Sunday, October 19, 2014

Fall events

Fall is extra busy this year. Tennis season is over.  Senior pictures. Done!

Cap and gown ordered.

While Zach was having his photos taken, I snapped a few photos myself. Here are my favorites. 

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Neon Ribbed Socks

Happy Feet!
I have slowly been finishing up my socks. I've actually had them finished for a few weeks except for the grafting the toes closed with the Kitchner stitch and weaving in the loose ends. I wore them to Zach's tennis match on Friday (yesterday). Good thing I had some new socks; it was cold outside!

Oh, that turned out a little blurry but isn't this yarn amazing?!
It's called Manos del Uruguay Alegria and I got it "For Yarn's Sake" in Beaverton, Oregon.
I snapped this photo at my local yarn shop. They always have cute fabric on the table in the shop.
The pattern for these socks is called "Ribbed Socks for Bigger Feet" by Susan B. Anderson (the pattern is FREE).  They are for adult sized feet, as opposed to child size feet... not BIG feet per se.  The pattern makes the best fitting sock since the sock leg and the top of the foot is all knit in k3 p1 ribbing. You can find a CHILD sized version of this pattern HERE.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Mini-Mittens: My FIRST Knitting Class


What fun! On September 27, 2014, I taught my very first knitting class!  I had six participants in my Mini-mitten class. I think the participants had a good time and learned what they hoped to learn.  Truth be told, this being my first teaching experience like this, I learned a lot as well. 

Would you like to see what we made?

Above you see Mrs. C's mini-mitten knit in fingering weight yarn.
This is yarn she had left over from a pair of socks she had knit a number of years ago. 

Above:  Mrs. B knit her mini-mitten in Berroco Comfort DK.  She knit a seed stitch cuff instead of a k1 p1 ribbed cuff and it looks super cute and feminine.  After the class, Mrs. B knit up a second mitten and sent me these two adorable photos of her handy work.

Above:  Mrs. G also knit her mini-mitten in Berroco Comfort DK. 
I love the little flecks of color in this yarn.

Above:  Mrs. C knit her mini-mitten in a hot pink fingering weight yarn. I love how her mitten turned out; the thumb is especially nicely shaped I think.

Above:  Mrs. F knit her mini-mitten in Plymouth Encore worsted weight yarn.  This lady is a perfectionist and made a super cute and tidy mitten. She even turned her mitten inside out to work in all the loose ends. 
Above:  Mrs. S knit her mini-mitten in Plymouth Diversity.
Mrs S. had started off her mittens with a dark purple yarn with dark colored double pointed needles and it was difficult to see her stitches well. She opted for this lighter colored yarn that I brought to the class which was ironic because this yarn was leftover from a pair of socks I knit for Mrs. S.

After the class, Mrs. S finished up a second mitten and sent me a photo of her beautiful mittens (below).
For the class, I brought some apple cider with a cinnamon stick; it was simmering in a Crock Pot while we knit.  When folks took breaks, they could have a nice cup of hot cider. I also brought some Vegan Molasses Crinkles and some store bought cookies.  It was a really fun time. After the class, Mrs. S and I went out for lunch.  We talked about the class; what was good, what could be improved, what would make the class better.  I appreciated her giving me feed back like this so I can improve on my teaching skills. If you interested in make mini-mittens, here are some pattern links.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Yarn bowl and socks

My good friend, Mrs. W, has been painting ceramics for years. She's gifted me lots of cool things since I've known her, usually at Christmastime.  In exchange, I've give her a number of hand knit items. I drive by the local ceramics shop (Hobby Hut) when I drive to my local yarn shop (The Yarn Shop at Words of Life).  Sometimes I stop at the ceramics shop when I see Mrs. W's car there.  A few weeks back, I stopped in to say hello and you'll never guess that I saw sitting on the shelves?
Yarn bowls.  
Ready to be painted.
I needed to do that!
So we made a day of it. We painted in the morning, took a break for lunch at our favorite lunch spot (MoMo's Japanese Restaurant), and then we went back to the ceramics shop to paint a bit more.
I was totally lost when it came to selecting paints, finishes, and techniques for my project.  But Mrs. W and the shop's owner helped me out.  I am sure I am using the wrong terminology for things, but I painted on three coats of a "glaze" that is supposed to be a dark chocolate brown when fired.  I had to wait for each coat to dry before applying the next coat. After lunch, I applied paper punches.  The paper punches were made out of card stock and they reminded me of fancy cut outs that folks use in scrap booking.  Essentially, my paper punches were very detailed dragonflies (the bowl has five dragonflies on it).  We soaked the paper punches in water until they were rather pliable and, when applied to the surface of the bowl, they stuck.  Then I painted on three more layers of  a "glaze" which was supposed to be a rosy sort of color when fired.  Painting over the paper punches was a drag. They kept lifting and I was worried all the glaze was seeping under the paper punches, thus obscuring the cool design.   When the third layer of rosy colored glaze was dried, I had to remove the paper punches. This was kind of stressful, too. I was afraid I would lift the soggy paper punches and too much of the glaze would pull off with the stencil and ruin my project.  Once the paper punches were lifted away, I could see some of the imperfections and I could scrape away some of the rosy glaze that had seeped under the paper punches.  I was told I had to wait for the project to completely dry before it could be fired.  I had to wait about a week to go back and pick up my yarn bowl. 

