Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Charity Fundraiser

In many high schools, at least in Oregon, Seniors have to do a Senior Project.

My daughter chose to raise awareness and education about teen suicide.

SAVE - Suicide Awareness Voices of Education

From her letter:

"Depression is a treatable medical illness marked by changes in mood, thoughts, energy and behavior that affects more than 23 million adult Americans each year. It is the most common serious brain disease in the United States. SAVE's mission is to prevent suicide through public awareness and education, reduce stigma, and serve as a resource for those touched by suicide.

We are asking for your help in getting the message out there and to help SAVE lives. We are in need of silent auction items for our upcoming fundraiser at (Century) High School in Hillsboro, OR. Any items or gifts would be greatly appreciated and your donations are tax deductible.

What can your gift do? It can help raise money for a cause that can spread the message to young adults regarding symptoms of depression and how to deal with thoughts of suicide through SAVE's educational programs. It can help us distribute grief packets to families dealing with the loss of a loved one to their battle with depression. It can help SAVE lives.

With your support we can reach our goals."

For more information, please email Elizabeth at

I will be making a quilt and donating it. As the event itself is being held at the high school, with music, it looks like the majority of the people attending the auction will be younger - high school to college aged. I am designing the quilt with that in mind.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

New Items for Fall

As previously promised, things are getting back to normal around here. Well, as much as my life can every be normal. So how about, normal for me?

I've recently added 6 new items to the store, with more in process. My yarn stash has become dangerously low, which I will have to remedy soon.

However, I did have the yarn to complete the new items. A new size of dish/wash cloths has been added, by request. The new ones are roughly 9" square, and are currently available in 2 colors.

For Fall, I added 4 new scarves in different styles.

For short scarves we have blue with random stripes:

And a soft and fuzzy one done in Sensations Rainbow Boucle:

Then we have the long scarves. For the women, we have a pocket scarf done in green with lavender, measuring at approximately 7 feet in length:

And for the REALLY tall, or those that just like long scarves that can be wrapped several times, we have this one done in black, red and white that measures over 8 1/2 feet long:

If you have any requests about what you would like to see in my store, please feel free to leave a comment.

Bright Blessings!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Almost there

The move is complete. Most of the new place is put together and organized.

Yesterday I got all the material that I have here sorted and the sewing area mostly set up. My yarn is organized and ready to go.

Only area left is the shelving unit holding the misc. supplies and paperwork. That will be done today, and that will allow me to clear of the craft table.

Meaning, by tomorrow, I can be back to work making new items for the store!

But that does not mean I have been doing no crafting.

Last night I had some down time, but close to bedtime, so I needed something relaxing. I had been thinking about some things that the bathroom could use to pretty it up a bit and watching Torchwood.

And this is what I accomplished before I went to bed:
Yes, it is a Dalek toilet paper cozy.

It's free-form, using no pattern, done in black and silver. If I make another one, I will make a few changes - for one, the eye-stalk looks too much like a beak to me, and the dome needs to be a bit bigger and stuffed so it does not cave in.

But I am happy with it, for a three hour, off-the-cuff project.

I should have new items in the store come Tuesday. Have a wonderful Labor Day Weekend, everyone!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

I'm Back!

I know that it's been a while since my last post. But it couldn't be helped.

On the 3rd of July, I started to have some breathing issues after being exposed to a lot of dirt, dust, dead bugs, etc. while cleaning out a garage. It got better, but then was exposed to more bad particles on July 7th. I did not get better, and ended up in the emergency room on July 9th.

I was kept in the Pulmonary Care Unit for 5 days. It took several hours in the ER for my oxygen stats to rise to non-life threatening levels. It was a very scary time.

When I got out, the medications that I needed to finish my treatments came to over $750.00. I had $150.00. A group of wonderful people, most of whom had never met me in person, convinced me to set up a donation page through WePay. In less than a week they donated the needed funds. I honestly do not know what I would have done without their generosity, support and encouragement. Heck, they were my main source of company and entertainment while in the hospital! I cannot thank them enough. To each and every one of them, I owe you so much! I will continue to pay to forward to the best of my ability!

