Friday, July 29, 2011

Embroidery Workshops at Sifu in August

I'm teaching a few embroidery workshops at Sifu Design Studio in Chicago during the month of August. Each 3-hour workshop is a great way to take your embroidery skills to the next level, or learn something completely new. All materials are included for each workshop - B.Y.O.Hoop if you'd like. You can sign up online and view the whole calendar here, or call the store to sign up - 773.271.7438.

ribbon embroidery class

Wednesday, August 3rd, 6:00 - 9:00pm

This romantic technique has been around for hundreds of years, and is perfect for embellishing clothing and home goods. In this workshop, you'll learn the basics to create ribbon motifs and how to combine them into a charming work of art. 

fancy stitches class

Wednesday, August 10th, 6:00 - 9:00pm

A workshop for the experienced embroider who is ready to learn a few fancy stitches. In this workshop we'll learn five decorative stitches and create a sampler to hang on your wall or give as a gift. 

punch embroidery class

Saturday, August 13th, 2:30 - 5:30pm

Create a patch for your letter sweater! Punch embroidery uses a special tool to push loops of thread through fabric in a specific design, creating a fluffy, soft picture. In this workshop, we'll learn the basics to get you started with a project of your choosing - bring a sketchbook with your own ideas or use one of our patterns.

Monday, August 22nd, 6:00 - 9:00pm

Appliqué is great for everything from t-shirts to home decor to covering a hole in your favorite garment. We’ll cover heat and bond, quick turn, reverse appliqué, traditional appliqué with blind stitch, and blanket stitch.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Make Up Your Mind - the complete sweater

And here it is, my summer sweater:

back of my summer sweater!

I planned it, I knit along, yet somehow, this sweater fell a bit short of the mark. I'll admit - I'm not really a summer sweater kind of girl. I prefer to knit thick, cable-y, dead-of-winter type sweaters. But I stepped outside my comfort zone, and knit the Make Up Your Mind sweater. 

Making up my mind on a pier

The design itself is awesome, Julie did a great job. But it's not really me. 

sassily making up my mind

It looks awesome in these pictures, and I love the color. But it's a cotton sweater, and it got wet, and there was some unfortunate stretching... ok, I maybe flashed a bit to much of the ol' chest. Good thing I was wearing a bathing suit underneath - that's all I have to say!

summer sweater on lake michigan

Ps. Photos were taken by my friend Melissa on Lake Michigan after a huge thunderstorm last week - isn't it beautiful!? 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Instagram Update

I've been taking a ton of pictures on my iphone using Instagram, a free app. It's so easy to take pictures and tweet them  - I've become a bit addicted! I want to share them here as well, so here's a round up of Instagram photos from the past two weeks:


1. New bangs cut  2. Embroidery embellishments for a class I'm teaching  3. Ombre cloud  4. Pink Lemonade cupcakes from here 5. Portobello burger & potato salad dinner  6. Balloon lady at the Chicago lakefront  7. Headbands in progress  8. New bedspread from Ikea

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Vintage Glass - a collection

I've been meaning to photograph some of my collections for awhile now, so when Casey from Elegant Musings posted that she wanted to do a blog tour of collections, I immediately emailed her. Can you tell I'm motivated by others?

I present my installment of:

Hello class, I'm Katie, and this is my vintage glass collection:

closeup on the vintage glass

I started collecting vintage cut glass in 2005, and it all started with a green glass vase. I loved the color and the elegance, and I easily started a collection. It didn't hurt that there's a profusion of glassware in thrift stores. Six years later, I still check the glasswares section when I'm thrifting. 

