Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Yay! For Last Wednesday in August!

I've been cleaning out my fiber closets--not that I wanted to, but we needed to put down carpet, which meant everything had to be pulled from the closet floor.
Okay, so all the fiber is out, it's a perfect time to go through all those skeins, wound balls and is what is what.

 I found these two handspun singles and thought--hmmm, how would they look plied together.
and there you have a new ball that I will use.
Searching patterns on Ravelry there was this great cowl--interesting pattern feature and since
I'm not sure how much yarn I'll have, the way to go.

And we are off and knitting!!  

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

My Woven Coverlets

When I came across the article about the gals doing research for the Ozark Coverlet Project--my memories went back to my coverlet 'collection'!
As a weaver, sometimes there comes a point in your weaving history that you want to weave a coverlet--most coverlets are overshot patterns.
A weaving progress based on 1-2-3-4 draft
Many years ago, our weaving group decided to do overshot panels--we each graphed our pattern, gave our yarn choices to each weaver (there were 12 of us).  We each wove our pattern in the weavers color choice and once finished, we had a big exchange party.  Here is the result of mine--I dyed my wool yarn with indigo.  

So much fun--although alot of weaving the same pattern, we knew at the end of the warp
we'd have a great collection of coverlet patterns.  I wove wool yardage to put my blocks together

A dear friend had this coverlet on hand and offered it to me--what a lovely indigo dyed coverlet.

The sister of this coverlet is in this book "keep me warm one night"  the best collections of
old coverlets

Here is the pattern from the book

My coverlet is in fair condition-I guess I should place it on my bed so it's not folded up to crease the yarns in places

Now, this coverlet was woven by the best weaver I ever knew in my life.  Of course, you can tell
from the color choices, it was woven in the early 1970's, but I don't care--It's in 3 sections--much like older coverlets, the weaver seamed it together perfectly.

Years ago while living in California for a short while, I came across this coverlet in
a garage sale!  Horrors!  In a garage sale lay this lovely woven coverlet--well, it's purple, not traditional colors, but I couldn't leave it there.  Even though I do not like purple I had to buy it--when asked how much.  The seller said "$10!"  Unbelieveable!  Yes, I'll take it.

notice how the seam matches up with each motif perfectly

The edging pattern is thought out well by the weaver.

It has this awful fringe.  I haven't tested it to see if it's wool, but I
don't really care.  It's a coverlet woven with love by a unknown weaver and it
can live in my 'meager collection' where I'll cherish it.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Ozark Coverlets

Recently, there was an article about two ladies making a decision to document Quilt from the Ozark Region of the US.  The Ozark Coverlets Project focuses on  re-creating old weaving patterns and telling the stories of the weavers who made them. Marty Benson and Laura Redford are long-time weavers with an interest in conservation of textiles.  They have written a book
After hundreds of hours of research, Marty and Laura authored and the Shiloh Museum published Ozark Coverlets: The Shiloh Museum of Ozark History Collection in 2015. 

Here is one photo from the book from Mary R Skelton's pattern page.

Not content to rest on those laurels, Marty and Laura are now working on the Ozark Coverlet Project—a study of historic coverlets and handwoven items in museums and private collections throughout the Arkansas Ozark region.The long-term goals of the project are to shine a light on Ozark weavers and their coverlets by recording their personal histories, and to keep the tradition alive by recreating historic threading patterns in modern notation for today’s weavers.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

KAL September 1

Let Fall begin!  Especially when you join in on this Knit Along with Judy of Patchwork Times and Denise of Just Quiltin' !

Stain Glass Cowl looks awesome!  

  1. You will need to buy your pattern. It’s $5 USD at Ravelry. You can go to the pattern page (click on link near top of this blog post) and read all about the materials needed so you know in advance if it’s something you want to do.
  2. You will knit at your own speed. There are no deadlines or finish dates. We do ask that everyone hold off and cast on together on or shortly after September 1. Of course, the chatter and our updates will take place probably over the course of a month or two and then we’ll not be discussing it much.
  3. The pattern is charted, it is fair isle and there is a provisional cast on. I’m not very experienced at fair isle and I think this looks do-able. If you aren’t familiar with provisional cast on, there are wonderful videos and instructions online. It’s a technique that I really enjoy. Charts .. not so much but they’re a part of knitting so I do them .. and you can too!
  4. The bind off is either grafting (kitchener) or 3 needle bind off. If you’re not familiar with those, again  . . there are lots of videos out there. I’ll probably use the kitchener stitch because I fear dropping stitches with the 3 needle bind off (it’s what we used with Hitofude).
  5. There will be prizes and you will have to have a Ravelry account in order to claim your prize. The accounts are free and Ravelry is such a great resource for knitters. If you do not have a Ravelry account, you can go there and create your free account.
The designer states on the Ravelry pattern page:  “The pattern is written in detail, with links to demos of techniques needed, and the colorwork is charted in large easy-to-read charts.”

