Sunday, December 27, 2009

Baby Hooded Jacket is Complete!

I actually finished it over a month ago, but didn't want to post finished pictures until after I gave it to the recipient. I really want to see it on her and really hope they get some good use out of it before she out grows the sweater!
You can see my progress here: and
This is a closeup of the seam on the hood. I did that differently than the pattern too. The pattern said to bind off the outer edges and continue knitting the middle to make a T shape and then sew the edges together on the back of the hood. I knit the stitches together as I went so I didn't have to sew the seams. It didn't save me anytime because I tried out a couple different methods. It was like a heal on a sock only hood sized.

After all that I bought the buttons and sewed them on. There's really no avoiding that kind of sewing if you want buttons on the front. :p

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Finished Hat

Ta Da! What do you think? It's my newest hat! I've talked about it a lot already and shown pictures of it in progress and now, its complete!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Featured Etsy Blogger For December

Each month the Etsy Bloggers choose a member to feature. This month's featured blogger is ... calkat!

She has some great jewelry in her shop; I especially like her zodiac necklaces, and she's currently offering free shipping until New Years.

Her blog is a fun read too. I just finished her post on
St. Lucia's Day

You can find her blog here:
and her Etsy shops here:

This shows a few of the things that are in her shop!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

S2KP A Double Decrease

I came across this decrease in the hat pattern that I'm knitting. I'd never heard of it before. I found it a little awkward at first, but now I really like it. So I decided to show it to you.

In the first picture we're ready to start the decrease. Knit until one stitch before the stitch you want it centered on. This decrease takes up three stitches on the working row.
Put your needle into the next two stitches like you're going to knit two together and slip them to the other needle. They're going to hang out until we need them.Knit the next stitch. In this picture both the new knitted stitch and the slipped stitches are on the right needle.
Now pass the two slipped stitches over the one knit stitch. The S2KP is complete.
This picture gives a better view of the finished stitches. They are slightly raised and centered! This decrease doesn't lean left or right.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Hand Spun Knit Hat

I've had this yarn (the light green one on the left in the first picture) that I spun from this hand dyed falkland wool top for a while now. It's been waiting for just the right knitting project. I knew I wanted to pair it with another yarn, but it took me a while to decide on some of my hand spun Bluefaced Leicester. The idea is that the solid color yarn will help to better highlight the subtle color changes in the hand dyed yarn.
Here is the hat I'm working on. I'm liking the pattern, which is here. I've been wanting to make one of those tams for a while too, plus its time to knit a hat for myself, because I want a new hat.
The really crazy part is that I knit most of that in one day. I had cast on the day before and knit a few rows. It was a day spent at various airports waiting for our flights and on the flights, but still, that much in one day is a lot of knitting! I wonder how long it will take me to do the rest...

Monday, November 9, 2009

Featured Etsy Blogger for November

Each month the Etsy Bloggers choose a member to feature. This month's featured blogger is ... thefabmissb!

Thefabmissb has all sorts of vintage items from aprons and table cloths to a paprika shaker and bathing cap. Her shop Becky Kazana has her handmade creations such as greeting cards, word garlands and pipe-pets.

You can find her blog here:
and her Etsy shops here:

This shows a few of the things that are in her shop!

Friday, November 6, 2009

November 6 Blog Carnival- Successful Items!

My most successful product is my felted soap.
They are followed closely by my magnets, mirrors, and buttons.I started with aviation themed ones and have recently started offering custom magnets, mirrors, and buttons!

While, I'd still like to sell more of these items, let's look at what's working for them.

They're both at a price point that can be an easy decision - both less than $10.
They can be made quickly, as long as I have the supplies around.

The felted soap especially, has done well offline. I think it has benefited by people being able to see how good it smells, and no shipping if you're buying in person. Plus its a natural item made with handmade soap, a small luxury or a break from all the chemicals we are bombarded with.

They're unique. I haven't seen anyone else making the same style of buttons, and while there are plenty of felted soaps out there, they are a small percentage of handmade soap in general and they're all different- different scents, colors, made with different oils, etc.

Quality is important too! The buttons are sturdy. I've never had a problem with one breaking. The felted soap is made with quality ingredients and without the nasty stuff that's in a lot of commercial soaps or detergents and then wrapped in wool one by one.

