Posted in Current Projects, Sewing

WIP Wednesday

It’s been a while since I shared all of my current projects and since I recently cast on some new things, I figure it’s time to share what I have on the needles today.

Sometime at the end of August or early September, I decided I needed to have a plain vanilla pair of socks on the needles. I have enough stripey yarn that I could probably have a pair of striped socks on the needles for at least a year or two! I pulled out a skein of Vesper self striping yarn in Venus in Furs. This is a colorway I traded with Jen (of the Piddleloop Sewing Team) for. I don’t know if my knitting changed or what, but for some reason my normal 64 stitch sock was way too big. Then, I went down to a US 0 made, but the fabric I was getting was a bit too tight and the sock (66 stitches) was too big. After a number of failed attempts at getting these socks going, around mid-September I finally re-started these with a stitch count that worked (60 stitches). I’m past the heel and halfway through the leg on the first sock. Behind the sock, you’ll see one of my bags from Jen. I love the fabric and it’s just the right size for a sock project!

Stripes - Venus in Furs
Venus in Furs Stripey Sock

I think I could have forced myself to work on things I had going, but last week Knitty released their Deep Fall issue and Brooklyn Tweed released the Fall 2011 collection. Two patterns jumped out at me as things I MUST KNIT NOW.

The pattern from Knitty caught my eye was Ambroso. I had a skein of Cascade 220 Superwash on hand that I’d been trying to find a pattern that suited it. Yesterday I spent a lot of time working on the decreases on the top of the hand portion, but after working it as written twice and trying to adjust it twice, I’m just not happy with how it’s turning out. The decrease section on the outer part of the mitten tends to shift itself almost to the center of the backside of my hand. Personally, I’m not at all a fan of how this looks. In looking at the pictures on the pattern page, I do notice this issue. I guess I didn’t think much of it when I started knitting them. After some thought on what to do since I couldn’t straighten it out, I’ve deiced to make these into fingerless gloves instead! I’ll knit ribbing around the thumb and hand to match the cuff.

Ambroso Mittens
Ambroso Mittens

The pattern from Brooklyn Tweed that caught my eye was Ashby. As the weather has turned a little cooler, I’ve found myself wanting something light that I could wear and easily take off. A non-lace shawl made from a warm fiber was just what I needed. I picked up some Ultra Alpaca and started it this past weekend. I like the construction of it. You knit the edge first, then pick up the stitches from the edge and knit the shawl from there. It avoids the problem of having 400+ stitches when you get to the bottom of the shawl! The color of the yarn is a little lighter in person then the photo shows.

Ashby
Ashby

For a while now I’ve wanted to make a pair of Embossed Leaves socks. I also wanted to use up this very fall colored yarn I got from the Loopy Ewe Sock Club last year. The yarn is Alchemy Juniper in Autumn Ecstasy. I’ve not used this sock yarn before and at first I wasn’t fond of the colors, but it seems to have grown on me and has been demanding that I make it into some nice fall socks. When I saw another pair of Embossed Leaves out of this very colorway, I knew I needed to finally knit this pattern. So far I’m enjoying both the yarn and the pattern. The yarn reminds me a bit of Fiesta Baby Boom. Looks kind of fluffy in the skein, yet isn’t as fluffy when you wind it at work with it, but makes a really nice fabric.

Embossed Leaves Sock
Embossed Leaves Socks

Despite casting on three new projects, I can’t shake the urge to cast on more things! I’ve noticed some other folks feeling the same way. Maybe it’s just the time of year. The weather has started to cool for many of us. For many knitters and crocheters, we start to think of all the warm, wooly things to knit and wear during the cooler months. I’ve already got my eye on at least one pair of fingerless gloves, a scarf, a hat, and a few pairs of socks. I won’t even talk about all the things in my queue!

Have you started any projects recently? Is anything calling to you to start right now? Any new patterns come out recently that you just can’t resist?

