Christmas Eve Eve

Someone has been watching too much Great British Baking Show! I’ve never made mincemeat before, but I’ve tasted it, and it’s pretty gross. So Bob made his amazing gluten free pie crust and I made my own delicious and tart mincemeat! It includes Granny Smith apples, apple cider, butter, sugar, Bob’s pumpkin pie spice, crystallized ginger, and dried sultanas, cranberries, sour cherries, and figs. Also sunflower nuts and pepitas since I can’t have tree nuts. And orange zest and a pinch of salt!

My flavors are there, but the crust could have used another minute.

I’m going to eat one while watching the next episode.

I have a new-to-me favorite Christmas song. Enjoy!

Fabric Flubs

Look at this gorgeous fabric I ordered. Unfortunately it weighs a ton. It is bonded! If I made a jumpsuit out of it, I’d feel like I was wearing a carpet. I think it will make a nice coat, though. So I’ll look for a coat pattern on Seamwork. I think my last issue of Ottobre has a coat too.

In the meantime, maybe I’ll try to make the jumper out of some knit fabric I purchased for a dress but never made. Then I can put it on hold until spring.

Whenever I get any new fabric or yarn, I take it to my studio. Then I think, why? I’m moving out of here in less than a month! I’m sad about giving up my studio, but I know it’s the right thing to do.

I don’t know if I will be able to sew after I move out. I’m guessing most of my things will go to the basement. I think I will keep my studio membership which allows me to use the sewing machine and sergers there. There is also a local sewing business where you can go and rent the use of a machine for $10 an hour. The problem is I need to be alone when I sew. I don’t have the ability to sew and chat, unfortunately.

Are you a community sewist or a solo sewist?

When My Worlds Collide

One of our vendors recently traveled to Puno, Peru to visit the artisans they work with, and they shared these videos.

I love the way the artisans carry the yarn around their neck, and how quickly they knit!

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On the home front, my Boost Your Knitting book arrived. I’m so glad they put everything in a book at the end of the club, because otherwise I wouldn’t be able to complete all the lessons!

Ancestry and DNA

I’ve been meaning to blog about my DNA test because I recently came across some new information.

These tests are only as accurate as the pool of DNA they have to compare it against. For example, I have documented French Huguenot ancestry, but DNA testing is outlawed in France, so there is no comparative DNA.

I found the West Asian DNA surprising, although you just never know for sure. But I was open to the idea, even though there is no family lore about it.

But I recently read about a man with documented Cherokee ancestry who had West Asian ancestry show up in his DNA test, but no Native American ancestry. The article went further to say that often people descended from Eastern tribes like Cherokee, Choctaw, and Creek will show up as West Asian, because that is their original and closest descent, while Western tribes will show up as East Asian/ Polynesian. This made sense because we have undocumented Choctaw ancestry according to family lore. There probably won’t be any way to verify this until more First Nations people choose to have their DNA tested.

ETA: I’ve done a little more research and it sounds like this West Asian – Native American connection is a bunch of hooey. Live and learn!

I suspect the Baltic comes from my maternal Grandmother’s Vance line.

Also, you might have ancestry that doesn’t show up in your DNA test because you didn’t get those genes.

Still killing time at the BMV…

Follow Up

Isn’t this blue linen pretty?

I originally bought it to make another pair of Emerson Pants. But I thought it was too pretty for pants. So today I cut out a Farrow Dress instead.

(Photo courtesy of Grainline Studios)

I hope to start sewing it together tomorrow. Shout out to my Mom who sent me some birthday cash which I promptly blew on linen fabric from Lithuania. (I’m so glad I did!)

I also worked on my felt painting today.

This is mostly Romeldale-CVM and local (Ohio) Shetland wool. I’m hoping to get to the felting part tomorrow. This is for a group show with Mother Artists at Work in July.

I even knit on my Celtic Myths today.

Today was a good day.

Back in the Swing

I went to the studio today and made a linen tee.

I found this fabric rather challenging to work with. It’s a tissue linen knit. Since it’s almost transparent I doubled the fabric on the body. I didn’t have enough to make them the same size so I went with the fluttery look by making the top layer a little shorter.

I left the edges unfinished. I accidentally sewed the neck binding on backwards, but you can’t really tell. Especially now that I’ve washed it.

I bought this fabric to make pj pants, but now I’m thinking of making the Lily top with it. What do you think?

I’m designing the perfect beanie with this Malabrigo.

I re-cast-on my lilac heather cumulus blouse. I tried to fix the messed up raglan shoulder, but wasn’t able to make it work. So I frogged it. All shoulders are looking good now!

What are you working on this weekend?

