Saturday, November 10, 2012

Cock a Doodle Who???

Riot Rooster! Annual Indie Craft Fair 

November brings with it many wonderful things.... leftover halloween candy, the sidewalks strewn with autumn's color palette in leaves, and of course RIOT ROOSTER INDIE CRAFT FAIR!!!!

oh how i look forward to this weekend the whole year, no other craft fair in roanoke has the same energy or sense of community and i'm so thankful to be a part of it again this year.

the hours are the same as last year:

Friday, November 16th, 5-9pm
Saturday, November 17th, 9-5pm

i wish i didn't have to miss the Grandin Village Children's Holiday Parade which is also on Saturday morning but i know my boys will be there, marching down Grandin and waving to all our friends and neighbors. if you see them, cheer them on for me!

copy/pasta from the Riot Rooster facebook page:

Riot Rooster unites local crafters and makers of handmade items, gadgets, foods, commodities, experiences, etc.

RIOT ROOSTER is an Independent Craft Fair in Roanoke, VA.

NO ADMISSION FEE, Family Friendly, Fun

Handmade, Upcycled, Recycled, Odd and Useful Gifts made for YOU by local crafters located at The h2o Heater, 813 5th Street SW 24016 in the historic Old Southwest Neighborhood.

-Red Rooster Coffee Roasters: Organic and Fair Trade Coffee

-Tasting by Foggy Ridge Cider
-Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef Project, you can learn to crochet and contribute to this collaborative exhibit.

featuring also:

funky upcycled wool hats, jackets, vests, sweaters from folkthreads . sock eye guys . adorable felties . surly girl bicycle inspired geekery . letterpress . handmade tutus . elegant green design . philosophy inc . root and bloom jewelry . hand built purses and bags . YUM spice blends . renegade printmakers LIVE on site screen printing . the quirky forest . handmade chocolates and fun surprises...

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

chevron maniac

i think i've become addicted... to chevrons!

no, not the gas company (cars and all things associated with them are definitely not one of my things), but rather the cute zig zags that i notice popping up all over the place. 

now, i've always had a obsession with colorful ric-rac. i mean who can resist it's cute factor? there are several spools in a basket just waiting for the perfect project to come along, just haven't found one yet that meets all my crafty dreams... anyways, that's a different tangent, back to the other chevrons that have caught my eye recently.

i started a quilt a while back but didn't like how my first attempt at piecing them came together, so it's nicely packed away in a drawer with some other woulda-coulda projects, maybe i'll dig it out and have another go at it if i find the time. sewing has taken a backseat though lately, other than a few of the up-cycled t-shirt skirts i knocked out over the summer. i find that til i get everything out and lay it in nice organized piles, it doesn't exactly leave me much time to do the actual sewing part. so, i end up spending more time with yarn and needles or hook in hand. the portability factor is key, plus it's nice and quiet which my scattered brain needs after a day of listening to the kids yammer away and the dog's incessant barking at people on the sidewalk  ;)

(just joking kiddos, i'm in no rush for you all to turn into sulky teens that don't speak and instead communicate via text messages!)

ok, back to the chevrons... so i finished a colorful baby blanket last week that i had actually started waaaaaay back in February with some yarn that Ash picked out. the kid was dead-set that he wanted a little snuggly blanket for his birthday in March, then when i was over halfway done with it, he of course decided that instead he wanted a superhero cape. (insert facepalm). not exactly surprising for a 5 yr old boy and so i set the blankie aside and sewed a striped cape instead. then 2 weeks ago while i was cleaning up the studio, low and behold i found the forgotten work-in-progress and pulled it out. the deliciously soft cashmere and merino blend yarn was exactly what my soul needed and the easy repetition of the crochet pattern helped calm me at the end of our hectic back to school preparations. if there's one thing i love about crochet it's how fast it works up in pattern... and holy cow, it's so nice to finish projects when most of the work has already been done! here's pic of it folded:

debbie bliss baby cashmerino blanket in rainbow chevron stripes

well, after that i thought "damn, i really like this. i want something for ME!"  of course i could have probably found something in my stash to use but i really kinda needed some retail yarn therapy and quickly made a bee-line to my local yarn shop.  oh so many colors, i had a hard time narrowing down the choices but finally picked out some Mandarin Petit cotton in a light robin's egg blue and a pale lime green.  chaining 37 stitches on a size B hook, i then began the familiar pattern. currently i'm about not quite halfway done with it, here's a couple of pix to show the progress so far:

why not a close-up too?

did i mention that i've also noticed quite a few chevron friendship bracelets lately? i knew they'd come back eventually! well, of course i had to break out the embroidery floss and a get a quick refresher from the latest issue of Mollie Makes magazine but once i did the first one, it was like riding my old purple banana-seat bike with the white plastic basket on the front. (man, do i wish i knew what happened to that bike....) haven't taken any pictures of the bracelets but rest assured they are zig-zaggy  and rainbow (shocking, i know)

still haven't gotten around to taking some good shots of the knitted headbands i alluded to in my last blog post but i'm hoping to get some later this week and update.

 alright i guess that's enough rambling for today   :)

Monday, August 27, 2012

end of summer already?

the spawns started school last monday and last night was our final phish show of summer tour, guess that means its time to shift attention to fall.

i'm going to be working more during the week while the boys are away getting smarter... kinda different for me and although it's a good thing, it will unfortunately leave me less time to work in the studio. i never get much done during the summer months but often look forward september and october, those seem to be my most productive months. need to figure out a new plan, yikes!