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Posted in Completed Projects, Cooking, Current Projects, Sewing

OppAtt Socks, Little Christmas Tree, and Juneberry

It’s a week from Christmas and this year I have zero “must finish this by December 25th” things on my needles. It’s kind of nice, though it’s a little sad, too. I didn’t knit anyone a thing for Christmas. Last year, I knit things for 3 family members, but this year nothing really jumped out as me as things I should knit for so-and-so. I didn’t feel stressed about last year’s gift knitting since I started pretty early, so it wasn’t even that holding me back. I looked and looked at patterns. Thought about what those I’m giving gifts to might like from me (handknit or otherwise). The one thing I really kept coming back to is this: I don’t get asked for handknits from people I would knit for. That makes it hard to think of things they might like that I could knit and they’re all a bit difficult to buy gifts for (I realize I’m hard to buy gifts for, too). Ultimately I concluded that store-bought gifts would be what I would be giving this year.

So… that means I’ve been knitting merrily away on some things for myself since I last posted! I even finished two things.

First thing I finished was the Opposites Attract Mystery KAL Socks. Didn’t take me long to finish the socks after I finished the commissioned knits I did.

Side note about that: everything worked out well. I think it was a misunderstanding on my part about price or maybe I misheard what was said, but regardless, things turned out well. I have been thanked repeatedly and was told many times over that they knew they were getting a huge discount and the items are “worth hundreds!” I feel a bit bad for complaining and getting worked up about it. I’m just relieved that it all worked out well in the end and wasn’t as uncomfortable as I thought it might be.

Anyhow, back to the socks! I like how they turned out and I’m very pleased with the fit. I don’t often do mystery sock KALs and usually end up frogging them. This one kept my interest and as the design came out one clue at a time, I continued to like the pattern and kept on knitting.

OA Mystery Socks
Opposites Attract Mystery KAL Socks

Pattern: OppAtt Mystery KAL for Barking Dog Yarns by Jeannie Cartmel (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: November 3, 2010
Completed: December 12, 2010
Yarn: Barking Dog Opposites Attract, colorway George & Gracie, one skein
Needles: US 1 (2.25 mm) Knit Picks circular
Notes: No modifications to the pattern, knit as written for the 72 stitch sock.

OA Mystery Socks (Front)
Opposites Attract Mystery KAL Socks – Front

OA Mystery Socks (Back)
Opposites Attract Mystery KAL Socks – Back

The other item I finished was a little crocheted Christmas tree. It was pretty simple to do, though it did take some fiddling to get the leaves how I liked them due to me misreading part of the tutorial. Took just a little more then a day to finish. I still need to add ornaments to it, so I’m not calling it completely finished yet. Once I add ornaments, I’ll do an FO post for it. The tutorial for it can be found here.

Crochet Christmas Tree
Little Christmas Tree

A few posts ago, I mentioned wanting to crochet the Boteh Scarf. After finishing the Opposite Attract socks, I immediately started this, then lost a bit of interest when the I found the tree pattern above. It’s a pretty easy pattern and the first scarf I’ve ever attempted crocheting. It’s even helping me get the hang of crochet charts a bit. Not completely, but it is at least making some sense for a change. The yarn I’m using is Bigmouth Yarns Buxom Sock in “You’re Turning Violet, Violet!”

Boteh Scarf
Boteh Scarf

Around the same time that I started the scarf and crochet the tree, Sairy posted about buying yarn for the Juneberry Triangle, which I immediately went to queue and realized I already had! Suddenly I needed to knit it NOW, so I looked through my stash and found that the DK weight mink/cashmere yarn I bought from Great Northern Yarns a while ago had enough yardage and would work for the shawl. Didn’t take long before I had cast on and found myself not working on any other projects.

Juneberry
Juneberry Triangle

Juneberry
Juneberry Triangle – Close

I’m now halfway through chart D, which is the one with bobbles. I rarely pick projects that have bobbles, but I have no real reason for that or aversion to them. Just haven’t really knit many things with them. I was actually surprised to realize there were bobbles in the pattern. I either didn’t pay enough attention to the photos of the shawl or just chose to ignore the fact that they were there. I find them to be a bit fiddly and they usually don’t appeal to me in a pattern. I will say that being able to knit backwards really comes in handy when knitting bobbles. None of that turn, turn, turn stuff, which got on my nerves after the first row with bobbles. I can only do the knit stitch well backwards, but I am very thankful I learned that when I took my first knitting class at Knitter’s Connection a few years ago.

