Friday, August 29, 2008

Knitting projects and flowers

It's hot here again! Today I went down to Kellyville and helped (a little bit--I didn't do much!) with shearing some sheep. Mostly I stood around and watched Danny, the shearer work, but I did open and close a gate and write notes on cards that were slipped into the bags of wool. I was dripping sweat by the time I had to leave to pick up Ryan at school. It was fun though!


We grew some Morning Glory plants from seed and they're very happy now:

Pretty, huh? Be sure to click to embiggen.


I've had a rash of finishing things around here, which is both good and bad.

Good, because I'm finishing things. Not always a common occurrence around here, as my DH can attest.

Bad because then I want to cast on for 20 new projects, which is totally justified because hey, I finished one!

Here's Gillian's flower Wallaby sweater, although it still needs a zipper.

She picked the colors and she loves it! Yay!

Here's the start of a top-down raglan for me. I started it a while back, like probably 6 months ago, and didn't pick it up again until last night. The yarn is Bernat Denim Style and so far I like it. It holds up fairly well to frogging, since this is the second time it's been used. It was about 1/2 of a sweater that was a total failure, so I ripped it out. What a cathartic experience that was!

Here's the progress as of last night:

Not much, but I'll get there.

Here's a knitted, beaded ornament cover. Fairly quick to make once I figured out what the pattern meant. Nothing like reading stuff that isn't there!


Thank you all for the wonderful comments on my shawl! We analyzed it at Panera Wednesday night and if I decide to refine and write up a pattern, there will be a few changes that should improve it.


Have a safe and happy Labor Day weekend!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Pictures of various things

In my last few posts I'd promised pics, and here they are.

First up, some pics of the shoulder shawl on me:

It's pulled a little too much across the shoulders in the pictures, but it's quite pretty in person.

I'm wearing it over my new Ravelry t-shirt, the "daily dose of fiber" one.

I'd hoped it would end up being a slight bit bigger, but when I unpinned it after blocking it bounced back quite a lot. That happened with the same yarn (KnitPicks fingering-weight Bare) that I used for my Diamond Fantasy.


Here are two lapel pins I picked up this weekend:

The one on the left is from the Ravelympics, and the one on the right is from the Creating Keepsakes scrapbooking conference I went to Saturday.

Here are the three layouts from the class, Scheming Around, on Saturday:

As always, click to embiggen.

It's a little different style than I normally use, and I'm not sure I really like it. I'll have to look at them a few more times before I decide. It was fun to try something new though!


I've got a nasty headcold, but at least I'm the last one in the family to get it.

Have a great week!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Finishing Ravelympics projects

Today I spent most of the day at the scrapbook convention and had a GREAT time! I got three pages done, did one make-and-take (for Marci), and purchased materials from S.E.I. to make a fun chipboard coaster mini book. I didn't have time to actually make it there, but Marci's friend Diane made one for her so I can always borrow it to have a look. (Right, Marci?)

Tomorrow I should be able to take pictures of the layouts I got done, and hopefully I'll get them posted here. I'll blog more about what we did all day, too.


I managed to get my two remaining Ravelympics projects done today!

I made a "My So Called Cowl" for the Cowl Jump:

The yarn is some from my Aunt Louise, and it's just LUSCIOUS. I'd been wanting to find the perfect project for this yarn, and this was it! I think it shows off the variegation to perfection.

My third (and final) project for the Ravelympics is in the Shawl Relay event. I started designing this and swatching on the 7th, and I just finished it this evening. Here it is, blocking:

I put it on right after I finished the bind off, and I'm totally in love with it. Last week I wasn't all that thrilled with it, but I'm really pleased with it now. I'll probably dye it in a month or two, once I decide on a color.


Earlier this month I finished my spinning for the July Spin-A-Long on the Ravelry group Spinner Central, and I finally got a decent picture:

It's the top yarn, a monochrome superwash merino. It's two plies, sport weight, 3.8 ounces and I got 367 yards.


I hope that you all have had as wonderful a day as I have!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Scrapbook Convention

This morning Marci and I went to the scrapbooking convention here in Tulsa.

