Monday, December 31, 2007

Looking back on the year

As I finally get back to this thing we call blogging, I took a look at what I accomplished on the fiberly front. I did so many more things in my head than I did for real, I still think I did pretty well.

Last Christmas I promised to make Tom at least one shirt each month. In part, the idea was to reduce the stash of dog fabric. Although I admit I did augment the stash, I think I did put a very small dent in it having made 26 shirts - 11 in August for our 25th Anniversary. I finished the last shirts of the year over the weekend.

Although I planned to sew for myself, most of the 15 sewn projects ended up being gifts, including a set of placemats for Dianne, a jacket, top and pants for my mom, and bag for Tom's aunt Flossie. Tom's Christmas present was a Simplicty 3890 jacket sewn from wool we picked up at the Pendleton Woolen Mills outlet in Milwaukie. And I made a jacket for one of Tom's nieces.

McCalls 5479; Fabric Mart wool blend fabric

Mostly I knit–20 projects, in total. I started (and finished) Michelle Rose Orne's capelet from Vogue Knitting Winter 2006, as a gift, but changed my mind about the giftee.

Instead, I put my newly learned crochet skills to the test and made the Chrysantemum lace shawl from Amazing Crochet Lace: New Fashions Inspired by Old-Fashioned Lace by Doris Chan from Muench Tahoe (stash) yarn.

Looking at the bigger picture of my fiberly pursuits, I guess I can't complain—but I still want to do more next year! To see all the sewing, knitting, and crochet projects - except shirts - plus a couple of other endeavors click here.

Oh yes and

Happy New Year!

Don't forget your black-eyed peas.

Sunday, November 25, 2007


Well, I haven't gotten my sewing done and my latest knitting effort was a bust (having found a BIG mistake right at the end...) so I've been hard at it at the computer processing pictures and html.

Pictures from the Hawai'i trip, are finally done and posted to TheHudsons.


And Dogs

And while I was at it, I pulled two month's pictures of Jake and Mandy off the card, so the cuteness continues on TheHudsons.


Monday, November 19, 2007

A lace obsession

I really have to stay off this computer and not go to bookstores. It started with Japanese knitting and now it's Japanese lace crochet.

We had some time to kill before going over to Flossie's house to plan Thanksgiving so we went to Uwajamiya which houses Kinokuniya. I came home with four books–three crochet and one knit. And now I'm obsessing about crocheted lace.

ISBN: 978-4529042246

ISBN: 978-4277171885

ISBN: 978-4529024129

ISBN: 978-4277113854

And on order from YesAsia
ISBNs: 978-4529044431 and 978-4529044349

Friday, November 16, 2007

Too early for Jake

Dogs on Thursday
Technically, it's not Thursday, and I'm still not in a picture processing mood, but Jake provides such a wealth of photo ops, some of which I take advantage of.

Here's how each early morning goes:
1. With the first light of day, Jake wakes up and must think "Oh - morning! Breakfasttime!!"
2. He come charging down the hall to the bonus room or into my office with a very happy puppy face and says "It's Breakfasttime!"
3. We have a moment when he looks like a little comma and I give him a hug till he wiggles out and says "It's Breakfasttime!"
4. I ask if he'd like breakfast and he wags his little tail and says "Yes! Yes! It's Breakfasttime!" and goes charging back down the hall and impatiently waits for me to move the gate so he can go downstairs.
5. I fix his breakfast while he follows me around the kitchen with his tail going a mile a minute.
6. He eats happily, all the time his tail is a-waggin'.
7. He goes out.
8. He goes back to bed.
And breakfast is forgotten till the next morning when the scene repeats itself.

When it's time to get Tom up, Jake is all about sleeping and most mornings it's just too early for him.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Blogging and Ravelry

Dianne (DiannePDX) just got her invitation to Ravelry and commented in a message to me, Suzie (knitnlisten) and Jean (no clue about Ravelry) that she thought the reason I haven't been posting much here is because I've been spending so much time on Ravelry. Not true. It may be worth noting I haven't posted much on Ravelry either.

Because to me, both are all about the pictures and my recent mantra has been "I'd rather be knitting and sewing than processing pictures"–that's exactly what I've been doing.

On my list (without pictures, in no particular order):
1. McCalls 5479
2. Vogue 8162
3. Vogue 7880
4. Vogue 8344
5. Simplicity 3890
6. Ene's Scarf (Scarf Style)

Since most are gifts, I won't give details and it's likely I won't post pictures of the projects till after the holidays. But eventually I will get to those Hawaii and Jake pictures.