I’m hoping to do a year end wrap up post like I have the last two years with all my FO’s, though I’ll likely wait until after Christmas to do that to see if I can sneak in another FO before the year is out. In preparation, I’ve been browsing through some old posts, looking at the projects I’ve completed this year, and even re-reading the goals I set for myself at the beginning of this year. If I don’t get a chance to post again before Christmas, I hope everyone has a lovely holiday! 🙂

Posted in Current Projects, Gardening, Sewing, Spinning

Tour de Fleece

Tour de Fleece is in full swing here! 🙂

Saturday I started out with what was left of the All Spun Up superwash merino (full braid was 6.2 ounces). I started on this fiber months ago. I managed to get two and a half bobbins done and even plied up the first two bobbins before putting it aside. I think I had about 1.5 to 2 ounces worth of fiber left when I started out the Tour de Fleece.

All Spun Up (Spinning in progress)
All Spun Up Superwash Merino

I didn’t spin that much on Saturday. We were busy getting ready for having people over on Sunday and we ended up going to see Knight and Day with some friends in the evening. I did get about halfway through what was left of the ASU fiber, though!

TDF Day 1
TDF Day 1

Sunday we had a full house, but even while people were over, I got in a fair amount of spinning time between playing hostess to our friends and family. I managed to finish up the rest of the fiber and ply it!

TDF Day 2
TDF Day 2

I didn’t figure out how much yardage I had right away because I’d never written down what the first two skeins were. I took the time to calculate it on Monday and I figured out that I have about 776 yards. After thinking I’d lost it, I managed to find my wraps per inch (WPI) tool and figured out that I have about 16 WPI (14 WPI in some places) giving me 776 yards of fingering weight yarn. That’s WAY more then I imagined I’d end up with or even thought that I had! Not sure what I’m going to do with it yet. It’s pretty variegated, so something simple. Suggestions welcome!

TDF Day 2
All Spun Up Superwash Merino Fingering weight, 776 yards total

Yesterday I was finally able to start the fiber that arrived last week.

TDF 2010 Roving
Corriedale in a special Tour de Fleece colorway from Zarzuela’s Fibers

I split the first 4 ounces into three equal lengths and prepped the first bit by doing a bit of pre-drafting. I wanted longer bits of each color, so after separating it into three equal lengths, I didn’t split the sections further into 2 or 4 (split in half, then in half again for) and just drafting as I go or doing just a little pre-drafting like I have been doing. Instead I pre-drafted the whole length of the first section and just went for it. It was kind of nice because I didn’t have to pick up or add any fiber to it as I went. By the end of the day I was able to get through the first 1/3 of the first braid.

TDF Day 3
TDF Day 3

This is my first time working with Corridale. So far, I’ve found it to be a sticky fiber (as in it likes to stick together). I’ve been trying to spin it a little thicker and so far the singles by themselves are looking about a fingering weight. I’m going to ply it, but not sure how yet. Considering trying to Navajo ply it since I’ve never tried to do that before. The one thing that I’ve noticed about my spinning vs others that I’ve seen is that my yarns end up rather loose when plied. Not really sure what I’m doing wrong here. There are parts that seem tighter then other parts, but overall it just seems loose. From what I’ve read, it seems like I’m plying correctly and when I’m plying it seems tight enough. Maybe I just need more practice. The third skein of the All Spun Up superwash merino did seem like it was an improvement. The first two had more loose parts and the third had much fewer.

I forgot to mention my goals for the Tour de Fleece in my last post. My overall goal is to spin at least an hour a day. I haven’t been keeping track of all my times like I did last year, but I can estimate how much I’ve done so far, so I might from here on out. My first goal was to finish up the All Spun Up fiber (check!). Second is to spin up the Corriedale in the TDF colorway. Beyond that…. well, I’m not sure! I thought that 8 ounces of fiber would take me a good long while to spin up, but thinking about how many days are in the tour and how much I’ve done so far… yeah I think I’m going to have to find something else to work on after I get done with the Corriedale. I’ve got enough fiber in my stash that I don’t think it’ll be a problem to find something else do spin up after that’s done. Might finally get around to the CJ Kopec fiber I got last year.

Between spinning breaks, I’ve been knitting. I’m working on the heel flap of Malestrom, I frogged the KawKawEsque socks I mentioned in my last post (wasn’t liking the yarn/ribbing combo), and yesterday I started the Serpentine Socks for this month’s Socks From the Toe-Up KAL. I’m still working on Daybreak, too. The rows are getting quite long and seem to take forever, plus it’s been hot and sticky out, so I’ve been favoring the smaller projects. I haven’t worked on my crochet top or the Rippleghan in about a week since other projects have been taking up my interest. I think once I get Daybreak done I’ll focus on the top again.

