weekend reading

bon dimanche à tous!

I hope you are having a wonderful weekend. Mine has been filled with knitting, seeing Phantom Thread (definitely recommend), and a lot of dancing at a 70s themed birthday party. Tonight I'll be seeing Brooklyn Rider and Béla Fleck and I am thrilled! I've seen both before but not together and I think it's going to be such a treat. 

Feeling down about your finances? Check this out and suddenly you'll feel very rich. 

A couple of years ago, I read When Breath Becomes Air and was incredibly moved by it. This article about the late author's widow is beautiful and full of hope.

5 ways to build a more ethical closet. I NEVER think of going to second-hand stores when I buy clothes, but this is the year that I will finally do that. Like I've said here recently, I'm going to try not to shop this year but there are definitely a few things that are lacking in my wardrobe (namely, dress pants that actually cover my ankles) so I think I will end up buying a few articles of clothing this year. I'll be sure to go second-hand!

Tis the season for unbearably dry skin. This homemade calendula salve sounds so luxurious and soothing. 

In 2013, I used to work at a specialty fabric shop. I loved working there! We eventually hired a store manager and she used to wear all sorts of fabulous smocks and aprons and I will always remember her Japanese-style aprons. They looked so chic while serving a functional purpose. Ever since, I have wanted one, and I think I have finally found the perfect pattern

While on the hunt for the above apron pattern, I stumbled across this beautiful etsy shop. I want EVERYTHING in it. I'm finding lots of inspiration for simple handmade clothes amongst all the designs. I'm especially fond of this.

I hope you all have a great Sunday and a wonderful week. xoxo.

weekend reading

joyeux vendredi, mes amis! 

how was your week? what goals are you making for the new year? i'm not really a resolutions person but i do have some goals. i pretty much just want to consume less...spend less money in general and use what i have. i believe i have bought only ONE article of clothing since this summer which is shocking to me but has also been very easy. i'm hoping to continue that and also hoping to replace any clothes shopping with garment sewing instead. i'd also really like to read all the books i own instead of buying new ones this year. and just stay on top of my daily routines that i enjoy so much: writing in my gratitude journal every night, staying on top of notes and hour logs at work, reading poetry every day, practicing french, using the internet less. 

i have a few links to share!

My Year of No Shopping. Fitting, right?! 

Sabotaging Big Days. Oh did this speak to me. As someone who tends to have crazy high expectations for holidays, I sometimes need the reminder that a holiday or a birthday can be just a normal day and doesn't have to be extravagant or The Best Day Ever. Taking the pressure off really helps!

White Christianity is in Big Trouble. YES. 

Y'all know i love buzzfeed quizzes and this one was really fun and pretty informative! 

Questions to reflect on the year past. 

Our Year in Poems

With it being so cold lately I have been taking loads of baths. I usually don't even turn on the cold water! I just steam up the bathroom and soak and warm up all the way to my bones. Earlier this week I threw in a bath bomb that I had been saving and it was so delightful! I want more bath bombs in my life in 2018. My friend Tania shared this post about how to DIY bath bombs and I definitely see myself enjoying lots of baths and bath bombs in my future!

My book club met in December and we read The Power. It was SO GOOD and thought-provoking and disturbing. A very good read. Next up, we are reading What Happened

Lately I have been listening to the gorgeous sounds of Cécile McLorin Salvant and you should too. 

i hope you all have a great weekend!

fragment scarf: a finished object

Yes, you're reading that correctly...another finished object! I told you I was hoping to have one very soon. 

A few weeks ago I was perusing Instagram (doesn't it feel like most of my stories start off this way?) and I saw this post. I loved the little bandana scarf in the photo and I thought it would make a great Christmas present for one of my best friends. 

Here's a thing about me: I rarely ever knit for other people. It just doesn't happen. Do you know how much knitting costs?! Or how much time a project takes?! I make things for only the people that I know will truly appreciate and use what I make for them (and who will properly take care of it!). All of that is to say that this friend is a good one and she is deserving of a hand knit :) 

The Fragment Scarf knit up super quickly and towards the end I was able to do the 10-row repeat a few times in one sitting because the decreases made everything faster and faster every single row. The only modification I made was that I did not do the last 4 rows because I 1. hate picking up stitches, and 2. was really worried I wasn't going to have enough yarn to finish. The pattern calls for 163 yds and my skein had...163 yds!!! I used Plymouth Cuzco Cashmere yarn and it was suuuuuuuch a pleasure to work with. It's 40% silk, 40% alpaca, and 20% cashmere and is an absolute dream. I would absolutely knit with it again for a small project (it's pretty expensive per gram). I recently bought some unscented Eucalan for washing and blocking my knits and this was the first project I used that on. It worked great! 

I knit up this project so quickly that I only took 1 in-progress photo of it! That is really saying something about how quick and easy it is! I really want to make it in a worsted weight yarn on slightly bigger needles to make an extra cozy version. 

Specs:
Fragment Scarf pattern
Plymouth Yarn Cuzco Cashmere bought at Fleece 
Size 6 needle
Ravelry link.
Started on December 9, 2017.
Finished on December 25, 2017.

daybreak: a finished object

I am so excited to be able to share a finished object with you guys! I believe the last knitted FO I had was all the way back in February and was the cutest little baby sweater. As I have moaned and groaned about many times on this blog, I was injured for most of the year with a pretty nasty combo of radial tunnel syndrome and lateral epicondylitis (aka tennis elbow). I was in pain nearly everyday for the better part of 10 months and knitting was the number 1 aggravator of the pain, so this project was on hold for most of the year. 

