weekend reading

December! How did this happen so fast?! I am happy you're here, but I also need time to slow down just a little bit. This week has flown by and I am excited to have arrived at the weekend. I've got lots of fun plans and am hoping to work on a long-abandoned Christmas quilt back this weekend so I can snuggle up with some hot chocolate!

Links!

Hygge. You've probably heard of it. It's starting to be a "thing" here in the US of A but I've known about it (and have practiced it) for a few years now. It's my fave. Candles, coziness, friends, community. All the best things. Educate yourselves and get to hygge-ing. (I've got 4 glassybaby lit right now and am listening to French Cafe Pandora, so I'm enjoying some real hygge vibes.)

Mittens inspired by mittens!

A couple of years ago I was perusing Pinterest and came across something that sounded so amazing- cranberry brie grilled cheese. I thought that I surely would remember it by the time Thanksgiving rolled around, but I never did. Not so for this year!! I remembered and I made this lovely Joy the Baker iteration of it and it did not disappoint! My only sadness was when I ran out of cranberry sauce. I'll just have to wait til Christmas to enjoy the melty tangy sandwich once again. 

Pussy Hat Project! Millions of women are going to be marching in DC on January 21 and I don't know much about DC but I do know this- it's hella cold in January. So let's knit up some hats for these rad ladies. 

I have major cute aggression over these adorable tiny patchwork Christmas stockings!!!

I wanna try this fun bubble art

 

norwegian mittens!

Back in September, I went to Stitches Texas. It was magical and full of my people, that is, knitters and fiber enthusiasts! It was a blast. I took a class that was definitely out of my comfort zone- Norwegian mittens. Color work has always intimidated me. It looked so hard. So I knew a class was the way to go to learn this skill!

I knit up a mitten in the class which meant that I was then filled with the dreadful second sock/mitten syndrome. In the (very) rare times I have knitted socks, I have always done them 2 at a time because I know myself reeeeeal well and know that doing them one at a time means I will be left with only one warm foot. I was determined to have 2 warm hands this winter and gave myself pep talks like 'it only took one 6 hour class to knit one mitten, so just knit for an hour every day and you'll have a finished pair in no time!' Thanksgiving week came and it was the perfect time to do just that. 

So without further ado, here they are, my very first stranded color work mittens! 

Mitten tops!

Mitten backs!

One of each!

Shoutout to my kind mother who took these pics for me. She doesn't have Insta and needed A LOT of coaching, but she done good!

weekend reading

Happy day-after-Thanksgiving! I promise I have crafts to update everyone on! I will eventually get to posting about them :) Let's just say that both of my hands will be warm this winter yay! 

But for now, just some links! 

Today is Friday, November 25. You know what that means? GILMORE GIRLS. I'm actually working today but only til 2:30, so from 3pm on, it is binge watching time. I've got a plan with a close friend and we are going to sit on the couch in comfy clothes and knit and eat Thanksgiving leftovers and laugh and cry and it's going to be perfect. 

I HAVE NO WORDS. This dress is so stunning. I seriously can't think of anything else to say because my words do it absolutely no justice! I'm definitely adding the pattern for it to my wishlist. 

The Compliment Project. I love this. I'm thinking of all sorts of places I could leave the little posters around. 

Minimalist/conscious wardrobe, socks edition!

My friend Erin posted this recipe for NO CHURN, FOUR INGREDIENT peppermint ice cream this week!!! I am so excited. I LOVE peppermint ice cream but it's difficult to find when it's not December so I am super pumped to have an easy recipe for it. #praisehandsemojis 

Purl Soho posted about this gorgeous Julie Hoover sweater the other day (and I just so happened to be listening to the Julie Hoover episode of Woolful!) and it is beautiful. It's going on my list of potential first sweater patterns! 

Currently reading

I'm getting a record player and a few records this week (gotta spend that first paycheck wisely!). I figure I can't go wrong with Frank and Ella Christmas records, and of course I gotta have Luluc. I can't wait to incorporate records into my morning routine and add to my record collection. 

I hope you all have a great weekend full of delicious food, binge watching Netflix, and only the best things! 

weekend reading

Hello hello friends. I couldn't bring myself to post anything last week but I am here this week, ready to post some good links. 

Let's start with the funny. The New Yorker is one of those publications that is supposed to be funny but many of the jokes go over my head. Not so for this article or this one, though. These had me laughing out loud. 

Sand, up close and personal. SO COOL. 

I am hella empowered by watching this and so are these kids!

