When Nate and I bought our house this past July, one of the bedrooms was in pretty rough shape. It had a behemoth wall cabinet built around a bed that fit into the center. I remember Nate’s dad remarking that it looked like the drawers in a wall at a morgue, and my first thought was this thing had to go!
Behind the bed was exposed wall and mortar. We even discovered a small hole where we could see light from outside! We found little critter poo in the area behind where the previous owner had their bed. I had total heebie-jeebies following that discovery! The first step was to ensure that there were no openings to the outside where critters can enter, so my dad filled the cracks and holes both inside and out. That went a LONG way to giving me peace of mind!
Where to start?
The room was poorly painted in a funky celery green color that was dirtied with age, with patches of the former paint peeking through. Our first inclination was to tear everything out and gut that insanely HUGE cabinet. After careful consideration, we decided to repair everything, repaint the room a soft gray with white accents, and try to work with the massive shelving (that was actually very well constructed). The previous owner had built the cabinet by hand out of solid oak, so the quality and construction was excellent. We all felt it would be a shame to completely destroy it. But what to do??!
The idea of facing this DIY project was a bit daunting, yet, when we started to disassemble and remove the drawers my mom came up with the idea of using this as a yarn storage wall! That had me shifting into 5th gear with an excited, “YES, PLEASE!” So, Nate, myself, my mom, and dad reinvented this wall unit into a yarn storage and turned the bedroom into my new studio/craft-room! It’s a night and day difference, and I couldn’t be happier with the results!
A little hard work never hurt anyone. It can however make me scream.
We started with the carpets. We rented a Rug Doctor and shampooed the carpets several times over. Once the floors dried, my dad removed the remaining drawers and hardware, leaving empty openings in their place. He measured and cut the wood for each “shelf” that needed a bottom. Then, we inserted each shelf into its cubicle and secured them with nails. We had 23 to reconstruct. I left two of the bottom drawers intact for notions, crochet hooks, and other supplies.
We decided then to paint the room. Since this room eventually will be my filming studio, I could only choose from white, cream, or gray paint so the lighting didn’t cast a strange color on my videos. So, I chose the soft gray with white trim. What should have been a simple paint job, was a disaster. One, we had to wash years of grime off the existing walls. Two, it took more than 3 coats of the light gray to cover the green color beneath. Three, I stepped off the ladder and the can of gray paint tipped over spilling and splashing paint EVERYWHERE all over the carpet! I screamed!! What a mess to clean up!! It took two full days to finish painting this small room. I still have a bit of trim to fix, paint, and replace, but overall it looks 100 times better than it did!
The Fun Part
Now the task of filling those compartments of my wall unit was next. My mom and I unpacked boxes upon boxes of yarn and began organizing them into colors. That took hours and hours! I think I went up and down the step ladder a hundred times that day. My legs were burning by the end! But what a difference it made! It transformed from being this massive thing with cold, empty caverns, into a wonderful warm, colorful work of art (haha!). My excitement just grew by leaps and bounds!
My dad and Nate repaired the back wall and constructed the table where I will be filming. They custom built the table for me to work and do my tutorials. They also added lighting fixtures to illuminate my work area. Once that was complete, my mom and I began to add personal touches to the room. The first thing to be hung on the wall was my Silver Play Button I was awarded from YouTube for surpassing 100,000 subscribers. One of the last pieces to be done was changing the ceiling fan into a hanging light fixture. We also accented with a black room darkening curtain so we can eliminate light coming through the window while filming. Soon the room began to truly come to life.
Over the course of the past few weeks, I added a big comfy chair and additional artwork to the room. Most of the items are second hand or gifts that add to that personal charm to make this space my own. It is one of the coziest and happiest places in our new home. It is the perfect place for me to spend most of my time!
I am still transitioning between homes as I still live with my parents until our wedding. In 5 months, I will be getting married and will be moving ALL my yarn to our home permanently and those shelves will be full! YARNutopia will have a new home with a new beginning! I am excited to make these changes not just in my personal life, but in the life of our online community! Lots of exciting things to come and I am so happy to share this journey with all of you!
We still have to add some finishing touches. I will be keep you updated on more changes to come as well as posting about the day we film our first tutorial in my NEW studio!! Thank you for joining me and sharing this adventure!
Let me know stories of your own home DIY projects! Have you remodeled a room? Share in the comments section!
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!!
My dad will continue to be the videographer, editor, and photographer for our videos.
Support YARNutopia today so we can continue to bring you clear, quality crochet tutorials even after I 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.
Over the past couple of years I have collected embroidery hoops and used them for crochet mandala wall art. In today’s blog, I will demonstrate how to make this mandala hoop art for your very own! Start your day with coffee or chai, and crochet!
