Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A sweater for Millie

I finally knit a sweater for Millie! I had intended to knit her one last fall, but didn't feel my skills were up to the task. And here it is! It's not entirely finished, I still have to add ribbing to the arm holes and honestly it's a bit roomy around her waist. That's the tricky part with a boston- her rib cage made her a "medium" when the rest of her is pretty small... SO I'll have to make adjustments there.
I used Pink and gray wool, and here is Cameron doing his "best in show" pose for the picture. At this angle you can see how wide the sweater is at the back, which will ultimately let too much cold air in! Now we just need to get her some booties and she'll be all set for the winter.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Common Ground Fair

On Sunday we went to the Annual Common Ground Fair in Unity Maine- an hour 30 mins north of Portland. It was the perfect day for it, slightly overcast and by the time we got there, no more rain and thus not as crowded as I'm sure sunny Saturday must have been!

Here is a little squash and pumpkin arrangement outside an agricultural tent.

One Vendor was selling floral head wreathes, as modeled by this gentleman. There were large tents dedicated to fiber and wool. One for the "wednesday spinners" and tents all about with such things as recycling education, composting toilets, sustainable construction, solar panels and many tents on plants and growing techniques all to support Maine Organic farmers.

Here a group of accordion players- a shout out to my Mom.

And as we approached the rabbit barns and the sheep barns- a Good warning!

There were also sheering demonstrations, and here is one spectator watching through his fence.

We had a great time! I bought some yarn that I plan to make hats out of for Urbanknits' etsy shop, we drank some hot apple cider and bought 2 pints of Maine blueberries to snack on for the ride home. We look forward to going again next year and to the Fryeburg fair in a few weeks! Hooray for fairs!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Wait for it... wait for it...

We had a busy weekend with our house guest, my sister! We went apple picking and just hung out... thus blogging is a little behind.

So here is a preview of what is coming up this week!

I will do a little common ground fair recap.

A recipe post- about fall dishes.

We are set to launch our ETSY shop- Urbanknitfits- by Friday! I'll post a special blog entry with details on Friday.

ALSO on Friday- is first friday, Portland's artwalk, I am participating in this fun collective drawing event at Space gallery called "Draw your face off". SO if you are in the area come on out for it!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

An English Garden

As promised in my first post upon returning from England, I would post pictures of my Aunt's garden. And here are just a few of many I have on my computer. Her garden is serious eye candy and a gardener's dream not to mention a superb example of all the possibilities out there! Above: is an elegant flower arrangement in a vintage ISIS ceramics pitcher. (My aunt is the creator and artistic genius behind ISIS.)

Yes, that is corn!

And the House with another shot of the layout of the garden. She does a fabulous job mixing in the veg with the flowers, making everything feel seamless and natural! It's a truly lovely home, a beautiful setting and proved the perfect place for my cousin's wedding.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

This week's new ETSY favorites

In preparation for launching our urbanknitfits etsy shop, I have been spending some extra time cruising around and gathering inspiration and know-how so we can really hit the groud running.
During all this I have found new ETSY favorites that I thought I would share with my blog audience. PS- take note of these things if you ever need help thinking of a present for me! (wink, wink)

Above is this VERY cool leather shop based out of Seattle, called Moxie and Oliver. Here is their poppy leather cuff, made to order!

Very Pretty ceramic tea light coaster for $10!!!! By Marci Gs.

Very Cool leather goods, specifically handbags, by Neiko designs.

A belt by Moxie and Oliver!

Very Very Awesome Plaid skirts by Sohomode. I hope this inspires you to take a cruise around etsy if you haven't already!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

People Tree- fair trade clothing etc

People Tree is a UK based company that features only fair trade merchandise. It's a great place to shop with peace of mind. Each garmet has a story, allowing you the customer to look up where the piece was made and by whom. Pretty sweet. Not to mention very cool clothing!

Here's the link! I love these cute pattern slipper socks, made in Nepal. Here's the link.

swept up and braided

First, a little side note, I have been observing some of this season's hair trends in order to inspire me to do more with my growing hair than just a bun or ponytail... Thus I share these images with those who might be in the same boat!

Above: Braid with Fabric from Oscar de la Renta show.

Drew Barrymore with the very chic braid trend.

And a model from NY fashion week! A slighlty crazier unkempt version of the braid!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Urban Knitfits: Our knitting inspiration

As I mentioned in an earlier post, we are starting a knitting little business call Urban Knitfits!
Here are some pictures of knitting items that inspire us! Above is a set of dish clothes, nice color combo and display!

Two large cowl neck scarves!!!!

And a great little wrap!
We plan on incorporating items like these into our line of knit goods!

