Thursday, November 1, 2007

Now it's really finished...

I've finally finished a little handle and the lining for my little purse. Like I said before, it's now the most perfect but the first time I had done something like this and I did sort of make it up as I went along. So not so bad, right?

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time off but just wish it could have been 2-3 weeks. I've averaged about 14 hours a day knitting, sewing and beading and I STILL don't have time for everything! When my ship comes in, I'm definitely going to be busy!!

The one thing I haven't gotten as far as I wanted to is with my Danish sweater. I have finished 2 of the pattern repeats but I have about 10 more to go. I worked out the other day that it will take about 60 more hours work to finish it. The goal is still the end of the year and I do have a little more time off before the end of the year so it's still do-able.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Looky, Looky!

It’s finished and I’m so pleased with it. This is a reworking of the vintage purse I was telling you about. Of course, it didn’t end up anything like the original but it was great inspiration. How fun is this?!

The body and top is crocheted with seed beads and then the edging and fringe are beaded with a larger bead accenting. I wish you could feel how gorgeous the beads make the bag feel. Although I started with tone on tone, it’s quite a hard color to match for the larger bead, lining and handle but I’m happy with the brown accents and I think they add an authentic color combination. It is lined and I did use a French seam because the lining was quite ravely. I used a very light lining fabric and it gives a nice ‘stained glass’ sort of effect in the light through the lacy bit at the top.

Anyway, it was a very easy project and I think I’m going to write up the pattern and then play around with some alternatives to the techniques here.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Just a thought...

The preacher told this story this morning which I really liked. Ever feel like you’ve lost your focus?

An old lady used to ride a scooter every day across the border in Brazil. Each day she had a bag of sand strapped to the back. After a while the border guard began to get suspicious and wondered if she was trying to smuggle something in the bag with the sand. One day, he made her open up the bag and even though he went through all the sand, he found nothing and had to let her pass. Finally after this had gone on for months, every day a bag of sand on the back of her scooter, he told her he wouldn’t arrest her if she would just tell him the truth if she was smuggling anything. Yes, she told him, she was smuggling. But what are you smuggling, he asked. Her reply? Scooters.

I love surprises! I have this week off from my day job to get some things done for my fun job. One of the things I wanted to do is visit the bead shop over in St. Louis. There’s also a knit shop over there called Knitorious. Several of the ladies from our Fiber Arts Guild have visited and really enjoyed it so I thought, as it was in the same part of the city, that I would stop by. I just wanted to check the web site to find directions and found that they were hosting a talk by a Civil War re-enactor, Deborah Hyland, on Civil War era purses. I got there and found that one of my compadres was already there, also for the talk. Fascinating! She had pictures of a wide variety of purses as well as the old patterns, ladies of the era carrying purses, etc. I thoroughly enjoyed it as these old purses are a particular interest of mine.

As a bonus, I don’t know if I mentioned it but several months ago when I was in Omaha, I bought a couple of skeins of Artful Yarns Portrait mohair yarn in color 122. I didn’t have a plan for it, I was just taken with the colors (jewel tones – green, blue, turquoise, purple). I found a little shrug that I thought it would work lovely with so off I went. Of course, the pattern didn’t call for this gauge of yarn so I had to do a little figuring but I found that I could work the yarn on needles 3 sizes larger than the pattern and work at about 66% of the stitches listed in the pattern and it came out just about right. That is until I got ready to do the sleeves and realized that I wasn’t going to have enough.

Classic story, right? No problem, I’ll call the store and get them to send me 1 more. That’s all I needed – 1 more. They certainly had more when I bought my 2. Uh, yea. They didn’t have any more. But they couldn’t have been more helpful. The owner offered to call his rep and see what other shops would be carrying the yarn. Maybe they would have one. Four shops – yea, nobody had any and, as you can probably guess by now, the color has been discontinued. Classic.

So, Saturday, I’m standing in Knitorious talking to my friend and I happened to look down. There it was! Not only the Portrait yarn but the very color I needed. Probably the last 3 skeins in existence!!! There, right in front of me!! I had a little scream, did a little dance and bought all the skeins they had!! I know I only needed 1 but, honestly, tell me, how could I not!! It was only 3 skeins so I can always do a scarf or a hat or something. I’ll post some pictures once I get it done! How fab is that?