Tuesday, November 19, 2013


So, I had been commissioned for some hats.  Nothing major, nothing super hard or fancy.  Well, once I sent the final bill to the client, they gawked.  The rate didn't change, but the time had.  In order to give the client what they wanted, the time was needed.  They were none to happy about it.  So now, I have 5 hats and the little bit of cash they gave up front.  At least I got that!

Here are some lessons that I learned. Number 1, it really is true that no one will pay you what a handmade item is worth.  No matter what they say.  I had said this before, but this client gave me a glimmer of hope.  It wasn't hope...it was wishful thinking.  It really is out of their budget, unless they're Warren Buffet, and then he's not going to pay because he could get it off Etsy for $30.  Number 2, do the work for yourself and those you love.  It truly is a labor of love, and it should go to those who appreciate it.  Number 3, I have more time to work on patterns than I thought I did.  No, really - I typed up 2 patterns pretty quickly and edited them (like in about 2 hours each, or less).  So, they are going on Ravelry.  Once I get them up, I'll post a link.  It's amazing how quickly you can write up a pattern in comparison to making an object.  So, if I have a design idea - write it up, have a test group knit or crochet it up, take down their notes, and post it.  That can go a lot faster than doing it yourself.  Ever experience something like this?  How did you handle it?

Wednesday, November 06, 2013


It feels like it's been forever since I last posted, but there's been a lot going on.  Expecting a third child takes just as much, if not more, preparation than having the first or second.  The good thing is that I have plenty of clothes, no matter what the gender.  I've been working on a crochet commission project, and hope to have pictures of that soon.

I've ripped back my Skelf, mainly because the shoulders kept falling down, and it was annoying to be wearing it and pulling at it all day.  You can see my project page here.  I'm going to actually do what the book suggested, and knit it based on my actual measurements, rather than just pick a size that seems close to the size I want.  Ysolda is so smart that way.  But, before I can cast on, I have to take said measurements.  There's a lot of them to take, but once I have them, I can translate them to any pattern.  Like my Oatmeal pullover, that's still sitting in the floor of my closet unfinished.  I think it's going to be a long, hard winter this year, and I want to be prepared.

I'm also horribly behind on socks.  I have 49 days until Christmas, and I still have 2 and a half pairs left to go.  Well, I have almost to the heel on the second sock done, so maybe 2 and 1/3 pairs?  In any case, I have to get busy.  I think I'm over being tired so much, as I'm headed into the second trimester.  Wish me luck!  What are you working on?  Please share!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Moving on

This past week or so has been rather tiring.  I've been making progress though:

I finished one sock.  I used the Vanilla Latte pattern by Virginia Rose-Jeanes, and it's more of a recipe than a pattern.  That's not a bad thing, if you're familiar with socks.  If you're looking for strict directions, however, you could run into a problem here or there.  I liked it, as it allowed me to use my favorite heel, a modified eye of partridge, and not feel like I'm committing heresy by making a substitution.

In crochet, I'm not quite halfway done with the center square for Alchemilla:

I have about 2 and a half skeins left to use for the center, at least by my calculations.  I'm going to try to make this my "mindless" project, as it doesn't take much brain power at the moment to work on that center.

I've also been commissioned to make a few hats for a photographer, which is pretty cool.  She's just starting out, but she's really good.  You can check her out here.  She prefers baby photography - like newborns.  This works out, since - ta da!  We're pregnant!  We decided to try, as we didn't think God was done with our family, and we were right.  So, #3 is on its way!  We should be expecting a new arrival in May.  What are you working on?

Monday, October 07, 2013


We went on vacation a couple of weeks ago, and with vacation comes rest.  I did get some rest, which promptly disappeared once we returned to real life.  But I did get these:

And no amount of reality can take that away, because that IS reality.  I did get to finish one project:

Elijah #1 is done.   I have since added eyes, and it's been given to its intended (the first picture up there).  The second picture up there decided that he had enough stuffed animals, but maybe he could use one more.  So, #2 will be in progress shortly.  The yarn has been wound; I just am insistent on finishing some Christmas presents.  Or at least one more.  I have also decided that this:

is just not working for me.  It's 100% alpaca, and I think it's a little fuzzy for a cardigan.  I just don't know that I'd wear a fuzzy cardigan.  I was actually thinking of changing it into a lovely retro styled pullover.  I think I'd get more wear out of it, and if I plan it right, the math won't be too hard.  Another issue I'm having is the pattern.  It's a lovely pattern, and really well written.  I just don't have the brain power for it.  It takes concentration, and I don't have a lot of that whenever I pick it up.  I'm thinking a plain sweater without a whole lot of concentration being needed would be a better option for me.  What would you do with 100% alpaca?  Have any suggestions?

