Archive | January 2009

969 Yards!

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I think I have enough for my sweater. LOL, now if only I can fit it in, time wise! I found a really nice pattern already written which is exactly what I had in mind…and will work very well (I think) for this handspun yarn. It’s really thick and thin in spots so I’m planning to work with that!

A close up…

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Now, I’m back to cleaning…it’s SUPER CLEANING DAY here, lol, ’cause I have been too busy quilting and spinning and whatnot to get anything done these last few days. Doesn’t everyone include washing their newly spun wool with their cleaning day?!

I really need some cleaning elves…

A Bit Of Searching…

I was searching for freeform crochet links and found these…I wanted to put them here so I have them later when I may want them again!

http://www.crochetpatterncentral.com/directory/flowers.php

http://home.comcast.net/~gandal195/freeform/freeformtutorial.htm

http://www.myrawood.com/pages/demo.html

https://home.comcast.net/~gandal195/3dpuffflowermedallion.htm

http://www.healmyhands.com/how_to/bullion_stitch.html

http://crochet.about.com/od/learnmorestitches/a/bullion.htm

http://crochet.about.com/library/weekly/aa052398.htm

http://crochet.about.com/od/freeformcrochet/Explore_Freeform_Crochet.htm

Working On The Quilt

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I’m quilting this freely, deciding exactly how as I go. I don’t know if you can see in the pictures but I’m changing embroidery floss colour each time I add a new thread – it’s interesting I think, to the eye.

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I’m going to decide what to do with the background and add more beads and buttons on a second go, once I finish quilting the applique pieces. I think otherwise the beads and such will get in the way of the hoop too much.

Should have more pictures later on… :)

Completely Freeform…

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The entire quilt top was cut freeform, without patterns and appliqued the same way. This quilt is like a giant scribble :) I’m using, entirely!, material, beads and buttons which I already had in my stash. Another stashbuster.

All set to add some quilting!

I’m always so amazed by how the stitching brings the quilt to life. It’s exciting! :)

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I’m using different shades of embroidery floss for the quilting itself – two strands – and some beads and buttons for fun.

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I LOVE my quilting hoop, btw, purchased in Ontario from a local craftsman, with a lifetime warranty. I’ve once had to replace a part and there was no problem at all.

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Quilting

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For my daughter’s birthday…I’m working on the back, building it out of strips of fabric, then on to layering and quilting! I’d like to add texture, maybe some embroidery or buttons or something, on top of hand quilting it.

Then, and all before Feb 22, I’m doing a baby quilt. Have yet to figure out exactly what it will be like but I’ll be thinking :) Boyish and bright, maybe themed, maybe geometric, maybe with some flannel (babies love flannel and I love flannel for babies)….

Since it’s late (and my back is sore from sewing!), I’m off to sneak in some knitting and watch tv!

Spinning Again!

Now that I’m finished the lovely knee socks, I felt like working on my spinning for a couple of days…it’s a nice break and I’ve been dying to get to it since I got all that beautiful (superwash merino) fibre at The Black Lamb for Christmas!

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I’m mixing these two colours (shell pink and a pink blend) by plying them together. I’m purposefully making the shell ply a little thinner than the blend – a little experiment.

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My finished product – the first skein – is approximately fingering to dk (by looks) and is about 14 wpi – probably 12 wpi in the thicker sections. I’m going to spin it all in a row to help ensure that the yarn is pretty much well matched. I know, I know….yes, I SHOULD just spin all the singles, wind them onto toilet paper rolls and then mix them to make the weights similar later.

Pfffffft…I don’t swatch either, ever. Don’t tell the knitting police!

I have a project in mind as I spin but it’s definitely a little into the future!! I’m thinking of designing an open knit sweater – done on larger than suitable needles – that is bottom up, as one piece as possible, with a simple seam finish and a v or some such neckline. It’ll be perfect for over a camisole. With this in mind, I chose the pinks because they are as delicate as the intended project.

I’m pretty excited about all of it :)

Flowering Orchid

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I’m so impressed! This is the orchid that my husband bought me last march, as a housewarming gift when we moved here. I haven’t done a thing to it but keep it watered and throw it some fertalizer every couple of months. It’s going to flower for a long time…I have many buds ready to open. :) I’ve always heard orchids are hard to deal with, which is why I’m so pleased :)

Bittersweet Socks

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Can you see the problem?

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Yep, two balls of araucania ranco multy. No dye lots. Different colour balance. Crap. One sock is very purple…one has a very purple foot and a really blue leg, lol.

But, since I’m extremely anti-frog…I’m going to keep them the way they are. The alternative (and an option if they bug me enough) is to frog both socks and mix the two skeins together by knitting a few rows of one and then a few rows of the other.

The moral of the story? ALWAYS check the two skeins – preferably in the daylight – to check the colour balance. I’m sure, had I done so, that it would have been obvious!

