Friday, April 29, 2016

Friday Finish - 96 Quilt Blocks!

     There are about 10 days until Floyd's birthday. My quilting focus for the next week will be finishing his quilt. This is the first quilt I've made him since the baby quilt I made him 3 years ago. 

Wednesday afternoon I finished 16 blocks.

Then just before dinner tonight, I finished the last 32.

     Here are all 96 blocks. They still need to be ironed and trimmed, but then it will be time to play with layout. I've been using Cluck, Cluck Sew's Stack n' Whack tutorial, but I've been thinking of ways to alter the pattern. If you want to avoid cutting 96 blocks to start, use layer cakes and end up with a 9 inch block. Or, if you don't like trimming the finished blocks, use charm squares for the middle and cut jelly roll strips to the right size. You would need two, 2.5 x 5 inches and two, 2.5 x 9 inches for each block (I think). A quick way to use up the precuts in your stash.


Wednesday, April 27, 2016

WIP Wednesday with a Finish


A late Wednesday post as I don't have much to show today except for a small knitted finish. 
     I finished my second Stormy Harbour hat yesterday. Pattern is by Sarah of Imagined Landscapes. This is a test knit but the pattern should be released soon. This was made with less than a skein of  Caron Simply Soft that can be found at JoAnn's (and maybe Michael's) for around $5. I think it's probably the best, cheap acrylic yarn. I have a couple skeins in this colour because I had planned to knit Floyd a sweater out of it, but that didn't happen.

On my head. The cabled section really pops. Love how it grows out of the cuff.

     The teen/adult small and medium adult hats together. I was going to gift the grey one and keep the teal one. Instead I'm donating both to Jen's KAL/CAL that goes until the end of the month. 

     I have enough yarn to make myself another teal one later. It's a very addictive knit. I thought of starting a third one as soon as I cast off the second one.

     I've knit maybe an inch or so of the sock since the last time I showed it here. A couple more inches until the heel. Sometimes the leg of a sock feels like it is taking forever.

     And a couple of inches done of the back of the shrug for my daughter. I'm not 100% sold on this pattern yet.

     And since I was such a good girl and did 3 test-knits this month (we're not going to mention my lack of editing my novel),  I pulled this yarn and pattern out to knit. Took three attempts to get gauge yesterday. Ended up going down 3 needle sizes. Need a refresher on provisional cast on, then I'll be starting it.

Monday, April 25, 2016

A Knitted Hat and Some Quilt Blocks

I was able to get in some crafty time this weekend. 

     I finished the first third of the blocks for Floyd's quilt. It needs to be done for his birthday in 2 weeks! There are 2 of each block in the picture above. They still need to be ironed and trimmed. I am using the Stack n' Whack block tutorial by Cluck Cluck Sew.

     I have been doing the blocks 2 matching pairs at a time. For the next few blocks, I cut several pairs and have them stacked beside the sewing machine. It would be nice to just sit and sew a bunch together instead of cutting them one set at a time. Hopefully I won't get confused.

     And I finished the hat I was test-knitting. This knit up very quickly. Same yarn I used for the neck warmer last week and the sweater I knit earlier this year. Pattern has not been released but is by Sarah of Imagined Landscapes. I think I'll be gifting this, along with the neck warmer to a niece for Christmas. Now to decide which one of seven nieces will get them.

     I test knit the teen/ adult small size. I had my teenager try it on for pictures. She looks pretty grumpy. Bees were attacking us and her brothers were shooting us with water guns while we took pictures.

     Here it is on my head. A little tight and a little short but it shows off the cables and twisted stitches.

And Floyd got to model too. Way too big but still cute.

     And since the size I knit doesn't fit me or match my winter coat, I started one that would fit and matches every coat I have. It's a great pattern. There is just the one small cabled section and the rest of the texture is from twisted stitches.

Hope you were able to get some crafty time this weekend.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Friday Finishes

I have one knitted finish to share today and two quilt projects that have made some progress.

Here is the neck warmer right after I finished it. I didn't take any measurements at this stage. 

     You can see from this picture that the yarn was still very stiff. I used this yarn to knit myself a sweater earlier this year so I knew the yarn would soften after blocking.

     What I did forget was that if you air dry this yarn, it stretches like crazy. I let it air dry and the neck warmer stretched to 25 x 10.75 inches. Finished size is suppose to be 23 x 9.5 inches.

