Sunday, March 26, 2023

A New Band

Late last December I dressed three of my looms to "start the New Year off right" without naked looms. Then the looms sat, mostly untouched. Well, I finally have the smallest of the projects finished. It's just an Inkle band, but it is one I do have a purpose for.

Years ago I bought myself a medical alert bracelet that you can buy interchangeable bracelets for. They are expensive, so right from the start I was determined to make my own. Initially I tried making beaded bracelets, but they had a tendency to break and, with that, came the risk of losing them. 

I then tried making decorative Inkle band bracelets for it, and that was far more successful. I have quite a collection of them now, and often make them so that they coordinate with items in my wardrobe.

This is the newest bracelet and it's made from that recently finished Inkle band. I often get questions from Inkle weaving enthusiasts wanting new and creative uses for their beautiful bands, so I'll answer them here.

The findings I finish the bands with are available through Etsy, and if you are lucky, sometimes you can find them at local beading supply stores. The ends that finish the band are called "ribbon ends" and I connect those to the lobster claw clasps with split rings.

The tools I use are flat round pliers that I use to get a good grip on the split ring when I am turning it to feed it onto the ribbon ends and lobster claws, flat round nylon jaw jewelry pliers which I use to close the ribbon ends without damaging them, and split ring pliers used for opening the split rings. Those last pliers are less expensive if you pick them up from a fishing supply store. 

To prevent the cut Inkle band from fraying and possibly pulling out of the end findings, I use a good glue that works for joining porous and non-porous materials before I pinch those end findings closed.

My personal preference is to aim for a fit that is close enough that it doesn't move around on my arm, but long enough that it is still easy enough to do up.

In case you're curious, I wear a medic alert bracelet any time I leave the house because I have a couple of severe allergies, one of which would be unexpected by the medical community and could be life threatening if I was unconscious and could not warn them.

Thursday, March 23, 2023

Stephen King Meets Dora the Explorer

I like to read in the bathtub for awhile most nights. I started a new Stephen King book tonight. Since it was loaned to me I would like to keep it in good shape. I took the original jacket off the book and tucked it away for safe keeping and then I covered the book with a nice thick shiny paper jacket, just like we did with text books back in the 60s and 70s. Rather than use brown paper bags, which aren't as readily available nowadays, I opened up a discarded gift bag.

Stephen, meet Dora. She'll be keeping your book safe while it's in my possession. 

If you are curious about the book covering technique, here's a link to a quick tutorial

Monday, March 20, 2023

Plan B Cardigan

My "Plan B" cardigan is now finished and tucked away for safe keeping until next September. I refuse to wear it until then because I'd like to enter it in the 2023 Chilliwack Exhibition and the amount of dog hair Teddy would add in the meantime would not be considered an enhancing decorative element.

I would have liked a little more room in the sleeves, they are a bit narrow for wearing over other sleeved shirts. Otherwise the cardigan fits well.

I changed a couple of things about the pattern. First I omitted the notch and instead added short rows in the neckline portion of the button band to bring it closer to the neck. 

Second, I changed the size and placement of the buttonholes. The pattern called for four 4 stitch buttonholes unevenly spaced. I chose to do five 2 stitch buttonholes evenly spaced. My two stitch buttonholes were all that were needed for these large 1 inch buttons.

Other than that the cardigan was knitted as written by Hinterm Stein. Her attention to detail is exquisite.

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Debuting 18 Years Later

Have you ever made something, loved the making of it, loved the finished item, but then never ever wore it?

That has been the fate of my gorgeous beaded Peacock Feathers Shawl, knit way back in 2005. I don't think I've worn it a single time! Well that is about to change. I'll wear it casually, as above, to FibresWest next Saturday. 

Here's how I displayed it for the finished object pictures in September of 2005. It shows off the lace pattern nicely, but I never wear a shawl that way. 

According to my Ravelry project page notes, the finished shawl weighs only 3 3/4 ounces with the beads. Without the beads it would have weighed less than 3 ounces. 

Friday, March 17, 2023

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

Are you wearing green today for Saint Patrick's Day? Although I'm not Irish I still make a bit of an effort to wear green on March 17. I think it's a leftover from my school days when not wearing green, Irish or not, was likely to get you pinched. this year I also made a little green doll's dress.

The model is Ruby Red Fashion Friend's Sara. She is wearing a dress I sewed using a Adams-Harris pattern, "Kate". The dress is supposed to be worn with a little pinafore, but I'm still waiting for a lace insertion for that. The leggings and faux long sleeves were sewn long ago when I had ball jointed dolls.

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!


Saturday, March 04, 2023

Targhee, a New Favorite

I initially had a bit of a fight with my new Nano2 electric spinner, but after sorting out a problem with the developing single not wanting to wind on, all went well and I had three little bobbins of lovely Targhee breed wool singles as a reward for my perseverance.

I then plied the 3 together to get this luscious 3ply 100g hank of squishy, bouncy goodness.


I think Targhee may be my new favorite to spin. It is soft to the touch and easy to spin. What more could a spinner want? Well --- MORE Targhee, that's what I want! Several sweaters worth would be nice.

Targhee is an American breed of sheep developed by crossing Lincolns and Rambouillets. I hope it soon becomes a more popular, and therefor more readily available wool, in Canada.

Thursday, February 23, 2023


I finished and bound off the left front of my "Plan B" cardigan and admired it, with it's lovely contrasting patch pocket, then I went on to pick up stitches for the back portion. 

I had all 104 stitches for the back picked up when I realized that they seemed to be off centre, so I counted the remaining stitches. Something was off!

It only took me a moment to realize that I had not made adjustments for the additional 12 stitches added for the shaping of the A-line version of the cardigan. The pattern does mention in a small side note that the shaping will throw off the stitch count from that point forward. I forgot, and it is not mentioned again in the instructions. In this left front portion my error is a difference of only 3 stitches, but I'll have to frog it anyway. *sigh*

At least I hadn't knit the entire lower back section as well, before noticing my error. Besides, it's all knitting anyway, and I like knitting, right?