Giveaway WINNER!!

Hi Everybody!
Well it's April 30th, and that means that it's time to select the one very lucky winner of the April Yarnful Giveaway!  (And it's also my little brother's birthday; he turned ten. :))

First of all I want to thank all of you lovely people who entered.  It's really great to receive all of your comments, and I hope you'll stick around for the May Yarnful Giveaway as well, which should be posted within the next week or so. :)

I used the List randomizer to pick one of you awesome commenters.  I listed your name twice if you followed my blog as well as commenting, and if you just commented I wrote your name down once.

Now... the moment of truth... the winner of the April Yarnful Giveaway IS... (drumroll please!)


Congratulations Jjlrdomom!  The malabrigo yarn and flower buttons are officially yours!  Please send me you address and info!

(below is the List Randomizer Results.  I would've taken a screen shot of all the names, but the list was too long)

Thank you thank you thank you for participating!  Stay tuned for the next giveaway!! :D



Knitting and Crochet Blog Week - Day 7

Well, today is the last day of the 4th annual Knitting and Crochet Blog Week.  For the final time this year, please read the italicized text below to find out what today's post is about. :)
  Day Seven (Sunday April 28th): Looking Forward
One year from now, when the 5th Knitting & Crochet Blog Week rolls around, where do you hope your crafting will have taken you to? What new skills, projects and experiences do you hope you might have conquered or tried?

This could be anything from mastering a technique (broomstick lace, entrelac, etc), trying a new yarn or skill, or a long term wish to crochet only from your stash, or knit every stitch in one of the Harmony Guides. Maybe you have no desire or plans for your craft at all, no new element of knitting or crochet that you dream of mastering, in which case write about why that might be. In a year's time participants will be asked to look back to see if they achieved any goals, no matter how general, and see which house conquered the art of looking forward.

By next Knitting and Crochet Blog Week I want have become a knitter who finishes projects, and doesn't give up because the pattern is getting "boring" or "hopeless" or "to hard" or "time consuming".  I also want to have a good grip on some tricky techniques.  Here is a list of things I want to accomplish.

  • short row shaping
  • color work (stranding, fair isle, intarsia)
  • lace
  • twist and twisted stitches
  • provisional cast on
  • knit a shawl by Emily Ross
  • spin at least 4 ounces of roving into one skein
  • design at least 5 patterns (?)
  • knit at least half a hexipuff a day
  • try Dream in Color yarn
  • knit another Hitchhiker shawlette (in a different color)
  • Participate in Knitting and Crochet Blog Week 2014!
I hope you have enjoyed reading my Knitting and Crochet Blog Week posts this year!



Knitting and Crochet Blog Week- Day 6

Day Six (Saturday April 27th): A Tool To Covet
Write about your favourite knitting or crochet (or spinning, etc) tool. It can either be a tool directly involved in your craft (knitting needles or crochet hook) or something that makes your craft more pleasurable – be it a special lamp, or stitch markers.

Is it an item that you would recommend to others, and if so for which applications/tasks do you think it is most suited. Conversely, do you have a tool/accessory that you regret buying? Why does it not work for you?

My favorite knitting, crochet, and spinning tool isn't directly involved with the fiber arts.  It's something that helps me enjoy knitting a bit more, and it's something that I use everyday.  My trusty iPhone 3g.

When I am knitting (or crafting) I almost always have my phone with me; headphones in, and a song I enjoy playing in my ears.  I think that knitting while listening to music helps me get lost in knitting, and it makes me focus on the knitting rather then other distracting things (little brother, kids playing outside, food, ect.).

Luckily I have never bought a knitting tool that I regret buying!  I am usually very careful when I buy knitting tools, so I haven't had the horrible experience of buying a poopy crafting tool. :)


Knitting and Crochet Blog Week - Day 5

Day Five (Friday April 26th): Something A Bit Different
It’s the annual challenge to blog in a way different to how you normally blog. You may choose to create a podcast, or vlog, create a wordless post or write in verse. You've already stretched your wings with an infographic, now it's time to freestyle. You can post on any topic you like, but be sure to post in a style different from your usual blog presentation. There's not too much guidance for this one simply because the more varied the posts are on this day, the wider the sources of information for other bloggers will be. Bonus points if you manage to work your house animal in somehow.

