Rip it. Just rip it.

Rip rip rip it.

Sometimes a project just doesn’t work.
No matter how much we want it to, it just isn’t.

That’s this.

It’s the one row scarf by The Yarn Harlot.

I’ve made this scarf pattern a couple of times but this time it just isn’t working for me.  I really wanted it to. I love this yarn and this color. I got a few rows in then I realized I have 800 yards of this particular yarn. 800 yards plus a little bit of another color will make me a spectacular sweater.

Rip.
I’ll pick a sweater eventually. I have 3 on the needles that I really want to finish. Now you know I have more then 3 on the needles but these are the 3 I really want to complete. Someday I’ll tell you more about them.

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Simplicity Pattern 5106

Simplicity Pattern 5106 is indeed a maternity pattern.

I’ve had it forever and I’ve used it a bunch. A couple of times, I used it for it’s actual purpose as a maternity top. I really dig the shape of the bodice. I know I could probably find a new pattern that is similar. There have been cases where I have actually done that with an old pattern. But there is something about this one that I am now determined to make and redo this until it’s about perfect.

Most recently on IG you might have remembered the saga of getting a dress done for my daughter’s graduation. It wasn’t that I really needed anything fancy, it was that I wanted a new dress. I managed it but there are things about it I still want to change.

This top is the “muslin” I made in prep for the dress. I wanted the dress to be more polished and this top helped me to get there. I finally did all the hems on it the other day so I could wear it in all it’s imperfections.

It’s comfortable but it could fit better. You can see that in the back mostly:
Which is funny because you’d think the front maternity part would need the most help. You can see I had to put an extra seam down the back to help with some of the fit issues. These issues were adjusted in the dress but I still had to put a tie back to make the dress feel more fitted and less maternity.

Well. I’m now on to the next step and I’ll be making myself a new pattern out of this old one and seeing about making some back darts to compensate for fit. Or maybe I’ll make it out of a knit fabric and adjust the whole thing smaller (except the armholes which were a problem that I have fixed). Maybe definitely it needs pockets for a work smock and then I don’t need back darts at all. I like a loose smock for work. So many options in one pattern.

Stay tuned. This isn’t the last you’ve seen of this maternity pattern.  Though, at the moment I do have my 10th Dress No.1 and my 12th Washi Dress, cut out waiting to be pieced together. Don’t think I’m not acquiring new patterns, I’ve purchased 6 new ones in the past week (when there’s a good sale at Joann’s I’m there). I just get happily stuck in the old and making the most of one pattern when I love it.

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New Favorite Scarf

I warped my loom at the end of winter and would weave a bit here and there when I had time. It wasn’t a project that I needed immediately so I took my sweet time getting it finished. After all, who needs a wool scarf in the middle of summer? Not me.

Well. It’s done now and I immediately want another.

I used 2 skeins of Spunky Eclectic Panda Sock yarn in the colorway “Brass to Sass”.
I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before but this is my favorite yarn to weave with on the rigid heddle to make luscious garments. I’ve used it a bunch in our weave club and also for my own projects.

Details:
Ashford 16 inch Rigid Heddle loom
10 Dent
128 ends
3 yard warp

Finished Scarf is 84 inches long (not including fringe) and 11 inches wide.
The fringe is about 12 inches long on each end. SO MUCH FRINGE

I didn’t use all of the yarn I had. Most of one skein went into the warp but there is about 60-80 yards left of the skein I was using for the weft.  So if you plan on making a sock yarn scarf like this I would still get 2 skeins of sock yarn just for safety’s sake. Overall my estimate is that it used about 800 yards of fingering weight.

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African Violet Propagation

This post is for Beth Smith. I figured I’ve been quiet here for so long that I might as well start back up with a special request. Beth asked me how I propagated these things and since I was doing a bunch of new ones and a new way (to me) I decided to make a blog post. I have a few to write about plants and propagation so this is just one of a few that are coming up.

The first thing to do is to choose the proper leaf. You don’t want a leaf too old or too young. You also don’t anything with a blemish. In the picture, the leaves marked ‘X’ are older leaves or blemished and I wouldn’t choose them. I choose the next set in to propagate. The ones marked with ‘O’.

Once you’ve chosen your star leaf…

You want to cut it at an angle. Use a sterilized scalpel and make a good clean cut. This cut is where the roots and the baby leaves will form.

My normal method of propagation is to make a little hole in some damp soil

Then place the leaf.

