Confessions of a Craftaholic

Tag: lion brand yarn

Hand Dyed Yarn, In Pink

Yes, pink.

I can’t divulge any details yet, but I may or may not have a reason to have to knit a baby blanket within the year. That being said, when I had my daughter Dakota, I wasn’t confident in my knitting skills enough to make a blanket. So I never did. So now, I’m making her one.

She’s quite a fan of the color pink, and I knew if I went to the yarn shop, she’d pick out some awful pink color. So I figured, I’d go to the Lion Brand Studio, and buy that lovely plain wool yarn they carry. I bought enough for a blanket for her. And of course, RIT dye. I bought three shades: Fushia, Pink, and Scarlet Red. I used a Tablespoon of Fushia, almost a tablespoon of pink, and about half a tablespoon of scarlet.

If you want to know how to dye your own yarn using RIT, it’s actually simple. I used Lion Brand’s Pure wool yarn. It’s like, $5 a hank, so you can’t beat that.

Follow the instructions on the package for Stove Top dying, as I find that it lends itself to a higher grade of color. I do wish that RIT smelled better tho. It does not smell most pleasant.

I hang them to dry on wire hangers. Wire hangers are terrible for clothing, but perfect for hanging things to dry, like pasta and yarn.

That’d be one heck of a bracelet, don’t you think?

And there it is, all wound up. Nice, eh? It’s such a lovely shade of pink. I’m trying to go as fast as I can, and just knit and knit like a little old granny, so I can finish it in a few months. So then, I’ll need to get started on another one.

I really enjoy hand dyed yarn, and this line of yarn, makes it so easy and affordable to just create your own pretty shaded yarn.

So that’s that.

The Craftaholic

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A Crochet Flower Necklace

I just made a couple of these for a swap I’m in. Cute, right?  I used Lion Brand Yarn for these. They have this pretty mohair blend that crochets up nicely.

If you happen to be a friend or family of mine, then guess what you’re getting for Christmas.

The Craftaholic

Fingerless Gloves & A Hat for Dakota

Here’s my latest project.

Fingerless gloves, and a hat for my little one. I made the gloves fingerless because she loves to grab stuff, eat, and things, while we are out on our daily adventures.

And the hat I made with a pretty scallop edge, just to make it a little more interesting. She likes things plain and simple, so no flower adorns this hat. But it has flaps to keep her ears warm.

I was thinking about writing down the pattern, for both of them, but for now I have it in my head. Will write it down soon.

The Craftaholic

TUTORIAL: Mixed Media Beeswax Tag

Here’s a quick and fun project for you.

I don’t know about you, but I love using jumbo sized tags as bookmarks. Don’t you? I put them in crafting books and fiction books that I read on the train.

Anyway, here’s what I made:

AND, here’s how to make it:

1. Cut out a 3″x6″ square, and snip off the two top edges, so that it looks like a tag.\

2. Glue some newspaper onto the paper so that it covers the paper.

3. Rub some Tim Holtz Distress Ink over it, and on the edges.

4. Cut out some vintage pictures (I got mine from Alpha Stamps).

5. Get out your Fantasy Fiber in “Cotton Cloud” and iron lightly, making a pretty fabric. Glue it over the newspaper paper.

6. Glue the pictures over the fantasy fiber.

7. Get some beeswax pellets, and melt them with your embossing gun.

8. While the beeswax is still wet, sprinkle on some glitter by Art Institute-I used the color “Confection” from their Dazzlers line.

9. Punch a hole on the top, and add a tassel. I used some pretty sparkley yarn by Lion Brand Yarn.

C’est fini!

The Craftaholic

that’s it! Poke a

Day 362: What’s on my needles


“Try to develop a deep conviction that the present human body has great potential and that you shall never waste a single minute of its use.”

-The Dalai Lama

Life is too short to waste time. Before you know it, your children will be all grown up, and will be out, applying to universities and looking for part time work.

