Friday, February 26, 2010

Small Projects--little bit at a time!

It's easy to bite off a small portion of something and work it through. When there is a pattern that looks difficult or time consuming, a piece at a time will work just fine. So, there are a couple of year long projects that are resting on the project table and by biting off a small piece each week, eventually, the project will be completed. This project is from Debbie Mumm Block of the Month. At first glance, the recipe looks complicated, but look, it breaks down easily into small bits. Block One and Block Two. This is a color study. If you use the fabrics suggested in the instructions, you'll definitely see how color affects the pattern distribution. In order to bust my stash, the fabrics will be from the stockpile of leftovers.
Then there is the other challenge taking place in the studio-- Pinwheel Sampler QAL . This quilt along has been easy peasy--only because it was started early and hopefully, over the period of time this QAL last, it will still be easy to keep up.

Two blocks down and only 14 more to go!! Now, Friday Block Party is another story. In this challenge, how behind can one get? Say a year! but, so much fun to collect the patterns.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Winter Blues--Not Here!

Look at "Sock It To Me" Sock Monkey being the king of his domain! He just perched himself upon the arm of the rod iron frame. From there, in the warmth of woven scarves and colorful backgrounds, he can see the whole area of the weaving room.
And what does he see? Most often a messy weaving room--but there is some activity happening on occasion. We are back in the hat mode!! Oh, how we love that simple pattern shared by Colorado knitter friend Judy! It's great road trip knitting.
Green head is resting so the banister post was used as the model head.

All made from leftover bits of sock yarn--just might need to knit more socks in order to have more leftovers! This hat was made from handspun wool found in the aging bin. Worked nicely for a hat. Two other hats are on the needles--one is called Warm Ears Taos Hat--can be found here Straw into Gold and the other is another pattern from Knitter Judy and Black Water Abbey Yarns

Monday, February 22, 2010

Always Learning

The saying is that you learn something new each day--some days yes, but some days, you think not. And if you are a member of Ravelry , there is no excuse not to learn something new every day. And if not a member of this networking community, then you should join--it's free and simple and oh, the rewards for fiber addicts is outstanding!! There are new groups popping up often and when this lace sampler group came along, it was absolutely necessary to join. Never one to knit lace, this sounded perfect. The group would suggest themes for the month and the moderator or 'powers that be' of that group would give us a lace pattern for the month--what fun this has been and definitely a learning opportunity. Here is the pattern for February--an easy recipe to knit lace. Of course, attention must be paid to the right line of the pattern to knit and counting stitches is a must--not one of my strong suits. Below is January pattern, which was winter wonderland.
This lace yarn has been "stashed" for quite some time, so it is properly aged that's for sure!! And the fact is, this lace knitting is great fun--in small doses!
Having finished this wall hanging before Valentine's Day, it will linger in the pile of things to be quilted--maybe, it will be finished by Valentine's Day 2011. The tutorial for this hanging was found on Piece n Quilt website. She offers many tutorials. Also a new QAL (quilt along) has been placed along the side panel--join in on the fun of this pinwheel adventure. It sounds feasible--in small doses.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Where It Is or Where Is It?

Yes, they are finished! The FLG are complete! Finished them up while watching "Taking of Pelham 123"--and that is where it is! There is still some of that handspun wool leftover so will have to think hard on how to use the rest--whatever will need to be small item.
And Where is it for this stack of flannel--a recent sale at Jo=Ann's Fabric store yielded a long wait in line for fabric cutting but it was well worth it--$2.49 yd for prints and $2 yd for solids + 10% off complete order. All washed and ready to go. These will make lovely blankets.
And another mystery to complete from Kris Knits (along the side panel). Life happen for her this month and she wasn't able to get the pattern out early. She will post several rows at a time and if you keep up by time's end, you'll have a wonderful cloth.
Where it is--a finished January cloth.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

No More Mystery

Well, it started out as another one of those wonderful mysteries that this soul loves but...........time got away and one thing added up to another thing. This was where it all began:
She-Knits instructions, Brooks Farm lovely mohair fiber, #6 beads--especially since it was going to be a short mystery--three parts, "easy peasy" this person said to herself as she downloaded step #one . Take up needles, cast on and complete step one. Wow! That was fun and yes, easy! Well, it's not easy if you don't work on the project. So, here it sits...........
in its nice little baggie, along with ALL of the instructions. Definitely, not a mystery anymore and Yes, there was some peeking involved on the ravelry group at the progress of others who have finished. Guess that's okay, but that peeking took the thunder out of the surprise--shame on you for looking!! Now, there is another She-Knits mystery lace project beginning soon--and yes, once again, my name is on the list. Can the first one be completed before the other one comes online? We can only hope!
Then, there is another project that is just one step away from being completed--another mystery that could be solved quickly, if only-- Fingerless gloves made from leftover handspun wool that has already created pair of socks. Just this one step to completion. Goal must be set and met; then, move onto She-Knits mystery already solved but waiting.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Rigmaroles & Ragmuffins