Getting political now...A List of Pro-Women, Pro-Immigrant, Pro-Earth, Anti-Bigotry Organizations That Need Your Support

Read these words from coziness expert Alicia and just try to tell me that crafting is not healing. "Stitching is just plain good medicine. Put on your coziest clothes, turn on the twinkly lights, make some tea, find a good movie or your favorite music, get a full-spectrum spotlight (that's the one I have) for those dark nights, call your puppers or your kitters or your friend to your side, thread your needles, and stitch your heart back together. If yours feels good but you know someone who could use some love, stitch one for them...There is something so poignant about holiday crafting, to me. I honestly think it's the sweetest, most optimistic kind of making we do all year. It doesn't have to be perfect, it just has to come from the heart."

In the same vein...Craft as solace

Some good books for those of us who are trying to be more mindful with our wardrobes. 

I started watching The Crown and it is gooooood. 

Currently reading- this, this, and this

See y'all next week!

brush lettering class at paper source

Hey friends! 

A couple of weekends ago, I had the opportunity of taking a brush lettering class at Paper Source! I have long been interested in brush lettering and have bought several brush pens before, but nothing ever came out looking quite right. I have been inspired by people on Instagram, showing befores and afters of their brush lettering skills, often dramatically improving in just a few months, so I took the plunge. 

I love taking craft classes because I am a very tactile learner. I am not one to learn things just by having it explained. I am very visual and I have to do things myself to understand it. We had a teacher named Smith whose lettering style is so cute and I was excited to learn from her. That is probably my number one tip about taking classes- find someone whose work you like. I had been told about another brush lettering class by a friend but when I looked at the teacher's Instagram, I didn't like her style, so I decided to save my money and wait for another person's class. It's ok to be picky! 

Here is what I saw when I came to the table: 

Who doesn't love seeing their name written all pretty?!

We practiced for about 2 hours, writing all sorts of things and having fun. Smith and our group talked about how if anyone ever found our practice sheets they might think we are up to no good because of all the random names that we write when we are practicing. I'm pretty sure every single one of my friends' names have been featured in my calligraphy practice sheets. 

I texted this to my sister because her name turned out so pretty! 

After we practiced for a while, we made an adorable project! We learned how to make our own envelope liners and cards and we did some brush lettering on both. We were all very quick learners so at the end of the class Smith taught us how to do ombre brush lettering! 

My final project! 

My main takeaways from the class were: 1. practice makes perfect. I obviously already knew that but I must say I was hoping for some insider secret to having perfect brush letters! 2. It's all about the pen! I had been practicing at home with pretty loose brushes which are much harder to control, and in class I got to practice with a very stiff brush and I was shocked at how much easier it was! I added several colors to my Amazon wishlist! 

I really want to make improving my lettering a priority, so I think I'm going to start writing out a poem a day (definitely gonna start with Nayyirah Waheed's poetry!) and practice using my oblique pen, my brush pen, and also a paintbrush. 

If you ever get the chance to take a class at Paper Source, I definitely recommend it! It was very affordable and it made for a fun Saturday afternoon! 

weekend reading

Happy Sunday, friends! Exciting things have been happening around here and led to my delayed post. I got a new job! It was fast and sudden but I am loving it and am already excited about working there, even if it means less blog time :) 

Links and things!

I am finally watching Stranger Things. I'm probably the last person on the planet to watch it but I am a sensitive soul and needed to make very sure that I could handle it. It's pretty intense and there have been a few scenes where I closed my eyes, but I really like it!! I finally understand things like Eggo waffles, the "upside down", and why Wynona Ryder has been holding Christmas lights. I love being in the know!

I need these stat. Peanut butter cookies seem like a Christmas thing to me because my family really only ever has them at Christmas, but I'm thinking I need to make them a year-round thing. Especially when they are dipped in chocolate. 

Speaking of cookies, Italian nutritionists say we should eat them for breakfast, which you certainly don't have to suggest to me twice. 

Also in food, Kale Sweet Potato Curry. One of my bffs and I can't stop eating this. It's so easy and really delicious. 

More food! I made this pasta earlier this week and it was perfect. 

One last food-related post: cookbook club! This sounds so fun and you get a lot of good food too! 

Ok I lied. Here is my last food-related link for real. Y'all know about my love for Chef's Table but you didn't know that I enjoyed the music just as much as the cinematography, especially the music from the Francis Mallman episode

At my new job I have MY VERY OWN OFFICE. Y'all. This is serious. I am so excited to make it cute and I made a moodboard and everything! In my search for a bookshelf or small dresser, I came across this very inspiring and helpful Buzzfeed article

Oh you guys. I had to do it. I've been watching bits of this video for fun (you just learned a lot about me as a person) and then I did it. What I'm saying is that I bought a pair of size 50 glittery knitting needles. I don't regret this impulse purchase at all. 

