Freebies, Giveaways, Craft Challenges, and More

Blogged under Around the Web by Tammy on Saturday 28 February 2015 at 2:54 pm

Art Bead Scene
Check out what Heather has been up to in her Inside the Studio post this week, and answer a question for the chance to win a $25 gift certificate from Humblebeads.

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton
Erin Prais-Hintz hosts a creative challenge through Halcraft called, Pretty Palettes. This month, Andrew was the Pretty Palettes Partner! Stop by and see what he made!

Peeptastic Center Piece
Love Peeps? Cherie has a new way to use them for your Easter table.

Carmi’s Art/Life World
Sharing supplies with friends is always a thrill when you organize a blog hop. This one was excellent as it feature beaded rings.

No Dog Snuggles but Lots of Crafting
In the latest video podcast, the Crafty Princess shows off some finished knitting, crochet, and shares some bead weaving ideas.

Holiday Craft Planning App
Anyone who hand crafts gifts and decorations for holidays or other special occasions needs to plan ahead. Handcrafted things take time. Download Eileen’s free spreadsheet.

New Free Pattern
Connie added a new free cross stitch pattern this week Also, check out the new additions to the Etsy shop.

Beading Arts
Cyndi shares how to construct a 3D crescent form, perfect for embellishing!

Beaded Rings Dazzle-It Update

Blogged under beading,Jewelry Designers/Artists,Jewelry Designing by Tammy on Friday 27 February 2015 at 6:09 pm

It was so fun to be part of the Dazzle-It Rings Blog Hop. I showed a little teaser, basically the wonderful beads and other supplies, and talked about what I had planned to do during episode 15 of my video podcast, and then I posted finished my ring, of course, on my own blog. However, above is a photo collage of all the rings together, which were created by myself and these other talented designers: Cyndi Lavin, Marissa Decipeda-Wong, Jennifer Tryon, Lisa Pace, Eileen Bergen, and Nancy Donaldson.

Book Review: Vest Bets

Blogged under Good Books by Tammy on Friday 27 February 2015 at 5:46 pm

During a recent video podcast, I mentioned that I had a number of book reviews coming up, and well. here you go! Vest Bets: 30 Designs to Knit for Now Featuring 220 Superwash® Aran from Cascade Yarns (The Modern Knit Mix) is published by Sixth and Spring books and retails for $17.95 in the US and $19.95 in Canada. As the title explains, it include 30 knitted vest designs all using 220 Superwach Cascade yarn in an aran weight, so these are generally on the chunky side.

I particularly like the look of the vest selected for the cover. It has wonderfully defined cables and represents a classic style of vest that would get a lot of wear. The use of the thicker yarn combined with making vests (versus full sweaters) means you get the look of a sweater (just layer) without the time needed to make one. There are other classic styles throughout (like the “Miss Woodford,” a houndstooth-check pattern), but then there are also some more contemporary (such as “Dahlia,” which has a leaf section that extends past the bottom). In other words, the 30 patterns vary from classics to contemporary, so there’s a little something for everyone.

Other pluses of this book is the fact that most patterns have a good variety of size ranges from extra small up to large, and some even have extra large sizes. All patterns include full color photos of the finished items plus close up details photos, and some include diagrams for helping to piece areas that must be stitched together.

I did not see any patterns that seemed to be fit for a very new knitter, but experienced and intermediate level knitters will find some alternatives to knitting big hunking sweater here.

Still Time for Feb. Craft-Along

Blogged under CFEs/Contests by Tammy on Friday 27 February 2015 at 1:23 pm

Yes, I know. February 2015 is almost gone! But, guess what? Even though there are only a few days left of this month, you still have time join us at the end at least for the February Visit + Revisit Craft-Along. No finished objects are required to enter and maybe win a $5 giftable pattern through Ravelry.

Simply head over to this thread on my Ravelry group for details and post some photos of a craft you are visiting for the first time or a craft you are revisiting again.

Dazzle-It Rings Blog Hop – My Green & Purple Obsession!

Blogged under Jewelry Designing by Tammy on Sunday 22 February 2015 at 12:19 pm

I recently mentioned the Dazzle-It Rings Blog Hop and showed off some super pretty seed beads I received from John Bead Corp. in a recent podcast episode. Now I get to share the process as well as the finished product. It started, of course, with some yummy beads and also a new booklet, Rings by Giovanna. The book has wonderful full-color up-close photos of how to use seed beads to weave various types of ring designs.

First, I had to pick out the beads, and I tend to be all about green and purple lately, so I selected those to get started.

Next, I had to decide on the stitch and the project. I decided to go with peyote and create an adaptation of the “Sinuous Ring” design from the book.

I used a size 12 needle, and the beads are size 10 seed beads. The supplies included black .15mm Wildfire by Beadalon. One tip for getting the beading wire through the needle is to use wire cutters to cut the beading wire. You need a very good cut on the end, or you will have a heck of a time getting that through the eye of the needle.

This project, which included a few stops and starts, ended up taking me about an hour to do. Little Dude was not happy that I was sitting at a table beading and not snuggling him on the couch. He tried a few times to even climb on top of the table! He is schedule for a bath today, which will include a mani and a pedi, so that will calm him down later, LOL!

Here is the finished ring flattened on my work area. I alternated 2 rows of green beads and 2 rows of purple beads. Then I stitched a picot with green beads around the edges.

I love how it turned out! I have some ideas for other ring-related bead designs. Hopefully, Little Dude will not get too upset that I’m planning more seed bead jewelry projects!

