Friday, April 19, 2013

In the hope that writing will spur more writing,...

... I'm posting in my craft blog. So much has happened since I last blogged - been to San Francisco and back, moved across the river to Northern Kentucky, began attending grad school for special education. Phew! Craziness. This will be quick.

I'm restarting an old project, the Star Chart Blanket. I realized that I still really liked the concept and still had the yarn hanging around, it was just the fact that I tried to start it on #8s that ruined it for me before. It's going to be a mindless knit, but that's okay. I've challenged myself enough recently, both with other projects and with life in general.

I'm also excited to receive a set of KnitPicks Zephyr acrylic interchangeable needles. I've been using the Boye interchangeable set for ages, but with the Magic Loop method, I've felt like I was fighting the cable. I really like the acrylic too, as it has some give to it, isn't as noisy as the metal, and isn't as sticky as the wooden needles. Too bad it was discontinued on the site.... It took some finagling, but I found a set on Kaleidoscope Yarns that was a way-decent price AND 20% off when I signed up for their email list. W00t!

I miss writing. I feel very out of the habit, so sometimes it's difficult to write for school, even though that's more technical writing. I'm feeling more in need of a place to express myself again, so being crafty will also include re-honing (shh, it's totally a word) my writing craft. Hope to see you again soon. :)

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Mission: UFO Annihilation

With a new year comes thoughts of new craft projects, but what happens to those projects that have been languishing in the dark for the past year, possibly even longer? Interweave Knits has a plan to rid knitters of those useless-till-finished piles of yarn: this is the year to finish all unfinished objects (UFOs) before starting new projects. It's like a diet of sorts, using self-control to finish what you've already started before diving into other projects, but it's not totally unmanageable.

I have a grand total of 20 (!) projects that are unfinished though. Holy cow! Many of the projects fell by the wayside either due to them getting too big to be portable... or due to me getting bored with the pattern and wanting to start something shiny and new. :)  I also have a few more projects that just need to be blocked, though I'm kind of scared to block them for fear of frakking them up.

Projects I'd like to finish:

  1. Texturized Tweed Coat
  2. Striped Thigh Highs
  3. Trumpet Skirt
  4. Star Chart Blanket
  5. Nessie
  6. Mon Petit Chou
  7. Cardigan for Mom
  8. Rumor Blanket
  9. Knitted Rainbow - may use a slightly different pattern
  10. Basketweave Blanket - want to add some strips on the edge to make it bigger

Projects to frog/that I'm not sure about finishing:

  1. Pogona
  2. Tuesday Night SW Hat
  3. Fat Bottom Bag
  4. Bunny Slippers

Projects that need blocking:

  1. Swirled Pearl Shawlette
  2. Gail Shawl
  3. Vine Lace Shawl

Friday, January 21, 2011


shh! alfie thinks he's helping. :)
i finished a project in two days! and it was a blanket at that! okay, so it was due to two consecutive snow days from school... but that doesn't negate the awesomeness of the project.

i purchased two soft, slightly-fluffy fabrics for the blanket -- a zebra print, and a solid black with tone-on-tone skull and crossbones. i was just tired of looking at one of the bolts of fabric sitting in the corner of my room. it had been there too long and i really wanted to just sew the frakking blanket already... i cleaned the floor of my room so that i had space to work, and the project took off from there.

i used my serger to sew the two pieces together while they were inside-out, and my sewing machine to top-stitch while the blanket was right-side-out. i had to create a blind seam / slip stitch for the area where i turned the fabric right-side-out. my hand-sewing skills for that part were a bit lacking, but i think i had a pretty good learning curve once i got into the groove. see? :)

anyway, it's far from perfect, but i'm so glad that i finished it -- now i get to snuggle under it and enjoy it!

