Thursday, October 25, 2012

10.25 Scott Pilgrim WIP

I skipped out on doing an update last week for a couple of reasons. 1) Not enough progress and 2) The progress that I did make wasn't very noticeable. So now I've gotten through the bulk of Gideon's hair, down to where the shading is changing. Now you can see how far I've gotten in the last 2 weeks.

It looks like next week will be the one year mark since I started this idiot project, so I'll do a full project shot next week, 1 update earlier than normal.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

So, you want to learn to knit?

I've been where you are, friend. Lurking on the periphery of the knitted arts. Reading blogs, maybe watching a youtube video or two. Perhaps you've joined Ravelry and found some cool stuff you want to make but now you need to make the plunge and learn how to get started. It's overwhelming, I know! I've been where you are! Let me get some guidelines down for you. A lot of knitters will tell you to go to a local yarn store or craft store and ask for help or sign up for a class. I am not one of these people as I am pretty shy in real life and the idea of going somewhere and asking for help is awful.

Here's a list of materials I recommend you pick up. You don't have to spend a fortune!
  1. One pair of US size 10 (or larger) knitting needles. The bigger the needle, the bigger the loops and the easier it is to get the needle through those loops when you're knitting. Also, I wouldn't recommend getting the cheap aluminum needles. I'm not trying to be snobby but they tend to stick to the yarn and make it harder to get the loops off which can cause unnecessary headaches. If you do choose the aluminum (and who can blame you, they're super cheap and you don't know if you like knitting yet) just keep the stickiness in mind while your working with them!
  2. One skein of yarn. Again, I'm probably going to come off like a snob here but let me explain. I don't recommend getting the red heart super saver yarn. While it's inexpensive, it's also 100% acrylic and not the good, soft acrylic either (of which there is some). The issue with this yarn, I've found, is that it's also super sticky and tends to not want to come off the needles. I also find it squeaky and it can hurt my hands. I'm not saying you should buy 100% cashmere or anything crazy but maybe look for something with some wool content or a higher quality acrylic. Don't spend $20 on a skein but maybe look into spending $5 instead of $3. Also, be sure to get a yarn that's rather thick - worsted weight or chunky. It's easier to knit with larger needles and works up fast. Color doesn't matter, but choose a yarn that you like. That's the most important thing. If you're working with a yarn that scratches you, or you hate the color, you're not going to have fun.
That's it! That's all you need to get started. No books, patterns, expensive tools or crazy gadgets. I'm going to put a couple videos down at the bottom that helped me teach myself how to knit. They are super cheesy as they're pulled from a dvd that was intended to teach teens how to knit but I have a hard time learning craft stuff from written instructions so this worked super well for me. Another great resource is - she has way less cheesy videos and great quality in her instructions. I can't recommend her correcting mistakes videos enough! Finally, I just want to reiterate something that so many other knitters have said before me. Knitting isn't as complicated as it seems. There are literally two stitches - knit and purl. Once you've got those down, you can do anything! Good luck and good knitting!

This post originally appeared over at Knitterly Notions

Monday, October 15, 2012

As I live and breathe

Hello Sarcastic Crafters! It's been a while since I've updated over here, so I wanted to give you a quick rundown on what crafty projects I've been working I stole a blog entry from myself. -Mal

This weekend was eventful. I finished a project and FINALLY took pictures of everything. ENJOY.
Finished Irish Hiking Scarf
First up is the Irish Hiking Scarf. I finished it a week or two ago, still haven't blocked it but finally took a picture! I really like it and can't wait to give it to the boyfriend when I see him in a few weeks.
The V-Scarf
Next up is the progress I've made on the V-Scarf...granted it's not a lot but I still love the pattern and the yarn. I've put it aside for now as I'm going to work on a birthday present for my mom and since her birthday is before Christmas it take precedence.
No Pattern Hat from "Knitting Rules" by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
I finished the No Pattern Hat for myself in record time (way quicker than a scarf) and I kind of love it. I can't wait to wear it tomorrow morning.
After I finished the first hat, I immediately cast on for another one - this time for my sister. This one is knitted out of some Socks That Rock mill-ends. I am delighted by the way the white has been spiraling around the hat. DELIGHTED. I have a ton of STR but this is the first bit I've knitted up. It's awesome and I think I've found my new favorite yarn.
Malabrigo worsted in Azalea
And finally, I ordered some yarn from Eat. Sleep. Knit and it came on Saturday (including some 16" nickel-plated circulars and some nickel-plated DPNs for more hats - turns out wooden needles hurt my hands). This will be knit up into a hat for my mom's birthday - it's going to be awesome.
Expect to see more hat pictures in the near future. Maybe I'll branch out into a pattern for one of them. I'm hoping to give mittens or fingerless gloves a try next.

This entry was originally posted at

Thursday, October 11, 2012

10.11 Scott Pilgrim WIP

Like I said last time out, 12 days ago, Gideon has crazy anime hair. You can see that quite well here. Still a long way to go before I'm finished with his hair, though.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Super-easy Bottlecap Magnet Tutorial

So, you've spent a good amount of money and time hunting down awesome beverages, and then you've drunk them, and now you've got nothing left to show for it.  But wait... did you save the bottle caps?  Then here is a quick craft project for you!


Supplies needed:

1) Bottle caps (try to pick the flattest ones you have)
2) Hot glue gun
3) Hot glue sticks (several)
4) Round magnets

Hot glue is hot.  Just sayin'.

Step 1:  Turn your bottle cap upside down.  Put in a nice big pile of hot glue, keeping it as round and even as you can.  DO NOT at this point put in your magnet.  First of all, these magnets are not quite tall enough to keep the pointy sides of the bottle cap from touching the magnetic surface you're intending to attach these to.  And secondly, because when the magnet snaps down into that puddle of hot glue, it's going to get all over your fingers and that crap hurts.

I think it's looking at me...

Step 2:  Wait until the glue inside the bottle cap has cooled and solidified.  Now, put a dot of hot glue on the magnet, and press the magnet, glue side down, into the bottle cap.  Try to keep the magnet as level as you can.  Hot glue is pretty forgiving here, and if you don't get it right, you can wait for it to cool down, pop out the magnet and try again.

Fancy!  ;p
Step 3:  Find a magnetic surface (a refrigerator is really the perfect home for these), and enjoy your new magnets!