Tuesday, December 2, 2008

round and round

I had intended to take this picture with afternoon sunlight streaming artfully across the fiber -- but, you know, one thing led to another and suddenly it was dark and, well, so here's a picture in the garish flash of the camera. In real life, the fibers complement one another quite nicely.
Want to make one yourself? Dive into your stash and pull out colors of yarn that please you. Procure styrofoam balls in a variety of shapes * Wrap yarn around the balls. Invite friends and family to do the same. Suppress the Martha within that wants them wrapped just so. Hot glue the ends of the yarn. When you have a nice pile of balls of various shapes, hot glue them to a wreath shape (We used grapevine. If you use a less-attractive wreath form, you might want to wrap it with yarn first.) Don't be shy with the glue -- glue each ball underneath and to the ball next to it.**
* For a greener version, wad up plastic bags and wrap yarn around them. They might not be quite as round, but the artful use of recycled products (plus the money saved) will warm you just as much. I wish I'd thought of this before I got the styrofoam balls.
** should you have an incident with the glue gun, here is a hint for burns: First get the glue off. Then squirt mustard -- sunny yellow mustard, not the Grey Poupon -- on the burn. Wrap a paper towel around the burn. After a while, take off the poultice. If the burn starts to hurt again, squirt more mustard on and let it sit a while longer. You'll smell like a hot-dog stand, but should be blister-free.

Have a quick, keen holiday craft? Do share!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

fire up the glue guns

Ah, yes, a happy crafter. Peyton likes to sniff the ball before she winds it up.
We all gathered 'round the crafting table to wind balls of yarns to make a wreath for our front door. I chose a palette of yarns and explained that I was striving for festive but not garish. They all nodded and picked up their tools (my son was in charge of the glue guns).
I don't usually go all Martha on them, but when I saw baby blue and blackin the same hand about to be wound around the same ball, I harumphed a loud harumph. The hand dropped one color and went about wrapping a plain ball.
But a smaller set of hands was wrapping glittery stuff in patterns around a ball -- not what I had in mind. I sighed a sighed and let it go.
It's not my wreath. It's our wreath.
A glue gun injury put one of us out of the game:

but the rest of us kept winding and gluing. I have great hope that this:

[Imagine here a partially finished wreath which I will post as soon as Blogger lets me]

will soon be on the door.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

bird by bird by bird

The whole bird thing started here. And after I made the first bird, I thought it would be a swell present to give my friends when we have our annual December gathering -- they are bigs fans of Anne Lamott as well). The pattern is the Yoruba Bird that tops the cover hat on Folk Hats. So one bird led to three birds. Then another bird. And another on the way. I'm so enchanted with the colors that are emerging that I just can't stop -- I plan to knit to the end of the ball of Noro Cotton Kureyon I unearthed from my stash (I can't find this on the Web anywhere, so I'm thinking it's not available anymore). I like that the birds are linked -- the color of one beak becoming the tail of the next. I think that they will enjoy perching in the Christmas tree until I give them away (well, not all of them).