Some people cut the tip of the leaf off but I usually leave it on. No reason, I just don’t bother to make that extra cut.

A method I had never tried is to place it in a cup of water. It’s not what I usually choose to do but I wanted to try it at least once.

These can be put into bottles or small vases, you want the stem in the water but not the leaf because it will rot. I have no small bottles so I improvised with some tape.

The roots are pretty cool to watch form. Eventually babies will form too. I don’t pull leaves out of the soil to look at them, they are too fragile and best left to do their thing.

I will need to plant it all at some point. I can plant it now, or when babies form. Which is why I go for the soil method most often. I feel like it cuts out a step.

As for what to plant in when you’re doing the soil method. I like using these plastic take out boxes.

I pop some holes in the bottom for drainage and away we go. The cap provides good humidity and I end up having to water less. Which also means I can be more hands off and not worry when I can’t get them when I’m traveling.

The takeout containers aren’t absolutely necessary. These plants will propagate well in just little pots. I do have a couple of grow lights set up but even those aren’t necessary. You can place the leaves in the same place you would put the healthy plants you’re growing. The one difference is that the leaves will appreciate the humidity of a cap. You can even use a simple baggie to create this.

Ok. Go make some new baby African Violets.

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Washing yarns

I’m lazy sometimes.
I make singles and then it sits there.
I need bobbins so I ply them and then they sit there.
I need the bobbins again so I skein it off and then it sits there.

Every so often I take a bunch of yarn and wash it. It’s just a simple soak in wool wash and warm water. It really doesn’t take any particular effort on my part. I just don’t often do it until I need the yarns or I run out of space.

yarns-justwashed

I did just that and these are the resulting yarns.
Colorways L to R: No Mud No Lotus (SE Club), Pajama Party, Internal Fire (SE Club)
There weren’t a lot of yarns that needed to have a simple wash but I wanted to use one of the skeins so I might as well do them all.

yanrs-combo1
And now that I’ve taken pictures of them lined up, I’ve changed my mind. Why? The yarns look good together. With just 2 more colors, these yarns could make a great Less is More style gradient. These will be set aside until I come up with a couple more yarns.

I’ll wait for kismet to come up with them for me. I make so many 4 ounce skeins of yarn in this general grist that I’ll just wait it out and then cast on for a sweater. Maybe I’ll finish up one of the UFO/WIP’s in the meantime.

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Weaving Today…

Sometimes it seems like I so rarely do more weaving then test weaves for the club or for classes I’m working up a curriculum for. Yet, sometimes I manage to get in a little bit here and there. I have a bunch of looms available to work in the shop but there’s only 2 looms that I call my own for personal projects and this is one of them. My Ashford Rigid Heddle 15 incher.
weaveinprogress
They come unfinished and since I like dark woods I stained it a pretty walnut. I’ve had it for a few years but don’t always have it set up as I really do consider it a non-work loom. A girl has to have these things.

weaveinprogress-close

The current project I have on it is shaping up to be a favorite.  I dyed 2 skeins of Panda Sock in “Brass to Sass”.  It’s going to be a large scarf for myself when it’s done. My personal projects do go slowly sometimes as I have to set them aside for work ones but this one will surely be done by the time the weather turns cold again. Though I find this yarn woven like this and worn loosely can be a good scarf for cool spring nights as well.

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A Tale of Two Shawls

Once I finished knitting that big sweater project I decided to work on shawls. Which both turns out are newer projects. We don’t need to talk about the 5 or 6 sweaters that are already on the needles or the 4 or 5 shawls I have waiting for me, I’m working on these.

When I have a little more brain power after work this is the one I work on.

forestcanopy-blue-all

It’s a Forest Canopy Shawl made in Spunky Eclectic Treadwell gradient dyed yarn. The colorway is the new one of the year called “Candy Coated”.  I’ve made a few Forest Canopy Shawls previously so this pattern just needs a small refresher and it’s back in my head again. It doesn’t hurt that I just keep working for the next color change. It helps keep me moving forward. I might have to choose a new color and do another when this is done. It’s like potato chips. Just one won’t do.

I’m feeling much the same way about this shawl. I want to do more than one.

granyshawl-inprog

This is a simple granny triangle shawl. No fuss no muss. I’m making it in Spunky Eclectic Targhee Classic which is a worsted weight yarn. Its going to be a fun warm shawl/scarf when it’s all done.

granyshawl-closer

And when it’s done, I’ll cast on for another! Or maybe we’ll see about finishing up another older project….

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