I started this bad boy in January. It had originally began life as The Doodler by Stephen West but it just wasn't working for me. Stephen West is known for his out there designs and if you know me, you know I'm not a very out there person. The Doodler was way out of my comfort zone and I'm sure it would've looked rad, but I wanted something that I knew I would wear. Insert Daybreak by Stephen West. This is one of Stephen's earlier patterns and is not quite so zany. Very wearable and very striped, which is exactly what I wanted for these yarns.

Speaking of the yarns, I purchased them in September of 2016 at Stitches Texas from Steven Be. I knew they'd be perfect as stripes and boy was I right! 

In October I started physical therapy and saw results so quickly and was able to start knitting quite a bit again. I went from barely being able to complete a row on a small project to being able to knit for 2 hours at a time within just a few weeks!!! It has literally been life changing and I will write a (very) long post about my injury progress soon. About half of this project was completed from January to March and the rest of it was done in October and November. So let's just say it took 4 months and not 11 :) 

Without further ado, my Daybreak!

Specs:
Daybreak Shawl I made the large size. 
Hedgehog Fibres Sock in colors Fly, Zephyr, and Skinny Dip.
Size 4 needle
Pattern was very easy (suitable for a beginner with experience with increases, slipping stitches, and color changes at the beginning of a row). 
Yarn is gorgeously dyed but loosely plied- if you have to rip anything out, you will have to be careful to not split the strands when re-knitting. 
Ravelry link.
Towards the end of this project, 1 row was taking about 30 minutes to complete and it took me nearly an entire hour to bind off. I have been told I am a pretty fast knitter, so keep that in mind when gauging your own time commitments! 

Special thanks to my sweet friend Ana from Ana Eloise Photography for showing me the life changing magic of using a gallery to upload photos! This will make my blogging life so much easier! 

I hope to have another knitted FO for you all very soon!

link dump

whoa you guys. It's been over two months since I last wrote. In that time, I went to physical therapy for my arm and I'M PAIN FREE!!! This is a huge deal because I was in pain for ten months of this year. During that time, I really had to reset my priorities and one of the things that was obviously no longer important to me anymore was spending hours a day on my computer. Before I wrote this today I couldn't remember the last time I had opened my computer. It has been so nice to take a break and unplug and I have found that I really don't miss those hours scrolling away on stupid websites BUT I did miss blogging!

I have A TON of links stacked up to share so I'm just gonna go ahead and dump them all out right now. Going forward I am not sure I will have a weekly link post since I am not spending much time on the internet anymore but I am hoping that will mean that I will be using my time more wisely on actually crafting, photographing said crafts, and sharing those pics here!

I'm going to break this up into categories and we're just going to go for it!

Recipes:
Earl Grey Honey Scones
Caramel Apple Clafoutis

Sewing:
Kochi Kimono pattern 
Dove Blouse pattern 
Boosting your sewing confidence. Just do the damn thing. Can be applied to a lot of areas of life, really.
The Linden has been in my queue forever and a day but this one really, really makes me want to make it. 

Handcrafts:
Tulle embroidery!
DIY rope necklace.
Love this weaving idea.
On why materials matter when making. Crafts are so tactile and you need to enjoy the process, including how things feel in your hands.
How Knitting Helped Me Overcome Severe Anxiety.
Why do knitted slippers always seem like the epitome of luxurious comfort to me?! 

Just good articles:
Sea salt around the world is contaminated by plastic. I'm telling y'all, plastic will be the death of us.
Yes, you too
The Husband Stitch and What I Don't Tell My Students About The Husband Stitch
Ideas for feeling at home in your body. YES.
The potato metaphor for emotional labor
LOVE this idea. Tea and Empathy.
A good poem.
Modest dressing, as a virtue
The Bully and the Buddhist.

Random others:
We all know I adore Chris Thile and at the end of October he debuted this Song of the Week on Live from Here (formerly A Prairie Home Companion) and I'm pretty obsessed with it.
How cozy does this jacket look!?
I've really wanted some clogs for a while now and this post is super helpful. I still am in love with Bryr clogs and will one day splurge on a pair BUT WHICH ONE.
Let's just be present, people.
Chance encounters.
The true meaning of self-care. Yes and amen.
PREACH.

Enjoy!

weekend reading

Have I got a lot of links for you. That's what happens when you don't post for a month but do keep bookmarking cool stuff! 

First up, I have to mention my newest music obsession. A friend invited me to go see Father John Misty with her last week. I had heard some of his music here and there on KXT and had given his newest album, Pure Comedy, a few listens. I've had his other albums for a while as well but hadn't really given them a good listen. So we go to the show and you guys. I was blown away. It was one of the best shows I have been to this year (and trust me, I have gone to tons of shows this year) and I had all of his songs stuck in my head. I made a playlist from the setlist of the show and listened to it all day long after the show. Then I started listening to I Love You, Honeybear and found that I didn't want to stop listening to it, so I think I have heard it approximately 100 times this week. I'm in love. I ended up driving a not insignificant number of miles to pick up some FJM vinyl because that is who I am as a person. If you ever get the chance to see him, whether you know his music or not, please go. 

Now that my fangirling is done, let's get onto some other links!

