Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Crafting for a Cause

Until about two weeks ago, I'd never crocheted for charity before, but I came across a post on reddit that just broke my heart and I felt compelled to help out the person who posted. Her friend's mom was recently diagnosed with cancer for the fourth time. To try and give her some strength and love, the poster, u/tryingforadinosaur, asked the r/crochet community to send her granny squares so that she can make a blanket for her friend's mom.

Since I got all of Sharon's yarn stash in December, I haven't really known what to do with most of the yarn since there's only one or two skeins of each color. This project was perfect, though, because I didn't need much yarn for each square and it allowed me to destash some in the process.

In all honestly, I intended to take pictures of all the finished squares before I packaged them and sent them off to Utah, but somehow I forgot and here we are. My best guess is that I sent something like twenty or more squares off to u/tryingforadinosaur and I'm really proud of myself for being involved with this project. I mean, don't get me wrong, it's not like I'm pounding my chest and yelling about it from the mountain tops, but I do feel good about the entire thing and I really hope that she gets enough squares to make her friend's blanket. It'd be great if she could send us pictures of it when she gets done, but I'm not sure that that will happen and thusly I'm not getting my hopes up. Either way, all is well and I was glad to be a part of the process.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

The Scrapghan is Making a Come Back!

I started going back to my knit and crochet group about a month ago and since then I've been crocheting nearly everyday (meaning that my cross stitches and cards have taken a back seat, but whatever.)

As a result of all this crocheting, I've been going through a lot of the scrap yarn that was given to me by a coworker before she retired. Truth be told, I'm still trying to get through it all to untangle and organize it, but I'm most of the way done and I've been crocheting up granny squares and granny's daughter squares (GDs) like a fiend. The extra scraps that are six inches long or more but aren't long enough to become GDs are then put into my scrap yarn container to be tied together later and added to my super scrapghan.

This is what the balls look like when I have enough to wind together and add to my blanket. I intentionally leave the knot tails wild so that they stick out all over the place as I crochet. The effect is pretty cool and I love the fact that this blanket will truly be one of a kind. The yarn has come from previous projects and friends and there's tons of memories interwoven with the yarn.

Off and on, I've been working on my scrapghan since January 2012. The project gets worked on when I'm actively crocheting, but until recently I haven't really been working on projects. With me going back to Sassy Stitchers, though, progress is imminent on this project. This last ball that I added made the blanket at least four inches longer and I'm over half way done with the entire thing, so I'm pretty happy with it all. Now if I can just get all my UFOs done and make space in my craft area for different things other than yarn, I will be very, very happy.

Monday, July 16, 2018

New Die Cutter & Resulting Birthday Cards

This year is flying by and I have no idea where it's going. And while I'm not sure that I've really accomplished anything significant over the last several months, I have been crafting.

At the end of June, I got a Sizzix die cutting machine to use with my thin cuts and I've been absolutely having a blast with it. My first projects were to make birthday cards for my grandmother and my husband. Gran got unicorns and Hubby got adorable cacti (and both loved their cards!) Pictures are below. Stamps and thin cuts came from Close to My Heart (great products!)

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

MTTA: Week 3 Progress

Ah! How have I already been working on this for three weeks! Time is flying and I have no idea where it's running off to. Things are really progressing on this piece which is really making me happy. The long weekend was good to me and I was able to get both Tanooki Mario and Frog Mario completed. (Frog Mario was a PITA, though. My god...)

I think last week I had set a goal to finish Baby Mario, as well, over the weekend, but by the time I'd finished Frog Mario I was grumpy and pretty tired of looking at cross stitch for the weekend. So, he didn't get done and I probably won't work on him for a few weeks. I'll do him later on down the road when I'm feeling more animated to work on something more difficult. For now, I'm going to do fill work to my heart's content or I know 100% that I'll burn out and put everything aside indefinitely.

25+ days in and counting!
My goals for this next week are to get the dirt section of this piece completed by the end of the week. It's similar to the water in that all the stitching is pretty uniform and for that reason I think it'll stitch up pretty quickly. I just need to find something good on Amazon or Netflix to watch, though, or things might get monotonous. We'll see. Whatever happens happens--I don't need to get super hard on myself for not meeting trifling goals.

Fun Fact: I have put the blunt end of an embroidery needle through my right thumb two times now!

Friday, May 25, 2018

MTTA: Week 2 Progress

(I know this is almost a week late, but I keep telling myself that I'm going to post pictures every single week, so here goes nothing!)

My husband keeps telling me that I'm flying through this project so far and in many ways I have to agree with him. Within the week, I'll be finished with all the water on this piece and in that time I'm also hoping to have at least the tanooki on the left done and potentially the seaweed, too. This upcoming weekend is Memorial Day, so I'm quite confident that I'll be able to get it done.

After finishing the three characters in the water, I'll be moving onto the dirt section of this piece. It looks like it's going to be another extremely section to complete, so I'm excited for the relaxation that stitching it is going to bring.

In all honesty, I'm quite curious as to how long this project is going to take me. Everything is going really fast so far and the only areas that I think will take me a lot of time are the Mario sprites. Even then, though, they're pretty small, so who knows. I'll continue to update as things progress!

Monday, May 14, 2018

MTTA - Week 1 Progress

I saw that this is my Week 1 progress photo for Mario Through the Ages, but in reality it's my Week 1+ photo because it's probably about 10 days of work overall and not 7. Not a big deal, though.

Right now I am working on finishing up all the water in this piece--and there's a lot of it. At the moment, I'm about half way through stitching all the water, which has me pretty pleased. The only thing is that I've almost worked my way through an entire skein of floss so far and I'm having a hard time locating another skein. I've never been through a whole skein on one project before, so it's a new experience for me and I'm sure that it'll continue to happen as I stitch my way through the hills and sky, too.

I plan on keeping track of how many skeins this entire project takes so that people who decide to follow this pattern in the future can more accurately plan what supplies they need to get everything done. I just hope that people will be able to find this post down the road and find any information that they need.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Needle Minders - I never knew they existed!

Up until about two weeks ago, I'd never even heard of a needle minder. Now, I'm not sure how I got through HSHY without one.

Needle minders are a simple premise: they're fun little magnetic gizmo that you attach onto your aida and when you're not using your needles, it'll hold onto them and keep them from getting lost.

In the past, I've lost needles on the floor and not been able to find them. Husband almost got one in his foot one time, so he was very supportive of me getting a minder despite the fact that money is pretty tight right now.

When I broke down and decided to purchase one, it took me a little while to find a store that I liked. The store I ended up falling in love with was TheCreativePalace on Etsy. There are an absolute ton of designs that you can choose from on her store and they're reasonably priced (which obviously meant that I had to buy more than one...)

I ended up choosing a Zero from NBC, the Toki Doki inspired unicorn, and a nice big cupcake with lots of surface area in case I ever decide to try parking projects down the line. The little unicorn on the bottom left was a bonus gift that was included with my order and I can't wait to use it down the line. Oh, and everything got to my house from Idaho in just a few days. I was really impressed. So, yeah, go check out her shop. Her stuff is great!

Note: I have no affiliation with TheCreativePalace or Etsy except as an occasional customer. ☺