Not Martha

craft stuff

Magpie & Cake recommends Knitting Help’s abbreviations explained page, which includes some videos, yay.

I really like the knitted goods at Wing NYC, via Mighty Goods.

Knitgrrl has a new book coming out called Alternation: Transform. Embellish. Customize, and it’s got it’s own website –

Making a fabric heart garland for Valentine’s Day, at One Hour Craft.

A recommendation for the Fiskars SewSharp Scissors Sharpener at Cool Tools.

I continue to appreciate that the people on the Craftster forums keep up their own indexes, like this ultimate purses, bags and wallets tutorials index which lead me to reversible cut out handle bag, clutch clutch clutch tutorial, classy peated iridescent clutch, cut out handle tutorial (this is how I prefer to do cut out handles, it’s like a bound button hole), slouchy hobo bag, nintendo messenger bag, cosmetics bag, and the monster purse.

· comments [5] · 01-31-2007 · categories:craft ·


I received the Craftivity book a while back and it promptly got buried under a pile of magazines and catalogs. I unearthed it last week and I regret it taking me so long to get to it because the book is amazing.

It is divided into parts based on material: Yarn & String, Fabric & Thread, Paper & Plastic, Glass & Ceramics, Wood & Metal, and Lost & Found. Each part starts with the basics – how to knit, spin, crochet and embroider, Kool Aid dye yarn, silkscreen and basics of wood working. All these are things you can find online but I get a cozy feeling knowing it’s all gathered here in this book for me. The projects in each part start with the easy and work up to Craft Master level, projects include knitting a hammock, wall murals and a lit up display shelf. Each project is clearly explained from the origin of the idea through to clear instructions, and everything is photographed beautifully.

I feel refreshed and inspired after paging through the book and I’m looking forward to a bunch of the projects I’d like to do — I must have a pom-pom rug for my bedroom. Other projects which caught my eye are the felted flower brooch, turning t-shirts into underwear, graffiti rubber doormat, a nice sturdy bed frame, embroidered screen door and moss graffiti.

Craftivity: 40 Projects for the DIY Lifestyle by Tsia Carson, founder of Supernaturale.

· comments [9] · 01-30-2007 · categories:books ·

99% of germs disagree

Microwaving sponges might not kill germs (via TMN), and it just be a little dangerous (also).

· comments [6] · 01-30-2007 · categories:links ·

follow up

How to put up an Ikea Lack shelf, at Ikea Hacker. More importantly see this comment by Splatgirl: “You gotta drill your own holes in the metal bracket thingie instead of using the ones already in it. The hole spacing that IKEA uses has nothing in common with any wall I’ve ever seen but it takes two whole minutes to mark and drill the bracket according to YOUR walls’ stud spacing and then you can load that baby up to your heart’s content.”

· comments [1] · 01-30-2007 · categories:the home ·

added to my Vancouver to-buy list

Chocolat magazine, at decor8.

· comments [3] · 01-30-2007 · categories:the home ·


How to disable the stupid Snap Preview things that are popping up on everyone’s site these days. At Kottke.

· comments [10] · 01-30-2007 · categories:technology ·

soup swap

I attended a really excellent soup swap yesterday. (A what?) I came home with Chicken Bacon Corn Chowder, Potato Leek, Crock Pot Beef and Barley, and Roasted Winter Squash and Chestnut with Indian Spices. On the way there Maggi and I found ourselves behind this car:

See more pictures on Flickr.

· comments [11] · 01-29-2007 · categories:food ·


Mighty Girl has been nesting, check out her awesome Terrariums, I love the glass containers she used all lined up on a bookshelf. This makes me think I might be able to keep a plant alive in my home. Also see how they painted bubbles in the nursery, so great.

And for us, Apartment Therapy has reviews of the Hercules Hook and the Monkey Hook (be sure to read the comments, some cheaper solutions are in there). Also for us, at This Old House:
installing a prehung door, hanging and interior door, replacing and interior door, fitting old doors in new frames, lining up door hinges, and plumb hinges and jambs. We have a bi-fold door that needs to go, unfortunately it cannot be replaced with a pocket door.

· comments [2] · 01-29-2007 · categories:the home ·

valentine planning

One Hour Craft has up instructions on how to make Sexy String Panties for V-Day, so cute.

Go see the Mighty Goods 2007 Valentine’s Day Gift Guide, you’ve still got a couple of weeks.

