Summer is coming

How’s your Memorial Day holiday weekend going (if you’re here in the States)? I’ve been in retail for all of my adult working life, so I don’t recall ever having a four day weekend during this holiday. I’m still in retail, but I work in the office now, so my schedule is more flexible. I have been spending this weekend indoors working on knitting a gorgeous Game of Thrones inspired shawl I found on Ravelry.

Not only is it a gorgeous shawl that is only subtly-Game of Thrones themed, I wanted to knit it up as soon as I could because I was craving a challenge while I was stuck in rows upon rows of stockinette stitch for the -other- shawl I’m working on. Plus, I might wear this one for a wedding I am attending in July.

So here was my progress when I started this morning:

 

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I cast this on a week ago. The shawl is knit top-down, and separated into four themed sections, starting off with Wall, then Snow, Waves, Dragon Scales, and finishing off with Stakes and Icicles. I’ll post more on that later.

So day one I spent trying to figure out something that looked really clear on paper until I had it in my hands, totally confused. I learned how to knit from YouTube, and this cast on method didn’t have a name (or so I thought), so I couldn’t look it up. I ended up putting it down for a while and went to the library and picked up a book on sock yarn shawls. The first page I opened to had detailed instructions on this exact method! It’s called Tab Cast On, and through the pictures and looking up videos, I finally got it and moved on. The Wall section is a rib knit. Easy-peasy. Snow was next. I missed a stitch or two and threw off the pattern of the snowflakes. When I realized it, I debated ripping it back to the Wall or to start over. I ended up casting off and starting completely over. The second time went much faster. I got through the snow section, placing a lifeline just in case.

The next section, Waves was trickier. I messed up a few times and had to re-count the stitches so many times. I finally got to the next garter section with the correct number of stitches, and promptly placed another lifeline (actually I placed one after the first set of waves, seen in the picture above, and then another one after the second set of them).

This morning I started on the Dragon Scales, and I’m relived that they are a breeze. I only have to count to two on thesešŸ™‚

So there’s today’s update. Now because it is a sunny 77 degrees and pushing late afternoon, I think I should go outside and get some sunshine. Have a good rest of the weekend, everyone! What are you working on this weekend? Craft projects, home projects, day job work, or fun?

 

I knit now.

It’s been seven months since I posted in this blog; another long silence. I get blog-block very often. Also, I haven’t been embroidering much, either. What I have been doing with all the free time I’m having while my partner is out on a west coast tour with his band, taught myself how to knit by watching youtube videos. So this blog will be taken over with knitting processes and occasional embroidery and other stuff. I have been really excited about getting to know another fiber/textile art that I’ve been wanting to learn for a few years.

TL;DR: Boyfriend goes on tour and I taught myself how to knit so there will be many knitting posts from now on.

 

 

WIP… Thursday

Here’s the latest update on this cat commission that I’ve recently restarted!

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I’m very pleased with it so far, but am nervous because I really liked the first attemptĀ when it was at this stage, too.Ā I affixed some iron-on stabilizer to this piece after learning that lesson the first time around. The puckering is MUCH less; phew. The other lesson learned on this project is three ply = MUCH better than one ply.

I am anxious to finish this, as it’s been on my mind for months upon months.

Halloween fun

Hoo boy, Halloween is my favorite holiday.

Two of my favorite people met at a Halloween party fifteen years ago and fell in love. Now, for the past five years, they have thrown a huge bash at their own house. The party has reached legendary status, with over two hundred people in attendance every year. People that don’t usually go out at night come to this party. Their two-car garage is cleared out and set up like a haunted dance club. One of the hosts DJs. There’s a bonfire, two kegs, and nine hundred jello shots. Yes- nine. hundred (they had to clear out everything from their fridge- including the shelves- to keep the jello shots until the party).

I love seeing my friends, co-workers, their friends and families, and strangers in costumes. One of my favorites this year was my friends as Chucky and Bride of Chucky. Another friend was Lt. Dangle from Reno 911. Then there was this person wearing a full E.T. costume, and when I walked past at one point, they silently held out their finger (it lit up) to touch mine. It wasn’t until the next morning that I figured out who it was by looking at pictures their wife posted online.

The best part though was getting to dress up with my partner as Wayne and Garth. I made the Wayne’s World hat in an hour because he waited until the last day before the party to decide to dress upšŸ™‚ I’m a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to costumes, but I was satisfied with the fabric paint-job I did on this re-purposed Lion King hat…

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Ā Party on. Excellent.

Did you dress up for anything this year? Do tell!

burn and start again

I’ve caught this late-summer cold thing that’s been going around. Today, for my day off, I woke up at 9, ate a bowl of cereal and went back to sleep… I woke up again at 2 pm to a series of texts from my sweet boyfriend; the latest one, “are you alive? HAHA…”

So now, after a while of feeling completely spaced out, drinking a bunch of orange juice, taking a hot shower, reading some BuzzFeed “articles” on the couch, and indulging in my first cup of coffee of the day at 4 pm, I am in fuzzy head-cold coffee sweats at 5 in the afternoon. And I finally feel motivated enough to get some work done before boyfriend and I cook dinner together.

I have decided to abandon hours upon hours of work and start a project all over again.

Back in February, a good friend asked if I was able and willing to stitch a portrait of her new cat. I enthusiastically responded yes. My first pet portrait commission! She sent me a few pics, I found a nice black sheer fabric to stitch on, as it would nicely contrast the creamy-white cat fur.

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It was looking really good and I was really impressed with myself….

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…then I did the eyes and I was super impressed with myself and felt like a f*cking BOSS…

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…THEN it was going SO slow because I had decided to use one ply. So, I was slowly working away on it, and I noticed that when I dissolved the interfacing (what I used to “transfer” the design onto the fabric, since those white water solubleĀ pencils are total shit), I had some serious puckering going on.

I set it down for awhile and worked on other projects. I kept looking at it, sitting in my studio, comparing it to the photo, and I realized that not only was it terribly puckered, I had also not really captured the correct look on his face that I wanted.

I don’t feel right giving this piece that I don’t totally love to my friend. So I practiced a little with cat eyes and fur, and I have fully committed to starting all over again (with fusible stabilizer on the backside).

Inspiration Wednesday

To get back in the swing of blogging, I am going to try to post weekly stuff that inspires me to embroider. Last night before bed, I was surfing Etsy and I found a few things that nearly made me jump out of bed and pick up a needle.

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I’ve been experimenting with making pin-back embroideries. I came across this lady on Instagram and love her style. These little horror film pins are delicious.

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Lil’ Bub! Not only is this LIL BUB, but this gal has done an amazing job on this piece. She has other items in her Etsy shop that are this adorable and well-made.

your (leg) hair is everywhere…

Grimes (see previous entry) isn’t going so well. Her hair looks great- but something about her face isn’t looking right. So I’ve committed to finishing this leg hair embroidery I started oh, a year ago.

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This embroidery is part of my in-progress “body hair’ series. Fact: everyone has leg hair. I wish it wasn’t such a damn shock when female-bodied people choose not to shave theirs.