Another snowflake ….

back to the fabric kind this time.

I got all my pieces fused and the cuts made so they are all ready for my Mom, Aunt and I to put the glue guns to work.

Here’s the fabric combinations I put together

20151229_7 - CopySo here’s one side of each group of fabrics.  There’s 10 different snowflakes there.

and then the opposite side is

20151229_4they match up in order left to right in the top and bottom photo. Some of the silver and gold glitzes on some fabrics aren’t showing up in the photos.

So for instance the first fabric in the top left (which is actually a pale gray with silvery glitzy swirls on it) will go with the first left fabric in the bottom photo – a blue and gray snowflake print with silver glitz in it.



I couldn’t resist – after I got done getting all these ready I took the one set that I wasn’t sure I’d really like when it was done and decided to glue it up and see how it looked.

20151229_10  I love it!. The only reason I thought it wouldn’t look as good was the yellow side was really bright yellow batik but because of the black print batik it’s fused to, it really dulled down the yellow.  But it still looks great.

I had to make myself “step away from the glue gun!”  – it’s one of those things where you want to see what the next combination will look like and then the next… but I’ve packed it all up.


I managed to get all the laundry caught up, I baked a pan of really horrific bars (I don’t know what happened to them, I’ve made them before, but I think wasn’t exactly paying attention and added too much butter).    But I did make a totally delicious crock pot of split pea, ham and carrot soup.  A couple containers are doing their final cool down in the frig before I stick them in the freezer and there’s a bowl full waiting for me to reheat for dinner.  Yum.


I also just updated the final tally for yarn knit for this year since I won’t get anything else finished before the end of the year – 22,597 yards knit this year.  Click on the button in the sidebar for Knitting the Stash and you can see all the projects finished.  AND (and this is a big AND) I did it this year – I knit more yarn that I purchased.  It’s a miracle — over 8,000 yards more than I purchased.   I’ve knit more than that but I’m only counting it when the project is complete.  So my two sweaters awaiting seaming – well maybe they’ll get me off to a good start next year.

It’s Many Snowflakes….

This time, not the fabric kind — tho here’s my stack of some of the fabrics I still need to fuse to each other in order to make more fabric snowflakes

20151229_5 No they are mostly not what you would think of as creamy or bluish snowflake colors — not many of those in the stash and I can’t wait to see some of the more dramatic colored ones.

What I’m talking about this morning is this kind of snowflakes


20151229_2  Winter finally arrived yesterday – with sleet, then inches of snow, and when I walked out of the office yesterday about 4:30 p.m. it was sleet – not the really rainy kind that builds up on things (thank goodness  because that could have really caused some damage) but the pelt you in the head and face stinging kind since it was pretty large and the winds were very strong.


All the way home it sounded like a sandblaster pelting the bus.  Luckily, many people are still on vacation or left work early so other than the semi that had slid into the middle of a road and got stuck and backed up traffic a huge distance, the rest of the ride proceeded at a slower, but steady pace with the bus only getting stuck once and having to back up to get a run at a little hill.    The timing was just right tho – the guys who clear the snow around the apartment building had just cleared the steps I need to take and were just finishing the sidewalk and in front of my door.   I haven’t heard yet how much snow we got- it was blowing so much that it was sort of drifting away from my door so I didn’t have as much right outside.

I sent some time last night doing the final bind off on my Olethea but I think I will probably be ripping it back and restarting.

I made it larger than the pattern so it would fit nicely around my shoulders.  I also added a few repeats from the beginning which with the weight of this yarn makes it feel like the neck edge is too large – should have left it about what it was.    When I added my extra increase row around the shoulder area, I increased in every section.  After I did that I thought it might be to much but decided to carry on.  It was too much.  I probably should have increased in every other section.

20151229_3The yarn is pretty, it’s comfy and warm to toss over my shoulders while sitting and knitting, but I think I’ll wear it more if I do a remake on it.    Good thing it’s a quick and easy knit.

