October 7th–One Small Step, One Big Leap

TECMS Logo 10.4

I will be a vendor at a local craft fair here in Fresno. Basically, I’m offering everything I currently have in my Etsy store and whatever I can finish before the date.

So I’m nervous. I’ve never tabled before or been able to call myself as a “vendor”, so this will be a learning experience for me.  Part of me wants to stay under a rock. The other part gingerly accepts that exposure is important and people should know what I do as a crafty and a writer.

I’ve been focused on a potential new career path and haven’t been able to finish new items for my store or indulge my craft work. I also don’t have a ton of friends, connections, or family to promote me so I’ve felt invisible this whole time. Even with the steps I’ve taken to promote myself–creating social media accounts like this blog and Instagram, trying to stay on top of posting regularly, and keeping an eye out for other crafty who also do what I do and connect with them–it is exhausting and nothing ever seems like enough.

Loving what I do is important to me and I wonder if “business” is really for me. Never viewed myself as much of a businessperson. I am an artist and I try to stay passionately true to that.

But I promised myself The Ever Clever Miss Stitch would be a vendor at this event, that I would try it. So I will. This is a good opportunity to do so, even if its just for the experience.

In the grand scheme of things, this effort is probably be very small. But to me, it is a huge leap.

 

 

Advertisements

Pattern of the Week: My Little Pony Pattern by Knit One Awe Some

A HUGE thanks to the crafty over at Knit One Awe Some for their My Little Pony: Friendship is Magical pattern. I’m not sure if the creator is active anymore or not, but regardless I want to always, always give credit for this pattern. But unless I’m needled for not giving credit every time, it goes without saying whenever I make an MLP style pony, its likely made from this pattern.

Every pony I’ve ever done comes from Knit One Awe Some. I even designed my crochet sheep off a modified version of this pattern. People love them.

This is the first I crocheted a few years ago. My skills have improved since then as you can see in my most recent work above and below ^_^;

I typically use Red Heart yarn and Caron Simply Soft (sometimes for the mane and tail).

The hook I typically use is a Boye H hook. Sometimes the stitches gape a little or look too spacey and I don’t notice until after assembly so it might be wise to use a small hook depending on the consistency of the yarn.

Agonizing over the face and attaching limbs and eyes just right is always a thing for me. I don’t like cutting felt and I still haven’t learned to use or be comfortable with applying puff paint.

I wrote the pattern I use for the eye pieces myself and they are sewed on. I cut felt for appliques/decoration like stars and hearts and use hot glue to apply them, along with rhinestones. Or I crochet the appliques and sew them on.

I may have to do a tutorial to explain how I do the mane and tail; there are two methods for the tail and I pretty much do the mane the same way every time.

This free pattern for My Little Pony: Friendship is Magical can be found over Knit One Awesome, a blog for free knitting and crochet patterns. This pattern really is pretty awesome.

These are more examples of my ponies, old and new.

Who Names These Yarns?? -__-

Bernat Softee Chunky in a questionable ‘kimono’

My fellow crafty ordered this yarn and expected it to be more red because the color sample image she saw online wasn’t true to the yarn’s actual colors. But as it turns out this Bernat Softee Chunky in “kimono” actually mirrors a koi pond. It does not make me think of a kimono, which as a concept would be hard to capture because a kimono can come in just about any colors. Though kimonos can have koi print theme, this ombre yarn in no way summons the general thought of a kimono, which is why me and my friend think its strange, misnamed, and potentially appropriative. Which is what happens when brands make lose references to somebody else’s culture, in this instance Japanese culture. The colors of the yarn bring to mind many images of teal, green, aquamarine plant life and waters. The white, orange sometimes pinkish, and red colors a koi fish’s scales.

Names Bernat Could’ve Called This Yarn (by me and Shanay):

  • Koi
  • Ocean Sunset
  • Lily Pond Sunrise
  • Random Reference to Japanese Culture

http://www.lovethispic.com/image/14463/koi---goldfish

Seeds & Flowers Scarf

My seeds and flowers scarf knitted in seed stitch. The puff flowers are crochet. ^_^

My seeds and flowers scarf knitted in seed stitch. The puff flowers are crochet. ^_^

Even though I’ve made my peace with knitting, I don’t have the proper tools, inspiration,  or the knowledge to make anything other than a scarf.

Sooo I made a scarf.

Yarn: Woolspun by Lion Brand, in Tomato (at least 3 and 1/2 skeins)

Needles: Crystal Palace (size 11)

Stitch: seed stitch

Notions: Puffy Daisy (crochet) by Cecile Balladino @ Eclectic Gipsyland (Which I also wrote about here in Pattern of the Week)

I cast on at least 20 or so stitches though I do think its a little wide. I also made double the puffy flowers do the scarf is double-sided on my ends. I had to order more yarn because the only skein of Woolspun I had was gift from a friend. I had planned to make the scarf really, really long but later thought it might be cumbersome to wear and besides the yarn worked in a seed stitch is fairly stretchy.

