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GUYS GUYS GUYS I FINISHED ALL MY EXAMS FOR COLLEGE AND I’M GRADUATING IN A WEEK FROM TOMORROW. More on that later. Just so you know, expect my writing this week to be a little… less than perfect. Generally it’s safe to blame vodka but Thursday is Cinco de Mayo, so you should probably blame Tequila. Cause I’m DONE WITH COLLEGE and that means it is CELEBRATION TIME.

Anyway, In case you were wondering, I have been knitting. A little bit. Working on two pairs of Manly Aran socks in a row burnt me out a little bit, so I haven’t been doing as much knitting as I usually would. What I have been doing though is acquiring yarn at an alarming rate. Now, I know what you’re thinking. “Weren’t you just talking about graduating and don’t you not have a job or any money?” That would be correct; however, I already sort of had the yarn. Which is to say I had some sweaters.

As a poor/cheapskate college student, I like cheap things. You know what’s cheap? Thrift store sweaters. You know what thrift store sweaters are made of? YARN. I’ve had the sweaters for a while and have been on an unravelling binge. I haven’t weighed any of them yet, but suffice it to say there’s a lot of yarn here.

What exactly have I unraveled? So nice of you to ask!

There’s this Shetland wool sweater that I got at a Good Will outlet (1.20 a POUND, people). It had tags still on.

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It frogged into a lovely laceweight, but Shetland is a very sticky wool, so I had to roll it into balls instead of onto the niddy noddy like I usually do.

There’s a 80/20 wool nylon mix, the perfect shade of white for dyeing:

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Five skeins of fingering weight yarn that will probably become socks (though I’ll probably hold it two strands at a time for strength). The little skein is from the collar, which alone yielded 140 yards.

There’s a very shiny linen/cotton mix (60/40) from a large tank top:

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About dk. Not sure how much for enough for a tank top and a sun hat, which is the goal. I’ll probably also dye this.

There’s this Talbot’s 100% silk pullover:

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Silk, by the way, frogs like a DREAM. It’s super strong so it doesn’t break every couple of yards like the Shetland was wont to. Ton of lace weight yarn here. There’s another skein I can’t find, so pretend there’s three. I want to dye it and make a huge shawl out of some of it.

Finally, there’s the creme de la creme, three wonderful, beautiful, SOFT skeins of 100% cashmere:

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Also lace weight but will probably be doubled or tripled for… something.

Sweaters, as you know, have a front, a back, and two sleeves (except for that tank top, which was a cardigan so it had a back and two fronts). But there’s only three skeins of silk and cashmere (well, the cashmere sweater had this weird tie front thing, but it gave four skeins and we’re pretending about the silk). With the second sleeve of the silk and part of a sleeve of the cashmere, I wound up one skein with the blend:

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It’s going to be a bitch to wind since the yarns aren’t plied, just held together. But it makes for the loveliest combination of shiny and soft:

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I’m probably going to dye most of these skeins before I work with them (maybe I’ll make some white socks). I’m still in frogging mojo, so I’m basically frogging down my entire thrift store sweater stash. I’m currently working on a wonderful Express sweater of lace weight merino/viscose/angora/cashmere. So soft. I’m thinking shawl.

None of these sweaters were over $5 and I’ve got easily over $100 worth of yarn here. The cashmere alone would probably be at least $50, and I paid $3.60 for the sweater. Truly, it makes my cheap thrifty heart sing.

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So after my recent adventures in earring making, it occurred to me that I needed somewhere to display them! So I made an earring holder, complete with tutorial for you lovely people!

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Materials:

– Crappy old picture frame from the thrift store, preferably with kitschy 50s cross stitch or print
– Paint/paintbrush
– Strong glue, like E6000 or FabriTack. Or I guess you could use tacky glue (which I used) or hot glue. Whatever.
– Aida cloth or plastic canvas (something with holes in) (I used 14-count Aida cloth. If you’re using Aida cloth, go for 11 count cause it’ll have larger holes. I just used what I had)
– Pliers (probably)

Step one: Dissemble kitschy art:

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(IDEK)

Step two: Grab your pliers and yank out the points of DEATH holding the picture in the frame.

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Step three: Paint frame.

Things I will not judge you for doing at this stage:

1. Forgetting until you get home from the thrift store that you do not have any paint and using watered down puff paint instead.
2. Remembering that puff paint will peel off, lacking some sort of sealant, and saying out loud, “Ah, fuck it.”
2. Visible brush strokes. We’re going for shabby chic here. Or something.
3. Lacking newspaper to put under the frame/paint and using ONE ripped apart plastic bag even though you have about a billion plastic bags.

Ahem.

Step four: Measure Aida cloth against the glass that probably came with your frame.

Step five: Glue Aida cloth against the sticky-out bit of the frame. Let dry.

Step six: Add earrings, hang up in the back of your closet so no one can see your shoddy paint job. Or on the wall over the dresser, which is what I actually did.

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(Also, I have more earrings than this and the singular ones have partners, they’re just downstairs in my boyfriend’s apartment and seeing as we’re on Spring Break, he’s not here to let me into it.)

Yay!

Incidentally, if anyone has any idea what to do with several pieces of glass from picture frames, I’d appreciate some ideas. I don’t usually use glass with embroidery, but my frames all come with it.