Um yes, I would like to make the top and dress versions of this pattern

Fabric bleeds, ugh! They're the worst. Suzy did a great job of providing lots of options for fixing and preventing them.

Loved this peek into Abigail Halpin's sketchbook.

Fast fashion has a price, people

When you're taking a break from things that hurt your arm, you gotta have SOME entertainment. This list helps

Amy Blackwell is my new fave artist, especially her Girl with a Pigeon piece!

It's October which means cooler weather is (hopefully) on its way. What better way to warm up than with red wine hot chocolate?!

The quilt police are the worst but Karlee found a silver lining and made THE RADDEST quilt! Also, if anyone ever ripped one of my quilts in half y'all would hear about it bc I'd be in prison for murdering said person.

Def have been watching this video off and on for a few weeks now. I already lurve Lisa Hannigan but that orchestra is amazing!

YUM. FALL FOOD.

Digging this playlist.

This made me laugh so hard that I was crying and snorting. 

I wanna knit this top and this blanket real bad.

And finally, The Knit Show with Vickie Howell has finally premiered on YouTube! I have been watching it every morning while I eat breakfast and it's a great way to start my day. 

See y'all next week!

on taking a break

wow, long time, no see, my friends. 

I didn't intend on taking a month-long break. As you all know by now, my pesky arm likes to give me trouble and I thought it was high time to take a serious break from the things causing me pain- knitting, crafting of any sort really, scrolling forever on instagram, scrolling forever on blogs, taking every quiz on buzzfeed, the usual.

So i ended up taking a break from a lot of things that bring me joy but also discovered that a lot of those things I also didn't miss much. My bloglovin' feed? I've cut down to just the essential blogs that I always look forward to and got rid of the rest. Buzzfeed? My life feels happier without it. Instagram is one that I did sorely miss, but just like when I first gave up on Facebook, it got easier the less I checked it. 

The knitting and crafting though? Y'all know that has been taking its toll. I'm happy to report that I was able to go to Stitches Texas and take 2 classes back in mid-September. Serendipitously, I met a physical therapist during my first class and she gave me some super helpful pointers for my elbow problems. I followed her advice and my elbow feels normal. That's the power of the knitting community, I tell ya. After Stitches, as part of the protocol the physical therapist told me to do, I was not knitting. This past week, however, I have been mostly pain free (in my arm at least) and have knit a little bit most days! 

Here comes the but. My old shoulder injury, which has never really gone away, has reared its ugly head and is causing quite a bit of pain. Just when one thing starts to feel a little better, the other goes awry. Is this what 28 feels like? Apparently for me, the answer is yes. 

The breaks from the things I thought I loved have given me room to entertain myself in other ways, namely books and TV. I have made it through all of Broad City, something that was on my list for a while, and have gotten to read a lot. I've been keeping up with my French lessons and that's fun too. 

So at this point I'm still not feeling great and have been trying to stay away from the computer and phone and other painful things. Even with those breaks though, things are still not quite right. I have an appointment scheduled with a pain rehab clinic this week and I'm really hoping they can help me out. They have a really good reputation and they're focused on treating the body holistically, with manual therapy (which I think is code for painful-but-good massage) and physical therapy, which is exactly what I have been wanting. Hopefully in the next few weeks I will be feeling good again and will have crafty things to post about. In the meantime, I will finally add a good old weekend reading post and will try to do those on the reg once again. 

PEACE!

weekend reading

happy weekend, friends. how was your week? mine was quite nice as i had three whole days off! it was much needed and i used my time wisely and i feel refreshed! 

on to the links!

this corn chowder sounds like the perfect late-summer thing to eat!

i'm such a sucker for the funny posts on buzzfeed and this one did not disappoint me. 

fall is coming! and this means cute outfits. but sometimes i get tired of wearing the same outfits so i need some inspiration to mix it up. this post has some great ideas!

speaking of fall clothes- i bought this top last weekend and it's already become my new favorite! it's a little too warm to wear it right now but i have a feeling that in the fall i will be wearing it constantly.

i really like may designs and their notebooks- i have multiples that i have used as gratitude journals and work notebooks- and now they have these adorable folios. i'm definitely tempted to get the spotted one.

i ran across this body image comic this week and LOVED it. i need to print it off for my patients at work. 

one day i will finish off a weave with the half hitch knot and when i do i'll want this handy tutorial.

good bones. 

i tried this makeup tutorial this week and i really liked it! it really did emphasize my eyes more.

i went to yoga this week for the first time in FOREVER and at the studio i go to, the teacher always puts a little lavender pillow over everyone's eyes during savasana. i always really enjoy it and i thought to myself that i could definitely easily make my own lavender pillow! i already have everything i need, so i did just that! i used the measurements and tassel idea from this tutorial but i did make it more like a little pillowcase and made the actual pillow as an insert so that i can wash the cover. 

how dreamy is this color?! 

this scarf! i haven't knit a scarf in a while, just shawls, but this one might break me of that habit.

and finally. this week i had one of those weird and random thoughts pop into my head- why are you supposed to trim candle wicks? so i went out in search of the answer and not only did i find the reason, i found some candle-burning tips and tricks that make sure you have the best candle experience. this week i made sure to always let my candles burn until the entire top layer was liquid and it made my candles look so much nicer and i think it means i will actually get to use up the entire candle instead of having some leftover wax hanging out on the bottom and sides. i did have to do a little candle surgery on one of my candles since it had some tunneling going on but it's back in flat working order now. also i feel like this is a good time to mention that i was terrified of matches until this year but a friend taught me the right way to use them and now i'm obsessed with them!

ok, i'll leave you on that weird note. happy weekending! 

happenings

i thought i'd post a sorta random post this week! i've been busy this summer and with my ongoing recovery from injury, i haven't been able to craft very much, so i have other things going on. here's what i've been up to in july and august!

