Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Time for Review

So it's nearing the end of the year, and I think I'm at the point where I'm not going to be finishing many more (if any) crafty things by the end of the year.

So what all have I done this year?

In no particular order, we have....

  • Pseudo kimono

  • Violet bearegard in blue

  • Seatcover for shop stool

  • Sleep mask

  • White basketweave washcloth

  • Hook roll in pink

  • Green zipper pouch

  • Skull bag

  • Divine hat in teal

  • Honey panta in white

  • Red leg warmers

  • Cell phone cases

  • Seraphina Shawl

  • Black leg warmers

  • Yellow mittens

  • Black mittens

  • The I don't know

  • Door Hanger Cat Toy

I haven't started plotting the Master Craft Project List for 2009 yet, but I know that I want to tackle socks, and a cargo net. Yes, you read that right.

I'm also going to try and get some patterns done. Hopefully they'll get published, but if not, I'm going to offer them on Ravelry or by request or something.

What all have you made this year?
What are you planning for next year?

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas is finally over...

...because I finally finished the last christmas gift. We also finished all the cookies today too, but that's not particularly crafty.

To be fair, the cats didn't care what day it was, but I decided I wanted to make them something, so I made them the Lion Brand Door Hanger Toy

It was spectacularly easy and didn't even take an hour, tops. The only reason it took me two days is because I didn't have time to stuff it when I started it.

Do they like it?

I think so, although the catnip I stuck in the middle of the stuffing may have something to do with it...

Poor Joe is so confused....it's a yarn thing he actually gets to play with without me yelling at him to drop it...

Monday, December 15, 2008

comfy gift

Although I didn't get started in time to make everyone in my family something, I did do a few things. There of course is the I Don't Know, and I made my grandma a pair of the flip top mittens.

I also made my sister a pillow.

(she flies, hence the airplanes)

Your tutorial:
Cut a rectangle of fleece. Fold in half, sew up two & 3/4 sides (but not the folded side). Stuff with batting. Sew up the hole where you stuffed.

It's that simple!

Next year, the goal is to plan early and start crafting by September...
(it would also help if my family actually WORE scarves and hats all those easily craftable items...)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Gifts for Crafters

Some of you are special and have a crafter in your family or circle of friends. For some reason, be it Christmas, Birthday or some other celebration, they may need a gift.

If you're also a crafter you may be able to make them something. But what if you're not? "I'm not crafty," you say "I can't make THEM anything." You can try, though, and I'm sure that they'll appreciate whatever your efforts bring forth.
However, if you'd like to stimulate the economy, I can give you some ideas as to what to buy.

First of all and Most Important: make sure you know your crafter. There's nothing worse than getting a pair of knitting needles for a scrapbooker. Awkward! Same thing goes for closely related crafts. Some crocheters also knit, some don't. Just make sure you know what you're getting yourself into.

Enough with the admonishments, on to the ideas!

Good scissors:
"Meh, scissors...." you're saying, but let me tell you, good scissors are an essential. Non-crafters think that all scissors are the same but they're not. There are pinking shears, fabric scissors, thread clippers, etc. Every crafter needs a good pair of scissors they can have exclusively for their crafting. Good scissors make cutting fabric, scrapbook paper or yarn a breeze. They're also safer than having to try and hack things up with a dull pair of grade school rejects.

Rotary Cutter and Mat:
Yes, more cutting things. If you have a sewing crafter, this will make everything SO MUCH easier on them. A rotary cutter is kind of like a pizza cutter for fabric. No more trying to maneuver around odd corners or curves - just roll around them and you're good to go. I got a set last year as a gift and let me tell you, they're awesome. If you get a cutter, you will also need a mat to go with it unless you want your crafter to slice up their tables and everything under the fabric. (Those things are SHARP. I'm still waiting for a CSI episode where somebody gets their throat slashed with one of these.)

Thread Cutting pendant:
This is the LAST of the sharp things, I swear. This pendant holds a tiny blade and lets your crafter cut their yarn or thread without scissors. This is especially ideal for the traveling crafter because these things are benign enough to be considered "safe" on planes, where scissors (and nail clippers) are verboten. If I don't get one for Christmas, I'm buying one for myself.

A good craft light:
Crafting requires attention to detail, which is easier if you can actually see what you're doing. I have an OTT light, and while I usually end up using it for lighting my craft projects for their photos, it does come in handy when I'm using dark yarn and can't see stitches as well under normal lamps. If you've got an aging crafter who can't see as well as they used to, it's a godsend.

Get Panda-fied:
If your crafter is a yarnie, consider a set of bamboo crochet hooks or knitting needles. They're "green" and affordable, and nice to work with. There are also wooden versions which are just as good if not nicer, depending on the wood. I'm holding out for a rosewood "G" hook, myself, but I do like the bamboo hooks I have.

A place to stash the stuff:
More and more places are coming out with specialized craft organizer bags. There are ones especially designed for knitting stuff and scrapbooking stuff, but everyone likes having a stylish and organized way to take their craft with them. If you've got a crafter who can sew, you can get them patterns for bags, making your gift twofold - something to do and a nice thing to use when it's done. They can also customize it to their liking.

Crafty hands work hard. They wind yarn, get burned by hot glue, get cramped from hours of knitting, get stuck by pins and generally take a lot of abuse to make those nice things. Help them feel better after they're done by giving your crafter a nice lotion. We generally prefer fast absorbing, non-greasy stuff, and please take into account any scent preferences or allergies (no lavender for me, thanks).

Gift cards:
You know you were thinking it'd be easier, right? Well, you're right. A certificate to the craft or fabric store, or the LYS (local yarn shop) are good ideas. You can even get them for online places like KnitPicks. You know they'll put it to good use and you don't have to worry about giving them well meaning but horrible yarn. If you want to play it safe, this is probably the way you should go.

Any of these items can be found on the internet (the sites provided are what I've used or what I've got), or at your local stores.

Happy gift hunting!

Happy Birthday Crafty Kix!

This blog's been around for a year now!

And people read it!
(so I believe, according to the Google analytics...)

Anyway, thanks for reading everybody!
I've got more crafty things coming up, I promise. :)

What is it? I don't know!

So in a post a while back, I mentioned the story of the "I don't know."
To review: My sister asked my mom what she wanted for Christmas last year and she said "I don't know, but a red one." That's exactly what she got. I think my sister whipped up this little fleecy flangy thing, and mom got a kick out of it.

This year she asked for an I Don't Know in blue.

Mission complete:

It was simple. Actually, the hardest part was trying to figure out how make it NOT be a rectangle.

It's wrapped, complete with tag that reads "TO MOM FROM IDA KNOW"

Sometimes Christmas can be fun.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Holiday, craft style

We had this on today, I thought it was cool: Batesville Woman Crochets 280 Santas

This woman has been crocheting different Santas for 15 years, she's got 280 of them now, and they're on display at her country store.

Not only is that an AMAZING amount of work, she really really really reminds me of my grandma, both in mannerisms and her voice.