Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A Little Passion in the Winter Wardrobe

I thought it would be fun to add a little rose embellishment to the plain dark gray armwarmers I made so I added knitted, felted roses.
To knit these roses:
Cast on 5
Row 1: knit in front and in back of all stitches (10 stitches)
Row 2: knit in front and back of all stitches (20 stitches)
Row 3: knit in front and back of all stitches (40 stitches)
bind off
Roll the rose how you'd like and stitch it together using one tail end. I usually have a tail end in the center and stitch my way out towards the sides as I roll it.
Felt by putting them in a lingerie bag and throwing them in a warm water wash with the rest of your laundry.

Stitch the roses onto the armwarmers how you'd like.

Monday, October 27, 2008

One for the Road

This blog post is my first without pics. No pics could be taken, and none are needed in this case. read on....
Thursday was a fingernail biting day. I took my daughter to take her driver’s permit test. Since she gets out of school at 12:15, it gave us a good head start to get to the DMV. I pictured the crowds and nastiness that is typical of an average DMV, but we truly lucked out. We walked in without an appointment and had only a 10 min. wait until we were called to a window. Before I knew it, the picture was taken, the thumb print taken and in the examination room she went. As she took the test in the other room, I sat in a chair and frantically started knitting. It was not long until she emerged from the room, holding her permit up proudly saying, “Jeez, 3 people before me didn’t pass and it was their 3rd time taking it.” I’m thinking, “although the DMV wasn’t bad today, I only want to come here twice; once for her permit and once for her license”. I couldn’t do it more than that I don’t think.

So we will soon have another driver in the house. She’s taking her driver’s ed and behind the wheel classes at AAA. Before you know it, it will be my turn with her behind the wheel after her first class at AAA behind the wheel. Then I will have stories to tell…

Friday, October 17, 2008

Looking Forward to Keeping Warm

I was completely enthralled when I came across the free patterns for Toast and Toasty on A Friend to Knit With blog. It was a must do right now type pattern but of course, I didn't have enough stash yarn to complete the pattern the length the pattern asked for. Which turned out fine, because being a bit smaller, I made them only one inch shorter and added colors which I just love.
I knitted the green ones with Cascade 220 and the black color blocked ones with merino wool I had laying around. The pattern is easy and moves quickly. I think these will make great holiday gifts. I finished a pair as a one and 1/2 day project only about 4 hours total.
My next pair will be a more luxurious yarn, a bit thinner and softer.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Indie Designers Have a New Home in Santa Ana

Indie designers do exist in Orange County. And this exciting development is long overdue. Believe it and now you can see for yourself. The Craft Kitchen, an indie designer boutique and craft workshop has opened in Santa Ana right on Main Street at the 5 freeway. Nicole of Random Nicole is the owner and many of her wonderful designs are available at The Craft Kitchen as well.

I was swooning over her little appliqu├ęd tops for babies. But not having a baby, I can only hope to have to buy one for a friend. I also loved her silk screened ties and bags. The prints are vibrant and exciting. There’s so much to choose from for everyone. There are several designers represented here but they were trying to get ready for the grand opening when I snuck in to take these pics, so I'll get back to you on which designers have their work here besides Nicole.

The Craft Kitchen will also be offering workshops starting this week in everything from sewing, bath and body, bookmaking, screenprinting and much more.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

I'm a Craftstylish Challenge Winner

I typically don’t enter contests, but when Craftstylish Magazine and website had a Flower Power Challenge, I figured this was a contest meant for me. After all, much of the jewelry and accessories that I create are inspired by flowers and color. So I entered 3 items. There were 130 entries and 4 winners, and guess what. I was one of the 4 winners with one of my entries. It was my favorite Flower ring that I sell in my Etsy shop, but what I did was put 3 rings together resulting in an Aster. I made these 3 rings in a different set of colors than I have in the past and there it is, the Aster Ring Set.
What I won is the ultimate embellishment package: an assortment from the new Crafty Chica Craft product line, the fab Crafty Chica book, The Crafty Chica Collection: Beautiful Ideas for Crafts, Home Decorations and Shrines from the Queen of Latina Style, and a copy of the premiere issue of CraftStylish Quick Gifts to Make.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Adding Zing to T-shirts with Crochet

I acquired this adorable handmade cowgirl and polka dot skirt from my pal Jennifer Ramos of Textile Fetish and realized I needed a top to go with it to give as a very special gift for an adopted baby in our extended family. So I purchased 2 plain tops, a black and a white long sleeved cotton t-shirt with the idea of using crochet to embellish them. I crocheted 5 stars in a white cotton yarn, which reminded me of sheriff stars and sewed them randomly on the black shirt. I got the very easy pattern here . I sewed each point on by hand from the back.

Then I made a simple crocheted edging to the length of the front of the neck and sewed it on. I figured that if I sewed it all the way around, it may not stretch enough to get the toddler’s head through. I found the pattern in a vintage crochet book called “A Treasury of Crochet Patterns” by Liz Blackwell that I picked up for a couple of bucks at a used bookstore. I’m sure if you look up crocheted edging on the web, you’ll find free easy patterns. And that’s it. I hope she likes it.

Impromptu Paella

Dinner last night came about with the goal being to make food without having to go to the grocery store. Alas, I had ingredients for Paella believe it or not. This version was a chicken and chorizo paella. My husband said it was Arroz con Pollo, but I disagree because I put saffron, paprika, olives, and peas in it, which to me defines paella. And it was in a paella pan. The picture above showed it cooking about half way done. The paella pan that I used was a 13 inch diameter one used on the stove. I also have a very large one I use for parties and make it on my gas grill. The one frustrating thing to me is that paella is made uncovered and unstirred and I have a heck of a time cooking that rice on the top. If anyone has any suggestions I’d love them.
Now for clean up. What a nightmare it would seem because since paella is not stirred, it develops this really yummy crusty bottom called Soccarat. This it seems would be a nightmare to scrape off and clean but alas, my new handy dandy Bambu Pot Scraper made the job a cinch. And it doesn’t hurt the pan. Love it.