Thursday, June 28, 2007


Just a few pics to post and not much time to say more.

Pattern:Janet's Moss Ivy face cloth
Yarn: Sugar and Cream
Color: Hot Purple
Needles: Size 7 KPO

I was tardy with this one cuz we were at the beach when the mid-month KAL for the monthly dishcloth group started.

Pattern: Lion Brand's nana's bathmat with modifications
Yarn: Sugar and Cream
Color: Taupe and Warm Brown
Needles: Size 10.5 KPO

I don't know how to crochet so I didn't do the edging, nor did I follow their size, except for CO stitches, so I stopped when it was deep enough. However, it wasn't wide enough, so I picked up stitches along the purl ridges in brown and garter stitched on both sides.

Pattern: Princess Crown cloth
Yarn: Knit Picks Crayon
Color: Pink
Needle: Size 5 KPO

This is for DD for the bath. The yarn is so soft, but kind of like a bouclé and I really don't like knitting with it. Fortunately there isn't that much of it in my stash.. I have to say though it makes great spa cloths cuz it's so soft. But better to use where there is no picture to see... just regular knitting would work best I think.

I inventoried my cotton stash... it's a bit overwhelming.. Mostly sugar and cream, Tahki cotton classic and Plymouth Fantasy Naturale. Although there are some miscellaneous types in there as well. I still need to finish the index cards for the cotton and put a snip of each yarn on the card so I can see what colors will go together when I start that MD cotton blanket. When I'm finished that, the next to inventory is the wool. That will take a bit longer!

DD has another week of morning art classes. This time at the Baum School of Art. She loves it and is learning so much: warm colors, cool colors, color wheel, proportion. And I think there's a show near the end of the summer to exhibit the art work from all their summer classes.

Tuesday P and I did a hands on spinning demo at the Warren County Public Library. She brought 2 wheels and I brought mine and 3 drop spindles. We had fiber to be picked and fiber to be carded along with sets of handcarders and a flicker. The ladies tried everything from picking to carding to spinning... it was great fun. Of course, I forgot to take along my camera... sorry!

Since Tuesday I've washed the rest of the Targhee, the Peace Fleece, the rest of the Lincoln Longwool and today I'm working on the Polypay. My goal is to wash all the fleece I have in the next week so it's ready to pick and comb/card/spin!

OK... gotta get moving on this house. DS's family party is Saturday and we are in NO WAY ready for guests. I've been freecycling up a storm

Friday, June 22, 2007

My daughter, the artist!

WARNING, Will Rogers! PICTURE HEAVY!!!!!!!!!!

Wow! I am so proud of her. Today was the last day of art camp for the week at the Crayola factory. Tonight they had a show and reception for the kids. All the families were invited and the works were displayed beautifully. The 3-D pieces were on semi-circle tables with colored table cloths and the flat work was displayed on display boards. There were only about 15 kids and their families there. I know not everyone could attend.

So to begin! I took pictures at the show, but I think some of the pictures I've taken at home show the work better, so those I'll post a mixture.

Flowers in a green vase
This is a painting on artist canvas.
The given still was only the vase, then they were able to add to the picture as they wanted
The flowers are like 2 little colorful bursts,
each emanating to the side.

Underwater adventure.
The students were learning about Japanese stamping and how they used dead sea creatures as their stamps.
Here the stamps were rubber. FIrst they used watercolors on the paper, after that was dry they chose their stamps, applied acrylic paint to the stamp with a ruler then pressed them on the painting in the desired location. Cool, isn't it??

This abstract painting took 2 days. First day, the glue was applied in whatever design they wanted. It dried for a couple of days. Then they painted over with water colors. After that dried, they used a toothbrush dipped in water color and fanned it with their thumb to apply the spots.

