Sunday, July 31, 2011

Knitting At Night...

...which was the original intent of this blog, after all. I haven't been doing too much of quilting or knitting lately, mostly just wiped out by this stupendously hot weather, and general lethargy. I hate summer for a reason. I have no energy at all, even though I'm in central air conditioning most of the time.

Anyhoo, I'm sure that all two of you who read this blog saw the picture of the Duchess of Cambridge taken right after her marriage - off on a shopping trip to the local supermarket. While that may be amazing enough, that a Royal would go off food shopping, what was really amazing was that gorgeous green ruffled shawl she tossed over her jeans and white t-shirt. Like 98 million other women, I instantly coveted that shawl. And where else to go to look for a pattern but Ravelry? I found two that I liked. One is very true to what she was wearing, done in 2300 yards (!) of lace yarn on size 1 needles; the other is a similar one done in a worsted weight on size 8 needles. Well, wanting a bit of instant gratification (and also because I don't have any suitable lace yarn in my stash), I started on the one done in worsted. Just so happens I had 4 skeins of Patons wool in my stash.

Not in the color I wanted, of course, but a denim-y heathered blue, which will at least go with the jeans that I spend 90% of my life in. Of course, now all I have to do is lose some weight, get some decent hair, and drop 30 years from my life and then I can look like Kate!

I've been looking for lace weight yarn; I forgot how expensive it is! Normally, spending $23 for a skein of yarn for a shawl will not make my hair stand on end - it's a pretty reasonable price for a shawl. However, since I need 2300 yards, that translates to 4 or 5 skeins, which is going to break the bank for me, unless I want to give up eating for a while. And come to think of it, I DID want to lose some weight...

The first picture is the closest in color to the actual yarn I'm using. Unfortunately, my camera chose to focus on the skein, and not the project, which I didn't notice til I uploaded. I'm feeling way too lazy to set this up again, so the second shot was taken at the same time, just without flash. It's a bit more green than the yarn, but it shows off the detail a little better.

I'm still qilting. Still working on green pyramids, and I have started pinning the last few rows of my 1930's sunshine quilt together. Ireally want to be done with that quilt. I just need to sew on the last few rows, and then applique the vines. I'm doing the flowers for the vines as yo-yo's, so they will be attached after this quilt is quilted. This quilt is pretty big, so I think I'm sending it out to a quilter. I have a lot of other tops in various stages of piecing, so I'd rather work on them.

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Ice Cream Cake

My birthday earlier this week, Chris's in a few days.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Union Star

I'm starting to see little green pyramids in my sleep, so I figured it was time for a break. Besides, as usual, there was another pattern and more fabric clamoring for my attention. So, here to join the WIP pile, which is growing in leaps and bounds, is Union Star:
The original pattern was done in all Civil War reproduction fabrics. I have some, and bought more, but I'm also adding in other fabrics from my stash that I think will work. I'm trying to stick to shades of brown ranging from very light tan to deep brown, and rusts from pale pink to deep burgundy, with golds thrown in. This is my birthday month, so I get a day where I get 20% off fabric and books at my not so local quilt shop plus they just had their 20% off summer clearance, so I did quite a bit of stash enhancement.

Monday, July 18, 2011


I was running out of a good variety of blues and greens for the Thousand Pyramids quilt, so I spent Saturday cutting out more. As I've said before, I don't use templates any more. It's so easy to cut out strips, and then cut the strips to size using a triangle ruler. Maybe too easy. After a few hours of cutting, this is what I wound up with:
Over 600 new pyramids! Oops! So I guess I have enough for another quilt now.

Labels: , , , , ,

Friday, July 15, 2011

This Is A First...

...because I'm only halfway done with my Thousand Pyramids quilt, and I already have the backing and the binding chosen and bought. It usually takes me a while to pick a backing, especially since I have fallen out of love with plain white, which used to be my backing of choice. I still have a queen-sized log cabin quilt that I finished well over 10 years ago sitting in my closet waiting for me to chose backing and even worse, I still have to figure out how I'm going to quilt it. I think I'll wind up sending it out, because the thought of having to hand quilt all that fabric acreage gives me the chills.

Anywhoo, here is the binding and the backing, along with the photography and quilting supervisor. He certainly is a busy boy these days. I chose a light green batik on the right of the picture, for the backing; and a dark green batik, on the left, for the binding. My not-so-local quilt store was having a summer sale, with 20% off selected fabrics, and 30% if you finished the bolt. There was a bit more of the light green than I wanted, but it didn't cost too much extra (read: $3.00!) to buy it, finish the bolt, and get a 30% discount!

