Tuesday, July 28, 2009

More projects...

I'm loving my pirate project bag that I got from fiber friend Tink's Etsy shop. I think most people would use it for socks, but I am using it for the dishcloths I am now making from my super cheap bargain buy a week or so ago. It's great to just grab it and head outside for some knitting while the kidsters are occupied, playing together in the sprinkler or on the swings.

***Reality check!***

Ok, that's what I try to do. The bag makes it outside with me, and the knitting gets out for a little sunshine. But the kidsters do everything in their power to keep me from making any actual progress. It's like they've formed a secret alliance or something. (It might be the only thing they agree upon.) I've even said I would knit them some that are "cool". Kidster #1 wanted a fire helmet. So, no problem. I'm currently making this. Kidster #2 wants a trash truck. No problem. I found this one. I'll probably finish them when they have moved on to some other fascinations.

See, I am two timing it again. My night time project is this little giraffe. My friend (well, my husband's cousin's wife...but we're really friends too) had her second baby two weeks ago. She herself has this giraffe thing going. And she's one of those people that probably would appreciate a knitted blanket or something like that, but not use it or appreciate it like you or I would. Plus I would like something that will grow up with the baby, at least for a little while. So I am making the little gal for her new little gal to play with. It's worked from the legs up, and I have the four legs done. Tonight I am planning to get them all attached to the body. I know most people would probably finish the project in a day or two, but remember I am doing this one hour at a time!

Tomorrow we're headed off to Cape Cod for a few days. I can't guarantee that I'll get too much knitting done since the kidsters are coming too, but I'll post a giraffe pic when I get back!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Checkerboard Dishcloth

I'm one of those people who like things symmetrical. And linear is pretty good too. I wanted a dishcloth that was the same on both sides and I didn't like any of the checked cloth patterns I found so I made this one up. It is so easy you don't even need to print out the directions. Oh, and very textured so it does it's job quite nicely!

The border is done in garter but you could easily change it to seed stitch or another stitch of your preference.

Skill Level: Simple
Materials: US 7 needles (or appropriate for your yarn)
Yarn: Worsted Weight cotton (I used Lion Cotton)

CO 36 stitches
Knit three rows in garter stitch
Rows 4-10: Knit 3, *knit 5, purl 5*, repeat 2 more times, knit 3
Rows 11-17: Knit 3, *purl 5, knit 5*, repeat 2 more times, knit 3
Repeat pattern two more times.
Knit three rows in garter stitch.
Bind off.

Remember it's a dishcloth. Don't worry about gauge or blocking or any of that fussy stuff. And if you can make enough of these to earn a small fortune, then by all means have at it.
I'd love to see you add your project to Ravelry.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Something new

I don't think dishcloths will be my new thing. But I like that they are quick projects, and I can see the usefulness of them. Especially when finished it cost about $0.35 to make.I've started another already. I'm restocking my kitchen with matchy ones and throwing away all the fraying store bought washcloths. I was going to follow a pattern but then made up a checkerboard as I went along. I like that it is reversible. Soothes my symmetrical mind.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

One of my favorite words!

No, not "new yarn", that's two words!


Hubster looked after the kidsters so that I could get some much needed sewing done. It's not that I mind sewing, I just don't like the idea of it. It always seems to be looming over my head that I have sewing to do in order to finish up some bags. Then the days pass and it seems even more arduous of a task. Well, today I dug in my heels, plugged in the iron and got to work. I was on a roll (and the 'sters all off at Auntie's for a swim) so I kept on going. I managed to sew three linings, complete with pockets and magnetic snaps, for all the cable handle bag sisters! And then the last one just kept leering at me. This fuzzster has been laying around for a long, long time. Frankly I was just tired of looking at it any longer so I made one for that too. Yes dear friends, four linings done. Now off to watch some tube and sew them into the bags.

Ahhh, the lovely sound of "Finished"!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Update on the Twins...

The twins are drying after felting last night. For some reason the handles on the blue one are shorter than the tan one. And not just by a little. Maybe the yarn was off by a few yards? It's very commercial yarn so that's probably not it. I'm guessing that it has to be the needle I used, since I had them going at the same time. The tan one was on my favorite green metal circs, the beige one on some Susan Bates circs. Nice needles but definitely more slick than the green ones. Come to think of it, I like them better than the green ones, I just always went with my favorite color. Oh well. Handmade=no two alike, right? The good news is that now I can work on writing up the pattern!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Yay, I actually did it!