Have you felt fall yet?  It was here, and briefly left this weekend, only to end in a storm and return with full force.  How's your fall season shaping up?

Monday, September 30, 2013

Slower than expected

I was on vacation last week, and I intended to take pictures of my craft stuff.  Really, I did.  Instead, I took some pictures of my children playing on a playground and I played a little with some of the lenses I have.  I'm still not great with it all, and have issues from time to time, but it wasn't bad.  I'll post those pictures later.  Now, since tomorrow is October 1st, I have 30 days to make my children's Halloween costumes.  I had thought I would get by with them just wanting to wear last year's, but no - I'm not that lucky.  So, my son decided to be a knight, and I will finally use the pattern I bought about 2 years ago.  My daughter, of course, wants to be a princess.  But not just any princess will do.

Courtesy of Disney Junior

She wants to be Sofia.  So, what's a mother to do?  Make the costume, of course.  First order of business is the fabric.  I'm going to hit the cheap spots first - the thrift stores.  Let's see what I can find.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Lazy blogger, busy crocheter

I've been working on the Alchemilla.

It's slow progress, but it's progress.  For whatever reason, I'm just not feeling the knitting these days.  Then again, I'm not really feeling the crochet either.  I'm still in a blah mode.  Maybe it'll break soon.  In a few weeks, I should be sharing some really great news.  Hopefully I won't be quite as lazy this next week in blogging.  There are a lot of things going on, and I'm trying to get on top of everything.

Friday, September 13, 2013


Ever get the doldrums?  You know, when you have a lot of stuff going on, but nothing really entertains you?  I'm there.  So here's what I've got going on:

I have the Numma Numma sock yarn in Cupcakes! working up in a Vanilla Latte pattern.  They're really rather lovely, but ho-hum right now.

I have my Grace cardi on the needles, and it's in a lovely alpaca blend, but again, just ho-hum for me at the moment.

I'm working on squares for this afghan, which is a class over at The Whole Nine Yarns, starting this Saturday.  The squares are easy and fun, and most take about an hour to work up.  But again, just ho-hum for me.

I just found some yarn in my stash that would be lovely as this shawl, but I don't know that I'm really that excited about winding the yarn and getting started.

These are just the projects that I've touched in the past few days that I have going on, and doesn't count some of the others that have been sitting patiently for me.  I'm not sure what it is yet.  Maybe I'm just tired of having to think and be on all the time.  Or maybe it's that I want to do what I want to do for a little bit, and let everything else go hang.  In any case, the projects that were exciting are now just okay.  I guess it's the "seven year slump" for me.  That's rather odd, because this time of year is usually invigorating for me.  I love fall, and it's in the air.  New plan - start whatever I want, even if it's 10 new projects.  Just start something - and maybe some excitement will burst back on the scene.  How do you deal with the doldrums?

Monday, September 09, 2013

Working on it

Guess what?

This is my Grace.  Not too shabby, huh?  It's not as far along as I'd like it, but then, what project ever is as far along as you'd like it?  I rarely have those that knit up as fast as I'd like them to, but part of the joy of knitting is the time.  I did manage to work on a sock today as well.  I'm now at the heel flap.  That should make it go a little faster.  Here's the odd part - I was going to give this pair to my mother, but I decided to change what I was going to give her, so now who do these socks go to?  

The Numma Numma sock yarn is lovely to knit.  It has very little twist in it, so it's almost like knitting with a thin roving.  It also is self-striping.  I was talking with another lady at church this weekend about self-striping sock yarn, and how it makes you look so smart because of all the color changes.  It looks like you put in WAY more effort than you did, all because it stripes.  

