Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Hickory, Dickory, Stitchery........................

Want a stitch?  Need a stitch?
Here is the website that has every stitch known to man and woman!
I'm so impressed when I look at all this neat stitches----
of course, do you see me working my hands like crazy to
create these fanciful images?  No, but..............

this handy dictionary of stitches is right at my finger tips when I
need them--whether I'm at home or on the road, I can
turn in, run down the list and
bam!  it's there!
Wouldn't it be fun to do each of these stitches--starting at A?! 

Monday, May 30, 2016

Memorial Day

Memorial Day in the United States

Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday of May. It was formerly known as Decoration Day and commemorates all men and women, who have died in military service for the United States. Many people visit cemeteries and memorials on Memorial Day and it is traditionally seen as the start of the summer season.
Arlington National Cemetary.

What Do People Do?

It is traditional to fly the flag of the United States at half staff from dawn until noon. Many people visit cemeteries and memorials, particularly to honor those who have died in military service. Many volunteers place an American flag on each grave in national cemeteries. Memorial Day is combined with Jefferson Davis' Birthday in Mississippi.
Memorial Day has become less of an occasion of remembrance. Many people choose to hold picnics, sports events and family gatherings on this weekend. This day is traditionally seen as the start of the summer season for cultural events. For the fashion conscious, it is seen as acceptable to wear white clothing, particularly shoes from Memorial Day until Labor Day. However, fewer and fewer people follow this rule and many wear white clothing throughout the year.

Public Life

Memorial Day is a federal holiday. All non-essential Government offices are closed, as are schools, businesses and other organizations. Most public transit systems do not run on their regular schedule. Many people see Memorial Day weekend as an opportunity to go on a short vacation or visit family or friends. This can cause some congestion on highways and at airports.


Memorial Day started as an event to honor Union soldiers, who had died during the American Civil War. It was inspired by the way people in the Southern states honored their dead. After World War I, it was extended to include all men and women, who died in any war or military action.
Memorial Day was originally known as Decoration Day. The current name for this day did not come into use until after World War II. Decoration Day and then Memorial Day used to be held on May 30, regardless of the day of the week, on which it fell. In 1968, the Uniform Holidays Bill was passed as part of a move to use federal holidays to create three-day weekends. This meant that that, from 1971, Memorial Day holiday has been officially observed on the last Monday in May. However, it took a longer period for all American states to recognize the new date.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Remembering My Daddy

Monday, May 30 is National Memorial Day.  A time to reflect on those who
served our country in the military.  My father served in WWII in the Army.
He never talked about his experiences or what war was like.  I wish he had.

Recently, as I was going through more of my mother's papers, I came upon
the map to my dad's grave in Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery.
He died June 24, 1974 and it was all such a blur.
I remember the burial site was near or under a tree
on a hill.  This map pinpoints it exactly--well, almost.

About five years back, we took a trip to the region and I wanted to
see if I could find dad's grave site--it took some investigative work
through U S Government records to find the site number and section.
We finally found the section and walked through the graves to
find the location--there it was....
on top of a hill, under a tree.  This map would have made it much easier.
As we roamed through those numerous graves, our hearts were filled
with thanksgiving for these who sacrificed for us to have

Saturday, May 28, 2016


We hadn't been together for quite some time--
This day is our day; I'm ready to share with my dear friends--
sadness, happiness, joys, grandkid happenings,
and not the least of all--our quilts!

Annette had made this 4 patch disappearing quilt top for a friend.
What fun--great way to use up all those scraps from the stash.
She started with 5.5" squares to make the four patch and
then cut, twist and sew!

Judy M, our hostess, shared her latest creation--$29 quilt kit!
WOW!  what a popper in the camera lenses--but to the naked eye
the fabrics don't look like they work together.

We thought the main fabric was quite busy--but in this
case, it all works together.  For this accent, Judy used
raw edge applique--and it works!

And the quilt design is just perfect for the busy front.

On the quilt frame--I'd call this "Juicy" fruit or "Starburst"
such lively, powerful colors on the gradient bases.

Linda used Pat Sloan's 2015 mystery quilt pattern (Josh' quilt top pattern)
to make this lovely Christmas quilt.

