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WIP to FO Challenge- 19 for 2019

It seems like everywhere you look online these days, people are taking stock of 2018 and setting goals for moving forward.  The first few days of the new year tend to be all about making resolutions, and to that end- here’s one of mine:

I resolve to turn the following 19 wips (works in progress) into FOs (finished objects) before the end of 2019.

I’ll write at length about each project when I finish (and post) about them, but for now here’s a short blurb for each:

1. FO Project Jars

wip yearly fo jars

I need to rip out all the individual lengths of yarn (1-10 yards long, each), match them up with what project they were from, and put the separated yarn into jars designated for each year.

2. Harvest Moon Pullover – crochetwip crochet harvest moon

I started this sweater on November 25 2016 as a way to use my adored Noro Silk Garden limited stash on something for myself.  Limited yarn + crocheted pattern with big holes = a sweater that might fit… right?

3. Granny Rectangle Blanket – crochetwip granny rectangle blanket

I started this blanket on August 9 2015 as a way to use up random sock yarns I figured I’d never get around to using for, y’know, socks.  Figured out how to make granny squares as rectangles and then alternated with white for… some reason.

4. & 5. Ralph and Black Sheep’s Sweaters – sewing & cross stitchwip boys toys sweaters

I started these sweaters for the boys’ favorite stuffed animals a few nights before Christmas 2016.  They were intended to be little surprises for them but instead they’ve sat in a bag ever since.  Sadly Jakob is no longer as into iHasCupQuake as he used to be, so I’ll need to rip out the stitching on the front of Ralph’s sweater and hope it doesn’t leave gaping holes in the fleece.  Then I’ll have to figure out new designs to personalize the fronts, find where I put the sleeve pieces, and sew the little sweaters together.

6. Drops V-Neck Pullover – knittingwip drops knit vneck

I started this deep-v sweater somewhere in 2015 or 2016.  It’s slouchy and soft and I want to wear it already.

7. Fluffy Shawl – knittingwip fluffy shawl

I started this shawl on April 6 2015.  It’s been sitting untouched in a bag since roughly that Fall.  I love how the colors blend together (black Sandes Garn Sisu and purple/green Noro Kureyon Sock) and would like it to be done and hugging my shoulders.

8. Comfy Socks – knittingwip fluffy ankleless socks

According to myself, I started these socks 2 FULL YEARS AGO.  They’re supposed to be my ‘take along’ knitting but because I haven’t finished designing the pattern, I never take them with me to work on.  I need them done so I can reclaim the needles and portable hanging knitting bag and start being more productive again.

9. Fun Fur Vest – knittingwip fun fur vest

I started this Bergere de France vest in 2012(!!).  My Ravelry projects page has it listed as completed on Feb 10 2015 but clearly it isn’t.  No ends are woven in, it might need armhole cuffs, and I think I was debating overdying the entire thing black.

10. Doodle Fusion Marco Raffiné Page – colorinwip doodle fusion marco raffine

This page from Doodle Fusion was started last summer (I think) using only my set of Marco Raffiné oil-based colored pencils.

11. Grimm Fairy Tales Alice Page – coloringwip grimm alice in wonderland

This page from Grimm’s Fairy Tales was a test to see if I could get good results using dollar store colored pencils.  I’ve since moved the pencils somewhere else and want to finish the image so I don’t need to dig them out any more.

12. Grimm Fairy Tales Little Red Page – coloringwip grimm little red riding hood

Those of you who follow me on Instagram would have seen this page from Grimm’s Fairy Tales back when I started it in June.  I love how it’s turning out and want to see how well I can complete it.

13. Imagimorphia Eagle 2-Page – coloringwip imagimorphia eagle

This double-page spread from Imagimorphia was started in the Fall of 2016.  I loved coloring the tiny rainbows and then lost steam.

14. Imagimorphia Egypt Page – coloringwip imagimorphia egypt

I honestly don’t remember when I started this page.  Luckily I’d blogged about it!

