Misc The April & May Spring Time Stitching Chat!

packyderms_wife

Neither here nor there.
I'm more than a couple of days late but here's the chat thread through the end of May. I'm sure that like me others here will be very busy with their gardens, starting seeds and transplanting seedlings and the like. I know some of you have goats and sheep that are kidding/lambing as well.. share photos of your new babies please!
 

O2BNOK

Veteran Member
Alrighty. Like a lot of other folks i've been pretty much glued to the property, but making good use of my time, or at least i consider it so. Last week of March i quilted for a customer, and once her job was finished i decided to dig through an older box of scrap fabric and make a log cabin quilt. My first quilt was made from log cabin blocks and i had forgotten how versatile they could be. Anyway, finished up this top yesterday. will scrounge around for a piece of batting and backing that will work and start quilting later today. Here's the completed top. Pretty happy with it.
 

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Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Beautiful! (those are *my* colors.:D) Love log cabin blocks.

Because no sewing machine, I do tiny art quilts by hand (mug rugs, etc.) I like to attach the log blocks directly onto the batting, so no quilting is required later. Good use of small scraps, and very visually effective.
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Ref. back to the Corona projects thread, started gansey swatching in the Frangi. Cordova blue. Figured there was no point in a massive sample swatch in the Rauma grey if I don't have the money anytime soon for more grey (spent it all on the Rauma blue!). So far, so good. The swatch is 80 sts in the round. I use circs like dpn's so there shouldn't be any discrepancy with stitch size in the small circumference. I've seen the videos on flat swatching as if round, but all those dangling floats all the way across the back just BUG me! I'd rather just join.

If I had any commercial influence in the knitting world, fixed circs would be available in discounted sets of 5. Purchased individually, it's about $50 in just needles if you need 5 of US size 1 in 24" length. That is just ONE size! Sometimes it is very helpful to have that in a shorter or longer length, and for 1 and smaller, you have to go "MIni" on the cord, so you can't change out cords with the size US 2 and larger. Gah!! Tons and Tons of money. I'm picky about needles - the good ones make a YUGE difference.

Still searching for the perfect cast-on edge for K2, P2 - nothing that is stretchy enough quite works as well as I want it to. I don't like the rope effect on the bottom edge with the old stand-by Double cast-on. Channel Island works well for K1,P1, but cause a ripple below K2,P2. I tried the basic knit on cast-on, but it doesn't seem stretchy enough, and looks sloppy when put on looser. The pearls would look best with a cast-on twist that sets them recessed from the start.
 
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Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Indigo is happening. Every summer I vow I will get the vat started again, and then September rolls around, and no vat. I have one mixed this afternoon. It is small, and the ingredients are old, so fingers crossed. More ingredients are in the May budget, assuming they are still available on the market.

I also need a heat source. I mixed it under the assumption I had one. Can't find it. In the meantime, the boa may have to share space with this scant gallon pickle jar.
 

packyderms_wife

Neither here nor there.
Indigo is happening. Every summer I vow I will get the vat started again, and then September rolls around, and no vat. I have one mixed this afternoon. It is small, and the ingredients are old, so fingers crossed. More ingredients are in the May budget, assuming they are still available on the market.

I also need a heat source. I mixed it under the assumption I had one. Can't find it. In the meantime, the boa may have to share space with this scant gallon pickle jar.
What type of vat did you start? I'll be starting five different types of vats next week when it warms up outside.
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Been distracted with granny squares. I'll have to buy more yarn for them. One thing I like is the simplicity. Even on the video tutorials, the YouTuber is typically like..."Ok, get your hook, get your yarn!" Quilting and historic garment sewing isn't quite like that.

My clothing is in shreds. I really need some more linen and light weight cotton, so I can sew some more clothes, but would much rather just sit out in the sun and crochet those silly squares.
 

AlaskaSue

North to the Future
New quilt in progress for my youngest son. 15” square Young Man’s Fancy made with flannels. 8 blocks done, 12 more to go. The blocks will have sashing and the queen size quilt a narrow border. I think these are around 77 pieces per block and a lot of fun to do...though I’m really glad he and his brother got me a new Janome; my old Singer didn’t like the small pieces of flannel. 78C872E6-9E49-4F57-9E04-1B7740183BED.jpeg
 

Martinhouse

Veteran Member
AlaskaSue, that quilting is a very pleasing pattern and color combination. Maybe kind of silly, but when I look at it I see in each square four angelfish pointing towards the center.
 