I enjoy making them. Without that there would be no point.

All together these are products that are working for me and I can continue making.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

On the Bobbin: Moonlit Sea

I dyed 4 ounces of Superwash Merino roving different shades of blue and green, with the blue at one end and the green at the other. Here is the single after I finished spinning it. I spun the blue part first so the green is on the outside.

So far I've spun just under 2 ounces of it. I navajo plied the single to get a three ply yarn that maintains the same color placement. The yarn gradually changes from blue to green over the skein with no repeats.
Here is the finished yarn!If you'd like to buy it:

Friday, October 9, 2009

Featured Etsy Blogger For October: Madebymelissa

Each month the Etsy Bloggers choose a member to feature. The featured Etsy Blogger for October is ... madebymelissa!

Madebymelissa has a wide variety in her shop, including necklaces and earrings, scarves and cute crochet toys like this adorable octopus!

You can find her blog here
and her Etsy shop is here

This shows a few of the things that are in her shop!

Halloween Memories Blog Carnival

I always liked trick or treating as a kid. It was a lot of fun to run from house to house wondering what goodies we'd get. I'd go with my sisters and when we got back we'd dump our bags out on the living room floor and trade candy with each other. I think the trading candy was as much fun as going out and getting it all.

This year I'm planning on going to a friends Halloween party! It should be fun, but I still don't know what to wear, probably something warm. I'm playing with the idea of something from Firefly, possibly Kaylee...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Spinning My Drum Carded Fiber

Remember those first batts I carded on my brand new drum carder? I finished spinning it into yarn!

The carding did the trick because the spinning was smooth. After I got the batts off the carder I pulled them apart into 4 long strips per batt. The drafting was easy and it made for a consistent yarn weight.

I think it looks a bit blue in the pictures, but its a dark purple wool with white mohair and white nylon sparkles.Now I need to expand my fiber stash...

Friday, September 25, 2009

September 25 Blog Carnival: My Studio

I've done posts on my studio before but I've moved since then so I thought I would show you the latest version.

Yep, its the same couch and spinning wheel as before. The couch is still comfy and the spinning wheel is still awesome.

Here you can see my shelf with my boxes of finished things and works in progress. I have all sorts of stuff on that shelf: my swift, wpi tool, scale, boxes of yarn. You can see some blue and green hand dyed merino wool at the top left. I thought it looked pretty blotchy when I was finished dying it, so I decided to spin it and see if I like it. I can always ad more dye when I'm done if I want.

I'm still working on the whole more space thing. I actually have less space at this apartment than at our last one. I'd probably keep whatever I was working on in the living room because I like to spin there, but it would be nice to not have to keep everything there, well the drum carder is currently in the bedroom. I still have to figure out where to store it!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Drum Carder!!!!!!

Earlier this week I was surprised by the fabulous gift of a drum carder! Here it is after I carded my first batt with it! I'm pretty excited about all the new yarn possibilities!

It is a fancy kitty drum carder. I'm really liking it so far! I still need to get a few tools to go with like a burnishing tool and a brush to clean it. I also want to finish the wood.

This is what I used in my first batt, a mix of purple dyed wool and white mohair with some nylon sparkle. This is what I had around here. That purple and white stuff is supposed to be roving, but it is a bit messy. I've hand carded some of it for yarn before.
This is the finished batt. I made 3 of them today and spun them all. I'll post pictures of the finished yarn when its done drying from setting the twist!

Featured Etsy Blogger For September: designsbyvanessa

Each month the Etsy Bloggers choose a member to feature. The featured Etsy Blogger for September is ... designsbyvanessa!

designsbyvanessa has jewelry and cute bird and cupecake items in her shop!

You can find her blog here
and her Etsy shop is here

This shows a few of the things that are in her shop!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Progress and Kitchener Stitch

I decided to go with Kitchener Stitch for the shoulder seams, since this is a baby sweater and the shoulders won't have to support a lot of weight, and Kitchener Stitch makes the seam look so nice and neat. Here is a close up of the shoulder. Kitchener Stitch is so great because it looks like it was knit in one piece!
Here the whole sweater so far. I have completed the body and started on the sleeves. I'm really liking how quick my progress is on this project!I've noticed that a lot of directions for Kitchener stitch only explain it for stockinette. In that case, with the purl sides together, you want to use your sewing needle to go through the stitches as if to knit the first stitch and purl the second, and for the back needle, purl the first stitch and knit the second. As you go push the first stitch of each set off the working needles. Remember: knit, purl, then purl knit.

