FOs: Fall Knitting 2013

After nearly a year-long knitting hiatus, I finally picked up the needles again a few weeks ago. And I’m having a hard time stopping! Here is about two weeks’ work… a few quick small projects and one that’s been a WIP for years.


Pattern: none
Yarn: malabrigo sock in 852 persia
Needles: US Size 0 and 1
Started: Dec 24, 2009
Finished: Sep 20, 2013
Ravelry Link


I think these socks win the award for longest duration of any project I’ve ever attempted, and it wasn’t because they were a big project or because of the difficulty. I cast them on two-at-a time, finished the toe and the reinforced heel all within the first month or so. It was the tremendously boring 1×1 ribbing on size 0 needles that took nearly 4 years to complete.


I finished them up at a cafe over a cranberry apple ginger iced tea, and decided to add the picot edging as a coastal twist. As much as I like them, I don’t forsee any small-gauge socks being attempted again in the future. Although I am using the remaining yarn for a pair of armwarmers, so we’ll see how that goes.


Pattern: none, inspired by Alexandra Tinsley’s Mix No. 24
Yarn: jil eaton minnow merino in 4720 aqua
Needles: US Size 8
Started: Aug 30, 2013
Finished: Sep 10, 2013
Ravelry Link


I saw this on the designer’s blog, Dull Roar, but I can’t get myself to buy hat patterns. So I spent an evening swatching (and watching the Hunger Games) and about two weeks knitting, and I had this super adorable bonnet!


I used exactly two skeins, down to the very last inch (the dangling pom poms were completed by gathering all the remaining yarn ends, splitting the pile in half, and wrapping around my index and middle finger until I ran out. Thanks to the un-plied yarn, they still plumped up quite nicely.


Pattern: Zeebee by Schmeebot
Yarn: noro cash island in 01 (black, brown, blue, teal)
Needles: US Size 8
Started: Sept 13, 2013
Finished: Sep 18, 2013
Ravelry Link


Oh, look! I knit from a pattern! Or at least… a detailed formula. I had this yarn sitting in my basket. I don’t know why I never learn that buying one skein of Noro is a bad idea. It’s not quite enough for a hat, not nearly enough for a scarf or shawl, and not suitable for anything like a toy or baby booties since it’s kind of scratchy and the fibers are rather weak.

But, I don’t learn… and so it was just sitting there staring at me. I decided to knit up a quick hat using a forgiving pattern that would show the variegation nicely.


At first, I loved how it was going. But around 6 rows til the very end, I ran out of yarn. Of course. I doubled up some Shiraito from my other Noro hat (below) and figured it was Noro so nobody would notice.


Then I got to the end seam, and by the second stitch into the graft, the yarn had torn. I spliced the ends back together but knew the same thing would keep happening, so I did a very obvious 3-needle bind off as a design element.


The seam doesn’t bother me. I actually think I might pull it out and re-do it in bright red or something. It feels super grunge and the perfect hat for running through leaves and sipping hot cider.


Pattern: none, inspired by Graham
Yarn: noro shiraito in 01 (teal, yellow, green, gray, black)
Needles: US Size 8
Started: Sept 13, 2013
Finished: Sep 18, 2013
Ravelry Link


This one was kind of the same deal as the hat above. I saw the yarn while in Rockland, ME at Over the Rainbow, a totally adorable LYS, and I had never seen this line of Noro before so I grabbed one. Why? Why do I do this? I cast on a plain stockinette hat immediately and had almost completed it by that night. Unfortunately, I tried it on and it was enormous. So I tore it out and started again. And again, enormous. The “ruler” app on the iPhone is really making me look like an idiot right about now. I finally got my gauge and cast on a more interesting hat. It was going to be Graham but, being Noro, I wanted to start top-down for fear of running out of yarn. And somewhere in between counting stitches and incorporating the pattern, I totally skewed it into a broken seed stitch (instead of a broken rib) and just left it. It’s kind of cute, whatever.


I actually had a bit of extra so I knit a tiny bow. I also had just enough left to complete the Zeebee hat (above), counted my blessings, and called it a day.

So that’s what I’ve been up to. Currently on the needles is a pair of arm warmers with the leftovers from the socks, and an oversized Lispenard for the winter. What have you been working on?

❤ v

we’re splitting up

It’s been over a year since my last post, but not without good reason! I liveblogged our 6-month road trip over at pilgrimages and traverses, where I’ll continue editing our favorite photos and posting them individually.


When we got home, we immediately put our event planner hats back on. As if planning weddings wasn’t enough, we got involved with the good folks over at the Free State Project and spearheaded the planning of their 10th annual Porcupine Freedom Festival. I’ll tell you, planning a week-long festival for ~1700 people in the woods of New Hampshire is not as easy as it sounds.


