48 hours

It’s the weekend! 2 days, no plans and the HB is working; therefore 48 hours alone to craft. It’s like a race! I have so many things to try out, I don’t know where to start!

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two-at-a-time sleeves

First, I would like to marathon the sleeves to my yellow sweater, two at a time. Any time I have to make two of something, whether it be socks, leg warmers, gloves, sleeves, two at a time is the way to go. For those who have no clue what I’m talking about, it’s working both the left and the right sleeve on one very long needle with two separate skeins of yarn. The benefit is when one is done, they are both done! And more importantly they are identical, without the guess work, or keeping track of 200+ rows.

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silk scarves, soon to be buttons

Next, I want to work on my fabric buttons. I have a plan to make unique, one of a kind pins, that will look great on Tara’s bracelets she makes.

I also need to list a bunch of items for our site, coffeeandt.etsy.com.

And finally, I have a bunch of jewelry ideas and some sewing that I want to do.

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button press, ready to go!

Ambitious? Maybe.  Wish me luck! Time to get started.

 

Button me up

I have been waiting and waiting for this day! I have been stalking fed ex via the Internet and bugging the doorman. And today finally came!!

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My button machine came in the mail! Part of my large and loving family was visiting and I could focus on nothing but making buttons. I ripped apart my newest knitting magazine and random pieces of fabric and printed stuff to try it out. Everything became a button today. I tried to offer making them buttons to make up for my lack of focus, but no one was as excited as me…

I hope the HB doesn’t get upset if he finds random holes cut out of his New Yorker because they might make great buttons…

Any requests? I will custom make them for you and sell them through coffeeandt.etsy.com !

I would write more, but I must go to sleep so I can wake up and make more buttons!
Is it sad that I also got my Master’s degree Diploma in the mail today and this is the first time I even thought about it…

And it was all Yellow.

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I’m currently in a color coma. It started when i decided to knit my first vest, about 2 months ago. A nice mellow yellow. About 2 weeks into that I had to look away. I quickly knit up a rainbow neck scarf. I was over the yellow blues and ready to knit the vest again.

The next week, I was starting a KAL (knit-a-long) sketch cardigan. I bought the yarn a month earlier….Yellow. So now I have two projects going, big projects and they are both yellow. The sweater starts with 13 inches of DK weight yarn, CO at 200 stitches. That’s roughly 23,400 stitches of solid yellow, no switch up of interesting stitches. Just solid stockinette. (knit one way, purl the other.)

So now, I’m in that lull. Half way through the vest and 13 inches through the sweater.

20110704-104216.jpgOnce I got past the 13 inches, the shaping of the sweater starts, so that means I have to pay attention to each row and it’s a little more interesting again. THANK THE KNITTING GODS. Now it’s a race. Every row of 200 gets two stitches shorter, so every row I get a little faster and a little more excited. “That’s right, only 186 stitches this row!”

So this morning, even though I have the yellow blues, I have to do my real job and all I can think of is yellow…

 

Coffee & T is open for Business!

by CourTney and Tara

Our Etsy Store, Coffee & T, is officially open!  Please visit CoffeeAndT.etsy.com and check it all out!

Coffee & T Etsy Store

Why Coffee and T? Well Coffee and Chai Tea are two of our favorite drinks while crafting.  And the “T”?  We will let you ponder over that one.

* For all the crafters out there, the logo was made from acrylic paint treated as water color and tea bags.

The store is new so we don’t have a lot of merchandise yet, but please keep checking in!

The Knitting Factory

Monday was a good night of combining the arts. The HB (husband, Brian) is in a fun, fantastic band called Leaf Pile. They played recently, at a bar called The Knitting Factory in Brooklyn. They have always “included” me in the band by saying I play the needles. I am not musically inclined, whatsoever! But they always say I should sit on stage and knit leaves and them throw them into the audience. I always thought it would be fun, but it never seemed to fit. But Monday was my grand opening performance. I knitted while sitting on the stage at The Knitting Factory (it felt like a sign.)

After the show a few people asked what I was knitting and if I sold the stuff I knitted. So yay! Cross promoting! I will be knitting at every show in the future (if the band will have me, of course) and I decided to make business card buttons for our soon-to-be store and the band to hand out at shows…oh the ideas!

Check out the band at: www.leafpilemusic.com and view the show below!

Watch live streaming video from theknitbrooklyn at livestream.com

Search and Rescue

Exciting things are happening!!!!

First of all, I FOUND MY NOTIONS BAG!!!

The Notions Bag Bandits.

The yarn stash ate it.  They await sentencing for Tampering with Owner’s Sanity.

Here’s a story:

In sixth grade, I was voted “Most Organized” which is….shocking.  (Well, I also won “Shortest” in the class…which is not so shocking.  Or important…)  But I honestly can’t remember ever losing my homework or having to ask my mom where my other sneaker was (which she would have promptly responded, “wherever you left it.”)  It was a friendlier existence, the time before the hostiles of my subconscious had to fight to keep up with the insanities of responsible adulthood.  Thankfully I have CourT, who is a natural taskmaster, motivator, inspirator (not a word?  is now.) and for that I am eternally grateful.  She should probably be put into a lab and studied to benefit all of mankind, but we are trying to open a shop here.

Cheers to The CourTney and finding stuff you thought someone had viciously stolen!

Whale of a tale

By CourTney

My husband is super supportive of my knitting. He makes suggestions, picks out yarn and dislike patterns with me. I have tried to make him several items but every time I knit for him, it turns into a nightmare. I made socks once for him (size 13 feet) that ended up perfect for myself (size 6.). It is almost as though the knitting gods are angry that I found myself a gentleman that is willing to roll up yarn during a 2 hour movie.

