today is the day! =(^・x・^)=

Today IS the day! The annual Toronto Yarn Hop! Caturday the cup cozy is chilling out at my neighbourhood LYS Yarnsomniacs, one of the many exciting stops on our grand tour of Toronto LYS’s today!

A bunch of us (over 120 people, to be more precise! :D) are yarn-crafting in public transit and going around to different independent yarn shops today while raising funds for Sistering, a 24/7 drop-in/support centre for women who are homeless or precariously housed. Last year we raised around $2700, which went toward much needed services such as primary healthcare, counselling, support groups and meal program (learn more about the event by reading my previous post here).

If you’re not able to physically come to the yarn hop this year, you can still join us (and help us reach our fundraising goal of $3000!) by donating to Sistering through this link here, and in return I will send you the pattern for the Caturday cup cozy (more photos here), which is a pattern that I wrote for yarn hop participants to crochet along. You can donate any amount and you don’t have to tell me how much or send me proof, just simply make a donation then email me at genuinemudpie@gmail.com to let me know, and I will send you the pattern in appreciation :)

Happy weekend!

 

 

Caturday… and count down to YARN HOP!

 

The Great Toronto Yarn Hop is coming up in exactly a week, on July 14! :D

All of us volunteers are getting super excited and busy organizing for a fun day knitting/crocheting/yarn-crafting in public with other yarn enthusiasts. It’s a great event for people to get to know each other, make a statement about the importance of craft and creativity by crafting in public, and support independent yarn-craft businesses.

So how does it work, you ask? Yarn-hoppers buy tickets and get organized into teams that take different public transit routes throughout the city to visit different independent yarn shops. At the end of the day we reconvene at a resto-pub for food, drinks and raffles. Proceeds from tickets and raffles go to Sistering, a 24/7 women’s support and drop-in centre that offers much needed services like primary healthcare, support groups, counselling and meal program to women who are experiencing homelessness/precarious housing, social marginalization and other challenging circumstances.

Sistering has a special place in my heart because that was where I trained as a social worker. The participants, volunteers and staff were the most valuable, knowledgeable teachers and I wouldn’t know what I know now and be where I am today without them.

There are still tickets left on a few of the routes, you can find out more details and buy tickets here

If you can’t physically come to the Yarn Hop, you can still join us! I wrote a crochet cup cozy pattern as part of the gifts for the Yarn Hop participants, called Caturday (because, you know, the Yarn Hop is on a Saturday). You can donate to Sistering through this Yarn Hop link, and I will send you the pattern! 

You can donate any amount, and you don’t have to let me know how much you donated or send me any proof, I trust that we all want to make a difference in someone’s life when we have the opportunity to. Simply send me an email at genuinemudpie@gmail.com letting me know that you have donated, and I will send you a pdf file of the pattern in reply :)

The cup cozy uses a small amount of DK yarn and 4 mm hook. It has a dense, textured fabric that will keep your fingers safe from hot beverages. If you’re not into cats, simply omit the last row and the embroidery, and you’ll have a simple yet not-so-plain cup cozy to show off a beautiful yarn. Great for using up scraps!

Want to know more about how your donations will make a difference? Visit Sistering’s website for information and inspiring stories from the most resilient women. 

In the meanwhile, I was also busy loom knitting a mascot for the team that Mike and I are co-leading — Team Alpaca! Look how cuuuute… (if I do say so myself, haha)

I’ve named him Cousin Alpaca, because I have a plush llama, who is perhaps like a cousin to alpaca…? Anyway, I thought Cousin Alpaca is a good name :D

If you loom knit and want to make your own alpaca, the pattern is by the Loom Muse and can be found here

If you’re in or near Toronto, come hang out with us and Cousin Alpaca next Saturday! :D Hope your weekend is full of crafty goodness!

 

 

this week’s awesome finds… and YARN HOP!

Adorable llamas to hold your yarn/embroidery scraps and it’s a free printable! :D From Picot Pals.

 

These would make cheerful buntings and adorable blanket squares. Llama granny squares from Maria’s Blue Crayon.

 

Look at these party llamas made of party plates! From Handmade Charlotte.

