Monday, October 31, 2011

A Tale of Terror

It seems fitting that I have a horror of a story to tell on Halloween. A few days ago I was startled to discover that there was grafting involved on the final edge my latest lace project. With no other choice at this point, I had to give it a go. Terrified, I Kitchenered my brains out. You see those stitches still on the needle? They were leftover after the grafting. They are NOT supposed to be there. At all.

Pulling all those tiny grafted stitches out was a nightmare of epic proportions. Don't even ask about all those live stitches that were left hanging out all over the place. My hair was standing on end as I struggled to pick them all back up and figure out where they went.

It took me hours of ripping to get it back to where the pattern made sense and then hours of getting it back to where it was pre-disaster. All the while I am thinking about doing serious bodily harm to the designer for getting me in this mess even though I know it really was all my fault.

How many times do I have to write posts about problems arising from NOT reading the entire pattern before forging ahead? All that grafting nonsense was clearly stated right at the beginning. I would never have started this mess if I had known since the Kitchener stitch over 81 stitches in laceweight is a recipe for madness.
The worst part is after all that fixing, I still have to try and graft that edge again. This thing is a gift and I need it by the weekend.
Happy Halloween, dammit.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Seriously, WTH?

Whew. I am finally home from an unexpected snowcation. Yesterday morning, after consulting the local weather, Daddio and I took some things up to my sister's who lives about 70 miles north. Those 70 miles made a BIG difference because the drizzle turned into a seriously scary snowstorm about 10 miles from our destination. I drove those last miles in white knuckled fear as the roads were one big skating rink.

The snow kept falling all day in between bouts of ice. It was surreal. There was no choice but to spend the night and wait for the Sunday sun to do it's job on the roads.

Looking on the bright side, Sister and I got some quilting done and once the roads were clear the next morning, we all had a nice breakfast at a local inn. After driving just a few miles out of my sister's little town, Daddio and I made the rest of our way home in the splendor of a gorgeous fall day without a hint of the white stuff anywhere. It was all so weird.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Return to Normal

Now that all the wedding insanity is behind me, I can get back to spending some quality sewing time with Daddio. Apparently he has been pretty busy. His design wall is full of projects. I can see he is getting an early start on the holidays.

He puts the giant potholders together and then I come over and quilt them while we drink tea and chat about all the things old guys like to chat about. I had forgotten how much fun our little quilting bees are.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Working Women

Just hours before, this beautiful china buffet was two heavy boxes being drug up to a 2nd floor condo from Ikea.

Daughter, still enjoying time off from work for her wedding, needed something ASAP to store all the beautiful glassware people gave her as gifts.

In no time at all, she had this thing up and ready to be filled thanks to a very handy power drill and a little help from me. Now I have a bad case of Ikea envy. There is a wall storage unit with my stash's name on it-as soon as I figure out how to pay for it.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Knit Night: Just the Two of Us

Knit Night was not well attended tonight but it was not a problem because the two of us who did show up had recently attended a bunch of family weddings so we had a lot to share. I am in a knitting dead zone at the moment so all I had to drag along was that awful sweater I started last year-the one that I now have no interest in wearing. Ever. Well, maybe ever. I may change my mind once it gets cold.

My companion was frogging and restarting a monster, Rosie to be exact. I do believe she is the creation of Katie Boyette whose other monster patterns can be found here. I was very impressed with my friend's ability to do a circular cast on while trading wedding anecdotes. The last time I had to do this, it took me three days of locking myself away from the world to get it right.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Little Ouchies

Four little charm packs have given me hours of fun lately, but I am paying the price.

My needle of choice for hand piecing are teeny tiny little sharp ones used for quilting.

My fingers are really sore from all the pokes you get from the back end of those sharp little needles. Luckily, I saw these in AC Moore a few weeks ago so I ran back this weekend to pick them up.

