Friday, July 31, 2015

Off The Needles - July 31, 2015

Off my needles this week is the Pretty Basic Shawl  a free pattern on Ravelry.  This was also my first garment to block using wires. It was a little tricky, but turned out ok. . I didn't follow the pattern exactly (well I meant to, but I made a big boo boo reading the pattern and didn't realize it until I had gone too far), so it is what it is. Wish it had turned out bigger like the original picture showed. I even added more rows thinking it would be larger.

I'm still debating what to start next.  I miss not having a sock on the needles, so I may cast on a pair of those next. Then the decision of which yarn to use--Judy's Loopy Legion on the Right or Denise's Mallard Duck on the Left - both are Lorna's Laces fingering weight yarns.

Come back soon to find out which one I choose.  Which one would YOU choose for socks and which for another knitted item?

I'm linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times.  Stop by there to see what other lovely things are being made this week. 

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Fabric Report - Week 30

Nothing in and a few more yards out this week.  I'm working on getting those 24 pieces of dragon pillowcases done--4 finished this week.  I also gifted some fabric to a friend.

I know it's hard to beieve, but I still have not bought any new fabric this year.  Only 5 more months to go.   Maybe I should take bets on whether I'll make it through December. lol

Week 30
Fabric Added - O
Fabric Used:  5.25 yards
Fabric Added YTD - O
Fabric Used YTD - 69 yards
Net used from stash this year-  69 yards

Check out more reports at Judy's Patchwork Times.  

Monday, July 20, 2015

A surprise in the Garden

Earlier this summer as I was checking my patio tomatoes, I noticed a "weed" that had come up in one of the pots and was about to pull it out.  A friend told me she thought it was a sunflower.  Now how could she tell that with it being only 4-5 inches tall. Having never grown sunflowers before, I had no idea.

I didn't really believe her, since how it got in that tomato pot was such a mystery. I had used pre-mixed potting soil to give the plants the best chance to produce big, tasty delicious tomatoes, and I know I didn't plant anything else in that pot.  Well, I carefully dug it out and planted it in my flower/veggie garden in the yard....just to see what it really was.

This is what finally became of the "weed".   Unfortunately, it faces away from us as we look from our house.

Please excuse the weeds. This little garden has a few flowers, 4 tomato plants and 2 green pepper plants. Oh yes, and now one beautiful sunflower.  Also, lots and lots of weeds.  They are my speciality!

Notice the tiny honey bee at the top inner ring and the large black bumblebee below it?  The whole plant faces to the East, I guess to greet the morning sun.

Switching gears a bit - 
At our quilt guild last month, we had our annual Summer Salad Supper program along with a white elephant gift exchange..  We were to wrap our "white elephant" so it would be enticing and completely covered. We could bring anything, even items unrelated to quilting.

The organizers had a game plan to make getting our gifts very random. As we waited for our numbers to be called, we could hear laughing and oohs and aahs coming from various sides of the room. A friend of mine at the next table got something that caused her whole table to break out in loud laughter. I looked over to see what all the fuss was about.  She got a great white elephant. She thought it was awful and did not want it. When she said who wanted to buy it, I jumped at the chance.  I thought it was the cutest 'white elephant' in the whole room.  You wouldn't believe some of the terrible 'white elephants people came up with.

Meet my new kitty.  She is house trained, doesn't need a litter box and she doesn't wake me up too early in the morning, but I think she is the cutest kitty around town.  Don't you agree?  The flowers she is carrying are Suoerbena, a Verbena hybrid. Royale Chambray is the color. (Of course you know it HAD TO BE PURPLE).

Has anyone ever tried to winter annuals over in the house?  This would make a pretty addition to our sun room in the winter.  I know kitty would prefer to be indoors when it's cold. lol

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Another UFO Bites the Dust & Fabric Report

This week will make the fabric report look better.  Surprise, surprise -- another UFO crossed off of my very long list!   This was a top that was given to me awhile back for a charity quilt.  It finally got it's turn in the quilting pile and I even found time to bind it this week. The backing and binding came from my stash, and it measured 55" x 74"; so that was 4 yards used.

