Friday Eve

Work has been crazy busy, but I found time on Sunday to start my Billie Jumpsuit.

The bottom is looking and feeling very like kid PJs. About 12 years ago, I was sewing a lot and selling my wares at craft shows, and a friend suggested I should design children’s clothing. Maybe she was right?

I am hoping once I get the top on, it will look more like something a grown up would wear in public. If it doesn’t, I’ll add some feet and own it!

My sewing machine is giving me tension trouble. I thought I had fixed it with the use of the correct bobbins, but I was too optimistic. My old Singer has the same problem.

I think I’ll go ahead and get a new sewing machine and a serger. I’ll test them out on Saturday to make sure I like the Jukis I’ve heard so much about. I don’t want to damage my expensive fabric on a cheap machine. It isn’t worth it! Plus it’s frustrating and sucks all the joy out of my sewing time. Maybe I will find someplace to donate my old machines.

On the knitting front, I’m finishing up another Tread. I will start my Jessica Jones cowl before my trip so I can knit on the plane. I heard we struck wool in Kenya, and was told to bring my needles! I’m excited!

All the Updates

Hello!

I thought you might enjoy seeing the pattern I picked out for my plaid flannel fabric.

Eh?

I’m pretty excited about it. If I like it for winter in plaid flannel, I’ll make a linen one for summer.

Will I try to match the plaid, or will I funkily mismatch it? Probably the latter but I’ll have to see how it looks.

My orchid is blooming again. Apparently I’m good at orchids now. Who knew? Maybe I’ll try ferns again this summer. I have been a notorious fern killer.

I’m in a bit of a dither with knitting and not sure what to do next. I was going to knit a hat out of recycled t-shirt yarn as a sample for our artisan partners in Kenya, but it sounds like they will be banning the import of used clothing soon. Good on you, Kenya! We’ll figure out products that will support their textile economy. They are having a wool renaissance like we are, so maybe that will work out.

Maybe I’ll finish up the two remaining Tread hats, and then start Winter’s Fern. What knitting will I take with me to Kenya? Maybe the Jessica Jones cowl?

I adjusted my meds so I am now back on a low dose of one med (instead of two) that I take at night. It was good to get off them completely to see what my baseline is and readjust, and better for me physically. The side effects were killing me.

This pic is for my Mom. Hi Mom! I got my hair cut recently and I asked them to take my photo. They took me back to a little studio area where they do glamour shots. I started looking around for props. I would’ve taken someone down for a feather boa!

I’m Obsessed

A friend shared these videos with me on Facebook. I am casting them to my TV and watching them on repeat.

I have no desire to make something like this myself. But I am enjoying the magic.

Twilight Toujours is slowly getting finished. We are in transition crunch time at work, which is stressful, but it will be so good when it’s done. I may not get out of my PJs this weekend, though.

I found my coat pattern!

yates coat

(photo credit Grainline Studio)

This is the Yates Coat. It is appropriate for my wool fabric, and it looks like it will be a good choice for my first coat. Not easy, but easy for a coat.

Sarah is making an Oxbow Cardigan this year and wants me to sign on for a Thanksgiving knitalong again. I’m game, even though it’s not on my list (yet)!

I want to make a black cardigan. My wardrobe needs this. I want to choose yarn from an heirloom breed. I found some Black Welsh Mountain yarn and the farm is participating in Shave’Em to Save’Em. I calculated my totals for the Oxbow Cardigan. $450! (insert flabbergasted emoji here)

I know the yarn is worth it, and we need to support our farmers and heirloom breeds. But I simply feel like I cannot afford that. I mean, I’m holding off on buying a new serger and a better sewing machine. That cardigan yarn would be 2/3 of the way to a new machine.

So, I’m going to hold off on any black bulky yarn purchasing for now, but with the full intention of adding Oxbow Cardigan to my list this year.

And maybe if I am very very very good and do not spend any of my crafting allowance on other things and save it up, I could buy the yarn I really want? That’s still a lot of fed mouths. But it could be a sweater that lasts the rest of my life, so maybe a good investment? And I would feel good about the yarn I purchased. I will have a long think on it.

Check out my beautiful son wearing the hat I made him (which makes me happy) but giving me snark.

img_7447

Gotta go. He is introducing me to 8 out of 10 Cats Does Countdown.

20 in 2020

I hear there’s a “20 in 2020” thing going around. 20 what? I don’t know, but I’ve decided for me, it will be things to make. Here is my list.

