1-24: Community Thursday


“Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.” – C.S. Lewis

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HELLO cold snap! I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but here in Bawlmer, temps dropped hard and we even got some snow [with more predicted for tonight] and I am chilly. Time for staying in the house, under a blankie, with some knitwear around my neck and coffee in my hand. BRR.
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coffeez
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Fortunately, the Internets never fail to offer great things to keep me busy on a cold day IN. Here’s some of what I’ve been finding and enjoying lately!
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A neat exercise from The Curious Pug! [photo: The Curious Pug]

A neat exercise from The Curious Pug! [photo: The Curious Pug]

It’s easy for some of us to get bogged down when it comes to creative thinking. In fact, I’d say this happens to all of us occasionally. If you’re a crocheter and you are feeling like you need to stretch your creative muscles, this exercise from the Curious Pug is a great way to challenge yourself on several points – how to make things that don’t seem to go together fit, how to get past the idea that everything you make must be functional, how to problem solve, how to deal with frustration in creating… It’s really clever and could be a great group activity, too.

http://www.thecuriouspug.com/2013/01/jumbled-up-crochet-patterns-creativity.html
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And speaking of breaking out of ruts, and crochet…

craftwich creations text

Sometimes, you enter a contest and figure you have zero chance of winning, because everyone else wants the wonderful prize, too. This time, I actually WON. *squeals of joy*
And what a prize! Monica from Craftwich Creations makes beautifully crafted crochet hooks, buttons, and shawl pins from lovingly shaped and sanded wood. The natural feel of the branch is soothing in my hand, and the sanding is silky smooth, so the hook I won is a joy to use. She does a variety of sizes and styles, including Tunisian. Her buttons – and I was lucky enough to get 2 different styles to check out – are perfect for finishing off knitwear or crochet projects. They’re big enough to make a statement without a lot of weight or too much competition against the yarn used. Oh, and my crochet hook came with a nice sock to protect it!
If you’re looking for a fiber tool that is well made, a comfort to use, and eye catching too? This shop is for you. [yarn is my handspun, for those who will ask]
http://www.etsy.com/shop/craftwich
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A clever technique share from Suzy of Wool Wench! [photo: Wool Wench]

A clever technique share from Suzy of Wool Wench! [photo: Wool Wench]

Y’all know that I think Suzy of Wool Wench is the bee’s knees, right? I mean, every time I turn around, she’s got something new and neat and fun to check out. And she’s extremely generous in sharing techniques and insight – something I greatly admire, because artists are under no obligation to share. This time, she’s got a clever technique for adding crocheted hearts to a yarn – IN LINE. That is, she crocheted the hearts on the fly, using the singles she just spun. I’ve done this with chains/braids, but I never thought to actually crochet in a shape. See, clever! Click through to see the whole tutorial, plus some gorgeous photos of previous holiday-themed yarn from Suzy.

http://www.woolwench.com/valentines-yarn-2013/
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“Well, art is art, isn’t it? Still, on the other hand, water is water! And east is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. Now, uh… now you tell me what you know.” ― Groucho Marx

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Buzzfeed did a writeup on Vogue Knitting Live. I didn’t see that one coming. It’s pretty funny!
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You have bulky yarn and a cold head. You need a hat. You can make this hat. In no time flat.
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Okay, I’ll stop this rhyming now. I mean it.
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People ask me sometimes why I am so into street art. Besides my participation in yarnbombing, which is a less-permanent form of street art, I have always found graffiti, and the metamorphosis into the more socially acceptable painted or wheatpasted street art to be fascinating, inspiring, energizing, and culturally stimulating. We have a lot of great street artists in Baltimore, and many of them are using their art as a way to make statements about the condition and feel of the city around us. This documentary covers the motivation, statements, and drive of eight artists from Baltimore – there’s a ton of great work shown here, some of which I’ve highlighted on this blog before, plus a fantastic discussion about the difference between “graffiti” and “street art” and the possible motivations, positives, and negatives for having them be a part of your city. I found this to be a really insightful documentary, and even if street art isn’t your thing – and especially if you hate it, really – I would recommend watching this. It might get you thinking about the urban art scene in your city in a whole new light.
Thanks to What Weekly for originally posting this, because it was the highlight of my day.
Some NSFW language.

Here’s the direct link in case the player decides to be a jerk: http://vimeo.com/57571301

And THAT, my friends, is it for this Community Thursday! As always, I welcome comments, discussion, and recommendations for links to feature. I hope you’re keeping warm [or cool if you live in the opposite hemisphere] and crafty!


About Xiane

I am totally in love with what I do, which is blend amazing fibers, colors, and textures into a tactile rainbow of awesome. I feel lucky that I get to do what I love as a way to make a living, and I celebrate it every day.