Sunday, May 6, 2012

Short May Update

Class Projects. Finals. Internship. Lab Fest. Mothers Day. 
Not much time to blog...

Crafty Highlights for May:

1. Finished seaming the Lace Pullover!!! (No picture yet, but maybe I will update this post and add one tonight!)

2. Picked up the 13 year old project I blogged about before and decided to finish it and send it to my Mom as a Mother's Day present!

3. Re-started the Moonlight Shawl in 3.5mm needles, made it my laundry day project and love it!

4. Waiting for my mother's package to arrive to start her Kiwi Mille Fili Whole Wheat Cardigan.

Image Source

 5. Baked six batches of our awesome secret recipe granola cookies for Jamie's Lab Fest later today.


Saturday, April 21, 2012

Pullover #2

Joan Forgione & Rose Callahan
Maybe it's a little late to blog about this now..

But after finishing Shibuya and spending a few days wondering which sweater to knit next, I decided to use the leftover yarn for Joan Forgione's #20 Eyelet Pullover.

Well, I actually started it on April 5th already. I added an inch of ribbing to the bottom and changed the sleeve ribbing a little bit as well.. 

It's insane how fast it knit up! Here's my progress from Ravelry:

April 7 - Over 8" of back done!
April 8 - Working on armholes
April 10 - Back is DONE!
April 12 - Front started
April 14 - 5 inc left for front waist 
April 15 - Started neck-shaping
April 20 - Sleeve No. 1 done!
April 19 - Finished front & 4" of first sleeve!
April 20 - First sleeve done!

As you can see, I only have the last sleeve left!!

Can't wait to see it finished!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Favorite Pattern Friday - Summer Time

Only about two weeks left until summer break!

Even though, I will be busy interning at Stillwater Living Magazine (I'm so excited!) and taking three courses during the summer, I should still have a little bit more time for crafting than usually during a semester. YES!

Time to share some of my favorite summer patterns!

Whole Wheat Cardigan by Alexandra Charlotte Dafoe 
Published in Delicious Knits 
© Alexandra Charlotte Dafoe
I'm actually going to knit this cardigan for my mother soon. She will send her kiwi-colored Mille Fili cotton yarn in a few days! By the the it arrives, the Eyelet Pullover I'm currently working on should be long finished. Really looking forward to this one!

Razor Cami by Katie Marcus free!
Available on

Monteagle Bag by Ann Hahn Buechner free!
Published in Mason-Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines;
also available at the Mason-Dixon Knitting Blog
© knitshearbliss
Semele by Åsa Tricosa 
Published in Åsa Tricosa Designs
© knittimo

Laar by Gudrun Johnston 
 My favorite Laar project is NoTailKit's version by far.
It fits perfectly and I love the yarn she picked!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

To hem or not to hem..

Being only 5 foot tall, shortening pants is nothing new to me. But that doesn't mean that I enjoy it.. I would rather sew a complete buttoned shirt than hemming pants! I guess, it's just like seaming or weaving in ends with knitting. I can't stand it, but it has to be done.

Because of this great enthusiasm, I usually just measured, cut and sewed it without dealing with the problem of how to use the original hem. Even though, I really would have liked to keep it; it just makes them looks a lot better.
Original and 'Easy Solution'
I have two really nice pairs of jeans here that have been waiting for a few weeks already. This time they will keep their original hems, I promised myself that. I just haven't figured out which technique to use yet. There are two great tutorials from Sew Much Ado and The Pretty Poppy. Both explain the process really nicely and feature a lot of pictures. 

With Sew Much Ado's version you basically just fold the original hem up to the desired finished length and then sew as close to it on the back side as possible. It's relatively quick and easy, but  leaves a small darker fold visible above the original stitching.
© Sew Much Ado
's tutorial on The Pretty Poppy is a little bit more complicated, but the result looks just like the original hem. Here you cut your pants at the desired length, cut the original hem into a separate stripe and remove its original stitching. The original hem is then folded open, attached inside out to cover the cut end and then sewn in place.
© The Pretty Poppy
I would like to try the easier version, but I don't own an iron. I don't know if my seams would be nice and flat in the end. On the other hand, I don't know if I will be able to sew through the thick layers of fabric in the second version. 

I guess I'll try Sew Much Ado's way this evening to see how that would turn out. If I don't like it, I can rip out the stitches again and try the other version after some sewing machine testing. Sounds like a plan!

