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Crafty Compilation – w/e 01/28/17 – w/e 02/25/17

Ugghhhhh.  Is February really almost over?  Is that a thing?

Sigh.  When there’s nearly 4 weeks of everyone in your household getting back-to-back gastro, time can really get away from you, y’know?

I’m obviously behind on these little compilation posts of mine, so rather than upload a bunch of weeks’ worth of recaps in quick succession here’s an overview of the non-own-post-worthy stuff that happened during these last few weeks:


Knitting

  • Comfy Socks

My travel knitting socks have become my sit-on-couch-watching-Supernatural socks because I’ve only been back to work part time as yet and there hasn’t been much need for a travel project.  No pics, but the first one is about mid-foot.

  • V-neck sweater progress

The sweater was moving along at a great pace, as stockinette projects tend to do, until I was nearly finished the front.  You split the front at the v-neck, working each side individually.  I’d finished one half and held it up against me to see how it was gonna look…and noted that the v-neck began roughly in the middle of my rib cage.  I’m not one to shy away from a low-cut top but that’s a bit much to wear without an under layer, even for me.

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I calculated the height I wanted it to start at and ripped back, making notes so I could add that many rows before the split.  I have ripped this yarn back so many times I’m surprised it hasn’t fallen apart by now!

Crochet

  • Kitchen soap cozies

As part of my massive cleaning kick (see ‘other stuff’ below) I threw together these liquid soap bottle cozies for my kitchen.

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The counter used to be a giant mess (pic censored to spare your eyes) and the cleaning supplies weren’t hideous but the kids (and I) had a hard time remembering which pump bottle I’d refilled with dish washing liquid and which one was hand soap.  The ‘dish’ one used to say ‘DISH’ in scrawled black Sharpie but it kept wearing off the bottle.

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I didn’t use a pattern.  It took longer to keep casting on, starting then ripping to get the correct number of stitches than it did to actually work the two pieces.  In the end they took 30 sts, and I worked 4 rows of single crochet for stability, followed by 3 of double crochet (so it wouldn’t take as long to make), then 3 more rows of sc to have a more closed-in area to embroider on, another 2 rows of dc and then finished with a row of sc to stabilize the top.  I embroidered the words and then sewed the cozies together in place on the bottles.  They do stretch enough to be removed and since they’re dishcloth cotton when they get dirty or covered in soap drips I can wring them out a few times and they’ll be good as new.

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Coloring

I’m not going to keep showing the coloring for each day… I tend to do them in batches as the images can start getting repetitive and I’m not always in the mood to work on them.  I’ve got them mostly completed through til February 12th or so, but I haven’t taken pics of them all yet so here are the last few I did photograph:

  • The Princess Bride coloring book

I have been ADDICTED to the new coloring book my brother got me for Hanukkah.

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This book is gorgeous.  It’s the entire movie in coloring book format!  No matter what your favorite scene from the movie might be, there’s a page ready for you to get to color it!

I always use the pages in the back of the book to swatch the supplies I plan to use.  I knew the pages were thick enough to allow water applications for my Inktense, but the little swatch sample I keep with the pencils is on beige paper.  I want to try to go for screen-accurate colors when possible, so I decided to swatch out ALL the Inktense colors.

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I gridded it out with a ruler then scribbled a tiny bit of color on one side of each cell.  Once it was dry I added the color numbers next to each but didn’t photograph that.

I’ve since begun working on some of the pages.  I’m going in order and have 4 pages in various states of completion.  It’s become my reward each night after I get the kids settled and tidy up and do laundry or whatever.  Chores done = coloring time LOL

Other Stuff

  • Cleaning!

Oh.  So.  Much.  Cleaning.  (…she says, pretending it wasn’t her own craft supplies making the mess in the first place!)  The house is long overdue for a big, thorough clean, and the first thing I’d tackled was the hutch in our dining room.  As you can see in the ‘before’ pic below, it was a massive jumble of an ill-organized mess, so crammed full of unnecessary things that there was no room for the things we DID need to store there.  During the brief lull between the kids’ gastro sessions I revamped the storage to better handle the things we needed.  My cake decorating supplies are still there, with the closed containers now spanning the top sections, and the open boxes and packages hidden inside the center.  Now the unit has become more of a central home art hub, with my drawing and coloring supplies on the left, and all of the home’s coloring and instructional drawing books on the right.  I’d grown up leafing through drawing books from a very young age and I didn’t want the boys to miss out just because mine were hidden away in my office.  The center square thing has become a homework depot (rather than homework remaining piled on the table or chairs during the week) with space for their binders and duotangs, as well as now being pre-stocked with construction paper, looseleaf, bond paper and cardstock, and the horizontal storage unit is all set up for them with glue sticks, scissors, erasers, sharpeners, etc.  All of their colored pencils and markers and such are in the top drawer right under the coloring books, so whether they’re up to some crafting or sitting down to homework, everything they need is right there.

