Vegan MoFo Day XIV : W.I.P. Wednesday’s Vegan Etsy Delicious

We’re almost there, kids! Only six days of Vegan MoFo left.  It’s like we’ve reached mile 20 of the blogging marathon, so take in some carbs, a little water, and hold tight!  The most frustrating thing about MoFo for me, is that I just can’t take the time to comment on my favourite blogs – too many posts, not enough time.

This is W.I.P. Wednesday’s final post dedicated to the creative and talented vendors of the Vegan Etsy team, and what better way to round things off than with some food-related goodness?

Sweet V Confections doesn’t ship to France (I wonder why?), but if you’re in the U.S. you can actually order vegan goodies!

Why not send someone a vegan cookie basket this holiday season?  I think just about anyone would be excited to receive 4 dozen cookies…don’t you?  It’s probably a good thing they don’t ship here, I’d be ordering myself cookies left and right.

If I’m ever near Daton, Ohio in the U.S. I know I’m going to get my hands on some of these :

These chocolate vinkies should be on every table…at least I think so.  They even offer local delivery Ohio people.  Who knew?  With a name like The Bombshell Bake Shop I’m sure there is a little rock and roll in those treats.

You’re not supposed to eat this Pink Grapefruit Vegan Swirl soap from The Vegan Soap Kitchen, but I’m sure it smells delicious.  I want all of her soaps – my shower would smell so gourmet.

While these aren’t actually edible, I do think these  candy cane horns I think they would be really adorable on Guppy, who is all all about costumes, dressing-up and make-believe.  April has beautiful beadwork and other fanciful things in her shop, go look!

Don’t forget to keep up to date with the Vegan Etsy Team and their happenings over at their blog, and remember – a part of their proceeds always goes to supporting animals in need.

Have you begun your holiday gift making and crafting?  I’d love to know what you’re making me.  It’s nearly December already!

W.I.P. Wednesday : Meow! Halloween Kitties!

Let’s just pretend it’s Wednesday, ok? Great!

This is one of those too-easy-to-publish crafts, but the fact of the matter is that sometimes we forget that simple can be cute and fun. It’s two-dimensional, so there’s not messing with gussets – just cut two matching pieces of fabric and sew them together. Ta-da!

Guppy and I sat down to make some Halloween Black Cats together, and the entire project took about 45 minutes from start to finish, meaning : finding the fabric, drawing a template, cutting fabric and stitching up. If there hadn’t been interruptions like the telephone ringing, taking the dog out and gluing more googly eyes on yet even more Halloween Felties, it could have been done in an easy 15 to 30 minutes, depending on how many Halloween Kitties you wanted to make.

I just drew a basic silhouette of a kitty head, and used a simple ribbon for the tail. I cut out diamond eyes from felt, but you could embroider yours – or get more elaborate with a nose, mouth and whiskers.

Your Halloween Kitty needs a Kitty friend! Make many!

There’s still time to whip up a few Halloween decorations! Do you have any new W.I.P.s in the works? We would love to see what you’re up to! Snap a shot of your  “in progress” masterpiece and add it to the  W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool. Whatever your works-in-progress, have a crafty week, and don’t forget to see what the other Wipsters are working on.

W.I.P. Wednesday : Knitting in the round, kinda.

Feeling a little knitting frustration this week, though I’m sure I’ll work my way through it. Going through the outdoor market last week I finally got my hands on a pair of circular knitting needles, and was all set to get to work on the beehive beanie. However, I need help! I am having one heck of a time trying to get these needles to work with me, or to learn to work with the needles.  This is one of  the many times in my knitting apprenticeship where I know the help of an experienced knitter would be so helpful.

Those of you familiar with circular needles may be nodding your heads with a knowing smile on your faces as I roll my eyes to the sky in frustration.  I can cast on my stitches with no problem, and joining in the round was no problem, either, but keeping my stitches from twisting seems a real problem, not to mention that things just don’t seem to be going very smoothly. Grr.

The good news is that I found this great video which taught me how to do a “long tail cast-on”.  It’s really clear and helped me so much, so I wanted to share it with you!

After casting on my stitches, I found myself completely perplexed when I actually tried knitting with these unruly things. After a few moments of frustration, I decided to try to find some help on using circular needles. This article helped me quite a bit as did this one with more ample photos (I’m such a visual learner!).  I’m not sure if I can describe it very well, but I keep ending up with more and more “play” (not a technical term!) with the yarn between the two needles (and no, I’m not losing stitches).

I’m guessing a bit more practice with these new needles will help me tame them, but if anyone out there has any advice, I’d sure love to hear it!

Do you have any new W.I.P.s in the works? We would love to see what you’re up to! Snap a shot of your  “in progress” masterpiece and add it to the  W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool. Whatever your works-in-progress, have a crafty week, and don’t forget to see what the other Wipsters are working on.

W.I.P. Wednesday : The Mad Hatter

It’s all about the hats, kids.

