Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Please Throw a Lifeline!

We can throw out a lifeline to a drowning person, purchase a medical alert item that will give a lifeline to someone in need; there is even a lifeline for dog rescue or someone in despair and in knitting there is also a lifeline...................................and this is an insurance you do not need to purchase.  It's one that you need if you make a mistake in your knitting!
Oh, boy! Big time mistake!  Just knitting away--thinking the pattern was being followed.  Oh, it looked so simple to follow those directions when the eyes first 'glanced' over the instructions.  Knitting happily away--going to finish that clue #10 (being behind in the clues doesn't help either).  Yes, we are finished and then clue #11 and there are way toooooooooooo many stitches!  What to do?  Well, first read over the pattern again--duh!

Okay, nothing to do but--dare we say it--ripppppp it out!  Groan! and we do not have that insurance that most intelligent lace knitters use.  That Lifeline Insurance so described by Heartstrings.  Why do we think that our lace knitting can survive any mistakes!! Stupid for sure!!  and now, we must rip back to the end of clue #10.
And pick up stitches!  Don't anyone touch this till all those 150+ stitches have been put back on the needle.  Slowly, now--don't drop any of those yarnovers.
Whew!  a sign of relief--all stitches have been recovered and not one stitch was dropped.  Okay, we have learned our lesson--throw in a lifeline while knitting lace!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A Stroll Through Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival

Another good day spent with knitter friend Judy.  On our drive to our destination we have time to share our thoughts, our ideas, learned techniques since we last met and goals we hope to meet.  We are taking the short drive to Loveland to attend the Rocky Mountain Quilt Festival, We have personalize service when a volunteer arrives at our car in his little golf cart to take us the last few steps to the door.  Thank you volunteer! 
We enter to find vendor booths and off to one side is this "Icicles" display from the Road to California quilt conference. 
Fiber artists from across the country were asked to create a dimensional icicle from six to ten feet in length and no more than 18" in width.
The requirements of the challenge was to use an artistic vision of quilted icicles in blue, white and silver.  The exhibit is called "California Ice Storm".
Hoffman Quilt Challenge 2011 show pieces were on display.
You, too, can work with the featured fabrics for 2012 challenge.
This show winner was crafted by Sherry Reynolds of Laramie, Wyoming.
Entitled "My Wyoming Home"
Don't you just love this bug jar quilt?  There are a couple of gals in our ex-pat group making these--what fun to look for all these bug fabrics!  Jan Weber of Centennial, CO made the quilt and Karen Farnham did the long arm quilting.
Bunny Hill Designs is the creative mind behind this pattern.  But, the hands of Elizabeth Purkett, Longmont, CO did all the work.
This was a block of the month, entitled "Le Jardin"  from The Fat Quarter Shop and the quilting was accomplished by Kim Waite Dreamcatchers Quilting, Mead, CO.
Nancy Pennington, Fort Collins, CO used "Legacy of Stars"  pattern from July/August 2002 Quilter Newsletter.  This quilt uses over 600 half square triangles.  Nancy completed the quilt in 2009.
This quilt is made by the hands of Nancy Pennington--what a quilter!  This was a mystery from Bonnie Hunter's website Quiltville.  This pattern is called "Roll Cotton Boll Roll"--quite the challenge too as there are over 600 1.5" half square triangles!
We didn't purchase much.  Judy did find wonderful new fabric (new to us anyway) to make a great bag.  Other purchases were minimal--hope those vendors didn't rely on us to make a profit!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Rocky Mountain High!

A journey into the natural................................a journey into Rocky Mountain National Park brings you lovely skies, cool temperatures, peaceful settings, lovely wildflowers and roaring streams as they tumble toward the great rivers.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Mixed Bag of Tricks!

There comes a time when we must pull out a bag of tricks to keep things rolling--what tricks?  Don't you have your own bag of tricks?  Ideas, thoughts, creativity, just plain "stick-to-itness".......doesn't everyone have those things just waiting in the wings for the day when it's right for the picking? 
Let's pull this one out of the bag and catch up with the others in the group!  The knitting on this handspun shawl is so far behind, we really need some of that proddin' or jabbin' to pick up the needles and begin on clue........where did we leave off?