And while we are on the topic of knitting- it is useful in so many ways, even in parenting and in social networking!

I want a sample of every single scent, please.

It's the little things.  

#slotober has me thinking still and, not gonna lie, kinda feeling guilty about my buying and getting-rid-of-things habits. But I can make informed choices in the future and can try to buy things that are better for everyone

Well ok! I'm off to enjoy more Stranger Things and to hopefully make a dent in a library book or two! 

i have this thing with shawls

As I was writing my previous post, I realized I should explain myself. 

I love shawls. I love knitting them, I love looking at them, and I love wearing them. If you look at my Ravelry favorites list, you know this to be true. Now, I know this may make me sound like a grandma, but I don't care. There are people out there who are sock knitters. I have long envied those people. It seemed so quaint and nice to have a little project that I could just whip out of my bag and work on anywhere. Plus there are all sorts of fun sock yarns available. But as we all know, I hate working with itty bitty yarn and needles. I have tried and failed to be a sock knitter. 

But shawls? I am there. Many shawl patterns do require the itty bitty yarn- but guess what?! Many require bigger (i.e.: size 4 or larger) needles and that is a trade-off I am on board with. 

The shawl obsession really took off during my senior year of college. I was taking a literature class called Victorian Gender and shawls were mentioned many times throughout the various novels we read. Plus there was Hey Porkchop. She has influenced my desire to knit shawls exponentially (and also my wish to be a sock knitter; also she has an amazing sense of color for everything but especially quilts). But those novels were full of images that stuck with me. A shawl waiting for the wearer, draped on the back of a chair. It was something she could grab quickly on her way out the door to throw on to ward off a chill. It was knitted by hand out of love and necessity, passed between mothers, sisters, and friends to warm. It was an experiment in making do and in trying your hand at a new stitch pattern. In a pinch they doubled as a little throw blanket and what is cozier than a blanket? And so I became a shawl knitter. They don't get a ton of use here in Texas, but looking at them reminds me of all the things I love about knitting them. 

I love the ease of knitting a shawl- the way I know that there will always be increases or decreases to achieve the shape, the long, long rows of stitches repeated over and over again, the way that I excitedly knit trying to get to the next part. I also love the difficulty of knitting a shawl- the hundreds and hundreds of live stitches on the needles, the intricate lace details, the counting and the miscounting. And then the moment when you bind off and admire the work, try it on, and envision it accompanying you on all sorts of grand (or not so grand) adventures. 

everly shawl: a finished object

It feels good to have a finished object to post on here!

I started this project all the way back in November of 2014. I had recently returned from a trip to Australia, where it was incredibly hot and humid, and I was itching to have some wool on the needles for the colder months. I came across the Everly Shawl pattern on Ravelry and immediately bought the pattern and the exact yarn that was used in the example. It soon arrived and then my Seed Stitch Wrap happened. I cast on for the Everly only for it to be abandoned until earlier this month. It came together very quickly and was such a satisfying and rewarding knit. I haven't done any lacework in a while so it took me a bit to get back into the swing of memorizing the pattern repeats and focusing only on knitting (even music or podcasts were too much of a distraction for me when working on the lace portion!) but once I did, it flew off the needles.

There are some projects that can be bound off and immediately worn, but this was not one of those projects. There was some serious blocking required...ahhh, yes, the smell of wet wool. But as usual, the blocking was totally worth the hassle. More and more I am realizing that I really love simple and classic knitting designs in neutral colors and this project definitely ticked all those boxes.  

Ravelry specs here

And now for some photos! 

October 9. (I only just realized how out of focus this pic is! I even had posted it on Insta eeeek)

October 11. 

October 23. 

October 24. Damn, I didn't realize how much progress I had made between the 23rd and 24th! 

October 26. 

October 27. Bath time!

I don't have blocking pins so I used regular old sewing pins 🙃

October 28. All dry and ready to wear! It even looks good with pjs!

weekend reading

Hello weekend! I have been knitting like a madwoman, thus my silence here. I just finished a scarf and I am still plugging away on the Seed Stitch Wrap and my Doodler. I'm thinking I'll still be able to finish my knitting goals for the year woohoo! 

I have A LOT of links for y'all this week, so get ready.

A while ago I saw THE FUNNIEST video ever thanks to Buzzfeed- a clip of Jurassic Park overdubbed with someone playing the theme song HORRIBLY on harmonica. It was one of those videos that elicited instant hysterical cry-laughing from me. Just thinking about it makes me laugh. So when I saw this post this week that started off with the Jurassic Park clip, I knew it was destined to make me laugh. I haven't laughed this hard in a while. I watched the clips multiple times yesterday and I cried just as much every single time. 

