Thursday, March 20, 2014

First Hand Spun Sweater

When I started spinning last year, I never imagined that I would spin enough to make a sweater - well I found a pattern that only needed a small amount of yarn!

The pattern (really a 'recipe') is 'Sassymetrical' by Gay Schiff, available for free on her blog.

This is how the sweater started-

Over 200 grams of 50% Merino/25% Bamboo/25% Silk fibre from SweetGeorgia Yarns - it was the February 2014 Fibre Club selection, inspired by the Pantone colour of the year 'Radiant Orchid'.

It was a dream to spin.

I spun a 2 ply yarn, in about a fingering/sport weight. 

The sweater is knit from the top down, so I was able to try it on I knitted and use all the yarn to make it a nice length.
Here is the link for my project page on Ravelry if you are interested in more details on how I made the sweater.

This was a really fun project to make!

I had to add a picture of my favourite backyard visitor.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

International Quilting Day

To celebrate this lovely day, I did some quilting!
My husband pointed out that it wasn't much different than any other day!

I made a little table runner using a ruler that I borrowed from my sister. The table runner is 12" x 26", the triangles are 6" high.

The ruler is called "'S' Curve - One Tool - Many Designs", but I could only find a couple of different pictures of quilts made with it. It is an interesting shape and was very easy to use.

I cut out 14 triangles, each is a different fabric. To cut out the fabric I used the small rotary cutter. I also put a layer of kitchen plastic wrap on the back of the ruler to make it less slippery.

I pieced the triangles into two rows.

I didn't use pins when I was joining triangles, I just lined up the edges as I stitched.

I pressed all the seams open.

I did pin the points together when I joined the two rows.

These triangles would also make a nice kaleidoscope pattern. I have also seen it used to make diamonds by using two triangles of the same fabric side by side.

I used cotton batting, and free motion quilted an allover meander - I just wanted something simple and flat.

For the bias binding I used a 15" square of fabric, and this method. I made the binding 2.5" wide.

I just use a rotary cutter to cut along the lines of the binding.

The finished table runner on the 'coffee table' in the family room.

We were surprised to see two squirrels at the bird feeder this week (we never see squirrels).

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Knitted Tea Cosy

This past week I knitted a tea cosy!
Like my family doesn't think I am crazy already - my son asked why there was knitting on the teapot!

The pattern is a free pattern on Ravelry, called Fairy Cake Tea Cosy by Frankie Brown. The pattern is extremely well written and easy to follow; it is written for two sizes, I made the large one. The only change that I made was that I knitted the top section in the round because I didn't want to have to sew a seam.

This project started out as 100grams of natural wool roving (Knit Picks Bare Roving, it was the first time I have used it, and I would buy it again).

I dyed about two thirds into two different colours, using acid dyes and steaming.

I spun it into a thick-and-thin, singles yarn, because I wanted a really rustic, 'homespun' look. I used a  'quick-and-dirty' short backwards draw - it took less than an hour to spin the three skeins.

I washed the skeins in very hot water to set the twist, and rinsed them in cold water to felt them slightly. It was fun to spin, and the yarn was nice to knit with.
Spinning - because knitting isn't weird enough!

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Quilt Bucket-List & Knitting

Thank-you so much for all the kind comments on my Anniversary Quilt!!! I tend to forget how wonderful blogging can be!

As a word of encouragement, that quilt was much easier to make than I thought it would be. I kept putting it off until the last moment, and now I don't know why. I thought there would have to be lots of planning, marking, unpicking, struggling..., but really it was lighter than a pieced quilt top, I didn't have the restraint of seam lines to quilt within, I didn't break needles on bulky seams, I had the freedom to quilt the designs I wanted to, where I wanted to.... It was really a joy to quilt, it came out better than I anticipated, and it made all the 'practice' quilting I have been doing the past few years worth it. A whole cloth quilt was on my Bucket-List of quilts to make, and I am glad to have checked it off.

It looks like this outside my windows, so I did take the whole cloth quilt off my bed since it was just too much 'white'! I'll save it for summer.

I put the log cabin quilt back on my bed. A Log Cabin quilt was the first quilt on my Bucket List of quilts, I had been wanting to make one since I first started quilting seriously 7 years ago. It took me a while to collect a good assortment of light and dark fabrics to be able to make it (these are mostly reproduction fabrics). I made this one last year, and it is probably my favourite quilt. I made it for my son's room, but it looked better in mine, and I found a better one for him in my stash of quilts.
The next quilt on my bucket list is a double wedding ring quilt, I have the fabric and I am ready to go! What's on your Bucket List of Quilts?

Last month I also did some spinning and knitting.

I bought a 'fibre of the month' subscription from SweetGeorgia Yarns, and this was the January fibre (BFL and silk).

I divided the fibre into the different colours,

and spun it gradationally,

into this skein.

I knit a scarf/shawl with it. Although I just made it to the yellow, I am glad that I didn't make it any bigger, it is 2.3m/95" long and 40cm/16" wide. The pattern is Heaven Scent by Boo Knits, more details can be found here.

This is another Boo Knits shawl that I made last month -

The pattern is Sweet Dreams, it was a surprisingly easy knit, more details here.

It is made with lace weight yarn (Knit Picks Shadow), and it is the first time that I have knitted with beads (Matsuno Dyna-Mites 8/0) - easier than I thought it would be too....hmmm......

This next one I started spinning at the end of the month-

This is the February fibre (merino, silk and bamboo).

I spun it into a DK weight, 2ply yarn. It is the first time I have tried something with bamboo. It is lovely, soft and silky,

and knitting up beautifully. I am hoping to have enough to make my first hand spun sweater. It is top down, with short sleeves (might be very cropped if I run out of yarn!).
I joined the fibre of the month to get different colours than I normally dye, and these two have definitely been out of 'my box', I look forward to this month's (it is the last month of the subscription).

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day!
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