Lovin’ the Handspun

Blogged under Fiber Fun,spinning by Tammy on Thursday 30 May 2013 at 9:16 am

See, this is why I am learning how to spin! Is this stuff not gorgeous or what? And in person it is so much nicer. It has a little bit of sparkle, just a little, and it is textured but still soft. I would love to claim that I spun this, but no, I bought it at my LYS. A local woman spun it and sells at at the shop. I lost the band, so I can’t tell you what is in it or the yardage, dang it, but no matter. I’m knitting it into a scarf, making my self get back to practicing my knitting, and I’ll have a scarf that will look great with these crocheted fingerless gloves.

And they will all go with this hat I made awhile back too, not matchy – matchy – but enough in the same color family I think I can wear them all together.

Alpaca Roving Score

Blogged under spinning by Tammy on Monday 27 May 2013 at 4:09 pm

I have picked up the spindle again this summer, something I’ve been wanting to do for awhile now but just didn’t find the time. For some added incentive, I also acquired some super soft alpaca roving at my LYS. I just got a few ounces in light brown and dark brown with the idea that I will ply them together.

This is so soft and yummy! Though I have spun some wool I already had opened recently and I had told myself that I was not going to open another pack of roving until I finished it, I went ahead and dived into this. I know I could wait and claim that I should save this for when my skills are better, but that is probably so far down the road that this could sit untouched for years!

As a holiday treat for myself, I set up my ipad to watch a few podcasts while I spun. Even though I only have two ounces of each color, this is going to take a while, but I’m in no rush. I’m trying to find that Zen feeling again and just enjoy the process.

Knits for Dolls Book Giveaway!

Blogged under CFEs/Contests,crochet and knitting by Tammy on Sunday 26 May 2013 at 4:44 pm

Knitting designer Nicky Epstein has a new book out this month called Knits for Dolls, 25 Fun, Fabulous Outfits for 18-Inch Dolls. Here’s a little info about it from the press release:

“In Nicky Epstein Knits for Dolls, the celebrated knitwear designer and author presents a collection of 25 beautiful, charming, and creative outfits that are sure to inspire knitters and spark the imaginations of little girls. The stylish designs—from a glittering lacy gown for a royal ball to a skull-and-crossbones tunic for
rocking out at a concert—will bring playtime scenarios to life. Many of the ensembles include fun accessories like hats, headbands, purses, scarves mitts, and socks. The designs feature a wide range of techniques, from cables to Fair Isle to beadwork, that are sure to delight knitters at every level of skill and experience.”

Thanks to the publisher, Sixth&Spring Books, I get to give a free copy away to one of my readers. Here is what you do to get a chance to win. First, go over to Amazon.com here and look through the book. Then come back to this post and tell me which is your favorite pattern from the book. The deadline for entering is June 3, 2013 midnight eastern time. I will then use the random number generator to pick a winner. Make sure you include your email address when you leave a comment so that I can contact you in case you win. The winner will have 3 days to reply back to me; otherwise, I will pick a different winner.

Disclaimer info: The book will be sent out by the publisher, not me. Therefore, I am no responsible for how long the shipping may take or if a prize is lost in the mail or any other similar issue. Participants who do not leave their email address or who post after the deadline even if I have not closed the blog entry are not eligible to win.

ETA: Congrats to #8 Danijela! She won the book!

Paper Flowers, Postcards, Paint

Blogged under Around the Web by Tammy on Sunday 26 May 2013 at 4:10 pm

A paper towel fabric for your stitching projects
Paper towels make the best fabrics! Come see how…

Ahh, the mail art exchange… come see some of the art that was exchanged!

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there are tutorials on how to make some pretty paper flowers, t-shirt transfers on sandpaper (along with chances to win copies of the books they are from) a cool crochet detail and a recipe for Paleo Banana Coconut Foster.

Postcard Art
Cherie participates in June’s postcard art challenge.

Sneak Preview of My Memories Suite Digital Scrapbooking Software
My Memories software makes digital scrapbooking easy for all with beautiful preformatted page layouts. Just drop in photos and add text. You’re done!