Can’t wait to get more spinning done later today! I’m sure the Corriedale will be done in no time 🙂

Posted in Completed Projects, Cooking, Current Projects, Sewing

Walden Shawl and Project Updates

This month has been flying by! I can’t believe it’s already the middle of June. This month has been pretty busy both at work and home, but I have been busy knitting and *gasp* CROCHETING. In fact, last week I finished a crocheted shawl!

I’ve been wanting to branch out and learn more crochet for a while. I’ve been especially interested in being able to read and follow crochet patterns. When I asked on Plurk what crochet pattern I should try, Leslie (of The Knit Girllls) suggested Walden. It seemed like a good pattern to get started with, so I started it right away and was finished a few days later.

Walden Shawl
Walden Shawl

Pattern: Walden (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: June 7, 2010
Completed: June 11, 2010
Yarn: 1 skein Scarlet Fleece It’s Tubular x2 colorway Coffee & Raspberry Pie
Needles: 5.0mm/H hook
Notes: I worked as many pattern repeats as I could before working the border, trying to use up as much yarn as possible. The skein was 420 yards and I think I had about 20 yards left. I probably could have added another row or two before the border, but I would have cut it pretty close I think! For a first crochet project that follows a pattern and isn’t a toy, I think this is a good one. It turned out bigger then I thought it would based on it’s pre-blocked size (it stretched a LOT) and it’s a decent sized small shawl. I would totally crochet this pattern again.

Walden Shawl
Walden Shawl – Front

Walden Shawl
Walden Shawl – Side

Walden Shawl
Walden Shawl – Back

On June 1st, I ended up casting on for the Diagonal Lace socks using the Campari Piccolo Wollmeise. I finished the first sock on June 5th and had knit the the foot of the second sock before I put it aside to work on Walden, but once that was finished, I picked it back up and finished the second sock last night. I don’t have a finished picture yet, but here’s what they looked like Sunday night.

Diagonal Lace Socks
Diagonal Lace Socks

After finishing Walden, I wanted to try another crochet pattern. I looked through Ravelry at all the patterns for tops/sweaters and decided on the Sweet Tea tank top from Everyday Crochet by Doris Chan. Luckily my library had an available copy, so Friday I picked it up from the library and started it in NatruallyCaron.com Spa (side note, why would a yarn be called “whatever.com”?). The yarn is a bit splitty to work with at first, but it’s getting easier as I go. I thought I had the whole crochet gauge thing worked out and thought that I had gauge. When I joined the top front and back pieces and worked a few rows, I quickly figured out that I didn’t have gauge and the top was going to be HUGE on me. When I’d finished the top back/front pieces and held them up to see if it would fit, they did (quite well actually), but when I had added the stitches between the pieces, it added 8 inches or so. Since I knew that without those extra stitches it seemed to fit, I ripped back to where I had joined the pieces and added the extra stitches and rejoined them without adding any stitches between. When I tried it on after crocheting a few rows, it fit! Now I’m sort of winging the rest of the body. Since I’m not doing any bust shaping, I’m not worried about having to adjust anything further in the pattern and it seems to be working out pretty good. I think I may have joined the two pieces with one on the wrong side, so there is a row that looks different/weird. I’ll probably rip it back to the join again tonight and fix it. The picture below is from when I joined it the first time with the extra stitches.

Sweet Tea Tank
Sweet Tea

I’ve been working on Daybreak and have 9 stripes done so far. This is what it looked like just after doing the first few stripes.

Daybreak
Daybreak

The Damsel Vesper socks have been put to the side. I’ll finish them eventually, but I think the colorway just doesn’t appeal to me when I knit it, so they keep getting put aside for other projects. I’ve at least started the second sock, though!

Damsel Sock 2
Vesper socks in Damsel

After finishing up the Diagonal Lace socks, I haven’t decided on a new pair to start, so I think I might try and finish these up before starting another pair of socks.

The weather has finally cooled off a bit and not been super humid and miserable outside. Last night we rode our bikes to music on the commons near our house and there was a nice breeze. They do music on the commons on Wednesday and Thursday, so I think I may ride down again tonight. It was nice to be outside, riding bikes, and listening to music. They even had a vendor with funnel cake! YUM!

