Huge swatch?

Is it a swatch? Or is it part of an A-line sweater I’ve been working on?  Well, it might as well be a swatch because as I’ve been knitting the last 2 or three inches I’ve been thinking – hmmm this looks awfully long and a bit too wide. A-line is one thing but swimming in stockinette is another…

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well I wouldn’t exactly be swimming but I’ve decided it definitely has more ease at the bottom than I need.   But, more importantly, the day I did the measurements for this one I must have  got a bit carried away with how long I wanted it too.  I’m not to the armholes yet – have a couple more inches to go – and it’s already longer than I think I will like.  So, I’ll be doing some tweaking to my Customfit measurement set for A-lines since I want A-line, but not swingy extra fabric around the bottom.   So you know what that means – all that lovely knitting will get ripped back.

It all works out okay tho (at least that’s what I’ll be telling myself as I rip all that back) because I decided I wanted the A-line sweater in a lighter weight yarn (fingering – so even more stitches to be knitting in stockinette) and this yarn – Classic Elite Soft Linen (DK) will be used to make Staring at the Stars.

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I got the pattern back in June when it was original released and keep going back and forth as to just use the design at the bottom of the sweater on a CF version or make it as is.  Top down raglan sweaters usually don’t work for me but in looking at the various measurements/sizing on this one, it may work out okay and there are some little design elements in the raglan that I like which I wouldn’t be able to duplicate in CF.

I usually have a hard time matching someone else’s gauge (which is why I prefer CustomFit) but I did get gauge on the needle size in the pattern so I’m taking that as a good omen.  It knits up more open than the “giant swatch” (f/k/a a sweater front) above which was done with needles two sizes smaller – but I like the feel of the swatch and it should have a nice drape so time will tell if it will work out.  But, nothing ventured nothing gained and it’s just yarn.

 

 

Where did Saturday go?

It’s just after 6 p.m. and I can’t believe it’s that late in the day already.  I think I may need to call the pizza people to bring me dinner since I clearly didn’t plan ahead.

I did finish today the quilting on my Camp Loopy project 3 quilt.  The binding is attached and clipped in place so I can hand sew that down tonight.  I actually pulled out a second quilt top to layer so I would have it ready to quilt (I’m in a machine quilting mood) but found the perfect fabric for the backing and simply had to order it.

I also figured out what my TLE August Mixer projects will be.  For August, both knitting and sewing projects are to be “Olympic-related” or “use the colors of the Rio countryside.”

When I ordered my backing fabric (mentioned above – which by the way is Crayola printed fabric – white background with crayons all over – for my Coloring Outside the Lines crayon quilt), I also ordered three fabrics that will represent my Rio countryside colors.

I cannot find back the photo which originally made me pick my Rio inspiration colors – it was of the city and a shot with lovely blue sky and water and a whole cluster of buildings with terra cotta colored roofs.   umbrellas - fabricThis photo sort of shows those same colors – tho the umbrellas a more red but it’s just “color inspiration” after all. Here’s the fabrics I ordered.augustmixerfab

 

 

I haven’t decided exactly what I’ll make with them – and I want to see the print in person and decide what other colors I want to bring into the project – but this will be my starting place.

For the knitting project – there was a cowl pattern I had started that was perfect and since I started the cowl putting the colors in the reverse order I really wanted them, I ripped it back (okay I cut the yarn since I wasn’t very far into it and just restarted since I didn’t want to untangle it as I ripped back the two colors).  Anyway, when I saw the Tesserino Cowl it reminded me of a photo of  Copa Cabana Beach where Olympic volleyball was taking place. Here’s the photo of the beach – does the rock area this side of the sand remind you of anything – like maybe the cowl design….

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and here’s my restart on this cowl last night.

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Today’s progress

A bit of knitting, a bit of sewing, a bit of laundry  – but I don’t plan to overdo the cleaning today since it is my last day of vacation.🙂

First the knitting – hot off the needles is my Camp Loopy 3 project – Endless Road.  I’ve got somewhere between 1,100 and 1,200 yards in it.  Those last rows and bind off did seem endless let me tell you.  My photos don’t do it justice.  It’s overcast outside by weirdly bright and glarey so I need to try to get some better photos on another day.  But here it is

20160812_8It’s a nice big wrap.

