Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Hacky Sack All

This post has been a long time in coming. I've mentioned before how the Mister's family is massive. This year, there are officially 37.5 of them, and often, for holidays, they bring bunches of friends who don't have a place to go. Well, in my plan to go Cold Sheep, I decided to make hacky-sacks for everyone, and a few extras. Well, here they are!

I've included pictures of them all together, as well as pictures of each family group's together, including a shot of the extras!

They were a smash hit at Christmas this year! The kiddos loved them, and so did the adults!


Over the next twelve weeks, I'll be posting on each design, showing you how I did it and what the priorities were! And maybe this year, I'll be able to post clearly all the way to Christmas!

Oh, and I asked everyone what their favorite colors were in order to make these. I'll be letting you know what the responses were as we go.





Sunday, March 27, 2016

50 Points for Gryffindor!

Not my work, click to view pattern
One of the Knitting Podcasts that I follow, Inside Number 23, really likes Harry Potter. A lot. I, also, am a Harry Potter fan, and so when I heard of her "50 Points for Gryffindor" challenge, I knew I had to participate.
Here's how it works:
For every projects you finish, you earn a certain amount of points. For every skein of yarn you buy, you lose points.
Katie's scheme is a little more stringent than mine, and the details are slightly off, but I'm participating with my own number scheme. Here, I'll list my point scheme, and keep track of my points. I started this on January 1st, and I'll be updating throughout the year. My goal is to hit 50 Points for Gryffindor by the year's end!
Since this only includes 2016, the projects listed will not be posted until the Christmas projects are completed. I have given myself extra point for project types I particularly want to focus on, including sweaters.Points:
  • socks +4
  • mittens/gloves +3
  • shawl +5 (+8 if > 150g; +10 if > 200g; +15 if > 300g)
  • sweater +5 per 100g used (minimum of +15)
  • small project +1
Bonus Points (per project):
  • Pre-2016 stash yarn +1
  • New Techniques +1
  • For Someone Else +1
Purchasing Yarn:
  • ~100-115g hank -5
  • ~50g hank -2
Running Tally for the Year:
0          Start
5          Oktoberfest Socken (+5)
-10       Threshold Yarn (-15)
-7         Huntington Beach Square (+3)
-5         Rubber-Band Basket (+2)
-3         Bathroom Brush Liner (+2)
2          Reyna Shawl (+5)
-8         Emiliana Yarn (-10)
-43       Plum Frost Yarn (-35)
-58       Inara Yarn (-15)
-68       Sontag Yarn (-10)
-73       Orange Dragonfly Sock Yarn (-5)
-67       October Mitts (+6)
-72       Black Cascade Socks Yarn (-5)
-61       Emiliana (+11)
-55       SM1: Slip Stripe Spiral (+6)
-49       SM2: Rose and Thorn (+6)
-59       Dad's Mitten Yarn (-10)
-69       Ben's Diamond Sock Yarn (-10)
-71       Vegas Yarn (-2)
-65       SM3: Waimakariri (+6)
-70       Tell Tale Oncoming Storm (-5)
-75       Tell Tale Oyster (-5)
-80       Thunderhead (-5)
-85       Wine Tasting (-5)
-90       Pond (-5)
-92       Sweet Potato (-2)
-94       Wonderland (-2)
-98       Razzleberry (-4)
-102     Cork (-4)
-104     Lantana (-2)
-97       Moss Rib Socks (+7)
-99       Brava Red (-2)
-104     Self-Striping Neon (-5)
-109     Red and Black sock yarn (-5)
-102     Caterpillar (+7)
-112     Plum Frost Yarn x2 (-10)
-107     SM4: Sweet Nuttins' (+5)
-102     SM5: Eisregen (+5)
-85       Tuscarora (+17)
-90       Tell Tale Bulkhead (-5)
-85       Heather's Mitts (+5)
-84       Wine Tasting Square (+1)
-79       Portland Plaid Socks (+5)
-64       Inara (+15)
-69       Cape Cod Yarn (-5)
-76       Green Sock Yarn (-7)
-81       Portland Yarn (-5)
-91       Cream Silken Lace (-10)
-116     Campside Yarn (-25)
-107     Gallifrey Sunset (+9)
-105     Serenity Square (+2)
-103     Plum Frost Swatch (+2)
-101     White Russian Square (+2)
-99       Pickle Juice Square (+2)
-97       Black Squirrel Square (+2)
-96       Old Money Square (+1)
-94       Red Hots Square (+2)
-92       Poppy Field Square (+2)
-90       Blue Violet Square (+2)
-100     Plum Frost Yarn x3 (-10)
-99       Lothlorien Square (+1)
-97       Sponge (+2)
-95       Scrubbie (+2)
-93       Scrubbie with SC (+2)
-92       Gingersnap Square (+1)
-90       Fleur de Couleur Square (+2)
-88       Camo Sqaure (+2)
-87       Razzleberry Square (+1)
-85       Auburn Square (+2)
-83       Deep Brown Square (+2)
-81       Ultra Violet Catastrophe Square (+2)
-79       Springtime Square (+2)
-78       Thunderhead Square (+1)
-77       Checkers Square (+1)
-87       Sontag Yarn 2 (-10)
-80       Farmer Saffron (+7)
-74       Disco Dance Socks (+6)
-72       Pacific Crest Square (+2)
-71       Disco Dance Square (+1)
-70       Oncoming Storm Square (+1)
-69       Cork Square (+1)
-67       Pink Sugar Square (+2)
-66       Sin City Purple Square (+1)
-65       Decay Square (+1)
-64       Vegas (Eva 7) Square (+1)
-63       Ranco Red (Eva 3) Square (+1)
-62       Enchanted Square (+1)
-45       Sontag (+17)
-44       Emiliana Square (+1)
-42       Portland Plaid Square (+2)
-41       Crelando (Eva 5) Square (+1)
-40       TYFKA Frozen Dancing Mermaid (Eva 2) Square (+1)
-54       12 Days Palette Yarn (-14)
-53       Drops (Eva 4) Square (+2)
-47       Camo Hat (+6)
-46       Jade (Susan) Square (+1)
-45       Debra's Pansy (Susan) Square (+1)
-42       Partridge in a Pear Tree (+3)
-44       Alice Starmore Samples (-2)
-49       Gingerbread House (-5)
-44       Quist Whit (+5)
-41       Three French Hens (+3)