Although it started with green glass, I quickly expanded to blue, gold and white - known as "milk glass." My collection is not mere decoration, though, I use it in every room in the house. Vintage glass makes great storage containers for craft materials, jewelry, cooking utensils - you name it, there's vintage glass to store it. I even store my button collection in vintage glass!

vintage glass in action

The humble beginnings of my glass collection in 2005 (taken with my first digital camera - oh, technology!):


Friday, July 15, 2011

MUYM Progress

When I joined Allyson's knit along and chose to knit Julie's Make Up Your Mind sweater, I was skeptical. I don't really believe in summer sweaters - who wears a sweater in the summer? They're hot, even if sleeveless, and I sweat. Plus everyone knows sweaters belong to winter! But I had no idea how awesome this sweater would be to knit on the road. 

vacation knitting
Cellular stitch on Thursday morning

I had a bit of a false start - since I'm using different yarn than called for, I swatched a bit skinnier than gauge. I decided to compensate by casting on for a size 48. After knitting about two inches, I tried on the sweater and even though it was only two inches, it was a baggy two inches. So I pulled the whole thing out and cast on size 44. 

MUYM in the car
Knit through cellular, checkerboard and in the midst of linen stitch on Saturday

From there it was smooth sailing - I added two extra inches of cellular stitch to the bottom of the sweater, and about an inch to the bust, as per Allyson's KAL recommendations. 

MUYM Progress shot!
Took a few days to work the Hindu Pillar stitch and finished off with some lace

I love knitting this! Or did, since I'm actually done at this point (stay tuned for FO pics). The design is really smart - every few inches you switch up the stitch pattern, which creates shaping without increasing or decreasing. That also makes it perfect for travel - no stitches or rows to count, just a new stitch pattern to keep things interesting. 

close up of stitch patterns

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

My Outer Banks Vacation in (iphone) Pictures

Like the rest of my Outer Banks vacation, these photos are a little lazy. That's to say - they were all taken on my iphone. I took another camera, I swear! But when it came down to it, I just didn't use it much. 

I decided to post the best all in one huge entry - Enjoy!

road trip!

Meghan and I set off on Friday - sisterz road trip!

me & Meg - road trippin'

somewhere idyllic in Virginia

Extremely idyllic landscape in Virginia

crossing over the bridge to OBX

Crossing the bridge to OBX after two days of driving!

first day on the beach

Finally at the beach. 

mama on the beach

Mi mama. 


like father, like daugher


dad & bro

Look how hip my little brother is!

patriotic sound

the sound

small town parade

We attended the 4th of July parade in Duck, NC, which was adorable.

4th Parade

marching drums

Patrick flying a kite

hangin' in the pool

Currituck Lighthouse

Currituck Lighthouse

dad & patrick

top of the lighthouse

lighthouse man & dog

Lighthouse keeper & dog

hangin' at the top of the lighthouse

delicious dinner

No trip to the East Coast is complete without a lobster dinner. 

Friday, July 8, 2011

aaand we're back!

I returned home this morning after my week-long trip to the Outer Banks, NC.

patriotic sunset

Little did I know that it would also be a week-long vacation from the internet. I'll admit - it felt kinda nice. And since I have a new fangled iphone, I was able to keep tweeting, if not blogging. 

I'll do a full post with vacation photos (and vacation crafts!), but right now I have a pressing question: What blog posts did I miss this week? I'm dreading looking at my Google Reader, so link me if you found or posted something awesome.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

vacation knittin'

On Thursday morning, I set off on an adventure. The first leg was less than glamourous - I took the Megabus home to Michigan - but yesterday my sister, Meghan, and I drove for nine hours through two states, heading towards the Outer Banks, NC. The Outer Banks is one of the most beautiful places in America, and our family has vacationed there since 1997, so I'm glad to be on the road. 

But I definitely need knitting...

vacation styleeee

Luckily, Allyson from Sweatshop of Love is once again hosting a Selfish Knit-Along! The sweater I've chosen is Julie Crawford's Make Up Your Mind, and I'm knitting it in Knit Pick's Comfy Fingering in Seafoam. My tropical color choice is definitely in the minority, but it will go perfectly with the new swim suit I ordered from Victoria's Secret. 

I'll be on the road for six hours again today before reaching OBX (the Outer Banks according to popular bumper stickers), so I'll have plenty of time to make major progress on my sweater. A good thing, considering I cast on three weeks after everyone else!