20160812_10So all my camp knitting projects are finished.

In the meantime, last night I cast on my second Summer Camp shawl  – for me these are more “scarfs” than shawl size but will be so cozy wrapped around the neck come weather that is not like a sauna outside – not that I’m wishing away the summer weather – just the humidity.

Anyway, here’s how the start of Summer Camp is looking.

 

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The green in the solid is a really good match for one of the greens in the multicolored and I’m really liking how these two yarns are playing together — but then since I love green, how could I not love it.  I had originally intended to put this one away as a gift but I may be rethinking that idea because this one may need to stay with me.

 

I’ve also been busy this afternoon working on my final Camp Loopy sewing project.

Got the quilt layered and now have all the sashing quilted and a couple of the blocks.

20160812_14I had this great backing fabric in the stash.  It is actually a wider than normal fabric –one of those that appears at the holidays for making table cloths hence the 60″ width.  It is also a much better quality than many of those table cloth width fabrics are so I bought a bunch of it several years ago at the end of the season sale when it was really inexpensive.  It was perfect for backing of this project since it was about 4″ wider than my quilt top so no seaming involved.  Gotta love that when it happens.

Had to stop and wind another bobbin but I was checking out the back and was admiring the stitches — not that they are perfect – I was doing free motion straight lines and they have a bit of a wobble here and here but I’m okay with that.  I didn’t want to turn all those corners using the walking foot – so opted for free motion.  But the actual stitches – my old machine that I quilted on always had tension issues so I was constantly battling either the top thread popping through to the bottom or vice versa.  I’m using a cream colored thread on the backing to match the fabric but most of the stitching in the photo above is done with a dark green thread for the top.  Not a hint of that thread popping thru to the bottom and not a hint of the cream coming thru to the top.  I’ve never had to adjust the tension of this machine since I ordered it in February 2014.  Best purchase I ever made and definitely time to stop starting new projects and concentrate on getting the huge pile of tops waiting to be quilted done.  (okay – maybe not start as many new projects since you know starting none will never happen)

Okay – coffee break over and time to get back to bobbin winding.

 

 

A basket full of yarn

20160811_1On the agenda for today was cleaning up the sewing room so once my batting arrived from Amazon today, I would have space to layer my Camp Loopy quilt.

Well I did do that but among the mess in that room were some tubs of yarn I had pulled out.  Since I was going to look for some yarn for a project, I decided to gather all the yarn I have stuffed in baskets and bags and places in the living room where it got stowed, and put it in the actual storage tubs and tidy the works in progress since I had knocked over that basket.  Well it’s after 6 p.m. and all yarn carefully stowed where it should be, WIPs are in bags in a basket and things are much more orderly.  The batting has also just arrived so don’t know that I’ll start layering the quilt tonight.

But – I have planned out my next couple of knitting projects (I’m nearly finished with my over 800 yard final Camp Loopy knitting project) and since I was digging through yarn, pulled what I needed and spent a good amount of time getting most of it wound.

First things first – for those joining Judy and I as we do a KAL for Stained Glass Cowl starting September 1, check out Judy’s latest post which shows some of the yarn/colors she’s considering here.  At the bottom of that basket in the photo above are my choices for the yarn I will be using.  Both colors are Wollmeise Pure and the multicolored is called Sultan and the navy is Admiral.  Here’s what it looks like caked versus in the hank.

20160811_5The interesting thing is the Admiral – especially in the hank – shows two distinct shades of navy – one darker than the other.  The flash enhances that because to the naked eye, it looks pretty much one color.  I had to look very closely to see there was more than one shade of blue so it will be interesting to see how that looks knit up.

Now I just need to find where I put the new needle I bought for this and see how many stitch markers I have free to gather for this project.

In the front of the basket photo are these two cakes of yarn.

