snow days continued

so what else do you do while off of school/work for 3 snow days? you reorganize the craft corner. the bag full of goodies goes out to a new friend on ravelry. the basket is full of buttons that i got for christmas from the in-laws. The box is full of my current knitting goodies and lots of green yarn. on the other box, joinging my snowman, cowboy, horse, and moose statues is a linen and muslin basket that i had stitched for christmas. i made 3 others to give to relatives as presents. the linen is from lotta jansdotter. i bought a bag of scraps for $24. well worth it. the scraps were gorgeous and the material worked great with the basket pattern. sorry though, i can't remember the website i got the tutorial from for the basket. the basket holds my small assortment of threads and a couple of needles that i use constantly. all of this is next to my favorite huge green reading chair. i love that chair! where do you all craft? got a special cubby just for crafting?
my 5 year old and i also spent the time making cookies. which of course barely lasted a couple of days in our cookie monster eating house! we love oatmeal chocolate chip and peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. ok. we love chocolate chips, if you can't tell!
i know it is negative whatever outside and he isn't wearing a shirt. but in all honesty, be glad he is wearing pants! my two boys love to run around in their undies and luckily that is possible because we have the best wood burning stove know to man! it keeps us really toasty.

and the last thing you do on snow days is load everyone up with tons of clothes and send them out into the snow for a little 4 wheeler sledding because we have no hills to sled down.


snow days

what do you do when you are out of school/work for 3 days due to snow? you knit like a mad person on your Mrs. Darcy cardigan. all of this effort takes a toll on my finger because of the wonky way i hold my yarn while knitting. observe the weird line on my finger, that began to hurt, get dry and crack. so i had an idea. use some fabric left overs to make a wide ring for the yarn to pass over instead of rubbing the crap out of my finger.

so i cut two fabric strips a little wider than my tape measure and about 5.5 cm long. iron on some fleece iron stuff that i had laying around the house to one of the pieces of fabric.

get out the dark brown thread. sew up the long sides of the material with right sides facing each other. turn inside out and then stitch the ends closed using mattress stitch.

violá. a reversible ring the sits just perfectly for the yarn to pass over.

no more line on my finger!
P.S. sorry for the crappy photos. i swear i thought they looked better when i took them!


bella's hat

well i have already made bella's mittens. these were mittens inspired by the mittens worn by the actress that played Bella in the movie Twilight. so i decided that i needed a hat to match the gloves. i loved preita sayler's hawk hat. so i thought that i would use the basic pattern of that hat and just change the cable. i worked beautifully. this pattern was really interesting because all of the decreases for the crown take place beside the cable in the stockinette portion of the hat, leaving the lovely mohawk like middle.

the final portion of the hat called for kitchenering the top of the hat closed. this happen to fall on the exact row that i needed to twist my cable. so to keep the bumpiness of the middle section, i rearranged the stitches for the cabling, placed them back on the needle and then proceed to kitchener these stitches. i love it. it worked out great. and it fits great. and the alpaca is oh so warm!

project: bella's hat (adaption of Hawk hat by Preita Sayler)
started / completed : jan. 22 -24, 2009
needle : US 8 (magic loop)
yarn: Alpaca with a Twist Highlander (color: black thorn)
one added note : this yarn is amazing. it feels great while you are knitting. it has magnificent colors and plenty of yardage. i still had about 1/4 of the skein leftover and the bella mittens used exactly one skein. love that too. so if you get a chance to purchase any of this yarn. do so! buy a load! you will love it!


fixing the tudoras

towards the end of 2007 i made two tudoras from this lovely pattern by cheryl marling. they were supposed to be knit from heavy yarn on smaller needles. i used two strands of sock yarn held together with size 4 needles, which i thought made a firmer fabric. it didn't. the neckwarmer was all floppy after just a couple of wearings. so i planned to add some material to it. i finally did just that this past weekend. with the above materials in hand i set to work. i traced out the shape on some muslin and then i traced the shape on a piece of material that match. next, i traced two more of the shapes on some fusible fleece. then i cut the fleece about a 1/4 inch smaller than the tracing. i fused it to the material and muslin per intructions with the fleece.

then with some heavy duty thread i hand stitched the material to one tudora and the muslin to the other. found some buttons and put them in place. now i thought that i would keep the pretty material one for me and give the other away next christmas for a gift.

but really, i like this plain one so much better. plus the button is funny. it is from an old shower curtain but it is a cool wood button.

they fit wonderfully. the handstitching adds a nice touch. you can leave it open a bit to see the material or wear it so that the material is hidden away.

