Thursday, June 28, 2007

Scarf me!

A lot of time has been spent laying on the couch which means a lot of knitting has been happening.

I love Kaitlin's stitch-saver, a piece of yarn from the project I finished for Cynthia. That marked her half-way mark. She wanted this scarf to have a lot of length.
Once they get healthy and are out & about (they have missed a week of tennis clinic and soccer training starts next week), projects like this will just be a figment of our imagination - a glimpse of the past - a distant memory.
I'm sure we used up all our creative juices in these past few days to last us the entire summer!

Caught the knitting ball - er' knitting bug

Years ago sister-in-law, Cynthia, found these 2 sleeves at a yard sale and thought of me. I didn't dedicate time to unravel the sleeves, instead I would pick at it from time to time until I had unraveled one sleeve down to the cuff.
Yesterday was Cynthia's birthday. I took the yarn from the sleeve and combined it with yarn purchased a few years ago from the mother lode Yard Sale and created a fun, eclectic scarf.
CO 6 stitches. Knit 3 rows, then knit w/ 4 over for 1 row.
Every 1/4 of the way I would add another yarn and BO the other then ended w/ 3 rows of the cream.
It was that giver's remorse situation all over again with me. I wanted to keep the scarf! I checked the watch and did the math. It took me 3 hours to knit the scarf (while taking care of 2 sick kids) and I started at 2:30pm. Dan left work at 6:00pm and would pick me up at 6:30 to head over to Cynthia's Birthday Party. I still needed to get dressed and set-up dinner for the girls. 3 divided by 6:00 multiplied by 1 carry-over the ridiculous equals not enough time.

I wrapped up the scarf , handed it over...lovingly...and Cynthia loved it. At least it went to a good home, right? :)

Nubbles - ultra blues

Kaitlin & Breana have not been feeling well lately :( with their fevers & sore throats they have been laying around staring at the tv. After a whole entire day of that, I declared a new rule: if you must watch tv (gosh, what else are they suppose to do in between their naps while bed-ridden?!) you must be working on a project. Kaitlin went through my baskets of yarn - found this blue/purple/green 'nubbles' - and got to work.
Her first attempt she co 12 stitches and came up with a short scarf (which have been my favorite lately). She called me while I was buying soup at the grocery store to ask if I could run to the yarn store to buy another skein. I had to think about that one - that would entail driving across town, getting tangled into crawling traffic with the possibilty of that color of 'nubbles' to be out of stock. So I suggested she start over, co 6 stitches and see what happens. I offered that if the result is still not what she was hoping for then we'd call the store and I would head out there for her.
It turned out the exact length that she wanted!


Breana received this as a birthday gift, I hate to admit, last year. It waited patiently in the studio for this day...
the day where Breana had a moment to sit and dedicate herself to creative projects. Sitting still without looming deadlines and activities to get to became our reality once school let out.

She worked meticulously on this beaded design off & on for 3 days - patiently applying the beads one-by-one to create this design using tweezers.
We haven't decided what we're going to use it for or where we're going to put it. For now it's on display on the dining table

This is just the beginning!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Finally a completed project!

Last year Kaitlin & her friend, Aria, starting sketching clothing designs so I took them to Hart's fabrics to expand their creative juices by looking at all the different types of fabrics, colors and prints. Seeing bolts of fabric is like viewing shelves of yarn for me - although I don't need any new pieces at home I'm salivating! Gotta have it! I have a thing for MunkiMunki/Lightning Bugs (orange upper-right) having a dear friend be Heather's sister, my girls were spoiled with the whimsical line of children's clothing.I also am a hoarder/collector (?) of dresses I adored on my daughters that are too precious to pass on because they are connected to so many memories, so I have let them stack up. Some I've cut into squares for a quilt (some day), some I'll leave as is to pass onto my Granddaughters and some I am hoping to find uses for them. I dream of how I can reuse the sweet material but putting the scissors to fabric is a hard thing for me.
Then one day Breana inspired me: I pushed aside my books, my ever-pending knitting, even a load of laundry and got to work.

