KAL preparation

IMG_5774_Rhapsody_Kal_mediumThe Rhapody KAL starts tomorrow (final reminder) 🙂  and since I am being the laziest person in the world today (I did tidy the kitchen a bit and toss a load in the washer but otherwise have been puttering and ignoring the chaos all around me that I should be tidying up) I pulled out my yarn for this and got it wound.

This was my original choice but then as I knit the first row I realized my multicolored yarn for the stripes has too much of my background color in it.

20170430_6It would still work fairly well – the test knit I did of this pattern I had the same thing – small spots of blue and blue/green in my striping yarn blended into my background so the stripes would sort of disappear for a few stitches.

Here’s the first one I made.

 

So I knew I had some MadTosh in the Antler colorway (off white) in the stash.  So now I will have a light background and I think it will be a great spring/summer shawl.

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On the Needles ——– April 29, 2017

Oh goodness, as I type the date I think – end of April already????  Seems like it was just January (though I do not want snow) but we do finally have blooming tulips and the tulip trees, and other flowering crab type trees are starting to bloom so it’s a pretty Spring finally (except for the last three rainy days and the next several to come – but it could be worse – it could be snow). 🙂

Now back to my original train of thought – what’s on the needles.   I might have cast on a new project earlier this week – yes going a bit crazy with new projects since I have a couple KALs (knit a-longs) coming up in May. poncho

But I had seen a pattern for a child’s poncho — which is not your mother’s poncho — you know the ones many of us wore when we  were in our teens – basically the big square with a hole in it so you had corner points hanging down in front and back and at arms – yep sort of like that, and I thought I was totally cool when wearing it too.  Don’t get me wrong – this style of poncho has made a comeback as many styles do – but there are so many new shapes and sizes and styles of ponchos.   Back to the child’s version – I saw the Ea’s Poncho on Ravelry and it’s so adorable.  To me this style is sort of a hybrid poncho – easy to toss on over something, buttons down the sides by comfy and cozy to wear and doesn’t interfere with your movement or your arms getting tangled in fringe. 🙂     I think my great niece may need one of those at some point in the future.

20170429_5.JPGBut then I saw the designer was working on an adult version which was released last fall.  I love this.  It’s got a lovely lace panel up the center front and back and it goes across the shoulders of the raglan-type sleeve openings.  I have a store bought version of similar style with a cowl neck that I love so I think I really need one of these for myself but first I have to figure out the sizing.  That’s the one thing that’s sort of lacking.  It comes in S, M, L XL but doesn’t give any inch or cm measurements as to what those correlate to.   I’m sure I need to add more stitches to make one for myself as well as added length but need a base size to figure that off of.  So I decided to make one as a gift for someone else (keeping my fingers crossed it will fit).  It’s a forgiving style – loose and comfy – but still I’d like it too look great of course.  So I stole some yarn I had in the stash for another project that I decided I might not like for various reasons and repurposed part of that yarn for this project.

20170427_1I’ve got plenty of this Kenzie yarn and it’s a great color – sort of heathered looking – and I had previously knit a swatch which instantly made me ditch the other project I had planned for it and decide I really needed a sweater out of it.  So I’ll get a second color to go with the gray I have that I’m planning a sweater out of and use this color for the poncho….. and it’s looking great.

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Since it had stopped raining for a bit this morning, I quickly spread this out on two needles (from having it all scrunched up on one) so I could see how big it was getting and how it looked so far.  I love the color, the yarn, and the pattern which is quite easy so far.  I just might have picked the correct size for the gift recipient but I won’t be able to tell until I get to where the “sleeve” edges get gound off.

And I love the lace stitch – also very easy since only one out of four rows is patterned.  And it will be even prettier opened up when blocked.   You can see sort of little whispy hairs on the yarn — no I have not gotten a cat (((shudder)))) –   it’s the blend of yarn which 20170429_4

consists of New Zealand Merino, Nylon and a touch of Angora, Alpaca and Silk.  It feels so lovely.  (and cat lovers – no need to leave comments regarding my dislike of cats – I’m allergic and just looking at cat photos makes me itch!).20170325_13

I also need to get this yarn caked this weekend since the KAL starts May 1 and runs through the end of July – three months to make this very easy, relaxing knit.

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and then there’s the Joji Mystery Wrap KAL that starts later in May that I showed you the yarn I’m using in the last blog post.  Yep – I’ll be busy since I’m also still working on my second quarterly KAL project for the ESK Yarnathon.

But enough dreaming about knitting projects – I’ve got some cleaning to do, laundry, and maybe some baking before I head into the sewing room to layer a quilt for quilting. So I’d better get busy.

