Tuesday, July 13, 2010

What I've Been Up To:

Life has been busy here in our home.  And I can't believe that we're almost halfway through July already!  How does the time manage to by so darn quickly?  I swear the summer just got started.  I know I've got several more weeks before school is back in session, but I've had so many things I've wanted to do this summer that it doesn't seem possible to get through them all.

I've been steadily plugging away at my "to knit" list, even though you can't really tell that by looking at my sidebar.  There are a few things on there that are half done, or close to done, or that I just can't put in the list because I don't want to spoil any surprises. :)  I've actually finished 3 projects in the last week or so that I can't share.  I hate waiting to share things.  So readers, you'll have to be patient with me until I can spill the beans and post some pictures.  :)

There are a couple things I can tell you about, though.  You all know by now I finished Gerald the Giraffe.  He was so much fun. :)  And after he was finished, I dawdled a bit picking out my next project, which was helpful to my Sinful Ribbed Scarf because I was able to add a few more inches to the length.  I've sort of put my Traveling Woman on hold until I can devote more time to it.  I've got a strict deadline for a few things and I need to make sure they get finished before I try taking on a whole lot else.  I sort of knew I would be the type of person to have several projects on the needle at once... :)  I guess that marks knitting as a favorite hobby. :)   When I get the chance, I knit a few rows on Mom's Haruni Shawl.  It's going slow right now, but making progress.

I recently shared a picture of the yarn my sister and I dyed a couple weeks ago.  It is being knit into the Let's Go Shopping Market Bag.  I've renamed it though to be called Raspberry Truffle at Market. :)  Sounds more fun!  I've made great progress on this bag, especially considering how many times I've had to tink it back and fix mistakes.....  I was about 6 inches into the lace/mesh part of the pattern when I realized my rows were off.  The pattern gives the bag a neat swirl effect and my swirl had started going the wrong way.  I would have known this if I had stopped to examine my progress.  But instead I just kept plugging away until I came up with the wrong stitch count.  It was tedious to fix, but after tinking back once, starting again, tinking back twice, starting again and tinking back  a third time and starting again, I finally am back on track.  Thank goodness!  The pattern really isn't difficult - it's very simple actually.  You just have to be more careful than I was!

I love how the colors are coming out in the yarn, though!  If you turn the bag upside-down, you see the colors form a swirl - as though you had mixed a sorts of ice cream in a big bowl, stuck a spoon in the middle, and started stirring. :)  Sis likes it, and I do too! :)

I've also been sewing - when I've had the chance.  Not a whole lot new to say, though, on that front.  With visiting family and enjoying the holidays, sewing seems to be the part of the mix that got left out.  I've been working on a zipper dilemma for a needle case and I've been having trouble with the construction.  So I've been practicing and using a little trial and error to see what I could do to navigate the issue.  Last night I finally figured out basically what I needed to do.  But it felt wrong, and the work would be shoddy if I did it that way.  I need to practice this a lot before it gets better, or I need to find another solution (either to replace the zipper, or a better way to sew in the zipper).  I must confess that because I've had trouble with this, I've been less apt to sit down and sew.

The last bit of new happenings in the crafty area is I've had the chance to dye a little more yarn.  The other night I couldn't decide what to work on so I picked up a couple skeins of Cascade 220 Superwash and set out to dye them up.  I had a particular set of colors in mind at this point, since I'd been thinking about dying more wool recently, and so I went at it.  I've only got pictures to share of one skein at the moment because the other one didn't turn out quite the way I wanted it to, so I overdyed it.  But more about that another time when I can share pictures!

This batch I call "Cotton Candy."  Yes, I know - all my color choices are related to food.  I just can't help it! :) Specifically, this one reminds me of going to the State Fair (or county fairs or the carnival my old hometown used to have) and getting the cotton candy on the stick (not in the bag) and it's fluffy goodness! :)  The colors are more vibrant in person, but I was anxious to get pictures and so I had to settle with the light God gave me that day. :) It's rich and yummy and I have no idea what the fate of this yarn will be. :)
Hopefully soon I'll have a few more things to share, that I can actually talk about and show pictures of.  In my opinion, that's the best part! :)

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