Saturday, July 4, 2015

Yarn Dyeing-You Need To Have The Guts!

I have always wanted to try my hand at dyeing yarn. I've always been really scared to try though. Working on my alien dissection's internal organs, I decided to go for it and use the Wilton cake frosting dye method-I am so glad I finally have the guts to try it! BAHAHAHA!

This is still a work in progress, but I was so thrilled with how my  yarn dyed up I thought I'd share it with ya'll!  Since my little yarn blobs were small I just used some berry bowls and put in a small amount of water (enough so my yarn blobs could have a cozy bath), a dash of vinegar and a tiny amount of Wilton Cake Frosting Dye-I stirred it around with a toothpick until I was happy with the color concentration.  

You need to keep the water hot-but not boiling-so I used my microwave.  I wasn't about to have pots on the stove or anything funky like that-so I just kept nuking them for about 15 seconds every few minutes just to keep them hot.  I would stir them gently as well.  I just kept soaking them until I was happy with how they looked and then rinsed them well.

Here is what the guts look like hanging out to dry...In case you wondered what alien guts look like hanging from trees...

I'm really happy with my little alien so far-I still have a few more guts to make and then get it all put together, but he is going to be awesome-at least he will be in my mind. :)  I can't wait to share with you the finished object! :)

Here he is off the needles, a few days later
Every once in a while, a project will come along that you become obsessed with. I'd am happy to admit that this Alien Dissection has been one of those projects. This little guy has been building up in my mind for such a long time...I am so excited that he is finally off the needles. I love how his hand dyed guts turned out-I can't wait to dye again...All this guy needs is a nice little shadowbox, fun little background and some T-pins!

A few days later....He is DONE!  I love him.  I am so proud of myself....mainly because I have convinced hubby to hang him on my wall-I thought, for sure, he would put his foot down!  EEK!  Mr. Alien shall hang on my wall with my Star Wars snowflakes that I lovingly cut out a few years ago and hung in sweet frames.  

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Walking Dead Jacket DIY: Daryl Wings

 I wanted to make my daughter a cool money holder for her birdday.  I had no idea what to get her and so an idea blossomed.  I thought, what fun to make a Daryl from Walking Dead jacket and stick the money into a pocket.  So here we go....a glorified money holder! :)

This is what I did to get me the end result....

First, I stopped at a local thrift shop and made good on a 50% off all winter outerwear and got this faux leather jacket for whopping $2.50.  I found some gynormous white pants that had a thicker material that I thought would work well for the wings for an extravagant $1.50.

The next step was to take some measurements to make sure I would be making my wings the corret size.  I measured from shoulder to shoulder-the widest part (divided that in half), and also measured from the tallest (where I wanted my wings to begin and end.  Then I took a sheet of tissue paper and cut it to those measurements and began sketching one wing.

I then took another sheet of tissue paper and traced only the outline of the wing.  Then I cut out that outlined wing, but cut about 1/4" away from the outline (the outline will actually be the sewing line).

I pinned the outlined wing pattern onto the pants and cut out my wings-one leg of the pants made both of my wings (double layered and back to back-it was perfect).

I took the other pattern of the wing, the one that had all the details sketched onto it and cut out, along the lines a few 'pieces' that I could trace over and onto my wings.  I just traced lightly in pen.

Then I took some black shirt paint and a paint brush and brushed over all my pen lines and let it dry.  After it was dry I washed the wings and let them dry again (just to get the pen out) and then I ironed them.

After pinning the wings to the jacket I used black thread in my machine and sewed along my outlines.

Then I wanted to make the edges look a little more raggedy, so I used a pin to pull out some threads....

And that's it! :)

Friday, January 16, 2015

Wedgie Burger

I stressed and stressed over the making of this shawl.  It has been a work in progress for almost four months.  After tons of frogging, tweaking, chart adjusting, and ship port strikes (omg my yarn was stuck in a port of a month!!!) I am finally done, and so very excited about this shawl.  I hope to get it tested soon, but I am really stressing over it, as this is a fairly complicated knit, and I have serious George McFly issues-fear of rejection.

This shawl consists of three different wedges (charted and written).  They are each interchangeable which means, the possibilities for creativity are endless.  I love making patterns that lets the knitter/crocheter 'chose their own ending.'  I love having artistic creativity, and that seems to come through in my patterns.  This one is no exception, and I'm actually really excited to see what others come up with using this pattern.  

Why Wedgie Burger for the name? Well…the wedge part of the design is obvious but for the rest….here is the back story: There is a long tragic story about the ‘Wedgie Burger’ in my family…My mom was in a restaurant and the man ahead of her ordered a beautiful sandwich and when she asked what he had ordered he told her it was a ‘Wedgie Burger.’ She said it looked so delicious she changed her mind at the last minute and decided to order what he did. When she was asked for her order she politely asked for a ‘Wedgie Burger.’ The cashier was dumbfounded. My mom continued to ask for a ‘Wedgie Burger’ a bit more and finally pointed at the man and his lovely sandwich….It was explained to her that the man had ordered a ‘VEGGIE burger.’ But of course, we all call them wedgie burgers now. So, this shawl I am naming after my mom. :) She’ll be thrilled. bahaha!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Bringing Booties Back!

Alright, here's the deal. My husband is awesome. He really is...Buuutttt sometimes he says incredibly stupid things...Things you cannot take back. If you know him well, chances are you have a favorite Jaime quote.

Tonight, he outdid himself. He was whining and complaining about his feet being too cold. He said, "I NEED BOOTIES!" Now of course we all knew he meant slippers, but booties is what came out. 

