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191  QUILTING / Quilting: Discussion and Questions / Scared to Free Motion - Other Options? (UPDATED) on: March 25, 2010 11:48:58 AM
Thanks for all of your help and encouragement! After hours of ironing, pinning, some sewing and loads of stitch ripping I managed to finish the quilting phase of my quilt project Smiley.

I was feeling really brave and actually started by free motion quilting. Then I spent two hours ripping out those stitches and wondering what had gotten into me.

I tried diagonal rows next which was looking really great but eventually the rows were getting very uneven and I was having a difficult time managing the bulky quilt around my tiny machine. I spent another two hours ripping out those stitches.

Finally I poured myself a large glass of white wine and just sewed straight lines Smiley. Here's the result (back then front)...

Thank you all for helping me see this through! Next up will be the binding and I'm sure I'll have more questions Smiley.

With some craftster encouragement (http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=333202.0) I managed to finish my first quilt top for a friends baby months ago...

Sadly, that's as far as I've gotten. The pattern suggests to free motion quilt and being a brand new quilter I'm totally paranoid to try - I've read tutorials and practiced a few times but I just don't feel comfortable enough with the technique yet.

I'm hoping for some alternative quilting ideas. If I were to "stitch in the ditch" would I just sew around each square?

scifimama made a beautiful version of this quilt and it looks like she just sewed straight lines...

Thank you for any ideas! I wouldn't have gotten this far without all of you.
192  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 48 ENTRIES / The Amazing Adventures of the Little Family (well documented) on: March 01, 2010 07:20:49 PM
Once upon a time there was a teeny tiny town. And in this teeny tiny town lived a teeny tiny family known as the Littles.

It was a beautiful sunny day in the teeny town so the Littles decided to stroll to the park and enjoy a picnic lunch.
But just when they were sitting down to enjoy some tater-tots they heard a rumbling in the distance.

Cactus Little recognized it immediately. It was the unmistakable call of the


(notice the glowing red eyes of the terrifying beasts)

The Littles ran and hid to escape the terrible monsters but they knew the pair of ruthless Weinzilla's would find them eventually.
Then Crab Apple Little had an idea...

What's the one thing Weinzilla's hate more than baths, more than the vet, more than being dressed up in stupid costumes

the vacuum cleaner!!!!

The Little's mustered all of their strength and courage and just when the Weinzillas were about to attack they flipped up the ON switch and the vacuum cleaner roared to life.

The Weinzilla's immediately turned and ran for their lives. They retreated to their blanket cave and the teeny tiny town was saved!!!!

The Littles returned to the teeny tiny town and were greeted with a heros welcome. They even had their photograph taken with the Mayor, Penny Little Lincoln. The End!!

Sadly, while enjoying his new hobby of spelunking, Hippo Little stumbled upon the Weinzilla blanket cave. The rest is history


I had so much fun making these tiny amigurumi characters (and dressing up my unsuspectting weiner dogs). Pear Little, Cactus Little and Hippo Little are made with embroidery floss. Chicken Little and Crab Apple Little were made with very fine tatting thread. The hook sizes I used varied between 1.5mm and 1.15mm.

Thank you SO much for looking Smiley Smiley!!
193  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / Another Installment of Tiny-gurumi...Ms. Pear and Baby Crab Apple on: February 25, 2010 07:48:23 PM
I'm a glutton for punishment! My hands hate me and my eyeballs barely function anymore but I can't stop making these tiny amigurumis. Here are my latest mini-friends, Ms. Pear and Baby Crab Apple...

This is the second tiny apple I've made...my dog ate the first one Smiley.
194  KNITTING / Knitting: Discussion and Questions / Advanced Knitting Techniques - I don't know what I don't know on: February 24, 2010 10:38:07 PM
I've finally convinced my non-crafty girlfriend's to give knitting a shot!! They are going to take a 6 week project class at a local yarn shop and I want to join them - mostly to show my support and socialize with my pals but also hopefully to learn a thing or two myself.

I've been knitting for 10+ years and I've made everthing from hats, to scarves, to sweaters, boxer shorts, socks and knitted amigurumi. While I know quite a bit about knitting, I'm sure there are a zillion things I don't know.

Unfortunately I don't know what I don't know Smiley.

Does anyone have suggestions for advanced knitting techniques that I could study in class?

I've never tried magic loop style circular knitting - I thought I could get some professional help with that but I can't think of anything else.

195  Washington / Washington: West / Western Wa Craftster Meet-Up? on: February 19, 2010 09:02:01 PM
Would anyone be interested in a real-life craftster meet-up?

I know there are many of us around the Seattle/Tacoma/Bellevue/Olympia/Lynwood area. Maybe we could find a semi-central location and craft in real life?!

If there is interest I am willing to handle logistics.
196  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Grape Seed Oil on: February 15, 2010 02:20:54 PM
I like to use grape seed oil in salad dressings and recently shelled out a fair bit of coin for a Lime Riesling grape seed oil that's delicious. However, I'm realizing that I really don't know what to do with grape seed oil apart from dressings.

I know that it has a high smoke point so I could cook without setting off my smoke alarm for a change Smiley. I just don't know how the taste might impact proteins or how the flavors might change when cooked.

Since it's a bit pricey I don't really feel like experimenting with it.

Anyone have experience cooking with the stuff and/or any recipe ideas apart from salad dressings??

197  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / Chicken (really really really) Little on: February 14, 2010 05:44:01 PM
I made a little hippo amigurumi out of embroidery floss last week and swore I would never attempt a project of that size again...so instead I went smaller Smiley.

I made this teeny tiny tweeter using this pattern http://bittersweetblog.wordpress.com/2007/02/19/birds-of-a-feather/, a 1.4 mm crochet hook and thin thread that I believe is typically used for tatting.

I would not recommend a project like this to anyone that values their vision Smiley.

Thanks for looking!!
198  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / The Inseperable Gertrude and Hank on: February 13, 2010 08:41:36 PM
I made Gertrude and Hank for my lovely partner in the Creepy Cute swap. She's received so I thought I'd introduce them to you all.

I used a pattern from the book, The Knitted Odd Bunch with a few minor tweaks. They were SO fun to make and I think my partner is enjoying their company.

They were made with bamboo yarn (which I loved working with) and have a finished height of nearly 12".

Thanks for looking!
199  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Brain Eating Octopus Zombie on: February 11, 2010 10:36:07 AM
If this isn't the right category for this project please move it to a better spot.

I made this zombie octopus for my partner in the Creepy Cute swap. Since he's officially arrived at his new home I thought I'd share him with you Smiley.

He's made from felt, embroidery floss and a bit of quilt batting.

200  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / Pygmy Hippo Baby Amigurumi on: February 08, 2010 09:12:32 PM
There have been so many cute teeny-tiny projects posted lately that I was inspired to make something of my own. With my newly acquired crochet skills I tried my hand at amigurumi.

I used embroidery floss and a little teeny hook that I found in a box I inherited from Grandma to make this little guy. My hands cramped and my eyes crossed looking at the little stitches but I think he turned out cute.

Here he is with his older (more guinea-pig looking) brother...

Thanks for looking!!
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