Yes, I managed to knit in my backyard. And it was stash yarn so I also managed to knit in my backyarn, too! While the kidsters were doing this...
I did this...
Got my toes done too! While I was at it I thought I'd show you my way of dealing with four working yarn balls at the same time.
It was so great! And over in 15 minutes. But I will look forward to the next miraculous moment!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

We Have A Winner!

Hooray, hooray! Congrats to Turtle, the winner of the project bag giveaway!

Don't fret if you didn't win. Head on over to Tink's Etsy Shop and get yourself one. Her prices are so reasonable you could get yourself two! I bet the Java and the Flower Power bags disappear quick, they were your favorites!


Thankfully my blog is fixed. There must have been a drought which caused the grass to die. I managed to put the sprinklers on and get it to grow again!

Stay tuned for the project bag giveaway winner post (I need to wake up a little more folks!). I will be using random.org to pick a post number for the winner.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

My ideas are leaking out.

I feel like the Little Old Woman in the Shoe, who had so many children she didn't know what to do. Have you ever had so many ideas to post about that you just couldn't get any of them out? Or were afraid that they would rattle around in your brain so much you would forget them, or worse they would leak out? I started a list of post ideas, but then I lost it. I think kidster #2 threw it away or hid it somewhere. He's in the hiding things stage.

Hey, don't forget today's the last day to enter the giveaway!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Stash Management

Got some new yarn yesterday. In total, I spent $20. I have enough for three sweaters! Not that I'll make them into sweaters...that would take me a long, long time.

I'm planning a summer tank with this. Yeah, I know it might be next summer. I can hear you snickering over there.
No plan for this yet but it's good basic black kidster yarn for the stash. And at $0.50 each I couldn't let it sit on the shelf.
And this is for my kitchen. Perfect match (it's really red, not pink as it appears in the pictures). My Ravelry friends might have noticed that I've spent some time faving a bunch of dishcloth patterns. Now if I can only get off Ravelry and start knitting!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Check out the other Around Abouts!

One of the most flattering thing for me has been seeing other people make bags from my pattern.

One of the first ones was fiber friend Gretchen's Around About. She used the same yarn for the color pattern, but switched out the pink for brown. Funny how one little change can make something so different!

This one is from Montananana's blog. She stayed with the pink theme too. Isn't it cute?

And this one from AprilFoolGirl is a solid color. I love it!

Anyway, I do hope the other projects on Ravelry get finished soon, the suspense is killing me!

And don't forget to enter my giveaway!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

About me tag

Super Speedy Shortly passed this Meme on to me. I've been working on this post in bits and pieces (ie, when I get a few moments or before Curious George ends), forgive me if some of the answers are a little off. So, as if you didn't know enough about me already here goes!

What is your current obsession?
Reworking (ok, trashing and redoing) my Amybelbags website and getting my Etsy shop started.

What is your weirdest obsession?
Fruit snacks. I love them. I buy them and end up eating them all before the kidsters even get any. I tell myself that they are ok for me because they have no fat. And I'm sticking to it. I think I'll go get some right now!

What are you wearing today?
Shorts, t-shirt, Teva flip flops. That's pretty much every day. Except when it's cold. Then it's jeans and a sweatshirt over the t-shirt. And maybe sneakers, but I push the flip flops as far as they can go.

What’s for dinner?
Whatever Hubster decides to make. Yes, you heard right. I am a SAHM and he cooks!

What would you eat for your last meal?
I have to admit that I had trouble with this one. I think it would be steamers or lobster. Maybe both, but it's not like I never get to eat them with being so near the ocean and all. Our town just opened up the shellfishing beds so I think I'll actually be having a lot of clamboils this summer. Let's hope none of them are my last meal though!

What’s the last thing you bought?
Does clean teeth count? I went to the dentist today. Without insurance it cost me $85 big ones just for a cleaning. And I told them to pass on the x-rays. If they want to know what my roots look like so badly then they can pay for them! Needless to say they didn't take the x-rays.

What are you listening to right now?
Birds chirping and the faint sounds of the neighbor's grand kids, here for a visit, playing next door. It is fantastic since the windows have been closed most of the summer so far due to this terrible wet weather we've had up here.

If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?
Maui, on the road to Hana. I went there with my mother in 2000, and they were right in the middle of a drought. There were hardly any waterfalls and I feel a little jipped.

Which language do you want to learn?

What do you love most about where you currently live?
Location. There is water everywhere. Tidal rivers and open ocean are just down the road. When the kidsters get restless I can just pack 'em up and head over to the town beach. We're there in five minutes. And if they lose it while we're there, we can head home in a jiffy without feeling like we blew the plan for the entire day.

What is your favorite colour?
Edible greens like olive, kiwi, avocado, lime, and celery (my Ravelry ID sums this one up perfectly).