Stay tuned and I'll keep you updated on our progress!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Announcing "Urban Knitfits"

Two of my friends from knit night and myself are starting our own little knitting business, "Urban knitfits"!!! And here is the first hat in the line of some very cool and unique items!

At the beginning we are going to stick to mostly art and craft fairs and are already booked for two local fairs! In the meantime we are starting our own etsy shop "urbanknitfits".
We are very excited and had our first mtg last night!

Here's what's on our list of items for our store:

hats, scarves, mittens, fingerless gloves, cowl neck scarves, felted floral headbands and pins, felted beaded necklaces and bracelets, LEG WARMERS (excited about that one!) Kitchen tea towels and dish clothes, baby hats and booties, ETC!!!

So stay tuned and I'll keep everyone posted about our fairs and any custom order opportunities!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

DIY speakers!

Urban Outfitters has come out with these great eco friendly speakers that you can decorate yourself! They cost $18 and are made from 70% recycled materials! Perfect for that hard to shop for teenager, the tree hugger in your family, or to entertain your kids on a rainy day!
Decorate- blast some tunes and have a dance party while pop corn pops away in the background!

Hey it's fall have fun with it!

A thank you To Ethan and Hannah

For our new blanket (the orange one) It's beautiful and was a lovely surprise and most of all a big success with little dog.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Deep in the Forest Mittens!

A knitting friend of mine shared this pattern with us this week and it's Awesome! Here's the link to the author's blog where you can buy the pattern! Would make a great Thanksgiving/ Holiday season gift or accesory!

Art Fair recap... What I learned

Well I had an eye opening expereince this weekend at the art fair I was in!

here's what I learned and thus what I will do differently in the future!

First for some background: I checked out the pictures from last year and hardly anyone had tents... So I thought I wouldn't be alone if I didn't drop $100-$200 on a craft fair tent. Yeah well I was and when the rain came in the afternoon I looked pretty pathetic! Luckily my artwork was all sealed in plastic and protected.... But still it wasn't good or professional looking!

BUT a lot of good ideas came out of this wet experience- 1- Get a bleeping tent, enough said.
2- For the Most part people love to buy things they can wear, it's part of this whole instant gratification mindset, also it's easy to digest- you like, you buy, you put it on and walk along your merry way. Where as with artwork you have to worry about a frame, and then a place to put it! (this is a no brainer for me, but maybe not so for others? Or at least that's what I tell myself to help lick my wounds!)

Needless to say I sold my necklaces, vintage tshirts and tin cans, but NO artwork, NONE! Which was a shame since my prints have done so well in the past... Luckily I did make back the money I spent on admission to the fair and then some- enough to buy Cameron an around town vintage bike (ie $60).

So now I am cooking up a knitting shop business idea. So stay tuned for more about that and where to buy the goods!!! In the meantime I have relisted artwork and necklaces on my etsy shop! here's the Link.

Friday, September 11, 2009

New ETSY favorites

Someday when we have a house I will get our numbers made by "AtlasSigns". Check out all of their signs, so cool!

"Pretty Sneaky" is by a friend and fellow knitting group member. Where she knits a custom sweater for your Chucks! Super awesome, a fun way to welcome in fall and soooo reasonable! Check her out!

"Criswell Creations" makes these awesome bird mobiles! Cute for a bedroom or to add a little flair to a kitchen or dining room!

"Squirrellicious" has this very cute and hilarious little zippered pouch that with the blue and red thread- makes it look like old school notebook paper. You can customize your pouch with text of your choice!

"jessitaylor" makes very cool jewelry! Here is her bird foot necklace that she cast from a real bird- shown here in silver for $62 (the gold is $430).

And last but not least is "Ovejanegra" who makes fantastic knit goods for UNBELIEVABLE prices! For example this sweater is only $145, I can't image what the yarn must cost let alone her time!

Don't forget: Saturday art fair!!!


To the Picnic and Music art fair tomorrow at Lincoln Park in Portland Maine from 11-6.

I will be there selling my prints, drawings and other goodies. Booth #88 "grayday designs" come check me out and enjoy the music and beautiful weather!!

Hope to see some of you there!!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Quit your day Job!

This couple, the creators of littlesaplingtoys were able to quit their day job by starting their own line of toys that they sell through etsy! I found this story VERY inspiring! and Wanted to share, here's the Link!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Presto it's Pesto!

It's that time of year when things are beginning to cool down and with temperatures hovering in the 60's we realized our time with our home grown produce is coming to an end. Thus we decided to make some pesto this Labor day from our Basil Plant!

We used Mario Batali's recipe and our food processor attachment that goes with our blender.

