Monday Treats

I’m pretty deeply into a couple of deadline projects at the moment, but I was able to get out to the Spring Toronto Indie Arts Market at the Gladstone Hotel on Saturday, and I picked up a couple of cute treats! Lots of the vendors were knitting behind their tables.

from the herd

Sweet cards from Gotamago on Etsy.

pretty buttons

Very cute leaf buttons from giroofasaurus-vexed.com.

you've changed

It was really beautiful this weekend. We also did a little bit of garden prep: bought some compost and nutrients to mix into last year’s soils, emptied and threw out some cracked old pots, set up our deck table and chairs. I’m pretty excited for this year’s garden.

sprouts - April 14

Make Do and Mend

Here’s a short project I did this morning – Dale asked me to mend the sleeve of one of his spring jackets, so I thought I’d take a few photos to document it.

jacket mending 1

The seam on the outer part of the ribbed cuff had come open. I couldn’t sew it from the wrong side because the cuff is folded over and sewn down inside.

jacket mending 2

Mattress stitch to the rescue! I used doubled grey sewing thread and pretty big sewing needle.

jacket mending 3

Tighten up along the way.

all done!

All done! I sewed over the loose threads from the previous seam, knotted the end of my thread and pulled the needle through to the inside, securing the knot inside the two layers of the cuff. It took all of five minutes, and now it’s much neater. Of course, had this been one of my handknits, the ribbing would line up perfectly at the seam – but you get what you pay for with ready-to-wear.

Now I can get back to some soothing stockinette, in Handmaiden Casbah.

mmm, stockinette

Hello to my first little tomato sprout of 2014!

hello little sprout!

A Finished Skirt!

I went on kind of a finishing spree this week and picked up a few things I haven’t worked on in ages. I actually really enjoy cleaning out the stash and WIP baskets…sometimes. It comes with the changing of the seasons, right?

It’s not sunny or warm yet, but I’ll be ready for when it is with this skirt!

finished gathered skirt

finished gathered skirt

I used quilting cotton and the Zinnia pattern pieces, but heavily modified for a gathered waistband – no pleats, shortened a bit, drafted my own waistband. I did the side seams on the serger, which was a bit complicated by the fact that I also did in-seam pockets. There were a few funny places that I had to fix up by hand, but it wasn’t too bad. I also attached the waistband piece with the serger before folding it over and finishing it by hand.

finished gathered skirt

Is it the most flattering skirt shape for me? Not really, but I dislike that “flattering” seems to mean “makes you look skinnier” these days. It fits, it’s comfy, and I like it. It’ll get lots of wear this summer, I think. I can’t for the life of me remember what fabric line this is, but I’m sure someone out there knows – can you tell me in the comments? It’s driving me nuts!

hem detail

I tried to really take my time with the hem, pressing it properly and stitching slowly. I’m pretty proud of it. As much as I like hand sewing though, I think it’s time for me to just buy a new regular sewing machine.

adorable sheep pin

New trinket from the One of a Kind Show – this adorable sheep pin from Mehoi. Knitters will buy anything with a sheep on it, eh?

Tax Refund

I haven’t been able to buy much in the way of fun stuff lately due to lack of funds, but I did get a tax refund! So after putting a bunch of it aside for this year’s taxes (responsibility!) I ordered some more yarn to finish up my crocheted blanket.

alllllmost done

alllllmost done

It’s so close to done now – just a couple rounds of double crochet around the whole thing for a border, and the ends. I’m not planning to write up a pattern for this but here’s what I did with the Wool-eater pattern:

  • I used a size F / 3.75mm crochet hook and fingering weight yarn: scraps of Koigu, STR, and Casbah for the edgings.
  • I worked 4 tiers for the square centres, joining new colours for each tier.
  • For the solid border on each square, I worked a Round 3 (cluny group round) then a round of double crochet, with a couple chain stitches between the dc’s on the corners.
  • Then I slip-stitched the blocks into rows and then the rows together.
  • The 16 blocks with borders, put together, measures 36″ square, but it’ll be a little bigger once I put the last border on.

new fibres

I also ordered some colourful new spinning fibres! These pretties are from Woolgatherings on Etsy.

K in progress

blob o' grey

I got a new lens this week! It’s just a cheapie one – the Nikon 50mm f/1.8. I’ve been using my 30mm Sigma lens for so long (in addition to a zoom lens), it’s really nice to get a chance to play with something different for once. It’s very light because it has plastic parts, which might actually encourage me to carry my “heavy” camera around a little more this spring.

Above, my grey blob is going quite well, and has grown a lot! I wasn’t able to get the whole thing out of one skein like I’d hoped, but I won’t use all of the second. Maybe 1000 yards total. I’m nearly done the body, then I just have to knit the sleeves, which should go pretty quickly. (I hope so, anyway.)

Logan

I picked up my Superhero sampler this week as well, and finished up Logan. I’m finally starting to see where I can improve my stitching – as in, I can see where the stitches aren’t perfect! It’s okay though, it’s a learning experience. K for Kilowog is in progress, and I’m looking forward to the larger blocks of colour. It’s nice to stitch and not have to change threads so often, I find it quite relaxing.

I really want to do The Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery’s Sugar is Sweet sampler too. Since it’s a smaller project, maybe I’ll cheat on my superhero sampler a bit and pick up some new materials. It’s so cute and has cake, my favourite!

A Little Button Love

felt buttons

I’ve had these buttons in my stash for at least…4 or 5 years? Maybe more. They were a gift from the always amazing Denny, and as such were very special – not just any project would do.

When I started knitting my Bathurst Hat, I knew this would be the one. These buttons are 100% wool felt, and a little too soft to use for something really functional (like a cardigan). A hat is perfect for showcasing those precious buttons that deserve to be seen.

I can’t read Japanese, but the one thing I’m sure of is that they’re 100% wool! Here’s the button card for posterity.

felt buttons, front

felt buttons, back

A little white thread really makes the brown pop, and I think they go really well with the teal of the hat!

felt buttons

I love them. Thanks Denny!