Crochet · cross stitch · Knitted Shawl · Knitting · Uncategorized · yarn

Hello December


Can you believe December is here?  This year has really flown by.  Except for this last month.  But only because I have had my Yarny Advent Calendar for about a month now and have been dying to dive into it!

advent calendar

This is my first time getting a yarny advent calendar.  This year is actually the first time I have heard of these types of advent calendars and just had to try it out.  I love AJHC Wools yarns, so of course I had to purchase her kit.  I actually purchased this over the summer and it was delivered to my local yarn shop last month.  It’s been a long month and I will not lie…I peeked at box#1 days before December 1.  I didn’t actually open the box.  My hubby did.  But I did beg to peek at it.  I couldn’t wait until December 1 to get started.  The kit has 24 micro skeins, all new colors just for the advent.  And finally December 1 came and I finally was able to get started around noon that day.

day 1 of advent calendar

Oh my gosh!!!  Just look at that skein of pastel goodness!! I enjoyed my self care time, knitting 19 rows of the shawl beginning.  Aaaahhhh.  But it went by so quick.  Waiting until the next day to see the next skein and add more knitting is such a long wait!  Here is my where I am at, after Day 5 this morning.

advent knitting day 5

It’s so beautiful!!  I am loving the colors of the yarns and seeing how they blend each day.  How did I ever miss out on this wonderful idea? Have you purchased a yarny advent calendar before?

I have also been working on my granny squares for the Natures Walk Blanket.  I have one more square to crochet up and 11 more to block.

blocking squares

I have enough of these very cool blocking pins from Knitters Pride to block 6 squares at a time.  So I have been switching them out every night.  I was very disappointed the first day I removed pins.  My squares, that were stretched to 6 1/2″, shrunk back to the 6 1/4″ they started at.  I could literally see the block shrink when I removed the pins.  Ugh.  All the work I have done, to be undone.  I thought I was doing something wrong, but I am told by a friend that some yarns have yarn memory.  She said to be sure that all of my blocks are the same size and to continue blocking them.  All of my blocks are between 6 1/4″ and 6 1/2″.  So I am hoping they will all line up ok once I start stitching them together.  Which will be pretty soon!!  I am so excited!  Here are my squares so far:

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The stack on the left has been blocked and lay so flat now.  I can see how blocking helps the stitches lay flat even though they are not blocking to size.  The mauve ones on top look wavy, but they have buds on them that have some dimension to them.  They actually do lay flat except for the buds.

And lastly, I have been keeping up with the 2019 Mystery Sampler from Linen and Threads.  I am on the last border and it is fabulous!!

2019 mystery sampler border

I am hoping to finish this by the end of December.  I’d show you the whole piece now, but the frame that it is on has become a bit wonky and a piece of it broke, so I don’t want to unroll it until I have to.  I don’t remember the name of this frame type.  The rods at the top and bottom are split and have little nails all the way across that you put your fabric into.  I can say I am not a fan of this style and this one will have to go in the garbage when I am done with it. It did serve it’s purpose this year, I suppose.

So that is what I have been up to for now.  I don’t remember what else I have worked on, but I think I have shared my main projects.  What have you been crafting on lately?

For now I will leave you with one of my favorite fall  photos I took on October 28, and then 2 weeks later, our first snow fall of 9″.

fall trees and pool reflection

I love the beautiful reflection of the trees in the pool.

first snow

 

 

Bella Filipina Designs · Crochet · cross stitch · Knitted Shawl · Knitting · Mermaids

I’m Sad Summer Is Ending


Hello blogging friends.  I have just enough time to squeeze in a post for August before it is over.  My blogging days have been few and far in between.  I will do better 🙂  My summer has been a little busy.  Lots of little day trips-mostly yarny trips. I went to a Wine and Wool Fest and I participated in the I-75 Yarn Crawl.  I visited 10 shops during the yarn crawl and purchased something at each shop.  And then last week I visited a new shop that I didn’t get to hit on the Yarn Crawl.  It was a lot of fun, but expensive, as I couldn’t resist yarn where ever I went 😉  I have been stitching, too.

