Friday, March 30, 2012

Yarn it all! WINNER!

And the winner of the Gnome Acres giveaway is:

crescendogal said...

AAF & I totally LOVE her new little monkey gnome!!! I too, have a GOOD yarn addiction & would love to make something for either my 6yr old son or one of my 3 grandbabies!!! <3

You will receive one skein of the beautiful No Place Like Gnome:

Email me your address!

*Be sure to check the right sidebar for all the fun parties I link to!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Shocking. Just, shocking.

Um...  uh... (sheepish laugh)... sorry I left you hanging there last night.  (Funnily enough, it seems googiemomma had complications too... ha!  Must be something in the water...)  I had a cute little something something to show you all, but I uh... I lost it.  Yeah.  Like, literally.  No idea where it is.  And then the substitution project, well, it ran into some snags.  Hopefully I'll be sharing that tomorrow for the final project of the series, but I have some things to work out first.  ANYWAY.  I DO have something to show you tonight.  Actually, I consider this TWO tutorials in ONE, so that makes up for yesterday, right?

You didn't think I could let Yarn it all! go by without giving you an idea for a yarn wreath, did you??  (If you DID think that, you don't know my very well).  For you newbies, I inexplicably and unexpectedly love making wreaths.  Combine that with my love for yarn and you get the Comfy Cozy, the Lucky Noodle and the Spring Yarn Wreaths respectively.

Therefore, it is no surprise that I now present to you:

a twist on the average yarn-wrapped wreaths.

Would you like to know how to make it?  Of course you do or you wouldn't be reading this part. So.  You will need:
A wire floral wreath form
spray paint

For the embellishments you will need:
plastic rings (found in the notions section at the fabric store)
a darning needle

So let's get to it!
1.  Take your plain old wire floral wreath form (the kind you usually use to poke and tie and wrap and wire fake flowers onto) 
2.  and spray it your choice of color.  (side note: I thought this would be slightly more yellow than it actually was when dried.  Sad.)

3.  Now, choose your yarn colors.  Totally up to you how many strands you use at once.  The more strands you use at once, the faster you will get done, but the less "herringbone" it will look.  So.  I decided to go with three strands, all different colors.  I cut equal lengths of all three,
4.  then knotted them as one onto the wreath form right next to one of the vertical stabilizing wires.

5.  And then I began to weave through the horizontal wires.  I made sure the knot was on the back of the form to start with, then pulled the yarn up over the top wire, down under the middle wire, up over the next wire, 
6.  and down under the bottom wire.
7.  Then wrap it around the bottom wire, bringing it up over the bottom wire, down under the next wire, up over the middle wire, and down under the top wire.  Essentially just the opposite of what you did first.
8.  And wrap it up over the top wire, down under the next, up over the next, and down under the next... and continue.  You get the idea.

When you get to one of those vertical stabilizing wires, there's really no trick to it at all, just wrap up and over onto the other side of it.

Right about here you will wish you hadn't had this brilliant idea.

Right about here you will curse yourself for starting this whole thing and wished you used about 25 yarn strands at once.

9.  If you run out of yarn, no biggie.  Just cut more and tie it in a knot to the yarn already on the wreath - making sure that the knot remains on the back.
10.  And here you're done!  Just tie of the yarn in a knot on the back of the wreath.  
11.  Cut the excess yarn off.  Ta da!

But it looks a little naked, yes?
How about some yarn flowers?

Get your plastic ring out.  Pick two colors for your flower.  

1.  Cut a piece of yarn in a color you'd like for the middle of your flower.  Thread your needle.
2.  Pull the yarn to equal lengths and tie the two ends together in a knot around the plastic ring.  
3.  Using the needle, start wrapping the yarn around the ring, making sure to wrap OVER the knot and keeping the knot on the back of the ring.
4.  Continue wrapping until it is completely covered.
5.  Stick your needle under some of the wrapped yarn and
6.  pull tightly to secure the yarn in place.

7.  On the inside of the ring, put your needle through the wrapped yarn close to where you've pulled your yarn through.  Make sure the needle is pointing back toward the beginning and NOT forward.  
8.  Pull through, pretty tight, but make sure the knot is visible.
9.  Do this again directly next to the first knot.  
10.  Go all around the inside of the ring,
11.  constantly making sure the needle is pointing backwards when you pull the yarn through.
12.  When you get back around to the beginning, go around the ring in this fashion again, making knots on top of the previous row of knots.  
13. Do this all around the inside of the ring, row after row, until you've filled the entire ring with knots.  
14.  You will end in the middle.
15.  On the back of the ring, thread your needle through one layer and pull tightly to make a knot.  Cut the excess thread.

Now we'll make the petals.

16.  Thread your other color onto your needle.  Tie the ends together in a knot.
17.  On the OUTSIDE of the ring, thread your yarn through the wrapped yarn on the back side.  Pull tightly.
18.  Put the needle into the wrapped yarn directly next to where you just pulled it through, facing the needle BACK toward the yarn and NOT forward.  (Just like you did for the inside!)
19.  Do not pull this part tightly.  Leave it loose in a little loop.
20.  Do the same thing right next to this first loop.  Make sure that your needle is pointing back the way you came from and not forward.
21.  Do not pull tightly.
22.  Keep going.
23.  Go all around the ring.

