Thursday, July 24, 2014

Answering Questions

I am joining Sarahsweethearts today to answer a few crocheting questions she posed.

Are you a multi crafter?
Most definitely. I mostly work on cross-stitch and crochet. I also quilt quite often. I recently learned to knit. In the past I have also worked on needlepoint, crewel, rug hooking and a variety of other crafts projects.

Do you like to knit or crochet more?
I definitely like to crochet more. This is what I learned to do first and what I am most comfortable doing.

What is your favorite brand of yarn?
I can't say that I have one as I only recently have begun paying attention to what I buy. I do like the feel of the Vanna's Choice Yarn by Lion Brand Yarns.

Striped, variegated or solid?
I really don't care. It really depends on the project I am making.

How long have you been crocheting/knitting?
I started crocheting when I was just a kid about 40 years ago. I knitted a little bit about 30 years ago and then returned to it last year.

Your preferred hook size?

Acrylic, wool, cotton or blends?
I have always used acrylic as that has been the most widely available, but I have recently expanded to wool and blends.

Do you like a regular handle or a thicker handle...such as a wood covered, clay covered, etc.
I have seen the thicker handles on other blogs, but I only have the regular handles. Most of my hooks have been inherited from my husband's grandmother and one of my aunts.

Do you donate or gift most of your items?
Most of my items are gifts for friends and family or things I want for myself.

What sort of charities do you donate to?
 I have donated preemie caps, crocheted hats to a local coat drive (they asked for hats and scarves also) and an afghan to a needy family in a school district that I worked in.

What is your main reason for being a yarn/textile enthusiast?
I don't have a reason. I just know that I love to spend hours time pouring over craft books and magazines, and browsing through yarn and fabric shops. My spirits are lifted immediately.

 What hook size do you not have in your collection?
I don't think there are any missing except maybe a couple of Tunisian crochet hooks. Although I do have a couple of them also. As I said, I inherited many and I have a few multiples of various sizes.

How did you learn?
My grandmother received afghan kit from one of my uncles and started making it. I wanted to make one also so I taught myself. I am "left-handed" so none of my right-handed relatives could really teach me. It turns out I crochet and knit right-handed. I now consider myself to be ambidextrous as I can write with either hand also it is just easier with my left hand. I taught myself to knit in my teens when I saw an article that had knits promoted by Marie Osmond (I was a big fan). I made a couple of items but found it difficult and went back to crocheting. I just took up knitting again last year after seeing so many beautiful knits on many blogs. I still find it somewhat challenging.

Just a little bit of info about me for everyone.
Thanks for stopping by! 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Not touching this yarn again.

I have been dithering around with this yarn for far too long. I started making it into an infinity scarf for my daughter last year, but I didn't like the way the colors flowed. I also realized that she probably wouldn't love these colors any way. 
I kept going with the Richmond Lace Infinity Scarf figuring maybe I would use it and then I realized that there wasn't enough yarn to make it as long as the pattern states. Ugh.
I frogged the scarf a little ways and tried the yarn in a couple of other patterns. You guessed it, I still wasn't happy and some of the patterns were a little too difficult for this novice knitter as well.
I was feeling like the unfinished infinity scarf was now taunting me, so what did I do? 
I finished it!!

I have several fall and winter tops that this scarf will go well with. It is not as long as it could be, but it will still work. I won't be able to double wrap it. 
I am still not in love with this yarn. When I bought it, I was told it would stripe nicely. Not really. There isn't any more of it left and I am quite happy about that.

I finished reading Magic Hour by Kristin Hannah in no time. This was definitely one of those books you do not want to put down. There is always something new and intriguing in each chapter. This book was both heart-breaking and up-lifting. The characters are wonderful. 
Just before I finished this book, I was notified that Insurgent by Veronica Roth was available to borrow on my Kindle. Perfect timing. I have been anxiously anticipating reading this second book in the Divergent trilogy. So far it is just as well written as the first book. I started it yesterday and am already up to chapter 13. I want to find out what happens to Tris, Tobias, Caleb and the others. I now need to put the third book in the trilogy on hold. 
I am also still stitching the final border of the Peanut's Christmas quilt. Once I mark in between the already quilted corners the actual quilting goes quite quickly. This stencil doesn't have as many twists and turns and the string of lights did. I can quilt along fairly quickly without starting and stopping. I will definitely finish this in time for the holidays.
Joining Ginny's Yarn Along once again this week. What are you knitting/crocheting? What are you reading? Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are crafting and reading.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Yarn along

I am still working on my variegated scarf. You really can't tell that I have gotten any more done so I will just show you last week's picture again.

I am joining Ginny's Yarn Along. What are you knitting/crocheting? What are you reading? Pop on over to her site to see what others are crafting and reading.
I have finished reading A Turn in the Road by Debbie Macomber. This is another wonderful book by this author. She takes you on a road trip with three women. As I was reading this, I was reminded of the road trips I made as a young girl with my mother and grandmother. I have to admit that my grandmother was not as spry or adventurous as Ruth is in this book and my mother did all of the driving, but a couple of the events certainly rang a bell with me. Without giving anything away, I remember similar reactions to a car breakdown on Interstate 95 one summer. We all piled into the tow truck with a very large flashlight as a "weapon" to keep the three of us safe. We were so naive and the people who helped us were genuinely nice.
I enjoyed reading about the adventures of Ruth, Bethanne and Annie. The story of the relationships they have with each other and with the men in their lives is beautifully spun. A few twists and turns with some heartfelt soul searching. I didn't want to put it down.

