Saturday, June 28, 2014

Summer days

It's been a great summer so far.  The weather hasn't been to hot, we've had a lot of rain, the boys are loving playing outside, and we have had (and still have upcoming) great vacations this year.  We spent a week at Tablerock Lake/Branson with my family, and we are planning on leaving next week for a week in Durango, Colorado.  I'm excited.  The boys ride well in the car these days, and are nearly both potty trained - which helps a lot.  I'm sure vacations from this point on will be a lot of fun!

I've not posted in a while, but that doesn't mean I haven't been busy with fiber.  A quick update: I have the cream and blue kitchen towels on my largest loom:

I'm over half way done with the second towel.  The pink line seen is my cutting line, where I will machine sew the end of the towels on either side and then cut them apart.  Each towel will have the same coloring but has a different treadling pattern.  The first towel was plain 'ole twill.  The second one is an extended zig zag.  Here is a close up of the design:
Although my kids bug the tar out of me when I'm trying to weave - touching this and that and walking off with my tools, I really love weaving and hope as they get older I will be able to devote more time to it.  It's so satisfying to spend an hour at the loom and end up with 10 inches of fabric, even at small gauge.  Much different than knitting in that way.

I have finished 3 projects to share with you in knitting.  They were each quick things that I finished.  First up is my Hat in Pinks.

This yarn is some that I've had for forever, three partial skeins, and I finally just made a simple hat with them.  Bernat Cottontots in 3 pink colors.  It is a discontinued line, which is sad, because I like the yarn a lot.  It is really soft and easy to work with.  I really like how the variegated yarn created stripes in the middle section.  

Next up is a wine bottle cozy.  The idea for this arose out of our summertime Sunday evening Twilight Concert series in the park that we like to go to. 

We began going 3 years ago with our neighbors, and it became imperative (*wink, wink*) to bring a bottle of wine along.  Now tell me how, exactly, we should carry a bottle of wine and glasses to the park along with blankets, snacks, strollers, sippy cups and the like WITHOUT breaking the bottle??  So as a crafter will do, I picked up some Alpaca Love, Stitch Nation by Debbie Stroller, and started in.  
This was fun to knit, quick, and easy.  All you got to do is slide in your wine of choice and tie it to snug in down, and you have wool and alpaca keeping that wine cold and protected.  Very important.  :)
 It's knit in the round with a spiral pattern.

So now my wine bottles are safe when I'm going to music in the park.  Horray!

Last, is my Knotty Gloves.  I really like these.  This is Berroco Sox.  If you ever need a great, sturdy, warm sock yarn, this is it.  I made my dad a pair of simple wool socks from this same yarn and color, and he wears them all the time.  But I went outside the box and decided to make a pair of gloves with the second skein I bought. 

Self-striping yarn can be great, and it can be not so great.  When you are working a detailed cable pattern, stripes can really detract from the pattern and make it less visible.  This happened in the cabled knot on the gloves, but I'm still very happy with them.  They fit great (I made them big for me - I have TINY hands), so hopefully they'll fit "normal" people.  They'll be very warm and extend half way to the elbow, so that adds even more warmth.  I love the stripes on the fingers.  Gloves never cease to amaze me in their construction.  How you can increase, decrease, place stitches on hold, and end up with such an oddly-shaped yet well-fitting thing is fantastic. 

I have a pair of wrist warmers nearly done on one pair of needles and a baby blanket on the other.  Here is a sneak peak of that:

And on my small loom, my placemats are SOOO close to done.  I can taste it.  I should go work on them now....

Off I go!  Happy summer to you!

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