20160811_11I’m going to make another Summer Camp shawl – it’s such a fun and so easy pattern and I may need to have an extra on hand for last might gift giving – tho green is one of my favorite colors so this one may be mine as well! :-)  I went  stash diving for these.  The multicolor is Mountain Colors Bearfoot yarn and the color is Blooming Gale.  That one came from TLE  4 or 5 years ago – they don’t carry that line anymore.  The green is “sprout” and is  Shalimar Zoe Sock – that’s been around a while too but not sure where it came from.

 

Also in the top of the basket are several smaller cakes of yarn – which might remind you of watermelon colors. :-)  The ones in the plastic bags are additional shades to go with the ones I have wound.   I’m going to make Night Market by Laura Aylor and stripe it so it looks like watermelon slices with seeds.

I also have a couple sweaters in the works I keep picking up and putting down in between the other projects.  These projects should all help keep me out of trouble after Camp Loopy ends and I have more waiting in the wings since I bagged up groups of yarn for specific projects once these are finished.

 

July Yarn Mixer Finished

This was so fun to make!

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The criteria for The Loopy Ewe July Mixer yarn project was to make something with cotton yarn.  Well that left things pretty wide open but since I had a lot of larger projects on the needles, plus Camp Loopy projects to work on, I wanted a smaller project.  Knitted dish clothes are not really my thing but I did a search on Ravelry, narrowed to cotton yarn, to see what it came up with.   One of those things was knitted and crocheted jewelry – necklaces, bracelets, etc.

Perfect – I love those multistring, multibeaded necklaces and although I don’t crochet much since it tends to bother my wrists, this would not entail long periods of crocheting.  So then the hunt was on for beads and things to add to my necklace.

Lower right image is of the  four tubes of size 6/0 seed beads  from TLE and above that are the stitch markers from TLE I added to the necklace as well (stitch markers on a knitter’s necklace – perfect don’t you think!)   But I knew I also wanted to add larger beads which TLE doesn’t carry so off to Etsy.    (You can see the round stitch markers in the outer strand below.)20160811_2

The rest of the beads pictured above came from Bohemian Findings.  The 2nd image from the left on top – with the shell in the bead supply photo – is cultured sea glass and I didn’t use those in this necklace because they were more blue and everything else in my necklace was more aqua (so those will be used in another necklace).   I do love their cultured sea glass and the rectangular pieces in the lower left were the perfect color to go with my beads.

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I looked at several free Ravelry patterns to get an idea of how they were made  – Bead Happy Necklace, Understatement Necklace (I liked the little clusters on this one and used all the same size beads to make my clusters rather than one larger bead and two smaller as in the pattern), and Crocheted Beaded Necklace (I like the way all the strands are gathered together in the back and then wrapped).

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So started stringing my beads on for one strand and just winged it as I went.  If you can crochet a chain stitch, you can crochet a beaded necklace.  Even if you’ve never crocheted, it’s easy enough to learn how to chain.  I like the way the larger glass beads add a bit of weight to the strand too.   Started and finished in one night.

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Borders are on

Got the sashing strips finished and added on some scrappy borders using nearly every last scrap of the fabrics I had bought for this project.

Just enough left over that I was able to cut the binding strips – at least I think I have enough cut.  I was going to get it layered but darn — no batting large enough.  I knew I was supposed to check that last week.  So placed my Amazon order and it will be here Thursday.  I guess tomorrow that gives me time to clean up the sewing room and work on some other things.

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A knitting finish

I have been working a shawl for two different KALs.   The pattern is Summer Camp by Laura Aylor and she’s been doing a “Summer of the Shawl” KAL – designing several new shawl patterns (and of course I really want to make nearly all of them so my list of things to knit has grown) and it’s also my entry for the Miss Babs Fall 2016 Shawl-a-long since I used Miss Babs yarn Caroline.  It is so soft and feels so good around my neck – I can see a need for more of this yarn for cowls/scarfs – with that added cashmere it feels so great.