Any fun weekend plans? We’ll be going to see the Cincinnati Roller Girls on Saturday night and probably working on cleaning up the basement the rest of the weekend. Oh and yard work. It definitely needs some attention. Needs a good mow and some weed whacking and pulling. Might finally try and get my raised beds set up, too. We’ll see. Right now all I want to do is just relax and knit all weekend! 😉

Posted in Completed Projects, Current Projects, Gardening, Sewing

Christmas FO’s and a Trojan

Wow, how have I not posted since the beginning of December and it’s now the end of December? Where did all the time go? I suppose the holidays get to you like that. We’ve been pretty busy with various get togethers over the entire month, but I think things have finally slowed down. I kept coming to a block when I wanted to blog since most of the things I’d recently finished or was working on, weren’t things I could blog about yet. Now the gifts have been given and I can finally post about them!

The first gift I finished was a beret for my sister Kaylee.

Kaylee with her beret!
Kaylee’s Beret


Kaylee’s Beret

Pattern: Moss Stitch Beret (PDF) (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: November 8, 2009
Completed: November 10, 2009
Yarn: Shelridge Farm Soft Touch W4 in teal, 1 skein
Needles: US 3 and US 7 bamboo circulars and US 7 DPNs
Notes: I knit to 6 inches before the decreases instead of 5.5 inches like the pattern called for. That was an accident, but it worked out fine. Otherwise, I followed the pattern exactly and it was a pretty quick knit.

The second gift I finished was a bucket hat for my sister Caitlin.

Caitlin is stylin' with her hat
Caitlin’s Bucket Hat


Caitlin’s Bucket Hat

Pattern: A Better Bucket (Ravelry Link) (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: November 10, 2009
Completed: November 11, 2009
Yarn: Shelridge Farm Soft Touch W4 in pink, 1 skein
Needles: US 7 bamboo circulars and DPNs
Notes: I knit this as written except the cast on. I didn’t really understand the cast on that was talked about in the pattern, so I just did a provisional cast on and it worked out fine.

The third (and final) gift I finished was a pair of socks for my mom.

348/365: Socks
Mom’s Sunday Swing Socks


Better photo of the yarn color.

Pattern: Sunday Swing Socks (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: November 14, 2009
Completed: December 14, 2009
Yarn: Three Irish Girls Finley Fingering in Seacoast, 1 skein
Needles: US 7 bamboo circulars and DPNs
Notes: Only change I made was to knit to a smaller stitch count on the foot. I decreased down to 14 stitches on the sole (16 on the top) for a bit more snug fit. I kept working on other things while working on these, otherwise I think they would have been done a lot sooner!

I finished my Long Sleeve Leisl, too, but it doesn’t have buttons yet and I haven’t taken any finished pictures of it (or Multnomah), so I’ll post about that later on.

I finished up a little Trojan this weekend for Matt. He’s now on Matt’s desk, but I took a few pictures before I sent him off.

Trojan!
Trojan!

Trojan!
Trojan – side view

Pattern: Trojan from Creepy Cute Crochet (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: Not sure
Completed: December 26, 2009
Yarn: Various Bernat acrylics
Needles: F, G, and H crochet hooks
Notes: I don’t remember when I started this, but I put it aside for a long time because the first head I crocheted didn’t come out the proper size for the helmet. Body and helmet are done in a G hook, head in an H hook, and the red part on top of the helmet was done with an F hook because it would have been too long otherwise. I think he turned out great!

Right now I have a total of three projects on the needles: a shawl for my grandma’s birthday, the scarf for Matt, and the Porom hat. I just finished the first half of the shawl for my grandma’s birthday.

362/365: Half of a Shawl
Hardenburgia Shawl

I made some changes to the border to make it flow better. I’ll go more into detail on that when I finish it. Matt’s scarf doesn’t really look any different and I haven’t taken pictures of the Porom hat yet.

The holidays kept us pretty busy visiting family, but it was good overall. Hope your holiday was a good one!

Posted in Completed Projects, Cooking, Current Projects, Sewing

Button-Up Neck Warmer and Liesl FO’s and a New Sweater

It’s time for “FO Fiday!” I have two finished objects to share this week. This week has been rather hectic and I planned to show one of these earlier in the week and the other one yesterday/today, but sometimes time just gets away from me. Anyhow, on with the FO’s!

