Category: alipyper likes to knit

esprit folk tunic

alipyper - siena in the garden

alipyper - siena sitting in the garden

alipyper - siena esprit folk tunic

The end of summer has flown by and I feel a little shell shocked and exhausted now that the kids are in school again. {G} had an amazing time in China and I still have a ton of pictures and thoughts to share from her trip. After she got back we took an impromptu family trip to San Diego for my birthday as a last “hurrah!” as a family. Getting {G} ready for her senior year, {I} ready to start high school as a freshman, and {K} ready to start junior high as a 7th grader has been intense! Today was the first day everyone had all-day classes and I just want to sleep for hours in the quiet house.

But I got pictures yesterday of the finished Esprit Folk Tunic I knit for a friend in exchange for both my boys to attend her week long art camp this summer and they are too cute not to share (this is the first of two sweaters I owe her).  Go here to get to the nitty gritty (please insert Nacho Libre voice here) on what yarn I used and how I adjusted the pattern. I’d really like to adjust the math to make an adult version for me. But that will have to be put at the end of a VERY long list of wip’s and other projects that have to take precedence. I wish I had Hermione’s time turner sometimes.

featured on darlyblog

alipyper - darlybird blog post creative home alipyper

I was featured on Darlybird‘s Darlyblog yesterday. You should go check it out! Thank you Rachel and Allison for the opportunity!

I know that I value creativity in my own life, but it was kind of hard to determine if I had been successful in creating an environment in my home that encouraged creativity in my children. In some ways I think I’ve been successful, and in other ways I think that I’ve been really selfish and unsuccessful. In any case, it was really good for me to think  and write about it. And I’m realizing just now that I never asked my kids what they thought! I’ll do that today. Should be interesting to hear what they think.

it’s been a busy week

handknit head scarf

It’s been kind of a busy week for me. I made up/adjusted a pattern for a head scarf/bandana/do-rag that the Mr. detests. Yes. Detests. He said to me, “I am really not attracted to you when you’re wearing that thing.” Ouch! Still not sure if I want to proceed to making more of them to sell if he felt that strongly about it. Darn! I thought it was cute and was very proud of myself for my brilliant adaptation.

k at starting line funrun 2014

k wins his grade funrun

{K} ran in his school’s fun run and placed 1st! Way to go buddy!

I spent all day Monday and Tuesday answering emails about fundraising and trying to get paperwork in order for {G}’s trip to China this summer. I have to stay positive that we’re going to raise enough for her to go. We’re going to do it!! We’re going to do it!!

g's quilt

g sewing her quilt

Yesterday, {G} tried to finish the quilt that she’s been working on since last fall for her Young Women in Excellence program. She took a beginning quilting class at Harmony in Provo, taught by the very lovely and talented Holly LeSué, and still hadn’t finished it. But we made great progress this week! She finished the half-square triangle top, chose a border fabric, we chose a back fabric, pinned it all together with the cotton batting, and she’s almost done with the machine quilting! She is SO EXCITED about it! Which makes a momma proud.

We’re gearing up for our Fundraising Garage Sale on Saturday. So many people have been so generous! And I’m teaching the Sunburst Granny Square class at Harmony on Saturday afternoon. I’m so excited for this class! It’s going to be fun.

I think that by Mother’s Day on Sunday, all I’ll want to do is sleep. Because next week is going to be just as busy.

(These pictures came from my Instagram feed. You should follow along!)

ways to help {g} get to china

Many of you want to help {G} in her efforts to attend the Diplomat Summer Study Abroad Program in China this summer. Thank you!! But many of you don’t craft (what??) or you’re not interested or not able to take one of my classes.  So how can you help?

JSA Fundraising Page* You can donate directly on {G}’s fundraising page. 100% of the funds raised on this page will go to {G}’s tuition. Thank you so much to those that have already donated!! You can also go to her page to find out more about the program she will be attending.

* You can recommend {G} for grants or scholarships. Are you a member of a local community group or business that awards funds to outstanding kids? Well, {G} qualifies! She is willing to come to a meeting or an event to share why your group should invest in her and the things she will be learning on her trip.

