A Lavender Mermaid!

Okay, I know it may seem like I make only Lalylala dolls now – I am working on other things, but a lot of them are top secret projects that I can’t talk about yet. All will be revealed in time, but for today…yes, I made another one! This time I decided to try Mici the Mermaid, and she’s probably my favorite so far.Purple Lalylala Mici the Mermaid holding buttercups

We have about a million buttercups in our yard right now (which I love), so I thought I’d use some as props, and I love how these pictures turned out. Purple Lalylala Mici the Mermaid holding buttercups

Mici is made of Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in colors Cloud and Haze Heather (with a little scrap ball of dark purple for her girdle), and size 2.75mm hook. I also used a gold metallic thread mixed in for the tail and hair; it was really difficult to get a good picture of it, but you can see it a bit in the photo above. A tip on the thread if you decide to do this: make sure you buy a bunch of spools! The yardage did not last as long as I thought it would, and I kept having to go buy more. I think I ended up using about 6 spools of this DMC thread.Purple Lalylala Mici the Mermaid in bunch of white peoniesI like using wool to make these toys, because it’s kind of sticky and sets up well when you stuff them, but the downside is that you can’t just throw it in the washing machine. I usually recommend that toys be hand washed anyway, to keep the stuffing where it should be, but it’s nice to have the option if you’re in a hurry. Still, the colors that Wool of the Andes is available in are hard to pass up, and it’s nice to work with.

The body and tail were pretty easy on this one, but the hair was incredibly time consuming! Each little swirl is individually crocheted and then hand sewn onto the head…not quick process. This is her after the first row, about the time I realized this was going to take me a lot longer than I thought!Purple Lalylala Mici the Mermaid in process of getting hair

Yeah. It was a lot of work. But when she was all done…man was I in love!Purple Lalylala Mici the Mermaid sitting in a tree

I’ve seen from some other people that they made their Micis a little bikini top to wear, and I also toyed with sewing or knitting one, but nothing I designed looked quite right, and in the end I just left her the way she was. I think it works! If you like my Mici (or want one in another color!, she’s available to purchase in the Etsy Shop, or you can get the pattern to make your own over at the Lalylala website!

Purple Lalylala Mici the Mermaid laying on bricks

Have a great weekend everyone!

Copper Jewelry!

Happy Tuesday! I hope everyone in the US had a great Memorial Day Holiday (and everyone else just had a great weekend!). I’ve been hard at work picking up a new skill – jewelry making! Here’s what I’ve made so far:

Copper Jewelry

For my first bracelet, I knotted some strands of copper wire together in the same way you would to make a friendship bracelet.

Copper Green Beads Bracelet 1

Once I felt like I had enough, I wrapped the back in more wire and some green glass beads, for a pretty two-toned effect.

Copper Green Beads Bracelet 3

I was pretty hooked after that one, so my next experiment was with knitting copper wire, which I’ve been meaning to try for a couple of years now. I cast on about 16 stitches and knit the wire exactly as I would have done with yarn, then rolled it into a tube and grafted the ends together.

Copper Knit Bracelet 1

I love how this one turned out, but I think next time I’ll use thinner wire; these are all made with 24 gauge, and it was pretty difficult to knit with.

Next up, I made a pendant necklace with a polished piece of white quartz.

Copper White Quartz 4

I’ve collected stones since I was little, and I love the idea of incorporating them into jewelry. The ones in this batch are actually from our last trip to Ashland to visit one of my mamas-in-law; we were killing time before dinner one night and ended up in a little shop that let you choose your own bag of polished rocks – an offer I couldn’t pass up!

Copper White Quartz necklace

On a side note, all of these pictures were taken in our front yard, and I’m so in love with the backdrop of these flowers for the jewelry. Everything is so gorgeous right now!

My next piece was a big, chunky ring using another stone – rose quartz this time.

