Friday, June 30, 2017

LifeSaver

I am making a crazy patch block and then adding it to the row....it is growing row by row!  
It is a great way for me to reward myself with a stitched row on the block, 
bit by bit!
And the Lifesaver Cactus bloomed!   Isn't it quite the amazing flower?!  It is shiny and firm-I don't detect any odor or aroma but it is pretty!

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Ideas Abound

 The order from KnitPicks arrived so I started right in on the pattern chart for Tuxie Love socks!  Cat lover will adore this pair of socks-make them in the colors of your furbaby!
 And then last night I cast on the baby camel yarn for the Sand cardigan.
 And another pattern from Classic Elite yarns called Jarul......a perfect top for summer in the cotton/angora yarn!
And look what else came in the order-needle keepers for circular needles-now when an adventurous boy climbs on my project bag the wooden needle tips will not get snapped!   It is a genius idea and I can't wait to put it to use!  I am usually a monogamous knitter so this spreading my ideas around thing is going to be a new summer idea!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Paper Piecing

 I used some leftover jelly roll strips and used them in to make these little blocks (6  1/2" )  .  They will be used to make another baby quilt!
 I begin with this printed paper and a bit of folding and pressing and sewing -repeat until I have covered all the area on the block.
 I made a lovely nest of strips to chose from and the only rule is to keep the center the same fabric each time!  A quick little block when I leave it there to add a strip each time I walk through the studio!
 I have a swatch........I am contemplating a little sweater for me.  It is fingering weight,  baby llama content.  The yardage is at the limit of the pattern which is why I am hesitating;  this yarn was gifted to me ages ago and there is no more if I run out!  Extreme knitting.   I think my safety net will be the length of the sleeves-they might be shorter is all and that is doable!

During nap time , there was a thunderstorm that blew through and so I sat and painted a little card!  

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Lapse in Haps

 
I was sidetracked from this knit and have decided to crank it into the finished pile;  it is the Hap for Harriet Shawl.  I am almost halfway with this shawl,  using handspun Shetland 2 ply in natural grey I overdyed with the dark olive green.
The first of my bulb lilies is blooming-the orange variety is going to be popping into bloom next week is my guess!  We are getting rain every afternoon and the plants are reflecting the bounty.   To give you an idea of the difference in rainfall-we have had more this month (12") than we had ALL of last year.  The summer is our rainy season and we need 20"+ minimum to avoid drought conditions.
We do not sing the 'Rain, rain, go away! song here!  The flowers agree!

Monday, June 26, 2017

Triangles

 Some strips in a box and a chance word by a quilting friend and this is what happens!
 Several triangles together look like friends.....
 and organized in different ways inspires just one more block to come off the machine bed!
I don't know how many blocks I can produce from these scraps but I will do something fun with them and it is good brain exercise, right!?
I will be making more during the Monday afternoon quilting group!

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Gladys Tidings!

 Off the needles and ready for wearing!  The Gladys Socks were a great knit; 
 this pair were knit over 64 sts with Chroma superwash and next time I would try them with only 56 sts but I haven't thrown them in the washer or dryer to see what happens there!
 When I smoothed them out on the sock dryers, I noticed a dropped stitch right at the base of the ribbing!  Thank goodness for scrap yarn, a darning needle and duplicate stitches to rescue the errant stitch!  If this was a toe-up sock, I could have ripped out the ribbing to fix it but this was top down--ripping was NOT an option!
 But once I finished weaving in the mending ends, there is no problem any more!
I also finished piecing and trimming all the flannel blocks into tops-you will be seeing them again soon as finished quilts!

((I was interrupted while in the middle of loading pictures and came back to the laptop to find Lena had loaded a picture and posted this for me!
What a sweet and helpful kitty!)

Thursday, June 22, 2017

The Solstice Bloom!