A Q and A and How Linen is Made

A Q and A from Kathy:

Q. Have you been to a baby or wedding shower where no gifts were opened during the  gathering?

A. No. I think that would make me feel a little sad. I did go to a baby shower where you were supposed to bring something used. That was fun.

Q. Do you have an amazon echo dot or the like?

A. Absolutely not. I don’t talk to my phone either.

Q. Did you watch the Kentucky Derby?  Did you agree with the ruling on the race winner?

A. I did not watch the Kentucky Derby.

Q. When are you most hungry during our 24 hour days?

A. I am most hungry in the late afternoon.

and

Q. Do you use margarine anymore?

A. We use Earth Balance, so yes. I prefer butter but I am allergic to dairy.

This is a reblog about the process of turning flax into linen fiber. I meant to post this months ago but forgot about it lingering in my drafts.

Making Linen from Flax

via The story of linen. — kmkat & her kneedles

Year of the Sweater

Hello! It’s snowing again. This should not surprise me. It’s March in Ohio.

I spent most of my studio time today preparing knitting for my trip to Oklahoma. Because I am taking four sweaters to knit on for the week. FOUR. The Oa, Midnight Merino Raglan, and two new ones: Cricket Hitofude and Meara XO.

I think we can safely call this The Year of the Sweater.

This is a merino and silk yarn in colorway Cricket for the Hitofude cardigan. This is my spring cardi I wanted to wear with my new tunic. It didn’t take me long to work out what I wanted.

Have you ever seen the Gilmore Girls episode when Lorelei is preparing for her wedding with Luke and all the planning falls together seamlessly so she knew it was meant to be? That’s what happened with this sweater.

If you’ve seen that episode, you know it turns out to be ill fated, but let’s stay positive and assume Cricket will come together seamlessly. The top of the cardigan is begun like a shrug. Have you ever knit a shrug?

Also, are you participating in Make It Yourself March? I am participating on Instagram, and one of the prompts later in the month is “most worn.” In preparation, I photographed myself in this shrug I knit about 10 years ago.

I wear this shrug every winter, most recently over this Mata Traders blouse. It’s knit from Knitpicks alpaca and silk, and the pattern may have been Knitpicks too. I can’t remember.

That first photo is a little goofy, but I never know how to pose myself in photos, so I typically ham it up.

It is also, according to Skeinherder, Malabrigo March. I thought that was the perfect excuse I didn’t need to buy a single skein of Malabrigo in my favorite color, cerulean. (That’s fun to say.) What will I make? I am thinking I will make the perfect beanie. When I know what that means, I will let you know.

Here is my tweedy Fibre Co. Arranmore yarn in colorway Meara. I’m calling the sweater Meara XO because it’s an all over cable pattern with XOs down the center front and back.

The pattern, Staghorn, is from the book A Fine Fleece. I like calling it XO because in The Expanse (and apparently the military) they call the executive officer XO. I secretly want my staff at work to call me XO as a term of endearment. But, as you know, nicknames cannot be forced.

Look at this hank of gradient yarn that turned out to be five different hanks of single color yarn. Boy do I feel stupid. I guess I’ll have to buy another hank of verifiably gradient yarn so I can knit my Bramen Cowl for the first lesson from Year of Techniques. (I copied Quiteayarnblog.) There were so many techniques on the list I didn’t know, I signed right up!

I think I’ll hold off on buying the yarn so I have an excuse to go yarn shopping in OKC when I’m there.

I’m still reknitting the bottom of my Carbeth. I’ve had to rip it out twice. But I think third time’s the charm on this one.

I’ve linked to two other bloggers in this post. I really blog for the community. Thanks for reading my blog and being part of my community!

Decisions, Decisions

I am making progress on Kate Davies’ Goats of Inversnaid hat for Hans. I won’t have any trouble finishing it by Christmas if I stay on task.

I wasn’t sure if the Milarrochy Tweed yarn would work for the crisp design, but I kind of love it. I think it gives a more grown-up look to it. I’m also thinking about changing the hearts at the crown to a star, because Hans is 15. I don’t need to say anymore than that, right?

There are two knitting clubs I want to participate in for 2019, and I can’t make up my mind.

Kate Davies has an upcoming club that looks to be more design oriented, and includes an awesome journal.

Knitspot is offering the School of Wool where you learn about American sheep breeds and fibers, and you get undyed yarn to play with.

I want to do both. I can do both, right? Can I afford to do both? (Can I afford not to do both?)

RIP Rudy

rudy arm knitted blanket

We lost our beloved cat Rudy on Friday. He was older and had some chronic illnesses, and finally succumbed to one of them. He was the kind of cat that never demanded anything, so when he wanted something like the arm-knitted wool roving blanket you just finished, you gladly let him have it. He was gentle and handsome, and always looked forward to couch time. We love you, Rudy! We’ll meet you in the next life.