What to Make With Chalkboard Paint
Browse through this collection of 30 fun and fabulous crafts you can make using chalkboard paint..

Baby Sweater Beginnings

Blogged under Craft Classes,crochet and knitting by Tammy on Wednesday 22 May 2013 at 5:01 pm

While on my summer school break, I plan to get through a few Craftsy.com classes, starting with the “Beyond Rectangles” class. This class is taught by Linda Permann, who just happens to be one of my favorite pattern designers. She is often published in Crochet Today, and I have made a number of her designs.

As the title suggests, this class is supposed to be beyond the basics, so I assumed it was an intermediate level class. In the class, you make a baby cardigan as a way to learn garment construction. Pictured is the back of the sweater, and I just started one of the sleeves. So far, I am enjoying this class. I feel like I have already learned enough to justify the cost ($9.99 during one of the company’s sales). I think Linda is a great teacher too, very calm and a little funny too.

At this point, I am on lesson 6, so I am only about half way through the class. A few things I have not enjoyed about the class is that there was an entire lesson spent on the basics like how to hold a hook and do chain stitch. I skipped that part, and I know I’m not perfect and probably could learn a few tips still if I went back and watched it. However, I want to make the sweater and learn more advanced techniques, not how to do a freakin’ chain stitch. So, yes, that kind of irked me a tad. One other issue I have had so far as well is that the pattern for the sweater is not written in the same order as it is demonstrated. The pattern starts with the left front of the cardigan, but she started us first on the back. She did give a reason for this, which I can’t remember now, but it made sense to me at the time. It is just that I’m now used to reading a pattern, and starting on the second page makes it a little confusing when I go back after setting the sweater down for a little while.

Like I said, though, it is a really good class, and I’m excited to think that after I finish it I will (hopefully) be able to make a sweater for myself!

Facebook Contest! Win a 31 Gifts $20 Certificate!

Blogged under My Crafty News by Tammy on Monday 20 May 2013 at 3:30 pm

To help promote my 31 Gifts business, I started a group on Facebook called Tammy’s Totes & More. On this group’s page, I provide information about the various products and specials available from the company, show how to use some of the products (especially when it comes to crafting), and now I started something new – I have my first contest going on over there.

For a chance to win, you first must ask to join the group by going to https://www.facebook.com/groups/tammystotesandmore/ and making a request. Then see the sticky post at the top of the page that says “**Contest Alert!**” for details. The winner will receive a 31 Gifts $20 gift certificate, and the contest is a little bit related to crafting, so if you are a crafter, then you have an advantage.

Monthly Specials: May, June, & July 2013

Blogged under My Crafty News by Tammy on Sunday 19 May 2013 at 10:18 am

I love it when I know about 31 Gifts monthly specials in advanced. It makes it so much easier to plan for gift giving. I am going to start on my holiday gift shopping this summer, doing it a little at a time, so that I can get some great deals, and luckily, 31 Gifts has announced the monthly specials for the next three months, including May, June, and July.

For May 2013, which we still have a good chunk of left, with every $31 purchase, you can get any of the thermal products half off. So, for example, the cute flip flop Thermal Tote (pictured top right) is normally $18. However, with a $31 purchase, you can buy it for $9. The Fresh Market Thermal, pictured below, would be $25.

For June 2013, with every $35 purchase, you can buy any of the Large Utility Totes for $10. Plus, for this month only, this tote will be available in the flip flop pattern (pictured top left). Normally, these retail for $35. These totes are one of the company’s most popular products, and I think they are really versatile. You can use them as a grocery shopping tote, or you can use them for storage. For example, I’ve got one in my laundry room (see the photo below) to store the towels we use when we wash our dogs. I’ve got another I use in my office at work to store yarn. I definitely plan to buy a number of these for gifts and a few extra for myself during June.

