Mar 31, 2009

Oh, how I miss you!

My old sewing machine, which is still in Norway because shipping it here is too expensive… and it has a bunch of extra feet and things to change stitches, which are in a separate bag somewhere, and I can’t go there myself to find them…

 

My parents gave me this, because I so desperately wanted a sewing machine. They could only afford a used one, and were worried that I might not like it since it wasn’t new… silly people, I loved it, and still do! It’s pretty, looks different, has lots of functions you wouldn’t expect for a vintage machine… and I miss it so much!

 

Crappy picture because it’s a scan. And because the original picture is crappy too. Hey, it’s almost 10 years old, give me a break ;)

Mar 30, 2009

Inspiration strikes!

I love it when a burst of inspiration floats by. This time, the idea that I’ll work on first is a new tawashi. I have other projects in mind as well, but they require more time and materials – I have one, but not the other, guess which! At least my new notebook is making itself useful, being filled with idea after idea.

 

While I’m working out the details, taking loads of pictures and writing up a pattern, I’ll leave you with this: -->

Another cuff, double, knit with sock yarn. Actually the yarn had sections of black and white very short repeats too, but I cut those out since I only wanted the pink and green. Ran out of yarn, so the bind-off is a little bit tight. But it still fits, and I still love it, which is what counts.

Mar 29, 2009

Today’s doodle… and some other randomness

A grape/hippo/animal thing, based on a strange creature I saw in “Gurren Lagann” - a very over-the-top hectic anime with huge mechas which is made by Gainax, of whom I’m sure you know already if you’re into anime at all :)


If you think that sentence was hard to read without mentally running out of breath… then don’t watch Gurren Lagann!


Now what to fill the rest of the notebook page with… hmm…


In other news, Nosferatuia posted a review of Q-lia’s Crystal Cube gel pens today. Now I want them. They’re not available online. Is this good or bad? I don’t know.


Also, this. Beautiful pen. Yes, pens can be beautiful. I don’t even know if I’d ever use it, at least not until I grow up a little bit and manage to not write with rainbow colors all the time… but I crave it nonetheless. Maybe I could just… hang it on the wall? Would that be weird at all?



Did you know that they (ok, Japan… or.. South Korea. Not sure which is to blame for this, this, this… wickedness!) make scented kneadable erasers in happy colors? They even come in a cute box… somehow I wish I didn’t know that. Or, to be more correct, my bank account wishes I didn’t know. Then again, that account died a painful death a long, long time ago.

Mar 28, 2009

Finally done!

The bathmat of dooooom is finished! Yay! 437923749364937938 meters of i-cord, then hours spent slip-stitching all of it together, today I saw the end of it!

All made on my very homemade i-cord maker. Which still holds up fine, btw.

Here it is, after being ironed into submission to lie completely flat:

Yes, that’s my entire stash of cheap cotton. I didn’t care about matching colors or keeping it balanced, figured all that i-cord would be hard enough on my sanity already. And weaving in ends.

I might make another one. If I get a 6-year old who loves making i-cord, that is.

Wonder how large it is? I’d say it’s bathmat sized. Regular, standard bathmat size.

Mar 27, 2009

Cute pencil case (and a couple of pens)

Received my order from peapod studio yesterday – and love it, of course! Very well made, and the seller was super friendly. So friendly that I’ll be going back there and ask for some custom made stuff I’m too lazy to sew myself later.

 

 

Got a couple of uni-ball signo bits 0.18mm as well, from jstationery. One violet, one purple. Not a shock if you know me at all ;) I like them both, but one seems to write better than the other. Maybe some more “breaking in” is required. Anyway, not at all as scratchy as I worried they might be. I think I’m getting addicted to thin pens…

 

 

Cedric proudly modelling the mohair scarf he helped me knit! (He came up with the pattern and helped keep the kitties away).

The scarf looks a lot better in real life, because, you know, you can actually see the pattern. I didn’t bother blocking it, mohair is so fuzzy anyway, I don’t see the point. The pattern is k1, *yo, k2tog* to one stitch is left, then knit that last stitch. Repeat until you can do it in your sleep with one hand tied on your back while solving complicated math problems… by then, you’ll be about halfway.

Finished with a row of single crochet on each end – but that’s not really necessary.

