It's not easy being me!

Fibers, Fabrics, Knitting, Felting, Weaving, Spinning, Quilting, Beads, Soldering, Polymer Clay, Paper arts, Photography, Book-making, Scrapbooking, Stamping, Decorative Painting, Gardening, Cats and Santa Claus - And of course CHOCOLATE!

Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up. Pablo Picasso

June 23, 2016

Knitting again!!

Completely healed from De quervain's surgery and knitting without pain! Finishing up some UFOs and casting on new ones.  Whoot whoot!

Playing with Paintstiks. Had them for years and didn’t do a thing with them, but was at a quilt show and saw a demonstration again.  So, hauled them out and voila – having a ton of fun with them.

Another Sunday Funday with my creative pals! This time Dolls!

May 12, 2016

My little group of pals have started an event which we call Sunday Fun day.  We rotate to each others house where the hostess leads the rest of us in some sort of creative endeavor.  Our first day was hosted by Carol and we made wonderful Tiffany lamps! It was a Sunday Full of Fun indeed, we were completely enthralled with our creations and the day just flew by.

So, there are a lot of reasons why I haven't posted in the last few months, non the least of it has been that I have not knit much since April.  I had such pain in my wrist and thumb due to De Quervain's tenosynovitis.  After cortisone shots that worked well for 18 months, the next alternative was surgery.

The actual incision is small with just 2 small stitches, but the recovery is long.  I need to wear a brace for about 6 weeks which impairs my ability to knit fully.

So, I return to sewing.  I have always sewed and it is like a comfortable old friend. I have never made quilts even though I have done lots of pieced work for garments.  But a local quilt shop was doing a class on One Block Wonders and here is my version ready to be sewn together. 

More piecework and decorative stitching for a jacket. Ying and Yang.

Then, because I have bag lust, I had to make a few more bags.

Doing a little gardening…lettuce growing in a deck planter.  Yum!

Even tried to do a little knitting with a sock loom… hmmm, I don’t think I care for it.

My lap…

February 22, 2016

Never been accused of obsessiveness - so it is no shock that once I figured out how to make an interchangeable needle case I actually liked, I would keep making them!  I have been experimenting with other sizes for different types of needles and with different enclosures since vinyl ones I previously used have been hard to find.  I don't think this will be the end of this obsession!

Back to knitting - I finished this shawl.  We know I am not a fan of shawls, however, this is an interesting knit and I love how the yarn plays.

Started a cardigan in a class called Wainwright.  WAY outside of my repertoire, since I actually have to pay attention to the pattern.  I really wasn't interested in the pattern as much as taking a class, just to get out of the house and interact with other people during the month of February.  I am making it out of a Noro, so that helps me a good deal.  Interesting and fun so far. 

Since I was having so much fun with Noro, I decided to cast on the tunic from Myra Woods book.  I have always liked it mainly because of the color play.  I just went shopping in my own stash and was able to start.  Kind of fun. 

Mr Entertainment...

February 8, 2016

I think I am a freaking genius!  I made my own Interchangeable needle case and I Love It

We have to understand that I have been searching for the perfect case for years, I mean years! I have spent lots of money thinking I had found the thing only to find out it was not.  I have a stack of cases, and there was always something not quite right.  

Now lets understand that I have several interchangeable needle sets.  I have Knit Picks Options and Nickel sets, Knitters Pride Nova Cubics and Symfonie Rose Cubics,  Knit Pro Spectra and Flair, ChiaoGoo, HiyaHiya and Signatures.  YES, I know, I like interchangeables.  

But the only ones I really love are ChiaoGoo, HiyaHiyas and Signatures. The Signatures come with a case by Graces Cases and it works great.   But, I wanted a case for my ChiaoGoo and Hiya Hiyas and since they come in US2-US15 most cases will not handle the full sets and the cables.  Plus I have extra tips in some sizes and extra cables.  

The ticket was finding the zip lock insets at a quilting shop made for "The beatle bag by abbey lane."  I wanted nothing to do with this particular pattern, but the inserts were fantastic and available separately.  So, after several days of thinking each part through - Voila!