Now to get to the rest of the things I need to do around here today.  I’m off work until after the New Year.  Hopefully the weather wont’ throw a wrench into some plans for visiting with family part of the time I’m off.

This morning – laundry has been going – last load nearly done.   I’ve started a big crock pot of split pea and ham soup with the ham bone from my Christmas dinner.  So I’ll have soup for the freezer and I think soup and corn muffins for dinner which sounds like comfort food to me.  I may even bake some cookies.     But time to fill my coffee cup and first on my agenda is to finish fusing all the fabrics for the snowflakes so I can clear all that mess away since I decided to work in the living room and then on to the rest of the cleaning.

It’s a Snowflake!!!

No – not the kind outside – we have a decided lack of those.  But as I mentioned in my last blog post, I was going to get fabrics fused to make 3D Fabric Snowflakes with my Mom and Aunt when I see them in a few days.   The video is great and goes thru every step.  So I plugged in a movie and started cutting all my HeatnBond Ultra into squares.     Several people have emailed me and commented on various posts where I talked about these saying  that they were planning to make some.  I’ll share my tips, which worked for me, to make things a bit easier and less messy. ;-0

In the video it says to cut your fabric squares 7″ and also cut your HNBU (Heat N Bond Ultra) 7″ also.  After you’ve added the HNBU to each of the fabric squares, you then fuse them to each other to get two-sided fabric squares.  The video warns that you should use a pressing cloth because some of the adhesive may ooze out a bit as it bonds to itself.

20151227_8These are the two fabrics I used for my first test run and I have two main tips after making it.

TIP #1:   I’m not fond of oozing stuff getting on my iron or ironing board so I changed the cutting sizes slightly to void that.  I cut the fabric squares 7″, I cut the HNBU 6-3/4″.    I centered the HNBU on each fabric square and fused.  I did put a pressing cloth under where I was pressing just in case but I never had anything adhere/ooze to my iron or the pressing cloth.

TIP#2:  Be sure after pressing the HNBU to each individual fabric square you let it cool completely before trying to adhere a pair of squares together.    If you don’t, even if it’s only slightly warm, it wants to stick together.  So after cooled, I carefully aligned the top edge of my fabrics wrong side together and then sort of rolled the top layer down so they lined up nicely and then pressed.

Since my HNBU was cut slightly smaller than the fabric squares I didn’t get any ooze and since you then trim the squares down it doesn’t matter than my HNBU square was smaller than the fabric one.  Per the video you trim the squares down to 6″ but I only trimmed mine down to 6.5″  I didn’t see the need to trim more off and  I happen to have a 6.5″ square ruler so that was perfect for centering on my fabric square and trimming away the edges.   The fabrics still felt a bit flimsy after pressing together so I wondered if they would really have the body needed to stand out nicely but after they cooled again, it was perfect.

Cutting the slits and then gluing it up — so easy and fun.  Here’s the finished snowflake which was made in no time.

20151227_4  At the moment it’s hanging on the inside of my front door against the blinds and it just looks so cool.

Too bad I have to work tomorrow – I could see spending a day working on these.

As it is, I think I have the HNBU pieces cut for 11 more snowflakes or stars or whatever you want to call them. So I need to get busy figuring out what fabrics to use for the others and get the fusing done.  Hmmm.. 11 stars times 12 squares per star for the first fusing — yep that’s a whole lot of pressing. 🙂  Some of them will be New Year’s gifts for co-workers.  I plan to make them in all kinds of color combinations – not just wintery blues and creams etc.  They’ll look more like psychedelic snowflakes or flowers I think.



Stashbusting 2015

I can’t believe it’s nearly the end of the year.   2015 will be over before we know it.

So my stash /quilting efforts for the year can be found on this page.

