Sunday, January 25, 2015

BOMs Design Wall

Block 1I played with fabric last week.  During the first week of January it seemed like there were so many new BOMs starting.  And I downloaded several first blocks but right now I am only working on two.  This block is the first of the 2015 BOM by Morning Glory Designs:  the quilt is called Happy Days.
It was so much fun to again be searching through my fabric to put this one together.  My plan is to do all of the applique from stash: I did shop for the background fabric so I did have a little bit of fabric shopping therapy.

stitchesDo you have trouble deciding what stitch to use for machine applique.  This is such a fancy design that I had difficulty deciding about using the blanket stitch, fearing it would make the piece look too “homespun”.  And then whether or not I would change colors for each piece.  In the end I did go with the blanket stitch and decided to use black for all the pieces.  I think it looks classy and am glad I went with this.

Block 1The second BOM I am doing is Ginger Bread Party by Fat Cat Patterns.  This  is the same designer who gave us my Funky Chickens quilt.  This one hasn’t be sewn down yet but I do think I am going to use different colored threads and maybe some fancy stitches. I’ll know better tomorrow when I sit down to begin.

Ginger Bread QuiltHere is a picture of what we will be putting on our Gingerbread men.  I would like to make each of them out of a different fabric so I will probably have to buy some fat quarters somewhere along in the year.

DH is going to be busy for the next month as he is directing the play Our Town for the community college where he still works (part time since his retirement 8 years ago).  Maybe this will give me more time to sew and knit and maybe even get back into my blog writing routine.   Gari

Linking with Patchwork Times: Design Walls from all over.  And with What A Hoot Quilts where you can see more BOMs in progress.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Happy Anniversary

It is hard to believe but this sweater is finally finished.  I had all the parts knit by the end of October but panicked when it came time to seam them together.  But last week I decided that it had to be completed as I wanted to wear it on our anniversary, which interestingly is today.


And since we have been having cold weather I decided I needed a cowl to go with the sweater. 


I still need to block these and then decide if I am going to put a closure on or not.



I paid a visit to my local yarn shop where the owner is beginning to dye her own yarn “exclusively” for her customers.  I found this skein of yarn and a pattern called something like “rib error.”  The funny thing is that this is not what it looked like so I guess this is a rib errors error.  Anyway I really like how this turned out.


So much so that I made a cowl to match the hat.

Of course all that meant that I was out of that yarn: what’s a knitter to do?


So I bought these two recently hand dyed skeins of yarn.  I said I wanted to knit bright socks so how’s this?



Well, and this is the yarn I decided to use to begin a new pair of socks (yes, I bought three different skeins). This is the milder of the three but I am working myself up to BRIGHT.



I need to get back to the short sleeved sweater but


I had started these socks before I bought the above yarn so I want to finish them first.



So what do cool people do to celebrate their 54th anniversary?  Yes, they go to see Paddington.  As I said, our anniversary is today but we celebrated yesterday.  Having given it some thought I decided that Saturday would mean a theater full of little children but Friday might not.  And I was so right.  The movie was great: we will get it again to see at home.  And afterward we did some antiquing, ate out and finished our day in the big city with a stop at Dunkin for coffee and, of course, donuts.


And now we are back to our daily lives and beginning our 55th year.  Yay!!       Gari
EDIT: 1/23/15
Since I only have one additional photo I decided to amend this post rather than write another. 

As you can see these socks have grown some this week.  I have been either sewing or gadding about more this week so there has been less knitting.  The orange socks have also grown some but not enough to take time for another picture.  I hope to have more next week.   Gari

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year

 Oops, somehow I forgot to write my blog for the last half of December.  I guess it is because DH has been on Christmas break and he has been making plans for us.  Once the Nutcracker was done he completed finals week and then we went to the movies, twice Christmas week seeing The Hobbit and Night at the Museum.    We enjoyed both, each for very different reasons.

Owl back packHere is one of the owls I got this Christmas, from DS#3 & DDIL.  It is a backpack but around here it is going to be a knitting bag.  I am enjoying it so much: I have it hanging on the lamp next to my living room chair.

