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Posts Tagged ‘tree’

My Canon PowerShot A530 took a turn for the worst. While attempting to replace the batteries, I dropped my camera (again) and it broke. I was actually surprised, since this point-and-shoot model is really sturdy and has survived some pretty traumatic falls. This time the height of the plunge wasn’t astronomical, but the retractable lens took the brunt of the impact. Apparently, lenses are really integral to camera functions, so I’m dumb out of luck. A new camera is in the mail but, for now, I’m stuck sifting through my Flickr account for old project photos like this baby hat.

There’s no pattern for the newborn beanie since I just made it up as I went along. I used a partly filled party balloon and Bev’s sizing list to determine the number of increases. The hat is half double crocheted with a size G hook and a row cluster stitches. I used some scraps from my Grandma’s old wool stash so I don’t know the yarn brand. Most likely it’s virgin wool from the Mill End store, though.

This Boy Beanie v2.0 was made for my brother. Shh, I haven’t tucked in all the ends! The hat is a revised edition of the Boy Beanie published in Stitch ‘n Bitch: The Happy Hooker. I wasn’t impressed with how the pattern was written. For one, I was never sure which rows were meant to be made in the back loops only. Plus, there’s an odd ch 2 maneuver that I didn’t like since it made the seam stiff and shorter than the rest of the hat.

I do like the color changes and overall style of the hat, though. There’s not a lot of yarn required and with all the double crochet it takes very little time. And free is a very good price for a pattern.

My brother has requested a ‘less holey’ version that fits his head. He does have a big noggin so I can’t blame the pattern for the size issue. One of these days I’ll get around to making him a custom, single crochet version.

Another pattern pattern designed with guys in mind is The Husband Hat, available for free at Crafty Christina with a folded brim and minimal single color trim.

*That’s cool* a random fact

The first passengers to ride a hot air balloon were a sheep, a duck and a rooster in 1783 as a royal demonstration for the court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette.

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I finished the knit boucle scarf for my mom.  Even though the pattern was very simple it took a lot longer to make than I’m used to.  There are more stitches to the inch compared to crochet and being a slow knitter doesn’t exactly speed things along. 

When I did finally finish the knitting I still wanted to embroider something simple in the corner.  After deciding on a treble clef, I put an image through knitPro to get one of those nifty graphs.  Originally, I intended to try out the duplicate stitch technique but the Caron SS yarn was fatally hidden by the boucle.  Those little tufts of yarn buried my best attempts. 

Since the duplicate stitch didn’t look right, I tried the back stitch.  Even with two strands together all that fuzzy boucle still got in the way, so I finally came to the conclusion that the crochet slip stitch was my only option.   

The slip stitches turned out to be just what I was looking for.  The only downfall is you have to free hand a bit more than the embroidery (exactly the reason I put it off).  The extra effort was worth it, though.  The slip stitch made the curves look much nicer than the embroidery and the raised effect makes the insignia really pop. 

My favorite part of the slip stitch technique is the opposite side.  Since I wove the ends in back through the treble clef, the backside doesn’t look that much different from the front.  See the gray yarn outline through the back?   

This scarf was made just in time, too.  We got four inches of snow yesterday and then a few more today.  What’s weird is that it snows during the night and early morning and then it’s really warm and sunny during the day.

During the day, on account of the warm weather, the snow trapped on tree branches melt off randomly in clumps.  It sounds like it’s raining all around in short, heavy bursts – defintely an auditory experience.  Plus, every once in a while when I was under a tree (hard not to do around here) I got smacked in the head with an ‘organic’ snowball courtesy of Mother Nature.  

*That’s cool* a random fact

The treble clef is also known as the G clef because one end circles around the ‘G line’.

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I have lots of crochet projects finished but have been rather lazy getting them documented so I thought I’d throw you readers a few non-craft related photographs a la Niki.  If you read the blog Knockout Niki Crochets then you’re familiar with her photo randomness posts.  The basic idea is to blog seven or more random photographs vertically in a single post.

Oh and check out Niki’s Etsy shop for prints of her photographs and crochet projects.  I’m especially fond of the crocheted chess clutch.   

I think the last photo would make a good wallpaper.  Don’t you think?   

