Sunday, January 31, 2010

Time to Knit

I have had time to knit reciently. I have been trying to use up some of the one ball wonders that I have. Sometimes when I spin yarn it only results in 1 ball, 200 yards or less. I have not had success getting those one skein/balls sold at the guild sales. So I have decided to knit some hats and scarves. I knit at lunch at work, at home in the evening, and during my sons wrestling games. I knit one of the entire Noro hats below at one of his meets.

These are from balls of Noro. Really easy pattern can be found here.

This hat is from some handspun Merino. The Pattern is "The Republic" by Nicole Reeves. Here is her blog. It has a band at the bottom that overlaps and you sew on a button. I am knitting a scarf like the one below to match.

The scarf is some hand dyed and hand spun Blue Faced Border Leicester. Wonder wool to spin. The scarf looks really complicated because of the multi-colored yarn, but it is just an Ann Norling pattern #69. I knit is 20 stitches to get the width and knitted until I ran out of yarn. It is 3" wide by 62" long.

Last night I got several projects to the portable stages. Two more one ball hats. I knit till I can put the stitches on a circular needle. Then it is portable. All I have to do is knit till I run out of yarn and It is done. I also started another scarf like above, that will use two balls of Noro Kuregon. Lunch time at work and another wrestling match this week. I should get more projects completed.

My goal is to reduce my stash. Not that I don't want more wonderful yarn. I have a couple of fleeces in the garage waiting to be taken for processing and plenty of yarn waiting to be knitted. I just don't want to be the one with the most yarn at the end. I would rather be the one who made stuff out of their stash at the end. I guess it boils down to changing my ways. I need to get the satisfaction from completing a project not from buying stuff make projects. The time and place of the satisfaction needs to change.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Sew productive today

Directions for this cute bag can be found here. Easy to follow directions. They are easy and the product is so cute. It took more time to pick out the fabric then to sew it. I added a ribbon on the zipper and added a button on the end to help open the zipper.

Couldn't stand it any more. Had to go make another one. This time I added a small loop at the opposite end of the zipper tab and added beads and ribbon to the zipper tab.

Napkins and Pillow Cases

My Sensation lately has been tactile. I am working on finishing projects and using the abundance from my Fabric stash.


A few weeks ago I was at Pam’s and we were trying to get my serger to work so I could make some napkins with a rolled hem. Well, we proceeded to break the serger, at least it wouldn’t work. So we ended up using hers. Well, I went home and got my other serger, a Singer, and tried to get that to work, well I proceeded to make that one not work also. I took the Singer in to get fixed and ask for an hour lesson. Time went by. I picked it up on Friday and spent the day bonding with my serger. I got the rolled hem to work with regular thread and with a wooly nylon. I then went to get fabric from my stash. I had some fat quarters that I had bought along with a Laurel Birch panel with a Christmas theme. Some of the FQ’s were not cut straight and had to make all the napkins 17” square. I cut 18 pieces. I know I went overboard. I tend to do that. So I spent the evening making napkins. My corners are not great, so when you come to dinner don't comment on the corners of the napkins. Just complement me on what a great job I did! I just need to make the panel into a table topper and I have a nice gift for myself or someone else.

Topper with 8 napkins. Well, no table topper yet - I have to work on that yet.

Four Matching napkins.

Four more matching napkins.

And 2 others.

Saturday, I bought a remnant for $10, 2 2/3 yards. I will easily make 8 20” napkins. I know I go over board.

Pillow Cases

When my kids were little, I would make them a pillow case for the different holidays. So we have Christmas, Halloween, Easter, Valentines. We love Cats, so we have many with cats on them. They are so easy to make. I am using up my stash and making some more pillow cases. Now that I have the serger working they were a snap to make. I sewed these up last night and finished them today. I had already had them cut out so that makes the sewing process a sinch. Just plan items that can use the same thread and get sewing. Half the battle in any project is getting the tools, equipment and materials ready for the job. Line up several items and do all the sewing to a stage, iron all pieces, then sew the next stage, iron more, sew more, and soon you will have many items finished. Yea!

This time for these are for me. The two on the left are from my stash. But, I have added to my stash, the ones on the right I bought as kits. The fabrics are so cute.

Also, I am making a quilt for a young one and had remaining fabric so I made pillow cases to match.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Domestic Goddesses

I spent the day with my girlfriends yesterday.We gathered at Sandy's house. She lives on a small farm with sheep. Here is the flock. It was a warm day for January, overcast, the snow was melting. A great day for gathering with friends and sharing.

We started with a show-n-tell of our latest accomplishments. I shared some sheep fabrics that I found the previous day at a wonderful quilt fabric store. Pam and Sandy shared some great patterns that they had found.
Sandy had made aprons as Christmas gifts and we all wanted to make our own. We started with this book.

The book has only a couple of apron patterns. The one on the cover and the one we made.

So, the leaf was put in the dinning table to make room for the sewing machines. Sandy read the cutting directions and we were off.  Sandy and Pam used the same main fabric. I had pink roses. Shannon, Sandy's daughter, ran off to Walmart and got pink and black polkadots.

 We had a debate over how to make the bias for the straps. I had an elaborate way, Pam just cut the pieces and Sandy sewed then together. My elaborate way did work, Just a lot of measuring but I got yards of bias tape. I will talk more about this later.

