Another Yarn, Knitting Needle, and Hook Score

Blogged under Fiber Fun,My College Craft Club by Tammy on Wednesday 15 June 2011 at 3:38 pm

I mentioned to my mother that I was attempting to learn how to knit. She is the first to try to teach me many years ago, but it just never clicked back then. I ended up making a bunch of triangles and just getting frustrated and giving up. Yes, you think maybe I dropped a stitch here and there?

After hearing that I was going at it again, she offered to give me all her knitting and yarn stash, a mixed menagerie of odds and ends, but of course I could not turn it down. She is kept pretty busy these days helping my sister with her kids, and the little free time she has she uses to either go to the gym, read, or sew.

Obviously I knew that she knitted at one time since she’s the first to try to teach me, but I was surprised when she handed me a large bag of knotted up funky yarn and various needles. There was some pretty weird stuff in there, such as some acrylic skeins marked .99 from TG&Y, but I persevered and was rewarded with lots of yarn bits (perfect for my craft club to practice with), 6 knitting needles, a knitting spool, and 4 crochet hooks. There were a few orphaned knitting needles and some yarn that was such a tangle of knots that there was no way to tame it, but for most of it I was able to rescue.

Reusing and Recycling and Crafting

Blogged under My Crafty News,Yada, Yada, Yada by Tammy on Monday 13 June 2011 at 4:53 pm

While I’m away from school, I’ve been doing some major spring cleaning around here. I’m going through the guest room, which eventually ends up the “stick it in there” room. I’m going through closets, drawers, whatever needs to be culled is getting the heave-ho.

In the past, I’ve donated items like these to Amvets, but they no longer come by my house to pick up. There is a Goodwill drop off that isn’t too far away, and that’s another good place to donate. However, there is a local recycle/reuse center that I’ve not only managed to donate items to but pick up a few free craft items as well. The last time I went, I got some crochet hooks, knitting needles, and crochet thread.

This time, I brought in six boxes of various items (clothes, dishes, a scanner, and what-nots) and left with a few skeins of vintage yarn and some sewing thread. Seriously, this yarn looks like it’s from the 1970s! It is perfect to add to the craft club’s yarn stash.

While I was there, people were already rummaging through my boxes of stuff, so hopefully, they found something they liked too. That’s what I really like about the reuse center. I get a little something and give a little something.

Explore Craft Links

Blogged under Around the Web by Tammy on Sunday 12 June 2011 at 10:30 am

Aileen’s Musings
Aileen offers you a printable Dad banner for you to download and make for the dad in your life!

Beading Arts
Copper tubing makes wonderful copper beads!

Carmi’s Art/Life World

Carmi has a tutorial for the Crafter’s Companion this week.

Craft Buds
Need to whip up a Father’s Day gift? Craft Buds has a roundup of free sewing patterns for Father’s Day, including a tie, an ebook reader cover, and an interesting hat.

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there are two chances to score yourself copies of cooking and crafting books just by leaving a comment, a free eyeglass box template, along with a “ransom type” quote embellished mirror, step-by-step comic drawing and inside peeks into Astounding Knits! in honor of World Wide Knitting Day (6/11/11).

Cross Stitch at
Fans of variegated flosses and newbies will both find helpful information in these tips for using it. Also, be sure to vote in the poll!

Eileen – The Artful Crafter
Here is a cute idea for personalized ceramic wedding favors. If you don’t want to buy the dye sublimation equipment yourself, find someone who already has it.

Lindsay Sews
A creative way to wrap up a tie for the man in your life on Father’s Day, with no wrapping paper involved!

Stefanie Girard’s Sweater Surgery
An interview with Jema “Emilly Ladybird” Hewitt, author of Steampunk Emporium along with a fun gear and Swarovski crystal earring project.

Retro Crochet Hair Bun Holders Discovered

Blogged under Crafts from the Past,crochet and knitting by Tammy on Thursday 9 June 2011 at 4:13 pm

While I’ve been on vacation, I have been doing some major spring cleaning around here. I’m finding all kinds of stuff, things that I am not sure why I kept, things that I haven’t been small enough to wear in 20 years, things that I can’t even remember where they came from! One of my recent discoveries was hidden under the bathroom sink along with a zillion bobby pins. I’m not sure what the official name is for this, but I’m calling it a hair bun holder.

Many, many years ago when I was much younger, I danced pretty regularly, even through most of my college years. I mainly studied ballet, jazz, and tap. I even toyed with the idea of getting a dance degree, but that would have meant going away to a strict religious school way out west where it is super cold, not my bag to say the least. Plus, after working a few seasons for “The Mouse” I knew that I didn’t have the drive to dance professionally.

I have always had long hair, and it’s very fine. Back then, it was super duper long. I could almost sit on it. So to get it up in a bun for ballet was a major effort. These bun holders really helped, and I crocheted them myself. I can’t find the book right now. Hopefully, it will turn up as I continue to cull through the mass of “things” we have around here, but I know it was probably published in the late 60s or early 70s. I made a number of items from it, but these were my favorite because they were so functional.

I washed them in hopes that they’d wouldn’t look so shabby, but that didn’t help much. Mind you; these have to be at least 20+ years old, so I think they have done their duty and are ready for the trash, but I just wanted to share a moment of nostalgia.

Knitting Graduation of Sorts

Blogged under crochet and knitting by Tammy on Tuesday 7 June 2011 at 10:10 am

After making two scarves using monster size 13 knitting needles and Wool-Ease Thick and Quick, I am now moving on to making scarf number three with smaller size 10 knitting needles (6mm) and left over Caron acrylic yarn from the afghan I made for tornado victims. A pound of yarn sure goes a long way!

