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Monthly Archives: February 2012

Oh Boy….. things just got more bleak for the man

So…. the man has true fear now. Yes – he is afraid, and rightfully so.

 The story starts 8 or so months ago.

A friend of mine from work and knit group had some drop spindles her husband had made for her to sell when she was doing demonstrations. They were 5$ and came with the drop spindle, some fiber, and some printed instructions.

Whelp, I went through the instructions and didn’t have much luck. The main issue was my being able to figure out how to get a lead onto the spindle if I didn’t have any hand spun yarn on hand. I tried and tried but the fiber kept sliding off. It wasn’t working. So – I pitched it to the side figuring I could revisit it in the future.

Well – that time came.

I was watching a video by dalequan on YouTube (definitely click for her channel) where she was spinning on a drop spindle. She, from all I have watched, is a really talented spinner. So, I thought I’d ask – what do you do if you don’t have fiber to use as a lead. And she answered. Not only did she answer me, she answered me with a 20 minute video that answered a LOT of my beginning drop spindle questions.

She has no idea how much I appreciate what she has done – but now the man has fear because now… NOW I can make my own yarn in addition to buy it. The day will come when he opens the guest bedroom door and he is welcomed with a wall of yummy, delicious, colorful yarn.

This, my friends, is a picture of my very first drop spindle yarn! The fiber is blank – so I know when I’m done, I’m going to try and dye it too! I’ll most likely give the kool-aid method a whirl, but I’ll cross that bridge when I get there.

I’m spinning a rather lightweight yarn. I’d say thinner than DK but not quite lace. Perhaps fingering weight?

I’m having such a good time now and its all thanks to dalequan.

 

Year of Projects: Week 35

Project Percentage Complete: 80%
Overall Percentage Complete: 96%
Number of Project Items: 20
Number of Added Items: 167

Total Completed Items: 179

Total Items: 187


Today’s post is not going to be too interesting, I’m sorry to say. Basically I have started the now afghan (not throw) for the state fair project. This doesn’t mean that I don’t need to do a throw for the living room, but I decided that since I did pull a couple projects off the original list, I’d just change out the throw for something WAY bigger.

For the afghan I am making 90 8″x8″ squares. Yup.. 90. Insane! It will be 9 by 10 squares in size with what I am hoping to finish off with a good 3″ border. I am contemplating sharing photos here but right now I think I won’t simply because I only have 1 strip of 10 squares done. I have started on the second strip. Heck. I may make you wait until its done to see the photos.

But this afghan has been my focus for the last week. I do feel a bit guilty because I have done absolutely no charitable crocheting, but then again, I spend most of my year crocheting for charitable causes and others’ projects that taking a month out for an afghan for me shouldn’t be a big deal. And yes, this afghan will be for me.

My biggest fear is that it is too simplistic for a state fair project, but at the same time, I think the sheer number of hours going into this thing makes it quite a wonder. Many folks stop at throws because crocheting something that covers a queen/king size bed takes a while. I think what I’m doing is going to take a lot of hours but its not like I’m doing it in thread! *laughing* That would be insane…. but I bet it would look cool as heck *pondering* Am I that insane to give it a whirl? ….. maybe.

So since that has been my focus and I’m not sharing photos of it yet, I figure I can let you have the stats and the list (although it goes unchanged from the previous post), and another silly photo from my personal life.

My daughter loves Build-A-Bear and all the accessories and clothes that come with it. And… unfortunately, our cat is about the size of a Build-A-Bear….

because of these two facts, you can see the mathematics behind this photo:

Little Girl with Passion + Relatively Tolerable Cat = (ticked off cat)^funny.