I went to the Dallas Museum of Art to see the fabulous Mexico exhibit.

I went to the Dallas Museum of Art to see the fabulous Mexico exhibit.

I went to the Dallas World Aquarium to escape some of the summer heat.

I went to the Dallas World Aquarium to escape some of the summer heat.

One of my succulents started growing multiple flower stalks!!! I've never had one bloom before, so I am super excited for this one to bloom. It will have red flowers!

One of my succulents started growing multiple flower stalks!!! I've never had one bloom before, so I am super excited for this one to bloom. It will have red flowers!

I saw a beautiful sunrise one morning.

I saw a beautiful sunrise one morning.

I did get to do a little bit of knitting!!!

I did get to do a little bit of knitting!!!

I had lunch with several friends at one of my favorite spots, Toasted. Their "coma-toast" is so so good and their matcha lattes aren't bad either!

I had lunch with several friends at one of my favorite spots, Toasted. Their "coma-toast" is so so good and their matcha lattes aren't bad either!

And a little more knitting!

And a little more knitting!

I got to see the partial solar eclipse! It was so cool.

I got to see the partial solar eclipse! It was so cool.

I saw Michael Franti at the wonderful Majestic Theater. He did like half of his show in the audience and I definitely got his arm sweat on my arm 

I saw Michael Franti at the wonderful Majestic Theater. He did like half of his show in the audience and I definitely got his arm sweat on my arm 

And finally, I saw Lord Huron at The Bomb Factory! This was definitely a highlight of my month. I had missed them the last time they came around to Dallas so I was thrilled to finally see them and they definitely did not disappoint!

And finally, I saw Lord Huron at The Bomb Factory! This was definitely a highlight of my month. I had missed them the last time they came around to Dallas so I was thrilled to finally see them and they definitely did not disappoint!

on deck for september? i already have gone to a wedding, i'll have book club, a girls' lake weekend, STITCHES!, the dallas greek food festival, the beautiful/anonymous live show, and finally, father john misty at the bomb factory. 2017 has definitely been a good and fun year and that fun is just going to continue right on into the fall. so many musicians i love are coming in october and november and i have spent way too much money on concert tickets, but it's all worth it for good music! 

weekend reading

oh heeeeyyyy. you didn't think i could keep the regular posting thing going, did ya?! the honest truth is that i didn't have any links to share 2 weeks ago and then i got lazy when i did have some links AND THEN I had to get another cortisone shot in my arm and was in too much pain to type SO here i am now, posting lots of links that have been saved up for a bit now. without any further ado, links!

It should be no surprise to anyone here that I love poetry. I have a few faves memorized, but I definitely want to learn more and this article only encouraged that desire. 

Mushrooms. I hate eating them but they are really really cool to look at!

Recipes! Tzatziki! Corn chowder!

The first photo in this post provided me with some major outfit inspiration. Yes, I'm serious. I now have a deep need to make that sweater that I mentioned in my previous weekend reading post in a deep green and wear it with my flowy pink skirt. 

I can't decide if I love or hate this skirt. It's so so cute on Sara but it's also so 90s? The jury is out but I keep thinking about it...

Actual conversation at my work dinner a few weeks ago: 
My supervisor: One of my big regrets in life is not getting that boob mug I saw in Europe.
Me: Why don't you get a boob vase?! 

~eclipse things~ I know it was a week ago now, but you gotta admit that it was prettttty cool. I brought 3 pairs of eclipse glasses to work and me and my coworkers all took turns staring at the sun and saying wow and being amazed. Here's a cool poem about the McDonald Observatory here in Texas and here are two photos of the eclipse that I really loved. And a rad art print!

Cute quilt binding idea.

These crocheted leaves are just ridiculous.

I have been loving the Imma Eat That blog recently and read an old post that really spoke to me.

I finally saw Amélie. Yes, I am the last person to ever see it. Yes, it was delightful. And weird. And funny. And French! Of course after I finished it, I wanted to find more French movies on Netflix to maybe hopefully somehow improve my listening skills, and I found this great list

And speaking of français, there is new research to suggest that exercising while practicing a new language can help make it stick better so it looks like I'm gonna have to figure out a way to move while doing my daily French lessons!

Et finalement, two cute hairstyles I want to try. Feeling real confident in my skills for the first one, not so much for the second one!

my favorite pasta

Four years ago I was just doing my thing, living life and reading blogs. I saw that Molly Wizenberg had a new post and I clicked on it, knowing it would fill me with the usual mixture of awe and delight that her posts always elicited in me. At this point, I nearly have the opening lines memorized, I've read it so often-

 Every so often, I encounter a recipe that makes me want to forgo the usual niceties of a post - the introduction, the story, the conclusion, the delicate foreplay - because that would only slow you down, when what you should really do is grab your shoes and make a list and run to the grocery store and throw some money at the cashier and run back home and make this immediately and I mean it, go, right now, DO IT.
— Molly Wizenberg

That caught my attention. 

