

 

Today I am supposed to choose a house for the Knitting and Crochet Blog Week, and explain my crafting style/outlook and why I chose that house. The choices are:

The House of Bee: Bees are busy and industrious, but can flit from one interesting project to the next as bright and shiny things capture their interest.

The House of Manatee: Manatees are gentle, calm and cuddly. Relaxed and unflashy they represent the comfort and soft side of knitting and crochet.

The House of Monkey: Intelligent and with a fun loving side, Monkeys like to be challenged with every project presenting them with something new and interesting.

The House of Peacock: Peacocks take something good and make it brilliant. Buttons, embellishments and a bit of sparkle prove that perfection lies in the details – like a Peacock’s Tail.

I had a hard time choosing between the House of the Bee, because I do tend to jump around between projects, and the house of the Monkey, because I love a challenge. But I decided on the House of the Monkey.

I went with the House of the Monkey because my favorite part of all the crafting I do is trying new things and giving myself challenges. I figure that’s actually why I jump between projects so much, one challenge gets boring, or easy because I’ve gotten good, and I move on to the next. I think that’s why I tend to do so many different crafting techniques as well; I get intrigued by the challenge and the newness and get excited to try it. But of course I refuse to admit that the only reason I’m trying something is because it’s new so I purposely get deep into it and stick with it, and inevitably discover more challenges in it. Of course sometimes I want easy and familiar so I start a simple project, but those are the projects that rarely get finished, or that take me years to finish.

Stick around all week for some fun, silly, and informative posts.

So how about you? What’s your crafting style?

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