Passing Down Crazy

Because Sometimes the Best Thing You Can Give Your Kid is an Addiction…To Yarn


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Nothing to See Here!

I haven’t done a blog post for two weeks because I haven’t finished anything!

I’m working on a block for the Norah’s Vintage Afghan KAL.  (You can still join!  We don’t have a starting and ending date.)

I do have 4 blocks finished, but there are 20 in all.

I got my loom warped, but it’s not even threaded.  I’m making four wool blankets….eventually.

I got my first BOM package from Fig Tree Quilts and got that stitched, but that won’t be done til December.

I loaded a quilt on the longarm.  (I may have made this seven or eight years ago.  I don’t remember!)  The fabric is Sanctuary by 3 Sisters for Moda.  I’m not sure what the pattern is, but it kind of looks like a Miss Rosie’s.

I know what’s going to happen.  All of a sudden, I’ll have a whole bunch of things finished.  I’ll just keep plugging away at all of it.

So, to celebrate all the beautiful projects, I started a new quilt yesterday.  Great logic, huh?

When I woke up yesterday morning, I was going through my Instagram feed and saw that someone had completed this quilt.  I realized I had the kit stashed away, and decided to start it.  It’s going to go pretty quickly because the pieces are large.  My plan is to spend the rest of the day in my sewing room to see how far I can get on this.  I’m pretty excited to work on it….except that I woke up this morning with a cold.  So I’m headed to my sewing room with some hot apple cider and a box of kleenex.

Here’s to the potential of unfinished projects!!!


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Finishing and Starting

Remember the blanket KAL I talked about in my last post?  Go ahead, go back and read it right here!

Well…I finished the first block.

Trust me when I tell you it’s so much prettier in person.  It’s just not that blotchy.  I’m using Blue Moon Fiber Arts Targhee.  I’m so impressed with this yarn.  It’s a little scratchy when I’m knitting it, but it softens up and blocks beautifully.  It seems like it’s going to wear like iron.  I really need to knit a sweater for My Hero with it.  And it’s about the same price as using Cascade 220.  Don’t get me wrong.  Cascade 220 is great yarn, but I love hand dyed yarn.

If you haven’t decided to join the KAL, you can join any time.  There isn’t a starting and ending date.  The ravelry thread can be found here.

In other news, I finished a quilt top.  Again, I don’t love the photo of it, but I’m too lazy to dig out my big camera.

This is Thimbleblossoms Night Sky.  I started it this summer and just now got back to it.  I’m loving the Essex Linen by Kaufman that I’m mixing in.  The red reads a bit pink on the photo, but trust me, it’s not.  I’ll certainly be using more of it in the future.

My other big finish yesterday was cleaning out our closet.  There were clothes everywhere, and I can’t even blame My Hero, because they were all mine.

So…laundry is started and I’m heading off to my sewing room to do a quick clean up.  And then I get to play with this!

I actually have two bundles of Brenda Riddle fabrics to play with.  I’m starting a monster project!  It deserves its own blog post, so you’ll just have to wait til next week to hear about it.

Happy Friday everyone!  May your weekend be filled with lots of creative endeavors!


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I Have an Idea!!!

Given my love of half finished blankets, I thought I’d start another one.  But I’m looking for more people to knit this one with me!!!

So who wants to to a KAL (knit along)???

This is the project!

norahs-vintage-afghan_lg

This is Norah’s Vintage Afghan, designed by the queen of cables, Norah Gaughan.  It’s a free pattern and you can find it here.

There are twenty squares in the pattern, but you could do 9, 12, or 15, or 16 of them if you’d prefer.  According to my calculations, each square takes about 200 yards of worsted weight yarn.  So if you plan to do all 20 squares, you’ll need about 4,000 yards of yarn.

The next question is, what yarn to choose?  The pattern suggests Berroco Comfort or Vintage.  However, you could use I Love This Yarn from Hobby Lobby or Pound of Love from Lion Brand and have a lot of hours of enjoyment for not a lot of money.

You could also use Madelinetosh Tosh Vintage and have a spectacular project.  You’d also spend a lot more.

So, what did I choose?  I ordered Blue Moon Fiber Arts Targhee from Eat Sleep Knit.  It was similar in price to Cascade 220, but it’s hand dyed so the color variation is gorgeous.  Here are my colors.  I chose seven colors instead of just five.

So, here’s the plan.  Go pick out some yarn.  The possibilities are endless. Or here’s a novel idea.  Go raid your stash!  Somebody, please try this with Noro Kureyon or Silk Garden.  Wind your yarn if you need to.  Print out your free pattern, find some needles, and a cable needle, if you use one.  I also think a cute project bag is a must.  You even have my permission to buy a new one if you’d like!

