Saturday, March 17, 2018

Double Cup

I recently took a little time to make another mug for the wall-hanging - which I am calling Three for Tea.
This mug is a little taller and there were a few more pieces and fiddly bits, but went together just as well as the first one.

A few of you have noted that the background fabric looks a little like steam rising from the cups. But that was just luck. The fabric is leftover from the solid blocks in the Spearmint Sticks quilts (it looks beige here, but it's actually a soft green) and I thought it would work well with the fat quarter fabrics.

So, now I have two cups,
 With just one more to go. Then I can put them all together and decide on borders. I've got some leftover brown from the Chocolate-Covered Pinwheels quilt, which is a nice match. And of course, there's a fair bit left over from the fat quarter bundle - these little cups barely use anything - they'd  be great for using up scraps!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Friday Felines

"What's it going to take to get you to throw this darn ball???"

Thursday, March 15, 2018

FO: Wildflower

After an evening of ripping and re-knitting, the Wildflower cardigan is finally done.
In the end all it took was a smaller needle and some plain ol' garter stitch to pull that neckline up to where is needed to be. I'm a little sad to lose the lace, but I'd rather it fit right, so I'm not going to complain. Sometimes simple is just better.

When I started this project back in the middle of July of last year, it was suppose to be a quick project I could get off the needles in no time. And I should have been. By the end of July I was already onto the lace edging. But then it got set aside and didn't get picked up again until February of this year.
Admittedly, the miles of knit-on lace edge can be a bit of a slog... but it's worth it. Especially once you get it all blocked out.
There's also a row of eyelet flowers around the yoke, and the bottom, just above the edging. Sadly, they don't show all that well in the handspun.
But I don't complain too much, because that handspun is beautiful. I love the range of stripes. Another thing to note about that handspun - it was, of course, spun by Mom. In fact, this whole little cardigan is a bit of a family affair; Mom spun the handspun, Miss Rowan dyed the edging yarn (Alley Cat in Larkspur), and I, of course, designed and knit  it!
And one last thing.... I had the perfect buttons for it! These pretty little copper flowers were bought years ago for my second Tea Leaves cardigan, but they ended up being too small. I put them away knowing I'd find something to use them on. And did I ever - the warm copper echos the warm tones of the handspun, while contrasting beautifully  with the coolness of the edging yarn.

I may take this to Mexico for a few modelled shots on the beach, but my photographer will be Dave, and his skills are hit and miss... so no promises.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Starburst square dance

On the weekend I decided to tackle piecing the Starburst top. As complicated as the pattern looks, it's actually not that difficult to construct. It's really just the same placement of 16 HSTs, repeated four times, with each quadrant turned a different way.

I always get in trouble once it's time to start piecing all my blocks together, so I thought sewing one quadrant at a time would be ideal to keep me on track.
I still managed to sew a couple blocks wrong, but in the end, it took me just over an hour to get this quadrant together.

This quilt does have a deadline, but it's not for many months, so I have time to take my time on it.
So I focused on getting my intersections line up just so! This is a big thing for me... usually my intersections are a mess!

And a question for you quilters out there:

Do you press your seams to one side, or open them. When I was taught to quilt, it was ALWAYS press them open. But when I got back into it, I noticed that Jenny of MSQ presses hers to the side. I like doing that because it's much quicker... but I find on something like this, with a lot of triangles coming together, it can make the intersections super bulky.
I'm playing it safe with this one, taking my time, and opening them up. But do you have a preference? And why? Or do you make a decision based on the quilt design?

Anyway, only three more quadrants to go, and this top will be well on its way to completion. I considered doing a second one right away...
But someone else had other ideas. So I packed it all away for another day, and settled into a good game of fetch.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Spring Tide

This weekend I accompanied little Wren and her Mom, Krista to a local flower show.

It was small, but it was beautiful and it was just the hit of spring I needed. While it's been pretty sunny, we're lucky to get above freezing right now (and it snowed a little yesterday!)
 The theme was Springtime in Paris and the green house was done up like a Paris boulevard complete with cafe
And flower market. The whole place smelled amazing! And just look at all the flowers.
I was absolutely swooning at the sight of all these Ranunculus. I tried to grow some last year, but they didn't do well. I may have to try again.
I do so love a nice blushing daffy. Krista said after the show is over, they do a bulb sale, so I may have to come back and get some of these.
And there's nothing like a god, solid red tulip. A true symbol of spring.
I've got Grape Hyacinths in the garden and I hope they make a good show this year. It will still be a few weeks before I see them
Itwill definitely be a month or more before we see the fruit trees blossom, but they were in full glory in the green house. And of course, they smelled amazing...
Wren thought all the flowers were wonderful - and I have to agree. Oh Spring... can't you come just a little sooner this year?

Monday, March 12, 2018

FO: Aldershot

Yes - the Aldershot socks are done!
I am extremely please with how this pair turned out. The cables are satisfyingly twisty, without being too daunting to knit. And the twisted stitches down the side add a nice bit of easy-to-execute kick. I love that they don't slouch, despite not having ribbing at the cuff (I love it when it can be all design on the leg).

The yarn, Jungle Cat in Banana Popsicle, is so soft, and the yellow is such a nice shade for this time of year. Yellow always makes me smile!

So now it's onto a new sock. I really should get moving on another GO design, but I haven't knit Dave any socks in quite a while... and it would be nice to have something more mindless for travelling...

Decisions... decisions...

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Just a cuppa

A few months back, Dave put up a shelf for my dolls above the couch. It necessitated moving the large framed poster I had hanging there, but the the shelf had to be high enough to keep nosy kitties from climbing on it. That meant there was a large blank space between the top of the couch and the bottom of shelf.

It was just calling out for a wall hanging. I spent many hours playing around on Pinterest before I came across In from the Cold.
I could just picture it with only three cups, and in non-Christmassy fabrics!

Mom bought me this lovely fat quarter pack
 Which was a perfect match for my other living room decor. (and had a lovely tea-theme!)

Since I still had one WIP box empty, it seemed like the perfect time to start. It was quite different from anything else I've done. Most of the quilts I've done have been sewn from pre-cuts, or had only one or two shapes, and not a lot of cutting.

This, obviously, required cutting quite a few different pieces. And a lot of them were small. (I'm doing a smaller version of the cup blocks)

And sewing those small pieces was a little fiddly. There were a few false starts... but I eventually got the hang of it.
And managed one cup! And one was enough for that day. The other two will be tackled when I'm feeling a little more ambitious.