It really is going to be pretty when (and IF) it is ever finished.  Just can't seem to stick to the needles on this one.
And what do we have here?  A real mixed bag---of yarns.  and what do these yarns all have in common?  Well, they are going to make up a mixed warp for a weaving challenge.  Now, just have to pull out one of those 'tricks' to figure out how to measure the warp and then how to sley.  Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, this will take some thinkin' for sure.  Guess we'd better let that one rest.
The loom already had a warp from (mumble under her breath) summer...........okay, it was summer of 2009--that's not all that bad, is it?  Anyway, we'll just tie on and pull through--one thread at a time.
This is what happens sometimes when you try to pull through the reed and heddles--threads get lost and we have to pull out another trick to rescue them.  The loose yarns are weighted and the feet are ready to tromp the treadles.
Here is the first sample--not good!  Too close of a sett--back to rethreading--we do want those ribbons and bumpy yarns to make an appearance.  And the handle of this--awful!  Feels like sandpaper.......................
This is much better--at least, that trick of spacing the warp makes a difference; but, still not too sure this is what we want to see and feel.  Okay, this little project will wait..........................................we'll need to go back to our bag of tricks and see what we can magically pull out!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Flying Geese & Other Sundry Stuff!

Darn those 'Gap' Caps!  The knitting needles are flying around, using up that stash yarn that has been nicely aged!  You'll never see this cap on this head--used purple!!  Nothing else needs to be said..............of course, there are lots of 'purple' people out there and this cap will look nicely on one of their heads.  Boy, "green head" is sure missed when a model is needed!
Using two different colors of yarns makes a world of difference in the look.
Not only has this yarn been aging, but the pattern as well.  This is a super kids hat pattern from a favorite designer--Woolly Wormhead.  Was a quick knit.
And now to the flying geese part of this blog.  This is a easy way to create those critters--no bias edges either to work with--one large square and two smaller ones with a diagonal line drawn 1/4" on either side of the center.
Sew down each side of the line and then cut between the sewn lines.
Who cares if you cut straight?
Oh, look--two hearts appear after the seams are pressed towards the light.
Add another one of those squares to the pointy end of the heart and sew again.
Chain stitching is good!
Cut between the lines and look--you have those pesky flying geese flying straight off the board!
And we add those flying geese to the top of the larger 4.5" square and we have the finished 48 blocks to this mystery quilt pattern sponsored by Lyn Brown on her website.  Now, we wait for clue #4 to be posted on August 17th--We are ahead of the game for once.
All the pieces are cut, pressed and ready to be appliqued onto the eighth block from Bunny Hill Designs  "Henrietta Whiskers"
Okay, back to another one of those 'Gap' Caps.......................................................

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Wrapping Up the Week

We are wrapping up a week's WIP--one is finished, another begun (shame, shame).  No sewing this week--just knitting, knitting, and some fun!
Here is the finished 'Gap' Cap!  This is always a quick knit--just hard to put down sometimes when you want to keep your fingers involved--mindless knitting for sure!
Found this handspun knitted cap hiding in the closet--must have been knitted many moons ago--think it is a sideways with short rows knit as there is a seam.
And we have begun a mystery shawl by one of our favorite designers.  Check out Stephen West's mystery KAL on Ravalry--don't you just love that site?  It gets us into so much trouble!  Using stash yarn here--no need to buy more when this has aged nicely.
And for a fun day! My knitter friend Judy's daughter Betsy (are you following this?) is a free lance production assistant and she got a gig this week to assist with the filming of The Quilt Show, which was being taped in Boulder.  Betsy received two complimentary passes for Judy and her friend--Me!  (Thank you Betsy and Judy!)  So we met up at the Daylight Studios at 8:30 AM.
So, this is all you get to see until the production is shown sometime in early 2012!  Look for us on the very back row....we were last in line so we were last to file into seats.  What an interesting day!