Blog Archives

Marching In

Since my last post, we had another snowstorm. This time, we were safely ensconced at home with lots of milk, toilet paper, and chocolate. We enjoyed this storm as much as we could, since we were sort of deprived during the previous one. The boys all went sledding.

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It was super cold that day, in the 20s I think, but they still had lots of fun. I used to go sledding, too, but lately I have found that as much fun as it is to go down the hill, the getting up from the sled without injuring myself seems to be getting increasingly more difficult.

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But, I am more than content to do my favorite snow activity, walking along snow covered paths and listening to the snow falling.

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At home, I love to sit an knit during a snow storm, especially with a hot cup of tea and a treat.

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With March came the beginning of sock madness, a sock knitting race of sorts, which I have joined this year. These socks are part of the first round. We get two weeks to complete each pair of socks, with contestants being eliminated based on speed at each round. I am finding this to be more challenging that I thought it would be, mostly because my hands get tired knitting at this gauge for long periods of time. I have to take a lot of breaks. There are five days left and I am now about halfway done with the second sock. Some people finished within a couple of days!

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Ah, well, if I don’t make it that far, I am ok with that. I am sure I will get at least one or two pairs done and that will be something. When I need a break, I have been doing a row or two on some blanket strips.

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This is part of the Blanket Statement Club from Knitspot. I am using some Ultra Alpaca yarn that has been hanging out in my stash for ages and will make a lovely warm blankie. By the time the blanket is finished, it will be high summer, but no matter. Winter will be around again before we know it! In the meantime, back to the madness I go, haha!

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Fuzzy

After countless broken threads and struggles with slippery, shifty, t-shirt material, I was able to finish the top for my friend’s t-shirt blanket. Thanks to all who left comments on how to deal with the material. I decided in the end to just deal with the thread breaking every foot or two instead of adding any interfacing. Most of this was just because I had already done a good portion of sewing and the thought of undoing and redoing was too much to bear. If I were to ever deal with t-shirts again, however believe me when I say I will be buying bolts of the stuff. My machine and I developed a funny dance of sewing, thread breaking, and re-threading. I can only hope that it will not revolt on me when I go back to my usual quilting cotton later on.

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Once I added the fleece backing, sewing went a lot smoother. Most of the tying was done during the Superbowl on Sunday night. Since my friend loves football, I thought it fitting to work on her blanket while the game was on. Good thing I was not too interested in the game because the blanket took all my attention. Everyone assures me that I did not really miss much and I was happy when the husband consented to let me watch Downton and Sherlock since that game was more or less done.

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Today, I finished the edges and, suddenly, I find myself done. Even with all the pauses for breaking thread, it took about 15 hours to put this blanket together, which must be a record for me. For all the trouble it gave me, it wasn’t a huge investment in time and gave me some opportunity to reflect on how special this friend is to us. In the end, I am pleased with the results. I hope she likes it.

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The blanket has the designs of more than 20 t-shirts and the finished size is roughly 75 inches square, big enough to snuggle under on the couch watching football. The fleece backing makes it nice and fuzzy and cozy and warm. Hopefully, it will bring lots of happy memories to her mind when she uses it. As for me, I think I will be pretty happy not to see another t-shirt in my sewing room for a very long time.

Stretchy

This weekend I started a new sewing project. A very good friend of mine asked me to make a t-shirt quilt from the many shirts she collected during her college years. Now, I have never before sewn with t-shirt fabric, but I was willing to give it a try. I have to say, it was a little unnerving to cut up someone else’s clothes, but after the first few, I got the hang of it.

There was a lot of math involved to figure out how to get all the designs incorporated without having to make any extra cuts. After five hours of cutting and arranging, my brain was very tired, but I had everything cut and labeled.

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The material is very stretchy and that made it very difficult to get square and even cuts, but I am hoping with a half inch seam allowance and a zig-zag stitch, that any differences in block size will be eased in.

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My machine had a lot of trouble adjusting at first. The thread kept breaking and I had trouble finding the right tension to keep the stitches flowing along nicely. Thankfully, we have decided to back the blanket with fleece and tie it, so after I assemble the top, all the sewing will be done except for the binding. I think my machine will thank me for that. I will let you know how it turns out.

In Time for the Storm

Well, I’m home! Thanks to Southwest’s amazing customer service, I was able to get a flight home yesterday morning. Good thing, too, because they’ve pretty much cancelled flights for today and tomorrow! Before I left CO, though, the weather cleared up and I was finally able to see Pike’s Peak.

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Beautiful, isn’t it? I will be thinking about this view as I watch the rain come down today. My plan for today is to go get a few supplies. I know, I am a little crazy, but I happen to think that the beginning of a storm is the perfect time to go to the store, not before it starts. Once it starts, people will stay home and it will be pretty calm. Besides, I’m not going for food. What I need is cookie cutters because, as everyone who knows me will confirm, when I am stuck at home, I bake cookies. Or bread. Or pie.

Anyway, after I return and after I bake whatever it is I decide to bake, I plan to snuggle up on the sofa under my finally blocked mitered square blanket.

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I loved knitting each and every square of this blanket.

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I hated sewing it together and finishing it.

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But, it’s finally done, and just in time for the storm, too. (The pattern is here. You can find my notes on my ravelry page) Now, Sandy can do her worst and we will be ready with cookies and blankets. Wherever you are and whatever weather you are having, I hope you are safe and snug.

Too Hot to Hold

I guess I am continuing in my quest to finish some of my bigger projects.  Finally, I have finished sewing together all 25 blocks of my Mitered Cross blanket.  I will not say how much I hated  did not enjoy the process of doing this.  Let’s just focus on the fact that it is finally done!  Yay!

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Briefly, I considered leaving the blanket then and just calling it done, but I hate having yarn leftover.  I had almost an entire ball.  It could not be left an orphan, but I SO did NOT want to do the I-cord edging.

So, instead, I picked up stitches all the way around the blanket for a garter stitch edge.  Over 1000 stitches and 4 size 6 needles later, I have this to hold in my lap while the temperature climbs this week.

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I wonder if I will actually work on it.