Iowa State Fair

I love the Iowa State Fair. I go every year with my mom. One place we never pass up is Snakes Alive. I have a photo from every year since I was 5. It’s kind of fun to have a picture from every year, even if I do have a huge snake draped around my neck. 🙂 I always make room for at least one lemonade and a corn dog… then there’s the bucket of cookies from the amazing cookie place in the Varied Industries Building… the apple cookies…  the pork chop on a stick… pineapple ice cream… some cotton candy and a caramel apple for mom. Oh, and don’t forget all of the free samples from the Iowa Beef Council in the Agriculture Building! There are hard boiled eggs and usually there’s some kind of milk, too! As you can see, mom and I go to the fair mostly for the ridiculous food! Ha, not really, but it is super tasty! We also go to see some of the animals, do a little people watching, and of course check out all of the awesome photography, doll houses, and needlework!

So speaking of needlework… I entered five items into the Fabric and Threads category this year. I heard that even if you don’t get a ribbon you get a good critique from the judges on how to improve. Nice! Below you will find the items I entered. It was a lot of fun making them and I think I will benefit from the experience.

While you’re looking at the pictures below… think about this… do any of you go to the fair every year?  Have you ever entered an item for judging to your local fair? Just how far do some of you travel to get to the fair? It’s only about a 15 minute drive for me so I consider myself lucky. 🙂 Is there some other activity you do yearly with a parent/child?

^Going clockwise starting with the blue hat: Tidepool Brioche Hat, Spring Blooms Wrap; In Bloom Cloche; Owlie; Genevieve Cardigan (withdrew this entry); Frogger

^Tidepool Brioche Hat – This was a test knit for a woman by the name of Sharon Fuller. She is sharonf on Ravelry.com and I just love her design. Her pattern will soon be for sale via Ravelry.com.

^In Bloom Cloche – You may remember this cloche. It is a hat I designed not too long ago. Edit: My In Bloom Cloche received a 2nd place ribbon!

^Spring Blooms Wrap – This was a test crochet for a woman by the name of May Cheang. She is maycheang on Ravelry.com and her pattern is up for sale as well! Edit: My Spring Blooms Wrap received an honorable mention ribbon!

Heartland Fiberpalooza

Well, folks, I think I may get to check another goal off my list come this weekend! A family friend has a booth at Heartland Fiberpalooza and has been granted permission to let me sit at her booth and bring some of my items. (I don’t have enough items for my own booth yet.) I have been feverishly making bunny fridgies and other small items to try to sell. I think by Saturday I’ll have some fridgies, a felted frog (he’s not felted yet in the pic below), three hats, a scarf, and one headband. Plus whatever I can finish tomorrow. 🙂 Either way, I’ll have some business cards and should meet some nice fiber folks! You should come if you have $3.00 and some spare time! I especially invite all yarn enthusiasts as there will be a lot of yarn vendors at the show.

I hope to see some of you there!

heartland fiberpalooza items for sale

Finished items for Saturday's Heartland Fiberpalooza

Bunny fridgies for Saturday and my pre-felted frog

Spring Twist Hat

Spring Twist Hat

picture of spring splendor hat

Materials:

  • US 6, 16″ circular needle (or DPNs)
  • ~150 yards worsted weight cotton yarn (My choice is Knit One Crochet Too Ty-Dy Cotton. It is considered worsted weight, but I think it is a little lighter so check your gauge if you use a different yarn.)
  • Tapestry needle, ruler, and button

Gauge:

  • 5 sts x 8 rows = 1 in. x 1 in.

Abbreviations/Stitches Used:

  • k – knit
  • p – purl
  • k2tog – knit two together
  • pm – place marker

Hat Instructions:

co 88 stitches (I used the long tail cast on method. Instructions here.)

Row 1:  K, P across the 88 stitches; turn, do not join

Row 2: k2tog, yo; *P, K; repeat from * until two stitches remain; yo, k2tog

Repeat rows 1 and 2 two more times to create three eyelets.