So that still doesn’t excuse the last 3 or so months, but we’ve just been concentrating on putting our businesses back together and recovering from the longest year of all time. We’ve also been putting finishing touches on our NYC apartment and house hunting in New Hampshire, but I finally decided that dumping all that information here would end up being a disaster in the long run. So I’ve started giftable@home, a splinter of this blog, where I’ll begin moving all home renovation, restoration, decoration, inspiration… you get the idea. Please follow me over there if you’re interested in keeping up with it.


From now on, this blog will be solely for crafts– knitting (including techniques and new patterns), sewing, jewelry making, and whatever else I end up dipping my toe in.

Hopefully this split will make everyone’s lives easier and be less distracting for anyone who is still following my ridiculous journey. Hope everyone else had an amazing year, looking forward to finally posting here again!

❤ v

Where in the world is giftable designs?

A few weeks from now, that will be a very difficult question to answer. Mike and I are embarking on a cross-country road trip that will keep us busy for at least a few months. We’ll be documenting our journey here, and on instagram as @imagesandverses.

We’ll both be working from the road, but obviously certain jobs will be nearly impossible (I will be bringing some bullet necklaces along but can’t make any new ones, and once they’re gone… they’re gone.)

I will still try to post some updates here, but it’ll be sparse. See you in… December? (Eek!!)

❤ v

To Martha and Beyond!

vm_ceremony140Well, the Martha newsstand date has come and gone, and I’ve never heard so many nice comments from people who aren’t even friends or family. My wedding planner even wrote up this beautiful post that means more to me than the story that was printed nationwide. She posted a bunch of photos that weren’t featured in the magazine, so if you’re interested in seeing more from our big day, head on over! We also have a feature on Martha Stewart Wedding’s website here.

Huge thanks again to Diana Ma (Diana Ma Weddings & Events), Meg Hamilton (Rodeo & Co Photography), Betsy Scott (Flower Kiosk), Jeanne Kalman (Well Dressed Cake), Doug Palardy (Ale House Inn), Evan Hennessy (Flavor Concepts), Joanne McDonough (Joya Beauty), Jenn Macek, and of course all our friends and family who have always supported us.

Phew! I never was one of those kids that gave acceptance speeches into a hairbrush in the mirror… this whole thing is pretty overwhelming. But I’m so happy for the great press everyone received. I know I’m booked up through the end of the year!

In renovation news, we’re finally finishing up details and still unpacking. Yes. Still. The stuff that we haven’t unpacked obviously isn’t important (we’ve lived without it for nearly a year now…) so I’m thinking of just taping them back up and putting them in storage. Kidding… kind of. Not really.

Big News…

Exactly one year ago, I was TAing printmaking classes for free just so I could use the studio to print my own wedding invitations. I poured my heart into those invites– pushing myself to design each piece, from save-the-date to thank you card, and print 125 of each by hand. Each color required it’s own screen, equaling right around 2400 passes of the squeegee. Each invite was cut to size, corners rounded, fit into a trifold, tied with twine, sealed with a wax stamp, and sent out with an array of vintage stamps.

And that was just the invites! The whole wedding, along with the apartment renovation, took up 100% of my time for almost an entire year. Both projects were completed at the same time (Late May/Early June), which is why it took me so long to post the renovation stuff here. And because I tend to keep personal stuff personal, I never mentioned any of this here (you can see some of the process of printing the invites on my wedding blog).

Well, it’s no longer personal because we’re going to be in Martha!

It’s been so hard to keep this a secret from even our closest friends, but everything has been finalized and I even have an advance copy of the magazine here in my apartment. The spread is rather short, but c’mon! It’s Martha effin’ Stewart!

I hope you’ll check out the issue, on newsstands Feb 27th. Since the renovation (which I’m almost done blogging about, I promise!), I’ve begun doing graphic design and event coordination for weddings and events in New England. It was just such a fun experience and I met so many great people… I love that I have the ability to give other brides the same magical feeling that I had on my wedding day. And after nearly 9 years with my better half, I like to think that I can impart some good relationship energy on others.

Renovation Close-Up: Office #1

Because it isn’t just as easy as picking out a color and waiting for the “after” photos, I’m going to start outlining each room, the process of design and renovation, and finally what I would change (or wouldn’t) if given the chance. I’m going to upload a ton of pictures with little descriptions, but if you just want the final run-down (or the finished pictures!), scroll to the bottom.

This is kind of half-assed of me. I’m posting a close-up of a room that isn’t even a room. But it is a separate space, so it’s kind of like a room by NY standards. At least I’m not talking about the shower in my kitchen (I was actually over at a friend’s apartment recently who has a shower in her kitchen. If you’re reading this– sorry! No judgments 🙂 ).

