If yarnbombing is a waste of time and materials, then why don’t aerosol artists get flack for not touching up house paint jobs instead of painting street walls? Because art. True, yarnbombing is more temporary and removable. But even Scotch Guarded yarnbombs don’t seem clean after a good wash and dry. Unless they’ve been indoors. And that’s just where our Old Navy truck yarnbomb was all through the holiday season. So when the Old Navy team asked us to repurpose the yarnbomb into memorabilia for the office, we put every usable scrap to work. (more…)
Old Navy Truck Yarnbomb
During November and December of 2014 you can see our most ambitious yarnbomb to date: a 1950 Chevy truck in Old Navy’s San Francisco flagship store on Market & 4th. We had such a blast yarnbombing this classic truck in a three-story shopping wonderland. (more…)
Holiday food fun: Knit pie & a gingerbread village
Thanksgiving knit apple pie & crochet pumpkin pie
Last year I made mini mince pies for my grandfather, Pa, for the last time and topped a pumpkin pie with prancing moose from our trip to the Okanagan. In retrospect, I think I needed to go all out in order not to let Pa’s last mince pie stand out like a sore thumb in time. Since I had just gone all epic on his ass a month before, in my 80 hour Day of the Dead filet crochet memorial pieces, going all out might just be how I deal with emotions. Ya think? This year a nice engrossing challenge was in order. And then that dough just called to be spun into yarn. (more…)
We Knit a Window Display for our Local Yarn Shop
I wanted to share one of the things Jill and I worked on lately. We have an EPIC project going up next week, but in the mean time I’ve managed to squeeze in another fun job.
Downtown San Mateo’s local yarn shop, Nine Rubies, is wonderfully supportive of local crafters and yarnbombing, so it’s no surprise they recruited us to spruce up the huge front window for the holidays.
If you’re in the Bay Area, Nine Rubies just might convince you to get out of the house on Black Friday: they’re offering 40% off everything! Check out the details on their Facebook page here. (more…)
New crochet pattern: Choir of Angels Christmas Ornaments
Every December after the fresh-cut tree is up I set aside an evening to gather around and unpack our family ornaments. We take turns hanging them one at a time, sharing again the familiar story behind each one. A trio of brilliantly painted wooden angels always delights. Like a little chorus of seraphim in heaven, they sing out their song, “holy, holy, holy!” I wanted to share my family’s tradition with you by designing a simple crochet angel ornament pattern with just enough charming detail to earn a place on your family’s tree for years to come. (more…)
New Ear Warmers, Knitting Patterns, a Sale and a Giveway!
Back in the fall I declared this winter the season for wearing cuter headbands. Banish the big flowers made by grandma! Be gone, sorority-esque cliches! Now, with much trumpeting and fanfare, I pull back the red curtain and unveil to you two new lines of cute chunky knit headbands. Plus, get your scroll on: 20% off all new headbands and enter to win one for Christmas!
Chunky Cable Knit Ear Warmer Headbands
Winter cannot force us to ditch the summer braid! Braids are toute la rage all year round, now that you can wear them on a squishy, chunky ear warmer. Plus, they’re made with a blend of warm wool and easy-care acrylic so you can even throw them in your laundry! $35 at knitsforlife.etsy.com
Convertible Turban Headband and Cowl
Step off the curb like a silver screen starlet with an über-chic turban look. Already flying off the shelves, I’m gifting this perfectly cozy, stretchy accessory all Christmas and Hanukkah long. $35 at knitsforlife.etsy.com
Some one-of-a-kind pieces came out of the design process too. Here are a few of my favorites. Find more in the shop under the Eco Accessories tab.
Knit your own
OK, smarty pants, so you know how to knit, huh? Great, you can make these for all your friends!
The knitting pattern for the braided cable knit ear warmer is free at transientexpression.com. Note that if you use super bulky yarn like I did, you only need 8 repeats of the pattern.
The knitting pattern for the convertible turban headband and cowl is $3 on Ravelry or at knitsforlife.etsy.com.
