A little bit of this and, a little bit of that, makes a little bit of me.

Reawakening and Relaxation


No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world~~Robin Williams

Sometimes I simply need to remind myself I don’t have to do what everyone else is doing. Dare to play and experiment.  This is a 7″ by 7″ mini-quilt (with double-binding–corded and regular bindings) made for my friend as shop-warming present.  It’s a proportionally replicate of her shop logo–Nicole Michelle Decor.  Beautiful first-class shop. Check it out. I free-motion quilted with Silk threads and had to redo a few times.  Not perfect, but, it’s the thought that counts, right?!

I have been seriously itching to paint my own fabric for a long time–accumulated a ton of books on the topic since last year–so many possibilities and one of a kind cloth. A month ago, I got a hands-on demonstration for watercolor-pencil painting on fabric from Kristin. Why did I procrastinate the play? Craftastrophe, maybe? These exercises are really about courage, I guess. To make a blank piece of cloth to some sort of art and then show it to people can be scary. I open myself up to ridicule. It is always nerve racking.

Summer time is a time of reawakening and relaxation. What better way to relax than to reawaken a plain cloth (fat quarter) with a burst of color!

Organizing my threads

I spent a better part of Tuesday night adding layers–1) first tried light sketching with Staedtler Mars Lumograph 100 pencils. It’s too faded to make a difference. My poor eyes couldn’t see the lines. 2) Mixed 1-part Martha Steward Fabric Medium and 2-part water–worked out great here and half the price of my go-to Liquitex Textile Medium.  3) Paint small working area of cloth with watercolor pencils, 4) Touched up with Inktense pencils.  Now that I get some idea of how it works, I can easily skip Step 3 altogether.  Inktense is the way to go.  Go on smoothly.  Colors are vibrant.  I only need very little of it unless I want the color dark on the fabric.  5) Let the cloth dry overnight.

I treated the colored cloth with dry hot iron next morning, washed it gently by hand with mild soap, and hung dried. Surprisingly, no color was lost between rinses even though I did not wash the sizing off beforehand or let it dry for 24 hours as some suggested.  I believe the fabric medium played a major part in this result.

Stroke by stroke, “Traveling down the childhood memory lane” is born–the boats, its shadows, water fluidity, stone wall, rope posts, and row houses (awaiting thread painting to give more details.) I love my first child-like painting!

Wish I could wash the birds off the sky and start over though. Typically, I can paint over it. But I won’t as I will be fine-tuning the cloth with threads later in the quilting process.

No matter how badly I mess up, there is something of value here. I always say some of my best ideas came from my worst ‘mistakes.‘ Once a couple of strokes in place, I wasn’t afraid to take creative risks. I now call this creative fertilizer for my crafty garden. Oh and…sometimes it’s good to know when to stop adding ‘one more thing‘ to the designs. It’s why I left the sashing plain.

This is a blast to work with, literally had me giggling (in a good way,) but it was the brilliance of Inktense Blocks and fabric medium that lured me into a late-night paint party! I can’t wait to seam the pieces up, add cotton batting and some pieced-backing, and start embellishing/quilting it. Meanwhile, I washed a few more clothes, awaiting to be dried for more experiment. I am thinking of using all the acrylic paints and washable textile medium by Delta, Ceramcoat, Folkart, Liquitex, Deco Art, and Chromacryl I already have.

It’s a good thing to take a break from the computer sometimes and pick up a pencil. I love to doodle, dream, sketch, and do what I please on this once white cloth. It is all about inspiring self to spread my creative wings. I need all of the positive creative inspiration I can get as it isn’t easy for me–not at all. Is there something you’ve been procrastinating? Be brave. Have courage and confidence.  Dive in. What the worst thing can happen?

Enabler Alert. I am delighted to share a couple of knitting and crochet patterns published this month. Diamonds and purls knitted shawl pattern is FREE for the month of August.  No coupon code needed.  Thank you, Jenny, for a fine lace beauty.

Are you as crazy about Mandala as I am? Take a good look at what Dedri Uys designed. The vivid colors.  The lotus-like flowers in the corners.  Raised petals.  All the little details in Sophie’s Garden are stunning!  What’s more?  The pattern is FREE as a bird.  Would you make it?

That’s the wrap, folks. Visit my Facebook page here for another inspiring project to be shared later today.  As always, it will be FREE.

Happy crafting and keep those creative juices running!

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(still doesn’t do MySpace, Twitter, StumbleUpon, DiggIt…but caved into Facebook, a smartphone, and a little bit of texting!)

Cultural Exchange


“…what this article is asking you to do is educate yourself, listen, and be open to reexamining the symbols you use without thinking, the cultures you engage with without understanding, and the historical and social climate we all need to be seeing.”  Full article here.

This kind of questioning of self and society needs to happen by each of us, no matter age, color, genitalia, etc.  Every culture has centuries of wisdom to learn from and deserves respect.