I used more than I purchased – that’s probably a good thing. 😉

Although in looking at the list of things finished – most of them were for Fabric Camp Loopy or Loopy Academy so I had to purchase fabric in order to participate.  I’m going to wait until the second semester fabric Academy requirements come out to see if I want to participate.  I have many quilts that need quilting, many projects I want to work on in progress, and a couple new ones I want to make so 2016 may just be the year I concentrate on projects already in my sewing room awaiting their turn.  There are always more plans rolling around in my brain than the time to do them. 😉

As for today – doing a few chores I’ve been putting off — like the washing of the socks.  I’ve gotten lazy over time and used to hand wash them all and hang them to dry.  Now they all go in the washer on a gentle cycle and now that I have my super duper new clothes dryer, the all go in there for a while on very low heat and then if not dry, hang on the rack for a while.   There’s one or two pairs that are gradually felting down a bit – those will be worn more like slippers.   It’s also made me look at the stash a bit differently — while some of those super soft yarns feel lovely as socks – the work horse yarns make  socks that stand up to the washer and dryer time and time again and come out looking just the same and are some of  my favorite socks.

….and the stockings were hung by the….. well mine are hanging by the Christmas tree at the moment. I should have put them all out for Santa to fill!

20151227_1Now the real question – does fabric you’ve ordered (or it could pertain to yarn too) that arrives after the last stashbusting / yarn busting post of the year count towards 2015 numbers or 2016.    Well, I think it doesn’t count at all!!  Yes I took advantage of a batik sale and also Miss Babbs gratitude sale so a few yarn and fabric goodies will be heading my way.  Oh let’s not forget TLE’s 40% off Christmas fabric sale either. LOL    Well you wouldn’t expect be to change my ways too much!

Remember the 3D fabric snowflake link I posted earlier – back on Dec. 12 – well I’m going to be visiting with my parents and Aunt soon so I’m going to put my Aunt and Mom to work – Dad too if he wants to wield a hot glue gun.    I’m going to get all the fabrics for a bunch of snowflakes fused and the cuts made and then we can put them together while visiting.  I told my Mom I was going to bring a little crafty project for us to do and she laughed but I told her it was geared toward the “crafting impaired”.  😉   The hardest part is going to be deciding what fabrics to use for each one.

Look out stash …. here I come……



Loopy Legend, Denise’s Gannets, Sweater finished

This afternoon, coffee cup and little bowl of chocolates at my side, I finally finished the side/underarm seams on my sweater.  The yarn was my Loopy Legends yarn dyed for me according to an inspiration photo – this bird is a Gannet.


I started the sweater August 30, 2015, — it’s a CustomFit pattern called Afterlight.  I wanted just a simple pull over that I could toss on with my jeans around the house.

This is the yarn based on that photo:


I didn’t want to bother with alternating hanks of yarn so decided it would be my “pooling” experiment.  I got several different types of pooling.  The widest swatch of pooling is on the back and if I were choosing placement, right across my backside would not be where I’d put it but it is what it is.  🙂

I need to bury a few ends and block it but here’s what it looks like right now.

20151225_9 I have jeans the same bluey/gray color as in the yarn but I was way to lazy to put those on for the photo.   Fingering weight yarn – tho it takes longer of course to knit a sweater in it – is a great weight sweater to wear.  The Lorna’s Laces Loopy Legends have a nice bit of drape – which helped create the bit of gathers at the bottom of the vee neck.  The vee neck is ribbed and then finished with a little rolled stockinette edging.

I updated my “Knit the Stash” page with this finished project.  Over 2,000 more yards of yarn added to the “knit” list.   I have converted those yarns knit/woven to date to miles – because I like seeing how many miles it converts to and so far I have FINISHED knitting/weaving nearly 12 and one half miles of yarn.


Merry Christmas

20151225_2If you look very closely at this blurry grainy photo (I had to zoom in and it was taken at night) you can see the white – yes those are a few snow flakes that landed on the ground when I looked about about midnight or 1 a.m. this morning to see if we had gotten anything from our 10% chance of snow.  I just look out now – 9:00 a.m. – and other than it finally “feeling” like winter — meaning we have normal temperatures in the upper 20s rather than the 40s we’ve been having – there’s no snow to be seen.