And the yarn had definitely softened. (Sorry for the bad picture, we had rain all day yesterday and I lost count how many times I tried to get a decent picture inside.)

Here Floyd is modeling how stretchy it was. I put it around his neck and it slid down.

So I threw it in the dryer with a load of laundry (it was still damp) and after an hour it looked much better. It now measures 23 x 9.5 inches. Perfect.

     And it sits up like a neck warmer should. The rain had slowed to a drizzle so my daughter and I ventured outside for pictures. This is a test knit so I am not able to link to a pattern right now but I'd recommend it once it's published.  I think I'll be gifting this to someone only because it doesn't match my winter coat. Or maybe I need to get a new coat? The test knit was for Sarah of Imagined Landscapes. You can find her blog here and her designs on Ravelry here.

      Now onto some quilting. I finished cutting all the fabric for Floyd's quilt. Fabric is Barcelona and bought a couple years ago. It can still be found. I'm hoping to have this done for his birthday next month. I have just over 2 weeks to finish it. I used a fat eighth bundle for this quilt. I was able to cut two, 9.5 inch squares from each fabric. I then matched each pair of squares with a solid. I am using black, cream, orange, blue and green. This should be a bright, fun quilt. 

I am using Cluck Cluck Sew's Stack n' Whack tutorial. I did the first 2 pairs this morning to get the 4 blocks above. Now to repeat that 23 more times. The blocks are finishing at 8.5 inches. The final quilt will have a layout of 8 x 12 blocks. Finished size will be 64 x 96. I already have the backing and batting ready. Just need a quilt top.

And I cut and sewed the fabrics for my final dresden. Now to sew them into a plate after ironing.

Did you finish anything this week?
Linking up at Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Up Friday.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

WIP Wednesday - Just a Little Bit of Knitting

     Missed posting on Monday since I didn't have a very crafty weekend and had nothing to show. Spent several hours in the garden on Sunday, clearing it out and getting it ready for planting. We are going to try pumpkins for the first time in several years. And we had such beautiful weather, we were outside a lot playing with sidewalk chalk, frisbee and bubbles. Monday, I got my crafty self going again and made progress on some knits.

      I finished the cowl/ neck warmer I was test-knitting. It is currently blocking. Hope to have post-blocking pictures on Friday. Then Sarah asked me to test knit a hat, and I said yes, so now I have to knit a cabled hat in a week. It looks like a great pattern so I don't mind. No pictures of it yet though. I just got the pattern this morning and haven't cast on. I think I have enough yarn leftover from the neck warmer for the hat. Then the yarn should be all gone.

Monday afternoon I cast on the second sock.

     And for Shannon's Tops, Tanks and Tees KAL, I cast on a shrug for my daughter's birthday. I am frogging a tank I made for myself. I think I'm going to try and find a summer dress to go along with it and gift both to her.

     And yesterday we found a Robin building a nest on top of our ladder. I'm not sure how restful this will be for the baby birds. A shelf with outside toys is right beside it. Then our garbage and recycle bins. And the sandbox is about 10 feet away. We hope to see some baby Robins later this Spring.

What are you working on this week?


Friday, April 15, 2016

Friday Finishes

     I think my brain may have been taken over by a dresden making monster. I can't seem to stop making them! They do work up pretty quick. Or at least they do at this stage. I know sewing them onto the background is going to take a little longer but I think I've made some decisions about where this quilt is going.
     I made the last 4 dresden that I had cut the pieces for. And then I made one small dresden. I think I like the big ones better. I have 11 big ones sewn together so I...

     ... covered my bed in all the white fabric I had and played with layouts. Here is a classic layout. I used the smaller one to give me an even 12 to play with. If I did this layout, I would cut white 18.5 inch squares to attach the dresdens to. 

     I tried a more sporadic layout, which I thought I would like and had envisioned doing as I was sewing. For this layout, I would piece together the white fabric into the size I would like the finished quilt to be and then sew on the dresdens. I didn't like this layout as much as I thought I would. I think this layout would be better if all the dresdens were different sizes.

     This layout has them really close together. Kind of reminds me of a yo-yo quilt. Again, I would make one big back, then sew on the dresdens.  After doing all three, I decided I liked the classic best. That kind of surprised me.