Backing is super great!  

Quilting by Sandy!

Brenda was hand stitching the binding from her latest quilt festival
workshop--love this star!

and here is the quilting pattern--super great looking!

Judy M wanted to use her orphan blocks to make a manly lap robe.
We played with the pieces--this is so much fun--itching to
bet to my 'orphans' to do the same!
A super great day for me--lots of laughter, a few tears, hugs, making
it the highlight of my day when we can gather.

Friday, May 27, 2016

What To Do With Sugar & Cream Yarn?!!

If you are like me, there is a basket full of cotton yarns just waiting!
I have all this Sugar and Cream yarn aged well and ready for the needles.
I passed off several skeins to a weaver friend who weaves
baby blankets.
Well, I found perfect patterns to knit up those yarns............

Simply Notable has several patterns for wash cloths!  Great gifts!
Enjoy her website!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Cables Anyone?

This blanket is a modular design, knitted in separate strips, which are then joined together in such a way that the join resembles another cable. The design has been done in such a way, that you could make a blanket of any size you want. The design is essentially a mix and match pattern with which you can design your own masterpiece.
The yarn is MoYa Caresse, which is used in a double strand. Order your kits at 15% discount HERE.
In order to stay up to date with the latest news:
Join the FaceBook group for this KAL.
Subscribe to my YouTube channel as some of the techniques will be demonstrated there.
There is a Ravelry Group for this KAL as well.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Spinning Silk For Yarn Wednesday

Years ago, I spun the silk for my blond headed daughter's wedding dress.  I bought 3 bricks(common measurement) of silk.  At the time, I thought the price was high but now----I'm so glad I have one brick left to spin.
It's pure pleasure to spin this bombyx silk!  So far, I have two bobbins ready to be plied

My goal is to spin all the brick and two ply for the loom.

My first goal is being met.  My second goal is to weave yardage.
I would really love to have silk pillowcases with silk knitted lace edging--
that is the final goal.
we'll see if it happens!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Christmas Knitting in June

Perfect!  Just Perfect!  Small in size with the right knitting techniques to make these
12 days of Christmas mittens.
Take a look at the website to see last year's mittens
and you'll want to knit those too!

mittens are about 2.5″ wide (without the thumb) and 4.5″ long. You do not need to knit the mittens at my gauge or size, but I think they are just right for using as a Christmas tree decoration, on packages or, of course, as a garland.
This year you will have two weeks between mittens. That should give everyone time to keep up. If you are a quicker knitter you’ll have time to work on other projects or make multiple sets as gifts. Or if you want to turn this garland into an advent calendar, use the off weeks to knit another twelve mittens. The Mitten Garland Advent Calendar has twenty-four more designs you could use, just change the Latvian braid at the cuff to garter stitch to match these.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Some Assembly Required!

Cynthia Frenette is giving me right pattern to make the brown headed daughter
the table runner she wants for her new home.  Of course, there is some assembly required
in fashioning this improv item.  I'm using some fabrics pulled from my stash
and batik fabrics for the leaves and berries.
Ground cloth has been constructed!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

ICAD--Oh Yeah!

The Index-Card-a-Day challenge, affectionately known as ICAD, is just days away. No matter what your time zone, your longitude and latitude, your GPS coordinates on the planet, the phase of the moon, the sunspot activity, your level of origami expertise and your mindset, it's zipping toward you and will be here, on your doorstep, before you know it.

What is ICAD?  It's simply--designing one index card a day for 60 days!  you can do that!
I can do that!  Break out those index cards, pens, pencils, brushes, paints, etc.  

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Yarn Bowls

Do you have one of these?
A Yarn Bowl!
I never thought about using one of these until I received this as a
Christmas gift from blond headed daughter.
It did sit around for awhile, buried in a corner of the work table--
no yarn inside, just sat lonely in a corner.

The other day I was winding a warp on my warping board and I had
balls of yarn to use and my brain kicked in..............
well, dud--you have a yarn bowl that will assist with this!

This bowl has several holes that I can use while winding my warp.
and the best part of this ceramic vessel, it sings to me as the yarn is
flowing through the holes!
oh yes!  perfect gift BH daughter!