Project List Items (not complete)

Lacet Table Runner […started…]
– Queen Sized (plus) afghan Throw for living room sofa [state fair project – started]
– Round Afghan/Throw
– Angel Tree Topper

Project List Items (done)
– 14 pair of Paperclip Ice Skates Ornaments
Easy Cabled Scarf
– Poncho (early Christmas present)

Added Items (not complete)
– Wristlet Bag (adjusting pattern) […65%…]
– 2 Kitchen Chair Wall Protector
– 1 knit scarf [started]
– Girls Trellis Poncho [started – my own pattern that will be posted free]

Added Items (done)
– 1 crocheted Wristlet Bag (making my own pattern)
– 1 Ear Bud “purse”
– 1 crocheted hand bag

– 2 Crochet Bags (Mystery CAL Beach Bag, EnviroTote #4)

– 5 Knit Washcloth
– 32 Crochet Wash/Dishcloth
– 1 crochet face scrub finger mitt (Christmas present)
– 1 dust mitt

– 2 Kitchen Chair Wall Protector
– 4 crocheted towel toppers

– 1 WW Yarn Runner for  ledge
– 11 crochet scarves
– 1 knit scarf
– 2 crochet cowls
– 5 Hybrid Hat (pattern coming soon)
– 1 knit hat
– 13 crochet hats
– 2 crochet character hats (sock monkey, puppy)
– 10 crochet hat clips
– 10 crochet headbands (some are Sherry’s Headband)
– 10  Candy Stocking Ornaments
– 2 Crochet Lid Topper
– 2 wreath pins
– 1 Spiderweb Doily
– 1 small decorative Christmas tree (didn’t like, threw away)
– 6 mug cozies
– 1 pair knit socks
– 4 crochet Faux Boob (pattern)
– 21 SIBOL Square
– 5 crochet pet beds (1 was not for donation, the rest are)
– 2 crochet mitts (owl mitts)
– 2 cup cozies (1 knit, 1 crochet)

———————
This post is part of the Ravelry Group “Come Blog-A-Long” #yearofprojects Project. If you are interested in joining along or finding other posts similar to this one, visit the group on Ravelry.

 
7 Comments

Posted by on February 26, 2012 in My Projects

 

Charitable Crochet: 12 for 12 Post #4

Today is my scheduled post in the 12 for 12 Project set up by Kathryn over at Crochet Concupiscence. Click on the link if you are interested in reading more about the project.

The premise of the project is to make 12 separate donations, one to each of 12 different charitable organizations of your choice.

And this …..*queue Law and Order music* ….. is my update.

Overall Progress: 1 / 12 donations made. Read on for more details.


OK – this is my fourth post in the 12 for 12 Project.

1. Knitted Knockers
Website Link
My Pattern
Would you believe I am still waiting to hear back from the cancer center? I think its time for a follow-up call! If I can’t make contact with them in the next week, I’m going to whip up a few more and send them off to the Knitted Knockers project group. I really wish I could get them donated locally though. *smirks*

Made 4 / Donated 0

2. Special Olympics Scarf Project
Website Link
I finished a second scarf and figure these two will end up being my donation. I will pick up more at the end of the year in the new colors for Special Olympics 2013. I want to get a state picked and get these mailed off in the next week so hopefully, with my next update, you’ll see that they have been donated.

Made 2 / Donated 0

3. Sunshine International Blankets of Love (SIBOL)
Website Link
I’m still workin’ away at these. They are a quick 20 minute square so always good for take-a-long in the car.

Squares Made 23 / Squares Donated 0

4. Hooked on a Cause
Website Link
This cause is still looking for hat and yarn donations! I am hoping to put together a hat donation by the end of March and get it shipped out as soon as I can. I will most likely be putting some yarn in the donation mailing as well to help the core people keep crocheting.

Hats Made 0 / Hats Donated 0
Squares Made 0 /  Squares Donated 0

5. Local Animal Shelter(s)
I was able to start making more beds soon. I have bought some more Red Heart yarn to make some beds so when I get a break from working on my afghan, I’ll whip out a few of these. I was able to get the pattern up on the blog (check under the Original Patterns category) so if anyone else is interested in making the pet beds, you can do so and get them off to your local shelters.

Beds Made 4 / Beds Donated 4

Locations Receiving Donations:
Local APL (Animal Protective League) – 4

6. [to be determined]

7. [to be determined]

8. [to be determined]

9. [to be determined]

10. [to be determined]

 

Crochet Mathematics: Chaos

(c) Wikipedia

This is probably a pretty cool design you’ve seen on a t-shirt, perhaps while perusing thinkgeek.com (one of my favorite geek-gear websites). But what is it? Whelp, I’m here to tell you AND show you how it can be represented through crochet.

In 1963, Edward Lorenz, a meteorologist, introduced the Lorenz attractor which was a form derived from the simplified equations of convection rolls arising in the equations of the atmosphere.

