give away

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I’ve written up a knitting pattern for a newborn baby hat. It’s a simple top-down beanie knit from about 100 yards or meters of fingering weight. I’ve done the increases in such a way that there is very little counting or marker placement which makes it easy to memorize and fast to knit, good qualities for gift knitting! You can download the pattern here or on Ravelry. I’d be happy to hear from you if you knit it! I handpainted the wool for the sample myself with acid dyes.

Countless – newborn baby hat knitting pattern

hand dyed hand knit baby hat countless knitting pattern

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I believe some of my readers like to do cross stitch. If so, speak up!

I received this lot of cross stitch books, a nice assortment of DMC floss, floss keeper cards and Aida fabric from a neighbor. I haven’t done cross stitch in a long time so I’d like to give this away to someone who will use it. I can’t think of anyone locally so I thought I’d post here. I can include an embroidery hoop for an interested beginner. The chart in the back is for a unicorn. I had to smile remembering how popular unicorns were with us girls when I was in junior high.

cross stitch patterns and floss

And if there is further interest, I have a few original charted designs that I can share by PDF.

There was also a strange package of wood pieces in the bag. If anyone knows what this is, a virtual brownie bottom ice cream sundae to you! xoxo


ETA: Thank you friends. These are spoken for and I will contact recipients for addresses.

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Meet Gabe, the bunny, who lives with my parents. He is an 8mo German Angora. He has lusciously soft white fur which spins up into incredibly soft fuzzy yarn.

German Angora rabbit playing with grass ball

Gabe meeting the boy.

Gabe meeting the girl.

Name the author and setting of the title quote and I’ll send you something bunny! (fiber sample if you’re a spinner, yarn sample if you’re a knitter/crocheter, something else bunny otherwise)

(In the case that more than one person knows the correct answer, I’ll randomly choose one recipient.
ETA: comments are now closed. 1/25/10)

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These are some of the things I made for the brown paper packages pay-it-forward. I tried to make something that would fit each person or something that we had in common. For some reason I ended up making jewelry for all three of these friends. Maybe because I like to make jewelry but I don’t actually wear it much myself. I have one left that is a little more difficult so I am taking my time.

This one is a charm bracelet made for Peggie from Maine living in Texas. I put some shells gathered from Maine beaches, a real acorn, some blue beads that reminded me of blueberries and a silver dragonfly—some of my favorite things about summer in Maine.

Maine themed charm bracelet

A rosy glass pebble backed with a handcolored print of a fairy sprite and embraced by curliqued copper wire went to Jen of Dahara Dreaming. I know she makes jewelry too but she also does pretty much every other craft I do as well!

glass pebble and copper wire pendant

And this hematite and howlite pendant was made for Carla, a fellow member of a fabric co-op I’m in. I don’t know her as well so I thought I’d stick to something black and white. I originally made a similar necklace several years ago and was never pleased with it but I liked the combination of materials so I decided to try again. I was much happier with this version. The three sets of beads swing from a wire ring suspended in the middle of the hematite oval so the whole piece moves freely.

hematite oval and howlite beaded pendant

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knitted wool potholder

I bought a bag of wool fiber samples when I bought my spindle. The spinning came out thick and thin and did not have enough spin in it but I was determined not to waste it so I decided to ply it and knit it up into potholders! I used a bit smaller needles size so they would be fairly tight, they knit up nice and thick and I did a row or two of single crochet around the edge. The first is just regular knitting, the second one I knit on the bias so I could practice making increases and decreases. They look much better knit up than the spun yarn did!

So I sent them to my dear friend Amy because I know she will love them because I made them, even if they are not so pretty! Maybe her little girl can use them in her play kitchen. These were done a while back but I waited to post them until after Amy got her “brown paper package”.

bias knitted wool potholder

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I’m working on brown paper package projects! It takes me a while to decide what I want to do in these sort of circumstances. But I have three of my five projects underway. I am taking pictures but I’ll post them after they get mailed out.