In other news, this weekend was wonderful.  I went to a women's retreat with some ladies from my church, and it was terrific.  

Thursday, September 05, 2013


I've been busy - playing single mom for a weekend while hubby visited friends and crocheting.  I finished these:

A two simple crocheted washcloths and a heating pad scented with lavender.  I made two sets, and they're for the women's retreat at my church this next weekend.

I found it difficult over the past few months *cough, couple of years, cough* to be content.  It has little to nothing to do with my home life - I really love that aspect of my life.  This lack of contentment usually has to do with work.  This in turn projects itself onto me, and I project it onto others (usually the hubby who is a wonderful understanding man and helps me see this regularly).  So, in an effort to put the discontentment back where it belongs, I'm going to start working on clothes for myself.  No sense waiting until I'm the "perfect size", is there?  The perfect size is right where I am.  And the best part is, if I make them, and get into a smaller size later, I can always REMAKE them.  Novel idea, huh? *grin*  So, first up:

This is to be accompanied by a top and skirt.  Socks are still on the horizon as well, for Christmas.  I think I just need a big project to keep momentum.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

In which I am tired and still have a lot to do

I figured out that crocheting the washcloths take about half the time that knitting them does, and I have switched to doing this.  I'm adding some to my "to make" list, but knowing that they take very little time, and with the time that I have saved, I'm not so worried.  I finished Princess's birthday sweater - weaving in ends and sewing on buttons (purely for decoration and at her request they're Hello Kitty buttons).  She's turning 3 in a few days, and she also wanted a washcloth, in pink (is there any other color for a princess?).

I've noticed I've been slacking on the pictures, but feel like writing for the moment.  I'm getting together some lovely gifts for the women's retreat at my church, hopefully.  I'm hoping that I can get out of work on time and make it up to the retreat before dinner.  That's going to be tricky - the leaving work on time part.  That's always a challenge for me.  I attempt to be on time, but usually fail.  I'm not horribly late, just 5-10 minutes most of the time, but that bothers me.  I try to correct it.  But with two children, it's hard.

Monday, August 26, 2013


I'm behind on my Postcards for August, but I've been knitting dishcloths like crazy.  I have 9 for Christmas gifts (WAY faster than socks), and I'm taking a small break from Christmas knitting to see if I can crochet a few for the Women's Conference at my church.  They always do drawings with little gift bags, and what would be better than a couple of crochet washcloths, a nice soap, and maybe a heated rice bag for your neck?  A little pampering is what every woman needs.  So, I'm trying to get 6 dishcloths crocheted, and then I'm going to get a stack of fat quarters and see how many of the lovely neck warmers I can sew up.  Fortunately, they're fast, and the soap is easy to come by, if you know where to look.  What have you been working on recently?  Any gifts for anyone?

Thursday, August 22, 2013


Princess' Birthday sweater - just have to weave in ends and put on some decorative buttons.

A new dishcloth pattern - and it's done now too.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


11 inches donated to Locks of Love.  MUCH shorter now. :)

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Friday, August 09, 2013

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Monday, August 05, 2013

Sunday, August 04, 2013


Last night's dinner:

Coq Au Vin and Sauteed Spinach

And Earl Grey #1 and 1/4:

Friday, August 02, 2013


It's Friday!  A UFO for you.

Thursday, August 01, 2013


On Truly Myrtle, she posted about The August Break.  I like it.  So here we go:

This is where the sock was at breakfast this morning.  Hopefully it will be finished tonight.  I'm off to complete the toe.  Wish me luck.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wednesday...and wet

So, I'm working on my Earl Grey Sock.  I really only have about 4 inches left on the foot and the toe.  I know - I'm a lazy blogger and I haven't taken pictures.  I've been working late, which is unusual, since close hasn't even begun yet.  But, it's year end for us, and things are crazy.  Hubby applied for a job, and we're waiting to hear back.  Knitting keeps me calm.  It keeps me from throwing my shoes at people at work, at least until they interrupt my lunch (my knitting time).  I really want to stay home and craft for a day or two.  Maybe I'll take a vacation day sometime just for that.  

