knitting/crochet planner

Using my knitting/crochet planner

I can't believe I've been using this planner for 6 months already!

WP planner list page

K&C planner project page written

KC journal notes pages

KC journal inventory pages

KC journal diary pages

It is so nice to keep all my yarn craft information in one place, and handy in my current WIP bag. I've used random notebooks over the years with little success. The fact that I can add and move pages as well as sections around this planner has meant I can make it work for me. Along with the TO MAKE list and project pages, I have printed notes pages, recorded what needles and hooks I own and use the diary to record how long each project takes me. This has come in very handy when I write up a finished object post here on the blog.

The personal size is perfect for this type of planner/journal. However if I was doing designs then maybe the A5 size with some grid paper would be the better option. I'm not at that stage yet, but perhaps one day!

C xx


Overwhelmed

Craft room 1 29 07 16

Craft room 2 29 07 16

All crafters can relate to the feelings of being overwhelmed. I am often overwhelmed, and feeling that way right now.

Crafters collect stash, and I have done a good job over the past 13 years of paper and yarn crafting to amass a serious amount of stuff. I have a craft area, in a spare bedroom, which I share with my dear husband, our treadmill and various desks and shelf units.

It's a mess. An area of chaos.

And it's time to clean up!

I am one of those people that needs a tidy system. It takes me months (maybe years) to come up with a practical solution to a storage/organisation problem. And if I've factored in all elements it works. Two big projects I have tackled and succeeded in this year are my coat cupboard and herb & spice storage (I'll blog them later in the year). Both took a lot of planning and foresight and the reason they succeeded is the elements (ie shoes/coats/herbs and spices) don't grow at the rate that yarn craft stash does.

And this is what I am battling to get a hold of. I know I will never catch up with the projects on my TO MAKE list but I keep adding more than I finish in a month. This has a direct impact on my yarn storage because an added project is also accompanied by a bag of yarn. Yes I am impulsive and when I want to make something I print the pattern and buy the yarn.

The idea of taking the elements (yarn) and deciding on the best storage solution is just not viable. This is an ever changing growing stash.

So i'm posting these photos on my blog to hold me accountable and encourage the eventual successful solution to this storage and organisation problem.

Stay tuned (although I may be a while) for the result!

C xx


Storing yarn craft tools

Tool storage
Tool bag
Tool crochet hooks
Tool straight needles
Tool straight needle back
Tool dpns

Oh I do love my little (or large) collection of knitting needles, crochet hooks, stitch markers, scissors, darning needles, knitting pins and tape measures! And keeping it all neat and tidy has at times been a little bit of a challenge. Thankfully I love storage so hunting down the perfect solution for my yarn craft tools has been a very exciting journey.

Although I can have a few projects in progress at once, I tend to work on one at a time, so I have a basket or bag that contains all the yarn for that project and when I work on it it comes everywhere with me. So it made sense for me to have a small make up/pencil case style 'bag' to keep scissors, tape measure, spare row counters, stitch markers and darning needle, which I could move from basket to basket as I moved between projects.

I moved from metal to Brittany Birch to Clover Amour crochet hooks in a space of 9 years. The move from metal to birch started because they're just so pretty (!) and I loved the shape of the hook. I collected the set over time and love how they now look in one of my grandmothers mugs. I moved to the Clover hooks when I experienced terrible cramps in my thumb pad after prolonged hooking with a 3.5mm birch hook. I needed a bigger handle on the hook and the Clover offered me the most comfort. I bought as I needed until I had most of the sizes and then filled in the gaps. I remember my gramdmother keeping pens and pencils in a glasses case so when I spotted one on sale I knew this was a good solution to crochet hook storage.

I bought my straight knitting needle roll at the same time as my second linen yarn craft bag. These bags are made with vintage linen sourced by Jolie and hand made into cherished and heirloom pieces. Although I have metal, plastic and wooden needles, I only store my wooden needles in the roll. These are the ones I use all the time as I find anything else terribly slippery (which could have something to do with my tension!).

Just recently (ie 2016), I've needed more double pointed needles so my collection of sizes has grown considerably as has the need of a storage solution for them. I visited Jolie a few weekends back and luckily they had a small crochet hook roll in stock. It's the ideal size for dpn's and fits into my collection perfectly.

I'm on the hunt for circular needle storage as mine live in a pencil case and I find that I need to take them all out to find the one I need, then spend ages rolling them all up to pack away. I have an idea to make one but it's still in the recess of my creative brain.

If you post or have posted about your tool storage please let me know so I can have a look!

Ciao xx


My sweet elephant Maggie

LCR Elephant

LCR elephant side view

LCR elephant shoes

 LCR elephant sitting

LCR elephant face

LCR dress button

LCR blue dress

LCR bag of yarn

LCR pattern

I can honestly say that this is one of my favourite knits! I absolutely loved each and every stitch.

Of course there was some self doubt and I put off starting a Little Cotton Rabbits knitted creature because it looked hard. This goes back to that thing about wanting to master something before taking the first step and i'm working hard to get rid of that bad habit! 2016 has been about trying new things and learning and I'm so excited about what the next 8 months has in store for me.