When it was warmer I’d use my camera on walks and shoot the landscape.  I haven’t been taking the camera out much these days because it rains and if I just stand in one place I get cold.  Then my fingers go numb holding the camera and my toes feel like ice because I wear flip flops.  I realize I could be warmer with ‘real’ shoes but I like my flip flops.   

Speaking of photos, here are some photography pointers I’ve come across on the web.  I have a regular point and shoot camera and I’m not a photo expert but these little tips have helped me a lot, especially with my crochet projects.   

In general: 

Natural sunlight is best.  Use the tungsten setting for artificial light.   

Direct sun on a nice day is too bright for most subjects.  Try the shade.   

Don’t take photos with the light source directly behind the subject.  I’m guilty of not following this one because the window is such an enticing backdrop. 

Turn off the flash or greatly reduce the output for accurate colors.

Reduce camera shake by propping your body and arm against something.

Odd numbers are better than even. 

Use the rule of thirds.

For close up shots:

Use the flower/macro setting.

Don’t use the zoom.  

That’s enough about photography.  I promise an actual craft-related photo in the next post!

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Good tidings

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I dug this out of the family ornament collection looking for a handmade skate ornament I commented about on My Tangled Threads.  (No luck yet.)  I did come across some crochet snowflakes and a couple cross stitch ornaments, though.   

I’ve been so busy with crochet lately I put the joy of cross stitch to the back of my mind.  It really is a shame you can’t cuddle up to a cross stitch piece of card board.   Considering how much time I put into this little guy as a high school-er I probably could have crocheted a nice hat or a long, fluffy scarf.

I really do enjoy those little dollar cross stitch kits though.  It seems these days that they avoid including the nice metal frames you see in vintage kits.  Instead they have red plastic frames or worse, they package it as an ornament.  No accessory needed.  I suspect this coinsided with the descent of Cracker Jack prizes.  The little plastic clothes hanger is the cross stitch kit equivalent to a Cracker Jack mini-baseball card. 

Here’s your blog prize: a photograph of the back for kicks and giggles.  Look ma’, no knots!

*That’s cool* a random fact

Early Native American tribes in New England preserved corn by coating it with heated maple syrup.

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I learned something about the nighttime setting on my camera – hold still.  The setting must have a really long exposure time, but I didn’t really pay attention to the results until it was too late.  All my picture were super blurry.  On the upside I got a nifty shot above of the local Christmas tree in all its glory.  The effect reminds me of those swirly star pictures of the sky.  

I was at the Christmas tree lighting ceremony at the local park to get this shot.  Tons of people were there.  Okay, not Times Square on New Years Eve ‘tons’.   ‘Tons’ as in more than I see at the Island Market on a Sunday afternoon.   

Santa Clause and the missus even managed to show up.  They visited with the kids while the band played Christmas music. 

I got some yummy mexican wedding cakes and piping hot apple cider with real cloves.  The latter was greatly appreciated since it was C-O-L-D and I wore flip flops.  (In my defense I did have a crocheted hat and scarf.)

This little boy was in my line of sight while I waited, freezing cold, in line for my provisions.  He was so enthralled with the music tent.  He stood very still with these wide eyes.  I was actually impressed with how long he could stand still. 

 

I guess I could chock it up to the holiday season and his inevitable meeting with Mr and Mrs. Claus.  Kids seem to become oddly well behaved for short spurts when they are reminded their Christmas present turnout is in the balance.

*That’s cool* a random fact

Thirty-six apples will produce one gallon of cider and a single apple needs the energy from fifty leaves to grow.

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There’s this birdbath that is perched on the porch rails.  It’s got a little hole for a twig and broken pieces of colored glass pressed into the edges.  It also weighs a ton. 

Today, in the late afternoon sun the water was like a mirror.  It reminded me of fortune tellers who clear the steam rising from the water and when the ripples settle you see an image of the future. In my future I see trees.

The crystal ball is also a popular fortune telling device, isn’t it?  Like in the Wizard of Oz and Pee Wee’s Big Adventure.  I wonder where I could find one of those.     

Here’s a peek at my next post.  (I think I got a little carried away photographing the bobbles.)

*That’s cool* a random fact

Hummingbirds can fly upside down, but their legs are only strong enough to perch, not walk. 

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