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Accurate Measuring and Cutting For Your Quilt

My friend said the other day that she thinks the problem with her quilting was her fabric cutting.  Yes, there is always trouble with accurate cutting fabric when measuring.  

A Quilting Life has created this list to use when measuring and cutting--great pointers!!  Check out her blog for details on this major points.

Press fabrics before measuring and cutting. 

Consider starching fabrics, especially when working with small pieces.

Use your cutting mat to line up edges of your fabric, not to measure it.

Straighten fabric edges before beginning to cut.

Use painter's tape or washi tape on your ruler when making several cuts the same measurement.

Use a sharp rotary blade for cutting your fabrics.

Use a rotating cutting mat whenever possible rather than cutting towards your body. 

And to me this is very important:  Measure twice; cut once. 

Friday, August 26, 2016

Sheet Thread Count?

This morning I heard a news report about the quality of cotton sheets.  I've always wanted a higher thread count in my sheets--thinking the higher the better, right?  Well, after some research, the higher count isn't always better.  And I should know that, being a weaver!

So, here's the skinny on thread count:  There is a warp going length and weft goes crosswise--on the same page so far?  A warp might have a single ply (that's one single piece of fiber) or there could be two ply, meaning two singles put together--and if you put those into a single inch along with the crosswise (weft) threads, you might have 2 ply warp + 2 ply weft x # of threads in an inch.  Let's say 40 threads per inch so that would be 4x40= 160.  Now, if there is more plies in a single thread, the count goes up--still with me?  But, what about 800 thread count?  how can you cram 400 threads in an inch?  I guess you could if you tried!

and then there is the quality of the cotton in the sheets--a whole new ball of thread questions!!  The news report this morning was about just that question.  Not all cotton is considered good quality--

Here is website info from Home & Garden (How Stuff is Made)

Fiber:  the majority of fibers that make up sheets are cotton and you should look for a longer fiber. “Longer fiber is ideal, because when you spin the yarn, it gives it strength, which means less pilling.” Egyptian cotton, which  is basically the standard of excellence, has a long fiber. Other good high-quality fiber options to look for are pima and supima, organic cotton, cotton-poplin, cotton-polyester and even bamboo.
Weave: According to Real Simple, the weave of your sheet “affects the way a sheet feels, the way it looks, its longevity, and its price.” There are many different kinds of weaves, but “a percale weave is the most prominent,” says Maher. “It’s a balanced weave, sort of like a basket weave, and it is a crisper or cooler feel.” Maher said another common choice is a sateen weave, which “has a bit of a softer feel to it, and a little warmer than percale.”
Numbers aren’t everything: Even if a sheet has a high thread count, that can be inflated by manipulating the sheet-making process with a low-quality construction or thread. As a general rule, buy above a 200-thread count sheet, and know that anything over an 800-thread count really doesn’t matter.
To help protect consumers from inflated thread counts, the Federal Trade Commission does its best to crack down on deceptive techniques and technology designed to increase thread count, as well as deceptive advertising and marketing.
Location, location, location: Not all thread is created equal. In an interview withNew York Magazine, Amanda Mettler, a textile buyer for Gracious Home, said “I can guarantee a 200 thread count from Italy is better quality than a 1,000 thread count from Pakistan.” France and Italy are regarded as some of the best sheet-makers in the business, even though the fiber they use isn’t always from those particular countries (such as Egyptian cotton).
Price matters: Maher is quick to remind people that “price and quality definitely go together. Bed Bath & Beyond or a Target 700-thread-count sheet is not really going to be the best quality.”
Finish is everything: Most sheets are “finished” with chemical processes to keep them from wrinkling or shrinking (look for words like “shrinkage control”). Though it’s nice not to have wrinkly sheets, try looking for organic cotton which should be chemical-free.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Here's Your Fall Palette!

Pantone has the color selection for your fall accessories, clothing or anything else
that colors your world. 
Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute™,explains “the desire for tranquility, strength, and optimism have inspired a Fall 2016 color palette that is led by the Blue family. Along with anchoring earth tones, exuberant pops of vibrant colors also appear throughout the collections. Transcending gender, these unexpectedly vivacious colors in our Fall 2016 palette act as playful but structured departures from your more typical fall shades.”
Check out Design Sponge's blog report on the first three colors of the scheme.
How do you feel about these colors?  Will they color your world this fall?

