Friday, August 28, 2015

REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Knitting Fabric Rugs

Disclosure: Storey Publishing LLC sent a copy of Knitting Fabric Rugs to Lapdog Creations for review. I was not compensated for this review and all opinions expressed are my own.


Knitting Fabric Rugs

28 Colorful Designs for Crafters of Every Level

by Karen Tiede

Paperback: 184 pages

Publisher: Storey Publishing LLC (July 28, 2015)


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Stuck in a hat/shawl/sock/cowl rut? Looking to take your knitting skills in a bit of a new direction? It's easy - just arm yourself with a copy of Knitting Fabric Rugs, some colorful strips of recycled fabric, and a pair of size 10 needles!

Trends come and go, but colorful accent rugs seem to be a new staple of contemporary design. Unfortunately, some of these fun, little pieces can sell for hundreds of dollars - not exactly fitting into everyone's budget. I'm sure I'm not the only one who's thought "why would I spend $300 on that when I could make it myself?"

So, why not make it yourself?  You probably have all of the materials you need hanging in your closet... collecting dust.  It's time to upcycle!  Don't toss your old clothing into the donation pile, reuse and repurpose it into colorful, fun, knitted rugs!

In Knitting Fabric Rugs, Karne Tiede teaches an innovative technique for creating fabulous designs.  Karen was inspired by handwoven rag rugs and bags.  Combining her love of these DIY projects with her background in knitting, Karen created her own method of upcycling fabrics into beautiful rugs.  

Knitting Fabric Rugs starts off with a lovely introduction entitled "Knitted Rugs - The Backstory" and is followed by eight knitty-gritty chapters all about materials, the process and techniques:
  • Materials: The Heart of a Fabric Rug
  • Color! Rules of Thumb
  • Process: Rug-Making Nuts and Bolts
  • Earn Your Stripes
  • Tantalizing Tessellations
  • Log Cabin Design and Beyond
  • Spirited Spirals
  • Inspiration: Going Free-Form

Instructions for 28 different rugs are included, many of which draw inspiration from traditional quilt patterns.  Karen also discusses her own inventive approach to color blending, spiral patterns and freeform design. 

Perhaps you're a beginner knitter wondering how on earth you could create these beautiful rugs? No worries... you don't need to be a master knitter to create masterpieces! The rugs require a knowledge of just the simple knit stitch and are worked in modular sections, which are later sewn together.  This helps to make the projects portable (which is something all knitters love) and easy to work on. 

Knitting Fabric Rugs has inspired me to take a second look at my Goodwill pile and rethink what I can do with some favorite, but well-worn, t-shirts. While I haven't started a knitted rug project just yet, I look forward to working on one... most likely over the winter, after the holiday knitting rush slows down.

About the Author: Karen Tiede markets her rug designs on her website, Rugs from Rags. In addition to doing her own design work and teaching, she is also a weaver and woodcarver. Karen lives in Moncure, North Carolina.

GIVEAWAY!
How would you like to add a copy of Knitting Fabric Rugs to your book shelf... for free?!?!  Thanks to the folks over at Storey Publishing, we are giving away a copy to one lucky reader. 

To enter, use the Rafflecopter widget below.  ***Note the first entry method is to answer a question in the comments on this post -- please be sure to click on the Rafflecopter to find out what the question is before posting your comment***

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Got Furballz?

Get your head out of the gutter people... I'm talking about the "silly characters made from long pile plush in bright colors," as goDog describes them.

first noticed these adorable fluffy toys sometime last year when the My Brown Newfies crew was raving about them.  I needed one thought Lola would love one, so Santa brought a big purple one for Christmas.

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Lola with our first Furballz, Christmas 2014

No one really played much with the Mr. Purple Furballz after Lola crossed the Bridge, after all playtime pretty much came to a screeching halt at our house. That is, until Penny came along...

While she didn't pay too much attention to the big Furballz (perhaps it looked like a giant monster to my 9lb peanut when she first arrived), Penny became obsessed with the small neon green monster that arrived in her 4-month PupBox last month.

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Sophie was also smitten with this new, really bright guy, so I immediately began searching for another small-sized Furballz. First attempt was a total fumble.  I ordered what I thought was the "small" size for a great price on Amazon.  It arrived shortly after and was small alright... Apparently goDog started making a mini size. (Which reminds me, if anyone out there has a pint-sized pooch who'd love a mini, get in touch)

On my second attempt, I made sure to double check the size specs before hitting the order button and a true "small" neon orange Furballz landed on our doorstep. It might have traveled along with a small purple friend as well, but shhh... he's sleeping in Santa's bag.

