Showing posts from November, 2012

How to do the russian join

I recently learned how to do a Russian join and wanted to share how I did it. I had been shown this technique before but everyone that showed it to me went way too fast and by the time I got home and tried to remember how it was done, I could not do it.
First, you need a needle and the two yarns that you want to connect:

These are a sample of needles in my case. I prefer to use the first one because the point is sharper and it is not as long. 

Thread the needle through the first yarn. It doesn't matter which goes first.  I like to leave the tail piece 1 inch long.

Take the needle and begin threading it through the center of yarn you are holding.

 Keep threading it through until you have about the length of your needle. 

 Next, you will simply pull the needle and tail through the part you just bunched up on the needle. It looks funny like this because I haven't pulled the tail piece out yet. 

 This is what it looks like after the tail piece is pulled out. Usually the hole is mor…

How to sew a fabric balloon ball

Awhile back, I posted some pictures of the fabric balloon ball I had made and said I would make a tutorial of how I did it.

Here's what I did:

I used the gore pattern from Mad Quilter's website. I purchased two colors of fleece material. I like fleece because it doesn't fray. Shown here is 1/2 yard of each color. Total cost of material $2.94
Bag of balloons $.97 for 25 balloons. They are 9 inch or 22.5 cm.

The material is folded so it cuts two. As you can see you can get a lot from 1/2 yard of material. Save yourself the time of pinning by cutting out your first gore and then laying it on the fleece. It won't go anywhere!

You'll need 6 total. I chose to do half of each color. As you can see, I need my scissors sharpened. 
Now, it's time to put the pieces together. I still love my sewing machine that I got last year. 

Starting from one point and going to the next point. I like to use the foot of my sewing machine as a guide. The fleece does have a tendency to st…

Knitted cambridge watch cap

Yesterday, I finished knitting my sixth Cambridge Watch cap as well as a 9 month old size hat of a different design. The original pattern is found here with my changes below. I will post pictures of both hats next week after the recipient receives them.

For the 9 month old size hat, I used Cascade 220 superwash. I had received it as a RAK gift and I like how soft and squishy it feels. Thank you, spinkluddite for sharing it with me!

I knit it on size 10 needles double stranded with a cast on of 48 sts. I tried it with a single strand of yarn but it was too holey for me. Even though it is a worsted weight yarn, I found it thinner than others.

I did a knit 1, purl 1 ribbing for 4 rows then switched to stockinette stitching until a total of 7 1/4 inches was reached. Then, I decreased it: K2 together across, Purl across, K2 together across, Purl across, K2 together (you will have 6 sts left). I cut the yarn 18 inches and pulled through remaining stitches and used the mattress seam to sew u…

How to cut t-shirt yarn into one long continuous strip

Recently I learned how to cut t-shirt yarn so that you get one long continuous strip instead of having to connect each loop together. I had read in the past about how to cut one long spiral strip, but never could quite figure it out until now. I suggest practicing with a grocery bag instead of wasting a t-shirt. (like I did until I got the hang of it!)

I'm getting ready to make another rag rug though I haven't decided how I want to make it yet. Will I sew one? Crochet one? Knit one? Stay tuned because I will be talking about this later. I probably won't start it until the new year since I've got too many unfinished projects laying around. 
Anyways, here's how to do it:
Take your t-shirt and cut off the top under the arms and the edging on the bottom. I gave away those extra pieces to a friend who is making a rug herself and doesn't mind the connecting of strips. Now that I know how to do this, I wanted minimal knots in my rug. Obviously, I will still have to c…

Nick's hat.

I finished Nick's hat the other day along with two others just like it for a friend's 15 year old twin sons.

He wasn't sure what to think at first of the way it had to be folded up to fit, which made me wonder if I shouldn't make it so long. But, I think that's why it fits as good as it does. The yarn I used is from Brown Sheep Nature spun.Worsted weight. The felted pouches I also made were from this yarn and it hand felted so nice and quick! And best of all, made in the USA!

I tried and failed to make the "Top Down hat recipe" for a friend's son.  (one of these days I'll learn to make a gauge swatch first!) It was my first time making a hat "top down" style. It went fairly quick.  I started out knitting it on my size 8 double points, but switched over to my size 7 circular needles in the 16 inch length.  I was a bit worried that the hat would come out too small, but when I switched it over, I noticed my tension went from very tight to n…

Homemade chili in a crockpot

2 pounds ground beef, browned and drained 2 16 ounce cans red kidney beans, drained 2 14.5 ounce cans diced tomatoes, drained (I drain the juice and add it back in later) 2 medium onions, chopped 2 garlic cloves, crushed 2-3 Tablespoons chili powder  1 tsp. ground cumin 1 tsp. black pepper (this was too spicy for us, so I just use 1/8 tsp.) 1 tsp. salt
Combine all ingredients in slow cooker. Cover. Cook on low for 8-10 hours. 
Notes: Use leftovers over lettuce and other fresh garden vegetables to make a taco  salad. For more flavor, add cayenne pepper or a jalapeno pepper before cooking. You can also add 1 cup chopped green peppers before cooking.
-this recipe is from my "Fix it and Forget it" Crock pot cookbook. Recipe submitted by Wanda S. Curtin and Ann Sunday McDowell.

Crockpot roast recipe

Loaded up the crock pot this morning with this delicious sounding recipe. I've made it before, but this is the "official" recipe with my directions below recipe.
Delicious Easy Chuck Roast
2-4 pound chuck roast salt to taste  pepper to taste 1 onion, sliced 10 3/4 ounce can cream of mushroom soup
Season roast with salt and pepper and place in slow cooker. Add onion. Pour soup over all. Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours or on high for 6 hours.
My directions:
I sliced two small onions and placed in the bottom of the crock pot. This keeps the meat from sticking. Place roast on top. Season with salt and pepper. Open up can of cream of mushroom soup (Campbell's makes the best taste) and pour on top. Cover. Cook on low. I do this around 8 in the morning. Then at noon, I add sliced carrots and potatoes and cook until 5 in the evening.
I like to make my favorite Egg roll recipe with this dish. The house is starting to smell yummy! 

Crocheted pot scrubbers- how long they last?

Some of you were asking me what my pot scrubbers looked like after a couple months of usage.

The purple one is the scrubber that is almost ready to retire to the bathroom for use in scrubbing the tub and sink. Even though it is flat, it still scrubs really good. 

Fingerless gloves Fingerless mitts

I'm not sure what the difference between the two things are: Fingerless gloves or fingerless mitts. But this week I was trying to find a suitable pattern for the two pairs I need to make this month! I was limited to viewing the patterns on my phone and was having a really hard time finding something that I liked. The pattern names were great and catchy, but did not tell me much about the pattern. Whether or not it was a skill I had learned or if I had the right size needles for the project.

 I had looked at several patterns on Ravelry while at a friend's house, but not having internet access at home, I had no way to print off copies to view later. 
I noticed that all the patterns I looked at either had a seperate thumb section or a seam that you would sew up the side and simply leave a gap. I was hoping to find a pattern I liked for the latter because I thought it would be easier. I found several great sounding patterns from "Knitting Pattern Central" but with titles…