Tag Archives: yarns

A little ta-da moment…

Dropping in to share a quick ScrapHappy project for my neighbour, a link over to Kate’s ScrapHappy post, and share another project just restarted for the umpteenth time.

Several weeks ago I was about to start downstairs in my building, when I saw my neighbour trying to manage 2 crutches, a booted foot, and some small packages before coming up the stairs.

.

We decided I’m come down first. On the way down I realised she needed a shoulder bag to put small bags in, and I had the very bag with me. A solution! I showed her what I had in mind and watched her easily and very adroitly balance herself upstairs.

Being a non-sewist, she had no idea how easy it was for me to make her a bag of her own… but a bit of thinking and we reasoned that a cross-body bag would be even better.

So that’s what she’s got, and it works a real treat. Mission accomplished! (Now I want one, too…. hehee! 🤣)

Over the weekend I had the urge to crochet, but I didn’t want to continue the project that’d been sitting untouched for weeks. What to do . . .

I ripped that forlorn-looking project down to zero and started over. And am happy to report it’s going great guns. At last I think I’ve found a good way to use this lovely yarn. Another little yippee!

🧶 🧶 💛 🧶 🧶

Advertisement

(not so) Wordless Wednesday

Finished off 3 small balls of leftover yarn a few days ago, and now have a narrowish looong scarf for somebody to wind around their neck on a cold winter’s day. Below are beginning, in-the-midst-of and completed views . . .

The ends are ever so slightly differing shades of a creamy washable wool bought from a friend in California who was selling out her washable wool yarns.

The middle photo shows the leftover-from-a-shawl yarn of I can’t remember what fibres 60% silk & 40% wool (from discontinued HPKY Hand Painted Knitting Yarns, Daphne colourway), that I got from Loopy Yarns, the great (now closed) yarn shop I lived dangerously close to in Chicago.

The shawl’s probably on Ravelry, draped over a creamy foot rest if I’m remembering properly (yes!)… but I also remember blogging about it, and here’s that photo!

It seems I decided to take off the fringe and do an edging around the shawl, which I duly crocheted. (See photo below.) After all that, there was still enough yarn left to crochet the centre section of that looong scarf. Remember the looong scarf??

Shawl with edging, completed 2015

Waste not, want not . . . . . 😉

🍂 It’s October – YEAH! 🍂

And I’ve finished Osman’s latest adventure, The Man Who Died Twice, book #2 of the adventures of the Thursday Murder Club. What can I say? It’s every bit as good as the first, if not better, ’cause I think the book’s longer. Hard to judge as I read an e-book this time, instead of waiting for the hard copy from the library.

(I gave up getting either book from our local library, which reminds me to cancel those requests.)

Now to catch you up on what’s been going on creatively since my last post —

All the soap bags I looked at online seemed to be single or double crochet patterns and I just didn’t think they’d allow much sudsy action. So this is what I came up with for my first attempt. Would you believe I sat down the very next day and crocheted it? Then to test it in the shower…

Unfortunately, once in the shower I quickly learnt how much that 100% cotton yarn stretches when wet. Instead of 3 soap slivers neatly encased, I wound up with 2, plus an escapee. Live & learn, right? 🥴

No, I haven’t started a second soap bag yet . . . .

Possibly because I was going hammer & tongs on a yummy scarf with some leftover yarn sent from Yorkshire in 2016 as an unexpected gift from my sewing bud, Ali.

Ali hangs out mostly on IG these days. Look for her in 2 places: #timbers OR #the.fabric.first.aider. As an NHS emergency paramedic, she’s had a harrowing schedule for the last umpteen months.

Yes, GBSB’s (Series 6) Ali. I’m right chuffed to know her before she became famous! She is the most generous, sweet & kind soul you could possibly imagine, and always smiling. Here’s a clip of her on set.

(For those who don’t know about BBC’s Great British Sewing Bee, Wiki has a season-by-season guide. Ali is in Season 6.)

The start of this story goes back to 2016 when Ali was crocheting several of what she christened Octopus scarves. If you’re intrigued, her pattern is here, and my version is here.

The reason it’s coming up now is I’m seriously working on eliminating my yarn stash before venturing out to buy more, considering the C-urrent situation. . . A-hem!

Yarn is Sidar’s Sylvan, 2016 vintage, and discontinued — ’bout time I used it up!
(Please note that freshly polished brass piece I used for contrast!)

Sewing sorta got lost in the crochet and ebook reading this past week, but I have plans, so stay tuned . . .

😆 🍁 😘 🍁 🤣

wordless wednesday (not really)

Editor’s note: The maaany links in today’s post should all open on separate pages. Should, but they won’t all cooperate & I’ve given up trying to force them. Just wanted you to know, in case you’re expecting them to all do the same thing.

As most frequent readers will know, the recipe above was altered when I made it up — I was looking for a spicy microwave cake recipe that didn’t require an hour’s baking time (in other words, a quick Raisin Spice Cake alternative). You can download it here.

