Another Myster Yarn Sale from Crochet Dude

Blogged under Around the Web, Crafty Products by Tammy on Sunday 20 April 2014 at 9:04 am



A while back, the Crochet Dude had his first of what he calls a Mystery Yarn sale. It was on his Decades line of yarn in the Iconic, aka worsted weight. I scored 3 wonderful skeins in the “Fer Sure” colorway. He has another mystery sale going on now. This time it is for his Inappropriate, aka sport weight, yarn, $8 a skein, which normally retail for $18 a skein.

What’s the mystery? You won’t know what colorway you receive until you open your package. You can specify if you want all your hanks the same color if you order more than one (which is what I did) or you want to be super daring and just see what happens if you don’t get them all the same color. I don’t think you can go wrong with any of his colorways, and this can be a good way to add some quality yarn to your stash at a great price.

Durathon Iron Review and Giveaway

Blogged under CFEs/Contests, Crafty Products by Tammy on Friday 21 February 2014 at 11:40 am


I was recently contacted by the folks at Hamilton Beach and asked to test out and review a product called the Durathon Iron (#Durathon). Believe it or not, I iron fairly regularly, and I’m not just talking about when I pull out my sewing machine or cross stitch (which I have not touched in awhile since I need to get a good lamp/magnifier to order to be able to see well enough to work on it). Just about every week I’m ironing a shirt for me or my hubby, and he also has to wear ties almost every day, so I have to touch those up after he has worn and mangled them.



I have to admit that my old iron was…well…ancient! I won’t say who the manufacturer was because it is a really old iron so it’s not like I was using the latest and greatest version, but even when it was new, I was not able to get it to work as far as the steam part. I ended up having to spray with a water bottle. I was very happy to see that I could get the Durathon iron’s steam and other elements, like the spritzer, to work pretty easily. It comes with a small manual, which I found very easy to understand. Some other items I liked about this new iron is that it has a retractable cord, so when I put it away, I don’t have the cord going everywhere. The safety feature is also really good because if you leave it on for a period of time and it is not being used a sensor will shut it off. Simply put - I love this iron!

Anyone who sews or is involved with other types of needle crafts knows how important stopping occasionally to iron your work can be to the outcome of the finished product. Even yarn folks can use an iron to steam and block some finished items, so a good iron is really just like any other important tool in your craft room - necessary.

Okay, now for the giveaway info! Hamilton Beach has agreed to give one of my readers a #Durathon iron! Squee! To enter, just answer any of the following questions in the comments section of this post no later than March 7th, 2014 midnight eastern time:

Do you ever use an iron when you craft? If so, what do you use it for?

Do you iron cloths or other items for the home or your family? If so, is there anything about your current iron that drives you crazy?



Make sure to include an email address so you can be contacted if you win. The winner must reply back within 3 days of me emailing her/him, and I am not responsible in anyway, shape, or form if the winner does not reply back in a timely manner. Spammers will not be included in the drawing, obviously. One entry per person, etc. etc. The winner’s name and mailing address will be forwarded by me to the company who will then send out the prize.

Space to Create! An End (for Now) to the Messy Madness!

Blogged under Crafty Products, Jewelry Designing by Tammy on Thursday 23 January 2014 at 4:55 am

Recently, I confessed to the fact that my jewelry work area did not have a square to spare as far as work surface. While the room this space is in still needs to tweaking, I can now see the surface and actually make something!




Weee! See how you can now see the top of the desk? Actually, this desk is a sewing cabinet, but it works great for all kinds of crafting, including jewelry making. Now the boxes to the left, they are what I mean by tweaking. The clear shoe box size ones in the back, well, they are full of a lot of stuff that I still need to go through. However, the other boxes on the left have been sorted out with supplies I’ve received from various vendors that I plan to use for future jewelry projects.



On the left side hanging on the wall is a product I purchased during an outlet sale through Thirty-One, which I’m an independent consultant for. It is called the Hang-Up Home Organizer, and my original idea was to use this in my home office, but by the time I got it, I had already gotten that place whipped into shape. Instead, I have zip lock bags with various items like findings, chain, charms, etc. and I put those in the large pockets, which have labels you can use. Now these are not all the findings, chain, charms, etc. that I have, but they were the odds and ends spread all over creation at one time. Now they are at least organized again and handy for me to use. I have other items in the small clear pockets, and of course, you can see a bead board in there too.