Copper Rose Quartz Ring

This one is probably my very favorite (in fact, I’m pretty sure I’m keeping this one!). It’s definitely a statement piece, but I love the way it looks. I tried it out yesterday on a date with my husband and I think I’ll be wearing it with as many outfits as I can manage this summer!

Copper Rose Quartz Ring 6

And last, I decided to make something a little more delicate, and braided some beads with the copper wire to make a very fine ring.

Copper Bead Braid Ring 1

This one is, honestly, probably more my style, and more of a ring I would wear every day or to an occasion where a huge rock isn’t appropriate!

These pieces are have just been listed in the Etsy store, so if you like them as much as I do, head on over to get yourself some cool copper jewelry!

And in other exciting news, I have an announcement; I now have a Patreon! If you love Measured and Slow, want to support me as I continue to grow, and love cool rewards (like personalized cards, discounts, exclusive videos, and more!), please head on over to my page and take a look.

Copper Bead Braid Ring

Cowls Cowls Cowls (and a scarf)

I’ve been in the mood to make some simple things lately (probably because I have so many boxes to unpack), so I’ve been using up stray skeins of yarn to crochet and knit a few big, chunky cowls (available in the Etsy … Continue reading

New Pattern: Transenna Blanket!

Meet my newest pattern, Transenna!

Lavender knit blanket with cables

Basically as soon as it started getting chilly and rainy around here, I was itching to start something with cables. I already had a bunch of sweaters in progress, and I’ve wanted a heavier, knit blanket to snuggle up on the couch with for a while now. I poked around for a week or so trying to find a pattern I liked, but nothing was grabbing me, so I made my own!

Lavender knit blanket with cables

I kind of just experimented with cables until I found some I liked, so this blanket uses a combination that ends up looking like an old lead glass window (which is where the name came from!).

Close up of lavender knit blanket with cables

It’s knit with yarn held doubled in Cascade Yarns Cherub Aran, which remains one of my favorite yarns. It’s so, so soft, but can be machine washed and dried (I don’t recommend drying it, as it can seriously shorten the life of your knits, but the point is that you can). This made it not only crazy warm, but also gave it a gorgeous drape and weight.

Lavender knit blanket with cables

I made this one in lavender (which was very quickly claimed by a friend), then immediately cast on to make one in green for a Christmas present, and I have plans to make another in blue for our new house!

Lavender knit blanket with cables wrapped around dog

It may look really complicated, but I’ve tried my best to break it down into easy to read parts, and the pattern comes with both written and charted instructions. It’s available for download in my Ravelry store. I hope you have as much fun making it as I did designing it, and as always, please let me know if you have any questions!

Lots of Little Things – And Meeting Debbie Bliss!

First, I must apologize for my longish absence; I was sick for a little while there. But, I’m on the mend and I have lots of little things to share! First up, I got a wild hair and decided to make a wallet for my mom:

Wallet made from Michael Miller Just My Type Letterpress

I was fairly happy with it, although there were a few things I’d change next time. It’s hard to tell, but I used iron-on vinyl on the outside, to make it more water and dirt proof. It made the fabric really thick and difficult to sew, which my poor little machine was not happy about. Because of that difficulty, the pockets on the inside did get slightly crooked.

Inside of wallet made with Michael Miller Just My Type Letterpress

It basically flat out refused to sew the velcro, so that part took me a lot longer than I’d been expecting. This frustration led to deciding it was finally time to get a more heavy duty machine, which I’ve needed for quite a while (I have a little Brother machine that I love, but she just isn’t up to the amount of quilting I do). A trip to Goodwill later, and this beauty went home with me!

1970s Kenmore Sewing Machine

She needs some cleaning and servicing, but runs great and is super heavy, so no more shuttering all over the table! Now she just needs a name…any suggestions?

I also finished this little guy, for a sweet brand new baby boy.