15. The Time Garden Quilt Page – coloringwip time garden pattern page

I don’t recall when I started working on this page in Daria Song’s The Time Garden either but judging from other posts about it I’d made in April 2016, I’m going to guess it was about that time.  I have NO idea, however, why I stopped it so close to being done.

16. The Princess Bride Fred Savage 2-Page – coloringwip princess bride fred savage

This page was blogged when I first started it, way back in March 2017.  I don’t want to move on to another page in the book until this one is done, though, so I need to make the time to finally get it finished up.

17. & 18. & 19. Harley Quinn, Betty Cooper & Teela Wall Hanging Trio – plastic canvas

wip plastic canvas girls trio

I’ve never shown these before, except for the odd glimpse in the background of Instagram pics.  I started this trio of plastic canvas portraits when I moved in August 2017.  While I love how they look in black and white (and blue), I designed them to be in full color and I’d love to see them complete.

Think I can do it?  Want to play along? Use the tag #19WIPtoFO2019 so I can see how many you get through!

ps: As I’m about to post this I just realized that 19 projects means committing to completing more than one per month.  Months that are already pretty busy with Becket, work, kids, commissions and all the new projects I want to work on and might come up over the year… Wish me luck- I’m gonna need it!!

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undateable

In this post: the cast of an NBC sitcom surrounding me as they hold stitched samples of their likeness.  In other words, just a normal Thursday…

Ha!

First, a brief apology.  After the rush and whirlwind of finishing my Sprocket costume I took a little break from crafting, and blogging.  Took advantage of not needing to stay up until 3am to crash early, or do other things that didn’t involve math, or thinking.  Couple that with an onslaught of weather-induced migraines, and I’ve been getting a lot more rest lately, but it means the blogging has suffered.  :/

So.  A few weeks ago I got word that I’d be able to attend a Just For Laughs panel involving the cast of Undateable.

undateable_ver2

I knew that since it would be a con-style panel, vs a stand-up-type comedy show, there was a chance the audience might be able to meet the cast.  And I decided I wanted to do something for them.  While I enjoy the show, I didn’t do it because I’m the ohemgee number one fan!!! nor to get a chance to potentially meet them.  I just thought it would be nice.  🙂

I hit upon the idea of doing something in cross stitch right away.  I knew it was easy and portable and something I could likely finish in time (I had less than a week until the panel).  I’ve had transactions in the past with an etsy vendor called weelittlestitches and I absolutely love her work*, and immediately I thought of contacting her to commission a custom pattern of the cast.  Unfortunately I didn’t think the timing would work out, so I ended up designing them myself.

I did an image search for each character and put together a little file for each one, giving me the gist of that character’s ‘look’.  At the same time I also pulled out some quotes from each episode so I could add a funny line for each character.

“Justin”, played by Brent Morin

undateable justin pic

Photo 2015-07-23, 11 29 44 AM“I’m kind of like Spanx.   I’m there to support you wherever you need it.”

  “Burski”, played by Rick Glassman

undateable burski pic

Photo 2015-07-23, 11 31 06 AM

“Dibs.”

“Leslie”, played by Bianca Kajlichundateable leslie pic Photo 2015-07-23, 11 30 21 AM

“One-night-stands are like fast food- sure you feel guilty the next day

but sometimes you just need something cheap you can enjoy in your car.”

“Danny”, played by Chris D’Elia

undateable danny pic Photo 2015-07-23, 11 32 21 AM

“Change is hard, Baby Bird, but I’m gonna help mend those broken wings.

I’m gonna be the father bird and just feed you knowledge.”

“Candace”, played by Bridgit Mendler

undateable candace pic

Photo 2015-07-23, 11 33 50 AM

“All I have is a scrawny little white-girl butt… There are people out there who like those too, right?”

“Brett”, played by David Fynn

undateable brett pic Photo 2015-07-23, 11 33 16 AM

“I’ve had sex with a lot of ladies.”