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Here is my Summer Camp.  Love the scalloped edging and garter stitch makes it so squishy. 20160809_12 A perfect pattern to knit on without having to pay much attention.  I’m contemplating making one in all one color.  So 800 yards to add to my finished yarn knit to date tally.

Progress is being made on the Camp Loopy shawl too.  It’s all scrunched up on too small of a cable so I need to go search for a longer one but here’s a close up of part of the slip stitched / striped rows.  The sun is washing out the colors but it is turning out pretty.

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Quilty Camp Project 3

Although I’m thoroughly enjoying working on my Camp Loopy projects – I’ll be happy when they are finished so I can get back to some projects that have been pushed aside in my sewing room (like the Barn Dance quilt that needs to be completed) and some other projects I have planned.

Here’s how far my 3rd camp project is —

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This block in the center has my most favorite fabrics in the group of fabrics I bought in it — same print but in two different background colors — love the colors used and the business of the trees and dots and animals tucked in.

Here’s all my blocks.

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Pattern: A Floral Perspective by Wendy Sheppard – free on Hoffman Fabrics website

 

The horizontal rows have a white on white print sashing added to them so I just need to add the sashing yet between the rows and then decide borders or no  borders.  I need to use up the rest of my scraps one way or the other to meet the yardage requirement for this Camp challenge but I could also use them on the backing.  I also need to go check on the batting supply and see if I have enough for this.

Let the Beading Begin

One of my Loop Ewe “mixer projects” is a beading one.  I have finally gathered all the various components I’ll be using.  Have the cotton blend yarn (which is the requirement for the mixer project – must use cotton yarn in something).  I’ve got small beads and stitchholders I’ll be crocheting in to my necklace from TLE and I’ve also got some lovely beads I found on Etsy along with some of their cultured sea glass pieces which are lovely.

20160731_1Now that I’ve found all my littlest crochet hooks, it’s time to start on this project and see what I can come up with.

Fling open the windows

This is the first day in two weeks that it hasn’t been like a sauna outside.  It’s still a bit humid but since it’s only 80 degrees it actually doesn’t feel too bad and I was able to turn off the air and open the windows – at least for a while.

I’m knitting along on a sweater and the Summer Camp Shawl but haven’t taken any new photos. I do have a photo of some new yarn tho.   I really like Laura Aylor’s latest shawl, Night Market.  When she first showed a sneak peak of it, after one of her prior shawls has “lightening bugs” across it – this one reminded me of a line of ants carrying off watermelon seeds. I knew I would have to buy some watermelon colored yarn and make it.  I now have the yarn – just need to find some black to go with it – but here is my watermelon

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Another project for when Camp Loopy is done.   The start of Camp project 3 is nearly here –wish 8/1 would have fallen on the weekend but it’s not like I don’t have plenty of other things to do.

I did change my mind about my fabric camp project. JuniperBerryChristmasTreeSkirt I was going to make this design as a tree skirt.

But in order to use the required amount of yardage for the challenge, I would have had to make it about 36″ square at least.  I don’t want a tree skirt that large so nixed that plan.

But then I remembered a free pattern on the Hoffman Fabrics website by Wendy Sheppard called  A Floral Perspective.

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I think in the Christmas prints I’m using it will look like ribbons on gift boxes.  I’ve been busy earlier today figuring out how to make the most of my fat quarters when I go to cut them.  Will have to wait and see how many blocks I can get.

As I was pressing my fabrics and laying them all out on the table to decide which fabrics would be used where, I noticed the selvages on the fabrics I’m using.

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Fabrics normally have dots or squares or some geometric shape along the selvage edge with a dot for each color used in the fabric – comes in useful if you are looking to match fabrics to a specific print.  These fabrics – Moda Juniper Berry – have little berries that look like holly sprigs – here’s a closer look.  So cute!

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With the shawl I will be making for Camp Project 3 having to be at least 800 yards, I’m going to be busy knitting and glad that I picked a simple quilting project.  Luckily I have a week’s vacation during that time period so will be able to spend some quality time working on both projects.