Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Lest you think there's only sewing going on in these parts...

Knitting will always be my first crafty love. My mother was an amazing knitter and she taught me so many times, I can't believe it took me until my late 20's to really get going. I knit when I'm bored, frustrated, angry, happy, restless, which basically means I knit pretty much every single day even if it's only one row. It has to be at least a full row, because I have learned that I am incapable of leaving my knitting mid row! It just doesn't jive with my personality.

Currently on the knitting agenda we have two WIP's that are moving along...

First up are my Rib and Cable socks :

I love knitting socks for several reasons. First off, I love the way a hand knit sock fits my foot and calf. It seems that every single store bought sock I have ever worn, has left sock indentations in my calf when I take them off and I just can't stand that. My handknits never do this. Secondly, they are infinitely portable. This pair was started with the sole purpose (ha ha) of being my airplane knitting. Knitting socks using the magic loop method makes them the ultimate airplane knitting, as you never risk dropping a needle and having to squeeze yourself down onto the floor in your row (yuck) searching for it. It also has the added benefit of not scaring  your seat-mate with all those pointy sticks! As you can see above, these socks have been a lot of places... in fact these socks have been to 5 states so far!

My second WIP just got started last night. It's going to be Paulie:

It doesn't have a project page yet, but I will get on that. I've had this Gloss Fingering from KP in my stash for years now, and haven't known what to do with it. Originally it was purchased with the intention of knitting a second Thermal, but I have decided a cardigan would be much more wearable in my new climate. 
The stripes will be rather subtle since I have set a goal for myself to only knit from stash until it is pretty much all knit up, or until Stitches West 2014! It's a pretty soft goal, because I will purchase more yarn at Stitches next year whether I achieve it or not, but basically I will not enter a yarn store for more than needles or wool wash until then. Therefore I am using up the two skeins of Gloss I have left over from the Thermal I knit years ago. The blue will be the main color and is called Dusk and the green for the stripes is called Woodland Sage. It appears both colors have been discontinued. 

I will keep you updated on the progress of these projects. I expect those socks will be finished pretty soon and I know exactly the yarn I will be casting on once they are done! 

Until next time y'all! 

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Nordika Whimsicöl

The second I saw this fabric I knew I had to have it. Has that ever  happened to you? C'mon tell the truth, you know it has! Anyhow, I was reading blog posts from quilt market and a lot of the bloggers posted pictures of Jeni Baker's new line for Art Market, Nordika. I kept going back to these posts to get a better look at this bag . I just loved how the border print gave this simple bag a lot of interest and I really like the leather handles.
At the time all of this was happening the fabric wasn't even available for purchase yet, so I tried to put it out of my mind. The end of the school year was in full swing and my vacation was coming up and so I was mostly successful at this.

My vacation looked a lot like this...

By the time we were back from vacation,  I had had many day-dreams about a Washi dress made out of this fabric. I had worn my linen Washi (dress #2)  a lot on my hot and humid vacation and lots of my family and friends said it was the perfect dress for me and that I should make more. I didn't even know how big the panel of the border print was, but I started putting 3 yards of it in the shopping carts on different fabric sites and then would walk away (you know you do this too!).
Then, I noticed that on Fabricworm they had the Whimsicöl listed per panel, with the dimensions as well. This was exactly the motivation I needed! I laid out my Washi pattern pieces on the floor and measured them. Turned out two panels would be just exactly enough, so long as I purchased a different lining fabric for the bodice. Just in case, I bought three! Isn't it awesome!

Before I cut anything I kept going back to look at Jeni's Staple dress. I just love the way the print makes a border at the hem of the skirt. I also looked through all of the Washi dresses in the Flickr pool. I knew I wanted a simple scoop neckline for this one, but I didn't want to leave it plain. I decided on a teal piping. The color (called Mediterranean on the package) was almost an exact match for the hills at the bottom of the print. I decided to jump in, even though I've only ever used piping once! All the fiddly-ness (is that a word?) paid off and the piping added just the right amount of something special! It finishes the neckline nicely and also adds definition at the waist. I often wear a belt with my other Washi dresses, but this way I won't need to

This is a wear anywhere kind of dress. It's casual and fun, and yet I think it could be worn to the right kind of wedding in a pinch! I will try to get some modeled shots for you here sometime in the near future.  The best part is that there is one whole panel of this gorgeous fabric left over... now what do I make with it?!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Maybe it's time...

I've been reading blogs for years now. It all started innocently enough. I used the web to search for knitting patterns that were cute and free. I especially liked seeing pictures of how the finished knits fit people, or the interesting ways they would wear a shawl or a beret. Mostly I lurked. I lurked on a LOT of blogs before I ever commented on one!

Along came and I was officially hooked. Free contemporary knitting patterns with lots of amazing pictures! What knitter at the time didn't fall instantly in love?  From there I found the blogs of the knitting designers, then links to blogs those designers were reading, and so on and on and on and on and on...

My love of knitting morphed into a love of being busy with some sort of crafting every day. I find I am less restless and more contented when I have my fingers in the crafting soup. Over the past year or so my first love of knitting has had to share time with my new obsession, sewing. I have expensive taste,  but a thrifty budget, and so the cute and cottony dresses from Anthropologie or Boden are beyond my reach. I had sewed many flannel baby blankets over the years but was always intimidated by clothing or things involving the dreaded zipper foot. Many blogs like Film in the Fridge and Made by Rae helped me get over these fears. Once the Washi dress pattern came out I was done for... I'm in the middle of sewing my FIFTH (yes you read that right 5th) one!! I love the confidence this pattern has given me, and can't wait to try out other patterns that my new found skills can conquer!

Since I've been essentially journaling all my sewing and knitting adventures for a while now, and boring my friends and family with photos on FB, I thought maybe it was time to put them up on a blog and bore anyone else who was interested too! I don't know if this attempt at blogging will take, so let's see how it goes!