Then a friend came by who needed some quilting/sewing advice.  She was working on a couple baby quilts.  After determining what colors she needed, I checked my stash and was able to find 3 yards of fabric that I gifted to her to help give more variety.  She now has plenty to complete her quilts.

Fabric Results - Week 29
Fabric Added - O
Fabric Used:  7 yds
Fabric Added YTD - O
Fabric Used YTD - 63.75 yds
Net used in 2015 -  63.75 yds

Take a minute to check out what others have been up to this week at Judy's Patchwork Times.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

QOV & Stash Report - Week 28

Nothing to report coming in or going out, so my numbers remain the same as last week.

But I do have some wonderful eye candy to share with you in the Quilts of Valor department.

Remember the retreat I went to last month, well the theme for our challenge project this year was Americana/patriotic.  For me that translated to Quilts of Valor.  I was pleasantly surprised when many of the ladies made their tops or finished quilts and presented them to me for our local QOV Chapter, Eastern Missouri QOV.  Here's what I received from these generous ladies at retreat.

Completed quilt by Rose Mary - AR

Completed quilt by Lonnie - MN

Completed quilt by Bonnie - MN
Completed quilt by Rilla - TN

Quilt top by Mary - WI

Quilt top by Rita - MO
Completed quilt by Faye - MI
Thank you so much ladies for your time, efforts and generosity for making these wonderful quilts for our American veterans to show our appreciation for their service to our country and to help preserve our freedoms.  As of July 8, 2015 our local chapter has presented over 1,800 quilts to our veterans.

Week 28 results:
Fabric Added - O
Fabric Used:  O yds
Fabric Added YTD - O
Fabric Used YTD - 56.75 yds
Net used in 2015 -  56.75 yds

Check out more stash reports over at Judy's Patchwork Times. 

Friday, July 10, 2015

On The Needles

The Pretty Basic Shawl is finally off to a correct start (third time is a charm)!  It's about two thirds the way to being finished..  After blocking, it will be a nice big size which can be worn in several different ways.  Can't wait to finish it so I can start on another new knitting project. The stash yarns are calling to me to come and play with some new patterns.

Check out Judy's Patchwork Times to see more beautiful knitting projects.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Fabric Report-Week 27 & Show & Tell

Is it July already?  OMG!  Where did the month of June go so fast.  It's been quite a while since I've blogged and I need to catch up on what's been happening in my sewing room.

First off, I attended a retreat in June and finished some quilts and tops.  First was the modern Square in a Square that I started last year. It is now quilted and bound, Yes, 1 UFO off the list.

And the back 

Then I worked on my Stars and Stripes QOV and finished the top.,  It just needs a backing and a presentation pillowcase. 

Another old UFO that has been sitting in my unfinished pile for several years finally got a little TLC. These blocks were made and given to me by my friend, Joan who didn't want them.  This is Joan's Stars. Really original, right? lol  They are made with stretchy homespun and were not a consistent size.  I bought fabrics for sashing and borders to finish it. The colors do not show up well on the computer, but the new fabric really enhances the look of the stars.  Two of the blocks were not made with homespuns, so they stand out a bit more. I'm debating if I should do some creative camouflage on one in particular.  Otherwise, I'm pretty happy with the results.

The "Snow Friends" got it's final borders to complete the size I want, but there are still some hand embellishments that need to happen before it's ready to be quilted.

Here are my current usage numbers up-to-date.
Fabric Report - Week 27
Fabric Added - O
Fabric Used:  11.25 yds
Fabric Added YTD - O
Fabric Used YTD - 56.75 yds
Net used in 2015 -  56.75 yds

I'm linking up with Judy's Patchwork Times

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Made My Goal of 52

Just finished the last 3 pillowcases today before leaving on retreat tomorrow!  I didn't plan to make so many this year (last year I made 52 for this retreat), but when I didn't have any fabric to count as being used for the fabric stash report each week, I would make a pillowcase. Here are the last 2 in the dragon fabric and 1 in the French purses.  I sure hope they will fit in that pink bag!   There are 23 novelty fabrics and 29 in the dragon fabric (and there is still more dragon fabric left on the shelf). Ugh! That will have to wait until another time.

