Tag: Fiber Arts

Mar 19

Something Else Sunday

Books/Writing, Cats, Gardening/Herbalism/Nature, Life 2

something else sunday

So, I’m changing up my posting schedule a bit. I’d been thinking about it for awhile and then Puput’s post on Figuring Out Your Perfect Blogging Schedule gave me the extra little push I needed.

I love books. I love writing. I love writing about books. However, I also have 50 million other interests (I’m not even really joking), as well as a family. I am also getting ready to move from Korea back to the States, which is a logistical nightmare and will undoubtedly eat up more than its fair share of time.

In order to continue to enjoy blogging and not burn out, I’m paring down my posts and narrowing in on focus. And here’s what you can expect!

Mondays: Down the TBR Hole
Tuesdays: Bookish or discussion post
Wednesday: Writing Up Wednesday
Friday: book review

If I feel inspired or have extra time, I may add additional posts, but for now this is what works best for me. You might notice, if you’re paying close attention, that Something Else Sundays are not on that list. I created this series because I still wanted to talk about my other interests. And lately…I just feel like they don’t belong here anymore. So I’ve created multiple instagram accounts and a little side blog for my garden/nature pursuits. You can find me in these various places:

Fiber arts Instagram: BentNeedles
Gardening Instagram: BentGardener
Adventure/Exploring Instagram: BentAdventurer

Now these things may bleed over now and then and I may still do personal updates every so often, but trying to come up with stuff every week was just exhausting. Especially when a lot of weeks, it seems like all I do is work and read if I’m lucky to have time! Oh, and…

Don’t worry, Sir Tristan will still be putting in appearances now and then as well. πŸ˜‰ I hope this new schedule and the freedom from pressure I feel like it will bring me results in a blog that’s more fun for my readers, with less “extra” stuff that really isn’t in your interests!

Last week on the Β blog:

This week:

  • Down the TBR Hole #17
  • Crown of Midnight (YA review)
  • Writing Up Wednesday #8: Motivation
  • Walking the Nile (nonfiction review)

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Jan 22

Something Else Sunday #22

Life, Musings 4

something else sunday

Hey everyone! It’s time for Something Else Sunday again and I’m feeling very disjointed and a little bit bummed out today…yay for all the political unrest on FB and general arguing I hear every single time I step outside my house (and sometimes within it). Blah. So, I’ve deleted the FB app from my phone (again…I did it for about 2-3 weeks back in November and it was very helpful) for an unspecified amount of time, and am going to try to Β channel that energy into reading and writing.

I participated in the Beat the Backlist bookstagram challenge this week! I was SO EXCITED about this because I love bookstagram but feel like I don’t have the time to commit to it the way so many people do. A week long challenge was perfect, and I ended up with quite a few images I really liked. I realized there is a LOT to be said for lighting, because I took the first few pics on a day with perfect natural light and then didn’t have good light for the rest of the week!

I did a lot of stitching the week, accompanied as always by the faithful Sir Tristan. He’ll do anything for chin scratches, I swear.

If you haven’t entered the INTERNATIONAL bookish tea giveaway from Riddle’s Tea Shoppe, be sure to go to the original post and enter!

Last week on the blog:

Down the TBR Hole #8
The Star-Touched Queen (YA review)
Riddle’s Tea Shoppe (bookish review + giveaway)
Silver on the Tree (MG review)

This week on the blog:

Down the TBR Hole #9
The Peculiar Miracles of Antoinette Martin (fiction review)
Writing Up Wednesday (new meme for writer-reader-bloggers!)
Fear the Drowning Deep (YA review)
Green Witch (non-fiction review)


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Nov 27

Something Else Sunday #16 – Beginning to Look Like Christmas

Cats, Life, Pets 5


Getting an early start on Christmas presents…with Tristan’s help. I can’t wait for my husband to open these…especially that giant one there. Hehehehe.

I think I might, possibly, be climbing out of the mire of depression that has kept me down for the last several months. Since about…February. I’m still a little afraid that it might be too early to know for sure…but I’m starting to be interested in life again. Anyway. I missed last week’s Sunday post, but here we are this week. Next week I think I will try to write more in depth about what’s been going on, but for now…

I was sick for Thanksgiving, so we…went to McDonald’s. Totally lame, but I felt like complete shit. So. πŸ˜› I’m feeling mostly better though, so this weekend we started decorating for Christmas! Its one of my favorite times of year and I love decorating. Also I think I either have or have ordered all but one of my husband’s Christmas gifts. This is the first year since we’ve been together that we’ve really even DONE gifts…I’m really grateful we can do it, because I don’t think we’ll be in a position to spend extra money next year. I’ve had so much fun picking out stuff and wrapping it! πŸ˜€ Hehehehehe.