What followed was exactly what Molly described as the "delicate foreplay"'; a description of a pasta that sounded so perfect that my mouth was watering and I knew I had to try the recipe as soon as my next meal. Eventually, I cobbled together the ingredients and did the requisite zizzing and defrosting and such.

If Molly's post could be described as foreplay, actually eating the pasta could be described only as orgasm. I had never tasted anything like it. The way each element came together and complemented one another was indescribable. 

I had found it: my favorite pasta. 

I don't cook it often...I think I worry that I will spoil my tastebuds and they will come to expect only the absolutely astounding. But those times I do make this pasta, it is no less enthralling than the first time I had it. 

And so yesterday afternoon as I was pondering what on earth I was going to come up with for dinner, I remembered this pasta. The thought alone filled me with mouthwatering anticipation and after work, I went to the store and picked up the ingredients that I didn't already have in my pantry. This time I was lucky enough to have a leftover bottle of pinot grigio to accompany my meal and friends, it was perfection. 

A word to the wise: keep the ingredients separate if you plan on eating this pasta for leftovers. The yogurt sauce is quite the delicate and picky thing and while mixing all the ingredients together in a giant bowl is ultra satisfying for a crowd, it doesn't translate as well in tomorrow's lunch. 

Bon appétit!

yet another new hobby

Let's go back to last Wednesday. I was sitting in the break room at work, eating a very delicious sandwich, and as is my usual Wednesday lunch ritual, was scrolling through email and Instagram. And I saw this. 

I had heart eyes emojis immediately. As usual, Purl Soho's gorgeous photography made me want to make the project immediately. I've never been a big jewelry person. I have a ring that I wear everyday and I usually have some pair of earrings on and I might wear my star necklace but that's it. I've never been big into bracelets or much more than understated and simple jewels. So it was sort of odd for me to want to make bracelets so badly. 

I had a little jewelry making phase in high school. I bought neon beads and made several pairs of earrings. They all were eventually thrown out in one of my epic cleaning sprees, but believe me, they were...interesting. 

So I was just thinking about those Purl bracelets and how I really wanted to make them even though it made no sense for me to want to do such a thing. And then one of my friends texted me, "did you see the purl soho email about the beaded bracelets?". Yes, yes I did. Another friend texted, "I want to make that silly purl wrap bracelet very badly". It seems we were all in the bracelet making mood. PURL STRIKES AGAIN!! I can't tell you how many times I have had the sudden NEED to make a very specific project because Purl posted it looking gorgeous and easy. 

This strange desire to make bracelets continued and on Saturday, I woke up thinking about them. That is how you know it is true love. There are a couple of beading shops here in Dallas and, while still laying in bed, I pulled up their websites to check out their class offerings. Lo and behold, Beads of Splendor had a bead loom class that very afternoon and it still had a few spots open! I signed up and perused insta and pinterest and youtube for inspiration. 

The class was great. If you have ever woven on a rigid heddle loom, you will know exactly how to warp up a bead loom. It is essentially a tiny rigid heddle loom! The hardest part was picking out what color beads I wanted to use and what design to do. I had picked out some copper hardware and I eventually decided on some dark purple and light pink/cream beads and a plus sign design. I got to beading and was off on my merry way. It was just as fun and easy and meditative as I thought it would be and I loved every minute of it. 

All warped and ready to go. 

All warped and ready to go. 

Several rows in.

Several rows in.

Close up!

Close up!

After I finished my bracelet, I perused the store and bought my own beading loom, beads, and thread to create a bracelet that is more like the Purl version. It is safe to say that the beading loom is my new crafting obsession and that beads are going to be my new vice. I definitely wanna make some bracelets with bad words on them 

And now for some inspiration: 
Here's someone I found on Reddit. I especially love her cloud, avocado, and cacti bracelets! 
Stormie Art. Gorgeous bracelets and other jewelry!
My new beading pinterest board.

Love all of the cacti in Eden Rain Beadworks bracelets! Instagram. Etsy. 

Love all of the cacti in Eden Rain Beadworks bracelets! InstagramEtsy

More Eden Rain Beadworks. 

More Eden Rain Beadworks. 

 Yours Arm Candy. I love how thin this one is. 

 Yours Arm Candy. I love how thin this one is. 

Nice to Bead You. Alternatively, I like how large this one is! And I like the closure. 

Nice to Bead You. Alternatively, I like how large this one is! And I like the closure. 

ameliadimonaco. Incredible!

ameliadimonaco. Incredible!

naronaxie. Another incredible one! I got to see this in person and it is AMAZING.

naronaxie. Another incredible one! I got to see this in person and it is AMAZING.

weekend reading

Hello lovelies!

How was your week? Mine was busy with a capital b, but isn't that how it always is? Let's take this opportunity to sit back, relax, and revel in the wonder of the internet. 

Let's look at some cute fabric, shall we? I'm loving this Perfect Catch from Dear Stella and 40 Winks also from Dear Stella. 

I have posted links to "summer water" before and this one is SO extra but I 100% definitely want to make it and drink it. 

Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation? Well duh, yes. But also not just A generation but probably all of us. Welp. Goodbye human interaction. 

I have suuuuuch strong feelings about this article. I don't even know where to start with it. 