they are extremely warm (i tested run one today in 6 degree temperatures). ok so one christmas gift down, many more to come. i hope!


fat quarters galore

i like to shop for fat quarters. i have not gotten up the nerve to hand stitch anything large than a bag yet. so fat quarters work beautifully and are cheap. the above fabric is some that i picked up at joann fabrics and i hope to make into a zakka pouch sometime. all i need is the right yarn color to go with it. white is out of the question due to the dirtiness factor. so it may take some looking to find that perfect color cotton yarn.
these are some other beautiful fat quarters that i picked up on my last visit to joann's, the only fabric store near my town. i hope to make some bags and pouches for christmas presents for next year. wishful thinking, jumping the gun like that, but i can always hope.

and lastly, these are some scraps from last christmas's projects. i hope to one day, when i have a sewing machine and am feeling ambicious, to make a quilt of some kind out of these. so one day in the future you may see these again as something much more beautiful. also some of the above fabric may look familiar to the observant. they are leftovers from making the japanese knot bag from a previous post. i hope to use them to make a matching camera bag someday.


FOs and a travesty

project: Bella's mittens by Maurielle Henault

started / completed: Jan. 19 - 21, 2009

needles: US 8 (magic loop)

yarn: Alpaca with a Twist highlander (color: black thorn)

i love these gloves. they are so warm and squishy and they were quick. i love the color too. evidently these are fashioned after the gloves worn by the actress in the Twilight movie. i haven't seen the movie, but when i do i will be looking for these! i have read the books though, and i loved them too. they were completely addictive; couldn't put them down and when they ended i wanted more. yeah i am such a book groupie. next up: a hat to match. i am going to make the hawk hat by preita and adjust the cable to the cable in these gloves.

one more look! Fab!

now look at this mess. this is a sock that i made my mother about 2 years ago, right after i learned to make socks. it is made with knit picks essential sock but obviously they have worn out. she wants me to darn these. i have never darned socks before. i am hoping to find a nice tutorial or explanation some where on the net to do this. i do have a little bit of this yarn left, so i can at least fill in back in with the same color. i am sure it won't match exactly anymore but it will be close. i really don't think that i can make the design in it again, but lucky mommy doesn't care. she just wants her socks back. i think mom will be getting more handknit socks for her birthday this year, which is cool. i haven't made any socks in a while.

as a parting shot, some elk that my husband saw on his hunting trip to new mexico this last weekend. no he didn't shoot any (they are out of season). he was there predator hunting, but had no luck.


p r o j e c t s

Project: Japanese Knot bag (tutorial by Show your workings)
material: fat quarters from Joann Fabrics
thread: some heavy duty stuff lying around the house
This bag is the first one that i made. it is all hand stitched, due to the fact that i don't own a sewing machine. it didn't take very long and i made 6 all together for christmas presents and kept this one for myself. i just love it and adore the pattern. the pattern is also reversible.

here is the inside of the bag, at least, that's how i keep it most of the time. i just think that it is such a versatile design and uses fat quarters. i love any project that can be done with fat quarters!

one last shot, just because.

Project: Shalom by Meghan McFarlane
started/completed: jan. 12 -17, 2009
needles: US 10 1/2
yarn: Nashua Handknits Creative Focus Chunky
skeins: 4.6 (500yds)
mods: added some ribbing to make short sleeves
3 buttons instead of one
no waist shaping

absolutely love this sweater. the design is great, the fit flattering, the yarn soft and warm, and the buttons were part of my christmas present! my mother-in-law bought me about 100 buttons as a christmas present! she thought that i would love them, her friends thought that she was crazy and i absolutely adore them!
more knitting... i am currently working on making Bella's mittens. i lost my peekaboo mittens sometime this winter. and after having temperatures in the negative numbers for over a week, i decided i needed some gloves with fingers. i saw these on ravelry and knew that i had to have them. also plan on making a new hat to go with them.


one more time

sorry if i am boring anyone. just trying out how this works one more time today. more interesting stuff to come, i hope.

this is the jacques cousteau hat made from paton's classic merino wool. this hat was a bore to make but my boys absolutely love it, which makes it well worth the boredom.

this is just me expertimenting. this is a bandana made from natalie chanin's book Alabama Stitch book. i love this book. i have made several headbands, one bandana and am currently working on the skirt from this book. if you don't have it, you must get this book.

in the beginning

this is my very first blog post ever. write it down me. 20 jan 2009. i have wanted a blog forever and now i can do it. even if no one reads this it will be cool to me.
i hope to write about and show pictures of my crafts, mainly knitting and sewing. ok. wish me luck as the blog progresses.