What fun!!

Tomorrow we'll be helping out in the door prize booth, so we got some neat things out of the deal. We had a $30 voucher at the Creating Keepsakes booth, and I used it to get a pair of scissors, two packages of adhesive, a bag, and a lapel pin. We also got a package of 12" x 12" cardstock for registering early online.

We had about an hour and a half to shop and we only managed to see about 1/3 of the booths! I picked up some really cool templates at one booth, and Ryan and I made one quickly:

I got one template to do the big flower he's holding, and two smaller (8.5" x 11" roughly) ones that have five or six designs each. It's fun!

I also got my t-shirt and pin that I ordered from Ravelry. Here's all the loot together:

Click to embiggen! (It's hard to see the templates if you don't.)

The circle template is for our class tomorrow morning. I'm looking forward to it!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Totally gobsmacked!

I got word this morning that someone (anonymously) has paid for my workshop fee for the upcoming Sally Melville workshop!!

I'm so thrilled I can hardly stand it. If that person reads my blog, thank you so much!

The workshop is offered through K.N.I.T. Guild, the Tulsa knitting guild, and will be October 18 and 19.

Sally Melville has written some very cool knitting books, and I've got three of them (or I will once my sister gives me her copy of The Knit Stitch that she doesn't want).


Today I finished rigging my indoor quilt stand so I could take a picture of my latest customer quilt. It's a beautiful quilt, and I love the colors. She said the pattern was originally for jelly rolls, but she just used her stash instead. I think she did a fabulous job!

Click on the pictures to make them bigger. [I might have to start using "embiggen" instead of "make them bigger" just for the heck of it.]


Ryan wanted to take some pictures of his eyes, so here's what we came up with:

The silly kid loves to make faces for pictures.


The kids both started school last week and we did the usual picture with backpacks:

So far they both love school which is wonderful. I hope that continues for a long time!


I got a package in the mail on Friday from my Aunt Louise, with some wonderful necklaces and a pair of earrings inside. She makes really neat beaded jewelry and I have a great time wearing it.

Unfortunately we didn't get a chance to see each other when she was in Idaho this summer. Next year we'll have to plan a bit better! Too many things happened at once and it seems like the summer just flew by. I have to admit that I'm really enjoying my 2.5 hours to myself each weekday morning though.


Thank you for all the compliments on my Rose of England shawl. It means a lot that so many of you have left comments.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Rose of England blocked!

I finally got the Rose of England shawl blocked and photographed!

Be sure to click on the pics to see details.

I can't get the color quite right—it's a little more magenta and less red. You can get the idea though!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Ravelympics and web site down

This is another catch-up post, although it's not going to be a complete catch up.

To start, Ravelympics is in full swing (knitting during the Olympics, organized through Ravelry) and as usual I'm rather overcommited. I decided I'd go for the Cowl Jump, Handspun Heptathlon, and the Shawl Relay. I finished the Handspun Heptathlon, although I'm far from thrilled with the finished product.

I looks neat, but it's horribly, horribly scratchy. It's a wool/mohair blend and I really should've known better. I even find Kidsilk Haze hard to wear, and this isn't anywhere near as soft as kid mohair. I didn't end up using the whole 4 oz as I just wasn't interested in doing more of this. I probably used about 3.5 ounces of it, and when I ran out of the thinner ply (for the second time) I decided I was done with that project.

I have no idea what I'll use it for since I don't want it anywhere near my skin. Any ideas?


For the Shawl Relay I'm designing a shawl, and while I'm not 100% in love with it, I'm pretty happy. I'd like it better in a lace-weight yarn I think, but that's not something I can do during the Olympic time parameter with all the other stuff I've got going.

Here's my progress as of yesterday:

I had it pinned out and steamed it to take some measurements, to figure out how much farther I want to continue that last lace pattern before doing something different. I want it to go down just barely past my elbows and I'm getting close.

Then I have to figure out the border. I want to do a knitted-on edging because I don't like the way other ones flip. I'm tempted to go with a garter border to match the edges, but I'd like to do something prettier than that. We'll see--I have a day or so to decide.