I have been recovering nicely since then. In some ways, faster than expected. But other matters of large importance have also occurred.

What happened and who was involved is not important. The result is that I am moving from just West of Portland, Oregon, an hour south to West Salem, Oregon. I sign my new lease there on the 14th.

It's a cute little apartment, about a block from the Willamette River, near bike paths and lots of outside recreational activities. It's a very calm place, and already feels like home. The manager there is a wonderful lady, and I am so looking forward to a fresh start.

Until the end of the month, it may take me a couple of days extra to ship any purchases from my store. I am leaving these items unpacked until the very last minute. But I will be going back and forth for about a week after that, so they may not be accessible that day.

If there will be a delay in shipping, I will be sure to let the Buyer know right away.

Everything should be back on schedule by September 1st. I have a lot of new items planned. I will first be restocking my pocket scarves so they will be ready before the cold weather hits. I am planning on adding a bunch of hats at that time, too.

Bright Blessings to all!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Be Kind; Everyone You Meet is Fighting a Hard Battle* Part 2

*Quote source - could be Plato; could be Ian MacLaren.

Earlier this week I posted a bunch of small businesses whose hard working owners are using their skills to improve their financial situations. Medical bills, job loss, and other economic reasons.

Here are a few more.

I'm not telling their stories, as I do not feel it is my place to talk about their private lives. Some of them have their story posted on their web page.

However, for this first store, I can tell her story.

Rena is an absolutely fantastic artist. I am jealous of her skills, to be honest. Here's her story in her own words:

Loads of people, friends & family have told me that I should tattoo... How? There's no real schools around here, only lengthy & very expensive internships ($15,000+)... Being a mother of three, I can't do that... But I can be gone for only two weeks!

The course I'm aiming for is this September 2012, very close to my birthday...

What's stopping me?

I need to pay over $6000 for tuition, travel (from Oregon to Luisiana)... I may have to put it on my credit card but that still needs to be paid...

Help me follow my dream & I'll pay-it-forward somehow, it's only right, Thank you!
Here's Rena's store: Purple Daizie Fine Art

Next is a UK group with fantastic items that could use some love and assistance. Their story can be found HERE.  Their store:  ReCreations Project

Lots of jewelry sellers on Etsy, but few as spectacular as Phoenix Fire Designs. If you like or buy jewelry, you must check out this woman's store! Phoenix Fire Designs

For beautiful and unique art and jewelry, you have to see this lady's shop, too! Be sure to ask her about custom work. Aphotica 

Some very unique knit items in this store: Dress Me Up In Stitches

That's all I have for today. If you want to shop, shop these (and Part 1's) store first!

Got a busy weekend, so look for a new post early next week. I have some fundraisers I want to share.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Be Kind; Everyone You Meet is Fighting a Hard Battle* Part 1

*Quote source - could be Plato; could be Ian MacLaren.

These days, all of us have our struggles, and too often, it's financial.

When faced with financial difficulties, most people try to solve them, generally doing one of two things - cut expenses/go without or increase income.

In desperate times, some people take the moral low ground.

This post is NOT about those types of people. No scammers, grifters,  or beggers allowed.

This post is about people struggling financially and are looking for help by way of selling their items. 

Please take a look at these shops. There are many, many great items, made by wonderful, caring people.

To start, we have stuffed Hellephants!

Awesome vintage toys!

Some cool knitting!

More knitting!


Lip gloss, and such! 

Etched glass!



More small shops ran by wonderful people coming soon.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Busy Times

I've been a little lax about keeping this blog up to date for the past 10 days or so. Mainly because the other aspects of my life - the non-crafting parts - have needed my attention. I have a couple of big meetings coming up fast - a political convention with party elections and a big DSAC (Disabled Services Advisory Council) meeting with elections.

Craft-wise, I have been working on a custom order of a baby sweater and hat set. It is just about done. I just have to finish the sleeves and sew the buttons on. Here's the finished hat:

I have more swatches for custom icons in the works, also. Set 2 is about half done. Five are complete, and I want to add another five before I photograph and add those as options.

