Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Infinity Scarf: The Master Post!

A note: Changes have been made in this post to address the myriad questions I have received about this scarf. Please refer to this post for answers to your questions, and comment on this post with any other questions you might have. I will reply ASAP as well as update the post itself with my answer. Let me reiterate that this pattern is extremely flexible, so I am hesitant to provide you with things like yarn weight, hook size, number of rows, etc. Make it how you like it!

Another note: Youtube user beautytipsbyshane brought up an interesting point in a comment on my video. This pattern doesn't have an official name. I am proposing that it be called the Crossed Clusters stitch. Thoughts? Any suggestions of better ones?

Hello all! It has been too, too long! In the rush of everything that is medical school, all of my projects and even the first birthday of The Stingy Stitcher have passed by already.

Unfortunately, as usual I have very little time, so today's post will be short and sweet...hopefully we'll have time to play catch-up another day!

This is a more detailed version of the Infinity Scarf pattern I posted here a long while back. A couple people were (understandably) confused by my vague instructions, so here we go again!

Forever 21 Infinity Scarf

Dimensions (relaxed): 8 inches wide and 56 inches long (before joining the ends)
10 pattern repeats, 57 rows
Dimensions are not concrete. This pattern can be easily modified to be whatever width and whatever length you want.

Yarn: Caron Simply Soft (worsted weight), 1 7-oz skein (366 yards)
Hook size: J
Again, this is nothing concrete. Use whatever yarn you like and a hook size appropriate to that yarn, then adjust your gauge to get whatever size scarf you'd like. Also, with scarves I do one of two things: I either keep going until I've used up one skein of yarn, or I keep wrapping the scarf around my neck until it reaches a length I like.


Ch = chain
Sc = single crochet
Dc = double crochet
Tr = treble crochet (it is my understanding that triple crochet = treble crochet; at least, that is what Google tells me)
Hk = hook
St = stitch
Sk = skip

- The beginning ch-4 always counts as the first stitch.
- The stitch marker isn't actually necessary, but putting that in the pattern makes it a little easier to explain.

For a scarf with 10 repeats:

Ch 36.
R1: Place stitch marker in 6th ch from hk. Tr into next 2 ch. Dc into ch with marker. Remove marker. *Sk 1 ch (from the second tr). Tr into next 2 ch. Dc into the skipped ch. Repeat from * 8 more times (only one ch is left unworked). Tr into last ch.
R2: Ch 4, turn. *Sk next st. Tr in next 2 sts. Dc in skipped st. Repeat from * 9 more times. Tr into last st.
Repeat R2 as desired.

To make the scarf wider or narrower, add or subtract chains in your starting chain in multiples of 3.

Edit: A reader asked me how I joined the ends of the scarf when I was finished. The first time around, I just used a whip stitch and it was fine. However, the second and third scarves (haven't posted about the third one yet, but soon!) had foundation chains that were too loose, so I removed the foundation chain and used a whip stitch. The photo tutorial can be found here.

In addition, I made a brief video so you can actually get a visual of this. Please let me know if there is anything you would like me to do to improve on quality for this and possible future videos and/or patterns!
Thanks for reading, and I hope to be seeing you all again soon!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Just popping in!

Hello everyone! I've been in China for the past three weeks, and apparently they block blogspot sites, hence the lack of posting for a while.

I'm afraid I'm at a very busy time in my life; I have to pack up for school this week and next week is days and days of orientation activities. Therefore, posting activity will still be low and will likely remain low for a long, long time, given the workload of medical school.

However, fear not! I still intend to squeeze in what crafting I can, as it's a great way to maintain sanity if properly managed, and I will be sure to share it with you in time.

I'd like to give a shout-out to Rachel of One Pretty Thing. A few weeks ago she featured my blue infinity scarf on her Crochet Round-Up, and I have to say, I was so excited about it. If you haven't done so yet, add One Pretty Thing to your daily routine of web prowling, because the tutorials and projects she features are gold, and I have found so many great blogs through Rachel's site. Thank you, Rachel, for all your hard work and for featuring me!