 

For the more adventurous, this no-drama-llama is very cuddly. Free pattern from Red Heart <3

Why so many llamas, you ask?

Well, this year I’m going to be team captain again for The Great Toronto Yarn Hop on Saturday July 14, and I’m with Team Alpaca! (formerly TTC Knit-Along — but we want to expand the name to include all forms of yarn-crafting and we actually have no official affiliation with the Toronto Transit Commission, hence the name change)

Alpacas are kind of cousins of llamas (I think), hence all the llama crafts :)

What’s so great about The Great Toronto Yarn Hop? It is an event where yarn-crafters get into teams and visit various local yarn shops in Toronto, shop for high quality yarn and enjoy special discounts, knit/crochet/yarn-craft in public on buses/streetcars/trains, meet other yarn enthusiasts and share projects/tips/jokes, support independent LYS’s, AND raise funds for Sistering, a local, 24/7 drop-in and support centre for women that offers services like counselling, housing help, meal program, primary healthcare, and a safe place to be. At the end of the day we all gather at a pub for food and drinks and raffle draws! I’ve only been involved for the past couple of years but this event is in its 12th year! What can be more great? 

If you’re in Toronto or close to it, we would love for you to join us! Tickets can be bought here for just $20. Each team follows a different route that visits different stores, and you can check out all the different available teams/routes and how the whole thing works here. And be quick because quite a few teams have sold out already! 

Need ideas for what projects to shop for or what to make during the Yarn Hop?

This cardigan is made with two hexagons sewn together! Very clever. Make it with a breeze cotton/linen for summer or wool for cozy fall/winter layering! Imagine using yarn with long transition colour changes! From Make & Do Crew.

 

What about a portable project perfect for knitting on the public transit, like these fluffy clouds? From Bernat Yarn.

 

Making granny squares is another excellent portable idea. This comfy summer sweater pattern is free this week only on Love Crochet!

 

Happy making, everyone! :D

 

sneak peeks!

It’s been quiet on the blog for a while, and that’s because I’ve been busy working on a multi-pattern project!

I’m going to put out an e-book!

Yes!

I thought I’ve been writing up patterns for a while, perhaps it’s time to put together something more “official”, with different sizing options, etc.

One of the projects does involve the above black cat, and to join in the fun you can download the peeking cat picture above as a desktop wallpaper! Get the full size picture here and then right-click it to set it as a background, so you too can have those glowing eyes peering at you every time you turn on your computer ;)

Here are a few sneak peeks of some of the patterns in the book! I’m still working on one other, hoping to put this out sometimes in July :) 

Yes, this top can be worn with either side in front — it’s like two tops in one! :D

And this one definitely needs a better photo shoot than stripes-on-stripes — but I was feeling happy that the drape worked out as the way I imagined.

So, stay tuned! :D And hope everyone’s enjoying some sun this week!

 

shine on

 

In these dark and uncertain times, there can be great value in imagining a bit of star in each human soul. Not just that it gives some hope for humanity at a time when man’s inhumanity to man seems ever on the increase; but also because it points to an inner brightness that can light the way in dark times. 

― Michael Meade, The Genius Myth

 

May each of us shine on with hope, peace, love, and crafting hands into 2018!

Much gratitude for everyone who journeyed with genuine mudpie over the past year. Looking forward to sharing more crafty goodness in the next! May your Christmas and new year be merry, and may you be surrounded by warmth, love, new inspirations, and many blessings in 2018.

All my best wishes,
Trish

 

tutorials, tutorials, tutorials

Remember sakura mochi? :D

He’s the first ever posted pattern on this blog!! Feels like ages ago. It is ages ago. It was in March 2010 that I started this blog, and today it is home to over 40 tiny plush patterns, almost 20 wearable patterns, and over 30 other craft tutorials.

When I came up with the numbers I was quite blown away myself! Actually I was more blown away by the fact that I never counted or took stock of what has been created on this blog until now. Really because I have two days off, with nothing planned, but only had to use up the vacation hours that would otherwise be lost by the end of the year. 

So I did a tutorial overhaul! :D

I realized that even when I was scrolling through my own tutorials it was tedious to have to scroll forever back and forth to find what I need. So I categorized them! 