What is your favorite piece of clothing in your own wardrobe?
Teva flip flops. They are like walking on air.

What were you doing ten years ago?
Father's Day weekend (the then non-)Hubster took me to Cape Cod for the weekend. It was our first "back together" thing we did since having a two year break. The rest is history.

Describe your personal style?

If you had $300 now, what would you spend it on?
A new bathroom floor. It was the only floor we didn't redo, and it shows.

What are you going to do after this?
Put the kids to bed. Do some more surfing, then go sit with Hubster and do some knitting. Hopefully. If there isn't any laundry to fold.

What are your favorite films?
I am an '80's movie lover. Give me a good Ghostbusters or Back to the Future installment, but my all time favorite by leaps and bounds is Romancing the Stone. "Say hello to my little Mule!"

What inspires you?
Seeing my kids become independent. I don't get sad or weepy that they are growing up. I like to see them making progress and succeeding.

Do you collect anything?
Does yarn count? Ok, that was too easy. Actually, I guess I "collect" presents. When I see something that the kidsters (or anyone else on my list) would like and, here's the important part, when it is on sale, I get it and put it away for either Christmas or Birthday time. It makes it less stressful for me timewise and moneywise when that time comes.

What makes you follow a blog?
Nice pictures, funny commentary, beautiful (but attainable) knitting.

What was the most enjoyable thing you did today?
Well, the dentist was not exactly fun, so I'm still waiting for that one. Although I have thoroughly enjoyed being able to sit here at the computer and do some blogging, raveling, and the like.

What is your favorite FO and why?
The bee mittens I made for Kidster #1. I told him I would make him mittens and he said bees. Not sure why a 5yo afraid of bees outside would pick that but we went with it. They came out great and he loves them to death. It is my most rewarding FO.

If you had the afternoon off and all to yourself what would you do to relax, besides knitting or raveling/blogging?
Ok, this is my question. I thought it fitting since knitting and computer related pursuits are my favorite things to do when I have a little free time. So to peel me away from those might be hard, but I would do some planting, replanting, or garden fixing-upping, then soak in the pool to cool off and work on my tan. That is assuming that this New England weather starts acting like it's actually July around here!

Now for your turn. The rules:
1. Respond and rework; answer the questions on your blog, replace one question that you dislike with a question of your invention, add one more question of your own.
2. Tag others!

I'm tagging:
Nean the Bean

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Why I Love Knitting Purses

Handy dandy yarn storage.
She is now complete...except for the felting.
And here is what I ended up with for scraps. Got to love that!
Now for ripping back the blue one and getting that one done. I have a week before my father arrives. I wonder if I'll be able to get it done by then. Hmm, ambitious I know. I wont hold my breath!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Summer Slowdown

I have to say that now that school is over I am finding it hard to steal a few minutes to post to the blog. And I don't seem to be the only one, as more than one of the blogs I follow are in the same boat. Is it the heat that seems to be gripping the country? I wouldn't know. New England has had a dismal summer so far. We managed to get three fantastic days over the holiday weekend, but now we are back to cloudy, rainy and 70 degrees. If I get any paler I might turn translucent!

To boost my spirits and hopefully yours too, today's post will be "giveaway day". You all know about my giveaway, right? Well, in case you needed something to go in that project bag I am giving away, here are a few more from my fiber friends.

Shortly is having a sock yarn giveaway to celebrate the release of her new sock pattern.

Darcy is also having a sock yarn giveaway on her blog.

So go over and enter. It's cheaper than playing the lottery!
I have managed to finish one of the cabled handle bags. Pictures next post!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Project Bag Giveaway!

A bit ago I got my hands on a few Infi-knity bags from my friend H over at the Tink-n-Frog. They are great reversible project bags, perfect for small projects like socks!

I picked these two because they reminded me of things I had been talking about here lately. The pirate bag reminded me of my latest pirate escapades. And the butterfly bag for my new cable needle necklace.

But wait! I am giving one of them away! One lucky blog reader will get to choose their favorite.

Ways to enter:

1. Visit the Tink-n-Frog Etsy shop then come back and comment on what you like.
2. Jump in the sandbox for an extra entry (those of you already playing get two more entries). Leave a comment saying you did so.
3. Post this giveaway on your blog with a link to this giveaway. Comment with your post link.

Sorry, I don't tweet, plurk, or floss. Wait, I do floss! I'm one of those weird people who actually like flossing :).

Enter now through July 15th.
Random drawing will be held on July 16th, my six month blogiversary!
I will ship internationally. It might take a while, but I would not think of leaving out some of my loyal fiber friends!