For my spinning, knitting, fibery thoughts
I went yarn shopping. No, I'm still poor, but I budged a bit of money up to buy a present for my secret pal. No, I haven't mailed it yet. So far I've got at least a week's gap between buying and shipping my SP gifts....
What I ended up with (besides the present, which I'm not showing for obvious reasons) was a skein of Filatura Di Crosa 127 Print, in the Lavender Colorway. Lovely stuff, soft to the hand, and knits (when you knit loose and on #8 needles) into a wonderful, drapy fabric. The yarn has 27 feet of solid color, then 8 feet of variegated inter spaced with the main color. So you get 'stripes', depending on where you start it, and how wide your piece is.
So I pulled out the center, and decided not to start with the colored bit. I wound off until I got to a solid section, and broke the yarn. I cast on 56 stitches for a normal hat, and knitted away.
Joy. I really enjoyed knitting with this. So I knit for about 3 hours, while we make characters for a new RPG (shut up. I like gaming.) and then when I got home and watched Return of the King on our new (to us) bigger screen TV. I got tired, and decided the hat was big enough. Decreased and bound off, with about 20% of the yarn to go.
Then I realized the hat was a bit short. Not too bad, and it was fine if I unrolled the rolled hem. Hmmm. I went to bed in a sorta snit; nothing I've done lately has come out perfectly. The stripey purse: strap too wide. The cabled hat: looks a bit... wonky, like it needs blocking, but I did it in acrylic. Can you block acrylic? Off to google that... The monster thing I made (more on that later) came out almost featureless, though a bit cute. And then the purple hat.
I had a mini breakdown (this is what I call any showing of negative emotions. My mate calls it the "Patented Lindsey Robbins Litany of Woe." Bastard.) and was advised that if my crafting wasn't relaxing me like it was supposed to, maybe I should put it aside.
The horror. Put it aside? Is he insane? It's keeping me going. Ok, maybe not, but still... I love my crafting.
I woke up yesterday determined to 'save' the purple hat. So I picked up the stitches on the cast on hem, and knit three rows of "knit front and back of each stitch." Yeah, I ruffled the everloving hell out of that thing.
And then, when I was casting off, I ran out of yarn. So I picked up the colored 8 feet I broke off from the beginning... and that helped for about 3 inches of hat. This thing has like 450 stitches now that it's ruffled... Hmmm. I used every bit of yarn I had broken off, cut off, or used in other spaces. I snipped the long end from the cast on off and used that. I still fell short.
So I used my crochet hook to pull each loop through the one previous, and then lifted the new loop over the old. It worked, and it the hellaruffle you can't tell. I wove in the 15 (yes, 15) ends from all the yarn scrounging, and have a hat. Now, I have a total of about a foot of yarn left over from the ball, in 2 inch pieces. I pop the hat on my head and really love it.
I show it to the mate, and he says ".... You put a ruffle on it."
"Yes." Flounce of the head to show off the ruffle.
"What's wrong with a ruffle?"
"... Nothing, honey. It's cute."
"What do you mean by that??"
"I mean it's cute. Yes. Cute." He even patted me on the head.
... I like my ruffled hat. And anyway, it's for the sale...
In completely unrelated news; I know what I did on the shorts, and I didn't do anything wrong, except hold them upside down when the teacher came to look at them. That's why she thought I had done something wrong. So it's back to class tonight to re-resew my shorts. Arg.
Oh, and I'm working on getting my serger working. Took it out of the box and fiddled with it, made sure it was threaded right (no, I didn't unthread it. I'm not insane!), but it's not surging. It's just wrapping the 'tongue' in thread. So it's at the shop, waiting for a free estimate to fix it. I so want to make a shirt before the Ventura Highland Games .... We'll see if it gets out of the shop on time.
Off to rememebr how to block acrylic. How can I block a hat without a hatblock.... Hmmm....
In the spirit of bad news first, good news last, I present you with the Story Of Shorts.
In my sewing class last night I began making my shorts. I took the pattern out, and, after measuring myself around and front to back (from what my teacher calls the 'sweet spot' between your legs. Yes, I find that disturbing, if only because she's a conservative, dress wearing home ecc teacher.) I determined that I needed my shorts a bit larger than the pattern. So I traced out the pattern on butcher paper*, and made it an inch bigger all the way around.