This Shibui Knits yarn knits up beautifully.  It looks really smooth, but then as you knit it, it has a slight halo that appears.  It's very lovely, and 100% merino.  The recipient should enjoy them.  

My hubby loves his socks that he received for Christmas last year.  It was funny - he had icy feet the other night, and then got excited because he remembered he had wool socks.  I think I'm going to pick another pattern for his lovely blue yarn:

It's Madelinetosh, and I've knit with that before, so that will be the second pair of socks next that I knit.  Before that, the next pair that I cast on will be this yarn:

So, that's it for me.  I want to spin, and sew, and knit, and crochet...but my time is incredibly limited.  So, I stick with knitting at the moment, because it's easy to transport.  How about you?  What other crafts have you been wanting to dig into recently?

Friday, July 26, 2013

Setting up

Well, Christmas in July was wonderful.  If you didn't get a chance to come by, you missed a whole lot of fun!  There were great patterns, lots of laughs, fun people, and even cookies!  How can you not like cookies?!  It was terrific, and I think a lot of people were interested in the next part I'm about to share: we're doing a CAL at The Whole Nine Yarns.  We're using this pattern:

It's the Crochet Sampler Afghan by Marianne Forrestal.  It has 12 different blocks, plus a border.  Once you make all the squares, you block them, seam them up, and crochet the border around.  It's just a block a month, and they take hardly any time at all.  The pattern is free, the class is $10 and that includes the yarn!  You get an hour of help from me, and in an hour, you can easily do a whole square.  At least, I've done 2 squares in an hour (each) and so some of them can be completed.

I also completed the second sock of the second set of Hermione's Everyday Socks.

That means that this one is done.  There's one more Christmas present done.  So, I've started another one.  I picked this one:

It's Earl Grey by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee.  And I balled up this skein:

It's Shibui Knits in Charcoal.  Not exactly as exciting as the MadelineTosh, but it's turning out lovely already.  As a matter of fact, it kind of makes me want a pair.  Maybe after Christmas is all done.

It's not just knitting and crocheting that I've been working on either.  We've been looking into some new possibilities for our business.  It's definitely slow-going, but changes are needed, and sometimes it's difficult to turn the Titanic.  So, little by little, things are looking up.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Fun Friday

So, I know I already posted this morning, but I’ve been kind of bored today, and so now I’m writing another post.  I’ve been scouting out some new patterns, and planning on completing some WIPs, but let’s face it, starting something new is always more fun!  Here are a few that I’ve found that I am itching to start:

Alchemilla Shawl

Have you see The Crochet Project?  Have you heard about it?  I’m completely loving this shawl – it’s based on a Hap shawl, which starts off as a big square in the middle, then works a lacy pattern around the outside.  This one is not unlike the Hap Blanket from Ysolda Teague, but it is crochet instead of knit.  It’s also worked in a fingering weight yarn, rather than a worsted weight, so it makes it like you’re NOT wearing a baby blanket.  C’mon – you know the only person who should ever wear a baby blanket is a BABY.  And then it’s less “wearing” and more “wrapped up in.”


You know I’ve been working on an Elijah, right?  Just in case you didn’t know, I am.  I have plans to make 2 for Christmas for my lovely children.  Right after I stop sleeping to complete all the projects I want to make for Christmas.  Yet I digress.  Have you seen this?


This is incredible – I love the use of motifs.  It’s worked in a sock yarn (fingering to DK weight) and a great way to use up scraps.  I really want to make 3 – one for each of my kids, one for a lovely girl whose mother is a dear that I know through The Whole Nine Yarns (link) and maybe even one for me! 

Tiramisu Baby Blanket

I know – another crochet project!  Isn’t it a lovely baby blanket though?  Just to be fair, I’ve had my eye on this one for a while too:

Big Bad Baby Blanket

I keep meaning to make this one, for someone I knew who had a baby last year, but I think it might get passed to someone else who’s about to have a baby (if it’s a girl – if not, I may have to rethink the yarn choice).   I’ve been adding some things here and there to my queue.  Some things are simple and easy – others are not.  What about you?  Have you been noticing anything fun on Ravelry lately?  Find any new great patterns out there?