Pattern: Button-Up Neck Warmer from Spring 2009 Spin-Off (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: July 29, 2009
Completed: August 16, 2009
Yarn: My second skein of handspun, from Zarzuela’s Fibers in Emerald City (I used about 105 of my 210 yards)
Needles: US 8 bamboo circular
Notes: This was a pretty fast and easy knit. Well, it was fast when I actually worked on it! I had about half of it done already when I picked it back up on August 16th and was able to finish it that day. This is soft and squishy and it will definitely keep me warm this winter! I absolutely love it and can’t wait to work with more of my handspun in the future.

Button-Up Neck Warmer Unbuttoned
Un-buttoned

Button-Up Neck Warmer Buttoned
Buttoned

230/365: Button-Up Neck Warmer
Me, wearing it! 🙂

Pattern: Liesl by Ysolda Teague (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: August 6, 2009
Completed: August 15, 2009
Yarn: Just over 3 skeins of Louet Worsted in Eggplant
Needles: US 10.5 bamboo circulars
Notes: This was a pretty fast and easy knit. The one thing I changed was garter stitch borders. I added 4 rows of garter stitch to the collar, the bottom of the sweater, and the sleeves. Since the button band was in garter stitch, I wanted to keep that element throughout the sweater edges and I’m glad I decided to do that. I did the lower neckline, though I initially started with the higher one. I’m glad I ended up ripping back and changing that. I also started with the 44″ size, but it just seemed like it was going to end up too small and after reading pattern notes in Ravelry, I went up to the 46″ size. I’m really glad I did! I really don’t think it would have fit otherwise. Overall, I’m really pleased with how it turned out and I already have plans to make a second one! 🙂

232/365: Liesl
It’s done! It fits! I love it!

Liesl Sweater - Back
Back

Liesl Sweater - Left Side
Left Side

Liesl Sweater - Right Side
Right Side

On Tuesday, I did a swatch for the Vine Yoke cardigan because it was still calling me. I thought “Oh, I’ll just do a swatch.” If you’re anything like me, you know how that goes. First it’s just the swatch, then it’s “Oh, I’ll just knit an inch or two, then put it aside.” The next thing you know, you can’t stop and don’t want to put it down! Wednesday I cast on for this sweater and brought it to the Reds baseball game with me. By the time I got home, I had knit 5 or so inches on it! I’ve been working on it almost non-stop since. The yarn feels fantastic when knitting with it and even softer after it’s washed. I think this is another sweater that’s going to get quite a bit of wear!

Vine Yoke Cardigan
Vine Yoke Cardigan progress.

So far there’s been two things I’ve changed: the button holes and how many of them I have. The pattern says to work the button holes 9 times on the button band row. That would have left me with 2 to 3 inches just sort of “hanging” at the bottom. I decided to add an additional button hole and it think that works out well. The way the button holes were supposed to be worked confused me to no end, so I changed it to bind off 3 stitches (sl 1, sl 1, psso, sl 1, psso, sl 1, psso), backwards loop cast on 4 stitches, knit 1, psso (the stitch passed over is the last backwards loop cast on stitch) then continued to the next button hole. This worked out to about the same results as what the pattern said to do without all the turning and fussing and confusion.

I don’t know about you, but I’m really glad it’s Friday. Anything fun going on for you this weekend? I’m ready for a weekend of not doing a whole lot since we have no plans for this weekend at all and for once I’m keeping it that way! Tonight we’re going to dinner with Matt’s family for his brother’s birthday. Should be fun! I think this weekend will be spent relaxing, knitting, maybe a little bit of housework, probably playing more Viva Pinata on the Xbox 360 (for me, Matt will probably spend time playing one Infamous on PS3), and some quality time with our new surround sound system that was set up earlier this week. Have a good weekend, everyone! 🙂

Posted in Completed Projects, Sewing

Sprucey Lucy FO, Sewing, and Baby Socks

Last night I finished up the Sprucey Lucy socks, which means I also finished my first pair for the 52 Pair Plunge III!

