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1  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Discussion and Questions / Understair dilemma on: April 22, 2009 06:22:02 PM
So I have this great area under my stair case that is basically a storage area right now.  I would really like it to either be some sort of functional seating area or be covered up.  It's sort of an eye-sore the way it is now.  I'm completely out of ideas and I need help!  I tried making a curtain to hang on the wall in front of it, but my classic problem of measure once cut once made my curtain crooked and I scrapped that idea.  The space is 82" high at the peak and 93" wide at the base. 
Thanks for your fantastic ideas!!!

super grainy shot of the offending area

it's right by the front door, so I'd like this to be a nice area rather than a storage hole

view from the kitchen! my apartment is tiny

2  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Vote for a Norris Nation! on: November 04, 2008 01:01:50 PM
I wanted to wear something election related to work today, but if I have to listen to the extreme leftists and rightists argue again I will pull my hair out just to create a distraction from the political madness.  Why can't we all get along in a Chucktatorship?

Go vote!
3  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / eco-friendly grocery bag on: October 11, 2008 08:35:33 PM
Does anyone else feel guilty when they use the plastic grocery bags now?  If I forget my fabric bag I try to cram as much into each plastic bag as I possibly can so I use as few as possible.  This usually turns out to be a bad idea since fabric grocery bags are so much more sturdy than the plastic ones.  But on to the pictures...

With Halloween coming up I decided to use some of my pirate fabric with sculls and cross-swords.

They fit so much stuff!

Everything I needed for chili fit into one bag.  12 pounds=lots of chili.

Such a ham.  I can't get the camera out without him ending up in one of the photos.

I may be shoving ice cream, chips, and beer into a bag, but at least I'm doing something good for the planet, right?  That makes it ok.
4  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / unique wallet design on: June 17, 2008 12:50:15 PM
Here's something I've been working on for a while.  I like wallets with credit card slots in them so I can keep everything organized, but of course I just have to be different and try to make vertical credit card slots instead of horizontal ones.  I love these wallets and I've been using one since October (is it bad to use the same one with halloween print through March?  Wink ). 

Here's the outside.  I was going for an envelope shape

Here's the inside with the credit card slots

Here's the one I've been using since March when I decided I really should change to a more spring-ish wallet.

Comments and crits always welcome!
5  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Double Knitting: a mostly pictorial tutorial on: January 25, 2008 12:23:07 PM
Let me preface this by saying I never imagined writing any sort of knitting tutorial from which other people can actually better their knitting skills.  I've learned a lot from the other knitting craftsters here, so I wanted to contribute the knowledge I've gathered because I'm grateful to others who took the time to do the same. 

So on with the mostly pictorial tutorial...

This is my example:

I used the graph I made up for my Disney scarf in this tut since it's the most recent one I've worked on.  I like Caron simply soft for these scarves and a size 9 circular needle.  The circular needle is for no reason other than I don't like the ends of needles poking out all over the place and I am quite good at losing needles.  I have to make a conscious effort to keep all my dpn's rubber banded together.  This size needle and the simply soft make a really soft scarf, and since it is two layers it insulates heat better. 

I searched google for a knitting graph and downloaded it.  http://incompetech.com/graphpaper/asymmetric/

I knew stitches were rectangular but not which direction.  Turns out they are wider than they are tall.  I think.  At least they are in my graph and it worked out pretty well.  So here's my graph for the Mickey head.

I used the long tail cast on method with both tan and brown held together.  Make sure your colors alternate.  Cast on 20 for this graph.

When you get to the end of your row, turn.  Hold the loose end and the ball of yarn ends together and make a couple stitches.  Don't cut the loose ends yet.  To make these stitches you're going to knit then purl.  I am knitting tan and purling brown.  If you do this it will give you a solid tan on one side and solid brown on the other.  I like to hold one strand in each hand so they don't get tangled and I can keep consistent tension on both strands.  Important!: Your first stitch is always knit.  Tan is the first loop, so tan is a knit stitch. 

When you get to the end you'll have tan all the way across.

Also Important!:  When you get to the end of a row, turn.  Now you're looking at the brown side.  Twist your two yarns together so the ends of the rows stay together.  Always twist counter-clockwise for a consistent edge.  This looks better than clockwise and much better than doing both. 

