So I've been busy...

The problem with being a crafter who is reasonably good is the amount of commissions you get.  The Christmas commissions came heavy and early this year. (And before someone jumps on it, all the gifts were specifically being given for Christmas and not Hanukkah or Yule.) 

The commissions involved:

1 Slytherin scarf and pair of fingerless gloves
1 Gryffindor scarf, hat, and pair of fingerless gloves
   (The owners of these two commissions duked it out in the Libs.  I'll post the pic later.)
1 Penn State Scarf
1 Granny Cross scarf
4 pairs of fingerless gloves, all different (I should have taken a pic of them.  Curse my lack of foresight!)
1 Capri Sun Bag (finally finished)
1 beaded lanyard for an original DS (Those things would lose their styluses like crazy, so I make attachments.)
2 more pairs of fingerless gloves (for the nieces!)

I've been busy.  But I've also made a lot of money!


Low Res Photography

I've been experimenting with low resolution photography on my cell phone camera (a measily 1.5 mega pixels).  And I've been getting some pretty spanking shots!  Check 'em out!

This lovely lily is from Luna's enclosure at the North Carolina Aquariums at Fort Fisher.

This is from the tree outside the house, which dropped all those beautiful leaves on my car.  

This is the bridge over the pond at the Hintz Alumni Center

Here is the surf at the lovely Wrightsville Beach.  I love this one!  Time to put it up for sale on Deviant Art!

 Another fall leaf.  I love how the light shining through the leaf shows off the veins.

This tree lives on my lane.  You can tell what season it is just by looking at the tree.  Spring in this case.

Another picture of the beautiful Wrightsville Beach.  This is the sun rising over the water.  :)


So busy...

This blanket was a wedding present for my friend Doc. He married a lovely girl named Jill last September in a beautiful ceremony that I missed the vast majority of because Lily was so finicky. Silly Baby!  The pattern for this one is the same as the pattern for the throw I made for Erica.

This baby blanket is a Steeler's car blanket for 'Gus,' the unborn son of my coworker Andrew. He doesn't read my blog, so I'm safe in posting the pic. :)  There's even a matching hat with super huge pom-pom.  The pattern for this one comes from Crochet World Magaine's "Afghans" Fall 2010.

The last picture is "A Very Victorian Baby" blanket. I was using up some scraps while watching old Dracula movies on TCM. I'll be donating this one to the craft sale the Libs has every year before Christmas. In fact, I took a picture of it in the Libs! You won't be able to recognize the place, Penn Staters. It's in my office. :)

The pattern for this one comes from Beyond the Square, though the original block is an older vintage pattern.  Yay, Public Domain!

I like how this one turned out so much that I might make a similar one for sale on Etsy.

More Fingerless Gloves!

I apologize for the blurry picture. You try taking pictures with a baby in the house!

As promised on Facebook, the pattern:

Easy-Peasy Crochet Fingerless Gloves

Yarn: 100 grams of sock yarn
Hook: E/4 3.50mm
1 yarn needle

Pattern Notes:
1. Chain 3 at the beginning of each round does NOT count as a DC.

Leaving a long tail. Chain 51.
Row 1: DC in 4th chain from hook. DC across chain. Turn. (51 DC)
Row 2: Chain 3. DC in back loop of each stitch. Turn. (51 DC).
Rows 3-5: Repeat Row 2.
Row 6: Chain 2. HDC in the back loop of the next 7 stitches. SC in the next stitch. Chain 17. Turn.
Row 7. DC in the 4th chain from the hook. When you hit the stitches, DC in the back loops to the end. Turn. (64 DC)
Row 8: Chain 3. DC in back loop of each stitch. Turn. (64 DC)
Rows 9 & 10: Repeat Row 8.
Row 11: Chain 3. DC in the next two stitches, *Chain one, skip next stitch, DC in the next two stitches* Repeat * to * until end.
Row 12: Repeat Row 8.
Row 13: Repeat Row 11.
Rows 14-19: Repeat Row 8.

Bind off with a tail long enough to sew up the glove.

Starting with the first long tail at the beginning chain 51. Use it to sew the thumb ends together down to one stitch past the single crochet. Bind off and weave in the end.

Take the long tail from the end and sew up the seam of the glove, taking extra care to be sure their is no hole where the thumb meets the glove. Bind off and weave in the end.


Doral Wristlets

I swear to God I haven't posted because I've been too busy... crafting!