Sunday is Father's Day. Nothing too strange for dad this time, but is something he needs/wants. Since he and some of his friends know about this blog, I won't say more until after Sunday.

Also coming up fast is my Mom's birthday on July 1st. I have a couple of ideas, but have not made a decision yet. She does not like the weird stuff that Dad does. lol

So more picture and new products coming as fast as I can make them. The Valknut tote has sold, but will be replaced by another shortly. Just stay tuned.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

The Rest of the Story

As I wrote yesterday, some FJL's assisted me in coming up with a birthday gift for my dad. I won't say what other ideas were brought up, as Father's Day is fast approaching. It was Poops that reminded me about the Penis Pack.

Like a Fanny Pack, a Penis Pack is a small pouch that it worn around the waist (or over the shoulder) to keep your small crap in that you cannot/don't want to put in your pockets. And it looks like a penis and ball sack.

For my dad, I made the sack part out of the leftover blue yarn from the lace sweater I made for mom. The flap and strap were done in tan. Dad chose to wear his around his neck.

(It was at this point that I realized that blue may not have been the best color to use. Or it was the perfect color to use. Guess it depends on your outlook.)

After snacks and cake, off we went, heading to our American Legion Post for the Saturday Night Draw. Dad put his cigarettes and lighter into his new bag and grabbed a jacket as it was starting to get chilly.

At the Post, we stepped out to smoke. Yes, dad knew exactly how this looked. He kept waving the "penis" at people, teasing them about how they were jealous of him - if they did that, they would be arrested - and basically just being silly with friends.

After the draw, dad wanted to show his friend Norm the shirt. It's Johnny Cash giving the finger. So we went to see Norm where he runs karaoke.

Overall, it was a pretty good night. I think dad mostly had fun. Dad and I talked about taking a trip to the coast this month, just the two of us.

Speaking of just the two of us, as I wrote the blog post yesterday, I realized I have no images in my computer of just dad and I. Our friend Gaylenn use my cell to take this pic. My cellphone camera is very difficult to use without blurring the picture, so it's not the clearest pic in the world, but I do not mind.

A final note - A big thank you to all the FJL's that helped me make my dad smile!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Today is my dad's 77th birthday. I feel very blessed to have my parents still around.

This (blurry cell phone) picture was taken last March. My parents are in the front, us kids in the back.

Dad is an interesting character. He likes practical jokes and definitely has a warped sense of humor. When I was younger, people would think me slightly odd, until they met my dad. Then things made sense.

 I've had a lot of fun making my dad things over the years. And since he requests items from me, I guess he appreciates them. From the ski mask above, to the neon robe below, it's been an interesting time.
Like this pic from Father's Day 2011. I made him a couple of fish, fishing pole and fish hook. Not only was he playing with it at the table, he later started fishing behind the bar!

And he just likes to be weird. Here he is, goofing around with Liz, during my twin's birthday dinner last year.

 And again, showing off his Christmas gift from Liz.
But after all these years of making fun things for him, I ran out of ideas. So I turned to my FJL friends, and asked them for ideas. I got some great ideas, many of which are saved for later use. But Poops came up with the perfect item to made for my dad's birthday day.

But I'm not going to spoil the fun. I'll post pics and details AFTER the party tonight.

I love you, daddy. Thank you for being my dad.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Baby Stuff!

After several requests, my custom baby sweaters and caps are now available through my WePay store.

Here's how this works. Each sweater and hat has a single color image worked into it. For the cap, the image goes all the way around, sometimes linked together, depending on the image. For the sweaters, there is a single image on both the left and right front, and linked images across the back.

For example, here's one that was done with anchors:

When you order one, you choose from the drop-down menu the size, the main color, and an icon from the list. I currently have Set 1 of icons done.

 You can also get these done in icons not listed. I just need an email stating what you want, and a picture/drawing, if possible.

I can do just about anything. However, I will not violate copyright/trademark laws, so please do not ask for anything that someone else holds the rights to.

As a side note, I am working up these patterns all on one long sampler. It's gonna make a very unique scarf by the time I am done!