MKAL – Joji Mystery Wrap

Because you can never have too many knitting projects on the needles (and I did finish and get several off the needles in the last two weeks), I decided to participate in the Joji Mystery Wrap which starts May 12.   Info can be found at the link.   I like doing mysteries if it’s someone whose designs I normally like (whether mystery quilts or mystery knit-alongs).   And I do love many of Joji’s designs and since this one is a rectangular wrap – it’s all good (since there are certain types of other shawl shapes I don’t care for).  Of course the hardest part is picking out colors but she gives a guide as to light, dark, medium, accent color etc. so in the end I picked a multicolor I liked and worked my way through the other colors from there.

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There are what I’ve chosen – tho I  need to see the multicolor in real life this is just a website image – to make sure the rest of the colors are keepers but I think they are.

Anyone else doing this MKAL?

My other finish – Helical Stripes

Oops posted the prior blog post too soon because I forgot to add my final finish for the weekend – Helical Stripes – yep, another Mary-Ann Lammers design.

The speckled yarn was my Camp Loopy 2016 bonus yarn for completing all my camp projects and the long color change yarn is Mini Mochi – one of my favorite color change yarns.   Tutti fruitti, frozen sherbet, salt water taffy, and angel food confetti cake all come to mind when I look at these yarns.  Now to add all these finished projects to my page in the sidebar where they are all located and tally up my used yarn totals.

Blocked and ready to wear

Blocked and I love how it turned out.  It’s the KISS Shawl Joyful  (KISS being “Keep It So Simple”) and it truly is.   Since I didn’t find an ombre yarn I liked, like that used in the original design, I played with colored stripes and added just two thin stripes that weren’t in the original pattern, and used all the colors of yarn I had chosen in the top patterned section rather than just one color. Easy slip stitch pattern at the top means you do not have to carry colors along like in stranded knitting.  And I love the yarn – Queensland Collection Kathmandu Aran 100 – and it comes in such lovely tweedy looking colors.  It makes for such a soft shawl after blocking – that drapes so nicely, and although warm and snuggly, will be very light weight to wear.

Another fantastic pattern by Mary-Ann Lammers.  You can check out her other patterns on Ravelry at the link.  As you may have guessed, I am a huge fan of her patterns having shared many of them I’ve made here.  She’s celebrating her one-year anniversary of designing so check out her KISS Shawl Regatta which she is sharing for free with a coupon code at the moment in honor of her anniversary.  And be sure to check out the KISS Shawl Rhapsody -the KAL starts May 1 in her Ravelry group.  I love my first Rhapsody

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and can’t wait to get started on my second one in these yarns

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So three projects off the needles this weekend and one other project blocked – I think it must be time to cast on something new! 🙂

Sunset Ridge

UPDATED 4/30/17 — Rochelle’s comment was lucky #32, selected by the RNG.  Congratulations! I have emailed you privately.

If you are an avid reader of the blog, you will remember I previously posted about receiving the advance copies of McCall’s Quick Quilts June/July issue with my quilt design, Sunset Ridge, in it – and also the opportunity to win a free copy of the issue.  The links above will let you preview the issue and see what other lovely designs are in it and give you more info if you want to purchase a digital copy.

After posting that, McCall’s Quick Quilts emailed me some photos of the quilt (much better than the ones I took of the magazine pages that showed it of course) and here they are.

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So I’m postponing the drawing for the free issue of the magazine until next Sunday to do all drawings at once.  Leave a comment on this blog post if you would like to be included in the drawing to receive a free copy (updated 4/30/17 – drawing completed).   There will be winners picked from both the prior blog post and from this one.  If you already entered the prior drawing, that’s fine; you can enter this one too to double your chances to win. 🙂

Subscription issues began shipping April 18, 2017. By May 2, 2017 the issue will be available on newsstands, as well as in print or digital download format at QuiltandSewShop.com at the following link: http://www.quiltandsewshop.com/category/quick-quilts

I’ve got some fabric set aside for this project to make my own version – a quick and simple beginner friendly project.

Knitting progress… continued

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My socks are finished.   The pattern is Ringwood Socks.  It’s a great pattern, and very simple to knit/remember,  for variegated yarn although this yarn, Mrs. Crosby Train Case, the color is Toucan, knits up more as what I would call a speckly yarn since it has just little bits of color and not longer lengths like what I think of as a truly variegated yarn.

Bit the colors in it are so lovely.

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My blocking shawl is nearly dry and now to finish off the edging on my cowl.  Lots of projects going into the “finished” pile this weekend.

Knitting Progress – 4-22-17

I thought I might actually get three projects off the needles last night but…. I fell asleep much earlier than normal.  Dang – that cut into my knitting time.

But… I did finish this cute little baby sweater.

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The sweater is for a babe whose parents are bee keepers and since I’m doing the ESK yarnathon and am in the Gumblebees (which look like bees) group, one of the badges to earn is to make something with your team mascot on it.  So, on the back side of the sweater, a bee has landed

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This was my first try at duplicate stitch, and it could use a bit of work but it turned out okay.

