Friday, October 27, 2017

The Joys of Autumn

I was not able to get a post up last week. We had driven up to Salt Lake to baby sit our 2 young granddaughters while their parents were out of town. Oh my. Lovely girls but I forgot how much work it is to take care of an almost 2 year old and a 4 year old. I was lucky to get the dishes done!

Baby hats
While riding in the car I like to knit. I am bored with dishrags, so I switched over to baby hats. Easy pattern, great car driving project. It is a 5-6 hour drive to Salt Lake, so I got a lot of knitting done. Now I have a couple of hats ready for the next new babies to arrive.
Mom's yarn
I had a bunch of yellow and pink yarn that came from my late Mother's stash. It feels good to use it up.
Brass and steam
I had a bag full of shawls and a couple of cowls that needed blocked. I decided to block one a day and was able to get them all done in about 10 days (took a couple of days off) We then went up the trail near our home and took some glamour shots. I did not photograph the cowls. First up is The Age of Brass and Steam. Rav project page
Hemp Shawl
Next up is a triangle shawl that I knit using some cool Hemp yarn that a friend gifted me. Just a simple triangle pattern that I made up as I knit. Rav project page.
I loved knitting this one! It is the Croc-a-tail Scarf pattern by Jessie Ksanznak. Link to my rav page.
I used some wonderful handspun yarn by Karen of Gift of Grace. Right now her shop is empty of most of her yarn, but she is doing a shop update soon, I believe on November 1st. She also does custom spins.
Simple blue
Another fun, fast knit! Blue is my favorite color.  Painted Hills is the pattern. Link to rav page.
Another fun knit! I had a bit of trouble with the start of the pattern, the designer is not a native English speaker and so some of the instructions were a bit unclear to me. Once I got the idea of how the increases worked, it all made sense. This is a huge shawl! Rav project page.
And the grand finale of my blocking pile! A design by SusannaIC. I love this shawl! It is very large, like a cape size on me. I started off using a larger needle and so it just grew like a weed! It is beaded. Rav project page.
I am still working on my swap blocks from last post. Hope to have those finished this week. So my only finishes are my knitting and blocking. Nice to get that bag of shawls blocked!

Linking to:

Amanda Jean

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Catching up

One of the quilt groups that I had belonged to in California swaps blocks every month. Each year has a pattern and color/theme and this year's blocks are strip pieced blocks. Since I am so far away and can't attend meetings I do a year's worth and mail them off to a friend. I usually try to get them there early spring, not happening this year. As long as they get there before the December meeting, my friend can catch me up.  I did participate in the swap last year and wrote about it in this post.

string block
I thought I need to square to 7" (over-sized for the recipient to be able to square all her blocks to the same size) and made about 4 blocks. Then I found out most were squaring to 7-1/2", so I decided I would just keep those and then went to the larger size.
4 blocks
My four smaller blocks. I love the design!
one batch
I have one month's worth done, and most of a second. Each batch features a block for each swapper and a block for the "Pot". Sometimes there is one winner and sometimes two. Depends on how many blocks are in the pot. I have won the pot a couple of times.
I pulled strips from my scrap bags. I sort my scraps according to size. I have bags of strips in various widths and also boxes of squares cut from scraps. No matter how many strips or squares you use up, they still keep multiplying! I tried to keep the strips sorted a bit on my sewing table. That lasted for about 15 minutes. Oh well. I work better in chaos.
in progress
I have several blocks in progress. I will start another one so that I can go iron the seams.
ready to trim

removing paper
I found that if I fold the paper back and then tear it away using That Purple Thang it really comes off easily! Since the seams are all side to side it is an easy chore. I have been tearing right after trimming each block.
Grand Canyon
We drove down to the Grand Canyon last week. Oh it was lovely!  I had only been there once before, when I was 4 years old. Since it is day trip from here, we will be going back frequently!

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

Home sweet home!

We were away from home for over a month. We had sketchy internet most of the time, so I was not able to get a blog post up.  Trying to catch up and get back into a normal routine. Our first stop was at the family cabin at Bear Lake. Very relaxing and peaceful.