I’m not going to set a schedule for completing each block, because who needs more have to’s?  As a general guideline, if you did one block every two weeks, and do all 20 blocks, you’ll be done in November.  That leaves plenty of time to put the blanket together before Christmas.

I just started a thread on Ravelry as well.  Let’s meet over there to discuss yarn choices and any other questions you may have.

Also, I’m quiltmomoffive on Instagram.  If you’re an Instagrammer, just use #norahsvintageafghan.

So, who’s with me???


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I have a bit of a problem.  Well, maybe lots of problems, but one in particular is bugging me.  I have too many fiber related things that I love to do.

I love knitting, cross stitch, quilting, spinning, and weaving.  If someone asked me to give up one of these things, I don’t know what I’d choose.  And because I love them all, I feel like I’m not getting anything done.

I did take a project off the loom the other day.  It was something I started just for practice before I went to Vavstuga to weave The Blanket.  The practice piece looks pretty awful.  The selvages are bad!  Maybe after I hem it and give it a bath, I’ll show it.  Maybe.

Yesterday, I realized I have a bunch of knit blankets in process.  And I have two more planned.  So I pulled out one that I started in 2012!

I love this blanket!  It’s called Norma and it’s a free pattern on Knitty.  Mom and I made a trek to Madtosh Crafts in Ft. Worth in June of 2012.  I purchased 8 skeins of Madelinetosh DK Twist in the Cousteau colorway.  I started the blanket as soon as I got home, and now it’s just sitting.  Last night I started skein 4 of 8.  I’m thinking I’m going to try monogamous knitting for a while and get this thing done!

I also started a new cross stitch project on January 1st.  (I should do a post on the cross stitch I completed in 2015.)

This is a large cross stitch of an American flag.  The stripes are formed by the name of every state in the order that they were added to the US.

I also have quilt #1 for the boys bunk room almost ready to assemble.

On the weaving front, I’m getting all the wool wound so I can weave 4 nice heavy wool blankets.  I purchased the yarn this summer at Vavstuga and I want them done.

On the spinning front…..I got nothin’!  I have a couple of things I need to finish, but I haven’t touched the wheel in weeks.

Maybe I should designate one day of the week for each of my favorite endeavors.

Who needs to clean, cook, and do laundry anyway?  As Miss In Charge loves to tell me, she hates “adulting”.

Please tell me I’m not the only one that has this problem.  How do you balance all the things you love to do?


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The Saga of a Blanket

The first week in December I made my second trip to Vavstuga, a weaving school in Shelburne Falls, MA.  I was there to do the Vavstuga Treasures class.

Let me back up a bit.  I first experienced Vavstuga in July, when I took the Basics class.  I fell in love with weaving during that week.  It’s a place like no other and is so inspiring.  While I was there, Tom from Leprechaun Sheepskin stopped in to show Becky some of his new samples.  I fell in love with a a lush, deep teal sheepskin and signed up to come back in December and weave a throw.

I arrived at Vavstuga on Sunday night.  There are dorm rooms upstairs and they’re so uniquely Swedish.  I met my 3 roommates and headed to bed early.  (It’s a bit different living in a dorm when you’re not 18 any more.  We didn’t stay up til all hours!)

On Monday morning, we headed downstairs to start our projects.  The looms were all pre threaded and ready to go.  All we had to do is pick out colors and start weaving.  By the end of Monday, I had two repeats of the pattern completed.

Although I loved what I had woven, I was a bit disappointed, because I really wanted red in my project and I’d tried it along with the teal and it looked like a cheap coloring book.  On Tuesday morning, I woke up with a way to add red, and it really worked.

On Thursday morning I’d finished weaving my blanket and was ready to start weaving the band that would go around the blanket.  I played with color and pattern and warped and threaded it up.  Look at all that color!

On Friday morning I started weaving my band.

By the end of the day on Friday, I’d woven 10 meters of band.  I did it!  It was a push to the end to get it done before the studio closed on Friday night, but I did it.  I headed out for dinner with Devorah, the apprentice at Vavstuga.  After dinner and a long visit, I headed back to the dorm and crashed!

I got up Saturday morning to head home.  My hands were so swollen I couldn’t even make a fist.  And my triceps…I couldn’t lift my arms above my head.  I got home on Saturday and didn’t do a lot for a few days.

On Monday, it was time to sew the band around the edge of the blanket.  I sewed a few inches on by hand and quickly realized that if I wanted it done in 2015, I needed to sew it on by machine.  Besides, if they’d had sewing machines in the 1800’s they would have used them!

I sent my blanket off to Tom the next day to have the sheepskin fit to the blanket.  We decided not to ship it back over Christmas, so it arrived back home this afternoon.

Wow!!!  I still can’t believe I made this.