And finally “Shelly”, played by Ron Funches… who wasn’t there, but I hope his got to him anyways.

undateable shelly pic

Photo 2015-07-23, 11 31 45 AM

“I identify with piñatas.  I’m also adorable and full of candy.”

Once at the panel my mom and I were seated pretty close.  Like…

Photo 2015-07-23, 3 52 27 PM

My feet were about 2 feet from the stage.

…really close.  So close in fact that when the cast came out and Rick was using his phone to stream the panel for Periscope, I jokingly offered to hold it for him and he leaned over and handed it to me.  (So if any of you reading this were watching the panel, I’m sorry for swinging it around and possibly making you nauseous before I realized where it was actually aiming).Photo 2015-07-23, 4 45 52 PM

Brent answering a question, possibly about the little gnome in his butt (you had to be there), while David, Rick, Bianca and Bridgit look on and feign amusement.

Photo 2015-07-23, 4 45 47 PM

The other side of said gnome-butt convo, egged on by Chris and more feigned amusement on behalf of Adam Sztykiel and Bill Lawrence, along with the panel moderator (who I think was from Mashable?).

Towards the end of the panel they took audience questions and I got the last one, asking, rather awkwardly, “I, um, made you guys something.  Can I give it to you?”  (Not my finest moment).  Luckily they said yes, and I got to give each one their framed portrait.  At one point Chris asked if it was called needlepoint, and started calling out, all Oprah-esque, “YOU get a needlepoint!  And YOU get a needlepoint!  Aaand YOU get a needlepoint!”.

Photo 2015-07-23, 4 59 58 PMThere was a funny/sad moment towards the very end when they were all looking at each others’ and then Bill put out his hands and looked around like “Where… where’s mine?”  I offered him a hug instead but he didn’t take me up on it.

Then the panel was over, and I thought that was the end of it.  Instead, however, David jumped right down and came and gave me a hug and said thanks.  Bianca did too, before walking away.  Brent came by, and suddenly I turned around and the whole cast (minus Bianca and the absent Ron) were standing right behind me.  My mom had been taking pics the whole time, so I wound up with this:

Photo 2015-07-23, 5 47 43 PM

Yep.  That’s me looking all dork-tastic.  🙂

Mom and I had barely made it to the elevator when my phone buzzed, and I saw this Tweet:

Photo 2015-07-23, 5 42 47 PMPhoto 2015-07-23, 5 42 43 PM

Awwww! 😀

* If you’re into cross stitch, or pop culture, or any combination thereof, go check her stuff out, it’s amazing.  😀


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i think i just blew my own mind

Before knitting, I was a crocheter.  Ok, that’s kinda untrue…I DID learn to knit as a kid, but stopped probably as suddenly as I started.  I’ve always been crafty, though, and can draw, paint, etch, sculpt, sew(-ish),etc…  When I was in high school I used to charge $5 to redraw a photograph onto 9×11 paper, in pencil.  Call me Kinkos.  I only took up the needles again once Yannick and I started dating.

Well the sweater I tried knitting for Yannick for our first dating anniversary didn’t get past 4″, probably because I’d found old needles at home, random acrylic from Wal-Mart, and a pattern from a book at the library, and none of the 3 had anything even remotely to do with each other.  I instead taught myself to crochet, and his gift sweater led to toys, shawls, home accessories and more.  I found my way back to knitting thanks to the fun fur trend of 2004, when I made a hostess gift for a friend and had to knit it because trying to crochet in fluffy black boa (feather) yarn was rediculous when you couldn’t see a single stitch.

But before getting my heart spiked on a knitting needle and fueling the last 8 years of my life, and after the months-long crochet obsession ending in 2 giant sampler blankets, there was cross stitch.  I won’t get into my eBay spending, my binders of print-outs, or the time I filled the cash register tape at 120 items and had to start a new transaction when buying one of every color of Anchor floss.  Here are some of my proudest xstitch items:

This was an ornament I made for an ornament exchange.  The original pattern had an American flag inside, but my swap partner lived in Australia so I charted my own flag for her.