The latest project he asked me to make was a whale hat. He wanted nothing for Christmas and his birthday or Easter, Halloween, or even our anniversary, except for this whale hat. I was super excited! He had a specific item. And I love hats! They are my favorite thing to make. I spent a day drawing on graph paper to get the math of his big head to match my repeating whale. It all worked out. I knitted the hat and to my dismay, it was TOO BIG! So, lucky for me, I knitted the hat from 100% wool. ( I know I just heard a huge groan out there from knitters and sweater wearers). But I knew better. I would be the first to conquer shrinking something in a washer by a couple inches without it coming out like a baby hat. ( truth be told, i sat on the hat for weeks, petrified to put it in the washer…. Afraid that it would come out like a huge ball of disaster.)

So, one weekend, while Tara was visiting, I got the courage. 5 minutes in the wash, nothing happened. 5 more…nothing. 5 more nothing….and then I….walked away for what I thought was 10 seconds…..nope. 10 minutes.

Never never never never walk away! No matter if u have to pee, or get more coffee or your cat is crawling out the window of your 5th floor apartment building.

So, after many tears and lots of husband disappointment, the whale hat, which he loved loved loved, was shrunk to a cone that wouldn’t even fit my head.

So, fast forward about 4 or 5 months. Tonight I did my first sewing project. I am making whale change purses, made from the wool-to-felted-cone-hat. I cut them out, drew a pattern and did a quick mock up. It was my first full use of the craft room. And it was all motivated by my Love. He even threw in a button flap suggestion.

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So, very soon our easy store will be ready to sell! And I think I owe someone a anew whale hat.

UFOs and nowhere to go

by Tara

Anyone who knows me would say that I have a tendency not to finish things.  I have a jumper for example, that has been on the needles for SEVEN years that CourT periodically nudges me to revisit.  Lately I have been struck with a glorious case of finishitis.  As in, I need to finish things.  Well, I certainly have the UFOs (UnFinished Objects) to do so, let me tell ya.

Last February I megabussed it to Jersey City for a yarn crawl with CourT and her awesome knitter friend, Kaitlyn.  I had an amazing time and bought lots of yarn for hats (I  still had beret knitting fever), and a baby sweater kit to make for a good friend who is expecting.  When I got back to Ohio I tore into the kit.  It was my first baby sweater but the thing flew off the needles in two days, tops.  It was a fun knit.  Then, it sat there.  Like most knitters, I hate seaming.  Ew.  About a month later I blocked it.  Then, it sat there some more.  But, in the height of my finishitis last night, I laid it all out and…couldn’t find my notions bag. I searched my tiny apartment for 3 hours last night.  Nothing.  Want to know what else is in the notions bag?  The teddy bear buttons that MAKE THE SWEATER SO STINKING CHARMING AND IRRESISTIBLE!  Dangit, dag nabbit, and mother trucker.  I probably stared at my UFO basket for another 2 hours, the knitted fabric scraps of a soon-to-be teddy bear, a mitten waiting for its top to be seamed shut…all dressed up and nowhere to go, the desperation is palpable.

I shall now distract myself with the ETSY store policy writing.  Perhaps I will finish something after all.

Work in progress

by CourTney

So Tara and I have decided to start an Etsy store.  We have a lot of homemade items that could be useful to crafters and non-crafters alike.  At this point, we have a name, a digital store front, graphics and some merch.  Now we just have to put it all together.

I think the hardest part to beginning the listing process is figuring out prices.  You want to make that cowl worth the 9 hours you put into it, but you can’t charge $90 or else you’ll never make a sale.  I’d be too scared to wear a $90 cowl!  So that’s the next hurtle.  I would love feedback if anyone has figured out a super magical math equation of time spend crafting/ what it’s worth to someone who doesn’t understand the amount of time put into it.

But maybe that’s the main thought.  People who don’t appreciate a handmade cashmere lace scarf would probably just pick up a bulky acrylic machine made scarf from Target for $5.  (And nothing against Target, it’s one of my favorites!)  I suppose people shopping on Etsy realize the difference, to an extent.  I know I love buying something that I know someone put some time and thought into verse grabbing it cheaper at a big box store, and don’t mind paying a little more.

However, there is the “grandpa garage sale love” side in me that LOVES bargins.  I may end up buying that $5 scarf at target because, Hell!  It’s only $5.

The last point of the argument in my head is the simple fact that I LOVE crafting.  Be it knitting, crocheting, sewing, painting, beading…You name it, I would probably enjoy it or am already doing it.  So, this is really just an outlet to help fund my yarn shopping adventures and to have somewhere to put the 25 scarves I have in the closet.  (I’m sure my family could do without another round of scarves for Christmas!)

So, I think I could argue all sides of this matter until I am blue in the face.  Any opinions out there?

Excuse Me While I Dye

by Tara

Last Thursday I dyed for the very first time.  It was magical, and special, and everything I thought it could be, and more…

OH!  The excitement I felt, as the wool soaked in its warm bath of blood red, black cherry Kool-Aid, came bumbling up from my gut in nervous, skittish giggles as I churned it about in ceremony.  With surgical care, being sure not to felt the untreated wool,  I toweled it off,  and hung it to dry, and then…waited…staring at my creation, hypnotized,  imagining how it will feel knitting it into the most perfect sweater…it was the most fun I’ve had in months.  Now, it is Monday and I already need another fix.  I had planned to scrub the bathroom tonight, but…it’s an emergency.  I just might die if I don’t dye.  I’M NOT BEING DRAMATIC!

If you have not dyed your own yarn, let this be a warning to you.  Look at me!  I’ve only done it once and I’m already out of control.  Now, I truly feel that what I create is unique and one-of-a-kind.  A new era of crafting has begun.