167/365: Sprucey Lucy

Pattern: Sprucey Lucy Socks by Wendy Johnson (My Ravelry project page.)
Started: June 1, 2009
Completed: June 16, 2009
Yarn: The Yarn Bearer Uber Sock, April 2009 Sock Club shipment with the theme of “Falling”
Needles: Knit Picks US 1 (2.25mm) DPNs
Notes: I changed the heel to a short row heel because I find they fit my foot better. The yarn was great to work with! First time I used this yarn, I made a Marlene sock that I ended up not liking and frogging. Then I decided to use it for this pattern, but I used US 0’s and knit the medium size. I didn’t like the fabric I got with US 0’s, so I frogged what I had and went up to US 1’s (2.25mm) and knit the small. Worked out much better and I love the socks! The lace pattern was easy to memorize, but it wasn’t until the leg of the first sock that it really flowed for me. If I hadn’t put these socks aside to knit Hey Teach, these probably would have been done a lot sooner. Took me 3 days to knit the second sock, but almost 2 weeks to do the first one! Ah well, sometimes I get side tracked 🙂

Sprucey Lucy, Sock Blockers
Pair 1 for the 52 Pair Plunge III! 🙂

On Monday, I finally decided to fix the strap on the purse I made a few weeks ago. When I made the bag, I didn’t think about the size of it and how only having one strap would make it sag in the middle while I’m carrying it. The sagging in the middle was making the D rings for the straps to turn and start damaging the fabric. I needed to do something about this, so I decided it needed two straps. Monday I finally went to the fabric store and got a set of four D rings in a 1/2 inch smaller size so that I could make 2 new straps and attach them to the bag.

IMG_2080
This is what the bag looked like before with only 1 strap.

I used my seam ripper to get the tabs on each end out and sewed up the spot where they had been. Then, I used my seam ripper to open up where the new straps should go and I sewed together two new straps and four tabs to hold the D rings to the bag. Once those were all put together (with interfacing and all that jazz), I sewed the tabs with D rings in place, then sewed the straps onto the D rings. Since the initial tabs were sewn into place between the inner lining and outside lining and I wasn’t willing to take it all apart to make it perfect, I had to hand stitch the parts where the tabs were to make it look right and not gap in those places. It probably took me about 2 hours total to do between doing laundry, but it’s done now and I absolutely love how it turned out. So much better then just having the one strap!

166/365: Brand New Bag
“New” bag, now with 2 straps instead of 1!

Right now, I’m just working on a pair of baby socks I started. There’s no intended recipient yet, I just wanted to use up some left over sock yarn. I think I’ll get these finished up before starting something new.

Babeh Socks
Little baby sock, just started the heel.

I want to start Hey Teach over again, but I also want to cast on for the Lacy Ribs sock. This would actually be the second time casting on for the Lacy Ribs sock since I frogged my first attempt because I thought it might be too bulky in my shoes, so this time I was planning on knitting the foot in stockinette and the leg with the pattern. I didn’t bring Hey Teach with me today, but I did bring the yarn for Lacy Ribs, so I’m guessing that I’ll get started on that first since tonight is knit night and these baby socks shouldn’t take too long to finish up.

This past weekend on Sunday, we washed the walls in the house with help from Alita, Karen, and Than. Without them, there’s no way we could have done it! Thanks for the help!! There was a leak we found from a pipe that had bulged and burst when we were turning on the water for the first time, so now the kitchen has a nice hole in the ceiling that needs to be fixed, but at least we found it now instead of after we moved in. Matt and his dad were able to find and fix it, thankfully. The house is currently getting painted and this weekend, I think we’ll start to move stuff over to the house. Things that we don’t really need and can live without for a week or more. Oh the joys of home ownership and moving! hahaha 🙂

Happy Mid-Week everyone! I’m still trying to figure out how it’s already the middle of June. Where does all the time go?

Posted in Sewing

Shopping Day

Today I went to Jo Ann’s only to discover that the set I was going to purchase was on sale and I couldn’t use that coupon I wanted to.  No worries, though, because Michael’s sells cutting mats and they take competitors coupons.  I ended up getting one that is 24" x 18" for $12.50.  Somehow at Michael’s, the lady couldn’t figure out the coupon thing and took only $3 off of the marking pencils I bought.  I told her about it and she couldn’t figure out how to fix it and someone else came up to fix it for her.  Well, they never fixed the 50% off the marking pencils, so I ended up getting 50% off both the pencils and mat.  I didn’t even realize it until I got home!

