Tuesday, June 30, 2015

One More Try

So, after ripping out the shawl the other day I found a soft gray to substitute for the dark green and used the dark green in place of the white. Also, I modified the pattern to start with smaller repeats. Instead of 25 garter ridges, I started with 10. Then I moved up to 15, and the plan is to continue increasing 5 ridges up to 25 again.
I am really pleased with the new color scheme, and I am digging the smaller stripes too.
What's on your needles today?
Joining Nicole today for KCCO.

Sunday, June 28, 2015


So, I didn't read the directions correctly when I started my Eden Prairie, and the first two triangles ended up upside down.
Hmph. I realized it a couple of stripes ago, but I didn't think it would bother me in the long run. Turns out, it totally bugs me, (look at how they bulge out, so annoying...) and so this morning I did this.
I wasn't super jazzed about the white either, as I mentioned, and it was a little thicker than the other yarns anyway, so I'm bagging it. Time to do a little more stash diving. I hope the yarn gods are kind, otherwise it's a trip to the yarn shop (not really a down side)
What's on your agenda this weekend?

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Knitting Things

Autumn's End is finally finished, just in time for a gorgeous summer. It'll be there waiting for me this fall, which is just fine with me. This gives me plenty of time to block it, which I clearly should have done before taking that photo...
Now, I'm not a shawl knitter usually, but I have had Eden Prairie in my Ravelry favorites for a long time, and I've always loved the aesthetic of Prairie Style art and architecture, so when I cast off Autumn's End, I dug through my stash and cast on this little beauty. 

The construction is very straightforward, which is perfect for knitting at the playground with my kids, and yet it isn't boring, which is good for my easily distracted knitters brain.
I'm not loving the white, I'm pondering some strategic tea-staining when it's all done. 
What's on your needles lately?
Joining Ginny and Nicole today.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Crafting On, Procrastinators Edition

During the summers for the past 6 or 7 years I have had the enjoyable experience to teach children's crafting camps.
This week marks the first of the summer.
Every beginning sewing class we make the same projects:
a needle book
a backpack
a pillowcase
and if there's time a patchwork pillow or quilt.

Yesterday I was cruising pinterest (I'm not the greatest pinterest user, I get kind of frustrated with the format of finding pins, searching out the original websites, blah blah blah, I guess I'm just an old-fashioned blog-reader at heart) and looked up some ideas for this week's class.
Since my class started in the afternoon I had a good 4 hours to whip up some fun projects to add to the mix this time around.
felt bookmark
tablet/book holder
Magic Pillowcase

The bookmark is such a sweet little project, it's nice to have hand work for the kids to do if they get ahead of the rest of the class.
The genius of it is that you can use the corners of the felt to make a nice clean right angle, and then you can make whatever shape you like on the third side.

For the tablet/book holder begin with a piece of cotton 18"x 16", folded right sides together along the longer side, so I was left with a folded piece that was 9"x 16".
Sew along two sides to make an L shape.
Trim the corners and turn right side out.
I marked a line 7 and 5 inches from the end in pencil to use as sewing lines.
After breaking two needles sewing along the edge of the stuffed section I opted for hand stitching.
I used two ziplock bags of rice, one in the pillow and another in the front, to weigh it down.

The magic pillowcase tutorial is linked above. It worked well for me, but it requires a high level of attention to detail, and control over one's machine.
In the end I only had one student opt for the pillowcase with a contrast band, so we'll see how it works with a beginner.

So, one might have done these things weeks ago, had one been aware that the class started this week, but that one isn't me.
Clearly I need the pressure of a deadline to get anything done.

Joining Nicole today, for KCCO
What's on your creative plate today?

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Keeping Calm and Yarning Along

After I discovered my sleeve sadness on Sunday I ripped out the offending knitting. Thanks to a relatively light day, schedule-wise, I reknitted it Monday.
Once it was finished I compared the new sleeve to the other and realized that I really wasn't giving this sweater my full attention since I had not followed the directions for increases.
 So I ripped out the first sleeve too and am about a fifth of the way through it.
The 90 degree weather yesterday, also the fact that it was the last day of school, kept me from making too much progress, but since this is really a late fall sweater I have lots of time.
I started reading Dead Wake, the story of the sinking of the Lusitania. It's an interesting story so far, but the kids have commandeered the Kindle and I haven't gotten very far.
Joining Nicole and Ginny today

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

American Lullaby by Gladys Rich

Hush-a-bye you sweet little baby
(The Youngest) "you mean little girl."
(Me) "of course"
Hush-a-bye you sweet little girl, and close those pretty blue eyes
(The Youngest) "you mean green eyes"
(Me) "yes ma'am"
Hush-a-bye you sweet little girl, and close those pretty green eyes.
Mother has gone to her weekly bridge party to get her wee girl the prize.
Nursie will turn the radio on
so you can hear a sleepytime song
sung by a lady whose poor heart must long for a baby
(The Youngest) "For a GIRL"
For a GIRL like you.
(The Youngest) "Like ME"

Monday, June 8, 2015

The Last Straw

This has been a rather disappointing week, monetarily speaking.
First my car needed new front brakes, then The Hub's car needed a new air compressor. Follow this with a washing machine that no longer runs a spin cycle, and a dryer that no longer dries and there goes our reserves.
Then, last night, here I am innocently watching Game of Thrones and making great progress on my sweater when I realize that I left out two rows in my repeat for an entire sleeve.
And I didn't come to this realization until here -

Just at that moment I look up and there's Stannis Baratheon doing something unspeakable.
I don't know if I can stick with that show, man...
Good thing there was a dragon (however cheesy that scene looked)

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Full Days

Spring in MN can be unpredictable. There are years when you will see snow on the ground well into May, but June, on the other hand, is a wonderful time.
The Youngest and I have been spending all of our time outside. 
Today we met some friends at the playground and took a walk down to the local ice cream and fish restaurant.

When we're not at the playground I have been practicing drawing and it's going pretty well, though I am not totally satisfied.
Beatrix Potter is my current muse, and I have such regard for her work, it's daunting to try to emulate it.
She was a master with the details in watercolor. I'm learning, but it's a slow road.
The Youngest is a fan, though, and keeps suggesting new subjects.
Next, Peter Rabbit -
The left foot is a little wonky, but, as I said, it's a process...