Come back soon for a link that will show off all the rings created by participants of the blog hop!

Episode 15: No Dog Snuggles

Blogged under Crafty Princess Podcast by Tammy on Saturday 21 February 2015 at 3:47 pm

Boy, what an ordeal editing this episode! I was close to finishing and my file somehow became corrupt. Luckily, I found some help after Googling possible fixes and ended up loosing part of what I had already edited on the file, but hey, at least I didn’t lose all of it!

Here are show notes with links and related info as well as a time line if you want to skip around. I also have lots of URLs embedded in captions inside the video. Plus, stay to the end so you can see some cute videos of my pets as well as a photo montage.

Intro & Craft-along Info

Crafty Princess Diaries Blog/Podcast Ravelry Group

My Youtube Channel

My Facebook Page (Jewelry Making and Crafting with the Crafty Princess)

Me on Facebook

Me on Instagram

Finished Objects start at 3:28

CGM Findings

Lion Brand Baby Kimono Pattern #L10465

Hibernating Projects starts at 7:30

Works in Progress start at 8:33 Blair the Bunny Pattern

Future Projects start at 10:40

John Bead Corp

Carmi Cimicata

The Complete Photo Guide to Jewelry Making, 2nd Edition: 15 New Projects, New Gallery – More than 700 Large Color Photos

Hattitude: Knits for Every Mood (Cathy Carron Collection)

Personal Stuff starts at 18:47

Disney Cruise

Tappingflamingo Blog

Thanks for watching!

Jewelry Love Links

Blogged under Around the Web by Tammy on Saturday 21 February 2015 at 10:43 am

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton
Andrew put together a kit inspired by the Color of the Year and Valentine’s Day. See what everyone made for the Marsala Valentine Challenge!

I Love Resin
The hearts are full and the resin is flowing. Check out even more projects from artists participating in this collaboration.

Wire Wrapping a Heart Pendant
The resin heart pendant that Eileen made for a collaborative showcase organized by Carmi Cimicata needed a finishing touch. Wire wrapping quickly turned a 1-inch pendant into a 2-inch one!

Beading Arts
When you’ve got a really special focal bead, you just don’t want to overwhelm it with embellishments. Here’s Cyndi’s solution!

Craft Challenge, Crochet, Knitting, & Resin

Blogged under Around the Web by Tammy on Monday 16 February 2015 at 10:22 am

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton
Come see the inspiring designs people created for the Desert Sands Challenge!

I Love Resin
The unique art created by 25 different artists working in the same tiny bezel is a joy to behold.

EnviroTex Lite Pour-On: The Possibilities!
Looking at an entrancing butterfly-filled window pane created with Envirotex Lite Pour-On made Eileen consider using it for table top decoupage.

Beading Arts
Cyndi has made a whole boatload of crocheted boot toppers, and she shares her method this week!

Knitting Lingo
Knitting a baby kimono brings with it a whole new crafting language.

Book Review: Modern Courntry Knits

Blogged under Good Books by Tammy on Saturday 14 February 2015 at 2:39 pm

Modern Country Knits: 30 Designs from Juniper Moon Farm is authored by Susan Gibbs, owner of Juniper Moon Farm, and published (2014) by Sixth and Spring Books. It retails in the US for $19.95 and in Canada for $22.95. The cover provides a pretty good indication that this is full of a variety of knitting patterns from sweaters to accessories.The thirty patterns are designed by a group of designers such as Tabetha Hedrick, Yoko Hatta, Melissa Leapman, and Adrienne Ku. All the yarns used for the projects are from the author’s yarn company and include an assortment of weights (from lace to to chunky) and wonderful luxury blends like merino and silk; cotton, merino and llama; and alpaca and silk.

I really liked that there was such a large selection of projects to pick from and many are wearable items, meaning you would really wear these on a regular basis. There were not any “out there” kind of pieces that were more artwork than functional pieces. That said, functionality does not mean they aren’t pretty. Many of the shawls are trimmed with some lacework. There are cables in sweaters and hats to enjoy.

The photography is excellent, really giving you a feel for the finished product because it includes images of detail elements as well as a photo of the entire piece. There are also some great shots that include super cute farm animals like sheep and goats. Each project includes a key showing the skill level suggested, from beginner to experienced. However, I did not see any that were beginner. There are some that are considered “easy,” but there also a fair number that require an “experienced” level knitter.

Knit Even, Learning a New Crafting Language!

Blogged under learning2knit,Projects in Progress by Tammy on Thursday 12 February 2015 at 2:24 pm

If you have watched any of my video podcasts, then you know what I’m working on, and you probably have seen bits and pieces of this little knitted baby kimono I’m making for my grandniece, Crystal Jewel. It is a free Lion Brand pattern called “Comfy Kimono,” and I am using Lion Brand’s Baby Soft yarn in the Circus Print colorway. I have one more sleeve to knit, and then it will be time to stitch it all together. I’m so happy with how it’s turning out!

Making this project has been a learning experience for sure! My latest lesson was on the knitting term “work even.” Yup. I was zipping along fairly well with the back and front pieces. Then when I was about half way through the sleeve, the instructions said “work 3 rows even.” Er, what? Was I working uneven before?

According to the Lion Brand web site, “work even” means to “continue in the established pattern without increasing or decreasing,” which in this particular case meant to keep doing stockinette. Why not just say that? Good question, but hey, it is one of the many little lessons I learn as I continue to learn to knit.

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