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Wedding Plans: 8 Weeks Left

Wedding Plans: 8 Weeks Left

There are eight weeks left before our wedding, and this week the invitations were sent! I will be waiting for the RSVPs to come in and will be busy crocheting the color coded “meal flowers” immediately.
My colors are all jewel tones – an amethyst purple, dark sapphire blue, and an emerald/teal green and of course gold. Each flower indicates a coordinating meal and will be attached to each escort card.


Our reception will be a plated dinner and our selections are the following:

Chicken Option:
(Nadia’s Favorite Food)
Chicken (Murgh) Makhani
A Pakistani dish consisting of a spiced curry mixture of cream, tomato, and butter,
blended together with full flavored roasted boneless chicken pieces served with Basmati rice.

Beef/Seafood Option:
(Nate’s Favorite Food)
Steak/Salmon
6 oz. center cut sirloin steak with king salmon, paired with house whipped Yukon gold potatoes and fresh garlic hericot vert

Vegetarian Option:
(Combined Favorite)
Classic Pesto Linguini
Linguini in light pesto cream with artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes, spinach, onions, and shaved parmesan served with garlic toast

For all kids, we will be serving signature Mac & Cheese.

Before planning a wedding, one never realizes the details that go into coordinating such an event!

Since we are having a Pakistani/Irish fusion wedding held on St. Patrick’s Day weekend, there are fun details from both of our cultures being incorporated into our special day.

My Mehndi is being held a day before our wedding and this event is a fun day for the ladies.  The Henna Ceremony, or the Rasm-e-henna ceremony, typically takes place one or two days prior to the main wedding day. Mehndi is a form of body art from Ancient India, in which decorative designs are created on a person’s body, using a paste, created from the powdered dry leaves of the henna plant. The henna is symbolically placed on the bride’s hands and feet by a professional mehndi artist. The designs are very intricate. Often hidden within the mehndi pattern the name or initials of the groom are applied. In Pakistan, the Mehndi is often one of the most important pre-wedding ceremonies. This ritual is supposed to bring good luck and longevity to the bride’s married life.


The wedding day will all be held at the same place with our ceremony being held in one part of the venue and reception and dinner in the banquet room.

The Walima (Groom’s Reception) is a meal that is held the day after the wedding. It is a feast of traditional Pakistani foods. It is at this ceremony that the bride and groom are formally and publicly showcased as a married couple.

Thankfully we are able to do much of the wedding DIY ourselves. My mom and I have been on the go for the past week, (well since I got engaged, but more so in the past week!) and we have been able to check a lot off the to-do list. We are definitely do-ers and planners! Nate has been sooo incredibly helpful as well, and of course, my dad weighs in to share ideas about the Pakistani parts of our wedding.

We met with our amazing DJ and planned out the music for the best dance party!

I may have mentioned in an earlier blog post that I plan to make all my flowers myself. I have been working on all the flowers for the bouquets, boutonnières, corsages, and centerpieces.


We started to put together an arrangement this past weekend to come up with how to incorporate the crochet flowers into our centerpieces. This was just a rough start, but we are loving how they look against the Lemon Leaf greenery. I have gotten a good start on the flowers and have about 150-175 left to crochet aside from those tiny meal flowers which I will know more when those RSVPs come in.


I crocheted my girls the Wrapped In Jewels Shawl which I will be gifting to them at our Rehearsal dinner. I shared those with you at the end of last year, and I was able to cross that off my list. I also have the Henna Inspired Mandalas that I crocheted and hope to somehow incorporate those into the weekend but not sure where.

Details, details, details!! I love the creative parts of the planning, but the logistics are giving me a touch of worry trying to keep everything straight and organized. So far, it is all coming together very well. My excitement is growing by the day! More updates to come!! Thank you for joining me on this journey!!

~Nadia

My dad will continue to be the videographer, editor, and photographer for our videos when I move away.
Support YARNutopia today so we can continue to bring you clear, quality crochet tutorials even after I get married and move into my new home! There will be an added expense of more travel and hopefully this won’t deter our ability to provide consistent videos on a weekly basis.

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GIVEAWAY ENDED: Yarn Pooling Made Easy Blog Tour & Book Review

GIVEAWAY ENDED: Yarn Pooling Made Easy Blog Tour & Book Review

This Giveaway has ended
Thank you to all who participated!
Congratulations to the winner Stephanie Parish Buser!!

