Sunday, June 17, 2012

It's been a long time...............

..........since I posted any knitting content. I have been knitting but not much finishing.

So far, a wool cotton long sleeved sweater that I hope I have enough yarn for (no picture yet) . A Noro cotton summer sweater, back almost done (again, no picture), a dress  (Oriental Lilly) for my granddaughter that I hope is long enough but it can be lengthened, and a shawl. This my first knitted shawl (aranami-shawl) and it was supposed to be a "knit in public" project because it doesn't require a lot of thinking, but it has consumed my knitting at home time. 

I have been working on a quilt project, almost every day when it is too hot to be outside.  This is a color challenge project from the 15 Minutes of Play blog.

A scrap basket to replace the cardboard box I had been using and few other quilting projects in the "what if" stage that I should be able to post pictures of next time.

And I just finished this tote bag using selvage edges. Used about 1/2 of my collection so I imagine I'll make another one and use it for a yet to be determined recipient gift.

Thanks for sticking with this random collection of projects to the end. Hopefully I will be a little more organized next time.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Collaborative Color Project

 A while back I started on a color challenge from the 15 Minutes of Play collaborative blog. Every Wednesday Victoria presents a new color that we are to use as the focus for a new block. Most of the others are doing more traditional blocks, but I wanted to have a more monochromatic, improvisational loo. And I really don't do traditional precision pieced blocks well.

So  using just what I had in my stash I  made large pieces of fabric. Then I inserted narrow strips, using just the challenge colors.
Colors so far --

bright yellow
dusty blue
bright - hurt your eyes - orange

This is really turning out to be a really fun project. The colors have been challenging to find in my stash. I really don't want to buy new fabric but I may have to. Ochre, a color I thought I would have very little of, because I don't do brown was not a problem. There were lots of hand dyed experiments in the stash from mixing too many colors together. When you do this you get brown.  Dusty blue on the other hand will require a trip to the quilt store. Although I have a lot of blues most are in the periwinkle or turquoise family. But I did get one block done.

Right now the pieces range from 8-15 inches. We will have a total of 15 colors when finished. At some point I will need to make duplicates but I think I will wait to see what the other colors are before I do the narrow inserts.

 This is turning out to be something I really like and I expect it will be a queen sized quilt when finished. It will be fun to put the puzzle together and I am looking forward to figuring out the filler pieces which will be surprises.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Finally back in the Sewing/Knitting Seat!

It's been a long time. Still not 100%. The arm break was the easy part. Associated tendon and nerve damage is taking a lot longer. But the good news is that sewing and knitting are on the approved physical therapy list. Working on the computer is also good therapy. Just need to take breaks for hot/cold pack rests.

When I last posted I was working on a vintage challenge. I almost got it done and this is where it is ready for quilting. No rush on this so it's on the back burner for now.

Vintage fabric

Mid design


Before final quilting and cropping.
Picture on right, Composition on left

A current deadline project is another collaborative project from Tommy where we all get a segment of an enlarged photograph to interpret. This one is larger than the one we did last year - a good thing..  I got all the piecing done and now I'm working on the quilting. Not all that hard sewing wise but takes time to figure out and practice to get the right free motion quilting technique. But I will only be a week or two late on the deadline and she is OK with that. Thank you Tommy for your patience.

**Update I got it done and ready to address the envelope!!!

Since I finished my collaborative project I am ready for something fun and relaxing and found it on the 15 Minutes of Play color challenge. Each Wednesday Victoria picks a new color and our challenge is to make a block with this focus color. So far the colors have been mauve, ochre, avocado, peach and "screaming" yellow. I have but together a collection of each color (ochre is a really problem because I don't do brown) but my bigger challenge is to figure out a block that I can use all these colors in. It's a little tricky to pick a background fabric that will highlight the focus color block, but not compete with it. I think I need to pick a light background. Not necessarily all the same fabric but a monochromatic pallet. Maybe a light beige, yellow or peach. Warm colors seem to be where I'm leaning right now. Just need to do some stash diving. 

My color collection so far.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Not Much Happening ----

I broke my arm last week. All projects on hold. Hope to be back soon.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

I Think I Got it!

Spent some more time on my vintage challenge project. Totally changed the color theme to reds/purples with a bright turquoise as a contrast. Also used some of my "made fabric" from the scrap bin that I cut into strips. You can find them as the small pieces of odd color that peaks out.  Adding black strips really works with this too. 

Simple strip pieced blocks but I think this will work.
Just getting started and will probably make about 4 more blocks before I start trimming and putting it together. This will be a wall hanging. Not sure the size yet because there is a lot of trimming to do. Looking at the picture some of the strips will need to be cut down. Narrow strips work the best.

One thing I discovered is that I really need more Kona cotton in a putty color. I really don't have a good selection of warn neutrals.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

This is Really Hard

I signed up for a challenge using a piece of vintage fabric using the process outlined in Rayna Gillman's book. I figured this should be pretty easy because this is the way I usually work. Well - not so fast.

First I thought I would use the fabric as a neutral and made a piece of strip pieced fabric. Went through the bins and found some pieces already put together.

And there they are sitting on the design wall. I just don't know what to do next.

Trying some high contrast motifs that might prove inspiring.  I am now thinking about a more tone on tone approach with just small pieces of high contrast.

 But can't go too far because the challenge fabric piece is quickly getting smaller and smaller.

There are 10 of us doing this and I think 2 are already done. challenge-fabric-quilt-top-done. Follow the tags for all the different blog posts on this.  All I can say is I wish I had thought of that. Their compositions are really good!!.

Back to the sewing machine and fabric stash!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

It's all about the Kitty

I cannot seem to focus on any detailed projects, knitting or sewing. I have been knitting simple chemo hats for donation to a local hospital cancer treatment center and cat mats for the local animal shelter. Both of these are simple repetitive projects that I can do without having to concentrate.

The cat mats are crocheted using some donated yarn that my knitting guild received. Not the greatest quality but perfect for cat mats that will be heavily used and cleaned.

Then there is the Hello Kitty project. How can anyone resist the cutest granddaughter in the world who has a Hello Kitty fixation. Christmas presents included Hello Kitty shoes,
watch and necklace. I was able to find some Hello Kitty fabric so current project is working on a quilt. It's all about the fabric so no great design decisions needed.

Then there is this. She is only  4 years old
 but I sure hope she gets interested in a sewing machine soon, because this was made for a Grandma to buy.

More coming soon on a quilt project challenge I signed up for.  What to do with this fabric? I'm starting with the color wheel to find a complimentary color. The challenge is based on this this book by Rayna Gillman Create your Own Free-Form Quilts, so my next step is to go through the orphan block basket and get going on this. After the kitty quilt that is!!