Grand Teton National Park
Next up was 2 days at Grand Teton National Park. There was a lot of smoke in the air from the ragging wildfires in the western USA. We could barely see the mountains through the smoke. The second day was a bit better, but still smokey. I had accidentally hit the date stamp on my camera.  Wish I could figure out how to erase it off the photographs from that day.
Old Faithful
Our next stop was Yellowstone National Park! We stayed 4 nights there. OMG! It was fabulous! Still some smoke in the air, but it did dwindle each day. This has been on our list forever. It was the first National Park in the USA.  We saw Old Faithful!
Sapphire Pool 
This was one of my favorite features! The colors were incredible! It looks like a cool pool, but is really a very hot spring.
Bear Lake
We took 2 days camped at two different lakes on the way back to the family cabin. We stayed for 4 or five days there before closing it up for the Winter. Sweetie dropped me off in Layton on his way home. The Utah Quilt Guild has an annual Fest every year and I love to attend with all my buddies. I did not teach this year, taking a year off.
The Amazing Race
I took two classes.  A design class from Joe Cunningham. Which I will show next post. And then a team class, The Amazing Race. Sandy and I did this class last year and it was fun! So we decided to do it again.  You work as a team and end with two quilts. In between the steps you have to do challenges. Which is to make a couple of blocks from a kit. The blocks will be used in donation quilts. I still need to get the borders on my pineapple!
Design Wall
After I got home I decided it was time to finally install the design wall in my new sewing room. To test it out I put up a batch of swap blocks that I had trimmed at Quilt Fest the week before.  Looks like it works!

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Friday, August 18, 2017

Back from a break

I took a couple week break from blogging. Sometimes there is nothing to say and the last couple of weeks there was nothing I wanted to say.

This week I have some photographs from the Springville Art Museum's annual quilt show.

Yellow Tulips
First up is a lovely hand appliqued quilt by my good friend, Florence Evans. Her applique is exquisite! And her machine quilting wonderfully enhances the quilt!
Ruth Ewers
Next up is a small piece by my substitute mom and dear friend Ruth Ewers. I forgot the title. She started this in a Gloria Loughman class.

Path to Inspiration
This piece is by another good friend, Anne Munoz. She batiked and dyed the fabric and added machine quilting.

Lisa and Carol
For some reason they chose to squeeze these two pieces together in a too small space. The piece on the right is by another good friend (can you see the theme of my blog post ;) ?) Lisa Chin. It is made of silk. The piece on the right is made by Carol Johnson. It looks to be hanging crooked, but it is just the slope of Lisa's piece that gives that illusion.
Me on the left, Lisa on the right
I made "Yellow" for a monthly online art group challenge. The background is free form pieced and the appliques are bits of quilted leftovers from another piece. They were applied by machine.  Lisa Chin's piece was made for the "Threads of Resistance" challenge and was not accepted into the traveling show.
Embrace the Curve
And the last of my little Springville slide show," Embrace the Curve". I have posted about this piece previously here. I am very happy with the way it turned out. 

The show is very good this year. We stopped on the way back from the lake and I didn't not have time to linger, but went through very quickly. I did not go through the red and white quilts since I had seen that collection on display at the quilt show in St. George earlier this year. 

Stage 3
I have been knitting on my Tour De Sock socks. I set aside Stage 2 to try and get Stage 3 finished by the deadline. I didn't finish on time. But I chose to continue with 3's because I was really moving along and the pattern was in my memory. I finished last night and will cast on stage 4 today. I will eventually go back to my stage 2's, but probably after the Tour is finished.

Challenging Kane
One of the local guilds is named "Raising Kane". We live in Kane County. This year there is a challenge. We bought a fat quarter of the challenge fabric and need to make a quilt using it in a recognizable amount in at least 2 places on the quilt. It needs to be at least 24" square and less than 36"square (does not have to be square, but within that size range) I completed my piece early since we are packing up for another month long trip and I won't be here for the reveal. I am pretty sure that the locals don't know my blog, so I hope it is safe to show today.  The challenge fabric is the multi colored print. I used free form piecing and then tried to put the "blocks" together so it didn't look like blocks. I machine quilted an off center X and then filled in each quadrant with V's. The edges really waved and I aggressively blocked it before trimming. I am pleased with the result.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Still Lazing at the Lake