It is for this reason, that I decided to stay home. Now, I believe in women’s equality and feminism and such. But I don’t think that there is anything wrong with my decision to stay home. I chose to stay home with my daughter because you children always come first, before your lifestyle, and before your own personal comfort. A lot of times, people choose their personal comfort over their children.

It’s sad, I think. I spoke to a woman on the train once who told me, “when I was on maternity leave I couldn’t wait to go back to work, because I was so bored. I couldn’t stay home!” That’s so sad, I think. I don’t stay home because I am this mid west farmer’s wife. In fact, I am a New York City feminist artist. I stay home because….life is short. Children grow quickly. I want to be close to my daughter. I don’t want to waste time working for someone else, donating half of my pay for her childcare. I’d rather care for her myself, and see her grow up.

Anyway, today I thought I’d show you what’s on my needles. It’s getting colder these days and so I started working on a lap blanket for my daughter when she is in her stroller.

Obviously, I have to block it. But yeah, this is going to be a stroller blanket for my daughter. Yes she likes her stroller. She’s three. She was going without for a while, and then decided that she wants to be in it ALL the time now. I started it last night, and figure that if I work at it steadily, I can be done by the time it really starts getting cold.

I am all caught up with my swaps! I am beside myself. I have a few to finish by the end of the month, and that will be fine. I did have to order more jewelry findings because most of the swaps I’m in are jewelry swaps. I’d like to make more of the jewelry with my same mixed media flavor, so that will be fun.  Maybe some puzzle piece earrings, or some domino earrings. I’d like to accumulate some more beer bottle caps, and make some earrings with that. We’ll see.

That’s all for today. I’m in a crabby mood this morning. I’m not sure why, I think I’m just feeling moody. It happens.

Day 314: The Frog & Toad Wrap


“If children do not receive proper affection, in later life they will often find it hard to love others.”

-The Dalai Lama

YES. Because life is short, and before you know it, our children will be grown, and what will you have to show for it? It’s something to think about, just on it’s own.

The nice thing about scrapbooking is that you can preserve all those memories, the circus ticket stubs, the first hair cuts, the first tooth….

It’s nice, you know?

Today, I finished a knit project. Finally. This is one of my personal faves. This design is based on what I see on the streets of New York, what I see women wear.

I call it, “The Frog & Toad Wrap”, because the colors remind me of the stories of “Frog & Toad”. The pin is vintage, from my mother’s collection which she gave to me some time ago.

I love it.

And that’s the pin. It’s a little spider.

Anyway, that’s all for now. I have a workshop that I’m teaching this weekend. I am UBER excited about it, since it was featured in Daily Candy! Cool, right?

If you happen to be doing nothing this sunday, come out and learn to make your own eye shadow!

Also, I wanted to mention that while this above knitted wrap is NOT for sale, I can custom make one for you, in the shade of your choice.

The Craftaholic

Day 203: Crocheted Jewelry


“Each of us in our own way can try to spread compassion into people’s hearts. Western civilizations these days place great importance on filling the human “brain” with knowledge, but no one seems to care about filling the human “heart” with compassion. This is what the real role of religion is.”

Filling the human heart with compassion. What does this mean to you?

Maybe it’s just me, but sometimes I feel like I have too much going on to even focus on the condition of my heart. Don’t you? Between being a full time mom, artist, buisiness owner, wife, writer, craft teacher, and everything else, who has the time, right?

Well, there is always time. You must take the time to check the condition of your heart. You must take time to check your intentions and your desires. There is ALWAYS time. Try to take a few minutes just on your own, just to clear your mind, just to focus on you and your soul. Every day. Think about it. You don’t have to pray, or believe in prayer, or god or anything. If you do, that’s great. But focus. Just on you. On your soul. Cleanse your thoughts. Every day. Forgive, every day. Even if you have to forgive the same person over and over and over again.

Try. Every day. A preacher at a church that I grew up in said that prayer is like lifting weights. At first, it kinda sucks. And it’s annoying, and you don’t feel like you’re doing it right. But you keep on. Every day. You don’t have to believe in god. Just take 5 minutes to cleanse your mind and your soul.