Knitting

  1. Twilight Toujours (95% there!) I am loving how my gradient dyeing turned out and it is exciting whenever I switch to a new cake of yarn. Charis Walker of Tarheelbilly Farm is in the latest issue of Vogue Knitting! Sometimes I want to call this Tunis Toujours. It is so soft! And sometimes I call it Hollis, which is the sheep’s name.img_7432
  2. Celtic Myths (90% there!)
  3. Shetland Tweed Throw
  4. Farmhouse Cardigan
  5. The Oa
  6. Peerie Flooers
  7. Arranmore Staghorn
  8. Midnight Merino Raglan
  9. Bousta Beanie
  10. Winter Ferns Hat in Gryffindor colors
  11. Toe Up Socks (I think I am going to frog it and start over with a more exciting yarn from my stash, especially since I really don’t want to make the same pair of socks twice)
  12. Jessica Jones Cowl from my Hogsmeade Forbidden Fibers (because it brings out my hair and my eyes!)

Only 4 sweaters! That’s progress!

Sewing

  1. Billie Jumpsuit (pattern is pieced and cut, fabric is washed)
  2. Ace (I picked up a remnant for this at Sew to Speak)
  3. Jill Coat in Black Roses Bonded Knit
  4. Rachel blouse
  5. I want to make a tailored coat out of my navy wool flannel, but I haven’t found a pattern yet.
  6. Something out of this amazing cotton flannel I picked up on sale at Sew to Speak. img_7431I think I would like to make a jacket, but again, I haven’t seen a pattern that is quite right. Since I accidentally automatically got resubscribed to Ottobre, maybe there will be a jacket pattern in one of their magazines I like.

I guess I like jackets as much as I like sweaters!

Fiber Art

I am part of a group show in November, so I will need to figure out my pieces for that. I will probably continue with the wet and needle felted paintings. I do not have a subject yet. Even though I will probably make 2-4 pieces, I will count this as one make.

Weaving

I’m going to weave a couple of placemats out of my turmeric dyed Cotswold. That’s 20!

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?

Grateful Sunday

It’s been a long time since I went to a coffee shop by myself, ordered a soy peppermint mocha, and enjoyed a leisurely moment in public. Most of my moments seem filled with purpose. It’s nice to sit here and not feel like I have to perform or impress, or even relate. I’m grateful to have this moment to myself.

After my moment, I did a little Christmas shopping and then went to my studio to get my knitting organized. I caught a full rainbow!

The new issue of Seamwork came out. I have fallen hard for the Billie jumpsuit. Mood is having a sale so I ordered some wool knit velour to make it. I will not wash this fabric before sewing! Must avoid the Ace catastrophe (when I lost my mind and shrunk new wool knit fabric in the washing machine).

Since I’m a Seamwork member the pattern is free. There are so many patterns I want to make. I’m trying to limit myself to sewing one garment per season. It’s all I can handle.

Studio Sunday

I made some pretty pink unicorn flannel pj pants for myself today. They are shorties because I could only get two yards of the fabric.

I broke the needle when I was serging in the elastic. I tried to fix it but the needle promptly broke again after I replaced it. So I clearly do not know what I am doing when it comes to the industrial communal machines. I will have to let my landlady know. I fudged the rest of the waistband with some zigzag stitching.

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this but I am going to let my studio go at the end of the year. I am going to miss it, but Bob and I want to buy a house that is not in the same neighborhood.

I also started recording my podcast today and I have an interview tomorrow with my first guest! Are you excited? I’m excited!

A Quiz! And Felting Blues

Here’s a quiz from Karen at nothingbutknit.

1. What was the last food you ate? SunRype Chocolate Chip Bites

2. Do you sleep with socks on? If I’m cold, but usually not.

3. Worst physical pain you’ve had? Gallbladder attacks

4. Favourite place you have ever been? Cape Breton, Nova Scotia

5. How late did you stay up last night? I went to bed at 8:15 and I was snoozing on the couch before that. I’m a little under the weather.

6. If you could move somewhere else, where would it be? Cape Breton, Nova Scotia

7. What is your favourite sport? I don’t have one but I would like to cultivate an appreciation for a sport and a fandom for a team. Maybe curling.

8. When was the last time you cried? It’s been a few months.

9. Who took your profile pic? I did.

10. Two of your favourite movies? There are so many good movies, it’s hard to choose. Auntie Mame is one of my all time favorites, as well as Nosferatu by Werner Herzog.

11. What’s your favourite season? Autumn

12. If you could have any career what would it be? I love my career but one thing more I would like to do in my lifetime is knitting pattern designer.

13. What was the last book you read? It Was a Dark and Stormy Knit.

14. If you could talk to ANYONE right now who would it be? My Dad

15. Are you a good influence on other people? I think so. I try to encourage people to accept themselves as they are and also inspire them to be the best they can be. That’s good, right?

16. Does pineapple belong on a pizza? If there is ham, then yes.

17. You have the remote, what show is on? I just finished The Bay on BritBox, and just started watching Blandings. Hilarious.

