Crochet, Crafting, Art & More · Hauls & Unboxings

La Mercerie Knitting Haul

Hello and welcome to a little haul from an online shop called La Mercerie. This is the second time I have purchased from them and both times I have been thrilled with the quality of the products and the quick shipping. So, I wanted to take a moment and share what I picked up this time around because I am so thrilled and I would not have been able to get these items in my local store.

Picture of Sock Set and Worsted Book

Worsted – A Knitwear Collection Curated by Aimée Gille of La Bien Aimée

I have been eyeing this book since I have heard about it. I have really been wanting to move away from making bags and winter accessories for the most part, I still want to be warm this year, but I wanted to make more wearable pieces and work with worsted weight yarn. As of late I have worked with a lot of fingering, which I love don’t get me wrong, but I want to explore more types of yarns. The curator of this book is an owner of a well known brand and I have seen a few people already starting to make projects from these pages and have heard great things. As a newer knitter, this is a must, I am still learning to read patterns in regards to knitting, crochet I am a pro at this point, so I need something that is clear, but challenging and this seems to be just the thing.

January – Sock Sets – 2022 Year of Socks

So, I ended up getting their January sock set for their year of socks. I missed out on their buy the entire year upfront and subscription options, but I really wanted to get my hands on this beautiful sock set called Snowdrift by Grenouille Co.. I really loved the deep winter feel of both the main color and mini. I can’t wait to make these into a cozy pair of socks!

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February Book Haul

Hello and welcome to the first book haul of 2022. Each year I have a list of books I really want to take the time to read throughout the year, most of which are from the International Booker Prize shortlist. Since my reading was so reduced in December I held off on picking any of them up. But, with my reading taking off in January with 9 books, I thought it was a good time to add these books to my tbr pile since I am activity reading a ton.

Stack of hauled physical books.

Physical Books

You Should Have Left by Daniel Kehlmann, I read another book by Kelmann last year called Tyll and I loved how out there it was. Knowing this one of my friends off line picked this book for me to pick this year for my 12 in 12 challenge. This short story is a horror novel that follows a family that spends 7 days in a rented house. From the description I am getting Jack vibes from The Shining by Stephen King for the main character. Which, for me works because I love The Shining. I am curious how this short story is going to turn out because his other works were wild and out there, but also mesmerizing and I couldn’t put it down.

The Employees by Olga Ravn, this is a science fiction novel. This too was on the shortlist for the International Booker Prize, but I am intrigued due to the fact that in the description it mentions it follows those who were born and other who were created. That really piqued my interest.

Breast and Eggs by Mieko Kawakami, I have read about 2 other works by this author and this one has been on my list for a bit. I finally decided to pick up a physical copy. This book takes a look at being a modern day woman in Japan. The story itself is fiction, but it touches on the experience of the author and others. At least that is my current understanding.

When I was Ten by Fiona Cummins, this one I added to my TBR because it was picked by Little Miss Booklover 87 for my 12 in 12 challenge I placed on twitter where I asked people to pick a book for me to read this year. All I know about this book at this point is that it is a thriller that takes place many years after a double murder. Where someone finally decides to break their silence. I have not read a ton of thrillers over the past few months so I though this would be a good time to read it.

When We Cease to Understand the World by Benjamin Labatut, this is a nonfiction novel, but seems to have some fiction as well, that takes a look at science, discovery and those who make these breakthroughs. It appears that this book touches on Albert Einstein, Alexander Grothendieck, Erwin Schrödinger and Werner Heisenberg.

The Dangers of Smoking in Bed by Mariana Enriquez, this is a collection of short horror stories that was also placed on the International Booker Prize shortlist. I love horror and it is refreshing to have some short stories on my shelf to grab when I don’t feel like reading an entire novel.

The War of the Poor by Éric Vuillard, is a horror novel that was placed in the shortlist for the International Booker Prize. It deals with inequality and takes place during 16th century in Europe. With the combination of horror and history I feel like this book will be a win for me personally.

Digital Books

Immune by Philipp Dettmer, I picked this up because I heard it mentioned on a twitch stream with Bob, Wade and Mark. I thought it would be a really interesting read and I do love myself a good nonfiction here and there.

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Katrinkles Haul

Hello and welcome to a bit of a maker post this time around. I did a little shopping on the Katrinkles website, which makes a lot of stitch markers and tools and such for knitters, crocheters, and fiber artists overall. The last half of the year as my reading really took a nose dive I really took solstice in crocheting and learning how to knit. This is a brand I saw all over and as I explored making more complex items, at least for me, I realized I needed some knew tools to help me along the way.