Uh huh...

Yes I did! :D

Now remember both of my sewing machines are in need of attention so Breana & I have been working with a simple needle & thread. I was fortunate to be given all of Grandma Felisa's sewing baskets & sewing machine after she passed away. My Grandmother (both actually) was a gifted seamstress. She tried to sit tomboy me down to learn stitching. Unfortunately I didn't have the ability to see myself 30 years down the road so I grumbled my way through our sewing lessons and bolted out the door once they were through. Yes, I completely denied myself of learning the tricks of the trade from the Master Herself.

With Grandma's needles and the little knowledge that was bestowed on me, this is what I did...

a completed piece - continued

This dress was handed down by Kylie. It's the first dress that I've cut in to. It was easier than I thought - I took a deep breath, opened up the scissors and made the first cut. After that first snip the rest of the fabric didn't have a chance!
More salvaging:
Someone tried to hand a pair of cotton/linen pants down to me. The pants never fit me but I kept it for it's fabric. A few years ago I did cut one leg up to use for lavender/rose geranium satchets for Christmas gifts. For this bag, my sister, Tisha, suggested I line it. I considered using the fabric that I started out with but changed my mind, I didn't want it to be that busy. This time I chuckled when I cut a piece out. Do you see it?

Here's a closer look: Yes, a pocket for my cellphone, lipstick & keys - no digging around in this bag!
I even added a gusset to give the bag more shape.
The finished product - finally a finished piece!

This bag took me a total of 3 1/2 days. Time-wise it only took me 4-5 hours.

A perfect summer bag!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Work in progress

Embarrassingly enough, four years ago I started a project for a birthday present for my oldest daughter. I fell upon this book, "Simple Knits With A Twist" that uses the most interesting materials to knit wonderful projects. I purchased 1/2 a yard of light blue netting and knit a little bag. Unfortunately the bag fell into the depths of a basket full of "WIPs" and was completely forgotton. Four years later I am determined to complete all those projects and mark them off as 'done'. I've changed the bag considerably from the pattern in the book and am now working on knitting a long strap.
Stay tuned!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

"Student Award" Projects

One of the last projects Kaitlin & Breana had in school was to make an award for a fellow student. After they randomly chose names the assignment was to create an award describing what is special and unique about the person. They were to include something specific about the person's personality, talents & hobbies as well as include a specific memory from the school year, etc. This project was treated like every assignment given in school; with thought, planning & deep concentration. Kaitlin & Breana were to present an award to students they both have known since kindergarten, Charlie & Jacki, respectively. I brought out a huge box of pictures from the depths of my studio that took us way back at least 12 years. The next step was to jot down a few things the girls felt were special about Charlie & Jacki. Armed with that list, we went to the scrapbooking section of the local craft store where we took an hour going through stickers & craft decorations that helped represent each student. We had to streamline a bit before we went up to the register, it's amazing how much you can spend on a handful of stickers!
With poster boards, stickers, craft paper, pictures, their own scissors & glue-tape, they each went to their own corners of the house and spread their goods out. Once everything was laid out on their boards, the air was clear of chatter and replaced by scissors snipping and glue-tape being snapped into place.
This project involved reflecting on good times and concentrating on what we appreciate in each other. They each took 7 years of their lives spent with these kids, sharing, learning & growing together and laid it out on one board - moments of time frozen.

Student Awards cont'd

This student totally got Breana. Just the picture of the horse alone made Breana happy!
Like Sally Fields once said when accepting her award, "You like me! You really really like me!"

Student Awards cont'd

It's meaningful as a Parent when others appreciates your child's talents and acknowledges her for who she is. These students get each other.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Breana's Work In Progress

Breana started off by cutting 9 3x3 squares out of fabric she picked out at Hart's Fabrics.
While my sewing machines are out of commission (from broken needles to tension problems) she is sewing this one by hand. After sewing 6 squares she had to put this project aside to tend to other activites (i.e book reports, Year-long Community Service Write-up, soccer try-outs...yeah know, 5th grade stuff!)