Friday, December 31, 2010

nerdy knitting

it's no secret. i'm a total nerd. i take great pleasure in being a nerd. determining how things work fascinates me. i'm incredibly easily amused, so i'm almost never bored. i love learning new things and absorbing as much information as possible. it's no surprise that this aspect of my life carries over to my knitting.

lately, i haven't had too much time to knit. it's a good problem to have though, because i'm either grading papers (yay, teaching position!) or playing with alfie (yay, puppy!). when attempting to knit, the latter of the two is either paw-ing my arm to play, or is asleep in my lap.... like he is at the moment.

my 'superman ice cream' baby blanket
my concept for a new project: constellation blanket. i'd like to use the pinwheel blanket (pictured at right) as my pattern. i have five skeins of dark blue cascade 220 that i purchased at the yarns & fabrications closing sale, just because i liked the color. (see how far that got me? story of my yarn stash... :)) i also have some glow-in-the-dark yarn that i could duplicate-stitch on top of the finished blanket to create stars and/or galaxies. i think it's a pretty cool idea, but maybe it's just the nerd in me.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

almost there

i'm so excited about the progress being made on the dress!

i finally have my dressform at mickey's so i've been able to pin and adjust it better than if i was altering the dress while wearing it... which would probably not be smart.

i made it in a silky fabric that i've had forever. i've had the concept for the dress in my head for awhile too, so i'm just glad to bring it to life. it's butterick 5182 in view "c". i made it in a size 20 for the bottom (that old sizing is going to give me a complex, not gonna lie), and 20 for the top, but i found that i don't quite need that much room "up top." the waist turned out to be quite big as well... i needed the largest size on the pattern due to my hips.

as you can see from the photos, i've only fitted the bodice portion of the dress so far. this is why it looks rather wonky from the waist down. since it's bias-cut, i'm not quite sure how to take it in. it probably won't matter too much, i'm just thinking that maybe if i have it dip in a bit at the small of my back, maybe i can compensate a bit for my derriere... although, if it's bias-cut, it'll probably hug my curves naturally... anyway... i'll figure it out soon. have to -- party's on saturday! :)

Sunday, August 15, 2010

feeling productive

this past week, i started and finished shalom as well as cut the pattern pieces and fabric for a dress. i've had the fabric sitting around and have had the concept in my head for quite awhile. when my friend invited our group to a 'formals and 40's' party, it was the perfect opportunity for me to be creative. view 'c' of this pattern.

sidenote: i contemplated wearing my senior prom dress that i also sewed (and that still fit!), but i didn't know if i want to look like a purple princess when i could look a bit more classy and adult-like... ;)

second sidenote: there's nothing but glorified shirts passing themselves off as dresses and matronly jumper-things in the 'special occasion' sections of stores right now... i would think with homecoming occurring not too long after the school-year started, they'd at least have something. can i please just have a happy medium? i'm in style-purgatory here, people!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

more booty

let me preface this by saying that i have been finishing projects. i just haven't been so good at taking photos of them. :)

that being said, i know my last post was about yarn goodness... but i have to devote this post to a yarn purchase as well. yarns & fabrication is west chester is going out of business and has everything 10% off until they close at the end of august. of course i couldn't pass it up!

  • one skein of malabrigo worsted in 'verde esperanza' for foliage
  • six skeins of classic elite's miracle in a dark taupe-y color for lacy dolman
  • two skeins cascade 220 in hot pink to join noro taiyo for striped thigh highs
  • five skeins cascade 220 in a navy & turquoise mix for st. james
  • four skeins universal deluxe chunky in steel gray for shalom
now i have to wind all the hanks... but it's part of the fun and part of the process. my winder is pretty amazing when the yarn decides to cooperate!

Saturday, July 03, 2010


well... fabric and yarn booty, that is.

i didn't have my camera last week, but i still wanted to post the wonderful, yummy things i purchased at lambikin's.

3 skeins aslantrends class

2 skeins noro taiyo

assorted fat quarters

and my most-loved purchase of the day... a panel for a funky-monkey/sock-monkey book!

Sunday, May 02, 2010


i've been watching the 'hoarders'-type shows lately and have begun to feel quite a bit of empathy for the people on the show. i feel that i have gotten myself pretty deep into some excessive retail therapy and have much more stuff than i should.

the reason this blog is posted among my craft posts is that many of the women on the show are crafters. it's kind of funny... and unavoidable when you get yourself so involved in a craft, you accumulate a ton of stuff related to the craft. one who's involved in several crafts sometimes has the luxury of having a devoted craft room for their goods. i have no such luxury at the current time, which may explain my conundrum.

the vast majority of my craft stuff is at jenny's place. i have about five plastic bins of yarn and three plastic bins of fabric, give or take a few odds and ends that that aren't currently in bins. i'm working on projects and finishing projects but there is so much i still have to work on. this is the maximum that i can take.

i'm imposing a craft-buying ban on myself, starting now. nothing craft-related will be purchased to make any new crafts. no craft paraphernalia (spelled that right on the first try!) will be purchased unless it helps me finish a previously purchased project. this will help my wallet and my sanity.

there. it's in writing. hold me to it, would ya? :)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

i love a quickie

you're so dirty.... i totally wasn't talking about that... :)
look what i made last night when i couldn't sleep!