Mar 26, 2009

Theme Thursday – things to do when you’re bored

Beware, this is full of timewasters!

 

Practice your shadow puppet skills:

http://www.instructables.com/id/Basic-Shadow-Puppets/

 

Make a Yip-Yip costume and dress up for buying groceries:

http://www.instructables.com/id/Yip-Yip-Costume/

 

Learn some useful knots, practice on every piece of available string you can find, including shoelaces already on shoes:

http://www.realknots.com/knots/index.htm

 

Learn the Norwegian names of a bunch of flowers – or just look at the pretty pictures:

http://www.kristvi.com/testdb/flora1.php

 

The most adorable cartoon ever, about a kitten. At only 3 minutes an episode, you owe it to yourself to at least watch one:

http://www.narutowire.com/318/Chi%27s-Sweet-Home

 

How about some addictive flash games?

http://www.eyezmaze.com/

 

Watch Korean, Japanese, Taiwanese dramas. Remember to have plenty of tissues available, these are tearjerkers!

http://www.mysoju.com/

 

Some look fun, some are strange, others are just plain ugly:

http://tackyweddings.com/

 

Translate any text from original language to any other, then translate it back. Repeat a couple of times. Laugh at result:

http://www.tranexp.com:2000/Translate/result.shtml

 

This will make you feel like a better baker. Guaranteed:

http://cakewrecks.blogspot.com/

 

How not to list your house/apartment for sale:

http://www.lovelylisting.com/

 

Older than the Internet’s grandmother, but still hilarious -  Dogs in Elk:

http://alumni.media.mit.edu/~solan/dogsinelk/

 

Robots in the Victorian Era:

http://www.bigredhair.com/robots/

(PS: It’s not real. Didn’t prevent a lot of people from thinking so, though. Another oldie.)

Now you have no reason to get any work done for a few hours. You’re welcome! :p

Mar 25, 2009

When two loves unite

… this is the result.

 

I needed to use a tiny crochet hook, but didn’t have one with a handle… and they’re incredibly uncomfortable to use without. So I emptied the barrel of an old pen that doesn’t work anymore (better if you get one without the clip-thingie on top, as I’m sure it’d become annoying after a while), inserted the crochet hook, and cut enough of the ink-holder thingie inside to wedge against the hook to keep it in place. Taped the two together, and that’s all there is to it.

Of course you can use anything that fits inside the barrel to keep the hook in place, I just didn’t feel like looking all over the place for something pretty.

 

 

Yes, in my household, things that we don’t immediately remember the name of get called thingies. It happens a lot, since neither of us are native speakers of English.

Mar 24, 2009

Yoodliedoodliedoo!

Just playing around with my Pilot Color Enos… because it’s fun.

Sorry about the crappy photo, but trust me, you’re not missing out on much ;)

I only show this because I’m trying to not be ashamed of my complete lack of talent – it IS all about the fun, after all! And if I can post my silly little doodles, so can anyone else!

The fish are based on some knitted and crocheted tawashi I made a while ago.


::Edited to replace picture with a slightly better scanned version::


Mar 23, 2009

The pens I won from JetPens

I just had to post a picture of them – I don’t often win things! Then again, I suppose most people don’t win very often, which is what makes it so special!

I really wanted to try the lavender-black, and am happy to report that so far I like it. Will post a review of that later, along with the other colors as well.

Hint: Lavender-black, red and pink are my favourites. Blue-black not so much…

Mar 22, 2009

Review: Hello Kitty Hi-Tec-C 0.3mm baby pink

I already did a review on the regular Hi-Tec-C 0.3mm pens a little while ago. Since then though, I’ve changed my mind about some things. Much thanks to a certain old geezer’s advice.



This particular pen, I received from JetPens to review. I find that the 0.3mm point works just fine, didn’t have any problem at all this time. It offers a pleasant writing experience, and is far from as scratchy as my first attempts with the Cutie Colors. The ink needed a little bit of convincing at first, but that’s common for many new pens. It has performed perfectly since then, at both slow and normal writing speeds.


At this point I have no real preference between the 0.3mm and 0.4mm (although some colors require the thicker lines for easier reading), the scratchiness seems to depend more on ink than tip-size, and nothing a bit of rubbing alcohol can’t solve. It’s either that, or the people at JetPens offer newer pens than the seller I’ve bought from before. Can’t really say anything about that without ordering more from JetPens (oh, the horror!)