Books! Books! Books! In my way of thinking one can not have enough books! And always being on the outlook for unusual and interesting books is a great pastime. This author, Elinor Kapp, was interviewed on one of the podcast--maybe, Cast On. She spoke about her adventure in collecting unique English language words that pertain to textiles. Immediately, this book was high on the priority list to find.
Elinor Kapp in her own words:
And reading through the book, you can find all sorts of interesting attachments to how our texture language has branched out into everyday life. Here is one that catches the eye:
Now, we would have thought that a lap dancer in a nightclub could be associated with my fiber world?!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Spindle Play

Take a box of spindles--each used for spinning silk. Every spindle is unique with different weights for spinning ability. These are all under 1 ounce.
Once your spindle is full, wind the silk off into small balls and store. All fiber, whether spun or unspun, needs to age properly before usage! For me, these little balls of silk are so finely spun (machine thread fine) that it takes at least 4 ply to make a yarn that is knitable.
Ply together--doesn't matter what the colors are--it blends. Below is the result of knitting small squares and large squares.
Here the squares are laid out on the carpet to block and below are squares joined together. If you want the complete pattern, check out Spring 2008 issue of Interweave Knits page 102 Chameleon Scarf by Lorilee Beltman or purchase from Ravelry as Holey Scarf.
And here is the finished scarf.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Ex-patchers Back at Work

It is back to the routine for expatchers group. The first meeting of February, not only was birthday luncheon for December (we didn't meet in Dec)& February gals, there was a presentation of accomplishments from the past month. Here is the Sock Monkey fabric quilt being made by Brenda for friend's upcoming baby.
Close-up of fabrics.
Baby quilt made by Linda for her new granddaughter that is due this summer. There was discussion on how to finish off these quilts, since Minkie fabric is being used for the backing--either to tie or machine quilt.
Brenda showed her completed Shop Hop Christmas quilt top.
Machine applique at corners and in center block--look at back--excellent work!
Over all quilt top with smiling Brenda in the upper left corner.

Annette brought her basket of pincushions chickens. The money donated for these little chickens is given to Breast Cancer Research. We could just hear all the chirping coming from the colorful chicks.
This is Annette's little and we are talking tiny, tiny blocks--perfectly matched points--on this completed quilt.
Close-up of one block on back.
Just a lovely piece of work!
Debby, who moved to Louisiana, came to visit and brought her piecework along with her.


Judy M was using this Binky quilt to warm up her long arm machine after an absence of several weeks. Lovely hearts decorate this warm comfort.
Just a simple preprinted panel makes an ideal Binky quilt; add some binding and you have a nice gift.
Brenda's mother was also in attendance. She pulled out her handwork to show us what she is working on--a Grandmother's Flower Garden.
All by hand!! She making two at the same time--one in pinks and one in greens.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Wild Spinners!

Flickr/Januaryspin
Head over to this link and watch the 'wild spinners' doing their thing to the tune of "We are the Monkees"! Great showing of skills. The hose they are wearing are handspun, handknit! Something to blow your mind. This group of talented gals had fantastic handspin, handknit umbrellas last year--we can't wait to see what they do with 2011 theme of "Beach Blanket Bingo".

Friday, February 5, 2010

JSPNNDT

January Spin-in Precision Niddy Noddy Drill Team performs for the crowd! First rehearsal in the hall before presentation.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

More January Spin-in Treats!

Here are a few more of the January spin-in special treats that were shared by participants.
Ron brings his sock knitting machine to work on premie caps that he donates to the local hospital Lovely shawl that was knitted by Tom of Illinois. He learned to spin and knit during those long winter days.
A basket full of wonderul yarns from Gale's Arts.
One of the traveling scarf exchange groups.
One of the vendors says "To Baa or not to Baa". Yes, Baa it is!
A definite sock lady!
Bottom of sock bag--cut up old socks!
Melody with her sock bag!
We were invaded by a group of hippies from the 60's--flower children. There was even a sit-in protest. Here Nancy shows off her first lace project.
Mermaid doll with art yarn hair.