Hauled items discussed below on crochet blanket.

Wrong Side/Right Side

As I have explored crocheting and knitting I have started to explore making more wearable items and sometimes the patterns require me to pay attention to which side is the right and which is the wrong. I am TERRIBLE at this and never keep track of it, so when I saw these stitch markers, I knew I needed to add them to my cart. Also, they come together to make a cute acrylic unicorn.

Kitchener Stitch Mini Tool

The next thing I picked up was a little reference tool that has the directions to the kitchener stitch. The first thing I learned to knit when I started to learn halfway though 2021 was a sock, I learned to do it top down. Due to this, I need this stitch every time I finish a sock to close up the toe. When knitting I try to get away from technology so I don’t want to whip out my phone to look up the directions. Having this tool on hand on the project bag will be really helpful and convenient.

Acrylic Cast On Counting Stitch Marker Set

This handy set of stitch markers, at least for me, to use while making my socks as well. I recently found my perfect row length needed for the foot section of my socks (50 rows) and I really need to keep track as I go or I end up loosing count because I just get into a relaxing rhythm.

I know this is a little different of a post, but I really have been loving making things with my hands lately and I was super excited about these tools to help me in getting even better at both of these crafts.

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Barnes and Noble 50% Hardcover Haul

Hello and welcome to a very surprising post. I had not expected this sale, but I was really happy that it came up because I was able to pick up some books I was putting off buying due to their price. If you did not already know, Barnes and Noble had a 50% off Hardcover sale starting on boxing day and the day after, as far as I am aware that is the length. I ended up going to BN for another reason and saw all the signs all over the store so I ended up picking up 5 books.

Photo of hauled books

Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone by Diana Gabaldon, this is the newest book in the Outlander series, book 9. This one is also a huge book and I have wanted to pick it up, but was waiting for it to come out in softcover.

Nothing But Blackened Teeth by Cassandra Khaw, this horror novella caught my eye and I have seen the cover around and I thought I would give it a shot. My understanding is this horror tale is a combination of lore from Japan and takes place in an abandoned building.

My Heart is a Chainsaw by Stephen Graham Jones, I have read about 3 of Jones’ work and have generally enjoyed his stuff. I had this on my list to pick up when the softcover released, but I didn’t need to wait anymore because of this sale. He tends to write horror fiction that reflects his Native American roots.

Billy Summers by Stephen King, I enjoy Kings novels, but there are only a few I will reread and because of that I never pay full price for them. I have been waiting for this book to have its softcover release or go on sale, which yay, it did! This work of his is more thrilled than horror based, but still has his horror roots. It follows a killer for hire that will only take jobs that target bad people.

The Other Black Girl by Zakiya Dalila Harris, talk about timing with this book. I was just recommended this book by a friend and I walked into BN and it was right in front so I scoped it up! When I first read the description it sounded like a fun fiction, but the more I read it turned into a mystery thriller, which really intrigued me.

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Local Indie Bookstore Haul

picture of hauled books

Hello and welcome to a small post sharing my finds at my most recent trip to an indie bookstore. I posted earlier in the week about taking a day trip with a friend and going to visit a yarn store, you can read about that here: Local Yarn Shop Haul. On this adventure we also walked around the corner and took a bit of stroll to a really lovely bookstore. I didn’t get a chance to take a picture, but this bookstore was packed with books. There was not a nook or cranny that was not filled with books and I was so excited. It was also one of the most busy indie bookstores I have seen before, which made me happy. Anyway, on to the two books I ended up picking up!

The first book that caught my eye was The Stone Face by William Gardner Smith. What first caught my attention was the black and white cover that really stood out among all the colorful and saturated colors of the other covers. This ended up being a historical fiction novel from around 1963 and this was a rerelease. This story follows a man named Simeon Brown who lost an eye in a racist attack. This story focuses on how he left America to escape racism and made a home for himself in France, which at the time was known as a safe haven for black artists. My understanding from the description is that the book mostly follows him once he is in France, but I cannot be 100% sure. I look forward to reading this ASAP. I had no idea that France was ever seen as this so I am curious to explore that.

The second book I picked up is Dune Messiah, the second book in the Dune series by Frank Herbert. I am only about 100 pages into the first book and I can tell I am going to want to continue the series so I decided to pick it up and support this indie bookstore. At first I didn’t think they had the book in stock, but a really lovely person helped me locate it. I was so thrilled because this was the one book I really had a plan of buying this day.

Anyway, while this is a small haul, I am really happy with the books I found and added to my TBR. The past few months my book hauling has slowed quite a bit and has been more meaningful and honestly, I am really happy about that.

