Sunday, September 18, 2016

cool pen and yarn dyeing

I am blaming this post on Walmart!!!  baha.  I am still feeling very puny and sick.  I went in for juice, soup and cold medication (and maybe a vacuum). I came out with a lot more than that!  Truthfully, it was my own fault for going in without a firm list.  
This first item, not on the list, is actually really, really cool.  It may be old news to other quilters out there but it was new to me.  A friend of mine had given me a sewing box that had been her grandmother's after she passed away.  Her grandma was a quilter and in the mixture there was a bright pink pen.  The ink disappears when you iron over it!  I used it completely up!  I have looked at Joann's, Michael's and a quilt store and did not find another like it.  So.  Today in Walmart I was walking by the office supplies and thought "I wonder?" Sure enough!
This second blank picture is after ironing over the spot I had written in the red ink. Love. It.  

Right. Here's where things get a little dicey.  Somehow I ended up in the yarn section.  I think I was walking by and a bright white skein caught my eye.  Like bare yarn.  I thought that was interesting, I entered the aisle....and that led to me deciding I should learn to dye my own yarn!!!!  You see how these things can just "happen", right?

There were only a few colors so I went a couple aisles over and found the tie dye colors.  Much better selection.  I don't know if it will actually work.  But thought I'd give it a go.  The yarn is a cotton lace weight 50g hank.  They also had a chunkier cotton.
I put the yarn in this plastic lid. 
The dye was already in these little bottles, just added water.  Easy peasy.

The yarn did not initially accept the dye.  Once it was wet though it did.  It may be a good idea to start with wet yarn next time.  The dye was super saturated.  I put on the light pink, then squished in the darker.  Then the purple which initially was like black.  Then, I took the black and spattered it over everything.  At that point the yarn was wet with the other colors so the spatter stuck well.  
I did not follow the instructions on the box.  After the dye was placed you were supposed to wrap it in plastic for 6-8 hours.  But, I decided to rinse it in cold water and woolite.  That lightened the color considerably to what you see above.  

I have it drying outside.  I can't wait to see what it will be!!!  50g could maybe be a short pair of socks???  For socks I usually start with 100g and I have a ton left over.  Anyway it was mostly just for fun, an experiment.

I did also come home with a hard floor vacuum.  I love it!  Even though Rocky is a short hair and doesn't shed horribly there still ends up being a ton of hair!  Sweeping was just getting old.  It's small, easy to put together and inexpensive.  So there's that.

Ok. For reals I am doing nothing for the rest of the day! I hope you all have a great week.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Fall finishes and award winning socks

I have a lot to catch up on!  Yikes.  
 This year I decided to enter some hand knits into the fair.  I entered my Duchess of Devonshire shawl, which won an "honorable mention"!  I already knew I had won on this because of friend of mine had sent me a picture while she was at the fair letting me know!  Last Friday night I made it out to the fair to check everything out.  I found my shawl first, as it was in the aisle on this mannequin figure.
Next I had entered these socks.  I thought they were fun with the contrasting colors and silver stellina.  I had written little note cards on each item telling the yarn, the pattern, when I started and ended each project.  I thought the judges might like to know?  These socks didn't win anything but it was still fun to find them in the showcase!
And here's the big surprise!!!  I got a first place prize ribbon for my eyelet socks!  Wooo hooo!  I truly did not expect to win, at all.  One of the doctors at the clinic I work at had entered a pair of socks that were cables cuff to toe and I thought for sure those would win! She did win 3rd place.  My first place was a shock!  I didn't realize it at the time but I also won $10 :)  I thought the prize was the ribbon - even bigger surprise!  Now every time I wear these socks I will remember they are prize winners. ha!

Last weekend I finished up these Halloween quilted items.  There's a couple pillow cases, a table runner (in front, folded) and a table topper.  I'm giving the table topper to a friend.  I bound them all with a thin black and white striped fabric, so fun!

The other quilted item I worked on last weekend and finished the binding today was this mini quilt.  When I bought this house with the fireplace, I knew that the open space above the mantle would be perfect for mini quilts!!!  

Honestly I think I could go a bit bigger but I like it.

The pattern did not have the little borders in between the o's.  I sort of wish I hadn't done those now, but meh.  I sort of like it.  Sort of don't.  But, it's not like I hate it and it's ok.  I really love the fabrics I used, they are sort of Fall but I think can also be used at other times too, you know?  I didn't use anything that screams, this is only Fall!  

Since I had finished that up I started putting out decorations.  I wasn't going to because my energy is super low.  I've had a cold all week and it has just drained my mojo.  boo.  But!  This week it is officially Fall so I just took my time.

It was fun because I had put things on the mantle, then take a step back and was like, nope.  Still needs something or don't like's now pretty close to really great!  ha.  Also!  I almost, almost forgot this little turkey pillow!  I did forget it last year.  

It's so fun having this new house, a new layout of furniture and surfaces to decorate.  That was one thing I *loved* doing at our old house when my husband was alive.  Every season I would take everything down, unpack the new season and enjoy all the things I've collected and love.  It's been 3.5 years since he died and I'm just now starting to want to do that again and get a bit of joy from it.

In knitting news I am almost finished with all the parts for a little animal.  There's nothing to really show since nothing is sewn together yet.  It's been nice since my energy has been like nothing to have just little pieces to knit and finish.  I'm really missing having a sock on the go though!  Oh! I found a new podcast (to me) that I really like!  It's called Bookend Knits, you can find it on youtube here.  It is seriously cracking me up.  It's two ladies who are identical twins, they chat about knitting, books, yarn, nerdy stuff....and they are quirky.  I love quirky!  So, I have been binge watching them, I'm on episode 4.

I just have to say that I'm so glad I found podcasts.  Mostly knitting podcasts.  In my real, regular life I know a few knitters but that's just about all we have in common.  The podcasts I really like also read, do other crafts, they have a sense of humor.  It's nice to "chat" with them!  If you don't watch podcasts I know that may sound funny but most podcasters also have some type of forum where you can interact, ask questions and such.  Anyway, I just wanted to say it's been nice to have that connection.