A WIP Wednesday

I love these weekly updates!

The shawl was at 56 cm and this week I have a total of 60,5 cm. Progress is really slow, but at least I'm getting somewhere. I'm just over halfway through the 8th flower.
I would like to try and designate an hour to work on it every day. I miss knitting every day, but I just haven't been able to prioritize it for some reason.

Oh and I think I promised you a picture so here you go. The purple marker is where i was last Wednesday. I'll try to remember to move it so I can show you my progress again next week.

Sew Tuesday

I was so very close to not having any sewing to talk about this week. How much of a failure would I feel like if I didn't manage to do any sewing the week after I proclaimed that a weekly update would keep me acountable?  The truth is not very much, so this will be the last. But somehow it still got me to get out the sewing machine, the iron and the ironing board and get to work.

Remember the neck seam that was making me slightly upset last week? Well, I based it and sewed it on the machine and it turned out fine. Then I did the embellishing seam and that turned out fine. Then I decided that the front embellishing seam wasn't good enough (I'm not aiming for perfect, but I need to achieve the I-would-wear-this-in-public---good-enough look), so I redid that and then I packed it all away again.

It felt good to do a couple of seams and then put it all away. At this speed it will take me a long time to make this top, but I'm not in a hurry. Although I might already have decided on what my next project is going to be (a t-shirt out of the left over fabric).

I fear ending up with a fabric stash. I worked so dilligently to get rid of my yarn stash and next on the list is the fibre stash. I need to make sure I don't end up with a fabric stash, but I think I'm good so far.

All in all a very good sewing week.

Missing Summer #3

I actually love autumn and winter, but there are days where I miss having the entire summer off and just  go seeing the world and do as you please without any firm plans...
So I made up a small series of posts with summer pictures to make me and hopefully you, remember and rejoice in the goodness that is summer. 

Winecountry, Bernkastel, Germany

A WIP Wednesday

I'm battling a cold today, but I'll still give you the line up of how my shawl is going.
Last week I had just begun the 7th flower and I'm sad to report that this week the 7th flower is almost done.
I have added 3 cm to the shawl and I think progress is going to be slow from now on. The rounds are really beginning to be long.

I have yet to be bored by the pattern, I'm really enjoying knitting this shawl.

Because the knitting will slow down, I have put a marker in, so that next week, hopefully, I can share a picture of my actual progress.

Sew Tuesday

Sewing is something I want to get a lot better at and I'm slowly making progress. So far it seems that I'm only getting good at ripping seams and not getting sad, because I have to do something over for the n'th time.

Since WIP Wednesday is doing such a good job at keeping me accountable with my knitting I figured why not start to do the same for sewing.

You may remember how my very un-proportional, but beautiful body made my life difficult when I first began to work on this top.
The ladies at the shop, where I got the fabric, were so nice and helpful and I was spot on with my diagnosis.

So I began the treatment. I ripped all the seams and then I re-basted it all together again. This time with a 3 cm seam allawance instead of 2cm at the neckline and shoulders. I measured the pattern and size 38 was almost 1cm smaller than size 40, and I could use a size in between size 36 and 38 so 1 cm it was.
The next step was to try it on and it looked a lot better, although I find it hard to see, when it is just basted together.

I made it through half the sewing before one seam was so mean to me, that I put the whole thing in time out. Really, after trying and failing to sew it 2 times, I knew it was time to sit it down for another day and a fresh mind.

What have I learned?

  • ripping is key, never settle for less than good enough.
  • basting is your friend.
  • no matter how well things fit when basted, it is another story when it is sewn.
  • it takes time to learn how to sew well.
  • Learning to sew is a lot like learning to knit, the only difference is that I have been knitting for at least 15 years. 
  • If I sew as well as I knit now by the age of 37 (15 years from now), I will be very pleased. 

Missing Summer #2

I actually love autumn and winter, but there are days where I miss having the entire summer off and just  go seeing the world and do as you please without any firm plans...
So I made up a small series of posts with summer pictures to make me and hopefully you, remember and rejoice in the goodness that is summer. 

Bernkastel, Germany

In need of socks

As far as I can recall I have knitted 9 pairs of socks in my life. Only 3 of those were for me. All 3 of those are now thread bare and one pair even has a hole in it. My man told me to toss them, because I'm always forcing him to toss his commercial socks when they get holes. We don't wear clothes with holes and I can't be bothered to darn commercial socks.

You know that saying a stitch in time saves nine?? I know now, that it is true...

It must have snagged on something in the wardrobe. 

Living stash free means that I won't be knitting sock any time soon. I need to finish my shawl first. So I'll be mending these and hoping that the other two pairs will last all winter. I do have commercial socks so I won't be freezing my toes off this year, but I'm hoping that one day my sock basket will have nothing but hand knit wool socks in it. All part of the gameplan for a hand made wardrobe. One day...  