I went back to Jo Ann’s after some other running around because they had rotary cutters (and all related tools) on sale for 30% off and fat quarters for $.96.  I also needed some fusible fleece interfacing.  I ended up with a rotary cutter for $10 and a ruler for $4.50.  It ended up being a little more than the Fiskars set would have been ($27 instead of $22), but I’m very happy with my purchases.  I used my other 50% coupon on 2 yards of fusible fleece interfacing, so I had 2 yards for $5.99.  That should last me quite a bit.

I was going to make a Loopy Ewe order, but I told myself to wait until after I got the rotary set.  Good thing I did, because I spent a little more than I thought I would! 

Anyhow, I took some photos of the things I came home with:

My very own rotary cutting set
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Fat Quarters and Fusible Fleece Interfacing – whatever could those FQ’s be for?
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Double sided fusible interfacing and marking pencils
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This is fabric I purchased at Walmart, on seperate dates.  I think they’ll make a great Box Bag, don’t you?

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That’s all for now.  Perhaps I’ll have more fabric things to show you soon!  Tomorrow morning I have a doctor’s appointment and in the evening I’m going to a belated birthday dinner with Crafty Mands.  Tomorrow should be good!  I’m looking forward to it :o)

Posted in Current Projects, Sewing

Apparently I like to sew (read: Sewing FO!)

I saw a tutorial a few days ago for this boxy sort of bag.  I’d been seeing them around the net and had been wanting to make one.  While I was at Walmart, I found some cheap fabric ($2/yard), so I bought 1/2 of a yard of two fabrics to make one along with some matching thread and a zipper.  Today, I finally sat down and made it.  It’s a bit fussy to do, but I like the results a lot!  Total, this project cost me around $4 – how sweet is that?  I love good deals :o)

Here’s the completed bag:

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Yellow isn’t a color I’d normally pick, but I really liked the gold/brown of the outter fabric (I think it’s some sort of upholstery fabric, it’s rather thick and canvas like).  I love it!  It’s about 9 inches long and 4 inches tall and wide.  It’s currently holding Wisp, which fits great inside.  I may make another at some point, but I think I have quite a few project bags right now.  Maybe it’s time to make a tote or two!

I think next weekend I’m going to invest in a rotary cutter and mat.  I have a 50% off coupon and JoAnn’s sells Fiscars Rotary Cutting set that comes with the mat, rotary cutter, and clear ruler.  It’s also fairly big (18" x 24") which I think will serve all my sewing needs well.

Don’t worry, though – I haven’t been completely sucked into the sewing world.  I’m still knitting.  Here’s proof:

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I started it on Wednesday and felted it last night.  It’s still drying and I want to sew in a liner, so I may not do an FO report right away on it, but the knitting part is all done! 

Hope everyone is having a good weekend.  I’m off to the library with my sister :o)

Posted in Sewing

Project Bags

Today it was cold out and I think the change in weather made me feel like cleaning.  I went into my craft room and started cleaning up both of the book shelves.  I really need bigger ones, but until then, I have to work with what I have.  There was a towering pile on one, threatening to fall over any second, so I started there.  Now it’s still a stack, but much more organized and I actually made shelf out of the top to hold knitting books that don’t fit on the actual shelves.  The stack isn’t threatening to fall over any longer, either.  Now I can find things!  Yay!

Well, after that I saw the fabric stack and started organizing that, too.  Then the sewing bug bit me.  I guess I got a little to close to the sewing machine!  Next thing I knew, I had two Leetle Bags (except, one not so leetle!).

Here’s both of them, side by side:

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This is the tall pink/red one:

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Here’s the brown/blue stripe one (click on the photo to see the spirals):

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And here they are side by side, with a ruler:

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The pink one is 14 inches tall and the brown one is 7 1/2 inches tall.  I wanted a taller one to hold the larger skeins like Trekking XXL or the Austermann Step I’m using right now for the toe-up socks.  Since I gave the first one I made to my Sockapalooza 4 pal, I needed a smaller one for me, so I made the second one a little smaller.  I intended it to come out a bit taller, but I love it anyhow :o) 

I still have enough fabric for two more.  Maybe I’ll make them tomorrow.  For now, though, I’m ready to rest a bit.  It turns out that sewing takes a lot out of me!