Left: 0.3mm Hi-Tec-C / Right: 0.4mm Hi-Tec-C


I also recommend that you write on a smooth paper, with no loose fibres that may clog up the tip. Not only is it a nightmare to write on (fingernails on blackboard!), but your pen will completely stop working after a little while.


My “specimen” had a Charmmy Kitty charm on the cap, very cute! The clip it sits on, can, as most people know by now, be removed and placed on another pen of the same kind. Be careful though, it’s quite hard to pull the kitty off the cap. I was able to do it for the pictures, but won’t be tempting fate by doing it more than once (or twice, when the pen runs out, although you could just as well reuse the whole cap or buy a refill).


I found that I had to remove the cap from the pen first, then pull charm and cap firmly apart, with no wriggling and no funky angle, just straight apart.


Writing test in my brand spanking new PINK Moleskine Volant:

(The whole recipe can be found here)


The baby pink is a nice, vibrant pink. It’s the palest one of the pinks offered, but still very legible.


The only downside to this set in my opinion, (because you have to buy all 9, can’t be bought separately), is the price. $30 is too much for me to spend on pens in one go, which is sad, because they’re all so cute!


Long story short: If you like Hello Kitty, thin pens and have the money to spend, go for it. They will brighten up both your notes and desk!

Mar 21, 2009

Busy day!

All self-inflicted, mind you. At 11:15pm, I suddenly realized I had only eaten some yogurt today. Time to eat again, perhaps? I got so busy doing laundry, cleaning floors, running all over the place trying to make this place look nice, that I completely forgot about food. And writing that pen review. Oh well, the review can wait until tomorrow.

Once I’m done with all the necessary stuff, I’ll spend the rest of the night knitting. I love having such nice yarn to work with!

Contents of knitting bag:

- 1 purple mohair scarf, about 1/3 done

- 1 green alpaca/silk hat, barely started

- 1 pair of rust-red socks in Elann Sock-it-to-me, which is not my most favorite yarn ever, but it works.


That’s it, you’re currently seeing my entire stash in the process of being used ;)

I don’t get more than I need at any time, no space to store it anyway.

Oh, and of course there’s the never-ending bathmat of doom that is actually almost done, but it’s too large to fit in the bag.

Mar 20, 2009

More random mail :)

This came from Susan on Ravelry. She read about how I wanted a reusable coffee filter, and decided to send me one! I promised to send her a pocket-sized hockey player in return… now where to find that!

 

I couldn’t believe all the neat stuff when I opened the package!

 

A card from New Zealand, wonderfully soft, purple mohair yarn, chocolate(!), Vegemite (I wanted to try it to see how it compares to Marmite), a mix CD with NZ music, a bunch of tiny, cute purple envelopes, gel pens in my favourite colors, neat soap, bamboo knitting needles, and last, but definitely not least, the coffee filter! I felt like it was my birthday all over again!

Mar 19, 2009

Theme Thursday - Fairytales

Today’s theme is something I’ve loved for as long as I can remember. The first books I read were fairytales, my grandfather told me folk tales, so did my mother. So I have a very big love for stories like that, from all over the world.


Fairytale inspired recipes; because you know some of those stories leave you hungry after long, detailed descriptions of lavish feasts! I really want the second one. It looks like a fun activity to do, with or without children around.


Little Red Riding Hood memo pads by Shinzi Katoh, rubber stamps,

an amigurumi pattern (very cute!), another amigurumi pattern because

I couldn’t pick just one (and the second one has a wolf too),

stackable cups, with either Red Riding Hood or the 3 piggies..


How about a fairytale picnic?

…or some reading material? 209 of the Grimm’s fairytales available here.

I hope they’re the unedited ones, didn’t have time to check. They’re so much more fun with a bit of blood and gore. Fairytales were never supposed to be all nice. Nice doesn’t keep children from being naughty little buggers.