I’ve also been savoring my birthday present, a dozen DVDs of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot mysteries, starring the admirable David Suchet. Agatha Christie has been my favorite author since I first read one of her mysteries in the third grade. I don’t often care for filmed versions of books but these are really well done—lovely sets, gorgeous costumes, good casting.

I’m enjoying spinning with my new spindle now that I’ve come to terms with the fact that my left hand is just going to do what it wants to do. The boy has been quite interested and “helped” a bit. He can actually give it a good steady flick. Now if I could just get him to wind the spun wool . . .

I’ve been playing around with reorganizing the sewing room. We moved some furniture out so I’m hoping to get a cutting/work table in. I’ve actually set up a temporary one to test the height and such. Lots of plans, not so much skill or time to accomplish them. Although I did get a great book with lots of ideas for building storage/furniture that doesn’t require a lot of fancy tools, Quick and Easy Handmade Storage by Philip and Kate Haxell. I laughed when I got home as I realized I already have another book by the same authors. I do think that I could actually do most of the projects in this book given the materials and some child free time with power tools. BZZZZ! BZZZZ!

Another reason there are no pictures is that my computer was having some issues so I’m temporarily geared down until dear hubby can patch it up again. And it’s been raining frogs here. I like a nice rainy day inside but the kids are getting a little crazy.


brown paper package

This has been going around the craft blogs lately. The first three commentors receive a handmade gift from the poster, then they post the offer on their blog and pay it forward to the next three. I don’t usually do these sorts of things but since you can make anything you want and I like presents (giving and receiving) . . .

Here’s the “official” part cobbled from my friend Krista who posted on Facebook:
Do you like getting packages in the mail?
Brown paper packages, tied up with string?

If so, it would be my pleasure to send you something that I’ve made for you and for you alone.

* I make no guarantees that you will like what I make.
* What I create will be just for you! New! Not something I made previously and have just laying around.
* It’ll be done this year (2009).
* You have no clue what it’s going to be. It will be something made in the real world and not something over the internet.
* It may be jam. It may be a necklace or an original artwork or a cake or a chocolate mousse or knitted goods. Who knows? Not you, that’s for sure! (Not me either right now…)

And fromSnippety Gibbet‘s blog: “The first three people to leave a comment will receive a hand made gift from me, the only thing you have to do is participate and carry on the gift giving to three more people . . . as soon as you have left a comment do a “pay it forward post” on your blog and continue the giving.
I will contact the first three commenters to get their addresses.”

MTA: Good question from Amy, no you don’t have to have a blog, you can use some other social networking medium or just send out an e-mail to friends.

Okay, I am e-mailing those who responded for snail addresses, just remember I have all of 2009 to send your package, lol!

empty black velvet lined boxes

I scored a few of these previously used black boxes, a little dusty but sturdy. They are some sort of thin but hard board covered in faded black paper and lined with foam covered with cheap velvet. (I’m sure these will be very easy to gut.) Some of them have little latches and some of them have self-closing hinges. Some are approximately 5×7″ and others are 6×8″, about 2.5″ deep. I didn’t know what I would do with them but obviously they have great potential. The girl appropriated one for her little dolls as soon as I got them in the door!

So I’m throwing this out there to my readers. What would you do with one of these? I’d love to hear your ideas on how you might decorate the outsides and what you might put inside. I’m thinking treasure boxes, photo storage, special gift packaging, triptychs, memory boxes, craft tool cases, decoupage purse. What are you thinking?  Leave me a comment by May 5th and I’ll be giving a few of these out.** Feel free to spread the word, I want to hear lots of ideas!

**Two catches – I’ll want you to e-mail a picture of your finished project to post here on my blog by May 31 and I won’t be sending any outside the US, because I’m broke, sorry.

lavender tulips in a metal bucket
just because they’re pretty ;)

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