24.  When you've gone around the ring once, stick your needle through some of the wrapped yarn and pull tightly to secure the yarn in place.  
25.  Then start making more petals BEHIND the first row.  Make them the same way you did the first row of petals - just make looser loops so you can see them.
26.  Keep going all around the ring.  If you want more rows of petals, continue going around and around the ring layer each row behind the previous and making the loops looser and looser.  When you like the way it looks, just make a knot in the yarn on the back of the flower.

Now you can add your yarn flowers to your wreath.  Just use the same colored yarn as the flower petals and sew in little stitches on two or three spots on the ring of the flower.  You can see I made two other types of flowers as well, and I will make tutorials for those later!
You can also add something to hang your wreath with at this point.  It's not absolutely necessary as you could just hang it from the yarn on the wreath, but for decorative purposes, I added a strand of yarn that I braided with a "finger weave" technique.  I just sewed it to the back of the wreath with the same color yarn.

And that's it!  A spring yarn wreath!

I had to make another one since I gave away  the one from last year.   

See how I gave you two tutorials in one there?  You could even put the cute little yarn flowers on clips for your little girl.  (She could wear them with her pixie tutu).  Or wrap some presents with them!

Don't forget to link up to our yarn it all party!!  Features on Sunday!

And don't forget to enter the giveaways here and on googiemomma.  Ends tomorrow!

Ok.  Go check out Shannon's stuff.  Go, go!

*Be sure to check the right sidebar for all the fun parties I link to!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

This one's for the girl.

Project three's a fun one, people.  A super duper fun one.  And what's more, it's incredibly easy! (Just takes some time...)  It's quite possibly my most favorite yarn project yet, but that may be because of the cute little face behind the yarn...

Do you have a Pixie to make a tutu for?  You can whip one of these up in an afternoon!  Get these things together:
a book
yarn in your favorite colors.  (Depending on the size of the tutu, you should only need about one skein, probably less.)
A sewing machine 

First, get yourself a BIG book.  Hm.  Or a small one... Ok, use one that is about the same length as you want the tutu to be plus an inch or so.

Now, start wrapping your yarn around it.

And wrap and wrap and wrap. 

And you're done!  A yarn wrapped book!  Cute, huh?

No, no, just kidding.  Take your scissors and cut one end of all the yarn.

Repeat this with any other colors you want to use until you have about this much yarn.  (I actually only used a little over half of this pile).

Measure your elastic to fit your Pixie's waist.  Subtract about an inch.  Cut.  Use your sewing machine to sew the two ends of the elastic together in two parallel lines with a zig zag stitch,

So it looks like a loop.

Stretch your elastic out over something about the same size as your Pixie's waist.  You don't want to stretch it too much (I've learned from experience, it's not a good idea).  Use a chair, a book, or a sort of ugly Dora Doll Stroller.

Take a small handful of yarn using whatever combo of colors you'd like to,

fold it in half and stick the folded end under the elastic.

Stick the other end through the folded loop and pull, but not too tightly.

Lay it flat and it will look like this:

Familiar?  Yes, exactly.  It looks just like a no-sew tulle tutu.  Super original, yes?  
Keep it up all around the elastic.  Don't pull too tightly and don't add too many handfuls or you'll stretch your elastic out too much to fit.  I may speak from experience here.
Once you're all done putting the yarn around the elastic, this is when the real creativity begins!  You'll want to make your tutu one of a kind.  Unique.  Fun.  Pixie worthy.
Take some strands and braid them.  Take a few others and knot them together.  One knot, two knots, three... it's up to you.  Unravel a few of the yarn pieces.  And by a few I mean a lot.  (I unraveled a lot.  That's the part that took the longest with this project.  I especially unraveled a a lot of the yarn on the INSIDE so that it made the tutu a little puffier).  Once you've unraveled some yarn, tie knots and/or braids again.  There's no rules here.  No rhyme or reason.  You know that's my favorite kind of craft.

When you're all done with that, hold it up and check it out from all angles.  Make sure you like the look and adjust, adding braids, frays, twists, knots, wherever you need them.

Then lay it down and trim it.  You don't want it to be straight across on the bottom, that would look much to perfect for a crazy, funky tutu like this.  But you do want to trim the pieces that are extra long and make sure it's the right length for your girly.  I cut some a little shorter than others to keep the non-uniformity of the yarn intact.

And once you're done trimming, you've got an adorable little tutu,

For an adorable little pixie.

Who likes to be nosy, nosy on the neighbors.

I have to be honest.  Tulle tutu's are cute.  They are pretty and fun and girly.  They are perfect for a ballerina or a classy fairy.

But this tutu?  Can't you see a little woodland sprite skipping through the grass in this?

Yes, this tutu is for the fun, funky, mischievous little pixie. 

And because I can't escape the resemblance of this skirt to rastafari, I thought you might be interested to note:
it doubles quite nicely as a wig.

Now, if you want to see something really spectacular, check out Shannon's post!

*Be sure to check the right sidebar for all the fun parties I link to!
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