The camisole


I started a project for Project yarnway on Ravelry  in June, it is going to be 2 months late but will get finished. This  one was Escape to Nowhere,  a vacation  escape, so my camisole was to fill a spot in my wardrobe for a warm climate with a cool evening top and as an undergarment when visiting a cold place.  This silk and merino number should fill the bill.

For the last six weeks, I have been trying to convince myself that I have enough yarn. Subconsciously I knew, I didn’t  and that is why I knitted with stockinette stitch. Just in case, I had to add another ball of yarn in at the bottom to make it longer. So on Sat, I phoned the store an tried to describe the hand dyed yarn that I had bought, there was no name or dye lot, so now I anxiously await for it to arrive. even when I bought the yarn, I had my doubts and said are you sure I have enough yarn? She said that is plenty. But I am not a medum size and I don’t want it very cropped either, nor did I do narrow i straps. So, more yarn is needed. I continue.

It arrived last week, and it matched quite well, not perfect in the dark areas, it is a little brighter, but I like it and I continue to knit. I have nearly done the crochet  edge on the hem, still not finished the straps.

I have been knitting a summer hat which I am now going to rip out, too small I think. Oh, such is life.

Project yarnway June

It sure would be great if I could design and complete something for Project yarnway. I have managed one completed article.

Escape to nowhere,  something for the imaginary vacation. I started with my list of words and associations for a vacation. Some things I didn’t need and I like to think I am practical about knitting (I am Not) but I don’t want to make something that I could sew, it needs to be multi purpose, go with quite a few things and not take a lot of room in a suitcase.

Since I am going to Jamaica for a wedding next January and a week later I will be visiting Toronto.  I finally decided on a camisole, comfortable in the evening out for dinner on the island and an extra layer of warmth if needed in Toronto.

As luck would have it I was in Courtney at the time, just happened to find a wonderful yarn store,  Uptown Yarns and then of course, found a yarn so soft, silk and merino and and incredible colour. Did I mention lace weight and 750 yards( I think) I have misplaced the label. It is by Sweatermaker. It was a bit of a b—– to wind into a ball, and no I didn’t use my swift or ball winder but I was dying to get started.

I did the math, decided on a circular needle and have knit pretty steadily, mostly on the boat and I have picked up speed but am now at the half way point.  If I keep working on it, it just might be ready for that vacation.

My computer is not liking my photos tonight, will try to add later.

Having fun

At the current time, I am in Love, Love, Love (as my teacher Suzi would say) with working with mixed media. I am taking the Goddess and the Poet with Suzi Blu, I want to work in my moleskine journal every couple of hours. I have nothing finished yet but have more than 4 layers of paint, pencil and gesso plus embellishments on most of them now. I have six faces in the works. I took the course so that I could do better doll faces, I was getting tired of the same old look.

So far I have used graphite, coloured pencils, clear gesso, fluid acrylics, rub on transfers. A few more layers are still needed.

Project yarnway, I found some wonderful lace weight silk and merino yarn and am in the beginning stages of a camisole. It was hand dyed on the island. Lovely stuff. I bought it in Courtney at Uptown, the knitting store.

Dare to be Inspired Day was this week, I am doing a canvas mixed media again but this one is based on Paris, and I intend to do ones on Athens, Barcelona and Rome as well. I need to go through photos, look up where we stayed in each city and get the dates.

In the meantime, my mind is thinking about packing up the boat for vacation, buying fabric for chairs and drapes, finishing a new t shirt, getting the last of the plants in, when it is not raining. Just the usual things of life.

Meanwhile, I smell the roses, curtesey of my friends garden.

Bag it and Tag it

It sounds like a CSI tv show but this is the Project Yarnway  challenge for April. Make a bag for a client, so we also need to create a story.

I finally decided that my client was a traveler who likes to pack lightly and therefore things must be multipurpose.   I have also been fascinated by the lantern purse in a sewing magazine from a few months ago.It was in the winter 2009, edition of Sew Stylish and was made by Judith Neukam.

I figured out the hexagon shape and the accordian  nature of the bag and started to knit. So far it looks interesting and strange to me.  I am struggling a bit with the closure but am going to the icord, drawn through the holes.  It is going to be felted by hand and not the machine so that I can control the size I hope.  How will it be multi-purpose?  You just dump out the contents and turn it upside down as a hat.

