Squeeze Me, Honey.

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So we are going to debut these Honey Bear Coffee Cup Cozies at Renegade Craft Fair this weekend. He was going to have a red cap, but then he looked too much like Winnie the Pooh, so now we gets a white cap! I was afraid nobody would know what he was supposed to be, so Hairy suggested I make packaging for it to make it more clear. However, I can’t put every cozy in a package, because displaying them in the booth might become kinda weird. So I ended up making one little cardboard stand for show. Hehe. Kinda janky but kinda cute. I am going to see if Kinko’s will laminate it for me cuz Manda jammed up her laminator! I will put this guy next to another cozy on an actual to-go cup.          

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Wanna see what I’ve been slaving over since Friday?

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I’ve been living in a sleepless crochet-haze the last 5 days or so, working on these crochet paintings for the J-Pop Explosion art show at Hairy’s gallery. Here’s the little Q&A I did on their blog. Sorry I didn’t get to blog about Craft Wars yet! Not only was I working on these crochet paintings, but I’m also planning for Renegade Craft fair, and I’m also house-sitting right now! EEP! I’ll post better/more pics of the Pocky paintings after Friday, when the show opens :). I’ll also post my initial sketches and progress pics, and you’ll get to see how things don’t always go as you planned :P. At first I was going to have parts of a 3D Godzilla on the edges of the canvas biting into a a big box of Pocky which would be the canvas itself, but then I decided to just focus on the Pocky instead! Still turned out ok, I think! Actually last night I was freaking out because EVERYTHING WAS GOING WRONG, and I thought I had to deliver the paintings in an hour. I was really sweatin’ it! Luckily, I got one more day to work on it, so I drove back home today from housesitting to get them finished up. I hope to have time to make a few smaller paintings for the fair as well!

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Decorating your crochet hooks!

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I really like the idea of making the tools of our trade super cute and fun! You may recall the candy cane inspired hooks Manda and I made a little while ago, and also the blinged out crochet hook tutorial with Elsie. I wish we could keep churning out the candy cane hooks, but they are quite time-consuming to make and sell at a reasonable price. It’s still a fun project you can try yourself, though! You could also purchase  rainbow plastic hooks, but whenever I use them, I snap them in half. There are also the super cute Hamanaka hooks, but they have the Boye-style crochet hook that I can’t seem to keep any yarn on!  So I stick to my good old metal Susan Bates with the bamboo handle. It’s not PRETTY, but they are my favorite so far. I still love to think of ways to decorate crochet hooks, though, so the other day, to prep a booth space for Yummy You! at a licensing show, I busted out my nail polish and my washi tape. I used plastic crochet hooks as a base. I feel like the plastic WHITE hooks are a bit stronger/sturdier than the clear rainbow ones. I covered one (already blue) hook in glitter polish, and I wrapped washi tape around the other and painted the top of the hook with red polish. Maddy tried wrapping her hook in washi tape as well, but she said she had to take it right off (at least it’s easy to remove!). I haven’t actually tried crocheting with this hook yet, so maybe it’s for decoration only and not for actual usage! I just thought I’d share some of the hooks I’d modified with you guys for fun :). There are also some pretty cool polymer clay-handled hooks on Etsy you could check out on Etsy for DIY inspiration or purchasing!

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Sunday Brunch Club – Fried Egg Brooches

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Guapo, Manda, and I used to have a Sunday brunch club. I love me some brunch, and sometimes we would try to get together at different places around the Bay Area to brunch together. This was years ago, and now we suck and don’t commit to anything! My brunchy go-to is eggs benedict. It always seems very extravagant and indulgent to me, and it also reminds me of my dad, cuz he would eat it for breakfast a lot at home! Anyway, my longing for Sunday Brunch club reminded me to bring back some fried egg brooches in the Etsy shop!

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Free Pattern: Mermaid Style!

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Okay, so my friend James had a birthday a few months ago. He wanted everyone to go to Smuggler’s Cove, a piratey rum bar with a bajillion different rums and crazy mixed drinks inspired by different continents. It sounds really cheezy, but the drinks were actually pretty interesting and quite delicious! The night before James’ bday party, Manda and I still didn’t have pirate costumes. I was really struggling with putting an outfit together from things I already owned. We went to the mall and tried to find pieces we’d use again in our regular wardrobe, but I still couldn’t get with the pirate program. Finally, Manda said, “You don’t have to be a pirate. You could be the mermaid.” EUREKA!!! Hence, the crocheted mermaid costume was born (after trying a few really bad pairs of green skinny jeans.) Here’s a really really REALLY poor quality phone-cam photo of me before leaving the house. My quick-n-dirty mermaid outfit came out pretty cute, so I thought I’d share the shell bikini pattern with you. I will warn you: it’s not great. I didn’t create the pattern with the intention of sharing it or selling it. I was really just trying to make myself a quick outfit. But maybe you guys will get a kick out of it, too, and use it as a foundation for a really awesome ensemble. Essentially, I just made two giant seashell “patches,” hot glued some see-through, bubble-like beads to the surface, and I tacked the shells down to an aqua blue dress with a few stitches here and there, so that I could cut the dress free afterwards. I also crocheted a starfish hair piece, hot glued gold beads to the top, and hot glued some small pearl strings to the back. I made the hair piece mere minutes before we had to leave, so I didn’t write a pattern for it. Plus, I can’t find  the pattern for an afghan that I used as a guide, so you may want to search for some other free star fish patterns out there, like this one. Now that I’ve made this sound like the worst free pattern ever …….. onto the free pattern! Remember, I made these for myself. They are BIG cuz it just ended up that way, so this probably wouldn’t fit children. You could use a lighter weight yarn than Red Heart Super Saver to get some smaller shells.

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Giant Pretzels at Royal/T!

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This was my most favorite part of my latest collab with Onch Movement. Giant crocheted pretzel pillows inspired by his signature pretzel necklaces! Here are the pillows as well as other BANG pop-up shop items at Royal/T, all for sale there until July 14! You can see in that center display box some cupcake hats, bacon wraps (new item based on Onch’s bacon necklace,) whipped cream mini-berets (also new and exclusive!), and a bunch of other sweet goodies! A word about the pretzels: I am SO happy and RELIEVED to be able to show you these pictures, because, for a couple days, these goodies were MISSING IN ACTION due to a postal snafu. We were beside ourselves. I was so bummed to not be able to show Onch all the goodies and a bit embarrassed that there would not be very much Twinkie stuff at the pop-up shop.  It seemed hopeless until this morning when apparently Onch’s neighbor said that HE had been delivered Onch’s boxes!!! So please go say hi to all the goodies. They have had a grand adventure and are happy to be home at Royal/T!

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After-Craft-Fair Sale is on now until this Friday!

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SHOP SHOP SHOP! SALE SALE SALE! I think I got everything into the shop! Anything on sale is marked “sale.” 😉 New items include the Burger Scarf and also Cupcake Brooches. Past favorites include a few more marshmallow charm headbands, ice cream scoop hair clips, cupcake mitts, and strawberry rings….and a bunch of other stuff!

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Too much of a good thing.

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You guys. I have too much yarn. It’s official. I need to do major yarn yard sale!!!   Sorry for the delay in re-opening and updating my Etsy shop. I had to take some time to make my yarn wall look more organized. My licensing team for Yummy You! wanted me to shoot a photo in front of my yarn wall for a poster they are printing for a licensing show, and my skills + my camera = no good for a 3 ft. x 5 ft poster. So I hired a local photog via  referral from my hair stylist, and she is coming over tomorrow to take pics! So I’m cleaning like crazy!!! You can’t imagine what a disaster all my craft stuff was after prepping for Bust Craftacular. I think I’m almost done picking up, though. I’ll do before and after pics later, but here are some quick snaps from my Instagram!  

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A little Craftacular peek!

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We’re home! We had so much fun in NYC. The weather was beautiful and perfect. There is never enough time to do everything or eat everything! We went to Times Square, up to the tippy top of the Empire State Building, got lost in the subway for 2 hours, ate hot dogs at Katz’s Deli, got cereal-milk milkshakes from Momofuku Milk Bar, went fabric shopping at Mood, t-shirt shopping in Soho, stayed in an apartment in the East Village, strolled through Central Park, ate pizza at Lombardi’s, hung out with different friends every day, but there were still so many things left on the list to do. Next time, next time! I need to get photos and video from Manda for a full NYC post, but here are some teaser photos of the Bust Craftacular off my iPhone. It’s always hard to predict what might sell at any given craft fair, but overall, it was a really good day. The new Square app for the iPad is super awesome. I want to make a video clip just of that to show you guys. We logged in all our items beforehand, and when people made purchases, all we had to do was touch photos of items, and prices would be totaled automatically. Gotta love technology! Here we are in the cab on the way to the venue. I am perfecting my anti-smise: smile with your mouth and not your eyes. Here are some shots of the booth before the show started. (The apple juice bottle is not part of the display… hehe… they were giving out fuji apple juice and it was really yummy!) Here was a fun surprise! A gal walked up to me and said, “I have something for you to sign.” I thought it was going to be a book. It turned out to be my crochet painting from JapanLa’s “Kittens & Ice Cream” show! That was really cool! A few weeks ago on Twitter, I randomly wondered who, out in the universe, owned the one and only hot dog hand bag I made and sold on eBay, back when I was selling exclusively on eBay. Lo and behold, the hot dog hand bag -owner messaged me back and said she would see me in NY! She drove 4 hours from another state to say hi! So awesome! Another HUGE surprise was a visit from Jenny Harada! Queen of the monsters! It was the first time I’d ever met her in person, and she is so cute and sweet and funny, just the way I’d always imagined. So Manda disappeared for a while, later in the day, saying she was going to buy something from a booth that was selling charms. She bought some prezzies and also came back with a prezzie for moi! She had them engrave “bff” on the round charm. We hadn’t really eaten much the whole day, and I saw someone come by my booth eating what looked like a miniature ice cream scoop […]

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Craft Faster!

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Hope you guys had a fun Easter! Sorry I didn’t get a chance to make an Easter update in the shop this year. I have been completely overwhelmed with prepping for Bust Craftacular! We leave for NYC on Wednesday night! If you are in NY, please come out and say hello at our little booth on Saturday. It’s one day only! These are just some quick images from my Instagram account (twinkiechan). I still have so much to do!!! You can see in the lower right corner the whiteboard I use to keep my crochet elves organized. I am so thankful for them everyday and could not do any of this without them. I can’t wait to come back from NY!! I’ll have a big sale with leftovers in the Etsy shop, and I have some fun free-patterns to post for you guys, plus, a giveaway which I might run while I’m gone!

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Project Explosion!

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My craft room today is an explosion of yarn and supplies and partially finished projects for Bust Craftacular. I can’t believe it’s coming up so quickly! I’m kinda freaking out because not only do I have to make sure to complete enough stock for the table and get everything tagged and labeled, but I also need to figure out again how to travel with my set-up and fit it into suitcases. The biggest challenge is a portable rack to display scarves. When we traveled for Austin Renegade, I was lucky to have my crochet elf Rita in town, and she picked up a laundry rack for me! We were thinking of maybe just running to a Target while in NYC and buying something to build and then just leave there. We’ll see! Hopefully more of that planning will happen later this week! I’d like my display to all be cohesive and cute and make sense, but the traveling/suitcase bit is something I have yet to figure out.

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Yarn Talk. Yarn Chat. Today’s Yarn. Radtacular Yarnage. The Ol’ Ball and Skein.