Look for Set 2 of images soon!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Happy Super Towel Day!

Towel Day is celebrated every year on 25 May as a tribute by fans of the author Douglas Adams. On this day, fans carry a towel with them to demonstrate their appreciation for the books and the author, as referred to in Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. The commemoration was first held in 2001, two weeks after Adams' death on 11 May 2001.
From Chapter 3 of the Guide:
A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. Partly it has great practical value. You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapours; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a miniraft down the slow heavy River Moth; wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (such a mind-bogglingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can't see it, it can't see you); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.

More importantly, a towel has immense psychological value. For some reason, if a strag (strag: non-hitch hiker) discovers that a hitchhiker has his towel with him, he will automatically assume that he is also in possession of a toothbrush, face flannel, soap, tin of biscuits, flask, compass, map, ball of string, gnat spray, wet weather gear, space suit etc., etc. Furthermore, the strag will then happily lend the hitch hiker any of these or a dozen other items that the hitch hiker might accidentally have "lost". What the strag will think is that any man who can hitch the length and breadth of the galaxy, rough it, slum it, struggle against terrible odds, win through, and still knows where his towel is, is clearly a man to be reckoned with.

Hence a phrase that has passed into hitchhiking slang, as in "Hey, you sass that hoopy Ford Prefect? There's a frood who really knows where his towel is." (Sass: know, be aware of, meet, have sex with; hoopy: really together guy; frood: really amazingly together guy.)
Today, May 25, 2012 is SUPER Towel Day.
May (5) + 25 + (20)12 = 42

Why is 42 important, you ask?

42, as all frood's know, is the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything.

So Happy Super Towel Day, and don't forget your towel!

And remember, Don't Panic!

Monday, May 21, 2012


One thing you can count on around here is rain.

After some very nice, and very warm for us, weather last week, it got cold and wet.

Sudden change to wet and cold + my hands = no knitting or crochet. Nor painting, drawing or sewing. Typing is difficult.

My hands are swollen, weak and not very agile.

Which just sucks.

Especially so, as I was inspired yesterday and started on a new illusion. I also found a minor flaw in how I was writing my illusion patterns, and fixed it, so this one should be my best yet. I designed the illusion without determining what it would be used for - tote, pillow, something else - so I won't know until it is finished. It's bigger than my others, though not big enough for an afghan.

When my hands get working again, I'll get back to work.

Leaving you with a picture of Priscilla bathing Gypsy. Just because.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

New Illusion Tote

So I finally completed the Valknut Tote. I am happy with the tote, though I'm just not a good enough photographer to take images where you can really see the details. In the photographs, the color changes is all the eye can see, making the plaiting on the sides all but disappear.

A Valknut is an Old Germanic symbol, consisting of 3 interlocking triangles. Here is one example:

And here it is as an illusion knit:

In this picture, it looks like a color-based lattice pattern to the right and left of the Valknut. It's actually the plaiting. The colors deceive the eye in photographs. (or at least in MY photographs!)

For more details, just click on it at my store above-right.

I have more illusion tote in the design phase. Look for them soon!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Quiet day

Lots of things going on right now, but little craft related.

I'm kinda in-between things at the moment. I'll be finishing up a new illusion tote in tan and black this weekend. I also have a pale green and white set of potholders on the needles as bedside knitting.

But I am thinking that my pile of plastic bags is getting out of hand. So I will force myself to sit down at some point this weekend and make up a bunch of plarn.

Plarn, for those that don't know, is yarn created from the plastic bags that, in some places, you get from the grocery and other type stores.

Here's some of the plarn items I have made in the past.

Not sure that I will make in this batch, though most likely, some sort of hobo bag, book bag or such.

If you have a request, please leave it in the comment section!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Silver Dragon

If you have been following my blog for a while, you know I do more than knit and crochet. I also quilt, sew, draw and paint.

Yesterday, I got my paints out for the first time in months. I wanted to do something a bit different. My SO & I's 2 year anniversary is coming up in 10 days.