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Fiber Through The Fingers...............

Last fall when we had a natural dyeing day, I took some of my handspun two ply silk
and wound them into small butterflies for the dye pots.  It's a good way to have samples
of the colors you got from each dye pot

The two on either side of the lavender one (I know it doesn't look lavender, but it is!)
are dyed with indigo.  My little butterflies waiting to be wound into balls 

I have a variety of colors from each dye pot--Now, they are ready to be used in 
my embroidery.  Many moons ago, I did this and gave the samples as a gift to
a friend, who used them in late 1700 's samplers--I felt so honored that she would use
them in that regard.   I love the feel of the silk fibers running through my fingers.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016


I love aprons!  I posted several months ago about an apron exhibit several of us participated in through the internet and we were fortunate enough to have a nice exhibition at International Quilt Festival.  Today on one of my blog reviews I found an apron tutorial--all free!

This apron is perfect for any time wear while in the kitchen or I could see it being worn while working in the yard or maybe even while weaving or sewing--big pockets are a major feature in
my book!
Patchwork Posse blog has many apron tutorials--an apron for any use or purpose.

Monday, August 22, 2016

A Friend That Enables!

Do you have a friend who enables you?!  I do!  Plus I can be an enabler too!  This morning my Florida friend called and we talked and talked, then she sent me a link....................................
she enabled me!  and I enabled her--giving her ways she could and would use all these tiny looms.

Tottie Talks Crafts is the link--now, I'm looking at this woven shawl and
thinking if only..............................

I could use those tiny looms for many purposes and as I told my friend this
morning, the tiny looms could be stored easily because they are TINY!
Both know of someone in our group that has the larger loom we could
ok, enabler friend, the brain is whirling!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

A Sweet Treat For Sunday Lunch

We are making a sweet treat for Sunday lunch--

we have fresh pineapple that we have cored and
cut into slices-grilled for short while to get some smoky flavor,
then put in food processor to make smaller chunks

Whipped up some heavy cream--little sweetener and vanilla for added taste,
Mixed in the crushed pineapple chunks

An angel food cake--made from a mix, but it could be purchased already made--hubby
said that would have been cheaper as I couldn't find my angel food cake pan and
he spent $10 on one!

Slice the cake into three layers and spread each layer heavily
with whipped cream/pineapple mixture

Stack each layer

Added last of the whipped cream/pineapple mixture to the top--
if you have extra cream spread around the sides.
Refrigerator till ready to eat--slice and enjoy!
Everyone enjoyed this delightful summer time dessert--easy to make, but
delish to eat!!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

The Making Of A Sweater!

Over the years, I've made a sweater or two--not successful, I must say!  I always have trouble with the seaming, fitting correctly and the buttonholes.  Now, I have the perfect chance to do a sweater and do it right!

Here we have the making of a sweater with the assistance of Fringe Association website!

A tutorial that will take me from the neck down, body to the sleeves!
I think this might get me a sweater that I'll wear!

Friday, August 19, 2016

Dinner And A Movie!

In most movie theaters now, you can reserve your seat, pay in advance and be prepared to enter the movie without long lines and the worry of not getting a ticket for sold out show.  In our area, we have many movie theaters, some that provide a dining experience too, so there is a choice but when the choice comes to attend a QUOTE ALONG!  movie that's the best!!


We are so there but just by a margin--almost didn't get seats for this one time event!  I think we might have a good evening, singing and quoting along with the actors on screen!  The one time you CAN talk and sing during a movie!!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Squares, Stripes,Rectangles--Oh My!

This quilt popped up on my blog watch the other day--how fun this is!  Such colorful fabrics--great stash smasher too!  This pattern is designed by  Allison Harris, who has written couple of quilting books.  I'm thinking this could be a quick children's quilt.

Here is the other quilt she made 4.5 years ago and she even has tutorial just for our use!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Wednesday.........................Yarn Round-up!

I keep moving them from one place to another hoping little gremlins will come
in during the night and do the work I have been putting off!
It's time!  I can't move them anymore.............

These socks need to have the toes closed with Kitchener stitch!  I have my needle at the ready
and the directions--let's get started!

One pair down!  Yay!  another pair to go!

And we are finished!  I don't know why I dread doing this last finishing touch--
I just need to keep saying "purl, purl, knit, knit" and it works out beautifully!
I'm anxious to try Susan B Anderson's  Smooth Operator Sock pattern--
she has developed a way to close the toes without the Kitchener Stitch--how can that be?!!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

YARN--The Movie!