I'll be seeing you around, folks! Wish me luck as I adjust to the newest phase of my life, and keep an eye out for me on your GFC reading lists! ;) I'll keep you updated on the latest news on the crafting front!


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Origami Roses

Greetings all! I'm back with a quick project I worked on about a week ago.

That is, it was supposed to be a quick project...

Do you remember this photo, from my turtle history?

I made these roses from construction paper for Mother's Day two years ago, using this tutorial. By now, sitting by that window has faded them to this:


So my mom asked me if I could redo them in something that will keep its color. My first thought was origami paper. Her first thought?

This is the same shiny stuff they wrap around poinsettia pots in the holiday season. It's pretty to be sure, but I'm warning you now, it's a bear to work with.

A paper rose might take me ten minutes. Might. Lots of pre-creasing.

However, these beautiful foil roses?

Each one took over an hour.

The problem with these is they don't stay when folded. They crease easily, but it won't stay put! I had paper clips hanging all over the place during the shaping steps, until I could lock the darn things in place.

But really....

SO worth it. They're gorgeous.

Now the white rose, of course, hadn't faded, only the pink and yellow had. But my mom was thinking, "Well, won't that one matte rose look odd against all that shiny-ness?"

She looks at me and says, "Why don't you try aluminum foil?"

I surprised to find out that the aluminum foil rose was significantly easier. The folds actually stayed in place (better than paper, actually); the only problem is that in both aluminum foil and the foil paper I had, it's difficult to reverse a fold (you know, make it fold the other way)...the foil doesn't like change, I guess.

But again...


Aren't these just beautiful? I am seriously considering screwing all gender stereotypes and making a bouquet of these for my boyfriend next Valentine's Day. Just so I can do it.

SO PRETTY. I'm a little obsessed.

Again, if you'd like to make these, the tutorial can be found here. Once you get the hang of it, it's quite easy. After two roses I could do it from memory. Please show me pictures if you try it!

Edit: Okay, so, um, ridiculous story. How many of you are familiar with the blog Inside Out Style? It's this really fabulous style blog by Australian image consultant Imogen Lamport. She has all these great posts that always focus on finding what is best for you. You'll see in my list of blogs I follow that I do read a few fashion blogs (it's one of my new interests), but I just don't talk about it much. But I have to say, Inside Out Style is one of my favorites because it's so practical and applicable to me.

So why did I mention this in the first place? Well, Imogen has a feature called Weekend Reading, and guess what link popped up there?


Sorry, I'm just blown away that someone so "high and mighty" in the blogging world would have even noticed something written by me. It's exciting, and such an honor! :) Thank you, Imogen! Please visit her blog and/or take a look at the other bloggers in this week's Weekend Reading!


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Foundation chain joining woes

Hello again!

So recently I made another infinity scarf as a present for a family member. It uses this pattern, but for this particular scarf I used fewer repeats per row and a larger hook.

Yay, pretty! No action shots on her, but she liked it...hopefully I can get pictures sometime.

Now, I don't remember what black magic I called upon last time to get a simple whip stitch to suffice for the joining seam, but my foundation chain for this scarf was ridiculous.

I wanted it to be able to stretch with the rest of the scarf, so I went up two hook sizes and chained somewhat loosely. I ended up with the most insanely loopy, messy-looking foundation ever. It stretched just fine, but can you imagine how shabby the thing looked when I attempted to whipstitch the ends together? There were loops popping out everywhere and it was just a mess!

It was then that I recalled something I had seen...somewhere in the blogosphere. Hopefully someone can enlighten me as to where I got the inspiration for this idea...are you ready? It's a revolutionary idea...it could change the very world........


Revolutionary, right?

Okay, so it's not that exciting, but I've gotta tell you, it's a great idea! Check it out...

Where's the join?

Do you see it?