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I guess you could say Penny loves her buddy buddies...

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Sophie does too... that is, when she can get her snout on one.

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Seriously, that little sister of hers is a total Furballz hog...

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I'm just thankful all of my girls love the same crazy, cute toys that their Mama can't get enough of.  Tut, on the other hand, isn't so enthusiastic.  Maybe it's the neon colors?

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Happy National Dog Day

Happy National Dog Day... let's get wordless!

Happy #NationalDogDay from Tut, Sophie and Penny! #rescueddogsofinstagram #rescuedismyfavoritebreed #muttstagram #puppygram #dogstagram #seniordog #coonhoundmix #houndmix #dobermanpuppy #dobiemix #rescuedpuppiesofinstagram #instadog #instapuppy #seniordog

Fall is coming!!! Found this cute little #woolybear #catapillar yesterday. It was SO tiny, it fit inside my #pawprint #dogcollar remembrance ring! #fall #autumn #newengland #603 #toocute #love #woolybearcaterpillar #ring

"It's going to rain ALL day? Well, that's it... I ain't going out!" - Sophie #houndmix #seniordog #rescuedogsofinstagram #muttstagram #dogstagram #instadog #instahound #muttsofinstagram #ilovemyseniordog #seniordogsofinstagram #rescuedismyfavoritebreed #a

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Autograph night at @beechridge and we're getting TUNS of compliments on the @lazydogbeer logo! Lots of fans asking where the @caseyjonesbones samples are... and we're giving out lots of @friendsofrescue pencils in time for back to school! #8 #HooliganMoto

"I just want a stay at home Mommy" - Tut #coonhoundmix #dogstragram #rescueddogsofinstagram #instadog #seniordog #muttstagram #rescuedismyfavoritebreed #dogsofinstagram #seniordogsofinstagram #ilovebigmutts #ilovemyseniordog

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On Monday I told you about the Incredible Leaping Doberman.  Today I present, the mini-bug hunter.  Penny loves to torment play with moths, ants, flies... and in these shots, what I believe was a baby grasshopper.

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She played with the poor little guy for several minutes before leaving him to... hop away?

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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

REVIEW: Grandma Lucy's Freeze-Dried Singles

Disclosure: Chewy sent a bog of Grandma Lucy's Freeze-Dried Singles to Lapdog Creations, free of charge, for review purposes. I was not compensated for this review and all opinions expressed are my own.

Grandma Lucy's Freeze-Dried Singles

Where to Find: Chewy.com


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Chewy White

As always, when this month's Chewy box showed up on our doorstep, the Lapdogs were eager to find out what was inside... and they were not disappointed!

2015-08-21_02-43-02We received a bag of Grandma Lucy's Freeze-Dried Singles to try, and when I took the bag out of the box I blurted out "Grammy's treats" which then led to some very confused dogs looking out the window wondering just where their Grammy was.  Oops...

I used to buy Grandma Lucy's meatballs for Zeus and Lola when they were much younger (and way back then, they came in a tiny plastic jar).  They also loved their Organic Pumpkin treats, but for some reason, the Lapdogs haven't had anything from Grandma Lucy's in years.  So, when Chewy offered us the chance to try the freeze-dried treats, I immediately say yes.

Grandma Lucy's Free-Dried Singles are a single-ingredient, wholesome, healthy dog treat that is Made in the USA.  They are available in several flavors, including Chicken, Liver, Pork, Ocean White Fish, and Tuna.  I chose the Pork variety for the Lapdogs.

2015-08-21_02-36-46In addition to being Made in the USA with high-quality ingredients, the thing I love most about Grandma Lucy's is the simple fact that they are a family owned and operated business who make all of their freeze-dried products in small batches, in their own manufacturing facility in California. This allows the company to not only control the quality, but to keep a close eye on production, materials and finished product. Sounds like a perfect treat option, doesn't it? Bonus... Grandma Lucy's has never been involved in a recall!

As mentioned, Grandma Lucy's Free-Dried Singles are single-ingredient treats, meaning they literally contain one ingredient, the protein source.  The Pork treats we received are 100% USDA sourced hormone and antibiotic-free pork.  The grain-free, GMO-free, all natural treats have no by-products, preservatives, or meat meals... just whole food ingredients that you would east yourself. 