On another note, my crafty endeavor for today, was a cool workshop that I taught, in midtown manhattan. We made some crocheted jewelry.

Here’s a few pics, before I post a simple pattern.

A desk shot, because I ALWAYS bring too much stuff.

This is Lexis and Vera. Can you believe that they are BOTH sagitarians, like me? Crazy! I never meet my fellow sun sign, much less two of them! And PS, both of them had boyfriends with the same sign. Even more spooky…woah.

Lexis. She’s REALLY trying to get the single crochet stitch. Keep trying, Lexis! You’ll do it!

This is Maria. She knows her shiaat. For reals yo.

Okay, so what we did, was we made a very funky crocheted bead garland. This is so fun, and SO easy! So fun.

Use any random skein of worsted weight yarn. I used amazing yarn for mine, Maria is using a nameless cotton yarn, because I forgot who made it. Sorry. I bought it about 2 years ago.

We also used some shimmering embroidery thread, by DMC Threads. I used pink, Maria used blue.

Here’s a better shot of what we made:

So, this is super duper easy.  Here’s a pattern, for what we made today. Note that there is no end really, because you just keep going until it’s as long as you want. You can actually connect it, and make a super long necklace, or you can make this for special occasion, like for Xmas or something.

So, you can either use Lion Brand’s Amazing Yarns, or a skein of Cotton Classic by Tahki Yarns, together with shimmering embroidery thread by DMC Yarns.

Here it is:


Row 1-8 SC in second ch from hook

Row 2-2 SC in each around (16)

Row 3&4-SC all around

Row 5-SC Dec. in each around (8)

Row 6-do it again, to make 4 sc.

Row 7-once more for the road, to leave 2 sc, then do a sc in the last two

Ch 12

repeat, repeat, repeat!

It’s that easy.

What do you think? You like it?

Day 167: The Yoko Ono Cowl


“I want to contribute to harmony and peace of mind, for less conflict. Wherever the possibility is, I’m ready. This is my life’s goal.”

I’m leaving this post a bit short, because in all honesty, I’m not really feeling well. I need to get out into nature somehow, and just remind myself of all the wonderful blessings I have in my life.

If we all were to live by this motto, and truly apply it to our lives, we would perhaps, live a life of more peace, don’t you think?

Today I finished another cowl. This one is called the Yoko Ono Cowl, and I’ll tell you why. I was walking around Manhattan on the upper west side, and saw this hipster Japanese  tourist with a very cool cowl. Actually, she inspired me to make two different kinds of cowls: this one, and the one I’m working on now.

I call it the Yoko Ono Cowl, because I pictured a young Yoko Ono walking around the streets of manhattan, arm in arm with John Lennon, wearing a cowl like this one.

I used two strands held together of:

LB Collection® Pure Wool Yarn

I used about 2 hanks total.

It’s so simple to make, but here’s a little pattern:

The Yoko Ono Cowl

cast on 42 stitches

Do a rib knit stitch (K2, P2) until piece measures about 25 inches around, and sew it up closed.

Like it?

The Craftaholic

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Day 154: Make a Knitted Purse


“…because our deeper identity and true character lie in the subjective nature of the mind.”

This is because we put our identity too much onto our property, and material goods. The person you are is NOT the clothing your wear, nor the food you eat. You are simply who you are, and that is all.

I’m leaving today’s quote short and sweet, because I think it’s best. Just think about what who you are, after all the designer clothing, the labels, the name brands…when all is removed, what is left? WHO is left?

Today, I’m posting another pattern! Yay!

This pattern  is UBER simple. It really shouldn’t even be a pattern.

This little purse was made for a “make a purse” swap.

I’m calling it the Country Girl Knitted Purse, because it, unlike most of my knitwear, was not inspired by city life, but by country life.

So here it is

The Country Girl’s Knitted Purse

I used two strands of Lion Brand’s Amazing Yarn, held together with 10 mm. needles

CO 31 sts.

Do a stockinette stitch for about 25-30 inches.

