Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Even more knitting! With sewing application!!

Pattern: "Jatta" by Norah Gaughan.  
Yarn: Elann Peruvian Highland Wool, felted (& roving for needle felting)
Lining: Amy Butler cotton

This was my first felting project and it sat uncompleted for almost a year, because I was to chicken to try needle felting.  

Needle felting is both easier and harder than it looks.  Easy to do and hard to make perfect. 

It takes quite a few needle pounces to secure the roving and this can create 'bruised' fabric.  I think this is another reason that it's recommended to turn the fabric over and pounce the design from the back - to make it flat again.  

Also, (and this is pretty obvious) the roving, once it's felted into the fabric, takes up a smaller area than as free roving.  So, you have to figure on the design, eg the petals, becoming smaller once it's felted.

Of course, you can needle felt onto any wool fabric.  I practiced on some worsted wool coating (with some nylon content) and it looked really beautiful.  It's definitely a lovely add-on for fabric embellishment, on lapels or pockets, or bags.


No, not Tom and  me.  We're lifers.  

My Bernina store and local fabric store got divorced.  Bernina moved out of town and is unapproachable.  The fabric store is still local but kind of lonely and depressed, putting on a brave face.  

I can't just drop by and browse fabrics because I feel obligated to buy something.  And, I'm not going to drive 10mins out of town to go to the Bernina store, because I can't be bothered to take classes there.  

Divorce sucks and one won't even talk to the other.  

I think I'll have to join a knitting group.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Knitting FO's

I've had a bit of bumper month with finished knitting projects.  Our kitchen was being re-modeled and that's right next to my mac.  So, instead of buying stuff online, I've been making stuff with my stuff.

Little Leaf Scarf

Pattern: Little Leaf Scarf, from Classic Elite's "Make It Modern"
Yarn: Rowan's Purelife Cotton (Brazilwood)

This is the most ridiculously soft cotton I've touched.  It's organic from source through to the dye and knits beautifully at 22st/4".  The plies are a little loose, but I didn't have a problem with splitting.  

It took less than half a ball of yarn and turned it out beautifully.  I think it'll be a perfect gift for my son's amazing Montessori teacher.

I'll keep on posting the rest of the FO's throughout the week.

Rebecca x2

I got to open a backlog of mail this week and guess what I found?

Lovely Marji had a "50 at 50" giveaway last month.  I (very quickly) asked for this issue of 'Rebecca', which I've been wanting for a very long time.  

So she sent it to me.

So did my Mom.  

Huh!  Anyway, I'm forwarding the generosity.  I'll mail one of these to the first person who asks for it.  Leave a contact in the comments.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Jalie 2794

So, the poor Avs lost rather spectacularly.  The Red Wings were just too good.  Boo.  Worse than watching your team lose, is watching your team lose live with hundreds of other depressed fans.  By the third period, there were more Red Wings fans in the stands.  

At least, I had the nicest t shirt there.  They really don't make attractive women's shirts.  Either they're cut like men's shirts or they're sparkly pink.  Gah!

I used Jalie 2794 for my t shirt makeover.  The original was a size XL.  I managed to cut out most of a size AA from the fabric.  The front yokes are cut from some matching burgundy cotton tube knit, as are the bands.

The size is pretty much perfect.  I think in a more stretchy fabric, it might even be a touch loose.  

I left off the the center front elastic because it would have interfered with the logo.  Also, the bands were too long to really pull in the back neck sufficiently against my neck.  That's an issue others have also noted.

All in all, this is a great pattern.  I love it so much that it's already getting re-cut it in a linen knit.

The back?

Why, yes, I am a Forsberg fan.  

Btw - what's up with hockey groupies?  Have they never smelled hockey gear??  

Stash Storage

Alas, I'm not 50 gram sized.  More like 40 grams.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Vogue 8506

I'm, I guess, content with my bag.  It looks good and is functional, but I get so frustrated by the 'home-sewn' quality of notions that I can get my hands on and my lack of experience sewing bags finely.  My bags always look home-sewn to me.  Gah!  

I think it's a combination of materials chosen, notions available, sewing machine techniques and pressing equipment.  I've seen a very few beautifully sewn bags on PatternReview, but they've been rare.  I just wish I could make that skill leap. 

Happy things instead.

I've been gathering Rowan yarns for a Kaffe Fassett cardigan from Rowan 31.  This is it on Ravelry.  It's a lovely combination of wide stripes of purples and reds.  A lot of the colors are discontinued, so I'm approximating madly.

They're like candy kisses.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Summer Bag

I decided to join in the PatternReview Bag Contest.  I've never quite completed anything for any kind of sewing contest or sewalong.  But a bag?  Surely even I can commit to a bag in a month.  Because if I can't, I really have a serious problem.

This is a print from Kokka Fabrics (Japanese), for View D from Vogue 8506.

It's a lightweight print, so I fused it with Vilene H410 and used muslin for interlining.  I'm hoping it's the right combination for a semi-structured bag like this.  A PR member mentioned using many layers of fusing to get just the right texture and weight for a handbag.  It had never occurred to me before to do this, but so far it's working out right.

The pattern is great, bar a few problems.  It's clear without being verbose (you hear me, Amy Butler???)

Meanwhile my winter project is languishing without a hem.  This is Vintage Vogue 2884.

I changed the lapel roll and it's beautiful.  But everytime I try to buckle down and sew up the hem, the sun comes out and the temperature hits the 70's.  So I grab the cottons and linens.  And then it snows.  Aye!!  This is the sad lot of the procrastinators. 

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Mood Fabrics

I didn't get to go the PR West Coast get together two weeks ago, but I got to visit LA on Easter weekend.  It was mostly time at the beach and with Mickey, but I did get one glorious hour in Mood, which was deserted.

I did pretty well, I think:

This is a Nanette Lepore wool, 2.25 yds.  I know the big woven tweeds are pretty much done now, but it's so beautiful  and visually appealing that I couldn't stop myself.   At the rate I use up my fabric, it'll be in vogue again before I get to it.  It makes me very happy.

This is a soft rayon lycra, which will be perfect for a summer top.  (Summer 2008 that is!)

This is a Cavalli print in 1.75 yd panels.  The colors there are all my favorites: cream, gold, red, black and green.  There are gold metallic dots outlining some areas and it's gorgeous.  This will take a little planning to make the best of it.  

This one is a designer print, but I can't remember who.  It is a textured cotton/lycra, heavyweight but just right for a summer and fall dress.

And, last is a double layer cotton lawn, brown under layer, pistachio top layer.  They are sewn together in a large paisley pattern with cutouts to show the brown.  This one was very expensive, so I got enough to make a loose, short sleeved summer top.

Since I got into knitting heavily last year, my time is very divided between fabric and yarn, but I'm moving into some kind of balance.  

I'm finishing up my winter projects, so I'll have some finished objects to show soon.  But spring is knocking hard on our door and I'm having to hurry up.