You stick them on your fingers anywhere you need them and they make a flexible little shield. I had my doubts, as I hate thimbles, but they work like a charm. I managed to get another section of my Double Wedding Ring quilt done in spite of having bloody stumps where I used to have fingers.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

How'd That Happen?

One day you are in a panic because that lace project seems to be going nowhere fast and the next day you look down and it's almost done. I have only 2 more pattern repeats to go, then the peacock edging and then this is another done deal. Yippee!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Autumn Nesting

It is starting to feel like fall around here.

The chilly nights have made it necessary to give the outdoor kitties a place to keep warm again. I bought a new really posh heated hut so now we have two heated huts for them to spend the night in. Silly cats. I wish they would just come in like the other three.

You also know it's getting darker and colder when I pull out the votives. I need to make a trip to Yankee Candle soon. I only have half of some kind of apple smelling thing left from last year.

Last but not least, I have dug out my bean pot. Tonight we've got Hoppin' John bubbling away in the oven. Fall would be perfect if only we didn't have so many leaves to rake.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Last of the Bunch

The flip flop adventure is almost over. I have a few pair of regulars to go and then a blinged out version for the Bride to Be. I wish I could say that this giant endeavor had improved my crochet skills but alas it is not to be. It is still as sloppy as ever.

Saturday, October 22, 2011


Daughter's guest book was in the form of quilt squares. In order to seam the squares together, I needed guests to sign in the middle of the square. I wrote up a cute little sample and laid it next to the sign in area. It was a very breezy day and the wind must have blown the sample to kingdom come because it was no where to be seen at the end of the reception. Obviously the guests hadn't seen it either because people signed all over the square. The sentiments on the square are priceless so I really need to come up with an idea to save this project. Hmmmm....

Friday, October 21, 2011

October Spin Along

This month my Yarnspinner's Tales Ravelry group is concentrating on improving our plying skills. Following directions, I took my woolen spun Icelandic singles from last month and plied them with some thinner singles so it would be easier to count the twists per inch. I used some thin Corriedale singles that I had spun during the Tour de Fleece.

We measured and tied off half yards and then tried to get the same number of TPI's in each section by counting the treadle pushes. I found that it was the nature of the single and not the treadle pushes that gave me the most consistent numbers. For instance, if I had a thick section I would have to push more and a thinner section, less, to get the same amount of twist. The twist always traveled better in consistently thin areas and stopped dead in a section that was underspun. Hmmmm...It seems I need to work on more consistent singles if I want more consistently plied yarn.
Next up is Navajo plying with some woolen singles. I have a very long history of bad Navajo plying so this should be interesting.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Homage to a Hook

I was really struggling with the 7 stitch nupps in my Peacock Tail and Leaf shawl.

I had tried every hook in the house but my stitches kept falling off or getting tangled. Susan Bates came to the rescue.

The hook itself has a unique design that really captures the yarn and holds it in place until you are ready to pull it out. The only drawback is that they are hard to find here. I searched every craft store in the area and only came up with a few. Happily, one of the sizes is just right for those pesky nupps which are becoming a pleasure rather than a chore-and for that I am extremely grateful.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Crafty People

I know I have been going on and on about Daughter's weekend wedding but I have a few loose ends that I'd like to share. We owe a debt of gratitude to so many talented people who added all the finishing touches on a magical weekend.

First, I need to give a big thank you to Wonderland Papers for having the patience to do and re-do our seating chart several times. This is just the first proof. The final version was a work of art.

Next, I would like to thank Rachel Carl and Co. for her amazing calligraphy work on the invitations. When I opened the box, her work literally took my breath away.

I wish I could thank the craft people that made the personalized wedding hangers on Etsy. Bride to Be had some gifted and had bought some herself. Unfortunately, since I didn't buy them I don't have their shop names but they were all beautiful.