I’ve been giving the above with spice variations a trial run. So far have made it twice, managed to waaay over-spice the first one (hint: 1 teaspoon of ginger, not 2 ), forgot the molasses the second time, but got the spice amount a bit better.

As usual, I only used 1 tablespoon of brown sugar rather than the 3 listed. Have yet to try it with a few raisins, but the chocky variation, which includes chips, came out nicely. So maybe a few raisins will be fine.

As mentioned above, this also chimes in with Deb’s & Donna’s monthly #WhatsOnYourPlateBlogChallenge.

Above piccies are further research into a yarn substitute for The Habitat Cardi by Make & Do Crew mentioned in a previous post. Thanks to the lovely Lynn (of The Tialys blog) for telling me about the wonderful web site YarnSub.

I adore the colours of the James C Brett Marble Chunky MC07 yarn on the left (see how I made it up here) and know the soft and easily washed yarn well. The way they go from one mixture to another is why I think it might be about the same weight as the sweater calls for.

But I’m tempted by this one as denims would “go” with everything. It’s James C Brett Marble Chunky MC10.

However, on close examination (hence the close-up), all the Brett Marble Chunky is probably 2-ply. But aren’t those strands thicker than the 4-ply of the red Vanna Yarn on the right (which I used yonks ago & still had a bit of)?

I know Vanna is not as soft as Brett’s Marble Chunky. Which might be why I’m not too keen on using any of the specified Lion Brand yarn. Aside from the fact I cannot find any colour I like. 😒

Am also tempted by this Brett Marble Chunky MC02 – the deep, dark blue reminds me of my dark blue stretch denim skirt.

Which would you choose?

Which looks more like denim to you?

Decisions! — Decisions! — Decisions!

🙄

macro monday chat

This might be an “official” holiday weekend here in the U.S., but having the real holiday on Sunday sorta throws me off, if you know what I mean. There were fireworks displays in some places on Saturday night, and other places Sunday night. I wonder if tonight will also be punctuated with pops . . .

But life goes on, and with it came this morning’s overdue walk up to the recycle center, right past a huge hydrangea bush. I couldn’t resist the photo op!

Seems about time for a knitting update, too.

I ripped everything out and started over, using the same 12 stitches cast on. I played with the alternating k2p2, p2k2 and didn’t like the effect at all! This yarn is so slubby and has different colours running in slubs as well as tiny bits of bright colours — totally obliterating everything else.

I found it very frustrating, and definitely not restful knitting. So I am back to the basic stockinette stitch of knit one row, purl the next, and am using where the tail of the yarn is to remind myself which row I’m on. Curling will have to be handled after I’m done. That’s the extend of my definition of relaxing knitting!

Now I might guess someone is gonna spy with their little eye that the felted piece above is attached to a large hair pin. Yes, an extra large plastic hairpin.

But no, I haven’t started felting – it was included in the package Sis#2 sent around the hols. She’s the master crafty person, dabbling in felting, eco dyeing, and a major knitter, far as I can tell. One difference between us is she has a house. With a back porch. And lives farther north, where it’s (generally) cooler than my apartment complex/state.

She also recommended a new author to me (Tony Hillerman), and although technical/electronic bits are outdated, the stories include correct info on various Southwestern areas and peoples.

The main character in the majority of the series is Lieutenant Joe Leaphorn, a member of the Navajo Tribal Police. “Hillerman is considered one of New Mexico’s foremost novelists.” Wikipedia. I thoroughly enjoyed the first book, The Blessing Way, and learned a lot!

Have I already raved about Richard Osman’s The Thursday Murder Club? In case I haven’t, let me report I literally couldn’t put it down. Finished it in 2 days, and sincerely hope there’s a sequel already in the works.

As this is fast becoming too long a post for Macro Monday, I’ll love you & leave you, to report on sewing projects another time . . . hehehee!

Ciao, Lovelies! 💕 💕

I framed the felted picture & hung it above my sewing table.
It deserves a better mat, but that’ll have to wait for a proper store visit.

🙈 knitting heeeeelp!

No, that’s not a typo – I mean knitting!

Above is my completed, crocheted scarf… but I discovered another ball of the same yarn. So . . . . .

First, let me define some terms. I can only knit & purl, and I crochet/knit for relaxation so don’t often do anything with a pattern. Besides, with such a busy yarn a pattern’d get lost!

After I got the brown crocheted scarf long enough to finish off (see above photo), I realized I had that other ball of yarn, plus the leftover from the crocheted scarf.

Remembering how to cast on with Maggie Righetti’s “Knitting in Plain English.”

So I decided to knit another scarf.

I started out trying to do 1 row knit, 1 row purl… then forgot which one I was on when I picked it up later. Now I have 2.5″ of what I’m calling the forgetful pattern… but the whole thing’s curling quite a bit, which I don’t like.

