Sunday, February 22, 2009

Colors to Dye For

Last Saturday, Feb 14, I was at a retreat. The retreat wasn't far from my home, which was really nice. We were at a great campgrounds with wonderful accomodations. The workshop that I took, was dying rovings. I thought I would let you see our pictures here. First, we chained the rovings and soaked them. Later we squeezed out the extra water and laid them on a covered table. Notice, we are wearing stylish plastic aprons and plastic gloves.

After painting the roving we rolled it up to look like a cinnamon roll and put plastic wrap around it. We used a great plastic tape and wrote our name on that and tied it tothe fiber.

Next we stuffed the fiber rolls, like a turkey, onto a rack suspended
over water by bricks, into a turkey roaster. We covered the roaster and let them cook.

The next photo shows them from the top of the roaster. All this color!!!! Isn't it gorgeous?
Warning: Once you use your kitchen tools for dying you cannot use them in the kitchen again. Be safe.

After cooking we layed them out to cool a bit.

Then each person could unroll them and rinse them. Mine are on the right hanging on the rack, still braided.

Anther warning:
color is contagious. :)

Thursday, February 19, 2009


When I found out one of my mom's good friends was going to have surgery for cancer, I decided to make her a pink scarf. It was almost Valentine's Day, so I had to hurry to get it done.
I also thought it would be fun to send my mom a red scarf for Valentine's Day. She tries not to eat a lot of chocolate, so I sent a scarf instead.
Well, I went to work. Found the yarn in my stash and found the needles and cast on.
They were fun to make, I used 2 strands of yarn and some fairly large needles.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Doll Clothes

I remember when I was very young and playing with dolls that my great aunt sent me some doll clothes for Barbie. She lived in Maine, an absolutely gorgeous state. So, when the manilla envelope addressed to me, arrived at our home in New York, I was so excited. This aunt, Aunt Elizabeth, was one of the people who influenced and encouraged me to knit. She would knit and sew such absolutely gorgeous items. I don't know if I will ever knit as good as she did, but I sure try. Others who have influenced me in my knitting are my Mom and my Aunt Florence. My mom is the person who put the knitting needles into my hands and taught me how to knit. Isn't that wonderful? She would knit sweaters, mittens, hats and scarves for me while I was growing up, I loved them all. She has made some things for me, as adult too, which are really appreciated. I used to sit amazed watching Aunt Florence knitting up gorgeous aran sweaters. But, Aunt Elizabeth was a very fast knitter, I remember seeing her knit a sweater vest in one day on size US8 needles. She would tell me that her job in the family, as a child in Canada, was to knit for their needs and to card the wool to prepare it for spinning. Her sister was the one who spun the yarn.

Anyway, back to the doll clothes. When the granddaughters' birthdays were upon us, I wanted to make something for their American Girls dolls. I searched around the internet for patterns, but finally decided that I could just make the sweaters without a pattern. I do have Felicity here at our house, she is our model today. The green sweater is made in all garter stitch and the purple sweater does have a cable down each front. They were lots of fun to make.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Birthday Fun

Even though we had breakfast together for the birthday celebration, it was a late breakfast. So, we had a birthday cake and what a birthday cake it was too. Auntie(Anna) made the cake and decorated it. She is soooooo talented! One granddaughter likes blue and the other, pink. It was difficult to cut into such a gorgeous cake, but we all knew what it would taste like, so the knife did its job.
We have a new member to our extended family. We have a new "grand-doggie." Skye is very cute and cuddly. She made herself at home, when they arrived for the birthday celebration. She is 4 years old and is loved very much by her new adopted family. Skye is a miniature white schnauzer.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Birthdays are upon us!

In our family we start in November with Jeff's birthday, then we have Thanksgiving, then Christmas and 2 days later, we have Anna's birthday. Then the New Year arrives and in January we have mine and Rebekah's birthday and about a week later in February we have Nicole's and Claire's birthday. We get a little break and Chad's birthday is in June.

We have fun at birthdays and try to get together. So, tomorrow we will be having breakfast together and Gramma has made cinnamon rolls for such an occasion! Years ago, Jeff would travel to Cedar Rapids IA and stay there for a couple of weeks, teaching a seminar for his work. He used to go and eat at the Amana's and brought home this cookbook. It has some really great recipes in it. One recipe is for the cinnamon rolls that I have made. Yummmmm........

Sunday, February 1, 2009


I haven't posted much of my knitting lately. I am busily working on designing and writing two patterns right now. They are both written and they are in the final stages of editing/test knitting. While that is going on, I am taking a bit of a break and knitting for myself and my family.

For myself, I am knitting a Sonnet. Sonnet is a great design found on and written by Kristi Porter. She also has a baby pattern called Haiku which is the child size of the Sonnet. You can use any yarn for any size. Kristi gives you the directions to figure out the number of stitches you need to cast on and how far to knit. The sweater is knit sideways, starting at the left front and knitting around to the right front.

I am using my handspun. The yarn was spun from Ashland Bay Merino and it is a bulky weight 2 ply. It is are very soft yarn and the color is a purple. The sleeves are started and will be done soon, hopefully before it gets to warm to wear it down here in TX.

Ahhh, weather. When I last posted we had ice. We are having an absolutely gorgeous day today. No need for a jacket even. Amazing! We do get these days during our winter and really do enjoy them. By the end of this coming week, I think winter will return.