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Idle Hands DC
Washington, DC
I love to embroider, knit, make and grow beautiful things in my house of dreams in Capitol Hill. I grew up inspired by the women in my family, whose hands are never idle.
Interests: gardening, embroidery, knitting, crochet, sewing, craft, design
Recent Activity
A while back, my family and I were brainstorming about what we would call our homes if we lived in Avonlea (of Anne of Green Gables fame) and used romantic place names like "Green Gables" and "Windy Poplar." I suggested that my house would be called "Flag Corner," to which... Continue reading
Posted Feb 1, 2016 at Idle Hands
I've been whiling away the snowstorm here diligently working my way south, row by row, on the map blanket. I'm making good progress, but I was considering taking a break for a project that is more immediately gratifying when I stumbled across a couple great new hat patterns. I am... Continue reading
Posted Jan 25, 2016 at Idle Hands
Did I say I would be done with this by Easter? That might have been ambitious. But I am making progress. Here is New England -- complete! And the Great Plains in progress: It is getting a bit cumbersome to knit as it gets larger, but doesn't it look cozy?... Continue reading
Posted Jan 18, 2016 at Idle Hands
I am going to add my voice to the chorus singing the praises of the Wonder exhibit at the Smithsonian Renwick Gallery. The nine massive works in this exhibit each recreate or react to the wonder and power of the natural world. Hundreds of carefully calibrated strings create a rainbow... Continue reading
Posted Jan 12, 2016 at Idle Hands
Looking for a calendar? I love these beautiful prints by Katherine Watson: via Katherine Watson's etsy page Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2016 at Idle Hands
Last year around this time, I was resolving to make one new recipe a week, inspired by some beautiful cook books I received as Christmas gifts. Friends, that did not happen. But I did try many tasty new things! This is why I think resolutions are best viewed as incremental... Continue reading
Posted Dec 28, 2015 at Idle Hands
I hope you are surrounded by family and friends and snowflakes. We'll be here, watching holiday movies, probably having some apple cake, and knitting. In the meantime, have yourself a merry little Christmas. Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2015 at Idle Hands
I love a big, roomy bag, and you're going to need something to carry those great Christmas finds. Here are a few of my favorites: Carry On from Pilot and Captain: via Pilot and Captain Zippered tote bag from handmadetherapy: via handmadetherapy And of course, the classic Strand bookstore tote.... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2015 at Idle Hands
True story: A few years ago, Lindy and I were running a half-marathon and having a tough time of it. (Everyone has good days and bad. This was one of the latter.) We needed a burst of energy, so naturally we started talking about Christmas carols -- which were our... Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2015 at Idle Hands
Time for Part 2 of the 2015 gift guide: gifts for crafters. Is there a knitter in your life? Look no further than cocoknits for beautiful and functional tools, like the knitter's keep kit, which includes a magnetic bracelet and metal tools, so you can keep all your needles and... Continue reading
Posted Nov 30, 2015 at Idle Hands
It will not surprise you to know that I am partial toward homemade Christmas stockings. Growing up, I had A LOT of them. My first stocking was felt and featured a rocking horse and a gingerbread man. Later, I had one fashioned to look like a giant ballet slipper. Now,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 23, 2015 at Idle Hands
Oh, Purl Soho, you are so tempting, with your beautiful patterns and your lovely styling. But sometimes, you are also ridiculous. Consider the Falling Bobbles blanket. I LOVE this pattern. It is so cozy -- so squishy and inviting. Some pros: - Made with superbulky yarn, it would knit quickly... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2015 at Idle Hands
It's November, which means that I am indulging in a steady stream of ginger bread and holiday music. Happy holidays! There''s still plenty of time to finish something for the holidays, as long as, unlike me, you pick something reasonable, and not, say, a blanket map of the 50 states... Continue reading
Posted Nov 9, 2015 at Idle Hands
Knitflix: an occasional series on the intersection of two of our favorite things (movies and knitting) from friend-of-the-blog Lindy Parker Vega. Ever since September arrived, I've been feeling nostalgic for sweaters of all types: chunky cableknit, cropped 90s mohair, oversized vintage cardigans - even fringed poncho-scarf hybrids have been giving... Continue reading
Posted Nov 2, 2015 at Idle Hands
We just got back from a whirlwind cross-country trip for a friend's wedding. We are about to fall into bed, but wanted to share this genius idea for traveling with little ones from O Chickadee all the way back in 2010: the wailing baby survival kit. via O Chickadee Guaranteed... Continue reading
Posted Oct 26, 2015 at Idle Hands
I have an ongoing love affair with Starshaped Press, a Chicago-based letterpress studio "printing like it's 1929 since 1999." Seriously, I can't get enough of these guys. Their classic aesthetic is beautifully exemplified by their new ampersand series. (I myself am not a huge font geek, but I love that... Continue reading
Posted Oct 19, 2015 at Idle Hands
I have very fond memories of homemade Halloween costumes. But then, I had a mother who actually made me Samantha's Christmas dress for a school project where we were supposed to come dressed as the character from a book. via A*G outsider So, you know, we were in a different... Continue reading
Posted Oct 12, 2015 at Idle Hands
We just returned from a very beautiful, very blustery weekend. After several rainy, windy days, I naturally took to the kitchen to make some soup -- one of the many great things about fall. Here are a few of my favorite recipes for your inspiration: Ribollita with italian sausage. Sausage,... Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2015 at Idle Hands
How is it possible that I did not know of the ravelry store? Happily, it goes beyond the usual "I love ewe" knitting puns (though let's be clear: I love a knitting pun) with items like these sweet notions cards: via ravelry and these adorable project bags featuring happy knitting... Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2015 at Idle Hands
Here's the thing: Elbow patches are basically silly for most of us. I have had a couple of well-loved sweaters that eventually got thin in the elbows, but this is rare (so rare that a sweater my mom knit and wore in the 1970s still has perfectly nice elbows). If... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2015 at Idle Hands
Less than two weeks to Crafty Bastards! This is one of the highlights of the year in DC for crafters and makers of all stripes (see previous Crafty Bastards round-ups here). To get you organized (and psyched),they are featuring pinterest boards of covetable handmade items. Here are a few of... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2015 at Idle Hands
Isn't this quilt top fantastic? via SewMamaSew Hillary Goodwin's tutorial on Sew Mama Sew makes this seem totally doable. Coincidentally, it would look great on my dream bed (the Quincy bed from Ethan Allen): via Ethan Allen Hope you enjoy a moment of rest this long weekend! Continue reading
Posted Sep 7, 2015 at Idle Hands
Are you feeling a touch of crisp autumn air? Me neither. It was 91 degrees and muggy today in DC. Sigh. Despite the Halloween candy displays at the grocery store, we have a while to go. Oh well -- a girl can daydream. Here are a few things to get... Continue reading
Posted Aug 31, 2015 at Idle Hands
I've been feeling particularly grateful for everyday things recently -- for homemade pesto, and Joshua's first shoes, and perfect August evenings. I found myself thinking of this poem, by Julie Cadwaller-Staub: Reverence The air vibrated with the sound of cicadas on those hot Missouri nights after sundown when the grown-ups... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2015 at Idle Hands
A friend of ours had a baby over the weekend, and it got me thinking about last fall when I came home from the hospital with a newborn. Lots of people brought food by, and I was grateful for every single one of them -- especially those who understood that... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2015 at Idle Hands