Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Knitting Failure...What Happened???

Last July I started knitting a vest/tank top called Sea Vines by Fleece Artist. I love their knitwear patterns and this one looked great. The front and back are both knit exactly the same. I was pretty sure I was following the directions correctly. The fact that it took me months to complete this, since I did not knit on it regularly, I still made both the front and the back the same. If somehow I interpreted the instructions differently for knitting the front side for instance, then the result would have been different. Everything worked out well below the underarm, although I see even my knitting pattern doesn't look the same. It's above the underarm where it obviously doesn't look right. My underarm looks different, the neckline is obviously not correct, yet was it me or really bad directions? I went over and over the directions and I do not see that I made a mistake. I think the directions were missing something. Yet when I went on Ravelry there were several projects made of this vest. So I don't know what happened to mine. I might rip it out and try and redo above the underarms, or just sew it into a pillow and cut off the top part, or add some crochet to the neckline to see if that helps??? I am at a loss as to what to do.

Here is what this vest is supposed to look like on the left and mine is on the right:

This is the back, which is the same as the front. See how the neckline is so droopy? Look at how low the front neckline is. I would be arrested if I wore this out in public without a shirt underneath it, lol!!!
Even my knit pattern looks different than the pattern on the instructions. I like how this looks, but the photo on the instructions does look more like a vine. What went wrong?
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Saturday, March 21, 2015

Quilter's Garden Blocks

I finished making 3 blocks for the Quilter's Garden BOM swap. There were 3 blocks to choose from to make: a tree, clothesline or a fence, which all blocks have a mini quit attached. I made 2 tree blocks and the clothesline block. I hope to make the fence block too, but I wanted to make sure I got the blocks done in time for the swap, so I might make more blocks later. I loved this one. I got a bit creative with one of the trees too as you will see.
I made my tree with scraps of yarns and threads. I used a washable stabilizer and sewed the yarn and threads to the stabilizer until I felt I had enough. Then I washed the stabilizer out and cut out the tree top shape and stitched it in place. I am keeping this block.

This is the clothesline and I added to 2 mini quilts and embroidered the clothespins to tack the quilts in place. I am keeping this block too.

I will be swapping this block.

These 2 blocks I am keeping. They need to be sewn together, but I might make another block, so I will wait and see what I want to do first. I see it might be better if I make the clothesline connect to another tree or post, so the clothesline isn't just out there in the air, lol!!!
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A New Link-Up & Up Coming Blog Hop Info

I am a follower of Prairie Sewn Studios. Laura has come up with a new Link-Up on her blog, called Crafty Karma Comment. I just read the blog post about it (click the link) and it sounds like a fantastic idea! I agree with all that Laura had to say and I know you will too. I know we all love a good link-up so show off what we have been creating to others who might not have visited out blogs and also to find new blogs that we hadn't heard about before. So many times we just pop over and have a look-see, but don't leave a comment. A comment can really make someone's day, but I know how we can also spend so much time on the computer that we don't have enough time to create, lol!!! Laura's idea to leave a comment on just 3 blogs to spread the good Karma is a great idea. We might not have time to visit every blog or to make a comment, but if you choose 3 blogs, and hopefully everyone will choose 3 at random and not just the first 3, so that the love gets spread around more equally, then it will be a fun link-up for all.

I was the first one today to add a posting to Laura's link-up. So how about you? Won't you stop by Prairie Sewn Studios and link up something today and cheer Laura on in her new adventure.
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Plus don't forget the blog hop Laura has planned for April. There are 6 of us participating in the blog hop to promote the year anniversary of Laura and Linda's Contain It! book. The blog hop will start April 13th-April 18th. I will be the first one to show what I made from the book (oh the pressure!), so be sure and mark your calenders and visit each blog. The schedule is below~


April 13 Daryl Perry of Patchouli Moon Studio Patchouli Moon Studio

April 14 Debbie Voigt of Around the Strawberry Patch Strawberry Patch Quilt Works

April 15 Christa Watson of Christa Quilts Christa Quilts

April 16 Andrea Taddicken of Knitty Bitties Knitty Bitties Sews

April 17 Terri Schurter of Hexy Lady Hexy Lady

April 18 Ren Murphy of The Inspired Wren

Blog Hop

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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

More Name Tags with Pockets

I made a few more name tags for my knitting group, including one for myself. I gave out a couple of the name tags on Saturday. I still have a few for some of the women who haven't come to the group in a few months. I really find the pockets so handy for all those little tools that I use while knitting, such as stitch markers, measuring tape, scissors, stitch holders, tapestry needle, etc.


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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Sweet Curacao Knit & Felted Bag

I had a lot of wool yarn in just one skein or less, so I wanted to make something with it and decided on knitting a bag that I later felted. After looking thorough some patterns I had, I decided on the Sweet Curacao Bag, which is a free pattern by Valley Yarns. I used the brown Sheep Wool that I had on hand. I felted it in a front loading washing machine on hot heat and fast spin cycle. I only ran it through once. Sometimes I need to wash it in the front loader twice to get it to felt enough. You can still see the stockinette stitch even though it's felted. If I had washed it twice I think you would see less of the stitch. However, I liked the size it was after one washing. I was so glad I kept it this size, because a while back I knit a bag using batik fabrics and I made a lining for the batik bag, but it ended up not fitting. I guess I didn't measure or calculate correctly. So I set it aside thinking one day I would make an exterior bag and use the already made lining. I remembered the lining grabbed it to see if it would work and it did! Yes! I didn't have to make a lining and because I had used a headliner foam in the lining, the bag was more sturdy. I am pleased with the results of this bag.
The bag is knit and ready to wash in the washing machine to felt.
Close-up of knitting before it was felted.
The bag after it was felted in the washing machine. You can still see the stockinette stitches, but the felting made the stitches tighter and blend better together.
The lining I added, including some slip pockets.
This is a nice sized bag. Not too large and not too small. Perfect for knitting projects.
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Monday, March 16, 2015

