Sunday, May 31, 2015

learning something new

I learned something new while avoiding cleaning and rearranging the bedrooms.

I think I may have found what I want to do with this yarn. 

I started Frankie Brown's Ten Stitch Blanket but I couldn't get the corners square. I did stumble upon a you-tube tutorial from Very Pink Knits that explained what I was probably doing wrong with the corners. Of course, that was after I had given up, ripped it all out and moved on to another pattern.

The next pattern tried was Lion Brand's Mud Cloth Inspired Afghan.  This was an intarsia pattern with 50 bazillion little balls of yarn.  I got maybe the first section knitted before I gave up because ever few rows you had to stop and untangle all those little skeins of yarn so you could knit some more.  This yarn frays really bad so it was a real mess.  Maybe in a sturdier yarn.  And I have a quilt designed in the lay-out!

Then I thought about the Edith Shawl by Lion Brand as an afghan but realized I would be dealing with 12 skeins of yarn.  Less than the Mud Cloth afghan but still not what I wanted to get involved with. The other problem was the lace I was getting didn't look so hot.  Maybe a simpler lace pattern.

So I pulled out the lace pattern from my Tappan Zee sweater and started with that.  Knit one repeat in blue and one in white.  Nope, not what I wanted.  Because I was stacking one diamond repeat on top of another, I was creating a secondary diamond half blue-half white. Yuck!

Then I was searching Ravelry for things knitted with Lion Brand's Cupcake Yarn and found a couple of entrelac projects.  I liked what I saw and I have always wanted to learn how to knit entrelac.  So why not?  I would be knitting one color at a time.  Kewl! 

So I search for you-tube tutorials and found several.  The most helpful were the tutorials put up by iknitwithcatfur.
part 1  and   part 2.

I did use Eunny Jang's suggestion to slip the first stitch of the every row as it made picking up stitches a whole lot easier on the foundation row.  The other thing I noticed was everybody's cast-on row was too tight, including Eunny Jang's.  So I played around with a couple of ideas for stretchy cast-ons and decided on a provisional cast-on.  If I need to make the afghan bigger/longer I have a place to add equally when I run out of the cupcake yarn.  If not, I think Jeny's stretchy cast-off will give it equal stretch at both ends.

One other thing, to keep the fraying under control, I remembered what you do with nylon rope to keep it from unraveling.  You use a flame to melt the ends.  Guess what, it works!  Just don't shake the end to put out the flame or you have molten plastic sticking to your skin.  Blow out the flame and let it cool before touching.  We won't discuss how many times I did this before I remember to blow out the end.  Okay!

Well, I need to empty and move a dresser. : >(
Or I could just go knit some more. : >)

Y'all have a good day!


Saturday, May 23, 2015

quilts Mother and I collaborated on

I found some pictures of quilts Mother and I collaborated on and I am playing with Hubby's computer to see if I can up-load them.  Guess what, I think it is going to work!
This is the last embroidered quilt Mom and I made together.  This quilt is for a friend of my younger sister.  Tricia and my sister went to high school together.  Mom and Dad kind of finished raising her, the hugs and encouragement when she needed it and the lecture/boot when she need that too.  If Mom called, as she became frailer Tricia was right there to help Mom when we couldn't get to her.  As a token of Mother's appreciation for Tricia's time and trouble, Mom wanted to make her a quilt.  My sister helped with color selection for the embroidery floss and borders.  I suggested the flying geese sashing to tie all the different blocks and colors together.  The great part was having Tricia help to pick out the fabrics because Tricia didn't know the quilt was for her.  She was just having fun playing with fabric!

As I was researching how to make flying geese, I discovered the symbolism of the background as being the sky.  I had originally planned to make the background scrappy too.  So my 'ah moment' was to turn the background into blue and make all the corner squares green for fields.  I thought it pulled the quilt together quite nicely so did everyone else.  The original idea for the border didn't work once I had the main body done.  So a trip to the quilt shop with it laid out on the floor in the classroom auditioning fabric culminated with me calling my sister and asking her to come help.  Boy, does it ever help to have someone who has had some art/color training!  She didn't have any trouble pulling the hand-dyed fabric for the outside border off the shelf.  I looked at it, but it was expensive...and I was spending Mom's money.  The inside border took a little more trial and error to get the right shade of green for it.  Tricia was so overwhelmed she cried when Mom gave it to her.
Mom's being silly in this one!  She likes having her picture taken about as well as I do!

This quilt was for my sister.  The embroidered blocks are lilacs and dragonflies.  I decided it needed to be set together with some kind of lattice sashing.  There are two colors of green.  The blue patches are the same fabric as the border believe it or not and the on-point cornerstones are a deep purple.  I had to hand-sew the points to the border to get them to come out right.  There were 50 billion little pieces to this sashing.  I was surprised I didn't have more problems setting it together.
This one went to my older brother and his wife.  The embroidered blocks are Jack Dempsey rose blocks.  As my sister and I were trying to find fabric to set this quilt together with, one of the ladies who worked at the quilt shop said, if it were her, she would eliminate some of the excess white around the edges.  The light bulb went off for us and we changed up the layout.  Then, as I am wont-to-do, I changed it even further after I got home and started playing around with the idea.  I ripped and resewed several spots because I was having trouble getting it to lay smooth with no puckers.  There were a few spots I ended up hand sewing to get it right.

Yeah, a blog post from some pictures I found while cleaning out and rearranging closets!  And yes, I'm avoiding the mess, why do you ask? LOL

I hope everyone is having a good day!


Thursday, May 7, 2015

just checking in

Just checking in, been having all kinds of computer problems.  Took my tower into Best Buy and they tell me my motherboard is dying although the funky sound is coming from the hard drive.  I got on Hubby's computer and sent an e-mail to his brother-in-law because I decided they were full of it.  However, I will have to stop calling them names after he e-mailed back and said it is a good possibility that something on the motherboard isn't working right and not feeding the correct power to the hard-drive.

So, I've got to dig through all of Hubby's computer stuff and see if there is a spare motherboard lying around.  Find all the disks for the software and if I have the right ones.  I'm also looking at just moving my hard-drive to his computer.  Then running both hard-drives from his, but I will need all the software before I start and his computer needs to be upgraded to Windows 7 cause his still has XP on it.  Also, he has some sort of exotic motherboard that is specifically for re-mastering music and videos and the standard stuff isn't always compatible.  Ah, for the days of our old KLH 286 with plug-n-play.

Don't have much to report on the quilting front.  I have two quilts started and with the blocks about half quilted.  I have lost interest in both.  Come to think of it, I have three quilts started and laying around. Sigh!

I haven't started cleaning out the second bedroom.  I need to get a move on it as I am heading to Kansas the middle of June to load Sister Suzy up to bring her out here with as much stuff as possible.  I would love to rent a truck and empty the storage room and my sister's garage but I may not have the funds to do it. Another sigh!

On another front, I'm beginning to think I may be allergic to corn. (Sister and oldest daughter are/were allergic to corn.)  I've been watching my caloric intake in an effort to take some strain off my knees.  I had a bowl of popcorn about a week ago and overnight gained five pounds.  (I gain 2 to 5 pounds if I have any dairy.)  It has taken me a week to get most of that weight back off.  If that (being allergic to corn) is true, I will probably need to drop peas and soy from my diet as they are/were both allergic to those items, also.  Double sigh!

Well enough grousing!  There are lots of good things going on, too.  Even if it's nothing more than John Bradford's, "there, but for the grace of God, goes I."

Y'all have a good day!