cat! pants!

see catpants. see catpants craft. craft, catpants, craft!

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Bits & Bobs

Goodness, it's been a while! I was going to post pictures of all the knitted things I sent to MissMeshell (although there's still one more package on the way!) but then I realized that her pictures are of a much higher quality than mine, so just check out her post here of what I sent. I'd like to think I spoiled her, but receiving the package she sent me was better than Christmas, so I think we're fairly even!

Ahhhh... these pictures are terrible! I was sort of in a rush taking them -- these were birthday gifts for Tim's nieces and I finished just before the deadline. The ring and nestlace were sent to the oldest, who was turning 13, and the cat (Knitty's Kate) went to one of the younger ones.

A while back I made this drop-stitch scarf out of the yarn I bought from the Mystical Creations etsy shop, which appears to have been shut down since then. Something scandalous, probably, although my experience with them was fine. I also made a quick pair of fingerless mitts for a woman at work's birthday; she seemed really pleased with them and touched that I'd made them for her.

I am pretty sure that my lack of green thumb (or maybe the cats' constant munching) is to blame for my crown of thorns not flowering anymore, but maybe it was just time. Anyway, underneath the pot is the knit placemat I made a while back out of some amazingly soft cotton. I meant to make two, but I didn't really like the way it turned out, so now I have a big old ball of the cotton buried away in my stash.

Last but not least, my recent attempts at spinning. I am getting pretty okay at it, as long as I pay attention to what I'm doing and coax my antique wheel (inherited from my grandmother) along the whole way. I love the wheel and I love that it seems to know who's sitting at it and how they're feeling -- and act accordingly. Sometimes, it seems like it would be easier to just go out and buy a brand new wheel, one that hasn't had time to grow persnickety, but I also like that my wheel* has character, and I like to think that shows up in the yarn. The yarn from left to right is a bamboo/merino blend plied with thread, handpainted merino from FatCatKnits, handpainted blue-faced leicester from Northwest Wools, and soy silk plied with metallic embroidery thread from India. I have two skeins drying in my bathroom right now that I'll be taking pictures of soon.

*I'm still deciding on a name for her -- I suggested that Meshell name her wheel Elinor, but now I'm growing fond of that name myself. Hmmm....

Monday, March 26, 2007

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

Did you know....

  • Breast cancer is one of the two leading causes of cancer death in women (the other is lung cancer).
  • There is a 1 in 8 chance of a woman being diagnosed with invasive breast cancer during her lifetime in the United States; there is a 1 in 33 chance that she will die from it.
  • The breast cancer death rate is declining, presumably due to earlier detection and improved treatment.

Although the death rate of women diagnosed with breast cancer is declining, we have a long way to go to protect our mothers, daughters, aunts, sisters, friends, and selves from this disease. I am participating in the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk this May. The money raised from this event will be used to promote early detection and in programs for those whose lives are affected by breast cancer.

I hope that if you're reading this, you'll help me support the fight against breast cancer, either by donating to the American Cancer Society (every little bit helps!) or by joining me in the walk on May 13th. Our individual actions may be small, but together we can make a big difference!

If you would like to sponsor me in the walk, please click the "donate" button on the sidebar or click here.

Edited to add: the MSABC walk is conveniently taking place on Mother's Day and my mom is joining me! Yay!



After many problems with my blogger account -- weird language settings and cookie issues -- I've finally figured it out! What a pain. I'm glad to have access to my blog again, though, since there are a number of things I've been meaning to post.

I'm still searching for the perfect grocery tote pattern. This one was okay, but I made it a little smaller than I should have, I think. It went to Sara, the manager of Glad Rags, for her birthday. She shares a birthday with one of my clients, who also works at Glad Rags. The hat was for him, in Blazers colors since he's quite the fan. The teeny little hat in the picture was sent to my cousin Jessie, whose baby Hailey was born in February. I had originally made two pairs of booties to go with, but the cats stole one of each pair and I was too lazy/busy to make new sets!

I'm particularly proud of this little fella. He was made for the One Tiny Thing Swap (round 11!) on Craftster. I used the SWAT Team Kitties pattern and gave him a gold earring, sailor shirt, and eye-patch to piratize him. If the pattern had legs, I would have given him a pegleg, too!

Next term is going to be a busy one for me, but I'm hoping that my lecture classes/bus rides will allow me plenty of knitting time. I'm also taking Ceramics, which I'm quite excited about, and a spinning class at a local yarn shop. Finally I'll conquer my wheel!

