November 30, 2010

Week of Hats: Day 2

Today is Tuesday and here is your second dose of hats for this very special week. I found this pattern online through Ravelry and made both versions of this hat earlier this year. These are closely my favorites of the bunch. Enjoy!

Spring Beret

The citron is the regular version and the eggplant is the extra slouchy version.

I believe that I used needles one size smaller than the pattern called for. I also freestyled on the increase a little bit to add some extra detail. The only tricky aspect of this pattern is making sure that you keep your stitches straight; I had to troubleshoot on a few occasions, but I really like how they turned out.

November 29, 2010

Week of Hats: Day 1

I recently added a bunch of my projects to my Ravelry account. And to show off my work (and diligence) I began posting each item to my Facebook page one at a time. It dawned on me yesterday that I should have done this through my blog instead. Thus the Week of Hats is born. Please enjoy and let me know what you think.

Flower Hat

I made this hat while on vacation in Maine this summer. The pattern for this cap is from Narumi Ogawa's Mr. Funky's Super Crochet Wonderful and was the perfect project for a road trip from Maine to Massachusetts. The flower is detachable and my good friend Anna models it very well.

November 27, 2010

Mystery Veg--Can you guess what it is?

I didn't feel up to the farmers' market this morning: the weather was crummy and I wasn't feeling too well (my annual Holiday cold has arrived.) So instead I have a little challenge for my readers (all 11 of you).

Can you name this mystery vegetable?

We found it at the supermarket last night. Neither of us had seen or heard of it before, and so naturally we picked one up. Here are some more pictures and a hint* to help you along:

*Its about 2.5 feet long, and no, it isn't celery.

Bonus points and my great thanks for preparation suggestions and recipes.

November 23, 2010

Mills College Holiday Craft Fair 2010

Last Thursday I participated in the annual Mills College Holiday Craft Fair. The day was great! It started out a little cold (great for hat sales), I got to sit next to my dear friend, former boss, knitter extraordinaire Fatima, and introduce a whole bunch of people to the magical world of whoopie pies. Take a look at what I brought and let me tell you how I did.

I brought...

Knitted goodies: festive cable beanies, slouchy berets, neckwarmers of all sorts, and wrist warmers. Also some crochet and felt pins (lower right corner).

Felt Christmas ornaments (on Etsy soon)

that I displayed on a purple Christmas tree.
Nice touch, I think.

And catnip buddies (of course)

I think I did pretty well. But next time I won't bring as many vanilla whoopie pies.*

*didn't sell a single one!

November 20, 2010

Farm Fresh Diary: November 20, 2010

Sorry for the lapse in posts. I went home last weekend (and so missed the farmers market) and then I was really busy preparing for the Mills Holiday Craft Fair on Thursday. The good news is I made it to the market this week and have tons of pictures of my craft stuff and the fair.

I didn't think I'd be able to make it to the farmers' market this week on account of the rain. Every meteorologist in the Bay Area reported rain all day Saturday and I didn't think that I'd want to brave the wet weather. But when I woke up this morning the weather was pretty nice: no rain, just chilly. So I decided to give it a shot; besides, I really wanted some bacon and I figured I might find some at the butcher stall. I donned my rain boots and jacket and set out. Here's what I got:

Thai basil, green beans and a red bell pepper (for dinner), ginger, red potatoes (for Evan), bacon (yum), and a pretzel croissant.

My first stop was the Range Brothers stall. They didn't have bacon listed on their board but I spotted apple and bacon sausage. I love chicken and apple sausage and figured that these would make a perfect substitute for bacon. But when I got to the register I discovered that they had accidentally sent the box that had the apple and bacon sausage to Danville. Fortunately, they had bacon! It was a bit pricier than the sausages--and therefore cost me more than I had anticipated--but I couldn't say no. The bacon was pretty good...maybe not as good as the $9 I spent for 12oz of the stuff, but it was tasty and went well with the homemade biscuits that I made for breakfast.