 Now I have a big design decision to make. First I could make 9 more big dresdens which would give me a quilt that is 76 x 94 - 4 blocks across, 5 down. Option 2, would be to do one more big dresden to give me 12. Then make a bunch of small ones for side borders and a border along the bottom. After taking the pictures above this morning, I went through my cut scraps and separated fabrics for 9 more big dresdens, thinking I would go with the first option, but now I'm not so sure. Any thoughts?

     My toddler has been taking lots of pictures this week. He snapped this picture of me sewing dresdens a couple days ago. The fabric in the foreground is for his quilt. I was able to iron some of it this week. Need to iron a bit more, then it will be time to cut.

      And I finished a sock this week. I ran out of yarn and had to use some leftovers to finish the toe but I think they match enough that it isn't too obvious. Both are Kroy sock yarns. I'll probably cast on the second sock this weekend.

     The toe looks okay, right? And the only people who will really see are my family when I'm home. 

Did you have any finishes this week?
Linking up at Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Up Friday.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

WIP Wednesday - Some Knitting and Dresdens

     Making progress on three projects this week. Trying to stop myself from starting a bunch of other projects - both knitting and quilt projects have been calling me. However, I hope to start a new quilt this week for my son's birthday next month. And Shannon announced her annual Tops, Tanks and Tee KAL. I'm thinking of casting on something for my daughter (for her birthday in June) and maybe a little something for me, if there's time. Here's what I've been working on this week.

     Finished the heel and now I'm playing yarn chicken for the foot. Might have to knit the toe in a different colour. Or make them on the small side and gift them instead of keeping them.

     About halfway done the test knit for Sarah of Imagined Landscapes. There are 2 different patterns on the neck warmer. I'm using the yarn leftover from my Thermal Tunic.

Here's one side (cloisters).

     And the other (droplets). I think both of these patterns would be great by themselves and as I work on it I think about how to adapt the pattern so I could make just a cloisters cowl or just a droplets cowl. 

     And the dresdens have officially distracted me from editing. I made 4 more, 6 in total. My current plan is to have a white background with the middle circles being cut from a variety of solids. 

5 more to go. 

     And the stack of fabrics to the left is for the quilt for my son's birthday. I plan on using Cluck Cluck Sew's Stack n' Whack tutorial (9.5 inch size). 

What have you been working on this week?

And Floyd, or toddler, just went down for a rare nap as I wrote this post so I need to decide what to work on now. Editing? Ironing dresdens and the fabrics for his quilt? Or dishes? I think dishes, ironing and then editing. I wonder why I'm not further along with editing my novel?

Monday, April 11, 2016

A Little Knitting and Some Quilting

     I had hoped to be craftier than I was this weekend. I'm still editing a novel for Camp NaNoWriMo but it's been slow going - chapter 6 took me three days. Making it my priority this weekend really cut into my sewing time. I took some time today to recharge and did a little sewing. I was just going to clean up so I can start a new quilt that has a deadline of next month but got distracted. Here's where my crafty projects are at as of this afternoon.

     I'm done the leg and am almost done the heel of a sock. I usually knit this yarn (Kroy) on size 3 needles and 56 stitches. After reading that several people use size 2 and 64 stitches with this yarn, I decided to give that a try this time. 

I started a test knit for Sarah of Imagined Landscapes. Loving it so far. 

Went to a thrift shop this weekend and picked up a couple fabrics. First was this piece.

     It's Strawberry Shortcake and only cost me 75 cents. Not bad. You can read the measurement on the tag. I think I'll be sending this north to my sister who liked Strawberry Shortcake growing up.

Looked at the selvage as I was folding it back up and saw that it was almost as old as me. 

I bought this off white with a flower design for me.

Can't beat almost 3 yards for $3.20. 

Today I finished sewing up 2 inch square pairs for some Scrappy Bento Box blocks.

     And as I was clearing off my desk, I thought I'd sew a few dresden wedges together to see what they were like. Did I want them scrappy or not? Turns out I like them scrappy.

      And they are very addictive. Above is wedges for 9 more blocks (organized so each dresden will have 18 different fabrics). I had to cut a few more fabrics to help the last few dresdens have a variety of fabrics. Lucky me, I already had 4.5 inch squares already cut that I trimmed into wedges. That will make 11 blocks, each 18 inches wide. I might use the white I bought this weekend for the background.

Were you able to have some crafty time this weekend? 

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