Thursday, October 17, 2019

Still making

Not too much in the way  of finished stuff at the moment but I continue to knit, sew and bead.

I did make a Marcy Tilton shirt out of a white fabric and it's a pretty good 'go to' white shirt, because everyone needs a good white shirt, right?

Then there's this beautiful shawl which I did not make.  Every year at the Colorado Bead retreat artists donate pieces to be raffled off and the proceeds given to charity.  This year a beautiful shawl was donated by Melody Cross.  Exactly my color and with crystals in lilac shadow.  I was totally enamored and I put all my raffle tickets into that one bucket and.......I WON IT!  That's never happened to me, seriously, not ever have I won something like this that I wanted to badly.

Melody even included a shawl stick which she beaded to match. Pattern is Aello by 

Here I am modeling it over my Ranunculus, so you can see it was made for me!

I was gifted a sweet pouch at the Colorado Bead Retreat by Julie and it's my new favorite sock bag.  It carries everything I need to make socks which is good because I am on a quest to made the perfect sock.  Maybe pair five will be that.

I’m working on perfecting techniques and finding the one I like best. All top down with rolled cuff, pattern

How I Roll

by Mara Catherine Bryner.
64 stitches around on shorties, size 1, except for sock four which is on size 1.5. First one, stockinette heel flap, turned heel gusset and Kitchener toe. Sock two and three after thought heel and barnntoe. Sock four, slipped stitch heel flap and barn toe. I think I like fours heel flap and ones toe....sock five will try that combination.

This is the Celebration kit by Sherry Serafini which I bought in Colorado.  I've finished it now and it's perfect!

Progress continues on my Skylark Cardigan.  I've finished the back and two fronts and now I have cast on the sleeves which I will work simultaneously.  I want to wear this on an upcoming trip so I have some deadline knitting to do.

Happy Making to all my maker friends out there!  This weekend I'm off to assist at the Beaders Dream Retreat in San Diego.  

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Blogger app post

I decided to look into blogging on the iPad again since it’s been a couple of years, so I’m trying out a new app.

First up
A photo from my recent airstream travel, Emma wood state Beach. This is Gertrude, the airstream mascot that travels everywhere with us.
This is Willowkiss, a simple beaded pendant. You can find the tutorial here.
This is my new favorite shawl,smock It by Stephen West.
And this is my peace heart, metal work by friend Tracy Stanley.

Travel makes

Interestingly I find travel to be a very productive making time.  Especially this kind of long, leisurely airstream trip with short distances on the road and long stays in between.  It is so relaxing and I find lots of time to work on projects.  I do leave the sewing behind, so it’s knitting or beading that come along and I’ve done plenty of both.

I finished 

A Metal heart
A pair of earrings
A faerie locket
Two peace signs
One pair of socks and one sweater
A beaded tape measure kit 

I’ve worked on 

A shawl
A second sweater 

I bought yarn for one new sweater

This is the Faerie locket.  I'll teach it at the Colorado Bead Retreat next week.

This is a reversible peace sign.  It has been too long since I made one.   The embellishments are freeform but there are photo ideas in the pattern.  You can find the pattern here.

 I made a pair of earrings to go with my new Johnny Was top.  I had the opportunity to stop at Creative Castle in Newbury Park so I took my shirt in and found the perfect colors.

This is my Ranunculus by Midori Hirose in Kestrel linen by Quince and Co.  The color is  Hyacinth.  I am using a 16 inch needle for the sleeve.  I made it cropped as per the pattern but decided to order more yarn and make it longer.  If you're tempted, look for instructions on joining the two ends of Kestrel together.  There are several ways, but I found this you tube to be the best explanation.  I've used it and am very happy with the result.  No ends to weave in either!

Here's what the yoke looks like.  I'm happy with it, but I will make it longer.

Here's my tape measure.  Pattern is from Paula Gething of On a String and cab is from Touch of Glass.  Everyone needs a fancy tape measure, right?  Check out Paula's Etsy shop.  Many pretty 
things there!  

I also made this dress for this little cutie, grand daughter Bella.  She loves rainbows!  If you have someone who loves rainbows I purchased the fabric at Birch in Paso Robles.  They have an online presence as well at  Since I dono't trave with sewing machine, I finished this up before leaving, but I did deliver it on this trip!

This is a heart I made for my daughter Casey at her request.  Metal work is from Tracy Stanley.  If you're interested in one, pm her on facebook.