For garter stitch it is: knit purl, knit purl - the same thing for the front and back needles. Just make sure the two pieces are facing the right way before you start so you don't end up with two knit rows and two purl rows together.

It's fine if its loose you can go back and neaten up the stitches.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Favorite Food Blog Carnival

There are sooo many yummy foods out there, but I think I'm going to go with sushi as my favorite. Ok, now I want some sushi. ^_^
Why? because it tastes so good!
In fact, I want to go here! The last time I was there was a really great night, but its been too long. It's time to go again. It sure would be easier if my favorite restaurant wasn't about 2,000 miles away...

Anyway, here are some sushi related items to look at since I don't get to eat any right now. ;_;

Crab, Avocado and Tempura Sushi Felt Roll Pin by Sypria

Ocean Floor by Glassprimitif

Kawaii huge sushi necklace by honeypopjewellery

I HEART SUSHI bracelet by insanejellyfish

Monday, August 24, 2009

On the Bobbin: Stormy Seas

I started with this lovely hand dyed merino top. I was trying to make a really huge skein, but I just had to see what it looked like when I plied it! This is about half of top I have.

It's already off the bobbin, twist set, and hanging to dry.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Downside of Knitting in Public

Some people say the craziest things. The other day SEVERAL people said something that really surprised me. I won't name names here because I don't want to embarrass anyone. I was working on the baby jacket in the previous post but hadn't knitted far enough for someone to tell what it was. Maybe it was the light pink yarn that caused such a fuss.

I was asked if I was pregnant, not once, but multiple times! Now, for some unknown reason these people thought that was an acceptable thing to ask. They are probably not the ones reading this blog but I wanted to clarify. Asking someone if they are pregnant is inappropriate and very rude. It doesn't matter how excited you are to talk about little ones. Did she tell you she is pregnant? No? Then don't say anything about that subject.

There are many reasons to not ask this question:
If she's not pregnant, you just called her fat. Maybe she wants to have a baby, but is having difficulty, you just brought up an unpleasant topic. Maybe she had a miscarriage, again with the unpleasant topic.
If she is pregnant, maybe she doesn't want to announce it to the whole group; maybe you're the 15th person to bring it up today and she tired of talking about it; maybe she has medical problems that she doesn't want to talk about.

Now about my situation. I'm guessing that they said that because of the knitting and not because they think I look fat (hoping anyway). How did you come up with the idea that knitting baby things equals pregnant? And why did you wait until I was knitting a pink sweater and not ask when I was knitting a tiny blue hat? And you asked this knowing that I knit a lot of gifts and things to sell... I'm far too logical to ever figure out what they were thinking.

I've been knitting since I was 12, statistically, the answer to that question is: go away, and next time be polite.

On the Neeldles: Baby Hooded Jacket

It's been a while since I knitted a sweater. I usually like to complete things quickly, and this is a sweater that fits in that category, as its for a 6 month old baby! It is the very first baby item that I have knitted. I've been loosely following the Hooded Sweatshirt Jacket pattern at
You may recognize the yarn from a few posts back. The first picture shows the front right of the jacket. The top is on a holder waiting for me to finish the back. the pattern says to do a three needle bind off. I'm still deciding between that and kitchener stitch.
I've changed the pattern around a bit. Instead of knitting each piece, front right, front left, and back, I'm knitting them all together (and leaving an opening for the sleeves). This way I don't have to sew the side seems later. You can see my sleeve hole best in the first picture.Here is a picture of the back. I've made a lot of progress so far. That's good, because I want to be done with the sweater in time for her to wear it! I picked a size a few months out, so it should be good.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Michigan Fiber Festival

I got to go to the Michigan Fiber Festival in Allegan on Saturday. It was pretty hot out but a fun day. We saw the sheep dog demonstration, and lots of very cute angora rabbits. Every time I see those cute critters I want one! They are so adorable and I'd love to be able to spin and sell their fiber.

There was a skein competition and we saw some of the judging. I wish I could have entered a skein.