Pull your strands tight-ish (not super tight) and you will have brown on top and tan on bottom.  You brown is now the knit and tan is the purl.  Notice the first loop is brown?  Good.  Knit and purl across until you get to the other side.  After you pass the doubled loops from your cast on you can cut the strings off.

Now for the fun.  Continue knitting and purling until you have your desired length.  I just did the two rows.  On the graph I have eight blank spaces, four shaded spaces, and eight more blank spaces.  Each space represents both a knit and a purl stitch.  So knit and purl eight times, ending with a purl.  Now you will purl the next stitch, bringing it to the front.  So you will purl, knit for four spaces.  You ended with a brown knit, and you will knit a tan stitch to get tan back to the front.  Whatever color you knit will show on the side which is currently facing up.  Continue to knit, purl across. 

Turn your work and twist your strands counter-clockwise.  Knit and purl the next row, giving you this.

Follow the graph until you get to the end.

I did two more solid rows of knit,purl and then did my bind off.  The only difference between this and a single color bind off is holding both tan and brown together again, and picking up one of each color as a single stitch.   

Finish and you're done!  There, that wasn't so bad.  Please let me know if anything is unclear, and definitely post what you make.  I'm excited to see a bunch of double knit projects on craftster.  Now go double knit!

6  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Double knit Disney goodness! on: January 18, 2008 11:01:16 AM
Picture this if you will.  It's Sunday night and I'm having dinner with some friends.  I have made a double knit scarf for one of my friends the last two years and we're talking about what he wants for his next birthday.  He loves Disneyland and all things Mickey Mouse.  I realize I could make a Mickey scarf with double knit.  Another one of our friends also loves Disneyland so I decide to make her a double knit Mickey scarf for her birthday.  Which was on Wednesday.  Three days to graph and knit a scarf?  So doable.  Granted I finished it right before I went out the door on Wednesday night, but it was done.  So here's the result.

7  KNITTING / Knitting: Discussion and Questions / mittens on strings on: November 28, 2007 11:14:58 AM
I am making mittens on a string for my boyfriend's nephew, whose 2nd birthday is on Friday (the 30th).  I have the mittens made and I think they will fit, but I don't have a two year old handy to measure the length of i cord I need to make.  What is a two year old's wingspan?  The mittens are the first knitted thing I've made besides a scarf of two.  Here they are...

As an afterthought, the mittens are 4" from fingertip to the start of the cuff.  Any opinion on whether that will be big enough?  Man, if only I had a baby handy...  Thanks for any help!!
8  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 22 ENTRIES / Growing Flower and Busy Bee on: November 05, 2007 10:59:10 PM
After much contemplation, I decided flowers and bees as two objects which are dependant on yet opposite of each other.  The flower is shown in growing stages from a sprout to a full flower.  The final flower is incomplete, however, because it depends on a bee to pollenate it.  The bee, likewise, is incomplete without a flower so it can make honey.

This is both pillows together on my bed.

A close up of the flower detail.

Close up of the bee.

Before I started stitching I sketched everything in my notebook.  I looked up pictures of bees and tulips online for reference.  Also, because I'm kind of, well, crazy, I made my own pillowcases.  I found premade ones for $13 and I found a twin sheet for $5.  Easy choice, and I made sham type pillowcases.

As usual, entering right before deadline...
9  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Pirate satchel on: August 02, 2007 10:43:16 AM
Pirate bandwagon...check!

I had to do something pirate themed.  Everyone else was doing it and it seemed like a good idea. So here it is:

I made this for my wonderful boyfriend to carry his stuff when he goes to the local coffee shop.  Usually just a book and a couple pens, so it seems unnecessary to take his big school bag.  The front I embroidered a while ago.  

I put a pocket on the inside which fits either a couple pens (as modeled by my crochet hooks) or his nano.

10  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / owl embroidered wristlet on: August 02, 2007 10:24:52 AM
My latest obsession has been making purses, so I figured I'd go a little smaller and make a wristlet.  Just the bare essentials fit inside, which is fine by me.  

front (although almost invisible, the top has a white zipper):

close up of embroidery (the wrinkled fabric is from me holding it):

inside card holder:

inside money holder:

It makes me happy... Smiley
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