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Grayson Andrew - Quilt #4

This is the fourth quilt, and it's the last of the quilts for the next generation! With this one done, I was able to gift all four to the kiddos on Christmas!

This was the completed version of Grayson Andrew's quilt top. Again, I used a jelly roll, and bound it with extra strips. I quilted in the ditch again.

Here's all four hanging outside my parent's house. So exciting! And the best part is that they all loved them!

Pattern: Jitterbug from Pam and Nicky Lintott's "Layer Cake, Jelly Roll, and Charm Quilts" book, with an adapted border. I made the border 2" squares, mostly patterned, instead of 2x4" rectangles, alternating patterned and white.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Christmas Soap

While at the Mister's family Christmas, we had a Yankee Swap! It was great fun, with 27 of the 33 individuals participating. I contributed six bars of a Christmas Soap I had made for that express purpose.

I also gave about a dozen bars to my local Stitch-and-Bitch group for a set of holiday gifts we made for the restaurant that hosts us.

Here's the Recipe:
Essentially, this batch is made using two separate batches of hot process soap. First, you make the green, and then the red.

  • 6.5 oz water (x2)
  • 2.5 oz lye - 9% superfat (x2)
  • 8.25 oz olive oil (x2)
  • 5 oz coconut oil (x2)
  • 2 oz cocoa butter (x2)
  • 2 oz shea butter (x2)
  • 1.25 oz castor oil (x2)
  • 1 oz jojoba oil (x2)
  • green soap coloring
  • red soap coloring
  • Essential Oils (recommended): Pine, Treasure of the Season, Cinnamon Bark, Nutmeg, Christmas Spirit
  • Crockpot, gloves, apple cider vinegar, scale, eye glasses, immersion blender, wax paper, pyrex baking dish, soap spoon, and glass tools/jars
  1. Measure out the oils and put the first set of oils in the crockpot to melt
  2. When the oils are mostly melted, add a dash of green soap coloring. Stir it in until mostly disolved.
  3. Measure out water and lye in separate glass dishes. Slowly add lye into water, stirring as you go to dissolve lye. Be sure to follow safety procedures.
  4. When the lye is dissolved and slightly cooled, add it to the oils, and blend with the immersion blender until the mixture reaches trace (about a minute).
  5. Put on cover and wait an hour or two for the cook.
  6. Stir in one teaspoon of Pine Essential Oil and one teaspoon of Treasure of the Season Essential Oil.
  7. Line a glass baking dish with wax paper and pour the first mixture into the mold. Place it in the oven at a low temperature to keep warm.
  8. Repeat steps 1-5 with the second set of oils and the red coloring.
  9. This time, add one teaspoon of Christmas Spirit Essential Oil and a half-teaspoon each of Nutmeg and Cinnamon Bark Essential Oil.
  10. Take the first batch out of the oven and pat down the soap mixture. Pour the second batch on top and stir/swirl the two together.
  11. Let the mixture sit for at least 24 hours before removing it from the mold and slicing it into delightful bars of soap!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Pickle Harbor Socks

Like the Dragon Egg Dice Bag with my family, this was another gift that I finished up simply so the Mister would have something to open on Christmas with his family.

He picked out this yarn himself quite a while ago, but when I went to order, they were out of stock. Later, when making another KnitPicks purchase (for my Sophie's Universe CAL), I discovered that Pickle Juice was back, and so I snagged a couple for his socks.

The majority of these socks were knit in August. In fact, I entirely finished them while driving from Boston to North Carolina on his family vacation.

And then I discovered something quite upsetting.

They were top-down socks. And the cast-on didn't go over his heel.
I wasn't about to rip this all out on the plane, so I set them aside and forgot about them.

Then, while brainstorming little things I could have the hubby open, I stumbled across these. I quickly ripped out the cast on, picked up all the stitches, and bound off with a yarn-over bind off.
I will tell you, the stitches were half a stitch off, since I was going in the other direction, but it didn't make a huge difference.

This was also my first double-forked short-row heel, and it was a great success. It gave the mister all the extra room he needed for his weird foot shape, and it certainly caused less strain on me!

Ravelry Project

Wednesday, March 2, 2016


My brother-in-law is a huge Doctor Who fan, and so when I found this pattern, there was no question that it would be his gift. I ended up adapting the pattern quite a bit to make it fit.
  • I increased the amount of stitches in the top quite a bit
  • I increased sooner on the thumb and made one extra row
  • I went longer before switching to the brown/yellow lines
Overall, he loves them. When he opened the box, it was covered with an image of a Dalek yelling "INSULATE!" which, for you Doctor Who fans, was just the icing on the cake.

Ravelry Project