Doily Love

“ole people stuff” … that’s what I used to call doilies.

Pretty, vintage, delicate, lacey, genius … that’s what I call them now.

To Diana and Hildred — my older cousins — who thought I had it in me to be a doily afficianado (like they were).   I’m sorry I laughed and thought y’all were old people (at 26 & 32) … just because I didn’t get what it took to be the type of craftswoman you both were.  But I know now.  It’s amazing what you two cranked out back in the day … both in complexity and size … and to think y’all didn’t even know how to read patterns … you just replicated accurately from looking at the stitches in finished pieces …

Bravo cousins!

This isn’t much, but I’m sure you’ll both be happy to know that I’ve finally … after 25 years … joined you in the doily love.

Cheers! <3

Doily Love

Pattern: Jute Rug motif from publication “Crocheting for the Home” by Margaret Ramsay and Sondra Miller.  Ravelry notes here

Claiming stashdown Scavenger 2015 challenge letters:

  • D: for delicacy
  • K: for kinship
  • O: for Ornament

See the list here.

What have you all been up to craft-wise? :D

 

 

Still Here & New Stuff

I think this one month break is the longest I’ve been away from this blog.  Short story is that I’ve been dealing with an issue that’s just been taking up so much of my time and energy, that I’ve been unable to do the stuff I love the way I know how.  There’s not much more to share right now so until then … let’s set the issue aside and go to the “new stuff” and maybe an update on an old one.

I’ve been plugging away on my Duotone cowl and really should be saying that it’s done, but even that happy spring project got set aside these past few weeks.  I’m almost done with the second section; that’s not bad progress all things considering.  With the Harry Potter Knit and Crochet House Cup back in full swing, I’m giving myself until the end of the month to finish it, kitchener it together then block and have the F.O. for you.

I think all die hard crafters feel this way — when we go some time without doing what we love, we get more crazed!  Am I right or am I right?  So this weekend, I decided to jump back into the saddle and have some “soul food”.

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My Sunday intake of “soul food” meant reading my Bible, classic literature (that Jean Rhys woman I love to hate), vintage crochet books and starting a shawl pattern that my IG buddies Kokomire and Elisa were convinced I could do.  I didn’t believe them but I tried anyway … and as my uncle would say … holy mackerel!  I actually was able to follow the video then work solely from the crochet chart as there are no written instructions.  Can I just brag here a little and say that I’ve never used charts only for knitting or crochet?  Since Sunday, I’ve been doing what I need to during the day and counting down the hours before I can get to this project.  The rows are already getting long but I’m going to finish it!  I have to.  Even my mom is waiting for the F.O. photos!

So far, I’ve gotten to this point:

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I would have gotten further but I keep stopping to stoke it and shake my head in wonder at the fact that I followed charted crochet instructions and made this!  I tell you … Elizabeth Zimmerman was right when she said — “Really, all you need to become a good knitter are wool, needles, hands, and slightly below-average intelligence. Of course superior intelligence, such as yours and mine, is an advantage.”   I would add crocheter to that quote as well.  :D

Is it just me or do you feel the same way?  When you take a break from crafting and you finally get back to it, don’t you just want to:

So that’s what I did … or at least am trying to do.  On Saturday, I added candle making to my repertoire.  Not just melt and pour wax stuff.  LOLOL! Actually working out ratios, measuring, melting, adding fragrance, then letting the mixture set so I could end up with a usable candle.

As the sun went down yesterday, it felt good to walk through the apt and smell the fragrance of a candle burning that I made.

Candle Light -- Sunkissed Leaves

I think I’m definitely out of my craft slump.

How have you been since I’ve been gone?

More Experiments In Colour

Since we spoke last week, I’ve been up to or rather, getting ready to get up to some more experiments in colour.  I had to totally frog my cousin’s blanket.  I made a mistake somewhere on the second repeat and in fixing that I found the yarn had looped in some crazy way in the 1st repeat.  That’s what I get for trying to work on it at midnight.  At some point I fixed the mistake but couldn’t work out what the heck happened to cause the looping.  So I frogged it all together and am going to restart it this week.  This time around, I’m going to stop when I feel tired instead of powering through because of some insane, self inflicted goal of finishing the project in a month.

I also fell off schedule with the Duotone Cowl.  I planned to finish the peach dominant repeats on Sunday but I went to brunch with my cousins and I’m okay with saying that I had such an amazing time I was too “noshed” to knit when I got home.  That’s what I get for having drinks on an empty stomach.  But not to worry, I didn’t do anything crazy … just felt super sleepy when I got home.  :D    I’ll be finishing those repeats this week and moving on to the magenta dominant ones.