Door hanger.
This one is self-explanatory; made with the foam pieces (but thicker than the stuff you buy at A.C. Moore), 3-D paint and little pom-poms. I love her design :-)

When pigs can fly!
These are little ceramic piggy banks that the kids were given paints, fabric and feathers and wings with which to decorate. DD had lots of fun with this one. She has a smaller one at home that SIL bought her at the factory store last summer. Now there's a pair!

Coil pot.
This is air dry clay. They made the coil pot first. Then painted with tempera (I think) There was no limit to the amount of clay they could use. Some of the pots at the show were really big. They were given them 2 packages to bring home that day. We made a little coil pot. DD of course, couldn't let it alone to dry, so she broke it. Never fear... I added a bit of water to the clay and we made birds from it. They are still drying, then she'll decorate with markers or paint.

And my favorite of all.
It's a cube made up of 8 cubes that are attached on some corners.

So that you can open it flat,

make steps

or leave it as a cube

that has 12 different sides!

They had punch, cookies, pretzels and cheese curls in a separate room. That had beautiful flowers on the table.

They also decorated a hat with the Crayola logo similar in shape to the hat from the Cat in the Hat. An art camp t-shirt, a crayola factory T-shirt with crayons in a teacup (they used fabric markers on both of these) and a white crayola t-shirt to use as a smock. They made a memory book (scrapbook similarity) a diary (journal) complete with key. And they were given a Crayola treasure chest that had markers, watercolor pencils, slick crayons, paper, a plastic storage box with under/over writer markers, colored pencils, crayons, super fine markers, 3-D paint, 3 pair of scissors (2 plain and one with a fancy cut), glue stick, regular glue and glitter glue.

I'm so pleased with her week as I know she is as well. She requested to go again next year, and I think DS1 will go too! I suggested to the director that they run a camp for parents concurrently. Hopefully the idea will fly and I can have fun next summer along with them!!!!

Oh, and I have one or two things of my own to put on the post.
This is from the Dishcloth Fun KAL

Pattern: Flutterby Fairy by RaAnn Clegg
Yarn: S&C
Color: Sage Green
Needle: Size 5 KPO

One sock is finished... now to CO the other, except I misplaced the needles ARGH!!!!!!! I remember putting them in their case and putting the case in a safe place, but now I can't remember where that safe place is.........

I leave you with some more eye candy! Happy crafting.. wish me luck finding my needles!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Happy Birthday L!

We were at the beach for a few days. I wanted to post before we left but ran out of time! So much to put in one post now! Today is DS1's b'day. He's 5, but according to him. "not until I get my cake and open my presents" Where did the time go??? He has gymnastic camp at Parkettes in the mornings this week, so I guess we'll celebrate at dinnertime.

DD is at morning art camp at the Crayola factory. She loves it. You'd think that with 2 out of the house for he morning, we'd get something done, but at least one hour of the time they're gone is spent commuting back from the camps and running little errands.

So today I stopped (OK, 'twas a bit of a detour) at Kraemer's yarn store. They're having a sale. At least 25% off patterns and yarn that isn't made by them. Some yarn is even discounted deeper! It was definately a S.E.X. for me! I got 19 skeins of Plymouth Fantasy (pics at a later date) for $3 each, 5 skeins of Noro Kureyon for 6.37 each (to start Knitty's Lizard Ridge) one skein of Cherry Tree Hill and one skein of Plymouth Sockotta and lastly a skein of Mauch Chunky, to ensure that there will be enough to complete the Lucy Bag. I'll post more pics later... kind of spread them out, so to speak.

