Wednesday, January 16, 2013

In Which I May Have Lost My Mind Art Yarn

I have been wanting to spin a funky, colorful, corespun yarn with bits added into it, so today, I did!  No one in my family has seen this yarn yet, but I'm sure when they do, they will think I've lost the remainder of my sanity!  Especially since the last yarn I spun was a simple, traditional, 3-ply alpaca.

Here is the result of my insanity!  I call it, Clownfetti! (Clown + Confetti)

I corespun colors of Romney, Shetland, Alpaca, and some unknown wool on a cotton core.  As I was spinning, I added in bits of recycled cashmere from a sweater, dyed lincoln locks, and yes, that is tinsel from my neighbors Christmas tree!  I then plyed it with navy blue sewing thread.  I ended up with 14 yards.

I can't speak for anyone else, but I LOVE it!  It is so funky and fun!  I am going to wash it to set the twist and put it up for sale in my Etsy shop.  I can totaly see this yarn incorporated into a crazy hat!

Here are a couple more pictures just for a little eye candy ;)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

DIY Tissue Box Toy

Does this happen to anyone else?

My 9 month old thinks that the tissue box is the BEST toy ever!  I disagree...I don't care to have to blow my nose on torn pieces of tissue, what if I miss the part that isn't torn...

Here is an easy fix to the "rip all the tissues out of the box" problem

Cut strips of fabric to various sizes.  I didn't measure, I just cut some random strips.  I used the selvage of several of the scraps I had on hand.

I think I ended up cutting about 9 strips of fabric.  Stuff strips into box and...

Tada!  Tissue box toy!

I think he approves! ;)

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Giant Doily Rug

I wanted to make something special for my brother and my new sister-in-law for their wedding.  They both love to decorate with a few antique pieces that mean something to them, so I decided that I would either make them a blanket or a rug that looked like it came for the Victorian era.

I knew that I wanted to use an ivory colored yarn because it would match everything.  I searched Ravelry for granny square and doily patterns to fulfill my blanket or rug ideas.  I really liked the idea of a giant doily rug the best, so that's what I went with!

I found this pattern and thought it would be perfect as a rug!  And yes, the page is not in English.  However, if you scroll down the page, you will find the diagram pattern that can be followed.  Yay for diagrams, the universal crochet language!

I chose Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick because it is a super bulky weight yarn and it is SO soft!  It is 80% acrylic and 20% wool.  I bought 8 skeins of it because I was going to be holding 4 strands together using a size Q crochet hook.

Here is the finished result

Between you and me, even though I bought 8 skeins, I still didn't have enough yarn to finish the last row of the pattern!

If you want to make your own crocheted doily rug, I have a few suggestions...

1. Choose a doily pattern carefully.  Make sure that the stitches in the pattern are not too intricate as the intricate pattern will just get lost in bulky stitches.  Also, make sure the pattern doesn't have too many rows, or you will spend a fortune in enough yarn to crochet the whole thing, and it will be GIGANTIC!  Simple is beautiful in a rug!

2. Choosing a super bulky weight yarn (will be a 6 on the yarn label), holding 4 strands together, and a size Q crochet hook will make your rug work up REALLY fast and you will have a quick gratification project (my favorite!). I think I only spent 1-2 hours on this rug.

3. Normally I am really picky about how I join my yarn ends, but with this rug, when I got to the end of a skein and needed to start a new skein, I just tied the ends together, cut the ends of the knot and kept going.  I could do that on this rug because the knots will get hidden underneath all of those strands of yarn being held together!

If you don't want your rug to be as thick as the one I made, or if you would rather have a square rug, try using a simple granny square pattern like this one.  Use only a bulky weight yarn (5 on yarn label), hold two strands together and use a size N crochet hook.  Like this one that I made out of Lion Brand Homespun.
There is a quarter in the middle of the rug for size comparison