Monday, March 31, 2014

Made by me

Lest you think these hands have been idle . . .

Remember this bucket bag I made?  I love the batik fabric and bought extra so I could make some drawstring project/yarn bags.  But after I made the little bucket, I kinda thought I wanted another, bigger bag out of that fabric.  I figured I probably had plenty of the batik but probably not enough of the green and I bought it a very long time ago so matching it could have gotten tricky.

So, I didn't even try.

Instead, I went and bought some lovely orange that also went nicely with the batik.  The colors in this photo are washed out - the green is darker, the orange is brighter and the batik is prettier.

But these are the project/yarn bags.  They are both lined - the green is lined with orange fabric and the orange is lined with green.  They are big, too, almost 17" tall and 14 inches wide.  They are big enough for a sweater's worth of yarn or enough for a large shawl.

Then I made this knitting tote.  It's big.  See how gorgeous the batik is next to the orange?  I love, love, love this bag.  It's not just that I made it either, it's that the colors are wonderful and it's big enough for all the projects I have going at one time to fit inside.  (Right now, that is three shawls, two pair of socks and a wanna be sweater that's not on the needles yet but it really wants to be.)  I gave it long straps because I always wanted a bag with long straps and none of them actually come with long straps.  Of course the straps are the batik because the other fabrics are only there to make that look good.  I would have made the entire bag of the batik, but that might have been too much . . . and besides, it looks better with the other color fabrics giving a chance to one up them.

The tote is lined in the green fabric and has pockets made out of the batik fabric.  Got to get as much pretty in one place as I can!  It also has a hard bottom - the green rectangle is actually a fabric sleeve covering a plastic bottom liner to help the bag keep it's shape.  It works really well! 

So this is the family together.  The big tote, the little bucket and the two drawstring bags.  Now I am out of the batik fabric and the orange.  There is one biggish scrap of the green left, but I think Girl Far From Home is planning on making an origami market bag out of it.  

As you can see, the straps are nice and long and the bag is nice and large.  I'd say it's bigger than most of the bags we've bought at E.L. Bags.  I love it and now I must run off to move my knitting into it's new home!!!


Sunday, March 30, 2014


Lots and lots of beads. They slow the knitting down, but oh the bling!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Not Knitting . . .

 Well, actually, I am almost always knitting, but sometimes I do other things for a while.  And that's what's been happening lately.  

I bought all this pretty fabric when I was sewing last year in the spring.  Then I sewed for a bit and then I sort of got busy with other things.
But last week, the fabric and the machine called my name and I answered.
I have come to the conclusion (all you expert sewers please stifle your giggles here) that cutting is the hardest and most time consuming part of sewing.
But cut it I did - enough for two bags, one for me and one for Girl Far From Home.

The green and brown flowered fabric is Girl's and the batik is mine. 

 I also bought a new iron (Rowenta but an inexpensive model) and a new ironing board.  I had to do that because there was a little mishap when Girl was helping me cut by ironing the fabric for me.

 Girl is still using a borrowed sewing machine.  My very good friend has let us use it for a very long time and eventually she will want it back and then I don't know what we will do.  But until then, Girl is using it.  It is a very nice machine that I used when my friend and I were working on costumes for the theater department and the girls' school.

My new machine is hidden in this little alcove at the back of my yarn and fiber room.  

We sewed and sewed and this is my bag ready for the bottom to be sewn on. 

 Girl's bag on her sewing machine - the outside is done and she's just top stitching the lining in place.

My finished bag.  I wish the bottom were straighter but it was my first time putting a round bottom on anything.  Next time I will do better.  I really love the batik fabric and am going to use it on another bag since I have enough extra.  (Bought enough to make some drawstring bags but would rather make another bag I found online).  The pattern for this bag came from a Craftsy class - the dark green on the outside is actually a pocket.


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Blocked and Ready for Photos . . .

Remember this?

Well, now it looks like this:

I knit it using Miss Babs Cosmic in the Galapagos color because I cannot get enough of this yarn!
I picked up one hank off destash, one from Miss Babs and two from Dena and combined them with the leftovers I had from making my Galapagos socks.

