Monday, May 25, 2009

And here’s the last of my catch-up entries, representing an amazing amount of time spent in late winter and early spring. The thread is size 30, hand-dyed, a small sampling of the dyeing I’ve been doing, though the colors are unfortunately washed-out by the flash – they’re much more intense than they appear. I dyed at least 200 skeins in various color variegations – mostly size 20 but also quite a bit of 30 and a dabbling in 10. I’ve done some tatting with these and I like the result – and when I took them with me to several tatting events people seemed happy with them.

They’re sitting on a layer of crocheted wash cloths / or dish cloths I’ve been making for the joint purpose of putting a dent into my cotton stash and trying to do some early preparation for Christmas. The dish-cloths are mindless crochet, and were perfect to take with me to Cleveland this winter – they were about all I had the wits to work on during Bill’s heart surgery and hospital stay. But because a few years ago I was gifted with a crocheted dish-cloth and found it quickly became a favorite to use in the kitchen, I thought these could be a gift appreciated by others, as well. I think it will be fun to put these together with a few other goodies – I’m not saying what in case my family is reading this!
Today was a work-day, but before I went in, I did some garden digging, made some soap (melt and pour, but it was fun anyway!) and planted two rows in the garden, doing some digging to prepare a bit more. This evening I planted the eggplant and peppers, transplanted some cosmos and marigolds, and hung up my shovel as having done enough for now.
At least outside. Inside, in the studio, I’m trying to usefully diminish another stash – by making quilt squares. Why is it that umpteen pieces of fabric may be put together with a lot of energy and effort – and the pile of fabric diminishes not at all?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Catching up – it seems like I’m always trying to catch up a little – comes in many forms. Today, under the impetus of two inspirations, I finally finished the sweater I began in February. I seem to have over-estimated my own size; also, as the sweater grew, I shrank a little. I wanted it to be oversized anyway, in part because it’s cotton and linen and could hypothetically shrink in any direction (though cotton tends to get shorter and wider with washing). I could also hypothetically shrink in any direction, though actually this isn’t happening quite as energetically as I’d like it to! The two goads to completion are related – tonight is the first in our library’s “Women in Wine” series, a fund-raiser for the library’s future expansion, and one I wrote about for the local newspaper; among those present at the event should be Heidi W., who started the same pattern sweater using different yarn – and I promised to model my finished one for her benefit.

You didn't think I'd take a photo with myself in it, did you?
Of course, I’ve also started another sweater already, hopefully one I’ll finish faster, because I intend to wear it this summer. The next one is white, made of a cloud-soft silk/bamboo combination I’ve got in the shop (in fact, it’s called “silk bamboo” and the back is already 1 ½ inches high. This will be a lace pattern with short sleeves and slightly larger needles – size 5 instead of size 3. Occasionally I read knitting blogs whose writers seem to finish a sweater every week or two. How do they do it? Don’t they have lives? Mine has me writing or completing five articles this week. Three down, two to go, not bad for Wednesday (they’re due Friday).