Friday, February 20, 2015

Currently Working On // Week 7

Happy Friday! Thanks to the three-day weekend, I finally had some time to work on some new knit/crochet projects - and even finish one from previous weeks. I've been trying to experiment with new techniques that are original but still current, while also trying to find new ways to knit/crochet larger projects more quickly (which will in turn let me lower my prices). Bring in the chunky yarn and oversized knitting needles :)


I started this blanket on Monday, and I am LOVING the way it is turning out! I bought these enormous size 50 knitting needles last week, and used two strands of chunky roving. (For reference, my "chunky" beanies are knit on size 10 knitting needles.) I ran out of yarn before I could finish, but if I can complete it in a reasonable amount of time without spending a crazy amount on yarn, then I'll go ahead and sell it on my shop!


Using the yarn from my February color crush post, I wanted to make a crocheted color block blanket using blush and black. I've been inspired lately by bold geometric shapes, so I thought it would be fun to play with that here. The black block is finished, but I'm still working on the blush.


I finally finished it!! You can see the progress here and here. It took WAY longer than I expected, which I why I bought the new, bigger, knitting needles. Hopefully I can start making affordable cowls that I can list on the shop, which will allow various price points for my shoppers :)

That's it for now - have a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Minolta Files // Part 1

Photo by Scott - obviously not taken with my Minolta. Death Valley, 2014

Back in college, I found my dad's old Minolta camera from his photography days stuck in a box in the garage. I was fascinated, so I brought it to a camera shop and had the lenses cleaned, the battery replaced, and bought some film. My dad for the life of him could not understand what the big deal was - "why waste money on film and developing prints when digital cameras exist??" was his reasoning. I, on the other hand, loved the deliberate and careful efforts needed to compose a shot worth taking - plus the look of the film prints themselves, of course. In any case, my dad showed me how to use the camera and after developing my first roll - I was hooked.

If I remember correctly, this was from one of the first rolls of film I ever shot with this camera. Taken during my time in France (2010-2011) on the street I lived on.

I also loved that it's the same camera that my dad used back in the day when he was around my age - including some of him and my mamma. For their 35th wedding anniversary, my siblings and I bought them a slide scanner and started the process of scanning some of the hundreds of slides they have from their pre-kids days. It was great because there were so many I had never even seen before, and many that my parents hadn't seen in decades. The two below were taken on the same camera, roughly 35 years apart!
Mom and Dad - not sure about the year...I think it's late 70's? Mom, I know you read this - can you confirm? ;)

Mom and Dad - January 2012, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

I've taken it with me on a couple of trips and while the pictures aren't always great, usually only a handful of keepers per role, I've had a lot of fun figuring out how to shoot film. It also makes me appreciate the ones that do turn out good that much more. As an added bonus, ever since I've started dating Scott, I've had a professional eye to help me even more. He also remembers to bring it with us more often than I do :)

I took this photo (with direction from Scott) during our trip to Death Valley last spring, 2014.

Anyway, as part of my "Make it public, make it happen" motto this year, I thought it would be fun to post some Minolta pics that I've taken along with some my dad took when he was my age. Hopefully I can make this an ongoing series of posts, which will motivate me to use the Minolta more often!


My sweet mom. Disneyland, California.

One of my favorites - a giggling, happy Lorenzo (my nephew) at 5 years old in 2011. Taken in front of the Griffith Observatory.

My late grandparents (dad's side). Downey, California. 1970's-ish. Side note: how great is my grandma's hair??

Travis the dalmation - 2011

My mama being adorable again. 1970's-ish.

My little brother's high school graduation in 2011.

Monday, February 16, 2015

My Life in T-Shirts

These four shirts basically sum up everything you need to know about me*. For example, above describes my perfect day. Side note: this shirt is only available in men's sizes, and I don't appreciate it.

Design and Content of this shirt get A++ in my book. All hail Saturdays!! AKA Crafturday. AKA Distract-Scott-So-We-Don't-Have-To-Clean-The-Apartment Day

Self explanatory and very, very true. Although I might just feel motivated to run if I could do it wearing this t-shirt**. I'm going to buy it regardless.

And last but not least, the story of my life. In related news, 7 reasons why you're always late.

*Not really, but close enough.
**Probably not.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

100 Year Old Valentines!

Vintage valentine
FRONT: "I expect to see you soon. From, Joe Smith" - HA! Joe, what a poet.