Row 7: K, P across the 88 stitches; co 20 using the single cast on (instructions here); 108 sts

Row 8:  Join to work in the round and knit all stitches.

Continue in stockinette until you are approximately 4.5-5 inches from the edge.

Crown Decreases:

*k10, k2tog, pm; repeat from * to end (99 sts)

Knit 2 rounds

*Knit to 2 sts before marker, k2tog; repeat from * to end (81 sts)

Repeat the last three rounds (72 sts)

Knit 1 round

*Knit to 2 sts before marker, k2tog; repeat from * to end (63 sts)

Repeat last round until 9 stitches remain

Cut yarn leaving approximately 6 inches; use a tapestry needle to thread the tail through the remaining stitches a few times and fasten off.

Weave in any remaining ends.

The last part of this hat are the twists (instructions below). Three of the twists are put through the eyelets and then buttoned at the top of the hat. This creates the “bow” portion of the hat. The part of the twists that goes through the eyelets will then be sewn to the inside of the hat. The twists will create a bump of sorts on the inside of the hat, but it is not noticeable from the outside. If you want to make the twists less intrusive I suggest a lighter weight yarn that matches your hat yarn. Another option is to use the yarn as a bow without twisting it.

The rest of the twists are used for the top of the hat. (I used 18.) Thread a piece of scrap yarn through the “top” ends of each tassel using a tapestry needle. (The top end is the end without the knot.) Then run the piece of yarn holding the twists together through the top of the hat to the inside. Weave in the ends and you’re done!

Twist Instructions:

First, double 15 inches of yarn and cut

measure 30 inches of yarn

15" doubled

Second, place your finger at the end of the loop and use it two twist the yarn. Twist until the yarn feels tight against your finger.

use your finger to twist the yarn

Third, bring your loop finger up to the other end of the yarn and hold them together. The yarn will twist up on itself as below.

Last, while holding the yarn together in your left hand, use your right hand to sort of straighten the twist.

Thanks and enjoy!

Note: This is a relatively simple pattern; however, it has not been tested. Please let me know if you have any feedback! Also, this pattern may be used for whatever purpose you would like to use it. If you happen to sell something using this pattern, please put a link to my blog.

Edit: 08/03/2011

angry wrists

I am finding lately that all of my favorite hobbies put a significant amount of strain on my wrists. Sad day.

  • Yarning
  • Playing the clarinet
  • Typing (chat and games)

At the rate I’m going I won’t be able to do anything by the time I’m 50! I’ve been told to “give it a rest!”, ice it, and “give it a rest again!” to solve this problem. Any other suggestions?

Goals

This is my first real year of business and I hope to make the best of it. Now how do I keep myself on track…? Goals, of course!

  1. Get some fans – while I love my family and friends, some outside fans would be nice 🙂
  2. Become a faster, yet still accurate, knitter
  3. Become a brioche expert – Edit: Is it possible to be a brioche expert? How about…. understand brioche enough to manipulate the stitches… hmm…
  4. Create a minimum of five patterns
    1. Two crochet hat patterns
    2. One knit hat pattern
    3. One slippers pattern
    4. One sweet scarf pattern
    5. At least one pattern will incorporate the brioche knitting stitch
  5. Attend and sell products at a craft show or similar event
  6. Have a selection of products ready to sell
  7. Truly figure out knit hats
  8. Make enough money to reduce my “real job” hours
  9. Stay sane and don’t break any needles

A brand new year

Hello and welcome to my brand new blog!

Today I watched the movie “Julie & Julia”. I wouldn’t say it’s a great movie, but I did find it inspiring. Since I started yarning* a couple of years ago I have noticed many, many craft types have a blog dedicated to their craft. Well, last November I started K1 Sew Too, my very own knit, crochet, and sewn items shop. (Of course my mom is the “sew” part, but it is mostly my shop. 🙂 Haha.) Anyway, I figured it was about time for me to start my own blog.

Here you will find my latest projects, ideas, and perhaps even a recipe or two. 🙂

*yarning – my word for knit and crochet

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