Labels: , , , ,

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Kona Cottons and Photography Assistants

Trying to set up a picture of some Kona Cotton bundles that were recent acquisitions, I used a white piece of fabric as a backdrop, and a couple of boxes to hold it up. Unfortunately, the photography assistant knew one of those boxes was his favorite sleeping box, and objected to the set up!

I recently invested in several of Robert Kaufman's Kona Cotton bundles. These are wonderful! I love the colors, and one of the sellers (I think Simply Solids on Etsy) labels each fabric with the name for easy reference. I love that! It's nice to look through the bundles and decide with color I like best for my project, and have a name to it, instead of trying to match it on my computer monitor.
Left to right: Purple People Eater, Spicy, and Pretty in Pink.
My Blue Heaven, Denim.

Well, there are a few more to post, but apparently, Blogger will not let me upload any more shots. Does anyone else think that Blogger has really gone downhill since Google took it over? Not only that, it's next to impossible to get an answer from anyone at Google when you have a problem. You have to post to one of their help forums, and hope you get a decent answer. I posted there a couple of months ago, and all I got were ridiculous posts, most saying, yeah, I have that problem, too" or "check your cookies". I finally got my techie son to help me fix it.

Labels: , , , , ,

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Error 503

What a frigging pain in the ass blogger is.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

More Thunder

Well, if it's July in these parts, there must be thunder. And there is. Lots of it, and the biblical, here-comes-the-Ark rainfall that goes along with it. After a frustrating night at work, and not being able to go right home and fall face-first into bed (my son is out of town, and has a diabetic cat. Said cat needed insulin and food; lives 8 miles from my house.), I was ready for some retail therapy when I woke up this afternoon. Jo-Ann fabrics has just remodeled their store, and sent out some nifty coupons that are only good for three days. I was itching to use these things today, and make a pit stop later at my favorite LQS. Grabbed purse, car keys and walked out of the house, only to hear thunder booming away, and watch a downpour begin as I stood on the porch. Grrr. In the last few weeks I've slogged through too many thunderstorms to be interested in heading out into another one. We had the walking across the parking lot into the movie theater storm a few weeks ago, which left both my son and me soaking wet, which was delightful, considering that the theater was chilled to temperatures approximating Antarctica in midwinter, so I spent two hours freezing my butt off. Oh, and then there was the storm that rolled through as I was checking out of ShopRite, which made me wait 15 minutes inside the store, anxiously wondering how long my frozen food would actually stay frozen.

So, the upshot of this is: no retail therapy today.

I worked the entire holiday weekend, so no fireworks for me. However, Mother Nature was thoughtful enough to provide an amazing July 4th sunset:

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Tokyo Subway Quilt

I first saw this quilt over at Oh, Franssonand loved it. So, I have 791 1 1/2 inch squares cut out for the subway lines. I haven't started it yet, because I'm still deciding on a background color. The original was done with a white background, but i saw a couple done with Kona Ash, and I think I like that better. Also, since I cut these out, I've improved my stash of pinks and grays, which were sorely lacking in my fabric collection. I might cut a few new squares from the new fabric just to have a bit more variety! My personal favorites so far are the cross-eyed chickens, and Alexander Henry's Baddanna print in black.

|As always, click on the picture for a larger version.

Labels: , ,

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Sweet Pea

A squick return to the original intent of this blog, knitting. The Susan B. Anderson "Sweet Pea" baby hat, for a coworker. Pattern available on Ravelry.

Labels: , , , ,

Friday, July 01, 2011

I Lied...

I said I would not post for the next few days. Well, here I am. It's a short post, but a post nonetheless.

I got busy last night with my new toy and trimmed the heck out of those Flying Geese that were all wonky. I wasn't sure when I originally cut them out, but I can see on the back of them that they were traced from templates. And none too accurately, I might add. I trimmed everything up; some were not salvageable for use, so they went back into the scrap pile to be reincarnated as something else. Once I was finished trimming, I decided to sew together a few blocks so I could see how they fit:
Looks 100% better. I could have sewed them all together last night, but I don't have much of a variety yet. I need to look through my stash for more fabrics for this quilt. I'm trying to stick with blacks, grays, gold, orange, dark blue, dark greens and brown for the birds, and beigey fabrics for the sky. I have a lot of stuff from the 70's and beyond that I'd like to use up, so I'll see what fits in this top. Each block is only three pieces, which makes them work up really fast! And, this new tool makes cutting them easier, too. I found some strips that I had traced the triangle template onto, but I flipped it over, and used the tool and my rotary cutter to accurately cut more large and small triangles. I don't think I'll ever go back to pencil, template and scissors to cut quilt pieces again!

Labels: , , ,