AlaskaSue

North to the Future
AlaskaSue, that quilting is a very pleasing pattern and color combination. Maybe kind of silly, but when I look at it I see in each square four angelfish pointing towards the center.
Ah! You're right! I didn't see that before! :) The lighting was bad for the pic so you can't see that the darkest flannel looks like herringbone tweed which adds a nice dimension to the block. Hope to finish for a wedding present for him and his bride-to-be. <3
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Ok, maybe for something a little different, and a bit off topic: Didn't get anything done today craft-wise. Had to re-do the entire poultry set-up in an attempt to thwart our predator. The hens weren't going back into their old roosting pen this evening anyway.

So, mid-day we visited a lady who is homesteading ten acres out by where our land is. I've never met her before. She built her house by herself. She has almost no money - the place inc. animal shelters is all scrap, pallets, etc. It was rustic, comfy, and charming. We talked goats, chickens, grey water, aquaponics, hydroponics, gardening, knitting, spinning, and natural dying. Two hours flew by. Had a great time. :)
 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
I've started a small project using up sock yarns (especially the ones I'm less interested in) combined with soft 100 percent wool yarn that is about a US sports weight.

I started trying to make socks with the soft yarn and realized it would tear to pieces in the foot - so the first pair I am wearing and has the sock yarn added just on the foot.

This second pair just finished today (Happy Earth Day Socks) for Nightwolf (though I can wear them) using the sock yarn plus soft sports weight yarn all the way through and the results are like 10 Euro a pair "work socks" sold in town but much nicer and made to fit.

I am about to start a pair for me, I'm doing these mostly on five needles and knitting each sock by itself rather than dragging 4 balls of yarn around, though I may try that at some point - as it is I'm finding these relaxing and they go fast enough I avoid the dreaded "second sock syndrome" where one sock gets done and the other sits around as a UFO (Unfinished Object).

This is more of a technique than a pattern but I like the effect better than the heavier Aran weight socks (though those are nice in deep Winter) in our climate these "work socks" can be worn almost year-round and given that Nightwolf often refuses to wear slippers with his socks, may even last more than one season.

Basically to make these socks you just use a sport weight or even laceweight pure wool yarn and combine it with sock yarn (wild or single-colored).

These socks were cast on as 64 stitches

K2 P2 Rib for about 3 inches

A pattern of:
round 1 - K3 P1

round 2 - K 3 P1

Round 3 - k all

Round 4 - K all

Repeat for a long time.

Because these were knee socks I did leg shaping by knitting two stitches together at the start of a row and then K1 S1 SSK at the end (leaving 2 stitches in the middle - next sock I'm going to add two stitches as a line to make it easier).

I did this 8 times to get down to 48 (or I did on the second sock, I made a mistake and only got down to 52 on the first one)

Basically you can decide how narrow you want the sock at the ankle, I decreased every 2 pattern repeats at the start and every pattern repeats at the bottom, next time I will try to space it a bit better.

To make shorter (not knee socks) just cast on 48 stitches (or 12 on each needle) and forget the leg shaping and/or just add multiple of 4 stitches to fit YOUR leg.

Do any "usual" heal pattern (I used the typical k1 S1 row one Pearl all stitches back and then turn the heal after 10 to 12 rows) but any good heal pattern will work, this is strong yarn, you can just garter stitch it or even put a piece of waste yarn in if your riding in a car or busy, go back later and knit a reverse "toe" for the heal.

Note if you do the "reverse toe" heal remember to make your sock at least 1 1/2 to 2 inches shorter than you would usually do because you will add those inches in the "afterthought heal."

Then just knit your usual foot - I continued the pattern down the top of the sock and added a couple of extra side stitches to have a pearl stitch on each side of the top of the sock but you don't have to.

Then I knit a toe about 2 inches from the end of the sock - I wanted an 8 1/2 inch total sock so I stopped at 6 1/2 inches then made the toe, any good toe pattern will work.

Then make a mostly identical sock - it doesn't matter if all the decreases are in exactly the same place as long as they mostly match, these are work socks, not art socks lol!

Oh and you can either do the heal with the smaller number of stitches after you decrease or re-configure your stitches evening again with 12 on each needle (which I find fits better but some people prefer a 2/3'rds heal rather than a half one).