Is this a good time?

Knitting for Victory.

My sister and I are obsessed with London Fogs (aka Earl Grey tea latte) and we also love hot chocolate. So of course we tried this London Fog Hot Chocolate. You guys. It was amazing.

Another hot chocolate I want to try

Obviously with all this hot chocolate drinking I need a cute knitted coffee sleeve!

This kid is going places

Weaving inspo!

Down with the open-concept offices!

I've been wanting a good high quality, but pretty, apron to wear for all my crafty adventures and it looks like I'm not the only girl wanting feminine and durable work wear

I have been keeping up with all the #slotober posts from Karen at Fringe Association and it's made me think a lot about buying, getting rid of, and mending clothes. It's also made me revel in the slowness of creating things by hand and of enjoying the process. I particularly liked these quotes/posts:
-"A thing I know is that making for my favorite people is a way to take care of them
-"The idea of creating is on my mind almost constantly"
-"
These are the things I’m thinking about as I knit alone in my home, as I do a thing that no one is watching me do. This is what I’ll carry with me when I wear my sweater in the wide world. Secret, humming power. Stitches done in a quiet place. Prayers and groans woven in. Not “I want,” but rather “I am.”"

Political think-piece time: If Hillary Clinton Groped Men

How the Media Scrutiny of Chelsea Clinton Affected a Generation of Curly-Haired Girls

 

 

weekend reading

Oh my friends, I have been bitten by the knitting bug HARD. I am so thankful to Stitches and the renewed knitting energy and passion it has given me! Making a crafting goals list has certainly been helpful as well and it has given me the motivation I need to press on when I'm getting a little bored. I've made lots of progress on my knitting goals!

Time for some links!

Stop everything you are doing and go watch Andrew Bird's Tiny Desk Concert. It is too good. 

File this under: things that are only increasing my knitting motivation. I have fallen down the rabbit hole of the Woolful podcast. I now want to live the most fiber-tastic life imaginable. 

Check out this beautiful Aerial Grove quilt. #hearteyesemojis

The cutest black and white bebe quilt!

Why Netflix and chill when you can Netflix and knit?! 

Rachel Denbow is always posting cute weaving stuff on Instagram and I've seen this necklace on her feed a few times and she shared a tut for it on A Beautiful Mess! Yay!

Poetess extraordinaire Nayyirah Waheed's gorgeous book salt. is FO FREE on the Kindle store right now! 

I need EVERYTHING on this website

Currently binge reading: Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay (book 3 of the Neapolitan novels). I am so excited to be close to caught up with this series! 

The number of times I have watched this video since I saw Boy & Bear at the Kessler last week? Countless!

weekend reading

Well hello weekend! Oh October, I am so glad you are here. I am ready for cooler weather and warmer drinks. I have bought the coziest blanket cape ever and I can't wait for the weather to cooperate so I can wear it NONSTOP. This week I crafted as usual, read as usual (meaning I was speed reading the day before a library book was due), and also I went to Luke's Diner! 

I woke up at 5:45 to meet with a friend to experience this...that is true love and friendship. 

Here's to the weekend!

Apple muffins. Be like me and bake them in a cake pan and feel oh so decadent when you eat a slice for breakfast. 

8 benefits of a daily sketchbook habit. I dream of having a daily sketchbook habit. I love when I do contribute to my sketchbook but it's definitely not a daily occurrence for me. I just might have to change that after reading this post! The point about having 365 drawings instead of like 30 is definitely a good one! 

And since I'm on a knitting kick, let's indulge it with some really cool old photos of people knitting! This inspires me to find more time to knit, like when I'm just waiting around for things. 

All the heart eyes emojis for this thick and thin cowl!

omg this had me laughing so hard. When you're a 30 y/o man and realize you can decorate however you want

Donate your old books to prisons. This is so cool and not something I had previously thought of.

Secrets of people with all the time in the world. Summed up: have boundaries.  

"They understand how our fingers are connected to our hearts." Connection and creating

All 47 Vice Presidents, Ranked by Hotness. I like this because it's silly and funny and ONE HUNDRED PERCENT ACCURATE. 

Now that I know how to do stranded color work, I really wanna make these Totoro mittens!

I think I'm gonna have to make this salt scrub for my Sunday night relaxation routine!

