Friday 2 February 2018

Ready, steady, quilt. And knit.

Firstly an update on Soy Amado.

No. 128

No. 129

No. 130

No. 131 - love everything about this one: the setting and the quilt itself.

No. 132.
Blue sky.
Haven't seen that in a while.

No. 133
Another lovely one from @grannyjack123 on Instagram

No. 134

No. 135

No. 136

No. 137

No. 138

No. 139

No. 140
All the blocks were sent to me by @obsessivequilter on Instagram. I believe they were from some block of the month thingy. They were random sizes so I just whacked them together, using my own fabric to fill in the gaps and then I quilted the whole quilt.

It's a whopper. I had to take the pic inside because of how chuffin wet and windy it was outside. That means it's not the best of lights which is a shame because the blocks are beautiful.

No. 141

And No. 142 which brings me up to date.
Artistic jaunty angle courtesy of the persistent wind and rain.

The latest batch have been delivered to South Africa where it's now summer. Once the cooler months return, the school where they have been delivered to are going to hand them out and have told me they will sit with each individual child and talk through with them the patterns on the quilts, explaining that each one is as individual as they are. Apologies for the blurry photo but this is the quilts arriving.

Knitting has continued. I spent a small fortune knitting this for eldest daughter as a going away to university present. The yarn is Woolfolk Far and although lovely to knit with is, by far and away, at $22 a skein and a whole lot of skeins required, the most expensive item I've knitted. I liked the yarn but it does have a slight tendency to bobble and I question my sanity at spending so much on a uni sweater.

The pattern is called Los (all the patterns I find are available on Ravelry) but I lost the will to live doing the actual body pattern so switched to garter stitch for a swifter finish. I actually think it looks great and I loved the way you knitted the front and back hems separately and then joined them when the back was longer.

Then I became obsessed with making the Pondhopper hat. It's so quick to knit up - I can do it over two evenings. If you are interested in making it, I did one full repeat extra of the pattern because other people on Ravelry had said it was quite a snug fit and I wanted it more slouchy. So far, I have knitted seven but I'll only bore you with three.

There seemed to be a lot of interest on IG on where I got the pom pom bobble balls from  - Cowling Country Crafts on Etsy. I've done your research for you because I feel a cheap looking pom pom can make or break a hat and these are great quality. Plus, they are fixed with snap fasteners, making it very easy to put on said hats.

I made a Gryer Shawl in worsted yarns.

And a Brida Shawl.

I hopped on a plane and train to my first ever knitting convention  weekend and took two classes with the brilliant Olive Knits. Those classes alone were worth the expense.

It was also my first time wandering around a place where a complete myriad of styles of knitting, both in the things you can make and the yarns you can buy, were available to peruse. I came away convinced more than ever that I like classic and conservative colours and styles. There were so many yarns that looked like the result of a bad decision the night before, they made me antsy with their splattered colour randomness.

Which is not to say I am the authority on what is classy. Just that it was a good chance to understand what I found appealing and what left me scratching my head and at times shaking it in an internal, OMG way.

This made me happy.

And this left me cold.
Which leads me to conclude I like my quilts a riot of colour and my clothes not so.

I made a Guernsey Wrap.
Well I had to really because of the name.
And I made it with two colours.
Just because.

And a 2nd Avenue Wrap which is lovely and wide and I wear it to work and it's great for keeping warm.

And my favourite knitting make to date is the Humulus Sweater.

When the pattern for this came out, I followed the hashtag religiously on Instagram to see other people's makes. I went subtle. Too subtle as you can' really see the green contrast pattern.
However, I love it, it's a great fit and I am going to make another one some time with more contrast.

On the quilting front, I continued with my open love affair with all things Anna Maria Horner.
I have quite the pile of excess squares cut from a previous quilt so I put them to good use and made this.

It's just the humble half square triangle which I made by whacking two squares together, pencil line diagonally across, seeing 1/4" either side of the line and then cutting on the pencil line.