It started out OK.

The bottom of the bag, the second picture show the side details,  it was very hard to get the right colour, even with photoshop it is still wrong.  It is a dark mustard colour.

Alas, the  felting did not work as I had hoped. Neither by hand or machine. It went through 2 machine washes and one drying on high.  Big weird and totally unusable. I could cut it up and use it as the base of a fabric postcard or atc. It could be a hot pad for the table. I could needle felt into it  and create something.  Let’s just say I am not totally surprised. I didn’t  make a swatch and felt it first. I guess a designer should know her materials and how it will or will not react.  I wasn’t sure if the flange area would work, if the purled and stockinette would look very different.  It is rather a matted blob, maybe my needle size was wrong. I am not sorry that I worked on this design challenge, I did learn a few things.

As Heidi, would say on Project Runway, “sometimes your in and sometimes your out.” Not a winner with this one.

Project yarnway for March.

The challenge for the design was to use something not produced for knitting as the material to work with this month.

Well, what non regular knitting material would I work with. I did paper once, I used paper streamers and knitted a crown, had visions of what neat Christmas hats they would make to wear instead of the paper crowns that come in the crackers. But one was all I made and One friend saw it turned it upside down and tried it on as a collar, I think I like it better as that. The crown was in Alterknits.

I have cut out jersey fabric into strips–too stretchy and combined with a different yarn it did not work out well.

So I’ve  been thinking and looking at things.

I don’t want to work with anything too thick. I know people who weave with different materials, kelp, wood, metal but there is a lot of twisting and looping needed for knitting.

So what is out there that might work, silk hankies, plastic lacing, wire, long grass-(too damp this time of year-) and I’m not shipwrecked on an island making a shelter). fabric torn into strips, same with plastic bags, (that is not for me).

I suppose that I could use leather cord. ( I tried this too hard an end project for what I had in mind.)

How about serger thread, I could start with a strip of fabric and serge over to create a new yarn. I could also cover ribbon, raffia or paper.

I am more into accessories for this challenge, so I thought of leather cuff for a coffee cup, an wrist cuff, a cord necklace, crocheted flowers.

I even thought of knitted dough, someone did that, I am glad someone was brave enough to try.

I have the feeling that for this challenge I am  sitting out on the sidelines cheering on the participants.

Two New Books

Since I joined project Yarnway at ravelry, I have purchased a couple of books.
Fitted Knits by Stefanie Japel and Design it, Knit it by Debbie Bliss. I am enjoying both books and am picking up some useful hints. There are good pictures.
My last 4 sweaters haven”t fit as well as I like,.
One I followed a pattern and it was too large. The other 3 I designed. One was a halter top for the 2006 Olympics, I wore it a couple of times and then I ripped it out. The second top was made, my first attempt at a wool cardigan– too short, too wide at the back and I intend to have another attempt at it!The third one is a bamboo tank– it has been taken apart twice and I am losing patience.
Last year, I knit sock and scarves most of which turned out well. This year, I’ll commit to Project Yarnway, hopefully, I ‘ll learn something during the design process and from my new books, other wise, I’ll continue on the same path with knits I’m not pleased with wearing.

Project Yarnway February

Over on Ravelry, the knitter’s site. A new group, Project Yarnway,was formed based on Project Runway, the TV show. The designers are challenged each week to make something new, sometimes it recycled, for a celebrity, for charity, using things from the dollar store, etc. All served up with judges, models and a whole lot of drama.

I love a new challenge and most of them for me start with ” I am not inspired” who wants to do that. Then the old brain cells kick in and I am thinking, what about that yarn, what stitch would I use, is there enough yarn.

So February’s challenge was the stash challenge, design something from what you have on hand. Don’t buy new needles, just use what is there.

First up for me, the versatile Neck Ring, in Rib, in Merlin a gift from DIL,  it is a cotton, linen, in terracotta and I loved working with it. It will be great for breezy spring days in the Pacific Northwest. I can see making it up in a couple of colours of noro as well for winter. I wanted the ring or cowl narrow at the back of the neck so one could wear a jacket without distorting the neck.  It can be folded in a couple of different ways.