One of the video games we play together is Ultimate Alliance, which features many of Marvel's superheroes. The artwork on the load screen is fantastic! My SO really loves this one:

He also loves dragons.

My mind was playing around with those two thoughts, and I sat down to start painting.

Now, while I have sketched some "mythical" creatures, dragons are not one of them. This was my first time trying, and here is the final result.

The only thing that bugs me is that the background wash colors were not quite what I was going for. I was looking for more of a true red instead of the red-purple that I ended up with. I think part of the issue is that the black I had on hand was too close to dark blue. But I'm still happy with the result.

Not my usual work, but I am satisfied, none-the-less.

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, May 14, 2012

New Kitchen Item

Today is a very busy day for me - more so than normal. I recently changed my internet provider. During the change-over, I used my "smart phone" to do a bunch of internet postings. I have discovered that much of what I sent from my phone did not arrive where it was supposed to. From emails to Facebook, my phone says it was sent, but it just ain't there. So going into meetings today, I do not know what information people received, and what they have not.

It's Monday. lol

I did manage to finish up a very pretty kitchen set over the weekend. I'm glad the colors do not match my kitchen, or I think I'd be keeping this set for myself!

It's a simple kitchen towel and matching wash cloth. What I love is how the yarn looks like a watercolor wash in blues.

With the basket-weave border, the towel lays flat. Both are completely reversible.

I also created a few more flower pins. I still need to update the photos, but the drop down menu now includes a metallic red, and yellow and orange blend, and a royal purple rose. The updated photos will hopefully be completed today.

Another set of pot holders is in the works. This time, a pale green and white variegated.

Hope everyone has a great Monday!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Sunshine, new Colors and Proud to be Ugly

I previously posted about a single sock that was a custom request from my weird father. He requested that it be as wild as I could make it. So I made this size 13 sock from a bunch of scrap sock yarn. I do believe it is the World's Ugliest Sock.

I have received great feedback about my scarf pins. The one request was that I offer more colors. So I added three more today:
 And finally, I finished the Sunshine Afghan.

I started it several weeks ago. The calendar said it was Spring, but it was still cloudy, rainy and cold here in Oregon. I wanted to bring in some sunshine, despite what the weather was doing outside. It was made in several different yellows, oranges and peaches. The center panel has the Norse symbol for Happiness.

As always, the pins and afghan are available through my WePay store. You can see what is currently available on the upper right side of the page.

For things like that obnoxious sock, please drop me a line.

Have a great sunshine day!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012


I love washcloths made from kitchen cotton.

Like my potholders, I always add a crochet loop for hanging purposes. It's one of those, "I'd rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it," type of things.

I make them in a standard stockinette stitch. This way, one side is flat and smooth for sensitive things, like washing your face or glass, and the other is rougher for scrubbing pots or feet. They are all edged with crochet for smoothness and a finished look.

Like all my kitchen stuff, they are easily washed, both in a washing machine or your dish washer. No special care needed.

I currently have three different sets available here . I can match most kitchen and bath color decor. Except black. I have a heck of a time finding this yarn in black.

More kitchen items, including some very pretty towels, coming as soon.

Final note today - I am a klutz sometimes. I managed to slice open the top of my right thumb on the inside of a cheese grater the other day - right on the part of the thumb that I use to guide my needles/hook. So I am behind on my item creation right now.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

New Items

If you look to the right side of the screen, there is now a "page 2" button for my WePay store. That's because I added a few new items today.

First is a fashion scarf. It was hand knit with a white acrylic yarn that has a thread of metallic running through it. It sparkles under the lights. It's over 6' long, so you can wear it a great many ways.

It was done in a lace pattern, and is very light.

My teddy bear Fred is the model for this scarf. Fred's a good sport about such things.

In this image, Fred is modeling the scarf along with another new item today - scarf pins.

Winter scarves are meant to keep you warm. Fashion scarves, on the other hand, are an accessory. I like to play with wearing them in different ways. Scarf pins are designed to hold the scarf in place.

I currently have 2 pins ready to go - a medium sized white rose and a large sized white rose. These were done in the same yarn as the fashion scarf.