These gloves are made with a mercerized cotton whose brand currently escapes me. The pattern comes from Caron International: Doral Wristlets

I altered the pattern slightly. I gave it a shell edge and a thumb hole (by not connecting of the motifs on one side on each wristlet.


Lily's New Blanket

Here is the reason for my recent radio silence:

A Rainbow Heart Blanket of Doom!  I made it for Lily.  :)

Here's a close up on the heart shaped goodness.

Lily is checking it out.

She approves!

For this pattern, I used the "My Heart Belongs to Baby" Blankie.  The original pattern is for a Cabbage Patch Kid, so I had to increase the number of chains to 122.  All in all, it took me about 4 weeks to finish.


The "Flowering" of My Labor

The first flower on my Hibiscus!  W00tini!



As much as I think photography is cool, I'm not much a photo taker. I say photo taker because I am in no way a photographer. It seems very elite.

Old Main Lawn (Penn State) with my feet as a bonus!
I take most of my photos with a 5 megapixel point and click which gets a ton of use with a baby in the house.  (You have to take pictures of your children doing every conceivable thing.)  The rest of my photos, I can with my Alias 2 which has a 2.0 megapixel camera.  For such a little thing, I can get great pics out of it.
The bridge over the Alumni Center's pond.
My biggest complaint is the delay.  My friend Sarah, who is a photographer in her spare time, says it's so the camera can get the correct exposure.  To which I say phooey.
Going to the left of the photo before leads you to the shaded area of the pond.
Digital cameras work by 'filming' the image in front of it.  If I click the button, it should take the picture I see on the screen at that moment, not the one that happens 2 to 3 seconds later.
 The signs next to the pond say not to feed the ducks.
I always miss the perfect picture that way.  I have missed hundreds of amazing shots thanks to that delay.  Digitals do not need exposure time.  Film needs exposure time and even my old 35mm took pictures faster.
Someone isn't listening because the ducks come right up to you for food.
It really sucks to think that you can never be a 'real' photographer because you can't get the equipment to work properly.  My husband will tell you, I have to have everything perfect or I freak the hell out.  I have erased more pictures than I care to admit because I can't see the value in the shot if it wasn't the one I intended in the first place.
Here they come!
And the worst part is that I can't fix the camera!  I can't get rid of the delay!  Most digitals come with a delay function.  The kind of thing you use for family portraits when you want to be in the shot and you've got your little point and click on a tripod.
Feed me, Seymour!
 And God forbid you have to wait for your camera to adjust!  You know what I mean.  You snap the picture and the camera says, "Hey wait!  I can do this really cool thing right here!  See this?  See?  See?!"  And the perfect Kodak moment is gone. Bastards.
You liar!  You have no food! 
So I'm gimped by my equipment.  I'm told it's a poor artist who blames the equipment.  Well, screw the people who say it.  I'm calling it like I see it.
Can you believe that chick with the camera?  She totally made me think she had food!
If it's a point and click, i should be able to point and click.  I'm not asking for anything fancy here.
We'll get her!  We'll program a delay in her camera so she can never get the perfect shot!
 Damn ducks.


Crochet Love!

I toyed around on Issuu today and look what I found!



Every time I drop rosaries off for the free rosary rack at church, Diane always tells me that people ask for my information so they can have custom work done.

So I started an Etsy Shop so the OLV community can find me!

Nicolle's Habit

(If you get the play on words there, it means you're Catholic!) 

Here are the first four rosaries I have for sale.  Pardon the pictures.  The batteries in the camera were dying at the time.  New pics will come later.  :)


Baby Blanket in Double (Crochet) Time

I was visiting my parents' place a while back and realized that I forgot to bring Lily a blanket.  No biggie.  My parents have plenty to spare, but I thought a blanket to be kept at the 'rents would be a good idea.

So I started making this awesome rainbow and hearts blanket (pics to follow) and realized I liked it too much to leave it somewhere, far from my loving gaze.

This left me with an obvious problem.  Time for a new blanket and this is what I've finished up in 3 days flat!

Not bad!  It's another glorified granny square in Caron Simply Soft Paints.  Lily likes it and is already playing with it!  I see the 'rents this weekend so I'll drop it off then.


New Bag for Me!

When if need of a new bag, the sewing machine starts running hot!

There's no real pattern for this.  I really just threw it together on the fly so I would have a nice bag for facility tour of Morris Library at the University of Delaware.  It carried the blanket I was working on as well as other essentials (notebook, pens, camera, etc.)

