Another Shawl on a Fence

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Thursday, March 29, 2012

I've been busy knitting shawls lately and I've realized that the only place in or around the house large enough to photograph them is the fence in the backyard. Yet another reason why we need a bigger house!

This is a very simple shawl using a combination of garter and stockinette stitch. It's modeled after the Simple Yet Effective shawl pattern available on Ravelry but I (accidentally) didn't follow it exactly. It's made with Noro yarn which really does most of the work. I alternated between two skeins every 4 rows to get the striped look.

So here it is, another shawl on a fence.




























Stay tuned for the next episode of Knits on a Fence :)!

English Muffin Bread

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Sunday, March 25, 2012

When I saw this English Muffin bread recipe on Pinterest today, I headed straight to the store to pick up some rapid rise yeast!

I really enjoy baking but I usually make sweet goodies like cakes, pies and cookies. I haven't had great luck with bread in the past but this recipe seemed so simple and delicious that I just had to give it a go. I'm so glad I did. We're having bread for lunch and dinner tonight!




























This recipe was so easy and only required 5 ingredients (and one is water so that hardly even counts!).

Here is the timeline of my bread baking adventure;

10:30 AM - So inspired by Pinterest post that I actually got off the couch and went to the store for yeast
11:00 AM - Mixed all of the ingredients in the biggest bowl I had in the house
11:07 AM - Filled greased loaf pans with sticky gooey dough and set aside to rise
11:42 AM - Confirmed dough had risen enough and loaded pans into oven
12:15 PM - Checked oven obsessively
12:17 PM - Checked oven obsessively
12:18 PM - Checked oven obsessively
12:20 PM - Temporarily removed loaves, smothered with butter and put back in the oven
12:28 PM - Pulled out loaves and cooled where the great danes couldn't reach them (top of the fridge)
12:39 PM - Overheard husband saying, "holy sh*t, this is the best bread ever"

So, from the couch to a very happy hubby in just over 2 hours. Not bad!

Thank you for the fantastic recipe, Jill!

Baker's Twine Wrapped Eggs Tutorial

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Friday, March 23, 2012

Despite the fact that an inch of snow fell at our house last week, I'm still ready to welcome the change of seasons and celebrate the spring holidays!

I got a jump start on decorating this year with these simple baker's twine wrapped eggs.




























You just need a few supplies to make these; baker's twine, hard boiled eggs and a glue dot runner.















I recommend using a hard boiled egg for these unless you like to live dangerously and want to risk using an uncooked egg. In order for the glue to adhere to the egg, you'll want to make sure that it's completely dry and at room temperature.

Start by running a row of glue dots all the way around the egg. Look closely at this picture and you can see the light blue glue dots!















Now, simply wrap your bakers twine around the egg on top of the row of glue dots. The glue will be strong enough to hold the twine tightly in place but not so sticky that you can't lift off the twine and reposition it if needed.





















Start on either side of your first row and lay down another stripe of glue dots. Wrap your twine around that stripe and repeat the whole process again and again until your whole egg is covered!















When you get to the top (and bottom), stripe the glue back and forth then cut your twine a few inches long. Carefully cover the remaining area by winding your twine in concentric circles.















I want to make a whole vase full of these. Of course, it's going to require that I buy additional colors of baker's twine. Oh darn.



Favorite Things Giveaway WINNER!

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Sunday, March 18, 2012

I'm pleased to announce the winner of the Favorite Things Giveaway!! Congratulations to Angie from Oh, Sorry. This is Angie.!!































Angie will be getting this haul of some of my favorite things!!














Congratulations, Angie! I'll be contacting you for address info shortly!

Dick's Drive-In Hoop

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

If you live in Seattle or have visited our fine city, you've probably heard of Dick's Drive-In and maybe even enjoyed a cheap burger and some of their famous greasy fries. There are a number of locations throughout the city and I'd consider all of them important landmarks!

I made this for a swap partner that was a former Seattleite. I know if I ever moved away, Dick's 2AM cheeseburgers and vanilla shakes would be something I'd greatly miss. Hopefully this gave her a nice reminder of her former home.















I made this with a combination of freezer paper stenciling and embroidery stitching. I used acrylic paints in layers and once everything was dry, I stitched over the top of it and around the outlines. I liked the bright colors it resulted in. Better yet, it's another way to avoid learning satin stitch!!
















Thanks for stopping by! Don't forget, you still have another day to enter my Favorite Things Giveaway! I'll be picking a winner tomorrow.