Not all designs on my wall are mine. I used patterns like Sophie’s Universe and some designs from A Creative Being (Marinke Slump) to complete this arrangement. My wall is not complete and there is room to grow! I see more mandala art in our crochet future!
“RED for strength, high energy and passion PINK for love, intuition and the feminine ORANGE for creativity, transformation, self-awareness and intuition YELLOW for learning, wisdom, laughter and happiness GREEN for physical healing, psychic ability, love of nature and caring BLUE for emotional healding, inner peace and meditation PURPLE for all things spiritual WHITE for spiritual focus BLACK for mystery, deep thinking and individuality”
Please check out the new beginning graphic in the video tutorial designed and developed by my brother Nabeel. He and his wife own and operate NFD Graphics. Please hop over to their Facebook page and show them some love! For all your graphic and video/logo design needs be sure to contact them today! www.nfdgraphics.com
Follow along with this video tutorial to make this mandala:
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**You can always contact me via Facebook if you have any problems with the pattern. I am happy to help if you have any questions along the way.
***You can definitely sell anything you make from my patterns, please just link back to my website YARNutopia.com. Thank you!
Teacher: Nadia Fuad
Video and Editing: Fuad Azmat (My Daddy)
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Designed by Nadia Fuad You *may* sell items made from my pattern, but please reference my website YARNutopia.com.
Please do not copy, sell, and/or post this pattern and claim it as your own.
-Use a smaller hook to make these smaller
-Use a bigger hook to make these bigger
-Watch the FULL introduction of the video tutorial for frequently asked questions and watch the full video for tips on how to make these smaller or bigger.
-This is a scrap yarn project
-This is for a 10 Inch Embroidery Hoop
You can buy any of the items in this kit. Buy all or buy one item. Check it out to see the supplies you can get online to make this project!
YO: Yarn Over
Sl st: slip stitch
SC: Single Crochet
HDC: Half Double Crochet
DC: Double Crochet
TR: Treble Crochet
DTR: Double Treble Crochet
BPSC: Back Post Single Crochet
BPHDC: Back Post Half Double Crochet
BPDC: Back Post Double Crochet
BPTR: Back Post Treble Crochet
ETR: Extended Treble Crochet
Ch 4, Sl st to first ch to form a ring Rnd 1: Ch up 3 (Counts as DC), 15 DC in Ring, sl st to first ch up 3. (16 sts) Rnd 2: In any st, Ch 1, SC in same st, *Ch 3, Sk 1 st, SC in next st, repeat from * around, sl st to first SC. (8 Ch 3 sps) Rnd 3: Sl st into Ch 3 sp, Ch 1, [SC, HDC, DC, TR, DC, HDC, SC] in each ch 3 sp, sl st to 1st SC. Fasten off. Rnd 4: Attach Yarn to Back Post of any TR, BPHDC around every stitch around, Sl st to first BPHDC. Rnd 5: In Any Stitch: BLO, Ch 3 (Counts as DC), DC in each st around working in BLO, sl st to beg ch up 3. Fasten off. Rnd 6: Start in the Stitch to the left of the stitch that’s worked into the stitch of the TR of round 3, Work a FPDC around the stitch, BPDC around the next st, [FPDC around the next st, BPDC around the next st] 2 more times, *ETR in TR from Rnd 3, [FPDC around next st, BPDC around next st] 3 times, repeat from * around. Sl st to first FPDC. Fasten off Rnd 7: Starting in an ETR, Ch 1, SC in same st, *Ch 8, SC in next st, Repeat from * around. (8 Ch 8 sps) Rnd 8: Sl st into Ch 8 Sp, Ch 1, [SC, HDC, DC, HDC, TR, DTR, TR, HDC, DC, HDC, SC] in each ch 8 sp around, sl st to first SC. Fasten off. Rnd 9: Attach to a BACK POST of any DTR, *BPSC around DTR, BPHDC around next st, BPDC around next 3 sts, BPTR around next 2 sts, BPDC around next 3 sts, BPHDC around next st, repeat from * around, sl st to first BPSC,
You can either fasten off or continue to crochet around the embroidery hoop and the mandala.
See video tutorial for visual instructions
If you have any confusion or difficulty with reading this pattern, please watch the video tutorial to have visual instructions.
This post contains affiliate links, which means if you click on the 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.
The yarn provided for this pattern is courtesy of Red Heart Yarns
Yesterday, I had a follow up physical and doctor appointment after having a bit of a health scare last week where I ended up in the ER. After going through a number of tests and scans, it was determined that we will postpone any surgery for now, and I will undergo additional testing and possibly a HIDA scan, for newly discovered issues that are affecting my gall bladder and other organs. Other than that, things were looking pretty “Normal for Nadia” as my doctors like to say! I’ll take that!