Cush from Etsy provided the lovely vintage embroidered hankie that I carried into the chapel in the event that I dissolved into tears. I didn't. I am happy to report that the hankie is still as pretty as ever. My tears came much later as tears of relief.

ilLUMIEnate provided the large wedding table luminaries that provided the inspiration for me to make my own smaller versions for the rehearsal dinner from stamped velum. I love this idea and have plans for lots of holiday versions. I also LOVE the clear plastic stamps that I used from Micheals. You can see through them so lining up images is easy.

I owe a huge debt of gratitude to my sister, Sandy, who took a couple of bags of grocery store flowers and some cheap tin pots and made centerpieces that were prettier than any of the more expensive versions in the refrigerated flower cases.

Choosing You
provided the gorgeous monogrammed letters for the reception hall door.

Shary, the talented pastry chef at Milton Ridge not only made a delicious and beautiful gluten free wedding cake but also made the groom a red velvet armadillo cake that was amazing in all its little details. He was too cute to cut but unfortunately he was also quite tasty so he didn't last long.

Finally, I owe lots of gratitude to the good people at Paper Source for having the experience and patience to work with a frazzled mother of the bride to create paper goods that were truly memorable. One of my fondest memories of the whole wedding experience was therainy day we all worked together in an assembly line to put together the programs and favor boxes.
Our bank account is certainly relieved the wedding is behind us-but for her father and I the experience was priceless.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Just Reward

Daughter and Son in Law gave me a thank you gift at their rehearsal dinner. She had been hinting for weeks that I was going to die when I saw what she had for me. I didn't quite die but it was pretty darn close when I opened the envelope to find four tickets to Wicked on Broadway and a night in a posh hotel. Wicked and I have a long history of disappointments because every time it comes to town I never can get tickets here at the always sold out Kennedy Center. Now I know I am going for sure and I can't wait!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

A Special Day

Without any prompting by me,the Print O'the Wave shawl I made for Daughter made it to the bridal cottage for her Saturday wedding.

It even made it into some of her portraits. I was very touched by the gesture.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Big Day

Right now I am off somewhere having the time of my life. I hope.
In case you have no idea what I am talking about, you can check it all out here.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Mother of the Bride

Daughter is getting married tomorrow. I can't even begin to explain how overwhelming all this is. I am so tired. It's been a solid year of intense planning and it's finally coming to a very welcome conclusion. I'm going to have lots of things to share about this weekend but right now, I've got nothing. I am totally out of creative gas. Totally.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

On Display

This is the second time I have been to a Virginia mall recently and both times I have found really cool knitting themed displays.

I couldn't walk past these big balls without stopping for a look.

Those are some really big needles. I did wonder why there was only one to be seen. The giant cabled afghans that acted as a backdrop were really beautiful. Someone made them but I am pretty sure it wasn't these dummies.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

One Thing Leads to Another

While I was hanging around Best Buy waiting for the verdict on my laptop, I made the mistake of browsing in the camera aisle. After spending $200 for virus removal, it seemed to make no sense to buy a new camera but I did it anyway. I did the awful thing of applying for a Best Buy card to get a discount and to let me make payments on my new little toy since I am B.R.O.K.E. I have two weddings in the next few weeks and really needed a photo upgrade since my little cheapo Kodak has been unrealiable, but I was really thinking of the MD Sheep and Wool Fest. This baby has 21X zoom. This year, I WILL get photos of those sheepdogs in action. Plus I can kinear Hot Pants from a safe distance-if he chooses to show up again this year. If you have no idea what I am talking about, check out the MD S&W group on Ravelry.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


My computer has a little virus issue. If you are reading this, it is because I have not got it cleared up in time for a daily post. Hopefully, I will be back soon if The Geek Squad can do their stuff. Until then, knit on and carry yarn.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Rubber Sole Part 2

I've got a lot of flip flops done.

Twelve pairs if you count the pair I made after taking these pictures this afternoon. At only one pair a day, I am keeping on schedule and not getting too sick of them. I can surely say however, that crochet is not my thing.