Monday, October 29, 2007

autumn kool-aid dying party!

so this past Sunday (aka yesterday) i had a wee little autumn yarn dying party at my apartment with my knitting (and non-knitting) friends!
it was a serious blast.
when i was in college, i experimented a bit with all different kinds of dying, but my favorite by far was dying with Kool-Aid.
one of my friends taught me, and i've since learned that it's a bit more common than i thought. especially here in the city.
but all of my knitting friends had never done it before! so i decided to have a party and teach everyone that wanted to learn.

i baked halloween treats, and had snacks to munch on while dying. in the back there, you can see, i set out all the yarn i've dyed with kool-aid, and my sketch book, which has all of my recipes hidden away. and my batch of kool-aid of course.

so first was the hard part, choosing the colors. it took awhile, but eventually everyone had their favorite combinations and was ready to dye. some were mathematical and precise. some were more organic and free-flowing (my personal style). some had a very specific color in mind.

for those of you who have never done this, or don't know the process, i will enlighten you. kool-aid dying is a simple process. you need a skein of naked yarn made of an animal fiber (such as wool, silk, etc.), a clear glass or tupperware container, preferably large, kool-aid of all colors and flavors, water and a microwave. put one (1) skein of yarn into container, add water. squeeze all excess air out of yarn, make sure yarn is completely submerged. add kool-aid. to achieve desired color, use at least 10 packets of kool-aid. can be different colors. blend as desired, or simply create patterns. place container in microwave. start with 10 minutes. nuke that yarn until the water is clear (or after about 30 minutes). rinse and hang to dry. you've got beautiful yarn!!!

all in all, everyone was very satisfied with the outcome! let's see.

R#1 was first, and you can see her stripes! this is a shot of the yarn in the microwave after 10 minutes of heat. she chose 2 shades of orange and lime green. she doesn't like to knit, but wanted to learn to dye! so i'm going to knit her something nice with this.

her colors blended soooo nicely.

L was next. she chose the most brilliant fuchsia. it was gorgeous! she used my method of free-flowing and mixing. it looks a bit orange next to her magenta shirt, but it really was so nice and pink.

R#2 decided to go with bright orange, how festive! she was very mathematical with her application. must be the engineer in her. she added a tiny bit of dark red and tan, you can see how nicely it blended together with the orange.

and S went last. she was so determined to get her awesome shade of mustard yellow! isn't it gorgeous?? her yarn was a bit tangled when it came out of the microwave, but she was so happy with her color it didn't even matter. who would have thought kool-aid could make such a nice muted color!

i was so busy playing hostess that i didn't get to dye anything until after everyone left! that's fine with me, i was so happy to see my friends having fun and enjoying each other's company. it was the perfect day.

if you have any more questions about dying with kool-aid, you can visit for the dying recipe and amazingly cheap naked wool!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

holiday ornaments collection

i'm starting a new collection on Etsy!
i was inspired by a project sort of commissioned to me by one of my co-designers.
i've just noticed how popular birds and animals are right now.
so i thought i would participate a bit.
see what kind of reaction this received.

bird ornaments!
i'm also going to make earrings and brooches to add to my autumn and winter collections.
this one i just listed on Etsy today, and i hope to be listing many more by the end of the weekend!

i'll be sure to bring some home for the holidays! since i was very young, my brother and i have been receiving ornaments at Christmas time. every year it was something new. most of the time we got to pick out our own, but sometimes it was a surprise to open. i think the worst year was when our tree fell, and my favorite ornament broke. the crystal ballerina. RIP.

i was walking through the craft store this morning, looking for some supplies, and yes. believe it. Christmas music was playing overhead. before i even realized it, i was humming along. i figured it was a good time to start selling holiday decorations.

and please check out this Etsy treasury! my brooch is again featured!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

front page!

it was pure chance that i happened to come home from dinner with my wonderful cousins, Nathan and Nancy, and walk right into my studio to check my Etsy page. at that exact moment, one of my pieces was showcased on the front page of Etsy!

here is the screen shot. you can see my item there close to the bottom, the brooch i posted about on Monday!
i had spent about an hour at the Etsy forums, mainly in the Crafting and Business section, to do a bit of shameless self-promotion and see if i could get any help with my shoppe. it was the best hour i could have spent. i learned so much about the best ways to run an Etsy shoppe, advice from buyers and sellers alike, and just saw what other successful sellers are doing.

as a result of this, i was asked to participate in a craft fair in Park Slope in December! this will be my first craft fair, so i am extremely excited.

more goodies to come!