* You can donate items to {G} that you’d normally give to goodwill. {I} and I will come pick up items from your house and sell those items at our Fundraising Garage Sale, Saturday May 10. You can also come shop for gently used treasures at our Fundraising Garage Sale! Message me if you’d like information on exactly when & where the sale will be. alipyper[at]gmail[dot]com

* If you don’t live in Utah, you can have your own garage sale and donate the proceeds to {G}! You de-clutter your home and you help {G} go to China. Win-win! Or, if you’re crafty and artistic you can sell something fabulous and then donate the proceeds to {G}.

keldan cookie dough announcement fall 2013* You can order {K}’s Cookie Dough (available if you live in Utah County). This is cookie dough that {K} and I make, in our kitchen, with my time tested, yummy recipes! The cookie dough is portioned, packaged, and delivered to your house frozen and ready to bake. Dough will be delivered May 15th. Available flavors this time are Chocolate w/ Coconut & Dried Cherries, Milk Chocolate Chip w/Toffee & Pecans, Oatmeal w/White Chocolate Chip & Craisins, and Peanut Butter. Specifics on how to order will be coming soon…

* In the coming weeks, I will be offering for sale custom crochet and knit items – so keep posted! If you already have something in mind that you’d like to commission – message me! We’ll talk terms and timelines.

Let me know if you have questions about any of the ways you can help {G} attend the study abroad program in China this summer. And, Thank You! Many hands make light work, so thank you in advance for all the ways in which you’re helping our family!

fundraising for baby g

alipyper - baby g is going to chinaWe found out a few weeks ago that our daughter {G} was accepted into the JSA Summer Study Abroad Diplomat Program in Beijing, China this summer. We’re over the moon excited for her! And we’re scrambling a little bit, trying to figure out how we’re going to pay for it.

The whole family is getting in on the fundraising action. {G} set up a fundraising webpage. {I} is organizing a garage sale. {K} is selling my frozen cookie dough. The Mr. is working his guts out at work – like he always does. And I am going a little bit crazy.

I have several classes at Harmony that I’m trying to fill. Are you local? Do you have friends or family that are local? If so, you might consider coming to one of my classes! The classes are very reasonably priced and I’m an excellent teacher :) Will you help me get the word out by sharing on Facebook and Instagram?

IMG_2932Beginning Crochet – Beginning Crochet is a 2 hour, $20 class designed for someone with no crochet experience or for someone that needs a refresher course. Students finish the class having made a lovely, versatile crocheted flower. Bring a friend and learn this exciting craft! Beginning Crochet, $20, Saturday May 3 or Sat. June 7, 3-5pm. Hurry! The May class is this Saturday!

sunburst granny square pillow closeupSunburst Granny Squares - This class is new for Spring! Learn a variation of the Granny Square that turns a circle into a square, with puff and cluster stitches adding texture and visual heft! Basic crochet skills are needed before taking this class. Learn how to crochet in rounds, change colors and learn a new way – slightly different from the technique taught in the Traditional Granny Square class – to join the squares together as you go! You are going to be so pleased with the squares you make at this class – you won’t want to miss it! Sunburst Granny Squares, $15, Saturday May 10, 3:30 – 5:30pm.

Seamless Bootie ClassMagic Seamless Knit Baby Booties – Would you like to learn how to knit a pair of baby booties that you can finish in a few hours and not have to seam together when you’re finished?? With only the ends to weave in when you’re done, this class teaches you how to seamlessly cast on (a useful skill to learn for toe-up sock knitting) and use the “Magic Loop” method of circular knitting on one long cable to finish beautiful baby booties. Basic knitting skills are needed before taking this class. Magic Seamless Knit Baby Booties, $15, Saturday May 31, 3-5pm.

granny square cross pillowTraditional Granny Squares -  Take your beginning crochet to the next level as you learn how to start crocheting in rounds, change colors, and join crochet motifs together as-you-go. And, you learn the timeless Granny Square pattern that has endless applications for clothing, pillows, blankets, and decor! Basic crochet skills are needed before taking this class. Traditional Granny Square, $15, Saturday June 21, 3-5pm.

Market BagCrochet Market & Beach Bags – This is going to be a really fun class that teaches you the tricks of crocheting with hemp and yarn and how to read crochet diagrams, while making a practical and useful summer bag! Perfect for the market, beach, or swimming pool! This is a two session class. Basic crochet skills are needed before taking this class. Crochet Market & Beach Bags, $18, Saturday June 14 & 21, 1 – 2;30pm.

Filling all my classes at Harmony would be a great step forward in helping {G} get to China this summer. Will you help?

noro cyochin moss stitch scarf

alipyper noro cyochin infinity scarf pattern

When I was first introduced to Noro yarn, I was a little bit reserved in my judgement of it. My first instinct was to not like it – the color combinations were a little bit too much for me and I had never really worked with variegated yarns with much success before. But Laura Harmon, whom I admire tremendously for her personal style as well as her crafting skills, was a huge fan and she displayed the yarn prominently in her shop when it opened in September 2012. So, it was great yarn, right? I eventually purchased a few skeins of the Kureyon yarn and it sat in my stash.