First, I finished the Mermaid’s Garden Shawl.  It turned out beautiful! Here it is being blocked.

mermaid shawl blocking

Mermaid shawl finished

This was such an enjoyable KAL.  The pattern is the Mermaid’s Garden Shawl by Lena Mathisson and is available on Ravelry.  I will be making this one again for sure.

I recently joined other knitters at my local yarn shop and we are making the Veronika cardigan.  Here is my start on this one:

Veronika cardigan start

That is not a shadow at the top of the cardigan.  It appears that my yarn doesn’t quite match.  Ugh.  I will continue on.  I am using Malabrigo Rios in Tranquilo.  I’m not into switching skeins every other row, so I will leave it for now.  I am using a size 9 needle as I couldn’t get gauge with an 8.  And after using fingering weight yarn for so long, this worsted weight yarn and large needle has really done a number on my right hand.  It is aching quite a bit today, so this piece is in time out for now. But I am loving the color.  And see that cute bag in the back?  It was a special order to CleverGirl Designs Co.  It matches my tool bag.

Clevergirl Designs bags

Kristine does a great job making these bags.  The smaller one has lots of pockets and holds a lot! You can find her on Instagram @clevergirldesignsco

I started a new cross stitch.  I know, don’t say it, LOL.  I couldn’t resist Bella Filapina’s “Pearl of the Orient Seas”.  She is a beauty!

Pearl of the Orient Seas start

I am stitching her on 16ct aida, a OOAK from Fantasy Dyed Fabrics.  While I love her, I have found out I am not a fan of stitching with red, orange and yellow.  Hopefully I will be able to get through it as she is really stunning.  I have become a big fan of Bella Filipina designs.  He is so talented.

I am still stitching on the Pillow for a friend. It is coming along and my goal is to get it done by the end of summer.  Which, as the title of my post says, is coming to an end.  I better up my game now.  I can’t show all of my progress because I want it to be a surprise for the recipient.  But here is a peek:  (Don’t look at the back of it!)

Jens pillow

I am getting near the bottom!  Woo Hoo!

And remember this crochet project?

Spicier life blanket 3

Well, I finished it!!!  A little less than 2 years and not perfect, but it is finished and I just love it!

spicier life blanket finished

spicier life blanket finish 3

This blanket will keep me warm while hanging out in the finished basement with hubby.  Yep, the basement is all finished and put together.  We still have lots of boxes and bins to go through for the storage room.  We are hoping to get those unpacked within the next month.  So that is what I have been up to these last few weeks of summer.  What have you been up to?  Did you recently finish a project you are happy to finally finish?

cross stitch · Knitted Shawl · Knitting · mystery sampler · Nora Corbett · Sampler · Uncategorized

Summertime Stitching


Hello my friends!  The summer is getting away from me and I know it’s been a little while since I last posted.  Our basement has come along nicely.  The waterproofing is done, the construction is done, it has been painted and carpeted, finally.  It is furnished with a couple of chairs and tv.  Office furniture has been put together and the computer and printer set up and files in the filing cabinets.  Mostly my cross stitch patterns, but some files, too, LOL.  Book shelves have been put together and books on the shelves.  They were filled pretty quickly with both hubby’s and my book collection.  And my Scrapbook cabinets have been brought down and filled with the scrapbooks.  The only thing left to do is get the doors sanded as they don’t fit now with the carpeting, and go through all the bins and boxes in the garage and bring down what we want stored in the storage room.  That will be a slow process as it has been so hot in the garage, and up and down 3 floors is taking a toll on my knees.  But it will get done.

I have been stitching whenever I get a chance.  Mostly evenings and when I am not so tired.  So I will share what I have worked on the last month or so.

