Thursday, December 30, 2010

Looking back on 2010 and ahead to 2011

I thought I accomplished a lot this year but when I looked at my finished projects in flickr, the number was smaller than I expected. No matter; quality over quantity, right?

2010 finishes (most of them)

Stuff I did in 2010:
I learned to knit entrelac, bobbles (just today!), crochet provisonal cast on, and continental knitting.
I started 3 sweaters and finished 3 sweaters (one still needs to appear on the blog).

I tried bobbles, filet, foundation single & double crochet, and double treble.
More amigurumi (of course!)

I finally committed to needle turn applique!
I started several quilts and finished a lap quilt, wall hanging, and a queen-sized top.

One thing that worked really well for me this year was "quilting Fridays." I didn't work on Fridays in the spring & summer so I devoted at least a couple of hours each Friday morning to quilting and finishing other projects. I'll be doing this again.

What's coming in 2011?
I have lots of ideas of things I'd like to do this coming year. For knitting, I plan to make more sweaters, my first shawl and lots of fingerless gloves. And more fair isle knitting,
I want to crochet with finer weight thread (20 & 30 wt thread) and more sock yarn. A shawl, pillows and other small accessories are on my list.
In quilting, I plan to do more applique, work on hand quilting and finish some tops. Hopefully, I can get back to work on some crazy quilting and I'd really like to try a couple of schnibbles patterns.

Although I probably am already doing too many crafts, I plan to try punch needle and sashiko embroidery.

What are your goals for 2011? Are there any techniques you'd like to try?

Happy New Year! Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas Gift Crafting

I can't believe I actually finished making all of my Christmas gifts the week of Thanksgiving. I don't quite know how I did it, but I hope I can repeat it next year! I think the two factors that made this happen were: I bought about half of the gifts this year, and I made less time-involved projects than last year. I still had a goal of a handmade Christmas, so many of the gifts I did buy were made by others or were gifts to encourage craftyness, like drawing pads and a cross stitch kit.

First up are a pair of Noro Camp Out Fingerless Gloves for Debby.

Noro Camp Out Fingerless Mitts

I really loved these gloves but did make a few mods. I used kitchener stitch to join the garter stitch tube, rather than a three needle bind off. I also added some ribbing around the upper arm because it seemed a little tight to me. I think I might make them just a bit shorter next time.

Yarn: Noro Kureyon 219
Needles: Sz 8 dpns
Pattern: Camp out Fingerless Mitts

I've been long wanting to make an art case for one of my nieces and nephews. I only made this one this year but I think next year, the rest of them will receive one.

Art Case for My Niece for Christmas

Art Case for My Niece for Christmas

I came across this great little pattern on Sew Mama Sew and really liked it. The only change I made was to knit an icord loop for the button. If I were to use this pattern again, I think I'd make the case a bit larger (it doesn't fit an average drawing pad) and eliminate the top little pocket (on the left) because I'm not sure how functional it is, given that it is shallow.

Pattern: Art Bag Tutorial by From an Igloo

My nephew, Anderson, asked me to make him a cardinal when I saw him this summer.

Crochet Cardinal

Pattern: Chicken Amigurumi Pattern
Yarn: Dalegarn Falk

My niece, Madison, is finally old enough that I can use safety eyes on her toys! I try not to give her anything with too many parts--my brother hates having little pieces lying around (I've heard he has been known to throw out board games!). :)

Little Snail and His Pear Home

Pattern: Little Snail and His Pear Home from Amigurumi World 2

I've been wanting to try the Jacques Cousteau hat for a long time and thought my brother-in-law would be the perfect recipient.

Jacques Cousteau Hat Top View

Pattern: Jacques Cousteau Hat
Yarn: Ella Rae Classic
I followed the mods by quirkygranolagirl for a worsted weight yarn.

Finally, a pair of soap socks for my step sisters. My mom and one of my sisters both make fabulous homemade goat milk soap and I thought that with all of the soap going around in the family, my sisters could use these.

Dragonfly Soap Sock

Yarn: Sublime Organic Cotton DK
Pattern: Little Dragonflies Soap Sock

Thanks for stopping by! Best of luck with your holiday gift making!