Although I haven’t done much quilting this vacation -I have been knitting like crazy. Knitting in the car, in the hotel, and at home – ignoring some of the cleaning and closet
rearranging I had planned to do while at home.
Laura Aylor has a One for You/One for a Gift Cowl-Along going on right now through her Ravelry Group, Laura’s Workshop – you can find all the information there. Cowls makes such great gifts so having extras around is always a good thing – plus I like wearing them myself. I prefer them to winter scarfs – no ends to blow around – and also like lighter weight ones to wear as a pop of color over a blouse or sweater rather than a silk scarf or jewelry. If my neck is warm, then the rest of me stays warm so I wear a lot of cowls year round.
I seldom knit with bulky weight yarns but for cowls bulky yarn is great and talk about instant gratification. These bulky weight cowls I started and finished all within a three day period in addition to working on several projects at the same time so they were definitely very quick to knit up.
24 – SSC cowl
This one is just stockinette stitch and the usual “wrong side” of stockinette is actually the “right” side of this cowl. I love all the little pops of color and the edges are meant to curl under just enough so that it lays nicely. This one is definitely one I’ll keep for myself since I love fall colors so much.
22 – Rhinebeck Cowl
This is the Rhinebeck Cowl – and although you’ve heard me say (or seen my write) many times that I don’t love doing cables – even I don’t mind at all doing this one row cable twisted cowl.
23 – Antidote Cowl
I love the Antidote Cowl – I didn’t have a bulky yarn to use for this one so I held two strands of BMFA Crackpaca (DK weight) yarn together – one was the multicolored and the other a light blue color. This is so soft and lovely – used only about half of each yarn so I can make another as a gift or use the yarn for something else. I still need to find a button for it – under the folded back flap there is a button hole. This one was probably the quickest of all of them to make – simple garter stitch, a few easy short rows and simple buttonhole.
I also have a few other cowls in progress…..
But more on those later…….
The wedding was this past weekend that I designed the “Barn Dance” free quilt pattern for. My version of that quilt which is to be the bride and groom’s wedding present – is still in my sewing room. The wedding card contained an IOU for the quilt – it still needs to be quilted but when I told my niece about it she was very happy saying she was “hoping” for a quilt from me and that makes it all the more fun to make for her. Now I just need to decide on the backing fabric and how I want to quilt it and get it done.
The wedding was lovely but I totally forgot to take any photos – with one exception and it’s not of the bride and groom but of my sister and her husband as we were getting ready to leave the hotel for the ceremony and they were being goofy so it serves them right that I posted this photo with them making faces at me. 🙂
Although I don’t have my Barn Dance quilt finished – Rebecca P sent me a photo of her version of Barn Dance that she made and it turned out so lovely. She said I could share her photo here. What a great looking quilt! If anyone else has finished their Barn Dance quilt – I’d love to see a photo of it and share it here on the blog.
Hopefully you’ll be seeing my own finished version here soon.
Clearly I’m not too excited about cleaning the sewing room. I did tidy up a few things – very few – and then decided to look for some yarn for the cowl KAL starting the end of this week and get some wound and ready to go with the patterns. Yes – I’m really not into the cleaning today.
But I have yarn and patterns paired up for several cowls and then came across some bulky yarn I had forgotten about and lo and behold after a bit of swatching…
I have enough to make a smaller version of the big lace shawl and this color will look lovely wrapped around the top of my polar fleece coat.
For the original test knit version I used worsted weight yarn and cast on 379 stitches on size 8 needles.
This one will have 199 stitch cast on, on size 11 needles with this Malabrigo Mecha yarn – the color is Jupiter – and should end up being between 60-65″ wide across the top.
My Crackpaca Cowl (so named because of the Blue Moon Fiber Arts Crackpaca yarn) got finished off last night too. I used a broken linen stitch pattern – it’s lovely and soft in this yarn which is an alpaca, merino and silk blend.
If you’re a knitter – I highly recommend this wonderful feeling yarn. Now to figure out what I want to do with the next hank of it I have – it’s lovely fall colors so it may need to be a cowl for a different jacket of mine.
I finished the shawl, I finished the cowl – so late last night was trying to figure out what to work on and picked up my Stained Glass KAL cowl.
This is the last progress photo I had posted.
I added several more rows last night and this is what it looks like now.
Slowly it’s moving along.
