Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Etsy Store Open!

Just a reminder - this blog will no longer be updated. All new crafty goodness is at http://jenniemaccrafts.blogspot.com/.

The latest news is that my Etsy store - http://jenniemaccrafts.etsy.com/ - is now open! Please check out the blog and store and tell me what you think!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

So Long, Farewell..

... Auf Wiedershen, Goodbye!

Well, not goodbye, per se....

I've decided to start a new blog, to set aside the memories that went into the making of this blog and to start fresh for 2009 with a new vision.

Thanks to all who have stuck with me so far. I'm excited about the new blog, my new approach, and the new Etsy store that will follow shortly on its heels. I'm also looking forward to the new year itself and to sharing with all of you some of the changes that have been percolating away over here.

I hope you'll join me at http://jenniemaccrafts.blogspot.com/. All the best - NTK, signing off.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Why You May Want to Move to Tucson

My facebook and twitter status last night was:
Jennie is sunburnt. In December. From writing and drinking chai. Really? A-yup. Really.
That it's beautiful enough here to sit outside is a blessing, though remind me how much I enjoyed this when I have skin cancer in ten years.

If anyone can recommend a good, light daily moisturizer with sunblock.... :) And a way to remember to use it.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays

I'll be candid - I'm sort of a grinch. Actually, that's an exaggeration, but I'm just not that big on the holidays. My husband and I don't really like spending time with my in-laws. I'm a vegetarian, so I don't eat a lot of our families' traditional foods. I don't even really like getting gifts, especially since most of what I get in recent years is stuff someone thinks I might like and actually don't. On a rational level, I know it's the thought that counts, but that doesn't make me appreciate the 36" dancing Jazz Santa or the solar-powered address light (when we lived in an apartment even) any more.

I also still resent how parts of our family fought over how much time we spent with who, etc. when we first married. What little is left that I like - good carols, baking - my husband is either sick of or shouldn't have. (Extra 50 lbs anyone?) So, despite how much I'd like to get excited tonight, I still feel like: holidays = hassle.

That said, I'm hoping all of you are having a great night - especially those with kids. And I'm hoping that maybe, just maybe, this year will be different.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Weekend Wonder #19 - WIP Slinky Gray Sweater

Hello again! This Weekend Wonder is a sweater that's been on-again-off-again in my life and is now in its third iteration. Originally, I bought the yarn - a soy blend - on clearance to use to make the Five O'Clock Tank from Crochet Me. Alas, I have neither the right hooks nor the patience for that particular pattern right now, and after my problems with the Strapless Corset from Sensual Crochet (three completed tops, three of which didn't fit) I decided to free form the tops with stitches I knew I could do with my current hooks.

After I started it, though, I lost interest, but an idea for a different type of sleeveless sweater, a drapy thing, kept dancing through my brain, so I began this:

Okay, I know it doesn't look like much yet, but it's only the neckline and a few inches of the front and back! It's getting there. The idea is a balletneck yoke in half-double crochet with the body made of alternating double crochets and double crochet clusters. It's more complex than that - the front involves a mitering effect - but it's also free form, meaning I'm still making it up as I go, trying it on every couple rows and doing a two-steps-forward-one-step-back dance of experimentation. But I'm enjoying it, and it's making a fun fabric, I've got to say.

If it turns out really well, I'll have an excuse to go buy more similar yarn - I'm enjoying the feel of it! - and I'll write out and test a pattern, but that's still a long way off.

Before I go, one more little present. My favorite distraction, chomping away on his Kong. This is Luke. Luke, Blog. Blog, Luke.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

D-O-N-E and WIP

Well, I'm writing this post in advance, but by the time you read it, I will be done with my first semester of my MFA. I imagine that it'll feel both like a big load off my mind and also a bit daunting. I have a lot I want to get done over break - a new writing project to start, books to read, family to see - but it'll still be nice to have a change of pace. And school doesn't resume until the week of January 12th(!). Still, that won't be enough time to read the 25+ books I just added to my goodreads wishlist. Yikes!

The WIP I want to share today is my circle rug, which is currently about 20% done (as of Saturday). The great thing about a project like this is you can take it anywhere - you just need a skein, a pair of crochet hooks, and a pair of scissors (unless you're better than me and can tear yarn). I'm making it out of a softer thinner yarn than called for, so I modified the circle pattern (added a repeat I think) and changed hook sizes. My goal is to finish this and make it a holiday present to myself and my roommate. It's going to be our bathroom rug.

Next time - the sweater!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Weekend Wonder #18 - WIPs

This Weekend Wonder is that I have, yes, actually been crafting. I've got a potluck to get ready for and a couple days of work on a take home exam ahead, but I wanted to take a quick break to share some of my current projects, even though these are all just WIP photos - progress, but not pretty.

First up, today, are two smaller projects I've been working on at bed time and will, with any luck, wrap up this week. One is a small bag based on the Tube Bag pattern from Uncommon Crochet, a book I really like and am going to take the time to finish reading, cover-to-cover, this holiday break, because it is that kind of book. Neat patterns, yes, very(!), but it also deserves attention to the design principles and ideas the author is putting forward.

Any blog followers may recognize this yarn as the lovely stuff I used to make the Boy Chicago Scarf earlier this year. I had a smaller-than-my-fist amount left over when I finished, so I decided to use it for this little experiment. As much as I love the stitch definition, I am planning to felt it and then play with strap or flap design from there.

The second is an even simpler project - a too-be-felted rectangle that will become a hook book, a la Lion Brand Yarn's pattern. I took a photo, but to be honest it didn't really say much. Look at me - I'm a variegated rectangle! I'll take a better shot before felting and share it with the FO.

Next update, my WIP Circle Rug, which you can see a preview of in the corner of a photo above, and after that, my sweater prototype.