Hansel and Gretel. Isn’t the cross stitch pattern adorable? Someday I will make this! It’s painfully expensive, though. More similar style patterns available on the website. The second picture is a memo pad from Kamio. They have one with Little Red Riding Hood as well, but I already posted enough with her, I think ;)


Tiny miniature cups with fairytale scenery, Alice in Wonderland rubber stamps, The Wizard of Oz daily planner (these two are fairytales because I say so),

Rapunzel with her prince crochet pattern.


That’s all for now!

Mar 17, 2009

Sneak preview!

Not all that interesting, but I don’t have anything finished right now. It’s all my fault for starting new projects all the time without finishing anything. I’m usually not that bad, but lately I just want to make everything at once!

 

A gazillion craploads of i-cord coming up:

 

 

Look, star! Wohoo, I’m almost getting creative here!

Mar 16, 2009

Surprise in the mail!

Why I love the Random Acts of Kindness group on Ravelry:

 

This is what was waiting for me at the post office today! A box all the way from Kristina in Sweden, filled with salty liquorice and yarn. How neat is that?

 

 

 

This whole giving without expecting anything in return is all kinds of awesome :)

It brightens the day, no matter if you’re on the giving or the receiving end.

 

In other news, figured out how to do the rounded corners thing on images – it was a lot easier than I though, so easy I should have been able to do it a lot sooner!

Mar 15, 2009

Socks for Mr. and Mrs. Gnome’s new baby

tinysockSince gnomes can be quite fickle, and you really DON’T want to get on their bad side, I decided to knit their baby a pair of socks. This is no easy task, gnome babies being tiny and all (a grown gnome is about 6” tall), but I figured it’d be worth it.

 

The idea of having to:

untangle microscopic braids in cat fur every day,

never finding my coffee in the morning,

important computer components mysteriously going missing,

my favourite pens suddenly being dry,

cat hair in our food (oh wait, that happens anyway!),

random pages missing from expensive books

 

is not terribly appealing. You think it sounds somewhat… excessive? Don’t piss off the gnomes, or you’ll soon realize that my little list there is just the beginning.

 

I only have one sock ready so far, so I put a little loop on it and attached it to a keyring for now – would hate to lose it!

Mar 14, 2009

I’m ready for that time machine now, guys

Does anyone want a ride back to the 80s, for shits & giggles? We’re just about ready to install the flux capacitor in the bus, so sign up before it’s too late!

 

See you on the dance floor! o(^-^o)(o^-^)o o(^-^o)(o^-^)o

 

80scuff

 

P.S. We’ll be stopping by the 70s too, no worries ;)

It only lacks the duct tape!

redmacSaw this gem parked outside the store yesterday. Very creative use of random spare parts, don’t you think? Maybe MacGyver (who I will keep on referencing forever and ever) has a redneck cousin nearby ;)

 

To quote another clever guy:

“If women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy!” (The Red Green show)

Mar 13, 2009

So unrelated, yet so cool!

led_umbrellaEver since I first saw the umbrella with light in the handle on Blade Runner (affectionately called the “glowbrella”), I’ve wanted one for myself.

 

And now I can! Current goal: Procure one of these babies before summer! Could sure have used one last year, in June we had 24 days of rain – and it did not get better from there either. In the spirit of rain everywhere, I shall carry Mr.Glowbrella everywhere, and thus ensure Quebec a nice summer!

Mar 12, 2009

Theme Thursday – Strawberries!

Because they taste good, smell good and look pretty!

I can't make much in the way of strawberry related foods/desserts because Jeff is very allergic, but there is a link to my favorite breakfast among the pictures.

It is delicious! Make sure to use a good-quality yogurt.

My favorite is Liberté organic vanilla yogurt, to which I add

strawberries and Kellogg's Guardian cereal with maple syrup.

It makes for a nice, filling little breakfast!


***


Bonus round:

Strawberry Path, “When the Raven has come to the Earth”. Japanese hard/psychedelic rock from the 70s. No, I did not just google this. I just happened to have it. No, not because of the name ;)


Random trivia:

The strawberry red Hi-Tec-C pen is the same color as the Revlon Electric Strawberry nail polish. In other words, bright, almost neon 80s pink! Not bright in a painful way, bright in an awesomely happy "my nails are making this room a better place" kind of way. Same goes for the pen, obviously. Yes, I know I mentioned this in the pen review yesterday. I needed to say it again. It’s out of my system now! *off to paint nails*