Thursday, August 30, 2007

soup + some knitting

I'm still sick- WAH! It's tiring to be sick, get better only to get sick all over again. Last night we ordered Japanese and I had Udon Noodle Soup with Vegetable Tempura. Tonight, we made this delicious soup so I thought I'd share the recipe. It's from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison which is a wonderful cookbook.

Chard Soup with Sorrel or Lemon (we used lemon)

2 tablespoons butter
1 onion or 2 medium leeks, white parts only, chopped (we used onion but leek would be lovely too)
3 red potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 bunch chard, stems removed, about 10 cups leaves
2 cups sorrel leaves, stems removed, or juice of 1 lemon
Salt and freshly milled pepper
1/3 cup creme fraiche or sour cream (we used creme fraiche)
1/2 cup cooked rice or small toasted croutons (we used medium sized croutons)

Heat the butter in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to color, about 8 minutes. Add 1/2 cup water and scrape the bottom of the pot to release the juices that have accumulated. Add the greens and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. As soon as they wilt down, after 5 minutes or so, add 6 1/2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 12 to 15 minutes. Puree the soup, then return it to the pot. Taste for salt and season with pepper. If you didn't use sorrel, add the lemon juice. Mix the creme fraiche with some of the soup to smooth it out then swirl it into the soup. Serve with rice or croutons in each bowl.

I've also been knitting away here and there a little and have managed to complete 2 more kerchiefs over the past week. One in this color and the other in sort of an oatmeal color.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


I made 4 of these over the weekend and I have one more to complete. I will split them between my Etsy shop and Mackey Blue. I love making them. I think they are great for room decor, birthday party decorations, shelves etc.
I have another style of garland that I've made one of so far that I plan to make more of. I can't remember if I've shown it before here or not but, I love it. Mysterious, I know.
I had all sorts of things planned for this week including sewing a dress for a little one that I have all cut out and ready to go but, it seems the cold from last week has reappeared as of yesterday and I feel terrible so, I think I'll sign off now and get some rest while Little M is sleeping because I know he'll be ready to go when he wakes up even if I'm not plus, I've got work tonight.

Monday, August 27, 2007

acorns, getting ready for fall knitting

I found bunches of acorns in my parents driveway and patio on Saturday. Luckily, I managed not to get hit by any of the ones the squirrel was throwing from the tree. I thought it was really interesting to see the variations of the all green ones and the already brown ones with dark caps at this time of year. I also collected some caps only which I like for crafting. I did needle felted acorns with real caps last year.

I had a little cold last week and so did Little M so it slowed things down a bit but, I think I am back on track.

I've sketched some ideas out for the knitted items plus a few other goodies I want to make this fall to sell. I'm not sure how many pieces I can complete but, it's good to be ambitious. I'm planning more kerchiefs which you can see over there on the right and I want to do mittens and hats and maybe more rapunzel scarves. Another item is this knit collar which I have 2 of right now.

I still need to sew in the ends, steam them and add the bows. The bow requires a trip to M & J. I may not get there till next week. I've made collars with buttons before which I also like and may make as well. As you can see, I didn't do my hair today. It is one activity I loathe to do but, wish I loved because then I wouldn't always be pulling it up. It requires time and I guess I dedicate that time to other activities like sleeping later.

I have 4 or 5 knits now in progress. One, I mentioned before is a sweater for Little M. I really dislike the way the pattern is written which makes it hard for me to work on but, I do want to finish it by end of summer. That is the middle of September, right?

Thursday, August 23, 2007

the mitten

This book is heavy on rotation this week. If you do not know this story, it is quite charming.

It is about a boy named Nicki who wants white mittens and so his Baba (Grandmother) knits them for him even though she is concerned he will lose them in the snow. He soon loses one mitten and then a mole, a badger, a rabbit, an owl, a hedgehog, a fox, a bear and finally a mouse take refuge inside the mitten. The mouse's whiskers tickle the bear's nose which makes the bear sneeze and the animals fly out of the mitten. Nicki's mitten sails through the air and so he finds his lost mitten this way.

This is one strong mitten. I think Baba must have knit it with super powers.

Here is my version for Little M. I just had to make him some so he could have his own white mittens.

Monday, August 20, 2007

rapunzel scarf

The length of this scarf just kept making me think about Rapunzel in her tower letting down her hair.
I just kept going and going using almost all of 3 skeins to complete this moss stitch scarf. It is very soft and thick with wonderful texture and very warm. I sewed up a pocket on one end to store a few things if you are just running out to the store, or perhaps a trip to the mailbox (does anyone do that anymore?) or even a great place to store your mittens so you are sure not to lose them.

