Presenting Koto Designs!

Despite my long silence on this “projects” blog, I have been diligently at work. I am very happy to announce the launch of my Etsy Shop, Koto.

Right now the shop is filled with embroidered cards featuring a variety of designs.

This one is based on an Islamic geometric star design.

Diamond!

I also have several constellations – this one is Pisces. I hope to eventually finish off the whole zodiac and a few of the cooler constellations like Orion.

I have far more cards than I’m able to feature here, come check out the shop for more!

Simple Blanket

My mother requested a blanket for my grandmother. Requirements: not too large, easy to clean.

The result:

I used cartridge belt rib and Simply Soft Caron acrylic yarn. Very basic, but tedious. Blankets take forever.

Hopefully my next blanket is a baby blanket (i.e. very small!)

Sewing Box Organization

I’ve had the same sewing box since I was a kid, and some of the thread and needles are only slightly younger than me. I don’t sew very often, so I’ve built up a collection of infrequently used thread. During a recent project, I decided I was sick of the mess of spools with loose threads everywhere and took some time to clean it up.

Nice and organized! I cut some cheap takeout chopsticks to fit the width of my sewing box and strung the spools of thread onto each chopstick. There is a little ridge around the parameter of the box, so I used that to rest the chopsticks on.

Under the spools of thread are some smaller notions that I’m keeping “just in case” but likely won’t get used anytime soon. Now I can see what thread is available at a glance.

Gifts for Nani

I’ll be meeting my grandmother-in-law in a few weeks and by request I made a few gifts. I’m told she needs hats so I made a few, the two on the left are pretty basic.

The third is from the pattern Hurricane Hat by sunshineknits. The pattern is really simple but creates an interesting design.

Finally I have round II of Purl Bee’s Daisy Stitch Handwarmers. I have no idea if she will like any of it, but I’m hoping at least one will make the cut. Fingers crossed.

Daisy Stitch Handwarmers

So I get tons of patterns from the purl bee. It feels a bit ridiculous to do so much knitting off one site, but as long as they keep posting great stuff, I’ll keep knitting it. This time, I didn’t choose the pattern for a change –the recipient sent me a link to the pattern and asked me to give it a go. “What colors?” I asked. “Just like the picture.”

Here’s the original picture of the model by the experts at purl soho:

Here’s my more imperfect version made from acrylic worsted yarn that I purchased at Michael’s (a combination of Bernat satin and Caron simply soft):

Not too shabby I think…the gold is much brighter, but I skewed that way when I was picking out yarn because I prefer it. The other major difference is that I added another three stripes to the top and added length to the thumbs for slightly more coverage.

It was a bit of a mess handling the four colors, but they knit up pretty quickly. I’m making another pair now actually, but I’ll be sticking to the original pattern since the thumbs on my version look weird. You can find the pattern (and many others) here.

Calorimetry II

I received another request for a Calorimetry headband. The yarn is Caron Simply Soft in Autumn Red.

After trying a couple of places and failing miserably, I headed down to Tender Buttons and found this guy:

He’s got a bit of a dead-eye stare, but the recipient and I like foxes enough that he’s still a winner. The color is more true in the second image, my camera is a sad 10 year old point and shoot.

Eight Point Origami Star

Late in the evening after decorating my tiny apartment-sized Christmas tree, I decided that I needed a nice big star to top the tree. This is an origami pattern I learned a long time ago, so long that I don’t remember the source. I regularly forget how to make it and then spend 20 minutes trying to make it work, so I thought I’d post it online in case I forgot again…pardon the dark photos. Continue reading

Happy (Belated) Halloween!

Halloween is my favorite holiday (along with Martha Stewart, which never made sense to me…white pumpkins =/= Halloween decor). I had fewer opportunities to celebrate this year but I made a few masks for the office party.

They were made using templates available here and here. Mine are printed on paper glued to cereal boxes since it’s cheaper than cardstock.

No pumpkins this year, if anyone knows a good way to display a pumpkin in a large, child-less apartment building, I would love to know 😦

Hilbert Curve Embroidered Pillow

I saw this embroidery awhile back of a Hilbert curve done with multicolored thread. I wanted to make something for the house that reflected my husband’s tastes, and since he works in math, I thought this would be a good fit.

A Hilbert curve is a “continuous fractal space-filling curve.” It lends itself well to embroidery since it follows a single line, starting in one corner and ending in the other.

After embroidering the front with a simple back stitch, I used leftover fabric to add sides and a backing to turn it into a throw pillow cover.

Three buttons I picked up from Tender Buttons close the back. A nice math accessory for our house. Some time down the line I’d like to try making a dragon curve pillow to match.