Meet the artists who are redefining the tradition of knit and crochet, bringing yarn out of the house and into the world. Reinventing our relationship with this colorful tradition, YARN weaves together wool graffiti artists, circus performers, and structural designers into a visually-striking look at the women who are making a creative stance while building one of modern art's hottest trends.
I'm waiting for this film to come to the neighborhood closest to me!

Monday, August 15, 2016

International Quilt Fest..................................................

The other day while visiting with expatcher friends, the question of Quilt Festival came up.
Oh, My!  I hadn't given it a thought.  We live right here where this big event takes place!
Once home, I downloaded the class schedule and took my time looking over the classes--
sooooo many good workshops--two days, one day, half day, seminars, etc.
and the exhibits
already, my brain is on over load!

November 3-6, 2016
Preview Night November 2
Classes begin October 31
George R. Brown Convention Center
1001 Avenida de las Americas
Houston, Texas, USA 77010

Preview Night: 7-10 p.m.
(5-10 p.m. for Class Enrollees and IQA Members)
Thursday, Nov 3-Saturday, Nov 5: 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Sunday, Nov 6: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

$12/Adults/$9 Seniors & Students
Children 10 and Under Free
$10 ea. Groups 25+ (Call 713-781-6864 to make arrangements)
$12 Preview Night (Includes one additional day)
$42 Full Show Pass (Includes Preview Night)

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Mustgo Omelet

It's Sunday and I prepare a dish that can keep all week for breakfast---maybe it will be egg muffins, BLTE sandwiches (for this one, fried bacon is on hand, just fry up an egg the morning you want to make the sandwich--oh, I guess I could hard fry the eggs and keep them in refrig--I'll have to try that next time) or today I'm making MUSTGO Omelet!

You see I'm a lazy cook at times--sometimes I like to cook--but most of the time--NOT!  I'm heading to the grocery later so must see what I need to add to my list--and clean out the frig at the same time.

Oh, look--here are the makings for my MUSTGO Omelet--few eggs, cottage cheese (oh yes, have that because I made Enola's shrimp enchiladas (her recipe calls for crawfish, but I like to use shrimp)

I bought this cookbook just for that one recipe--and it's a good one!

anyway, crack some eggs in a bowl, beat them good!!!  add cottage cheese and now, I've found some ricotta cheese hiding on the top shelf-what did I use that for??

Oh yeah, the ricotta lemon blueberry pancakes last Sunday-- oh, talk about delicious--yum, yum--this recipe is the greatest!!  I use Bobby Flay's recipe and kind of tink it some for my use.

Okay, we have eggs, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese in the dish all beaten up--oh, there is small piece of onion and red bell pepper (why? would I save such small pieces?)  doesn't matter--chop up and add to the egg mixture--found some fried bacon in the freezer--in it goes!  Anything else I can find?
oh, yelp there are a few small bags of shredded cheese--in it goes--
whisk whisk like crazy--anything else?
okay--there are few packages of crushed red peppers left over from pizza the other night--in it goes too.  
sometimes, I'll add broccoli or peas or carrots, even cooked potatoes--left in the frig, it's game for the MUSTGO Omelet!

I think it's ready for the greased pan (no crust--just all goodness!) --pour the mixture in, place in 350* oven and bake for 25-30 minutes and we have Breakfast. 

When it comes out the oven, it's so nice and fluffy!
But, now it's half gone and the other portion is cut into squares and ready for
a handy breakfast during the week--bet this will be gone by Wed AM!
There you have MUSTGO OMELET!  

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Antique Quilt VS Modern

For years, I've had a love of antique quilts--just thinking about how pieces of fabric from various resources came into being a quilt is a fascinating study.  Thank goodness, many of these antique quilts live to tell their story.
Take this quilt from collection of Mingei International Museum
Just look at all those blocks of diversity!  Small to large pieces combine
to give us a visual interest into this quiltmakers life.
Temecula Quilt Company is hosting their Olympic challenge during the 2016 Olympics
Their version of the pattern is on the website free of charge throughout the duration of
the games.  I'm going to see if I can recreate this antique quilt--how about you?
Are you up to the challenge?

Friday, August 12, 2016

Baby Time.............................

When a friend or family member is having a baby, I go to my favorite thing to give--
flannel receiving blankets!

It takes two pieces of flannel, each at least 1.25 yards in length, 45" wide
I always wash my flannel before sewing--
place two pieces right sides together--I mark to make rounded corners and 
stitch around, leaving a small opening to turn right sides out--
once turned, I press lightly, stitch the opening closed and
then comes the fun part---
I do button hole stitch around the outside of the blanket with perle cotton--
Ready, finished, wrap for the new baby--this one is a boy--
as if you didn't guess that already!
I usually buy a small gift if there is a brother or sister involved--
they won't feel left out.