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Archive for the ‘Crafts’ Category

While I don’t call myself an artist, I have the inability to leave an art supply shop empty-handed. There’s just something about new supplies that makes me giddy. It brings me back to the days of my childhood, when a new box of Crayolas meant endless possibilities. I have quite the collection of supplies, which have mostly gone unused. I have good intentions, for sure. I mean to use them someday. This month, I hope to carve out some time for creativity, time to actually use the supplies that I have acquired over the years.

In addition, I also hope to seek out opportunities to experience art in a community setting, whether it’s music, film or theater. There’s a community orchestra concert this upcoming Sunday. (2 pm at St. John Lutheran Church, for those in the area.) I was invited to view and discuss The Life of Pi with some friends the following weekend. Two of my favorite musicians named Josh (Ritter and Garrels) will be performing in Minneapolis, within the same week. I most likely won’t be able to attend both, but I can dream for now. This piece by Lanier Ivester has renewed my interest in opera. I have since found out that the Minnesota Opera is performing Turandot at the Ordway this month. Oh, and the local theater also has a show this month. There is a calligraphy class offered through community ed this month, and I’m tempted to take it, especially after seeing this. (Among my supplies is a set of calligraphy pens and ink…)

I won’t be able to do all of the above, but it’s nice to have options, and that’s only this month! I may or may not post the results of all of my creative endeavors and adventures on the blog, but I hope to at least post some updates.

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November Joys

There’s nothing quite like cuddling up with a good book after a long day…

Wool socks to keep those toes nice and cozy…

Red cups have made their return!

A glorious November sunrise!

Ever yellow trees? 😉

The season’s first snowfall – November 12th!

Dashwood wants to help with my crochet project – fingerless gloves!

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Crochet for Beginners

“Anything worth doing is worth doing badly.” – G.K. Chesterton

Last month, I learned how to crochet. My cousin, Heidi, asked me to take a community ed class with her. Our grandma was a crocheter and made all of us grandchildren ripple afghans in our choice of colors. I still remember accompanying her on a trip to the yarn shop to select my colors: mauve, country blue, white and gray. (It was the early 90s… ;)) When Heidi asked me about the class, I had grand visions of being able to carry on the family tradition by creating beautiful afghans.

Imagine my frustration as I sat in class on the first night, and couldn’t even get the basic stitches down. There were 12 students and one teacher. When I got stuck, I sat for what seemed like an eternity while the teacher was helping someone else with their tangle of yarn. I could have burst into tears. Heidi was similarly frustrated. “If Grandma could see us, she’d be shaking her head,” Heidi said. “She’d be proud of us for at least trying…” I smiled.

When I got home that night, I worked and re-worked the chunky yarn until I could successfully maneuver a half-double stitch. I kept going until I had what would have been a square, but appeared to be more of a trapezoid. (Thanks to Heidi for that observation!)

I’m hooked… (Bluebelle in progress)

In class the following week, as we learned how to create a double stitch, I actually enjoyed myself. The teacher had invited a friend to class for extra assitance. Her friend was able to diagnose the cause of my trapezoidal creations – I was inadvertently skipping the last stitch.

I was so excited that I made a trip to the yarn shop –  the same shop my grandma used to frequent – for some better quality yarn. I spent the weekend working on what I call the Gilmore Guava scarf. (I watched an entire season of Gilmore Girls whilst working.) I was truly enjoying myself and had a hard time not crocheting into the wee sma’s. I also got my first order from my four-year-old niece, Anabelle, for a light blue scarf – Bluebelle.

Gilmore Guava Scarf

I haven’t attempted an afghan, or even a granny square, yet. But I’m finding comfort and freedom in the words of G. K. Chesterton: Anything worth doing is worth doing badly. I hope to chronicle my adventures in the art of the afghan this winter. 🙂

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