Companion Carpet Bag #2

I made another Companion Carpet Bag, which is the January 2015 Bag of the Month Club bag. The bag is designed by Samantha of Handmade by Mrs. H. I loved how my first bag came out and I decided to make my daughter a bag too. I used rather unconventional fabric for her bag. You see she bought  few yards of this pretty fabric that is kind of sheer. She had wanted to tack it above her bed to give her bedroom an Indian feeling. Well that never happened and as she was cleaning out stuff one day she gave me the fabric. I think there was more than 3 yards total. I didn't think much more about the fabric at the time. I wanted to make her a bag and I wanted to use fabric that I know she would like. She has her own tastes in things. Then an idea hit me. What if I fused some Shape Flex interfacing to the back of the fabric to make it handle like a regular fabric and to make it look less sheer. Then what if I added fleece to that and quilted it? So I did that and it worked. I created a beautiful bag using the fabric she likes. I had an organic green cotton fabric that was leftover from some pillowcases that I had made a few years ago, so I used that as the accent fabric for the handles and channel for the frame. I had another fabric in brown and green that I used for the lining of the bag. I showed the bag to her in progress and she seemed to like it. I just left it at her house this morning. She is going to an Irish Music Concert on St. Patrick's Day and what's better to wear to an Irish concert than a beautiful bag in a green print?


The fabric is brown, green and pink with metallic gold accents. I sewed on some green "handmade" buttons on the strap tabs.
Lining fabric and slip pockets.
The label I used, since this is for my daughter.

Back of the bag.
Inside the front slip pocket.
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Friday, March 13, 2015

Small Applique Woman Quilt

I made this small wall quilt several months ago, but I never got around to taking a photo and then I forgot to post it. It's just the head part of a pattern by Carrie Payne.


As you can see by the small doll hanger that I used to hang this quilt, the quilt is not very large. I made this using just scraps of fabric. 
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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Spring Mug Rug Swap

I joined a Spring Mug Rug Swap in February with Fort Worth Fabric Studio. We each made a mug rug and then were sent a name and address where to send the mug rug. I sent my mug rug off to Mary in California. Then one day I received a package in the mail and not only did I receive a beautiful mug rug, but I also received a pincushion, some buttons and a chocolate bar! I certainly didn't expect anything but the mug rug so that was a very pleasant surprise indeed! Thank you Marianne!!!

I swore that I took a photo of the tea kettle and cup applique mug rug that I made for the swap, but I cannot find the photo. Geesh, did I just imagine that I took the photo??? Am I losing it? So I emailed Mary and asked if she would take a photo of the mug rug that I had made her. Thanks Mary for taking the photos and emailing them to me. Here is the mug rug I made for Mary~
I used scraps of pink fabrics to create the background of the mug rug. I appliqued the teapot and teacup using a machine blanket stitch. Even the binding was from my scraps.
The teapot and teacup are batik fabrics. I quilted this in a wavy pattern. I guess great minds think alike because the mug rug I received from Marianne is also quilted in a wavy pattern too! (see below)
I did take photos of the mug rug and the other goodies that I received from Marianne, as you can see below.
I love the spring colors in this mug rug.
I like the pretty wavy quilting too.
Look at the cute fabric on the back of the mug rug too.
Each item came wrapped separately in that cute red and white polka dot tissue paper: the pincushion, the package of buttons, the mug rug and the chocolate bar. Thank you again Marianne!



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Sunday, March 8, 2015

Hyacinth Bag

I made this Hyacinth Bag from the Bag-of-the-Month Club, for a friend of mine. She doesn't have internet access, so I feel safe posting this now before I give it to her. She loves African material and other African things, so I decided to use some fabrics that I had with African prints, although the fabric I used is not really made in Africa. I did a Zentangle of an African woman on the flap and painted the background of the beige fabric and then did a collage of appliques that I already had but never used before. I quilted it all to headliner foam. I decided after making this bag that I do not like using the headliner foam as much as I like using Soft and Stable, which is denser and has a nicer feel to it.

I changed a few things on this bag too. I didn't add the cash and credit card slots under the flap, instead I made a larger zippered pocket and a large slip pocket. I made the adjustable strap about 10" longer so that it was more adjustable to more lengths. I added a zipper tab to each end of the zipper so that there is something to grab on to when zipping and unzipping the bag, and centered the zipper too. Of course I made the flap somewhat artsy fartsy, LOL!!! Even though the flap did not turn out quite as I had imagined it, I hope my friend will like it.

I doodled the African woman with a fabric pen, painted the background with textures underneath the fabric, added fabric appliques all around, quilted it all and added a few buttons.

The back of the bag has a zippered pocket.
Inside the zippered bag is a divided slip pocket.
Side of the bag.
With the flap lifted up you can see another zippered pocket and one large slip pocket.
The zippered and slip pocket under the flap.

I sewed a few buttons on the flap too, including this handmade button. There is a heart button and a flower button too on the flap.
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