 For this post I wanted to do an all pictures post.  These pictures below show you how I knit; the environment that I knit in, the things I do while I knit.  After the dotted lines there will be no more words in this post.  The photos were all taken by me. :)



Knitting and Crochet Blog Week 2013 - Day 3

I'm back for another Knitting and Crochet Blog Week post!  Read the italicized text below to see what this post will be about.
Day Three (Wednesday April 24th): Infographic
There are many ways of conveying information on a blog; text and images being the two most widely used. Many infographics combine both these elements to provide a visual way of presenting text information.

Make your own infogaphic (no fancy imaging software needed, you can draw it on paper and photograph it if you want) to convey any element of your craft(s). It can be just for fun or a thoroughly researched presentation of an idea/finding. Here is a very quick example that I made just for fun, which took me under three minutes.

There will be nobody checking on how accurate your infographics are. They may be just for fun (like the one above - I don't have that huge a yarn stash and it certainly didn't you any actual statistics - though if I had taken the time, I could have worked out the rate at which I knit yarn by looking at how many metres of yarn I had knit over the last year, calculated the total amount of yarn in my stash in metres and used a calculation of the average life expectancy of a woman in the UK minus my current age to find an actual calculation... but as I said, this took three minutes.

The whole point of this topic is to experiment with infographics as a way of sharing facts, information and ideas, and to explore another tool in a blogger's arsenal of communication options.

For more information and inspiration on infographics,
look here. If you are looking for a quick and easy way to produce and infographic search the web for 'Infographic Maker' to find many free tools for making your own, or embrace the old school with some paper and a pencil.

So, I followed the directions, and created an infographic.  And to be honest I think it turned out pretty cute!

As you can see, this infographic is displaying the amount of projects I start, verses the amount of projects I finish.  You can tell that I don't finish very many projects, but start tons of them!  This infographic is actually very accurate, and it's true that I don't finish most of the projects that I cast on.  I am trying to change my start/finishing habits, but it's really hard.  Hopefully I can do a post later in the year with an infographic showing a better percentage of finished projects! :-)

Now I have a question for you:  Are you like me (starts many projects but finishes only a small percentage) or are you the kind of person that starts something and goes all the way to the end?  Let me know in the comments!


Knitting and Crochet Blog Week - Day Two

Day Two (Tuesday April 23rd): A Mascot Project.
Your task today is to either think of or research a project that embodies that house/animal. It could be a knitting or crochet pattern – either of the animal itself or something that makes you think of the qualities of that house. Alternatively it could be a type or colour of yarn, or a single button. Whatever you choose, decide upon a project and blog about how and why it relates to your house/creature. You do not have to make this project! It is simply an exercise in blogging about how you come to decide upon what projects to make. Try and blog about the journey which inspiration and investigating patterns, yarns, stitches, (etc) can often guide you through. You may wish to make a collage or 'mood board' to present several ideas, or even sketch out your own design.

When I am browsing around the "patterns" section of Ravelry I am usually drawn to patterns that require a small-medium yardage, small-medium amount of time, and a skill level that is fairly appropriate for me.  For example, I would much rather knit a cowl or hat than a time consuming afgan.  I prefer "tons of little knitted things" over "one big knitted thing".

For my House of Bee project I chose these Honeycomb Fingerless Mittens.

I see these mitts as the perfect project that embodies the bee.  The honeycomb pattern resembles a beehive, and the golden color of the yarn looks like the fuzzy, yellow body of the bee, and the sticky and sweet honey that the bee produces.

One other thing that caused me to choose this pattern over other projects with honeycomb cables (blankets, scarfs, throws, pillows, ect) was the yardage, sizing, and time it would take to knit these up.  They are small, simple, and look to be a quick and easy knit, so that you could easily cast off both mitts in a few hours and flit to the next project on your queue. 