“We tend to think of this as cultural exchange when really, it’s no more an exchange than pressuring your neighbors to adopt your ideals while stealing their family heirlooms.” BAM.

Can a knitter avoid ‘two halves’ construction in a scarf, stole, or shawl, and grafting seam lines together? Absolutely. Imaarat, a simple geometrical lace scarf with side-to-side construction, is knitted in one-piece.  No grafting or 3-needle bind-off.  You just knit to the center using Pattern A and from the center to the end using Pattern B. Voilà. Can you believe Sandhya S of Swatch Love only took up knitting in 2011?  Enjoy the complimentary scarf pattern. Let me know if/when you knit one. I’d love to see your project.

Heddi Craft is offering her newly published Ocean Waves Stole knitted pattern–reversibleFREE. Thank you, Heddi.

Must a sock always be “expected?”  According to Charles Gandy, “By attaching these colorful circles one to another, a creative and playful sock emerges that allows the wearer to express their own individuality in a new and unusual way. They are fun to make, and even more fun to wear.”  Charles is an incredible master of design!!  Circle Socks are unquestionably whimsical and gorgeous–FREE online patterns via Schachenmayr.

Check out my Facebook page here for another inspiring project to be shared later today.  As always, it will be FREE.

Happy crafting and keep those creative juices running!

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ღ(✿◠‿◠)˙•٠•●ღ
ƸӜƷ•.¸¸.• ƸӜƷ

(still doesn’t do MySpace, Twitter, StumbleUpon, DiggIt…but caved into Facebook, a smartphone, and a little bit of texting!)

Never Forget


Losing myself, my identity, the things I cherish most about myself, living totally for someone else means I disappear. Excruciating. Right?

People always think the most painful thing in life is losing the one they value. The truth is, the most painful thing is losing myself in the process of valuing someone too much and forgetting that I am special too.

Creativity, genius, artistry and depression often travel in the same soul. I’m sorry Robin was unable to survive his illness. It’s a crappy way to live. If you or someone you know or love needs help, reach out. Sometimes a kind word, photo, or touch gives that person the little push to try again. I’m learning to change. I’m unique and special too. Never forget how special you are. Robin Williams was special. He made so many people happy. A timely gift of laughter and tears. I’ll be “keening” for a while. I’ll always enjoy the genius of Robin. His death was as tragic as if he died of a heart attack or cancer and does not deserve to mark his career badly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfDyTUiL8xs

Have you been wondering what endless inspiration awaits on this glorious Tuesday morning, my crafty friends? New and Free: Lucidity. That actually sounds like a catchy slogan, doesn’t it? The magnificently sprawling square lace shawl by Beata Jezek took my breath away. Enjoy the free knitting pattern as I do.

i’m feeling this weird obsessive thing come over me–must do this golden pair of knotty socks. Julia Kupferfeder is offering her newly published Drachenkrallen knitted cables pattern–in English and German–FREE.

Afghans come in many shapes, sizes and styles. Margaret Afghan Square crochet pattern is FREE ’til August 31, 2014. Use coupon code MARGARET at check-out.

Check out my Facebook page here for a fun cardigan pattern I’ll be sharing latter today. It’ll be another free download, of course (like this Mirasol Stripes Shawlette.)

Happy crafting and keep those creative juices running!

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ღ(✿◠‿◠)˙•٠•●ღ
ƸӜƷ•.¸¸.• ƸӜƷ

(still doesn’t do MySpace, Twitter, StumbleUpon, DiggIt…but caved into Facebook, a smartphone, and a little bit of texting!)

Go with It


Some changes look negative on the surface but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge.~~Eckhart Tolle

Growth is painful. Change is painful. But nothing is as painful as staying stuck somewhere I don’t belong. In every change, live the possibility for something wonderful to manifest. It is up to me to stay open to that something wonderful.

Come to think of it, growth and change do not have to be painful–go with it! There I am with a whole new world to play in. The trick is to embrace it. It’ll happen. Believe. I am going to repeat this all day. Care to join?

Today’s gifts for my crafty friends…Liquen fingerless mittens pattern by Mer Almagro is FREE ’til end of August.  Just hit Buy Now, click use coupon, and leave blank. The price will automatically adjusted to FREE.  I dunno if you like someone that much to knit him/her a pair. Linen stitch in a sticky Shetland wool is not very fun, but, the mitts are indestructible as far as I can tell. They’re also super warm and lightweight at the same time–fabulous for biking.

WARNING QUEUE ENHANCEMENT. Kismet Sunset Shawl crochet pattern by Suzy Allen is FREE only today–not sure ’til what time. Use coupon code kismet at check-out and blipity.

Free to join SweaterBabe’s Mystery Scarf Knit-Along today through August 31. Read how-to HERE and for the $5 coupon to use for the pattern. Shibuiknits Silk Cloud would be perfect for this knit-along. What do you think? No worry. Her designs are fabulous. Here’s one of the gorgeous published samples:

Happy crafting and keep those creative juices running!

