Sunday, June 12, 2011
The highlight of their year was a 6-day trip to New England including Mystic Seaport, Provincetown, and Nantucket. Photo below is the group in front of the Brant Point Lighthouse on Nantucket. You know it's an amazing trip when your son's highlight was a museum. The Whaling Museum on Nantucket is on many lists of "100 things to see before you die." Nate is completely enamored with Fresnel lens, used in lighthouses to amplify the light. He studied a lighthouse on the island that was one of the first in the world to use this type of lens.
Saturday, May 28, 2011
I hope you enjoy. Happy spring!
Sunday, March 27, 2011
I sewed the handkerchiefs together using a very basic zig zag. I had a few tension issues at first but got it together and the sewing went very quickly. My machine is used to slogging through recycled wool sweaters and cashmere. This stuff was far too delicate!
In the meantime, my next project is looming. Literally. I have a theory that I can weave long strips of cashmere and make some fabulous scarves for next winter. I found a great tutorial here: http://www.hallnet.com/Weave.html
and have already bought and marked the wood for cutting. I'm going to try it out first on some old t-shirts rather than risk cutting up the cashmere without a plan. Can't wait.
What wintery projects are you hatching this spring?
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
These are true cinnabar beads. Thick with color and beautifully carved. I'm sure they came from Asian during one of her many travels with my Grandfather in his consulting days. This red is my favorite shade. When Grandma gave me a strand of these beads, I was thrilled. But, I don't wear necklaces too much so I re-strung some of the beads into a bracelet. The others were left in the drawer for several years. Then, I made them the centerpiece of one of my sewing group projects. For those new to my blog, my sewing group is an eclectic mix of craftswomen from every corner of the fiber world: embroidery, sewing, quilting, knitting, felting, etc. We do it all. We've been together for years and work on projects for each other through the year.
Monday, February 7, 2011
The most boring part was to very carefully, in excellent light, snip the yarn connecting the different sections together. I wanted my edge to be just the squares themselves. No scalloped edge or other connecting threads. Doing this for both bag pieces plus the leftover squares I'm going to use for messenger bags took FOREVER.
Once I had the threads snipped, I laced up the sides of the bag. I've done this on my machine before, but the wear and tear sewing on such thick fabric is not worth it. I couldn't get a good picture of the lacing, but it came out nice enough that I kept it on the outside, finished side of the bag!
All in all, a great project. I'm only sorry I had the afghan for 6 months before actually doing it!
Sunday, February 6, 2011
Thursday, January 27, 2011
I love this idea. The genius behind it can be found here: http://fivegreenacres.wordpress.com/2011/01/14/the-rumpelstiltskin-challenge/
The plan is to work from what we have. Work from the stashed stacks of fabric, bins of recycled wool sweaters and skirts, containers of buttons and trim, etc. She says you can continue to buy your "staples" like thread, interfacing ... that sort of thing. The challenge is to just try it. How long can you last? A week? A couple of months? Who knows?
I'm starting on this with my current project, the Granny Square afghan remake. I had the afghan and, yes, I did buy some lining fabric. But, I've got some black leather straps already on hand, magnetic snaps, and all the other stuff. I want to put some pockets in the bag and was planning to go to the fabric store and find a cute coordinating pattern since my lining fabric is a big print. BUT I'M NOT GOING TO DO THAT! By God, I'm going to find something downstairs in the cedar closet that works.
I've been wanting to make some small stuffed sheep using different recycled wool plaids. I've got all the stuff here for that! I'm going to do it! Any idiot can go to a store (thrift or otherwise) and buy a bunch of stuff for a new project. The wise ones use up what they have. I bet I can do this with my cooking, too! What's in the pantry? What's hiding in the back of the cereal cupboard? What havoc can I wreak on my kids' dinners?
I can't wait. Stay tuned for my progress. And, thanks to fivegreenacres!
Monday, January 17, 2011
Watch out! The bags are back in town.
After many months of gloves and scarves, I'm feeling the itch to make some handbags. This fab afghan was bought on Etsy last summer. I was scheming with a lovely lady in Australia to make a couple bags out of it and have some fun. The afghan is a black base and the squares are refreshingly subtle for a Granny Square blanket. Sometimes, so garish...
I've ordered some lining fabric and some leather straps for handles. Stay tuned...
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
This year my personal theme is Sheep and I gave everyone a 9-inch square of hand-dyed wool with the instruction to do a sheep. I've received 4 so far and they are great.
This sunflower mat is for my friend, Kathy. Her theme this year is for all of us to use leftover screening from her porch repair and to use the screening as the base fabric for our creation. The only other stipulation was that we incorporate the letter "S" in the design.
The minute I saw it, I immediately thought of rug hooking. I tried out a few strips to see what would work and settled on a #6 cut. Because the holes are so small, I had to use a small hook that I picked up at a garage sale one time. Not my beautiful hook that I use most of the time. And, once I tried out the hooking, I realized that this was not going to be as pleasant and relaxing as hooking on linen.
Screening is hard plastic and has zero give. Even if I wiggled the hook around, I couldn't get the little hole to be very big. I was also using a fairly loose weave plaid for the main color of the mat and the loose weave did NOT want to be cut in a narrow #6 cut. The green fabric was great -- tightly woven and a bit felted but still very flexible.
All in all, I like how it came out, but it was a pain. However, below is the project Kathy did for me a few years back when I had everyone do a vegetable. The 8 vegetables hang in my kitchen at our lake house and they are all fabulous. Kathy did squash and I know this type of work takes hours and hours. So, as I scratched my way through I remembered the incredibly beautiful work Kathy has done for me year after year. She's worth the effort.