Thursday, September 24, 2015

Post-Game Shenanigans

Here's the hexagon table thingy all blocked and I'm quite pleased with how it turned out. Aside from weaving in all the ends, it was really a pleasure to do and used up some old stash.

 Half of the gradient batt is all spun up and I'm loving how the singles are turning out.
And I got back into the swing of sweater-making, too. I'm almost through the sleeve increases for sleeve numero uno and it's going pretty quickly. This is my travel project for now, until I decide on something simple to cast on.

 And Ballet Bear got another sweater. Why? Why not. Also, it's a good way to practice technique. I'm thinking fair isle and steeking could be next.
 She decided on yellow buttons, which I think is just about perfect.
Here's a rare candid shot of Iris and her frond after a football game. Their two schools are rivals and there were post-game shenanigans.

Thursday, September 17, 2015


I have or had a cold. I'm not sure where we are with that right now, because some of what I'm feeling is a bit "frazzled mom syndrome" and some of it might actually be some rhinovirus shenanigans happening in my face. I spent much of yesterday trying to both take it easy and wrangle a certain little monkey. It was an exercise in patience.

As you can see, I've been doodling and sketching, though nothing spectacular. I'd love to brush up on my more basic drawing skills, but really what I need is to just draw more. I can, I just need to practice. 

 I finished the hexagons, though. Here they are blocking. I do still need to get a good FO pic of these, but I do rather like it and I think it'll be nice on our holiday table.

That's about 200 yards of deep stash handspun from approximately 2009 and 2011-ish. I can tell I'm a better spinner now than I was then.
And speaking of spinning, I finished the silk singles. They just need to be plied and washed and they're done, but I kind of want to finish the singles for the merino that's next in the queue, so I can ply it all at once. 

I'm strongly considering investing in a bobbin winder.

 And here's the merino. It's a gradient that fades from black to blue to orange and it's got some sparkle in there, too. I did a good chunk of the blue while I listened to the Cubs play the Pirates in extra innings last night.

You may be able to see some of it there at the top that was spun a little more tightly. It was a bit of a nailbiter of a game, but they did end up winning. Hooray!

The playoffs are a real possibility this season, so I may randomly say things like " behind" and "Wild Card standings" and "GO BLUE GUYS!" Just go "Woo!" when I seem happy and pray to your deity or deities of choice (if any) that I'm not back to normal about baseball until November.

I also finished a wee little bear sweater because Ballet Bear needed something to wear when it's not time for his dance class. I'm already working on bear sweater #2, which is a long sleeved fall sweater with an intarsia butterfly on the back. I figure a teeny bear sweater is a good opportunity to practice technique and I'm already contemplating a steeked fair isle cardi.

This one is about 30 yards of Plymouth Yarn Fantasy Naturale Multi in a pattern of my own devising, which is conveniently spelled out on the project page, should I or anyone else so desire to make another wee aran weight bear sweater. The second one is basically the same, but in worsted weight acrylic with about ten or so more stitches at the cast on. I'll tell you more about the second sweater later.

I tried to get a better picture of Iris, but this is the best I could do this week. She's been doing very well en pointe and I'm super proud of her. Bu, on the other hand, could do well, but she's got some work to do on listening skills first. 

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Only a Half Dozen Different Things

First, an arctiid moth, because they're cool.

Second, an FO. This is Meditations on the Holy Mother, Leto by Diana Rozenshteyn. I used size 3's and lace weight, so it ended up being more scarf-sized than stole-sized, but it drapes beautifully. The brown is Misti Alpaca Lace in NT-304 and the green is Knit Picks Shadow in Lost Lake. The Shadow was deep stash from 2009 and the Misti Alpaca was from 2013. That's 819 yards out of stash, bringing my annual totals up to 6,287 yards in 14 projects. The sizing and yarn choices were the only modifications, but if I had to do it over again, I wouldn't have done the provisional cast-on since the ends of the scarf/stole aren't particularly directional.

 Third, a cake! The eldest wanted a Steven Universe-themed birthday party, so of course I made an appropriately themed cake. This is a show that I would recommend to just about anyone. It's goofy and silly in a lot of places, but there's also a complexity to the characterization that's slowly revealed over the course of the show. You can watch this one with littles, but some of the more emotional parts might even make the grownups cry (ONLY A LITTLE! ::sobsobsob::).
Fourth, some crochet. This is from the Reader's Digest Complete Guide to Needlework and if you clicky that link, you'll find that there's a familiar photo under this particular pattern. Turns out that one wasn't in Ravelry's database yet.

This is going to be something for the holiday table and I'm using some ancient and venerable handspun stash that was too skritchy for pretty much anything else.

I also finished the drawing of Princess Luna I'd been working on. The app has been updated since I finished, which I hope means more versatility. I'm still learning how to get the most out of it and I hope to be drawing more-- not just fan art, but just more in general. 

Lastly, something for Mom. She's pretending to crochet here and wrapping the yarn around the hook several times, but she kind of has the idea.

Thursday, September 03, 2015

Fall seems to be creeping in

Sometimes, the FOs are tasty. This is about eight jars of peach nutmeg jelly that I put up this weekend. It's even husband-approved.

I have a mind to do some apple cinnamon jelly as well, but I want to get some apple pie filling done first so that I can have the peels and cores.

Jelly is kind of magical in that I feel like I'm getting something from practically nothing.
The spinning queue is moving along, too. Most of the time, I try to spin while listening to the Cubs play. At this point, I'm 3/4 of the way through the silk. I've got one more not-for-me spinning project to do, then it's on to spinning my own stash again.
I've also been working on some mending this week. When you have a pair of jeans you like, it's really hard to let them go. I'm liking the different sashiko stitch patterns and I feel like I get a sturdier patch this way, since no fabric is lost by cutting away the old fabric for the new. 

With other kinds of mending, the patch tends to pull on the old fabric in such a way that often results in even more holes, so you get caught in an endless spiral of patching or you just give up on the garment altogether. Because sashiko patches are quilted to the old fabric, there's no significant pulling at stress points like corners. The whole patch moves with the rest of the fabric. 

Next up is some embroidery for some of the smaller/more difficult holes on the side seam.

I've been wearing my plaid shirt this week, especially in the cooler early hours of the morning and, as Bu has also observed, it is so comfy. This is a sewing win.
And I did manage to get a picture of Iris in her natural habitat. The other pictures are a bit more flaily, but I thought this one was nice (garbage can notwithstanding).