Remember these?

I still love this color.


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Rules . . .

. . .are they meant to be bent or broken? Is it bending or breaking my rule to cast on something new if I haven't finished anything . . . This is badly pinned, but it is gonna be fantastic!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Rule

The rule is that if I finish one, I get to cast on another . . . no matter how many are already on the needles. So this is Romi's second annual mystery shawl KAL in A Verb For Keeping Warm's Annapurna yarn. The color is not accurate but it's name is The Sound of Cicadas. More and better pics later.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Sixteen and a half

Sixteen and a half points done but that leaves 47 or so left to do . . .

Thursday, March 13, 2014


The dogs are comfy and I've got my knitting - all set for the long drive to the beach. I am working on the edging on my pi shawl. I might actually finish the knitting by pi day. Won't be able to block it until we get home though, didn't bring my alphabet blocks or pins.

Monday, March 10, 2014


for a friend because I haven't finished mine yet. This one is 66 inches across and absolutely gorgeous. I only hope mine comes out as nicely. This is the Event Horizon Pi by Donna Druchunas and Ava Coleman.

Thursday, March 6, 2014


 I had a friend once ask me if I only posted the successful projects on the blog and Ravelry.  I had to answer yes because up to that point, I hadn't posted any failures.  Honestly, I have had very few failures, but there are a few.  There was a felted bag that I was making up as I went along.  The knitting went beautifully and the finished item looked like it was going to be very cool.  The felting didn't go well at all and I ended up with a big mess and a lot of wasted yarn.

This hat is another failure.  It was meant to be a Fairy Snow Cap by Rosemary Hill. 

As you can see, mine looks nothing like hers.

When I knit it, I was careful to get gauge and started knitting.  I am blaming the problems with this hat squarely on the yarn.  This is not nice yarn and it was not a good idea for this hat.  I had just enough to make a hat and since this is alpaca yarn, I thought it would be nice and warm and soft.  When the hat turned out so wrong, I decided to felt it lightly to make it wearable.  It is wearable and it fits a head and it should be warm, but it isn't a Fairy Snowcap or anything even close.  And it's ugly.  Really ugly.

So this one is a failure like the other one knit from the same yarn.  The yarn is cursed and the leftovers are getting chopped up for the birds.  (Every spring I put scraps of yarn in those mesh veggie bags outside for the birds to take for nesting material.)


Wednesday, March 5, 2014


I remembered how terrible airport security was the last time we traveled to Mexico - really terrible!  I got searched bodily and my luggage was searched in every airport we went to or through at every opportunity.  The big problem with that was that the girls' belongings were still being packed in my luggage, so my suitcase was really stuffed full.  That meant that it was difficult to close and every time the security folks dug through it and messed everything up, they left me to close it - in the middle of a crowded airport with people all around and the suitcase on a table with no leverage or possibility of my sitting on it to get it to close.  It was embarrassing and difficult and time consuming.

So, before I went to Mexico this time, I did a little research about whether or not knitting needles were allowed on flights out of Mexican airports.  Yes, I do know that they are allowed on U.S. flights, but that isn't the case all over the world.  And, my research showed that some airports in Mexico always confiscate knitting needles and others only do it sometimes but they pretty much all have been known to confiscate them and relatively recently.  

That meant I couldn't risk taking my socks because pulling those off the needles would have been awful.  Instead, I found a small project that I could do on the airplane but wouldn't be sad to lose and I brought some bamboo DPN's that I could drop in the bottom of my purse with the pens and maybe they would go unnoticed.  The yarn was a small leftover portion of a ball of Sugar & Cream that I got from Dena on one my visits to make the Corn on the Cob and the similar Potholder.  I still like the color of it.  The pattern for is called The Almost Lost Washcloth Pattern and it was something I saw and wanted to try making just for fun.  It was fun too!  Next time I will use a provisional cast on and graft the beginning to the end instead of sewing (hate sewing!) and maybe add one stitch to the center so the hole is easier to close up.  All in all, it's a nice wash cloth or maybe if made smaller, coaster.  I will make more because they are quick and easy and might make nice presents with a fragrant bar of soap.