Friday, December 30, 2011

Free Printable Christmas Card Thank You Note

After getting a new iMac for Christmas, I've been determined to explore beyond knit and crochet design to a little graphic design.  While I know I'm new to the field, I wanted to share my first printable project.... so, I came up with some Christmas thank you notes for us (and you!) to use.  I've been inspired by so many other mommy bloggers, like Living Locurto and Parties by Hardie who design amazing printables for parties and other occasions.  I designed cards that have a design on the inside as well.... I was finding that most free folded cards online don't have designs on the inside and that just isn't as good looking.  I mean, who wants to open up a totally designless card on the inside?     

Printables are great because you can print great looking cards and other items right at home without having to go to a store.... and you certainly can't complain about the price!  I hope you enjoy these and can put them to good use writing Christmas thank you notes.





Instructions:  Page one has two cards with the front and back pages.  These will be cut out and folded later on.  Print page one and then feed the same page back into the printer to print page two on the backside.  You will have double-sided cards.  Make sure you're really comfortable with you printer and you know how to feed the page back in to get the printer to print on the correct side.  I suggest using regular paper to start with and then once you're comfortable, move to print your final cards on card stock.  Cut the cards out on the gray lines (the gray boxes should line up on both sides), fold in half, and write your message!

Page 1 - Front & Back of Cards


Page 2 - Inside of Cards


Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Happy Birthday, My Little One!

It's hard to believe that my littlest one turned a year old today! We hung out with grandma and grandpa and uncle today at home and then Dad made it home early from work.  We celebrated at a fun local family restaurant where Conor had his first very own kids meal, grilled cheese, of course.  We ended the evening with some cupcakes and some great laughs as we watched Conor dig in to his very first real sweet treat.  It's so hard to believe my little guy is one already!  Where did the year go?  





Sunday, December 25, 2011

Getting Ready for Santa

 Any of you putting together gifts right now?  We certainly are (or my husband is, I should say)....  This is the first year Santa is making a stop at our house, now that our almost 3 year old "gets it" and we're very much looking forward to the morning..... for those of you up late wrapping gifts and putting together toys, we're right there with ya.  Santa has already eaten his cookies, had his milk, and fed some carrots to his reindeer.  I hope everyone has a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Needlepoint Anyone?

I'm not one for needlepoint traditionally, but this New Year's Needlepoint Clutch from the Purl Bee really caught my eye.  The whole project doesn't seem too overwhelming and I love the detail!  Hmmm..... I may just have to try this myself.  Check it out.....


The Purl Bee


The Purl Bee

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

One Shoe On, One Shoe Off

Does anyone else have a child that loves to have one shoe on and one shoe off!?!?  I can't keep both shoes on my almost one year old.  We just moved from Robeez to more legitimate shoes and this child does not like to have both shoes on for whatever reason.  His right foot has to be free.  Just curious if anyone else's child does this.  Is this just a phase?  It's obviously very cute, but it is winter around here!


Friday, December 16, 2011

Easy Knit Infinity Scarf Pattern: Mid-December

Yes, I'm crazy about infinity scarves and cowls still and couldn't resist passing this on..... so Merry Christmas!  Here is a free knit infinity scarf pattern that will make you want to grab two skeins of super bulky yarn and size 19 knitting needles as fast as you can.  The stitch was somewhat inspired by a double-breasted knit jacket in Easy Baby Knits by Claire Montgomerie.  I wanted to use a different looking stitch that wasn't difficult and had a fun stitch on the reverse side.... I'm calling the scarf Mid-December.   


While I've been busy knitting gifts for friends and family, I got the itch to come up with another fast and easy infinity scarf pattern.   I had to post this Friday night so you could use your time wisely this weekend (it being the last weekend left before Christmas and all).  So get your knitting on and make one for your friend in an afternoon this weekend. 










Materials
Size US 19 (15mm) 24" Circular Knitting Needles
2 Skeins Lion Brand Hometown USA Super Bulky Yarn (or another Super Bulky Yarn). Each Skein is 5 oz. (140 g), 81 yd. (74 m) -- the color pictured is Los Angeles Tan
Yarn Needle
Stitch Marker

Gauge
6 STS and 12 rows = 4 inches in establish pattern [see rows 1 - 3]

Measurements
About 8.5 inches wide and 51 inches in circumference

Instructions
CO 90 STS and join in the round, marking the beginning/end of row

Row 1: [K2, P1] to the end of the round
Row 2: [K2, P1] to the end of the round
Row 3: P to the end of the round

Repeat rows 1 - 3 six more times.

Next Row: [K2, P1]
BO in K2, P1 pattern

Weave in ends and enjoy!


Abbreviations:
BO = Bind off
CO = Cast On
K = Knit
P = Purl
ST(S) = Stitch(es)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Some DIY Holiday Craft Ideas

While I'm furiously knitting and crocheting Christmas gifts (gifts that I can't share yet because I don't want people to see them before they receive them!), I thought I'd share some other craft ideas that could be easily used for Holiday gifts.  This is that time where I start trying to find anything and everything to make because I love all of the DIY gifts that I'm seeing online.  I find myself having to take a step back and not biting off too many crafts because it's just impossible to get everything done.  First thing I took a step back on, the Christmas cards..... yep, not making them anymore.  I did come up with a design and had it all planned out, but the printing and cutting and gluing just wasn't looking realistic.  So I ordered the cards last night on Tiny Prints (LOVE that website) and can't wait to get them soon!

Anyway, here are some DIY gifts and decorations that might satisfy that crafty gift giving urge you might have!

