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I have update Knitting 2 and watercolors.

These are the lastest watercolors from the past three months of classes:

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Boat at Low Tide

for-copies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plum trees in bloom on HipPocket Street Peachtree City

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Rose in Full Bloom

Hope you enjoy!

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Easter 2009

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My latest project has been trying to create a form to felt a size 2T coat for Alaina, but I knew I would have a hard time felting it to sizeThe coat is for next year so after talking with Emily Ann we figured she will be about a 2T by then. The pattern is by Nani called “Ella & The Legume”. It is so cute I saw it done in pastel colors at Knitch in Atlanta and just had to get the yarn and pattern to make her one.  (If you are going to get the pattern look also on line @ Deep South Fibers there is a correction to the pattern there.)

 

 

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The thought I would share with you the project because it was easy fun and very useful when felting or even knitting.

 

  

MAKING FORMS:

Making forms all came about because my daughter Tracy was mentioning that when I knitted her a sweater she has to much extra fabric under her arms. I thought about this problem and did not know how I could work without trying it on her or having a form. Trying it on her with her living Michigan and I in Georgia seemed a bit difficult. However, a dress form was not out of the question. I did not want to buy a form they cost so much so that left me to exploring making one. I found a great book called “Custom Knits” by Wendy Bernard. She suggests making a form for you with the help of a friend out of duck tape. This worked really great and was an easy and fast way to solve the problem.

 

Making a form for Alaina like this presented two problems. One she is not a size 2T yet and the second and biggest problem was I would never duck tape a little person. She would hate it and never sit still and I would be the Nana that traumatized her at a very early stage!!!!! So with that said I started to think about what could be done.

 

Several years ago I made Santa Clauses out of children’s clothing. They were really cute and I enjoyed making them. I thought maybe I could do that. The next problem would be that they would be all wet during the felting process. Whether during the drying or spot steaming process, they would become damp and limp. Then I thought I could water proof them.

 

Ideas:

1.        Paper Mache ……..not waterproof again. Nope!

2.      Plaster of Paris……not waterproof again!!! Nope.

3.      Water proof the above…..HHHHHmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

4.     Why brother with all the mess just waterproof the fabric of the outfit!!!!!!!!

5.      But how??????????

6.      Buy spray waterproof like the kind for boots and stuff………….too much money

7.       what makes cloth waterproof……………..Enamel Paint

 

So I did I spray painted the outfit with enamel paint and water proof she became. The following are pictures and explanations of the process I used to create Alaina 2T: 

 First step was going to a thrift shop to buy cheap 2T long sleeve top and pants.

 

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Then you need to make the form:

 I  closed the arms with fabric circles to give room for the wrists of the coat. I stuffed the top and the began to work on the bottom.

 

 

 

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I made the same type of circles for the legs and sewed them to the opening. This insured that the legs were round and not pulled together. Stuffing the legs came next but I wanted them to be weighted so they could stand if I wanted.

 

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I put the stone weights you use for flowers in vases in a plastic bag to keep them together and placed them in the legs. I then stuff the legs tight and began to attach the top to the bottom.

 

 

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Next step.

After I stuffed the top and bottom tightly I then attached the two together. I whipped stitched them all the way around.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I can either stand the form up or put it on a hanger in the neck of the top. Depending on now heavy the garment you are felting, will depend on which way you will want to put the form.

 

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Standing on it’s own!

 

Waterproofing!

 

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I put a paper tube from wrapping paper down the back like a spine. This helped me be able to handle the form when I was spraying the paint. I left it in while it stood to dry and will cut it down later so there is room for the hanger too. I painted the form green because that is the color I had on hand. It also made me think of Michigan State. Go Green Go White. But I think I would have rather  had the white. I would pick a color you like and go for it! make sure you get all the spots. Under the arms around the legs around the neck. You want it water proof so it doesn’t go limp or mold while drying.

 

I think it came out rather well. I am just about finish knitting the coat just a front ruffle. I will be felting it next week and will make sure to share the finished project and the coat drying on the form.

 

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Good Luck putting your form together. Let me know how it goes!

