I have been working on the latest pair of socks while traveling in the car and visiting with family. Adele chose this pattern and knit the sock on the left. I am knitting the one on the right. This pair of socks is challenging as I have to match the sock that is already complete. I had several inches knit and compared the two. They were the same diameter but I noticed that if I continued the way I was working that for the same number of pattern repeats my sock would be inches longer than the other. I turned them inside out to see if I could see a difference there. Adele's sock, on the left was knit stranded and I had knit mine by weaving the yarns.
I pulled it all out and tried again. The second attempt worked so that the pattern repeats were equal but my sock was narrower. I kept knitting but then decided to take it out again. This time I am knitting with both yarns in the right hand, alternating colors.
One of the first years I went to Gwen Marston's quilt retreat the theme was string quilts. I was overwhelmed with all the possibilities and could never settle on a design that I wanted to make. Instead of doing one big project I tried lots of different ideas and came home with a selection of small sample ideas for future projects. I liked this little scrappy tulip to be used in an applique quilt. This was another fun one that has the continuity of a common color like the scrapbuster that I just finished. Here, the accent fabric is set in a pinwheel design. The block is built from four squares.
This one makes a "spider web" pattern when the blocks are all set together. Each block is made from four triangle sections. This next one uses up odd bits and pieces of fabric. Just built squares and set them together however you want. Four patches are always good. With sashing or without sashing. Anything goes. Gwen's approach to quilting helped things sort of "click" for me. I came home and purged pattern books from my quilting library and now focus on books with photos of old and antique quilts. I would rather follow a "recipe" to made a quilt than follow a pattern.
I love successful projects. I think this is a winner for several reasons.
1. I like the finished top. 2. There is now space in my scrap bin. Seems there is soon to be a little more room. P likes that piece with the bunny on it! 3. There was little waste. This little pile is what I am throwing away. Here is the finished top. And if it looks like the quilt has dandruff it is because it was snowing when I took the photo on the porch this afternoon.
Now, I am left thinking of how to quilt it. It will be machine quilted because of the large number of seams. How would YOU quilt it? What design plan would you use?
I finally finished another of my retreat quilts. I machine quilted it so that it could be laundered. The colors make me think it would be great for a baby to sleep under.
I like the contrast of the bright stars and the varied blue background. I like the backing fabric as much as the front. It reminds me of the aurora borealis which we have seen several times. The quilt is 35 x 35 inches. It is now in the shop.
I found this little quilt of the Rainbow Fish in the sewing room today. I made it years ago when the boys were small. I remember that making it was pretty much just an excuse to use all those metallic sliver threads when they first came out. We enjoyed reading the book Rainbow Fish when the boys were little. When I first read it, I liked the sharing message of the book when the proud Rainbow Fish shares his scales and and becomes an accepted part of the group. But now, over 10 years later, I have read it to P and don't like it quite as much. I think it is interesting that what I notice in the book has changed. Now, I notice the behavior of the other fish more than that of the Rainbow Fish. The other fish seem greedy. I don't like that they seem to want to all be the same and are bullying about it. The book does have lovely pictures and it was fun to create a quilted version of the fish.
I don't really like this quilt as much as I did ten years ago either. It is stiff from all of the fusible web and stitching. The machine applique stitching seems heavy and messy. I have learned that I really do like hand stitching; I really enjoy hand applique and like the look of the fabric meeting fabric. Still, this project is part of my needlework past. Making this quilt did, in some way, help define the quilter/artist that I am now. I guess that is one reason that I keep this quilt even though it has never been displayed.
It is natural that our tastes change. Otherwise, we would all still have that big hair of the 80s. Or Dorothy Hamill hair. Or whatever the defining "do" of our youth.
I got a package from my Two Make a Pair partner on Friday. I knew it was the latest pair of socks arriving just in time for snow. Saturday, I put them on and they are toasty warm. They are great for sleeping too.
This pair is knit from some beautiful hand painted yarn from Briar Rose Fibers. I do love Chris's yarn. The pattern is Ann Budd's Undulating Rib Socks in Favorite Socks 25 Timeless Designs from Interweave. These socks are a pleasure to wear. They are like getting a little hug (around my foot) from my friend in a another state. I miss you A.