18. Last text message: Catchy

19. What’s the last concert you’ve been to? SaltfishForty

20. Favorite food: The Universe has conspired against me enjoying my favorite food of all time which is cheese.

21. Favorite album all-time? Josephine Foster and the Supposed “All the Leaves are Gone”. When I think about listening to it I imagine the scene in Mars Attacks! when the aliens’ brains quiver and explode to Slim Whitman music, only it’s my brain and it feels good.

22. Favorite day of the week? Saturday

23. Have you ever drank alcohol? Yes, I like good wine with food, hard cider, mead, and beer (although I can only have gluten free beer). Also, it’s “drunk”. Also I try not to drink very often because it’s a depressant. See number 25 below.

24. Did you go to college? Yes. I worked my way through college and it took me nine years to get my bachelors degree. I’m proud of that.

25. Have you ever experienced depression? Yes, it started with post partum depression after my second child and has continued as clinical depression and generalized anxiety disorder. Yes, I take medication and have accepted that in order to fulfill my potential for a life well lived I will probably have to stay on medication the rest of my life. And I’m ok with it.

Please join in. The more the merrier. Feel free to answer in the comments or leave a link if you’re posting it on your blog so we can read your answers.

My Blue Ribbon Beanie got a little stretched out on my trip. I thought, “I know! I’ll put it in a lingerie bag and wash it on cold WITH A LOAD OF JEANS and then reblock it!” It felted right up! Of course. The good news is it still fits. The bad news is it has lost its jauntiness.

Before I took my expensive wool knit fabric to the studio to sew my Ace, I thought I should probably wash it which led to me thinking, “I know! I’ll put it in a lingerie bag and wash it on cold WITH A LOAD OF JEANS and hang it up to dry!” And yes, it felted. I don’t know if I have enough to make Ace now.

I think I have finally learned my lesson.

PS: Happy Halloween! I accidentally turned my comments off for this post, but they are back on again, in case you want to leave one.

All The Things – A List

  1. Vogue Knitting Live is in Columbus this weekend, and I signed up for two lectures on Saturday. I was impressed by my own restraint. I signed up for Sketch to Knit and Heirloom Wool Production. These seem right down my alley. I did not sign up for any classes as I think I already know it all, and as we already know, I don’t. But there was nothing on the class list I felt compelled to spend three hours of my time on. I do plan to spend three hours in the marketplace shopping.
  2. I’m not sure if I told you this, but I also registered for Midwest Craft Con. It happens in late February, hopefully not while I’m in Kenya for work, which I think will happen in early February.
  3. When I returned from vacation, after catching up on work email etc, I turned around and traveled to Indy for work. It was a good and productive trip, but I’m knackered and I took today off since I worked events on Saturday and Monday. I’m a little under the weather, which always happens when I get stressed out, and one of these days I guess I’ll learn I can’t do all the things. I haven’t learned it yet, though.
  4. I love my handmade PJ pants so much, I want to sew some flannel ones for winter. This should be an easy thing to do, except I don’t have any flannel fabric. Where do I buy ethically made flannel fabric? I will try Sew to Speak today. I might also try Dabble and Stitch. Or maybe I will buy this unicorn fabric and call it a day? Done. That was way too easy.
  5. img_6679Here is my Weekender progress. Do you think I can finish this in time to wear to Vogue Knitting Live on Saturday? Unlikely, but it might be worth a go.
  6. img_6681My yarn arrived from Canada. (I had to ship it to myself as we only carried on one bag each.) I want to get started on these before my inspiration wanes. I think the merino bulky is too soft for thrummed mittens. I really like yarn for my mittens and gloves to have some tooth. Maybe I will knit a cowl? It’s super soft.
  7. I am currently listening to How to Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran on Audible. Not only is it hilariously written, it is also hysterically read by the author. I highly recommend. It is slightly filthy, so if you don’t love English potty mouth, as I do, then it might not be for you. Also, she does not mince words. I love this.
  8. I have my microphone and I have Audacity. It is time to record my first episode of The Just Craft.
  9. I am back down to my pre-vacation weight!

Friday Eve

I saw this over at Petite Slice of Life, and I think from now on Thursday will forever be known to me as “Friday Eve.”

This Friday Eve I am up late washing. a. band. competition. uniform.

My unspirational calendar was, once again, on point for the last day of my vacation.

I only gained two pounds on my vacation!

Tomorrow I will divide the stitches for the chest and back of my Weekender sweater!

I received the fabric for my Ace sweater. It is beautiful. It should be a quick and simple sew. It will probably take me longer to cut and piece together the pattern.

Only 10 minutes until Friday!