Wherefore art thou progress 3

Nora Corbett’s Wherefore Art Thou came out for a little bit and I got quite a bit done on her.  Hopefully the next time I pull her out I will get her finished.  I am stitching her on 16ct Aida, a one of a kind from Fantasy Dyed Fabrics.  I am using all hand dyed threads on this one.

wingspan progress

I haven’t worked on this one in a few weeks, but so far so good on this one.  It is the famous WingSpan Shawl by Kyle Vey.  There are about 45-50 rows on my needles, even though it does not look like it.  I have finished row 24-1 and am looking forward to getting back to this one.  I am knitting this one for someone and maybe I will get it done before X-mas, LOL.    I have ordered yarn from Blue Brick to make one for myself, and hopefully I can get through this pattern without any problems and want to do it again for me.  The yarn I am using on this one is Mirasol’s Qulla in Moonlight colorway.  This pattern is available on Ravelry if you want to give it a go.

mermaids garden mkal

A couple of weeks ago I joined the Mermaid’s Garden MKAL from Softyarn Designs.  At first I thought my knitting was too loose.  I was getting gauge, but it just seemed off for me.  Not sure why, as it is a mystery and  I really didn’t know how it was supposed to look.  So after about the 5th start, I decided to keep going and busted butt to get caught up this week.  I am LOVING this shawl!  I’ve learned some new stitches with this one like Sea Urchins, Little Sea Shells and stitches that look like mermaid scales.

close up of mermaid shawl 2

I can’t wait for Clue #4 to come out tomorrow, and then the final Clue #5 next week.  So there is still time to get in on this one.  It is available on Ravelry. The yarn I am using is Mermaid’s Ass from A Whimsical Wood Yarn Co.  How appropriate, right?  I also purchased some yarn from AJHC Wools in DK in Tawaret colorway to make this one again.  It is a mauve color with some blue/purples specks throughout, but more of a solid color.

2019 Mystery sampler progress

I added the June section (lower left corner) to the 2019 Mystery Sampler from Linen and Threads.  I am stitching this on 16ct Graceful Gray from Wichelt and using DMC 3810 and Gloriana thread in Rainforest.

sunflower pillow progress 2

And in between all the projects, I have worked on the pillow.  I don’t want to show all of my progress because I want it to be a surprise for the recipient.  This one goes slow, with so much confetti stitching.  But it is really growing on me and I am liking the colors right now.  So bright and cheery.

I have also put a tiny few stitches into a new afghan project, but there really isn’t much to show on that one, so I will share when I have more to show.  I have also tried my hand at Tunisian Crochet, but not having a lot of luck with it.  As with all of my crochet, my edges are wonky and I still struggle with where to insert my hook.  I have 2 more classes left, so I’ll see what I can absorb and if it will finally click with me. My teacher, Jen, says I can do it, so I keep trying.  Wish me luck!

So that is what I have been doing with my summer so far.  What fun projects are you working on?

Crochet · Crocheted Wrap · cross stitch · Diamond Painting · Knitting · mystery sampler · Sampler · yarn

And Just Like That It Is June


Hello, friends!  I can’t believe it is the start of Summer, unofficially.  Though today doesn’t feel like it as it is only 59 degrees.  But that’s ok.  So what have I been up to?

Well, I started this Willowy Wrap crochet pattern back on March 4.  I know, crochet??!!  The pattern is by JL Creations, the crochet expert at my LYS.  It was released on March 3 at the shop in conjunction with AJHC Wools.  I saw it at the shop that day and it was so beautiful and soft that I just had to try it.  So here is how my progress went:

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progress on willowy wrap

Just about finished!!  So excited!

wrap finished

Finished, just needs blocking.

wrap soaking

Just look at all of those luscious colors soaking in the water.

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I am so geeked at how straight my sides are!  This is the first project where my sides are not all wonky.  And look how straight that blocking is!  So proud of myself 🙂

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And here it is all finished! I am so excited to get this one finished.  It’s not perfect, but it looks pretty good to me.  The pattern is Willowy Wrap by JL Creations and the yarns are by AJHC Wools.

I was also able to get my Peacock Garden Mystery Sampler from Linen and Threads all caught up and started the June section. This is a FREE Mystery SAL and you can get the patterns on their website for this sampler and the previous 2 samplers.

peacock garden

I am stitching this on 16ct Graceful Gray from Wichelt.  Threads are Gloriana Silk in Rain Forest and DMC 3810.  I’m not loving this one as much as the previous 2 samplers put out by Linen and Threads, but I like it.  I am anxious to see what is going to be in the other blocks.