The medium are roughly 3" across, and the large are roughly 4" across.

 I will soon have more done in a red yarn with a red metallic thread running through. Stay tuned for those!

Monday, April 30, 2012

Pocket Scarves

Pocket scarves are great when it's cold and you have small items that you need to get to.

Cell phones, mp3 players, keys, cigarettes, cash and bus passes all can be carried where they are easily accessible without have to open your coat or purse.

The key to a good pocket scarf is to have a pocket that is big enough to get your hand into, but tight enough that it won't sag or fall open.

I currently have three available for purchase. Shown here are the blue and multicolored, with one done grey also ready to go.

The scarves are generally knit on a knitting board, then I crochet the border and secure the pockets with the crochet.

Turn around time for a custom pocket scarf is 1-2 days, depending on how quickly I can get the requested yarn.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Blue Scraps

The Rainbow Afghan put a dent in my scrap yarn pile, but then I found a plastic tub with even more odds and ends of yarn! (We had been using the tub as a nightstand. lol)

As I sorted through the yarn, I noticed I had a lot, and I mean A LOT, of blue yarn. Which kinda made sense since I have made many things for my mother over the years, and her favorite color is blue.

What else could I do except make a scrap afghan out of blue yarn?

In this case, I used the standard method of knitting up squares, then using a crochet hook, working them together while creating a unique pattern for between the squares.

This is definitely a one-of-a-kind afghan, as I never wrote down how I made it, or how I did the crochet design.

Not to mention I would never be able to duplicate the colors and placement exactly.

I loved how it turned out. The mixture of the different blues keeps it from being both too light and too dark. While the crochet looks light and airy, it is very heavy and very warm.

Sales info for the Blues Afghan HERE.

Up next - Pocket Scarves

Friday, April 27, 2012

Scrap Afghans

I was cleaning my craft area one day (what normal people would call the dining room) and realized that I had 4 1-gallon Ziploc bags full of small to medium balls of yarn, in all sorts of colors, materials and designs.

I wanted to start using this, and I had been looking at different afghan patterns that were made differently than the standard back-and-forth knitting. So I combined a few different methods, and created a corner-to-corner design.

This enabled me to start knitting without having to calculate how much yarn of which color I would need. With all the colors I had, I figured a rainbow would be pretty, colorful and use up a lot of the smaller balls of yarn.

I like this type of afghan work - I can change colors whenever I am bored with the color I am using.

Here's the result of that fun:
 After I worked it up, I went around with single crochet with black of a simple, yet effective border.
 Here's a detail shot of the basketweave stitching:
 This Rainbow Afghan is for sale through my WePay store. Just look to the top right of the screen.

Next up - Blues Scrap Afghan

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Some Changes

I'm in-process of making a few changes.

For one, I am leaving Etsy. If you shop on Etsy, you already know why. If you don't, then it's not relevant anyways. lol

Second, on the right is a new little widget - it's my store on WePay. You can click the image and details will pop-up in a smaller window. You can shop right from here! Please note that all shipping and handling is included in the price that you see for all US orders.If you are interested in custom work, please let me know.

Third, if you use Facebook, please "Like" my Store Page. New items, future items, sales and craft fair info is posted there.

And finally, I started using Twitter again. Some personal stuff, some political stuff, and some stuff that is shortened versions of what I put on Facebook. If you are that bored, or that curious, it's OriginalsbyJ.

I have three new items coming, in different states of completeness. One is about 25% done, one is about 50% done, and one is about 70% done. I am hoping that all three will be done by the end of the month.

An aside to all the FJL's reading this: without saying too much, I got the thrill of my life today. Someone we all think very highly of emailed me in response to an idea I had. The first words were, "This is fantastic!" I swear I have never received higher praise, or more meaningful, than that.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

I like socks

I have fun making socks. Especially for my dad, as he wears socks with sandals, and likes them as wild as I can make them. The pic below is an example of a pair I made for him. And yes, I made him model them for me.

So when my dad asked me to make a sock for a friend of his, I knew it would be fun.

