Saturday, September 29, 2007

Oh, Woe is Me

Yesterday I realised that skipping in piles of autumny red and yellow leaves makes me ridiculously happy. Yay for autumn.

Today I realised that skipping in said piles of leaves, wearing too little autumn-appropriate clothing, will get you flued up and fevered. Boo for autumn.

But before all these oh so important personal revelations, I spent a day in Helsinki with my brother on Wednesday, at an excellent Dream Theater concert, so I'm not too bothered about my ill state (yet). At this point it's the perfect excuse to lie in bed and listen to Dream Theater and Nightwish's new album (and write blog posts, apparently). If only I can get hubby to bring me icecream and crosswords, I'll be all set for a little break.

Fortunately this is the last full day of my brother's visit, in the sense that we got to have fun together most of the time. He comes here maybe once or twice per year, so it'd be a huge pity to spend those few days being ill.

By the way, before I got myself sick I made and listed this pair of fingerless gloves, suitable for both men and women. Be smarter than me: buy them, wear them and don't get the flu.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Oh my, I've been tagged!

I've been tagged by Heli and need to list 7 random facts about myself. It's my first time, so be gentle. ;)

1. My first ever flight abroad was going to New Zealand for 3 months, travelling alone for 40 hours or so and changing flights 3 times along the way. That's what love does to you. ;) During this trip most people spoke German at me for some inexplicable reason (I'm Finnish), even on the Finnish plane.

2. I have an aquatic strain of bacteria named after me. (No, I didn't name it.)

3. I'm a total fish fanatic. At this moment I have 6 aquariums, two of which are still at my parents' place because they won't fit into our (hubby and I) apartment. At best (or worst, depending on who you ask) I had 8 of them.

4. I've been knitting since I was, well, tiny. I don't even remember when I started, but I know I was too young to read patterns so I just made up my own creatures. There's a huge collection of them now.

5. I'm 168 cm tall (that's about 5'6''), which is pretty much average for a woman around here, I believe. However, I grew up in a family where even my little brother is 30 cm (1 foot) taller than me, so I think of myself as really tiny.

6. One of my mother's nicknames for me is Garfield, because growing up I was always in a horribly grumpy mood in the mornings before my huge cup of morning coffee and I loved lasagna. This behaviour hasn't changed over the years.

7. I love to relax by playing a good computer or video game. I once made a list of completed games, in a sad attempt to find out just how nerdy I am, and the number was 47, with another 50 or so I had played but not yet finished. Our bookshelf has almost as many games as it has books.

So there you have it. I thought it appropriate to post a picture of me (sans head, though, cause I'm shy), although it was mostly to show a purple sweater I found while tidying my clothes closet. I made it a couple of years ago from a wool blend, making it up as I went along, then forgot I had it during the summer. One good thing about having a useless memory (there's fact 8 for you) is that you find fun surprises like these!

Aaaaaaanyway, while you ponder all these deep, dark secrets of mine, go and browse through Heli's shop, because it's awesome!

Lastly, here's the rules of the game for those I tagged in turn:
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself: some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post and list their names (linking to them).
4. Let them know they've been tagged by leaving a comment at their blogs.

And here's the people I have tagged in turn, I hope you want to play!

1. Prairie Daisy Handspun
2. dalinda
3. Mrs. Kwitty
4. Star of the East
5. Pamela Angus
6. La Pomme
7. Paper Flower Girl

Saturday, September 22, 2007

It's a heart gone wild! SAVE US!

I spent most of today being a wild heart factory, which was more fun than what it sounds like. Not only is the heart shape as I want it now, but I have even listed one of them in my shop! Here is Heart Gone Wild version 2, featuring more teeth and a bigger grin.

I've also made a smaller one, about 8 cm (~3 in) tall, which will be listed a bit later. I might even make a set of three later on, but I'll see if there's any interest in these two first.

Anyone in the mood for muffins?

Rejoice, for I bring you yet another one of my muffin recipes! Or something.

These are yummy apple muffins with a bit of gingerbread flavour. I was surprised by how well the combo works. Perhaps everyone else knows all about apples and gingerbread together, but I didn't. (And if everyone does, why didn't anyone tell me!)

As usual, the less you mix the batter, the better they'll be.

Apple Muffins (makes 16)

2 apples, chopped into small cubes
1 dl (~1/2 cup) apple juice
4 dl (~1 1/2 cups) flour
3 dl (~1 1/4 cups) sugar
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp vanilla sugar
100 g (~1/2 cup) melted butter
3 eggs

Mix the dry ingredients together. Whisk the eggs, then add cubed apples, apple juice and melted and somewhat cooled butter. Fold the wet ingredients into the flour mixture. Divide the batter into 16 muffin cups and bake for 18-20 minutes at 200°C (392°F).


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The result of being a zombie for a day

I spent most of yesterday in a zombified state, as I didn't get proper sleep the night before. Not even half a liter of coffee could wake me up fully. While this is bad in the sense that I can't get anything done that needs a clear mind, it is also good as this is usually when my less sane ideas happen.

I was organizing my crafty things when I happened upon this bookmark. My zombie brain immediately thought: "Hey, wouldn't it be funny to make a heart stuffie with really big teeth?" So I got started.

At some point I remembered having plans to make little knitted hearts for decorating the Christmas tree. I then spent the rest of the time making this wild heart giggling to myself at the thought of a tree full of voracious hearts. I'm surprised hubby didn't express any worries about my state of mind.