In continuing with the Valentine's Day theme this week, I wanted to share these old valentine's I bought at the Vintage Paper Fair because they're adorable and old and I didn't post them the first time around:

Vintage valentine
The one above is from April 21 so it's technically not a "valentine", but it's from 1910!!! 105 years old!! The postage is also only 1 cent. Craziness.

Vintage valentine
FRONT: "Will you be my valentine? Feb 14th, 1917"

Vintage valentine
BACK: Say kid, I aint a teasin' like some folks will do, can't you guess the reason? why - I'm just in love with you. To May" 98 years old! That May was one lucky gal.

So great! I wonder what people will think of my valentines 100 years from now... :)

Monday, February 9, 2015

Valentine's Day Gift Ideas

I have decided that this week will be Valentine's Day themed! I have a love-hate relationship with this holiday in that I hate the crowded restaurants and pressure to do something romantic and give gifts, but I love the corny kitschy-ness of it all too. In the end, I embrace it, and Scott and I typically do something low key. If we do give gifts, we try and aim for smaller budget with more thought. These are all between $10-$30, and while they are all gifts I've gotten for Scott at some point, I use and enjoy all of them as well!
mighty mellie valentine's day gift guide pink
A) Bottle Opener Fridge Magnet: I had originally hoped to find a cool wall-mounted beer opener, but since we’re renters, that wasn’t really an option. Instead, I got this one that sticks to the fridge and ordered a magnetic basket to go underneath and catch the bottle caps. It’s pretty neat – no more digging through the drawer to find the bottle opener!
B) Bodum Double-Wall Beer Glasses: I got these for Scott two Christmases ago, broke one on accident, and got another set because we love them and use them often! Scott likes them because the double wall adds an extra space between your warm hand and the beer, keeping your beverage cool. I like it because it looks like your beer is magically floating. Win win! Also good for smoothies and caffeinated beverages.
C) Hand Knit Beanie in Heather Grey: Duh! Scott had been asking me to make him a beanie since way before I opened my shop, so I finally made him one and sent it to him while he was in -40 degree Canadian weather. It’s the same beanie I’m wearing in my bio pic (because I constantly borrow it). I actually just made one for a friend to give her BF for a V-Day/Anniversary present :)
D) Saga: I’ve talked all about my love for Saga here, but in short it’s a great comic book that Scott tore through in just a few days (as did I). Highly recommend!
E) Anthony Hair and Body Wash: Scott first tried this thanks to my sister, who used to work for Anthony and gave him a sample. He’s very sensitive to artificial or super strong scents (axe body wash – barf), so this one was PERFECT because it smells simple, clean, and outdoorsy (hints of pine, maybe?). The company's tag line is "developed for men, borrowed by women" which my sister and I can both confirm is true.
F) The Moth (book): Do you guys listen to The Moth Radio Hour either on NPR or as a podcast? It's an hour of true stories told by real people (a mix of all kinds of story tellers from all walks of life). We could listen to it for hours on end, and often do. So when they recently came out with a book featuring 50 of their favorite stories, I immediately ordered it for Scott. I'll surely be reading it when he's done, although we've probably already listened to all the stories in there.

I could instead stop getting Scott gifts that I also enjoy, and just get him that Wii U he keeps asking for...maybe next time! ;)

Friday, February 6, 2015

Currently Working On // Home Edition

postcard wall close up

Happy Friday! I'm still working on most of the same projects from the previous weeks, so today's Currently Working On post will be about some DIY projects that Scott and I have going on around the apartment. Therefore I present to you Week 5 - Currently Working On: Home Edition.

postcards and washi tape

As I previously mentioned, I have been collecting postcards for several years now. In that time, I've been trying to find a way to creatively display my collection without damaging the post cards or the walls. In college, I tried using these fun connecting clips from the PhotoJojo store, but the postcards were a little too thick, so they ended up getting dented by the clips. I couldn't find something that would stick to the postcard without ruining it, and if I did, it probably damaged my walls instead. Then I came across a few examples on Pinterest of creating gallery walls using washi tape. For those who aren't familiar, washi tape is similar to masking or painters tape in that it sticks to surfaces without damaging them if/when you need to remove it. It's also made of paper and comes in tons of different colors and patterns. I figured this would be our best bet, especially since we're renters. You can see my inspiration pins here, here, here, here, here, and here.