I'm off for a few days of R & R and looking forward to meeting new friends and seeing some of the regular attendees from all over the U.S.  They come from as far away as California, Virginia, Minnesota Kentucky, Wisconsin Tennessee and Alabama plus other states. I hope to get some tops finished up with needed borders, bindings or pieced packings. Who knows, there may be time to sneak in a little knitting too.  Today it's almost 90 and that's the weather prediction most of the week.  It will be good to stay inside and play with fabric and eat, laugh, sew, knit and just relax.

See you later --it's about time I think what clothes to pack.  You know the sewing projects are more important than what to wear, right?

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Fabric Report - Week 23

A busy week, but not for using my stash, I'm afraid.  There was nothing in or out.  That's not all bad though, it means I'm still batting 100% on NOT buying any fabric for the year.

Same numbers as last week.
Fabric Report -Week 23
Fabric Added - O
Fabric Used: O
Fabric Added YTD - O
Fabric Used YTD -  45.5 yds
Net used in 2015 - 45.5 yds

I did however get a few things done during the week. Finished reading a book entitled "Rena's Promise" by Rena Kornreich Gelissen co-authored with Heather Dune Macadam.  It is the true story of two sisters who survived Auschwitz for over 3 years and what they saw and endured to stay alive.  It was unbelievable what the human body and mind can endure and still live to tell about it. It hit so many different emotions in me, that I was exhausted when I finished it, but loved it.  It is a story that I will never forget.

My other task was to make chive vinegar.  Barb over at Cat Patches introduced me to this several years ago. Since I love chives and grow them on my patio, I started making it.  Last year my chive plant was not very big, so it only made a small amount. This year, the plant as doubled and there were enough blossoms to get twice as much. Still not much compared to Barb's standard amount, but I'm happy with what I got this time.  I love using it when making salad dressings. Whenever it calls for vinegar, I substitute this.  It has a slight oniony flavor and look at that beautiful purple color.  It will get a bit darker purple as it ages.  It makes for great gifts too for those gourmet cooks in your family.

I'm linking up with Patchwork Times.  Stop by and see what others have done this week. 

Friday, June 5, 2015

On and Off the Needles- June 5, 2015

Well, I did it!   Finally finished my Hermione's Socks.  Now I can move on to something new on the needles.


Do you remember this earlier start of the Pretty Basic Shawl, well it was not looking right.  The center design was all caddywampus and I knew it would bother me every time I wore it, so I bit the bullet and frogged it back to the beginning.  Now I am going to pay attention more and see if I can get it right this time!

Starting Over.
Check out more OTN posts at Patchwork Gardens to inspire you.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Fabric Report - Week 22, 2015

Nothing in or out of the fabric stash this week, so my totals remain the same.  However I am nearing the end of the deadline for the donation of pillowcases that will go to St. Louis Children's Hospital the middle of June.

I am aiming for 52 and the count is at 50, so only 2 more to go to reach my goal.  There is still more dragon fabric cut for pillowcase size, but they will be done at a later time for a different group.  I'm pretty tired of looking at that fabric for a while!

Fabric Report -Week #22 - same as last week. :(
Fabric Added - O
Fabric Used since 4/19 - 7.5 yds (mostly pillowcases and one border)
Fabric Added YTD - O
Fabric Used YTD -  45.5 yds
Net used in 2015 - 45.5 yds

Linking up with Patchwork Times. 

Friday, May 29, 2015

On The Needles - May 29, 2015

The needles have been a little quiet lately, but I'm making progress on my Hermione's socks.  Hope to start the toe decreases soon and then it's all downhill from there.  

I did finish up another facecloth over the last week or two.  It really isn't as lopsided as it appears in the picture.:)

Stop by Judy's to see what other knitting projects are being worked on this week.