Here's the website You might want to turn off your sound before you visit though.

There were also three buildings full of vendors. Pretty much everything fiber related was there, and lots and lots of spinning fiber and yarn. It was fun shopping but at times a little frustrating too. I was quite surprised by how many vendors didn't label their items with fiber content and price.

I ended up buying a little Merino and a little Alpaca spinning fiber.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

August 14th Blog Carnival: Planning Ahead

Here's the question: In a few months, the holiday season will be in full swing. What are you planning for: increasing your inventory, festival hopping, networking?

This isn't specifically for the holiday season, but I've been trying to increase my inventory. I'm hoping that that will help lead to more sales. I'm not sure about festivals. I've had mixed results. I would like to find some good indoor shows to do, since I don't have a tent right now.

I'm thinking about the kinds of advertising I want to do in the future. You may have noticed the ad box on the right side of the page (or not if you're blocking them). I've started using Project Wonderful which is a way to buy and sell ads, but its an auction system where you bid on the ad space you want. If its available for the price you want, you get the spot, if someone else wants to pay more for the spot, they get it. You can set a minimum bid if you want to, but I didn't, so the first few people who bid on my spot actually got their ad up for free, until someone else bit 1 cent. As I write this, the spot is going for 2 cents. I was also able to put my ad up for free on a few sites.

I still have big plans in the works for my soap, and generally want to grow my shop.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Featured Etsy Blogger For August: Memoriesforlifesb!

Each month the Etsy Bloggers choose a member to feature. The featured Etsy Blogger for August is ... Memoriesforlifesb!

Memoriesforlifesb has lots of cool scrap book albums

You can find her blog here
and her Etsy shop is here

This shows a few of the things that are in her shop!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Etsy Bloggers Anniversary Giveaway!!!

The Etsy Bloggers are celebrating their 2nd anniversary by giving away 25 really cool prizes.

I'm participating in this giveaway with one of my felted soaps!

Head on over to to enter to win!

The prize that I'm giving away is this lavender oatmeal felted soap!
(If this particular soap sells before the end of the giveaway, the prize will be your choice of any of my lavender oatmeal felted soaps, or if you really want a different color just say so.)

Monday, August 3, 2009

New Felted Soaps

These are my latest felted soaps, all in vanilla. Very yum! Vanilla is one of my favorites!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Yay ArtFire!

Not that long ago, I participated in an ArtFire contest on Twitter. I didn't know how many people entered, but I thought my odds of winning were pretty low. To my surprise I won! The prize was to shop in ArtFire shops doing the Christmas in July sale, all on ArtFire! This is such a cool prize because even more people win! I won this cool stuff and got to choose my prize and the sellers won because me and the two other winners are buying things in their shops!

The first thing to arrive was this card holder from madbird.
It is constructed very well and has three different fabric patterns.

This very pretty Merino Top is from FiberCycle. I can't wait to spin this!

This handmade soap and recycled yarn is from happyearthsoaps.
How did she know what my favorites are?

beSPAlicious had this cute lavendar sachet that I couldn't pass up.
Gotta protect my stach you know!

Thank you Artfire and thank you madbird, FiberCycle, happyearthsoaps, and beSPAlicious!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Featured Etsy Blogger For July: Miesmama

Each month the Etsy Bloggers choose a member to feature. The featured Etsy Blogger for July is ... Miesmama!

Miesmama has some super cute felt purses and bowls which I'm always a fan of, as well as hair ties, garlands, and other goodies!

You can find her blog here
and her Etsy shop is here

This shows a few of the things that are in her shop!

Friday, July 17, 2009

What Happens When Felted Soap Is Used Up?

This is my fist felted soap that I made. I used it to test out my felted soap and it worked great! Here it is after all the soap is gone from the middle.

I decided to cut it open and show you what the inside looks like.

You can see the different layers of felt and they've all shrunk leaving a rather tiny space for the soap as it was used up.
There are still uses for the little pieces of wool.
It would still work well as a scrubbie, on dirty hands or dishes just with soap added now.
It could be used to protect jewelry when packing very light.
My pieces fit neatly on the ends of my fingers; they could be used to make cute finger puppets.
Do you have an idea for how to use the leftover felt? Please share it in the comments. :P

Etsy Mini - See Items in My Shop