Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Getting it done...or at least trying to

I am trying to work through a list of to-dos, but something seems to be conspiring against me today, grrr!  I have managed to work on tidying the sewing room while watching a Craftsy Sewing with Knits class, but I couldn't manage to get the iPad connected to the TV so I mostly just listened while cleaning.  Seems like a great class for getting me over my fear of knits.  To be honest, my fear seems well-founded.  I just put the top and bottom halves of a Lola dress together and it was awful.  The top was too big and did nothing for my already flat chest.  The bottom fits fine. I am thinking of scrapping the top, cutting the bottom off evenly and making a skirt out of the bottom half.

Now on to blogging about some recently finished knits.  Once again, this isn't coming easily.  This is the second go-around of this blog post.  Don't know what happened to the first.  One second it was there, then the next I was deleting a single picture, and voila the whole thing was gone and I was staring at the Blogger login page.  Hello??????  Where did you go????

First up, a baby hat.  Cascade cotton yarn of some kind.  It was a small lace pattern detail to it.  It's for a little girl my last year's teaching partner had.
Gus is modeling,  but his noggin seems a tad bit big around for it.
Project details:
- Cascade pima cotton
- self-designed pattern (ie. made it up as I went along)

Second, my first GAP-tastic Cowl.   Yeah for projects knit on size 13 needles that take only short parts of 3 evenings to complete.  It's a little long for me to just wrap around my neck twice, but it gets kind of bulky if I wrap 3 times.  I am pretty sure I cast on 145 stitches, so next time 131 might be a better number.  The yarn is a big, fluffy alpaca yarn.  Must go find the ball band and add the exact yarn.  Very soft and cozy.  Not sure why I haven't knit one of these before.
Huge gauge! Love quick and easy projects.

This is the closest to the actual color.  A deep, teal color.   Notice the wood to the right of the chair?  That's the beginning of my new sewing room shelves!
Project details:
Yarn: ??
Pattern:  GAP-tastic Cowl, free download on Ravelry
Needles: size 13 circulars

Third and final, this is my Qiviut cowl.  It's actually been done and worn constantly for the last month.  It is the most luscious, heavenly soft, and luxurious feeling thing I have ever worn.  It was hard to stop myself from going online and buying at least 2 more balls of yarn at $98/each.  The cowl ended up being wider than I would have liked.  I am going to, but haven't yet, solved that problem.  After deciding not to frog the whole thing and knit over (I was worried about hurting the yarn), I've decided to create a fold/pleat in the top edge and sew it together with a vintage, mother of purl button that is a beautiful, natural brownish color.  Looks like a perfect match.  Maybe the whole thing will look like I planned it that way from the beginning?  Maybe?

By the way, this was the perfect pattern for this yarn.  The stitch pattern appears to be a cable, but it's not.  A real cable pattern would have pulled the yarn much tighter making it feel stiffer and less soft.

Project details:
Yarn: 100% qiviut fiber, gifted by my dad from a trip to Greenland
Pattern: Cameron Cowl by Veronica Parsons, bought at 2013 Rhinebeck trip
Needles: size 7 circular

Monday, March 3, 2014

Sew Expo 2014

Saturday I went to Sew Expo at the Washington State Fairgrounds...I hadn't been in a few years...oh my!  Let's just say I started with a budget and ended with a free for all.

My mom asked me to go because she wanted to take a few classes and wanted company.  Our classes were later in the day, so we spent the morning wandering through 2 massive buildings of vendors.  I was on a mission to find the Bernina stall to try and sort out a problem with a foot I ordered, and as I discussed my problem I happened to spy something wonderful across the aisle.  I have been wanting, dreaming of, drooling over, envying (the list goes on and on) a dress form.  I have read countless reviews, read tutorials for making one, even bought some of the supplies to make one, but hadn't done it.  Now there is no need!  I haven't named her yet, but she is being made and will be on her way to me in about 3 weeks.  She's coming in a standard size (smaller than I am currently), but we took a class from the seller on how to fit her to our sizes exactly (my mom ordered one too).  This is the company that does all the dress forms for Project Runway and Dancing with the Stars.  They have fully collapsible shoulders and are fully pin-able.  The company we bought them from is Fashion Supplies, Inc. and they're French European Dress forms.  What really caught my eye at first was the price.  They were less than 60% of their regular online price (he said their philosophy at these shows is to sell volume, hence the really low price).  Then when I got up close the quality seemed really amazing.  I am so excited!  At first I ordered the dress form (sans legs).  Then I took the fitting class.  As I sat there I really debated spending more to get the form with legs.  After spending quite a bit of time googling and reading more reviews during my next class I caved and went back to change my order to a lady with legs.  I am *hoping* this lady will last me many years to come.

 Padding the ladies with "fluff" will get them to achieve your own shape/measurements.  Then they get covered with a new, tight-fitting spandex cover to smooth all the fluff out.

Of course I was so excited that I forgot to take a picture of the leggy lady that I ordered.  She'll be here soon and I am sure will have a fashion shoot once she arrives.

As for the rest of the Expo, sewing-related items oh-my!  No pictures of all the goodies, but rest assured that sewing-related madness was abundant, and there was even a little yarn thrown in.  In addition to my leggy lady I also bought some fabric, supplies, and 2 wool felt hand sewing kits.

Whew!  I could have used a 2nd day to look around, but then I might have blown my budget by even more.  How does one go to these things and not get out of control?  Many times I think it's just best for me NOT to go.  Apparently I lack a lot of self-control when it's knitting and sewing related!