Now I'm sure you're wondering what a pretzel croissant is. Well...its exactly what it sounds like: its a cross between a pretzel and a croissant. It has the light, airy texture of a croissant but tastes like a pretzel. I picked one up from the OctoberFeast Bakery stall--the same place that makes the pretzels that I like--to hold us over until I could make the biscuits.

November 11, 2010

Buddies Galore

Check out these super cute catnip buddies!

I actually made these catnip buddies a while ago, but I've been staggering their release--which is a polite, albeit half-truth way of saying that I made them ages ago and then fell off the crafting and Etsy wagon for a while and now I'm using them as filler between real-time posts. Every blogger does it (at one time or another); it happens.

Posts about my current craft projects are just around the corner. I've actually been crafting quite a bit (I'm preparing for a craft faire!!!) and I've finally gotten around to taking photos of my yarn crafts. Stay tuned.

November 8, 2010

Home Improvements and Autumn Decorations

Every once in a while I feel like changing things up a little bit. About two weeks ago I started to notice that I was coming down with a case of the home improvement blues. It all began when I suddenly realized that I was absolutely sick of the pile of shoes that had manifested in our "entry way". (I say "entryway" in quotes because its proximity to the door, rather than its size, is what qualifies it as an entryway.) I then realized that I had far too many pairs of socks, my shoes were far too inaccessible to allow for regular use, and there was nothing in the apartment that said "Fall is here!".

So I decided that changes had to be made. I cleaned out my sock drawer (it's the simple things in life), relocated my shoes from an inaccessible corner between two dressers to the shelf above said space, and bought myself a nifty, sleek shoe rack (that I picked up from Target for $10 and 10 minutes of my time). I also strategically placed some removable hooks around the apartment, (finally) hung my painting, and set up a lovely little autumn themed center piece on our coffee table.

I took a cue from my friend Christina and utilized a silk scarf that I inherited from my grandmother and used it as a table cloth. I like to think that using it to add some color to the living room is a much more effective way to use this piece of cloth, especially when you consider that it's been living in my dresser for years.

I also filled a small basket that I often use to display my work at craft fairs with decorative gourds--organic and otherwise. The "real" decorative gourds were on sale at the market and I made the other two from a pattern that I found online. They took me less than an hour to make and I think hat they help to make a lovely arrangement.

And lastly I added a vase of marigolds to the mix. I really love marigolds, especially in November. Stay tuned to see what I do for Christmas.

November 6, 2010

Farm Fresh Diary: November 6, 2010

The farmers' market was lovely this morning. I did a little perusing, had a nice conversation with an apple vendor, and found some beautiful flowers. I picked up 3-ish pounds of heirloom tomatoes (for making sauce), a bunch of thyme, and 3 New York Special apples. Apples were really the only item that I had on my mental shopping list today and so I was quite satisfied with myself when I found these. I had never heard of New York Special apples before and was very curious. So I gathered up some courage and asked the vendor about them. He gave me a sample and explained that they are a cross between Braeburn and McIntosh varieties. We also had a short conversation about apples that was very pleasant. At any rate, the apples are very tasty and now they're one of my favorite varieties.

I also got some pastries for breakfast (the usual from Panorama) and splurged a bit on these flowers. I didn't plan on getting two bunches, but they were reasonably priced and I really fell in love with the idea of mixing them together like so:

November 3, 2010

Gettin' Things Done

Three years ago I took a beginning painting class. I made this creepy little lady for my final. I've been meaning to hang her ever since we moved into our apartment last June. Until two weeks ago, she had been leaning against a wall in our bedroom. Then, with the intention of hanging her, I moved her to the living room. Unfortunately, I couldn't find the D-rings that I thought I had. By the time I finished my chores and ventured into the rain to pick some up from the hardware store, I was not in the mood for putting it all together.

Which is ridiculous, because I've done this kind of work before (I used to work as a preparator for a museum) and because it took me less than 10 minutes to do.


+ 10 minutes and some planning =

1 creepy beauty and 1 happy girl.


Getting her up on the wall has definitely been a process and serves as a testament to my propensity to procrastinate. But she's up and looks great and I'm happy.