If you forget don't worry, as long as it goes on you or your intended victim I mean wearer's foot that is all that matters.

Have fun with this - My first pair (that I'm wearing) I just mostly did in knit stitch with a few garter stitch rounds to hide the decreases. I may do another one in the cables.

I want to make at least three pair for each of us for next Winter, especially if heating fuel is scarce we will need them and Nightwolf may need them now doing all that digging and garden work, some days it still gets down into the 40s here.

Here is the photo of Work Sock II - Earth Day Edition (for Nightwolf)
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Love the socks!

I am impatiently waiting on the indigo vat to turn yellow/green and ferment. It was supposed to be ready today, but may need more heat. (I should probably move it out of the boa enclosure, if I bump the temp on the mat up any higher.)

Ordered a few gansey sweater patterns from Northern Lace. Her lace patterns are very clear, so I'm looking forward to the knitting. They are sized for women, none will be the huge project that was the men's gansey. These are also historic recreations of surviving sweaters that the Herring Girls wore. Arrived by e-mail. I'll print them out tomorrow.
 
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packyderms_wife

Neither here nor there.
Love the socks!

I am impatiently waiting on the indigo vat to turn yellow/green and ferment. It was supposed to be ready today, but may need more heat. (I should probably move it out of the boa enclosure, if I bump the temp on the mat up any higher.)

Ordered a few gansey sweater patterns from Northern Lace. Her lace patterns are very clear, so I'm looking forward to the knitting. They are sized for women, none will be the huge project that was the men's gansey. These are also historic recreations of surviving sweaters that the Herring Girls wore. Arrived by e-mail. I'll print them out tomorrow.
Buy yourself a decent fish tank heater, it’s what I use.
 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
Well, in the 1980s I used to make yogurt in a peanut butter bucket on top of a heating pad, something like that would probably work too - just put it under the dye vat.

Hint, if you live where you get hot Summers (this will not work in Ireland most years) a lot of the really intense dyes used in the middle eastern carpets come from letting the dye pots sit out in the harsh sun for several days to a week.

This only lets you do one dye lot, you can't just keep dying more faded versions of the same color until the dye runs out (aka your first dip is dark blue, the next one medium, the last hank eggshell pale) but you do get some really intense colors.

I've done the Irish version of this, which is to slowly simmer a vat of dye with yarn or fleece in it on the back of a solid fuel stove in Winter for about 72 hours and the results are really intense.
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Yeah, that is why I always intend to start the vat in the Spring, so it can sit outside in the summer sun (NM). We are not yet there temp wise, and I was concerned that if I didn't just DO it now, it would get put off again endlessly, 'till NEXT summer.

I have a spare styrofoam cooler, and found a spare heat regulator, so all I have to still come up with is a spare heat mat. As soon as the adobe house warms up a bit (takes time in the Spring), I'll take one from a snake enclosure. Most of them have two - warm, and warmer, depending on species.

The fish people complain that aquarium heaters have a nasty tendency to fail and overheat, thus cooking the fish. They also normally suck up more electricity than the heat mats. I'd like to do this project w/o the cooking risk and w/o an obvious jump in the electricity bill. My vivariums already have a zillion plug-ins. This very old house is currently maxed out for a large draw.
 

packyderms_wife

Neither here nor there.
Yeah, that is why I always intend to start the vat in the Spring, so it can sit outside in the summer sun (NM). We are not yet there temp wise, and I was concerned that if I didn't just DO it now, it would get put off again endlessly, 'till NEXT summer.

I have a spare styrofoam cooler, and found a spare heat regulator, so all I have to still come up with is a spare heat mat. As soon as the adobe house warms up a bit (takes time in the Spring), I'll take one from a snake enclosure. Most of them have two - warm, and warmer, depending on species.

The fish people complain that aquarium heaters have a nasty tendency to fail and overheat, thus cooking the fish. They also normally suck up more electricity than the heat mats. I'd like to do this project w/o the cooking risk and w/o an obvious jump in the electricity bill. My vivariums already have a zillion plug-ins. This very old house is currently maxed out for a large draw.
You can get a solar operated heater, and the ones I buy run a hundred lus dollars and are very reliable, I’ve been doing this for thirty plus years now.
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Once you use your t for indigo you can never use it for a tank, just saying.
Agree. Goes without saying. Fish are SO sensitive.

