Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Like dew drops on a lotus leaf, I vanish.

Apparently, I can get a lovely brown shade with coffee grounds, a fact that only encourages my favorite vices: coffee and thinking about dyeing. I took the plunge and bought some cream wool and some taupe wool from the Yarn Barn, the lovely eBay shop with the unbelievable prices.

I have invited a new contributor to come chat about marbling, but she has proved reluctant. Soon I'll be excerpting from her blog and posting for her myself.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

I can feel it calling in the air tonight (hold on).

I think it's possible the sweater on the bottom of this page is eleven years old and still looking good because...

Monday, February 26, 2007

Forgive me/ they were delicious.

I just gave my wheatgrass plant a haircut and put the clippings in the freezer for a future dyeing venture.

Shower Ideas/Jogging Ideas

These are the best ideas of all, the ideas that summer to-do lists -- and now craft blog entries! -- are made of. Fair Daphne -- I mean, The Bolter -- has wisely suggested I list something besides earrings in my shop to draw in more customers. I'd considered trying a pendant, but I don't think that any of my tiny, fragile new jewelry-making skills would produce a pendant I wouldn't be embarrassed to list. But today in the shower, I had a vision of a really fun and possibly wearable bracelet I could make! Okay, to be honest, I had the idea for the NAME of the bracelet before I had the vision. Does that seems backwards? I may try to produce this bracelet tonight, if I can possibly justify it.

Also on our summer to-do (or rather to-try) list: hand-sewn knitting needle holders, made to be sold at reasonable prices. Have you ever priced these things? I don't care how fancy their fabric it, these people are kidding themselves.

I also want to make myself a perfect little pencil case and finish the two blankets I'm working on and find a quick and easy pattern for good grocery bags so that we can carry our own to the store and stop accumulating the plastic ones, which are currently filling up our broom closet like so many non-biodegradable skeletons. I'm trying to knit them into one big plastic bag bag, but it seems I can't knit fast enough to stem the tide.

Does that seem like too many projects for one summer?

The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test.

Scroll down for awesome.

Dyeing to meet you.

I had set dyeing as the outer limit of my yarn fetish, the Thing I Wouldn't Do, the I-tip-my-hat-to-you,-yarn-dyers-but-I-am- perfectly-happy-with-commercially-dyed-yarn-even-though-it's- probably-made-from-the-blood-of-rats. (Lilyriver describes herself as a grad student with hobbies or a hobbyist dabbling in grad school; unfortunately, given the torturous construction of that last sentence and the sentiments contained therein, both my "grad student" and "crafter" cards have been revoked. I can't go on; I'll go on:) As with all limits, of course, this one falls by the wayside as easily as any Lenten promise. I'm currently eyeing a pound and a half of cream-colored wool yarn on eBay, offered at a suspiciously low price, and thus I have set my eyes on the prize: Kool-Aid. The fruity smell will fade.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

The Etsy Experiment

So I'm up to 21 items in my Etsy store, and 5 items sold (one still awaiting payment by money order). I gather those are pretty good stats for a first week, but I'm a pretty insecure person, and I just want proof that people LIKE me... I've been lurking in the forums there a lot and so far I've gathered that it takes more self-promotion than I'm used to doing and possibly more talent than I have available to be really successful -- but I'm not aiming for a profit so much as a positive Paypal balance.

Anyway, this is supposed to be a crafting blog, not an insecurities/finances blog. So! Besides the earrings, I'm also working through an obsession with knitted headbands. I've done one in purple that's essentially several very long rows of stockinette stitch. It rolls up and ties around my head (so far it only ties around my head inside the apartment -- if it makes it outside or, better yet, makes it through a day without ending up stuffed in the bottom of my bag, we'll know we have a winner.) I also finished a light green cabled headband, but it accidentally turned out man-sized, and I don't know any men to whom I could offer a green cable headband. So that one is definitely indoors only.

Re: the Craft Fight with the Bolter -- it was just like a Girl Fight, except instead of bite marks and scratches, it ended with a pair of earrings named after a Coleridge poem. Before long, we'll be narrating our crafting adventures as Pastoral Comedies.

Lilyriver and I have a crafting fight

L. wants to name her new black briolette earrings "Dragon's Blood," but I maintain that dragon's blood is red. We rolled a twenty-sided die and, as usual, she won.


I'm working on a felted tote bag (based on a Knitpicks pattern), and it's going fine, if rather boringly (rows and rows of stockinette). I am not going to do the needle felting and it's going to be a single color. I have a couple of concerns about the project. For one thing, I decided to use a single strand of yarn instead of a double strand, mostly because I did not want to pay 5 billion dollars for yarn, so now I'm worried that the bag won't be very strong. I can put a lining in it easily enough, though, so it could be all right. The other problem is the actual felting: I don't have much control over washer cycles since it's whatever piece of shit washing machine my apartment complex bought in the Jurassic period. So I'm basically just gonna go for it and hope for the best.