"Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either." ~ Elizabeth Zimmerman


Lattice Lace Bracelet

I have finished this months Seedbeadersters bead along, the Lattice Lace Bracelet by Carolyn DeGroff.

I seem to be in a red mood. I find myself drawn to all things red of late.

It's a fairly easy pattern. I was afraid it was going to be a little boring and tedious for me, but I enjoyed it very much.

This is the first time I've used a slide clasp.

 I used silver lined size 8 seed beads and matte red and grey size 11 seed beads. I used a few metallic silver size 15 seeds to attach the clasp.

I don't really have much red in my wardrobe. I've got a couple things it'll go with. I could definitely wear this at Christmas time too.

Our next challenge is two-drop Peyote stitch. I've not done it before, so this will be a learning experience.

Live long and prosper. \\//


I've Got the Blues - Fair 2013 Results

As planned, I went to the fair on Wednesday. I did quite well, if I do say so myself. I entered 12 items. I won 11 first place ribbons and 1 second place ribbon. I took photos, although some of them didn't turn out as good as I wanted. It's hard to take photos of things in glass cases.

 I had 4 knitted items. The red beaded doll dress won Blue. (I wish they'd pulled up that shoulder a bit.)

Seed Stitch Striped Mens Mittens, Blue.

Lime and black baby cardigan and matching hat, Blue.

Mens stockinet stitch mittens, Blue. That's really saying something. It's hard to get nice even tension in stockinet stitch.

I had 3 items in the General Crafts department. I entered the bracelet in the middle of the black background. I really couldn't tell which ribbon went to which item, but my best guess is it won Red. I won't know for sure until I pick it up next week. For all I know, I could be completely wrong and have not won anything on it.

The Irish Cream bracelet won Blue.

So did this Christmas ornament cover.

I entered the remaining beaded items in the Needlework department under bead weaving cataegories. These three items won Blue ribbons.

My lacy bracelet won Blue too.

Finally, this ornament cover won Blue.

The Knitwits did fantastic! The majority of their entries won blue ribbons. I'm so proud of them. There was only one item that won no ribbon at all. The prize money won will be used to purchase more yarn for the group.

The weather is back to being hot, stuffy, and the air is thick with forest fire smoke again. My eyes hurt so bad and I've been coughing a lot for 2 days. Right now, it's also cloudy and we've got thunderstorm warnings. We're under extreme fire danger conditions too, so lightning is a scary thing. Hopefully, we'll get lots of rain with the lightning, if we get anything, and there'll be no new fires.

Last night I tried to back up my hard drive. It's been a year since it's been done. My little Passport pocket drive is what I use for backing up. I lost the chord to it last year. I tried using another chord that fit it, but I kept getting a 'chord is too long' error, so I gave up. Well, yesterday I found the lost chord-in the car of all places, attached to my MP3 player.

First I tried using Windows Backup to do it, but it failed-after crunching for 4 hours! Very frustrating. The Passport came with WD Smartware software for backing up, but I don't really like that program. However, it appears that is the only thing that will work. So, I had to update the software which took me a couple hours to accomplish. (Have you ever noticed it takes a long time to get anything done on a computer?) Today I'm gonna try again. If it doesn't work, I'm going to have to do something else. Not sure what. I need to back up my hard drive! My computer is starting to get to the age of hard drive failure. I don't want to take chances.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Essential Amber Wigged Out

A new doll has been added to my small but growing collection. This is Essential Amber Wigged Out.

This doll came out in the fall of 2010. She's already very rare and hard to find. I mentioned in the ImaginingEllowyneWilde group on Yahoo that I'd fallen in love with her after seeing pictures of her on the Wilde Imagination web site. To my surprise, one of the members emailed me privately that she had one for sale. She had all of the original outfit, wigs, and stand and at a very very good price. I had to take advantage of the opportunity.

She comes dressed in this little outfit with 2 wigs, the black one above, and the red one below.

She's the same size as Ellowyne and Lizette (16 inches), and fits in all the clothes that Ellowyne can wear.

I managed to do a little beading yesterday and got a couple more inches done on the ladder stitch bracelet but I didn't have enough time to finish it. I've decided I'm not going to make it into a Christmas ornament. I'm liking it so much I want to wear it as a bracelet after all. The pattern calls for a sliding clasp, which I don't have, so I've ordered some from Firemountain Gems.

Tomorrow the North Idaho Fair opens. A dear friend has given me 2 tickets so Ruth and I are going first thing in the morning. I'm anxious to see how all the entries I took down there last week have done. Especially my little Ellie with her hand knit red dress. I'll be posting the results afterwards.