Really simple but oh so effective.

And then I decided I needed a Courthouse Steps quilt in her fabric so this is the start of something I am already hugely in love with.

And that, if you have got this far, brings you bang up-to-date :-)

Tuesday 19 September 2017

And the next update...

The theme of the last couple of months has been quilting, knitting and destahing fabric; the latter because I realised if I wanted to combine quilting and knitting there was no way I was going to be able to get through my healthy fabric stash.

Unless I lived to infinity which I don't think is possible just yet.

So let's kick off with Soy Amado. Three big bags of quilts went off last week and I'm just waiting to hear where they've gone which I will then, hopefully, share pictures of.

The blocks have continued to come and I have quite the leaning tower of blocks to choose from. I will get around to making some more soon but my sewing machine is currently occupied...more on that shortly.

Soy Amado No. 123

I have a thing for dahlias, the more jewel like the better.
It was raining when this pic was taken so there was no inclination to go looking for a local scene.
It was either the trusty washing line or my dahlia border and the the dahlias won out.

Soy Amado No. 124

No. 125

I know. Another chance to brag about the dahlias.

No. 126 was another beautifully made one from @grannyjack123 on Instagram and was a fabulously colourful shot on a miserably grey summer's day. If you look closely, you'll spot a couple of keen swimmers getting in to the sea.

No. 127 - many of the blocks are country flags, very generously sent by an IGer in Germany. There's even a Guernsey one.

I've carried on knitting.

This is a Mulberry & Silk yarn from Sherwood Yarn in a colourway called King's Ransom. The pattern (available on Ravelry) is called the Bosky Cardigan but I did slightly alter it by adding the vertical edging along either front edge as I felt it didn't add enough boobage coverage. It's lovely to wear and I've reblocked that slightly squiffy left (as you look at the pic) bottom edge bit. Can't recommend the yarn highly enough.

Appreciate it's not the most tantilisingly styled pic you've ever seen but I'm also seed stitch deep in an Addison sweater.

I'm knitting that one in Blacker DK Gotland. It's got quite a rough texture when compared to the cardigan above but when I wet blocked the swatch,it did go much softer. Currently finished the front and am half way up the back. This one is knitted in separate pieces, whereas one above was knitted top down in the round which is always much easier in terms of less seaming to do.

I also visited (and possibly may have purchased) a couple of yarn stores over the summer.

Imagiknit in San Francisco which, believe it or not, was completely overwhelming. I walked in the door and the choice was too much. Two rooms crammed with yarn, yarn and more yarn. Their system was to categorise by yarn weight and then composition but it was still a 'where do I start' moment.

Plus, I cycled there using Google Maps on my phone which told me it would be an 18 minute cycle ride from where I left my husband. I told him I 'won't be long' but Google Maps doesn't take in to account the hills in San Francisco.

I returned to him two hours later.

Definitely worth a visit though.

I also visited Loop in London.

Oh and a five minute walk from where I was staying in San Francisco was Britex Fabrics. Very hard not be impressed/overawed.

Long flights mean the opportunity for hand piecing and the following represent two transatlantic flights...minus the backing to the blocks which I forgot to cut out and bring with me.

I don't really have a game plan for these blocks - I think they're just blocks to do whilst on the move so maybe in a couple of years I'll have enough to put together for a whole quilt.

And then there's this.

My Pickled Fish Quilt finally got it's border put on it.

Simply put, scrappy quilts are the best. They're fun, quirky, happy, mad, zesty, visually interesting and completely and utterly by cup of tea.

A form of controlled chaos.

Which I love, love, love.

And now I'm on a mission to quilt it.
Lines just 1/4' apart which are giving the most amazing texture to the quilt.
I can't remove it from under my machine until I've finished so when there's a sneaky spare moment to be found, that's where I am.

I'm using all sorts of weight and colour of threads (including monofilament) every few lines so it's not just a uniform look but again, a disjointed feast for the eyes.

Hopefully, it's working.

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