Makes 1 cup:

3 table spoons of Pine Nuts
2 cups of Fresh Basil
1 clove of Garlic
Pinch of Salt (I used two pinches of sea salt- to taste)
1/2 cup of Olive oil
1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmigiano cheese.

You blend, or pulse, the basil, salt, pine nuts and garlic together.
Then take it out of the blender and dish it into a bowl for the remainder of the making.
Drizzle your olive oil over the pesto-ish mixture and stir. Continue to add the olive oil drizzle at a time and keep mashing it up. Once the olive oil is all poured and mixed add your cheese one table spoon at a time. And TASTE! (here is where I added another hint of sea salt I think my "pinch" wasn't generous enough on my first go around).

And PRESTO you have PESTO! So tasty and smells fantastic.

We mixed it with chicken and pasta and finished it off with more parmigiano. Enjoy!
PS-if you are making a lot of Pesto you can store it in ice cube trays in your freezer, than pop them out of their trays and store them in a ziploc bag in your freezer. Then you can have pesto whenever the mood strikes! Or if you are going to use your pesto in the near future- ie within a weeks- Put the pesto in a jar and pour olive oil on the top and seal and store in your fridge, use within a week.

Monday, September 7, 2009

a little P.S. on the blanket front

I meant to include this in the wedding blanket post, but completely forgot...

Here is Millie hanging out on the blanket while I knit one end and Cameron knit the other end of Amelia and Alex's blanket (don't worry we have a very clean dog) And I got the hint and am now taking the leftover yarn from my sweater and I will felt Millie a blanket for the cool fall months ahead!

A Wedding Blanket

For my Cousin's wedding in England this August Cameron and I decided to knit them a cozy blanket.  We used the eco wool from Peru that I used  for my gray sweater (see other knitting posts). It's amazing, smells nice and sheepy and comes 478 yrds to a skein!!! we used 4 skeins!

Here are Amelia and Alex opening their gift the morning after their wedding.

Here is the blanket. I used a tree pattern that originally was for a 6x6 inch square. Thus we multiplied it by 4 to enlarge it... of course some things are bound to pop up during this process and as a result some of the branches got a little wonkey and had to be improvised! 

I chose this pattern because Amelia and Alex were married in my aunt and uncle's apple orchard.

I would love to give a shout out to my sister in law who saved my butt by helping me knit the border the night before we flew to England, as well as many previous knitting counsel sessions through out the summer! I learned a lot along the way and can now cable! hooray!

Congratulations to Amelia and Alex for a lovely wedding that will indeed lead into a lovely marriage!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

millie & henry

My brother and his wife are visiting this labor day weekend and they brought their Italian greyhound- Henry. He and Millie always have fun together and manage to tire each other out, which is great for everyone involved...

Thursday, September 3, 2009

ART Festival!

I was accepted into this picnic arts and musical festival in Portland Maine. Here's the flyer and here's the link. Spread the word, hope to see you there!

Fruit flies- how to eliminate them

We came back from England this week to find our kitchen swarming with fruit flies!

Honestly we had a few before we left but NOW they are really, really out of control!

So I went ahead and looked up how to get rid of them and I thought I would share it with my blog audience.

Use a soda bottle, or a bowl, and fill the bottom with a combination of vinegar (cider vinegar) and water with a touch of dishwashing liquid. Then cover the container with cling wrap and poke a few holes in it with a fork or a knife. THEN the fruit flies will fly in and get stuck and poof your own home made trap!

They also recommend cleaning out cabinets and eliminating any possible breeding areas. Old potatoes, your drain or disposal, compost bin, spills and the cracks between appliances and cabinets.

Good Luck. I'll let you know how we fare with our little trap!

Our traps worked incredibly well! It's really gross how many fruitflies we had, which we didn't realize until we cleaned out our traps and set new ones.

What I learned: The addition of liquid dishsoap is helpful but not necessary. It helps to trap them in the bubbles. The cling wrap is a MUST since it keeps them inside the cup or bottle. We used Juice bottles, cups and even bowls and all worked equally well. I also heard that besides cider vinegar- that balsamic works well as does wine, or scotch. But work with what ever you have around- in our case cider vinegar.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

A Sneak peek at upcoming posts!

I've been in England for the last week attending my cousin's fabulous wedding, thus posting has been put on hold... Until this week!

I wanted to give a sneak peek into what you can expect on my blog coming up in the next few days and beyond!

Pictures from England- my Aunt's amazing garden and some shots of the wedding!

My studio makeover- the "after" picture to complete a previous post.

The completed room I helped redo in my friend's house.

The blanket I knit for a wedding present for Amelia and Alex.

A future to do list for upcoming knitting projects (including a felted dog blanket, and Maine fall essentials).

My completed trash can project.

Reviews of products and local places around Portland...


So stay tuned!


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