Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Overly Ambitious

Remember how I said we went fabric shopping last weekend? We visited Grey's Fabric, where I always get hypnotized by the pretty fabric and over-estimate my free time. I seriously over-loaded my sewing queue, so I decided to do a separate post so I can show you all the pretties. Now I just need to get my sewing machine serviced already so I can get started... My beloved machine is having some thread tension issues. Heartbreaking.


I bought the new Hawthorn dress pattern when it first came out, and then Ashley at Grey's Fabric suggested this pretty butterfly print. Now is when I confess I am completely intimidated by all the buttonholes. The fabric on the right, with its adorable mountains and roaming foxes, is for a surprise gift.


The golden fabric is going to become a Victoria Blazer by By Hand London, lined with the light gray cotton. I've always struggled to find blazers for my frame, so I might as well try making my own. The black tulip print fabric will be the sleeveless Datura blouse, with a solid black Peter Pan collar.

Now who wants to do my laundry and wash my dishes for the next month so I can make all this?

What's in your making queue?

Monday, July 22, 2013

A SOWA Sunday

Yesterday Lucinda, Karissa, and I met up in Boston for an afternoon of fabric shopping and shopping at SOWA Open Markets in the South End. It had been a ridiculously long time since I had gone to SOWA, and I really love being on the buyer end of the craft show sometimes. I know a lot of the local handmakers in this area, so I'm always excited to find new people to stalk love. This time I found two new-to-me sellers.

Jon Wye

Jon Wye makes "Artist-Driven Graphic Clothing," and when I saw this t-shirt of a robot eating robo-cereal, I couldn't resist getting it for Nate. Those who know Nate know he has a serious fondness for cereal, especially late at night.

New Moon Studio

I am completely smitten with this turquoise pomegranate vase by New Moon Studio. As a mythology lover, I have a special place in my heart for these lovely fruits. I've seen many artistic interpretations of pomegranates, but I had to have this gorgeous turquoise version.


I also spent some time tending to my veggie garden this weekend, and it looks like I'm going to have a bountiful tomato harvest soon. I can't wait!

I hope you had a wonderful weekend, and that this heatwave is being kind to you. We lost power for a while on Friday, and some pretty uncivilized things were yelled by someone in this house. Ok, it was probably me.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Things I Learned from Knitting

Knitting can be a strange thing. Some of us are process knitters, some of us are project knitters. I am a project knitter. A few of us are single-project knitters, enjoying monogamous experiences, knitting one thing at a time. I am not a monogamous knitter. I am always knitting, but when it comes to making things for myself, I usually have many projects going on. Some get finished pretty quickly, and others get tossed aside for months.


These gloves? I started them in May 2012. I was really excited about them, until I knit up the index finger and found out it was too baggy. I ripped back that finger, lost my enthusiasm, and put them aside. Until this weekend. I decided I really want to wear these this winter, so I modified the index finger, knit up the thumb, and cast on for the second hand. I often get asked how I stay motivated to knit during the summer, and this is the answer. I love knowing I'll have pieces ready to wear when the cold starts.


This is how I spent my weekend, completely immersed in knitting: knitting these gloves, and reading my new Yarn Harlot books about knitting.

Have you read her books? Did you enjoy them? I've already finished Things I Learned About Knitting, and am starting Free-Range Knitter today.

I admit I am feeling the itch to start a new shawl... but I'm going to try staying focused on the gloves.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Sweaters and Wraps

Avalonian Wrap

Even though my holiday weekend didn't include fireworks and cookouts, it did have a whole lot of knitting. If you follow me on Instagram, you know I've been working on a cabled wrap for a while. I designed this pattern to use in an introduction to cabled knitting class I'll be teaching this fall, and I'll also have it up on Ravelry for sale. The actual knitting portion is done, now I just need to block it, photograph it, assemble the pattern... Ok, there's still a lot to do.


I also made a lot of progress on some sweaters I've had hanging around for a while. After giving myself some time to be grumpy at the project and punish it by sticking it in the corner, I finally knit the collar in a contrast color and ripped back the neon cuffs. Now I just need to block it and model it!

Blank Canvas Sweater

This is my almost-finished Blank Canvas Sweater. I changed the grading of the sweater to add a couple of inches at the hips, and accommodate my waist and bust size without getting baggy arms, so it's been as much of a math project as a knitting project. In general, I prefer top-down sweaters because you can try them on and it's easy to add length. I'm a little worried this will be shorter than I want, but I'm really excited to finish it and try it on. If it turns out a bit short, oh well.

What have you been making? Are you a top-down or bottom-up sweater knitter?

Project Notes
Pattern: Breezy Cardigan by Hannah Fetig
Yarn: Araucania Huasco

Pattern: Blank Canvas Sweater by Ysolda Teague
Yarn: Toil & Trouble Merino/Cashmere/Nylon DK in Kelpie and Wine Harvest

Monday, July 8, 2013

Picnics and Thoughts

Ah Monday, always arriving too quickly. I hope you locals had a great 4th of July weekend. We spent ours at home, watching scary movies, eating good food, and generally resting. Not terribly exciting, but exactly what we needed. The weekend before, however, we ventured out with some friends for a picnic at Salem Willows. We've lived in Salem since 2009 but this was our first time there. Probably because I would rather stay home and hang out with yarn most of the time...


The wind wasn't terribly cooperative, so I had some failed attempts at kite flying which mostly involved a lot of running around in a circle and panting.


We also played a game of Koob. Nate found this at a toy store in Falmouth while I was doing a trunk show at Sage Yarn last year. Apparently it might be a game of Viking origin, which is pretty interesting, if it is in fact true.

My first impulse is to apologize for not having more action shots, but as I sat writing this post and getting way too introspective, I realized there is a struggle in being a person who processes memory visually. Some people have strong associations with music or smells, but for me it's images. This means I want to take my camera everywhere and document everything, but it can sometimes get in the way of actually being in the moment. I get caught up in documenting, and forget to participate. So I've been working on taking fewer pictures - enough that I satisfy my constant photographic cravings, but also trying to be more present. If you're also attached to your camera at the hip, do you struggle with this too?


And of course, there's always some yarn-making going on.