While at the shore, I stopped at Island Knits, LBI NJ and bought this:

Well it wasn't in this state when purchased. But I did buy the yarn and needles there! I took with me to the shore: 2 drop spindles, some roving (ashland bay merino, rambouillet, and stuff I made at the Mannings), King Tut cotton, Mauch Chunky, my KP Options set, Bamboo dpns in sizes 8, 9 and 10, Knitting Rules (by the yarn Harlot) and Magical Knitting vol 1 by Cat Bordhi, and the pattern for the Lucy Bag. I didn't have the right size needles to start the Lucy Bag (needed 10.5 dpns to start) and didn't get the Möbius CO... so knitting was out. Finally, on our last day of the trip, I convinced DH to let me pop into the yarn store while the kids were asleep in the van. I came out with this and proceeded to swatch and make Stephanie's socks from her book, well start them. This is the first one...not yet finished. That was after I spun all of the Rambouillet on my Greensleeves drop spindle and wrapped it on the niddy noddy I had in my bag. Here it is in a mini skein approx. 250 yard fingering weight.

The weather at the beach was COLD. Most of the time we spent in sweatshirts, except DS1 of course. He was in the surf as much as possible. We went miniature golfing, rode one of those quadcycles with 2 bench seats and a baby basket in the front. Looked like a surry without the fringe on top! Sat. night we went to Fantasy Island. The kids loved that. Both DD and DS1 as well as DH helped out the magician in his show. We'll go back later in the summer when hopefully the weather will be warm enough to lounge on the beach in a proper bathing suit instead of jeans and a sweatshirt!

Some FOs to share:
Dad's LTK felted moccasins

Pattern: Little Turtle Knits Felted Moccasins
Yarn: Paton's Classic Merino
Color: Denim Marl and Blue Storm
Needle: Size 10.5 KPO
Modifications: I had to make the slipper longer than the largest ssize on the pattern, so I knit a 4"x4" swatch, felted it and did the math to fit dad's feet. Happy to say that they do!

Mrs. Reynold's change purse

Pattern: Jean's Felted Coin Purse
Yarn: Peace Fleece
Color: Blueberry Borscht
Button: From stash (dd's choice)
Needle: Size 10 KPO
Modifications: I didn't felt as much as I normally would. We wanted to fit the packaging for the Barnes and Noble gift card inside the little purse.

And the remaining chakalaka baskets. I can honestly say that I'm happy to be finished with these for a bit! The one on the left is the S&C colorway called Sun Kissed... I love it! On the right we have P&C Butter cream (I think? It was one of the cones on special - probably still is LOL)

DSes gave their daycare workers a big basket filled with LOTS of different candy bars, peanuts, sesame seeds, snack crackers. All tied up in cellophane with curled ribbons. Hope they enjoy eating it all!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Fulling and knitting

Well I've been busy knitting chakalakas until I've got the pattern memorized and my hands hurt. The addition to the pair of summer splash is in the colorway Party Time by Lily's Sugar and Cream. Since I've taken this picture I have another completed in the Butter and Cream colorway of EP's Peaches and Cream yarn and one OTN is Lily's Sugar and Cream in Sunkissed (I love this colorway btw) Until I'm finished with these, I'll want to put the cotton down and knit on some wool that gives a bit!

Here are pop's mocs pre-fulling.. when I post the after fulling picture (which has yet to be taken. They're drying right now, stuffed with plastic bags) I'll do a before and after shot with the same coffee mug to give you an idea of how beautifully this Paton's classic merino fulls. Really nice! and very quickly to boot.

DD's classroom teacher will be getting this little number with a gift card to Barnes and Noble. My idea was to put the card in the purse, but they attach it to this rather large card and I don't know how that will work into the scheme I had originally planned.

On the bobbin is some targhee that I've been slowly working on . This particular fleece has tons of VM in it .. too much for my taste, but I learned today from a spinning e-zine (whose name escapes me right now, but there's a link in the sidebar) that it would be time well spent flicking the fibers BEFORE washing to removed the chaff etc...I"ll have to give that a try! Anything to make the spinning part fly and be effortless.

This is my new Kromski kniddy knoddy. Keeping it warm is the fiber that I spun Saturday from the batt I made on the drum carder (Oh some day I'd love one of those!) This is the yarn that I leaned to Navaho ply on. It's a bit tight twist, but hopefully it will be OK. I'm far from wise enough to do this right at the get go. So it's a very small amount but it's so darn cute!