IMG_3908The other owl I got is this one.  He is about 9” tall and has a battery operated light.  I currently have him sitting by the fireplace where I can see him while I am watching TV.  This one came from DD.  The fun came because she was able to spend Christmas Eve with us so got to see me open it.   With  3 of our 4 children living in different states this was the first time in a long time we had one with us for Christmas Eve.  We even made her pass out the gifts.  Winking smile

This is the picture of the rest of our gifts that I put on Facebook Christmas Day.  We really have some fun family members.

This week saw us back at the movie theater watching Into the Woods.  We had seen the stage version several years ago and I didn’t much care for it but the movie was GREAT.  Not only is it an interesting interpretation of 4 fairy tales but the music and voices were tremendous.  Now we will settle down for a few weeks but plan to see Cinderella for our anniversary in mid-January.  Funny how that keeps coming around.

better than half way  I did get this little afghan done but haven’t gotten a picture yet.  I’m still trying to decide if I want to put fringe on it or not.

2014-12-29 004And I have begun stitching the parts to my heavy cardigan together.  I have the sleeves attached and have half of one sewn together.  I plan to work more on it tomorrow morning cuz it has gotten quite chilly here so I want to begin wearing it.

The owner of our local yarn shop has begun dying yarn to sell in her shop.  Today I went to see some of her recent work but it was still damp so not yet ready for sale.  But while there I found a skein of some bulky she had died earlier so I bought it and have started a hat.

Now we just have to see if we can stay up until midnight (not likely).  We haven’t made it to midnight for several years and yet the New Year seems to come anyway.  So HAPPY NEW YEAR to one and all.   Gari

Friday, December 12, 2014

Hot Hook

better than half wayI am so excited.  My Tunisian crocheted afghan is a little more than half way done.   And it has gotten easier and easier: this means that I am going a little faster than when I first started.  Staci suggested stopping, when that larger section is done, to do a cross stitch name.  However, I can’t decide if I want to do a name or not so I will probably wait until I have the afghan done and blocked and by then maybe I will have decided what I want to do.


next projectAnd I have decided what my next knitting project is going to be.  This is the cowl Judy just showed.  I have found that my neck really likes being warm when I am out in the winter and this cowl pattern looks great and will provide me a terrific challenge (new stitch and cables).

I still have to get back to knitting on my short sleeved cardigan, right after the afghan is finished.

Gus' throwI have been doing some sewing.  I made this twin sized throw.  It took me over a year to find the red fabric so I was very excited to be getting this project donel

GI step 1And I did get some Step 1 blocks done for Grand Illusion.  I still have to make parts for many more of these but I think that I will devote this weekend to Step 2 (Step 3 comes out tomorrow so I don’t want to fall much more behind. 

Drosselmeyer returns (as he has every year since 1982) in Nutcracker performances Dec 11-14 in the Dixon Center on the LBWCC campus in Andalusia AL.   A great show as always!One of the reasons I think I will be able to get a lot done this weekend is that DH is again dancing in the Nutcracker: he is Drosselmeyer and does not really dance but since he has been doing this for over 35 years he does make an impression with his entrance: children remember him all year long and recognize him when they see him out and about.  They have already done a school children’s matinee and now have two evening performances as well as a Sunday matinee.  See why I will have some studio time?

I hope you will have time to work on your projects as well as checking out what others are accomplishing  over at Patchwork TimesGari

Sunday, December 7, 2014

A Little Cutting and Sewing

52 unitsGiven that I have done very little on the quilting front, I am very excited to have begun Bonnie Hunter’s Grand Illusion Mystery.  These are the beginning units.  I cut 2 1/2” strips with the GO, laid out the strips right sides together  and then cross cut with the Easy Angle Ruler.