My basement is coming along.  Painting was done last week.  Carpet has been ordered. Then we can begin putting it all back together again and get our house back in order.  Between the front door and the path to the basement, all furniture has been moved to another room or shoved over and all of my pictures have been removed from the walls.  My diamond painting has been moved all over trying to keep it from being ruined.  So I thought it was time to get it framed.

butterfly diamond painting

This diamond painting was a gift from my best stitchy friend a couple of years ago.  The picture was taken from a photo I had taken in my front yard and had posted on Facebook.  She had it made onto the canvas.  It is now hanging in my dining room, which is just inside my front door.  It really brightens the room and I will treasure it always.

And I have started a new project.  Did you really think I wouldn’t have?  But it is not cross stitch.  It is a knitting project.  It is the famous Wingspan Shawl by Kyle Vey and is available on Ravelry.

Wingspan

I fell in love with this one as soon as I saw it.  I even ordered yarn from Blue Brick Yarns right away.  The dyer, I am sure, has been overwhelmed with orders, so it will be a bit before my yarn arrives.  In the meantime, I am knitting this one for someone else.  The yarn is Mirasol Qulla in Moonlight colorway.  It is more like a denim blue, and not the dark blue in the photo.  This one took me 2 days to finally get the first row done.  The pattern calls for “make1 left and make1 right throughout the first row, after the cast on!  I didn’t even know it was possible to “Make1” on the cast on row.  But a gal at my LYS pointed out that there is actually 2 threads in between stitches on my longtail cast on. Boy do I need new glasses!  So home I went, trying to cast on loose stitches, but not too loose that my stitches sag.  And struggling to get those Make1’s in and have the correct stitch count at the end.  My mind tends to wander after so many repeats, LOL.  After several attempts yesterday, I finally had my first row done to my satisfaction!  I even held my breath and did row 2!  Just skimming through the 17 pages of pattern is very intimidating and I have been a knitter for about 33 years. So, fingers crossed, wish me luck and send good vibes that I can get through this pattern.  And that I can get through it a 2nd time once my yarn arrives 😉

So that is what has been going on with me.  What fun things have you been up to lately?  I’d love to hear about them 🙂

cross stitch · Knitted Shawl · Knitting · Pillows

Where Did April Go?


Hello my blogging friends! April really got away from me.  I didn’t post anything!  And here it is almost mid May.  I don’t have much to show in the way of crafting.  April kept us busy with the basement issue.  I am happy to say that the construction part is done, aside from a couple of minor issues.  Painting is scheduled for near the end of the month and hopefully carpet will follow.  While the actual process wasn’t too bad (we’ll be cleaning concrete dust from everything for months to come) the work we had to do before was the worst.  Packing and moving everything out.  And we will have to unpack it all and move it back soon.  We thought about painting and recarpeting the whole house, but that is going to have to be another time.  We live in a quad level house and there isn’t much space for moving furniture out of rooms, so I am not ready to do all that again.

So, what have I been up to?  A lot of scrapbooking while the workers were here.  Evenings were spent knitting or cross stitching.  Last week I finished the “Waiting For Spring” shawl from Woolenberry, that I started in February. And today I took it off of the blocking mats.

Waiting for spring shawl start

Waiting for Spring progress

Waiting for Spring shawl off the needles

shawl blocking

Shawl on the blocking mats.  It is quite the process trying to get it all evened out and as close to dimensions as possible.

wating for spring shawl blocking

Love how the pattern looks all stretched out.

waiting for spring shawl 1

I think it came out so beautiful!  Love the way this yarn drapes and it is so soft.

waiting for spring shawl 2

So pretty!

Waiting for spring shawl 3

It will probably have to wait until Fall to be worn.  Or maybe some chilly evening.  I do love how it turned out.  Again, the pattern is Waiting for Spring by Woolenberry and is available on Ravelry in her 2019 Shawl Club.  Next week the Summer Shawl will come out, and I am thrilled to have the Spring one finished before the Summer one comes out.  The yarn I used is AJHC Wools Basic Sock in Silenus colorway.

