Archive for the ‘A Bit-O-Random’ Category

We think this little video is sooo cute!  We are sure many of you knitters and crocheters have already seen this from Mochimochi Land, but thought we would share in case you hadn’t.

It was a very busy 2012 for Brandy and I with our new company (www.crowdedcoop.com), but knitting and crocheting has been in full swing the last several months.  I have been a sweater making fool, with two down and another 1/2 done in the past two months (B.O.B., Nati, and the London Tunic) , and Brandy is now officially obsessed with socks, and she also has been plugging away on a Sock Yarn Blanket.  We are also both back to being addicted to Ravelry as well.

We hope you all had a very Happy New Year – do you have any craft related resolutions this year?  I am committed to either running or knitting for at least 30 minutes a day in 2013 and am tracking it here, and Brandy wants to master color work, double sided knitting and read 1 new craft book a month – and of course paint more, which she is incredibly talented at – and she is tracking her efforts here.

We look forward to sharing more knitting and crocheting inspirations on our Rewind site soon!


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Darron Cummings/Associated Press

Via Vogue Knitting Facebook : We wanted to share this inspiring story of how handmade and heart wins over mass-produced any day. These “Super Scarves” are the hottest item to get your hands on this Super Bowl. Click through to read whole story >>

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Unless you’ve been living in cave OR haven’t yet gotten your invite for Pinterest, you have no doubt seen the hilarious meme “Hey Girl.” featuring various images of Ryan Gosling and incredibly spot on quotes that all start with “Hey Girl.”; connecting to the plight of being a strong, independent and crafty woman. Our favorites have to do with knitting and crochet, of course (but the one about the mason jar lamps is pretty damn funny too!).  This meme is not new, but because of Pinterest it has had a resurgence of followers creating a whole new wave of images of Gosling and relatable crafty / DIY quotes. Click here for the original tumblr to get all the Ryan goodness you can stand. Here’s some of our personal faves:

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While Halloween at Brandy’s house wasn’t as busy with kiddos as in years past, we definitely had more time to focus on a few new projects.  The weather has turned here in the PNW, and the last few weeks I have been focused on gloves and mittens.  One, their quick, two, sizing really isn’t too much of an issue, three, I’m thinking holiday gifts.  I came up with two easy options that are NOT knit on DPNs.

The first ones are some cute cable wristlets, with the thumb added after you sew them up.  I wore them for about a week before I decided to add the thumbs,  so you can go either way.  Pattern will be posted next week.  This is some super soft bamboo hand spun yarn I got off of Etsy over a year ago, and I was happy with the results.

The second ones I think I will call my Dishcloth Candy Cane Wristlets.  These are the easiest things ever.  I came up with these for a friend of mine (who shall remain nameless) who is convinced the only thing she can knit is dishcloths.  Again, knit on regular needles and then sewn up after the fact.  You could even do these in school colors (my sis is getting some Purple and Gold ones for Christmas in honor of our U of W Huskies!).  I used Vanna’s Choice yarn.  I am going to get the pattern written up for you next week on these as well.

And here is what Halloween looked like at Brandy’s house.  We went with a funeral parlor/graveyard theme.  I was D. Eadly and she was D. Ceased.  Please note that we hijacked our store mannequin and planted her body parts in the lawn.  I was worried her leg was going to get stolen, but she is all back in one piece now.  We watched Anchorman, knit and crocheted between ‘customers’ and I tried to not eat all the Smarties out of the candy bucket. All in all a successful evening!

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Hello there! Mary and I hope everyone had a great holiday and an even better New Year’s Eve. (I know we did… a little too good, my head still hurts!) The dust has settled and we are back to crafting!! We’ve been reading several blogs as of late and many of our favorite bloggers have been posting their “Life List Goals for 2011”. Inspired, we’ve decided to toss our knitted hat into the ring! Here’s our joint “Craft Life List, and in true Brandy and Mary style, written on sticky notes:

List Rules:
• Each craft may only qualify for only one of the “to-dos”.
• Past crafts do not count (Mary).

While Mary and I were reminiscing about last years crafty shenanigans, coming up with our list, we decided that we are going to expand into posting about sewing. CALM DOWN! It’s just going to be a post here and there since we both enjoy sewing; but are still pretty novice. Also long story (and one call to the police) short, this New Years we had a PJ party where Mary and I sewed the guest custom PJ bottoms. That’s just too much fun NOT to post.

