Sunday, February 26, 2012

The insanity of moving.....

Also known as 'Help I'm loosing brain cells!'

I will confess.  I.  Hate.  Moving.

Seriously end of story.

Only right now the family is facing one of the biggest moves and changes in any of our lives.  Out I think the Gentleman of the house gets a pass since when he was a teen he and his family moved from Arizona to Illinois.  That is a big change.  Though he wasn't in charge of it, he was along for the ride in a sense.

I have to admit to never living more then an hour away from the city I was raised in.  Ever.

I've visited a hand full of other states and had the pleasure of seeing the Atlantic ocean once.

Now we are five weeks away from moving from Illinois to California.  This is a huge thing.  Just trying to research and make heads or tails of various laws there has been a bit of an eye opener.  (Gerbils are on the prohibited list, luckily we don't own one...)

It kind of hurts that I have only had the spare brain cells to work on a pattern with a one row repeat.


My Faucett scarf is light enough that it won't be obsolete in California, and it would be a *very* light if not mostly decorative scarf in a normal Illinois winter.  It is honestly a super easy one row repeat.

The pattern I was trying to write is on hold until the drive to California, due to the sheer lack of free grey matter on my part right now.  I think it says something that I was two balls of yarn into it before I realized I was using needles that were two sizes two small.

Posting will be touch and go for now.  My intent is to get a post up at least once a week, maybe two, though we will see what happens.

-The head Wench.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The secret world of Arrietty

We went to see a movie today.  And, what a lovely movie it was!

The secret world of Arrietty is a sweet, happy and kind of sad movie.  As usual Studio Ghibli did a wonderful job putting together not only a beautiful looking movie, but, a good story for all ages.


If you have kids or enjoy a well detailed story.  I seriously encourage you to check out this movie, or, any of the wonderful movies that Hayo Miyazaki and studio Ghibli have put out so far.  For a short list there is always My neighbor Totoro, Ponyo, Porco Rosso, and Sprited away.  all are wonderful movies that are great to watch at any age.

-The head Wench

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

It's the little things...

It is those little things that everyone holds dear.  It is those little things that bring joys and smiles to a child's face.  Today I had the pleasure of doing a small repair job I had been wracking my brain to find an answer to.  It brought a huge smile to Miss B's face when I surprised her with the result.

As you can see in the picture below the pin of her fan had not only broken but had managed to be horribly bent in more then one place.  This had happened before she bought it and lay hidden until after she had paid for it.  Enter one unhappy child who I reassured I would find a way to fix the broken item.  I told myself that there had to be a way to not only fix it, but, to make it better then when she had bought it.


The one end of the pin (left side in the picture) had been connected to the ring that the tassel was tied to.  That was all that had been holding the whole thing together.  Also as a note the 'ring' the tassel was tied to was flat and the cut edges hadn't been smoothed at all.  The edge of the tassel where it had been tied to the 'ring' was a little worse for wear, though still working.  It will last a lot longer on it's new ring.


I started with a piece of 18 gauge (maybe 20 gauge?) I had left over from Christmas crafting.  It is just a hair smaller then the size of the holes though the pieces of the fan, but, not so small that everything wobbles about.  I folded it at both ends for a test run on the fit.  It worked like a charm so I started to work on making a loop of one end and folding the other end so I wouldn't have to worry about edges catching on everything or the whole thing coming loose.


Once everything was set I tied the tassel onto it's new ring.


The slightly frayed edge of the cord is ever so very slightly visible.  Luckily with no more rough edges to rub against the cord will last a lot longer.


Not the pretties of wire work that I have done.  But, taking into consideration the tight area and odd angles I was working with, while wishing that I had a extra pair of hands, I think it turned out alright.


It's smooth and flat to keep anything pointy from snagging clothes or any other fabric.


And the final working product.  I should have tried to catch a picture of the huge smile Miss B had when I called her down to my work area to surprise her with this.  She has been waiting quite a while for me to figure this problem out and inspiration had hit while I was cleaning my craft area.  I wisely hit the iron while it was hot.  I can catch up on craft area cleaning tomorrow.  The very happy Miss B was so very worth the lost time.

-The head Wench

Friday, February 10, 2012

Project supply drop off!

The fates are being kind to me for the moment.  I think they are taking pity on me for all the insanity that is going on in my life right now.  At least one can hope, right?

On such a gray and gloomy day the mailman knocked on the door.  I feel sorry for him having to be out in such nasty weather.  The sky can't decide if it should be dropping ice pellets, snow or rain so it seems to think it should dump all the above at once.

At top is lava heather, left is serrano, and right is deep waters and pearlescent

All three are luscious yarns that are soft as can be!  Lava heather and serrano are both machine washable, so bonus points there.

Serrano is going into a project that I am making at the request of my Aunt.  She needs to give a special gift.  And I get to have fun stretching my wings with writing a pattern.  Win, win!

Lava heather is going into my first adult sized sweater.  I've made kid size sweaters for gifts.  Now I am going to spoil myself.  The pattern practical procrastination is the one I settled on.  It is a nice simple pull over in a raglan style.  I love raglan!  No seams!  Perfect for me as I *hate* seaming knit items.  At least anything larger then a knit toy.  Seaming anything large drives me batty.

