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Quandary in A Thing for String DK: Heart of Darkness. Click picture for pattern link!

The school year has started, so of course I feel like doing nothing else but the mountains of assigned reading before me. Well, actually, some of them aren’t that bad. Some of them I get too into, and totally nerd out about them in class.

Yeah. I’m that kid.

I have actually noticed, though, that knitting helps me keep my focus while doing my reading. Having just that little something to keep my hands and mind busy keeps me on task. Now you’re thinking, shouldn’t your reading keep your mind busy? Technically, yes. But you know that part of your mind? That part that gets disctracted? That part that says, “I’ll just open that file I need to–ooh pinterest!” That’s the part of my brain that knitting keeps busy.

Side Note: Pinterest, man. It’s becoming a problem. It’s like I can’t get off of Pinterest. I even have it on my phone. It’s everywhere. But hey, I have a knitting board so it’s all good.

But back to the point, I find that when I pair knitting with reading or studying, it can make it easier for me to motivate myself to do the task. (This may or may not be because I cannot scroll down Pinterest and knit at the same time.) Adding knitting to the mix can make assigned reading downright enjoyable.

Do any of you experience the focusing effect of knitting? How do you use knitting to motivate you?

P.S. In case you’re wondering, this is the pattern I’m current;y working on:

Campus Jacket by Amy Christoffers

You know, because I’m going back to campus and such. Also because it looks like the coziest thing since flannel. I’ll take some progress pictures for you soon!

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Model Knitter

Hello….

Is anyone still there?

I apologize for my absence. It seems that the end of the semester only brought a little relief to my crazy schedule. Since then, I’ve gotten a minor promotion, taken on a second job, had a birthday, and am currently taking a summer chemistry course. Unfortunately, my knitting has fallen to the wayside a little bit, and I have had nothing new to show you.

Don’t worry. I’m working on it.

Even though I haven’t been knitting, I’ve been involved with someone who has been doing an awful lot of knitting. Like, it awes me the amount of knitting she gets done.

Meet Wooly Wonka, a yarn dyer, designer and knitter extraordinaire.

Now meet her new model.

Image credit to Woolywonkafiber.com/blog/

That’s right, ya’ll. I’m a model now.

*cue excited shrieking*

Wooly Wonka/Bunnyspinner(RavID)/Anne is coming out with an 8 piece collection for fall all inspired by legendary tales of epic and fantastical proportions. This shall is the first available pattern, the Rappaccini’s Garden Shawl. The rest of the collection will be out in September and I’m super excited to see how the whole collection turns out in print.

The collection will consist of two sweater patterns, two shawls, a cowl and two pairs of socks, and let me tell you…they’re all gorgeous (not to mention very toasty on a Texas Summer day in June). I’m sure I’ll keep you updated on the release of the rest of the patterns, but until then, go check out Anne’s website!

T-Shirt DIY

I have a confession to make. I think I am addicted to Pinterest. I think Pinterest may be my new Tumblr. This may only slightly by due to the fact that tumblr makes my computer lag like nothing else (it’s getting elderly, my computer). Or perhaps I enjoy that aspect of Pinterest that says ” I made this, and so can you!” While I don’t yet feel compelled to make my own laundry detergent or decorate my entire house with wine bottle corks, I have been inspired to try a few non-knitting craft projects.So here is one of my very own Pinterest diy’s.

The Pin: T-Shirt to Draped Vest

The Original Site

My Version:

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The tutorial is fairly easy. All you need is a big men’s t-shirt and some scissors. I used an extra large (If it had been large my dad would have adopted it.)green shirt that I got for a dollar at Salvation Army. It had a pocket on the front, but I ripped it off.

The steps are simple.

Lay out shirt.

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Remove cat from shirt. (I swear it took approximately 3 seconds after laying the shirt down before the cat was on it. Always has to be the center of attention, geez…)

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Snip the sleeves off..

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And now the collar…You might want to start small with this and increase it later. Essentially this is going to be the hole where your arms go, but it will stretch out a bit with time, so don’t cut it too loose.

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This is how it will look opened up.

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Last step: Trim and wear!

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The camera whoring is optional, but really at this point, why not? This vest is super easy to make and easy to wear. Plus is get to look super accomplished when I said that I made it.

Now excuse me, I think I have some more projects I need to pin on Pinterest.

Stripes! Colors! and Scarves, oh my!

I am SO CLOSE to being done with finals, which is a relief, because I’m also really tired. My brain needs a break. Hopefully I can fit that break into the two weeks before summer classes begin, because this June I get to take Chemistry for Liberal Arts Majors. Whoohooo!

With all the finals stress, I did manage to complete one knitting project to show you. So meet my most recent FO, the classic Noro scarf :Image

As you can see, while I have had the time to finish it, I haven’t had the time to take proper pictures of it. So you get the awkward-arm-selfies (Look at it! It’s so wonky…).

While I refer to this scarf as the Noro scarf, that’s really more of an homage to the pattern that I think every knitter has used. It’s not made of Noro. Noro and I have met several times in yarn stores, and I’ll admit the colors are enticing, but every time I actually touch Noro I am severely disappointed. If I can spin softer yarn than that there is a problem. Plus, it’s got little pieces of like grass and hay in it. Sorry, you’re going to have to be cheaper for me to put up with that. So this scarf is made out of Noro’s softer cheaper cousin, Lion Brand Amazing Yarn.

