‘Escape’ crafting: things I want to make

When I get frustrated with things in life I can’t change, and need a mental lift, I always think of crafts.   I love making small changes, improving a bit of my life, making a tiny thing new.  In the past few weeks I’ve finished scarves for four of my daughters, using yarn I bought years ago.   The other day the kids and I cleaned up a spot behind the hay barn to use for picture taking.  Monday I took an old shirt of mine and turned it into a cute skirt for my youngest.

Yesterday I bought a yummy ball of yarn and some new bamboo knitting needles, hoping to make these sweet socks. I ‘ll show you pictures of what I’m doing later.  I have been experimenting knitting on the round with a single circular needle.  It is fun but tricky. The start of my ‘sock’ ended up more the size of a hat toddler’s hat.  The yarn’s too big and I don’t think I understand the sock pattern well enough to shrink it, so I think I’ll just go with it and let it be a hat.  Here’s another cute sock pattern I’ve got my eye on for later, with smaller yarn.

Another random idea I’m saving for later: turning a mason jar into a soap dispenser.  Isn’t it cute?

Do you use crafts as a break from ‘real’ life?  Have you bookmarked any fun ideas lately?

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  1. I made one of those soap dispensers last year. I still love it! I have had to replace the lid a few times, as they rust. I also had had to replace the pump a few times. It gets a lot of use in our kitchen.

  2. I have been crocheting my own dishcloths as an escape lately. Productive escape is a beautiful thing.

  3. That soap dispenser is sooo cute. I might give it a try.
    I do a lot of knitting and crocheting. It does tend to give my spirits a lift – especially if I’m making something for someone else.

  4. I’m a big fan of the following sites, and have borrowed some of their ideas. My crafting mostly takes the form of cooking and sewing.

    Chica and Jo: Making a drawstring backpack (I made a dozen of these as Christmas gifts for my Sunday School kids last year)
    http://www.chicaandjo.com/2009/04/27/make-a-drawstring-backpack/

    MADE: Freezer paper stenciling and the shirtdress
    http://www.dana-made-it.com/2008/08/tutorial-freezer-paper-stencil-makenna.html
    http://www.dana-made-it.com/2009/04/summer-fun-shirt-dress-tutorial.html

    DudeCraft: Paper-cutout portraits
    http://www.dudecraft.com/2009/11/papercut-portraits-tutorial.html

    With the Crickets: Making a hat out of an old sweater
    http://withthecrickets.blogspot.com/2009/11/sweater-hat-how-to.html

    This Mama Makes Stuff: T-shirt to baby gown
    http://thismamamakesstuff.com/2008/08/tutorial-t-shirt-to-newborn-gown/

  5. You do usually need much finer yarn for socks Mary, if the pattern calls for thicker yarn it usually has much fewer stitches on. The cotton is great for making dishcloths. I can’t use a circular for socks, it is rather tricky, I like to use the 4 or 5 double pointed needles 🙂 Let us see your cute hat when you’re finished it.

  6. That is the wrong yarn for socks. Lion Brand does make a great self-striping sock yarn, though. Pretty much the biggest yarn you can use for socks is sport weight (which I think that cotton is), but you need to use a much smaller needle, like normally sport weight uses size 6 but for socks use a 3. (I know far too much about yarn for my own good. I need your next book to be “$5 a week craft projects” please.
    Cotton yarn is also cute for kids’ sweaters because they wash easily and cover little shoulders in the summer without adding lots of heat like wool or acrylic.
    I’ve done well with socks on two circular needles but not on one. I’d imagine the heel and gusset are too hard?
    Do you know about ravelry.com? Tons of patterns, many free, and you can search for patterns and pictures with the yarn you’re trying to use. Great if you purchase nice yarn on sale without a project in mind.

  7. I’m a crocheter, but understand what you’re saying. The world can be swirling around me, but if I have yarn and a crochet hook, it’s all good. It relaxes me and helps me think clearer. I was just thinking to myself what I nerd I must be to spend my spare time perusing crochet sites/blogs for new patterns and to figure out how to modify things. I even use my I-phone to watch youtube vidoes of crocheting when I’m sitting places with nothing to do!

  8. I love the knitty.com site for inspiration. I made the knit doll from one of the patterns and it turned out so cute. I loved that I bought organic cotton yarn and stuffing so the entire thing was pesticide free. It made me feel great giving it to my little girl.

    Recently I have taken to floral arranging, again. I love having new arrangements around the house for the seasons. It’s fast, cheap (when I catch the supplies on sale) and looks way more expensive than it is.

  9. Really cute socks and I love the mason jar dispenser! I think I’ll add that last one to the long list of crafty projects I’d like to do too.

  10. For many things for Yarn, I go to the Lion Brand website.
    Also subscribe to Coats & Clark e-newsletter
    both have free patterns and yarn descriptions for their products

    Be careful going to some crafting places because the spam really pours in after a visit there.

  11. Just came to your site though Sheila’s post today. Saw this and had to check it out. How do you find time for crafts? I have such a hard time keeping up with my housework (my maintenance takes up my whole morning!) and I only have one little boy and a small house! I am working on going through a book on time management (One Year to an Organized Life by Regina Leeds) and am hoping that it will help. I’m also commiting to spending less time on the computer, yikes!
    I would love to get more into knitting. It’s been a couple years since I have (I have a half finished blanket that I started making when I was pregnant with my son) but REALLY want to learn how to make wool soakers for his cloth diapers. Anyway, love the site and looking forward to reading more!