Sushi Knitting Needle Roll

My sister saw the giant knitting needle roll I made for my last swap and asked if I'd make one - so here it is! I sometimes think I'm Craft-Attention-Deficit-Disordered, but I finished this one in record time! Started Monday evening, it took the better part of the week to finish, but I am working on getting the Etsy store open , and a Sampler swap, so I've been kind of swamped lately! Take a closer look over at my flickr set!

Jenn, you're pretty lucky, normally I'd hafta charge 30$+ to cover the time & materials for this! I'm really proud of it! The sushi fabric was free, but I dug into my stash for the rest of it, so you're gonna owe me a craft! :) I looked at the Nagano Sakura pattern over at Knitty, and I think the yarn it calls for is going to be too scratchy for me! I was thinking maybe a Razor cami?
I saw it a few weeks ago, and thought it was so cute, but once again, I haven't tackled knitting in the round yet! You'll have to sit me down, and beat the circular fear out of me! LOL

2 balls of Sirdar Snuggly doesn't sound too bad for materials, to me (@ 4.35$ per ball I won't be breaking the bank for it!) Now...color? I like 394 Hyacinthe Mix, 355 Chocolate, 341 Blueberry, and 222 Surf. What can I say, I like a lot of different colors!?!?! :)

June already...?

Time is so much about perception; it's funny how fast or slow something can seem, depending on how much fun, or no fun at all it is. This year I've created a lot more than in past years, which I'm happy about. There's still that feeling that I could be working harder or doing more, and I just have to remind myself I'm charting my own territory, and it's not going to work or be efficient all of the time.

I'm working on a sushi themed knitting needle roll for my sister, and should be finished soon! I think it's coming great, and I hope she'll like it, and really enjoy it. The behemoth has 50 pockets!


Crafty Ginger opens shop!

Well, soon anyway! Hey, I'm trying to speed things along as fast as I can, but doing something different can sometimes be tricky & time comsuming. I'm kind of a control freak, so things like packaging have to be spot on before I send things out - and I don't even have anything listed in My Etsy Shop yet! So here's a sneak peak at my packaging, I'm really proud of it; but I'd also really love to hear some other opinions too! My business card -

I can say though, that I'm enjoying making tsumami flowers. My husband calls it tedious, but I think the hand work is relaxing. I'll be selling them in pairs with barrettes that they can snap on & off from, on wristlets, and well - anything else I can put them on!

On another note; what is it about the Japanese that so captivates Americans attention? At least in the craft world, kawaii amigurumi, felt sushi & neko cats seem to be so popular! I admit I am a definite fan, I just wish that Japanese craft books weren't so expensive or hard to come by in some places (where I live!)


Tsumami kanzashi flowers galore!

A few weeks ago I discovered Tsumami Kanzashi - a technique to fold fabric squares into flower petals. I found this excerpt on PuchiMaiko.com,

The word “Tsumami” means to pinch – specifically, pinching a square piece of fabric to form a shape. The word “Kanzashi” means hairpin. Tsumami Kanzashi is a traditional Japanese art form that dates back over 200 years. Tsumami kanzashi is most often seen worn by maiko (apprentice geisha) and young girls for shichi-go-san celebrations however, with the revival of traditional arts, and a younger generation appreciating them – tsumami kanzashi have become quite a fashionable accessory to be worn both with contemporary clothing and kimono.

Mrs. Graham-Diaz is an excellent authority on Japanese Geisha, and their traditions; as well as a major inspiration to me! Her tsumami flowers are what really drove me to learn the "pinching" technique, and although I don't use traditional methods as she does, I hope I can still honor Japanese tradition!

My method differs from the traditional in that I don't use rice paste to glue the petals together. I start by sewing the petals together in a circle, then I glue a circle of fleece or felt to the back with fabric glue. I use different tools to get a more angled or flat appearance to the petals. I also don't use habotae silk, as it's not what I have on hand. I use scraps from all sorts of projects, cotton denim, twill, silk charmeuse. If I've got enough scrap fabric left over, it's going to end up as tsumami flowers! LOL I finish with a button, the centers can look very messy and I like them to look neat.

Some fabric works much better than others for the pinching technique, I've found medium weight tencel twill to be too slippery for my smallest 1" petals. Silk charmesue was a challenge, but definitely worth it - it's got such a lustrous sheen to it. Double petals, with an inner color and a different outer, are also much more challenging. I must say though, that I really enjoy working on these flowers. They are exciting and sometimes difficult, but ultimately so satisfying.

If anyone is interested, here are a few tsumami kanzashi links -

  • Puchi Maiko - Small accessories inspired by the art of geisha, maiko and traditional Japan.
  • Ganjin Geisha - Gallery of wonderful kanzashi!
  • Maya Doll - Amazing kanzashi for sale - watch out, they're pricey! :)
  • Kanzashi movies - #13 Edo hair ornaments: actual craftsman using traditional techniques. This one is ABSOLUTELY worth the time! (5 movies, a few minutes each)


Marble magnets - easiest craft project ever!!!

I just finished the easiest project ever - picture marble magnets! Talk about simple, just glue the picture to the back of a a flat marble (floral or aquatic arrangements), then glue the magnet. She-bang! You're done!

This first set was made with images from Gwen Frostic - a Michigan artist I've loved since I was a child. She made beautiful block prints of nature and it's creatures.

The second set is seashells, and they're the smaller 3/4" size. I really enjoyed this project because it was so easy! I haven't been feeling good this week, so I'm glad I could find a balance and not work on projects that would have made me feel crappy longer.

I'm thinking of selling these on Etsy, but because they're so popular I want to do them a little differently. The larger 1 1/2" size are a little more uncommon, and magnetic boxes/boards are even more so. I think I'll be able to come up with something I'm happy with.

On the subject of Etsy, I'm hard at work building up inventory, working on new ideas and packaging details. I am SO excited, but I want to do it right, so I'm now planning on opening my store on June 21st, the summer solstice.


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