Friday, May 20, 2016

Giddy Up!

I AM THRILLED!  This quilt is finished and back from the quilter, Sandy!
She did an outstanding job, giving this quilt the needed
stitching details.
now, it's up to me to do the binding and 
hand stitching to complete.
and a Happy Birthday!

This was the latest free quilt pattern from Pat Sloan

I used western/cowboy prints for my cowboy grandson, Josh.

And to use up all those blocks that didn't make the front, I put them 
on the back along with western fabric.
It is finished in time for his 23rd birthday, May 20th!
Giddy Up--Saddle Up

Thursday, May 19, 2016

53 Years!

Today is our 53rd wedding anniversary!  Yes, 53 years with the SAME man!  unbelieveable!  If someone would have told me when I was younger that I would have been with the same person that long-I would have laughed in their face!  "Me?  Not me!"

It has been ups and downs over the years, but I think that is what makes us stronger--celebrating each day to the fullest, even when he throws his dirty laundry on the floor, doesn't take out the trash, falls asleep in front of my favorite TV show, grumbles about shopping, and says "whatever" when asked what he wants for dinner.  Sometimes, he irritates me to no end!!  Of course, there is no way I can irritate him~~ I'm perfect!! Yes, he has his faults, but he's always there for me and the family!

We have grown comfortable in our skins together--
                                                                      Happy Anniversary!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Wednesday Yarn AL

I love knitting lace patterns!  And this one is no exception.
Clue one of Gerda by designer Bethany Hait went smoothly--
no problems, no errors
and we waited for clue 2........

Here is clue 2 finished--but, in some patterns, this clue had some errors.
you knit and find that there is a correction, so you rip it
and wait for the right correction.

Finally, all was cleared and you're off to the races.  my needles aren't long enough to
spread out the pattern, but it's going to be lovely once blocked.
Now, I wait-----for clue 3, which can't come soon enough!

Tuesday, May 17, 2016


I stumbled upon this when searching the web for something completely different--but, that's what gets me into trouble!  I should stick to the game plan instead of detouring, but
I do learn something interesting things while roaming.
Point in case, is this interesting construction with great strandwork.
Hence, you have Swedish Dubbelmossa. Dubbel means double and mossa means cap so Dubbelmoss is a doubled-hat. It is worked from the provisional cast-on out on both ends in a tube. The lining end, the blue side in this case, is much shorter in length to accommodate for the turned up brim or cuff. The cuffed part of the hat is actually four layers so it is a very warm hat. 
Susan Anderson recommend the Dubbelmossa pattern. It is not difficult, very straightforward, really you are just reading simple charts. It is a great way to practice stranded colorwork.   
I know I won't be knitting this anytime soon--no way we can use this type of warmth in Humid TX--but, it was great lesson learned on another knitting technique.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Mystery KAL= True Love=Shawl

What a perfect opportunity to knit another mystery and practice my Spanish?!! Woo Woo! This KAL begins June 1 but you must register by May 21 on her website in order to get the pattern free or pay at a later date.
Mystery KAL +True Love+ Shawl
Let’s start 1st june. 4 Clues. To register HERE
Free pattern only for MKAL participants!!
Deadline 21 May. Join us in my group (Ravelry, of course!)
ONLY English version
Bottom-up lace ending and short-rows construction
Dimensions/Weight Blocked
Large: 71 inch x 19 inch (180 cm x 50 cm)
Medium: 62 inch x 19 inch (160 cm x 50 cm)
fingering weight or lace
600 m – 700m / 656 – 765 yds
US #5 - 3,5 mm and US #7 - 4,5 mm (cast on and bind off)
Other Notions
stitch marker, tapestry needle for weaving
Cast on, short-rows, increase and decrease
28 sts x 32 rows over 10cm/4” in stockinette stitch (before blocked)
The pattern contains written and charted instructions

Sunday, May 15, 2016


Have fun and raise money for a worthy cause in this speed-knitting competition based on the famous bike race with a similar name! Competitors will race to finish a pair of socks in each of six stages earning points for finishing the fastest. Registration fees (less paypal and shipping expenses for prizes) will go to Doctors Without Borders to help continue their excellent work of providing medical care to those in need around the globe
Tour-de-Sock 2016 is fast approaching!  Please join us in the Ravelry Group for any off-season news. Registration Is open till May 31! 