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Me and Sock Monkey thought it would be fun to put together a map of all the places the family has visited over the last 40 years. So we got a world map. We mounted it and took a few color pins and went to work. Black pins are for Paul’s work travels, red Emily’s, green are where Paul and Emily went together, white is where the whole family went. The big pins are places we have owned a house and blue are where family live. There is one lone yellow for Tracy by herself in South Africa. She has been the farthest south in the family and Paul the farthest north with Helsinki. It was a lot of fun to do and see. Paul really enjoyed the surprise! He got to add a lot of pins from places we did not remember. How he wants to go through all the boxes and boxes of old pictures we have and sort by decade. So look forward to the next addition with old pictures to come soon.

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I wanted to share with you the latest projects I have been working on. I just finished my first shawl for Joe and Sarah’s wedding. It has been a long journey to the first one done. I first had a problem finding and getting pure white long shawls. I thought I had them ordered from a store at the Atlanta Mart but when they came 8 week later they were off white. HUGGGGGGGGGG! Then I found some white ones on the internet and they really came rather quickly. I got them from Peach Couture. They had a nice variety of shawls for a good price.

 

I then thought I would embroiderer the three snow flakes on the shawl and decided to use one of the off white scarves to practice on and boy am I glad I did. It looked awful! The flakes looked heavy and pulled the scarf and left holes where the needle went in. I then tried different types of floss with no change in the holes. I then thought I would iron on backing to help hold the scarf together. That worked well! However, the snowflakes still looked heavy and not pretty and light at all!

 

I then talked with Karen Joe’s mom about the color and type of floss and we both agreed that silver would look very nice. Sarah’s colors are white and dark navy blue.  But we could not match the dark blue with a floss color.

 

So I thought, and thought, and thought about what to do with the snowflakes. I had wanted to copy the pattern from one of the books I brought home from Japan but they had embroidered the snow flakes on linen which is a much heavier material. The light airy scarves just could not hold up with that thick of a stitch.  I then got a brain storm that I could cross stitch the snow flakes with waste canvas. I had made my sister a beautiful throw with poinsettias several years ago and the waste canvas worked really well with that.

 

So off again to the craft store and I got silver floss, iron on backing, and waste cloth. Once again I worked on the trial scarf and was happy with the results. Now that I like the results I have sixteen weeks to complete eleven more adult and one child scarves before the wedding. I will be working on Christmas presents at the same time but I think I have enough time. It takes about four to six hours to do one flake and at that rate I will have plenty of time to finish. I hope Sarah likes them and I hope they look nice on the wedding party.

 

Here are a few pictures of the finished scarf. I will not be using the white on white again. However, I will mix the dark and light sliver together. The beads are crystal and really sparkle in the sun.

 

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It seems lately that I have become obsessed with lace and cables patterns. I am bored by stockinette stitch, going crazy with changing colors in intarsia, and not interested in felting things in this heat.  Knitting the intricate patterns and watching them unfolding has really been quite satisfying. I have been home a lot this week waiting for the Comcast repairman to really come. I have waited a total of 16 hours in three days. (never showed and my phone still doesn’t work) This is another long story you really don’t want to hear. Which brings be back to cables and lace. I have been working on projects while waiting. I also have been shopping (just a little) on the internet for yarn and patterns. I have spent some time looking at patterns in the books I have, and sorting my stash to see what I can use. Maybe, I should have to stay home more often. (right, not)

I first thought I would make everyone folk mittens for Christmas. But now that I am burnt out on changing colors after working on the trial baby carrier, I have decided to make shawls or scarves with lace or cables or both. These are the patterns I have been looking at to do and some of the books I have either just purchased or took out of my library to use.

First I really enjoyed making the lace sweater top from “Rowan Knitting and Crochet magazine Number 43”.   

 It really looks nice on:

              

The book is really nice and has 37 different patterns. I think that the Rowan pattern magazines are really well done!

The latest addition to my library is “Victorian Lace Today” by Jane Sowerby. There are several great lace patterns. I heard about the book when it was reviewed by Kelley on the Knit Picks podcast. She makes me want to buy every book she reviews. I think she is there best salesperson! 

  If you go to the link you can see several of the patterns inside the book.