Sew up the sides, either with a crochet hook and a slip stitch, or with a darning needle.

Then, attach handles. I used some bamboo circle shaped purse handles.

To attach them, I put them on the inside, and just sewed around it, to make a lovely little edged ruffle at the top. Cute, right?

That’s all!

Then, a little crocheted flower makes it sing. I didn’t and don’t ever sew the flowers. I attached the flower to a hair clip, so that if my swap partner decides she wants her purse a bit more simple, then she’s got it.

I don’t have the pattern for the flower, because I kind of just made  it up. I think I chained 3, did 2 sc in each of the next round, then 5 or 6 sc in each of the next. I THINK. Try it, and see what happens.

I’m currently working on a nother city inspired knit, then I have an idea for another purse I want to make. I’ll post patterns for both. My current project was inspired by a japanese hipster I saw on the upper west side the other day. I’m so excited for this project. But I won’t tell you what it is. Not yet.

The Craftaholic

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Day 138: Make “The New Yorker” Cowl


“We must all live harmoniously with our neighbors.”

What does this mean? This means we need to not pick at each other.

Living in harmony. It’s defined in the dictionary as follows:

–noun, plural -nies.

1. agreement; accord; harmonious relations.
2. a consistent, orderly, or pleasing arrangement of parts; congruity.
3. Music.

a. any simultaneous combination of tones.
b. the simultaneous combination of tones, esp. when blended into chords pleasing to the ear; chordal structure, as distinguished from melody and rhythm.
c. the science of the structure, relations, and practical combination of chords.

So that’s interesting. It reminds me of music. Living in harmony means we bring out the best in one another, not pick at each other, or try to tell each other what to do, or hate each other.

We tend to look at our differences a bit too much. Our differences are what make us live out of peace and out of harmony’s way with one another. We must live in peace. How do we do this? Compromise. Compromise. Compromise. We must put down our shallow egos that insist on being right all the time. Let’s be like the guitar and the bass, and make beautiful music together. The analogy is quite corny, but it’s true. Listen to your favorite song, and see how everything goes together. But the musician must LEARN how to put the instruments together. He must learn how to play the guitar, and in doing this, he learns how to harmonize with the other instruments.

So then, we must learn to live in peace with ourselves.

As artists, we tend to fall into different categories: 1) those who criticize their work 2) those who criticize others’ work. Let’s not fall into either of these. I hate hearing people say, oh blah blah blah, “real” art. What is “REAL” art? And who are you to say? Are you Van Gogh, or Diego Rivera? Are you Fridha Khalo? Even they would tell you that they are not the ones to say what real art is and what is not.

Living in harmony means taking away the labels. Stop labeling yourself and others. Art is art. It’s not your buisness to say what is real and what is not. It is only your job to make the world see things the way you see them, through your own art. That’s all. The rest does not matter.

Today’s crafty endeavor, is another free pattern! Yeah! I am on a roll with these patterns. It’s actually a lot of fun to knit up something new.

This is called, “The New Yorker” Cowl, because it’s inspired by the many hip new yorkers I see walking around with all these funky expensive cowls. I’ve even seen some cowls on etsy for over $100. Woah. I think for $100 I would rather learn to make my own, don’t you? I mean, still I understand everyone’s got rent and bills to pay. So it’s all good. But I’m glad I know how to knit.

The New Yorker Cowl

Size 10 mm needles

2 skeins of Lion Brand Alpine Wool Yarn in Chili

CO 32 stitches

Row 1-k

Row 2-P

(only because I simply cannot start a knit pattern straight away. I always do two rows of stockinette. But you can do whatever you wish, of course).

Do a rib knit: K2, P2 for entire pattern, until piece measures 22 inches, then sew or crochet the seams.

That’s it, baby! It’s so easy.

You could even pull the thing up to cover your ears.

I want to do another version I’ve seen, one that closes and has cool buttons. Perhaps that one will  be next.

I also made a cool journal that I’ve got for sale in my boutique.

The Craftaholic

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