When I saw this sweater, I said something like, "ummmeigoebnov;aifjiewane;owbavnoewajflksanvoaehgo OOOOOOOOMMMMMMMGGGGGGG" and proceeded to drool all over my keyboard. I am IN LOVE. That hemline! That yoke! That sleeve length! I burn, I pine, I perish! I'm picturing myself in one that is either a rich navy, a gorgeous forest green, or a light grey. How will I ever decide?!

I still really want a pair of overalls but I haven't found just the right pair. I'm really digging these, though, and obvs handmade is the most ideal so they could be perfect???

Suddenly a red backpack is on my to-make list. 

This vegetarian pizza has pretty much everything I like on it. Sounds delish.

Idk why, but I am so into tassels on shawls. This one is pure perfection. Love the colorful tassels, the seed stitch border, and the simple stockinette body. 

I hope your weekend is full of ridiculously extra summer water and daydreaming about sweater yokes because you deserve only the best things. xoxo.

weekend reading

Happy Saturday! 

My week was pretty hectic, thus the late posting of this post! But we are here now, it's the weekend, and I am listening to some real good tunes, so let's get this started. 

It's the morning, I'm writing this in bed, and food is on my mind. Like these Ramen hacks! Related: easy vegetarian meals with lots of protein!

Earlier this week, my home was a bit of a construction zone. The entire living room had to be taped off so dust wouldn't get everywhere and it resulted in a few air conditioning vents being blocked off, meaning the rest of the house was very warm. I found myself donning my lightest weight pjs and dreaming about having some other light and airy options. I'm thinking any of these would work.

My French is getting better every week and I am comprehending a lot when I read in French. I'm hoping to start reading some of these stories to increase my comprehension. 

I really like this little laptop table.

While perusing Reddit this week, I came across this thread full of excellent music and this video that breaks down Bohemian Rhapsody into is amazing-on-their-own components. 

Let's talk about crewel. It is something I have never been interested in because it seems like I only see the 70s variety with daisies and the avocado green colors. This week I saw this kit from Purl Soho and now I definitely want to do crewel. 

A few weeks ago I found Nibyniebo on Instagram and I have become obsessed. She released a PDF pattern of one of her creations and I totally want to get it and recreate it!

Cotton+Steel released their newest lookbook and there are some gorgeous fabrics coming from them soon, as always! I particularly LOVED this banana print! I wanna make a blouse or a dress out of it!

I heard that Spoonflower released a new gauze fabric this week. Sara made a SUPER CUTE top from it and now of course I want to copy it exactly. 

I always love Lucy's crocheted blankets, but I especially love the color gradient in this one. Her blankets always make me want to learn to crochet. 

Such a perfect visual for why I am trying my hardest to buy only natural fibers these days. They degrade! Which sounds like something you don't want, but in the long run, it is so much better for everyone. 

There are lots of good books listed here

Currently reading.

Happy reading, eating, listening, and crafting!

weekend reading

Hello hello my Friday friends. 

How has your week been? I hope it has been full of long, happy nights, and air conditioned days. Here are some links to provide some weekend entertainment. 

Last week my friends and I had our monthly craft night. I worked on some weaving, which I haven't done in a while, and I forgot how relaxing it is! I'm thinking my next project will these cute woven coasters. Here's the how-to for the tassels

I haven't sewn any garments in a few months and I'm starting to get a little itch for some new handmade wares. The Kalle Shirtdress and Georgia Dress are looking like perfect summer options.

I'm loving this pretty floral artwork.

With the sweltering summer weather, I am looking for all sorts of ways to stay cool. I've been wearing my hair in a classic French braid at least once a week in an attempt to cool off and I'm thinking these Dutch braids are perfect for those mornings when it's just too hot to blow dry my hair. 

Buzzfeed never fails to make me laugh. 

It's no secret that I love the New York Times series Modern Love. Whether it's the essays or the podcast, I find myself identifying with the stories almost every time. I really loved this one this week.

Heartbreak

How cute is this little diy plant stand?!

And finally, something romantic. I have been following mylittleparis on Instagram for a while now, mostly for their cute illustrations. This week they posted this gorgeous poem and I couldn't get it out of my head. I translated it and it is just as perfect in English, especially this line: une nuit à maudire l'arrivée du jour/a night to curse the arrival of the day. Gah. 

Off to dream poetic French dreams...

lake colors

About a week ago, one of my friends invited me and a few other gals to her lakehouse for the weekend. I had been once before, in winter, so I was excited to go and actually get in the water this time. We spent the weekend together on a giant float, a boat, jetski, and of course, the dock. I dyed my hair pink. We ate guacamole and pizza. And I took tons of photos. I was loving all the colors at the lake! Here are some of my faves from the weekend. 

log cabin quilt! a finished object!

I've got an FO for you! I made this beauty back in April and May. It came together, as usual, in the span of a weekend.

