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Month: December 2015

Knithacks of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come

At the beginning of this year I made a promise to myself to learn two things – 1) entrelac knitting; and 2) how to crochet for real. I’m happy to say that I’ve accomplished both. The entrlac project is slow going (I’m half way!) but it’s absolutely gorgeous, if I do say so myself. As for crochet, I’ve made a few things – some coasters, a few flowers and a very beautiful tweed cowl that I actually wear! That’s real progress in my books … and yesterday I had a great crochet breakthrough: I crocheted a sphere using Julie...

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Another fun gift combo for people who love to give knit and crochet!

This bird you see below is all the rage in Brooklyn right now! Spotted last week by a birder with an excellent eye, news of this Painted Bunting traveled fast through the birding community and a small crowd gathered. I was part of the crowd last Saturday afternoon and I was lucky enough to see him. As you can see, he’s a gorgeous bird, a real rarity. :: Photograph taken by Chun Zhou :: It got me thinking, binoculars would make a great Christmas gift – everyone can use a pair for sports events, birdwatching, boating, the list goes...

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Raindrop Amigurumi Gift Idea

Here’s a handmade/store-bought gift combo idea – an umbrella and a raindrop amigurumi! About the amigurumi: Based on a free pattern by Abigail Forrest, I knit this amigurumi in about an hour using Lion Brand Kitchen Cotton. Abigail has a bunch of really great patterns that would make great gifts and stocking stuffers, definitely check her out. About the umbrella: The Crown Coast Umbrella* is a heavier and sturdier umbrella than I’m used to and I like the quality of the fabric. The casing and handle are made of a soft-feeling plastic, which is unusual and welcome. The button...

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I'm a Gift Machine … Quick Gift Ideas for Knitters!

I’ve been knitting like crazy! My go to pattern this year is the Pompoms Hat – I’ve made 19 so far using a variety of chunky weight yarns like Wool-Ease Thick & Quick, Zaps and Hometown USA. The hat: Pompoms Hat made with Hometown USA in the color Phoenix Azalea with a purple Pom on top. This hat took just over an hour to make! The glasses: WearMe Pro’s Heart shape mirror glasses are cute, I really like them! For $9.95, these are great value and very good quality – a great gift, especially coupled with a handmade case!...

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6 Times Magic and Knitting (and Crochet) Joined Forces … PLUS Kids Magic Wand Review

*** Speaking of magic … Finn and I were asked to review this Kids Magic Wand set by Rhode Island Novelty. It’s good timing, because like many seven year olds, he’s beginning to develop an interest in magic and the magical arts … in other words, he loves trickery! As you can see, the cape and wand were the big hits for him, although he does like everything else. He needed a little help figuring out the disappearing coin case but once he got it, it was a favorite too. The quality of the five items included is good...

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Handmade Holiday Gift Idea: Flickering LED Candle with Crochet Flower

You could have two gifts done and in the can in the next hour … keep reading! I got these adorable LED candles from KooPower to review and was so impressed with the quality, I thought they’d make a great gift. Being crafty and all, I also thought about ways to pair them with yarn and settled on a finger-crocheted flower. Earlier this year David Babcock, aka the Knitting Runner, came to New York to run the marathon and while he was here he taught myself and several colleagues how to finger crochet flowers. Luckily, he recorded a tutorial,...

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New Book! “Knits & Pieces: A Knitting Miscellany”

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