Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Scarf and Hearts

I saw this project on Craft Hope. It's a part of the Orphan Foundation of America's Red Scarf Project . I'm sharing my scarf late, because it was sent out before Valentines Day. My scarf isn't red, but I am sure I read on the instructions that other collegiate style colors were welcome...

Scarf Label

I handstitched a cute little red felt heart tag for my package. It was fun to knit again! I used some of Vanna's Choice Yarn which is a squishy wool/acrylic blend.

Scarf Label

I'm also finishing up one of my quilts. I sewed on the binding last week, and my Olympics project is to cuddle up under it and handstitch it down on the backside whle watching various events. We find that we really enjoy curling! Go Canada! I like the Winter Olympics better than the Summer Olympics, because I think the events are more fun to watch. How about you?

Sewing on Binding

Most of the fabrics on this quilt are from the Katie Jump Rope collection by Denyse Schmidt. I liked that little red floral so much I found an etsy seller who still had it in stock and I bought two extra yards to do the binding and to gaze at lovingly.

My friend Sarah Moore, from Craft Critique, is organizing a professional crafters convention taking place here in Chicago this October called CraftyCon
It will be a great opportunity for crafters to network with other crafters, and to get hands on training with industry experts. Sign up to get on the CraftyCon email list or follow them on Facebook or Twitter. Its going to be a great event!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Floral Granny Squares - Wool

I had fun making granny squares with acrylic, but the yarn was so scratchy, I yearned for a more satisfying fiber to work with. I took a trip out to one of the Big JoAnns stores (my local one is one of the small ones, fortunately it is always pretty busy), and I found an endcap of all natural Stitch Nation Yarn. We just saw this yarn debuted at CHA. There is 100 % Peruvian wool, an alpaca/wool blend and a very soft bamboo/ wool blend. Each lovely skein is only $5! Not even the tiniest bit of synthetic fiber is in this yarn, the 100% wool is a squishy singly ply, and I don't have to go to a specialty yarn store or the internet to find it!

Here is my blurry pic of Debbie Stoller with her yarn at the Red Heart booth at CHA:


The colors I selected are my favored bright and higher contrast, but not as bright as the Red Heart Acrylic.
Wool Granny Squares

Wool Granny Squares
Wool Granny SquaresWool Granny Squares
Wool Granny SquaresWool Granny Squares

I'm making the squares into a throw pillow by special request from my husband and daughter. The pattern for this very nice granny square is free at Lion Brand HERE.


Today is the Superbowl here in the USA! Go Colts!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Granny Square Explorations - Acrylic

I am inspired to craft again since CHA! Last week I got out my crochet hooks and started crocheting floral granny squares from this pattern at Lion Brand HERE.

First I played with Red Heart Acrylic because I wanted a stack of pretty scrubbers and I have a lot of that scratchy yarn to use up. They are super bright.
Acrylic Granny SquaresAcrylic Granny Squares
Acrylic Granny SquaresAcrylic Granny Squares

I dug up these old ones I made 3 years ago with Caron Simply Soft. That yarn is more like sport weight than worsted so these are much smaller than the Red Heart Acrylic ones. I'm pretty sure I made a few scarves in some nice colorways as gifts one Christmas. I don't always photograph the stuff I make at the holidays:

Acrylic Granny Squares

Tomorrow I'll share the ones I stitched up with some new wool yarn. They are bright too, but oh so nice in a natural fiber!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Professional Quilting

Finally! It's quilted!

Katie Jump Rope Quilt

I went over to the professional quilters house a couple weeks ago to drop off this quilt top I've had finished for at least a year.

Alice has a ton of space to give over to her hobby in her basement. Here we laid out the quilt on the floor to be sure our backing and batting would be sufficient:

Getting the Katie Jump Rope quilt ready

Look at how gigantic her machine is!

Professional Quilters

It's a Gammil Optimum which is a top of the line model. Her husband is a carpenter so he understands about nice tools. They bought this for a retirement hobby.

Professional Quilters

She's like me in that she likes to make things for the joy of it and not so much to sell. Marketing and selling takes some of the fun out of creating for us. I feel lucky that I found her one summer at a booth at our local Farmer's Market. Our local quilt shop also has connections to professional quilters, but they take longer and have a far more limited selection of stitching patterns.

She let me take a few photos of her house which is full of quilts by Alice and handmade wooden things created by her husband.

Professional Quilters

Professional Quilters

Look at the cute spindle idea they came up with:

Inspired spindle

It's a spool of thread with a bobbin on the end! She has a lovely quilt collection:
Professional Quilters

I still need to do the binding on my quilt, but look at the swirly back:

Quilt Back