During this appointment, I was telling my doctor about my recent engagement and how Nate proposed on our trip to Europe. She was so genuinely excited for us. She hugged me three times and was overjoyed because she has seen me through so much. She also asked about how the transition will be as I prepare to transfer some of my medical care to a new city. Although it is far down the line, I will need to find a new physician and leave her behind. That’s a very difficult thing for me to do. It began to hit me how many changes are about to take place not only in my health journey, but life and business as well! Oh Boy!
Support goes a long way
My entire life has been spent with my parents; it is no secret that my Mom is my best friend. Although I did spend a short time away from home attending university, illness/surgeries impeded my ability to continue. After 6 separate attempts at going back to college, I decided to postpone it indefinitely. Illness won that battle. (I am still winning the war) I may consider going back one day, but for now, it was the best decision.
During those struggling years, my parents encouraged me to start a small Etsy shop and website to showcase my crocheted items. It was also during those times that, while in the hospital, so many nurses, nursing assistants, and doctors asked for help learning how to crochet. I began showing them basic techniques and taught while I was in the hospital. Teaching crochet in that setting helped me SO much. It also gave me a great idea!
Planting the seeds to grow a dream
I will always be grateful to my mom for her insight to give me yarn and a hook so long ago. She pushed me to do something constructive during those long months when I was in isolation or just spending a month hospitalized for whatever health problem I was having that kept me there.
When you are isolated and feel alone, having a skill or hobby to pass the time becomes invaluable. It becomes a lifeline that keeps your mind occupied and stops it from wandering straight into depressing thoughts. Thankfully, I was able to take that time to hone my skills in crochet and develop my craft into such a blooming network and community. It helped to open a platform that I could teach others my craft. My dad helped me start a YouTube channel, and I could reach others with my video tutorials. Having that connection to others quite literally SAVED me. There, an idea born out of a desperate situation, became the seed to grow this dream.
Looking forward to next year (2018), I am excited to be getting married and starting my life with Nate. Out of respect for my Pakistani culture and my personal beliefs, I will not live with Nate before we get married. What has me feeling a bit anxious is how my life will be structured to continue YARNutopia from a distance. I will not only have a new marriage, new doctors, a new home, and a business to balance, but an entire change from everything I know. Moving even a few hours away from home hits me at times that is both exciting and scary. This weekend, while celebrating Mother’s Day, we sat down to discuss this.
Structure and Discipline
Presently, we try to film 2-3 videos a week. Prior to filming, my mom and I design several items that I create off camera. I perfect and refine the pattern and then proceed to head into the studio for filming. It is in the filming process that we decide what videos to keep, what projects will be popular, or what ends up on the cutting room floor. Sometimes only one video will make it to our channel. This process is lengthy and tedious. It requires many hours invested and a lot of trial and error. Our days are planned, structured, scheduled. We each execute our particular tasks and responsibilities. My mom handles a majority as she also takes care of our home on top of everyone in our family as well as running and managing our business.
Having the structure and discipline of working with parents who have built a photography/videography business from the ground up so many years ago has been priceless. I just hope when I move away into my own home and start my life with Nate, the lessons they taught me will carry over into our life. I have never had the opportunity to work outside the home and this will be a big challenge to maintain this work ethic on my own, which incidentally, I never have had to be alone. Nate’s career has him working 8-12 hours a day. That is another idea that will take some getting used to.
Nothing Can Stop Us
Recently, Nate and I have begun to search for our “build a dream” home. We have been scouring the listings for a house that can accommodate our must have list. We sat down and made a checklist of things we want in a forever home.
My top priority is a place for a craft room/studio (and a dishwasher, but that’s another story!) We have gone through several places that have potential. Let’s see if we are able to find a place where we can create our life and provide me with the ultimate craft room! (That will be a future blog post of its own).
My dad will set us up with an in-home studio, and his plan will be to travel and film at our home. My mom and I plan to design, create, and work remotely via Skype. So many fun and exciting changes to come in the next 300 days as we plan out this move! As much as I look forward to all these changes, leaving my old life behind and starting over feels a bit daunting and overwhelming at times. I’m just eternally grateful for the support of a wonderful man, my parents, and all of YOU, who will continue to accommodate all these changes in order to see YARNutopia through this growth and transition.
Oh song lyrics, you give me the feels!
When I look back and reflect over the past nearly nine years of health challenges and life detours, I never pictured this being the way my life would turn out. I honestly wasn’t sure I would ever meet anyone willing to accept not only the voluminous health issues I came with, but also accept that I would need to manage a job that would fit my abilities and challenges. I could not ask for more in anyone and somehow through God, or destiny, it led me down this path. There is a song lyric that says, “This much I know is true, that God blessed the broken road, that led me straight to you.” No words could ever be truer to describe how I arrived to this place in my life. At times when I faced another health challenge, I always asked “Why!??” maybe this was always the answer.
“What is meant to be will always find a way” ~Trisha Yearwood