And you say… huh?

Me too – and this is where the research begins.

The Concept
The idea is that chaos is derived from a series of questions that help describe the chaos of nature. These equations, the Lorenz equations, have been used to help describe the behavior of chaotic systems like weather and water turbulence. Lorenz first developed a simplified model of thermal convection. He used three different equations to model two thermal convection rolls, each behaving unpredictably. He noted that even the small change in the beginning caused the system to evolve very differently in a short amount of time; however, while unpredictable, the equations produced consistent structure.

So, what in the world does all this mean?

If you put a gaseous substance into a box and heat it up, you will note that the warm gas will rise and the cooler parts will sink. As the gas closest to the walls warms it will heat and rise, and as it rises it will cool and fall again. This will form cylindrical rolls. With a regularly applied temperature, the moving gas should be regular and predictable; however, its not even if it appears to be. The movement is chaotic. The gas, even under the conditions described, will roll for a while in one direction and then stop and reverse direction. It will continue to randomly reverse directions at unpredictable time and speed.

Why? Because regardless how smooth a surface may appear, at a molecular level it is not smooth. Something at a molecular level can impact the overall pattern.

Think to the butterfly effect – with Lorenz’s observations, the beat of one butterfly wing can change weather patterns drastically – perhaps not immediately, but it can cause change that otherwise would not have occurred.

(If you are interested in seeing the equations in full, you can click here to view.)

Crocheting the Concept
Dr. Hinke Osinga and Professor Bernd Krauskopf, both of Bristol University, got the idea to crochet chaos using computer generated patterns sketching out the increases and patterns created by the Lorenz equations. Osinga, who had learned to crochet at age seven, took the computer generated pattern and got to work. The pattern could always be observed in a 2D image, such as one on computer screen, but being able to view it in a 3D world, via crochet, was exciting for the researchers.

Lorenz Manifold

After crocheting just over 25,000 stitches in 85 hours, Osinga has created chaos. The crocheted model, called the Lorenz manifold, helps visualize how chaos arises and is organized in systems like chemical reactions and biological networks.

Dr. Osinga explains this shape, this concept by imagining “a leave floating in a turbulent river and consider how it passes either to the left or to the right around a rock somewhere downstream. Those special leaves that end up clinging to the rock must have followed a very unique path in the water. Each stitch in the crochet pattern represents a single point [a leaf] that ends up at the rock.”

Osinga and Krauskopf insist their crocheted manifold was not done for fun (although any crocheter and mathematician/math geek may disagree), they insist their work gives true insight on how chaos arises and that chaos is organized in systems. While I still insist it had to be fun, I cannot imagine how wonderful Osinga had to feel as a concept viewed only on a computer screen came to life as she created each stitch.

Oh, want to know something even more exciting for those truly intrigued by the shape of chaos? You can crochet your own following the original instructions published by Osinga and Krauskopf (click here if you want to give it a whirl).

Just remember, if you tackle crocheting chaos, I need to see some pictures!

References:
The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2004/dec/16/research.highereducation3

MathsReach http://www.mathsreach.org/Crocheted_Chaos

Math World http://mathworld.wolfram.com/LorenzAttractor.html 

Physorg.com http://www.physorg.com/news2395.html

Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lorenz_attractor

Zeuscat http://www.zeuscat.com/andrew/chaos/lorenz.html

 

[Video] Understanding and Creating Filet

This isn’t so much a tutorial rather than a walk-through in understanding the creation process of crochet filet – or at least how I make basic filet designs.

 
 

[Video] Single Crochet Foundation Chain

The tutorial below is to help you learn how to do the single crochet foundation chain, also known as the single crochet base chain.

 
 

[FOTH] February 20, 2012

My Fresh Off The Hook Video for Monday, February 20th.

 
 

Year of Projects: Week 34

Project Percentage Complete: 80%
Overall Percentage Complete: 96%
Number of Project Items: 20
Number of Added Items: 167

Total Completed Items: 179

Total Items: 187


Whelp, a little housekeeping/info first. I did add a few items to the list this week but it wasn’t enough to change the overall percentage. I’m ok with that. I think I am doing really good this year and am actually a bit surprised at everything I’ve made. I can say I never thought I made that much… and the funny thing is, I know I’ve missed a few items here and there – that I have forgotten to come and add items as I finished them or what-have-you. It’s still a pretty crazy list regardless.