'turn a square' hat by jared flood

it's a little more purple-y than the photos portray... i'm loving it. :)

Sunday, April 11, 2010


currently, i have three projects in need of blocking:
i'm still kind of apprehensive about the whole blocking thing. which has led me to delay the actual completion of these projects... i have the eucalan, the rubbery/squishy pads that will serve as my blocking boards, and the rust-proof pins, i just don't know if i'm going to do it right, so i'm nervous.

i'm not sure if i want to block the clapotis... i kind of like the swirl-texture of this one by hawk on ravelry, and i made mine super-long for a similar uber-scarf effect. i think it could work. i suppose for the moment though too that they all pretty much look like jumbled messes... so anything's gotta be better than that, right? :)

PS -- so excited that i finally got the pattern for the 'swirled pearl shawlette'. i've been looking around for it and all of the lys in the area didn't carry it anymore. the 'lacey lamb' in deep teal is looking great and i'm getting more adept at adding the beads to the lacework. i love a challenge!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

it's ON!

in an attempt to finish all the partly-knit projects laying around my house, 'operation ufo: search and destroy' is currently underway. ufo = unfinished object, for the non-yarncrafters out there.

'gail' shawl (warning, pdf file!): completed knitting this week, needs to be blocked
'russian winter' hat: halfway done knitting, after i re-read the directions
'mermanda & mermandrew': will restart once i decide how i want to apply the hair
'mon petit chou': will restart once i get the urge to read another knitting chart

there are more ufo's, unfortunately. these are the projects that are on my priority list though.

i bought a skein of yarn this week because it's a new line that we carry at joann's. it's bamboo ewe by debbie stoller, a bamboo and wool blend. can't wait to make a hat or some wristwarmers with it. :)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

thanksgiving prep

i hadn't originally intended this blog to include my timid forays into cooking, but with Thanksgiving approaching, i'd say it's appropriate. no, not just appropriate, obligatory. (ooh, vocab, ooh!)
i've wanted to try some new recipes that i've been scouting online, specifically one for brie-stuffed mushrooms and one for an apple-y spice cake with bailey's caramel icing.... becoming my little creation of 'drunken caramel apple cupcakes.' i tried making drunken green velvet cupcakes for st. patty's day and they were a hit. i felt that i must try to make other alcohol-infused desserts.... ;)

i shopped for my ingredients today and didn't end up spending too much. let me just get it out of the way: i love aldi and i'm not too proud to admit it. i bought a turkey roast for $9.99, which i know tastes amazing when butter and seasoned salt are drizzled and sprinkle over it while baking. mmm, i'm drooling already... i realized a couple weeks ago that i rock at making corn casseroles, so that's definitely on the menu as well. i found some sparkling apple cider at aldi, which i love, for about $1.99 a bottle. and the caramel bailey's? i bought the aldi brand for $8.99. yay!

i had to go to meijer to get the parsley and i ended up also getting the mushrooms there. i probably should have just got them when i was at aldi but i wanted to check the selection at meijer. they look like they'll work though, so that's all that matters.

the girls are bringing over some thanksgiving basics as well, so we'll definitely have a good variety of stuff. i'm so excited!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

at an impasse

Man in black: But if there can be no arrangement, then we are at an impasse.
Vizzini: I'm afraid so. I can't compete with you physically, and you're no match for my brains.

i'm currently not sure what to do regarding the shawl i'm knitting... was knitting, whatever. i was reminded of the princess bride quote above when thinking about my shawl situation. this project has definitely beaten my giant and bested my spaniard...

it would still be pretty, if finished. it's not going to be finished by the prospective deadline, unless by some random act of time travel.... there are some mistakes within the lacework, but none that the casual observer would be able to detect.