postcard wall wide shot

The wall is still a work in progress, as we have a few gaps that need to be filled in, but overall it's shaping up quite nicely and it's SO much better than the blank wall that was there before. In addition to the postcards, there's an illustrated map of Greenland that Scott brought back for me from his trip, a whale watercolor print from CactusClub, some original art from a very talented friend, a California print from Blue Atlas States, and of course a handful of Scott's photos.

map wall supplies

Scott and I had been wanting to put up a map of the world somewhere in the apartment since we moved in, but for whatever reason just never got around to it. We also thought it would be fun to mount the map on a layer of cork, and use color coordinated map pins to identify where A) Scott's been on his travels, B) I've been on my travels, and C) where we've been together. We may also do a fourth color for places we want to visit. For part of Scott's birthday/Christmas presents, I finally went out and got all the supplies we needed. Now we just need to put them up! Currently, we're planning on hanging it in the bedroom, next to Scott's side of the bed.

yarn on peg board

My yarn collection inventory is getting to be a little out of hand plentiful, so I've been trying to find ways to store it in an organized way without taking up a ton of space. I was super inspired by this post about using a pegboard to organize and display yarn, so I went out and bought the recommended yarn winder. Why didn't I do this sooner??? SO convenient! Here's a before and after of what my yarn used to look like (excuse the crap before picture, it was the only one I could find):

yarn collection before
yarn collection after

It took basically a million years* to wind all my yarn, but I finally did it, then went out and bought some peg board and hooks. PROS: The yarn that IS up there looks nice and organized. CONS: I don't know where to hang said peg board so it currently resides in my closet; the yarn is not hung in any cohesive order; I have since accumulated a billion** additional skiens of yarn which all need to be wound as well; I ran out of pegs (and peg board). So that's where I am with that project. Stay tuned!

*A three-day weekend
**Several, maybe like 20-30?

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Color Crush // February Edition

I am not a fan of the color pink...with two exceptions: 1) neon pink, seen here, and 2) barely there blush. Basically I only like the two opposite ends of the pink spectrum.

my colors are blush and bashful

Anyway, this color crush started when I was at the Vintage Paper Fair. I got a beautiful set of old blush stamps that were probably my favorite score of the day. I might frame them, because they're too great to ever use. Oddly enough, they're Civil War Centennial stamps from 1962 commemorating the Battle of Shiloh. Perfect for Valentine's Day! Anyway, from there, as is the case when I like a certain color, I began seeing it everywhere:

february color crush blush

Clockwise from left: Grand Canyon postcard; 1962 vintage stamps; Embroidery floss; Delta Ceramcoat acrylic paint in Peony; Sephora nail polish in Invincible; FIMO soft oven bake clay in fleshtone*; Bookcover matchbox (part of a set I made in college for fun) featuring Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar; and Bernat alpaca yarn in peony

I'm using the alpaca yarn to work on a new baby blanket, so stay tuned for that! I've already gone through a skein, so I'm sure you'll see it again in an upcoming Currently Working On post. My goal is to add a few new blankets to the shop this month! I'm undecided as to what I'll use the clay and paint for...but I'm open to suggestions. The clay will probably be used for some variation of this project by A Beautiful Mess or this one by Oh Joy.

A friend of mine sent me the above minimalist challenge from Into-Mind, which we've both decided to try - partly because it's fun and challenging, but mostly because that design is ON POINT. I originally saw it on pinterest as a link to Bycyclette Boutique, where where I was so pleased to follow the link, read the whole post, and see the image below. BLUSH EVERYWHERE! But really though, color aside, I'm excited to accept the challenge for the month of February.

*Whose fleshtone? I don't know. BUT on the actual package itself, the color says "flesh light" which is unintentionally inappropriate and hilarious.

Monday, February 2, 2015


Yesterday marked the 1 month anniversary of starting my blog and formally promoting my Etsy Shop and all I have to say is a big fat T H A N K Y O U ! ! !

Thank you doodle

I opened my Etsy Shop on November 19th of last year, and up until last week when I sold my first blanket to a stranger, all of the purchases have been from people I know. Old friends, new friends, facebook friends, acquaintances, coworkers, family, and others (many whom I wouldn't have expected) have all come out to support me. To be honest, I was so nervous to put myself out there - there was a voice in the back of my head saying it was a silly idea and nobody would like my stuff. With your help, that voice has been silenced! It has meant so much to me that so many people have shown their support - be it a purchase or a facebook like. It has all been incredibly encouraging. I am so grateful and humbled.

It might just be a little side project, but it makes me happy and I want everyone to know that I appreciate their kindness and support.

thank you. thank you. thank you.