I haven't picked up another book just yet. I am trying to catch up on some of my magazine reading. Next up is either Magic Hour by Kristin Hannah or
Island Girls by Nancy Thayer.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Really Slow Sunday Stitching

I know I am slowly making progress on all of my stitching projects, but it seems to me that it is really slow progress. I have been spending a lot of my time reading. It is summer and I really love to read out on my backyard deck in the summer. I will update my latest book reading on Wednesday as usual. My reading has been eating in to my stitching time though. 
I have been hand-quilting a little bit each day on my daughter's Christmas Peanut's quilt. I have finally finished quilting a string of lights in the first two borders.

 I'm not sure you can see it in this picture but it spans both the red and green borders. 
Now I have to work on the outer blue border. Unfortunately, all of the careful marking that I completed before I basted this quilt together has disappeared along with all the stencil adjustments I made to ensure that this pattern would go around the quilt in a nice flow. 
I am using the stencil below for this outer border.
Now though, I have to mark it all over again. I have decided to mark and quilt each corner individually and then fill in between, making adjustments as I go. I don't want to spend the time marking the whole border just to have it rub off again. It is so very frustrating and much more difficult to mark now that the layers are sandwiched together. I am using a soapstone pencil as it seems to work the best in this situation. I quilted one corner yesterday.
You can just barely see the stitching. Now I am off to mark a second corner and then sit and quilt it up. I am excited to be working on the last border and have a renewed energy to get this finished before December so my daughter can have it in her apartment. 

I am linking up with Kathy's Quilts for some Slow Sunday Stitching today. See what other bloggers are stitching at her site.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Another scarf

I decided that I have to use some of my fairly extensive yarn stash. That said, most of my stash consists of individual partially used acrylic yarn skeins. I did however buy several small skeins of this yarn from the bargain bin in A.C. Moore last year.

Rather than scan Ravelry, I sat down with my also extensive collection of torn out magazine patterns and found this scarf. It is from Woman's Day magazine (9/16/03).

Yup, I have had the pattern for quite a while. Trust me when I tell you that I have other patterns that are much older.

Since the pattern calls for variegated worsted-weight yarn and uses a really easy triple crochet stitch that works up fast, I decided the yarn and the pattern were meant to be even though I probably don't need another scarf. This may become a gift in the future.
This is what I have finished so far.

It is a quick pattern, but since there is no time table for it I pick it up only when I am watching TV. I really do like the way it is working up.

I finished reading City Girl, Country Vet by Cathy Woodman. At first I found the reading slow going, but I think it was more getting used to a new author's writing style than the book itself. In the end, I spent a few afternoons sitting on my deck and some nights before bed reading this and I finished it quite quickly. It is light, funny romantic comedy whose characters are engaging. I would definitely pick up another book by this author.

I am now engrossed in Summer House by Nancy Thayer. Yes, I said engrossed. I do not want to put this book down. This book is about the dynamics of the fictional Wheelwright family and their summer vacation at their Nantucket estate. It is the type of book that I know at the end I will want to know more about this family and what happens in the future. This is the first time I have read a book by this author and I can't wait to find more of her works in my library.

I am joining Ginny's Yarn Along again this week. What are you knitting/crocheting? What are you reading? Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are up to.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Yarn Along

 Just a short post today to show you my finished On the Tracks Infinity Scarf. 

This was a very easy scarf to crochet. Each row was 250 stitches long, but there are only 11 rows after the initial chain row. It is going to be great to wear in the fall and winter. I love this!

I am joining Ginny's Yarn Along today. What are you knitting/crocheting? What are you reading? Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are up to.

I have finished reading Needles and Pearls by Gil McNeil. After reading Divergent this was a much slower paced book. I wasn't sure I was going to like it, but this was a good book. The characters are engaging and mostly likable and the story line moved along nicely. It was mostly a feel-good book to read with only minor adversity. Another book that I readily picked up throughout the day and even eagerly read a few chapters before going to sleep.

I have moved on to City Girl, Country Vet by Cathy Woodman. This is "a warm, breezy romantic comedy with just enough mishap and plenty of adorable four-legged creatures". I am only a couple of chapters in so I will review this at a later time. So far I am enjoying it.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Slow Sunday Stitching

Now that I have finished "Through the Woods", I can concentrate on my stamped cross-stitch and Large Cross-stitch #1.
This is the last update on the stamped cross-stitch.
This is where I am as of today. I am quite pleased with the progress.
Here is the last update on Large Cross-stitch #1.
I have added a few colors other than blue. Although I am now immersed in grey for a while. Still, it is nice to see some of the picture taking shape.

I am joining Kathy at Kathy's Quilts for some Slow Sunday Stitching. Pop on over to her site to see what other bloggers are stitching.

Thanks for stopping by!