Tristan being SUCH a good kitty…while plotting destruction, no doubt. πŸ˜‰

Then, I finally finished this ornament…I did the actual stitching something like 2 years ago but never finished it into an ornament until today. I’d *like* to finish another before Christmas this year, but who am I kidding…I probably won’t be motivated enough. πŸ˜› This is the “Hot Cocoa” ornament pattern from Little House Needleworks.


And here is our completed tree, complete with city lights in the background. Haha!


I’m hoping to get back into more reviews this week. I only have…5 – yes, count ’em, FIVE – books started, in an effort to restart my bookworm. I’m not even posting a projected list right now, because…yeah. Not there yet. But I’ve found a new meme that I’m really excited about, and that post will be going up soon.


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Nov 14

Something Else Sunday #15

Books/Writing, Cats, Crafting, Life, Musings 2


Tristan can feel my sadness, I think.

Yes, I’m pretty much an entire day late. Bite me. πŸ˜› It’s been a rough week. I’m still reeling from everything – Alfie’s passing, then the election…we have such a road ahead of us. I really don’t understand how my country – that I thought was finally climbing out of the dark ages as far as diversity, equal rights, women’s issues, etc., goes…apparently IS NOT. In fact we just slipped back in time oh, about 60 years.

Pray to your deities of choice. Be there for your friends. Be there for strangers who are unfairly treated.

For all I’m saddened and horrified by the election results, I personally am one of the people who will be LEAST affected. I am one of the lucky ones. I have lived a life greatly sheltered from prejudice and discrimination. And honestly, I’m not sure what to do about that. I treat people…as people. Regardless of color, sexual orientation, nationality, language…and I try to give people the benefit of the doubt, always. sometimes it bites me in the ass. But I would always, ALWAYS, rather err on the side of kindness and love. I don’t know what to say to my friends in this community and elsewhere who have been or possibly will be on the receiving end of all the hate that is suddenly so evident. Other than that I grieve with you and I will do my best to fight against the bigotry and intolerance.


Trying to do some creating to get my equilibrium back, since I haven’t been able to concentrate on any books, sadly. It was…partially successful. I had a hard time concentrating on this too, but I did finish one square.


More importantly, I started writing letters again. I only wrote one, and it was much shorter than my usual letters…but I wrote to a friend. I have a long way to go to get caught up, but I know my dear friends are caring and understanding. I hope that every person has at least one other that they can turn to for love and support.

Love and light to each and everyone.

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Sep 25

Something Else Sunday #10

Books/Writing, Crafting, Life 4


Well, this is about the extent of my fall decorating. Hehe. Next year…next year!

This week…well. It’s sucked, mostly, to be honest. I didn’t get much reading done. Work was just blah. Issues is…issues. I have them. πŸ˜› My writing mojo has officially up and left me, despite receiving some lovely snail mail. I only sent one letter…apologies to all my lovely penpals. πŸ™ I’ve just had no inspiration and my overall mood has been rather on the blue side and I hate writing letters that sound that way.


I did finish this little guy. He’s not perfect but I think he’s cute – especially for my first finished crochet project in about 7 years! Edited to add credit where credit is due: the pattern is Foxy Fox Lovey, by Briana Olsen. πŸ™‚ The granny squares from a couple of weeks ago never got finished into anything, sadly. Maybe one day I’ll find the motivation to weave in all those ends. Or not. πŸ˜›


Also went to see this re-enactment of the Battle of Nakdong River, which was pretty cool and included paratroopers and the South Korean Air Force’s “Black Eagles.” I was actually really impressed by the fighters…I’ve seen quite a few air shows, but never a performance of 8 fighters flying in formation.


Books! I received TWO book boxes in the mail this week, both of which made me squeal and dance up and down. I already reviewed the September Lit-Cube, and this week a review of the September OwlCrate will be coming. πŸ˜€ I’m also in the middle of The Dream Thieves. I’ve kind of been dragging my feet on it, purely because I’m enjoying it and I really like the vibe all the characters have right now and I’m kind of scared to see what happens.

September is almost over, can you believe it? I’m going to take a step back from my current TBR list in October, and read mostly atmospheric, creepy stuff that’s been somewhere in my list but put off for the right time. Like Dracula. I’ve never read the original Dracula, can you believe it? I’ve been dredging up recommendations for various sources and am putting together a list. They won’t all necessarily be HALLOWEEN themed, but atmospheric enough to invoke the spirit, if that makes sense.

Hope everyone has a great week!

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Sep 12

Something Else Sunday #8

Books/Writing, Crafting, Life 7

I seem to have a trend of these being late now. Oops. Also, I only got ONE review posted last week! But you know, life happens. This weekend though, I did get TWO books finished!


Here’s Sir Tristan being cute as can be while I start on my new BIG project. The claws are not actually hooked into my leg, just lightly into my jeans. Haha.
