What’s your Craft Life List? Best list of 5 crafty to-dos wins a fun mystery crafty prize pack!! Comment by 1/14/11 to enter.

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It’s true… we are so excited we can’t hide it! Mary and I have been busy prepping for our 1st ever Thursday night knitting party here at The Modern Mercantile. (we are still trying to come up with a name for our little group or club or circle or — any ideas?) Mary will be knitting a scrap yarn scarf with all her various stashed yarns. Last year Mary scored a major yarn stash from an older gal that was needing to clean out her shed-o-yarn! I plan on making some crochet soap tawashis for holiday gifts! At The Modern Mercantile we carry an amazing locally made soap that we can’t get enough of. When wondering what I was going to make this came to me while restocking our display — remember our obsession with tawashis?!

With the wine and cheese chilling it’s sure to be a great time!! If you are in our neck of the woods we’d love you to join us.  Since most of our readers are sadly not from our area, you have our permission to put your feet up tonight, pour yourself that favorite beverage and craft your brains out for a few hours!  Would love to see a few pics of your crafting adventures.  🙂

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Come join us for our first knitting/crochet night! Don’t know how to knit or crochet? It doesn’t matter! We’ll have plenty of yarn, needles and patterns for you to learn! We have a great group of ladies rsvp, should be a super fun night. Check the store Facebook page — click the events tab for details. BYOC – bring your own chair; we have benches but we suggest to be comfy to bring your own chair. 🙂

The Modern Mercantile – A Collective of the Unexpected
206 E. Main St., Suite A
Monroe, WA  98272

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Whatcha been up to??

Who.. us?? Well sadly not knitting and crocheting as much as we want to. HOWEVER we just embarked on quite the adventure. We opened a retail store – The Modern Mercantile – in the heart of historic downtown Monroe Washington!!! Say what!? That’s right, Mary and I have wanted to do this for some time. It has been a long time dream, so when the perfect location was available we couldn’t say no. What was our 2 year plan turned into our 18 day plan. That’s right we opened up our store in 18 days! It was a lot of blood, sweat and tears (of joy) but we opened and have had such a positive response, we couldn’t be happier. With all that said, now that we are settled into our space and our new nook (we created specially for Mary and I to craft the day away, in between customers of course) has been outfitted with all the essentials, we are ready to get back to our first love – fiber arts. The store offers us the perfect place to sell our knitted and crochet wares and give back to the community by featuring other local artisans and hosting make ‘n’ takes. Again we couldn’t be more thrilled.

We’ll be ready with fresh posts and awesome new free patterns next week. Until then check out our new store’s website and “like” us on Facebook!

OH! and if you know of a cool line of products that you think we should take a look at, knitted/crochet or otherwise send it on over! 🙂

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I often stumble across the most beautiful studio spaces. You know the ones where “a place for everything and everything in it’s place”? Instead of feeling admiration for those spaces I’m the one feeling out of place… Sure they are beautiful (and sure they’ve been cleaned up and styled 6 ways to Sunday) but they don’t feel real and I can’t relate. That is why I was so inspired to share this particular studio space, the unkept chaos is like a wonderful game of Where’s Waldo (or Bill). I would be right at home amongst the piles of retro blankets and heaps of finished art bits. This inspiring studio by Sarah Applebaum is as crazy and cool as her website.

What’s your studio space inspiration??

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Not to say that we all don’t love a good bargain, but there is something truly magical (especially for Brandy) about the 2 for $3 bin at our local craft store. Every time we walk by it, I know that Brandy will stop, bury her face in it, and give it a big hug.  I took this picture to prove to her that she is having a very personal and somewhat inappropriate relationship with the bargain bin.  Don’t even get me started on her behavior with the new scented Sugar ‘n Cream yarn.

On the Mary front, I finally finished my turtleneck tube vest from Stefanie Japel’s wonderful book, Fitted Knits.  I love the top down construction – it is very intuitive and just makes great sense.  I even used the same color that was pictured in the book – loving the periwinkle (not very imaginative I guess).

Up next – out of Twinkle’s Town & Country Knits, the printmaker’s pullover.  I am done with the sleeves, but I had to special order the size 19, 29″ and 24″ needles.  Love how fast the sleeves went – but I feel like I am knitting with kindling, damn those needles are big!

I guess to sum it up, knitting is full steam ahead over here – hello fall, I love you!


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