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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Moses and I have just returned from the park on the loveliest, springiest day of the year so far. The birds have been chirping raucously for a couple of weeks, and the daffodils have been hesitantly waking up, but today -- with the buds of the magnolias and camellias looking like they might burst open at any moment -- was definitively spring.*

Today I had my first experiment with RIT dye, dyeing a linen skirt obtained at a Naked Lady Party.** The skirt began life an unfortunate pale pink, about the same color of my skin when I'm feeling somewhat ill. One bubbling pot of ick and ten stained fingernails later, it emerged blue... ish. I'm not too pleased with the way it turned out; it looks sort of denim-y and uneven, and considerably less "royal" than it did at first. I might buy more of the same and dye over it, but I'll probably just be lazy and wear it as is.

*Yes, I know that spring doesn't "officially" start for another two weeks and no, I don't care.

**I am all about the footnotes today! A Naked Lady Party doesn't actually involve any naked ladies -- it's a clothing swap party.


Thursday, March 01, 2007

Spending money like it's goin' out of style

Have I mentioned lately how much I love Etsy? Especially since the new version came out? I love it. It's the perfect blend of four of my favorite things: cuteness, crafts, technology, and stuff I can buy.

In the interest of plugging some really fabulous sellers on Etsy (and, okay, showing off a bit), here are some items I've purchased recently:

The first is one of three postcard-sized print from BirdNerd, whose original art I would buy in a heartbeat if I could justify to myself spending that much on prettiness. The second is a 10x8 print entitled "Cold Toes, Warm Heart" which is painfully adorable in and of itself. The seller, TheBlackApple, had to relist this particular print twice for me because other people kept snatching it up. Highly coveted, this artist is. The last picture is a skein of handpainted yarn from Mystical Creation Yarn. It's a wool/silk blend, I bought two skeins, and it is for a SUPER TOP SECRET project that I can't wait to start!

And now it is dinner time. Adios!

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Sunday, February 18, 2007


I think I've been spending too much time looking at pictures of on Craftster of all the gorgeous clothes and accessories people have made for their Blythe dolls. I'm really, really tempted to blow my tax return on this. Love.

Ack. Blythemania.


Sunday, February 11, 2007

Knit pirate panda for fizzledimpulse
being attacked by Rusty:

For the past two months I've been trying to stick to a budget I created after reading about financial responsibility in my Personal Finance textbook and felt horribly guilty. I'm pretty sure I've gone over my crafting budget for the month already, but there were SALES, people, SALES! The yarn store was celebrating its second year in business while the bead store had lost its lease and is going out of business, which is sad but also makes for some great deals. Some other time I'll post pictures of all the (totally un-needed but fun nonetheless) earrings I've made.

Above is the knit nautilus I made for trifarina (I sent her a nautie eyepatch too but didn't get a good photo of it in action) along with the valentines I made for the party we're having at work on Wednesday. The whale stamp is my new favorite thing.

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Wednesday, January 17, 2007

I've been aching to post pictures of what I've been working on lately, but since most of it is for swaps, it'll have to wait for another week or two until my partners receive.

Surprisingly, there are a few things I've made lately that weren't for swaps. First, a basket/bowl I made with Crystal Palace Taos yarn and felted in the washing machine.

I'm using to hold some yarn at the moment, although I'm not sure if its purpose will change in the future. I checked out Cat Bordhi's Treasuries of Magical Knitting from the library and I really want to make one of her moebius baskets, but that will have to wait for some suitable yarn.

This afternoon I made a few cards, in keeping with my goal of sending every member of my extended family a birthday card. Devilninny sent me a number of birthday cards for the previous round of the Invite Your Partner swap on Craftster, but I've almost run out already! I made these four today, and one is already in an envelope and ready to send to my aunt Karen. While making these cards, I've come to the following conclusions:
1) Glue sticks are magic.
2) Rub-on letters are magic.
3) I need a craft table (specifically, I need a craft table other than our dining room table!)
My mom and I have vague plans for a craft day of churning out tons and tons of birthday cards, which I'm wholeheartedly looking forward to -- especially because she keeps calling me to tell me about all of the hidden craft supplies she's stumbled across at her house!

This hat was sent for the Fairytale Swap. I'm assuming my parter has received, but she hasn't been on Craftster in over a month. I hope everything's okay and that she's enjoying the hat! If you can't tell, it's meant to look like the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland. It was knit in about one and a half days of classes last term.

Lastly, I would like to present you with Exhibit A in the case of "Why Tracy Really, Really, Really Needs a Craft Room":

A very serious situation, indeed!

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