I did a lot of making on little stuff this week. Blanket squares, test skeins. However, I also managed to finish the first re-knit sleeve for my Vivian.


Also finished the first skein – a mini one, to test out the ply, etc. – on my BIG project.


This is eventually going to become a Thoth shawl.


Which has this awesome phases of the moon design.

I also decided on a whim to try to pick up my crochet hook for the first time in about 6 or 7 years. And I’m feeling the beginnings of a relapse. I can’t stop looking at crocheted blankets on Revelry.


Then there was a tiny little bookmark for a friend, in a lovely autumnal orange. I’ve been wanting to use that word all week. Autumnal. It looks so lovely written down but it’s such a bitch to say, my tongue always trips over it.


Hmm. So maybe all that explains why I didn’t get but one review written! Haha. However, I went on a slight – just a slight – Terry Pratchett binge and finished two books in as many days. One of my goals for this year was to read through the ones sitting on my shelf that I’ve never got to, so this was actual progress (covers link to GoodReads).

204939141Β 386372

Next up is a re-read of Sourcery, and then on to the next one I haven’t read, Wyrd Sisters. In the meantime, I’m reading the 4th in Rhys Bowen’s Her Royal Spyness series, Royal Blood. Which is amusing so far…I’m hoping it doesn’t delve into the supernatural, but stays in the scientific and rational side of things like they’ve done so far. This one is set in Transylvania, so we’ll see.

I can’t wait to see what everyone is reading this week! Off to poke through my Bloglovin’ feed. πŸ˜€ Have a great week!


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Aug 08

Something Else Sunday #4

Books/Writing, Cats, Crafting, Life 2

It’s Sunday again! Every week I am so excited that it’s the weekend but…how is it Sunday, AGAIN? Haha.

This week I actually have something to share that I am SUPER excited about! Back in February I came to a standstill on this massive quilt for my husband. It’s in honor of his military service (obviously, I think? haha). I made a lot of mistakes and the design is much more traditional than I usually go for. It suits my husband well, though. Lots of new skills on this one. It was my first time with applique’ (the stars), and my first time trying to quilt anything this large. My biggest mistake was trying to free-motion stitch in the ditch. OMG. Rage. So much rage. I will never, ever do that again. In the end I just had to go with the squiggly lines and call it part of the design. Makes it look more “rustic,” I guess. *eyeroll* But, DH seems to love it even with all the mistakes, and that’s the most important part.

Also received some lovely snail mail this week! I have some very talented friendship check out the brush script and lovely handwriting!

I sent out quite a bit too! Well, ok. This is what I wrote over the weekend and is going out Monday, but still.

Something Sunday wouldn’t be complete without an appearance from Sir Tristan! He was shoving his head into my chin while I tried to take this picture because I was neglecting my dutiful scratching of HIS chin. Spoiled baby.


Upcoming reviews this week:

I’m trying for 3 reviews this week! I’d been going with 2, but…I just feel like 3 this week. Hopefully I’ll actually get to it!

  1. The Vanishing Throne, by Elizabeth May
  2. The Hatching, by Ezekiel Boone
  3. Alice, by Christina Henry


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Jul 12

Top 10 Tuesday: 10 Facts About Me

Books/Writing, Life 14

This TTT pick from over at The Broke and the Bookish this week! Link to be added once that side of the world wakes up to Tuesday (it’s almost noon here).

  1. I’ve been reading pretty much non-stop since I was 4. My mom taught me how to read. Little did she know what she was creating…
  2. I have a B.A. in English, but since I graduated in 2010 have worked as a phlebotomist and EMT. I love words and books, but I can’t make it my JOB. At least not currently. I get too twitchy if I do nothing but stare at a computer screen ALL the time.
  3. I think animals are better than people. About 90% of the time. I’m really a dog person, even though I’ve only had cats for the past 4 years.
  4. I like eating canned black olives straight out of the can.
  5. I love trees. I am convinced that somehow, there are spirits in trees that I could talk to if I could just figure it out.Β 
  6. I would like to get rid of television. Permanently.
  7. The first movie I saw in theater was Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. I was 20.
  8. Besides reading, my next favorite things to do are anything outside (unless it involves LARGE quantities of mud, but a little is ok), knitting/spinning, and writing letters. Some of my best friends I’ve only ever “met” in writing.Β 
  9. I don’t plan to have children. I love my friends’ kids and have a lovely, adorable goddaughter (that I sadly haven’t met in person yet), but feel no need to procreate. And don’t tell me getting older will change my mind. I’m 28. I’m child-free by choice and my husband is 100% okay (maybe we should say thrilled – he already has a child from a previous marriage, and said kid is awesome but also almost an adult so…much awkwardness would ensue) with that.
  10. I’ve wanted to hike the Appalachian Trail AND be a medical doctor since I was 11 years old.