Coupons and giveaway
From now until Christmas, save 20% on my new ear warmer headbands in the Etsy shop with code XMAS2012. I ship items the same or next day in cute, hand-stamped gift wrap with no price on it so you can gift it directly in the mailing package. I also include a free vetiver-scented buckwheat sachet your recipient can pop in the microwave and use as a pocket hand warmer. They’ll be warm cuddly from head to toe!
The coupon goes “poof!” on Christmas eve and on Christmas morning I’ll announce the winner of a free ear warmer! You get one headband from the cable knit line or the turban line in your favorite color shipped to your door for free. To enter:
1. Tweet “Save 20% on these über-chic hand knit ear warmers from now until Xmas: http://wp.me/p1sxl3-gN”
2. Share Knits for Life’s Facebook announcement on your feed. You must go to Knits for Life’s page and click “share” on the story already posted there. Sharing a link to this blog post on your page doesn’t count. My page: https://www.facebook.com/knitsforlife
3. Leave a comment below letting me know you’re in!
Don’t forget to order by December 17 in time to ship for Christmas.
Happy happy winter!
IKEA hack: Hand stamped brown paper packages
Last year I gave you DIY Christmas gift wrap ideas using a little botanical cheer. Those plain, brown paper packages are my favorite backdrop for dressing up prezzies any time of year. It’s crazy-versatile!
So what more can you do with that bargain kraft paper from IKEA? Indulge your trendy collection of hand carved stamps! If you don’t have any stamps, even better. Now you have a great occasion to try out a new craft. It’s a little tricky, but with the right tools from any good art store, you can have tons of fun. I made this little ball of yarn stamp on my second try!
My sister’s birthday presents certainly called for this yarn theme. Check out her new knitting swag: a handy, retro wool winder and an electronic stitch counter. She loved them, of course!
Brown Paper Packages Tied Up With String
I know a lot of women haven’t outgrown the joy of creating a special package for someone on a special day. My best friend and I used to compete to wrap the most presents for each other’s birthdays. One year we wrapped not just packages of candy, but every piece of candy! Christmas is full of people to wrap for and I love sitting down to a big, clean table, a pile of odd-shaped gifts, and a stash of gift wrap. The last few years I’ve used brown paper and natural jute twine to as a canvas for other embellishments. This year my cranberry and popcorn garlands as well as our tradition of decorating oranges with cloves inspired me to use pretty spices and cutouts to create a natural woodland gift wrap. Pictured are cedar boughs, star anise, Szechuan peppercorns, construction paper and jute twine. I think they turned out so pretty! What are your favorite wrapping materials?
Pottery Barn Knit Hack
You always walk through stores remarking to yourself “Pshaw… I could make that!” But how often do go home and prove it? Here’s a free project I created to help you restore that balance and make your holiday hostess and guests squeal with delight. It’s a knit hack of one of Pottery Barn’s wine bottle accessories, a teeny hat and scarf. They sell it (probably machine made) for about $8. Now you can whip up a priceless hand made one with just half an ounce of yarn! Super duper holiday stash buster to keep your vin chaud or Sierra Nevada Christmas Ale cozy all winter.
Be sure to share your finished hacks on the pattern page over on Ravelry.
Pottery Barn Wine Bottle Accessory Knit Hack by Knits for Life
Yarn: 0.55 oz (32 yd) Malabrigo Worsted Merino in Amoroso.
Needles: Five US 7 (4.5 mm) DPNs
CO 24. Divide evenly onto 3 DPNs and join to work in the round.
K2, P2 rib for 2 inches.
(C4B, P1, K2, P1) 3 times.
(K4, P1, K2, P1) 3 times, repeat for a total of 3 rows.
Repeat last 4 rows for a total of 4 times.
K2, K2tog to end.
Cut yarn, leaving 6 in.
Thread through remaining sts, pull tight and knot.
Make a two-finger pom pom and sew in top.
Weave in and trim ends.
1.K2, P4, K2
2.P2, K4, P2
3.K2, P4, K2
4-5. Repeat rows 2-3.
6.P2, C4B, P2
Repeat rows 1-6 to desired length.
Repeat rows 1-5.
Bind off in pattern.
Make a fringe.
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