Have a fab one! 

new wip on the needles

It was bound to happen. I commit to making a craft goals list for the last bit of the year and then I go and buy 3 of the prettiest skeins of yarn ever and must come up with a pattern for them immediately and then next thing I know I've cast on for a new shawl that is most definitely not on my craft goals list. 

sigh. 

BUT IT'S SO FUN. 

Here's the story. You remember my impulse yarn purchase at Stitches, right? Well, I got home and stared lovingly at my new yarns and had visions in my head of some sort of stripey shawl. I have always been drawn to the stripey shawls, a la Kirsten Kapur, and these yarns were just begging to be stripes. So I got on Ravelry and hunted around and then I found The Doodler. Now I am fully educated about Stephen West and his cult-like following, but I was not aware of him or his imminence before last week! This guy is very popular among the modern knitters and his designs are a little...out there...for me. I like a more classic looking knit (even if I am using crazy colors) and West Knits aren't exactly classics. They are FABULOUS though!! 

The Doodler happens to use 3 skeins of Hedgehog Fibres and what did I just happen to buy? 3 skeins of Hedgehog Fibres! Yes! I got to knitting and started progressing pretty quickly, but things looked...off. So I consulted my fellow Ravelers and they informed me that I had been doing the shawl wrong THE WHOLE TIME. So I ripped to about row 3 and started over, the correct way, and it's been fun and perfect ever since! 

Doodler photo updates!

Looking good on the first few rows.

Still looking pretty good 2 wedges in. 

The point where really loud alarm bells went off in my head...things looking reeeeeeal wonky!

Ah yes, much better! Started over and looking normal!

time for some closeup color appreciation!

I'm thinking about putting this thing away until 2017 so I can knit up my other goal knits, but I doubt it's going to stay hidden for long! 

stitches texas 2016

Yay! A Stitches recap! Here's how it all happened. The week before Stitches, I woke up thinking about this woven wrap. Yes, this is what wakes me up in the middle of the night- craft projects. This wrap is made on a rigid heddle loom which is very different than the lap looms I have been using. The loom is a somewhat large financial investment, so I was wary of buying it, especially since I had no idea how to use it. I googled "rigid heddle loom classes Dallas" and lo and behold, the website for Stitches Texas popped up and there was going to be a class THE NEXT WEEK. 

FATE. 

I added the class to my cart, and a knitting class for good measure, and then texted one of my close friends about it in case this was a dumb financial decision (the classes at Stitches aren't exactly cheap). She said to think about it for 2 days and look at my bank account and you know, be an adult and make sure there were no big expenses coming up. Did I take her advice? A little bit. I waited an hour. Or maybe a half hour. Definitely not 2 days. I didn't want the classes to sell out! Then I spent the next week longing for Friday. I bought yarn for my classes and did my knitting homework (the best kind of homework). 

my class supplies

Then Friday came! Yay! 

I did rigid heddle weaving with the talented Deborah Jarchow. She was a great and very experienced teacher. The first 3 hours of the class were dedicated to helping everyone choose their warp and weft yarns, turning skeins into balls, and learning to warp the loom. Then there was a lunch break and after that, we wove! It was a lot of fun but tbh a little boring. I'm glad I did the class because Iearned it wasn't as satisfying to me as weaving on a lap loom. I like that you can make longer and wider things on the rigid heddle but I don't see myself investing in one (for now...). 

my chosen yarns

warping the loom!

that's one good lookin' warp if I do say so myself

the red yarn is waste yarn that separates the warp so it is evenly spaced; the pink yarn is my first few rows!

oh yeah looking good

my (mostly) finished scarf! I still need to wet finish it and trim up my stray ends and fringe.

~close up~

Then on Sunday I took Norwegian mittens!!! Beth Brown-Reinsel taught the class. I was SO excited for this class because it was going to be my first foray into stranded color work, something that has always intimidated me. When I've seen other people's stranded projects I've really admired them but thought that I could never do them. A class was the perfect time to try it out so that I could have hands on instruction and help if (when) something went wrong. To my delight and surprise, stranded color work is not hard at all! If you can knit, you can do stranded color work! The hardest part is figuring out how to hold 2 yarns at once and even then, when you get that down, you are good to go! We made most of 1 mitten in class. I need to make the other one and my encouragement is that the first one took only about 8 hours total, so if I just knit an hour a day, I'll have a complete pair in about a week! 

that row on the needles was my first stranded row ever!!! shoutout to all my instagram followers who liked and commented on this pic even though they had no idea what I was talking about 🙃

I was checking to see if it fit- it did!

WHAT SORCERY IS THIS

the palm side

all of the student mittens! (note that I am apparently a super speedy knitter and got further than everyone else...#humblebrag)

I came home, put on my jammers, and finished the mitten!

