Monthly Archives: July 2013

Shawl FO and Serger Almost-Success

Second post! Can you believe it? I won’t say the blog is fully revived but I’m tryin’.

First of all, thanks to all of you who read the last post, are still with me from years ago, and/or left a comment. I do love those comments, and please know that I am so socially awkward that I don’t always know I’m supposed to reply. Oops, guess I will from now on!

On the knitting front, I finished a long-time WIP, the Spearmint Tea shawl with Miss Babs Yummy Sock Yarn in the Biker Chick colorway. While I was at Stitches West, Mehitabel Marie asked me to pick up a skein of Yowza in this colorway for her. When she told me it was black, white and orange, I can’t even describe what was going on in my mind. Suffice it to say I was pleasantly surprised when I saw it knit up in a sample at the booth. Enough so that I had to bring a skein home with me. Here’s what the shawl, dubbed Earl Grey Tea, looks like while blocking.

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Why is she named Earl Grey Tea? The pattern is called Spearmint Tea, but the colors look more like Earl Grey to me. I drink English Breakfast every morning, but Earl Grey sounds a bit classier, don’t you think?

This crescent-shaped shawl was pretty simple to knit, even with the lace. The only parts that tripped me up were 1) flying along without keeping track of my progress and having to rip back inches to put in the garter ridge rows, and 2) not having stitch counts before the lace. As I am wont to do with my knitting, my stitch count was off, so I had to fudge it quite a bit with some thrown in increases here and there. This allowed me to start the lace according to the directions, rather than have to try to figure it out in the middle of the lace repeat. It all worked out in the end and I’m looking forward to having a modeled photo for you in the next post. (I gotta have some kinda hook to get you to come back, right?)

On the sewing front, last weekend I attended Mimi G’s Sewing, Fashion and Style Conference in Downtown LA. It was a wonderful two day event filled with fabric shopping downtown at Michael Levine’s, listening to knowledgeable industry speakers, and meeting tons of other sewists who also blog. I’m realizing that I don’t have the sewing camaraderie with friends, as I do with my knitting friends, and this helped me meet a bunch of friendly, open and experienced sewists. I’ve connected with many on facebook and instagram, joined a couple of online sewing groups, and found a couple of new blogs to follow, Susan from Miss Lulu Sews and Diane from Diane’s Vintage Zest.

With the excitement from the conference, I harnessed my energy into cracking the tough nut that is my serger. I read through my serger books, looked at online serger tutorials, read and reread the serger manual ad nauseam, and watched the Beginning Serger class on Craftsy which I got free for visiting their booth at Stitches West this past year. (I love how my Stitches West experience is still present with me even five months later! I have invested about six hours so far into my friendship with my serger, and it’s juuuuust beginning to pay off. She’s a little fussy but I know that the more time I spend with her, the more rewarding our friendship will become. Here are a couple of proofs of my serger almost-success.

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Basic overlock with woven fabric

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Basic overlock with lightweight jersey knit

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I even figured out how to make gathers! But don’t look at the top very closely. It’s a hot mess.

I’m learning on a drop-waisted dress which Squid has requested. Hopefully, it’ll come out well enough for a photo. Next post, yeah right.

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Don’t have a heart attack

I’m baaaaaaaack! Please don’t have a heart attack.  I’ve been crafting a lot lately, knitting of course and a resurgence of sewing. I’ll try not to write too much text and blab on and on, but I wanted to memorialize, or scrapbook if you will, the stuff I’ve been knitting and sewing.

Here’s the most recent.

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It’s a skirt which I just finished this morning. It’s a wearable muslin, if you will.  A wearable muslin is a test sew of a pattern to see what adjustments need to be made to fit better. This is actually the second muslin and it’s much better than the first. And no, I won’t post a picture of the first. Fabric – cute. Fit – not.  The skirt is Simplicity 2226, a learn to sew pattern. I think it’s my first yoke front skirt. Slight gathers in the front and back with a zipper closure in the back.  I was influenced by Zaaberry’s. I have some grey polka dot fabric lined up for the next iteration, maybe with some yellow rick rack on the pockets?

The sweater is Miette. It’s part of The Loopy Ewe’s 3rd annual Camp Loopy knitalong. This is Project #2 of the kal, and I finished it in less than a month.  All of the challenges are held in a one month period.  The yarn is Madelinetosh Tosh DK, one of my all-time favorite yarns, in Molly Ringwald colorway.  I used almost all of 3 skeins.

Let’s hope I can keep the knitting, sewing and blogging mojo going!