Hand knit brown teddy bear wearing a blue bow

He was an order from my Etsy store, and measured about 17 inches high. He was so cuddly and huggable, I kind of wanted to keep him, but I decided the baby probably needed him more :). The pattern is this one from Debbie Bliss, which I’ve made several times and continue to fall in love with.

And, speaking of Debbie Bliss, she was visiting Seattle recently, and guess who got to meet her!

Girl standing with Debbie Bliss wearing a dress made from Michael Miller Just My Type LetterpressYes, that is yours truly, standing next to Debbie Bliss, and wearing one of the sweaters she brought with her, from the new fall designs. This one is knit from the new Roma yarn, and that and the sweater design should be available at the end of summer, from what I understand. This is another from the same collection:

Girl wearing sample of a gray Debbie Bliss designed sweater

It was an awesome afternoon. There weren’t that many people there, so we were each able to talk to Debbie and try one a bunch of sweaters. She talked a lot about her design process, and how to knit for yourself. Interestingly, she recommends that you pick a sweater pattern based on your shoulder measurement rather than your bust measurement, especially if there’s a lot of ease in the pattern. In hindsight, this makes a lot of sense, since a lot of the time when I make a sweater in “my” measurements, I’m not happy with the fit. But I have a couple of sweaters that got made a size or two small, and they fit great. I went home incredibly inspired and ready to work…and she complimented my dress, which pretty much made my week!

Hope everyone is having a great summer (and beating the heat), and I should be back to regularly scheduled postings next week!

Variegated Spiral Baby Blankets

I’ve been working on a few pretty intricate quilts lately, so when I ran into some Bernat Handicrafter yarn on sale in pretty summery colors, I snatched it up to start on an easy project. Generally speaking, I’m not a huge fan of variegated yarn, but I was totally swayed by the colors in this case, and I love how they turned out.

Two spiral knit baby blankets, one in pink cotton yarn and one in blue cotton yarn

The sherbet colored one is color “Strawberry Cream” and the blue/mint/yellow one is in color “Peppermint Patty”. A quick look seems to indicate that these colors may have been discontinued, but they have a bunch of other ones that look just as nice.

Close up of two spiral knit baby blankets, one in pink cotton yarn and one in blue cotton yarn

I based them off of this pattern on Ravelry and added a teeny ruffle on on the outside edge of each by working a row of knit one, yarn over at the very end. The sherbet one is slightly smaller than the other one, since it was the first one I made and I wasn’t sure how far the yarn would stretch. It ended up being about 32′ across.

Spiral baby blanket made from variegated pink cotton yarn

The blue one ended up just a little bigger, at about 34′ across.

Spiral baby blanket made from variegated blue and yellow cotton yarn

Since the yarn is 100% cotton, it’s a pretty lightweight blanket that should be perfect for late spring and summer, and it was nice and soft to knit with. These were extra large skeins, with 608 yards in each of them, and they were just about perfect for a baby blanket size. They shrunk slightly in the dryer, so I think I would recommend that these be air dried only to avoid further shrinkage.

Close up of spiral baby blanket made from variegated pink cotton yarn

I couldn’t resist using our yard as a backdrop; everything is blooming at the moment and these bright blankies fit right in :).

Spiral baby blanket made from variegated blue and yellow cotton yarn

If you’re looking for an easy, pretty pattern, I would highly recommend this one. Or, if you’d rather have one of these, they are both available in my Etsy shop!

First item for sale!

My Etsy shop is officially up and running! You can find it here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/MeasuredandSlow.

Here’s a peek at my first item up for sale:

ImageIt’s a dove grey blanket with star squares surrounded by a seed stitch, based on this pattern. It is, of course, a lot bigger, and I chose to use only the star and leave the heart. Seed stitch is one of my favorites – it just looks so simple and crisp. I used a wool mix yarn that is washable and dryer safe, and it washed up to be super soft. I’m tempted to steal it for our own couch, but I’m hoping it can find a nice new home instead!