And it wouldn't be a knitting convention without a little shopping, now would it?! I didn't want my weaving hobby to feel left out so I got some cute tiny weaving tools from the Hill Country Weavers booth for my Hockett loom! I got 2 tiny beaters- one for me and one for one of my weaving pals! This is way classier than the dinner forks we've been using. I also got a cute shed stick and a rad needle. 

I spotted some Hedgehog Fibres yarn at the Steven Be booth on Friday that I really wanted but I talked myself out of it. But then of course I was thinking of its perfection and how it was going to get snatched up if I didn't buy it. So I hemmed and hawed and then on Saturday morning I went and bought it. If you ever need an enabler while shopping, I'm your girl. 

I MEAN REALLY

So there you have it, my Stitches Texas 2016 recap! I loved going and I definitely want to go again next year! I loved walking around and seeing everyone knitting, asking people about their projects, wearing a shawl around and having people compliment it, and doing the same of others! I want my everyday life to be like Stitches! 

weekend reading

I had planned on recapping Stitches this week, but I didn't get around to that, so you can expect that post on Monday! It was a blast! 

Links for this week!

I've written before about my tennis elbow and other arm/hand/finger pain and I know that it's exacerbated by spending too much time on my phone (I'm looking at you, Instagram). Turns out I'm not the only one

I'm in love with this Carolyn Friedlander quilt! I first learned how to do needle turn appliqué from her book, Savor Each Stitch, and her post about her quilt definitely makes me want to do more appliqué! 

This and this could be really cute for my fall closet! 

How do you feel about cilantro? I used to have no opinion because I liked it but my taste buds have been changing lately and I'm starting to understand the soap people. I'm not quite at the extreme of this article yet, but I thought it was hilarious. 

Who knew that cute little pet goldfish turn into giant mutants when released into the wild?! 

Thanks to Stitches, my obsession with knitting is back full force. I used to only knit and back in those days that's pretty much all I did in my free time, but now I do lots of crafts and have to choose between more things when I have free time. This week, though, it's all been about the knitting! I started this shawl, and while it's totally out of my comfort zone in the zaniness department, I bought some yarn at Stitches that just had to be used for it, so I'm going to do the yarn and pattern justice and bring it to life! I'm also breaking my personal rule and creating something using...size....FOUR...needles. It's going faster than I thought though! Expect to see updates on it soon! 

2 yarns that I didn't buy at Stitches even though I really wanted to: Loopy Mango Merino No. 5 and Stunning String Glitz. There were a lot of glittery yarns at Stitches which made me so happy, but a lot of them were fingering weight which makes me sad. That Loopy Mango yarn was luscious though and I would love to make a cozy blanket out of it eventually. 

weekend reading

Oh hey, another week with no posts! Let's just pretend that it's because I lead a very interesting and busy life (mostly true) and that I am just crafting SO MUCH that I don't have time to document. Yeah, let's go with that! 

Link love!

Oy. No One Wants Your Old Clothes. I really do try to be conscious about my clothing purchases and buy only the things I really love, but lately I am completely uninspired when I look at my closet and I kinda want to just get rid of everything and start over. This article makes me rethink that! 

In a similar vein: joining the start-over club. When one is a knitter (especially, but this goes for any type of maker), you occasionally get to a point in a project where you're not in love but you continue anyway because you've already put so much work in. And then you keep knitting and keep silently hating the outcome and you have to make a big decision. To forge ahead or to frog? I recently ripped out about 70 rows of my Seed Stitch Wrap because one of the colors just wasn't doing it for me. I hadn't really liked it the whole time, but I thought surely with the next color I would like it. Well guess what? I DIDN'T. And so I made the decision to rip back to the end of the first color. It wasn't fun and some people thought I was nuts, but it all comes down to this: I would rather have something take 500 years and be absolutely in love with the outcome than to spend 500 minutes on it and feel only ok about it. The next time I am contemplating ripping a project, I will definitely refer to this article and to my very own blog post. #knittingessayover

LOVE THIS. Tampon drama for the ages! This is like every text exchange between a girl and her best friends. 

I really liked this Reddit post. I think most of us have at least one thing in our lives (illness or not) that we'd rather not have, but this guy makes a great point about doing what you can to change it and then accepting it and moving on. 

Self-care. It's not just for us therapists of the world! It's for everyone. I'm glad to see it featured on Design*Sponge.

