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Pat's Knitting and Quilting

September 29, 2009
Red Fox Faces

When I found out that the SKA September Mystery Socks were going to be designed by Nancy Bush, I had to go for it! This pattern had so many of her wonderful features- including a lateral Vikkel braid, partial ribbing down the back of the leg, lovely lace, dutch heel with eye of the partridge flap and a toe I had never seen before (just like regular toe decreases, but with 3 points instead of 2) which fit my rounded toes perfectly. While knitting the lace pattern, it looks like little fox faces - hence the name.

Fox Faces

Pattern: Fox Faces by Nancy Bush (this pattern will be deleted from Ravelry in a few days, so if you're interested....get it now) - September SKA Mystery Sock
Yarn: 80 grams Cherry Tree Hill Supersock in Cherry colorway
Needles: 2 socks on 1 circular 2.25 mm needle

Sorry - not the best photos, but I had to get them up quick to qualify for the red Solid Sock KAL for September :-)

Fox Faces Fox Faces

They were a little bright for the full sunshine - here is a non blinding photo....

Red Fox Faces

On the quilting front....I don't really like the final quilt for the Christmas Lights Mystery, so am not sure what to do with these blocks - I've tried other settings, but nothing seems to work - I may have learned a "mystery quilt" lesson :-)

So for now I'll make quilts that I know I'm going to like....

Block 1

Galactic Explosion BOM in the warm colors version!

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September 21, 2009
Lace and Plaid

If you only have a teeny tiny bit of very special yarn - say some qiviut or cashmere - this is the perfect pattern - I used only 22 grams of laceweight yarn and have a beautiful elegant lace scarf!

Nancy Bush Lace Scarf

Pattern: Dee's Diamond Scarf to Knit by Nancy Bush from Piecework July/August 2009.
Yarn: 22 grams Posh Yarn Eva (2 ply lace weight 55% silk/ 45% cashmere) in Hot Spot colorway.
Needles: 3.25 mm circular
Finished Size: 5 1/4" X 52"

This beautiful diamond pattern was adapted from a shawl that Nancy Bush saw in an Estonian museum. I think it would be a perfect 1st lace project! It is simple pattern, but incorporates many lace techniques, including (easy to execute) 5 stitch nupps. The cast on/bind off and edge stitch instructions are very well explained - I especially love how she handles the 1st stitch of every row (slip the first stitch purlwise with yarn in front, then place yarn to back between the slipped st and the next st to be worked - makes a beautiful well defined strong edging!) The chart is easy to follow and there is no grafting - It was a quick project too....I LOVED making this scarf and I know I will love wearing it! The silk/cashmere yarn....heavenly!!
I still have 34 grams left - this scarf used less than 200 yards of yarn!

 

 

Here are a few more photos - click for bigger - and if you want to really see the nupps click here.

Nancy Bush Lace Scarf Nancy Bush Lace Scarf
Nancy Bush Lace Scarf

Only 8 more blocks to go and I'll be done with the blocks for my One a Day 9 patch KAL Quilt. I've decided to stop at 48 blocks and make it 6 X 8, but still haven't made a choice on sashing or borders yet - I'll know when I know :-)

plaid 9 patches

OK - I promise I'm not turning this into a spider blog BUT SO MUCH HAS HAPPENED that I need to at least finish off this part of the story!

A few evenings ago we watched her very busily shoring up the egg sac and building another web near it - I thought she was going to move over closer to her babies, but when we woke up in the morning, here is what we saw... yes - she had been getting it on!!!! Egg sac #2 with at least a thousand more eggs - we will have over 2000 spider babies next spring! I took this picture of Mom and the sacs yesterday - At 7:00 this morning (it was very cold last night) she was gone - her web was in shambles and she has never come back. Until today she had never left her web - not even for a minute, so we know she is dead. The egg sacs are sturdily attached to the zinnias and hopefully will be safe this winter. We will be keeping a good eye on them!

egg sacs spider

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September 14, 2009
On a Roll

I have got so many quilts and knitting projects going right now that I don't know where to start, so here are a few pictures - there are more to come....

Nancy Bush Mystery Socks
Nancy Bush Mystery Socks in Cherry Tree Hill "Cherry" - Clue #2 done

Spruce Mitten Cuffs
Cuff of Spruce Mittens from Favorite Mittens using stash leftovers

Nancy Bush Scarf Blocking
Blocking stage of Dee's Diamond Scarf by Nancy Bush from Piecework Magazine

Mystery Quilt Clue 2
Sewing Clue # 2 of Bonnie Hunter's Christmas Lights Mystery Quilt

Mystery Quilt Clue 2
Clue #2 of Mystery Quilt completed!

There are also more socks, a sweater and 4 additional quilts in progress including a fun new BOM...be back soon :-)

Oh - I almost forgot the spider news - she is a very common Argiope aurantia and we are thoroughly enjoying watching her daily life. The 1st thing we do each morning is go check in and see what's happening. She spins a gorgeous new web every night (eats the old one) and is very busy catching yummy bugs during the day while fiercely protecting her egg sac. She will die in the 1st hard frost - her babies will hatch INSIDE the sac this fall, but stay inside the sac all winter and then emerge next spring with no Mom to help them - I won't be cutting those Zinnia stalks down this fall!

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September 4 , 2009
Scrappy Blue Stars

Remember when I pulled out all my blue fabrics? Well they have finally been turned into a completed quilt! I used every blue fabric I own and ventured a little into the purples and aquas for sparkle.

Scrappy Bue Star Quilt

Pattern: None - scrappy 6" stars straight set with a border designed on Electric Quilt 6 by me - here is the EQ plan
Size: 54" X 66" - perfect cozy lap size!
Fabric: Tons of scrap basket blues/purples
Method: Machine pieced / machine quilted (straight lines and gentle curves with feed dog up)

Since I have not mastered the art of free motion quilting, it is always a challenge to figure out a quilting plan. I machine quilted with the feed dogs up using my built in walking foot - LOVE my Pfaff! The only marking needed was the 1st set of curves on the border - otherwise I used the block/star lines for reference and decided how to quilt as I went along, starting with the diagonal straight lines. For the border I used a dessert size plate and marked curves around the light triangles then followed them out every 1 1/4".

Close up blue stars

Close up border

and just in case you want more pictures.....

the boys

We have been absolutely engrossed in this spider's life cycle. She has been living in the Zinnias for several weeks. 1st thing every morning and then off and on throughout the day, I go out and just watch the spider happenings. 3 days ago she looked like this, happily gathering bees and flies in her web...

Yesterday morning she was all shriveled and looked exhausted to me. She is very protective of her new egg sac. I cannot believe all of that happened in one night!

egg sac

Today she is even more shriveled - Linda reminded me she is going to die after the babies are born :-(

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