I worked until noon yesterday – part of a skeleton crew.   I spent most of yesterday afternoon and evening snuggled under quilt, watching old holiday movies, etc.   I also did a test run of my new dryer.  Yes my old one really was dead when they came to look at it on Monday and on Wednesday a new one was delivered.  I actually had to check out the instruction book because it has more bells and whistles than the older model did (which may have been the original one put in when the apartment was built) and nearly had a heart attack when the buzzer sounded to let me know it was nearly done drying the load.  My old dryer had no alarm, plus I had left the laundry room door open so it sounded super loud. LOL

I started on a second Olethea  in some Berroco Ultra Alpaca Chunky.  This one is for me – I’ve adjusted the size just a bit for my shoulders and actually added a second increase row in so I can wear it just over a top or over my winter coat if I want — at least I think so, will have to wait until it’s off the circular needles to truly tell.

I used this yarn – Blueberry Mix is the color

berrocoultralpaca blueberrymixIt looks dark blue from a distance but up close you see the lighter shades of blue and that lovely purple mixed in.


Here’s how far I’ve gotten.  I’ve nearly knit through three hanks of yarn and have two more waiting in reserve.


Now I think another cup of coffee is in order and then back to my cozy spot for a bit more knitting or to start seaming the side/underarm seams of a sweater I’d love it get finished off today – just those seams to do but in fingering weight yarn, they take a while.


The good..the bad..and I call him Stumpy…….

THE GOOD — the stashbusting report finally has some movement on it.  Finished up the deer/fish quilt so 11.5 yards used for that bring my tallies so far this year to:

12-20Not bad.  I’ve used over 50 yards more than I purchased.  Now if I could finish off those other nearly done projects before the end of the year but I don’t see that happening.

THE BAD — The Loopy Ewe put their Christmas fabrics 40% off so I had to purchase more of a couple I love before they are all gone so the numbers will change a little.  But I didn’t go too crazy.

THE GOOD — 20151220_11The tree is decorated!

THE BAD — one ornament bit the dust in the process.  Glass ornament do not bounce when they hit tile.

THE GOOD — I finished that deer/fish quilt binding and here it is

20151220_1I threw it and another lap quilt that is a gift — this one —

in the washer because I wanted to have them shrink up a bit to cuddly level.



THE VERY BAD AND REALLY ANNOYING — when I took the quilts out of the washer, I discovered my dryer is conked out!!!  It was working yesterday; today it makes a horrible noise when I hit the button and it doesn’t move.   Now I have two quilts hanging over rods with fans on them to try to dry them.   I’d much prefer a quick dry in the dryer  — why does this always happen on the weekends!

THE GOOD — my Hy-Vee grocery delivery experiment went very well.  I had scheduled delivery to be made between 9 and 10 a.m. this morning.  I got an email about 8:45 that my order was checked out and ready to go and gave me the total (since a couple items were by weight and could vary.)   9:30 a very pleasant gentleman brought my groceries.  They are in plastic bags but then put in larger tote boxes that he brings in, takes the bags out of and lined them up on my counter, made one more trip in with the rest and off he went.  I signed for the order and off he went.  This will be great when I want to stock up again on stuff I hate getting when I’m riding the bus.

THE BAD — I can’t decide what I want for dinner tonight since I now have many choices with all the stocking up I did.

and now here’s “Stumpy”

20151220_10I spied him below the bird feeder earlier today and no, it’s not just the angle of the photo — his tail is chopped off very short.     Wonder what happened to the rest of his bushy tail…



The tree and Hy-Vee experiment

The tree and Hy-Vee – an odd combination to be sure.     First the tree – finally got the tree out of it’s box and look, it’s upright and lit and branches fluffed in all its scrawniness but I love this skinny tree.


It’s looking a little bare tho but that will soon be remedied.

I started uwrapping ornaments but then got sidetracked for a while, which takes us to the Hy-Vee experiment part of this.