For my 40th birthday, a dear, dear friend -  knowing that reaching this milestone was not sitting well with me, AT ALL – knit me the most AMAZING scarf using the Silk Garden yarn. The entrelac scarf she knit for me was so beautiful, so perfect, so fantastic that I was immediately won over to the Noro side. I get compliments on this scarf from complete strangers whenever I wear it. And it matches EVERYTHING in my closet! I’m wearing it here. And I used the same colorway in the Noro Silk Garden Sock for this disco halter top I just finished.

So I decided that I needed to use up the Kureyon yarn in my stash and went searching for a project. I wanted a cowl that I could wear inside and out without worrying that the ends would dip into dirty dish water while doing the dishes, like a scarf might. This pattern caught my eye, but I was worried that I didn’t have enough yarn in my stash to make it long enough. So I went up a size with my crochet hook and went for it. I love, love, love it! In fact, I loved the yarn and the way the cowl looks so much that I crocheted a cowl for {G} to wear too. I’ve already borrowed it several times!

{G} has been wearing her scarf everyday and I can’t keep borrowing it! I wanted a scarf with similar colors to the scarf I made for {G}, but I didn’t want to copy hers exactly. When Noro’s Cyochin yarn showed up at Harmony, I wasn’t sure if I’d like the color progression – it’s a lot more mottled and tweedy than the Kureyon – but again, the yarn knitted up beautifully, the colors are perfect, and I’m in love again! This scarf was unbelievably easy to knit. It took only one skein and it’s a perfectly lightweight, stretchy cowl that provides just enough warmth to wear inside and outside, all day long.

Noro Cyochin Moss Stitch Infinity Scarf/Cowl

1 skein Noro Cyochin yarn

US 13 (9.0 mm) knitting needles

Large tapestry needle

Gauge: 12 stitches & 14.5 rows per 4″ – in moss stitch

Cast on 25.

Row 1: K1, P1 repeat across to end.

Row 2: K1, P1 repeat across to end (moss stitch)

Continue in moss stitch until almost all the yarn is used – leaving enough for the bound off edge and joining seam (about 45″).

Bind off loosely. Knot. Thread yarn end with the tapestry needle. Bring ends of scarf together and give one side a half twist. Sew ends together flat. Weave end in. Wear, and enjoy!

lots of pinning going on

alipyper - fall pinterest inspiration 2013

I’m kind of addicted to Pinterest right now. These are a few of my recent pins. I’ve been incredibly busy with lots of different things going on, but the pure joy of spending a half an hour (haha! right!) being inspired by creative and beautiful images is pretty darn fantastic. A happy visceral gut-instinct reaction to images and ideas..that I can file away for when I have time to process them later. Brilliant!

Follow along if you want…

dress / potholder / cowl / lace shirt / baby cardigan / raspberry thumbprints / sweater / knit pattern / rose / slippers / fair isle / quilt / room

mission memories

alipyper - Ali Mission MTC

alpyper - Ali Mission Taiwan National Palace Museum

alipyper - Ali Mission Taipei Taiwan LDS Temple

Exactly 20 years ago today I entered the Missionary Training Center in Provo, UT to serve an 18 month proselyting mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Taipei, Taiwan. I said goodbye to the Mr. (who waited patiently for me while I was gone – and then said, “Come home, already!” We were married 10 weeks after I returned.), my parents, family, and friends and wore my missionary tag for eighteen months with great pride.

I’ve been thinking about that girl – her dreams of the future, her confidence (oh! the confidence!), her expectations, her accomplishments – and wonder what she would think of herself now? I’ve also been thinking about how fundamentally my life was changed for the good by my decision to serve a mission and I’m filled with gratitude.

1. Saying goodbye, August 4, 1993. Those aren’t really tears of sadness – they were tears of, “Why the heck did I bring so much stuff??/2. National Palace Museum/3. Photo taken on the roof of the Taiwan Taipei Mission Home overlooking the Taiwan Temple. That sweater! I bought it at Benetton while I was in Taiwan and after living several years in Las Vegas, NV, I gave it to good will thinking I’d never really need it again. Oh how I wish I had that sweater still!! It’s on my list to recreate.
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