Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Second Rug- done!

It was a close race to the finish, but I managed to finish AND fix the mistakes on the seat rug for Dad- for Dad's day. It was to be a seat cushion for his desk chair, with his beloved Jess the Border Collie on it.

I started this a looooonnnnggg time ago.

January, 2013

So where's the Border Collie? 
So that's as far as I went before actually drawing in the dog. That black bit got ripped out...
I was most nervous about trying to draw a dog free hand. And not any dog, but one that looked like a Border Collie. And not any Border Collie, but one that looked like my Dad's Border Collie, Jess. I worked at the Church in Grindstone City, far away from the internet or any pictures I have. And my memory certainly does not function as a photo album! So I sketched a few doggies on a scrap paper, and then I swallowed hard, grabbed a sharpie, and went for it.

Dog with attitude!
Then for the filling in...one weekend at a time. Winter had set in, but luckily we had Geothermal heat and it was a pretty cozy and inspiring place to work!

The studio...
In the bleak midwinter...
OK, time to stop for now. 

Next month:
Feb 13, 2013
Feb 23, 2013

And then April: (what happened in March? I don't even remember March!)
April 11, 2013

How will I do those pretty "feathers" on the legs and belly? 

Fast forward to May-June. It's all a blur, but somehow I managed to finish it up. With two major flubs. Can you see them? That's supposed to be a barn door behind Jess's rump. What?

So with the experience of a knitter used to ripping out her work, and the inspiration of having to drive to Rochester, NY in a few hours, I pulled out the red and replaced with white, and then bound the edge. Here he is on the chair.

Ruff Ruff! I'm a farm dog!
Except...even though I carefully measured the chair seat 6 months ago, and carefully made a template to fit...when I got back to the studio, I assumed that the curved edge was the open edge. Which it clearly is not. So doggie is upside down. Argh!

Fur real??
Oh well! Here's the real deal!
Jess in action! 
He's cuter in person, but at least I got the colors right! (Can't go wrong with black and white!!)

What do you think? 

Friday, December 28, 2012

Prayer Shawl

Finished in time for Christmas. It still counts if I finished it Christmas Day, doesn't it?

I started it at Thanksgiving, when my Grandma Terwilliger died.

That was sad.

Three generations, one groovy hat. 

So I started Mom's shawl. It's the Collonnade pattern I found on Knitty, and I've knit it five times.  Three shawls for me, one for Norma's Birthday, and one for mom.

Happy Birthday, friend! 
This thing needs to be mentioned. We had a lovely meal, but we needed dessert. It came in liquid form. I drank it. It was good. Very good.

Fast forward a month to Christmas, 2012.

I started knitting on my trip back to Rochester Thanksgiving morning, and finished it Christmas morning. I did not knit while driving. Yes, I thought about it.

Matching Collonnades.
I also cut 10 inches off my hair. Actually, someone else did after I gave the OK. It felt great. Really great.

SO the first Collonnade I knit was a thicker wool and I must have knit it on smaller needles.

Then came my fave- the red one.

Cherry Red

Lake Huron Blue
 Then the third- two odd colors for me, but I like them together- very Autumn.

Gold and brownish purple.
I have yarn for at least one more.

Can I do it? Six? I love the pattern, and it's a useful garment.

Next project is a chair cushion, though. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


My first hooked rug! It was started after my visit to the beautiful Locally Made Shop in Leroy, NY a little more than a year ago. The lovely Jan introduced me to the art of rug hooking and even let me try a few loops on her rug. I was literally hooked. I returned again this year at about the same time and visited her- in the meantime I had acquired a rug hook, backing, a lot of wool and cutting tools. I was almost ready to go, I just needed a pep talk and last minute reminders. When I got back to Michigan, I found an image, started sketching, and made the rug. So here's how it went, from drawing to finished rug.
Are you sure you want to do this? 
Goat Sketch. 

First loops, it's fun!

OK, goats are cute!

I can see how this is going to be!

It's feeling ruggy!

The camel hair background was THICK!

Hooked! now...the edge...

Green wool, whip stitched. 

Must sign and date.

And the finished product:
Happy 70th Birthday, Mom!!


Monday, January 16, 2012

Thrifted Gold!

So I've been thrift crawling for most of my adult life, and I've found some amazing bargains and amazing items. But I jut can't get over this bag of yarn I found for $5. Not at the Sally Bland or the Goodspill, but at a generic but always busy Thrift Store on Gratiot near Mt. Clemens.
Can you SEE those prices?

Can you FEEL those textures?
All I can think is that some lovely, classy older lady passed away and her bachelor, ungrateful son (ungrateful because he didn't cherish his mother's yarn stash which most likely kept his head and neck warm for years!)  bagged them up and shipped them off. I mean, who willingly gives away Noro?

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Jiffy Pop Hat

I did do some Christmas knitting, but I had to give them all away pre-photo, so a quicky description will suffice: four cotton star dishcloths. Two yellow, one red, and one green and white. They were fun and useful!

On to my Thrift Store find of the year: over $120 worth of yarn for $4. All in one bag. All nice yarn, including this $20 skein of Noro nadeshiko yarn...on which I quickly went to town. I wanted a hat for church renovating weather. Church renovating weather means icy cold wind alternating with propane heated jets of smelly warmth. I had a picture in my mind, and I wanted a cable band. I wanted it to be full and warm, and to fit around whatever silly thing I was doing with my long hair that day. Usually braids or bun, sometimes ponytail.
Here's what I came up with:

Friday, December 23, 2011

Lacey Shawl, at last!

Yes, I made a wispy shawl for to furl and curl around me as I walk on a misty beach.

I finished it in the summer time, and just now got around to showing it. It's been a busy fall: Teaching day job at HS and night job at college, couple of other side projects, and of course, sleeping and eating. And now: a Church! White Church Gallery, Grindstone City, MI. Coming soon!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Rag Rug

That sounds like "red-rum" but other than bloody fingers from sewing a gazillion stitches, no harm came from the making of this thrift store corduroy rug.

I love our cottage in Port Austin, MI. Love love love. Everything about it is cute, even the unfinished-ness of some of it.

Husband was having bro-friends for a long weekend so we purchased a bunk bed for one of the two diminutive bedrooms. It had mostly been used for storage: in other words it was a junk room. The transformation to usable room included some kind of floor covering. Before, it was the remnant of the bathroom carpet. After, it was a small but cushy corduroy braided rug. Hand braided, hand sewn by me. In two days.

Let me explain. Day one: cutting the rug (tee hee)

I bought these pants long ago at the Bad Axe thrift store for a song. They were plush and large. And I liked the colors. I had six pairs of corduroys- three of them were of similar rusty color, and the others were velvety contrasting colors.

Next day: I went about braiding them. Now, in hindsight, I was pretty sloppy. I've had long hair my whole life so I feel like my braiding skills are above average, but the way I cut the strips left some dangling edges and unevenness that had to all be braided in.

I figured I could fix it all when I sewed it all up.

Sewing it all up- now that was the real project.

As the sun lowered, I kept at it till my fingers were bloody. I kept pricking myself. I used fishing line and a simple if somewhat erratic stitch. I used a LOT of fishing line, and a LOT of stitches. It took all day. But what fun!
I was blocking the rug in the pre-sewing stage.

Finished product:
It's dinky! But dang- what a lot of work! It's soft and kind of matches the thrown together decor. And I'm sure the bro-friends won't have a clue, but for all you thrift-store crafty souls out there, Yay for us!