Thursday, March 24, 2016

Oh, The Productive Life

 I have been sewing in the studio!!  Pat Sloan offered this little flower in a pot pattern and I decided it would make a great mug rug for the craft table I have recently set up in the great room.  I drew out all the pieces on my fusible and then spent some time picking out fabrics.  I even ironed them all on the wrong side of the fabric, something that does not always happen even though that is the right thing to do.  Just as I finished with the iron I realized that the six little pieces were not supposed to be leaves but petals.  The original plan was for a yellow flower.  Opps!!  Anyway, I now am calling this an art piece.

I quilted the piece using a quilting stitch on my domestic machine: I think it really looks more like chicken tracks than anything else.

 I used a small blanket stitch for the applique and I think it turned out pretty good.  I did fill in between the petals: I will show that in the next post as I still need to put a binding on it.  Anyway, I now think this is going to be a gift so I am going to start another one for me. 

I made one other thing this week, well really 6 other things.  It was DH's 75th birthday Tuesday.  He has always loved apricot pies, something it is difficult to find.  And he married a woman who is not a pie baker.  But for the last few months I have become obsessed with cooking shows.  I stopped cooking when I got sick and haven't even tried to pick it up again but Tuesday I made apricot turnovers.  Eric had to teach that morning so I pulled out my packaged pie rounds, rolled them out and cut pretty large circles in them.  I cooked the apricots (canned) with artificial sweetener, water, and a little cinnamon.  After I folded the rounds over the apricots and crimped the edges I coated them with some butter (no eggs in the house for an egg wash) an baked them in a 350 oven for 11 minutes.  I'm told they are very good and they must be OK as they are disappearing.  I wanted to make something that was easy to handle and/or even to eat on the way to work.  And they made a real surprise for a man who has really been a rock for me as I attempted to work my way back to a somewhat normal life.

I got an early start to my day today as we had an electrician come to fix the outlets that were not conducting electricity.  We have a modular home and I had suggested that the electric plug between the two modules had come unplugged (this had happened before).  My sweet hubby disagreed with me but he was not here when the electrician came so I sent him under the house to see if that was it.  AND I WAS RIGHT, again.  The electrician was here for only 13 minutes.  I texted sweet hubby to tell him the outcome: he texted back "don't you get tired of always being right?"  Never.    Gari  

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Busy But Not Overly Productive

This is how far I have gotten on Gentle Rain.  I have the bottom band (32 rows, a garter stitch band (8 rows) and the beginning of the body of the shell (maybe 2”) of SS knitting.  I will be doing this for about 9” before I get to the beginning of the arm holes.  I am doing  some decreasing to make a fitted waist area (4 rows per decrease).  Anyway, I am on my way up, when I get a chance to work on it.

Monday we took my HQ 16 to be serviced, first time in the 10 years I have had it.  Just prior to my getting sick last Spring it started cutting the thread about every 20 – 30 stitches.  I was 3/4 of the way through a small lap quilt and got pretty frustrated.  About that same time I found that I couldn’t stand for very long so even taking the bobbin out and cleaning the area was difficult.  Then I just found myself spending my days sitting in the living room and eventually in the hospital and bedridden.

Over the past couple of months my strength has begun to come back, I can walk better and I think my standing strength will eventually return.  So I decided I better get that quilting machine up and running as I have some tops that need quilting, some blocks that need putting together and some ideas than need to be showing up in fabric.  And, of course, I have a studio that really needs to be cleaned up, especially the cutting table and ironing board.

Oh, and I forgot that Wednesday I got a call that the HQ was cleaned and oiled and stitching so she was ready to come home.  It is a 180 mile round trip each time but well worth it.  My machine is now back on the rails and all I have to do is plug in the stitch regulator and reattach the bottom of the quilt and I think I will be ready to finish that little quilt.  I do need to thank our son in law who came over both times to help carry the machine from studio to car and then from car to studio.  

In addition to quilting, I hope, I need to find something I can make and finish before the end of the month.  I didn’t finish anything last month and nothing looks like it will be finished this month unless I get to it.  I think I am going to get back to doing some machine embroidery.  I have several shirts that need embellishing, maybe even with applique.  Oh, the ideas that are buzzing around in my head. 

Our weekend will again be graced by our oldest son and his wife.  They have been coming to see us monthly ever since I got sick.  Initially they came to see how I was doing but now I think they come just because they like us.  They arrive on Friday night and leave on Saturday afternoon: they have major responsibilities at their church so they have to be there every Sunday.  And they drive 500+ miles monthly for these visits.  You know that makes us very grateful.  So we will be having a wonderful weekend, how about you?  Gari

Linking with Patchwork Times.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Gentle Rain Shell

 I have started a new project.  It is going to be a shell and I have already knit the first 16 rows.
 This shows the first 32 rows plus a garter stitch band.  I really do have the holes but my knitting is compressed because I am once again doing the front and back at the same time. 

                                                   I will work both until I get to the neckline and then I will have to work each separately.  But I have a while to go before I get to that. 
This is the yarn I bought.  It is so soft.  And it is quite "nubby" with a lot of different thicknesses.  I think this is going to make a very interesting sweater.
I am showing the label because I would like to know what this yarn is made of and I don't read German.  Any help would be appreciated.

This project is going to be a studio project because at least while I am knitting the last 16 rows of this band, where I have to do a lot of counting and I need to not have dogs jumping on my lap.  After this I have the garter rows and then flat stitches until the neck.  There is a little shaping but I am not concerned about that part so it may be brought back to the house and evening knitting.  I guess we will just have to see how it goes.

And now I am off to clean off my craft table so I can learn how to use a new toy.  When I have mastered it, insert laughter here, I will review it here.

Have a great weekend.  We will be visiting with our grandson, his wife, and their terrific son, one of our great grandchildren.  Should be lots of fun!   Gari