I made learning the seed stitch really, really hard when in fact its not hard at all. I kept getting ribbing instead of a seed stitch because I kept second-guessing what to do after I worked a row instead of just continuing to knit one then purl one. As I worked, I started to see the difference between the way knits and purls look and it became easier for me realize when I’d made a mistake and where. At times it was frustrating, there was a lot of unraveling and having to pick my stitches up again (at least a dozen times). I learned that I prefer to cast off with a crochet hook and I even learned how to pick up dropped stitches during this project.

Unfortunately, at the time I wrote this, it was getting reaallly hot in California and every time I looked at the scarf, I got a little mad. Seeing red, I guess. Its very soft and cute though.

Pattern of Week: Puffy Daisy by Cecile Balladino

IMG_20160430_1914116_rewindThese are the crochet puffy flowers from my knitted scarf, which I sewed on using a yarn needle. The Puffy Daisy pattern, thanks to Cecile Balladino over at her crafty blog Eclectic Gipsyland.

After a lot of trial and error, I used three different hooks in the end: Boye P, K, and N hooks for small, medium, and large flowers respectively. The yarn is Red Heart in cherry red and gold.

I tried to make puffy flowers bigger by using bigger hooks and using half double crochet stitches in the first round because I don’t have much bulky yarn at all. That method DEFINITELY doesn’t always work to make things bigger (just looser and not as neat-looking), sometimes you need weightier yarn and that’s all there is to it. I wanted huge puffy flowers sewn to the edge of the scarf and I wanted them in those colors. I settled for this minimalistic motif. I also added more pattern repeats to the petal to make them thicker.

This post is in French and English. It was exciting and though I did try to read the French anyway, I was intimidated because I’m trying to teach myself French using the Duolingo app ^_^;. In any event, please visit Cecile over at her blog, Eclectic Gipsyland, for the Puffy Daisy pattern and more. Thank you for sharing, Cecile!

Pattern of the Week: Springtime Coaster by Doni Speigle

img_20160709_2002498_rewind

Sorry about the shadow, not a lot of attractive locales to photograph my work in here. I think I plain gave up that day and took a “lazy” picture.

Half the time, the story always begins with my mom asking me to make something for somebody.

img_20160709_1958206_rewind

I had made a little pocketbook/purse for my mom’s co-worker but her the co-worker’s daughter liked it so much that she took it. So my mom asked me to make something cute for all the daughters, something “girly” and shaped like a flower. I keep telling my mom that if you want something to look nice, its going to take longer than five minutes to make–especially when you have to sew lining into it. But I so graciously met her unreasonable demands in spite of how time-consuming it was. 😉

Searching for large crochet flower motifs on Google, I discovered this crochet pattern for the Springtime Coaster by Doni Speigle on Ravelry and used it to created a small flower purse. I couldn’t find anything as simple as my mom was making it sound so I modified Doni’s flower coaster pattern to suit my needs. My mom has so far asked me to make eight of these for co-workers, friends, and church members, two of which I haven’t finished.

The purses in the picture are crocheted using Red Heart in pumpkin and bright yellow, light raspberry and petal pink, light blue and delft blue (I think it was delft blue although it may be a Caron Simply Soft yarn or something else), bright yellow and gold, cherry red and light raspberry. I experimented with different sized hooks from H to P to make the flower as big and uniform as possible. In the end I used a Boye  N 9.00mm hook for the coaster motifs and Boye H 5.00mm hook for everything else. After crocheting two flower coasters for each purse, I came up with a method for building the purse by crocheting the siding and strap. Then I sewed the lining inside, crocheted a short strap with a button hole on the center back motif, and sewed the button in the center front moti. Voila!

If anyone is interested, in the near future I will (attempt to) write a pattern for these cute little purses and share it, especially if it alright with Doni Speigle (since its a modification of their pattern).

This free pattern for Springtime Coasters can found on Doni Speigle’s Ravelry page. Thank you, Doni–I fulfilled a really tedious request and challenge with your help. I’ve never made coasters, pot holders, or things for the kitchen before but I’m glad I did something creative with it.

Because of the insane amount of time it took me to do these little purses, I’ve posted most of the pictures in this private post, including views of all the lining I had to sew in. (I didn’t want to have an endlessly scrolling post and I’d need to collage the pictures together to save space.)

 

img_20160609_1902107_rewind

This is the very first one I did

 

Pattern of the Week: Crochet Newborn Baby Booties by Sarah @ Repeat Crafter Me

img_20160613_2233494_rewindMy mom specifically wanted newborn baby booties for a coworker, which aren’t as easy to come by as I thought. After looking around a little, I would say most baby bootie crochet patterns are not for newborns unless you intentionally make them smaller…

I finally found this Crochet Newborn Baby Booties from  the same crafty I learned corner-to-corner crochet from and whose blog I’ve visited before, Sarah from Repeat Crafter Me.

I used Red Heart in petal pink and I can’t remember what hook I used but I’m sure it was smaller than an H, which is what the pattern calls for. Added the ribbons and I was done! Fairly quick and fairly easy.

This free pattern for Crochet Newborn Baby Booties can be found on Sarah’s blog, Repeat Crafter Me. Thanks, Sarah! This is exactly what I needed.

img_20160613_2233360_rewind