GI unitsHere are 20 of the 52 units I completed.  My current plan is to make 140 of these units before completing the Broken Dishes units.  Of course I find that I can’t go on right now because I seem to not have the bright yellow fabric I knew I had laid out for this project.  I searched my fabric stash and seem to not have any bright yellow so I guess I will have to visit the three fabric shops that are close by.  And of course I already know that as soon as I buy more fabric I will find what I already have.  Sarcastic smile  Meanwhile I will finish the HSTs and cut the black squares so I can be ready to finish step 1.

And of course, I haven’t forgotten that step 2 came out Friday so if I have some time I will try to get started on that also.

I am almost to the halfway point in the Tunisian crocheted afghan and hope to have it done before the end of the month.

As you can see I have a pretty full plate that also includes  doing some embroidery for a couple of gift projects that will not be going to anyone soon and a quilt that has been on the frame since June and needs to be finished.

Whew, all that has tuckered me out so I think I will take a breather and knit a little on the sweater that I have ignored for the last week.  While I’m at that why don’t you click on over to Patchwork Times as see what other’s are up to.   Gari

Thursday, December 4, 2014

One Hook, Two Needles, and the Fun is On

IMG_3889Who is this?  Gari returning from the land of silence.  It seems that I wasn’t getting much done so there was nothing to write about.  Then I decided I better figure out a way to get on the stick and thus this picture was born. 

So, what is this? This is me crocheting.  I watched Staci’s video on the afghan stitch and remembered when I tried it many, many years ago.  I had written instructions and NEVER could figure out how to do it.  One viewing of the video and it was clear as glass.  So here is the beginning of a baby afghan.  I would be making a baby quilt but right now I can’t stand for long periods so cutting fabric and/or quilting is not happening here for a while.

I did finish the sleep socks DH asked me to knit him.

And they seem to be working, don’t they? 

And this is our nature study photo for today.  DH pointed out this perfect spider web made on the lip of a bucket.  Can you see it?

Here is a chot from a different angle.  I love the way the sun glinted in a perfect circle with the tiny spider as part of the circle.

I am going to see my doctor in January and then maybe we will find a way to fix my hips and I will be fully back in quilting business.  Meanwhile I am going to spend this weekend and next week trying to catch up on Bonnie Hunter’s Grand Illusion Mystery, perhaps a smaller version than hers.  Wish me luck.  Gari

Linking with Patchwork Times.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Needles Still Clicking

crop sweaterI am pleased to show my progress on the cropped sweater, which is not going to be cropped.  I have a long way to go to get to the bottom so I may be at this for quite a while.  I am looking at the sleeves to see if I can do the in the round rather than flat.  I’m still shying away from seaming.

I did sign up for a Craftsy class that has a lesson on seaming.  I have viewed it once and will be looking at it again next week so I can finish off my completed cardigan.  Those pieces have been hanging around for a few weeks now and really need to get together.

sleep socksMeanwhile I have been somewhat diverted by a new project, sleep socks requested by DH.  He has not asked for anything knitted so I was excited to be able to do these for him.  The pattern is from Very Pink.  I did make a change in the toes.   She called for the provisional cast on but I really like Judy’s Magic Cast on better.  I just can’t seem to do a good job with the provisional so I chose to do it differently.  The heels are done with short rowing.  Now all I have left to do is get the leg part long enough.  On my socks I like the leg to stop shortly after the ankle but DH wants a long leg so it is 2 x 2 rib for several more rows.  I should have these done before the next freeze hits here.

taco soupFor our below freezing evening this week I made  crock pot taco soup.  Every time I make it it is different according to what ingredients I have on hand and every time it turns out great.  And it was perfect on a 25F night.

white Christmas CactusAnd lastly my white Christmas Cactus is really blooming.  Last year I got nothing but this year it is covered by buds and this one open double flower.  So I guess we are already started decorating for Christmas.

Today I begin my 10 days of DH 24/7.  He is retired but continues to teach 3-5 classes a semester.  However they get Thanksgiving week off and then 3 weeks off around Christmas.  This means that we will be having a lot of 1 on 1 time:  whoopee!  I guess it’s that level of excitement that has kept us together for almost 54 years.

Have a wonderful weekend everybody and keep warm.  Gari

Linking with Patchwork Times.