My friend Lea gave me some lovely CVM that she combed and put through her make shift diz. I'll post pictures of that later along with the great top she handdyed called green flash. The rest is for sale on her etsy page.

I'm off to edit yesterday's post to add some pictures. My new spinning buddy Tanya sent me some great shots of Saturday, otherwise you'd just be looking at the animals (which is OK for me too) I leave you with this adorable alpaca to say
nighty night!

Saturday, June 09, 2007

The Mannings

Wow... what a great day.

Guess I don't need to tell you which one is me. If you know anything about me from reading my blog, you'll know I'm the one in tie dye! Thanks for going with me Lea! I had a blast.... I'll post animal pictures later, but unfortunately I left my brain at home and didn't take pictures of the spinning bee or any of the demos as a matter of fact. :-/. Thanks Tanya for filling that void!

My first impression was that the store is unbelieveable... truly a fiber candy shop to the nth degree! Outside the demo area was a bit small but we were in no way cramped. The weather was perfect..sunny but lots of shade under the big trees and a nice breeze to boot!

We got there just before 10AM. Took a quick walk through just the front of the store. Then came outside. There were 3 sheep (Romneys) waiting to be shorn which took place during the day at well spaced intervals. First stop natural dying with Juanita Breidenbaugh, what a fount of information this woman is! Her first batch of the day used alum and cream of tartar as the mordant (pre soaked wool) into baths of dye... Lea you need to help me out here.... The second time we visited the dyes, that wool had come out of the pots and new wool was in that had mordants of iron, cream of tartar and a bit of alum. These wools had a much deeper, warmer color as the end result. Juanita had notebooks full of samples that showed the same fiber treated with different mordants but dyed with the same dye. So interesting... I know it's beyond me now, but it's opened a myriad of possibilities.

There was an area for flax processing - preparation and spinning by Eric Weit and Leigh Spencer. Here's Leigh spinning off flax into linen off the distaff. So interesting although I know it would be quite some time before I'd spin flax. The presenters were wearing linen clothing of course!

Then to the RIgid Heddle Weaving with Kathy Heindel. She and one of her students made it look so easy. I didn't stay here long for fear I'd find a new hobby!

We went back to the car to get our wheels because the next area was fiber preparation, with Sally Jenkins, and of course after it's prepared you need to spin! Sally is the nicest, most helpful woman who hails from Maryland. She had lotss of dyed fiber pieces and a drum carder (along with many sets of hand cards, a set of combs, a dog flicker - well it's not really a flicker but that's what you can use it for) and a picker. We were permitted to take her pretty fiber and play with color combos on the drum carder to then spin at our wheels (or drop spindles....there were plenty of those there as well) I now have a cute little skein of some pretty fiber and some more to spin, but more on that later

While we were spinning the sheep shearing started so I popped over to watch Michele Riley shear her sheep. She's so fascinating (and speedy) to watch, has such control over her sheep and is so informative about what to look for in finding a nice fleece and what to avoid when choosing a fleece. Plus her fresh raw fleeces were priced very reasonably.

Some before and after shots of this sheep. He's hard to see but it's the sheep in the far left of the pic, still in his wooly coat.

This pic on the right in his nakedness. Reminds me of the sheep in Wallace and Gromit's movie A Close Shave!

The store, the store is unbelieveable... truly you have to see this place to believe it. Everything a fiber person could want is there. I showed tremendous restraint however, even though there was one raw fleece that was SHOUTING my name (a BFL, border leicester cross) I walked away with a flicker which will be great for the targhee I'm working with right now AND the rambos to come, and a small Kromski niddy noddy. I taught myself to Navajo Ply tonight after I watched Lea do it this afternoon. It's really easy and am so glad that I can do it now. You'll see pictures of that on my new niddy noddy later.