I also did a similar complete overhaul to the den (I think that was between mine and Yannick’s bouts… ughhhh…), and am currently on a break with the kitchen about 85% complete to work on my office.  No pics of the rest cus there’s only so much of my mess I want to make public LOL

  • My hair 🙂

In the middle of all the illnesses I returned to work for the first time since roughly August.  Finally getting to be around people again was reason enough to treat myself to a little salon time, and I redid my crazy colors once more.me 2017-02-09 2.png

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If interested in any of the items I mentioned in this post, you can check them out below:
Creative Coloring Throughout the Year 2017 desk calendar
The Princess Bride coloring book
Derwent Inktense pencils
  • these are affiliate links.


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dyeing my hair – going from brown to PINK!

For those of you who follow me on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, this is old news already, but it occurred to me yesterday that I’d never posted about it here.  Back in November, I dyed my hair… PINK!  (Ok, technically magenta, but it looks pink in most light).

Anyone who’s followed me for a loooong time might remember that I used to have long blonde hair, and when Henri was little I’d added a blue streak under one ear.

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(Very few pics actually show it, this was the best I could find)

I’ve always missed having colored hair, and gaze longingly at all the purple, blue and other brightly (or pastel-y) colored tresses I see online.  Finally I decided to take the plunge again- I decided to dye the underneath of my hair blue.  Not the ends, ombre-style, but the underneath half of my hair, figuring that it would be cute but subtle, so I’d still look ‘professional’ enough for work or being a mom or whatever kind of grown up I’m supposed to be.

Then I told Yannick my plan.  Found him pics online… and he was not impressed.  He didn’t like the idea at all, and suggested dyeing my entire head.  “But… I don’t want to dye my whole head blue,” I protested, “It will fade to green and I don’t think that would suit me.”  “Then don’t go blue,” he said, “go red or pink or something.”  I decided to call his bluff and Googled crazy hair colors, opening up a ton of tabs to show him the ones I thought were pretty.

Surprisingly, we both liked magenta.  So… before I could change my mind and chicken out, I called my hairdresser the next morning and booked the appointment.

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This was my last pic with brown hair before leaving for the appointment.  When I got there I looked through the color samples book.colorswatches

I’d brought in a picture of the color I had in mind, and it looked closest to the color “orchid” above, however once there we decided to mix a little “magenta” in to brighten up the color a bit.  Now that I was actually there I decided to forgo any attempt at subtlety (I’d thought the orchid color might pass as brown in dim light) and just GO FOR IT! 😀step 1 blonde collage

The first step to any of the ‘crazy’ colors is to lighten, so for the first time in at least 4 years I got to see how I’d look as a blonde again.  (Not a fan, tbh).  You can see the variation in my hair color, that’s because my hair has had brown dye in it for the last 4 years, as I’ve been dyeing it darker than my natural color… whatever that is.  (I’ve never dyed my eyebrows, so I’m guessing something like that).step 2 pink collage

In the top left image you can see the samples we played around with.  Kristin, my stylist extraordinaire, had taken an extension in a similar color to my now-blonde hair and dyed it with the orchid, the magenta, and a mix of the two.  The color we both liked best was the mix, and so that is what we did.  I got my first glimpses of how my hair would look as the color sat on my scalp.  No turning back now!step 3 pink collage

And here’s the final result, the first 3 pics taken at the salon, and the 4th in my front hall as soon as I’d gotten home.  Verdict?  I F’ING LOVE IT!!!step 4 pink shades

One thing that amazes me is how different it looks in different lighting.  These aren’t the best pics to show it, but contrary to what it would appear in this post I don’t run around taking selfies of myself all day hahahahaha.  Sometimes it appears pink, other times an almost neon purple, and in dim lighting it can go raspberry.Photo 2015-11-25, 9 28 27 AM

I’ve since gone back to have the color touched up, because sadly these kinds of colors fade pretty quickly.  I’ve managed to keep it vibrant by following the tricks I’ve read up about – washing with cold water, minimal shampooing, using a cuticle sealant, avoiding heat styling… but because the roots didn’t have brown dye they remained more vibrant a purple color, and the ends faded to a kind of red-wine shade, so I went back to have the opposite colors put on each section so they would match better.  Eventually as my hair grows out and I trim off the previously-brown ends it will be easier to have a more even color everywhere.

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This is the result of the last color- even color from root to end.  In my bedroom it takes on this reddish hue, almost veering towards The Little Mermaid.  At Hebrew school pick up last week I was told it was almost glowing purple in the lights.  😀 It’s like mood hair!

The most surprising thing to me has been the reaction.  I’d thought my family would berate me for it but the reaction was overwhelmingly positive.  My kids love it.  Strangers stop me on the street with compliments.  I’ve had senior citizens pull me aside to tell me they love it and little children tug my arm to ask if I was a princess.  And me?  I feel like a superhero.
final brown to pink collage

Before                              ~                              After