Do you think I should rip it out & start over? I’m not averse to that, and am tempted to restart with either all knit or all purl. The thing I really don’t like is that curling, which I’m not convinced can be steamed out, given it’s half cotton, half man-made. What do you think?

Yarn deets:  Content: 51% cotton, 37% acrylic, 12% polyamide.  Recommended needle size: 4 or 4.5 mm but I only had 5 mm.

Thank you – thank you – thank you in advance!

❤️ ❤️❤️ ❤️ ❤️❤️ ❤️ ❤️❤️

Friday night

Friday night’s supper

Hello, Lovely Readers, and welcome to my Friday evening!

🌬 🌦 🌈 ⚡️ 🌪
We’re very much in see-saw weather so I’m flipping between fleece and cotton, with intermittent cogitations on corduroy & ponte — the season of “what to sew next?”  But more on that in another post.

Oh, our National Hurricane Center has decided to open two weeks early this year due to past increases in pre-season “activity.”    Uh-oh.

Before I forget ~
In case you’re peckish for something oaty but your recipes are calling for an oat type you’ve never heard of, have a gander at this page. It describes what American oat growers & grinders mean when they use “their” terms. Hope it sheds some light.

I always enjoy a jaunt with Joanna Lumley and was delighted one night to follow her around her own isle, Britain. You don’t have to have access to BBC’s iplayer to watch – just check out YouTube for her latest 3-part series, Home Sweet Home.

Rest In Peace, little hyacinth

On a sad note – The hyacinth I’ve been photographing committed hari kari. Yes, this last ickle bulb, the runt in Aldi’s litter, always had a disconcertingly major bend in the bud stalks. That evidently became too much to overcome Wednesday dead-of-night, and it toppled off a high shelf. 💔

📚 & 🧶
I’m actually reading a book. 🤪  A very looong book. Erik Larson’s The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz. It’s about one of my fav eras, and came highly recommended by an old friend. Being fascinating and hard to put down, I’ve had a lot of late nights, and am not keeping up with my listening-whilst-sewing books. Naughty-naughty moi . . . .   hehehee!

I haven’t done a thing on my blues blanket since pinning 2 of the 3 long rows together, preparatory to joining them. They got carefully rolled up, put away, and not looked at since.

Problem is I keep thinking I need to clear off my long cutting table. Sewing long rows together needs consistent tension everywhere, no?  And to get that, everything needs to be flat, right?  Any suggestions or hints? Am I being too cautious?? Is a monster  trying to stop my progress?!?!?!?!

🤣     😆     🤣

 

Happy Mother’s Day

First, hello, Lovely Readers!  How’s your week gone? Hope everyone is holding up under whatever rules & regs are in place in your space.

Today is Mother’s Day in the U.S., so Happy Mother’s Day to you all, but let’s extend that to all Mothers in any country.

And let’s extend it to all those Dads who’ve had to be both Mum & Dad.

We’ve been having wonderfully cool weather, and I’m sending a giant THANK YOU to Canada for shipping it down to us.   ❤️   🇨🇦   ❤️

It’s been heavenly — mostly breezy with low humidity and 60’s for highs. As we’ve really had no winter to speak of, the prolongation of moderate temps is MOST appreciated.

[Could we talk about repetitions in June, July, August, September…]

Having recently met folks who had no idea there was such a thing as raw peanut butter, which separates quite naturally if not stirred, I looked it up, and discovered our Northern Neighbours created it! Another reason to be grateful to Canada! 🇨🇦

🐸 Crochet 🐸
Crocheting continued until Thursday, when I thought I had finished the ski hat and could go on to the pompom. Then I tried it on. Oops.

The bulky superwash wool yarn I was using was bulkier and less stretchy than I’d bargained for.

Currently the cap would fit a very short and extra-wide head. Am preparing to rip it, and maybe do a scarf instead. . . .

Friday’s #VirtualTeaParty2020
Still unable to purchase whole wheat flour for my weekly loaf, I started reading about substitutions. Taking my own advice, I did a quick check on the Library of Congress’ website, wondering about flour substitutes. Found a few things that might be doable, if I can get corn meal. Both are circa 1918. You can see them in situ here and here.

Photo by SDP ~ thank you!

If anybody’s missed my Wacky Cake or Boiled Raisin Cake recipes, they’re here and here. And here’s a variation, kindly sent down to me from SDP’s collection.

Friday’s #VirtualTeaParty2020
Please do stop by either Su’s place, on the 14th New Zealand/Southern Hemisphere reckoning, or right here on Friday, the 15th if you’re Northern Hemisphere/East Coast North America, or both.

Come as you are, or in your best bib & tucker. No need to bring anything, but you can if you want. There’s always an interesting assortment of peoples and conversations about food, recipes, coping, whatever. But we keep it civilised. It is a Tea Party. 😉

 

P.S./ Here’s a closer look at that page with recipes . . .