You read that right - a sock. His friend lost one of his legs a few years ago.

Dad told me to make it as wild as possible, and that is what I am doing.

Now wild does not have to mean uncomfortable. I went out of my way to design this sock with comfort in mind. The center of the foot is done with a very slightly thinner yarn with a lot of stretch, so it hugs the foot nicely. Then I'm using a slightly thicker yarn at the heel for a tad more cushion. here's the sock so far:

I used a toe-up pattern so I could easily estimate how much of each yarn to use. I'm using all left-over yarns from previous socks for this, trying to make the colors clash as much as I possibly can.

Just because you knit (or crochet) something doesn't mean it has to be boring or old fashioned!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Changing My Store

There are over 4,000 people selling knitting on Etsy alone, not to mention all the other sellers on-line.

So to stand out, I will be focusing on unique afghans, intricate knotwork cables and illusion knits.

As more items are finished and listed, the shop categories will be changed to reflect that.

As such, all my standard knitted items will not be available for sale on-line pre-made. All shawls, standard hats and pocket scarves will no longer be available once their current listing expires.

Of course, I am always available for custom orders!

Check them out before they disappear!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Crafting for Charity

I try to do what I can to help others. Much of my profit from my sales goes to charity, or for materials to make items for charity. It's just who I am.

I am happy to say, it's not just me. There are a lot of sellers on Etsy that donate a portion of their sales to charity.

And then there is a large group of Fat Jealous Losers, also known as April's Army. They are the Regretsy community. They may tear a seller of crap a new hole, but when someone is in need, out come their hearts - and wallets.

And talent. These crafters make items just so that Regretsy can sell them for charity. This month's charity is to assist a disabled woman with getting a new harness for her service animal.

If you have a moment, please click the link below to read the story and visit the charity shop. There is an option to "buy" a $5 donation.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Kitchen stuff

I make a lot of crochet and knitted items for my kitchen. Some of them I sell, as anyone can use them.

My potholders, for example, were designed after years and years of cooking for my family. I crochet a loop instead of using a plastic circle, as the plastic can get hot. I personally hang mine on a small hook near the stove so they are always right at hand.

My cup and spoon sets are another like that. I hate the little half-moon dried coffee that happens when you set a coffee (or tea) spoon on the counter. I really hate it when people put the spoon on top of the coffee pot! And thus the set was born.

But beyond those things, (and towels and wash clothes) I make things that are just needed. For example, in my kitchen, the stove is set close to the wall, with about 2" of counter between them. Of course, this is the spot you are going to set down your utensils, and is also very difficult to clean. So I got out my yarn and made two strips to fit exactly that area. When they get dirty, I pop them in the dishwasher. Problem solved!

More kitchen items will be added as I get them finished.

Back again!

Time to get serious again.

Well, as serious as I ever am. Considering my current read is Tough Sh*t by Kevin Smith (Silent Bob, for those that do not know), joking on the square is my norm these days.

The best place to start is with my new store on Etsy - Originals by Jeanene. Right now I am focusing on my knitting. There are over a dozen items ready for shipping right now, with more in process. While there are some things that those that know my knitting will recognize, I am doing new things as well.

On Etsy, if you search shops for "knit", 4,263 shops come up. How does 1 person stand out???

My best sellers have always been my complicated, self-designed knotwork cabled items. My second best seller has been my items made from recycled materials, especially my plarn items.

But that wasn't quite enough, now that there are others doing similar knitting. So I learned Illusion Knitting.

In Illusion Knitting, the knitting part is easy - you knit the right side rows, and knit/purl the wrong side rows, changing color every other row, creating ridges. That's a heck of a lot easier than many of my knotwork patterns!

It's creating the patterns that is difficult and time consuming. So I started with something easy - a heart shape. I liked it, so I duplicated it, but reversed the colors, and made this:

Now was time for something a little bit harder. I also wanted something that had more use than sitting on a couch. A tote bag was the answer, and here's the end result.

My next design combines two of my favorites - illusion knitting and knotwork cables. Stay tuned here, and in both my Etsy and WePay stores, to see it when it's done.