This is a little (4″ square) pillow I made of our cat Sam, using X-Stitch photo software to convert the pic to a pattern.  The back was just lined with a piece of flannel cut off an old shirt.

This is a little piece I made for Robyn when she moved into her first place.  (Not my design, it was from a cross stitch magazine I used to subscribe to).

My mom’s name is Betti, and everyone always buys her Betty Boop stuff.  This is a vest I’d made her back when she was still teaching.  There’s a product called “waste canvas” that is disolvable in water, so you baste it onto your fabric/shirt/etc, do your cross stitch, then wet it and remove the strands of waste canvas, and your cross stitch remains on the fabric below.  Here I’d bought the zippered vest and used the photo software to convert a picture I’d found online.

I used a fun, football-jersey-style font to create the “letterman’s jacket” writing on the back, with more waste canvas.

That same year we were getting together with Yannick’s family for Easter, and I made the hourglass picture for his grandmother as a “thank-you” for hosting all of us.  The original pattern (from the same cross stitch magazine I’d subscribed to) said something in English, like “time with the family is time that counts”, so I translated it to French since Yannick’s family is French-Canadian.  I really enjoyed doing the beading in this piece.

Finally, my most “epic” cross stitch HAS to be this one.  My dad isn’t sentimental, but he loves his family, and I always liked this pic of him, my sister and me.  (My mom and two brothers were in another photo).  I used the photo software to create a pattern using only black, white and shades of gray, and enlarged it to 9×11.  I stitched it on black Aida and framed it with a plaque reading “Daddy’s Girls” and a copy of the original photo on the back.  I love that from far away it looks like a real photograph and you can’t even tell it’s stitched, but I don’t see myself recreating a project like this any time soon, ‘cus it took 192 hours of stitching!  (Luckily I was home on sick-leave at the time, but still…)

Why am I bringing this up now?  Well a few days ago I was watching weaving videos on YouTube and saving them in a playlist (yes, I AM that kind of nerd), and a lightbulb struck when I saw a woman making floats for decorative Christmas trees, and checking her “pattern” she’d drawn with Xs on graph paper.

That was when I realized that weaving, unlike most knitting, is square.  (Assuming you’re using the same weight yarn in warp and weft, and your tension is even).  Maybe I should rephrase to say “plain weave” is pretty darn square.  And I suddenly realized that all those cross stitch patterns snoring away in my office could be put to use if I wanted to practice using a pickup stick and weave with floats on top to “draw” designs.

But today it wasn’t a lightbulb that went off, it was a whole fireworks display.

I don’t need to weave the pictures- I can weave my fabric, a scarf, a shawl, placemats, etc…and then CROSS STITCH on it!  Using my patterns and my floss stash…after all Aida and linen that you buy for cross stitching is nothing more than woven fabric at a certain number of threads to the inch.

Whoa.  Mind-numbing expansion of cross-crafting possibilities here.


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over the weekend and into the week

This post was originally just titled “over the weekend” but I got delayed in posting and now have an extra two days to catch up. I don’t know where the time goes but I can’t seem to get anything done!

On Saturday morning I awoke to hear Jakob crying in his sleep…sort of “fussing”. I know that sometimes he rolls around and winds up with his arm or legs hanging through the bars of his crib (I almost typed “cage” LOL), so I thought maybe he’d rolled around and gotten stuck. I went in to take a peek…

…he’d rolled onto his stomach! In his sleep he’d managed to roll onto his stomach then realized he didn’t know what to do once he got there, so he started to cry. I immediately rolled him back onto his back. He was still crying and I knew if I took him out of bed he’d want to be fed, so I went to the washroom first to wash my hands. I heard him fussing again and when I came back he’d rolled back onto his stomach! I called for Yannick to come, and to bring the video camera. Thank gd he didn’t question why- it was around 5:00am! I rolled Jakob back over and as we watched he promptly rolled right back onto his stomach. We managed to catch it on video. Unfortunately Jakob still didn’t know what to do on his stomach and began to cry in earnest so I took him out to feed him.

