Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Magnet Love

I love making magnets. I don't know why, but I do. It could just be that I  love having a colorful fridge and magnets seem to be the easiest way for me to accomplish that.

So for a little fix, I quickly lay down some paint in a variety of my favorite colors...

...and then traced a magnet that I had for a template.

...and cut out the circles.

Then I busted out the crafter's glue/sealant of choice and went to town adhering the circles to the magnets.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

on the needles

After sorting through my stash, I picked out the first yarn to use for my new method of knitting. :-)

This 4ply fingering weight yarn is 100% merino and oh' so lovable!

Now for the pattern! After several hours spent wandering about on Ravelry, I settled on the Mizzle shawl by Patricia Clift Martin.

This half-circular shawl is the perfect combination of stockinette and patterned rows (doesn't get any more difficult that YO, K2TOG). It has been my tv-watching project this week but would also be great for a road trip.

To see my progress, you can check back at my Ravelry project page.

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Playing along at Simply DesigningCraft Goodiesannemariesbreiblog and Our Sweet Farm

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Thursday, August 25, 2011

My new fieldkit- this week's creative space

To keep my sanity as a stay-at-home-mom, I try to keep up with my sketching on a very regular basis. Sometimes I work at my drafting table, but most often I'm working in my living room or out on the front porch as a I hang out with my husband after dinner. This has led to my need for a field kit.
Over the years, I had always loved the up-cycled altoid tin kits and set about to make my own.

It did not go so well. It was a disaster Mod podge-ing the paper on the top, flies hopped into the container right after I sprayed the inside and the lid won't come to a close. DIY fail!
Not to be discouraged, I assembled the neccesary ingredients and gave it a go for a second time.

(half pans and full pans from Daniel Smith)

I filled my pans with paint and glued magnets on the back...

and spray painted the lid to use for mixing colors...

and voila! I now have my simple and economical field kit.

**Go here to see more creative spaces!**To see other bloggers flauting their stuff go here!**To see other gals being crafty go here!**To see other frugal projects go here!**

Monday, August 22, 2011

coupon organization- my method

When I became pregant with our little one just over a year ago, my husband and I began to envision living life on only one income. We knew that we could do it, but there would be some changes that would need to take place. A woman in our small group at church was a major coupon queen and was always encouraging us soon-to-be-moms to learn the craft.

Fast forward less than a year later, and I have comfortably encorporated couponing (say that five times fast!) into my weekly routine. After getting over the initial high of saving so much money on a weekly basis, I fell into a sort of slum. I didn't stop the clipping and saving, but it became quite the drag. I think that a big part of that was due to the way that I was organizing all my coupons.

Using a coupon binder seemed to be a very popular method so I gave it a try (Collin at Hip2Save shows how this method works here and here). Sure enough, finding the coupons I needed was very easy, but it took a lot of time to stuff the coupons in each slot and I would rather spend my evenings knitting or sketching instead of sorting coupons. Then, one day while I moving my studio space into the basement, I found an old index-card holder from high school and thought that it would do just the trick!

I can sort them quickly, and it is oh so easy-peasy to find the ones I need!

Friday, August 19, 2011

in my sketchbook

Here is a peek into what I've been up to this week!

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

the kind of knitter i am vs who i would like to be....this week's creative space

I am one of those knitters who sees a project on Ravelry or hears about it on a podcast and then decides to make one myself. If I have a yarn in my stash for it then great, but if not, then I usually have enough $$ in my knitting budget to accommodate a purchase.

Unfortunately, this has left me with yarn that I have acquired through amazing sales or thrift stores piling up in the one storage bin that I allow myself for stash accumulation.

The time has come for this all to change. Instead of viewing the yarn housed in this bin as the yarn I'm "stuck with", I am going to (try to) view it as the yarn that I "get" to knit with for the rest of the year. My goal isn't so much to knit through all the yarn I have (because let's face it, it could take years for me to knit through the cones of peaches and creame yarn alone!) but to think differently about the yarn I aquire.

And so, my lovely little creative space this week is the piles of yarn that I have been surrounding myself with as I wind, organize and upload to Ravelry all the fiber that I "get" to knit with.

To see more creative spaces, join us here!

Monday, August 15, 2011

lessons from my sketchbook

Sketchbooks are a great place to hash out new ideas and play with new materials. They take the pressure off of you to create something amazing when you only have five minutes to play. Also, they save you from making silly mistakes on nice (read "expensive") paper. 

Lately, I have been doing lots of sketches with Sharpie markers. They are great to draw with since the ink is permanent, and you can find them on sale with back-to-school specials. That being said, I was in the mood for a bit of change and decided to switch to a caligraphy pen. Deep down I knew that this ink wasn't permanent, but somehow my brain did not fully register all the implications of that fact.  

Specifically, I "forgot" that if you decide to do watercolor washes over drawings made in non-permanent ink, you get a mess! The ink bleeds into the wash and creates some not so attractive colors. Ick!

On the bright side, I loved the change in line weight that the pen created so I'm thinking of doing some more work with it. I'll just make sure not to try to paint over it! 

Friday, August 12, 2011

on the needles

Well, I have already begun my Christmas knitting for this year. Some would say that I'm starting a bit on the early side, but I'm sure that there are others who are already halfway done! First up is a cowl for my sister-in-law. Having already made a  Gap-tastic cowl for myself earlier this spring, I know that this pattern is great to work on while watching tv and has a sophisticated look about it.

 My SIL is obsessed with the color purple so the obvious choice would be to knit her something in that colorway.

I quickly decided against that for two reasons: (1) She wears it so often that it would be better to knit her something that would go with her already vast collection of purple tops. (2) I want to knit projects with the yarn that I already have and not add to my stash for the rest of 2011.

My solution was to use up some of my Cascade Eco-Wool and hold it with a variegated purple crochet thread that someone gave me (for free!!! yay!!!).

How are you coming on your Christmas knitting?

(for updates on this project, you can follow my progress on Ravelry)

Saturday, August 6, 2011