I was doing my knitting homework (haha yes) for my Norwegian mittens class that I'll be taking this weekend at Stitches Texas and I had...a revelation. I have always wanted to be a sock knitter. I've seen bloggers who are constantly knitting a pair of socks and it just seems so quaint and relaxing. But here's the thing: I HATE KNITTING SOCKS. Rather, I hate knitting with the itty bitty yarn and needles (remember my rule? Size 7s or above!!). These mittens are knit with worsted weight yarn and size 5 and 7 needles. THIS IS MY KIND OF KNITTING YALL. I can still be a sock knitter, I just need to make worsted weight socks! Which are obviously cozier anyway. There is still hope for me. I wanna make some straight up CRAZY socks. I'm thinking these yarns will do: Madeline Tosh DK in Holi Festival, Lang Jawoll Magic in color 54, and Felici rainbow yarn!! (double stranded, obv.) #secondknittingessayover

I'm feeling ultra inspired these days. I think it's because I've been mostly off of Facebook for the last few weeks, deleted Twitter from my phone, have been checking Instagram only very sporadically and for only a few minutes at a time (I'm not going to confess how much time I was previously spending on there), and haven't been lounging around on the internet for hours after work. All this time off of technology has allowed for a few things: my recurring tennis elbow is almost gone (I get tennis elbow pretty often because of so many repetitive movements from crafting and from, yes, scrolling on my phone), I am reading tons of books, and I am getting lots of crating in! 

Also inspiring- pretty much all of my entertainment these days is of the European variety and I am suffering from extreme wanderlust!!! Call the Midwife, the Elena Ferrante series of novels, Irish music, and Chef's Table France are giving me life and also making me want to travel and eat and drink and laugh and love and make cool stuff. For now I will keep dreaming and keep making here at home. 

weekend reading

Oops, I missed yesterday, but Saturday is still the weekend!

Last night, I went with 5 of my gal pals to see Bridget Jones's Baby and it did not disappoint! It was so funny and was much better than I was expecting! I totally recommend it! 

I am SO EXCITED for next week because I am going to Stitches Texas!!! It was a completely last minute decision, but I am thrilled. I am going to be taking two 6 hour courses- rigid heddle weaving and Norwegian mittens

In the same vein as Norwegian mittens, here is a fantastic post about Icelandic knitting. Swoon. 

I went to Anthro yesterday and scored this adorable mug. As if I don't own enough mugs! I also got these cute little bowls because they were on sale! Yay!!

Adding this scarf and this wrap to my never-ending want-to-make list. Purl will always be my creative crush. 

Loved this post about WIPs. I long for a day when I have only 1 WIP, but I don't think that will ever happen. 

To Be Held. yes. 

Lurve this weaving idea!

omgggg you guys. I laughed SO HARD at this

I always knew Stacy London was a badass, but this was further proof

BRING BACK THE LEISURE! This is why I don't craft for a living. Everyone encourages me to, but I enjoy it way too much to let it become a business and turn into something I hate.

All about that hospitality.  

That's all I got for ya this week, folks. Here's to a great weekend filled with coffee, happiness, and leisure! 

marthe blouse

You know that moment when you write an entire blog post and it’s great and it has links and everything and then Safari QUITS?! Yeah, I know that feeling well because that happened with this post! The only thing that got saved was half of the title of this post! Booooo. Hopefully this second writing of the post will be just as good as the first writing :) 

This weekend I did something I haven’t done in a while- I sewed a garment! I spend all of Saturday on it and it was so satisfying and I am IN LOVE with the finished product! 

The Marthe Blouse has been on my to-make list for a while and it was only after being reminded that I have owned the pattern for quite a while (thanks Dropbox for keeping it safe for me!) that I decided to make it. I had been wanting to make a top with Anna Rifle Bond’s fun flamingo voile and this was the perfect top to make with it! 

The pattern is very easy to follow and comes together pretty quickly. It is appropriate for beginning sewists, however, be aware that many of the techniques are not fully explained (such as installing a zipper, gathering the fabric for the peplum, attaching the bias binding, etc.). These should pose no problem for a more experienced garment sewist, but if this is your first garment, make sure to have Google or a more experienced friend at the ready. 

Marthe is a French pattern that has been translated to English. I had no problem following the instructions. It does require that you add your own seam allowances, which I did by tracing my pattern pieces onto pattern tracing paper and then running it through my sewing machine with a bright thread (more detailed instructions can be found on #2 in this article). This pattern calls for 2 meters of 140 cm wide (55 inches) fabric. My fabric was the standard 44/45” and I was able to get away with using 2.5 yards. I made the size 36 with no length modifications (I am 5’7” for reference; I usually wear a size 2/4 or extra small or small and the size 36 was perfect), but had I made a bigger size or added length, I don’t think 2.5 yards would have been enough. Be aware! My only modification to the pattern was adding a ribbon tie to the back but that’s only because I am not the best at installing zips on garments and my attempts to add a silver metallic zip were thwarted! I like the tie a lot though and in future iterations I will do the tie again or omit a back closure altogether as there is plenty of room to fit my head in! This pattern fit perfectly with just the right amount of ease- it is breezy without being a tent woo hoo! 