It’s a lovely fall day here today – the sun is shining which is a welcoming sight. I’ve done a bit of puttering about this morning and some laundry but I think after finding some lunch I will head to the sewing room. Just maybe I can finish the cleaning/reorganization in there without getting sidetracked into some other project… or maybe not.
The big lace shawl test knit for Laura Aylor is done. In worsted weight yarn (Miss Babs Yowza) it turned out lovely and soft and will be perfect for wrapping up in this winter as I’m sitting and knitting. The pattern will actually be called Between Oceans and I think will be released by the weekend. I’ll let you know once the pattern is released. This one looks wonderful in bulky yarn too. I love the way the test knits look in the heavier yarn so I may need to make another smaller one to go with one of my winter coats.
It’s a very simple lace design and quite fun to knit.
That’s what I called this project – the actual pattern is Whim by Laura Aylor. Simple garter stitch body and fun, simple lace border is added after the body is made. I love the squishy-ness of garter stitch shawls. Bound off the edge this morning and then blocked it.
The yarn I used is Colinette Jitterbug and the color is Salted Caper. I love the shade of blue in this yarn – not your average blue but just a bit different and also love the golds that are mixed in with it. The photo below shows the colors pretty true to life.
19 – Whim – Laura Aylor pattern
This is completed project 19 on my page of items knit this year. I bought this yarn back in 2013 from TLE so time it finally turned out to be something.
I also finished off my Crackpaca Cowl and it’s blocking and hopefully tomorrow can also get photos of the big lace shawl.
Well I did accomplish some cleaning last Friday but mostly I decided – it’s a vacation day from work so I didn’t want to work too hard. :-) I never did get back into the sewing room to finish cleaning there but I will work on that this week.
On the design wall — still the same Points of View blocks as the one I showed October 2 – there’s been no sewing going on but I hope to remedy that before the end of the week.
I did spend a lot of time over the past three days knitting on the Laura Aylor big lace shawl test knit and finally just after midnight (this morning) finished it and got all the fringe on. I’m just waiting to lay it out and give it a bit of a steam to block it before trying to get some photos. The steam should open up the lace a bit – I don’t want to totally wet block it because the weather is (yet again!) wet and damp so it would take forever to dry. I ended up using about 1,400 yards for the shawl (that will look nice when I add it to my yarn knit to date tally). I just need to wait for the water softener salt delivery guy to make this deliver today before I lay it out on the living room floor – don’t want people traipsing around or over it.
After I finished that off I moved on to another Laura Aylor project – Whim. I really like how this one is looking in the yarn I chose. I’ve got about half the bind off done so that one will be off the needles later today too so I’ll have some finished projects to share soon.
And with projects being finished – that must mean I need to start some new ones right? I’m just planning new ones at the moment since Laura Aylor’s (yes I like her designs can you tell?) next KAL will be a “One for you / one for a gift cowl-along” of her cowl patterns. I took advantage of her sale in connection with the upcoming KAL and added a couple cowl patterns I had wanted to my Rav library. The KAL starts 10/21 – you can find info on all her KALs through her Ravelry group. After 1,400 yards of knitting on that shawl – I’ll be happy to knit a few bulky weight cowls that will knit up quickly. :-) So now I need to print the patterns and then figure out what yarns to match up with what patterns.
Now to get a few chores done, start some laundry and then maybe I can get back into the sewing room this afternoon to continue the clean out of that room.
It’s a lovely fall morning here – even lovelier since I’m on vacation. Sun shining, cool crispy air, tiny bit of a breeze and bright blue sky and about 40 degrees right now. But it will be in the 60s later today – my perfect kind of weather. A friend at work was laughing at me earlier this week — it was a coolish day and I had pulled out a long sleeve sweater (albeit a cotton one) to wear with my pants and had sandals on. She just laughed and said you know we are Wisconsinites – we wear sweaters and sandals at the same time. I’m going to be said to have to put away my sandals and wear real shoes.
I headed out to the dumpsters with some trash and recycling about 8 a.m. and I could see my breath outside – and yes, I was wearing my sandals.🙂
As for knitting – I’m still plugging away on the big lace shawl test knit for Laura Aylor. It’s going to be big – but then so am I🙂 and it’s going to be so cozy to wrap all up in this winter. So my other projects have been set aside until I get this shawl done but I can show you what’s not yet on the needles.
Two more colors of Crackpaca. I so love the feel of this yarn.
And some Miss Babs Big Silk. I’ve never tried the Big Silk before but it feels very lovely to.