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Show Off Those Large Prints!

Now here is free pattern: OlĂ© for Cinco de Mayo 
to show off those special fabrics you don't know what to do with!
Would make a great "I Spy" quilt for a young heart!

Friday, May 13, 2016

Philosophers' Stone Mystery KAL

I so enjoyed knitting other of Erica's lace knitting patterns--she has a seasons--Earth, Wind.  Here is another opportunity to gather some of her lovely yarns for this knitting venture.

Download this pattern free HERE until July 14, 2016.
Pattern PDFs are non-refundable once purchase. No exceptions.
Free download link will only work once per customer.
Yarn for this shawl can be found on FiddleKnits.com
Cast On: July 15, 2016
Clues: July 15, 22, 29, and August 5, 2016

The Yarn
For this pattern you will want to use a solid or gradient yarn in a fingering weight.
I will be using 2 skeins of Polka fingering weight in one of the solids dyed for this MKAL which are: Sorcerer’s Stone, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, The Potions Master, Vino: My Kind of Alchemy, Butterbeer, and Transfiguration.
Polka is a 100% superwash merino fingering weight. This is my favorite shawl yarn as it blocks of magnificently. Each skein is 100 grams/400 yards. You will need two skeins of the same color to complete the shawl ($22 each).
Polka will be sold on FiddleKnits.com (while supplies last):philosophers stone
Interlude yarn is also appropriate for this design, however, it is not currently being sold. Interlude was available only as a pre-order. This was a 150 gram/600 yard skein of 80% superwash merino/10% cashmere/10% nylon. (If you placed a pre-order for Interlude and would like to switch to one of the Polka colors now that that option is out you are more than welcome to do so if your yarn has not already shipped. Simply email me with the name on your order and your new choice. Direct emails to: Erica@FiddleKnits.com)
Be prepared to use all 150 grams (600 yards) of your yarn if using the Interlude gradients.
The last several rows of the pattern are such that you can continue to work in the pattern until your yarn is finished, or cut off a few rows if you’re running short.

Receival of clues: An email/message containing each clue (1per week for 4 weeks) will be sent to your email address or Ravelry inbox. There will be a link in the message that directs you to download the new PDF file. If you are receiving the clues on Ravelry you will also notice the option to update the pattern in your Ravelry library (if you have chosen to store it there). What if you no longer wish to receive the updates? Every MKAL I get emails asking to be removed from the update emails. Designers cannot take a persons name off a pattern list. Once you sign up you must also sign out. At the bottom of every update email is a link you can click to opt out of future updates.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Let's Make A Woolly Bird!

Laura Wasilowski is beginning a tutorial on how to make your own woolly bird. Join her for the next few days to learn how to make this free-stitched bird on wool.
To get started you’ll need these items:
  • an 8″ square of boiled wool. Boiled wool has been felted. It is thicker than your standard wool and has more body. Have a wool coat in your closet? Go ahead, clip out a square of fabric for your bird.
  • Embroidery thread (Size 8 pearl cotton threads work best)
  • Size 3 or 4 embroidery needles for the thread
This is just a few days late, but well worth the journey to learn some of Laura's techniques.  I was fortunate enough to take workshop with Laura last summer--great fun!

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

It's Another Wednesday!

I'm really into this Gerda thing!  Love knitting this lacy pattern from my handspun.
This yarn has been sitting around for years (well aged, that's for sure!)
and I finally found the perfect pattern for it.