 We had to make Yo-Yo's! Well, one Yo-yo. I am not a hand sewer. It hurts my hands, carpel tunnel. But, I did manage to make one and get a button attached. We made just the top pocket and added a rick-rack stem and leaf.

 Lunch came and we went out to a Mexican resturaunt, Border Cantina, in Brighton. Then we stopped at a Quilt store that I happened to find the previous day when I was out enjoying a day off. This is their web site. But they have a wonderful brick and mortor store tucked away in a office complex. Lots of great quilt fabrics. They buy the entire line of a designer and keep them organized together, so you don't have to search through the store to find something that would go with it. Pam had a great time. She kept thanking me, some of them I think were genuinine.

Back to the house to finish the aprons. They turned out so nice.

 And finally the Domestic Goddesses in their aprons.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Using my abundance

Over the past years I have collected many cool products, yarns, fabrics, paints, stamps, inks, paper, my list could go on. My sisters and I had a great time shopping for all this stuff. I have started to use, give away or share these items. If you don't use some of them, they dry up and are unusable. So I have sent many of my paper products to my wonderful sister, Kate. She does great work with creative journals, painting, knitting and weaving. You can find her blog at here - The Queen of Creativity.

On Friday, I was lucky to have the day off. I spent it with my friend Pam. She is a very creative knitter and sewer. So we spend the day having fun. I have an extensive supply of rubber stamps and a collection of Lumiere Fabric paints. The paint needs to be used or it will dry in the Jar.


First we stamped on some hand dyed fabric that Pam had dyed. We stamped again later and here are the two samples. I can't wait to make something from them.

I took them home and heat set and washed them. The silver and gold paint had clumped up when I stamped and there was some loss in the washing process.

Then, we dyed some fabrics. I had a collection of dyes my sister Marianne received from a friend of a friend, so we used those.

The colors from left to right, sky blue, plum, amathest, havana brown, some green - I don't remember the name, and peach. Fat quarters to have fun with. A few weeks ago, I visited Pam and we dyed some fabric using mixtures of dyes and this was the results

Soon there will be completed projects with these fabrics to show. The fabric was white bleached muslin. The dyes have a great mottled effect. There are even some spots where the dye did not disolve well and small dots of intense color can be seen.

I brought my serger over with me to make napkins. The serger hadn't seen the light of day for a few years, and we proceeded to kill it trying to get it to work. So we set up Pam's serger and make dinner napkins. She brought fabric at Walmart that she thought my kids would like. Here is the results.

The first ones are camoflage. Having boys, she thought they would use the camo napkins verses flower napkins. The white spots kind of look like sheep grazing if you don't look to close.

This fabric was really cute and a nice thread count for Walmart. Here is a closeup.

So over all we had a great time, stamping, dying and sewing. We even had lunch and walked to the fabric store in town. A Great Day.

It feels good to share. Items can be given to the goodwill etc, but you never know what has become of them. Did they get used or thrown away? I hope to continue this with others. Invite someone over and share your abundance what ever it is.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

New Year New Begining

Well, I am like many people this time of year. Setting those resolutions and hoping to remember them 6 months from now. So, I really don't plan to make a resolution this year, per say. I just vow to live my life to the fullest and strive to make myself happy.

I picked my new word for 2010.


• Physical feeling - a physical feeling caused by having one or more of the sense organs stimulated

• power to perceive - the capacity to receive impressions through the sense organs

• mental impression - a vague or general feeling, especially one not attributable to an obvious cause

I want to feel life this year. So let my senses be stimulated!

We have 6 senses, I am sure that I can keep my self busy and happy getting them all stimulated.
  • Taste - I love to cook, so good food will abound. Tastes of all kinds.
  • Touch - I am very tactile. But I want to also be touched emotionally and touch emotionally - not just physical.
  • Sight - I am a very visual person. I visualize what I want and then try to make it happen.
  • Hear - I am a good listener. I hear beyond what is spoken, to what is unspoken. That involves other senses.
  • Smell - I have the nose. Very sensitive to smells.
  • Spiritual - I want to awaken my spiritual sense. Be aware. Ask. Receive with appreciation.
So, Last night I wove a project started a long time ago, maybe a year? It is a rug. My neighbor Gabriella, gave me some wool roving from her Corridale sheep. She didn't like/want it? So I had made myself a rug with the roving. And I put another warp on and vowed to make her one also. So here it is on the loom. Just plain weave.

That is just the header and some plain weave rug yarn at the beginning. Here is the finished rug. It is 24 inches wide by 42 inches long.

A Close up. Just thick roving and rug yarn.

It turned out nice. I plan on taking it over to her today. So I have started the year off good. Had many senses stimulated working this first day.

Sight - It looks great. Edges are good, thickness of roving is pretty consistend throughout.
Smell - It smells like wool - Earthy and substantial.
Hearing - The sound of the loom, shed up, shed down, wool being pulled though the shed.
Taste - I was having a cup-a when I was weaving it. Brought back visions of my mother and sister Kate.
Touch - Rug felt darn good to get it done. It felt great to weave. It feels wonderful under my feet.
Spiritual - I will feel really good when I give this to Gabriella. I feel good that I made something for someone that gave me something with no expectations and will I receive a wonderful gift when she sees the rug.

So here's to a good year full of sensations!