Nevertheless, assuming I should find an "aquarium" heater that I like, well, it is only prudent to also purchase a back-up, just in case. Then, I end up with an extra heater (along with plenty of other extra fish stuff, inc. empty tanks) and one day I find myself on a tempting fish site...

It happens. :eye:
 

packyderms_wife

Neither here nor there.
Agree. Goes without saying. Fish are SO sensitive.

Nevertheless, assuming I should find an "aquarium" heater that I like, well, it is only prudent to also purchase a back-up, just in case. Then, I end up with an extra heater (along with plenty of other extra fish stuff, inc. empty tanks) and one day I find myself on a tempting fish site...

It happens. :eye:
You want an axolotyl.
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Kammebornia Podcast is back. I was finally able to re-get English subtitles - they were gone for a while, and I fell out of the habit of watching the videos. (Click the wheely thing on the video screen, not the cryptic Youtube symbols below the video.) The most recent post has footage from a few months back, a trip to Norway. OMG that country is gorgeous! Lots of yarn, and beautiful sweaters. Sophia shows the granny square blanket that got me distracted with crocheting the damn things. :D

28 min run time.
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SI1iaEs5eUo
 

ginnie6

Senior Member
Some progress on the quilt but yesterday and today I'm working on masks for dd. She works at a local family practice and texted me yesterday asking if I could make masks for some of her people for at home use. She stockpiled for work use. She said they were willing to pay for them. So I spent yesterday doing that. Got a few more to finish up this morning. Then last night sil called talking about me making the masks and him selling them. That man can make money like nothing I've ever seen. So I may try and get a few dozen made up for him to sell. Especially since he's getting us some chickens this weekend.
 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
Working away on socks two, the "I meant to do that" yard substitution edition when I realized I did not have as much dark grey as I thought (lol).

Then husband asked me for "Glittens" or "Shooters Mittens" so he can clean out the freezer - this is marriage speak for "I am not touching that dang freezer until I have some mittens with a thumb and forefinger on them!"

I am going ahead and trying to race through MY socks then I managed to find my old pattern book (nicely placed on the floor and gathering dust in a room with no power - long story) and found an outline of his hand (for gloves) made in 2009 - marked "Wolf 2009" so I don't need to run him down and measure his hands, they have not changed size.

He, on the other hand, has lost way too much weight doing labor in the garden and then doing most of the cooking all Winter when I wasn't up to it.

So last night I made homemade pizza and tonight he's having leftover pork "tonkatsu" that he made himself a few days ago and I'm making vegetarian pasta for a housemate.

And I'm baking a lot more bread in between the almost non-stop knitting.

I'm also hoping to find some UFO's (like the Sweater of Way Too Many Cables) to see if I can salvage it (it has been in a box for at least 5 years) It is from the book Men in Knits and I was doing a pullover version of their Cable Cardigan, I think it may become a vest and/or a sweater with just ONE cable going down the top of the sleeves - the yarn is from a restored Irish woolen Mill and would not frog out neatly (it is too fuzzy/harsh).

On the other hand, I've realized that the lovely soft Aaron yarn sweaters I've knit him are falling apart doing yard work, so I am looking for either double-stranded sweaters or other ways to get stronger yarn since I need things faster than I can spin even on a wheel, though that might be a project for the coming Winter (I have some proving, just would prefer to concentrate on getting things made right now with the yarns I have).

Oh and I found this site still exists - a great resource it is too!
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Soft wool and yard work don't generally go together, at least not in my experience.

I'm not familiar with the bulkier aran weights, but you might look for something with Jacob rather than merino. My Icelandic Leti Lopi yarn shawl has held up very well, and it is not only a shawl for me, but gets regularly clawed at by the chihuahua trying to make a little den for herself in it. It's dirty, but not tattered, and no pills.

ETA: Given what you've said about how he goes through them, I'd probably just use Lion Brand Worsted from WM. Can you get anything equivalent in *generic* yarn over there?
 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
Soft wool and yard work don't generally go together, at least not in my experience.

I'm not familiar with the bulkier aran weights, but you might look for something with Jacob rather than merino. My Icelandic Leti Lopi yarn shawl has held up very well, and it is not only a shawl for me, but gets regularly clawed at by the chihuahua trying to make a little den for herself in it. It's dirty, but not tattered, and no pills.

