Crafty Bird

Welcome to my nest of fibre, fabric, paper, and beads...

Location: Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

Thanks for dropping by! I have a passion for all sorts of crafty goodness. Creating items with my hands and heart is a perfect complement to my working life.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Shawling around

I have just returned from a lovely visit with my Mum where she celebrated her 60th birthday. My schedule was free last week (no classes) so I took the ferry over to the Mainland for a few days. I had a nice, quiet time with my Mum where we went out for a few meals, window shopped, and watched a lot of home improvement shows on television.

I also gave her the Leaf Lace Shawl I made for her. I think it turned out lovely for my first lace knit shawl! The pattern (if you don't know already) is from Fiber Trends and was a great pattern for a first lace knit project. The other lovely aspect of this pattern is that it is knit from the center back (top) outward, binding off at the outer bottom edge. I used yarn from my stash: the squishable and lush Heirloom Alpaca 8ply in a cherry red colour (shade 905 - discontinued), 5 balls. The shawl was knit on Denise size 10 (5.6mm) started in December and completed in February. I had to eliminate about 2 rows of the final chart so as to not run out of yarn, so the points are not as pointy as they could be. Here is a pre-blocked closeup of the lovely leaves:

And here's a picture of the leaf closeup:

And, finally, the shawl blocking (this gives the best depiction of the colour):

I hope it gives my mum many years of warmth.

I will post a bit later on some thrifting finds I picked up while away!

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Trying to catch up!

I finally have to admit to my self that I have more projects waiting to be knit than I will ever complete in the next year. Between the demands of school and life, there is only so much time in the day for leisurly pursuits.

So this means that my projects tend to be ones that others have long since completed. This is nice in a way as I can see where people had problems with the pattern or yarn selection and adjust my project accordingly.

At this moment I am working on River from Rowan 38. Here's an in-progress shot.

And here's a picture of what usuallly happens when I put any wool product on the floor.

Yes, I have a wool-eating cat. Oscar is lovable, sweet, and a great cat for a dog-lover like myself, but he eats wool! Anything over 50% is fair game: socks, yarn, sweaters, gloves, you name it! Needless to say, I have to be very careful where I leave my projects.

Over the holidays, I finally sat down to try a little spinning. My Mum lent me her Louet spinning wheel and some roving last Fall and I was eager to find some time to give it a whirl. Here is my first ever attempt at spinning:

I then spun up some Fleece Artist roving picked up at my LYS.

Notice the lovely overspun sections and the thick and thin! I decided after these attempts that a lesson should be in my future if I plan on continuing with spinning! I do like it very much and hope to take a lesson if I can find someone locally who teaches.

I did manage to knit up the pink and green yarn into an iPod cozy for my brand new iPod! I love my iPod as I can listen to all of the great knitting podcasts out there. And I love that my iPod cozy is knit from my handspun yarn!

Another shot:

I just cast on 12 stitches and knit garter stitch until I ran out of yarn, sewed up the sides and, voila! iPod cozy! The Fleece Artist yarn is lovely, soft, and the colours are wonderful.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Embossed Leaves

Well, I have discovered Firefox and it seems to be a bit better than Safari. Thanks to my first all time commenter for the suggestions! It sure is nice to have people comment - I feel like a real blogger!

A little bit about me and my purpose for this blog. I mainly envision this blog as a medium for me to share my knitting accomplishments (and defeats) as well as other crafty stuff I am into. I was tired of lurking at the many knitting and crafting blogs and wanted to have more of a dialogue with other bloggers (and non-bloggers too!).

I have been knitting for one and a half years now. My friend, Karin, taught me the basics while we were on a road trip during the summer of 2004 and the rest I have self-taught through books and the fabulous online resources out there. I actually resisted learning to knit for well over a year as I didn't think I needed another craftism to spend money on and occupy my time. Silly me. I find knitting very meditative and a great complement to my scholastic studies! So, thanks Karin for sharing this fantastic activity with me!

Enough blabber - on to the photos!

Here's a picture of my second pair of socks every knit. My first pair were knit for my Mum for Christmas 2005 - I'll post a picture of them soon.

Here's a picture of them on my feet (foot).

How about a close-up of those fabulous embossed leaves:

Pattern: Embossed Leaves Socks from Interweave Knits Winter 2005
Yarn: Koigu Painter's Palette 100% Merino, 2 skeins
Colour: P21733 - Purple variagated
Needle: 2.5 mm
Mods: I didn't do the rib ktbl as it was too challenging with the mini-dowels (aka Addis)
Time: Umm...December to early January.

I realize that this yarn is probably not the best to emphasize the pattern. And that the socks are a bit too big (I know now to knit them with a little negative ease). But I love them anyways! I really enjoy knitting socks as a small project. I knit this pair on one needle (Addi turbos) with Magic Loop method. I liked finishing both socks at the same time, but it makes them less portable as a project.

Alright, enough for now. More knitting and crafting to follow.


Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day to all!

Although V-day is not my favourite holiday it certainly is one that elicits spreading warm wishes to those close to me. I really value having a supportive partner in my life and we try to celebrate Valentine's every day - resisting the commercial influence that pervades this day.

This cute vintage valentine was found through a link on Bella Dia (at Hmmm...I will have to learn how to do links...and possibly change my browser as it seems Safari is not supported.

Monday, February 13, 2006

fledgling post

A quick post for my first on this blog. I am excited to start this public yet personal venue in which to discuss, display, and develop my crafty desires. I've enjoyed lurking around other bloggers' sites for far too long and feel it is time to take the plunge into the blogging universe. Feel free to stop by and say hello!