I have also been working on the Sun Flower pillow.  It is slow going, with lots of confetti stitching, but I am determined to get it done this year 😉

Sunflower Pillow progress

So that is what I have been spending my time doing.  What are you up to these days?

 

 

cross stitch · Knitted Shawl · Knitting · Mermaids · mystery sampler · New stash! · Sampler · yarn

Happy Valentine’s Day!!


Hello my blogging friends, and Happy Valentine’s Day!  I hope you have a wonderful day however you celebrate this loving day.  I can’t believe it’s February!  I have been so busy and the days have just gotten away from me.  I had so many days I wanted to post, and just didn’t get to it. So, this one may be a long one.  Grab your favorite beverage and get comfy.

I suppose I should start with my birthday, that happened near the end of January.  To celebrate, Hubby took me to a winery about 1 1/2 hours from our house.  They just so happened to be having a Winter Wine and Wool festival the weekend of my birthday and I had decided that is what I wanted to do.

Winery sign

I was so excited to get there after the drive.  If you know me, you know I don’t like being in a car on the highway.  So nerve wracking.

Wine tasting room

This was my first time to an actual winery.  This one was a very sweet, inviting place. Once inside, I made my way to the yarn and bag vendors.  It was a very small place for an event like this.  There was almost no room to get up and down the hallways.  So I searched out the 2 main booths I wanted to shop at.

AJHC yarn booth

So many scrumptious yarns! See that yellow/orange and red cowl on the left?  I picked up some mini skeins to make that.  And a few other skeins to make a shawl.

Yarn stash from winery

Then I found the MidMitten Designs Project Bag Booth and purchased a bag and some small notions bags.

Me at Midmitten Bags booth

Midmitten bag

Love this new Sassy Style bag!  There is already a project in it 😉  Then is was time for some wine tasting.

me wine tasting

Winery

This was a Raspberry wine, perfect to pair with chocolate!  Hello!!  I came home with a bottle of this one and a Meade wine.  Hubby spoiled me so much for my birthday.  It was not so bad turning 55 😉

If you remember from one of my previous posts, we found out that we have to have our basement waterproofed.  So hubby and I have been going through things, donating things, pitching things and putting things aside for our boys and hauling it all up and out to the garage.  We have done quite a bit, but we are not going to be ready for the end of February, so we have moved it to April 1 with the contractor coming to remove the drywall and carpet the last week in March.  I can’t believe how much we have accumulated in the 23  years we have been here.  So we are still working on that a little at a time and in between, I am still stitching.  So, lots to show you with that.  First, I finished the Treasures of the Deep SAL.

Mermaid SAL finished

Sorry about the blurry photo.  Just couldn’t capture it right.  But it is finished with all the hundreds of tiny beads.  I have to admit, that looking at it from a certain angle, it looks a bit gaudy, but then from another angle it looks beautiful and sparkly.

close of december mermaid

I stayed up until 1:00 in the morning to finish it so I could take it to the cross stitch shop to put it in for framing.  Here is the frame I chose for it:

Frame for mermaid SAL.jpg

I was not going to go with a gold frame, but nothing else seemed to work.  I think this one will be perfect.  And while I was there, a framing was ready to be picked up.

2018 Mystery Sampler framed

I absolutely LOVE how this turned out!!  So beautiful.  The frame is so perfect, too.

Frame for 2018 sampler

The weathering on this one matches perfectly with the variegated threads.  Now I will need to find a place to hang this one, so I can see it all the time.

While in the cross stitch shop, I was inspired to start a new project; the 2019 Mystery Sampler.  I had already ordered a piece of Graceful Gray 16ct Aida by Wichelt, which was there for me to pick up.  On my last trip I had picked up a smaller piece of the fabric and a pink silk thread. I started stitching the peacock, but the pink was too light for the fabric.  So I hadn’t thought anymore about color, until I was in the shop.  And I saw the beautiful variegated thread that I thought would be perfect for a “Peacock Garden”, which is what the new sampler is called.  The thread is Gloriana, a silk and the color is called Rain Forest.  How perfect!!