Clue one and we're off and waiting for the next clue.
You can find Gerda, designed by Bethany Hait on Ravelry

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Hexie Pincushion

I'm so glad that someone has a quick mind and nimble fingers!
These smart pincushions will be great gifts for any luncheon or favorite person.
A Spoon Full of Sugar has the perfect tutorial for you.
I'm thinking these will make great gift bags souvenirs for our next conference.
There are all kinds of round useful items that can be used for the holder--
check out the blog for other helpful hints on their blog tour.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Demelza Comes to Life

This blanket has been inspired by the character ‘Demelza’, from BBC’s Poldark (2015). The designer, Catherine Bligh, used Demelza’s colour palette and incorporated her love of flowers into each square.  You can find this free pattern on Ravelry

Gauge is not essential for this project. As a guide, the big central square turned out roughly 16 inches , worked in Stylecraft Special DK with a 4.5mm hook (making the blanket as a whole ~55.5 inches across). If your central square is smaller, your blanket will be correspondingly smaller. If your square is bigger, your blanket will be bigger. Use what feels comfortable to you with the yarn you choose. Some tend to have a tight gauge; use your own judgement as to whether you want to go up or down a hook size, or even two!
There are two pattern documents: one with plenty of images to help with particular steps or stitches, and one without images, which is smaller and more printer-friendly.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Mothers Are Celebrated!

Mother's Day in the United States is annually held on the second Sunday of May. It celebrates motherhood and it is a time to appreciate mothers and mother figures. Many people give gifts, cards, flowers, candy, a meal in a restaurant or other treats to their mother and mother figures, including grandmothers, great-grandmothers, stepmothers, and foster mothers.

Gift boxes and pink rose.
Flowers and other gifts are given to mothers on Mother's Day.

What Do People Do?

Many people send cards or gifts to their mother or mother figure or make a special effort to visit her. Common Mother's Day gifts are flowers, chocolate, candy, clothing, jewelry and treats, such as a beauty treatment or trip to a spa. Some families organize an outing for all of their members or hold a special meal at home or in a restaurant. In the days and weeks before Mother's Day, many schools help their pupils to prepare a handmade card or small gift for their mothers.

Public Life

Mother's Day is not a federal holiday. Organizations, businesses and stores are open or closed, just as they are on any other Sunday in the year. Public transit systems run to their normal Sunday schedules. Restaurants may be busier than usual, as some people take their mothers out for a treat.


The origins of Mother's Day are attributed to different people. Many believe that two women, Julia Ward Howe and Anna Jarvis were important in establishing the tradition of Mother's Day in the United States. Other sources say that Juliet Calhoun Blakely initiated Mother’s Day in Albion, Michigan, in the late 1800s. Her sons paid tribute to her each year and urged others to honor their mothers.
Around 1870, Julia Ward Howe called for Mother's Day to be celebrated each year to encourage pacifism and disarmament amongst women. It continued to be held in Boston for about ten years under her sponsorship, but died out after that.
In 1907, Anna Jarvis held a private Mother's Day celebration in memory of her mother, Ann Jarvis, in Grafton, West Virginia. Ann Jarvis had organized "Mother's Day Work Clubs" to improve health and cleanliness in the area where she lived. Anna Jarvis launched a quest for Mother's Day to be more widely recognized. Her campaign was later financially supported by John Wanamaker, a clothing merchant from Philadelphia.
In 1908, she was instrumental in arranging a service in the Andrew's Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, West Virginia, which was attended by 407 children and their mothers. The church has now become the International Mother's Day Shrine. It is a tribute to all mothers and has been designated as a National Historic Landmark.
Mother's Day has become a day that focuses on generally recognizing mothers' and mother figures' roles. Mother's Day has also become an increasingly important event for businesses in recent years. This is particularly true of restaurants and businesses manufacturing and selling cards and gift items.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Fustian Cloth

Every day I learn something new--and I'm glad I do!  Take Fustian Cloth and Cutting--I didn't know what that term meant until I came upon an article and video about Fustian.  I'm very familiar with velvet, corduroy and other welted fabrics, I did not know about Fustian cutting.

Video is worth watching to understand about this technique.