For July 2013, with every $31 purchase, you can buy any item (except for collegiate items) at 31% off the retail price. Now this is a huge special! If you have been looking at some of the higher end products but did not like the higher end price, this is when you can snag some deals. For example, the Super Organizing Tote, which I use to store my spindle, roving, and other spinning supplies (see below), is a great bag, but it is normally $50. At 31% off, it would bring the price down to $34.50.

If you are thinking ahead to holiday gift giving or want to snag a few deals for yourself, you can browse through the catalog on my 31 Gifts web site, and for even more discounts, consider contacting me (tammy powley @ yahoo dot com) for information on how you can host a web-based 31 Gifts event.

I also have a closed Facebook group called Tammy’s Totes & More. I post 31 Gift info over there & will be doing some product giveaways. Feel free to join us!

Note: I’m a 31 independent consultant, and this post is my personal opinion.

Poetic Art, Quilts, Crochet, Graduation, & Father’s Day Ideas

Blogged under My Crafty News by Tammy on Saturday 18 May 2013 at 11:09 am

Art and Poetry
Cherie makes new pictures using her poetry.

Art quilt batting experiments
Have you ever mixed waxed paper with your quilt batting…?

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there are tutorials on how to fold a Pegasus out of a dollar bill, crochet a magic wand, and recipes for cocoa and green tea rubs.

Father’s Day Craft Tutorials
It’s not too early to think about what you’ll create for Dad or Grandpa. Father’s Day is June 16th!

Money Gifts
With Graduation coming up, one or more of these creative money projects would make a perfect gift for a special graduate.

The Epic Windsor Lace Wrap FO!

Blogged under crochet and knitting,Finished Projects by Tammy on Wednesday 15 May 2013 at 5:39 pm

I have an epic finished object! I started making the Windsor Lace Wrap back in July of 2012. Since then, this has been my no-brainer-got-nothing-else-to-work-on project. The pattern, which is free, is basically all double crochet and chain stitch, and there are three rows of this that you do over and over again until it is 87 inches long. Yes, 87! As in 8 – 7! This is why I call this epic because it is so long and took me so long to make.

I used Knit Pick Chroma yarn in the Fossil, and like most of the gradient Chromas, I love how the yarn changes colors. I am fairly pleased with how it turned out. For some reason, my gauged changed some from the beginning, which is wider on one end, than the end, but I don’t think it is that noticeable. More than likely, this will end up as my school office shawl because of the neutral colors that will go with just about anything I wear.

Cute Lil’ Expressions Bag

Blogged under My Crafty News by Tammy on Tuesday 14 May 2013 at 5:58 am

I have been holding off showing this cute Lil’ Expressions 31 Gifts bag that I bought and personalized as a gift for my sister who is celebrating her birthday this month. Since I finally was able to gift it to her, I can spill the beans here. It turned out about 100 times cuter than I expected. The bag is also more functional that I thought it might be as well. Here’s a picture of the inside, which includes two pockets, a lobster clasp (to hold your keys), and a magnetic closer.

You could use this as a roomy purse, a tote for hauling around whatever, or it would also make a nice project bag for a large item such as a sweater or baby afghan. It measures 13″Hx11.5″Wx6.5″D. The bottom is flat, so once you get stuff in there, it can stand up.

The way the Lil’ Expressions line works is that first you buy either this tote or there’s also a smaller zipper pouch, and they are just blank. The tote runs $45 and the pouch $12. This is, of course, if you pay full price. As I have explained before, there are lots of ways to get 31 Gift merchandise at discounted prices. I ended up buying this tote at half off the retail price.

So you can leave either of these just blank, or for an extra $7, you can personalize them, and there are lots of choices. My sister has two little boys and the family dog too, so I opted to personalize it with these cartoon type images for Jake, Dalton, and Bandit. And, my sister loved the bag.

Along with personalizing it with children or pets, there are options for icons like a butterfly or sports related icons, you can put someone’s name on it, and in the new summer catalog, there is a cute flip flop icon you can select also.

I can think of a few other people on my gift list that this would be perfect for, and I love the fact that I can make each one unique and fit the personality of the person I’m giving it to.
Disclaimer: I’m a 31 Gifts independent consultant, so all the above are my own rambles.

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