oh! and i just found out that the lace i'm using is potentially 'cobweb laceweight.' ARE YOU FRAKKING SERIOUS?!? sweet. awesome. that's just great. wait... how insane was i to start this? i feel like pulling 'a charlie brown', tossing back my head and screaming "UGGGGHHH!" well, maybe that is a bit dramatic... but it IS frustrating...

now is the time when i have to remember that it's just yarn -- slow it down, now: it's. just. yarn. just breathe, 'kay?

i should have never let myself fall in love with it at the yarn store... but it was a beautiful colorway and incredibly soft... and i spent far too much time over a period of a few months scouting out the perfect pattern. i then spent $10 on said pattern, something i've never done before.

i'm not going to frog it... i mean, would YOU rip out 200 yards of cobweb lace? i enjoy fixing mistakes and solving problems. i just kind of have a knack for trying to 'make it right,' though i think my motto for this project is going to be 'just make it work, regardless of mistakes.'

so where am i right now? chart c (ie: the third chart in a set of nine[!]), at the part where you have to increase sixteen stitches within the double yarn-over from the previous row... yeah, i've had seven years of yarn experience so far and even i don't know how to pull this one off... and the fact that i have to attach two pages together in landscape layout just to read across the chart is frustrating too. i'm going to have to find an easier way to focus on whatever row i'm knitting.

ps - if you've made it this far, congrats. thanks for sticking with me. :) i'm posting the rss feed of facebook for my craft blog now, instead of the curvykristen blog. i'll still be writing the curvykristen blog on my weight-loss endeavors, but i'm currently struggling with some heavy stuff (no pun intended) and i'd like writing that blog to be more of an outlet for me... and not get so much 'publicity.' although there may be many crafting terms that appear, there's usually a deeper meaning / understanding within the words -- i always feel that there's a lesson to be learned.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

letter to my shawl

dear shawl,

we need to take a break... this doesn't mean that the chance for reconciliation is gone... it just means that i'd like to see other projects. i need something easy, quick, and fulfilling right now, and you were just becoming too much of a struggle and too complicated. the charts that i could follow but could never get the proper stitch count made me feel like i couldn't do anything right.

i must admit something to you: i had a one-night stand with a tan hat during trivia night this week... and i'm spending the weekend with a striped hat right now. they don't expect any more from me than some ribbing, some increasing, and a whole lot of stockinette. it's comfortable and familiar... and i need the satisfaction of a fast project -- something you can't give me.

i'll pick you up again sometime soon. hopefully this will give us both some time to rest and reflect on the mistakes of the past.

yours truly,

i always fall for those intricate, lacy projects because they're beautiful and they need to be understood... too bad that they have the propensity to be such a pain in the butt...

Saturday, May 02, 2009

oh, hi!

i haven't posted for awhile on this blog... i find it so easy to upload stuff (when i get around to taking photos of my COs...) on ravelry. this has made me a lazy, inconsiderate blogger. why? because not everyone has been exposed to / shown interest in the craftiness that is ravelry. *gasp!* i know, blasphemy, right? :)
for anyone who is interested, curious, bored, etc., i will be posting many a finished item on this page again. it has been neglected for too long. :)

here's a preview:

progress with the merpanda from a couple months ago.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

yarn chat

when i purchased eight skeins of sandnes garn's lanett in sage green about a year ago, the yarn couldn't decide whether it wanted to be branching out...

or a razor cami...
it seems that after some thought, lanett would rather be a dolman top from knit so fine. so pretty... :)
also: this flutter sleeve cardigan could be quite cute, now that my waist is more defined. :)

lastly, isn't this yarn gorgeous? it's not mine... yet. :) (jojoland melody)