So here's the technical bit:
I used Rowan hand knit cotton for the body, Rowan summerlite 4 ply for the shoes, knickers/pants and clothes, Rowan cotton glace for the eyes and shoes buckles and Rowan kidsilk haze for the cape. I also bought some Scheepjes catona and Quince & Co sparrow (both 4 ply) and a ball each of Rowan lima and Rowan kidsilk haze (to be used together for another creature!!) to add to the toy making stash.
You'll need 3mm straight and dpn's, 2.75 straight and 2.5 straight or dpn's. (I've added lots of tiny needles to my collection in 2016 and really need a small needle roll to keep them in before I forget what I have!) (And I guess they need to be documented in my knitting and crochet planner too)
A pen and paper helped to keep track of rows, especially for the lace dress as you knit the lace bit (row 1 to 12, 11 times) then pick up stitches along the long edge to knit up the dress. I really didn't want to lose my place!
The pattern is so well written with plenty photographs and tips. I did go off piste once as I looked at the photo and went off on my own only to discover that it's better to read the words and use the photos as reference, lol.
I don't do any kind of needle work so the eyes and shoe buckles were a little challenging especially as I left the eyes till last and should have done them before joining the head to the body. I'm pretty happy with the way they turned out!

TOP TIP:
This is a tip on the pattern but I didn't realise how important it was until I had to redo the 'neck' a few times. It was coming out too thin and the head wobbled around too much. You will put a lot of effort into this knitted creature so it's important to put it together well.

I can add toy knitter to my resume now :)

Ciao xx


Project planning pages

K&C planner project dashboard

K&C planner project page blank

K&C planner project page written

The lovely Carol at PracticalPaperShop made these super cool knitting and crochet project plan pages for me yesterday. I cannot tell you how excited I am about these and how much I love this cactus collection! I'm seriously considering changing my whole planner to this theme.

I've printed these double sided and the crop marks make cutting to size easy peasy. Carol is lovely and i'm sure if you wanted these pages in one of the other collections she would help you out!

My knitting and crochet planner is back in my hand bag because I can't stop looking at the new pages, lol

Ciao xx


The perfect knitting/crochet planner

WP planner arrived

WP planner front page

WP planner tabs

WP planner tab ruler

WP planner page

WP planner list page

WP planner calendar page

Disclaimer: Links to sites I used are at the bottom of the post and are not affiliate. All opinions are my own.

My quest to find the perfect knitting/crochet journal has been a long one. I started with the My Knitting Journal which has lots of information pages (that didn't really apply as I was just doing crochet) and some project planner pages. With the addition of ball bands and yarn sample cards it swelled to bursting point and I had to tear out most of the information pages to make room. It's also quite big so didn't live in my project bag/basket and I kept forgetting to use it!
Then I tried a plain note book which I divided into sections for 'future projects, 'project pages', 'tools lists' etc, but was quickly frustrated at the confines of a bound book. 

When I started my Carpe Diem Planner journey last year I thought that I could perhaps incorporate a knitting/crochet journal but despite my best efforts I couldn't seem to make them gel. 

One day while looking though Instagram I came across a photograph from Webster's Pages. Now I see their posts as I follow them, but this one image jumped out at me and I knew their personal size planner was just what I needed. I managed to find one at Crafting.co.uk for £8.00! It's a 2015 starter kit but at £8.00 I really couldn't pass it up!

I was so excited for the planner to arrive and when it did I was not dissapointed. It's very nicely presented in a sturdy box with velum cover, that made me giggle.....hello pretty planner!
Although I had planned to swap out most of the inserts that come with the planner I've decided to keep them in and see if I can use them. I wasn't sure if the divider tabs would work either but actually they're really sturdy so it makes sense to keep them too.
I had read some mixed reviews about the quality and build of the planners but Webster's must have addressed these and made some improvements as I can't really fault it. The only one negative I have is that the pages aren't punched very well so they are stuck together, but it's a minor issue and at £8.00........goodness I really can't believe I got such a great bargain!!

I couldn't find stock of the 2016 Websters diary inserts in the UK (although I will probaby try harder to find them later in the  year to have them for 2017!) so I bought a few printables from PrintablePineapple on Etsy. The month on 2 pages is great for keeping track of what i'm making and gives me an idea of completion time when I blog a finished object. I also bought the 9 in 1 listmania package and have used all except the 2 grocery lists, although I'm sure i'll make use of them at some point! I love that there are 3 different blank list formats, which I have already used to keep track of sock yarn colour combos!

Misstiina has some really cute free printable journal cards and I printed loads for this planner and my CD planner.

I'm still looking for the perfect 'project page' and if I could get my head around designing my own I would. If you're a whizz on the old PC and fancy a collaboration, please shout!

As with the Carpe Diem planner, this one will evolve and change as I make it work for me, so keep an eye out for a update later in the spring. I'm so looking forward to popping it in my project bag :)

Ciao xx

Misstiina

Wendaful

PrintablePineapple

Webster's Pages

My Knitting Journal

Crafting.co.uk