Now the next cool thing, I can’t take credit for. If you look to the right on the first photo at the top of this post, you will see a few little caddies there. They are called the Littles Carry-All Caddy, and again, I got a few during the outlet sale. I first thought I would just toss my hand tools in there, but then some brilliant person on Facebook showed how you can fit up to 6 Crystal Light containers in one of these. This way I can keep my tools separate and organized. The other caddy has a box of tissue (for my ever running nose) as well as a pad of paper and post-its and pen for me to take notes as I make jewelry, necessary for later writing it up as a project.



Finally, I guess I should have taken a photo of the inside of this. It is also a Thirty-One product, which I got from the new spring catalog. It’s called the Flip-Top Organizing Bin, and I’m using it for seed bead supplies. I can fit a ceramic bead tray as well as one of those felted top boards in there and other beading supplies, and this way, it makes it a little bit portable. And, of course, my growing amigurumi menagerie can use it to hang out on too.

I am looking forward to getting some jewelry made this weekend. I have a resin kit that I’ve been really wanting to dig into, but resin takes space, and now I have it! Hopefully, it will stay like this for a little while.

Naw, I Don’t Need No Swift N Ball Winder

Blogged under Crafty Products, crochet and knitting by Tammy on Saturday 11 January 2014 at 5:19 pm



I keep telling myself that I do not need to spend the money on a swift and ball winder. Then every once in a awhile I have an unruly skein like I did today. I don’t even know how long it took me to finally wind this ball after I got it tangled at one point and had a pile of yarn barf to deal with. At least, I caught up on some podcasts.

The colorway is called “Metamorphosis,” and it’s the “Show Stopper” base, 80% superwash merino/10% nylon/10% cashmere from Leading Men Fibers. It is destined for fingerless gloves.

Project Bag/Book Bag/Purse/Kitchen Sink

Blogged under 31 Gifts Indep. Consultant, Crafty Products by Tammy on Wednesday 24 April 2013 at 3:51 pm



Like any dedicated crafter, I try to make sure I have a small project with me pretty much all the time, just in case I have any downtime or, in my case lately, I’m stuck in a meeting and need something to keep myself busy. I am not the type that can just sit and listen without doing something or my mind wanders. In the past, I have either taken notes that I never actually go back and reference or I would doodle. Now that I have come out of the crochet closet and crochet during meetings (at least many of them), crocheting a wash cloth is my form of doodling.

Luckily, one of my favorite 31 bags is perfect for keeping my yarn, books, ipad, phone, wallet, keys… umm……yeah..everything but the kitchen sink handy.

Recently, I posted some tips about getting good deals on 31 Gifts bags, and I briefly mentioned one of my favorite bags and showed a picture of it along with a smaller bag, but I did not give details about these two bags, so here goes:

  • The larger bag is called the Cindy tote, and retails for $70 (unless you use my tips for getting deals of course…I paid $35 for mine). It has a zipper on the top to close it up, and it has two outside pockets on each end that are large enough to hold a water bottle, a large zippered inside pocket, and three other inside pockets. There is also a hook inside for attaching your keys. It has a flat base with little metal feet, so it stands up (when you put stuff in it), and it comes in 4 different patterns. Mine is in Railroad Denim.
  • The smaller bag is part of a set of make-up bags that come together. The set retails for $35, and they come in 5 different pattern groupings. For mine, the larger makeup bag is in Woodblock Floral, and the smaller one (that goes in my Cindy tote) is in Grey Pin Dots.

I have been trying to figure out a good bag solution like this for awhile and before discovering 31 bags I was looking a lot at Namaste’s products, but the large bags are all are made of vinyl, which I’m so-so on. The Cindy tote has plenty of room for a skein of yarn plus all my school stuff, and I keep a little pair of scissors and a crochet hook (along with makeup, pens, and other odds and ends) in the smaller makeup bag. They work perfectly together, and I now always have a project handy just in case I’m stuck somewhere.


Zipper Pouch Project Bag & Crochet Experiment

Blogged under 31 Gifts Indep. Consultant, Crafty Products, crochet and knitting by Tammy on Tuesday 2 April 2013 at 5:10 am



I decided to make something for myself for a change and dipped into my treasured stash of Cascade Baby Alpaca yarn (colorway no. 3030). At first, I was going to make a shawlette, but I was having trouble understanding the pattern. After frogging it about six times, I figured life is too short and decided to make a cowl or infinity scarf. I’m going to make this long enough to double around my neck, attach the ends, and then single crochet around the edges. Of course, this yarn is so soft and buttery. I love working with it.

I’m housing it in a new project bag I purchased when I hosted an on-line Thirty-One catalog party. It’s called simply the Zipper Pouch, and the pattern is Woodblock Floral.