As I mentioned here I really want to try to make this adorable beehive bonnet, but that would require some circular knitting needles and I haven’t got any.  I’m sure they aren’t very expensive, but the only mercantile in town that sells them has been closed for the past two weeks for renovation! The frustration!

In the mean time, I was able to find a super-duper easy pattern in my beginner’s book I showed you here that comes together really quickly and just needs to be grafted/sewn together. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!

So far I’ve only made these two : a tiny one I just sort of improvised hoping to make a small-enough one for my toddler niece, and a smaller but not too small version for a skull cap for Guppy.  I know I’ve been pretty lucky, because futzing with a pattern when you have no idea what you’re doing is probably not the greatest idea.  I’m still hoping to snag me a pair of circular needles, but this is fun for now.

And guess what I learned to do today? I’m purling! The excitement! The joy!

Do you have any new W.I.P.s in the works? We would love to see what you’re up to! Snap a shot of your  “in progress” masterpiece and add it to the  W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool. Whatever your works-in-progress, have a crafty week, and don’t forget to see what the other Wipsters are working on.

W.I.P. Wednesday : Knitting 101

I’m finally learning to knit.  I figured now that it’s reaching 22°c and 25°c outside it’s just perfect scarf-knitting weather…

Obviously I’m joking, but I am finally getting the hang of it. The problem is I’m such a visual learner – had I found someone to sit down with me and show me what to do, I’d have learned a long time ago I suppose.  I gave it a go a few weeks ago, but skipped so many stitches I pulled it all out and am giving it another go.  Hopefully I’ll get it done before too long!

(The grey scarf I’m knitting is behind the book!)

This book has really helped me. I had another one, but it wasn’t as geared towards “true” beginners as this one is. It’s got lots of diagrams and pictures, so that works for me.

I guess I’ll try to work in a few stitches between packing boxes next week as I’ll have a full week’s vacation. Happyfish.

A warm welcome to all our new Wipsters! If you’d like to join the Wipster list, just leave a comment and let me know. The W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool just keeps growing – don’t be shy! Those photos are there to inspire, and we would love to see what you’ve been up to. Think of it as your parents’ fridge : a safe and loving place to highlight what you’ve been working on (without the strawberry jam stains on the door).

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W.I.P. Wednesday : Shhh!

Whipping up a little rabbit family for Guppy’s basket on Sunday. Or trying to. Can’t let her see what I’m up to now, so, shhh!

A warm welcome to all our new Wipsters! If you’d like to join the Wipster list, just leave a comment and let me know. The W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool just keeps growing – don’t be shy! Those photos are there to inspire, and we would love to see what you’ve been up to. Think of it as your parents’ fridge : a safe and loving place to highligh what you’ve been working on (without the strawberry jam stains on the door).

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W.I.P. Wednesday (on Thursday) : Easter Projects

A day late, but not short on crafty ideas in this week’s installment of W.I.P. Wednesday.

I can’t believe Easter is just around the corner.  At our house Easter is celebrated as marking the Spring Solstice and the promise of new life and new beginnings.  Vegan chocolate a plenty in the baskets, and usually some bunny love for our daughter, Guppy.

This year I’m much busier with work that I have been in years past, but I don’t want that to get in the way of my making something special for the baskets this year. Last year’s bunny is still one of her favourites, and I’ve since made a few for other people. She also still plays with these bunnies from two years ago, one of my first attempts at sewing anything, especially a toy.

Inspiration abounds on the Internet, and these projects featured on The Purl Bee have really caught my attention. I’m not sure which I’ll have time to put together, but I thought I’d share my “Project To-Do” list with you. The following photos are all from the The Purl Bee site, and they’ll lead you to the project posts.

These Bunny Finger Puppets are just adorable! I love that they’re quick and small, just like a bunny I guess.  I’ve still got some vegan felt left, so I’ve no excuses.

These Best Bunnies would be just perfect for my 1.5 year-old niece. With its reversible/double face, it’s like having two bunnies in one. This would be a great project to use up  bits from other sewing ventures as well.  Start here with Materials and Notes if you’d like to make one, and follow the links to complete your bunny.

Have you got any Easter projects you’d like to share? Ideas are always more than welcome, just leave a link in the comments section.

We would love to see what you’re up to!  Snap a shot of your  “in progress” masterpiece and add it to the  W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool. Whatever your works-in-progress, have a crafty week, and don’t forget to see what the other Wipsters are working on.

W.I.P. Wednesday – Featured Wipster Projects

Welcome (back) to W.I.P. Wednesday! The Wipster List* and W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool have continued growing, this despite my blogging hiatus. Even though I was too busy with work to unleash my creative energy, I found solace in all the beautiful creations appearing every week on the W.I.P. photostream.