This is how much fabric I had leftover!!! Be careful, friends!

Finished front!

Finished back!

Photo of it on because I hate when people don't post photos of them wearing something!!! I need to know how it lays and stuff, people! 

This photo is a big deal because I rarely properly finish my seams, but for this one I went all out. 

Is it really my blog if I don't post an artsy photo of me knitting while wearing my newest FO?

sweater weather

Lately I've been itching for new knitting projects. Because my ongoing projects are finished? Of course not. My seed stitch wrap is currently only 2 colors in and another WIP is still in its project bag, longing to be finished. But fall always has me yearning for a new knitting project (or 5). This is a yearly occurrence for me, the searching on Ravelry, the daydreaming of knitting something fabulous, of wearing it when it eventually gets cold. Often it doesn't get past that daydreaming phase. 

Usually my knitting day dreams are about shawls, wraps, scarves. This year, though, I've been bitten by a different bug altogether- the sweater bug. I have never desired to knit a sweater before. In fact, I used to scoff when people would ask me if I had ever made a sweater. But for some reason, this year I have been bitten by this sweater bug HARD. 

I doubt I'll get around to it in 2016, but I'm thinking it'll be a great 2017 goal. I'm also thinking I should start off with a baby sweater for a friend's babe so I can get the technique down. 

IDEAS!

For the baby sweater I'm thinking this:

adorable!!!

And now onto adult sweater ideas. I want something oversized and chunky. If a pattern says something crazy like "size 4 needles" I immediately nope right out of there. I don't have time for that madness. Size 7 and up, I say! That is my general knitting rule. I might consider a pattern if it calls for size 6 but for real size 7 (or even more for real, size 10, 13, or like 50 (yes, I have size 50 needles)) is where it's at. A friend recently asked if I wanted to join her in knitting this and I was 100% on board, but then I clicked over to the pattern and I saw the dreaded "size 3 needles" and I was just straight up like HELL TO THE NO I AM NOT KNITTING THAT. Just thinking about size 3 needles gives me arthritis. But I digress. Onto the sweaters! 

Relax. Even the name is good. 

Worsted Boxy. Worsted weight, YES. They understand me. 

And then here is some Pinterest inspiration:

Can't find original source. Sorry!!! Pinterest source.

This one is from an online store that sells only nude and neutral-colored clothing. MY DREAM. 

You can't see me, but I'm drooling over this one ahhhhh. 

YOU GUYS. AHEIOABPEGAHOVAOEGJEOPWA I HAVE NO WORDS. Pinterest link.

So there you have it, my sweater dreams in picture form. Check back in 2017 to see if I've actually committed to this 🙃

weekend reading

Ahhhh, a September weekend. Those words alone sound perfect and right. I am so excited for fall to soon be here (but let's be real, here in Dallas that won't be for another month or longer!). I've got fall projects in mind. I've got a preeeeetty ambitious crafting to-do list to finish before the year is up. So let's look at some links and discover even more things we want to create!

Giant Arm Knit Bunny. I NEED this. Seriously. I don't arm knit, but maybe I can find someone to make it for me?

A Shawl for Fall. Clearly I'm not the only one with fall crafting feels! SPECIFICALLY THIS SHAWL *HEART EYES*

I bought this pattern this week and promptly added it to said ambitious crafting to-do list. I also stumble upon this cute little blog while looking up finished versions of the dress! Pretty convinced I will need to make a Nani Iro version of the dress now. 

I want this dress too!

This article makes a mean case for the chemise. And this one makes a mean case for the house dress

Yassss, Alicia Keys. Killing it without makeup

omgggg you guys. If you are in need of a salty treat, this is your recipe. It is SO GOOD. 

Well, that's all I've got! May your September weekend be full of crafting, salty treats, and happiness!

birthday weaving

My friend Sarah was celebrating her birthday recently so I thought I'd make her a cute little weaving for her. Her favorite colors are light/aqua blue buuuut I didn't have yarn that color so mint green it was! It took me about 2 hours total to make it and I watched counseling videos while I wove so I could count the time as work #genius

Aaaaand, the craftermath.

Happy birthday, Sarah!