Have you ever hemmed jeans using one of these ways?
Please share your tips or suggestions!
I'll keep you updated on my results!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Happy Little Lunches

They're cute, small and healthy.. and if you are into colorful little things like I am, you have probably heard of them before.. Bento Boxes!

Bento (弁当) is a Japanese small-portioned lunch box that traditionally consist of rice, fish or meat and vegetables, but the possibilities of ingredients and containers to use for it are endless!

Here is a great page to get to know the basics with more links to recipes and other interesting things.

The lunches can range from elaborate and stunning designs from Bento-addicted hobbyists..

© luckysundae


.. to simpler everyday versions as family and school lunches




Unfortunately, we don't really have the time or money to make our boxes as colorful and healthy, but I think they are still making the day a little better and happier.

About a year ago, I started putting little snacks in boxes when Jamie got his job at the microbiology lab here on campus. He didn't really have time to take a big lunch break and always refused buying himself something to eat there. But working from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with classes in-between and not eating anything just didn't seem right to me.

So I began to pack random things and leftovers we had at home into a small container and just stuffed it into his backpack before we left for classes in the morning. After a few days he actually started to like the idea and I had a new hobby.

(Making this Stormtrooper Onigiri probably helped a bit in the process..)

Most of them included some kind of Onigiri, steamed or fried vegetables and soy sauce with some chili flakes for dipping.

Of course, with Jamie's love for sweets, I usually also had to include something more 'fun'.
I started making little iced butter cookies and no-bake energy bites to add as a little sweet extra.

The box I used at first didn't really make it easy to separate the rice and spicy vegetables from other things, like cookies and fruit, but after a little search online, I found a relatively cheap alternative:
I love this box! It's so nice and fun to fill, has just the right size and is extremely easy to clean. The four little movable compartments also made it easier and quicker to put things together. Now, pretty much everything was possible!

I started to use tortillas to make small pizza rolls and mini soft tacos, which were a big hit!

Whenever I had enough time, I still tried to include rice and some kind of meat. The smoked German salami and little sausages we brought from our vacation were a really nice addition too.

I also started including little portions of whole grain crackers, nuts and trail mix.

I'm sure you also noticed Jamie's addition of Haribo..

Still trying to keep them at least a little bit on the healthy side, I started to include orange slices, mixed canned fruit and self-made Granola bars.

Like I said before, they are not really the typical Bento box and probably not the healthiest or prettiest either.. but I think they do their job and Jamie seems happy!

Tomorrow's lunchbox: 
  • Whole Wheat Ritz Crackers & German Pepper Crust Salami
  • Spicy Peanut/Cashew Mix
  • Tropical Fruit Mix
  • Chocolate Covered Marzipan Candy

Are you making lunch boxes for yourself or somebody else? 
What are some of your favorite ingredients/recipes?

Friday, March 30, 2012

Favorite Pattern Friday - Jared Flood

©Jared Flood Photography
This FPF will be dedicated to one of my favorite designers, Jared Flood. 

Jared Flood is a Pacific Northwest native, founder of Brooklyn Tweed, knitwear designer and photographer. His outstanding designs are clean and strong and focus on quality, texture and detail.

Another thing I like about his patterns is that they are mostly worked in the round. As a fan of Elizabeth Zimmermann, who was big on easier, more adjustable 'recipes' rather than line by line patterns, Flood tends to use her construction styles and creates most of his designs to be as seamless as possible.

There was a great two-part article, titled "Going Seamless," by Jared Flood in Vogue Knitting about converting flat-knitted and pieced sweaters to a seamless version, specifically with bottom-up construction. You can read parts of his tutorial online in Vogue Knitting's article archive.

Martina Hecht, a German knitwear designer and writer, had really inspiring interview with him last year; it's available on her website MaschenGold.

Enough said. Time to share some of my favorites!
Published in BT FALL 11
© Brooklyn Tweed/Jared Flood
Published in Brooklyn Tweed
© Brooklyn Tweed/Jared Flood
Published in Brooklyn Tweed
© Brooklyn Tweed/Jared Flood
Published in Brooklyn Tweed
© Brooklyn Tweed/Jared Flood
Published in Brooklyn Tweed
© Brooklyn Tweed/Jared Flood
Published in BT FALL 11
© Brooklyn Tweed/Jared Flood
Published in Brooklyn Tweed
© Brooklyn Tweed/Jared Flood