Friday, May 26, 2017

The Color Yellow


 Someone commented to me recently that I knit a lot of lavender and rose colored sweaters for myself which got me to wondering why because I really love to wear yellow.  Lavenders and roses or pinks can lean toward the reds on the color wheel or toward the blues and I will like them or they can be muted and I will like them.  Yellows can be harsh or brassy or dirty and they loose their true color when photographed.  The tunic on the left is as bright as the daffodils but lost all its brightness in the photo it is also rayon and polyester.  The yarn on the needles was called vibrant lemon but is more the color of goldenrod as is the  cotton sweater on the right. Then another picture as I progress and this one does look more like a vibrant lemon color, it still matches the cotton sweater.  On the website the yarn looked yellow not golden.  There was another yarn that looked like the perfect color of yellow even though the color name was lime something so I asked and was told it was definitely green.  Another light yellow yarn just looked dirty.  I suppose if the yarn fiber has not been bleached to white white any yellow dye is going to be muted by the natural color of the fiber.  I might have to knit with synthetic yarn if I want a bright clean yellow.  I cringe at the thought of synthetics--Ann--

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Machine quilting

More of my meandering feather and concentric teardrops its my favorite free motion quilting design and so easy to do.  I plan to do a feather around the piano key border. --Ann--

Monday, May 22, 2017

Power sewing

This is my favorite of the neutral quilts click, click, because there is more contrast of the lights and darks in this quilt.  I'll save the binding for another day. --Ann--

Friday, May 19, 2017


Socks are finished for oldest son's birthday with weeks to spare!  Slow progress on the gloves and other socks but whats the rush.  Just a few more rows until the little fingers and start the fiddly work.  Thank you to  Judy at Patchwork Times over the years and exposing me to so much knitting by so many talented people.  She is the reason I started knitting socks.  I would see hers every week and want the yarns.  --Ann--

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Machine quilting

It feels good to be in my sewing room after what seems like weeks without but I have been in there sewing quilt backs then hauling the quilt frame out to the family room after moving all the furniture then basting quilts.  Quilt backs and basting are my least favorite parts of quilting.  Now I can do some power sewing.  I'm just getting warmed up here with my concentric teardrops and meandering feathers.  There have also been some rainy days and rainy days are always productive in the sewing room.  Today I don't have to do the chore of watering the plants in pots because its still raining.  Happy sewing --Ann--

Thursday, May 11, 2017

and more spring flowers

I went to a talk at the greenhouse yesterday and learned all about the new plants available this spring. I only bought a couple basil plants and a cilantro plant because I only had three pots to put them in.  Today I bought a big pot and 5 bags of planting soil then went back to the greenhouse and bought plants to go in my new pot.  I bought more potting soil than I would fit so now I have to buy another large pot and more plants.  Its a vicious cycle almost like buying quilt fabric. --Ann--

Friday, May 5, 2017

On and off the needles

I finished my sweater the other day and got it blocked.  It stretched some.  I could wear it with leggings around the house next fall because I will never wear leggings outside my house.  It is interesting that you can see the way the increases lined up on the back.  The pattern has increases every 6 rows on the front then a decrease in the sides then a right and left increase in the back giving it a little flare.  Then there were short rows to make the back longer than the front.  I really like the fit and feel of this cardigan link to the pattern the yarn is Zauberball by Schoppel Wolle.  Linking to Judy's OTN  --Ann--

Thursday, May 4, 2017

More Spring Flowers

I went for a walk through McCrory Gardens this morning, the sun was shining.  What a glorious morning to be alive and good thing I went when I did because now the clouds seem to be appearing out of now where.
Art is the unceasing effort to compete with the beauty of flowers--and never succeeding.----Marc Chagall

My stylized flowers really pale by comparison but these will last for years and no weeding.  --Ann--

Friday, April 28, 2017

On the Needles

I recently went searching for my stitch counter, it was a barrel shaped thing that fit around a knitting needle and had a dial to turn as each row was completed.  I never did find it and its just as well because it wouldn't be practical on cable needles.  I found the cute little stitch counter in a quilt shop it was hand made by somebody but I had a terrible time turning the numbers the thin little wheel was not firm enough to grip and turn so I turned to the internet because somewhere I had seen chain links with beads for counting rows which didn't make sense to me as to how it worked but I was curious.  Instead I found a link to the string chain. She explains it so well.   If you are numerically challenged like me it makes counting rows and keeping track of increases or decreases so easy.  I put one chain at the beginning of the row to count the rows between sleeve decreases and one at the end of the round to keep track of the number of decrease repeats I have done.  No more going back and looking for the decreases on the sleeve or trying to figure out how many rows I have knit.  I'm knitting non stop now not stopping to count rows.  I use it on mittens and gloves too so my fingers and thumbs are the same on both hands.  Happy knitting.  linking to Judy's OTN --Ann--

Thursday, April 27, 2017

More spring flowers

 A couple more blocks cut and lots of leaves to cut and arrange but everything is falling off the wall so I will wait with the fussy work until I am actually sewing the flowers to the background.  The last block might be foxgloves.  I think foxgloves are so pretty and such a lovely name, do foxes really put them on their paws?  Its a lot of little pieces to cut out and sew it might turn into poppies. Large poppies.  More bright colors on a dreary day.  --Ann--

