DIY Valentine’s Day Pom Pom Garland

Hey everyone! Now we are just a few weeks away from Valentine’s Day so I don’t feel totally crazy doing another decor post! I was planning out my week and turned the page and BAM! February is next month…how did that happen?

Anyways, I got the idea for the Pom Pom garland from Pinterest (where many a light bulb moment is had), but since I didn’t need it for a birthday or photo backdrop I thought Valentine’s Day would be the perfect theme to start with! I mostly knit with only animal fiber now (amen!) but I do still have a lot of acrylic on hand and Michael’s had a huge yarn sale at the beginning of the month and thought this would be a perfect for use for it.DIYPomPomGarland_Pinterest

Supplies:

  • Pom Pom maker (or you can google how to make yourself one, but the $7 investment is WELL worth it!)
  • Yarn in festive colors (I had magenta, baby pink, and red)
  • Scissors

PomPomGarland_Supplies

I have 3 big and 2 small pom poms on my garland. I made the big ones with 2 colors at a time and went back and forth on each pom pom maker half to ensure a nice, big fluffy one!

PomPomStepOne

I like big ones ūüėČ

After you do both sides, you cut along the groove..

PomPomStep2

Cut pom pom, lots of fuzzies included

use a spare length of yarn to secure and separate the two halves and woohoo!

CompletedPomPom.jpg

A completed pom pom! Repeat as many times as you want, I did it 6 times but only ended up using 5, because I’m a visual person and most of the time things don’t make sense until I see it haha.

String them together on one long length of yarn

PomPomAttatched

I used the baby pink for the main string to attach them. I thought it would look best on our white mantle!

Finally, hang up and enjoy!

Completed Mantle

 

I’m thinking about doing a rainbow one for St. Patty’s Day or maybe one in pastels for Easter. But then again, I’ll be 8 months pregnant and probably not feeling it LOL.

Anyways, get out there and make something pretty!

oxox

Catie

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DIY Photo Display

DIY Photo Display!

For Christmas I received a¬†Polaroid Zip Printer¬†that I had been lusting after (yes, lusting haha) for a while, and I absolutely LOVE it. The photos print out on 2×3 sticky paper and they are adorable and handy and I’m able to keep up on having actual physical pictures of my favorite digital snaps! They’ve been accumulating on our school bulletin board so I was on a mission to find a cute way to display them.

You¬†can’t step into Michael’s or Hobby Lobby or any other home or craft store without being bombarded by chalkboard, ‘rustic’, burlap or mason jars. It’s. Every. Where. But I’m cheap, and I’m definitely not about to drop $50 on a made-to-be-distressed ¬†piece of decor made in China. I just can’t.

Husband and his sailors volunteer at our local Habitat for Humanity ReStore, and it’s a great place to find home improvement items and even decent furniture and decor if you’re lucky! I asked him if they had any windows there and sure enough, they did!¬†So for a whopping $3, I became the proud owner of a white, six paned window frame.

So, I present to you…

an easy $15 (or less!) DIY Photo Display!

DIY Photo Display

 

DIY_Photo_Display_Supplies

Old window, chicken wire, and clothespins

What you need:

  • Old Window
  • Chicken Wire
  • Large-headed nails
  • Hammer
  • Wire cutters
  • Cute clothespins or other clippies of your choice

Step 1:

Carefully remove glass if your window still has it (ours only had 5)

DIY_Photo_Display_RemovingPanes

Using a hammer and flathead, Husband removed most of the caulk around the glass so it popped out

empty white window frame

Ah, empty window frame!

We live in the great (and wet) state of South Carolina, and there was some mold on the frame. With some hand sanding, it came right off.

DIY_Photo_Display_Mold_Before_After

Before it was moldy, After it’s only distressed!

Step 2:

Measure out, cut, and potentially flatten enough chicken wire to cover the back of the open portion(s) of the frame.

chicken wire for diy project

Our high tech way of flattening chicken wire!