Here is the last reason why I selected this pattern.  When I think of the bee, I picture an agile, quick, and skilled little insect, darting around nimbly from flower to flower.   I believe that the bee is a lot like a knitter or crocheters' hands.  to understand my reasoning a bit more watch your fingers move as you knit; they are probably moving very fast, throwing the yarn over the needle and pulling it through the loop.  Our hands and fingers (ask knitters and crocheters) are like little bees attached to our forearms.  :3  so, I picked these fingerless mittens because of the place they are worn: the hands.  I intend on purchasing the pattern (or downloading one similar to it), knitting them up, and wearing them while I knit, so I can picture little bees on my arms, skillfully maneuvering the yarn, and darting to save a dropped stitch.


Knitting and Crochet Blog Week - Day 1

Hooray!  This is post is the first one of seven very fun and interesting posts for the Knitting and Crochet Blog Week 2013!  This is my first

Day One (Monday April 22nd): The House Cup.
A bit like Harry Potter, but not quite, this year’s Knitting & Crochet Blog Week is split into 4 houses. Don your favourite knitted or crocheted hat and let it guide you to which house you will be in.

The House of Bee: Bees are busy and industrious, but can flit from one interesting project to the next as bright and shiny things capture their interest.

The House of Manatee: Manatees are gentle, calm and cuddly. Relaxed and unflashy they represent the comfort and soft side of knitting and crochet.

The House of Monkey: Intelligent and with a fun loving side, Monkeys like to be challenged with every project presenting them with something new and interesting.

The House of Peacock: Peacocks take something good and make it brilliant. Buttons, embellishments and a bit of sparkle prove that perfection lies in the details – like a Peacock's Tail.
So choose your house. You may be a combination of more than one of these noble beasts, but think about which house best embodies your qualities and declare your place. You can use one of the graphics above to display your house crest, if you like (though this is totally optional).

Post about your crafting outlook/style and why you chose this house. The descriptions have been purposefully written to seem quite vague, but that's really because they are only the merest starting point to prompt bloggers to write about in which ways they identify themselves within their craft(s).

Don't forget to drop by Eskimimi Makes later in the week and vote for which house you chose so we can see which houses crocheters and knitters most identified with.

You could of course decide that you are so unlike any of these creatures in your style of crafting that you set up a rival faction and adopt your own house, though whether you get invited to the end of term disco remains to be seen, you rebel.

I have to admit that finding the "right house" for me was quite a challenge, since I think that I fit into 3 of them (Manatee, Monkey, and the Bee) but I've finally come down to a decision.  Here is what I think...

I am a fairly busy person.  I don't lie around all day and watch TV, spend hours on my phone, or sit on the coach eating potato chips like a blah.  My life consists of going to school, coming home for a bit, doing some HW,  working on a drawing, and going straight to soccer or track training.  So I guess you could say that I'm busy and industrious [hint hint].

When I'm in a "knitting phase" (when I have tons of time and crave knitting) I can accomplish 3- maybe 4 projects all in a single week.  If I really feel like it, I can flit from one project to the next without hesitation.  By now I'm guessing that you know where I am taking this...  I dub myself into the House of Bee!

That's all for this Knitting and Crochet Blog Week post!  I will be back tomorrow for another one!


FO Yarn: Ducklings

Last night at about 10 PM I had an urge to finish spinning my merino yarn which I nicknamed "Ducklings".  I guess I felt like it was time to stop spinning this yarn, because I wanted to save more then half of the 4 oz. roving for a heavier weight yarn. 

I am very pleased with the final product.  The yarn is fairly consistent, with the exception of a few yards which look hideous in my eyes.  But overall, I think the yarn is nice, soft, squishy and beautiful.  I was going to save this post for next weekend, but I was so excited to share this so I decided to show you today. :)  Here are the pictures, enjoy!

It is approximately 75 yards of a 2-ply lightweight yarn.  Even though the yardage is small, it took me a really long time to finish this handspun.  I'm not sure why, but it took forever.