BTW, it may come as no surprise that I'm Fiberlyone on Ravelry.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Focused on Finishing

I have to admit some frustration with the Mom capecho and with the body finished, and the collar to go, so I decided to set the project aside for awhile. I needed something that I could finish so I pulled out the Gold Nugget Shawl and finished it. I am always amazed at the transformation lace makes after it's been washed and blocked. As I knit the shawl and looked at the pattern, I thought, "This isn't going to be anything like Shui's beautiful shawl." But lo and behold through the magic of blocking it became something entirely different and lovely. It took exactly one ball, with a yard to spare, and it measures 48" wide and 24" long.


Next, I decided to try my hand at crocheting something. Since it was my first crochet project, instead of diving into one of the lovely patterns in the Japanese knitting books, I thought it would be good to start in English, and probably something not-too-complicated. To that end, I found the Off the Grid scarf on Knitting Daily, chose stash Crystal Palace Romance yarn in a mustardy color and crocheted away.

Since the Mom capecho is a bust for now, the Dressing Gown needed to be finished. I have contacted two knitters who finished the shorter Bed Jacket version to get a handle on interpreting the very poorly written collar instructions, since the publisher/author never responded. Both admitted to having a problem with the instructions, which tell you to start the collar before sewing up the shoulders, but they did manage to finish and told me the process; in theory it was straightforward. I started the collar as written. I can read and I understand knitting instructions, but as I read the collar instructions, the short rows would make a half collar. So in frustration, I gave up and decided to knit a lace collar, but I couldn't find a pattern.

Then I remembered the cover of the Fall 2006 Interweave Crochet I'd bought because it had combination knitting and crochet patterns. So I decided to throw caution to the wind and wing it with the Pineapple Lace. It took three tries to get the foundation pattern done right, but I did and even though I didn't count the stitches (it's a long way around the gown), it all worked out. I decided to stop at the eighth row in the pattern for fear of running out of yarn and the robe is pretty heavy as it is. For the cuffs I just did the first four pattern rows.

Next on the agenda involves much pointier needles—Christmas sewing.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Fabric, Yarn and a Dog

I feel I've been remiss in not posting Hawai'i pictures, but I just haven't gotten through the almost 300 pictures. That's a lot of pictures and I'm only about halfway through processing...and then I have to build the web pages. Maybe this weekend..

In the meantime, I did take some pictures of the fabric I got from Kimura's Fabrics. It is a must see if you like fabric and you're on the Big Island. In addition to the fabric selection, you get to step back in time to when H Kimura's was a general store. But I was there for the fabric.

Tom will get two new shirts—someday.

I love red and just couldn't resist this silk brocade. I also like the "wrong" side of the fabric...what to do with it...

Yarn...well knitting
I've been concentrating on the Mom capecho. Here's progress to Tuesday. The sleeves are now on and the collar is in process, but I took no pictures to prove it.

And I did a little repair work on an RTW sweater. I responded message on the sewing guild list seeking someone to fix a friend's sweater.

And a dog
Jake is a sensitive dog and tends to have feelings of guilt at really odd times (it must be from whatever went on with his previous families). When he does, he finds a corner and leans and goes to a place in his head where even a cookie won't coax him out; it takes picking him up and moving him from that "place." Yesterday, he went to that place, but to pout. Tom was out of the house. Jake was sure he heard him and wanted to go downstairs. I headed the other direction and Jake pouted. This time I just took his picture and waited and the switch flipped and he was happy dog again.

"I'm so in love"

That was the subject of the email we got from Jane, Petsitter Extraordinaire, when we were in Hawai'i. She was speaking of Jake, of course. And yesterday, since she was in the neighborhood, she decided to drop by to see him. Now that says something...

Jake doesn't like cherry flavored ChapStick. He got it out of my purse (sneaky little devil).

I love the greeting whenever I return and someday expect to hear that Jake jumped the gate.

Jake did open the door to your office. I think he thought you were in there and kept jumping until he hit the handle just right. When I got upstairs to check what all the noise was, he was in your office looking for you--and trouble!!

Jake has been running outside protecting the borders from neighbors bbq-ing dinner and from dogs in their yards. Tough job that requires lots of downtime next to me getting lots of head and tummy rubs (dont stop or you get the nudge with the nose)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Vogue Knitting Holiday 2007

It was waiting for me when we got home on Tuesday. I stopped subscribing to VK for a couple of years because there were a couple of years where nothing appealed and Knitter's and Interweave Knits were publishing more interesting patterns. But the pendulum seems to be swinging the other way for I'm seeing more patterns that are appealing to me. Question is: when and what will I have time to actually make?

Of course the first things to appeal to me where lace, and each could be added to my ever-growing "to do" list.

There's Shirley Paden's two piece dress.

And Shiri Mor's drop waist dress with lace skirt.

Karen Joan Raz's beaded shawl is beautiful, but I'd most likely omit the beads.

I loved the colorwork by Alice Starmore and Brandon Mably, but it's doubtful I'd ever actually start these.

And Tom Scott's unusual shaping was interesting. Personally, I'd lose the fringe, but that's me.