I am making decent progress on various projects. My main focus for the week has been Special Olympics scarves but it is hard because they are made using Red Heart. While Red Heart Super Saver is nice after it is washed, working with the darker colors proves to be rougher on the hands. I’m not exactly a fan of that, but I have no choice in the yarn with this one. I could go to the Red Heart Soft option but unfortunately the red seems to be in short supply here…. and I am not afforded the comfort of time to order it online and have it shipped.

I am also a little disappointed that due to other time constraints, I will not be doing a huge donation this year. Last year I did over 10 scarves. This year I will only have 2 or 3. While I know any donation is a good donation, I was really hoping for something larger.

My new Acer tablet

Let’s see – I got this little gem of a device a few days ago and have spent a lot of time playing with it. New toys in the house always seem to cut into crochet and knitting time. *laughs*

I am looking for some new apps that are crafting related. I got my Kindle account on here with a Kindle reader app. This means that I can get the crochet patterns I already have associated to my Kindle on my tablet. I have not figured out an easy way to get pdf files to my tablet. I can email them to my Kindle easily, and I have. I was thinking my tablet would be able to replace my Kindle, but losing the “read to me” feature of my Kindle and the ability to email directly to the device are two reasons I will most likely need to keep my Kindle. That’s ok – I love it anyway :) It was a Christmas present from my husband last year (Christmas of 2010).

the oops-wrong-size finished bag

So what does this have to do with crafting? Well, first, I’m looking for some awesome crochet and knitted related apps. In addition to this, I need to whip me up a carry cozy for the darn thing. I did start one – my own design, of course and I grossly miscalculated by a half inch. And of course I was having a good time working it up, visiting with my friend, and watching a movie, I didn’t pay attention to the size so I was a good hour or two into it before I held it up and thought “uh oh” *laughing*

But, that’s ok. I kept working with the idea, took away some ‘lessons learned’ on the pattern design and know how I can make it better. I also know how I can make it bigger *chuckles* – I’ll be adding 5 more chains to the foundation chain.

For the recovered bag, I did something fun and funky with the closing flap. I really like it and will be using it at work for my feminine hygiene items. … Was that polite enough? *laughs* I really do like the flap on this one and the overall look. I definitely know what I’m going to different as far as making a case for my table; however, I don’t know what I’ll do for the flap. Obviously I can’t do something that closes half the opening for a hard, electronic device. I’ll think on that one and wing it when I get there.

The only other thing I have done that is different than my normal is I did practice my cabling with a cup cozy.  I used a pattern from Ravelry (click here).

I really liked how it worked up but being more of a novice knitter I did have to YouTube videos on how to bind off in the pattern and cast on in the pattern to make the button hole. I was ok with the cabling instructions. So – see that little open area there to the left – that is my first ever knitted buttonhole. I think it turned out good (its open because I’ve had it buttoned and wearing it as a wrist warmer hehehe).

I think the cables turned out pretty nicely. I am going to darn up the 2nd buttonhole today. I don’t like that when its on a larger cup, it stretches and leaves a hole.

So, that’s all I have today. And because I have enough photos above, I don’t have to inject any silly random photos here at the end…. although I do have some new ones that you’ll just have to stay tuned in for with other updates that end up needing a photo at the end.

Have a great day! Happy Crafting!

Project List Items (not complete)

Lacet Table Runner […started…]
– Throw for living room sofa [state fair project]
– Round Afghan/Throw
– Angel Tree Topper

Project List Items (done)
– 14 pair of Paperclip Ice Skates Ornaments
Easy Cabled Scarf
– Poncho (early Christmas present)

Added Items (not complete)
– Wristlet Bag (adjusting pattern) […65%…]
– 2 Kitchen Chair Wall Protector
– 1 knit scarf [started]
– Girls Trellis Poncho [started – my own pattern that will be posted free]

Added Items (done)
– 1 crocheted Wristlet Bag (making my own pattern)
– 1 Ear Bud “purse”
– 1 crocheted hand bag

– 2 Crochet Bags (Mystery CAL Beach Bag, EnviroTote #4)

