Let us put by some hour of every day for holy things...

Think on th' eternal home,
The Saviour left for you;
Think on the Lord most holy, come
To dwell with hearts untrue:
So shall ye tread untired His pastoral ways,
And in the darkness sing your carol of high praise.

--from Keble's The Christian Year, Thoughts in Verse



Thursday, February 7, 2013

Out of the Starting Post at Last!

In my last entry, I mentioned starting on the Craftsy Mystery Knit-Along project for February. I was making swatches to assure the right gauge, and I was going to keep you posted along the way.  So much for good intentions! I've been waiting all this time for my 40" circular needle to arrive so I could cast on the required 320-ish stitches to begin the actual shawl. I didn't imagine it would take this long, but today it finally got here and so tonight, I'll be casting on and attempting to catch up with the rest of the knitters. Aaaarrggghhhh!!!!!! Ah, well. Such is life. And if this is the worst I'm dished out this month, I'd say I'm in pretty good shape.

I wish I could share the photo of the Laera shawl I'll be making from the online course, but I can't seem to get it to appear without the instructions which are, of course, copyrighted. So you can be mystified right along with me as it takes shape, okay?

Meanwhile, I've been keeping myself busy knitting another wool worsted afghan square and sewing some drawstring bags.


The blue square on top is the one I just finished. Isn't it cool? This pattern is a ridged square pattern; there are various adaptations of it to be found. It was easy, just knit and purl stitches. Very straightforward.

The red square was a case of rediscovered treasure. I was up in the barn looking for some stuff I had stored there, when I decided to take a peek in a plastic storage bin full of yarn to see what colors of pure wool worsted I could find. In addition to yarn, I found a few half-finished projects that I'd stashed away, and this lovely red square was one of them. I'd forgotten I'd made it! It was years ago.

My camera is balking at capturing the texture of this piece, for some reason, but I finally managed to get this close-up:

   

It's a pattern called ripple stitch. I really like this one, though it does curl! If you'd like to try it, here's the basic pattern:

Ripple Stitch 

Cast on any multiple of 3.

Row 1:  *K2 tog, k the 1st stitch again, k1; repeat from * to the end of the row.

Row 2 and all following alternate rows:  Purl.

Row 3: *K1, k2 tog, k the 1st stitch again; repeat from * to the end of the row.

Easy and fun! Especially once the pattern gets going.

The drawstring bags I made this week are for the shop. I'm thinking little girls and birthday parties, hence the Strawberry Shortcake theme:

   
I really dislike making drawstring bags, frankly. They're not hard, but it can be time-consuming and frustrating threading drawstrings through the casings, especially when they get hung up on the seam allowance. Oh, well. I can buck up and deal with it. The appliques I made from an all-over Strawberry Shortcake print fabric and "Wonder Under" fusible web.  

My fabric situation is really becoming embarrassing, and I'm determined to start culling the stash to a manageable level. Some of what I've acquired I won't actually mind getting rid of, but I find it hard to let go of the novelty prints. Here's one batch I did put up for sale this week, though:




www.etsy.com/listing/122877543/reclaimed-fabric-gingham-dogs-calico   

Tomorrow I'm scheduled to go off on a jaunt with my partner-in-mayhem/sister-in-law Claudia. If all goes as planned, I should have some unusual adventures to share in the next post.  

  

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