Step 3:

Stretch chicken wire across back of frame and nail in place.

DIY_Photo_Display_Nailing_Chickenwire

Step 4:

Trim up your edges so no one is stabbed walking past your beautiful project ūüôā

Completed DIY Photo Display!

Completed DIY Photo Display!

Step 5:

Hang up your masterpiece! Throw your photos on and¬†ta da!¬†A great photo display that was a fraction of the big box store’s cost AND you’re upcycling!

DIY photo display

Michael’s had the purple sparkly clothespins, how could I say no?!

Tag me on Instagram¬†with your completed project!¬†¬†I can’t wait to see my display fill up with my favorite pictures!

Now back to knitting ūüėČ

Catie

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Valentine's Day canvases on display

Easy Valentine’s Day Canvas Tutorial

Yes, I know it has just turned 2016, everyone is still fun-hungover and broke from the holidays. But I am having a major need to create, and Valentine’s Day is the next holiday in need of decoration!

So, I present to you an

VDayCanvasPin

Supplies:

  • 2 Canvases (mine were 9 3/4″ x 8″)
  • Acrylic paint in festive colors (I used a pink and a fuchsia)
  • Brush(es)
  • Modgepodge
  • Glitter (I used gold and a magenta)
  • X-Acto Knife to make cutting the outline easier, but scissors will work just a well
  • Tape

Step 1:

Paint your canvases!

Pink and fuchsia canvases

My Pink and Fuchsia Canvases drying!

Let these dry overnight. I had to do a few coats on the pink and several on the fuchsia to get it to be non-streaky looking.

Step 2:

Create your outline! I used Pages to drag and drop a heart outline, and make a outline for XOXO. If you want something a bit different, go for it! Otherwise here are the PDFs for what I used:

Heart outline

oxox

Print and cut these outlines out and tape to your dried canvas. Now your ready for the FUN part (or not so fun depending on your stance on glitter).

Step 3:

Paint some Modge Podge into the outline, make sure you get it all the way to all the edges!

Painting Modge Podge into the heart outline

Painting Modge Podge into the heart outline

Apply glitter liberally to outline..

glitter on outline

#TeamGlitter! Also for the XOXO you will need to cut and tape in place the center of the O!

Remove stencil and voilá!

Fun Valentine’s Day canvases!!

Valentine's Day canvases on display

Perfect for my mantle!

Let me know how yours turns out! Supergirl loved helping, but this could also be a fun girls’ night-in craft time! Tag me on Instagram (Follow Me here) for your finished product!

XOXO (ahhh see what I did there? haha),

Catie

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An Adventure in Sock Knitting: 2 New Methods in One Pair of Awesomeness 

I knit my first sock last year while on vacation, and it never gained a mate. I made my first pair October of last year which went to Husband. He promptly stepped in a puddle of pee with them on and that was the end of that. *facepalm*

I finally bought some wool wash and cleaned them up, and the toes fell apart. *DARN YOU KITCHNER STITCH!*

*deep breath*

This year has yielded 4 pairs of successful socks, and I’ve learned a lot. I finally attempted my first two at a time (TAAT) socks AND a Fishlips Kiss Heel (FLK) this month!  


H

 

First attempt was a bust because Patons Kroy is much thicker than the sock yarn I have been using. I got these and 2 balls of another color way on clearance at Joann’s for $2 each. How could I not buy them?!Moving on, restarted with correct gauge, they progressed nicely!  

 
Then came the heel. I’ve heard many knitters and podcasters sing the praises of FLK heels, so I thought, Why Not?? There had to be a better way than a heel flap. I purchased the pattern and was super impressed to see all the detail put into the pattern! If you have been wondering about it, do it. I have 0 regrets. But one thing, how come NO ONE has mentioned the awkward cardboard cut out you have to make?! Haha, everyone got their foot traced, and the proper marks made(buy the pattern!).

It took me 90 minutes to do both heels for the first time, but I don’t think I will ever go back to a heel flap, it’s amazing!  