– 5 Knit Washcloth
– 32 Crochet Wash/Dishcloth
– 1 crochet face scrub finger mitt (Christmas present)
– 1 dust mitt

– 2 Kitchen Chair Wall Protector
– 4 crocheted towel toppers

– 1 WW Yarn Runner for  ledge
– 11 crochet scarves
– 1 knit scarf
– 2 crochet cowls
– 5 Hybrid Hat (pattern coming soon)
– 1 knit hat
– 13 crochet hats
– 2 crochet character hats (sock monkey, puppy)
– 10 crochet hat clips
– 10 crochet headbands (some are Sherry’s Headband)
– 10  Candy Stocking Ornaments
– 2 Crochet Lid Topper
– 2 wreath pins
– 1 Spiderweb Doily
– 1 small decorative Christmas tree (didn’t like, threw away)
– 6 mug cozies
– 1 pair knit socks
– 4 crochet Faux Boob (pattern)
– 21 SIBOL Square
– 5 crochet pet beds (1 was not for donation, the rest are)
– 2 crochet mitts (owl mitts)
– 2 cup cozies (1 knit, 1 crochet)

———————
This post is part of the Ravelry Group “Come Blog-A-Long” #yearofprojects Project. If you are interested in joining along or finding other posts similar to this one, visit the group on Ravelry.

 
24 Comments

Posted by on February 19, 2012 in My Projects

 

Charitable Crochet: 12 for 12 Post #3

Today is my scheduled post in the 12 for 12 Project set up by Kathryn over at Crochet Concupiscence. Click on the link if you are interested in reading more about the project.

The premise of the project is to make 12 separate donations, one to each of 12 different charitable organizations of your choice.

And this …..*queue Law and Order music* ….. is my update.


OK – this is my third post in the 12 for 12 Project.

I am starting to wonder if I’m going to be able to make separate donations to 12 different organizations/projects. I say this because I am getting caught up in crafting for one or two. I want to make a good donation and I know I want to make more than one. Can I make it to 12 different projects without losing quality to any of them or the number of donations I want to do?

I don’t know. That, my friends, is going to be a challenge!

1. Knitted Knockers
Website Link
My Pattern
Would you believe I am still waiting to hear back from the cancer center? I think its time for a follow-up call!

Made 4 / Donated 0

2. Special Olympics Scarf Project
Website Link
I finished off one scarf yesterday and have another on the hook. Whatever I have done by end of February is what I will have to donate. I am a little disappointed in myself for not focusing on this project more. Previous years I’ve donated 10+ scarves – but I figure any little bit will help! I do not know what state I will donate to. My home state had an issue with the blizzard last year so they are reusing those scarves. I think I’ll go to the listing, find a state with a March deadline that has the fewest donated scarves and send them there. I’ll keep you updated with how many I donate and to where.

Made 1 / Donated 0

3. Sunshine International Blankets of Love (SIBOL)
Website Link
I am making good progress on this one. I am up to 21 squares. She requires 25 for a blanket so my goal of 50 is not so far fetched. I have decided I will not be putting them together. I think she can best use them for filler squares on other blankets she is making. Then she can theme them with the color considering mine are all different colors.

I set SIBOL as the February iYarny charitable giving group so if you want to craft for SIBOL, check out the iYarny group on Ravelry and the chat module schedule listed at the top of the right column.
(over there >>>)

Squares Made 21 / Squares Donated 0

4. Hooked on a Cause
Website Link
This cause is still looking for hat and yarn donations! I am hoping to put together a hat donation by the end of the month and get it shipped out as soon as I can. I will most likely be putting some yarn in the donation mailing as well to help the core people keep crocheting.

Hats Made 0 / Hats Donated 0
Squares Made 0 /  Squares Donated 0

5. Local Animal Shelter(s)
Several animal rescue shelters exist in my city and in the small surrounding towns. I’m hoping to donate 4 or 5 pet beds for cats and small dogs (1 skein projects). Perhaps if they can get more donations for smaller beds, the money spent on those can be consolidated to buy the beds for bigger dogs so every critter wins. I created my own pattern I’m working from (linked here).

I was able to head out to PetSmart today and drop off my first donation. There were three local shelters there hosting pet adoptions so I gave the beds to the first that I saw. This was the APL. I did pick up a flyer for a second group and will be mailing them my next donation. It felt pretty good to give today although I wish I had more. It is not often that more than one organization is at PetSmart on any given day.

