Why? Because I usually do some sort of give-away… right?!  So here I am in Florida and there won’t be anytime for blogging… and there might not even be wifi where I am staying. I’m at my grandmother’s house- where the knitting all started.  And then Fri, Sat, Sun I will be at A Good Yarn for a trunk show! Yay!  I have never been to this shop before but I am very excited to go and see all the lovely and exclusive yarns Susan carries.  I know she has very special things there.  I wonder if I will have enough room in my suitcase…

Anyway- if you are going to be in the area, make sure you stop by A Good Yarn and say hello!

 

Moving right along, I promised you a give-away right?!  So here it is- one lucky winner will get two hanks of Kollage Toasty  (100% wool, 108 yards) in the color 8203 Foliage as well as a PDF of the Greenleaf Ascot pattern to go along with the yarn.  And you know I always throw in some fun goodies to go with these prizes.

 

 

So… how to win?!  All you have to do is make sure you follow me on Twitter or Facebook (or both to increase your chances).  To find out if you win check back on Wednesday October 17th- I will announce the winner on my blog.  If the winner doesn’t claim their prize within three days I will announce another winner.  So make sure you check back and continue checking back… just in case!  Good luck to everyone!!!

Remember last year when I went to the Renegade Craft Fair?  I titled the blog post part I of II… well finally after many months of waiting I am posting part II.  Why so long you ask? Ah! Good question!

The very last vendor I met at the Renegade Craft Fair was a company called Metalcast Kits.  They specialize in casting customized belt buckles.  What?! Yes! The possibilities are endless.

 

 

 

After seeing a few of the buckles on display I was sold! I thought I’m going to make a ton of these- all knitting themed!  Well after I got home I realized how difficult of a task it was to get even one done… I mean c’mon it took me about eight months just to finish carving out my buckle.  After many sketches and scrapped wax pieces (good thing they gave me extra), I finally came up with this:

 

 

Now coming up with the idea was pretty easy- P2tog, that’s my license plate number.  But carving out every nook and cranny of this piece of wax was going to be the hard part.  I had no idea what ind of project I had gotten myself into.  Because of the complexity of the design it took me FOREVER, plus one day!  But I don’t regret it one bit because this is what I have to show for my hard work:

 

 

I love this thing!  Hopefully you’ll catch me wearing it around.  The belt I have for it is too big right now- so I have to wait until I find another one that’s smaller.

If you missed the Renegade Craft Fair last year, not to worry.  It’s coming again and pretty soon too.  Right before the holiday season- so it will be perfect for getting some really great handmade gifts!  It will be in the Los Angeles Historic Park on December 8 + 9.  If you don’t live in LA, they travel around from city to city- usually the vendors aren’t the same they are more local to the area in the city which they are exhibiting.  But sometimes they do make the trek far far away.  The point is, you never know what you’re going to find there.  Plus- they have food trunks… YUM!

If you’re not on the mailing list then you missed the newsletter with the 3 day sale!  But don’t worry! You can sign-up for the newsletter here.  I am having a mini-sale! Only three patterns, only three days! Now it’s only two days!  Save 15% when you use the Ravelry coupon code FallAccesoriesSale!!! on Olana Slouch, Walt’s Tangled Cables, and Bumble Stripes now through Sunday, October 7th, 2012 by 11:59pm Pacific Time.

     

 

 

I know I said I was going to go to the Cherry Festival last weekend, but then I found out about the Patchwork Indie Arts & Crafts Festival (which was the same weekend) and I decided to go there instead.  I thought to myself I like crafts more than I like cherries…. plus, it was waaaaay closer!  Patchwork was held in what I think might have been a parking lot in the historic Helms Bakery in Culver City.

 

 

There were over 100 vendors…. it seems like a lot, but it’s not that much…. Also I was promised some DIY workshops and there were none.  It was very disappointing – but I got over it.