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ღ(✿◠‿◠)˙•٠•●ღ
ƸӜƷ•.¸¸.• ƸӜƷ

(still doesn’t do MySpace, Twitter, StumbleUpon, DiggIt…but caved into Facebook, a smartphone, and a little bit of texting!)


Has anyone ever told you that you are irreplaceable, one-of-a-kind? Has anyone ever let you know that you are LOVED–wholly, unconditionally and deeply LOVED?

Has anyone ever told you that this world needs YOU? That it needs all the unique gifts only YOU have to offer? If not, I’m telling you now–‘cuz you are WANTED, you are LOVED, and you are BLESSED.

Let someone know they matter, today and everyday.

Today’s gifts for my crafty friends…Bountiful pattern is FREE ’til August 15, 2014.  Use code birthdaygirl at check-out.  A terrific one-skein wonder knitting accessory.  Thank you, Becca.

Thanks to Jessica Gumm’s generosity.  You may choose any one of Betelgeuse Designs’ patterns for FREE ’til August 13. Use code RAKAUG at check-out.  Vino was my pick. Now, it’s your turn.  What did you get?

Do you have a 7-year-old girl or someone you’d just like to knit for? Then, you are in luck. fáinne geal an lae bolero is super cute and the pattern is FREE. It’s rather easy to modify the cable yoke to fit any size, really. Just knit ’til you reach the desired circumference of the neckline and adjust number of stitches to pick up accordingly.  Try it on as you go for best fit.  Give it a go. You may just surprise yourself.

Happy crafting and keep those creative juices running!

ღ¸.•*””*•.¸¸ “
ღ(✿◠‿◠)˙•٠•●ღ
ƸӜƷ•.¸¸.• ƸӜƷ

(still doesn’t do MySpace, Twitter, StumbleUpon, DiggIt…but caved into Facebook, a smartphone, and a little bit of texting!)

Adjust the Dial


If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.

~~Maya Angelou

I am here to live. I am here to love. I am here to be me freely.  (Pictured is my doodling for free-motion quilting ideas.)

Be nicer. To self. To others. To the environment.

All of a Treble Shawl pattern is FREE ’til August 13, 2014.  It’s suitable for beginner and experienced. Just add the crochet, top-down pattern into the cart and the price will change into £0.00 GBP!  Wouldn’t it be perfect for a partial skein of Malabrigo Arroyo just begging to turn into something beautiful? Thank you, Alison Henshaw.

Happy crafting and keep those creative juices running!

ღ¸.•*””*•.¸¸ “
ღ(✿◠‿◠)˙•٠•●ღ
ƸӜƷ•.¸¸.• ƸӜƷ

(still doesn’t do MySpace, Twitter, StumbleUpon, DiggIt…but caved into Facebook, a smartphone, and a little bit of texting!)

Stay in Charge


Learn to say no to the unimportant and remove the chaos from my life. This helps me focus my energies on forward motion.

Today, I choose to stay in charge of me, not let the outside world control me. (Guess it’s why I don’t care much about watching TV, especially reality TV shows.)

As I continue to plan out fall projects, I realize I haven’t shared freebies for quite a long time.  So. here are a few.  Melanie Gibbons aka PinkLemon just released Mermaid’s Escape rectangular shawl pattern.  It’s FREE through August 15, 11:59 PM CDT!  No promo code needed!  You do need to click “Use a coupon code” at Buy It Now.  Total will be adjusted to FREE.

Crescent Hearts is one of the newly published knitted shawl pattern for the week and it’s FREE.  Thank you, Reah.

Crochet anyone?  Baroness – 12″ Square patternpart of a Royal Family design collection–is FREE ’til August 16th.  Coupon code at check-out is: baroness (pattern rated “easy.”)  Don’t you just love the textured center created by interlocking chains, surrounded by V-stitches?  I am going for a timeless, classic afghan using silver and grey or beige/ivory combination.  How about you?

I know I’ve said I wouldn’t knit another boxy sweater. This is just so dang cute and inviting with added color splashes. Did you see the pockets? Avignon pattern is a free download. No coupon needed.

I share free patterns on my Facebook page regularly.  Like the page (HandstitchStudio) if you don’t want to miss the limited-time offers.  Pictured WIP is a hooded lace cardigan on needles. Sadly I am running out of the specific yarn and am contemplating what to do next–black current for the hood, perhaps.  What do you think?  Yay or nay?

Happy crafting and keep those creative juices running!

ღ¸.•*””*•.¸¸ “
ღ(✿◠‿◠)˙•٠•●ღ
ƸӜƷ•.¸¸.• ƸӜƷ

(still doesn’t do MySpace, Twitter, StumbleUpon, DiggIt…but caved into Facebook, a smartphone, and a little bit of texting!)