Yes, it’s as soft as it looks.  The whole throw weighs close to 10 pounds.  I wish I’d taken a photo of My Hero wearing it like a Superman cape around his office today.

So….details for those of you who weave.

Stjerne Overshot

  • Warp 16/2 cotton
  • Weft 16/1 linen for tabby, Faro 6/1 wool for pattern
  • Band 16/2 linen (I think!  It may have been 16/1)

This truly is a Treasure, and I won’t forget the week I spent at Vavstuga weaving it.  Thanks to Becky, Bettie, Kim, and Devorah for making the whole experience so perfect!

 

 

 


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It’s A Wrap

Yes, we’re all alive and well!  Because I haven’t posted since April, I think it’s time for an update on the family.

We’ll start with The Genius, on the far left.  She spent 3 years in California, working as a visual effects artist and another totally unrelated, but rewarding job.  In July, she made the trek all the way across the country, and is now gettting an MFA in Fibers.  That means she’ll get paid do do what the rest of us spend tons of money doing.

Next up is Superblonde.  She’s second from the right.  She graduated from college in May, got a job as a 2nd grade teacher, and bought a house.  She also has a goldendoodle named Stella.

Dreamboy, the big guy with his finger in Santa’s nose, is in his second year of college, pursuing a business degree.  He’d much rather work, and takes any chance he can to see what Dad is up to.  But that degree has to be had!

Miss In Charge is on the far right.  She’s a junior in high school, and just loves to study (not!).  She can be found a lot of the time with a camera in hand, doing a photo shoot.  She also loves being on two different worship teams at church.  She also has a part in a musical at our local community theatre.  Oh, and there’s also a fair amount of babysitting.

Frankie, who is hiding behind the rest of the kids, is in 9th grade.  He specializes in being a huge pest.  He’s perfected the art!  Most of the time he has us all laughing at his antics.  Case in point: the night I heard a bunch of noise in our back yard at midnight.  Frankie had jumped out of the hot tub and was chasing around the back yard with Arnold the goldendoodle.  In the snow!  Frankie then jumped back in the hot tub.  I’ll bet our neighbors just love us.

These two are my favorite children.  They don’t argue or fight. On the left is Georgie.  She can’t figure out why we have to have such a huge dog around.  Arnold is a goldendoodle who at present is 60 pounds and we don’t think he’s done growing yet.  Stella, Superblonde’s dog, is his sister, so we have 3 dogs around most weekends.

My Hero is still my hero!  He works hard and is still the best husband and dad around.  He still doesn’t have any hobbies, but he’s smart enough to ooh and aah appropriately over my projects.

I’m still knitting, quilting, spinning, weaving, and cross stitching.  Yes, you heard that right.  I got the bug and started cross stitching again this summer.  I did lots of it in the ’80’s and ’90’s.  I’ve also made two trips to Vavstuga this year, and my knowledge of weaving has grown immensely.

Here is a collage that I posted to Instagram of some of my projects this year.

We’ve had one change this year.  We bought a lake house a little over a year ago.  It met its demise with a bulldozer this fall, and we’ll be building in 2016.  I’m having a blast making stuff and dreaming about color and texture and how we’ll use our home.  I’ve pieced several quilts (machine quilting is high on my list of things to do in 2016), woven some things, and done 4 cross stitch items that will be part of our decor.  We’ve lived in the same house since we got married 30 years ago, so this is such a treat for me!

I’m still trying to decide if I want to get back into blogging or not.  I love having all my projects documented, and I’m not sure why I got out of the habit.  Instagram is just so easy!

I guess it’s time to hit the grocery store.  We have no plans for New Years Eve, except to sit around and be lazy!  We traveled a lot over Christmas, and we’re just ready to be home.

Happy New Year!

Romans 15:13.  Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

 


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Big Quilting Update!

Waaaaaaaayyyy back in February, or maybe it was even January, Heather sent me some photos of quilts she was working on.  I immediately texted her and asked if I could please test some of them!!!  By the next day, I had copies of several of the patterns.  I started with Petals on a String.

Please go over to Heather’s blog, Anka’s Treasures, and take a look at her photos.  They are so much better!

I got a big surprise earlier this week when I was cruising though Instagram.  My quilt is on the cover of her new book, Angles With Ease 2.

I also tested Radiant.  I absolutely love this quilt!!!

The fabric is Moxi, a new line from Moda.  My plan with this one is to put an applique border on it with some bold flowers.  I can’t ever just leave something alone!

I also pieced another quilt for her that I forgot to photograph, so I’ll save that for another post.

Heather’s book, Angle’s with Ease 2, will be available soon.  I love every quilt in the book.  You’re going to want it!

And now I’m going to go outside and enjoy the sunshine.  It’s that sunshine that made the first quilt very hard to photograph!

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