I love this brooch or holiday gift topper from Betz White


Make It and Love It's T-Shirt Braided headband is great for your little girl or fun to give as a gift.


I just love the idea of paper wreaths.... fun to do with the kids and can be very sophisticated looking!  I saw this on Luvinthemommyhood and the tutorial is here at Finecraftguild.com


And of course, I had to find something involving yarn!  Check out Tangled Happy's Chained Wreath Ornament.... so cute for your tree or maybe for Grandma and Grandpa's?


HAPPY CRAFTING!


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Gathered Gartered Cowl Pattern


Yes, I am cowl crazy.  I don't know what it is about the winter and the holidays, but all I seem to want to do is design and wear my cowls (and make some for gifts too)!  Here's the latest design.... I wanted to come up with something that looked a bit different and didn't have any cables, so I put together a design with a unique gathered look.  It is started in the back, with a crochet provisional cast on so that it can be seamlessly finished. At it’s widest point (unrolled), the cowl measures 16 inches wide, the garter center is 5 inches wide, and the whole cowl measures about 28 inches in circumference. The gartered center makes the cowl bunch, creating a fun gathered look.


Materials
Size US 13 (9mm) Knitting Needles
Size US 8 (5mm) Knitting Needles
Tapestry Needle
2 Skeins Lion Brand Vanna’s Choice Yarn (or another worsted weight yarn); each skein is 3.5 oz (100 g), 170 yards (156 m)
 Gauge
5 STS and 7.5 Rows = 2 inches


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Quick Cable Double Cowl Knit Pattern

I was in the mood for a double cowl.... and one with a never-ending cable look.  So here it is!  I really like the uniqueness of the cable and I love the thickness of the double cowl.  This is a great holiday gift because you can knit it up in an afternoon. It's a fun knit and super warm and cozy. It measures about 5 inches wide (unrolled) and about 56 inches in circumference. It's grafted together at the end for a seamless look.




Materials
Size US 13 (9mm) Knitting Needles 
Cable Needle
Tapestry Needle
1 Skein Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick Yarn (or another Super Bulky Yarn) -- 6 oz./170g (106 yd/97 m)













Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Children's Quick Knitted Cabled Cowl



This is the greatest quick gift for a little kiddo....  you can easily finish this in an hour or two!  It's perfect for the holidays if you're finding yourself becoming really overwhelmed trying to finish all of those knitted gifts.  This is a child version of my Quick Knitted Cabled Cowl Pattern.  It's a fun knit and super warm and cozy.  It measures about 5.5 inches wide and about 20 inches in circumference.  It's grafted together at the end for a seamless look.

Materials
Size US 13 (9mm) Knitting Needles
Cable Needle
Tapestry Needle
1/2 Skein Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick Yarn (or another Super Bulky Yarn)

Cast on 18 STS with a crochet provisional cast on.  (Instructions can be found here)
Row 1 (RS): SL1, K to end
Row 2 (and all WS rows): SL1, P to End
Row 3 - 8: Repeat Row 1 for RS (odd numbered) rows and Row 2 for WS (even numbered) rows
Row 9: Sl 1, Place 4 STS on holder in front, K4, K STS on holder, Place next 4 STS on holder in back, K4, K STS on holder, K last stitch
Rows 10 - 26: Repeat Row 2 for WS rows and Row 1 for RS rows
Row 27: Sl 1, Place 4 STS on holder in front, K4, K STS on holder, Place next 4 STS on holder in back, K4, K STS on holder, K last stitch
Rows 28 - 44: Repeat Row 2 for WS rows and Row 1 for RS rows
Row 45: Sl 1, Place 4 STS on holder in front, K4, K STS on holder, Place next 4 STS on holder in back, K4, K STS on holder, K last stitch
Rows 46 - 62: Repeat Row 2 for WS rows and Row 1 for RS rows
Row 63: Sl 1, Place 4 STS on holder in front, K4, K STS on holder, Place next 4 STS on holder in back, K4, K STS on holder, K last stitch
Row 64 - 72: Repeat Row 2 for WS rows and Row 1 for RS rows
To finish, graft the stitches together and weave in the ends.  (Instructions for grafting can be found here)

If you'd like to make it longer, after row 63, continue the cable row on every 18th row, completing 9 rows of ST ST after your last cable row.



Abbreviations:
K = Knit
P = Purl
RS = Right Side
SL = Slip
ST(S) = Stitch(es)
ST ST = Stockinette Stitch
WS = Wrong Side

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Christmas Tree Is Up!

Thought I'd share a few pics of the tree that we just got up..... beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here!




Thursday, December 1, 2011

Kids Crafts: Easy Holiday Banner

I'm constantly trying to come up with fun and easy craft projects to do with the kids, especially when it's too cold and yucky outside to do much.  Plus, it's that time of year when someone seems to always be sick, so we're often stuck spending our afternoons inside the house -- so why not embark upon a fun craft project?   I wanted to share a project we did this afternoon to start making the house look more festive for the holidays.  Plus, this is a great way to engage kids and make them feel like they're actively decorating the house with you.

We started off with a quick trip to Michaels (JoAnn's or any other craft store will probably do) and purchased some packs of foam trees and snowflakes and then also got packs of foam stickers in the shape of ornaments, stars, and gifts.


We decorated the Christmas trees with the stickers and used some glitter glue on the snowflakes.





Once we were done decorating, I took a tapestry needle and some yarn (yes, I can use my knitting and crocheting supplies for other crafts!) and pulled yarn through the sides of the snowflakes and trees, tying a knot in the back.



I created a double strand on the ends so I could wrap the banner around a hook in our windows and tied with a bow (for easy removal).  And now our dining room looks a little more festive!