There were lots of fun vendors…. and many of their products were made from re-purposed or up-cycled materials, which I love!  Say the work up-cycled or re-purposed when trying to sell me something and chances are that I will buy it.  There was a fun little vendor- Make Shop Live that had a ton of re-purposed products…. like bottle caps!  They made magnets and pin-cushion rings out of bottle caps! How can you not fall in love?!  Here are a few photos of their booth space:

 

      

 

There was also a vendor who will “Pimp Your Bike!”  - SpokeNWheel Designs - this vendor is all about bike bells! Yes, bike bells! She had all kinds, sushi ones, eyeballs, letters and more…. but I ordered a custom bell…. I’ll post a quick picture when it comes.  Can’t wait to share with you- but in the meantime here are some of her other bells:

 

 

 

All in all, it was a pretty fun day.  I was hoping for some DIY projects, but I ended up buying quite a bit of fun stuff instead.  After the fair we all (the girls from the shop and myself) headed over to Father’s Office for lunch and beer.  Yum.  Hopefully next time the craft fair is in town I’ll know a little bit earlier and give you all a little heads up so you can go experience it for yourself.

I have lived in LA all of my life and have never taken advantage of the wonderful and interesting things and events this city and southern California have to offer.  Rory and I decided we want to start attending more local events… like festivals.  So we have a few planned for the upcoming months, like the Beaumont Cherry Festival and the Gilroy Garlic Festival (I have wanted to go for so many years). But two Sundays ago was the Oxnard Strawberry Festival.

So we got to the festival and one of the first things I saw was this lost and found sign.  Lost your car keys and your child? Don’t worry we have now combined the two into one amazing lost and found location!!! How convenient! … only at a festival will you find a sign like this.

 

Rory and I skipped breakfast that day and we were very excited to get our hands on some strawberry themed food (after all that is why we came).  First up was, of course the chocolate covered strawberries.  Mmmm…..

 

 

Then we made our way through the vendor area where there were tons of local artists and vendors selling all kinds of interesting things.  From left to right- there was a guy who would re-purpose or up-cycle silverware and turn them into something interesting and functional (like a napkin holder), there was a woman who made these gorgeous stained glass pieces, and a man who had hand carved wooden bowls.

 

   

 

Next we found our way (by nose) to the funnel cakes. Wow and Yum! We shared “The Works” with cinnamon sugar instead of powdered sugar (just to mix it up a bit).  We devoured that thing in less than 10 minutes… not quite a record, but for me it was.  Here is a picture of our delicious funnel cake – with strawberries of course.

 

 

After we finished eating we noticed that there was a whole funnel cake making line behind the tent.  It was absolutely mesmerizing to watch all these people making the funnel cakes.  Here are some photos I took – they make me want another funnel cake now!

 

       

 

Next Rory and I walked around for a bit and watched a pie throwing contest…. unfortunately it wasn’t as exciting as I thought it would be…. maybe because it was little kids throwing the pies… there wasn’t much of a thrill.  We walked around a bit more and watched some live music.

Then we decided to get something more substantial to eat… Ha!  We went with the beer battered garlic and crab fries. Oh yeah! Gotta love fair food!  It was actually some of the best fries I have ever had and most definitely the best thing I ate that day.  Here is a glorious photo of the fries. Wow!!!

 

 

All in all it was a pretty good experience.  I have never been to a food festival before and wasn’t sure what to expect.  We only stayed for about three-ish hours…. and I probably wont go again.  But we had good food, a good time and a good day.  And of course we left with a case of strawberries (I froze some to make ice-cream with when I find the time).  Here is Rory with the case of strawberries…. and look a celebrity citing behind him…. STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE!!!

 

 

Last Sunday was the Vintage Expo here in Santa Monica.  I went to the expo for one reason and one reason only- to see Linda Sicard – The Button Lady. I spent about five hours with Linda carefully picking and choosing buttons for both me and the shop.  I need more buttons like I need a hole in the head… but how could I resist?!  Here are a few photos of Linda’s booth… see what I mean when I say I can’t resist?

 

 

All the buttons Linda sells are at least as old as vintage, some are even antique! She has everything from plastic, to wood, to Victorian Glass, to Bakelite & Celluliod and much much more.  So after about five-ish hours I actually left with a pretty good selection of buttons.  Here is what I took home:

From left to right: diminutive glass, diminutive bakelite, metal with an amber-like square.

On the left diminutive glass, on the right carved bakelite.

From left to right: metal, bakelite with mother of pearl center, and metal.

From left to right: painted metal, metal with mother of pearl, and hand carved bakelite.

Victorian Glass

Assorted vintage metal

Assorted plastics, mostly celluliod and bakelite.

Linda will be attending a few more shows in California.  If you happen to be up in San Mateo, Ca this week make sure to stop by the California State Button Show and visit the Unbuttons! booth- Say “Hi” to Linda!