I actually like the thick yarn and big needles, even though it makes me feel like Wilma Flintstone, and I plan to make another scarf using them, but that scarf will be for a friend, so I want to get my technique polished a little more. I’m still working on getting an even gauge to my stitches, but I’m getting more confident. After this third scarf, I plan tackle purl stitch.

Fun Craft Links

Blogged under Around the Web by Tammy on Sunday 5 June 2011 at 12:10 pm

Cross Stitch at
Connie’s free Musical Notes Collection will be the perfect patterns to use for a project to give to a musically inclined person.

Eileen – The Artful Crafter
Come along for a virtual visit to Caracas, Venezuela, where Artist Patty Sucre decoupages and sells beautifully-crafted trays, boxes and other wooden items. Que maravillosos!

Mixed Media Artist
Cyndi explores how to combine soy silk fusion with other backgrounds!

Stefanie Girard’s Sweater Surgery
Stefanie shares her experimentations with fabric circle pom poms and paint stick stamping,

About Family Crafts

Drop by and participate in the current make-it-over craft challenge. What can you create using duct tape?

Aileen’s Musings
Heads up all you Steampunk Art lovers out there. Aileen is celebrating her husband’s art being published in 1000 Steampunk Creations, which was just released! Stop by and find all the ways you can enter.

Carmi’s Art/Life World
I have a great tip for adding embellishments to summer t-shirts.

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
This week at Craftside there are tips on fixing pressing errors, how to write a book proposal interview with Jennifer Worick, 2 free heart clip art images, a fun recycled rebus affirmation project, and info on two events with author of Painted Pages, Sarah Ahearn.

Tornado Afghan Done

Blogged under Charity Crafting by Tammy on Saturday 4 June 2011 at 4:35 pm

It is very purple and now in the washing machine, the afghan I decided to make ASAP for some of the recent tornado victims. I ended up making 6 squares, each 15 inches. Then I stitched them together and did a row of double crochet stitch all around it.

I think it turned out okay. It’s large enough for a child or would also work as a lap-gan for an adult. I wanted to make it larger, but my arthritis doesn’t want to cooperate lately, and I wanted to make sure I got this done and mailed off next week. I haven’t had a lot of luck lately with USPS. I sent two hats for a charity drive a week ago, and so far, they still haven’t made it to their destination. I figured I better get this thing shipped as soon as I can.

No Sew Curtains

Blogged under Sew Simple by Tammy on Friday 3 June 2011 at 4:28 pm

As I was pulling out of my driveway a few weeks ago, I got a good look at the curtains, or should I say rags that once were curtains, hanging in the front window of my office, eeek! They were so faded and just down right embarrassing! I did have plans to purchase some new curtains and had even done a little shopping but hadn’t found anything that was much better than what I had already on my windows at the time, and then time went on and I sort of spaced on the whole window thing.

I still had to measure the windows (something I needed help form my DH to do accurately) , and I needed curtain rods as well because the push rods I had been using kept fall down because of a certain little cat (Coco) who thought it was fun to stand up and pull on them!

But I had to do something about these things while I waited to have all the info and time to buy new curtains and rods. Thus, I whipped up these “No Sew Curtains,” and they didn’t turn out too bad, at least a lot better looking than the rags. In fact, if this wasn’t a front window that gets tons of light, I might have kept them.

To make this, I used a flat sheet that is at least the same width as the window. I keep a few inches of my curtains from the bottom of the window because my cats love to sit and look out the window. I have a little bench under the window, so they need a few inches of “viewing space.” I used a queen size sheet, so I ended up cutting off a good amount from the bottom once I got the top finished.

To make this “no sew,” I used pinking shears. I also used a cutting sheet like quilters use, but a ruler would have been okay as well. Below are photos of the basic process.

I trimmed off each side of the sheet so that the top part turned into a casing.

Then I measured over 3 inches and cut up to the casing seam.

Then I measured two inches more, cut another line up to the seam, and then cut off this piece so that there was a two inch space between the first section cut and the next section. I kept doing this all the way down until the end of the casing.

Then, as I said before, I cut across the bottom until I had the desired length of curtain. Finally, I just slipped these on a push rod, and voila, curtains!

My husband totally hated these, but they looked way better than the horrible things up there before, and this urged him a little to finally help me measure the window! In a pinch, these did what I needed them to do;

Crafting Radio Interview

Blogged under My Crafty News by Tammy on Thursday 2 June 2011 at 9:09 am

I have done a few radio style interviews, and I still get so nervous. I mean…it’s live, so if you mess up, there is no “do over.” But I think things went really well with my interview on FaveCrafts Radio yesterday. You can catch the recorded show that includes me and a number of other craft pros (Hilary Frye, Kathy Cano-Murillo, Maria Nerius, and Brenda Pinnick) at this link.

The show lasts about an hour, and I’m on about 25 minutes into it. Pat Sloan is the host, and the show runs regularly the first Wednesday of every month from 3-4pm. Please tune in and listen. I talk about my latest book, my college craft club, and my jewelry kits.

I have added a link in my Podcast sidebar list of links to this show, so you can always come by here and link over to it on Wednesdays or catch up on past shows you’ve missed.

Why You Always Need More Yarn

Blogged under Crafty Videos by Tammy on Thursday 2 June 2011 at 8:10 am

Anyone who does any type of crafting, no matter if you are a fiber person who knits or crochets or a jewelry person who beads and works with metal, there is no such thing as too many supplies. This cute video explains one reason yarn lovers must keep a comfortable yarn stash.