Ahhhh fresh turned heels!

 
I knit the feet (foots?) over the last few days and finished them up today. They are seriously the best fitting socks I have made to date!  

 
Husband tells me he can’t wait for it to get cooler so he can wear them…hopefully these socks will never meet pee ūüėČ 

Do you have a favorite way to knit socks?? I want to hear it!

FO Friday, Finally!!

I am so excited to actually have not only one, but two finished objects! The first item I had finished last month minus weaving in ends and blocking, but I knew I would have another item so I waited on the finishing steps.

First up, a variation of the Claire Shawlette from Ravelry! I’m not sure what I did wrong but I no way had enough yarn to make the full pattern even though I had the yardage specified. So I improvised and left the eyelet border off.

¬†This is for one of my best friend’s birthday in October, but I’m so excited I’m giving it to her next time I see her!

Next item is my own design, and stupid me didn’t write anything down. I will be making another and writing an actual pattern for sure!

This is what happens when you listen to grunge and knit kids….

Haha the person this is for is another one of my best friend’s, she’s in California now and I kept her in mind when I was designing. She is a super cool chick, and I feel like this just absolutely suits her! It’s a Shawlette technically I think, but the fluffy Madeline Tosh Light and size 6 needles led to a fabric that blocked out pretty big. I follow Stephen West on Instagram and love all his designs and videos, and I was so anxious to get my hands on some Mad Tosh! Needless to say, I am HOOKED and will be splurging on some for an Exploration Station for my birthday! I bought this purple, Flashdance¬†online, and when it came I was immediately in love.

Finished!

Finished!

Right now all I have on the needles is a pair of socks for Husband, and I’ll be starting a Voodoo Love Me doll once I get some polyfill this weekend! Michael’s has a 20% coupon for your entire purchase, including sale items, good starting tomorrow and I am pumped!! I’m going to get my pollyfill and supplies to make a Halloween/Fall wreath…because once August is half way done, it’s Halloween everyday for this family! ūüėČ When do you bust out the Fall and/or Halloween deco??

Facebook Detox…End of Week 2 Update

It has been almost 2 weeks since I unplugged from Facebook, and man the difference is AMAZING.

I took all apps off my Ipad and phone, and last Thursday logged in for the first time to check on a few Scentsy things, and since then I have logged on in the morning for about 10 minutes on our Mac and that’s it! I occasionally have been checking in the evening for a minute, but I do not feel the compulsion to sit there and scroll through Every. Story. And. Post. until I’ve seen everything. The first several days were rough, and I still feel the urge to check in the evening but I have avoided it for the most part!

This may seem weird or cliche, but I feel alive and real. Cue Neo being reborn….

Remember this from the Matrix?

Remember this from the Matrix?

I interact with my kids. I have more time to think for myself and work on things. I have almost completed 2 weeks straight of Turbo Fire, which is pretty much unheard of in the 18 months I have had the program! I get more house work done. I feel more organized and on top of things. It’s really, really, refreshing!

Some of what I’ve been working on the process of designing. On top of being able to interact more with my kids, I feel like I’m being more accountable for my friendships, actually texting them one on one and not just ‘liking’ their Life on Facebook. One of those conversations involved me disclosing my future plans, and that following all of these awesome knitwear designers on Instagram make me feel like I would as a teenager listening to peers play piano or violin by ear or being an awesome sight-reader. I am neither of those things. With practice and sheet music in front of me, I can play violin or piano. I made up for my lack of natural skill with hard work, and most of the time it still wasn’t spectacular. Anyways, I’ve been working on being inspired, and listening to myself more. I made a few mood boards

Halloween/Gothy Moodboard

Halloween/Gothy Moodboard

Screen Shot 2015-08-04 at 5.48.34 PM

Inspired by The Simpsons and Mid Century Mod

…and have been obsessed with 90’s grunge. Like, super. I finally had a design breakthrough with a project I’ve attempted to make 2 times, and so far it’s going well! I am a big¬†HUGE¬†Foo Fighters and Dave Grohl fan, so obviously there’s been a lot of Foo Fighters but also The Unofficial Ranking of Favorite Grunge Songs