In the meantime though, I’ve been working on the mini skeins below.  This Instagram posted pic had to be one of the most popular and most commented pics on my feed.  So many questions about what I’m going to do with them and comments about how patient I must be to actually wind all of these.  When I get phone calls about them from my non-knitting friends, I know I better say something.  :D

104 Minis

I’m not a patient woman, I’m really not, but I had to do these (they were fun to make; I blast through 55 one day).  These minis will be used to experiment more in colour.  That’s the literal truth.  I was gifted some acid dyes recently and I want to see how far I can go with my dyeing skill.  I don’t what’s going to come of it, but my consolation is that even if nothing does come of it I would have added another skill to my crafty repertoire and some awesome skeins to my stash.   Will keep you updated as I fall further down this rabbit hole.

For My Health

I’ve also been trying to experiment in colour with regards to my food.  Did you know that nutrition experts recommend that we experiment in colour so we can get the best of what real, unprocessed, nutritious foods have to offer?  For the past three days, I’ve been having my dinner earlier then making my last meal a juiced one based on color.   What’s shown is a juiced snack of lettuce, cucumber, celery and ginger.  My sleep patterns have improved so far and I’ve been falling asleep without having to drink a chamomile based tea.   Tonight I think I’m going to try carrots, red pepper and some ginger.  Wonder what colour the red and orange would come to?

Dress Shop of Dreams

A short social media break over Easter had me reading two books in five days and I realised how much I missed reading.  It’s great to be connected but I needed to cut back on the number of hours I was online and focus on other things I enjoy or need to be more productive at.  After reading the other books: Longbourn and Age of Innocence, I picked The Dress Shop of Dreams.  Can I be honest and say that I picked it because I love the colours and design of the cover?  Someone tell me I’m not the only one who does this?  I know I’m not?  :D

What have you been up to?  Have you been influenced by colour lately?  Share with me in your comments, I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to.

Experiment In Colour

How does the saying go?  I think it’s “April showers bring May flowers” and boy are we getting showers over here in my neck of the North East woods.  I feel as if winter’s still here.   Dark, gloomy, gray, very wet days have become all too frequent.  Despite what the weather’s like, I’ve decided to enjoy Spring in my choice of colours for the projects I’m working on this week.  I’ve decided to experiment with colour combos and brighten up my dreary days with vibrant colour!

Experiment In Colour

I wasn’t sure if this peach and magenta combo on my Duotone Cowl (original image below) was going to work.

source: original design and colour combo from Orange Flower Yarn (on Ravelry)

I laid them out together one day, looked at them for another 48 hours then decided to take the plunge.  So far so good … I think I like it.  I’m hoping the magenta doesn’t overpower the peach once I get to the second set of repeats where the magenta would be the dominant colour.  This project is another simple one with great teaching opportunities.  In addition to being a colour experiment, I needed to learn crochet provisional cast on since the cowl will be eventually joined using kitchener stitch.  If I didn’t get enough of seaming that way with my first mitten, ha … this project is going to make an expert out of me.  The other technique is making jogless stripes … honestly, it looks messy to me but I was assured that the stitches would smooth out once the project is done and blocked.   The miles of stockinette makes it perfect for what my friend Elisa calls …  Knitflixing (aka watching Netflix while knitting).

The second project is more of a mental experiment in colour.  I would NEVER pick  that shocking green colour as an option for a solid blanket but my little cousin did.  Shown above is the yarn/colour he chose to make the Sutter Mill Cable Throw that he made me promise to make him after he saw my 2014 Mood blanket.  Strangely enough, although the colour is so startlingly bright to me, I have to admit that it’s kinda cheery to work with on those grey days and I can’t wait to see the cables forming.  Here’s the original pattern — one of the four blankets I plan to make this year:

source: LionBrand Studio

I’m making this all together instead of doing 5 stripes then seaming.  It might take a little longer this way but I don’t mind.  I know it will also get heavier the larger it gets but I’ll just have to lay it down while I work on it.  There was NO WAY  I was going to do the five strips individually … NO WAY!!!  :D  I just have to pay attention to where I make the cable crosses since three are to the right and two are to the left.

So?  What are you working on?  Anything fun, bright or using a Spring palette?  Any new techniques?  What’s your favourite jogless stripes method?  Talk to me in the comments!  :D