We can all look at Shawn (me) and blame her because she makes stupid stuff like booties on a continuous basis....So we giggled and laughed for about five minutes as he continued to get our lovely daughter her ice cream...

He finally had had enough of the abuse and shouted out to us, "Hay! I'm bringing booties back!" So that,my friends, is his one funny for this year. So if you were hoping you'd get to witness it, missed out. You'll have to wait till next year.

While I wait for him to come up with his next funny though...I think...just to be a big mean jerk, I will make him some booties.  ;)  Some really cute frilly ones.  

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Dreambird For Dragonbird

I am currently working on my dream project. It is something I have seen floating around for a while and every time I would see someone’s lovely FO of this project pop up I would sit and stare at its beauty. I would enviously wish I could knit so I could create such a wonderful display of artwork on my own body. So I taught myself to knit in May. Mainly, because this was my goal. I worked very hard on many different projects so I could get some experience and decided it was time to take the leap.
So now I am having a really tough time with this. I am so in love with the project it is interfering with my working on it. I keep stopping so I can lay it out and ogle it. I lay it out…pat it gently, think about what color to use next, take pictures of it, show it to my family (who roll their eyes because it looks no different than the last time I showed them) and basically just DROOL all over the stupid thing.
Am I the only one that has this crazy love obsession with a project? I want to think that it is a GOOD thing to love what you are working on, but good lord, maybe I shouldn’t love it THIS much! haha! I’ll never finish!

This is an excerpt from my project's notes:  "I am in love LOVE with this pattern I tell you. I keep stopping my work so I can just stare at this stupid thing. how insane is that? VERY. I love everything about this pattern, and I think I shall marry this thing when it is all over. I finally got to the pink part in a feather and I almost died from excitement. I think this is seriously getting out of control. No one should be that in love with a project. It’s Wacky Shack worthy. I have found though, that I was pulling my double stitches a little too tight with this thinner thread (the crap yarn I was practicing on didn’t have that issue). So the first few feathers have a few little holes mainly because I was too diligent in pulling them tight…But my last feather is perfection. PERFECTION I tell you. Did I mention I love it? OMG I need sleep. Sleep? I’ll dream about my dreambird. Yes I will. Why? BECAUSE I LOVE IT."

Tuesday, September 9, 2014


I taught myself to knit in May (see the blog post 'Scarlet K' for more details) and since then I have been trying to learn everything I can about it.  I have made my own patterns already and am really excited.  Just easy things like headbands, hats and scarves but I have just finished designing my very own top.  I am so happy with how it turned out!  I hope to someday get it tested, but for now it is seven long pages of scribble that looks like a serial killer wrote.  I've been typing up a little bit a day and am about half way done.

My favorite part about this top is the crocheted focal point in the center.  It gives validation to my true love! :)

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Artist Blog Hop!

Julia Gartner of Dada Neon Crochet has asked that I join in the fun in this Artist Blog Hop!  I am thrilled to participate and honored to have been asked.  She is such a gem in this little world we live in.  She fills our world with color, smiles and kindness and we need more people like her in this world.   I invite Jenny Lawson , and Enna Strikkeliese  to participate in this fun Artist Blog Hop if you so chose! :)  (Julia gave me your names, I hope you don't mind-you both create magic!)

1. Why do I do what I do?

I do what I do because it brings me joy.  I love to make something out of nothing.  There is a great satisfaction that comes with turning a ball of yarn into a work of art-and if the art is wearable it is even more fun for me!  I began on my crochet journey when my daughter was incubating inside and I decided that since I'd be a mommy to a girl I HAD to know something like crochet and so I learned how.  My grandma did most of the teaching me the basics and I have been self teaching ever since.

I love to be my own unique individual.  I never leave the house without something adorning my head.  Flowers all year long, spiders and rats in October, flags in July, Turkeys in November and lots of fun stuff in December.

I'm also a stay at home mom, and now that my kiddos are getting older I really need constructive things to pass the time, sometimes earning just a little but of extra money.  How can one ever be bored when they can make stuff out of yarn??!!! I've enjoyed donating items throughout the years here and there to various charities and fund raisers.  

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?

My work differs from others work in that I try to make every item I make it's own unique individual.  There is something special about being able to say, "This is the only one in the whole wide world like it!"  I think if you are trying to exactly replicate something you see it ceases to be art.  It is the art side of crochet that I truly love, which is why I enjoy making my own patterns.  I also remember being a slave to a pattern so I try to put free patterns out there as well as some that have a price.

My latest pattern (mentioned in more detail below) allows for some serious personalization while constructing the hood.  I am so excited about it because I remember being shackled to a pattern and looking at freeform crochet wishing I could do it!  This goes a long way in helping people create something unique and fun while still using a pattern. :)

3. How does my creative process work?
My creative process is fairly simple.  If I see something I like I think, "how can I make it better?"  My mind might whirl around for a bit but then the wonderful things that come flying off my hook (or needles) are so worth the swirling mental crisis I sometimes find myself in.  Sometimes I'll just randomly think of something to make while doing daily chores-especially cooking.  I hate cooking.  I actually hate eating.  Unless it is chocolate.  MMMmmm chocolate.

4. What am I working on now?
Currently I am working on Dada Neon Crochet's awesome CAL (link at the top of the page) and am working on finalizing two patterns.  I just published my latest pattern Faux Freeform Hood .  This one I am really proud of, I had some amazing people test it for me, and each one of their creations is completely unique.  That is precisely what I was going for when I created the pattern.  You can see different projects there on the pattern page if you click the link.  FUN!


Patterns in progress: