Making · Uncategorized · Updates and Info

All the Crafts I Do: 2019 version

A lot of people ask me where I get my ideas from. A lot of it is runway inspiration, sometimes it’s shopping, clothes I wanted at some point in my life… Sometimes I go through a completely original design idea based off of a building, plant, colour or anything really. Inspiration is truly everywhere.

I find one thing that has really helped my design and creation process is the accumulation of skills. The more you know how to do, the more you’re DIY fashion journey.

Sewing

Sewing is the most obvious way to make clothes. I don’t really remember the process of learning to sew. I used to make Barbie clothes with my Nonna, and my Mom was a pretty good sewist. When I was about ten my Mom found out that the local quilting shop ran kids classes and those were my first formal sewing lessons.

Sewing has always come very intuitively to me. I’m at a stage now where I’m trying to learn how to do things properly, and it’s really making a difference. The good thing about sewing is, more than anything else, it’s a true life skill. Sewing on a button shouldn’t be something you need to outsource. Being able to mend your own clothes is good for the environment, your wallet, and there’s a great sense of self-accomplishment in it.

Sewing is a bit of an investment. While a needle and thread can get you places, you’re not going far without a machine. I wouldn’t say it’s the most compact, portable hobby either. But… After not having a sewing machine for a year and kind of putting it on the back burner I’m realizing how much I’ve always truly loved it and how rewarding it is.

Embroidery

I’m still a newbie at this- I only learned it last year. The biggest barrier to me getting better at it is that I’m not the biggest fan of embroidered clothes. I do love embroidered home decor though, so I see many, many pillows in the future.

I’ve always been bad at hand sewing, so when I learned embroidery I honestly thought I’d hate it. But… I kind of wanted to have a Jane Austen novel moment so I persevered. It’s made my hand sewing, and honestly every other craft, so much better. There’s something about being able to see every single stitch so clearly and distinctly that makes you pull up your socks a bit and take pride in your work.

Knitting

I always wanted to learn to knit. My Grandma finally taught me when I was about twelve and I took to it right away. She taught me the knit stitch, and my Nonna taught me to purl (the only two stitches in knitting) so I always think of them when I knit.

Knitting is not a cheap hobby. There’s some really nice bargain yarn out there, but even then it adds up. I honestly don’t think you could make a sweater for under $80. I’m honestly too scared to even think about it in euros. Knitting is also not a fast hobby. When you knit you’re literally making fabric stitch by stitch. The time adds up, especially when you’re working with finer yarn.

I’d say knitting is probably the easiest hobby to travel with. Yarn’s light, and it’s really fun finding yarn all over the world. It’s also a great way to spend time on planes.

One of my favourite things about knitting is that it’s a bit of a passive hobby. If the project’s right you can knit while you watch TV, knit while you chat, knit while listening to podcasts… it’s great for fidgeters.

Crochet

I want to be really good at crochet. I think because I find knitting so natural I get frustrated that I haven’t managed to pick it up straight away. Eventually, I think I’ll get it, but I need a tonne more practice. My biggest issue is that in every situation I could crochet I find myself picking up knitting.

Spinning

This is one of the few things I’ve taken an actual, in-person class for. I don’t have a wheel, so I’m on a drop spindle and again, it takes forever. I find myself not gravitating towards it, but when I do it I really enjoy it. It’s definitely the most meditative thing I’ve ever done.

Tatting

I was working at a school in southern Italy for two weeks and whenever the nuns who ran the school had a minute they would pull out this lacework and make doilies. One of them ended up teaching me. I got the basics and I’m eager to learn more.

Beading

I used to be bead crazy. As a kid, all I wanted to do was sit in a room by myself, listen to the radio, and bead. To be fair, that’s essentially all I want to do as an adult most of the time. I love beads. There’s something just so primal about the shiny object attraction. Unfortunately, my massive bead collection didn’t make the move as I haven’t been doing it as much. However, I definitely want to get back into jewellery making of all sorts.

Overall I think I’ve developed an interesting skill set, but I’m always wanting to learn more. Any ideas on what my next big hobby should be?

 

DIY's · Making · Uncategorized

Rhinestone Shoes!

Rhinestones are amazing. One of the best things in the world has got to be shoes covered in just so much sparkle. I needed to find a pair of silver shoes for an upcoming bridesmaid’s ensemble and was having trouble finding a flat pair. After checking with the bride that rhinestones were okay I ordered… 20,000 of them. It was a bit excessive. But, I mean, I’m a bit excessive so there.

Materials for Rhinestone Shoes

You’ll need your shoes, I got these at Penney’s, glue, and rhinestones. Not pictured, a good source of entertainment for your ears. I decided to watch Friends for the ten thousandth time.

IMG_20190213_200416514_BURST005.jpg

Then, you just glue rhinestones to the shoes. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat some more.

There isn’t much of a tutorial, because, well, it’s glueing things to things.

However, there are some things to note.

Glue

Apparently, E6000 is impossible to get in Ireland, so I started with a super glue we got at Lidl. It was a liquid, it was messy, and it made the top gems look less than sparkly. It’s super inflexible… and I just hated it. The t-strap dried so hard and inflexible it was unwearable and I had to cut it off. Do not use the glue in the picture for this project.

I ended up getting Gem-Tac when we were in town and it worked so much better. It dries clear for max sparkle, it’s a bigger bottle, and it stayed flexible. It also just feels nicer when dry and came off my fingers SO much easier.

I need to see how the Gem-Tac wears, but honestly if you have E6000, use it. It’s really an irreplaceable glue.

Gems

While I’d love to one day repeat this project in Swarovski crystal, with my current budget a plastic rhinestone is a plastic rhinestone. I used a 5mm stone I got on AliExpress. I’d definitely order from them again. They came super quick, were cheap, and out of the 2 packs I finished and the third pack I started there were only 8 “mistake” stones- a few with the backing on the wrong side, no backing, or this kind of malformed one that looks like a bit like a cabochon. Honestly, I kind of wish I could buy the mistakes in bulk- I kind of like them, so I’m hoping by the time I get through all 20 bags I’ll have enough to do something with the rejects.

I used a 5mm stone, but if I had to do it again I’d consider a 2 or 3mm. Don’t get me wrong, these look really good and I’m happy with how they turned out, I just wonder if they would possibly look a bit more elegant with a smaller stone.

IMG_20190221_153521772.jpg
My shoes after the drop. Notice how the top rows (where I used the liquid glue) are less sparkly than the bottom Gem-Tac’d sections.

Drop ’em

This is one of the weirdest craft things I’ve ever done, but it works. When you’re done glueing all your stones on drop your shoes from as high as you can. This will shake off all the gems that aren’t as glued on and will allow you glue them on now, in your home, while you have plenty of glue to fix them instead of when you’re wearing them and they fall off in the street.

DIY Rhinestone Shoes.png

I’d definitely recommend this project, it’s easy, a great boredom buster, pretty cheap, and the results are amazing.

These guys are coming to Australia with me in May. To see them in action make sure to follow my Instagram and mention me if you make a pair!

 

Knitting · Making · Sewing · Uncategorized

Caring for Handmade Clothes

I spend a lot of time watching DIY clothing videos on YouTube and one thing always just baffles me. Do these people not wash their clothes? Don’t get me wrong, it’s great looking cute in a picture, but if I’m going to spend my time and money making something I want it to last.

Upcycled Clothes

This is where my bafflement comes from. I’m not the biggest fan of fabric glue. I realize it comes in handy, and some stuff just plain needs it. However, if I can sew something I pick that 100% of the time. You don’t have to worry about glue spilling, it’s sturdier, and you can fix it easily. Also, fabric glue is never as cheap as a needle and thread. While yes, fabric glue is washable, it still makes me nervous washing it.

As for raw seams, it’s true that some knits don’t need finished edges. When I made my bridesmaid’s dresses I kept the edges raw. I think it really depends on the fabric. If it’s a stockinette knit it will curl and a hem just makes it lie flat- especially after washing. Looser knits will unravel if they’re not hemmed. Woven fabric will just fray like crazy. Sometimes that’s what you want- see every distressed jean ever.

If it’s a t-shirt type upcycle that has no raw hems I’ll throw it in the dryer. Anything else I like to hang dry. If I have a distressed jean I’ll throw it in the machine and hang dry, and if I have a woven with a frayed edge, like my blanket scarf, I’ll handwash it.

Like I mentioned in my post about dyeing jeans, wash stuff with black for the first five or so washes or until you’re 100% sure there’s nothing that’s going to bleed out.

Sewing from Scratch

Prewashing fabric is not optional. Sometimes fabrics can be coated with a stain repellent, wrinkle remover, fade repellent, or really anything. I’m not opposed to the coating of fabric- it’s important to protect the fabric before you buy it, but it can throw the fabric completely off grain. You know when you’re wearing a t-shirt or tank top and the side seam keeps wiggling and migrating? That’s the result of something being off grain. It looks super unprofessional and, most importantly, is really, really annoying to wear. Nothing’s worse than spending hours making something only to have it change completely after its first wash. Also, fabric shops tend not to be immaculately clean places so it’s nice to start with something fresh.

I try to avoid dry cleaning because the chemicals creep me out and it’s expensive, but sometimes it’s inevitable. If your fabric is a dry clean only type of thing, e.g. silk or wool, I find it’s good to cut some squares (I like a 10cm x 10cm) and see what they can do. I’ll hand wash a square, throw a square in the machine for a load, and maybe one in the dryer just to see what happens. Keeping the squares consistent allows me to see the shrink rate and compare the colour fading and how the fabric feels. Most of the time handwashing works just fine and I can prewash like that. If dry cleaning is necessary it’s more than worth the extra cost to bring that big bolt in.

Fabric issues aside I find both quality hand stitching and machine stitching do just fine in a washing machine. I tend to keep hand sewn stuff out of the dryer if I can because the dryer just isn’t good for your clothes.

Hand Knits

Honestly, I’m low key disgusting and never really wash my knits. To be fair, I don’t really make sweaters so it’s not a super big deal. When I do need to wash things, it’s always hand wash. I don’t care what the yarn label says about the machine, Knitting takes too long to try anything else.

I think the main thing to remember is that in all cases, the dryer is evil.

Go forth and launder!

 

Making · Recreating the Runway · Uncategorized

Overdyeing Acid Wash Jeans

It’s been a more than tough week for me. I had a cough that I’m still trying to shake, my hip went out and I had a tonne of tiny annoying things happen that compounded themselves. I needed a win.

And dammit, I got one.

One of my big annoyances that has been going on for a while now is Penney’s (aka, Primark Ireland) has decided they no longer want to carry my size and leg length jean in washes that aren’t… well, in washes that I would consider wearing. Being tall is tough stuff. Add in the fact that I’m on the cusp of plus size and buying clothes becomes a total nightmare.

Remember Men’s Fashion Week? In Paris, CMMN SWDN and Kenzo sent down iterations of this weird treated denim that looked like acid wash overdyed. Liam Hodges and Marni sent down a similar treatment in their shows.

Marni AW19
from vogue.co.uk

When I saw acid wash jeans on clearance I picked up two pairs. A quick stop to the craft shop for dye and I was ready.

The short description? Buy some jeans, follow the instructions on the dye pack.

Now, the rest of this post will be all about how I kind of veered off the instruction path and was fine. First off, my jeans were about twice the weight that my dye specified. Secondly, my jeans had a bit too much of a polyester content for the dye to work “properly”.

Honestly, before we get into anything, I need to talk about the dye.

IMG_20190121_101409837

I used Dylon because that’s what my craft store had, and it was an all over stressful shopping experience. How on earth is a picture of a feather supposed to accurately show me a colour?! Tell me Dylon. How?! Burlesque red is not a standardized colour. I knew I wanted a wine red to echo the Marni-ness of it so I took a chance. I also got a pack of jeans blue just to see what would happen. The red pants have a bit of the acid wash-ness still to them- they’re surprisingly close to the Marni jacket, but the blue ones are just a straight up indigo jeans colour.

IMG_20190204_124055386.jpg

These are the jeans we’re starting with. I got two pairs of skinny, acid wash jeans.

IMG_20190204_125553790.jpg

This is definitely not a material heavy project. All you need are your jeans, dye, anything the dye instructions tell you- for me, that was 250g salt, gloves, and a dye specific utensil.

That last one is important. Anything you use with commercial dye can’t be used for food ever again. This spatula did its duty, but we got a nicer one so now it has a new life.

At this point, you just follow the dye instructions.

IMG_20190204_125646926.jpg

I got some warm water in there and dissolved my salt…

IMG_20190204_125745239.jpg

Then I dumped in the dye pack and dissolved that too.

IMG_20190204_125935501_BURST000_COVER_TOP.jpg

I stirred that up and popped my jeans in. The instructions say they should be prewashed and damp, but I skipped that step and threw them in dry. You have to stir the jeans for fifteen minutes, so pop on some good music and go to town.

IMG_20190204_131612652.jpg

After that, you leave them for at least forty-five minutes, stirring/poking them every so often.

Like I said, my jeans had a lot of polyester in them, so I wasn’t sure how much more they’d lighten up at this point. Polyester tends to look like it took in dye, but it just rinses out like crazy.

IMG_20190204_141540867.jpg

After an hour or so passed I went back to them and drained the sink. I rinsed them with cold water and kind of kneaded them to get out as much dye as possible. Then I added some soap and rinsed them again.

IMG_20190204_142725802.jpg

The hardest part is definitely waiting for these to dry. The red ones lightened up a lot, so my curiosity was killing me. No matter how good you are you’re not going to get all the dye out, and you’re not a spin cycle so there’s probably going to be some major drippage. Trust me, those paper towels on the floor are a godsend for picking up drips of dye.

Run these through a wash cycle with all black clothing so that if more dye leaks out it won’t wreak havoc. I’d recommend sticking to dark wash cycles and not wearing them to places with light-coloured fabric seating for the next five-ish washes, just to be sure.

One of the best things about this is it’s a really passive process. While the fifteen minutes of stirring can get a bit tedious, after that you just give it a stir when you’re around it. I vacuumed the house, put bread in the oven, and started writing this post- I’m literally staring at them on the drying rack right now.

IMG_20190206_105125984

I dyed the red ones first, they picked up all the cool denim variations. It’s also good to note that the thread didn’t take any dye in.

IMG_20190206_105258883.jpg

The blue ones didn’t turn out as fun, the dye just kind of filled in where the original wash wasn’t.

IMG_20190206_105416936

You can really see the difference in how the dye took on the inside of the back pockets.

The implications of this are amazing. There’s almost always white, acid wash, or some other weird light-wash jean on clearance racks. I paid €5 for each pair of jeans, and €4 for each pack of dye. I dyed the red pair first and a small part of me wanted to pick up a different colour of dye and really go for it with the second pair, but I’m happy I did the jeans blue simply because now I know that this experiment works… But I still wish I had been a bit more ballsy. I’m sure I’ll be able to find acid wash jeans on clearance again and fulfil my mustard-pant dreams. I’m also wondering how other jean washes will take up dye. I’m definitely going to go wild on clearance racks this summer and see what other light coloured pieces that I can get creative with. I’m hoping I can find some acid wash jean jackets and get the full Marni experience.

To see these pants in action follow me on instagram @SandySalierno

From This.png

 

 

 

 

 

Fashion · Making · Uncategorized

My Personal Ethics for Copying Designer Clothes

It’s fashion week, and we all know I love to pull DIY inspiration from the runways. I’m also the type of person who hates knockoffs. I try to keep what I do as moral as I can while keeping in mind that there are no new things, only old things in new ways.

I never copy a logo

I would love to say this is all about the sanctity of the brand and respecting copyright. Don’t get me wrong, I do think that a brand’s logo is representative of tradition and quality. I also think that 99% of the time efforts to copy logos just look like crap. Using modelling clay to get two interlocking C’s on your belt never turns out as nice as just taking two metal rings and glueing them together. And hey, we can all the bits where your transparent transfer paper has changed the texture of negative space in a logo. It’s just not worth it.

Credit where credit is due

It’s always good to show source inspiration. Someone put a lot of time, effort, and skill into making whatever is inspiring you. Even if all they did was sew trim in a spot and you could totally have thought of that, the fact is you didn’t.

Don’t ever think you might not one day buy that

Basically, don’t think you’re better than designers. We all remember that glorious scene in The Devil Wears Prada where Meryl Streep fabulously explains how fashion trickles down. Like it or not, we all participate in the industry. There are things I really don’t like- I’m tall and on the cusp of plus sized. Finding clothes is a nightmare, so I chose to flourish my DIY skills. Does that remove me from the fashion industry? Hardly. Even if I never looked at a runway or a shop I would still be influenced by the street style I see around me. No one lives in a vacuum.

So, is my runway DIY ethical? I think so. Aside from the environmental aspect of keeping clothes out of landfills, I think that taking inspiration from designers has happened forever. Also, the vast majority of my DIY’s end up looking quite a bit different- whether it’s from being pared down to a more wearable silhouette or from having a fabric or trim I like a bit more.

Like I said, this is just my little code of ethics. It’s always growing and evolving. What are your thoughts on being inspired by the runways?

Knitting · Making · Uncategorized

Acrylic: My Poor, Misunderstood Friend

Let me start by saying that I love wool. I’m the type of person that will literally make a day trip of going to see a single breed sheep farm and drag others along. If I had the funds I would gladly spend all day buying all sorts of amazing, soft, luxurious alpaca, goat, sheep, and any other fibre animal’s greatest offerings.

However; I do not have the funds. I try to keep wool in my life- I’m always cold so wool house socks are a particular must. I love a good wool hat or scarf. Wool is the quintessential example of you get what you pay for. I’ve held wool that I swear was just spun cloud. I’ve also held wool that I swear was Satan’s nail clippings.

I’ve also seen some truly tragic acrylic. However, as technology improves it’s getting better and better. Besides some people having moral issues I’m not going to get into today, there’s also the issue of allergies. More than anything though I find the biggest champion for acrylic is low cost. Again, you do get what you pay for. The stuff that comes free with a magazine? It feels and acts like plastic. Would I make myself something out of it? Probably not. I love it for swatching though- if I muck something up or hate how it looks I’m not super bothered and it tends to have awesome stitch definition. Acrylic in all forms also tends to be washable, which I don’t think is talked about enough. A lot of us are really gross knitters who kind of just never wash our knitted stuff. Imagine the liberation that comes with just tossing it in the machine!

Hatandmitts

If you’re on a budget, try for an acrylic blend. I made this hat and mitt set out of an 80% acrylic, 20% wool blend I got from Aldi of all places. The acrylic keeps the wool from being scratchy, but it’s still wonderfully warm.

IMG_20180422_144044080

If you’re looking for an amazing 100% acrylic to start with, I’d recommend Vanna’s Choice. It’s really soft, the colours are amazing and proceeds go towards a children’s hospital. It’s also quite warm- I wear this hat a LOT.

Enough people have started knitting that we’re in this weird snobbery period in DIY. I’ve met knitters who won’t use anything that costs under $50 a skein. I think it’s just a really bizarre way to shop for craft supplies. Who cares how much it cost? If it feels nice and looks nice it’s best to give it a chance.

Making · Sewing · Uncategorized

The Big Four

When you start sewing more you hear a lot about the “big four”. It took me an embarrassingly long time to figure out what that meant.

To be fair, as a kid my sewing education was a bit limited. My Mom isn’t bad at sewing, actually, she can be quite good. But, she was a bit out of practice. I also took quilting lessons and was super excited to take textiles in high school. Unfortunately, the teacher was super old fashioned and not always the nicest or most helpful. When I enrolled in a fashion program for post-secondary the sewing classes I had been promised never came. I focused mostly on refashioning old clothes and didn’t know anything other than the patterns for sale at the fabric shop existed.

Just for clarity that it took me far too long to find: The big four is really the big two. It encompasses Simplicity Creative Group– which includes Simplicity, New Look, and Burda; and McCall’s- a.k.a McCall’s Group: Butterick, Vogue, and Kwik Sew. I think the big four moniker comes from McCall’s, Butterick, Vogue, and Simplicity.

I can’t speak too much about independent patterns. I just don’t have that much experience sewing with them. However; I can safely say there are more than a few things to look out for when it comes to our big supergroup friends.

Accessibility: 

First things first, you can’t sew a pattern you don’t have. McCall’s and Simplicity are dabbling in digital downloads but otherwise, these are physical patterns you go to a store and buy, or order the tangible product online. I believe in the States most stores stock one or both groups. Simplicity seems to have pulled out of Canada a few years back. I could only find Burda patterns at Dressew, but it’s been a while so I can’t say if that’s still the case. Simplicity eluded me a bit as the patterns tended to be expensive and shipping to Canada was, as always, a nightmare.

McCall’s was a bit easier. I could always find them in the nicer fabric shops. They also tend to go on sale very often and did bulk shipping to Canada- $25 for 20 patterns. Even with the exchange rate, it was still pretty okay price wise.

I haven’t been able to find out what the standard is in Ireland, but the Simplicity EU link leads me to literally all the patterns together.

Basically, if you like big four patterns don’t move internationally.

It’ll do your head in.

Price:

One of the benefits of the big four is that they have a reputation for being cheaper than independent patterns. I’m not sure that’s always the case, the listed prices run high, however; I’ve never met a single person who paid the price on the envelope. The benefit of the big four is that if you’re patient a sale will come. It might take a minute, but it will be there. Whether it’s through their direct site or one of their stockists. Shop around for the best deal.

Physical Product: 

You’ll get an envelope, instructions, and the pattern on thin tissue paper. Once you unfold the paper you will need an origami genius to get it back in there. I usually just place all the parts in a freezer bag.

The tissue rips super easily so I trace all my patterns onto other paper both for sturdiness and so I can keep the graded nest. Also, if I want to lengthen, shorten, or full-on change anything it’s ten times easier on real paper.

The Instructions: 

There’s just as much love as there is hate for big four instructions. These companies have huge research teams. These patterns are theoretically tested multiple times. There’s literally no excuse for a mistake in these patterns. But… there sometimes is. Sometimes things are just explained in ways that are overcomplicated or just plain strange. The good thing about the big four being so prominent is that there is most likely a plethora of people who have sewn the pattern before. A lot of patterns even have youtube sew-a-long’s. If there’s a problem with a big four pattern give it six months and not only will you know what it is, but you’ll also have multiple examples of how to fix it.

