Thursday, September 15, 2005

Secret Pal Stitch Markers

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I love my stitch markers from my secret pal from Belgium! Two are made for small needles and two are made for larger needles and they came packaged in this neat little magnetic note pad. Thank you, secret pal - you rock!

Blue Jeans Bag

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Blue Jeans Bag after felting. The finished bag really does look like denim - the color stayed true and the bag felted up firm. Even though I felted it down as far as I could, the stitches are barely visible if one looks close. The finished size is 8 1/2 inches across the body of the bag and 5 1/2 inches tall at the body. If one wanted to carry a lot of "stuff", the pattern would have to be enlarged or felted less. Endless possibilities with this pattern for colors and altering (handles shorter, longer, etc.)

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I loved knitting with this yarn - Cascade 220, color number 9414 - a denim blue. The yarn is plied with a lighter denim and a darker denim. I used the Pink Lady Pattern that I purchased from Noble Knits and just changed the color. A great pattern! It knits up fast and easy and I can already see so many different variations. I knit this double stranded on size 15 needles - aaaaaand - there is no I'cord! The handles are made by knitting up the sides and then joining at the top with the Kitchener Stitch (which I am still trying to get comfortable with).

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

In the Mail Today . . .

I just received the stitch markers from my Stitch Marker Swap Secret Pal - all the way from Belgium! They are beautiful. They also came with a nice little magnetic note pad - adorable. I'll take a picture tomorrow in the daylight and post it for all to see! Thank you, Secret Pal!!!

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Teal & Black Bag

Post Felting
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The felting process went pretty quickly, but boy was the Lamb's Pride ever FUZZY! Fortunately I had it inside a zippered pillow cover because when I checked it the first time, there were several large clumps of fuzz inside the bag. It took about 25 minutes to felt and quite a while to dry, and it ended up nice and thick and sturdy. Since I don't like FUZZY on my finished bags, I shaved, shaved, and shaved some more (inside and out). Finished size is 9" at bottom by 9" tall, excluding the handle. Perfect size! So many different looks could come from this basic pattern - let's see, what's next???

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This bag knit up really fast - two short evenings. If I'd have had enough time in one evening to do it, I think that would have worked. The pattern was from the book "Knit One, Felt Too" by Kathleen Taylor and in the book it's called "Scallops and Beads". I used the basic knit pattern but changed the color and omitted the beads. Trying to use some things in my stash, I selected Lamb's Pride Worsted for the teal portion (double stranded with one strand of the color spruce and one strand of the color pine shadows) and I'm happy with the mottled look. I used Plymouth Galway in black for the top portion. Knit on size 15 circular needles for bag and size 13 double pointed for the I-cord strap. The strap is attached inside the bag and the top portion very conveniently rolls down toward the outside.

SP6 Questionnaire

1. Yarn Snob? Yes, I guess you could say that I am. After I tried the better, more pricey yarns, I have had a hard time using the lesser expensive brands - there is a difference in quality. I don't use Red Heart or Lion Brands and pretty much purchase yarn at yarn shops or over the internet.

2. Spin/Crochet? I have not taken up spinning yet, but I do know how to crochet, although I prefer knitting.

3. Allergies? No

4. How long knitting? I have knit off and on for several years, more off than on. Although, VERY on in the last 9 months!

5. Amazon or online wish lists? Not at this time.

6. Favorite scent? I guess you could say floral and/or fruity.

7. Sweet tooth? Oh Yea! My favorite is chocolate, but I unfortunately like all things sweet!

8. Other crafts? I am an amateur photographer and I have also done scrapbooking, although I'm not scrapbooking at the moment.

9. Favorite music? Country, easy listening. I don't think I can play MP3's, only CD's and DVD's.

10. Favorite color? Plum. I prefer the purple, plum, blue, green pallette. My home is predominately light gold, plum, olive green, beige. I don't like orange and don't do much with red.

11. Family situation? Married, no pets. I have two married daughters and 2 grandchildren.

12. Life dreams? That's a hard one. I want to live my life pleasing to God, be a good role model to my grandchildren, family, and co-workers, and I hope to retire in the next 6 or 7 years and be able to spend more time with family, friends, church, etc.

13. Favorite yarns? Cascade 220, Lamb's Pride Worsted, Plymouth Galway, Blue Sky Alpaca, I love to felt! Also like cotton yarns.

14. Fibers I don't like? Acrylic or really wild, funky yarns. I do like to use some novelty yarns, but not too crazy.

15. Knitting obsession? Felting.

16. Favorite items to knit? Felted bags, easy sweaters, ponchos.

17. Knitting right now? Bag for felting, short sleeve pull-over sweater, poncho, shawl.

18. Ponchos? I like ponchos if they aren't too wild and crazy. I like wraps, also.

19. Straight or circular needles? It depends on the project, I like both equally well.

20. Bamboo, aluminum, plastic? I've been using more and more bamboo needles.

21. Sock knitter? I haven't tackled a pair of socks yet, but I am very interest in it and have almost purchased supplies for socks a couple of times.

22. Learn to knit? Taught myself.

23. UFO? Not sure what you mean here.

24. Favorite animated character or animal/bird? I don't have a favorite animated character. For animal or bird, I would have to say hummingbird.

25. Favorite holiday? Christmas.

26. Collect? Dragonflies.

27. Knitting magazine subscriptions I have? Creative knitting, Vogue Knitting, Cast On.

28. Books I would like? A good sock knitting instruction and pattern book. Also would like the new Rowan book called "Classic Knits for Real Women". I think that the smallest sizes in this book would fit me - I really like some of the patterns in this book.

29. Patterns? No patterns I'm craving right now.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Mom's Bag

Image hosted by Photobucket.comFinished, Felted and Shaved!
Wow! Did this ever need to be shaved. The Noro Silk Garden is 45% silk, 45% kid mohair, and 10% lamb's wool. I am told that it will only felt when carried with another 100% wool that felts. I am sure that it was the mohair that caused the fuzziness - plus, there were these little strings sticking out all over the place from the Silk Garden. After about 45 minutes of shaving, clipping, shaking, shaving again, clipping again and then vacuming (yes vacuming with the wand of my big vacume cleaner) it is just beautiful. The only thing left to do is attach a fastener, probably a magnetic one, as that will be the easiest for my mother to open and close and will help keep her "stuff" in the bag. These are her favorite colors, so I can hardly wait for her reaction at Christmas. One Christmas gift done . . . . . how many more to go???

Image hosted by Photobucket.comMom's Bag Before Felting
This was also very beautiful before felting, but was long and flimsy. Felting sure does the trick. This is the Vintage Bubble Bag out of the Pursenalities book, made just as the directions called for. I used one strand of Cascade 220 in a beautiful Royal Blue, color number was 7818, and carried along one strand of Noro Silk Garden, color number 232, a multi blue, purple and green. The very top is Cascade 220 double stranded with no Noro and the handles are a 5 stitch I-cord, single stranded Cascade. It actually took quite a while to felt it, probably because of the Silk Garden - the Cascade had to do all the work of the felting. If I remember correctly, it took about 45 minutes of agitation in hot water before it was the way I wanted it. I stuffed it with several old small rag towels and plastic to shape it and just sat it aside to dry. Ooala! I am certainly addicted to this felted thing. I have the yarn to make one for myself in some yummy greys, blues and mauves, but I think I will cut the pattern down and make it just a little smaller for me.