Sunday, January 11, 2009

yarn cakes

first off, i'm writing this blog on my new laptop. woo hoo! my very own laptop! it is the new millenium, you know... even if it is about a decade old already. :)

last weekend when my sister was home, i taught her some very basic steps about how to knit and crochet. she found knitting a bit easier, so we're going to progress with that next time she's home. i think what inspired her was the huge, fluffy blanket that i knitted for her for christmas. it was pretty cool. i also think that after six years of watching me crochet and seeing the projects i've made, she's at least a little curious. :)

i finally purchased a yarn winder. the alpaca yarn that started it all is pictured below:
i had it wound at knit on in bellevue, ky. i thought that the patterns on the side made it look so cool. the shape makes the yarn easier to stack too. i immediately wanted my own winder. :)

here's a picture of my spoils from this weekend... i went a little crazy with it:

here is a before and after of some joann's sensations stellina yarn. it doesn't stay together very well, so the yarn is much better off in a cake. :)

Monday, December 08, 2008

it's about time!

truly, it is. :)

i've been thinking a lot lately... which is scary... and yes, i've been thinking but not quite blogging until now.

i think it's kind of funny that a person might form analogies towards life based on the line of work he or she does, or hobbies that he or she may have. i've noticed this in a couple knitting blogs and i've caught myself thinking this way as well. i don't know, maybe it's just the patience and tenacity that one develops when knitting... and by now means is knitting considered an "extreme sport" or anything... but when you're knee-deep in a lace pattern on #2s, you might feel that way. :)

anyway... my thought was this, silly as it may seem: life is like a knitting pattern (or crochet pattern, if you will). sometimes you get the easiest pattern with a large section of stockinette or garter... it's great but it bores you to tears. :) then you come across a difficult portion where you have to give your full concentration, and you may be completely daunted by the pattern. this is the point where you take it line by line, reading carefully and breaking down the pattern one step at a time. when this is done, the item grows beautifully and when you reach the end of the pattern, you are excited that you made it through and you have a physical representation of your hard work and maybe a new skill you didn't have before.

while it is fun to strike a new path and create or modify pattern, i'm continually amazed at what happens when i simply follow the directions. :)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

on holiday

i may not be blogging for awhile, due to the fact that i recently (read: yesterday) agreed to a teaching position at a summer camp in the pocono mountains until august 14th. it's going to be a really good opportunity for me to use some of my teaching skills while enjoying the summer in a place that's a little off the beaten path. i've wanted to work at a summer camp for the past couple years too, and this just kind of fell into my lap.
they are funding my plane ticket out there, my room and board, my food, and they're paying me a decent amount on top of that for the seven weeks that i'll be there. i guess that's what happens when you're certified to teach. :) i'm finally beginning to reap the benefits of people realizing that i'd be a good candidate for teaching. it also helps that they need someone starting wednesday of next week and i just happen to be available for the rest of the summer.
have a great summer!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

holy projects, batman!

i'm so excited for my yarn to come in the mail.... so funny how a little package filled with the stringy-stuff will brighten my day. i found a gorgeous purple heathered yarn (while the link works) to make maude. it's fingering/sock weight yarn, so i'm a little scared... also it's a bit lace-intensive, and i'm apprehensive about that, too. just have to jump right in, i 'spose. :)
anyway, it's late and i just wanted to post about my awesome find! will post again with other current wips and stuff.

Monday, May 26, 2008

clutter has taken over....

... and now that the school year is winding down, it's time to reclaim my room. i would take photos to provide you with a wonderful "before & after" depiction of how bad my room looks and how good it will look when i'm done, but i'm too embarrassed to even show you a before picture of the mess in which i live....
i've been finishing a lot of knitting projects recently, seeing as how when i sub at the end of the year, my duties consist mainly of telling the students to work in their exam review packets. i enjoy when students and other staff members become curious about what i'm doing. amazing how knitting has the ability to open a conversation and provide you-learn-something-new-everyday moments.
i love teaching people about what i'm doing when i knit. they'll share some comments like, "wow, that's really cool!", "i don't have the patience for that," or "my mom/grandma does that." the first one i hear a lot if i'm working on a complicated-looking piece... or if i'm working on dpns -- the four needles throw them for a loop. :)
a new FO:

my second dizzy, for a friend.
caron simply soft in soft pink

i finished my mom's simple shrug as well, i just haven't taken any photos yet. :)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

sheldon, the turtle

i finished the turtle and was on my way to give it to mrs. mcswain when i realized she had a sub for the afternoon. so disappointing. oh well. hopefully she received it this morning. :)

wool-ease in loden and avocado
#2 and #3 (yikes! super-small!)

