Little Box of Crochet

I know I’m super late to this party, but I got my first LBoC box just before Christmas, and I’m so thrilled with everything inside it I just wanted to share!

For those who don’t know, Little Box of Crochet is a UK-based subscription box company.  Every month they send you a little box of crochet which has a pattern and everything you need to complete the project, plus a few extra goodies.

Since I signed up on one of the last days of November, and (at the time) they ship out based on your subscription date, I received the November box a few days before Christmas.

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There’s two patterns in the little booklet – one for a fall wreath and one for a brooch.  Since I’m not really a ‘brooch person’ I’ll probably make that into another hanging decoration.  I love how they literally send you everything you’ll need – including a darning needle!

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They included this cute hook in the proper size for the pattern and yarn, a wire hoop for the base of the wreath, a pin back for the brooch, and a darning needle.

I also LOVE that ‘Hey Hey Let’s Crochet’ sticker.  I want that on a pin!

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Love these colors!  This is Petra 3 by DMC, and it’s a lot thinner than the yarn I’m used to working with but I’m looking forward to the challenge.

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Look at this adorable stitch marker!

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Green velvet ribbon to hang the wreath and make a bow for the brooch.

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And this cute little card, from Posy & Petal, which I’m planning on sending on to an internet friend who’s going through a rough patch right now.  Hopefully it’ll bring a bit of cheer.

I’m really looking forward to digging into this box and making these patterns, though I can’t say for sure when that’s going to be.

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Fancy vacation yarn

At the beginning of October I took a semi-spur-of-the-moment vacation to the Outer Banks.  I’ll do a whole post about that later, but for now this post is about the fancy (for me) yarn that I brought back from that vacation.

There’s a local yarn store in Hatteras, NC called Blue Pelican.  I think I picked up a brochure from the information center I stopped at while I had a bridge-related freak-out (big bridges over large bodies of water freak me out; islands = bridges did not occur to me when planning this vacation).  Or I picked it up once I got on Hatteras Island, I’m not sure.  In any case, local yarn store!  They also have locally made jewelry and art.

I was on the Outer Banks just days before Hurricane Matthew would swing past, so when I stopped at Blue Pelican they were in the process of packing up some of the store in preparation.  Even so, the two women who were working were very friendly and welcoming, and one – not sure if she was the owner or not – even went online and looked up some patterns that I could use with the yarn I was considering.

I explained to her that I don’t buy fancy yarn at all, because I mainly make blankets so I use inexpensive acrylic yarns like Red Heart and Loops and Threads and the like.  And fancy yarns tend to come in small amounts compared to the acrylic yarns that I’m never sure how much to buy or what to make.  So her looking up patterns for me was above and beyond in my opinion.  She even printed one out for me!

They were having a sale on a bunch of yarn, so I was able to justify to myself buying six balls of yarn, lol.  All machine washable, because I don’t hand-wash anything.

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Euro Baby Maypole yarn, in light blue, green, and purple;  and green, blue, and brown.  It was 50% off, so I bought everything they had in these colors. It was probably for the best that this was all they had.

I’m going to use the green/blue/brown yarn to make a wrap, because the colors remind me of the ocean and the sand and the grasses on the dunes.  I think it’ll make a fantastic reminder of my trip!

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I’m not sure yet what I’m going to make with the peacock-colored yarn, but it was too pretty to leave behind.

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It’s such soft and squishy yarn, too!  I’m really looking forward to working with it.

 

Organize ALL THE YARN

My yarn has always been a kind of organized, in that it was – mostly – in bins in the attic.  There were shopping bags up there, too, not gonna lie.  But it wasn’t in any kind of order; it was just thrown into bins and bags willy-nilly, so that anytime I wanted or needed something I had to go through everything in order to find it.  Which was fine.  Whatever.  It worked, kind of.  I had a vague idea of what I had.

Lately though I’ve been feeling the urge to get it sorted, even if I’ve been to busy to do anything about it.

Until Thursday.  Thursday was the first of two days off in a row.  Thursday was going to be the day.  Even though I was working the closing shift on Wednesday, yarn was going to be put in it’s place on Thursday.

Wednesday afternoon I brought down all the plastic tubs and shopping bags of yarn from the attic.  I pulled all the skeins out of the shoe organizer hanging on a wall in my craft closet.  I took the shoe organizer full of yarn off of the back of my front room door.  I piled it all in my front room in preparation for Thursday.  This is what I had when I left for work that evening:

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This is ALL OF MY YARN, except for what’s being used for my current works in progress.  I knew I had a lot, but I didn’t realize just how much until I dug into the pile on Thursday.

 

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This is everything sorted out by color. Yeesh.  Most of it I purchased, but some if it I ‘inherited’ from other people.  The Walmart bag in the middle of the picture contains a half-knitted baby blanket plus yarn that was included in some of the yarn I was given.  I do not knit, so one of my coworkers is going to take it.

 

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This is yarn that is earmarked for specific projects, to be completed…eventually.  One day, these will be lovely finished objects.  But for now they get their own bin:

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Once that was taken care of I started putting the yarn back into the bins – by color, and rewinding balls/skeins as necessary as I went along.

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Best. Purchase. Ever.  I don’t use this all the time, but man am I glad I had it on hand.  It was a lifesaver.

 

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It took most of the day, but now my stash is nicely organized by color.  So now I won’t have to dig through all the boxes and bags in order to find the yarn that I’m looking for.

The tubs on the left are what most of the yarn was in before.  The drawers on the right came from my late-grandpa’s house, and were sitting empty.  Yay for not having to buy storage!

It’s all back in the attic now, nice and neat. And I have extra storage in my craft closet, because the shoe/yarn organizer is now empty!

 

Christmas crafting

As I was putting up Christmas decorations in my front room, I came across an old, cheap, plastic village set that my parents used to set up many many many years ago, and that I remember loving as a kid.  I decided to set it up under my little tree, but it needed a light strand.  The set is only 9 houses, and it was difficult to find a set of lights that small and on a white cord.  So I ended up getting a string of 20 lights and a ball of Lily Sugar and Cream cotton yarn in white, and made them white.

I followed Moogly’s pattern for an ear bud cover, and used an E (3.5mm) hook.  It took me two days, because I started in the evening after work, but it could easily be finished in one day.

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I think this would be really cute done in different colors, or varigated yarn, if you’re the sort to decorate with fairy lights year-round.  The cord doesn’t get hot at all, and the lights don’t get too hot either, so I think it would pretty safe.  Obviously you wouldn’t want to leave them on and leave the house, just to be on the safe side, but other than that no worries.

I also got an idea from the Red Heart yarn blog, about easy Christmas ornaments to make with yarn.  I think it was in a ‘crafting with kids’ type of post, but I saw it on Facebook and was all, ‘Brilliant! Why didn’t I think of that?!’

Take an empty ornament, the kind you can buy to fill, and stuff it full of yarn scraps.  It couldn’t be easier!  I save all my yarn scraps to use as stuffing in toys, so it was just a matter of pulling out the colors I wanted and stuffing them into the ornament.  I also used a pen to pack them down a bit.

ornamentSuper easy and super cute!  This is going on the tree at work.