*did you know you can draw on top of that pattern-piece-onionskin paper with a permanent marker and it will go through to the butcher paper? O_o On the upside, it is easier than trying to see the lines with the butcher paper on top...
It seemed really big. Like... Butt that ate Manhattan big. Like Buttzilla big. But (hee hee hee) I decided that the pattern itself looked big, even for the smaller sizes. So I lay out my fabric, and cut the pattern. So far, so good.
Then I take it to the teacher for help with the next step. Because I'm using a McCall's pattern, the illustration doesn't show all the steps, and the text was confusing.
So the teacher shows me how to pin the two sides together, and tells me to sew the center seem. I baste it together, and then serge it up.
At some point, I start to think something is wrong, but I figure the teacher knows what she's talking about. So I sewed the red line to the purple line (below).
So, that's basted and sewn, and I'm thinking that I've done something horribly wrong. I take it to the teacher, and she laughs and says yes, you've sewn it wrong.
Grumble grumble grumble. I did what she told me to... So I sit and rip, rip rip out serger stitching. Teach said she'd show me the 'easy way' to do it, but then didn't. That's ok; I figured it out myself, and was 'unzipping' the surger stitch after trying for more than 15 minutes. So, after more than 45 minutes, I get it back to four pieces.
I plunk the pattern down on the cutting table, lay my pieces out, and look hard at it. I believe I did step one correctly. I'm not sure what else I could DO in step two. I have this horrible feeling that I had done it correctly, and she made me rip it out because she didn't realize that. I left class with nothing but my pattern cut out after 4 hours of sewing class. I am very, very frustrated.
Any seamstress/seamstress out there? What did I do wrong? Should I sew the red line to the purple? Or what? The directions aren't helping me here, and neither is my teacher.
After stomping home (ok, I drove, but I was driving petulantly), I found my secret Pal had sent me a package!
2 skeins of Regina sock yarn, in a super cool black with color pops, a sock booklet, a knit booklet, and CANDY. Oh sweet baby Jesus, candy. Secret pal, you have no idea how welcome those mini mars bars were! Chocolate is the perfect panacea... Thank you!! You saved my night.
That’s right. Two!
First up, my first garment FO. This is the ‘t-shirt’ that I made in beginning sewing class. Yes, I’m pitiful at sewing, so I took a class. This wasn’t so hard, though I don’t like ‘setting in’ sleeves; I’m horrible at it.
So, Photobucket, where I store my images, is having a outage, so no photos. And all my photos are broken until they fix the problem, which is likely to be tomorrow. Arg! Oh well.
The NSB I thought was "raspberry" and "almond blossom" isn't. I checked my labels. I bought these about a year ago, so they must be an old set of colors. The colors are actually "claret" and "taupe" ... ok, so that's almost the same. The taupe, however, looks mostly grey next to the claret. Which is fine.
Two young people I know suggested I make a bag to sell at belly dancing events. They say that belly dancers will buy anything, as long as it's brightly colored and jingles. I can do that. I hope to make a bag with those little mirrors on it...
Off to Kitten's house for an evening - and morning, as it's a hour(x) drive to get there. Now, I know, lots of you all out there in Blogland drive much more than an hour to either be with your friends, or to get to the LYS. But out here in LA, an hour(x) drive means an hour, times whatever the traffic is. As I have to go on the 405 freeway, which is the freeway that goes by LAX international airport, and as I have to go at around 4 PM, I figure it will take me about 3 hours.
In LA. In LA traffic. Blech.
But Kitten is worth it.
I have a few knitting questions for the blog world in general:
First I present to you the case of Donna:
Remember that fleece I bought at the spinning compition at the fair? Well, I washed it with the little vial of Wooly Wash that I got from my Secret Pal (thanks!), and have a suprizing amount remaning. It was a pound going in, and it must be less than that now, but it seems like a bunch of wool!
Here's the washed fleece. Yes, there's bleaching. And it's less black than dark brown. But it has so many colors! I hope to be able to card it all together into a heathered brown mix.