Tuesday, March 31, 2009

a few new animals.

i know that i can't, and shouldn't keep everything that i make. since, you know, i am trying to make a living at this. but here are some animals that are gonna be pretty tough to let go......

the chicken and the grey dog are going to TRULY in white bear lake, the little blue bear will be a keeper for a little longer and the orange guy....i'm not sure. i don't know what kind of animal he is either; a mutated ewok, an otter from mars, i just don't know.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

A tisket, a tasket...

....an easy knitted basket!

I got the hankering to whip out the knittin' sticks last week and this is what I came up with...
It's super easy and it's also reversable.

Plus, you get to do some felting!

This will be going to my nephews as their easter basket, it kind of looks like a kid's hat with chinstrap before you felt it.

You'll need:
Some wool yarn, brownish in color. I used two strands of wool/alpaca held together, and it made a very nice and dense basket after just minimal felting.

Some needles in gauge with your yarn ( I used 10's)

A yarn needle to weave your ends in.

CAST ON: 44 stitches, always slip the first stitch and count as a 'knit' stitch for a cleaner edge. work k3 p1 ribbing for 6 inches (or about 4/3rds as high as you want your finished basket to be). To decrease for the bottom, k1, k2tog, p1 across width. On return, k2tog, k1 across width, then finish by k2tog on final pass. Break yarn with a 12 inch tail, and send through remaining stitches to gather bottom. Stitch up sides of basket and weave yarn tail into basket.

HANDLE: With a new piece of yarn, anchor 5 stitches in the side of the basket (i don't know if this is even a legit knitting technique, but it's basically like picking up stitches) and knit an icord for about 12 inches. Attach to the other side of the basket and bury end of yarn.

Now the fun part....FELTING! My favorite method is still to throw it in the washing machine on the HOTTEST cycle, and check on it after the first go-round in the spin cycle. I usually end up doing sweaters for longer than knitted items, they tend to shrink pretty quick. Be sure to use soap and also to include towels or other items to help agitate the fibers.

I tried to felt it in the sink and it just got bigger and bigger so my parents relented and let me use their washing machine (they are concerned about wool fibers floating around the house) so it shrunk down to a nice size. You can also place a small bowl inside as it dries to help it keep its shape.

That's it! Any other kintters out there, if you make one of these little guys let me know! Post your own photos, ok?

I want to play!

I am combining the facebook and other 'net meme in this post.

OK here are the rules, the first 5 people to comment on this post will receive a handmade item from yours truly. It will be smallish, I'm not gonna lie, but it will be handmade and it will be fabulous!

The first 5 folks to comment below will get an e-mail back from me, wherein I confirm your winner status and then ask for your mailing address.
That's it!

Thanks for playing!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Gotten a bit busy...

My folks are back from their vacay, but they have left again to visit my bro's family in missouri. so while i'd gone back to housesitting for a few days in highland, i'm back up in hugo, again. haven't been in the studio to work yet though. hopefully tomorrow i'll get to some animals.

but i'm also working on a mural project with kids down in edina at the middle school, which is 40 minutes away. which means a one hour twenty minute round trip, on a good day. which, because of road construction season ramping (!) up, means there are no good days to drive in minnesota in the spring. boo!

i'm feeling the urge to do some knitting, i have de-comissioned my winter hat (seen in my profile photo) because i've been told it makes me look sloppy. the string holding the top has broken and i haven't fixed it. it will become a neck warmer next winter, i love how soft it is and i don't want to frog it. so i'm thinking of knitting this cute little topper- although the needle size is freaky-small so i may adapt it to larger needles and larger yarn. or mayhaps i'll do what i always do, make up my own pattern......
(EDIT) Ok maybe i'll do this one, not in yellow though.....

Friday, March 13, 2009

more new animalz

half of these little guys have made their way onto etsy, the other half will be posted tomorrow....?

in other news, i got some suuuuuper cute little baby shoez up in lindstrom today, one of those scissors that has 5 blades in one (don't know what i'm going to use it for just yet but i had to have it!) and some other sundry supplies at the thrift and antique stores up there. stimulating the local economy, right?

i think i may have found a good source for sew-on patches, i hope it pans out! i'm LOVING not having to name these little guys myself ;)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

New Animalz!

I taught a felt animals class @ Truly.... last night, and one of my students (who happens to be a long-lost family friend!) asked me to make some animals for gifts. I was happy to oblige! Another student came along for dinner after the class and the three of us had a super great time talking about our neighborhood, school, kids, jobs, so much more. Totally fun! I look forward to more fun times with these ladies, they were a hoot and very talented rabbit makers, too!

Anyway. Here are the photos. I will be making several more monsters in this style, and I am looking for more name patches because I love how Phil turned out! I've got three more patches out in the studio, we'll see how productive I am today.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

New to me....

Just wanted to share a few amazing things I've found, on the internet, or in the real world, in just the past few days. Just because they're new to me I am obsessed with them.

Dean Lucker is a MN-based artist, who created a very funky coin operated kinetic sculpture at the Como Zoo. His studio partner, Ann Wood, (not to be confused with this Ann Wood) creates amazing works of collage too. Their studio is mere steps away from my old apartment, I wish I would have known about them when I lived there!

New baby emperor tamarins, also at the Como Zoo! My photos were teh suck so here's one from the Zooborns.com website.

Thru-You is a website where an Israeli DJ named Kutiman remixed dozens of clips from You Tube into new songs/videos. I can, and have, listened to this all day.

Juxtapoz magazine. Capturing urban art, the melding of toys and art, and the new faces of the scene. I've thumbed thru it before, but just recently have taken to reading it in full.

In other news....going back up to Hugo for a few days while my folks are off to an east coast wedding. I am looking forward to sleeping in my own (temporary) bed, and having my fully stocked studio space to work in. While it's POSSIBLE to sew and work here, I always find myself thinking "I wish I had ___" and of course, what I want is up in Hugo. I have a class on Felt Animal Making on Tuesday at Truly, but no one has signed up for it yet so I don't know if it's a go or not.