Sew far, sew bad...

It is no secret that I have dreamed of someday having a completely handmade wardrobe.
Knitting is a big part of that, but let's face it, I'm not going to knit all the clothes I need and want, ever.

So I have taken up sewing and have been working on a that pretty, long sleeved top my parents gave me fabric to make for my birthday. I came a long way, all my seams were so pretty, I was surprised how good it looked and then I ran into troubles.

You see, I need a size 40 to fit my chest, but at 165 and 52 kg the rest of me is, how should I put it, a lot smaller than my chest measurement would lead you to think.

At least that is what I think is the problem, as the top is gaping at the neckline. Because I'm fairly new to sewing. I really don't know what the matter is, all I know is that something needs to be altered a lot, before this top will be worn by me.

So I'll be going to the fabric shop that, thankfully, is a small independent shop in our town, and ask if they have any advice. I think the solution is to scale the part above my breast to a much smaller size, but how on earth do you do that?

Hopefully the nice ladies will answer my questions, help me and not just tell me to toss it and forget it. i don't think I'll ever fit into any commercial pattern straight off, because this is not the first time I've run into this very problem...

WIP Wednesday

Last week I was at almost 5 flowers on the shawl and was afraid that I might get bored with the project at some point. I'm still concerned about that, but so far I still love it.

You won't be getting a picture this week, because there really isn't anything to show, except that the shawl is bigger.

It's currently 53 cm from tip to top and a round takes 15 min and I have just begun the 7th flower.

I like doing these small updates each week on my progress because it keeps me accountable. As I've mentioned before I'm knitting this up as a sample for a family friend's yarn store. I don't have a deadline on it, but I want to get it done in a relatively short time. So far I have been knitting on it for a month and got half way through the body of the shawl. As the rounds are only getting longer and the border will take forever, I'm aiming at 4-5 months, hoping to have it done before March.

This is what the shawl is supposed to end up looking like:



I am bi-craftual. I have done so many crafts I stopped counting a long time ago and I'm sure I've even done some I can no longer remember. But being bi-craftual is not always a good thing and the last couple of years I've learned that I need to concentrate on a few and not spread myself too thin. There is studying to be done and food to be cooked and spaces to be cleaned, and there is only so many seconds in a day.

I've found even more reasons to be focused on a few crafts. You see doing crafts requires materials, those can be costly and they take up space.
So I'm gently and slowly weeding through my crafts. I know that fibre is truely where my passion is, so I'm going to focus on knitting, spinning and sewing for a while.

Painting is a craft I never got good at, so I have packed up all my supplies and they are ready to go to a new home with my friend, who is awesome at drawing and painting.

3D cards were another thing I used to make and lets face it, it has been years probably, since I last made one, so those are going as well. I haven't found them a new home yet, but I'm sure I will.

Drawing, like painting was something I never felt comfortable doing, but then I discovered the endless possibilities of lines, so my pencils aren't going anywhere at the moment.

As I dig out more crafts, that have been burried in the basement and forgotten, I'll relocate them to new and loving homes.

Monogamous crafting is not in the near future for me, and I don't mind that. As long as the suppies i have on hand are for crafts, I do on a regular basis, I'm good.

Missing summer #1

I actually love autumn and winter, but there are days where I miss having the entire summer off and just  go seeing the world and do as you please without any firm plans...
So I made up a small series of posts with summer pictures to make me and hopefully you, remember and rejoice in the goodness that is summer. 

Stained glass mosaics in Trier

Porta Nigra in Trier

A beautiful waterfall in Bernkarstel

WIP Wednesday

I think it is about time I show you how my shawl is coming along. Being a monogamous knitter haven't been hard at all and I haven't felt like casting on anything new, yet.

I love knitting on the shawl at the moment and I have almost 5 flowers in the center from tip till top. I have calculated that I need 13 and I will make however many I feel like or until the yarn runs out, which ever comes first.

I fear that at some point, I'll really hate this giant shawl and just want to be done with it. Especially since I'm not knitting it for myself. And I'm really glad that there is no deadline on this project, because the rounds are getting longer and I have a feeling they will take hours to knit at some point.
Last time I timed a round it took 10 min. I think it takes me about 15 min. to knit a round at the moment, but I haven't timed it lately.

Fabric and a sewing lesson

I asked my parents for fabric and a sewing lesson from my mum for my birthday and they said it was a lovely idea. I want to make this:
Simple, classic, but with a twist. Made in jersey, which can be tricky to sew in, but which is also very comfortable. I might be going for grey and black shoulders.

My maternal grandmother was a seamstress by profession, so my mum knows a bit about sewing. I have sewn before and I'm not a complete beginner, but it has been so many years since I last sewed something from a pattern, that I would like my mum to hold my hand through it. An added bonus is that we have to be on the same island for this project.

I can really see this piece finding it's way into my wardrobe in many colours and variations...