Right here!

Not too shabby, right?

I can anticipate this working nicely for a lot of things that require joining something to the bottom of a crocheted piece, and possibly even nicely finishing the bottom edge of a piece. I plan on experimenting with that later. :)

Plus, it helps to get rid of the stretch issue without being forced to start with a foundation sc or dc row.

I put together a photo tutorial for the method that I found worked best. If you'd like to see my way of joining two crocheted pieces by replacing the foundation chain, please read on. :)

Thursday, June 9, 2011

I liiiiiiive!

Well, hello there everyone! I must apologize for the long, long hiatus, but schoolwork does not wait for anyone. *sigh* That, and my life has been thrown in all manner of directions since I graduated (heck yeah, I GRADUATED). I will be a medical student this fall (XD YES), which I predict means I will have even less time to craft than I have in the past few years. It's a sad thing, but, eh, the sacrifices we make for our futures, yes?

Anyways, a good bit has been happening on the crafting front in the past (almost three!) months, and I'm super-excited to share it with you. However, although I'm sure you're all on the edges of your seats, today's post isn't really about anything crafty. I thought I'd share a little something and just let you all know that I am, in fact, alive.

There is a second-hand store near my school called The Bottomline, and they have a fabulous mission to provide lightly used, work-appropriate clothing at great prices. I've found a couple great things there, but nothing (NOTHING) compares to what I found at the end of my finals week.

That jacket? Isn't it gorgeous? Sorry for the awkward photo, a clotheshanger did not wish to make itself available. However, the jacket itself is not the awesome part. Are you ready?


My dear friends, I paid less than 5% of this beautiful, NEVER-USED jacket's retail value. $9.00 for a Michael jacket. Let me tell you right now, I am the person who prowls the clearance racks at clothing stores. I cringe when I pay more than $20.00 for just about any wearable item. It boggles my mind that I own this. No, it's not a vintage Chanel dress I found for a dollar or something nuts like that, but it's so exciting, especially with the expensive thrift stores in my area. >.<

Ah, don't you love thrifting?

So the story goes that a hotel chain (I can't remember which) used to have this as a part of their uniform. They changed their uniform, and, lo, The Bottomline is inundated with boxes and boxes of these lovely jackets. And, lucky me, who hadn't gone thrifting in months, I walked into the store when only three or four were left, saw this hanging on a display, and instantly snagged it.

It's fate.

I'll be back periodically in the coming weeks with more crafty posts. Much crocheting and sewing has taken place, and more is taking place and is planned for the summer. Here is just a teaser of the many things I have to share with you.

Mad photoshopping (AKA Paint.net) skillzzzz

Thank you for stopping by!


Friday, March 25, 2011

Make it something you LOVE

Hello again! You probably won't be hearing from me in the next couple of weeks. I have massive amounts of studying to do, as well as a Capstone paper to write. >.< If I don't come back, it means I've died of exhaustion. Ack!

So what I'm showing today is really simple, but when I realized this, it was still eye-opening. You know those clothes you have that are just...okay? The ones where you look at them and think, "If only this or that were different, it would be perfect."

I've finally realized that I have the ability to make them perfect! Well, for me, at least. ;) And so do you! Take, for example, this sweater.

It's a nice sweater. I wasn't a huge fan when I first got it because I wasn't so open to the chunky knits thing. But lately, I've really come to see the great potential in it. (It also comes with a matching belt, so I don't look like a droopy rectangle when I wear it!)

However, there was one thing that really, really got on my nerves about this sweater. Can you guess what it is? Here, I'll give you a hint.

ARGH! Those buttons! Do you see how they're this funky, pinkish hue? I probably wouldn't have minded if they were actually pink. But these buttons just look faded and grody and I hated looking down at them when I wore this sweater. (bonus points to anyone who realized the buttons aren't sewn on...I had already replaced them so I just put them on top of the buttonholes)

So for months I pouted and mentally whined about how much I hated those buttons until I came upon a revelation: Change the darn buttons already!