So now what am I doing?  I have a second sock cast on.  I'm working on fixing my Ranunculus, I'm knitting on my Skylark sweater, my Fintry shawl and beading a Geometric Beadwork piece.  Those should keep me busy for a bit.  I've also had a request for a pink hat for another wee one who appreciates a Grandma knit.

Monday, December 10, 2018

2018 Makes

Well I've been beading, sewing and knitting, and not blogging.  So let me show you what I've been up to.   We'll categorize the various disciplines....I am all over the map and never quite sure what I'll feel like working on for a given day.

This is a pendant that I made reversible, but truth is I don't love the coloration on the reverse side, so it's kind of a moot point.  It's in process here waiting to have chain added to the bottom.  I did finish it up when I got home.  I was beading this one while at the Albuquerque balloon fiesta this past October.

Here are a sweet pair of earrings using the same technique but 1/2 the square and much daintier.

Early November I made a trip to New York to surprise my friend Miriam at a class she was giving.  The two beautiful components on the bottom are her design and the appetite stone came from Beads by Blanche.  I bead embroidered it and finished off with some chain.  There are matching earrings with no photo handy at the moment.

I love these new Tierra Cast drops so I made up a pair of CRAW cubes using 4mm pearls and crystals suspended from chain.  Easy and elegant and I love how the drop adds such texture and drama.

Next on the earring front I used the hubble bezel from my Bella earrings and changed up the bottom with a CZ drop and some straight chain.

Finally on the earring front, inspired by a kit I bought from the great Sherry Serafini, and using what I learned, I made some bigger and bolder earrings.  I love wearing these ones.

Moving onto knitting.....While air streaming the Oregon  Coast this year I tucked into a sweet little yarn shop in Cannon Beach.  I purchased this Urth yarn and did a hitchhiker with an added row of eyelet, a great knit and so fun to wear.

Finishing that up I began work on Michele Hunters Building Lace with nine different lace panels.  I used Rylie, a linen alpaca blend which is so soft, and just the right amount of weightiness.  Over 60,000 stitches later, with the addition of size 6 beads on every panel, and seven weeks of time, this one is finished and has been worn.  It's a dream.  The pattern has a lot of information, so if you've wanted to try lace and were intimidated this is a great pattern.  Michele's website also has a lot of video assist tutorials for the various techniques you'll encounter.

With Building Lace off the needles it was time to cast on this years Project Peace Cowl from Christina Campbell.  I'm using Lazer Sheeps sport weight in Dove Grey from my LYS South Park Dry Goods.

Then there is sewing....This is a tunic by Tina Givens in a white linen, it's ok.....

Then another Tina Given jacket, called Peplone.  This time I had help.  I found myself a sewing teacher and am beginning to learn things to help make truly wearable garments.  The patch on back I did by collaging some royalty free images I liked and then printed them on organza. It's a product called ExtravOrganza by Jacquard.

It's pretty wearable and I like it a lot.

This is my prototype of a lined jacket Clare, by Closet Case.  It came out pretty good (with lot's of help).  I've since done one in a rose gold metallic brocade from Mood.  It's my best garment yet, but I don't have a decent photo.  I will share soon.

My last show and tell for sewing are these potholders.  The first one is from a panel of fabric from the ghoulies series, and the second is a set I made grand daughter Sam for her first grown up apartment.  My mother in law always made potholders until she became too ill and so I had a big potholder void. You just cannot purchase a potholder as good as one you can make.

So that is almost all my makes for the last half of the year in one place.  I also finished Mark's sweater vest, but alas no photos of that either.  Now off to finish up a new beaded pendant for teaching next year at the Heart of Texas Bead retreat in June next year.  Yes, I am retired.....but I still enjoy seeing my bead colleagues and students so I accept 2 to 4 engagements per year.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

A new gypsy jacket

When I left you last I had the idea to make a new gypsy jacket in white linen.  I cut it out and stitched together two days before leaving on a 12 day trip to Spain.

When I returned I had exactly 5 days to get ready for a 6 week trip in the airstream.....So what did I do, I sewed.

I am sad that I will be missing my machine, although there is knitting and beading to do, both more portable.

While in Madrid I bought a pretty watercolor fabric and also a sheer polka dot embroidered fabric.

This was my first gypsy jacket.  It was short and I decided to make this one longer.