  1. Everlong – Foo Fighters
  2. Teen Spirit – Nirvana
  3. Creep – Radiohead
  4. Jumper – 3rd Eye Blind
  5. And everything Oasis

I hope to share the FO of my design next week sometime!! I will be continuing to keep Facebook to the bare minimum on the desktop, and enjoying all my freed up time. What could you do with an extra two hours a day??

My Knitting Journey….Because a Story Ends

My maternal grandmother was insanely crafty, at least in my opinion as a product of the 90’s. I remember wearing handmade dresses from her, and spending hours admiring all the patches of different fabric in her quilts.

My Mom tells me she can remember when some of these were still shirts!

My Mom tells me she can remember when some of these were still shirts!

I can vaguely remember her hand-quilting, and I’m also told she crocheted but I don’t ever remember seeing her do so. My mom has an old Singer sewing machine of hers in her house (that will soon be coming to live at mine, I am so looking forward to that!), and I can definitely remember¬†pushing the pedal as fast it could go because¬†there wasn’t an app for that ūüėČ

A Wedding Ring quilt from my Grandmas

A Wedding Ring quilt from my Grandma

My mom never sewed, but she did cross stitch from time to time, but that was my only real exposure to any textile craft until middle school. There was a school monitor who would crochet during lunch time and she taught a group of us how, and I have a half finished rainbow blanket somewhere! I don’t know what happened because I can now not crochet to save my life!

Fast forward to 2011, I am a Navy wife with a 2.5 year old and my husband is in a school that takes up most of his time, and sea duty with deployments is fast approaching. I pick up a NEON pink skein of Red Heart and a¬†I Taught Myself to Knit!¬†kit from Walmart and get to work. Between the booklet and youtube, I FINALLY figure it out after many false starts (What the hell does ‘turn the work’ mean?!) and decide to knit a laptop cozy. Because everyone just learns to knit, then designs a project, right?!

So that definitely did not end up happening, and I can’t remember what I actually made. Summer 2011 is busy, a move, finding out JP was on the way, husband going out to sea, and Fall brings my first scarf.

Ugh horrible picture!

Ugh horrible picture! Bear Down, U of A!

Another move, JP was born, Husband’s sub caught on fire, plans changed AGAIN, and I was still knitting. Blankets, baby sleep sacks, baby hats for¬†Operation Shower, lots of easy-ish things. I was on Ravelry, but I couldn’t really get the hang of it so I wasn’t addicted like I am now, and Pinterest was my main source of inspiration and patterns. You can actually see on my Knitting board the evolution of my knitting! 2014 brought my first socks, and feeling non-acrylic yarn for the first time. I am a Born Again Knitter.

After joining a few Facebook groups, finding some knitting Podcasts, and finally figuring out Ravelry, this year I have been cranking out projects. I worked on this Speckled Shrug¬†from January and finished in February this year and is what I consider my ‘breakthrough’ in knitting. Lots of knitting and purling, and it was B-O-R-I-N-G, but I did it way quicker than I thought and being able to wear something the you MADE?! Priceless.

Speckled Shrug!

Speckled Shrug!

Now, it is over half way through 2015, and knitting is saving my sanity and possibly my life (well, well-being really). All the craziness going on around me, but when I sit down and put a stick in a loop, it all kind of dissolves and all that is left is joy. I mean, I get frustrated still when I can’t figure out a pattern or there’s a huge knot in a skein, but for the most part it’s joy. Do you craft for joy? Or is there another hobby that brings you joy? Tell me about it!

baby sweater

A Baby Sweater and Opinion on Knitting for Posterity

Man, am I glad it is FINALLY August! Starting the month out right (especially after frogging 3 projects last month, oy) with a finished Baby Vertebrae!¬†This sweater is for one of Husband’s best friends and his wife who had a precious baby boy last month. Being a summer and Arizona baby, I made a 6-12 month size so he can actually use it when it gets cooler.