Big Silk is 60% wool and 40% silk and comes in BIG hanks (hence the Big Silk name I bet) of 540 yards. The color on that photo is really off – it’s all shades of purple and much darker than it looks in the photo – the color is called Crow’s Feet and I got the Blackbird (black) to go with it. I had planned to use them together (just by the names they should like they should be used together) but don’t know that the black will stand out enough against the darker purples – but for now I just squish them when I walk by to feel their lovely softness.
Today’s vacation plans – clean and clean and maybe clean. Kitchen and living room are up first and then back to purging the sewing room of unneeded/unwanted “stuff”.
I am so messy when I’m sewing….. or cooking….or baking…. even knitting – I know – how can you be messy knitting? But one side of the couch has several projects sitting on it waiting for me to get back to them as I switch back and forth on what I’m working on.
But back to the sewing room — which has been a mess for quite some time and is feeling a bit claustrophobic from all the “stuff” scattered about in that room. As I was contemplating what to do to make things more manageable (other than the obvious fact that I don’t need to buy any more fabric or yarn) :-) I decided that this storage center needed to be cleaned out. Much of it was filled with thread (and whatever else has gotten tossed into the drawers rather than put in it’s correct home).
A large portion of the thread was “hand me down” from several friends who had family members who sewed or quilted and no one else in the family did. The drawers had turned into an unruly mess and I knew there was actually quite a bit of thread in there I would never use and could cull out since it was various discount store brands of yarn that are too fuzzy for me to want to use in my machine and/or too weak. So it was all sorted, rearranged and the weak thread along with the really dusty spools were cleared out. I still have about half those drawers filled with thread but was able to use the rest of the drawers for other stuff and still have one empty I think.
Next it was on to the two shelf unit that used to hold some fabric groups and other goodies.
I say “used to” because here it is – just a couple things left to take off the top of it and then on big trash day, it can go to the curb .
Everything that was on it fit on a different shelving unit in the room so one less piece of furniture in my sewing room.
I just have these two little boxes to finish going through that were on that shelf.
Scraps – I’m generally not much of a scrap saver – except for maybe batiks which one of those boxes is, and I think the other is all my scraps from TLE fabrics so if I’m working on a Mixer project or something else through TLE, I know where to look for scraps. But I need to sort through and decide if there’s anything in these I want to keep and then one little portion of the sewing room will be tidied and I can work my way around the rest of the room.
One of the major clean ups I did today was computer CDs – which took up quite a bit of my day. I had piles of them – projects for Hoffman Fabrics, extra copies of projects for EQ Boutique and past blog QAL and mystery projects, lots of quilt photos, computer back up cds, etc. All of them were, of course not very clearly labeled. So I went thru those and dumped all the quilt photos into my “Justquiltin’s Quilts” blog — there’s a link in the sidebar to get to it and that blog is just my “photo album” of quilts finished and some in progress. There’s duplicate photos that I need to delete at some point but I was just trying to get them all in one place as quickly as possible so I can destroy the CDS and get rid of that stack of clutter. I have just over 450 photos on that site now and added nearly 300 of those today. As I was adding the photos I was surprised at how many I had totally forgotten about making as they had log ago been gifted or sold – like seeing old friends. I still have some disks to go through — from before I had a digital camera and I had the images put on CD by Walgreens – and then there’s the album of quilt photos – way before digital – that I want to scan and add too but those are projects for another day and I’ve done enough rambling on for one day too.🙂
Time to get back to my test knit shawl.
It’s a crisp fall morning here – 48 degrees although heading up to 60 so a perfect day in my book – and finally SUNSHINE! I love the air on crisp fall days (not to be confused with dang cold winter days) so the door is ajar letting in that fresh air.
A flurry of activity on the needles. I did get a few more rows done on my Stained Glass cowl but haven’t pinned it out to get an updated photo so maybe next week I’ll get a new photo of that. It’s coming along slowly but that’s because there’s been other projects with deadlines to fit in ahead of it.
This week a lot of my knitting time has been devoted to a test knit of a shawl for Laura Aylor. Here’s a sneak peek at my yarn. It’s Miss Bab’s Yowza Whatta Skein. The color is Sea Life and it’s all shades of green – the very darkest shade looking almost black and as it knits up it looks like melty mint chocolate chip ice cream (so of course I’m hungry for mint chocolate chip ice cream!). This is going to be a big lovely shawl to wrap up in.
I did get a big more progress done last weekend on my Crackpaca cowl. My yarn ball is dwindling so getting closer to the finish on this one