Injury, Illness and Productivity…

Well, it’s been over a month and I figured I’d better post something…

My dad got the island shell finished and we got it into the kitchen. Here’s a picture. Please excuse the mess, we don’t have anyplace to put anything at the moment.

Island Shell

You may be able to tell, we added another cabinet on the end (the left side of picture). It just wasn’t quite long enough. It is now 10-feet long.

One evening, right after my last blog post as a matter of fact, we decided to put it in its permanent spot on the floor. I was on the left end, walking backwards. Sweetie said that was a good spot and so I let the cabinet drop. It landed on the big toe of my right foot!

I’m still not convinced that the toe hadn’t been fractured. I couldn’t walk for several days and only this past week and a half have I been able to wear something on my feet other than my snow boots.

I thought I was going to lose the nail on that toe, but I haven’t yet. Thank goodness! The thought of that just really gives me shivers!

The week I was home with my toe, sweetie came down with the flu. He promptly gave it to me and then he developed pneumonia. I developed a serious sinus infection and ear infection and have been off work ever since. My boss won’t let me come back until my symptoms are gone. So, basically, I’ve been off work for a month. This is seriously painful for the bank account! I went to the doctor about two weeks ago and he gave me antibiotics. They didn’t work. I go back again on Tuesday. That too hurts the bank account, because I don’t have insurance.

Well, one positive thing about being off work and not feeling like doing much is that I have plenty of time to play with yarn!

I finished up the afghan that I started months ago…

The afghan block is called Arches and it is available here.

Dark Square

Light Square

Complete Afghan

It’s the perfect size for me to use on the couch. Sorry I didn’t get any pictures that show the size, but after putting it through the washer and dryer to block, the squares are 10 inches. I used Red Heart Super Saver yarn in the colorways Buff and Cafe Latte. It is soft, squishy and oh-so comfy! Acrylic yarn really has come a long way since I first learned to crochet in the 80’s!

Next up, I made this shrug… I needed a cover-up to wear over tank tops at work (tanks aren’t allowed to be uncovered) and I was tired of wearing the same old, plain cardigans. I designed this simple shrug myself. The only pattern I used was this stitch pattern: My Picot #2049.

FoF Back

Starting chain 99 + 1 (tripled pattern horizontally). Repeated 13-row stitch pattern 3 times to create large rectangle. Single-crochet border around raw edges. Sewed 20 stitches up sleeve. After sewing it up, I did 3 more single crochet rounds around the cuffs and edge. Hand washed, dried in dryer. It took me about 10 hours to finish this project. I used Red Heart Super Saver acrylic yarn in White. Again, it washed up nice and soft.

And my most recent project comes from a booklet that I inherited from my mother in law. It’s the Coats & Clark Pineapple Doily A-1067. This can be found in the Learn to Crochet booklet.

Doily A-1067

This is my first pineapple project. It took me about three days to finish.

Well, that’s about it for now!

Another Cowl and Other Things

So, I made another cowl. Big surprise there, eh? I don’t know why I’ve been in such a cowl-making mood…

Avery Cowl

It is crocheted with Red Heart Soft yarn in the Turquoise colorway.

Avery Cowl 4

I just love that yarn. The color is lovely and it is wonderfully soft, if a bit splitty to work with.

Avery Cowl 3

The pattern can be found here. I changed the pattern in that rather than making another chain to work into for the second half of the pattern, I just used the foundation chain. This allowed me to not have a visible line bisecting the main flowers.

I made the small version of this cowl and it is a bit too long for my tastes. But, it is very pretty and I’ll wear it when warmth isn’t the goal.

The kitchen re-do is coming along nicely. My father finished the island shell and it is in the house. Next weekend we will be facing it with the blue and buggy and then it will be on to the top! We found a gas cookstove (as opposed to a range that includes both the cookstove and an oven – this is just the stovetop portion) that we are going to install after we get the tile laid. We decided that we would prefer gas to cook with and are going to get a big propane tank for it. We may need to convert it from gas to propane, but I doubt it. Natural gas is very rare in our area and we got the stove – used – from our local ReStore.

I finally got around to starting to process last spring’s fleeces. Well… I made a mistake and they felted. I was pretty upset. Sweetie told me that next time, I’m sending them out for processing.  *sigh*  At least I tried.

Long Time No See!!!

Sweetie has been doing a small kitchen remodel. He’s taking out the L-shaped wall that separates the kitchen from the living area and replacing it with an island. I joke that the only way he can get rid of the yellow walls (which he truly hates, BTW) is to tear them down. But, half of the kitchen walls are still intact. Haha!

Kitchen Demo

The studs on the left are now gone. My father has the plywood and is building the island’s shell, as I type this. Once we get the shell in – probably next week sometime – we will face it with some blue and buggy that was salvaged from James’ grandparent’s house when it burned down. We are going to use the classic white-and-gray marble floor tiles for the top. And the countertop’s trim will be cobalt-blue ceramic.

After the island is in, we’ll update the floor with vinyl tile. We already bought some for the project, but now I’m rethinking the pattern. We may end up going with something else and using the tiles that we’ve purchased elsewhere.

I still haven’t done the second coat of white paint on everything (or the first coat on the drawers). I should probably get on that…

On the crafting side of things…

I’ve been kind of obsessed with cowls, lately. They are great projects for me… They work up quickly (great for one such as myself who has startitis). They are quite useful in our area. And they don’t use a whole lot of yarn.