One Friday I was just babysitting and my sister called me and said she had the day off and wanted to see if she could come hang out with me and the babe. Obviously I said yes. We had a great time playing and eating and hanging out. Then it was time for those two glorious hours: naptime. My sister has been working on her very first quilt and we started talking about how she was going to come spend the weekend at my house and wanted to work on her quilt. And then I got that all-too familiar itch...to also be working on a quilt. How was I supposed to watch her quilt all weekend and not have one to work on myself?! We both got our phones out and started scrolling through instagram and pinterest for ideas. I of course have a whole pinterest board dedicated to sewing and so every five seconds I would click a photo of a quilt I liked and show my sister. I went through all my screenshots as well (because who doesn't have a camera roll filled up with screenshots of quilts they like?!) and kept coming back to this photo:

The Log Cabin quilt block is such a classic design in quilting (and knitting!) and I have consistently been drawn to it. There are so many contemporary interpretations of it today that I love and it has long been on my list of things to do. I loved the simplicity of the log cabin design with the solid colors of that pillow and it really inspired me to do something similar in a quilt. I'm kinda weird about shapes, though, and knew I wanted a rectangular quilt and not a square quilt, so the math doesn't work out as perfectly as it does with a classic square log cabin quilt. That didn't stop me from making the quilt, though! 

Measurements!

Measurements!

I bought all my fabric and decided on a somewhat risky move- using regular old quilting cotton for most of the quilt and then a yarn dyed cotton. The potential problem here was shrinkage- the yarn dyed cotton will shrink much more than the quilting cotton. It's also a rougher texture but I just couldn't resist the way the yarn dyed cotton looks- the colors have more variation than a classic quilting cotton and that provided a depth that a fully-solid quilt really needs. 

'grammed this, obvs

'grammed this, obvs

The top came together super quickly- from ironing board to full quilt top in about 5 hours. The actual quilting is always my least favorite part and I really really really considered tying it like I do for most of my quilts, but I loved the diagonal lines that the pillow had so I sucked it up and did real machine quilting. And you know what? It really wasn't bad at all! I loved seeing it come together into exactly what I envisioned. 

Every quilter has taken pics from above to see how the colors look from a distance. It's just a part of the quilting process. My sister had to stand on the counter to properly look at hers! #beentheredonethat

Every quilter has taken pics from above to see how the colors look from a distance. It's just a part of the quilting process. My sister had to stand on the counter to properly look at hers! #beentheredonethat

Sewing with my sister! So fun. We both sew on Janomes because they are THE BEST. I sew on a DC2012 and Lauren sews on a DC2015. 

Sewing with my sister! So fun. We both sew on Janomes because they are THE BEST. I sew on a DC2012 and Lauren sews on a DC2015. 

Usually I power through the binding but this project happened at the height of my arm/hand pain so I was taking it a little slower with the hand binding. It eventually got finished and the quilt now lives on my bed! This quilt finished up at a little less than 60"x80" which is larger than my usual 50"x60" and I don't think I am looking back from this new size. I had wanted it to finish right at 60"x80" but silly ol' me forgot to add in seam allowances #wecantallbeperfect. And yet, seam allowances forgotten, it perfectly fits on my bed and is still a great throw size quilt. I have washed it a few times and the yarn dyed cotton has softened and is perfectly wrinkly. I love the looks of the different textures of fabrics and the diagonal quilting. It is definitely a winner and one of my favorite quilts! 

I have yet to take photos of the quilt with the binding fully attached, but you get the idea with these :) 

A giant storm was rolling through right as I finished the top so a lot of my photos look like this. 

A giant storm was rolling through right as I finished the top so a lot of my photos look like this. 

Yay! Finished top. 

Yay! Finished top. 

Quilt sandwich time. 

Quilt sandwich time. 

Basting away. 

Basting away. 

Look at that quilting!!

Look at that quilting!!

Binding

Binding

On my bed. Don't judge the total un-glamourousness of this photo. 

On my bed. Don't judge the total un-glamourousness of this photo. 

Hanging out under my new quilt even though it still had clips. 

Hanging out under my new quilt even though it still had clips. 

Specs (I used up nearly every single inch of fabric, so beware if you are following my measurements that there is little to no wiggle room):
Bella Solids in White Bleached, 1 and 2/3 yards
Some sort of cotton (Kona, Bella, or possibly Cotton Couture) in a light peach color (I'm really bad about keeping receipts or writing these things down...twas the purpose of this blog but obviously I'm not doing that part well!), 3 and 2/3 yards (tiny 10" square used for the front, all the rest for the back)
Essex Yarn Dyed in Flax, 2 yards
Cotton and Steel Sprinkles in Anna Blue (surprise, surprise...I've used Sprinkles in nearly every quilt I have made in the last 2 years), 1/2 yard
Batting, 2 yards? It was 90" wide batting, so 2 yards seems right :) 
Completed in 1 weekend as usual (minus hand binding)

weekend reading

Hello hello, friends. How are you? It's hard to believe that I've missed a few weekend reading posts but that I haven't missed other posts! That's pretty impressive for me. I haven't done much crafting in the last few weeks, thanks to my pesky arm, but that hasn't stopped me from finding some good crafty links and some other just good links. 

Let's dive in. 

A few weeks ago I learned about this Pep Talk Generator and I am now obsessed. It's my new go-to for encouragement and daily affirmation. 

I found this website last week and have been looking up EVERYONE'S account. It's kinda addicting. 

Using your phone intentionally. I feel like this is a thing I think about ALL the time. I know others are thinking about it too and I really do want to try harder to not be on my phone allll the time. I liked this article because I thought it gave some really good practical tips and ones that I'm not reading all the time. 

Bristol Ivy and a few other cool knitters went on an amazing trip to Shetland Island. Bristol did THE COOLEST project with supplies from her trip and documented it on her Instagram

And speaking of said Shetland Island trip, Jamie from Fancy Tiger Crafts went as well and posted a really fabulous recap of the trip. I wanna do a trip like this!!!