I’ve decided to start a new series here at W.I.P. Wednesday : The W.I.P. Round-Up (except I don’t care for that title at all and will probably change it post haste!). This bi-weekly event will showcase a few featured projects from the W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool, because I would like to share some of the inspiration and talent concentrated on that humble little flickr group. What fun!

Without further ado…

Gnomey Little Explorer Bag

I just love this little Gnome bag from Gypsy Forest, perfect for gathering treasures.

WIP Wednesday: Winter Warmth

These  little socks knit by Frontier Dreams are so sweet! So cheerful against the winter cold.

Even if you don’t crochet, this lovely photo from Heirloom Seasons invites you to pick up a hook, doesn’t it?

I hope you’ve enjoyed these beautiful photos. Now that I’m not spending every free second grading I hope to begin (and finish!) a few W.I.P. projects of my own. Do you have any new W.I.P.s in the works? We would love to see what you’re up to! Snap a shot of your  “in progress” masterpiece and add it to the  W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool. Whatever your works-in-progress, have a crafty week, and don’t forget to see what the other Wipsters are working on.

*The list is still not completely updated, helas. Don’t hesitate sending me a little nudge via email if you’re waiting to be added.

W.I.P. Wednesday : Checking In

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Greetings! Welcome to all the new Wipsters – you are all such an inspiration, and I just love to see the list growing. In fact, I’m having trouble keeping up! If you’re still not on the list, have no fear. I’ll be adding you soon.
I cannot believe it’s been so long since I’ve posted. I’d like to sincerely thank everyone who has sent me little love notes and to reassure everyone – all is well. In fact, I’m a little buried by a blessing, so to speak.
I found a new part-time teaching job (in addition to my other teaching position) and have just been scrambling to get things running smoothly. I am very behind, but I have a feeling that I’ll get a handle on organising all this soon. There have been some big schedule changes for Guppy to adapt to, in addition to her new class and teacher, and we are all adjusting, but things are headed in a good direction.
Can you believe it’s nearly Autumn? I have so many projects waiting to be started (and finished), but there just isn’t enough hours in the day right now! I have been beating my W.I.P. jones, however, admiring all the fine creations on the W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool.
There is no way I can properly express my gratitude to all of you for your friendship. In the past few weeks I’ve received an outpouring of love, and I can’t thank you enough. I’m sorry I’m behind on emails (you know who you are!), but please know I’m so thankful for your support and compassion!

Do you have any new W.I.P.s in the works? We would love to see what you’re up to! Snap a shot of your  “in progress” masterpiece and add it to the  W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool. Whatever your works-in-progress, have a crafty week, and don’t forget to see what the other Wipsters are working on.

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W.I.P. Wednesday : Fun with painting (please don’t laugh).

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My two months of summer holiday are nearly over, and my list of projects/ideas has been about as neglected as my tan line this year. My big list for 2009 needs tending to, especially because there are only a few months left this year!

One of my desires for 2009 was to begin painting, meaning to start learning how to paint. I was able to purchase a few supplies, and soon-to-be-mamma Maria Rose (who blogs at Little Things Are Big) created two painting lessons for me (Lesson Number 1 is HERE and Lesson Number 2 is HERE.) I was so excited, motivated to begin…but stuff kept getting in the way.

The other day Guppy asked to paint after her nap, which she often does, so I broke out her ganache and watercolour paints for her, as I often do. She started painting, and I began the dishes.

And it hit me that something was really wrong with this picture.

The dishes aren’t going anywhere, and I don’t care if they stack up, really. I mean, who freaking cares!?!

So I sat down next to Guppy, and decided to paint. But paint what?

How about this :

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Three Sunflowers in a Vase, Vincent Van Gogh

We have many Van Gogh prints hanging about the apartment, and this one is right over the kitchen table (where we were set up), so I decided to use it as my model. Being a good student, I recalled Maria Rose’s lessons and knew I needed to first sketch the painting, which I did rather quickly onto a piece of paper.

I set to work, and here is what I have to show for an hour of drawing & painting :

Silly Painting

Please don’t judge me too harshly – I’ve never, ever painted anything before. Except fences, houses and a few bedrooms.

My painting is obviously pretty different, but I knew it would have to be from the get-go. Since my decision was so spontaneous I didn’t fetch my materials, and decided to just share with Guppy (or she shared with me, whatever) who had a very limited supply of ganache in primary colours : nearly no yellow at all, almost no white…you get the point. I just decided to be inspired by the original, did my best to sketch it, and decided to make the background blue and the flowers more orangy because necessity is the mother of invention.

So there you go. My first painting.

Ta da!

Now I’m going to try and re-watch my painting lessons and hopefully not wait so long until I give this another go! It was really relaxing, and it really helped me be in the present moment – I couldn’t do anything but be in the now, to concentrate on where I was and what I was doing, which is as it should be.

Don’t forget to stop by WIPster central to see what everyone is up to, and be inspired by all the creativity found on the W.I.P. Wednesday Flickr Pool. There are new members joining every week – welcome!

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