 

If I were to start this blog post a year ago, you would have heard my howl of frustration across the globe as I spent most of my efforts attempting to Yarn Pool in utter failure. No joke. I can’t even begin to count how many times in the past year, as yarn pooling began to trend, that I have been making feeble tries to make a go of it. After a few failed attempts, I would give up. Many people here on YARNutopia would ask for my help or write to see a demonstration, and I had to honestly admit defeat. Yarn pooling was something I wrestled with and lost. I started to reconcile it was NOT for me.

 

A few weeks ago, I was invited to participate in a Yarn Pooling Blog Tour hosted by Marly Bird. She has a great book Yarn Pooling Made Easy. I was provided a copy of the book and asked to give one of the projects a try by combining her detailed instructions with her comprehensive video tutorials. This was my chance! My last-ditch effort to make it through and understand this incredible technique. So, I agreed. I WAS going to overcome this challenge! I was bound and determined THIS time I was going to succeed.

 

Crochet Yarn Pooling

The instructions say to use a variegated yarn with a repeated color way. I had my yarn Red Heart Super Saver in Platoon that I felt would be perfect for this. I decided to not over shoot my first attempt by getting over zealous taking on a huge pattern, so I decided on a scarf as my first project to try yarn pooling. I was ready. I was excited. I was optimistic. I was geared up to tackle something that previously tried to defeat me. This time I was NOT to be defeated!!!

However, things did not go as smooth as I had hoped in the beginning. Have you ever tried to do something and no matter how hard you try, something just doesn’t click? I lacked the coordination to understand some key elements and my first several attempts I had to frog my work. I was not going to let Marly Bird down! So, I kept going. I watched her video tutorials and read the instructions in her book very carefully. I started over and over. I put my headphones on, tuned out everything, and listened to each word of her videos. By the time I reached the end of her segment, I was sooooo inspired!! Marly, you inspire me so much!

Crochet Yarn Pooling

I began to work my yarn into to the right calculations and GUESS WHAT, it works!!!! It worked out for me!!! I started to see how the pooling effect created the argyle pattern, and boy, I did an epic happy dance all over my house!!!! How thrilling!! This has been the ONLY helpful guide for me to be able to succeed on something that I was about to give up on. I am typically NOT a quitter and thank goodness, because if I was, I would not have found my way to this great book and Marly’s fantastic videos and I would not be Yarn Pooling today! I am so thankful to have stuck it out and succeeded. Marly, thank you!

 

To make this even more exciting, I am giving ONE copy of this book away to ONE lucky follower here on YARNutopia!!!! NOW YOU TOO CAN HAVE THE KEY TO UNLOCK THE MYSTERY OF YARN POOLING OF YOUR VERY OWN!!
WOOT, WOOT!!

Congratulations to the winner Stephanie Parish Buser!!

Who Can Enter? Only open to those 18 years of age or older and US residents. (sorry…legal reasons prevent us from making this open worldwide)

My Giveaway will end on September 20th, 2018 at 11:59pm and the randomly chosen winner will be announced and contacted on September 21st. The winner then has until September 24th to claim their prize.

Here is a schedule of the blogs that will be sharing a review and doing a GIVEAWAY:

Date : Blogger

9/5/17 : Calleighs Clips and Crochet Creations

9/6/17 : ACCROchet

9/7/17 : The Stitchin Mommy

9/8/17 : Crochet Memories

9/11/17 : Pattern Paradise

9/12/17 : 5 Little Monsters

9/13/17 : YARNutopia

9/14/17 : Same DiNamics Crochet

9/15/17 : Nicki’s Homemade Crafts

9/18/17 : Looping with Love

9/19/17 : Underground Crafter

*NOTE: Winners will be chosen at the discretion of each blogger host, and by their rules. All winners will be notified within one week of the last tour date. All winners will need to respond to the host with their information by 9/24/17 or they will forfeit their prize. All books will be sent at the same time at the end of the tour, regardless of when the winner was chosen. Winner must have a US or Canadian address.

I can’t express the excitement it is as a seasoned crocheter to be able to find a way for this to make sense!  Now the opportunities are endless! If you are like me, struggling to understand this technique, this is a fabulous instruction manual and pattern book you won’t want to miss. Combine these great instructions from the book with Marly’s step by step video tutorials and you have yourself a winning combination!!

A few notes:

My persistence paid off in one day! From the moment I sat down to try this to reaching success, was only a few short hours.

