Friday, July 27, 2012

Back on track

So I took up my labors again this morning, and failed time after time.  Finally I took the key plate out to the garage and fairly soaked it with silicon spray.  Problem solved!  My next try resulted in row after row of beautiful stitches, with no dropped stitches at all.  Of course, now I'm tired like a dead thing.

That's the up side.  The down side is that the row counter stopped working somewhere in the 50s and I have no idea how long this piece is.

Knowing nothing about knitting, I'm taking advice from the innerwebs.  I have read that since the knitting was under tension on the machine, I should let it rest for 24 hours before I check the gauge.  Tomorrow I will block it and see if the gauge is ok, and then I can start!

Thursday, July 26, 2012


Yesterday I bought some yarn for my first project, and this morning I settled down to making a swatch, only to have absolutely everything go wrong.  I haven't been able to get beyond row 16, and now I see that one of the thingies in the hem weight has broken.  I'll be taking a break until I can calm down.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Machine knitting day whatever (no longer counting)

By day 4 I was no longer losing stitches at the ends, but I did finally drop one in the middle of the row.  I didn't catch it in time and it ran.

I don't think I did a very good job of picking it up, so I dropped another and let it run.  Fixing it went better the second time.

Next I decided to try knitting different yarns from my tiny stash, only to discover that moths had gotten to it!  This is all I could get out of the ball of gray yarn.

Isn't it pretty?  And it looks just like "real" knitting.  And finally I tried some slightly nubby tweed stuff (the actual color is a dark olive).

Sis has offered to put together a yarn package for me to play with, until I'm confident enough to start a real sweater.  Which should be soon.

In the meantime, I have no place to sew.  I'm thinking of moving the knitting machine to the top of the old ironing board, since it's easier to use while standing.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Machine knitting day three

I finally succeeded in casting on!

And followed up with many failures!

I don't know what I was doing to cause those first stitches to fall off.  Probably if I knew more about knitting I would know what was happening and how to fix it.  But finally I made my first 12 perfect rows.  Aren't they pretty?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Machine knitting day two

Waaaaa!  It's too haaarrrddd!  I can't even accomplish the first steps of casting on.

I told Sis I'm going to send it back, but I'm not.  I haven't got the hang of it yet, but I'm intrigued.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Sis's birthday celebration

I (Annie) was going to take Sis out for her birthday, but when I arrived in Seattle I discovered I hadn't brought my card case.  Sis generously offered to buy lunch, so now I owe her.  Here she is modelling the ring I gave for her.

We had lunch on the terrace at Maximilien's; it was loads of fun!

And when I got home, my new machine had arrived!

I can hardly wait to get started on it, but I've read enough around the web to know that I need to watch the video before I start, so I'm off to do that.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Window Pane blouse finished!

Having re-grown my thumb, I finished the Window Pane blouse yesterday!  It's so beautiful, I swoon every time I look at it.  I think, however, that the next time I make this blouse I will come down a size or two.

Here is Dahlia modeling the Window Pane by the rose garden (with David's handmade fence in the background).

Now it's on to Vogue 8813.

PS  Happy Birthday, Sis!

Thursday, July 5, 2012


Am I the only person who has to keep bandaids in the sewing room?  I was working on the Window Pane blouse this afternoon, and instead of snipping off a thread I snipped off the end of my thumb.  It hurts, it's messy and I did a lot of whining, but at least I have the Kitty for comfort.  I shall sew no more today.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Summer sewing

The last sewing I did was working on a pegged skirt. Then I got distracted, and suddenly it was summer! Or what passes for summer around here. Anyway, I just had to start making summer clothes, and last week I had a cutting out marathon.  I cut out three projects in a row and was so tired I had to take to my comfy chair and play Skyrim.  Anyway, here they are:

Subtle Twist

The first is a blouse, using Louise Cutting's Subtle Twist and a beautiful fabric (silk/cotton?) which I bought years ago from Emma One Sock.

As you can see the fabric has extra folds of fabric woven in to it to make heavy stripes. Heavy raw edged stripes, on what I assume is the intended right side. Now, and I know this is going to offend a lot of people, but I don't think it is "creative" to leave hems raw and raggedy, or stick your serged seams on the outside, or wear your underwear on top of your clothes. Don't agree? Bite my garters, it just looks lazy. Whew, sorry, I got a bit carried away there. At any rate, I am going to use the smooth and possibly wrong side -- it is so lustrous and beautiful.  The picture doesn't do just to the color which is "natural" with a beautiful golden cast to it.

Vogue 8813

Next I cut out this Marcy Tilton dress (Vogue 8813), using a piece of polyester (!) fabric from Nancy's in Seattle. I haven't sewn with polyester since some time well back in the last century, but this is so lovely. It's a light, floaty piece of cloth with a pleasing crinkly texture.

The problem with the fabric is that at some point (before it reached Nancy's) someone cut the selvedges off.  This meant I had to establish the grain using the torn end, since I knew that to be true.  Not a big deal, just kind of a stretch.

Vogue 1234

The final piece is Sandra Betzina's intriguing dress.

I am using a gorgeous German rayon knit I bought from Emma One Sock.  After consulting with Sis I decided to cut the center panel from a black knit -- the black and white on its own would be overwhelming.

Well, there it is.  If any of them fails, you will never see or hear of it again.