Tag Archive | craft projects

Let Them Knit Cake

I am a knitter.

I want to make it absolutely clear that I liked knitting long before hipsters started doing it.

Free time? What's that?

Free time? What’s that?

I started when Mom broke her leg, which meant hours and hours in doctor and hospital waiting rooms. My first project was a scarf. It was pretty awful–eight inches wide at one end and five inches at the other. The scarf, not her leg. Though that was pretty awful, too. Poor Mom. She’s been through a lot. And I’ve gotten a lot of practice knitting in hospitals and doctor’s offices.

So, silver lining and all that, I have progressed beyond horrible scarves to pretty good scarves, plus gloves, shawls, hats, purses and sweaters.  Okay, sweater and a half. One was for my niece, who is only two.  I figured that would be a good one to start with, because my attention span is–


Which has always been my crafting downfall.  I–like just about every knitter/quilter/crocheter/stitcher–have many many projects in many stages of completion because there’s always some new and bright and exciting project that catches your eye right when you’re in the tedious middle of the current one.

I might mention, this also happens with books. A new idea is always exciting. You can’t wait to start banging out words. And the end is great, because you have momentum on your side. You can see the shape of the finished project! All it needs is a few more rows. But when you’re in the middle, that’s when shiny new ideas for other books appear to tempt you.

Or sometimes it happens with books and knitting BOTH.  I’m working hard on my next book, but I picked up a knitting magazine when I drove Mom to Jo-Ann’s this afternoon. Now I want to knit a sweater.

This sweater:


I want to knit this sweater, to give to some hypothetical guy on some hypothetical future date when the hypothetical he will be able to wear a wool sweater in Texas.  Which is about five days a year. Non-consecutive days, I might add.

What are the odds of this?

I totally bought this magazine because of the hot guy modeling this gorgeous colored sweater.

Clearly we have entered a new era of knitting. No longer are doilies and old lady caps and mittens enticement to shell out for a knitting pattern magazine. Now the target audience is women (or men, I guess) who like to picture themselves knitting a sweater for a hot guy.

And I have succumbed to the siren call. I want to be a girl who knits sweaters for cute guys. I want to wear adorable lace wristlets and skinny scarves and not look like dork. I want to refinish flea-market furniture and repurpose antiques into quirky jewelry… Oh my God, next thing you know I’ll be baking CAKE POPSICLES.

Actually, none of that is true.

Except maybe the cake part. I’ll take cake in pretty much any form it comes in.

Mmmm... Cake.

Mmmm… Cake.

Are you a crafter? What are your hobbies (besides reading)?  Do you have a favorite online resource? What are your feelings on Cake Pops?  Delicious bite sized treat or bakery anathema?

PS The pattern for the knit cake above can be found here.

Back in the Saddle

You may (or may not) have noticed I wasn’t exactly faithful in updating my blog over the last… Okay, well, October. I would like to say I’ve been jetting around the world (I haven’t) or I’ve already completed the next book (I haven’t). But after finishing the rewrites on The Splendor Falls, I needed a bit of a brain break.

Which is not to say I’ve been idle. Just the opposite. I’ve just been busy doing stuff that isn’t active writing. I’m teaching a class next weekend and the North Texas RWA retreat, so I’ve been reading about how to apply the "Hare Brain, Tortoise Mind" philosophy to writing. I’ll probably post more about this in the future, because I was surprised how much this applied to how I think and work creatively.

The upshot, however, is that I’ve been doing stuff that’s not writing this month, so that I can refresh my subconscious. Some people call this "refilling the well." You guys who are doing NaNoWriMo (and I’m unofficially with you–more on that later) will find that after you’ve been outputting a lot, you need to set away occasionally and do something that involves INPUT rather than OUTPUT every now and then.

So here’s what I’ve been doing during my computer/internet break:

1) Sewing. Mostly this involved three(!!) Halloween costumes, but I’ve also made huge strides in a big embroidery I’ve been working on for about two years. (Picture here.)I might be finished with it, if I hadn’t discovered….

2) Mystery Case Files for the NDS. Oh my God. These hidden item games are so addictive, it’s like crack. Big Fish Games has a bazillion of them for PC and Mac, but I like playing this on the DS because I can hold it close to my face. I like to have things that occupy my hands while I watch TV, which I’ve needed more of, because I’ve ALSO discovered…

3) Supernatural on DVD. I’m now addicted to the adventures of Sam and Dean Winchester. I remember why I didn’t start watching this from the beginning. The premise-Hardy Boys meet Kolchek the Night Stalker (or Buffy, if you prefer), is very like the Maggie Quinn: Girl vs. Evil premise (Nancy Drew meets Kolchek). And yet they’re somehow also really different. Anyway. I’m only halfway into the second season (I have, after all, not spent the entire month on the couch… and also Netflicks only sends 3 DVDs at a time), but I’m hooked.

I’ve also read a bunch of books and watched a number of movies, which I’ll post about separately. No sense in overdoing it the first day back!