just a note: i darkened the last photo to better represent the colors of yarn that i used.

i received lots of "wow, that's really impressive!"-type comments yesterday, which made me feel amazing. i think he's pretty cool, too. :)

Sunday, April 27, 2008


i really haven't posted on here in a month? i suppose the initial intrigue of ravelry hasn't worn off yet... :)
i've been subbing a lot and working diligently on a few knitting projects... unfortunately, i misplaced my camera battery charger when my parents had all the carpet and hardwood flooring replaced in the house. it's probably in one of those i'm-going-to-put-it-here-so-it's-easy-to-remember places... but i haven't been able to remember yet. i do that to myself quite a bit though. the oxymoron of "organized chaos" is becoming much less appealing, especially as i'm attempting to pare down my belongings... both as a new start as i'm losing weight, and as a way to make moving out of my parents house much less difficult on myself.
one of my projects is the lovely little sheldon. i'm making him for the biology teacher who allowed me to take over her class for six weeks. she has a turtle tank in her room, so she obviously enjoys them. she also has a bunch of frog accessories, so maybe frogs are her favorite, but sheldon looked so cute that i had to make him for someone. :) he's my first knitted toy.
once i find my camera charger, i'll post more pics, but in the meantime, here's an early-on progress shot:

you begin knitting at his tail-end and work your way towards his head. the #3 dpns are quite small and began creating little sore spots on my hands, just due to the frequency at which i was knitting this project. he's so cute though, you just can't stop! i was leery about attempting the shell area, since i really haven't done any colorwork before. the pattern made it easy to carry up the color that wasn't being used on the side, which will be seamed later... so it doesn't matter how great it looks on the side.
sheldon is not nearly as difficult as i thought he would be. i'm glad that i started knitting him. i like challenging myself. :)
also, here are some completed photos of dizzy:

Friday, March 28, 2008

knitting fiend

i couldn't sleep last night, so i instead worked feverishly on the dizzy hat. i can see the swirl pattern and it pleases me since i previously epic-failed with the other yarn. :)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

tying up loose ends... harharhar...

get it? get it? it's a yarn jo-.... nevermind. :)
i'm on spring break from my long-term sub job (two weeks and i get a break already!). it's a good thing that i didn't have a trip planned or anything, because i started feeling incredibly under the weather on good friday and i'm just now starting to feel better.
i've been finishing some items though. the saartje's bootees, which i was afraid to finish due to the closure of the straps, are now finished and it wasn't as bad as i thought.

the little star afghan that i've had hibernating for-freakin-ever is now finished as well. i only had two-and-a-half more rounds to go... why did i put it off?

i'v been spring cleaning and donating to amvets as well. it's part of my make-the-move-from-my-parents'-house-much-easier plan. :)

Sunday, March 09, 2008

suede booties

i finally put the elastic on the inside of the suede "ugg" booties.

i'm sewing the buttons on the saartje's bootees as well. pics to follow because blogger isn't uploading things right now.... :)

i'm snowed in... what else am i going to do. plus, i wanted to make sure my cousin's little girl gets them before easter. good thing i made them a little big!

Friday, January 11, 2008

yay, photos!

i finally uploaded some photos on the ravelry site. my project page looks much more pretty now. :)
i am stitches away from finishing both sets of booties and a headwarmer for steve. steve loves the "lolcatz" site and asked earlier, "i can has headwarm?" awesomeness. :)
invisible bike
moar funny pictures

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

chirstmas gifts

i've been working on mom's christmas gift and have been knitting so much that my hands hurt... i need to finish both the saartje's booties and the suede booties for my new niece. peyton olivia just came into the world yesterday! These booties and my mom's blanket that she's making will be super-cute chitmas gifts for the new arrival. :) side note: i should get my mom to join ravelry... i'll mention it to her. not sure if she crafts enough for it but she might like it.
while i'm working on these other projects, i think i might bring the basketweave blanket out of hibernation. it had to hibernate during the summer because it was way to hot to work on a blanket with the fluffy symphony yarn!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

completed: pinwheel blanket

yay, finally! this project wasn't a gift to anyone but i really wanted to finish it so that i could complete a project and so that i could get my circular cords back... :) now i can focus on gifts and other stuff like that...
photos have been taken, will upload later.