Cowl

This was fun to make. I like the front-post stitches. I used Cotton-Ease yarn, which is a mixture of cotton and acrylic. It’s my new favorite yarn. I made simple one out of this yarn for sweetie, but I didn’t take pictures. The pattern for this cowl can be found here. This cowl turned out a bit too long for my taste. It wasn’t long enough to wrap twice and it was too long to do much good. I ended up giving it to my niece.

Granny Stripe Cowl

This was just a simple granny stripes cowl using Red Heart Earth and Sky yarn. No pattern involved. I really like it, but unfortunately I have to pull it on over my head. Since I usually wear my hair up, this can be a bit of an issue. I made one of these in the Red Heart Pink Camo colorway, but it wasn’t tall enough. I gave it to my niece, too.

Cowl Cap

I found the pattern for this button-up cowl to wear when my hair is up and I don’t want to pull something over my head. It’s really cute, but I need to move the buttons; they are too close to the edge and as such gaps are created.

I’ve also made a couple of doilies in the last couple of days:

tOctoberfest Doily

As you can see, I made this one from yarn rather than thread. It is called Octoberfest and the pattern can be found here. I’ve never done a spiral like this before and it was fun to watch it materialize.

Five Point Century Snowflake

I stayed up late last night and made this one for sweetie. I chose it for the cute little hearts. He much prefers doilies made from thread. He’s pretty much the only person for whom I will crochet with thread. I very much prefer tatting with thread rather than crocheting with it. This pattern can be found here.

Still in the works are the kitchen curtains. A few weeks ago I had a very frustrating experience with them and have walked away. Now that there’s no wall to hide the kitchen, I get a daily reminder of how unattractive bath towels hanging over the windows are.

And here are some gratuitous critter pictures:

Excuse Me

Ray and Metal Manger

Dolly and Tank

Gratuitous Hound Photo

12-Stitch Machine Knit Gingham Chart

Hello!

I know that it’s been a while since I posted, but I’m sure you’re all used to that by now… It has been a bit of a whirlwind of activity around here…

I’ve started working 4 days per week for the company that I previously worked for. It’s been good. Part time has been agreeing with me. I do enjoy having 3-day weekends, for sure.

Last weekend we had a severe freeze here and the heater in the pump house couldn’t keep up. The well head froze. Thankfully, we were able to save it, several hours later. We really thought we were going to have to buy a new pump. SOOO glad we didn’t! We had a couple of burst pipes under the house and a couple of our drain pipes froze – 2 burst; thankfully they were just drains and not water pipes. We had the plumber out yesterday to fix them.

I received my “new” knitting machine and have enjoyed playing with it. One of the patterning drums is missing a tooth and the gal I bought the machine from is sending me another carriage that I can cannibalize for parts.

It’s amazing how much faster fair isle knitting is on the machine! I’ve been having a few operator issues when doing colorwork, but I think I’m learning pretty well.

For my kitchen curtains, I want to do a gingham check along the bottom of the panels, so I came up with a punch card pattern to accomplish this task. The rest of the panels will be in a tuck stitch pattern. This will keep the curtains a solid panel, but will give them some interest.

Here is the gingham check punch pattern that I came up with:

12st Gingham Pattern Chart JPG

And here is the PDF

12st Gingham Pattern Chart PDF

Enjoy!

12-Stitch Argyle Machine Knitting Punch Card Pattern Chart

I will soon be the proud owner of a Studio SK-155 knitting machine. My Bond machine broke a keyplate and it has been unusable since. So, I am investing in a metal machine. I expect to get hours of knitting enjoyment out of my new Studio.

One of the great things about the new machine is that it uses punch cards for patterning. I can’t wait to try some fair isle and punch lace.

I have started designing punch card patterns for the 12-stitch machine – so you can expect to see them here from time to time.

This is my first pattern:

12-Stitch Argyle

PDF:

12st Argyle Pattern Chart

JPG:

12st Argyle Pattern Chart

 

WIP – Pineapple Lace Curtains

This is a sneak peek at my current work in progress. I am making curtains for my kitchen windows. Now that snow is here, we need to retain all the warmth we possibly can and bare windows let out a lot of heat.

I found a simple pineapple lace motif pattern and wanted to do the curtains in this with some sort of sheer panels as a backing. But, sweetie wants me to make solid panels instead. I see his point, solid panels provide more privacy and hold in more warmth.

I started out making simple DC panels, but I soon realized that it would take forever to complete them that way. So, I’ve switched it up with TC. Hopefully that will make it go faster. I will change up with DC, SC and some color.

I’ll use the pineapple lace to make a valance and some long side panels.

Kitchen Curtain Lace 1

This is the motif. Please excuse how messy it looks, it is unblocked.

Now, my kitchen has yellow walls and white cabinets and ceiling. It has blue accents. I thought that including some color would be nice.

Here are my messy Photoshop examples:

Kitchen Curtain Lace Kitchen Curtain Lace Blu Yell Kitchen Curtain Lace Yell Blu Blu Kitchen Curtain Lace Yell Blu Yell Kitchen Curtain Lace Yell Blu

I haven’t decided which version I want to go with. No matter which one I choose, it will mean a whole lot of non-stranded color work. That fact alone makes me think that maybe I won’t do color within the motifs. I know that I want to do some blue stripes in the panels and a blue ruffle. Perhaps I’ll just do a blue ruffle on this portion, as well.

To be continued…