My first thought was to go through my modest button stash. I experimented with variations on a hue (red, green, or blue), or using multiple colors. Ultimately, I decided that I still wanted my buttons to be plain and simple, because the cabling was already quite enough detail. So I went to Hancock Fabrics, found some lovely, simple black buttons, and here we are!

So much better, yes? I like how the contrast makes the sweater a leetle more interesting without making it look busy. Here's how I wore it with the the shirt I just posted about.

I look a bit bulky...I'll just blame my boyfriend for taking pictures of me from a low angle. :P And yes, I switched out the belt. I wanted something with a bit more color.

I now love this sweater. Let's look at the comparison again:

It was such a small change, but it made a world of difference to me.

Your assignment: Evaluate your own wardrobes and see if there's something in there that just needs a little tweaking. A shirt that needs taking in? New buttons on your cardigan? A dress that needs to be shortened or lengthened? Take the time to do these things, and you will thank yourself immediately afterward! It's totally worth it to be able to turn something you like into something you love.

What item in your closet do you think needs a little switching up?

See you all next time!


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Flamingo Toes Think Pink Sundays (sorry Bev, the button wasn't working for me!)


Sunday, March 20, 2011

From scratch!

Long time no see, my friends! Things have been absolutely nuts in my life this past month, and the crafting front is quite quiet. However, I have many, many old things I would like to show you, so I will slowly be posting about those in the coming days/weeks. Is it sad that I had to wait until Spring Break before I had time to draw a breath and maintain my blog? Wow.

Anyways, this project had me super-excited. My interest in sewing was initially inspired by my interest in recons. However, despite my lack of experience, I have always had the ambition to sew something from scratch (hence the heaps of fabric in my closet). Hallelujah, what should I stumble upon one day but this fabulously simple tutorial for a fabulously simple shirt? And would believe that this girl is only in seventh grade??? Such envy...

Ready to see my VERY FIRST WEARABLE ITEM MADE FROM SCRATCH? (can you tell I'm excited about this? Haha...)


Oh yeah, look at that, look who's a crafting boss! By the way, please forgive the exposed closet, my ancient apartment doesn't have closet doors. I'm debating getting a pretty shower curtain to cover it and use as my photography backdrop, but we'll see.

These photos without flash are a bit more true to color. I have no idea where the fabric actually came from, but I've had it for years, and I have a lot of it. My grandmother used it to make a baby-sized bathrobe for my brother, and he's 11 now, so let's let the age of this fabric really soak in...

I won't be posting my own tutorial since I don't want to be stealing Nay Nay's glory. But I did modify it in a couple ways.

Number one (and honestly my favorite part of this shirt), I hemmed the neckline rather than using a band. However, for some reason I decided to be a genius and use a straight stitch with jersey. I don't know if any of you have tried it, but you can feel how weak that kind of seam is. So to add some strength, I went over it three more times, this time making the lines wavy for visual interest. And I really love the look! My only real regret is that I wish I had cut an even more generous neckline, but there's still plenty of jersey in my stash! :D

I did something similar with the sleeves, opting out of using a cuff and instead hemming them. I'm not as happy with them because it is much harder to manipulate the waves when the sleeve is so stretched around the machine, so they don't look quite as nice. I'm pretty sure I'd be the only person to notice though, haha.

So there you have it! Make sure to visit Nay Nay's blog, Sweet LemoNAYde, if you're interested in this tutorial or any other simple but awesome sewing projects. Seriously, how many seventh grade girls are this cool?


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Monday, February 21, 2011

Cases and a koi

Hello, my lovelies, it's me again! So more crafting has been going on in my life than my blog makes it look like. I just post the fancy ones. :)

Anyways, here's a quick overview of my more "mundane" crafts. More photos and information (including some simple tutes) are below the cut, but it's a looooot of pictures.

Oh yeah, check out my mad Paint skillz!