ETA: Given what you've said about how he goes through them, I'd probably just use Lion Brand Worsted from WM. Can you get anything equivalent in *generic* yarn over there?
You are correct and the sweater I made from the Jacob sheep we used to have lasted until (as usually happened) he threw it down somewhere and I didn't find it for six months and the moths had a great time with it.

He won't wear synthetic blends if he knows about them, but he really likes the socks that have the strand of "sock yarn" through them which is a blend.

Because many folks in Ireland are too poor to buy the often over-priced wool yarns, we do have lots of blends (I have a lot for blankets and baby clothing) but the percentages of wool tend to be just too low to work - like 25 percent wool to 75 percent acrylic.

That said, I am looking at options; the sweater of way too many cables are made with much stronger Irish milled yarn, which is one reason it hurt my hands badly and I stopped working on it.

Somewhere in storage, I have more cones of the stuff I got off the early "Irish yarn list" on Facebook, not always in great colors but they might work if/when I can find them.

As a temporary solution, I will probably make him a quick "Wonderfull Wallaby" "hoodie" using stranded yarn as I've noticed his Norwegian ski sweater types last a lot longer - they still die but not as fast (and more often because he dumps them somewhere).

Thankfully I enjoy knitting, but I've already told him I'm keeping the complex Fair Isle I am in the middle of, we wear the same size now and I'm just not willing to let weeks of labor be torn up by chicken wire.

I may let him borrow it for photos shoots or when he is on panels or the TV as a consultant once the lockdown is over (happens sometimes he has a PhD in Old Norse studies and writes historical fiction and fantasy as well as Asatru/rune books) but otherwise I will wear it and keep it in a nice safe box in my work room lol!

Here is a photo I took last year (before I got sick this Winter) as a WIP
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
That is going to be lovely. Don't even let it out of your sight! Maybe attach some crochet 3-d pink roses around the neck, so he wouldn't be caught dead wearing it? :D
 

Melodi

Disaster Cat
That is going to be lovely. Don't even let it out of your sight! Maybe attach some crochet 3-d pink roses around the neck, so he wouldn't be caught dead wearing it? :D
That's a thought, I already keep him out of my socks (sometimes) by making them in the wildest, craziest, hippie sock yarns I can find or my housemate (who is in on the joke) can find for me in Germany. In Germany, they are really cheap and sell them in most supermarkets, so rather easy to do.

I did start the sweater for him, but he's not getting it now, at least not except for very special and supervised occasions.
 

Faroe

Has No Life - Lives on TB
Ordered and received three Herring Girl gansey patterns. Liz Lovick at Northern Lace. Her lace patterns are easy to follow, so I have high expectations for these. Wish she had included more historical info with them. Would love to see photos of the originals they were patterned after, even if in shreds. I will probably contact the museums, IIRC, she does note where each is from. Just curious. The story of the seasonal itinerant fish gutters is at least as interesting (more to me) than the actual fisherman who wore the classic ganseys.

I've also been given leads on two more books that should have snippets of info on this rather elusive course of study. Google images has numerous photos of the women at work. I was trying to piece together a typical sweater from the old B&W photos. Not so easy to do, esp. as a bib apron was usually worn over top. Glad a few sweaters survived for patterns!

A few ladies on line have been remarkably generous and helpful to me. They are apparently all British. Manners? I have no clue how to conduct myself in polite society! Just a bumbling hick American (a brash Yankee, no less), and feel like a bull in a china shop. I'm sure I'll unavoidably embarrass myself, I just hope I don't badly offend any of them.

Currently have Frangipani cones in four colors, so there is plenty of suitable yarn to knit with. IF I can fit it into the May budget, would love to get the red wine color, or the plum color.
 
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Broken Arrow

Heathen Pagan Witch
WOOHOO!! Got final confirmation! We shear on Wednesday! I know a bunch of sheep that will be very happy to get their itchy wool off!! And pregnant ewes that now the babies can find their udders!!
 

Broken Arrow

Heathen Pagan Witch
Awsome.
If you are selling fleeces/roving...let us know!
As of right now they are all reserved. If I have any that back out, i'll post them here. I will also be offering ready to spin combed top mill processed roving from some of my fleeces for sale after I get it back from the mill.
 
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