If you go to the Tutorials page now, you’ll see a list of categories, from tiny plush to non-yarn crafts! 

I don’t know how to do this just yet but in the future I hope to layout the tutorials in a grid rather than a list, like I see on other nice modern looking blogs :) But I hope at least the categories make things easier to find.

In the beginning this blog was more for me as a way to feel motivated to create, and record patterns and how-to’s that I come up with so I can go back to them later if I need to remake something. I really only expected about a dozen people reading it, mostly my family and friends. It’s never intended to make profit. I welcome yarn and related products and promote yarn-related businesses by writing review posts, but I always turn down offers for ads. I have not yet written a pattern for sale. I’m lazy about the blog’s appearance (hence the long overdue tutorial overhaul and the early 2000’s look, kind of like my everyday appearance :S). But it’s a comfortable place that I always go back to, a virtual home, updating and writing posts even when I’m swamped, even when I don’t feel like it, even when I thought it’s not amounting to anything, even when WordPress tells me that my readership is dwindling. Somehow, I want to keep it alive.

Since then I’ve met many great people through this blog, sharing such kind comments and crafting along, letting me know that they’re trying out my patterns, exchanging notes so we can figure out modifications together, communicating in different languages across the continents (me using Google Translate), actually exchanging snail mail and hoping to one day meet in person… I’m so grateful for the connections and for the kindness you’ve shown me and genuine mudpie. Perhaps it is not really the blog that I want to keep alive, but the connections and creativity that sustain this blog.

So cheers to you! Let’s craft forward! :D

 

mystery dino CAL!

Introducing — mystery dino crochet-along! :D

This idea has been brewing in my head for a while, to make a series of tiny dinosaurs, thinking about different dinosaur shapes and ways to articulate them with crochet stitches… and I’ve been trying to figure out the best way to organize it and invite everyone to join in on the fun. But at the same time finding myself procrastinating with the designing… So I figure, I’d just launch it! That would make sure that I do it!

So here it is! Over the next little while you’ll find a dinosaur pattern posted every week, or, “excavated” from a square of the badlands above (ha!). Follow along to see what dinosaurs get unearthed! :D 

As you can see one dinosaur is already out! You can find the tiny stegosaurus here

What to do with tiny dinosaurs, you ask? It makes a wonderful zipper pull, brooch/pin, and travel companion…

They would also make really friendly fridge magnets. Or a baby mobile with all of them together. Or a pocket pal. They’re flat so it’s super easy to mail one to someone to brighten their day! Nothing says “never in a million years did I think I’d find someone so utterly perfect…” better than sending a dinosaur! (haha, maybe not, but still! Who doesn’t love a tiny dino?) 

So I invite you to journey along, and send me your dinosaur pics, and at the end I’ll put my amateur graphic design skills to good use and make a virtual dino party with all of your pictures! It will be a riot! :D

You can share your pictures by:

  1. Emailing genuinemudpie[at]gmail[dot]com
  2. Bloggers: leave a comment on any of the Mystery Dino CAL posts with a link to your blog post with the picture.
  3. Instagram: tag me @genuinemudpie and use the hashtag #mysterydinocal
  4. Join the Ravelry group
  5. Post your FOs to my Ravelry dino project pages

 

I hope you will join me! Have a rawrrring weekend everyone! :D 

 

countdown to the TTC knitalong!

I spent yesterday morning stuffing awesome swag bags with awesome people for everyone coming to the TTC Knitalong (heart-eyes, heart-eyes, heart-eyes). Check this out!

So excited!! It’s only one week away! It’s not too late to sign up, but hurry, there are only a few tickets left!

So grateful for the sponsors this year!! <3 we’ve got very nice mercerized cotton, large buttons, needles, hooks and knooks (new craft to learn btw!), gauge ruler, and knitting patterns!

There are ALSO lots and lots of YARN raffle prizes, which you can check out on the TTC Knitalong Instagram feed :) And you can get a free raffle ticket for every yarn or finished item donation! The yarn donations go to organizations like Street Knit, Knitted Knockers and hospitals. Proceeds from the event goes to Sistering, a drop-in and support centre for women in Toronto.