So, here it is. A heart with huge teeth in an equally huge grin. Soft creature, Christmas ornament, bag decoration or car mascot. I need to make few more prototypes to tweak the shape into perfection, though.

I love those zombified days.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Morrgan's Creatures is celebrating one year on Etsy!

One year ago to the day I listed my first items on Etsy. Honestly, it's hard to believe it's been a whole year. I'm very happy with how my shop has come along and want to thank each and every one of my customers for a good year. Thank you!

I wanted to do something special for this occasion, so to celebrate I have created a section in my Etsy shop called Etsyversary Sale. The items in this section have had their prices reduced by 15-50%! These special offers will be up for the whole Etsyversary week, from September 17th to 23rd (noon GMT).

Be sure to take a look, for this is the first time I have ever held a sale and it'll be at least another year until the next one. ;)

Saturday, September 15, 2007

The scarf is finished!

Today I have been 'enjoying' some totally freaky weather - warm, full sunshine one moment, and miserable rain and freezing wind the next. Fun, fun, fun. But hey, at least I got a reason to wear my green gloves for the first time this autumn.

Speaking of autumn and cold weather, here's that scarf I mentioned yesterday! All finished and listed in my shop. As the photo shows, each side has different cabled patterns - one big cable on one side and two small ones on the other. I'm happy with the look, it turned out just as I had imagined, and it was a fun project overall. It was also the most efficient project so far in terms of yarn use, as the only leftovers from the two balls of yarn were three inch-long bits of yarn.

So, now that this is finished, what do I make next... *ponders*

(And how do I stop myself from buying more of that lovely yarn...)

Friday, September 14, 2007

Another Vacation Creation Showoff

Seems it's been a week since my last vacation creation showoff (that sounds pretty good, doesn't it?). Oops. I wasn't kidding when I said I'd be busy. ;)

But here it is, then. As soon as I saw this teal yarn, I knew what I had to do. It was just begging to be turned into a stylish pair of armwarmers. As with my other armwarmers, these were knitted from a soft wool on 5 double-pointed needles. They're already listed in my Etsy shop too.

Now, on to more current projects! As soon as all the custom orders were finished, I jumped this yarn. It's turning into a lovely thick, warm scarf, with two different cabled patterns on either side. Working with size 8 mm needles for this project is also a welcome change, compared to the usual 3.5-4.5 mm. Hopefully I can finish it and take photos this weekend.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Needful Things

So I was about to start weaving in all the loose ends on some fingertipless gloves last night, when I heard a snapping sound and found myself holding half an embroidery needle. Oops. Annoying, as I was hoping to finish those pairs last night already. Oh well, instead I got to work on knitting yet another pair of gloves.

On the bright side that needle really sucked and I now had a really good reason to get a new one. (Well, the suckiness alone would have been reason enough, but I just kept forgetting while it wasn't a pressing issue.) After a quick shopping round this morning, I came home with these babies. Half a dozen sturdy tapestry needles, and it wasn't until I came home that I noticed they're half golden. How shiny!

(By the way, the needle case in the photo is a lovely lovely sewing book by Jenn Maruska Designs. Great work by a great lady, I highly recommend her shop!)

Armed with my fancy new tools I was able to finish up three whole pairs of finger(tip)less gloves. This time it was actually quite fun, who knew new shiny toys could make such a difference. Ah, it's all about the simple pleasures in life.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

A handy tip for the knitting whisky friend

Today, I realised something. I realised that the cardboard tube Laphroaig whisky comes in is perfect for storing my long knitting needles. It's exactly the right height and sturdy too. How come I never thought of this idea before?

Despite the title of this post, I'm no huge fan of whisky. I love, love, LOVE the smell (especially Laphroaig), but I can't stand the taste. Hubby and I have gotten into the habit of enjoying it together: I sniff the whisky, he drinks it. Peculiar perhaps, but hey, we're both happy with the arrangement. ;)

Friday, September 07, 2007

The showing off begins

It's time to show off a bit of what I made during the vacation! I finally took some photos and listed a new pair of armwarmers in my Etsy shop. These armwarmers are beige with black stripes, knitted from a soft wool on double-pointed needles. I'm quite pleased with how the ribbing shows up with a light colour like this.

In other news, I found the loveliest acrylic yarn today, in shades of white, beige, brown and gray. It's just soooo pretty and tempting. I know I shouldn't. What would I make with it? Don't I already have a tower of yarn, nearly collapsing from its own bulk?


Will I be able to resist? Well, if I won't, you'll find out through this blog soon enough.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Have a look at some more yarn

Long time no see! I'm back from my two-week vacation. It was great to have some relaxation, but it's good to be back with charged batteries too. :) Which are needed, as it turns out, for I have a couple of busy weeks ahead of me. I don't have the time to show off all the new knitted stuff immediately, but they'll trickle into this blog as I find a few moments here and there.

But first, here's what was waiting for me when I got back! A yarn package from Twisted Fibers with a whole three skeins - one a thick-and-thin cotton yarn in black, white, beige, blue and gray, and two soft cotton blends. I'm especially happy with the blue-brown one on the right, I love that combo.

I have plans for two of them already, but have trouble deciding what to do with the one in various brown shades on the left. Then again, right now I'm a bit too busy to get started with any of these, so I have time to plan. Oh well, these make a nice treat to look forward to once I've gotten everything done. =)
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