Month: June 2014

Cast on, cast away!

lumplump

That picture. The one right above these very words displays the horror that was the beginning of last week. I finally finished tweaking the (simple) midi skirt pattern I had been working on. To make the fabric more manageable (it is about 10ft by 12 ft!) I cut out a rectangle… Then I ironed it, not once, not twice, but THREE times. The result? That picture right up there… There must be something wrong with the way this fabric was woven, because no matter how I iron it, it cools down to that lumpy texture. [If anyone knows how to fix this, please let me know!] So with my summer midi skirt dreams crushed, I moved onto knitting Jessa! (I’m totally still on the lookout for a perfect summer midi skirt fabric though…)

JessaSwatch

First came  swatching! The picture actually shows my second swatch on 3.25 mm straights, it’s slightly under-gauge but since my gauge loosens on circulars I decided 3.25 mm would be a good size!

instruments

In case you have never thrift shopped for knitting needles, these two items are what I usually bring with me. A less conspicuous piece of equipment would be a knitting needle gauge, which is basically a piece of metal or wood that you can push the needles through to check their size. Since I don’t have a knitting needle gauge but I do have a vernier caliper, I prefer to use my vernier caliper (not to mention it’s also more accurate!). Unfortunately there were no circulars at the two thrift stores I visited so I went to my LYS to pick up aero’s!


needles

mistakes

After casting on and finishing the neckband, I started the short row neck shaping. Everything was fine until I realized I had been twisting my purl stitches for one entire row! You can see it in the picture above, all of those little bars one row above my needle are twisted stitches. I don’t know why this has been happening to me laterly! I assume it’s because for the past three years I’ve only knit cowls, mittens and socks…

Anyways this was frogged yesterday, and I re-knit a new neckband today! I am now onto the short row shaping for the second time…

Summer is HERE! (In my mind at least)

manicure1

Today was a day off. No classes and no studying to be done! I meant to get up to sewing a pleated skirt with a plaid fabric… I’ve been designed what to sew with this fabric ever since I saw it! I finally settled on a design and created a pattern, I just need to cut and sew! A post on that will be coming up soon. Unfortunately (or fortunately) for me my friends had different plans; spa day!

There’s really only one colour I ever wear on my nails… China Glaze’s Flip Flop Fantasy! You can definitely tell it’s summer when flip flop fantasy is broken out. This colour makes me smile every time I look at my hands. It also makes me want to:

– Go on a road trip
– Dance
– Flip my hair
– Sing loudly
– Ride my bike through the fields
– Lay on the beach
– Drive down farm roads
– Sit out on the dock
– Swim in a lake
– Jump
– Eat freshly picked berries

It’s amazing how something so small as nail polish can really brighten up your day! Seriously if you haven’t tried this polish in the summer GO GET IT!

Please excuse my super messy application, it’s really hard to do a nice job on “engineering cut nails” (that’s the style I call my badly cut nails when they have to be kept short for laboratories!). Plus I wanted to snap pictures before the awful humidity ruined all that hard work!

manicure2

Thrift Finds

closeupkhakishirt

I told myself I was going to do this post today, I thrifted these items quite a while ago (upwards of a month… I had a winter coat on…) So like any determined person I dedicated myself to photographing the items. As your can probably tell by the terrible quality, I had a really hard time photographing the clothes. I’ve always had a hard time taking pictures of clothes! That is definitely one of the reasons I was hesitant to start a blog in the first place.

I took a few deeps breaths and went through my photos and chose the least-worst photos, so here it is, a long overdue collection of thrifted items! I always love looking at what other people find (and especially what they pay for it!) Keep reading to find out what I got for a grand total of 20$!

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Dying Cotton Yarn

picture2A few weeks ago during my regular thrifting trips I found 10 balls of pure white cotton yarn [for about 8$]. I put one into a skein (first time ever!) to take a few pictures of the pre-dyed colour but my skein was horrible (really horrible!) so I have no pictures! 😦 Imagine white snow, or if you have no snow, those giant jet-puffed marshmallows.picture1

So I went out and got a packet of dylon in scarlet. I’ve used this once before to tie-dye shirts for Canada day. My friend wanted a darker red, but I was convinced scarlet was going to turn out to be the brightest most Canadian red! My first was right, the shirts came out light orange/red, and faded to a beautiful coral colour. Since I had more than the recommended amount of grams for the one package of dye, I figured my yarn would come out coral. I followed the instructions for manual dying (cue sitting outside stirring a giant pot of yarn with a spoon for thirty minutes!), and this is the result!

The plan for this yarn is to make Jessa by Justyna Lorkowska in a summery cotton yarn. I’ve been hesitant to cast on ever since I finished winding up the yarn because of the modifications I want to make, but also because I’ve never knit a full garment and I’ve never knit with cotton! If anyone has any advice on knitting a garment with cotton (such as whether I should knit a smaller size and expect it to stretch out, or size up because it won’t stretch!?) it would be so greatly appreciated! As for the modifications, I would like to make the button band in the back real, so that it can actually open and close, and I’d like the neckline to be the same in the back as the front, so that I can wear it “backwards” or the way it is pictured in the pattern photos!

 

Andalou Naturals BB Cream Review!

Picture of the tube and box. I feel like I’m the only one who has been searching all over town for a natural safe spf protection for my face! I finally decided to purchase the Andalou Naturals All-in-One Beauty Balm with SPF 30 – Tinted when I found out about it in the monthly flyer for my local health food store! The product claims [and my opinion]:

  • helps prevent sunburn [YES]
  • decreases risk of skin cancer and early skin aging caused by the sun [UNSURE]
  • naturally sheer, mineral-tint colour (complements most skin tones) [NO]
  • can be worn under make-up [YES]
  • certified organic aloe vera soothes inflammation, oxygenates and hydrates, advances dermal delivery and absorption of active ingredients [UNSURE]
  • brightening [YES]
  • contains fruit stem-cells which renew, repair and regenerate the skin [UNSURE]

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