 During the day I finished piecing some more flannel squares.  I was bored with the straight setting of the squares so put them on point!
 When I was finished, I squared up the outer edge-I have two more little tops set out like this left to do!
 During the day, I could see the bloom growing and expanding!  I knew tonight was the night!
 Sure enough-by nine o'clock it was beginning to open!
 When I went out at eleven, it was a torrential downpour!  It didn't stop me!
I needed to capture this event! 
 As I was up close for the photo session, Bill shone the flashlight from the porch!  The aroma was heavenly even with the hard rain pounding away!  As I am getting soaked, Bill yells that there is another bloom on the other side of the plant!!
 I couldn't believe it!  Another full bloom about a day ahead of the one on the other side!  See the shape?  This is why it is called the Dutchman's Pipe-it is about 12" from stem to flower tip!
  It is indeed amazing-so intricate and delicate looking yet hardy enough to hold up to the driving rain last night.  It was worth it to be up and sopping wet to see this incredible event!


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Anticipation!

 I am ready to turn the heel on sock 2-it is going much faster as usual on the second one!
 My night blooming Cerius is preparing to bloom!  It swells each day noticeably!
 And then the curl up of the bloom-this is why it is commonly called the Dutchman's Pipe!
 See how the end is filling with the flower?!  I check it every night so I won't miss it!
 I have sewn all the piles of men's suit fabric into tops and measured them so I will be able to purchase the right amount of fleece for the backing.
 And now I have started in on the pile of flannel that has been cut up into squares and waiting for me for a few years!  Little quilts will be completed soon!
And another very exciting bloom I am waiting for-the Lifesaver Cactus is going to not only flower but there are two!  Just wait until you see these!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Off the Needles

 I finished the washcloth in time to tie it to the baby gift!
 The masterpiece of a sock, Gladys, is off the needles and its mate is cast on!
 It is really a great marriage of color and texture!
 Over the weekend, we discovered a tortoise and the boys ran with him down the lane next to our house!
Later we picked blackberries;  the rains in their seasons are bringing in a good crop!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Stitch by Stitch

 I wanted to knit a baby washcloth yesterday-I spent more than half a day looking for this pink cotton yarn!  When I found it and the pattern (Daisy Stitch Washcloth)  I got to work.  I wasn't seeing the pattern and felt a bit frustrated when I turn it over to the side I thought was the back and paid attention to the return row....
 and here was where all the goodness showed!  The pattern isn't a thrill to knit but it is an easy remember and has good results so I will finish it up today, I hope!
 I couldn't wait another minute to cast on this pair of socks last night!  And then when I got to the pattern section of the chart to add white-I wasn't happy with the natural I have and so I will wait and order white to go with this!  Delays....
 I am plugging along on the foot which is going on way too long! lol  The pattern is a joy and since the bottom of the foot is stockinette, it is moving along very well, it's just that I only get so much uninterrupted knit time!!!!
Look who was taking her morning bath in the sunshine!  She looks small in this pic but she is already larger than another of our little runts but she is still the sweetest little kitty Lena!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Dawning

 My wild quilt is completed-even washed and dried!  It is 44" x 60".
 I so enjoyed stitching it with a sunburst on every block and squiggles on the borders!  
 For a treat with my share of the tax money, I splurged and bought a new program for embroidery.  My old system no longer worked with the updated computers so I haven't been able to tweak, customize or combine designs.
Now, the embroidery is open for me again and I want to explore embroidery for quilting blocks!
 As a complement to the software, I bought some new embroidery thread!  Lots of shades so the embroidery will have the depth it need for success!
 I organized them in rainbow order, of course!
(I was able to buy both of these products on EBAY, at a price I could afford,
 from the luxury of home-priceless!)
 This isn't a pic of buds but rather the flower head is made up of these tubes and the hummingbirds love them!
 And for the first time, our prayer lily has produced a flower!
Dawn....chasing the boys from dawn to dusk;  from morning cuddles to bedtime snuggles.  It's an art.

Roped into it!

 When I was in my teens, I played with clothesline rope for a basket (see last pics) but I covered it in wool yarn to echo Navajo basketr...