I'll add pictures to this post tmrw but I'm so tired right now I really need to go to bed. The kids will be up at 6 for sure cuz DH wore them out today between the playground in the morning, grocery shopping and the pool in the afternoon. Boy I love that man!

I leave you with some pictures of the camelids. LLamas and alpacas... Aren't they cute!

I'm so excited!

Lea and I are going to the Mannings spinning seminar today... we meet in about 7.5 hours. I hope the weather holds out because it's outside, rain or shine, and we're taking our wheels.

She's bringing her viking combs along, so I quick washed up some Targhee... it's about dry already :-) I know I'll get hooked on combs and then I'll be spending more money.

DH and I bought new windows for the house today. I hope that they provide what they promise 46% off our heating and cooling bill... gotta keep my eyes on that one.

DD had her field day Friday (still today for me really). She had a blast but she was beat tonight. Hope the kids behave for DH tmrw.

And lastly here are 2 more chakalaka in the colorway Summer Splash by Lily and Cream. The basket on the left has one additional knit row at the top. I need to decide which style i prefer. I really like this colorway though. I'll start some in Fiesta trmw. I have 4 down and 4 to go for DDs school, plus a felted change purse and bookmark... then what to give the workers at daycare??

Happy crafting

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

more chakalaka

DD decided that she'd like to give these filled with 'good' chocolate to her special area teachers as a summer's here gift.So I started one last night... on size 7 needles with Lily's sugar and cream... then I read the instructions, and decided at lunch at school today that the needles were too large... so when I got home I cast on in Sugar and Cream Over the Rainbow on size 5s. Much better. Doesn't hold too much chocolate. There are 2 Ghiardelli squares at the bottom, 2 Ferrar Rocher balls and 2 Lindt truffle like things.... Now I only have 5 more to do for her and if I do the same for the boys that will be another 9 more... plus the real gift for DD's classroom teacher a felted credit card/change purse witha gift card to Barnes and Noble and a knitted bookmark... my idea (not that it will see fruition....) is a bookmark with a butterfly in beads on it, with the card saying something like you've helped give me wings to fly. But I don't know if that will happen since I've never knit with beads b4 nor do I have a butterfly bookmark pattern... Guess I should make google my friend.
Happy crafting everyone.. I know I should be casting on!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

catching up

Thursday was DD's Fine Arts night for her school. Everything was held at Lehigh University Zollner Arts Center. The art work was in the lobby and the concert in the main hall. The kids did a fine job. They sing very well in tune and were cute to boot! This was DD's exhibit in the art part of the show, Queen Nephretete. If you look closely, you can see her name written in hieroglyphs in the lower center of the sarcophagus. Funny how she made her with blonde hair... my WASPy child... and her school is pretty diverse, guess the art teacher didn't show pictures of what the Queen may have looked like in real life!

This is some of the Lincoln Longwool that I've been spinning on Patti's Ashford drop spindle.. I've taken it in to school and the kids are fascinated. Maybe I'll bring some along on my journey of historical living. It was so funny because all week I was wearing different long tie dyed dress (made by moi) and spinning.. I must have really looked like a hippie to them. LOL

And finally, my portion of a combined gift to a retiring colleague. Well my part is the knitted part (what a surprise). The eggs inside aren't going to her, but there will be two others that my dear friend has made (she made the two in there right now) This woman will be sorely missed... in so many ways... we love you Rhoann!

Pattern: Chakalaka by Wendy Wonnakott for the Garter Belt
Yarn: Peace Fleece
Color: MirAtlantis Periwinkle
Needle Size: 10 bamboo dpns

I was contemplating felting this basket when it was finished. I did change the pattern, in that I moved up on the needle size, mostly because Peace Fleece is such a heavy worsted yarn. Other thatn that I followed this pattern exactly. I'm sure I'll be making it again, for it was super easy and fast. I love how the stitch looks up close. If you click on the picture it will open an enlargement that allows you to see some of that ;-)

More later.. gotta run!