I had actually used Lion Brand Amazing to make Wingspan, which was great fun. I loved watching the color changes with that pattern, but when I put it on, It was so not me. Nor was it any member of my family (We like neutrals. We like muted colors. Olive drab: good. Bright pink: Bad.). So I did the next logical thing. I threw it on the FO pile for about a year to mellow before ripping it out to make the Noro scarf. I am much happier with it this way.

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This is the face I make when patrons look at me too long in the library.

I’ve also made the Noro scarf before, in my early knitting years with Mini Mochi Yarn (which was beautiful). However, in those days, I liked my scarves really long and super skinny. Now I like a little more substance. So this scarf is really wide. I think about 40 stitches (I don’t remember how many I cast on.). It’s also really long, because I just kinda shoved it into my backpack and worked on it at school and didn’t realize how bit it was getting. It’s like Tom Baker’s Doctor status. (Even though I’ve never actually seen his Who stuff, apologies to all hardcore Whovians.)

 

As for the stripes, I paired 4 different colorways, because they were what I happened to have at the time/ they were on clearance when I went to Michael’s. I paired the Wildflowers colorway with Glacier Bay, and the Aurora colorway with Ruby. I don’t know that I would pair Aurora and Ruby again, they were very similar in some spots and I had to cut some sections out so the stripes didn’t match.

I’m really pleased with how this scarf turned out. I have a feeling that it will be a favorite come Winter. However, these days it’s getting to about 80 degrees in the afternoon. Boo. But once it gets chilly again, I’m going to wear the heck out of this scarf!

I have survived the week! Due to circumstances like ALL THE LIVING PRESIDENTS being on campus this week, I have been forced to partake in public transportation. I got to ride the train to school. And when I say “got to” I mean “had to” because I was not allowed to park anywhere remotely near campus. *gripe gripe..* Complaining aside, I kind of enjoyed taking the train. I didn’t have to worry about other cars on the road because I wasn’t on the road..technically. So that was nice. And I could knit. Except not when the train is going backwards. That means major motion sickness (hey, you learn something new every day). Still, it wasn’t a scary stressful experience like I was expecting.

My knitting progress has been moving at a snails pace lately. I don’t have much to show you, so I won’t. What I will show you are some of the beautiful flowers on campus. The ones by the chapel were particularly pretty. I was really happy with how the pictures of them came out too. I think I’m getting better at manipulating my camera.

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Handmade With Love

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Why hello.

It’s been a while.

It’s been two weeks and I think I’ve finally conquered this cold. So not fun.  The semester is also hurtling to a close. This is going to be an interesting week, as I’ve got a lot of work to finish and my powers of concentration are just about shot. This is also, funnily enough, why I am sitting here blogging instead of doing the reading that I have to do. I am a case.

I just wanted to share these adorable tags I got in the mail. I came home from school all sniffly and sick one day and found a package for me. But here’s the thing; it was from one on my mom’s best friends. So I was confused. I opened the package and inside were these little tags for my knits. They say “handmade with love” on them.

ImageAren’t they just the cutest things?

Agree with me. They’re the cutest things.

It turns out, she had made these for me a long time ago, and meant to give them to me when she came to Texas to visit my mom, (She lives in California.) but she forgot to bring them. So she just now sent them to me. I think they’re adorable. Course, I can’t use them until I actually knit something for someone, but my uncle’s birthday is coming and up and I just found out that my old youth pastor and his wife (the two people beside my parents who probably had the biggest impact on my faith) are pregnant! For the first time! Can you say, baby knits?? Ah! I’m so excited. I already know I want to make a little bear sweater and every baby needs an Elijah and hallelujah both those things are gender neutral so I don’t even have to worry about that! So it looks like this selfish knitter will have plenty of uses for these “handmade with love” tags.

(The tags are also handmade..with love…Craftception!)

 

She liiiives!

Hey guys.

I’m back.

From outer space! ♫ ♪

Just kidding.

But, I really am back. Sorry for disappearing for a week there. Right after Fiber Fest I came down with the nastiest cold. Like I had all the seven dwarves of sickness. Sneezy, Sniffly, Stuffy, Achey, Drippy, Sleepy and maybe even a little bit Queasy (also Sore-Throat-ey. But that doesn’t make a good dwarf name.) It took a toll of my energy levels in the big way, and was just generally unpleasant. I’m still not entirely over it, but I’m getting better.

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How can you tell I’m sick? Mugs! Tea mugs everywhere!

Obviously, I’m not planning on keeping to my regular blogging goal of 20 days this month. Between getting sick and the enormous amount of homework that I have to do, I think It’s just better if I cut myself some slack this month. I have so many assignments due at the end of the month that it’s terrifying. It’s like that kind of stress where there’s so much to do that you get overwhelmed and decide to take a nap instead of working on it. Then you wake up consume with guilt. Except I don’t nap…. sooooo Tumblr instead!

I think my goals for April are going to mostly consist of:

1. Not dying. and 

2. Not breaking down and crying in public.

We’ll see how it goes. I’ll keep you posted, but bear with me if my posts have the air of a slightly crazed woman until the end of the semester (which is only like 3 weeks away!! AAAH!)