Since M and I both work from home, we wanted to each have our own office space. Back in Toronto, we bought a big desk and shared it, but since my space is always messy from crafting and his is always covered in paperwork, we decided to split off our offices into two spaces. I got the window side of the living room and he got the window side of the bedroom.

This is kind of what it looked like on paper:

As you can see, we divided up the space with furniture. My office is separated from the “living room” space with a wood credenza (aka liquor cabinet) and his by a huge Ikea Expedit bookshelf. This leaves slightly-larger-than-doorway-sized open spaces for us to “enter” our offices. Without this, I would spend my work day trying to catch a glimpse of the TV and he would roll over into bed around lunchtime.

I’m not going to go into renovation details. New floors, new AC units, new windows, new electric. Here’s a quick refresher:


before, clean-ish.


6 months of work in 3 images– how about that? Anyways, once we got moved in an unpacked about 80% of the boxes, I was finally able to SEE my office space again.

^I probably shouldn’t tell you how long we lived like this^

I put together the Ikea desk and the small Ikea Expedit bookshelf. I constructed some curtains (Ikea fabric. Do you see a trend?) and realized I had no space whatsoever for my yarn and fabric. Back to– guess where??– Ikea! 3 Billy bookcases and one week of hex keys and particleboard later, I have this:

ImageIsn’t she a beaut? I love her. The tops still need to be filled with tsotchkes– I can’t reach them without standing on a chair, so I didn’t want to put anything functional in there. I was finally able to start unpacking the rest of my office supplies, and later that week I had this:


There are still some blank spaces on the wall to fill in, and I want to do some fun crafty things with the desk. But overall, I’m happy with where I am right now. It’s a great space to work in. And hey– I’m not using the kitchen counter as a desk… anymore…


• Desk – Ikea… purchased years ago and no longer available.

• Bookshelf – Combination of Billy bookshelves from Ikea with glass doors and height extention ~$300ish

• Curtains – Ikea Monalis, $7/yd

• Flower Pots –Ikea Kardemumma, $4-6 each

• Egg chair – Ikea. Super old… they probably don’t make it anymore. And if they do, don’t buy it– least comfortable office chair ever.

• Chalkboard Window – from Building Character in Lancaster, PA

• Desk Lamp Bird Branch Task Light from Pottery Barn Kids.

• Art bulletin board and “Chinchilla Ranch” sign are handmade by yours truly. Bunny etching from Oldie’s Marketplace in Newburyport, MA (antique), $12. “Make Do and Mend” sign from Urban Outfitters, $20


Next post will be about some exciting life updates! Much more interesting than Ikea furniture!

2 Months Later……

Happy New Year, everyone! From the worst blogger in the world. Here’s what’s happened in the 2 months since my last post (oof):

♥ I typed up a post about refinishing the dresser and nightstand and wordpress DELETED it. For serious. I was all psyched to post it and then the next morning it wasn’t there… I’ve been too frustrated to re-write, until a second ago when I finally did. So technically it’s been like 30 seconds since my last post. I am a great blogger! Not really though.

♥ I spent a week putting my office together, and it looks awesome, if I do say so myself. Post on that later. Stop laughing, I will finish this series of posts if it kills me!

♥ I did NOT buy any furniture for the living room… it actually looks worse than ever (it is now a graveyard of furniture’s past). If we finish working on it before we sell the apartment, I will be surprised. Coffee tables are just SO $$$! I was psyched on this coffee table from Pottery Barn but when I went to see it in person all I could think was how much ramen I would have to eat to make up for spending $700 on a TABLE. I’d rather eat a huge plate of sushi on a folding card table than eat stolen saltines on a fancy glass coffee table. We also still haven’t hooked up the tv (long story) so we don’t spend very much time in that area anyway. This is what happens when you live in 200-400 sqft apartments your whole life and then suddenly you move into a 750 sqft mansion…

And in non-apartment news:

♥ I started doing event and graphic design… like, in a legit way. Working on some weddings and finishing some ads for real companies that will be in real printed materials. It’s all freelance, so if you want to talk, you know where to find me 🙂

♥ I also made a Facebook page for giftable designs… I’ve been trying to avoid all this self-promotion stuff but people were actually asking where they could buy my jewelry and stuff (!!), so now if something’s for sale it will be on there. I made a ton of new bullet necklaces so… have at it! I’m going to start getting stones custom-cut for bullet sizes that aren’t currently available (namely 9mm) so that will be cool. Here’s one I just sold, modeled by my ceramic gun vase (that’s double-self-promotion, kiddos!)

That was the most paragraphs I’ve ever started with the word “I” in my entire life. Back to normal blogging starting…now!