Beds Made 4 / Beds Donated 4

Locations Receiving Donations:
Local APL (Animal Protective League) – 4

6. [to be determined]

7. [to be determined]

8. [to be determined]

9. [to be determined]

10. [to be determined]

 

Year of Projects : Week 33

Project Percentage Complete: 80%
Overall Percentage Complete: 96%
Number of Project Items: 20
Number of Added Items: 164

Total Completed Items: 176

Total Items: 184


First and foremost, I added a new “stat” to the summary: total completed items. I was counting and recounting every month and that stat seems to be the one that changes the most. So I thought if I added it o the top, I wouldn’t have to count and recount as much as I currently am. I will go back in once a month and verify all the numbers are correct. I think that’ll make tracking a lot easier!

I continue to plug away at my list here and add plenty of new items. I changed out what I was going to make for my living room throw – but I’m happy that I did. I am now working on a sample-ghan – it is made from 63 different squares about 8×8 in size. I’m very pleased with this so far. I have completed 2 squares and figure I can make one a day or every other day. This means I’d be done with the project somewhere mid-April/early May. That puts it into my schedule at a nice slow but steady pace and allows me ample time to finish it before state fair time. I’m good with that.

I was able to donate 4 of the pet beds that I made. I will be posting more on that with my 12 for 12 charitable giving post.

I did get one Special Olympics donation scarf completed yesterday and I hope to finish another one today. I have also made a few items for my swap partner from the Fresh Off The Hook group. I should be able to get that in the mail tomorrow…. ok, the man will get that into the mail tomorrow *laughs*

That really is about it. Work has been really hectic this week. I’ve had to work 10-11 hour days because a co-worker has been in the hospital. My prayers are with her and I just hope I kept her workload clean enough so when she returns it won’t be such a big deal to transition back.

keep your eyes “peeled”

So that is pretty much all I have for you today. I have a few things planned for the blog that should kick off in the next day or so – keep your eyes peeled for that.

And with a statement like “keep your eyes peeled for that” – I have to break out my banana brow picture again. I know I’ve used it before, but it is pretty darn funny.

Project List Items (not complete)

Lacet Table Runner […started…]
– Throw for living room sofa [state fair project]
– Round Afghan/Throw
– Angel Tree Topper

Project List Items (done)
– 14 pair of Paperclip Ice Skates Ornaments
Easy Cabled Scarf
– Poncho (early Christmas present)

Added Items (not complete)
– Wristlet Bag (adjusting pattern) […65%…]
– 2 Kitchen Chair Wall Protector
– 1 knit scarf [started]
– Girls Trellis Poncho [started – my own pattern that will be posted free]

Added Items (done)
– Wristlet Bag (making my own pattern)
– Ear Bud “purse”

– 2 Crochet Bags (Mystery CAL Beach Bag, EnviroTote #4)
– 5 Knit Washcloth
– 32 Crochet Wash/Dishcloth
– 1 crochet face scrub finger mitt (Christmas present)
– 1 dust mitt

– 2 Kitchen Chair Wall Protector
– 4 crocheted towel toppers

– WW Yarn Runner for  ledge
– 11 crochet scarves
– 1 knit scarf
– 2 crochet cowls
– 5 Hybrid Hat (pattern coming soon)
– 1 knit hat
– 13 crochet hats
– 2 crochet character hats (sock monkey, puppy)
– 10 crochet hat clips
– 10 crochet headbands (some are Sherry’s Headband)
– 10  Candy Stocking Ornaments
– 2 Crochet Lid Topper
– 2 wreath pins
– Spiderweb Doily
– 1 small decorative Christmas tree (didn’t like, threw away)
– 6 mug cozies
– knit socks
– 4 crochet Faux Boob (pattern)
– 21 SIBOL Square
– 5 crochet pet beds (1 was not for donation, the rest are)
– 2 crochet mitts (owl mitts)

———————
This post is part of the Ravelry Group “Come Blog-A-Long” #yearofprojects Project. If you are interested in joining along or finding other posts similar to this one, visit the group on Ravelry.

 
11 Comments

Posted by on February 12, 2012 in My Projects