My scarf using the pattern in her book took me a combined 4-5 total hours once I got the hang of yarn-pooling.

The book is titled ‘Yarn Pooling Made Easy’ and you can purchase your copy now.

This post contains affiliate links, which I may be compensated for when you make a purchase. That means if you click on any link and buy from the linked websites, I will receive a small percentage of the value of your order. The amount you pay is not changed. Thank you for all your support in clicking the links in my blog!! You all are so amazing!! ~Nadia


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Tips on Homemade Gift Giving

Tips on Homemade Gift Giving

Over the years, I have found that giving crocheted gifts has been well received. Even my brother has raided my stockpile of crochet items for cowls, hats, scarves, and items to give to his own friends. People love a well-made item. Giving someone something homemade, especially made with love, is priceless.

Here is a quick checklist on what to do when preparing to give a homemade gift of crochet.

Give yourself plenty of time

Start early to avoid stress and pressure of finishing something you are aware has a deadline. Don’t wait until the last minute to start a stack of crochet projects on December 1st for Christmas gifts or a baby blanket two weeks before a baby shower, UNLESS you are a seasoned crochet artist with years of experience and have no worry working under those high pressure deadlines.

Tackle a project or idea that falls within the range of your skill set and time frame, so crochet is a pleasure and not a chore.  Even if you want to take on a challenge of something that you have never tried before, having enough time to learn and complete it will remove some of the anxiety of trying something new. That way, if you run into issues experimenting, you will accomplish something doable without the frustration of getting in “over your head” when you have the time to “play around” with a new pattern.

Personally, I have to give myself time. I have good intentions when tackling a project, but I have learned, nothing ever goes quite the way I plan. Even when I give myself time to finish, I find that I am running up to the very last moment of my timeline!

Make Lists

Who is on your gift giving list? Are you tackling a project for one individual or a list of people? Once you answer these questions, make a list of who you are gifting to. Then, decide what you plan to make for each of them. Then, make a list of the supplies needed for each project. Here is where things might get a bit costly. If you have a large list of people you want to make gifts for, breaking down the supplies into smaller purchases takes off some of the financial pressure of doing them all at once. Working on a single or even a couple of projects to completion, and then comprising another list to tackle the rest of your list makes the blow to the pocketbook a little easier to manage.

The next step is to give yourself a REALISTIC and liberal time frame to finish the project. Here is where I always end up in a trap! I always underestimate the time frame I can complete a project. Even as a seasoned crochet artist, I cannot plan for those unpredictable circumstances. It is impossible to prep for the unknown. I can sit down with the best intentions to spend the evening crocheting and friend might drop by, or my best friend who is in the Peace Corp in Africa has an internet connection and wants to have a Skype date! I love crochet, but there are definitely times when my crochet projects take a back burner to other more important things! That is part of life! So always make sure that you allow for those times.

Set goals

When I was making the G.G. Cardigan, I sat down and counted how many squares I needed to make. Then I planned the time frame it would take to reasonably make this coat. My circumstances are different than most, but the principle still applies. I set a goal of how many squares I needed to do in a specific time frame. I took the total number and the time I planned to make it and divided. Example: If I needed 70 squares, I wanted to finish it in 2 weeks, which meant I needed to do 5 squares a day or 10 squares every other day.

Presently, I have been working on my wedding flowers (tutorials to come). I want to make a variety of flowers for different things, my bouquets, boutonnieres, centerpieces, the place cards with coordinating floral details that are color coded for my menu options, etc. This is a HUGE undertaking. I needed to make 2 flowers each day for the year (we got engaged in March 2017 and are getting married in March 2018). Yeah, that isn’t happening. I have a little over 100 flowers done. I have to really amp up my production if I am going to meet this deadline, and I will, but that means changing my expectations. When I miss a day or two, I will sit down and make up a dozen or more flowers to catch up. It has been pretty successful. Again, so much comes in the way of meeting those goals so be sure to account for that!

Homemade gifts will be treasured for years to come, but remember that the goal of giving them with no pressure and stress is our hope and expectation. Try to avoid that last minute pressure and stress that sends you on a stream of made up curse words going off in your head as you crochet like fiends the night before!! I can’t tell you how many times that has happened to me! HAHA! We have all been there and done that!

Are you a plan ahead crochet artist?? Or are you the one that is pulling the all-nighter to finish in time to give a gift? No matter which way you function, I hope crochet continues to bring you joy under every circumstance!

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