At this point I have to confess to being a complete idiot.

I let my domain name expire.


Two years ago, the last time this happened, I was told to change the domain host but that I couldn't do it within two months (I think) of then and within two months of it expiring. Two months is a loooong time for me, and when I finally did remember, I got partway through the process, got confused, got interrupted (multiple times--I have young children and they were even younger then), and forgot.

Last night I went to check something on my site and it did not take me to my site and I panicked a little bit.

Hopefully I can get it straightened out soon and the site will be back up. I've had the darn thing for six years now, but now there's a quilt shop called Pieceful Stitches that started up a little while ago, so hopefully they don't grab it before I can do something to get it back. [No, I'm not affiliated in any way with them, and they have nothing to do with my business or line of patterns.]


Last night I pulled yarn out of my wonderful yarn box that Greg built for me (and I LOVE LOVE LOVE) and photographed it to put in my stash on Ravelry. It was kind of depressing in some ways, but I'm trying to get a handle on what I've got since most of it is stored out of eyesight. I sure have some lovely yarns! They just need to become lovely knitted items now.


Have a wonderful Sunday, everyone!

Friday, August 08, 2008

It's Almost Time for School....

School starts on Wednesday and I can't wait!! Isn't that horrible? My little boy is starting pre-kindergarten and I am really, really looking forward to a whole 2.5 hours ALL TO MYSELF every week day!

It seems like I haven't gotten a whole lot done in the 20+ days since I've blogged (sorry about that, Mom!) but I guess I have. One of the things I did was to move my considerable paperback book collection from the living room to the wonderful bookcase in the dressing area. I moved my knitting and quilting books into the living room instead, and I'm happier with the arrangement so far.


I managed to finish my Concentric Squares quilt a couple of weeks ago.

I started this quilt in 2002 (I think), at a workshop with Mary Ellen Hopkins. It was a fabulous weekend, full of sewing and laughing. I think this might be my first finished quilt from that workshop. How pathetic is that?!? I have a bad habit of wanting to make everything queen size, but I think I'm pretty much over that now. Too many quilts in the house!


Before we left for Idaho I ordered 4 onces of super-wash merino roving, and I managed to finish it earlier this week.

The final weight was 3.8 ounces and I got 367 yards from it. That put it solidly in the sport weight range which is a little disappointing because I was shooting for fingering-weight yarn, but that's all right. It's still beautiful.

Unfortunately it's not right for the project I had in mind so I'll have to spin up something else instead. (Ow, ow, twist my arm! LOL!)


I lost my mind and signed up for not one, not two, but THREE projects for the Ravelympics that started this morning. One hand spinning project, one shawl project, and one cowl project. The shawl project is about 2/3 designed so far, and I managed to swatch last night. (Swatching is considered "training" and I should've been training and designing for this project last week instead of last night.)

Here's my (kind of out of focus) swatch:

I'm basing it off the wonderful Faroese-style shawls in Myrna Stahman's book, Stahman's Shawls and Scarves.


I'm making progress on my Pay it Forward projects, but I'm not going to give any more details until things are done and received. I just want to let my PIF people know that I haven't forgotten you!


Our garden project has done wonderfully!

We started with this:

And now (or last week, actually) we have this:

The birdhouse gourd vine is going crazy, and actually has four good-sized gourds right now.

In the front yard, we actually had a recognizable chrysalis from a Black Swallowtail butterfly!

We planted parsley last year with the hopes of attracting that type of butterfly and we got to watch numerous crops of caterpillars decimate the parsley. It came back every time and survived the winter, so we've had a good time watching them again. Be sure to click on the picture and you can see the filament holding the chrysalis in place.

One of this summer's projects was redoing the front planting bed and adding an island, and we're mostly done! Here's how it looks now:

I'm so thrilled! It makes me really happy to look at it. We put in a red flowering Dogwood so it should be pretty spectacular in the next few years.


I had a couple of more things I wanted to post about but I think I'm done for now (and I'll bet you are, too!).

I'm going to try to be better about posting more frequently. Now if only I had 20 more hours in a day I might get everything done that I want!

Have a great weekend, everyone!