 

 I think I will use several for the Christmas scarves. I got the book from Knit Picks and also order some lace yarn for a shawl pattern I just got. They have several very nice lace yarns in wonderful colors this year.

These are a few of the projects I think I will make as gifts.  

 

While visiting projects on Ravelry  I found two shawls I just loved. They both were from a designer that only sells on the internet. The patterns  are from Die-Wollust . They are from Germany but sell their patterns in several languages. I got the “Ornamental shawl” and the “Art Nouveau shawl” both are very beautiful. The patterns, however, are done in charts and i am a written directions kinda gal. I have been spending several hours putting them into written form. There are several debates about charts vs. written directions. I have preferred written lately. There is too much looking back and forth for me and I am always losing my place. This way the rows are numbered and color changes between the lines really helps me keep track. I know it takes a great deal of time to do it but I think it is worth it because the project goes quicker for me, I don’t lose interest in the project, it is much, much, much easier to carry around with me when I am on the go, and I can always use them again when I make the pattern in the future. This is what my written directions look like I do them in a word document. I have done them in excel in the past but like this format better:

Row #

Border

Instructions

Border

Done X

 

 

Cast on 145 from Crochet cable

 

 

 

 

Purl row and all Wrong side rows throughout the pattern

 

 

1

(K2tog, yo1,)2, k1

(k2tog, yo1,)5, k1, (yo1, skp1)2, K25, (k2tog, yo1,)2, k1, (k2tog, yo1,)3, k3, (yo1, skp1)5, k1, (yo1, skp1)2, k5,  (k2tog, yo1,)2, k1, (k2tog, yo1)3, k3. (yo1, skp1)3, k1, (yo1, skp1)2, k25, (k2tog, yo1)2, k1, (yo1,skp1)5

K1, (yo1, skp1)2

 

3

Repeat border throughout shawl

(yo1, skp1)4, k2tog, yo1, k2, (yo1, skp1)2, k24, (k2tog, yo1,)2, k1, (k2tog, yo1,)3, k2, (skp1,yo1)3, k2, (yo1, skp1)2, k5, (k2tog, yo1)2, k2, (yo1, skp1)3,k2, (yo1, skp1)3, k1, (yo1, kp1)2, k24, (k2tog, yo1)2, k2, yo1, skp1, k2tog, yo1)4

Repeat border throughout shawl

 

 

I format the page to fit 5.5 wide by 8.5 long so that when I print the page they can easily fit my Chart Keeper which is another handy dandy tool I got from Knit Picks. (after reading over this you would think I was an advertisement for Knit Picks, I am dropping them a line and see if they would like to sponsor my blog :O) LOL)

 

I have chosen a lace yarn called Shimmer Hand Dyed Lace Yarn It is 70% Baby Alpaca, 30 % Silk. The color is steel gray tweed, called Cumulus. It is really much nicer in person then the picture on the web. I am also going to make this shawl for my sister Yvonne. I am just waiting to see what color she wants. I hope she chooses soon before I get more into my Christmas knitting and time gets short.

 

The Cable book I have been looking at comes from my library again. It is called, “Inspired Cable Knits” by. Fiona Ellis.    There is a blue sweater that has been on my project list to make for a while. My dear friend Karen bought me some wonderful yarn from “Stonehedge Fiber Mill” in East Jordan, MI. The yarn is a chocolate gray and I thought this would be the perfect project to use the yarn. I have been saving it for something wonderful. I think it would look really great with jeans. So that project has just moved up on my list to do. I don’t think I will be able to start it until after all the Holiday knitting is done. It is better to work with this yarn when it is cooler out anyway.  

 

My next adventure project will be to do some dyeing. I have gotten some sock blanks and plain yarn to dye. This will be my first try in a very long time at dyeing. I did some back in the 80’s when I spun a lot but really have not done any dyeing since. I also want to knit up a sweater to felt and dye at the same time. I want to paint with the dye and see what happens. I will make sure I document the process to share. I need to make a trip to Old Time Pottery for supplies. Anything you use to dye with can not be used again for cooking. It is best to have equipment just for dyeing. But I will save all that for another post.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

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