The Upside of Frogging

It was time to take stock of my knits in progress. Some things had been languishing a bit too long. I had two shawl’s on the needles that had not been touched in months. One was a mystery shawl that was halfway done. Upon viewing the completed shawl I decided that I did not want to devote anymore time to that. It went to the frog pond. I felt no pain or sadness over this. I think I’ve matured as a knitter because frogging used to make me sad. I also had Haruni on the needles and although I like the pattern, the yarn and my gauge weren’t working together. Upon closer inspection of the shawl it looks like that time I accidentally attacked it with the vacuum had split the yarn, so that made the decision easier. Now on to the upside of frogging:

1. The yarn can be used for something new and exciting

2. New projects can be cast on without guilt.

After seeing  beautiful Tanis Fiber Arts yarn at AmphibiaKnits  it reminded me of my own stash of Tanis.  I knew I wanted to knit with Iris so I wound it up quickly.

IMG_4770 IMG_4774Isn’t she pretty?

I was thinking about making socks for someone else, but Iris is too special to give away. I’m not ashamed of my selfish knitting. I’m thinking I will do a simple slip stitch pattern of my own creation. Not following a pattern is not something I do. This should be interesting!

Autumn Socks

I was stash diving sometime around Halloween and this yarn just screamed autumn. It’s Malabrigo Sock in the color Marte. The pattern is Glenwood.

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This pattern is easily upsized or downsized by adjusting the stockinette portion. I managed to botch the pattern and switch the chart around on one of the socks but it didn’t make a big difference to me. I told you this yarn screamed autumn.

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I started these on October 30th. It took me so long because I’m easily distracted by other patterns and holidays. I will never tire of showing the heel flaps of my socks. I’m still fascinated by the heel flap on my socks. This is an interesting turn of events seeing as how not long ago I hated that type of heel, and swore I would never knit them if given a choice. Never say never.

IMG_4705The leg.

I’m glad to have another pair of Malabrigo socks in my collection. My favorite pair of socks were Malabrigo and I lost them in the hospital after giving birth to my son in 2011. They went down for a good cause I suppose.  If you take hand knit socks to the hospital keep track of them. My poor socks were probably thrown in the trash or are on some scandalous hospital workers feet. This worker never felt the need to swipe socks until they saw my beautiful, unique socks.  I prefer to imagine that the craftsmanship of my socks drove some nurse to a steal them as opposed to them being tossed.

My daydreaming is officially over. Thanks for taking the ride with me if you are still reading ha! I think I should make more socks out of my Malabrigo stash so I won’t have to worry if I lose a pair. I’m off to fondle yarn. Have a good week.

Quilty

I’ve recently discovered Quilty magazine. Its great. The quilt designs are fresh and modern. I also like that they give you a little diagram of how the quilt was quilted. I made my first quilt from the magazine. I think its called Sunny Side Up from the November issue. Its designed by Anna of Noodle-Head fame.

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This picture shows the backing used.

IMG_4686Let’s pretend that we don’t see that shadow in this picture shall we?

The piecing went pretty well. My quilting and binding have left a lot to be desired. I try to tell myself that the irregularities make the quilt special and my mom will love it even more. I do my binding completely on the machine. I keep trying and trying and I’m horrible at it. I’m about to give up and go back to finishing the binding by hand the quilt seemed to have went well, but when I went to quilt the piece there were tons of puckers. . My next quilt will be hand quilted. I’m excited to try out some major hand stitching. I feel thats an important thing to learn. Plus I have to use my quilting frame.

Madness

To end out 2013 I thought I would share my newest obsession with y’all. Ive gone from this …

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To this…

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Now y’all never-mind the ugly furniture in the perimeters of the photo. This is the upstairs den area where furniture goes to die.

So the orchid collecting has reached a peak. I’ve got a few more shelves that could be filled but that would require more lights and plants. I don’t want to have to spend more than an hour or two a week on the plants. I do enjoy my orchids so my husband helped me dream up this way to increase my collection. Orchidboard.com also served up a lot of inspiration.IMG_4592

On the bottom shelf we have a bunch of phalaenopsis.  A lot of these are orchids were bought on clearance at Lowe’s (about 3 bucks down from 15.00.) So they are currently in orchid ICU. Several of these plants are in spike. Yes I bought them that way, but one spike is homegrown by me. That plant that was at death’s door when I bought it many months ago! So thats exciting.

Next we have my dendrobiums and Cattleya’s. One of the den’s is growing a new cane and that developed totally under my care as well.

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For the lights we have T8 fluorescent light fixtures. The bulbs are 32 watts in cool and warm colors. After much research it was determined that this setup will provide the light required by my particular plants. I also keep the windows to the side of the shelving open for some natural light. I just like having more control over things. Hopefully it all works out well.

Happy New Year!