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Crochet, Crafting, Art & More · Hauls & Unboxings

Local Yarn Shop Haul

Image of hauled items

Hello and welcome to a little post sharing some of my more recent yarn related items. This past week I took a trip with a friend of mine to go to a little local yarn shop to stock up on some items that I can’t really get in the crafting stores in my area. I had such a great time not only spending it with my friend, but us also going through all of the amazing stuff and struggling to narrow down what we actually wanted to take home with us. Trust me, I wanted to take home more, but my wallet said I wasn’t allowed.

I am so excited to finish my final present project I have currently going so I can jump in and start using these products I picked up. I think with the Sly Fox dye I am going to attempt to knit a hat for the first time. I am planning on following the pattern Sockhead Slouch Hat by Kelly McClure, which is free at the time of writing this. As for the Sharknado skeins I am planning to make a really nice and comfortable pair of socks using a pattern called Cafe Mocha by Twin Stitches Designs. I feel like it would look really cool in the colors I picked up.

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Crochet, Crafting, Art & More · Hauls & Unboxings

Crochet and Knitting Haul

Hello and welcome to a post where I am going to share some of the things I have picked up over the past few months to help with my crafting crochet and knitting wise. Yes, I did say knitting. I in the last month or so taught myself some basics and actually managed to make a sock. I am still working on the other one, lol. Anyway I thought it would be fun to share some of the things I have picked up and share what I plan on making with them or using them for.

Project Bags

Two project bags.

I picked up a few project bags that were on the smaller side to keep my sock project, current and future. I had them in my larger project bag where I kinda keep all my WIPs they almost became unraveled so many times from being tackled. I picked these ones up from Pea Pod Threads.

Knitting Needles

As I mentioned I took up knitting and I ended up picking up a circular needle set, I really like using circular needles I have found out. I settled on Lykke Indigo Driftwood Interchangeable Set in Indigo. I currently am using it to make a cowl and I am really liking how they feel and they are sturdy. I was worried because it was interchangeable and I have only used fixed ones until this.

acquired yarn, knitting needles, and chart keeper

Notions

I picked up this really helpful item called Knit Picks Basic Knitting Chart Keeper. Pretty much it is a place to keep your pattern while you are working that folds in half and projects the paper when shoved in a bag. The patten is held to it by magnets and there are extras so you can use them to also hold your place. It almost looks and feels like a thick folder without pockets. While is is called a knitting chart keeper I use it with either knitting or crochet.

Yarn

As for yarn I picked up 4 skeins of Juniper Moon Farm’s Moonshine Fine, I ended up picking up 2 in the color Moonbeam (1003), which is an odd white and then 2 of Cocoa (1001), which is a dark gray. I decided I am going to use this yarn to make the Sonder by Expression Fiber Arts (website). I adapted the pattern to a crochet pattern because this was before I learned to knit, but I am not to far into it so I might frog it and then try it as knitting. We shall see how I am feeling when I get a chance to pick that project up again. The next yarn to make its way into my home is 3 skeins of Urth Yarns Monokrom Cotton Yarn in a gray color. Sadly, I cannot give you the color name or code because it is not on the tag on mine. I am planning on making another shawl with this one and I am for sure going to knit it. The pattern is called the Kari Shawl, which is a free pattern you can find from Sari Nordlund (Ravelry). All of this yarn was bought at local shops, which I know I am lucky to have a few around me I can support.

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Books I Bought at an Indie Bookshop While Visiting Family

Hello and welcome to a very specifically themed book haul. I have not done a standalone book haul in a while, but I recently traveled a bit to spend time safely with family in the middle of the woods. Side note, being in the middle of the woods and away from huge crowds of people did wonders for my reading. You can see this in my post called, Books I Took On Vacation and Did I finish Them?. Anyway, when I was there I decided to stop at an independent bookstore to support them, but also buy some books that take place in the general vicinity or state I was in. That way when I miss my family or want to trick my brain into thinking I am somewhere else relaxing I can pick of one of these books/souvenirs.

The Books

Wild! Weird! Wonderful! Maine. by Earl Brechlin, is a nonfiction book that accounts the “out there” history of Maine from ghost stories to aliens, Inventors to interesting people. It just sounded like a fun look at the legends, myths, and the not so known facts and stories about Maine.

The House at Lobster Cove by Jane Goodrich, this historical fiction novel follows a wealthy man named George Nixon Black who wasn’t very social, but liked in a house known by many. It seems like while it is know by many, the house was not visited often by others. This story seems to lift the veil of this mans private life in this beautiful house.