Live long and prosper. \\//


L'Or Noir et Blanc

I managed to get some beading done this weekend and finished a necklace.

Click on the pics to embiggen.

Some of you may remember the beading challenge I participated in earlier this year in the Seedbeadersters Yahoo group where we made Bitty Beaded Beads in odd count peyote stitch? This is what I made with them.

Here's a close up of each bead.

Little diamonds

I did each bead with delicas in matte white, black iris, and silver lined light topaz.

Little spots

I lined each one with a piece of plastic drinking straw, glued in place to give them some strength. Otherwise, they tend to flatten.

Big diamond.

This is my favorite of the 4 patterns I used.

Bigger spots

I liked the Bigger spots pattern so much I decided to put it in the toggle loop for the clasp.

Between each bitty bead I strung 6 strands of beads in a little repeating pattern. I used size 11 white, black iris, and silver lined light topaz beads for the strands.

In the center section of strands, I used some 4mm Swarovski crystals in Crystal Golden Shadow, and some 3mm golden glass pearls to create a focal point.

As I mentioned already, I made the toggle clasp to match.

Total length of this necklace is 22 inches.

It's very sparkly in the sunshine. I am looking forward to wearing it.

In addition to finishing the necklace, today I worked on this months beading challenge for Seedbeadersters. We're doing a ladder stitch bracelet which I thought was gonna be too easy and boring, but I'm actually really enjoying working on it. I've got it about half done. I hope to finish it tomorrow, though I am toying with the idea of making a Christmas ornament cover with it instead of a bracelet. Ideas are kicking around in my head.

The weather today was absolutely awesome! The wind has changed direction and it blew all the smoke out of the area from the forest fires. It was not overly hot. It was just right and the breeze was cool and gentle. The sky was so blue and the air smelled so good with the scent of Sweet Clover and Stargazer Lilies. I couldn't help myself. I just had to spend the day outside on my deck, beading, reading, eating, and sitting in the hot tub. It truly was a glorious day, weatherwise.

I really should take pictures of the deck and post them here. I planted a mix of different colored Petunias in the boxes this year, instead of the usual Dwarf Dahlias, and they are looking fantastic! The moose and deer are leaving them alone too, so far.

Speaking of moose, they are starting to graze on the yard. The woods is pretty dry now and all that juicy luscious green stuff must be very tempting. This morning we were missing parts of the flowering plum tree, the birch, and the poor abused Dogwood Vine will not need to be pruned this fall. I bought some taller stakes to raise the little fences around the flowering cherry trees cuz the moose were nibbling on the tops. Ruth and I installed those last Friday. I'd like those trees to actually grow tall some time so they can start blooming!

I finished one of the teal mittens last night. Time to start it's mate. I'm starting to get tired of making mittens. Knitwits is in dire need of adult size slippers. Maybe I'll make a few pair of those after I get the mittens done. Then again, I have been wanting to get into doing fairisle mittens.

There's just too many ideas in my head, and not nearly enough time to execute them all.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Making Wigs

Technically, I've made one wig, so far. The two wigs I got for Ellie got me to wondering, and the next thing I know I'm reading tutorials on how to make wigs for dolls. I found some that used yarn and just HAD to try it. Here's the result. Lizzy (Great Depression Lizette) gets new hair.

A close up from the front.

This is a view of the back.

And this is the top. I hand sewed that part on there.

Basically, I used some 4-ply worsted weight acrylic yarn, and some fingering weight acrylic. I used the fingering weight to crochet the wig base, or cap. It looked like a beanie hat done in double crochet when it was done. Then I cut a whole bunch of lengths of the worsted weight yarn. I separated the strands of each piece, and latch hooked them around the post of each double crochet stitch. After that, I made the part and sewed it on. I finished up by very carefully brushing it so it was all spread out in a circle, (I used the thin handle of a comb. An actual brush was destructive.), steaming it just a bit, then trimmed it into the style I wanted.

I really like how it looks. In fact, I like this hair style better than the one Lizzy came with. However, this wig is not as good as one made with actual hair, mohair, or synthetic hair. It's very soft to the touch being acrylic, and it can be pulled apart very easily so brushing it is out. I think the staple length of the acrylic fibers are too short for it to be like actual hair. Or maybe it's just the staple length of this particular acrylic yarn (Vanna's Choice). Perhaps a better quality acrylic would work better. I will have to try it and find out.

I did this based on parts of 3 different tutorials I found on making yarn wigs for dolls. Here are links to them if you want to try it.

