Sunday, June 10, 2007

So many crafts, so little time!

As D-Day looms nearer and nearer, I find myself

a) not wanting to start once again)
b) trying really hard not to stash
c) trying even harder to finish Oriental Fans

It's probably a double edged sword having so many crafts that are too enjoyable. THat is, enjoyable to the point that I often wish I was at home pottering around the house rather than at the office. To say nothing of the job (which has dismal prospects of late), the list of crafts now extend to:

cross stitch (overwhelmingly addictive, credit card enemy)
tatting (nice break to indulge in from time to time, cost effective too)
crochet (nice to play with thread, also relatively cost effective... but cheaper in the USA)
patchwork/quilting (going soooo slow, and been playing hooky from class, I HAVE to finish that sampler soon
embroidery (fast, and fun, but also needs some home work)
beading (pretty damn pricey, even with my wholesale accounts!, but fast to finish and provides some of the quickest Happy Dances and wearable to boot) -- which reminds me, I have lost a part of a set of patterns I took classes for. THey're somewhere in the house but I don't know where
hardanger (fairly fast, and fun, except for the blanket stitch...nice to indulge in and good outlet when you rather perforate your boss' brain)

Hurm... what else?

Oh ya! I took up knitting a couple of weeks ago from Mona (see Knitnut/Mona at the knitty blog section on the right). Yes, don't we have enough to do already!! We went to Adeline's and picked up two balls of Schachenmeyer Apollo acrylic, which is like a double twist (loose twist) in a medium taupe and a variegated second colour which runs from light chocolate to ice blue to navy... very nice. Adeline retreated at the challenge of teaching a leftie (hander, not commie)... but Mona showed me just how to do it... cast on (using the knitted approach ... later I find out there are various ways to do this), knit and purl.

I put my first ones on metal Poney needles ... cast on five times and was about to give up when I saw the gradation of colour just slowly "grow", and then bang! A new crafty obsession. I can already see much stashing in this field, but thankfully together I can pair it up with crochet.

Truthfully, I'm not a housewife. But there are times when it's all I want to be. (But one who is interested in world affairs, current issues, stock market and pretentious books, but won't advertise it, of course

So here are some updates:

This is my first project. Of course, like all starters with no imagination, the choice was "scarf". It's going to my dad and there are one or two errata discovered along the way, but the experts I know say it doesn't really matter as is
ahem a) good for a first timer b) the variegation covers it up.

Ahhh.. and here is project number 2. It's a poncho-in-the-making using Sirdar Country in a sort of purple and pink. Boy I'll say one thing, knitting is not a craft you should go into if you're skint, because it does add up esp in Malaysia with its 30%over duty. Dumbass laws!

So far, I'm working to make flat pieces, and don't know how to increase or decrease yet (but I can bind off, I think)... but I would love to progress to things like cables and lace.

So the stash for this has begun: Here's 3 samplers ( I have two balls of each type)

Top one is sort of an eyelash yarn, the one of the left is a thin silvery-blue thing which I heard can be combined with a thicker yarn or another for a shimmery piece (think the Kreinik BF's for knitting)
The one of the right, the most recent acquisition (RM20 for two balls of that most gorgeous peacock blue/turquoise) is for lace knitting. And I don't even know how to do lace knitting yet!!! This is from Knitpicks, I think. (god, I just can't wait to MOVE so I can avail myself of great and cheap stas!)

On to cross stitch...

Oriental Fans, the fourth of the five-project challenge, now looks like this: 74% of the cross stitching done.

After this, HAED again. Yay! I LOVE James Christensen's art and have a bunch of his charts which I wanna do. At one point, it seemed that some of the charting was pretty suspect -- i.e. blotchy spots, and while I love the more "serious" art type or the ones that feature beautiful supernatural folk, I shy away from the cutesy style ones, but at the back of my mind, think that they might have better accuracy when compared to the original.

Also I need to get back to the lovelies I bought before but abandoned. And perhaps, acquire Kinuko Craft's Turandot -- finally, a chart that combines my love of opera and music and Oriental culture !! -- which I have been salivating since forever, like even before they signed Kinuko (a reputedly difficult artist but brimming with incredible talent).

...and Jan Houtman's Patchwork Sampler, always a addictive stitch, is now well into its second panel. Watch out for the big rectangular block coming, which I need to figure out how to fill... either to retake the motifs and stsitch it, or plonk some other motif in??? hmm

On the cross stitch stashing front, I picked up all 3 parts of 100 Birds, a famous Chinese painting good for feng shui from Haby & Wool.
Hans, a really famous Dutch stitcher, generously gifted me with a Permin kit (my first Permin kit!!!) and Terence Nolan/Dimples Designs' Wee Beasties. Thank you, Hans, you're a darling!
I also bought 3 Indigo Rose charts (used) from a stitcher, and am awaiting them in the mail. One of them, Jasmine and Sapphire comes with the Caron Waterlilies threads, so that is too cool.
Above all, participataed in the Needlework Show, wrote Tracy Horner a tale about her latest coup, I Still Do (gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous) and I WON THAT CHART!!!! Tracy sent it to me, and I also purchased Kaleidoscope, based on her colourful mandala paintings. I bought 1m of linen from Aw and am about to kickstart some new projects, once the urge hits. (in the meantime, still desperately trying to have more finishes and show less "stash" before BF's imminent touchdown in KL)

No pix of stitchy stash, I'm afraid... but I'll organise it all and post it soon, I promise.

Onward, to beading. Most of these are for girls at work. I have to admit, I work with some pretty awesome people. It's just the person we have to report to that makes me shake my head sometimes.

A bracelet I made for Kerry to match earrings (done earlier). I had to do some lengthening, because while Kerry is marvellously slim and I figured her wrist would be tiny, missed the circumferential mark by about 1" at first. Using glass pearls, gold and silver caps and smoky quartz she bought in China.

This is a fixer upper done by moi (readers, watch out for the label, which I finally hope to kick start towards the end of the year)... just to reshape the necklace. The restringing was not a problem until i reached the "pendant" which was a loop-de-loop ..and THEN the cursing began. Also, I might need to redo this (have to resize Ling's neck measurement again) because I think it's a tad short.

Some pairs of earrings, which are prototypes for my future easy-wear, easy-on-the-wallet line. Glass cubes and semi precious stones make them a whimsical pair. I've had to pick my models, Susan, Hung Yee, Ling and Kathy. Let's hope they LIKE them and will wear them, or it's back to the drawing board (or in my case, sweaty, small, over crowded, craft-shop-lookalike bedroom)


Michelle said...

I have a ton of hobbies too - and I love doing every one of them. Congrats on learning to knit, I am just learning as well and have completed my first scarf also! Your Fans are looking beautiful!

HAED Sexy Fairy said...

Unbelievable - how much you can achieve in such a short time. No wonder your doctor is not very happy with you.

I like the yarns that you use to knit!! I think I should get back to you very soon before you left *sigh*

Race for the fan???

Ruth said...

Wow, you've been Little Miss Accomplishments! Each and every item looks divine. Congrats. I love your summary of hobbies and their devilish pros and cons -- You are soooo right.

Aniza said...

We are the normals to have more than 1 hobby...but there are loads more abnormals out there who doesn't have a single productive hobby! ;-)

bells said...

Wow! You've been a very busy girl!
Love the jewellery!! Your cross-stitch is looking awesome as well! And congrats on learning how to knit! Isn't it fun?