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Spring flowers

Another dreary overcast rainy day here on the prairie.  I need color.  I need flowers.  I need something cheerful.  When I was working on the sunbonnet Sue quilt a couple weeks ago I found 2 1/2 inch strips that I had cut for half square triangles for a border for this quilt click.  I have been cutting triangles and got rather bored with that.  I pulled out a book of pastel appliqué and thought I should make an appliqué quilt and use up the rest of these 1990's fabrics.  This was much more fun and so much more cheerful.  The book was so poorly organized that I'm only taking suggestions from the book.  The cutting instructions refer to fabrics by number then the dimensions then it refers to the blocks by letter without referring to the fabric number or size.  There was a nice diagram which could have had letters and number for easy reference but it did not.  The book was not organized the way my brain likes things organized so I closed the book and I'm doing it my way.  Looking at my pile of fabric......I'm barely putting a dent in it.  Maybe I'll separate the blocks with little pieced checker boards and pinwheels, I have plenty of time to figure that out since I am going to buttonhole stitch appliqué cheerful project.  --Ann--

Monday, April 24, 2017

Reading list

  1. Mrs. Grant and Madame Jule by Jennifer Chevarini
  2. The Wright Brothers by David McCullough for book club  non fiction
  3. The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein the story is told by the dog
  4. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr  WWII occupation of France
  5. Poldark by Winston Graham for book club as good the second time around
  6. The Shepherdess of Siena by Linda Lafferty second time for this one too
  7. Goodnight Mr. Wodehouse by Faith Sullivan for book club WWI era about a teacher and her son and the books she reads
  8. The Four Seasons by Laurel Carona about the music composer, Vivaldi
  9. Leaving Blythe River by Catherine Ryan Hyde father and son survival
  10. 1776 by David McCullough non fiction  American Revolution
  11. Jeremy Poldark book 3 of series by Winston Graham 
  12. A Fall of Marigolds by Susan Meissen for book club about a fire in New York in 1911 and Ellis Island interwoven with New York 2011
I sat in the sun on the deck on Saturday and read a few more chapters.  A pleasant change from being curled up with a quilt.  Earlier this year I was doing more knitting and sewing than reading then all of a sudden a couple of the kindle books that I had on hold from the library were available so I plunged into reading again.  I'm going to be looking for more books by Faith Sullivan and Susan Meissner and book 4 of the Poldark series.  Susan Meissner has such a way with words "the pen whispered" as she wrote it didn't scratch.  It was a lovely image.  Whereas typing on a keyboard is chatter.  Another kindle book just arrived.  Happy reading --Ann--

Friday, April 21, 2017

On and Off the needles

Finishing up some little projects

I have little baskets or bags sitting by my favorite chairs so there is always a little project to pick up when I sit down for a cup of coffee or grab and go for a road trip.  I like to have socks or gloves because they have short rows of knitting, short rows as in not no many stitches between pulling the needles to knit the other side, not short rows with wrap and turns.  Anyway these little projects get done a few rows with each cup of coffee.  The socks on top were on the needles for almost a year.  I would work on them after I did my time on the elliptical and was cooling down in front of the fan.  They are short because I liked the yarn with my new winter coat nothing else in the stash of yarn went with my new winter coat.  I needed some gloves to go with it so I cut the yarn and left the socks while I knit the gloves then came back to the socks and that is all the yarn there was.  The reading mitts are alpaca yarn and left over from Christmas gloves and the bottom basket is gloves, getting done row by row every morning with my coffee.  Shouldn't need them until next fall.  There has been some progress on the sweater and socks from last weeks post so I will skip the pics.  Linking to Judy's OTN --Ann--

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Log Cabin Fan

Back to my previously scheduled quilt top.  The borders are sewn.  --Ann--

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Sunbonnet Sue Quilting

 Auditioning a binding and that one is wrong.

A short story:   Once upon a time there were two little girls, one lived in town and the other little girl lived on a ranch far from town but her grandma lived across the street from the first little girl so they became friends.  Kindergarten was the year of lots of snow so the ranch girl lived with her grandma most of the winter.  The two little girls would play together all morning then go to school.  Sometimes they played dolls, sometimes ponies and sometimes dress up.  The little ranch girl liked dress up so much that she wore the dress up clothes from the townie girl's closet to school then after school change back into her own clothes and go home to grandmas.  The townie girls mom made them matching dresses because they were BFFs.  Then the little ranch girl moved away then the townie girl moved away but they are still FBFFs.

I machine quilted in the ditch and around each sunbonnet Sue and palm leafy loops in the setting triangles.
As profound as I get words and the years of all her Easter birthdays.
1995, 2006, 2017, 2028 and 2090.
DD would frequently exclaim to me when I was sewing a dress for her "For Me!??!"

I always stitch my name onto the quilt along with the year.

The large floral print was a favorite sun dress with a ruffle at the hem and little bloomers underneath.

Little girls grow up so fast.........cherished memories.  --Ann--