Vasarely Blanket

I wanted to try and tackle a big crochet/knitting project to begin the fall season.  It's been a while since I've made something big, so I thought the beginning of fall season is the perfect time for this challenge.  It takes forever to finish a project for me, so hopefully I can stay on task.  This pattern for a crocheted blanket has been on my Pinterest board for a while, and I really wanted to make it.

Its inspired by the artist Victor Vasarely and the pattern basically looks like 3D cubes, which I think is a total trip.  It's basically a bunch of diamond patches stitched together.  I like it because its not your typical granny square afghan. It is still the same concept though, and the diamond pattern is easy enough that I'm not constantly referring to pattern instructions.  You increase every row for a little bit, and then decrease every row.  I picked white, grey, and black as my color palette, because I've been into the monochromatic look.  My only complaint is when I'm working with the black yarn, its a little difficult to see the stitches.  But I wanted black, so whatevs.

I'm using Red Heart super saver yarn with a size J hook.  The original pattern called for a dk weight yarn with a smaller hook, but I didn't have that hook, so I figured I'd stitch a sample and adjust pattern from there.

I had to sketch the blanket to determine how many diamonds and half diamonds I needed to make.  You can tell I started with a smaller blanket, but increased it once I figured out the measurements.

So basically, I need to make:

Full Diamonds: 48 in black, 48 in white, 38 in grey  (134 Total)
Half (lengthwise) Diamonds (in grey): 12
Half (widthwise) Diamonds (in grey): 8

If you include the half diamonds, I have to make 48 diamonds of each color. Heh heh, I'm not scurrred.

So far, I've made 2 black, 6 white, 1 grey.  So... 125 more diamonds (135 if you include the half ones) to go. lol.

I will keep you updated, internet!


Nails of the Day (or Week) : Nude + Gold

I love beige polishes, but liked the idea to add a little shimmer to it.  Freehanded the gold, but used a striper polish so it was pretty easy.

Polish used:
Nude: OPI - Samoan Sand
Gold: L.A Girl - Gold Glitter


"Cheer" (Flag) Bows

As a coach for a high school flag team,  ordering uniforms and equipment is an annual ritual.  If they go to nationals, it can be a biannual ritual.  One of the things I've tried to incorporate my craftiness in would be making the kids their hair bows.  Usually, if we order bows through their uniform vendor, its this basic gold bow that can cost about $6 each.  Six bucks for a basic bow??  I couldn't bear myself to not DIY that.

Bow making is quick and easy.  There are youtube tutorials everywhere.  And if you have the right Michael's coupon, you can make bows for an entire nation.  Okay, that's not true.  But a spool of fancy ribbon with a 50% off coupon can be about $6 and make about 8-9 bows.  8-9 bows!!  I don't even have that many kids on the team.  Plus, the bows will be special because no other team will have it and custom-made bows are baller (for lack of a better term).  So yeah, $6 for some basic metallic bow or $6 for baller bows for a small nation?  The latter for sure!

The kids go to Nationals every year in Anaheim to compete, and so I wanted to make something super duper sparkly to go with their performance wear.  Obviously, it needed to be gold and even more obviously it needed to have glitter.  The first year, I chose this gold glitter ribbon, with bigger, hexagonal holographic glitter embedded in so it'll looks super sparkly in the right light at the right angle.  The width of the ribbon was about 1.5, which wasn't as big as I wanted it to be, so I layered it with a white satin, to get that contrast in there and make it look bigger.  They turned out awesome.

The second year, I was contemplating making the same kind of bows.  But, during the Christmas season I saw this ridiculous gold sequin ribbon that I couldn't deny. (Imagine myself denying the ribbon. lol.)  And, it was about 2 inches wide so it didn't need another layer of white.  They turned out great:

We had one boy on the team, so he didn't need to have a bow.  At the end of the season I made him a bowtie just for fun.

Both ribbons I used were wired since they are originally made for gift wrapping, but because its a flag team, I don't think its a big deal.  Cheer might be a different story, since there's a safety issue with all the tumbling and the stunting happening, but I don't know what the rules are for that.

Materials used:  ribbon (about 30 inches per bow), mini cable ties, ponytail holders that match hair
Tools: scissors, glue gun, cardboard about 7inches wide to use as a template


Nails of the Day (or Week): Spring Nails

Decided on these theme nails for the first day of spring using polish that I recently purchased.  I pretty much followed this marimekko design my Elleandish .  I think her youtube videos are so well done.  Great editing and her tutorials and designs are really cute. 

Polish used:
Purple: China Glaze - That's Shore Bright
Sparkly Purple: China Glaze - Tail Me Something
Accent Nail: China Glaze - White on White, That's Shore Bright, Lemon Fizz , Essie - DJ Play That Song, Revlon - Stilleto


Design Update

When my old laptop died after over 8 years of good times, it was sad.  That thing had its moments, but it also had a fan replacement, a hard drive crash, and basically died a slow, broken hard-drive, overheated death.  It was sad, but what was most upsetting was Photoshop was installed on it, you guys.  Trying to design a blog to make it my own without the use of my trusty old photoshop software was kind of a challenge.  I didn't want to shell out the money to get Photoshop again so I ended up downloading GIMP.  For a free program, it is really good and I can see why a lot of people recommended it.  But I was used to Photoshop,  and already knew it was going to take some time for me to get used to all these features and such.  I tried to find the user manual online and ended up googling other Photoshop alternatives again.  Fortunately, I found out that Adobe released Photoshop CS2 for free on their website.  It's been on there for free for over a year.  Like, an actually legal download of Photoshop software.  For the free.  ::fist pumps::

Anyways, my point is that I updated this blog's design and it looks more crisp than the design I made using PhotoScape.  I like how it turned out,  but I need more content.  That, is something I am working on.


A Food Post But Not a Food Post

I saw this super cute crochet project by Twinkie Chan online and I knew I had to do it.  Plus, the pattern is free!  I always have allergies, so having a tissue box readily available is a must.  Plus, my favorite holiday is Thanksgiving, so this tissue cozy just made absolute sense.  I didn't have the yarn that it called for on hand, so I used what I had and adjusted the stitches in the pattern since I knew the gauge would be different.  I literally stitched a row and lined up the edges to a tissue box to see if I had to add or subtract stitches.  It was that easy.

Now every time I grab a tissue,  I can't help but chuckle.  It's so freaking hilarious.  I consider myself a knitter, but I love the cutesy and kitschy crochet world of amigurumi.  It is amazing what people can come up with.  If you love things shaped like food, check out Twinkie Chan if you haven't already.  She is super creative and definitely inspires me to craft more.


Nails of the Day (or Week): Half Moon Mani

I wanted to try and freehand a halfmoon mani, so I used China Glaze Sunset Sail as a base and carefully painted Essie No More Film over it. No More Film is this awesome purple-y blue that I am currently in love with. It is one of those polishes that require only one coat.

I found this bandaid that actually matches my skintone, so it deserved a thumbs up. Papercuts are the worst.