Threads for 2019 Mystery Sampler

I will use it for the borders. So I picked out a color that matched for my peacock.  And this is what happened:

2019 Mystery Sampler start

And look at that! I am using a Q-snap frame :O I am cringing that my aida fabric will be pretty wrinkled.  I am not used to that with using a scroll frame.  But I used this for the beading the last half of my mermaid SAL so I didn’t roll over the beads, and it worked pretty good.  So I thought I would try it for this Mystery Sampler.  Here is what the January and February sections will look like for this sampler:

2019 Peacock garden

It is different than the last 2 samplers.  This one reminds me more of a Round Robin.  I can’t wait to see what will end up in all of those squares.  If you want to get in on this sampler (or the last 2) they are all FREE and put out by Linen and Threads.  So sweet of them to do this.  There is also a Facebook group where people from all over the world are stitching this and sharing and connecting.  It’s awesome.

Now for my last project.  On February 6, I started this project and was so excited:

Floral shawl first start

By the end of the day, I was so frustrated with this project.  It is the Floral Shawl from Woolenberry.  I was just not coming up with the correct amount of stitches at the end of row 7.  I knitted back several times, ripped out several times, and then just gave up.  Then I decided to leave a comment on Ravelry for the designer to see if there was an update or to figure out what I was doing wrong.  So after several emailings back and forth with the Sweet Janina Kallio, I kept trying.  I arrived at row twenty something and thought I was doing well.  My floral pattern didn’t really look right and I was still concerned about the yo ssk knit 3.  It just wasn’t feeling right.  I was ending up with a yo after the ssk.  Anyway, a light bulb finally went off in my head yesterday and I finally figured out what I was doing wrong.  I was knitting the ssk on the front needle instead of the back needle.  What was I thinking?  I knew better. All I can say is that it was a very senior moment.  And after a week of frustration, I am happy to say that I am all straightened out and I have the correct stitch count and my floral pattern is looking lovely.  I am using AJHC Wool’s Rhea.

Floral Shawl start

If you look in the bag, I am almost up to the frogged strands.

So there you have it.  I told you it would be a long post.  I think I am all caught up now.  If you are still with me, thank you 🙂  That is just about everything I have been up to.  So now I want to hear what you have been up to? Have you started a new project? If not,  what are you working on?

 

cross stitch · Knitting · Legos · mystery sampler

Happy New Year!


Happy 2019!!  I wish for everyone a very happy, healthy and loving New Year!  I am looking forward to having a great year.  I did not make any New Years Resolutions list this year, as most of the time I failed and did not want to set myself up for failure this year.  There are things I want to do, accomplish and finish, but if I don’t do them this year, there is always the next, right?

I already have my first finish for 2019.  I tried my best to get it done by midnight on New Years Eve, but I just couldn’t get it done.  I frantically stitched from 9:00-midnight, but was still hours away from a finish. So I finished it on the night of January 1st.  Here it is:

mystery-sampler-finished.jpg

I am so happy with how this one turned out.  This photo really doesn’t do it justice.  The fabric is a beautiful 16ct Aida peach with gray, hand dyed by Johanna from Fantasy Dyed Fabrics.  I stitched with DMC 53 and DMC 310.  The pattern sections are still available from Linen and Threads as well as the 2017 one and the first section of the 2019 Mystery Sampler.  I haven’t fully decided if I want to do another year long sampler, but the first section is beautiful and I look forward to seeing more.

And I have to share a wonderful gift I received on Christmas from my sweet husband.

addi needles

A set of Addi knitting needles.  I have 2 addi circulars and I LOVE stitching with them.  There is nothing like knitting with these metal needles.  They just glide so wonderfully!  I was with him when he purchased them at the knitting store just a few days before Christmas as he didn’t know if I would like the short needles or the longer ones.  Definitely the longer ones 🙂

New Year’s Day was earmarked as Lego Day, and so I created this:

lighthouse legos

The Friends’ Heartlake  Lighthouse 🙂  I had a nice lego day 🙂

I am getting back to stitching on the mermaid SAL and will post my progress soon.  That is what I have been up to.  I’d love to hear what you have been up to?