Well, that was fun and oh-so-very random! Can’t wait to read all the others that come from the link-up. πŸ˜ŠπŸ˜„πŸ“šπŸ˜œ

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Jul 10

Something-Else Sunday

Books/Writing, Crafting, Life, Pets 0

Not really related to books, just my life. Not sure if this will be a continuous thing, or just for today – because I have about FIVE books I need to write reviews for, but right now I am taking a deep breath before the oncoming week hits. Yes. Oncoming. Because right now my next week feels like a train about to hit me. I did something to my hip about a month ago, and despite being on light activity for that time, it hasn’t healed. At all. Went back to the doctor on Friday and was put on doctor’s orders for NO activity, which is just about killing this outdoors-loving bookworm. But considering even a few minutes of activity makes me feel as achy and decrepit as I imagine a 90-year-old woman would feel…yep. Parking my butt in a chair and tearing through as many books as humanly possible seems to be the only way to deal.

Anyway, let’s start with the cuteness that is Sir Tristan. Because he makes us smile! And want to kiss his fuzzy little head! And, erm, buy bookmarks in his honor. Because – orange cat butt. How could I resist? Get your own from the My Bookmark shop. They’re so cute. A little pricey, yes, but they are handmade and the bookmark itself is metal and very sturdy. No affiliation, I just LOVE LOVE LOVE them. This won’t be my last. Wait, that was book related. Oh well. Books infiltrate my entire life! And I like it. Mmmhm.


Something else…spinning! One of my many textile/fiber related creative pursuits. The Tour de France is in full swing right now, and as such so is the Tour de Fleece on Ravelry. I’m spinning for a couple of different teams, the Fat Cat Knits dyer team, and the HPKCHC (Harry Potter Knitting/Crochet House Cup) team. So far I’ve managed to spin a little bit (one day it was only about 3 yards of a single) every day, but only have one completed yarn to show for it.


This lovely is from some of Fat Cat Knits’ fiber.

Progress on my second yarn. 2 plies completed now...one to go.

Progress on my second yarn. 2 plies completed now…one to go.

Tristan takes his supervising duties very seriously.

Tristan takes his supervising duties very seriously.

I’ve been rather remiss in my snail mail the past couple of weeks. But, at least, my rate of incoming/outgoing has been about the same, so my reply pile has stayed at about the same number! Hopefully my letter-writing mojo will return this week.

This week's outgoing.

This week’s outgoing.

And one more kitty pic, just for smiles. Because he is my little ray of sunshine, every day.

My little snuggler.

My little snuggler.

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Apr 03

Bug Warmer Handspun Project

Crafting 2

I’ve been holding onto this project to share for awhile now, as I wanted the recipient to have it in hand before posting here. So without further ado…

I started with this fiber, 80/20Β  superwash merino sparkly nylon blend from Ginny at Fat Cat Knits in the gradient colorway Mon Ami.


It spun up beautifully, the smoothest merino I’ve ever spun. Usually merino doesn’t behave well for me, it clumps and sticks together horribly. But this was an absolute dream and I spun the entire braid in 3 days. I can’t say enough good things about Ginny’s fiber prep and her color sense.


I’m still not quite back in my grove with spinning. I was aiming for a worsted/aran weight yarn and ended up with DK. Oops. If the fiber hadn’t fluffed up a TON it would’ve been sport weight. I got 330 yards of 2-ply. I tried to keep the colors together as much as possible but of course there was some areas where, as I was plying, I could see there was just way too much mismatching of the sections, so I broke the ply. It killed me to throw away what probably ended up as about 30 yards, but I was a lot happier with the finished yarn. I could have split the top in half exactly in the middle and had a one-way gradient, but I split it lengthwise and so had a purple-blue-yellow/orange-pink-yellow/orange-blue-purple yarn.

yarma_medium21 yarma_medium22

While I was overall very happy with the yarn, I still see a lot of inconsistencies in my singles and my plying is too loose. In my opinion.

Regardless, I picked the Bug Warmer baby sweater pattern (free on Ravelry) and away we went! It was a quick, easy knit and made my happy with every single stitch. I finished it in a couple more days and then after blocking it to even it all out – something I’ve found almost entirely necessary with handspun…it helps even with the more evenly spun yarn, but especially with my slightly uneven handspun – got it off in the mail to my lovely, adorable little goddaughter who looks like she will absolutely ROCK it.


None of the pictures show the sparkle very well…it just looks like little bits sticking out but it’s really quite sparkly.


I love how the colors blended right here.


Ta-da! Oh, I did add a little leftover commercial yarn on the edges. AND, since I ended up with so much yardage I only used about half of the skein (hence the one-way gradient in the sweater). So now I’m trying to find something to make with the other half for either myself or Baby Girl’s mama.

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