the last few weeks i've been knitting head wraps. like a mini beehive, they're great for days when i just want to put my hair up and keep it off my face. the blue cashmere-merino one I wore all weekend was perfect :)

will post some pix when I get back home to give you all an idea of what to expect from the QF this fall.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

summer! summer! summer!

is the chant around the house during this, the last week of school for the boys and my last week of daily quiet until the end of august. they're all ready for long lazy days of do-nothing-ness, while i frantically try to get as much done as i can before the inevitable chaos begins.

but summertime is a happy time for me too, it means hot days spent in the sun, warm evenings dancing to my favorite band, the adventure of driving to new cities and spending time with old friends. i love the unexpected patterns that naturally arise out of our days at home, spending time with the boys doing whatever we please, and forgetting what time it is. the first few weeks are always an adjustment, but once i give in to it and take a few deep breaths, i realize how sublime it all really is.

i've been playing around with my serger the lately and have found a fun way to piece together scraps of cotton fabric (think old and gently used t-shirts) to create striped skirts and dresses. they're so soft and comfortable, i could practically sleep in my favorite one, if the nights weren't already so hot.  

so, without further ado...... the Up-Cycled T-shirt collection:

Thursday, March 29, 2012


so, with Earth Day quickly approaching i've been thinking more about up-cycled craft projects. goodness knows i end up with a bunch of leftover bits and pieces from projects and being the kind of girl who hates to throw away a perfectly good   (insert whatever crafty thing here)   it stands to reason that i end up with quite the horde of what others may see as junk. so here's a few uber-quick crafts i've been working on lately:

Pretty Tin Cans
-a take on the old soup-can-turned-pencil-holder except i used the cans left over from those yummy pirouette stick thingies that pepperidge farms makes (the other brands give you different sizes for the cans which is also nice for variety)

ok, so first i covered them with a coat of white primer. then i spray painted the base of the cans and a little bit up the sides. next i cut out scrapbook paper to fit each can and used medium matte gel to adhere the paper to the cans. finished them up with a top coat of the medium matte gel to seal everything and give it a nice sheen.

a few of the finished canisters

Scrappy Fabric Wreaths

-next i came across some wicker wreaths that i must have bought for who-knows-what project in the past and thought, "now what can i do with these???" 

 i looked around the studio and found a bunch of material scraps leftover from dresses and small projects.  after trimming them up into nice and neat 1" strips, i then cut them to the desired lengths (about 15" for the larger one, and 11" for the smaller) i folded them in half and just did a simple slip knot type of thing around the wreath, letting the little ends fan out along the outside.

see, i always knew that it's not bad to be a pack-rat, hahaha

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

like wearing a rainbow around my neck

that's how i describe my new necklace. it's soft and colorful, all of my favorite shades and seems to match at least half my wardrobe. made from baby cash-merino wool, it's not only luxurious but also pretty and versatile. it can be worn long or doubled (as shown in photo) and is the perfect accessory for Spring :)

i really love the simplicity of the design and how light it feels against my skin. if i'm gonna wear a chain around my throat it may as well be one made from YARN!

plus it matches my favorite set of felt bracelets!
...and then i realized i can wear it as a pretty headband too, crazy!

now, of course i had to make some more of these as well as some in different colors and yarn blends and they are listed on my  Etsy Shop.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

shhhhh... all is quiet in the forest


i never realized how much i would miss it until i had kids and then for last 10 yrs, finding a moment of stillness was something that i mostly dreamed about... well, at least when i stole a minute to dream, which wasn't very often either. now that all the kids are in school i cherish my quiet time alone in the house and most days i don't even turn on my itunes, instead reveling in the absolute lack of noise. 

now, you may think that with all this quietness, i would be super productive, the soft whir of my sewing machine or click-clack of the knitting needles softly breaking the monotony but being alone in the house brings with it a new set of distrctions, i.e. all the things i should be doing but don't really feel like doing, otherwise known as housework.  the list is ridiculously long and i find it so daunting that i try to ignore most of it and only focus on the things that need my immediate attention for survival.

soooooo, i have found myself making lists and taping them up on the walls of the studio in an effort to be somewhat organized and i'm not talking about little post-it size notes, i mean big-freaking-couldn't-miss-seeing-them-even-with-my-eyes-closed lists. hopefully it will help me stay on track.

i have managed to get a few projects finished though, commissioned pieces for friends and a new baby present for my oldest friend in the whole world who i have literally known since we were babies. i've also been working on getting groups signed up for our Earth Day festival in April and trying to get to Happy Healthy Cooks class between taking the kids to the dr's for strep throat, enlarged tonsils, ear aches, intestinal viruses, and now a heart murmur. between the 3 of them, i think i've spent more time in waiting rooms the last month and a half than i have in the last year, good thing knitting is portable!

so, without further ado, a few pictures of some of those projects:
(drumroll not necessary)

me want worms

this little phishy hat went to a new phan in Florida :)
welcome Michael!

 present for baby Ella  :)

inspiration comes in many forms, this time it came from a beautiful pop-up book
full view of nona's basketweave blanket

the original Strega Nona book 
by Tomie dePaola

Strega Nona pop-up book
(simply gorgeous) 

2 little pairs of matching pants
ah! love those bummy ruffles!
knitted basket weave stitch for the main body with crochet edging

 now that those are all finished and sent off i can start working on Ashton's birthday blanket (his request). gotta love a kid that wants mommy to make him a blanket for his birthday rather than buy some plastic action figure!

love and hugs to all of you on this Valentine's Day :)