As a concerned dog Mom, I feel great giving my kids Grandma Lucy's products... and they seem to feel great about eating them as well!  Not only were the tails wagging, but even little Penny was drooling while patiently waiting for a taste. 

We've got lots of reviews in the work for the blog...and started working on this one when it started raining. Stay tuned to find out what Penny's got her eyes on this #tastytuesday HINT: it's our August #Chewy selection #puppygram #instapuppy #rescuedpupp

2015-08-21_02-43-35All three Lapdogs lined up and sat nicely waiting for the tasty little morsels, which are appropriate for all life-stages.  They begged for more, but Mama finally had to say "that's enough for now."  (insert three pouty snouts here)

We'll certainly be adding Grandma Lucy's back into our regular treat rotation going forward, especially now that we know we can get them at Chewy!

Of course, Tut wants to make sure that you know that you should stock up on Grandma Lucy's Free-Dried Singles and other great treats at Chewy too!  Remember, 1-2 day shipping is always free on orders of $49 or more!  Tut says your pooch will thank you for the delicious treats... and he knows he's always usually right!

Monday, August 24, 2015

The Incredible Leaping Doberman

Today's Monday Mischief installment is a little spin-off from Thursday's post in which I briefly mentioned admitted that --gasp-- my perfect precious little angels just might have some, um, annoying habits.

While Teutul and Sophie are pretty much set in their quirky little ways, there's a new girl in town with her own bag of tricks... some of which need to be taken down a few notches.

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For instance, Penny just doesn't get "personal space." She loves her humans so much that she must always get to them... as fast as her lanky legs can propel her leaping body from the floor/ couch/her other human's lap.

And, it's not a wimpy leap. Penny leaps with authority, backed with all of her puppy energy that she's not afraid to use. If you're not paying attention, bad things can happen. Spilled drinks. Flying popcorn. A paw in the eye. A paw someplace her Daddy thinks is the worst thing ever. Dropped stitches (which her Mama argues is the worst thing ever). You get the picture...

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There are also plenty of times when Penny just climbs up into my lap. I might be in the middle of a game of Farm Heroes, reading a magazine, or about to take a bite of a juicy burger. But no matter what I might have been doing, Penny knows I need cuddles at that very moment. And you know what, she's usually right. After all, who could resist this (look how small she was just a couple of months ago!)...

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We sometimes have personal space issues in the car as well.  Although Penny is big enough to ride in the backseat, sometimes she still needs to get.as.close.as.she.can.to.her.humans.  I swear if she could talk, we'd hear "are we there yet? huh, huh, are we there yet?" for the entire car ride.  This shot was taken during a pit stop on the way to a race a few weeks ago and she really was looking out the window to see if we were at the track yet. 

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Just like human kids, sometimes she just wants to be nosey...

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After all, riding in the backseat can get lonely...

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We won't even get into the issue of Penny kisses today. Let's just say, she's a lick monster just like her big angel sister Lola. Besides, I'm still wondering how my tiny little cuddle bug/lick monster got to be 33.4 pounds (as of last Tuesday) so fast?  I miss when she used to come stand by the couch or bed and ask for "uppies."  My little girl is growing up way too fast.

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May, 2015 ~ 10 weeks old

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August, 2015 ~ 23 weeks old

What mischief is your pack getting into this week?

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Black & White Sunday: A Girl & Her Ewok

Happy Sunday-funday-chill day!  Penny hopes you all get to spend it with a good friend...

Just a girl and her #ewok  #puppygram #instapuppy #starwars #petco #rescuedpuppiesofinstagram #dobermanpuppy #puppylove #dobiemix #puppiesofinstagram #rescuedismyfavoritebreed #adoptdontshop #dogtoys #puppyplaytime #happypuppy #petcostarwarscollection

Friday, August 21, 2015

GIVEAWAY WINNER! The Essential Guide to Color Knitting Techniques

Thank you to everyone who entered to win a copy of The Essential Guide to Color Knitting Techniques!

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The lucky winner has been chosen thru Rafflecopter... but if it wasn't you, don't worry.  You can get the book on Amazon currently for just $15.45 (see link above)!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Congrats to Donna!  I can't wait to see what you create after getting this fun book.

Stay tuned to the blog next week for another great review and giveaway, thanks to the folks over at Storey Publishing.  The Lapdogs are also working on quite a few dog treat and product reviews as well.  It sure is busy around here!