I love the colors.  They remind me of ducklings in a pond and waterlilies floating on the water.

 I spun this yarn on a Turkish drop spindle and the yarn broke a lot, making it a frustrating process.  However, spinning is fun, so I enjoyed spinning this for the most part. :)

After I write this post I will be soaking my handspun in some water, and hopefully that will get rid of the kinks in the yarn.

My next handspun will be a heavier weight yarn I believe.  If you're a spinner, do you prefer to spin heavier weight yarns or finer weight yarns?  Let me know in the comments, I would love to hear from you.

~ Emily

P.S. Knitting and Crochet Blog Week starts tomorrow!  :D :D :D


Thinking Ahead

This week has been a very busy week for me, and I haven't been able to knit as much as I would like to, mainly because of sports and 2 speeches that I have to give this month.  My main project this week was my Beekeeper's Quilt, and I knit approximately half a hexipuff a day, since that was all I had time for.  I will be posting pictures of the finished hexipuffs once I reach 50, and there will be a celebration post. :)

Not being able to knit as much really bothers me.  I feel so uncreative when I can't craft very much during the day, and it makes me kinda cranky.  It's really weird how activities that I love (soccer and track) are taking away from other activities that I love (blogging, knitting, spinning, photography ect.)  But I can see summer rolling in, and that makes me happy because of all the precious time that summer provides - time for knitting, photography, friends, and other wonderful things.

So, in preparation for the summertime, I have created a "To-do List" of all the patterns I want to knit, and some goals I have for this summer.

1. Daybreak by Stephen West
 Daybreak is a shawl that I have been wanting to knit for a very long time.  I love it's elegant shape the the great use of stripes on the stockinette stitch.  I can't wait to knit this one this summer!

2. Get to the 100 Hexipuffs milestone!
 It would be so nice to finish knitting ONE HUNDRED hexipuffs!  When I reach 100, I will have a little party with my dog and we will eat hexipuff shaped cookies all day long.  Oh how I love to fantasize!

3.  Design some more patterns!

4. Clockwork by Stephen West

That's all...for now ;)
Also, Knitting and Crochet Blog Week starts on Monday, get ready for a week filled with posts!  I finished pre-writing mine. :)


A Very Special Owl and Blogging Week

Right now I am knitting an irresistibly cute stuffed owl for my friend.  The pattern is called Xavier the Observant Owl by Rebecca Danger, and I am really enjoying the pattern so far; even though the rounds are really long. :P

Here is my progress!  I am about a third of the way done, and so far everything is looking good...

Once I finish this little owl I will be making 3 more!  Who wouldn't love an army family of owls? ;)

The yarn I am using for this fun project is Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Worsted in color ways Marina and Coal.  I like the yarn, it's sturdy, warm, slightly scratchy but not too uncomfortable.

Also, the 4th Annual Knitting & Crochet Blogging Week starts on April 22nd!  I can't wait for the blogging fun to begin. :)  Will YOU participate?


A Random Post on a Random Day...

I took a lot of photos today...

Sleeping puppy!  Actually, she's 15 years old in human years. -__- Not exactly a puppy any more.


Her name is April.

I also did some spinning (not all of this was done today).

So far so good...

Have a nice day,


WIP Wednesday: Windschief

This week has been a very busy week.  The track season just kicked off and soccer practices/games are back after a nice, long spring break.  I haven't had much time to knit from Monday to today, but I have some progress on a new project to share that I worked on over the weekend.

I eagerly cast on for Windschief, a hat pattern by the great designer Stephen West.  It uses twisted stitches to create a curved rib that travels up the hat.  After buying this pattern I just had to look around Stephen's pattern shop and I was stunned by the colorful shawls and original designs.  Here is a recent photo of my progress!

I'm knitting this Windschief hat for my dad, who has been patiently waiting for me to knit him another black hat.  It's nice knitting things for people you care about. :)

Here is a more "close up" picture of the twisted ribbing.  I love how it gently curves around the hat.