I spent the morning with him at a brunch and old friend threw as a sort of “reunion” for lost friends. Over the years we’ve all drifted apart so she set up a little group on Facebook and invited everyone from her friends list who lived in Montreal. I didn’t know most of the people but I hadn’t seen that friend in a long time so I went. Jakob was such an angel- he slept the entire time! He was so good that I was able to take him to the knit-out in the park that was also scheduled for the same day. It was a bit disappointing because only 3 other people were there. I’d gone at the very end, just for a half hour, but they were the only ones who had shown up all day. Then Jakob and I went to FutureShop to pick up my repaired Palm. I was very bitter because Palms aren’t supposed to be repaired, they get replaced and I’d received MY original unit back (I’d marked it).

Finally Jakob and I wound up at my parents’ house where Yannick was doing some brick work for them. Julie came over to see us then my parents took us to Jade Palace for some Chinese buffet for supper. Yum! Once again Jakob was behaving himself like a perfect little guy and slept the entire time.

When we got home I was worried about how to put him down to sleep. We had been swaddling him but I was afraid that if he rolled onto his stomach he might find a way to get the loose fabric into his mouth. I remembered that I’d bought a sleeping blanket that time we were at Fairview, so I took it out to try it.

It’s like a soft flannel sleeping back with shoulder straps.
I knew Jakob would be a bit fussy because he liked to rub the blanket against his cheek, but safety is the priority so we’re trying out the sleeping blanket now. I will still swaddle him during the day when I’m able to check on him, but not for over night.

Sunday was spent running around doing errands. First we went to Walmart for a few things and to have lunch at McDonald’s. Then we went to a really cool gift store in Pointe-Claire. Yannick had bought me a charm for my bracelet to commemorate our son’s birth, but I was afraid the little emerald birthstone might fall out, so I wanted to find out about their warranty. When we left there we went right back to FutureShop since my Palm had died again over night. I complained and said it wasn’t easy for me to run around with a newborn, and they were really nice and exchanged it for me right away. My Tungsten T5 wasn’t available any longer so they switched it for a Palm TX which came with a cool wireless keyboard and built-in wifi. Finally we went to Fairview because Yannick needed some socks and running shoes, so we went to see my brother Mike at Sports Experts.

Sunday night we went to Yannick’s sister’s house for cake and coffee for William’s birthday (last week) and Alex’s birthday (at the end of the month).

We dressed Jakob in this cute little outfit. It had a special meaning- it was part of Brigitte’s gift to us at my baby shower.
That night I heard Jakob fussing again and finally went in around 6:00am Monday morning. The little stinker was folding himself in half again but was too tired to roll all the way onto his stomach so he’d make it to his side then pass out. The little cutie. 🙂

Yannick’s parents had to move his grandmother into a new residence and in the process were helping her empty her old place. They came across this framed cross stitch:

This was my first ever attempt at cross stitch. Back in 2003 I was trying to find a gift idea for Yannick’s grandmother for Easter since all the cousins brought her gifts but everyone usually brought alcohol. I wanted to be different and found this in a magazine. I loved the image and had Yannick’s mom help me change the quote into something in French. I bought all the supplies, did the stitching and beading and had it framed for her just in time for Easter. Now that she’s not as well they gave it back to me so we could keep it.

Later on Monday Yannick and I took Jakob back to the Shriner’s Hospital. Good news- there is nothing wrong with his hip (last time it looked under developed) and he’s just fine. Yay!

Today my mom and I both went to have our hair done so one could watch Jakob while the other was occupied. He was such a little cutie and flirted with all the girls there. We brought him to surprise my dad at work too, then went to Loblaws for some dinner groceries. The little guy woke up when we got there and didn’t stop talking out loud the entire time. After dinner with my mom and Yannick, we came home and I had just enough time to feed him before he passed out. I’m going to follow his example now, since we have another busy day tomorrow.