Ishbel Shawl

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Monday, March 12, 2012

I recently did a personal swap with the AWESOME sheepBlue from QuirkieCraft. I so admire her talent and whimsy so I was thrilled to get to craft with her. She happened to request a knitted shawlette just at a time that I was craving some shawl knitting!
I made her the famous Ishbel shawl as seen all over Ravelry. The shawl and I had a troubled relationship for the month we were together. There was some frogging, some angry throwing into the WIP basket and more than a few cuss words. We eventually found a mutual respect for one another and ended on a happy note. I'll remember her fondly :).

I used Araucania Ranco solid yarn. This was the first time I've used it but it won't be last! It's lovely to work with and the hand dyed color is beautiful.



























I did the bind-off a bit too snuggly so I didn't have the wiggle room to block out the points. I'll make that correction if I ever knit another one, which I will.

I received some wonderfully fun and beautifully made goodies from sheepBlue in exchange for this shawl. It was a really great swap all around.

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

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Thursday, March 8, 2012

This isn't crafty but I still wanted to share it with you all!

I got a wild hair yesterday (excuse the pun) and decided I needed a bit of a style change. After some Pinterest browsing for "short hair" and a trip to the salon tonight, my long hair is long gone!





















This new cut is going to be fun but it will take some getting used to. I've been scaring myself every time I walk past a mirror. Who is that person?!

If I knew how to use Photoshop maybe I would have made my cheeks a little rosier and my forehead a little less shiny in this picture but this is the real me after a long Thursday. No secrets here :).


Favorite Things Giveaway

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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

I think it's time to thank all of my kick-ass followers with a giveaway! Would you guys agree :)?

I've never met a craft supply that I didn't like but I will admit to having some favorites. I thought I'd share some of the craft goodies that I enjoy most of all with my readers. The winner of this giveaway is going to receive all of the awesome stuff that follows!

Yarn Crafts
1 skein of Cascade 128 Superwash
1 set Addi Turbo circular needles


I absolutely adore working with Cascade Yarns. They have lovely fibers and a wide range of colors. When it comes to needles, Addi's are just the best, plain and simple.















Embroidery
4 skeins DNC floss
5 5"x5" squares of fancy felt

I wish I could have a giant wall with every single color of DMC flosses! I know felt doesn't seem like a traditional embroidery supply but it's something that I use in nearly every hoop. This fancy felt is my favorite to work with.
















Sewing
3 coordinating fat quarters

I'm a sewing newb but that doesn't stop me from collecting (hoarding) fabric. I especially like fat quarters in a collection of fabrics. They are perfect for small projects.















Paper Crafts
Collection of ephemera
Tim Holtz Distress ink pad
Fantastix smudger

I wasn't that interested in paper crafts until I discovered some of the wonderful and inspiring ephemera pieces out there. I love opening up my bin-o-junk and play with all of it. I recently discovered the wonder that are smudge sticks. These are great for adding softness to stamped designs or aging papers. Also on the topic of aging, Tim Holtz Distress inks are awesome and they come in some great shades!















My Favorite Supply of All
Alphabet stamps

I've you've browsed any of my completed projects, you must know that alphabet stamps are my absolute favorite. I use them ALL the time and can't imagine a crafty life without them.















To review, our winner will receive; 1 skein of Cascade 128 Superwash, 1 set Addi Turbo circular needles, 4 skeins DNC floss, 5 5"x5" squares of fancy felt, 3 coordinating fat quarters, collection of ephemera, Tim Holtz Distress ink pad, Fantastix smudger and a set of alphabet stamps!

Now that I see these all together I realize I'm missing so many other favorite supplies! Aw well, this is a good start for now.














To enter, simply leave a comment about some of your favorite craft supplies! If you are a follower, you can leave two comments and double your chances of winning. Be sure to leave a way for me to reach you.

I'll be picking a winner at random on Sunday, March 18th.


Spring Inspired Cushion Cover

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Thursday, March 1, 2012

I organized a cushion cover swap over on Craftster and this is what I made for my wonderful partner, Judy (aka pjherbert). Judy and I have co-organized many swaps together (including the cushion cover swap) and I was really excited to finally get to craft with her. 

She had listed 'floral' as one of the themes she likes and given that we're heading into spring, I thought a simple flower inspired design would be nice. 




























I used linen and quilting cottons for the foundation. The flowers are made of felt and were stitched on with embroidery floss then finished off with a variety of white buttons. The stems were embroidered as well. 

The quote is by Ralph Waldo Emerson. I stamped it on a piece of linen using permanent ink then sewed it to the foundation with a zig-zag stitch. 

I can't wait to see the amazing cover that Judy is making for me. Check out the gallery to admire some of the great covers others have made! 

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