Ease:

Ease gets it own special mention because it’s such a prolific big four problem. For some odd, unknown reason big four patterns have just… a ridiculous amount of ease. This is great for when you want to feel a little bit thin, but bad for when you spend hours sewing something that you want to wear and look good in. I usually buy fabric and notions for the size the envelope says I am, but then measure the actual pattern pieces when deciding a size. If you’re using really nice fabric I’d definitely suggest a mock-up. I like to use a nice, but not as nice as the final fabric and make a muslin I can wear.

Design: 

There’s definitely a mass market appeal when it comes to the big four. Sometimes they even try to be downright trendy, and they’re definitely better than they were fifteen years ago. As you browse through patterns you may start to notice something, well, truly baffling. I understand not everybody has the same personal style and my style is not right, and someone else’s is not wrong. I’m not trying to yuck anyone’s yum here. That said, I will never understand some of the fabric choices these companies make.

Sometimes it’s simply me thinking it’s an ugly fabric, but a lot of the time it’s also a fabric choice that doesn’t showcase the nice design details. For example, if there’s a lot of ruffle details, maybe a print isn’t the best choice? Sometimes you look at colour choices and feel a bit off kilter. I feel like a lot of the time they work against pattern features instead of with them.

The biggest thing you can do to make clothes you really like with big four patterns- and any pattern really- is learning how to read line drawings. I got formal training in doing it, but comparing sewn garments to a pattern envelope will get you so very far.

I mean, sewing is really one of those annoying things in life where you just have to practice, and big four patterns are a great place to get it.

 

 

Making · News · Uncategorized

The Ups and Downs of Bluprint

Craftsy announced that it’s switching its pay by the class model onto the subscription model, Bluprint, as of January 8th.

I’ve been using Bluprint since April, and overall I really like it. I like the classes, I like that the subscription model lets me try new things without a huge cost commitment. I love embroidery and definitely wouldn’t have tried it if the class had come with a larger price tag. I like online video classes and while, yes, I probably could have learned everything I did through various youtube videos, saving time by having everything curated is a really good thing.

My biggest gripe with Bluprint is their search feature. I usually go on the Craftsy site and use their browse feature, then type the name of the class I want into Bluprint. I’m honestly really upset that that’s going to go away.

A lot of people are saying it’s the beginning of the end for Craftsy, but I’m not so sure. The subscriptions aren’t too costly, right now a year is $79.99. A lot of their one-off classes were that much or more. You still get to keep your downloaded materials.

What do you think? Is Craftsy’s reign of… whatever coming to an end? Will you try Bluprint?

Making

My 2018 in Crafting

I miss my stuff.

I know it’s trendy to be all minimalist and zen, but I hate it. We all know I moved countries, then houses, and it forced me to give up a lifetime’s worth of crafty collecting. I miss my beads, I miss having fabric, yarn, ribbons, and every other remnant of every craft I’ve tried. I probably won’t ever use the pony beads leftover from my prodigious bead animal phase, but then again, I might. I’m not saying you have to be a hoarder to be effective at crafting, but it definitely doesn’t hurt.

My main focus this year has definitely been knitting. Knitting is amazing because it really doesn’t have to take much room. Don’t get me wrong- I could definitely fill an entire house with knitting stuff but in terms of hobbies it can be surprisingly low key. Also, knitting is just all kinds of awesome.

I started learning embroidery online and ended up with a really cute cushion. I also acquired lots of raw wool that I’m (very) slowly cleaning, carding, and will eventually spin.

I think my craft goal for 2019 is a big one. I’ve always struggled with finishing things. In knitting it’s the blocking, in sewing it’s the hemming… Even in just a year, I’ve compiled a good amount of weird little half projects, some kits, all sorts. In 2019 I want to focus on using supplies I have and finishing projects I’ve started. I’ve got tonnes of old clothes and finally have a sewing machine to do something with them. I have a dress I bought over a year ago now that I really want to turn into a sweater. I’m a craft hoarder, and this year I want to do something about it.

Except for the beekeeper’s quilt. I’ll finish that… someday.

What are your crafty resolutions?