The outside has zippered pouches on BOTH sides that are BIG enough to actually hold stuff. 

One side holds the complete set of Hiya Hiya, and the other holds the ChiaoGoo.  The insets hold all the cables arranged by size. 

I am in love with this case and think  I need to make more only because I can, not because I need to - ha, ha. 

Here are the latest works - finished a couple of ponchos that have been on the needles for the longest time. 

This is a work in progress. 

Another small quilt: 

Today's double cuteness: 

January 13, 2016

For a new year resolution, I “should” resolve to do a better job of posting my creative pursuits. Maybe that will happen, maybe it wont. I started this blog as a way to document my ideas and imagination.  Sometimes that journey was hectic and eventful, sometimes not so much.

This past year has been the year of the sock.  Readers may be sick of me talking about this, but tough! It has been a reminder of the “never say never” prophecy.  I was never going to use those tiny needles and tiny yarn and use the same stitches and the same yarn over and over again.  How boring I thought. This year I learned the intimacy of making socks.  Yes intimacy… not that socks are personal, even though they are.  What I have learned is the intimacy of the act of “knitting” the sock.  It is a very small and contained project. It is performed with small tools in a small space held very close…intimate.  It is easy to start and in a short amount of time there is great progress.  Unlike most other garments I have made, I need to stand in front of a mirror to appreciate my handiwork.  With socks, I just look down and see my accomplishment.

Most of the time I like to use lots of different yarn and follow patterns loosely. This type of knitting can take a lot of space since I like to view my entire yarn palette as I work.  Then, I need to stand back from my work as I create, because I never know what direction it is going to take until it well underway.  That also takes a lot of space, and not conducive to packing up and knitting on the go.  

Socks are the ultimate pack up and go project, again very intimate, they take up no room in a bag and since I use the magic loop technique, it is pretty easy to maintain all the stitches on the needle. Plus it is really easy to knit socks with a dog in the sunshine.

Or when you have a full lap of animals… My traditional knitting style requires a lot of stop and start, which is usually enjoyable since my attention span is pretty short.  With socks there is a rhythm that is very soothing and calming to both myself and the creatures.

So, here is the year in review… I started the year making dolls, did some swinging, made a couple of Stephen West patterns, made bags with my sewing machine and had a ton of fun with socks.

At the end of the year, I bought a new sewing machine, for no good reason.  They were on sale and it was a way to upgrade… Merry Christmas to me!

I made a couple of art quilts playing with the stitches on the machine, some hand embroidery and bead embellishments. Too fun.

Let’s start this new year and see where it takes us!! Woo hoo……

September 28, 2015

I do not know who I am…  I have always said I will never knit socks, and right now, that is all I want to do.  Who am I???  I have always wanted fun, colorful socks and I envied knitters who had them.  But I was never going to knit with those tiny yarns and those tiny needles.  But after my failed interaction with a circular sock machine, I picked up some needles and gave it a try.  I can not explain it, I have now knit about a dozen pair over the last 3 months or so.  I experimented with a few styles, first using short rows, and then I found a very simple pattern that knit the sock from the toe up, made a heel gusset and finished with some ribbing and they are ready to go.  I love my socks.  Never say never, I guess.

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Just chillin in the sunshine…

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July 18, 2015

I got nothing to say about why its been a while, it’s just been a while…

I finished this pair of socks from the sock blank in the last post.  Really funky and I love them.

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Then, I finished another pair, these are kind of knee-high length.  They are made out of some vibrantly hand dyed yarn, and made interesting designs.  I like them. I am totally amazing myself because I never thought I would make socks, but they are strangely relaxing to make.

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Back to some typical kind of knitting; I made this out of cotton tape.  It is a just a group of varied lace designs knit over 100 stitches.  I made 2 identical pieces and seamed the top and sides and I have a very comfortable summer topper. 

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Then, I finished this wrap.  It is also made out of cotton and using a pattern called “Rigoles” as a guide, it is something nice for cool summer nights.

My boy with his bone…