Early in the 16th century, towns in South Lancashire had a reputation for making cotton goods, in reality these good were made mainly of wool with a small mixture of linen, both constituents being home grown, whilst cotton had to be imported. Large numbers of Flemish weavers had settled in Manchester and surrounding areas to escape persecution in their own land. They were the first to use cotton imported from India and Asia Minor. To evade laws passed to protect the woollen manufacturers, the Flemish weavers mixed linen in with cotton and this material was the starting point for fustian that was used in the district up until the beginning of the 20th century, Cadishead is best known for fustian cutting, by the 1870’s it would have been well nigh impossible to find a house without a cutting frame or a family unconnected with cutting. Fustian cutting is an operation in the manufacture of velvet and involves cutting by hand of loops woven into the cloth to create the pile. The basic requirements were a frame on which to spread the cloth to drum tightness, and a knife to cut the loops of the cloth. The frame was about 6ft by 2ft6ins wide and 3ft high. The knife was around 18inches long it had a wooden handle and the tip was drawn out to a sharp point which was ground to a sharp edge at the top. The cloth was brought by horse and cart from warehouses in Salford and Manchester it was woven to give continuous tunnels along the length of the material. The pile was created by the cutter passing a knife through the tunnels cutting the threads at the centre of the arch. There were between thirty to forty of these tunnels per inch so one can imagine the skill and concentration required. Most of the family would take part in the operation with the women working the frames in spring and summer whilst the men were working on the farms. The men would take over in the winter months when there was not a lot of work elsewhere. Around 1770, fustian cutting was carried out mainly in farm workers cottages. By 1840 terraced houses were being built with cutting shops built on the end. This followed on from farm houses that had stables attached to them which had been modified for fustian cutting By 1860 two storey terraced houses were being built with the attic built to house the cutting frame. The attic in Academy Row, Cadishead is set at the back of the terrace, giving a lop-sided appearance to the gable end. The higher part of the gable end would face towards the south to get the most light. The attic would run the whole length of the terrace, but could only be accessed from the end house. By the end of the nineteenth century mill- type structures of three stories were being built. These buildings showed the change from cottage craftsmen to factory tradesmen. A good example of one of these buildings is the building opposite the Ship Hotel in Irlam. Along with these factory type buildings a new longer frame was developed. These frames could be up to 12 yards long and the operator would walk along the length of the frame. The worker would be walking around twenty miles a day. As the fustian could only be cut in one direction the cutter would have two frames and would walk up one and down the other, totalling around twenty miles a day - twenty miles of precision cutting. In the 1870’s and 80’s fustian cutting was at it’s peak, the master cutters with an eye to business would convert a portion of their cutting shops into grocers, green grocers and shops of other trades, paying wages one day and then taking it back the next. New industry was brought into the district through the building of the Manchester Ship Canal at the end of the 19th century and young workers were attracted to these industries with the lure of better pay and better working conditions. The industry of hand –cutting was finally doomed by the invention of machinery to do the job. The machines could cut fustian ten times quicker than a hand cutter. These machines were introduced just before the First World War even though hand cutting went on in Cadishead until 1928. For more information on Fustian cutting, Irlam and Cadishead Local History Society

Friday, May 6, 2016

Lunch With Mother

 Today we are having lunch with Mother to celebrate Mother's Day.  This 95 year old lady is still chugging along with her BMW walker (purple no less!) at the assisted living facility.

She does have a little dementia but she gets her way no matter what--the gals at The Bridges know
how to keep her happy and the staff in good moods.
You go Mother! 

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Summer Accessory

Robert Kaufman has a free pattern for you to make
this wonderful crossover bag.
Just think of the endless fabrics you can choose from!
One for each outfit in a different color!
I have some Indigo dyed fabric I think that will be just perfect.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Wednesday Yarn Along

Have you been busy with your yarn along--doesn't matter if you work it on Monday-Friday or weekends, I hope you are doing something with fiber.

This is the beginning of cuffs for Craftsy sock knitting class with Lucy Neatby.  It is a free class with three sock patterns and lessons to go along with the patterns.  I finally got out my sock yarn and begin.  I enjoy doing two socks at one time with two circular needles.

Problem--I worked part of the pattern and since this yarn was so "lively" for the want of a better word, I couldn't see the pattern emerge, so off to find a solid sock yarn that would work!
Why work for days on a pattern that you can't see?!  Nope! 
I switched to this yarn!  Hurray, easy to see the pattern!  I used the tapestry needle as 
suggested by Lucy in the lesson--works great.
onto knitting up this pair of socks to the heel and then see what we thing I can
learn about turning a heel.