Saturday, February 16, 2013

Wrapping up

I do love deadlines.  I get a strange sort of enjoyment on seeing just how much I can accomplish under pressure.  I'm more productive when I'm working and I'm way more productive when I'm crafting.  I still have 2 more projects I'd like to finish before I leave town Tuesday morning, but I think it's going to happen.

This week I finished the pair of sport weight socks...
The yarn is by Lunabud Knits- a dyer/spinner in Kentucky that I met on my travels around the midwest to sell yarn.  It knitting up very quickly when I actually worked on.  Have worn them twice since I finished them this week. Love them.
I finished up a doily that was meant to be finished in October but wasn't even started until after Christmas.  And then it lived in my purse for a month and a half with the Lunabud socks, not actually getting any of my attention. I dug it out for Downtown Abbey last week and I was halfway through the 3rd letter and by the time Downton was over (yay 2 hour episodes!) I was on the last letter.  After my dork show and Castle on Monday night I was halfway through the border and then it sat for a couple more days until I had a rather grumpy day and sat down and finished it so I could get back to work without the bad attitude.  Sometimes you just need a little knit-break in the middle of the day.
I still haven't ironed/starched it yet and I'll pick up a frame when I'm in Castleton on Monday and I'll mat it myself- it saves about $150 to do that and I'm super frugal right now.

I have still been cutting fabric for my king sized quilt and working from a twin sized pattern.  So on Thursday morning (Valentine's Day) I sat down with my calculator and did some math to figure out just how much fabric I'm going to need for the background of the quilt top.  I also learned that I don't have nearly enough fat quarters, and I'm going to need around 10 yards of the main color.  So after I dropped off Rob's surprise Valentine's Day cake at his office on Thursday, I went to the quilt shop on Michigan which I've driven by a thousand times and never gone in.  And oh. my. god. It is amazing.  And HUGE! I asked a lady there about buying a whole bolt of fabric and explained the project.  She listened to me talk about my process and how much fabric I've already got cut up and how I'm altering the pattern from a twin to a king, how I know I'm going to need a lot and I don't want to spend a fortune but I don't want to run out and have to change dye-lots and finally she asked...

"You're new at this, aren't you?"

Ummm....yes.  And I'm so glad I went to a proper quilt shop and not a big box fabric/craft store.  She pulled out a handy chart saying how much fabric you ACTUALLY need to make a quilt top in all these different sizes.  She also recommended this one brand of fabric that is well known for it's consistent dye lots.  She then showed me a quilt that she was working on that had 8 different dye lots of the same fabric in it, from scraps of other projects.  And it was perfect and I couldn't tell and I'm feeling much more relaxed about my quilt project now. So I got a few fat quarters while I was there and I'll get a few more when I visit the Amish quilt shop in Sarasota next week. And then I'll finish cutting my colored fabrics into little squares and little triangles and then I'll finish a few more knitting projects before I buy the main color.

I also told her that I'd already bought fabric for the main color and the back before I changed my mind on the size so I was going to need a lot of backing fabric too.  "No you don't- just piece the old front and the old back together into another quilt top and use that on the bottom!" BRILLIANT!  Seriously- I would have never thought of that.  So I was thinking about pooling my coupons to go and buy a bunch of fabric from JoAnn, but it will probably end up being cheaper and better to go to a proper quilt shop and only get as much as I really need, a couple yards at a time. What a crazy idea.

Here are the fat quarters and fat eights I got at the quilt shop....and then what the quilt looks like after a couple hours of cutting squares into triangles.  I'm kind of over the cutting part.  Unfortunately, I've still got at least an hour of color cutting and a couple weeks of plain white cutting once I get that fabric.

And now back to knitting.  I did start a new project yesterday and that's because Good For Ewe is having a trunk show on March 2nd in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  And I'm going to be out of town the whole week before the trunk show, getting back in time to pack, drop off the cat and head up there. I had a couple more patterns that I wanted to finish before the show and then one of my designers sent over a couple more patterns! Yay!  Except I don't get the models for these patterns.  Oh well, I could always knit them myself.  I definitely don't have time to make a sweater in sport weight yarn, but I can totally squeeze in a worsted weight cowl, right?

I started yesterday and I'm already about halfway done. I'd really love to get it done and blocking before I leave for Florida.  And if that happens I just need to narrow down the other 3 projects that I'd like to finish before the trunk show...

So what do you think?  Should I take the sock yarn shawlette with the beads?  The cabled hat in the yarn I haven't picked out yet?  Or attempt to finish a baby blanket in Chord that I've been ignoring for months?  Decisions, decisions. 

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