I don’t usually stress about these kinds of mistakes – it’s good enough for me that I know what happened and that I won’t do it again in the future. I’ll always look at this pair of socks in a bittersweet way…

The knitting is beautiful and even. The lace is gorgeous. The fit is perfect. The. Colour. Is. Off.

Link to the free pattern – Lacy Cables Knee Socks

Freezing Cold Emergency

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So, last night we realized that we couldn’t find my son’s balaclava (or his dad’s) anywhere. He has skiing today and it’s FREEZING cold (-31 right now). The only possible solution at 9 pm? Knitting, of course.

Then I couldn’t find a pattern for a child size OR for a larger needle knit – which is what I needed considering it had to be done for this morning.

So I designed my own – using the word design loosely, lol!

I used two strands of worsted weight handspun (my silverlights) and large dpns, cast on 72 sts, worked 2×2 ribbing for 8 inches or so, seperated by casting off 18 sts and then casting them back on two rows later, worked another 2 inches of 2×2 ribbing and then decreased gradually over the following couple of inches to form the hat crown.

I’m SO IMPRESSED that it fits! LOL, the kiddo was in bed so I was just guessing and you do start to question your guessing skills once the clock strikes 2 am or so…

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Stay warm people…it’s COLD out there!

I Love This Sock!

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It’s the first of my Lacy Knee Socks. A few better pictures…

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I worked a couple repeats fewer than the pattern calls for before beginning shaping and then shortened and modified the diamond shaped increase area. I kept a lot of notes – separated into pattern repeats so I can easily follow them on the second sock (or the second, third or fourth pair, really). A big job to knit but well worth it. I think the ribbing I added will keep them from falling down at all — they’re a perfect fit. :)

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Knee Socks

Good morning!

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I realized, after finishing my version of ‘tempest’, that I had just enough of the Araucania ranco multy to make the Lacy Cables Knee Socks. And I do love knee socks! It’s funny because I was purely an ‘ankle sock girl’ until just recently.

They’re going to be gorgeous!

I’m starting the calf increases now and hope I’ll have one finished pretty soon. I may change the increases somewhat but I’ll have to figure that out as I go.

I’m focusing on them instead of on my ‘news’. I’ve just been scheduled for a small surgery and I’m as nervous as can be. I have to have a cyst and some breast tissue removed next month. I’m scared, nervous…the inner freaking out thing while on the outside I’m trying to set a good example for my girls and be a ‘big girl’ about it. All I have to say is aging sucks as far as the body goes…

Then, on to finishing up a few things in the halfway-done-pile…

The medallion sweater.

The cabled hoodie.

The frost flowers and leaves shawl (poor thing has been languishing for more than a year – two years in march as a matter of fact! – waiting for its knitted edging to be finished).

The flower mittens for my daughter – waiting for their thumbs, lol.

Another dream of mine – I’d like to sort all my yarn. Properly. Really. LOL, normally it’s a project that gets half way done and then gets the ‘good enough’ and sits that way. This year I’m hoping to do as I did last year – knit mainly from the stash. We’re so broke lately, I’m loving this hoarding habit of mine!

Maybe the new knee socks will inspire me :)

So Not Socks!

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This is my version of ‘Tempest‘ from knitty by Ann Weaver. I followed the pattern advice and went with negative ease (28″ bust – I am a 32/34) and I love how it fits – other than I wouldn’t mind it a little longer, maybe by a couple stripes or so…

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I used two balls of sock yarn – one ‘ranco multy’ and one austermann ‘step’. What an awesome alternative to socks!! I’m so glad I didn’t use these up before now :) The ranco was a birthday gift I recieved last February and I’ve had the step even longer, lol. Now, instead, I have this beautiful sweater!

I made a few modifications;

*knit the body in one piece up to the armhole shaping.
*knit the sleeves in one piece and lengthened them to long sleeves, decreasing the amount of stitches cast on.
*lengthened the body at the waist by two small stripes.

Then I spent the entire afternoon sorting buttons from the vintage button stash. I found some nice copper buttons and used those…

I can’t believe I finished this in four days! Of almost constant work, mind you…

Esther!

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These are my Esther socks…they’re made of knitpicks ‘risata’ and are so comfy cozy! I like them enough that I may make another pair, SOMETIME, lol. It seems not a day goes by when I don’t have a few more ideas…

I’d like to make a pair of kneesocks that I found a pattern for.

I’d like to design a little cardigan with some finely spun handspun – I can picture it perfectly – now whether I’ll find the time (or take the time) to design it, we’ll see.

I’d like to try some crochet lace a la Antonina K. I saw her work for the first time recently and I’m enthralled! Beautiful!! So enthralled that I pulled out some crochet cotton and my hooks a couple days ago. You know how I had nothing on the go? LOL.

I’d like to finish the mittens for my daughter – they need thumbs!

I’d like to finish spinning the bobbin I started after Christmas with the new rovings. Better yet, to spin a second ply so I can use the yarn to make those socks or design that cardigan…hmmm…

So many, many things I’d like to do, start, finish in 2009. Looks like it’ll be a busy year :)