· comments [0] · 01-29-2007 · categories:craft · shopping ·

the bloggies

Aw, look at that, I’ve been nominated for a Bloggie in the Best Craft Weblog category, thank you so much. And what good company – Angry Chicken, Design*Sponge, Make: Blog and Crazy Aunt Purl are all there as well. Go on and vote for your favorites, as usual the whole round up is fantabulous and I’ve got plenty of new to me sites to check out.

· comments [13] · 01-26-2007 · categories:mumbling ·

knitty gritty

Vickie Howell is coming to Seattle for a book signing at the Northgate Pacific Fabrics & Crafts for her book Knitty Gritty Knits (DIY): 25 Fun & Fabulous Projects on February 3rd from 1 to 3 p.m.

· comments [6] · 01-26-2007 · categories:events · knitting ·

stop it

A few convergent mentions had me thinking about Drysol and Certain Dri, not necessarily because I need it but because it’s one of those things that seems to come up every few years, and it’s good to know about. Drysol is a prescription medication that stops excessive sweating, it’s a brand name for aluminum chloride hexahydrate. In the US Drysol (20% aluminum chloride hexahydrate) is by prescription only, but you can get Certain Dri (12%) on the shelf. I first heard about these two things at Pamie, where so many of us learned about all sorts of girl hygiene. She got a lot of advice (see part two as well), then tried Certain Dri and declared it a success. It definitely seems like one of those things that would be good to keep in mind for important events, I’ve heard of it being used for wedding days and I wonder what people walking down the red carpet use (Botox perhaps?).

Anyhow, the most recent mentions I found about Drysol and Certain Dri were this question on Ask Metafilter and in Episode 30 of Lip Gloss and Laptops. Both places also recommend Mitchum. Lip Gloss and Laptops really loves Kiehl’s Superbly Efficient Anti-Perspirant & Deodorant. I’m feeling a little deodorant burn out these days and I’m going to seek out some Mitchum next.

· comments [22] · 01-26-2007 · categories:beauty · links ·

500 degrees

The knob on my Chefmate dutch oven is only oven safe up to 350 degrees, which isn’t nearly enough for the no-knead bread. I went in search of replacement options and found this Le Creuset branded stainless steel knob for about $10 (you can also find replacement phenolic knobs), and this mention on the Cook’s Illustrated message boards of simply using a stainless steel kitchen cabinet knob. I’ve seen other mentions of using a few nuts and a large washer, other people find wrapping the plastic Le Creuset knob in foil protects it well enough from high heat. I’ll report back on what I find and how it works. In the mean time, what do you use?

· comments [34] · 01-25-2007 · categories:food · links ·

they pull me back in

I found the Grail Of The Moment at Target last night. That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the Cheftmate enameled cast iron pot:

I was starting to seriously doubt if I really even needed an enameled cast iron pot after all, but there it was sitting all innocent and unchipped.

For those of you just tuning in the $40 Chefmate enameled cast iron pot at Target was ranked as good as (though limited to a single 5 quart size) a Le Creuset in a recent Cook’s Illustrated magazine. Combined with the great no-knead bread incident of late 2006 and the pots were quickly sold out. Checking back on the thread over at Chowhound and it appears the pots are reappearing on Target shelves, though the rumor is that they were only going to be stocked through the end of January 2007. Be aware that some people who spotted them at Target reported that the ones remaining on the shelf were badly chipped, which doesn’t bode well for the long term durability. I’m not a prolific cook and figure I’ll only be using my pot a dozen times a year, so I’m happy with the quality/price compromise.

Related links:

How do I wash flour and dough covered towels without making wheat paste in my washing machine? at Ask Metafilter.

Jim Lahey was on the Martha Stewart show making the No-Knead Bread, and you can watch the segment here (fifth and sixth segments) and find the recipe here. Thanks to Sassy Priscilla for the link. (Cup and a half of water, in case you’re wondering.)

updated: Oh hey, they are offering it online now as well – Round Cast Iron Casserole Pot with Lid – Red:

Thank you for the heads up Christine and Chelsea.

· comments [38] · 01-24-2007 · categories:food · shopping ·

right after the most depressing day of the year

Today is National Soup Swap Day. And what is a soup swap? This explains all.

· comments [5] · 01-23-2007 · categories:food ·