Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Retire or Keep

Never thought I would have this conversation with you guys.

So my Baby Monkey Earflap Hat is becoming my best selling item in my etsy shop. Which is great, except I spend a lot of my time making them now. I just made 3 last week. It is an adorable hat, but I am worried that I won't be able to expand because I keep making one thing.

I am not at this point yet... but just in case I would like to get your advice.

I have never had a problem like this, but I am certain it exists. What do you do? Do you retire the item and only make one occasionally to sell or do I keep it up and keep making them?

Saturday, January 23, 2010

New Ways to Join Granny Squares

I have always thought there were only 2 ways to join Granny Squares:
  1. Whip stitch them together with a tapestry needle (not fun)
  2. Single crochet them together (leaves a very obvious join line)
I hated each of these methods and still to this day do not like the way they turn out. Whip stitching them leaves them loose and they don't lay right. They are always puffy. Single crocheting them together leaves a raised border around all of them that I think looks choppy and takes away from the overall beauty of the granny square.

I had ruled out granny squares because of this reason (and the one I mentioned before), until I stumbled on another way. I then googled the heck out of it until I found a few more methods. Here they are all in one place for you (with pictures).
  1. Whip stitching
  2. Single Crochet them together
  3. Slip stitch method
  4. Carina's Joining method
  5. Joining as you go
Obviously these are only some of the ways to connect granny squares. Please let me know if you have another way! My preferred method is #5. I enjoy joining as I go for a few reasons. 1 being that I am super impatient and cannot wait until I crochet them all to attach them together, and 2 The squares lay perfectly flat every time! I can't even tell that they are even joined.
Anyone else have a different Joining method? I would love to post about it, or try it out!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

New Hair Accessories!

I just started a new collection for the summer months ahead (I know its early, but the cold is getting depressing). The above is 1 of the 2 new listings I have put up on etsy so far. There are more to come.

Oh... did you notice the great pic! I made a photo box. It works wonders! My photos look so freaking good now!

Anyways. The above flower is 10 dollars and the ones below are 8 for the set!

These are just the first of many as I am going to make a huge stock for the craft fair I am attending in May.

Oh.. I also got a custom stamp! You can see it in the first pic. I used alchemy on to get a custom listing. I worked with JLMould to make it and they did a great job! I fully recommend going through their shop if you need a custom stamp. (I'll talk more about her stamps later)

Monday, January 18, 2010

I Found the Solution!

I have found the solution!
Remember the organization problem I was having a little while back. Where all my yarn was getting tangled and sitting in duffel bags. Well I had my engineer husband help me find a solution that didn't break the bank or hurt my yarn. He came up with Tupperware... which would work, but would be kinda expensive for all my yarn. Then I had a stroke of genius.

Here is step 1 of a total organization solution.

Step 1:
Place all yarn skeins in plastic Ziploc bags. YES! Ziploc Bags!

This really works. I put my ball of yarn in a Ziploc (I used a storage bag, 1 gallon I think). I then poked a small hole close to the zipper and pulled the end of the yarn through. It works really well when you are working on projects too. It will keep my yarn clean and the yarn pulls through the hole without snagging. When I am not using the yarn I tuck the end back through and zip it into the Ziploc, so it doesn't get tangled with any other ends, or start unraveling like balls of yarn usually do.

Step 2:
Buy a shelving rack to place them all on.

I haven't successfully done this step yet, but I have been searching for just the right type of storage for them. I think I have decided on clear rubbermaid drawers. That way I can separate all my yarn by color and be able to see it clearly. I keep looking for them to go on sale so I can save some money in the process!

Already my supplies are looking a lot better!

Good luck to all of you out there with the same problem!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Help Needed

So as you can see I am getting mosaic madness... it is contagious so watch out!
I have decided that I would designate a day of the week just for mosaics. Mosaic Monday Madness will now be a frequent Monday blog post. I am really excited to find more great handcrafted items on

The great thing about this new addition is that you all can be in my mosiac! All you have to do is:
  1. Have a account and post pictures of your crafts and finished items
  2. Add me as a friend so I can see your photos: melunder8 is my username
  3. Check my blog every Monday to see if your photos were picked!
I am really excited about this... so I made a mosaic!
Here are some great Knit items!

1. twinkle's big city knits-bfc, 2. Knitted Ballet Slippers, 3. knitted star tutorial, 4. happy - pink and green knit bag, 5. knitted balls, 6. Knitted anteaters, 7. Knitted FairIsle Cushion, 8. Turquoise Knit Bedcover, 9. Knit Dishcloths, 10. Asteraceae ... Knitted Neckwarmer / Scarflette - Chartreuse Green, 11. Soul of a Vagabond - classic cable knitted shoulder bag, 12. Victoriana Knit Scarflette - Merino Wool & Cashmere, 13. Hand Knit Mitts14. Not available15. Not available16. Not available

Created with fd's Flickr Toys

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Rethinking the Granny Square

I have seen some bad granny squares in my day. I have even created some really bad granny squares that I would like to burn to this day, but recently I have learned that granny squares can be absolutely beautiful!

Here are just some of the granny squares that have inspired me to pick up my hook and try again!
And yes I know that one of them is a circle, but its a very perfect circle I just had to throw it in!

1. Granny triangles, 2. 62/2009: Hot Pad Side 1, 3. The End Result, 4. willow granny square II, 5. Granny Square white spring, 6. WIP, 7. granny squares, 8. c u s h i o n, 9. circles, 10. Granny Square Design Closeup, 11. Doll blanket, 12. Granny Afghan Edging, 13. Granny Squares, 14. Flower Granny Squares, 15. Granny Squares, 16. Pip's Granny Squaring

Simple changes in color, stitch, and pattern can transform a granny square to a modern beautiful work of art!

I have been very inspired by the work above and vowed to make my cousin (who is now expecting a baby girl) a gorgeous granny square baby blanket.
I will make sure to post my progress (as soon as there is some to show).

Anybody else weary of the granny square?
Hopefully this will help boost some confidence!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Jen Ting's Jewels free offer

Jen Tings Jewels has teamed up with me to offer these earrings above for free with any purchase of 15 dollars or more.

I can tell you it would not be hard to spend 15 dollars in her shop. Take a look at some of the great items that would earn you these free earrings:

Lavender Mist BraceletOne of my favorites! It is just beautiful and I am a sucker for bracelets! It is made with Swarovski Crystals so you know the quality is there. There are even matching earrings available in her shop.

Not a big spender. This Tangerine Sugar Bracelet will put you right on the money to receive those free earrings. You will even get some great jewelry out of the deal. This bracelet also has earrings made to match available in her store.

To get her great free offer mention that you were sent to her shop by me The Crafty Tortoise in the message to seller.
Hurry up though. This offer is only good until January 20th. So go get some jewelry!

What is your favorite jewelry item of hers?

I have to say mine is the lavender mist bracelet.. who can resist that loveliness.

Monday, January 4, 2010

New Email Address

So over the holidays we started to talk about changing out TV service. Which I thought was a good idea... until I realized that my business email is through their service. So like everything it was time for a change.

It will be a slow change, but my new email is: is the only thing different.

How was everyone's Holidays. Mine were great. Although we went snow skiing for the first time... I came home with more than sore muscles. My husband is just glad I didn't die, lol. Lets just say I am not the best skier, but I am just learning so with time I should get better. (crossing my fingers)

Sadly I did not get much crocheting or crafting done over the holidays, but am hoping to make up for it now.
Did anyone else get anything done crafting wise?