Thursday, February 25, 2010

BFL handspun

100g, Blue Faced Leicester handpainted roving received as a Christmas gift. Mmm, silky and soft.

Spun into a fingering weight 3ply.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Checkstand Bags

I did some sewing a while back but wanted to give the finished product a little test run before I made any comment on the pattern/process. These lined, cloth, grocery store checkstand bags have been used for several grocery trips now and I am happy to give them my official stamp of approval.

They are made by first deconstructing one of the store's regular, plastic, checkstand bags to get a pattern. How could you possibly get a better fit hey? The cashiers don't complain about these ones falling off their bagging stands like they do the store's own, reusable, nonwoven cloth bags. The baggers quite like them and I've had some nice comments about them.

Best of all these bags are completely washable. The cashiers in my community are occasionally overheard complaining about customers who come in with bags covered in dog hair or smelling of cat pee. Ewwww! I don't blame them. In the customer's defence though, the first time you wash those "nonwoven cloth bags" they get all limp and fall apart.

I've been looking for a better solution for quite some time now. Thanks to a discussion on a message board on Ravelry I found this tutorial: Singlet Style Shopping Bag.

When the shopping is done you can fold them neatly back into their self pocket, pop them into the trunk of your car, and they are there ready when you need them again.


I made 6 of them for about $12 using material found at a thrift store. If you want to give it a try look for sturdy but light weight fabric so that your bags don't end up too bulky. And be sure that it is fabric that won't need ironing! Just sayin'.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Aeolian Shawl Debut

Pattern: Aeolian Shawl by Elizabeth Freeman

Yarn: Alpaca with a Twist Fino purchased at Chilliwack Wool and Craft Shop.

The yarn was originally more of a blue-violet colour like grape drink, but I overdyed it with red and a small touch of black to get this colourway which I call "Black Cherry".

It's a little smaller than I expected, but I love it worn more as a shoulder shawl anyway.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Aeolian Blocking

The Aeolian Shawl is nearing completion. After a pinning session that took several hours it only has to dry overnight and have the ends sewn in.

I found this shawl to be particularly difficult to block nicely. With all those lower edge points and the curved top edge it was a bit tricky figuring out how to tackle it. The numerous nupps added an extra element to fuss over too.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Olympic Torch

I went out and did my patriotic bit this afternoon. I stood outside the recreational centre (mustn't call the building by it's real name and offend the corporate sponsors) all decked out in red and white and awaiting the arrival of the Olympic torch in my hometown. . . . it's that bright bit in the centre of the first picture.

This is about as close as I'm going to be able to come to attending anything Olympic. Tickets for the Olympic events are priced so high that the people who are actually paying for the Olympics (that would be your average TAXpayers), can't easily afford to go. Even if I was handed free tickets the cost of transportation to get to and from the events would probably still make attendance difficult and costly.

Still despite my feelings about the overpriced Olympic ceremonies and the cost of hosting the games, I still wanted to come out and show my support for the athletes. Go Canada!

You can just see the Olympic flame in this picture too. It's the bright bit to the left on the stage. No really. . . . . click on the pictures to enlarge them and then. . . .squint.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Falling In Love Again

I don't remember why this project was put aside in the first place, maybe I lacked the necessary concentration during a very stressful time of my life, but it's back in my active project pile now and I'm falling in love with it all over again!

It had been so long since I worked on it that I had no idea where I was in the pattern and had to reread everything and study the charts for quite some time before I found my place and was able to continue again.