As you can see, it’s got plenty of room. This is just about a full ball of yarn (about 200 yards), and I could easily fit more in there. The bag is 9 inches high by 12.25 inches wide, and 2.5 inches deep.



It has a little ribbon tag connected to the zipper, and the inside is lined with vinyl, making it easy to wipe clean if you used this for something other than yarn.



The bottom flattens, and the material is stiff enough so that it stands up. The Zipper Pouch also comes in other colors and patterns and retails for $15. You can find it in my Thirty-One Gift shop, item number 3045.

The infinity scarf is working up quickly. Fingers crossed, I’ll have it done in a few days and can put another new project in my new project bag.

Crochet Dude Decades Yarn

Blogged under Crafty Products by Tammy on Tuesday 29 January 2013 at 6:50 am



I am waiting on some freelance money, which means my play money is on the low side right now, but luckily, I had a few funds left so that I could indulge recently in some new yarn from a line designed by The Crochet Dude. He sent out a newsletter with a promo code that you could use to discount anything in his on-line shop. I ended up getting these two skeins from the 1960s Decades collection in the Blacklight colorway. They are made with 100% extra fine super wash merino, and each skein has 2 ounces/125 yards. I’m not exactly sure what I will make with these. I think there’s enough here for a hat and maybe some fingerless gloves or maybe a shawlette would be nice. I’m curious to see how this knits or crochets up. It is very soft, and the colors mingle from a dark, tonal pink to a pastel pink. Now I will be on the lookout for the perfect pattern for this yarn.

Crochet Dude’s Stitch Markers - Thumbs Up

Blogged under Crafty Products, crochet and knitting by Tammy on Tuesday 1 January 2013 at 5:52 pm



With all the amigurumi I have been making, this means counting stitches a lot, and of course, this also means using stitch markers. While for larger areas of crochet, I prefer locking stitch markers; when making small items like limbs for a stuff animal, I find the locking markers to be a bit of a pain to take on and off constantly. I pulled out these little flexible stitch markers sent to me by Simplicity Creative Group. They are part of the Crochet Dude line of products they distribute. I definitely have to give these the “thumbs up” because they are perfect for small items like this and are very easy to slip on and off but stay when you need them to stay too. It’s a little thing, but the right stitch markers can make a huge difference in the end product as well as the experience.

Stacey Trock Pattern Sale 12/31/12!

Blogged under Crafty Products, amigurumi by Tammy on Monday 31 December 2012 at 9:58 am



I’ve really been enjoying the Woodland Animals amigurumi class I’m taking from designer Stacey Trock on Craftsy.com. Though I’m not new to amigurumi, I still feel like I’m learning a lot from the class, and I find her patterns to be very easy to follow. That’s why I’m helping pass the word on about a one day pattern sale she is having in honor of her birthday, which is today 12/31/12. She’s offering 36% off her patterns, which you can purchase through Ravelery or directly through her Freshstitches web site. The discount code is STACEYS30TH, and you can find out all the details on her blog.

Her patterns are pretty reasonable any way, so with the extra 36% discount, they are priced really low. I purchased 5 patterns (Cliveton the Tiny Pig; Choose Your Own Dragon Adventure; Owen the Monkey; Jeff the Valentine Dog; and Cliff the Brontosaurus) for a total of $16. Plus, since I purchased them through Ravelry, they are automatically in my on-line library over there. Anywho, I have no affiliation but am just a fan who has enjoyed making a number of her patterns.

This Week’s Craft Links

Blogged under Around the Web, Charity Crafting, Crafty Products by Tammy on Monday 10 December 2012 at 11:51 am

ACreativeDream
June’s having another give away. This time it’s a mid-century style glitter house!

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there is a double giveaway featuring 16 new craft and cook books, 25 days of paper crafts, and a recipe for vegan stuffed cabbage rolls.

Eileen - The Artful Crafter
Make these sweet bread dough clay candy cane ornaments with the kids.

Holiday Gift Guide for Arts and Crafts Lovers
What to buy for the crafter in your life? Here are our current favorites!

Laura Thykeson’s Uniques
A Wonderful life - well lived! Plus some arty eye candy!

Mixed Media Artist
It’s amazing what adding some color to a black and white fabric print can do…

Modern Quilt for Music Lovers
Lindsay shows off her Turntable Quilt, a modern crib-size quilt that’s unlike anything you’ve seen.

Stefanie Girard’s Sweater Surgery
How to make recycled cup glitter votive holders

Very Last Minute Stocking Stuffer
Cherie makes a simple ribbon bookmark with charms.

Next Page »