Friday, May 31, 2013

Charm School 2

I am so glad that I did some homework before this class. It would have been too much to do in the scant three hours we had.

The nearly finished project is lovely and will make a great wall hanging or throw when it is done. The scraps are destined for a mini quilt project as a table mat for work. More on that later.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Sock Bag + : More information or more of the same

I am testing another bag design with the idea that it will be a perfect bag to take to knitting group. It will have room for your sock or small "vanilla" project as well as your wallet, phone, and keys, maybe even your iPad. Then all you need to do is carry that into whatever fun location your knitting group meets.

This is the test one that did turn out a little smaller than I planned. It measures 8 1/2 tall by 8 1/2 wide by 2 1/2 deep with 18 inch handles. I am working on a second one that will be larger.

I will be taking more pictures this weekend of the two finished and the items you might put in them. By mid -June they will be available at my Etsy site.

These are the design projects I have so much fun with because I know that knitters love bags like I do, and the cuter the better, I say.

I am considering designing one as a sling bag for hands free knitting. Let me know if you like the idea and want to see one of those.

Happy Crafting to All~!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

New Bag Design Tested

The first official holiday of the summer season is over and, for me, it was relaxing, fun, and productive. I can't expect more than that.

When I got home from my adventure, I wound yarn in preparation for Camp Loopy which begins on June 1, and I prepared some test fabric for a new bag design that I dreamed up.

Yesterday I put together this test bag and worked out the kinks. It is a usable bag however I will be reinventing it for a salable bag to put on my Etsy site. Here is the finished 1st version. It is made from charms of the Cuzco fabric line by Kate Spain, plus a piece called Tweedy Orange. The buttons for the closure are from my vast button collection.

I will start working on the second test bag this evening. I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend~!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

GO! Section - Weekend Adventure

I spent the weekend in the San Luis Valley with a view that looked like this. It was quiet and peaceful and full of fun knitting, friendly chats and seeing some interesting sights along with a cute little town that is off the beaten trail.

Relaxing and restful are the best words for it.

I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend~!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Camp Loopy - Goin' Hiking

I am so excited, it is nearly time for Camp Loopy to begin for a third year in a row.

I managed to get in on the first Camp Store and pick up some yummy yarn that I will be winding on Monday in anticipation of the June 1 start date. I will be knitting a Summer Wind cowl out of my first skein of FiberNymph Bounce in Scylla Beware. It is a color that I would not normally choose but that is part of the Camp fun for me.

The first session of camp will include hiking and I am one of the hiking team that is assigned to  Mt. Knitsalot, seems appropriate. And I will be taking along my Camp Loopy is a Hoot bag to keep my "survival" gear in, that includes needles, string, and a wineglass. Somebody else is bringing the fire makings and the smores, right? Anybody? Search and Rescue?

Looking forward to seeing all the Loopie Groupies on the "trails" this summer.

Happy Knitting~!

Note: The duck in the picture is a gift from my friend CatWithCats, it even has a handknit sweater, too cute!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

One Skein Tote on its Way to a New Home

Here is one of the totes I made and mailed to a Ravelry friend. I hope she enjoys it. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Fling Hat - Published!

Good Morning! I am happy to announce that my Fling Hat pattern has been published to Ravelry. The link for the pattern is at the top left of the column on the blog.

I had a lot of fun designing and testing this hat. I hope you will enjoy it as well.

Happy Knitting to All~!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Repurpose Bedding or the Pink Apron

I finished another apron like the blue one I mentioned previously.

It is from a repurposed sheet and pillowcase. I think it is too cute.

Again, the pattern is available for from Better Homes and Gardens craft section and is called the Cottage Inspired Apron. This could also be done out of new fabric if you desired.

Happy Projecting to All~!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Longstocking Muffler

Here is a great way to use some of your self-patterning or striping sock yarn that you may have lying around.

The idea came in the Churchmouse Yarns newsletter. The pattern is available for free from their site. I have not found this pattern linked to Ravelry yet so I can only mention it there and hope others find it.

I have two of them started, one is for a shop sample out of the Red Heart Stardust fingering, very sparkly. And the other is out of a new yarn I discovered at Hobby Lobby put out by Premier Yarns and called Wool Free Sock. The colorway I am using for this one is called Grand Canyon. I am making it for the shop owner because she is allergic to wool.

The premise of the pattern is simple, you knit 12 rows of K2P2 cuff and then just knit around the 64 stitches until you have a scarf long enough, then knit the last 12 rows in K2P2. The pattern calls for 830 yards to total a scarf about 7 feet long, however you can do it whatever length you want.

The picture here is from the Churchmouse site because neither of mine are long enough to take a good picture yet.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Recycling Bedding into Wearables

One of the first things I ran across when I was researching apron patterns was a book called Dozens of Ways to Repurpose Pillowcases by Suzanne J. E. Tourtillott. It has some very fun projects in it, including an apron that I want to make. It is called the Layer Cake Apron.

I went looking for the pillowcases at Goodwill however did not find the embroidered ones as shown. So I bought some fun top sheets and pillow cases for $1 a piece and brought them home for the future apron that I would create.

In the process, I found another pattern that worked beautifully for I have found. It is called the Cottage Inspired Apron and is free from the Better Homes and Gardens website (

I finished it this weekend and used some of the leftover materials from the lap quilt I made from a kit I purchased at Snappy Quilts in Denver. I think it will make a cute picnic quilt or to throw on the patio table this summer.