Deep waters and pearlescent are going into a nice part fashionable and part practical (in a mild winter) scarf for myself.  I have been drooling over the Faucett scarf in the latest issue of knitty!  So, that is the scarf that I am doing.  I love knitty and if you are a knitter who hasn't heard of it you should go and explore the free patterns.  :)

Top is a pair of new 32" cables, middle is a set of cable connectors, and at the bottom is a pair of 60" cables.

Honestly if I can't finish up the last big Christmas project, with the cables and cable connectors so I can give it to my dad then I am a lost cause.  At least these are brand new cables so they shouldn't die in the middle of my knitting.  And if they do knitpicks is *very* good (and super fast) at replacing things.  I have only had trouble with one thing in the years I have been ordering from them and they were very nice about it all and very easy to work with.

This is the start of the arm warmers I and making for Miss M.

Miss M has a nervous habit.  She has a spot on her arm that she pinches and picks at when things get nuts.  Well life is very nuts here right now so she is having issues and needs mental barrier. She likes to wear short sleeve shirts so I am making her a pair of super soft arm warmers to cover her arms as she won't mess with her arms when they are covered.  I am using a ball of left over yarn from the finger-less mitts I made my niece little Miss K for Christmas.  The yarn is sprinkle heather which is a lovely blue purple, though in this picture it comes off more of a pink purple.  I'm planning on making a pair of clips so that I can fasten these to her short sleeves so they don't slide down.  They will be finger less mitt style on the hand end so they won't be super easy to slide up.  I decided to use a mock cable rib for the main knitted area to give it some visual interest.  So far Miss M is thrill to watch the progress.

-The head Wench

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Of flubs and owls.

As promised last time first up is my latest flub.  Having killed the longest of my circular cables (that was on it's last leg as it was) while trying to finish up some late Christmas knitting, I was in a bit of  a bind with a lace weight shawl I had started for myself.  It was all rolling along smoothly, with plenty of space to spare on the needles, until I hit the edging.  That is what you see jam packed on my one, in fact the shortest of my cables, circular needle.  Luckily I should have the new and much longer cables here by Saturday if the package tracking is correct.

Honestly, when a pattern says that there will be a butt load of stitches involved take it as a possible understatement.

I am really looking forward to getting this off the needles and into the blocking stage.  For a couple of reasons.  The first being that there will be no work getting done in the room that I end up blocking this piece in for about 24-48 hours!  (I'm terrible, but it has been nuts here so having one less thing on my list for that time would be a god send right now. *wink*)  Second I enjoy a challenge and finding unconventional answers when I don't have the normal items I would need on hand.  My understanding is that this is going to be the biggest shawl I have blocked yet.  With the blocking supplies I have at this time I didn't have the ability to block what is currently my biggest shawl the 'normal' way.  Pinning it out didn't happen with that one and I'm not holding my breath on it happening with this one if it is the same size or bigger.  Luckily I have plenty of blocking wires and nice long lengths of scrap acrylic yarn to make a room look like a technicolor spider on crack has gone postal in order to shape this shawl.  It worked last time.  I doubt that it wouldn't work this time.  

I have a fun side project that I am working out the details on.  I know that instead of it being knit top down like every other pattern I have seen that it will be knit bottom up.  It lets me work some of my sock knitting knowledge into yet another project.  Knitting it in the round is a given, no way I would change that.  I have pretty much figured out what stitch pattern I will be using for an area that needs to be tighter then the rest with out loosing the stitch count. (see the double owls v1.0 below) And I am looking forward to the challenge of finally writing a pattern down. It really needed to happen sooner rather than later.  Now I just need to decide on the edge treatment for the top.


Big O little o what begins with O?  This is a slightly modified cable pattern from my big book of cables.  Currently I am calling it Double Owls.  If you look close it looks like a big owl cuddling a little owl.  :)

Originally it was a toss up between this basket weave style cable pattern and what became the double owls. When it comes to baby items, I'll go with cute cuddly owls.


-The head Wench.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Second whitest day this winter!

Camera issue has been fixed!  I can properly blog again!  Now if life would just let me catch my breath.

Until then lovely pictures from my yard after waking up to the beautiful to look (and not so much to drive in) effects of a freezing fog.



Fuzzy frost on my butterfly bush.

A lovely display on some cat tails (at least that is what we call them) by the front garden.


A nice foggy view across the shared backyard.

Fuzzy raspberry cane.

I really liked how this shot of the frost on the mulberry tree turned out.

Some super fuzzy morning glory vines on the back garden fence.

Then of course as I was getting ready to go in a red bellied (not a clue why it has that name since the belly isn't red at all!) wood pecker flew into the tree int he back yarn raising Cain!

So I decided to test the new photography toy's limits and oblige the wood pecker with some pictures.  Not too bad for a tablet.  *wink*


For some better pictures and more information about my bossy visitor I would suggest you look over here, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red-bellied_woodpecker.

Tomorrow I'll show off my latest flub.  Over stuffing a circular needle.  Which means I get to start testing stitch patterns for a baby sleep sack pattern I need to write.  

-The head Wench.