It's messenger style and the fabric is from the Legacy Collection available at Jo Ann Fabric.  The fabric was originally slated to be part of a diaper changing mat, but I can't get this specific color anymore, so a little spinning turned the fabric into a bag.

There is a set of inner pockets for a pen, cell phone, and my gum.  I didn't do any other pockets because I found a cosmetic bag with diapers and wipes to be more effective than a diaper bag.  Everything Lily needs in one little package with enough room for a baby spoon, tissues, and *ahem* feminine products.  The outer pocket has a slim section to hold onto my sunglasses (as seen above).  My only regret was that I didn't put the pocket lower on the front panel so I could sew in a separate pocket for my hand fan.  (Yeah, I'm one of those crazy people who actually carries an old fashioned, fabric fan around in the summer.)

And yes, that is a Johnny Bravo magnet in the picture.  Man, he's pretty!

Wedding Blanket Finished!

I finished Erica's throw two weeks ago.  Here's the end result:

It's really just a glorified granny square.

1. Chain 4 and slip stitch into a ring.
2. Chain 3(counts as one dc), dc twice into the ring, chain two, *dc three times into the ring, chain 2,* repeat from * to * twice more and slip stitch into the top of beginning chain 3.
3. Chain 3(counts as one dc), *dc in every dc to corner, (2 dc, chain 2, 2 dc) in corner*, * repeat from * to * four times and slip stitch into the top of beginning chain 3.
4. Repeat round three until the afghan reaches desired size.  Change colors (or not) as you please.

Lily approves!

Catching Up: Capri Sun Pencil Case

I haven't been lazy about crafting. I've been lazy about getting the photos online!

I did a trade with my friend Larry. He shopped a picture of my little girl and I made him a Capri Sun Pencil case.

Here's the case:

It's zippered and awesome!

Here's the original picture of my Lily-girl:

Here's the super awesome new version:

So cute!!! 


Pardon Me (I Didn't Knit That for You)

I don't usually have this problem.  Most people ask me why I even craft, like I'm selling out all women by not being a nuclear engineer and putting my child in the hands of strangers at six weeks so I can pursue a 'career.'


Anyway. Ganked from via Facebook.


Crafty Travelling Souvenir

Here's a great idea for a crafty souvenir of your travels!

A hundred little bobbles or easy to transport scarves, clothes, and other scraps of fabric?

I totally have to try this.


Wedding Throw

Tis the season... for weddings!  And with weddings come a whole bunch of commissions.

The first commission this wedding season is a throw.  The order comes from a coworker, Erica.  Her sister is tying the knot and needs an uber-awesome gift.  It will be a square, crocheted throw in earth tones.

How I do blanket commissions:
The client picks the colors.  I pick the design.  The size, materials, and how long it takes me to make the finished piece determines the final price.

Pictures to follow!



And thank God too.  If I have to crochet another stitch on this one, I might have murdered a hobo.



Fairy Doll for Channah

Channah, the eldest daughter of my friend Mandee, needs a doll.  A kick ass doll.  So here we go on a weekend project (which, by the way, I did in the middle of the week).

I love dolls.  I do not make them enough.  But dolls can be a time consuming pain in the neck.  So I went the quick and easy route:

Pre-sewn (but un-stuffed) 12 inch muslin doll
Cream colored thread
Yarn for hair
Thread to match hair color
Fabric Markers
Dress for a 12 inch doll

1. Stuff the doll.

2. Use the fabric markers to draw on a face.
I hopped around the intarwebs for a while checking out doll faces before choosing some features I liked and practicing them on paper.

This doll has hazel eyes.  To get the hazel look, I dabbled green around the pupils and brown along the outer edge of the iris.

I gave her a purple heart on the cheek.  :)

3. Lay out the yarn a little longer than the length you would like it to be on the doll.

The yarn I am using here is Berroco's Optik #4944.  I'm not sure the yarn is still in production.  I've had it in my yarn bin for years now.

4.  Sew on the hair a bit at a time down the middle of the head.

5.  About half an inch away on both sides from the center stitch line, sew another line in order to hold the hair flat to the head.  Doing this eliminates the need for a weft.

6. Trim hair to designed length and dress.

Action Shot!!!

This doll took 4-5 hours to complete.  The dress is actually a 'teddy bear' dress.  I also painted her nails pink with the fabric markers.

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