We are still at the lake. And then knitting is not going well. I tried the texture pattern from the first stage of Tour De Sock on a dishrag. It didn't work very well, the design is charted for knitting in the round and did not translate well to flat knitting. So after a few rows I ripped it out. Oh well. It was worth a try.
Folded Cuff
The second stage pattern was released on the 25th. I couldn't print it out until the next day, the small local library isn't opened on Tuesdays. And then we were trimming a tree on Wednesday so I didn't get to cast on until Thursday. I had trouble with the provisional cast on. It should not have been that hard. I think that the folded cuff would have worked just as well with a regular cast on edge. It took me way longer than it should have to get to this point.
First chart of colorwork
The next section is a Latvian Braid. I had never done that before and expected it to be difficult. I followed the directions and it knit up easily! Then on to the next 3 sections of colorwork. I was able to finish the first section. Love how it is turning out. My colors are a bit Circus-ish.
Apple Pie
On the 24th Utah celebrates Pioneer Day. About 10 years ago someone came up with the idea of "Pie and Beer" day for those who are not of the dominant religion. It has grown in popularity. I made an apple pie and my sorta new mom made a pineapple cake for a coffee and cake with our German friends that we consider family. Our own little Pie and Beer Day celebration! All of the older generation emigrated to the USA from Germany in the late 1950's and so are our Pioneers!
Bloomington Lake
Sweetie and I took the dogs for a drive up Bloominton Canyon. At the top is this lovely little lake! It is a lovely drive, although sections of the dirt road are a bit tricky.
On the way down we spotted this moose! I always feel lucky to see wildlife in the wild!
I love wildflowers! And this week we had access to quite a few in the upper elevations!
Sego Lily
We have had off and on cloudy days. Which is ok. I love the puffy white clouds and this one was especially interesting to me!

Friday, July 21, 2017

Lazy Summer Days

We are having a wonderful, relaxing time at the lake. We have a wonderful shade tree where we have set up some lounge chairs. We have spent quite a bit of time there while watching the clouds and the lake. Yeah, it doesn't suck.
My view from the lounge chair
The lake is Bear Lake on the border of Utah and Idaho. We are on the Utah side. My parents bought the lot over 50 years ago. I grew up here, spending most of the summer at the lake. I am lucky that the property is still in the family. I remember when my Dad and the neighbors constructed the flag pole and we have been flying the flag since. Love the view of the flag and the clouds.
My boys love it at the lake. This is Eddy, our "little" guy. Loves to be right next to his dad.
This is Peaty, our big boy. He loves to be next to his mama. Peaty is getting older and has some health issues. But still loves to come to the lake, just doesn't like the 8 hour drive to get there.

Lazy summer Dish Rag knitting

I failed on my socks for the Tour De Sock, stage one. So I picked up my dishrag knitting bag. Perfect, mindless summer knitting when enjoying the view is the most important thing to accomplish.
Failed sock
I did not take a photograph before ripping out the knitting on the sock. I had hoped to give the socks to my daughter. She said the pattern was ok, but she was not enthused about the design. And when she said that the yarn was too pretty to waste on that design, it sealed the fate of this project. I do like the texture design and hope to use it on a dish rag. It would be a wonderful scrubby texture. After I complete the green dish rag I will try it out.
Trouble maker shawl
Not quite a fail, but just giving me trouble. Since I am using a very fine yarn I am using small beads. And my normal crochet hook method of adding the beads isn't working, my smallest hook doesn't fit in the bead. So I was trying various dental floss methods, but had the wrong kind. I bought the floss of choice yesterday when I went to the big city to shop. So hope to get caught up on this guy.
Alternate project.
I did not have room to pack a sewing machine with a machine project, so I brought this ongoing hand sewing project. It has only come out of the bag for the photo op. I hope to finish the last light flower and get him sewn into the center so that I can start planning what comes next. This is a design and build as you go project. I have a lot of hexagons wrapped. But didn't have the right one to finish the center portion. I think I will do a dark round next. Who knows?

Friday, July 14, 2017

A real Finish!

I wanted to get something finished to enter in the Springville Art Museum's annual quilt show. I had a friend visiting last week and I had pulled out this top to show her. She gave me some very good input, so I was able to finish this piece in time.
Making matchsticks
I decided to try matchstick quilting. My piece is curved, so the lines are slightly curved to match the piecing.
And more matchsticks
You start off with quilting lines that are spaced out and then quilt in between. And then again, in between. Helps keep everything smooth and secure, no shifting.
another view
The colors are more accurate in this photograph. Again, blogger rotated my photograph.
I think it is enough
I could have gone one more session of adding lines in between, but since I was already into the sixth bobbin on a 30"x 24" piece, I decided it was enough. I would like to try it another time, maybe on a smaller test piece.
close up
I used a dark charcoal colored thread. I am pleased with the effect! One of the things that Helen and I had done was audition thread colors.
I have titled this piece "Embrace the Curve".  
Loved this!
The car club in town hosted a little park and show your stuff downtown this week. We went down to look. Fun! Only about a dozen or so cars.  But fun anyway.  I loved this sign on a mini cooper.