All in all, a productive weekend.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Charm School Homework

In preparation for my next Charm School class the end of the month, I have been cutting and piecing the center section of the project we will be working on.

The point of Charm School, in case you were wondering, is to learn new ways to use the charm packs that come in a large variety of fabric lines. These little 5-inch squares of fabric have a large range of possibilities and it is so much fun to see what others have imagined for them.

This project will eventually turn into a 42-inch table topper or wall hanging. The one pictured here is the shop sample, I plan to do two corners with the flowers applique.

The other picture are the pieces I have constructed to build the four blocks for the center. I am using the charm pack Stone Chips from Northcott with a corresponding Northcott fabric for the background pieces.

Happy projecting to all~!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Tube Socks - Take 2

Previously you saw that I knit a pair of fast tube socks during my mom's eye surgery, mostly to keep my hands busy and my patience high, and also for her to wear with her favorite Crocs.

I learned a few things to make these socks even faster to knit and better to wear. First thing is to go down a needle size for a firmer fabric.

Here is the next pair on the needles and she will be receiving them this weekend for Mother's Day, along with some things that will remain secret.

The yarn is Knit Picks Felici Sport in Macaroon and the pattern is on from the Better Homes and Garden Craft newsletter and is called: Two Knock-Out Socks You Can Knit.

I am practicing the nearly jogless stripe technique so I can teach it this week at Stitch of the Month class. It works well with self-striping yarn.

Needless to say, I ordered more of this yarn so there are more pairs come, get those Crocs ready~!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Roll Call: Beginning Quilter - Here AKA Sewing, The Other Passion

I believe that I mentioned that I started taking a beginning quilting class in January. It is a three part class designed to be done one a month however with my knitting classes scheduled the same dates and the knitting retreat I was only able to get one done that first quarter of the year.

With some help of the class instructor (thanks, Jeanie) I was able to schedule the rest for May and June, so I will have all the basics come summer. Last weekend I attended part two which features borders and bindings.

First thing I can say is, MATH. I am always surprised when math is a factor in crafting, who would know. At least this math has a purpose and a "real" answer, usually a number, to date, not a "letter". And the formulas do not have to be memorized, I have cheat sheets.

We started with bindings which I had been doing with decent results but learned some key points that make so much more sense. From now on my bindings will look much better. One key point, there is a reason to leave at least 3/4 of an inch of batting and backing around the top before you quilt the top and bind. Another is the use of sewing at a 45-degree angled at the end of each edge seam versus leaving it loose at the quarter inch mark. It made a much better mitered corner.

We also learned about borders, who knew there were so many choices. I think that the basics are the launching point to learn more about each part of the techniques as I need to know more. It was a lot to take in during a six hour class.
And I got to make my first Flying Geese and the Delectable Mountain (Jeanie's preferred method). I have pictured them here.

Now I am ready for the last class, have to go do my homework for machine quilting. Soon I will have more things to show for this. I hope all are pursuing their passions fully~!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

The Thank You Hat

The knitting retreat was super fun and there are supporting cast to thank for that. First, the weather gods, we had perfect mountain weather for our weekend. It was cool and warm, only slightly breezy and the sun shone brightly on the white mountains. Truly of gift of spring in the Rockies.

Then our favorite knitting shop outdid themselves with service, beautiful yarn to shop for and a great, new classroom space that made learning with Mikki fun. We gifted her with a one skein tote bag (as shown in a previous post) complete with stitch markers designated for the retreat.

And, I have to commend the owners of the Vista Court Cabins for all their hard work over the last year to renovate their spaces. As usual the cabins were warm and cozy. The guesthouse is a great place to meet for meals and knitting/game nights. The redo of the back bedroom with plans for an extra bathroom was a welcome surprise. We remember the first year when that bedroom was still mostly a sun porch, sort of like camping out (still, we had fun).

When I got home I knit up a skein of Malabrigo Worsted in a lovely green color for the owner of the cabins and have mailed it to her as a special thank you. I hope she likes it~!

And, last but never least, the knitters themselves. They are an awesome bunch of women who, each year, follow me out to the mountains to see what I have concocted for them this time. I have lots of fun in the planning stage from the dinner ideas to the class choice to the surprise gifts. I look forward to our fourth year and am already in the planning stages. Thank you all for making this a very fun endeavor for me~!

Friday, May 3, 2013

New Yarn Discovery

I discovered a new yarn. It is by Premier Yarns, in sock aka fingering weight, and is wool free.

I bought it in the Vegas colorway. It takes two skeins to make a pair of adult size socks. I think these will be so fun when cold weather comes around again, so bright and cheerful.

So, for all of you who say you cannot wear wool, this is worth looking into.

Happy knitting~!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Big Reveal: Part Two

The other part of the secret sewing was to create what I have dubbed the One Skein project bags. 

These are made from a jelly roll from Moda called Ticklish by My Sister and Me. I used matching liners from the same fabric line to finish them. I added ribbon hangers near the handles to add a binder ring that holds stitch markers for easy access.

I am using one for a hat project, they also will hold a sock project nicely. These were also gifts to my knitters that attended the retreat.

I am enjoying my sewing very much as you can see.