Tutorial on Flicker

Tiny Mohair Wig for Dolls

Making a Brushed Yarn Wig

That last tutorial is about making wefts with yarn and then sewing them to a cap. I want to try that one next. I also want to try my hand at using bought mohair wig wefts too. But that will be for another day.

Great Depression Lizette in her original outfit and new hair.

So many ideas! So little time!

Live long and prosper. \\//


Fair Entries

Today I hauled fair entries to the fair and got them, well, entered. It was a big job.  I received 20 new entries at the meeting last week which brought the total number to 57 entries for Knitwits this year. I am so very excited about that. Last year we had 34. So 57 is quite an increase!

12 of those entries are from me. I am going to post what those entries are for my own benefit.

Mens mittens in turquoise and brown.

Mens mittens in red, Seed Stitch Striped pattern.

Baby cardigan with matching hat in lime and black.

Red knit doll dress with bead embroidery.

RAW bracelet in purple and ecru.

Schist Happens Cabochon necklace.

Netted matte gold beaded bracelet.

Blue and White herringbone bracelet.

Red and gold Christmas ornament cover.

Gold and pearl RAW bracelet.

Picasso brown/beige flat spiral bracelet.

Red, white, and black Christmas ornament cover.

That's all of them. It'll be interesting to see how they do. Especially the knitting. I didn't make nearly as complicated things as I usually do in that department. But, then, I haven't felt like doing anything complicated either.

Next week the fair officially starts. I plan to go on Wednesday.

Live long and prosper. \\//


Wigs for Ellie

I've bought a couple new wigs for my Essential Ellowyne Five doll. She came with blond hair. I bought a couple brunette wigs. Both are made of Mohair, which I think I prefer as far as doll hair for small dolls goes.

She looks so different with dark hair.

I really like it a lot.

I also got a short hair style.

I like this one so much I wish I could get my own hair styled like this. I will need to do some heavy duty growing out first.

I have developed a fascination with wigs for this doll. I would like to try making my own. I've found several interesting tutorials and videos on the internet on how to do it. I am most interested in making wigs with yarn. Maybe, after this busy August is over, I can try my hand at it.

I finished the purple dress, but it does not fit. It is way too big above the waist. It just falls down around her arms. The skirt part fits perfect. I will be starting over, re-adjusting the pattern. I didn't think the lace design in the yoke would make that much of a difference. I forget I'm working on a really really small scale here. So, some personal time with my calculator and some swatches is in order. I'm just glad it was a doll sized dress I screwed up and not something large enough for me. (Been there, done that.) Heh heh.

Had Knitwits this week. Had a wonderful time at the meeting. I'm especially thrilled cuz one of my best friends, Phyllis, joined the group. YAY!!! I am so happy to have her added to our ranks.

I did receive quite a few new fair entries at this weeks meeting. I've been working on getting things ready to take to the fair for entry. I have to take them in next Monday. So far, not counting the new entries, I've got 37. I was thinking we didn't have as many as last year because it only filled one box. However, we've actually got quite a few more. It's just that everyone is entering smaller items this year. Not as many afghans as we usually have. That's fine with me. As long as we have more entries. Easier to haul one or two boxes than 4 or 5.

I've been thinking of ways to drum up some new members for Knitwits. Our membership has dropped off quite a bit. I'm thinking about a web site, or maybe a Facebook page. I will have to talk to our illustrious leader about doing it.

On Saturday we're having a party. It will be my daughter Sarah's last evening here so I'm inviting the family over for a barbecue so everyone can see her before she goes home. I finished the food shopping yesterday. Just a bit of cleaning to do and I'll be ready. Oh yes, and the mowing of the lawn. Sigh. No sweet hubby here to do it for me. Doug and Sarah will be coming home from their bike ride earlier that day. They said they will not be too tired to party.

I also managed to sprain my right thumb on Wednesday. I was closing the cover on the hot tub, which is kind of heavy. My thumb got caught on it in a weird way and the weight of the cover bent it in a way it was not meant to go. Swelled up like crazy. I applied ice. I've been soaking it in the aforementioned hot tub too. The swelling is completely gone and the pain is greatly alleviated. I can knit (thank the knitting gods!), and as long as I'm careful, it should heal up fairly quickly.

It's hot, sticky, and thick in the weather dept. It's been in the upper 80's/low 90's all week. The air is filled with smoke from nearby forest fires and grass field burning, thus 'thick'. My eyes hurt so bad, and I find myself carting my inhaler around in my pocket so it's readily available. August is the month I call 'the dog days of summer'. No insult to dogs intended.

Live long and prosper. \\//