The Field House: A Writer’s Life Lost and Found on an Island in Maine by Robin Clifford Wood, is a nonfiction novel following the life of an author by the name of Rachel Field. She was a very prolific author who won tons of awards, but her name has been lost to history. The author of this book takes a look at her life and her home to get to know Field’s.

Writing on Stone: Scenes from a Maine Island Life by Peter Ralston, his nonficiton novel takes a look at Gott’s Island and its history, but also the story of a family. At least to the best of my knowledge from the description.

A Haunting Fog by Heidi Martin Washburn, is a fictional novel that follows Madelyn Davis during a tough time in her life. It is affecting her in every where to the point her boss tells her to take a break. During this break Madelyn becomes a caregiver of an older women who has secrets of her own and mystery begins to unfold.

I am really looking forward to all of these books for different reasons, but each one just sounds like a story I can easily fall into depending on my mood. Darn being a mood reader! I really do like how I picked up a wide range of books, fiction and nonfiction so I can explore Maine in various ways while I remember the memories I shared with my family while in that state. Also, helping support indie bookstores is another huge bonus!

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Haul | Lion Brand Yarn Mystery Box

Hello and welcome to a bit of a yarn haul! I recently got an email from Lion Brand announcing that they had mystery boxes for sale and you got to pick which weight you wanted. I, loving yarn, had to say gimme gimme. I ended up placing and order for weight 5 yarn and here are the goodies I got!


The first thing I noticed and LOVED about these mystery boxes of yarn was the fact that all 9 of the balls of yarn were not different. You are given 3 balls of each type so you actually have enough to create something. This was my biggest worry, but I am so happy it was unfounded.

Lion Brand® Homespun® Stripes Yarn in the color Mango Chutney, 98% Acrylic, 2% Other. In the past I have used Homespun yarn before, but never the stripes version. I do really like the neutral color schemes of these cakes. I can really see me turning this into a scarf or another winter accessory because it is so fluffy and it seems like it can hold in the heat a bit.

Lion Brand® Rewind Yarn in the color Valerian, 70% Polyester, 30% Viscose. I honestly had no idea what to do with this yarn, but it took a bit of googling and I was able to find a few patterns or people making summer shirts and hat with, as well as a few bags. I am learning towards using this yarn to turn it into a shirt called the Openwork Cover-Up.

Lion Brand® Twisted Cotton Blend Yarn in the color Coral/Ecru, 69% Cotton, 31% Acrylic. This yarn was surprisingly soft, I have a market bag pattern from the chain Michael’s I have had for sometime and I am thinking I might use this yarn for that. I so love the pop of color for this, it isn’t too bright, but not dull and plain either.

Overall, I am really happy with these acquisitions! All of them are great colors and I was able to pretty much come up with a plan for each to use all of the yarn so it isn’t wasted or anything like that. I am honestly really pleasantly surprised.

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Book Haul | April 2021

Hello and welcome to a bit of a haul from the month of April. I went on my first day trip this past month after getting fully vaccinated. It was my first time doing so in over a year and it felt so great! On this trip I went to a really awesome bookstore that was new to me and found some gems to bring home with me and picked up a few books from my local bookstore and sent one by a friend. Anyway, here are the books!


The Books

Record of A Night Too Brief by Hiromi Kawakami and Ms. Ice Sandwich by Mieko Kawakami I picked up on a day trip to a Japanese market. They have a really awesome bookstore there and I always find gems like this I would not have found otherwise. Record of A Night Too Brief caught my attention because it seemed to have so much packed into such a small package. Ms. Ice Sandwich caught my attention because of its talk of starting something new and possible love.

The Orphan of Cemetery Hill by Hester Fox, was a gift from the amazing Adrianna. I am really excited to get to this historical fiction novel with a possible paranormal twist to it.

Junji Ito’s Cat Diary: Yon & Mu, I also picked up from the Japanese market. But, I have read this authors work quite a bit. He is a known horror manga writer. This book tells tales of his own life experiences as a dog person then owning two cats. It is quite funny and it was fun to read.

Pachinko by Min Jin Lee, this book has been on my radar for quite sometimes and I finally picked it up. I am really excited to get to it this month as well.

Ghosts of Harvard by Francesca Serritella, I will be honest the cover of this book really pulled me in. The cover alone has such a great atmosphere for a thriller and sets the tone so clearly. Then, when I read the description I added it to my pile before checking out from the store. This books talks about a girl going to Harvard to try and figure out what led her brother to suicide. There also seems to be ghosts possibly present in this story as well.


What book have you recently added to your shelves from the library or the store?

What book have you recently read?

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