As a woman with a Master's degree, I have heard the "intimidating" line a time or two. I really appreciated this article and loved the message about being your amazing intimidating self. 

This article was so good that I immediately printed it out and used it in one of my therapy groups. I've seen it making the rounds all over the internet, for good reason. 

I love wholesome memes so much and this whole post made my heart happy.  

Obviously I knew knitting was the new yoga like 13 years ago, but some people are just now figuring this out. Plus, it linked to a free blanket pattern!

Yeah, imma need to make one of these and never take it off. 

Shibori quilt goals!!! 

Happy weekending!

because i'm not done with shibori yet

Well I couldn't just write one (or more) post about this topic, could I? 

Over the last few months of planning on doing shibori at some point, I started collecting useful links. I referenced them often before my birthday party and had them pulled up for my friends to look at to get ideas for their bandanas. 

So here it is, a pretty comprehensive list of helpful shibori links! I hope they inspire and guide some of you like they did me. 

Shibori Indigo Dyeing Tutorial from In Color Order
DIY Shibori from Honestly WTF 
DIY Shibori Designs 4 Ways from Design*Sponge 
How to Indigo Dye Fabric from IndieSew 
Shibori Indigo Cloth Napkins from Alice and Lois 
Shibori Dyeing from Seamwork
Shibori Tie Dye Folding Techniques from Creative in Chicago 
4 Ways to Dye with Indigo Dye from Brit+Co 

And you're going to need some creative ways to wear your bandanas, so look no further than this article for tons of ways to wear them. 

I was also inspired by this bolo necklace from Free People which they unfortunately no longer carry, but it gives me good ideas! I'm thinking of making some polymer clay rings to wear with my bandanas. 

I was also inspired by this bolo necklace from Free People which they unfortunately no longer carry, but it gives me good ideas! I'm thinking of making some polymer clay rings to wear with my bandanas. 

on sketching

For as long as I can remember, I have loved watercolor paintings. More specifically, watercolor illustrations, especially if they have some pen/ink and/or words. I'm not quite sure where this affinity came from, but it has been long-lasting and continues to inspire me. 

As I recently mentioned, knitting is causing me a lot of problems these days. It's really sad and I feel an empty hole in my heart that can only be filled by creating something with my own two hands. As I have also mentioned previously, I have been a creative thing my entire life and have never not been doing some sort of art or craft. In junior high I was introduced to the idea of keeping a sketchbook. It was encouraged in one of my drawing classes but I never really did it. But I had to admit that there was something so pleasing about the idea of doing a little something everyday and filling up a book with whatever I wanted. 

In high school I continued to take art classes and continued to every once in a while play around in a sketchbook. It wasn't until I was in college that I started putting ideas to paper more often. It still wasn't an everyday thing but it was so fulfilling to see pages filling up in my sketchbook! This sketchbook habit was highly encouraged by my painting professor during my senior year of college. She didn't care what we did in our sketchbooks, but she wanted us to be doing something in them. We turned our sketchbooks in at the end of the semester and she filled the pages with sticky notes with her comments. 

Now, if you aren't an art-type person you will have no idea how scary all of that was. Someone else looking at your sketchbook!? Commenting on it?! What?! All the comments were positive, of course. You can't just go through someone's sketchbook and tell them you don't like it. And guess what? I have a sick fascination with other people's sketchbooks. Always have, always will. I love to see what people are doing in their own little art space, all the ideas they are working on and just messing around with. And I feel that same sense of satisfaction seeing someone's sketchbook filling up as I do with my own sketchbooks. 

So anyway, this is getting tangential. What I'm saying is this: not knitting is leaving a void in my life and I think working on my sketchbook more often will help fill that void a little. I learned in college that in order for me to actually keep a sketchbook, I need to take the pressure off of myself for anything to be "good" and also I needed to downsize. I am a person who is just naturally drawn to tiny little things. My sketchbooks weren't huge- usually 8"x12"- but the pages were just large enough to make me feel intimidated about filling them. At some point in college I picked up a little 5.5"x7.5" sketchbook with thicker pages perfect for using watercolor on and figured out that it was my perfect sketchbook size. I collaged the front of it and the rest is history- I have completely filled up two of those sketchbooks and am working through a third. Each gets its own special collaged cover (because I find the covers they come with very uninspiring) and filled with whatever I want- notes from books I'm reading, lots of hand lettering practice, swatches from new supplies, paint sample cards, magazine pages, sketches that I blatantly copy from other artists, the list could go on and on. 

This all comes back around to watercolor, I swear. It is often my preferred sketchbook medium. I am not formally trained in watercolor at all but I find it to be so fun. Some of my favorite illustrators work mostly in watercolor and I get so inspired by their work. After perusing Pinterest for a while, I am inspired all over again to play in my sketchbook more often with my watercolor. I did so on the 4th of July and it was pretty much the best. So this is me setting some sort of intention in the world- I want to do more watercoloring in my sketchbook. I'm not going to put any rules around it but it is merely a little goal, something I want to strive to do more of. 

Now for some watercolory links. 
My "art inspiration" Pinterest board which is full of watercolor and pen/ink illustration
Yao Cheng Creativebug watercolor class
Jennifer Orkin Lewis Creativebug gouache class
Jennifer Orkin Lewis (a few years ago) on painting in her sketchbook everyday