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I thought it might be fun/useful/interesting if I blogged about new yarn brands/lines I buy and try. I don’t branch out that often, and I have my old stand-bys, so we might as well share info and thoughts together! I recently purchased some Brava (worsted and bulky) from Knit Picks. I’ve been on the lookout lately for a good replacement for the LionBrand Homespun in pastel colors that have been discontinued, as it was my favorite for the cupcake scarf. For now, I’m pretty mentally committed to Cascade 128 Superwash as a replacement, which is merino wool and chunky, but I’m bummed the pink isn’t QUITE perfect, and there isn’t really a mint green, just a lime green. I also want to see if I can find something cheaper, as Cascade 128 is about $14/skein. Brava Bulky comes in a nice array of cheery, saturated colors and is 100% acrylic. Brava also comes in worsted and sport weight, for a wide range of projects. Here are the balls I bought: Colors: Tranquil, Rouge, Canary, Sienna. Tranquil and Rouge are beautiful, but I think a couple shades darker than I would prefer for cupcake frosting colors. Canary is rich and beautiful, more yolky than neon, and Sienna is nice and chocolatey. These are beautiful, soft yarns, at $2.99/ball. For projects where you want rich color, I really recommend Brava! p.s. if you have any more suggestions for what to call these yarn posts…let me know! 😉

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Two lil’ cupcakes for two lil’ cupcakes.

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I popped out two of these little guys in a little over 24 hours. My parents are visiting family, so my mom asked me to make two cupcake scarves for two of my little girl cousins (my cousins’ kids… 1st cousins? I have no idea) before she left for her trip. I made each scarf 10 cupcakes long (vs. 16-17 cupcakes long which is the usual length for an adult scarf). Kelly-Anne graciously helped me out with finding a good scarf length for a 3 year old, since she has one! They turned out super small and cute!

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New Interview with me at The Making Spot blog!

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Happy Monday! It’s Crochet Month over at U.K. crafty blog The Making Spot who kindly asked me to offer some stories and inspiration. I try to think of new and different anecdotes for you guys in various interviews, so check out The Making Spot to find out what an Onion Head is 😛 P.S. to complete your visual while reading, Boxburg was made out of a bunch of recycled refrigerator boxes that all the kids painted and decorated by themselves. I believe mine was sky blue with painted grass on the bottom and a white fence! I don’t remember what all the boxes/businesses looked like, but I do remember that one of the most popular ones was a video arcade, where one boy brought in some sort of video game system (this was the 80s) and all the boys huddled in this tiny box! I also remember my friend Jeanette’s business, which was a beauty salon. She painted my nails and we gossiped! It was super fun but was also meant to be educational, as we also learned about capital, taxes, gross profit, net profit. Pretty cool, right? Wish I had a picture!

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Pastel Rainbow Marshmallow Headbands

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I updated THE SHOP with single lucky clover hair clips/brooches as well as the full pastel rainbow marshmallow head bands! There are only 4 right now because I’m a dumdum and forgot to order more of the bands themselves. DOH! Just put in the order now 😛 So snag these 4 while you can! xo

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Free Pattern/Tutorial at www.elsiecake.com !

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Elsie kindly asked if I might contribute to her “Tricks and Treats” guest-blogging series on her site, and of course I jumped at the chance to do anything having to do with that little lady! Check out TWO tutorials I created over at her blog! Sorry I posted it so late here. I’ve been out all day! At first I wanted to make Mummy Mitts… but then I thought it might be too complicated for crochet beginners, so then I wrote up a Daisy Headband project, and then I couldn’t decide between the two, so I sent both to Emma, and both got posted so you get double the fun! 🙂 Here are two extra mummyriffic photos: The flower head band looks like this and is SUPER EASY to make! I have actually been wearing it a lot, but I didn’t want to post any photos until the tutorial went up! Instead of doing anything Halloweeny today, my cousin, his bestie, Hairy, and I drove to Napa Valley to go sparkling wine tasting at Domaine Carneros and to eat dinner at Ubuntu, with a spontaneous stop at Chandon. It was a pretty delicious and decadent day. Hairy and I were going to see Saw 3D, and the boys were going to go clubbing, but everyone ended up kinda sleepy and there wasn’t a late enough movie for us to catch. Oh wells!

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