My white linen was too plain and I wasn't liking it.  I did play around with printing out a design that I did using adobe draw on the iPad.  I printed it out on extravorganza a sheer printable fabric from Jacquard.  I liked the results but still thought it was too plain.
I decided to use the polka dot which meant cutting off the bottom piece and then reattaching it with the polka dot as an overlay.  I liked it but it still needed something, so I went off in search of lace trim.  I wasn't able to find a matching cream color that I had already used so I decided to go for contrast.    Truth be told I don't really love it, but it's stitched down good now and so I think it's a garment that I'll wear at times but not a favorite.  Sometimes I wish I were less impulsive.  Had I sat with the decision longer I think I may have appreciated the white linen and perhaps a different piece of artwork.  Or maybe I would have dyed it, but oh well I am impulsive and fickle!

All in All I created a wearable garment and my skills are improving.  This pattern is by Tina  Givens

And now there is packing to be done!  I have to wind yarn to finish Mark's vest.  The back is about 1/2 away from being done and fits perfectly.  I'm finding it an easy knit with beautiful yarn and it will serve me well while traveling to have a mindless knit on the needles.  Next up is Georgetown, a cardigan in a fuchsia donegal tweed.  I need to wind the yarn for that.   Susan at South Park Dry Goods took all my measurements and worked out the numbers so once the vest is done I'll be ready to start.  I also need to figure out how many and which beads to bring.  I have a project that needs inspiration, design and development by September.  I have some Gaudi photos I think I'll use for inspiration.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Sewing has become a passion!

I finished up my fair isle sleeved sweater and cast on a cashmere and leceister wool sweater on size one needles for Mark (it's a big birthday this year, and he loves sweater vests and I love him) and I also swatched for a Georgetown for myself.....but I'm sewing, a lot!

Seater is Enrobed from Amy Herzog's knit to flatter.  I' happy with it.  The vest is from Knitting for Men and is very simple but the wool is so luscious to work on.

I finished this Marcy Tilton shirt dress with buttonholes and everything!  I absolutely love it.

 Then I made napkins because they are fast and easy and who doesn't love a beautiful cloth napkin!

I take two coordinating fabrics (from my friend  JudiPatuti's selection at South Park Dry Goods) then I cut 18 1/2 inch squares sew with 1/4 inch seams, slightly rounded corners, 4 inch opening for turning, corners snipped off, turned and corners poked out, pressed and 1/4 inch top seam all around. Easy peasy and so rewarding.

Then I packed to get ready for a trip to Spain followed by a long time in the airstream and no sewing, so, I decided to cut out a Tina Givens Gypsy jacket and have another go at it.  This is the first gypsy.  It's ok, but the skirt is a bit poofy and the workmanship is not so good.

 This time I'm doing it in softened white linen with serged seams.  So now if you'll excuse me there is sewing to be done!

Monday, May 14, 2018

Saga of the well loved baby blanket or.....

What's a grandma to do?

Here's Layla four years ago as a newborn.  She's cozy in her very pink, chunky cotton Baby Chalice blanket by Karen Lauger.  It's my favorite newborn lace blanket and I've made it often.  It's easy enough for a beginner lace knitter and with chunky yarn it goes fast.  To say Layla became attached is an understatement....This is her go to blanket and is with her always!

Although somewhere along the line she deemed it too small for covering her and asked for Grandma to make her a bigger one....and Grandma did.  However as wonderfully purple and as big as it was, it just wasn't as good.  This one is Pine Forest baby blanket  by Ingrid Aartun Bøe and I love it as well for a semi-mindless knit.  

Layla's blanket was so well loved that it was getting rather thread bare.  Since I live 8 hours south of Layla we had to come up with a strategy to have her be separated from the with just enough left over yarn I made a scarf, same pattern, same yarn and sent it.  She was convinced while wearing her scarf to go with Mom to the post office and to send off the blanket to Gamma for fixing.  I did my best and returned it priority mail the next day......

But at this point the fibers are just worn out and for each repair a new hole emerges.  Four months from the date of this repair it became clear that we would be nearing disintegration if I didn't find a solution.

So I came up with a plan to stitch the knitting down to some flannel.  I pulled the broken fibers together as best I could and stitched around each of the leaf motifs.  I'll mail it tomorrow, I'm hoping the soft flannel and the fact she can still squish it up will make up for the fact her favorite blank-ie in the world has been altered!

 I am touched that I was able to make something so well loved!

..and she loves it...whew!

So happy that she has embraced the new design!