Friday, August 17, 2007

sew a button, knit a stitch

I've been meaning to publicly thank my dear friend Anna who about a month ago had me come and pick through supplies she needed adopted. While there is way too much to photograph it feels a little like I won the lottery. I got a ton of Brown Sheep Bulky, some Cascade plus a variety of some other yarns, tons of vintage buttons, zippers, lace and trims, vintage hankies, sewing patterns...I'm sure I forgot something. Most of it I just can't fit in the apartment. I cleared out a shelf for some of it that I plan to use in the near future and the rest of it is in storage.
Anna is an amazing knitter. You should check it out. She's got her hats and scarves in some of the best stores in NYC.
So, Anna...THANK YOU. It will all be put to good use and I will be making you a little something at some point that I know you want.
Hope everyone has a great weekend. It's supposed to be glorious weather.
Oh, and yes, I did make the little mason jar pincushion top the other day.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

wee kitty cat

This lil' darling finally got finished up today. I had been waiting on polyfil and everywhere I went was sold out of it. So, I finally gave in and dug into some batting I had and it seems to have worked out just fine. Last year, I made the bear for Little M's 1st birthday. You can see it here.
So, now I just have the bunny to do someday. The combination of all 3 is one pattern and you can purchase it here.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

little m's room

I thought it might be fun to do a 'corners of my home' and show some pics of Little M's room

First up is a painting by an acquantiance of ours named Hamish Kilgour. We adore this painting and so does Little M. The painting actually came years before his arrival.

Next a print from Stella Im Hultberg
This is titled 'I'll keep you warm' and I love that the little child is wrapping a scarf around the little birds

This is part of the scene on his non-working fireplace mantle...some animals, knit booties, vintage miniature children's books including a miniature copy of Hamlet for him to read during his downtime....hehe....

what you see when you look up

one side of a shelf showing one of the Jenn Docherty animals I own, M's initials and a jar of marbles

recently purchase paper doll set from Wool and Water that I put together last week and framed.

recently acquired vintage children's table for crafts, snacks, puzzles...

my brother Christopher's old toy box with some of little m's cars, trains and his plane

an old family heirloom china cabinet that we painted and use for storage

really great animal letterpress cards

a handmade bird stuffie from this shop which I love.

Monday, August 13, 2007

mary jane's and a strawberry

I finished knitting these mary jane's this weekend. They can be knit two ways. The other way would have the eyelet row matching the tie on strap. I've always loved wearing my mary jane's with tights. You know I'm a girly girl, right? I had the yarn on hand for size 0-6 months in the perfect combination of black and white. I'd like to knit them in a bigger size next time with worsted weight. Of course a photo of these on a little baby or even a doll would really benefit the photo as they don't look nearly as cute lying there. I need to see if I can get a doll that can wear tiny baby clothes. The pattern is from here. I got the combination package so I will be trying out the baby chuck taylor's at some point as well.
Last week, I also needle felted this little strawberry and added a little felt and sewn on beads. I attached a pin-back to it so that it can be worn as a brooch. I've been wanting to get back to my needle felting but, with my mind always pulling me in a thousand crafty directions it's hard to decide which way to go sometimes but, I'm thinking of a few more needle and wet felting projects in the near future. My mind is mostly going towards knitting with some sewing and other crafts thrown in sporadically as I think I want to get more knitted goods in the shops and it seems like a good idea to start on that now.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

velvet ribbon

I love velvet ribbon. It is so little girl and dress-up. I saw this idea awhile back (not sure where) and decided to make some of my own. It's just velvet ribbon with a little elastic sewn on each end. It's much better than tying the ribbon on like I used to. As you can see someone needs a bit of a touch-up (see grays - yikes). I also had my haircut yesterday and had my bangs done asymmetrical and am still deciding if I fancy it or not.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

felt flower magnets

sometimes you need a simple craft... just cutting + glue = sweet flower magnets for the fridge.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

sweater for blythe

This sweater for Blythe had been left languishing in a bowl for so long it was simply sad. It only needed it's knitted parts to be sewn together and so I decided yesterday was the day to finish it up. Understand, I do not have a Blythe doll but, maybe someday or perhaps it will fit another doll. Anyone know which dolls are about the same proportions as Blythe?
The pattern is here and it is the Groovy Boogie Sweater shown in green.

Monday, August 6, 2007


I knit and felted this bowl this past week using Brown Sheep wool in color Blue Blood Red. After felting, I used a metal bowl for shaping it. I could really get addicted to making these and already am itching to make some more. They knit up quickly and turn out beautifully. The felting process took about an hour in the washing machine.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

bunnies and kitties

I was so happy to receive Kitty and Lou, my Frozen Charlottes from Jennifer Murphy in the mail the other day. This was a Valentine's Day present. How great is it to get a Valentine's Day present the last day of July...pretty great I think. They are too cute. You can read all about them here.

All my projects I mentioned yesterday have been started. Here is a wip shot of the kitty I'm making.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

summer fun

I'm working but, a little slower than usual...knitting mostly and a little sewing planned for this week (appliqued tees for a special niece and nephew and a little kitten softie for me ). In addition we are planning a trip to the beach, boardwalk, rides and aquarium, a dinner out on our own and a family graduation party in PA.
The photos above were from last weekend - a little time spent in Central Park: a picnic and rock and stick collecting.