Come join us this Saturday if you’re in the Toronto area! :D You’ll see me with team Magic Loop!

Have a good week everyone!

 

spring knitting

There was this buy one get one free deal for Caron Simply Soft yarn one day at Michaels. I was working on a project that needed dark blue at the time and thought I only needed one skein. So I picked up this fun self-striping fiesta colour for the free skein because I love the neon yellow in it. One of my nieces birthday was coming up soon, so I thought I’d make her a fun vest with it :D (pictured above) The pattern is from issue 88 of Inside Crochet, the Imogen cardigan. I added the arcade stitch to the bottom third of it for more fun :)

And then I ended up needing more of this blue yarn, so I had to get another skein, and had the chance to pick up yet another free skein of fun self-striping yarn!

(One might even suspect that I did this on purpose so I could get more free skeins to grow my stash rather than just getting the 2 skeins of blue that I needed in my first round of shopping. But I promise I really thought I only needed one skein of that blue. Who would want to grow their stash? That’s ridiculous.) 

What do I do with this delicious mixed berry colour? Turned out that one of my best friends was visiting from out of town with her most adorable daughter. So I made another vest, plus a matching bias scarf for mum! :D

I used the Chasing Blizzard pattern for the scarf, but only followed it loosely, because my gauge is different. It was a lot of fun to knit. Here I am kind of modelling it so you can see the stitch patterns a bit better.

And the bunny rocking the vest :D It was part of a cardigan pattern from a very old issue of Crochet Today magazine. 

She insisted on playing with the rice cooker measuring cups at the juncture of kitchen and dining room. (that was how her mum was able to get a picture of the front of the cardigan)

And spring is the perfect time to go on a knitting/crocheting/yarn crafting adventure! Two years ago I participated in the TTC knitalong, it was a great deal of fun visiting different local yarn shops, meeting other yarn crafters and knitting in public! (you can see my pictures here!). I even got a few exclusive patterns and won a sweater-quantity of handspun from one of the shops!

This year the knitalong is going to be on Saturday July 15! It’s been a hugely popular event that’s entirely run by volunteers, so this year I’m helping to organize the event and we need a few more yarn-loving folks to help out! So if Toronto is your neighbourhood and if you love yarn I think you should absolutely join me :D

It’s really a fantastic event that brings people together, draws business to independent yarn shops and benefits Sistering, a local drop-in and support centre for women. So! The next planning meeting is Saturday May 20 at 1pm, and we can even get ice cream afterwards! :D For more information and updates, check out the event’s Facebook page here.

Hope everyone’s enjoying the sun!

 

all was well

This week’s quick make! :D

I had quite a bit of leftover untwisted multi-colour yarn left from the pink fisherman hat project, I thought it would make a great colour block cowl! Also a perfect opportunity to try the no purl rib pattern from Purl Soho, which I have been eyeing for some time :D

I used 10 mm straight needles, cast on 27 stitches, used 2 strands of bulky weight yarn held together for the grey part, knitted till the piece was about 45″ long, then sewed the ends together to make a cowl. Here’s a better look at the magically made ribbed texture, with no purling involved! 

It is very thick and warm :)

Speaking of warm scarves and hats, I’ve just discovered that there’s a knit/crochet-together event in the city next Sunday! If you’re in the city, maybe consider joining me to knit for those who can use some handmade warmth this winter? Warming Toronto Knitting Day is happening next Sunday Feb. 26, 12:30–6pm at the Imperial Pub (Dundas/Yonge). I’ve started another fisherman rib hat for the event!

And of course you notice the rad t-shirt I’m wearing in the first photo? :D 

Mike and I finally visited the Lockhart, a Harry Potter themed bar in the west end of Toronto, for brunch!

The food was marvelous and quite affordable. The Better Beer (a butter beer in my book :D) does not disappoint!

Highly recommend if you’re in the neighbourhood, especially if you’ve enjoyed the Harry Potter series. (confession: I’ve actually not read the books, but quite enjoyed the movies! Maybe I’ll read the books one day…)

Wishing everyone a lovely weekend! :D