Thursday, August 21, 2014

A few days off

I'm sitting here on a bluff looking out over Lake Huron. I can hear crickets, birds, the wind in the trees and the waves washing up on the shore at the bottom of the bluff. We ended up at Point Farms Provincial Park, a nice little place just to the north of Goderich. My plan for the rest of the day..... I have my knitting in my lap and I'm staying put right here looking out over the lake. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

On, and mostly off, my Needles

I have a finish!! Woohoo, Yippee, and a little bit of a happy dance! This is Flyaway Hoodie, by Joji Locatelli. I love her designs. I have another of hers printed off, and waiting to be started, and another one yet, that the yarn arrived for yesterday. But more about that later. This sweater still needs to be soaked and blocked to get it shaped properly, but it is done. All the ends are sewn and woven in. And I bought the zipper for it today.

 This is a close up, a bit on the blurry side, of the cable going down the sleeve. The perspective on this picture makes it look like the sleeve is miles long, but really, it's the perfect length for my short little arms.
 And here's the back, and the hood. The sweater is made out of the softest, cushiest yarn. It felt so good to knit up, and then stop and pet it every now and then. Once I get it blocked and the zipper in, I can wear it, so I don't have to pet it. It's Malabrigo Worsted yarn. I cast off the last stitches of the sleeve last night at about 10:30.
And here's the tension swatch for my next project. It's a Malabrigo Rios yarn, which isn't quite as soft feeling as their worsted, but pretty close. It is also a Joji Locatelli pattern, called On the Grass, the same sweater that Judy is making right now. She's such a good role model for us yarn and fabric obsessed people. I also want to make See You There, and I have the yarn for it, and it's all swatched and ready to go. However, I'm ready for something a bit easier, without charts and cables, which is why I've decided to do On the Grass. Plus, I have lots of sweat shirt type warm things to wear for the cooler days, but only one nice sweater pull over, so that helped with the decision as well. I'm linking up with Judy's On the Needles, and then I'm going to print off my pattern and study it, and maybe even start it.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Stash Report, week 32, 2014

What a lovely weekend it has been. The best of the summer, so far. Warm, but not too warm, with just a gentle soft breeze. A perfect weekend for spending most of it outside in the yard, and that's exactly what I did. Yesterday was a sewing day, and I decided that today would be a knitting day. I'm on the second sleeve of my latest sweater. It just might be done by this time next week. Which will be good timing, since I have more wool coming. Good thing I don't do a stash report for yarn, just fabric. I had 4 yards added this week as a birthday gift, but I used enough to keep me out of the positive numbers. Here's this week's report.

Used this week:               2.75 yards
Used this year:               63.25 yards
Added this week:             4 yards
Added this year:            62 yards
Stash Busted:                   1.25 yards

I'm linking up to Judy's Stash Report, and then I think I'll do some more knitting.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

The Big 6 0......

I don't normally pay attention to my birthday. I usually like to ignore them and pretend that I'm not getting any older. This one is kinda hard to ignore, though. Today, I turned 60. Scott started the day off with bringing me a coffee in bed, and, once my eyes were open enough to be able to see, he gave me a lovely fat quarter bundle of Stonehenge fabrics and a new book to read. That was a lovely start to the day.  The rest of the family chimed in with lots of happy birthdays, including a skyped message from 3 year old Avery singing happy birthday. Then, as a gift to myself, I gave myself permission to start a new project. And, I even took my own advice from a week or so ago, and made it an easy one.
I started a Blooming Nine patch. Teresa, over at A Quilt and a Prayer has been working on one, and I've been watching it grow, and thinking that I'd like to do one too. So, I started out today pulling all kinds of fabrics, using only stash, trying to come up with a combination that would work, The hard part was finding combinations that had enough fabric for the various levels. I think I finally came up with one.
This is what I have, so far. During the selection process, the quilt decided that it would be for a little girl. I'll take pictures of it as it grows. The colours are a little brighter than what shows here. It was starting to get dark when I took this picture, so it's a bit on the grey side.
I also treated myself to a change in sewing rooms for the day. It was warm and lovely, with just a gentle breeze outside, so I took a table and my sewing machine outside into the yard. Nothing better than a sewing room with a nice view, a nice breeze, and the sound of the birds singing and the leaves moving in the breeze. Absolute bliss!
And now, I think I'll start that new book.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Design wall Monday, again on Tuesday...

I'm late, again, posting this. Maybe I should name mine design wall Tuesday. Except, that if I did that, it would probably end up getting written on Wednesday. Oh well, better late than not at all. I don't have anything up on my big design wall, at the moment. I continue to slug away at this particular UFO, called Meteor Shower, by Judy Martin. The center is done. The big stars for the four outer corners are done. I am now working on one set of side borders at a time. Three out of six stars for the first of the four borders are done. I hope to get the last three sewn up tonight. Then I can get that first border assembled and sewn onto the quilt. I would like to have this one done long before the end of this month. We'll see how it goes. I have to be careful when it comes to attaching the borders, because the way the stars are turned and the side each border attaches to depends on the colours in the stars. Somebody remind me that, when I start the next new quilt, I should make it an easy one. My brain is just about fried after the last three quilts I've finished. Each of them have been large and complex. Maybe the next should be an easy string quilt, or something like that.
Anyway, I'm going to like up to Judy's Design wall Monday, even if it is Tuesday, then I'll go back to sewing stars and listening to the soothing music of Fernando Ortega.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Slow Sunday stitching and stash report week 31

This is the first time in quite a while that I've had any hand stitching to share. But, I am so excited, because the hand stitching is for the binding and hanging sleeve of Cactus Rose, a Judy Niemeyer pattern. I'm sitting outside in the yard, on this glorious summer day to work on the hand stitching. I am beyond over the moon thrilled with how this turned out. There was a picture in my mind how it should look, but I wasn't sure I could get it there. It looks even better than I had hoped it would. And I couldn't just leave it with that teaser photo of it all curled up in my lap.

 Here's the whole thing, before binding.

  And here's a close up of one of the sections. I took the shape of the leaves and the flowers and just ran with it in the quilting in all different directions, with a few patches of pebbles thrown in here and there, just to break it up a bit. Then, I put a larger leaf shape in the outer border area, and put a few pebbles in the center of some of those leaves, also for added interest.

And here's a photo of the back.

 Some of the stash usage this week went towards the binding and hanging sleeve for this quilt. The rest went for living room french door curtains, and some borders for Meteor Shower.

Used this week:                       6.7 yards
Used this year:                      60.5 yards
Added this week:                    6 yards
Added this year:                    58 yards
Stash Busted:                             2.5 yards

I'm linking up this week to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching and Judy's Stash Report. And then, there is lots more stitching to be done on the binding and hanging sleeve to finish, hopefully by the end of today.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Stash Report, Week 30, 2014

I have usage to report, and more than just a couple of inches....... finally. And it's because of making the backing for this.
Cactus Rose is finally loaded and the quilting started. I'm about 1/8th of the way done. I'm doing tons of stitch in the ditch, and lots of echoing and leaf shapes and a little bit of McTavish style and a bit of pebbling as well. I don't want the quilting to take over the piece, but to complement it, and look like it was meant to be this way. While I was at the sew-in day yesterday, I saw some quilting that Lorna was doing, and the filled leaves in the outer border section of this quilt were inspired by what she was doing. This is going to be a time consuming project, nut I'm thinking it will be well worth the time.

Used this week:           3.4 yards
Used this year:            53.8 yards
Added this week:        0 yards
Added this year:         52 yards
Stash Busted:                 1.2 yards

I'm linking to Judy's Stash Report.