Baby Vertebrae is Blocking!

Baby Vertebrae is Blocking!

I love knitting for babies, and while I first thought it was because those projects are always super quick, as I thought about it more I came to the conclusion it’s because those items are actually useful and have the potential to be used by more than one baby. Or at least that’s what I’d like to think ūüėČ

If you know me, you know I¬†LOVE¬†me a handmade item. I can honestly say I have kept every handmade item ever gifted to any of our kids. It makes me so sad to see quilted, crocheted, ¬†and knitted blankets or baby sweaters in places like Goodwill or Savers, because I know someone sat down, picked out a pattern and yarn or fabric, then spent hours of their free time constructing the item. You’re making Grannies everywhere sad, people!¬†

*Deep Breathes* I digress. I recently read this¬†Slate Article¬†about why TV show sets always have the same old granny square blanket, and it was actually pretty interesting. The first one that came to mind was the one on the Connor’s couch in¬†Roseanne and they even mentioned that specific one! The article basically talks about how it’s meant to show sentiment or that there’s a family member some where the character is attached to, or just to break up the couch’s color haha.

So before you toss out Grannie’s blanket, take a second to think about all the times you reached for it when you were cold or sick or cuddled on the couch. You don’t have to be a crafter to understand the time and labor that went into it, but you can bet your bottom dollar you’re holding that item because someone, somewhere loves you.

Wip It Wednesday, and 1st time using a Pom Pom Maker!

Oh man, it’s Wednesday already?!¬†After trying to make my stupid day seem interesting, I’ll just tell you today ended up with dinner at Chick Fil A because we had a dinner Pinterest fail, don’t you just hate that?! Silver lining was we didn’t have to end up using the oven, got out of our house for the hottest part of the day (It is hot as hell her in SC!) and the kids got to play for a bit. So not all bad, but still annoying haha.

Wips!!

I cast on a¬†Baby Vertebrae¬†yesterday for one of my husband’s oldest friend and his wife (who is due any time!). This is the second one I’ve made for a summer baby this year, so I am making it 6-12 month size so the baby can wear it when you know, it’s actually¬†cold.

Start of a Vertebrae!

Start of a Vertebrae!

Next project on the needles is a¬†Frazzled¬†shawl by Allie Coffey of the Caffeinated Knitting podcast (I love her and Gert!). This is my first time using Madeline Tosh and¬†OH EM GEE¬†I understand the hype! I wish I would’ve bought a Tosh color for the body of it too, but the Smooshy yarn is nice too ūüôā This is a late birthday present because the lace-y shawl I had planned was a huge¬†BUST.¬†I am totally loving this patter, and am about 70% done! It is a gift so it’s partially hidden ūüėČ

Knitting and Peach Milkshake, does it get any better??

Knitting and Peach Milkshake, does it get any better??

I dragged the family into Joann Fabrics today because I needed a few things, and for knitting they are my go to because even the 1 (yes, 1) LYS here is hit or miss and Michael’s selection is pitiful…anyways I finally purchased a medium and large pom-pom maker! I have made pom-poms before with handmade cardboard templates, and it was…not enjoyable. This thing is amazzzzzing and if you need or want to make pom poms like a¬†BOSS, they are definitely worth the $7.48 ūüôā Next time I use it, I’m going to put at least 3 layers of yarn on each half, that way I have a crazy fluffy pom pom. This one went on a Happy Happy Joy Joy hat for Super girl!

Yarn to Pom Pom in under 2 minutes!

Yarn to Pom Pom in under 2 minutes!

What are your WIPs today??? 2 WIPs is slightly unusual for me, I’m finding myself drifting from monogamous knitting ūüėČ What’s your average amount of WIPs at any given time??