Monday, October 15, 2007

featured items

happy monday all!
another lovely weekend come and gone.
visions of October hanging over my head as the month is already half over.

happy birthday to my sweet brother who turned 25 yesterday!
i felt such a void not being able to be with him, eating lots of crab legs and hot fudge cake til i burst. heaven.

my mother did a beautiful post for him yesterday. so here is my part of it. this so describes our awesome relationship to a TEE. dad's old tractor, me driving, pete crackin me up.

in other news, check out my Etsy shoppe! i'm featuring my farm animal goods this week, so check them out!

i've also had time to post a few new items, and added an "Accessories" section! joy!

a pin or brooch, perfect for your fall jacket! i just love these colors. mustard yellow and a deep brown with a hint of purple. been so inspired lately. new ideas all the time!

enjoy your week.

Sunday, October 7, 2007


so i made these new earrings.
they are super weird, but i actually really like them.

oh yea. they are also huge.

just posted them in Etsy tonight.
what do you think? would love some feedback.

adventure weekend

the weather has been perfection this weekend
especially for getting out on my bicycle.
luckily C has been wanting to ride a lot more lately, so we've had a couple adventures this weekend.

starting yesterday.

C standing next to our bikes. mine is the green monster and his is the purple crazy dutch koga-miyata. we rode around Queens, and decided to go to this new outdoor mall. i seriously felt like i was in florida. so weird. your typical stores, Starbucks, Border's (which you can see in the background there), Claire's, Halloween Adventure. C and i were debating what was going to be there once Halloween was over. i said maybe Thanksgiving Adventure, and he said Talbot's. i think his guess is better than mine.

we had some nice iced coffee from Starbuck's, free of charge, thanks to my dad's gift card he got from his kids for xmas. yay dad!

beautiful fall flowers. the colors are truly inspirational. these were in front of the 'Amish Market'. yea right. more like 'Over-priced Grocery Store'.

total miles yesterday: 5

then today we decided to take advantage of the beautifulness early! heading out at 9am, we made our way to Manhattan via C's route to work. this was exciting, as i had only seen his route through a car or bus, not while riding a bicycle.

going over the Williamsburg Bridge, from Brooklyn to Manhattan. i took this while on my bicycle by the way. this is a very popular bridge to ride/walk/run/jog over. very enjoyable i must say.

C took me for breakfast at his favorite restaurant, Atlas Cafe, on 2nd Ave in the East Village. great food, vegan/veggie friendly, and outdoor seating. always a plus when watching bicycles locked up.


after breakfast, we rode over the west-side highway to look at the water and ride on the bike path. we weren't on here long before we started heading back to Queens. pictured above: C riding ahead of me. and. the new Frank Gehry building which i just love. his first building in New York actually! pretty amazing.

total miles today: 26.3 (that's right folks, marathon style. by far the longest i've ever ridden in one day)


in other news. this is what i'm obsessively knitting.

from the same book where i got the pattern for K's scarf (the red one i finished awhile ago). i love lace.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

sweater finished!

today is a beautiful day for a bicycle ride
i can't believe it's 80 degrees outside tho
i've been inside all morning and am just ITCHING to get out there
but first...

finished and listed on Etsy!
the newest addition to my recycled sweater collection. if you will remember, last week i posted my process of making this sweater.

here i am modeling it. i added another piece of the same fabric to the front, to create a nice flow from front to back.

i am very excited about this piece, and hope to make many more like it.

but for's time to get outside! i'll bring my camera, i promise.
have a wonderful saturday! hope the sun is shining in your part of the world.