I really needed to run to the grocery store this weekend but when I looked at the temperature it was 20 degrees outside and really really windy so I really didn’t even want to know what it felt like out there with the wind chill.  No way did I want to go stand on the corner and wait for the bus to go grocery shopping.  Normally I don’t mind hopping the bus to the grocery store – I’ve gotten really good at getting in, grabbing what I need, and getting back to catch the next bus a half hour later.   It works most of the time unless I get a bad checker (which is why I usually use the self-check lines).  I save the stocking up shopping for when I’m out with a friend who I frequently go shopping with, since when taking the bus I can only carry so many bags.

But, this morning, the light bulb came on.  I remembered last time I was in the Hy-Vee store that I saw a sign that  they deliver your groceries.  Hmmm…  so went on line and checked it out and there are two Hy-Vees within 2 miles of me and they would both deliver to me.  I thought there might be a really high charge for delivery – no – so I set up my order and it is scheduled to be delivered to me tomorrow morning between 9 and 10 a.m.    I am excited to see how this works out.

There are some things I didn’t put on the order because I want to pick out my own of those items — like some fresh fruit and veggies — sometimes those bags of lettuce on the shelves do not look good enough to come home with me or like grapes – I have to see them to decide if they look good enough to buy.   I did add one or two fresh items tho to see how they do choosing for me – head lettuce and asparagus – they can’t go too wrong with that.  I did stock up on staples tho because the cupboards are fairly bare in addition to things like bleach, laundry detergent, and other cleaning stuff.

As much as I absolutely hate grocery shopping, I’m hoping this works out well. I wouldn’t have them deliver all the time but it’s nice to know that option is out there.  Now I just have to figure out how much to tip the delivery person since it’s sort of a pain to get from the parking lot to my door (up and down steps) but I’ll worry about that later.

Now back to unwrapping those ornaments and getting them on the tree.  I’ve got one box unwrapped but two or three more to go.


A fun knit

DSCN4833 A project off the needles this week.

This cowl collared shoulder warmer is a Laura Aylor pattern called Olethea.  It’s knit in bulky yarn on 10.5 needles so it’s pretty quick to knit up – I cast it on last Saturday night and had it off the needles by Wednesday night.  And the yarn – Malabrigo Mecha – is lovely soft, squishy and warm.  I love the bit of weight it gives this .  Very fun knit and very easy.   I’ve got yarn sitting here to make a second one since I think I will give this one away.

I updated the Stash Knitting page – the net stash used didn’t change since I had to add in this yarn which I bought and then add it to the knit up tally.  So far 19,695 yards knit into finished projects (more knit into projects I need to finish).

There will be a bit more yarn coming in since there should be some more chunky/bulky yarn coming – just a bit – which hopefully will arrive tomorrow since I’m now a day late for another Laura Aylor knit – her holiday MKAL called Just For You, Two which started today with the first clue.  One clue each day from today thru December.  Clues are broken down to be about an hour’s worth of knitting so I should be able to catch up quickly.

Now to think about pulling the Christmas tree out of the box and fluffing some branches.


Denise’s Pillowcases

This afternoon I started the set of pillowcases that are for a Christmas gift.

20151213_17They are now complete.

The photo is only showing a quarter of each pillowcase since they are folded.  I sort of streamlined how I make them so five straight seams and no topstitching and I’ve got a French- seamed pillowcase.

The quilt binding is added to my quilt and just needs to be hand stitched to the back which will be my project for the evenings this week.

I did pull out the Christmas storage box with the tree and all the decorations.  I put the pine and pinecone garland around my door and hung out a 3-D start light (not hooked up to electricity yet) and just as I untangled the string of icicle shaped lights and was ready to start stringing them up outside, it decided to start raining.  I should have gotten at it first thing this morning.  It was over 50 degrees so a very warm day but it’s rained all the rest of the day so the lights will wait till later in the week.  And one of these days I’ll get the tree set up.

By justquiltin Posted in sewing