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I also finally got my KISS Shawl Joyful soaked and it is not on the blocking mats.

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Definitely a blurry shot – the sun coming in at the opposite side of the room was messing with the camera.  The photo is a bit of an optical illusion from the angle where I took the photo but I did block this one a bit longer than the original pattern size since this yarn really got stretchy when it was wet.

This is pinned out to block at 23″ x 82″ which should be a very nice size to wrap up in next fall/winter.

 

I love the way the different colors /stitch pattern looks along the top edge.

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The other two projects that are oh so close to being completed are my current socks on the needles (another ESK badge project) — I only have about 10 rows left before I can kitchner up the toe, and my Helical Stripes cowl – which has been a fun knit – I only have the top border to do and bind off  – so another dozen rows I think.

 

Sadly, I noticed when washing all the hand knit socks last weekend, that my favorite pair

socksand not the first, but a pair I made not long after my first pair ever, is starting to wear thin on the ball of the foot.  But they have been worn so much and have stood up more years than I would have expected – and way longer than any store bought sock would have.  After wearing hand knit socks, I could never go back to the uncomfortable store bought ones – just last month I finally cleaned out the drawer and got rid of all the non-hand knit socks that I haven’t worn in years.  The fact that I never wear shoes in the house so I’m walking across carpet probably didn’t help with the “wearing out” factor.  But in the meantime, they’ve got a few more wears left in them.

Happy Easter

UPDATED 4/30/17 — Graylagran (a/k/a Denise – what a lovely first name she has! 🙂  comment (was lucky #6, selected by the RNG.  Congratulations! I have emailed you privately.

20170416_12  I realized yesterday I had not dyed any Easter eggs – well that’s just wrong but I didn’t have any of the Paas dye stuff so after looking on line to see how to use food coloring to dye eggs, mixed my own dye and got this lovely salmon color.

And I opened my door this morning to….

SPRING!   It was unseasonably warm (and rainy) the last couple days and we went from no leaves on the trees and a few green weeds growing on the hillside outside my door to this.

That bright springy green on little shrubs and the trees all sprouted tiny leaves.  It looks like Spring has finally arrived here.

And there was an exciting arrival yesterday – the first of my designs in print this year – the postman brought the advance copies of the June/July issue of McCall’s Quick Quilts.  It’s always exciting to see it actually in print and part of that is because I never really know what it will look like.  I don’t actually sew up the version of the quilt that appears in the magazines and the magazine chooses the fabrics/colors that it will be used by one of their sewists to make it.  And, since I hate naming quilts, if I do have a name I have given one of the designs, I always tell them they can feel free to give it a new name. So  here is Sunset Ridge.

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I have extra copies to give away and will be choosing winner  – winner chosen  see update above next Sunday on April 30.  To be eligible for an entry to win, you must live in the United States and leave a comment on this blog post – one comment per person.

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The quilt in the magazine actually uses colors/fabric similar to what I used in my original drawings in EQ.  Below is the EQ image I submitted to them.

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On the Needles – 4-14-17

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I started a new cowl last night – it will go well with my spring jacket for those blustery spring days – which hopefully will arrive sometime soon.  The white yarn has speckles like confetti angelfood cake and the other is a minim mocha long color change yarn.  The pattern is Helical Stripes and is a great pattern to learn how to make stripes in the round without the usual jog that occurs when you get to the end of a round – super easy and fun to see the different colored stripes form.  Very Eastery looking colors.

When I went searching for the yarn last night I discovered there had been yet another leak in the sewing room closet from the apartment above.  Luckily only some cotton yarn soaked up a bit of the water so I squished it dry with a towel and left the fan on it and the closet carpet overnight.  The maintenance man was able to find the problem (new maintenance guy  – the old one told me lots of reasons he thought there were leaks but none of them really sounded plausible).    Could have been much more of a mess like the last time tho – thank goodness it was not.   And when the maintenance man came back to pick up the big fan and check on things he brought a very pretty new light to install in my kitchen as a bonus. 🙂  There was just a one bulb fixture in the ceiling – within 15 minutes a new larger 3 bulb installed and it is so nice to have that bright light there.

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Spent a good part of the day putting the closet back in order after everything was dry while this lovely quiche was baking – bacon, mushroom and asparagus.  I would rather have had swiss cheese in it but forgot to buy some so cheddar it is.  Looks like it turned out very good – and will be good with some of that fresh pineapple along side.

After I got the sewing room back in order – I was able to put up the rest of the blocks I had finished sewing yesterday (before discovering the water problem).

 

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Still more to make but I need to cut some more pieces.  I also need to fix that one rogue block at the bottom there – need to rip off one section and flip it around.