Monday, March 26, 2007

I Am A Crafting Machine


The Golden Clutch
Have had lots of positive comments about this clutch. It is a wonder that it took me so long to sew a lining and zipper in, but the finishing touches are worth it.

PC Bag
A handsewn bag to ferry my laptop to and from work. Much less bulky that my laptop case and super cute to boot! Made from quilted fabric and twill tape, with 3 snap closures.

The Wheel In Motion Skein

After 4 months lying dormant, my spinning wheel is up and running. In just four nights of spinning and one of plying, I have my very first wheel-spun skein. Describing my wheel in one word: Fabulous!!!


Ripple Afghan
With no knitting ideas floating around my head at the moment, I thought that I would jump on the crochet Ripple bandwagon. Plus, it gives me something to do with my huge pile of scrap yarn.

Monday, March 19, 2007

DG Afghan

After making 6"x6" squares for 4 months, the DG afghan is finally finished! And just in time to be auctioned off this weekend.

My friend Jane and I starting sewing the squares up on Friday evening to ready the quilt for its debut on Saturday. Little did we know that this was going to be an 8 hour task! Three movies and a couple of PB&Js later, we had a quilt! I am just glad that the it is done and I can start working on more interesting projects.

Jane sews squares together

The finished quilt

Jane's beautiful lace border

I also had some time this weekend to finish some old projects and start an exciting new one, though pictures and stories will have to wait until the next post. SPOILER: No more drop-spindling, I need to break in the wheel!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

The Oven and The Sewing-Machine

While the oven was my medium of choice for my last post, I've switched my attention to the sewing machine this week. My sewing machine was inherented from my Mother, an old Singer machine that she recieved as a college graduation gift and subsequently passed onto me during my college years. It is still in good working order and was quite handy in fixing all of the holes that had developed in my clothes since I last got it out.

In addition to mending a few items, I performed a little surgery on a T-shirt I won at the bar the other week. As exciting as it is to get free stuff, the XL nature of free T-shirts usually has me passing them to the fiance rather than swimming in them myself.

The free XL Jack Daniel's shirt I won at the bar

However, I saw a link on the Craftzine blog to a tutorial on how to make T-shirt pants, a perfect use for my free bar shirt. I must say that these pants are SUPER comfortable! I would only mention that it probably best to follow directions for the waist, as I am not 100% happy with the two versions I tried.

The resulting pants are super cute and comfortable!

In the knitting world, I finished my second Monkey sock!!! I'm now in a race to finish this DG afghan by Saturday, when it will be auctioned off. I need to do a 12"x12" section and a few more 3"x6" sections before it can all be sewn together. It should be doable.

And my final creation of the week was made last night in the kitchen--a batch of Maple-Walnut cupcakes from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook. My roommate called them 'muffcakes' as the walnuts make them very muffiny, but they are still delicious. The only thing I did not like about them was the really buttery taste of the icing; I don't think that both sticks were really necessary.

Yummy muffcakes...

Have a good week and happy crafting!

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Ying and Yang

It's been a busy month. Of course, as mentioned in my last post, I am doing lots of wedding planning right now, but I also just completed a major hurdle on the way to getting my doctorate: the Thesis Background Oral. It's basically a thesis proposal presentation, followed by an hour of questioning by my committee of three professors. It's a pretty big deal, as you need to pass to stay in school.

I am discussing this here because so much of the last month of my life has been taken up by reading science articles and thinking about experiments. No real time for knitting or stress relief via some craft project. And as the date of the exam approached, I really found myself yearning to be creative. My creative side is half of me and needs to be stimulated in addition to my scientific half. It is like ying and yang--I need both.

Of the small amount of creation that I have been doing over the last several weeks, most has centered around baking for some strange reason. I have always liked to bake and truly enjoy the fruits of my labor when I am stressed and craving sweets. I started with these fabulous muffins and moved onto red velvet cupcakes. I am starting to understand the current obsession with cupcakes and plan to keep my friends fat and happy with them in the future.

The last lonely cupcake, soon to meet its fate

Also, while perusing for more cupcake recipes, I found an easy way to make caramel using a can of sweetened condensed milk. I had seen this the other day at The AntiCraft, but didn't believe it until I heard it from two seperate sources. I gave it a try the other day and am working to find a recipe that calls for caramel, so I can open the can. Any ideas?

What an easy way to make caramel!

Now we come to the saddest part of this post where I show all of the knitting I have finished over the last 6 weeks:

Yes, just the one sock. The picture was not taken at a great angle, but it is a really nice looking Monkey Sock. I have spent the day working on its partner, now that I actually have free time. It is so nice to be knitting again.

I hope to be able to show off more knitted goodness in my next post!