So I kept knitting on this pair of socks while I waited and a week later, Mrs. W sent me a text to tell me that my yarn bowl was done.  I sure love the way it turned out.  I was so surprised how the rosy colored glaze "moved" and the dragonfly designs look even more delicate.  I can see why Mrs. W loves ceramics so much.  I don't need another hobby but painting ceramics is a lot fun.  It's kind of like Christmas morning when you drive down to the ceramics shop and see what magic happened in the kiln.

As for the socks, these are my indulgent souvenir yarn socks.  Manos del Uruguay Alegria yarn from a shop in Beaverton, Oregon, called "For Yarn's Sake".  The colorway is Locura Flou.  This is what then yarn looked like when I bought it. 

Interesting to see how it knits up.  The pattern I am knitting is one of my favorites for socks.  Socks for Bigger Feet by Susan B. Anderson on 2.50 mm needles.  This is a great fitting sock since it's mostly ribbing.  I am working on the heel flap on sock #2 right now.  I'll post some photos when I am all done. 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Transfix! Complete!

Yarn:  Berroco Boboli Lace (a DK weight yarn)
Pattern link can be found HERE.

Sometimes it's really fun to make an easy project using the yarn recommended in the pattern. No guess work; this pattern and this yarn are a perfect match!  The yarn and the pattern are both from Berroco.  The pattern calls for using two balls of Berroco Boboli Lace and casting on 60 stitches on US Size 7 needles. I used just one ball of yarn and cast on only 30 stitches.  I wanted a narrower scarf.  My scarf is plenty wide and plenty long.   It took me about a month to complete this simply because I am not find enough time to knit lately.  I do love how this turned out.

Monday, August 25, 2014


I Spy... a blue heart!

I-Spy... zebra!

I-Spy an ice cream cone? Do you?

I-Spy a ruler and a clock!

I-Spy a dinosaur bone!

I-Spy a racecar!

I-Spy a seahorse.  Do you?

A little "hook & loop" tape keeps it all together.

The other day, I stumbled across a fun looking sewing project on Facebook, a fabric I-Spy book.  The tutorial is found HERE at Fish Sticks Designs.  I immediately dove into my stash of fabric scraps and fat quarters and went crazy.  I made enough squares to make two similar books but have completed just one book so far. As I was making the squares, I got more and more creative with the piecing. I did not have to purchase any fabric for the project; however, I did purchase a 6 1/2 x 6 1/2 hard plastic square so I could cut out the finished squares to precise measurements with my rotary cutter.  Also, in case you are wondering, there is a layer of fusible fleece sandwiched between the book front and back sides. 

When I was done with my book, I was so tickled. I truly believe is the most fun I have ever made making a sewing project.  With a project like this, you are only limited by your imagination.  Endless possibilities!  I have so many ideas for other books. I am sure this will not be the last fabric book you see here.

Check out the Fish Sticks Designs blog/website for more amazing sewing inspiration!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Crocheted Ruffle Scarves: Red Heart Boutique Sashay Scarves

Over the past few weeks, I've whipped up a few ruffle scarves to add to my Etsy shop.  I love crocheting these scarves; I can make one in an evening.  These novelty yarns are so pretty and colorful.  I had a hard time taking nice photos.

The top two scarves are Red Heart Boutique Sashay "Boho" and the third scarf is Red Heart Boutique Sashay "Sequins".  The top two scarves have quite a bit of metallic gold thread along the ruffle border as well as lots of very tiny gold sequins.  The last scarf just last little purple sequins along the border.  You can't see the sequins very well in the photos, but they add a lot of shimmer.   I really love the "Boho" line. It's so new, I am not even seeing it on Ravelry yet. 

Fun!  These would make really great gifts. I don't care to wear ruffles myself but I always think these scarves look great on ladies.  I wish I could pull off ruffles.