Wednesday, 29 June 2005

French Market Bag is completely shrunk

Requisite pre-felting pic
French Market Bag knitted

Drying on the clothes horse after 1 cycle of felting.
French Market Bag felt 1

To be super-specific: Asko front loading washing machine - Super Quick Cycle (35 mins) at 80 degrees C. including spin at 800 rpm (bag in pillowcase + some other darks that needed washing). I let it dry and then decided that perhaps another round in the machine wouldn't go astray.

French Market Bag complete

Almost dry bag posing with current knitting (Scarf Style - Misty Garden) after 2 (in total) cycles in the washing machine (2nd cycle went through with the towels, no pillowcase this time, at 75 degrees C. with spin at 1200 rpm - I forgot to reduce the spin speed the second time around - no harm done).
End result looks pretty good although the light purple obviously wasn't as colour fast as the darker purple and I wasn't intending to have such obvious stripes. However, the moral of the story is that you can felt in a front loader. You just have to be brave because you can't stop it halfway through.

Latest book purchase:

I ducked into Dymocks at lunchtime today and was smitten by the quilt on the cover of this book The Modern Quilt Workshop. More quilts to add to the mental "to do" list which is growing longer and longer. All just-for-the-hell-of-it quilts are hold until the 3 wedding quilts are all done. It really was inconsiderate for them to all get married so close together - no consideration for the quilter's lot!

Friday, 24 June 2005

Using up yarn from the stash.

I have yarn (Stonewash 50% cotton / 50% acrylic in grey with a white fleck) left over from making Aibhlinn and so was hunting round for a pattern to use up the 3 balls extra (it was on special when I bought it so I erred generously on the side of caution). I'm trying out the Scarf Style Midwest Moonlight. I've done about 3 pattern repeats so far but I'm not sure if the yarn allows the pattern to be shown to the best advantage. I think the fleck detracts from the lace effect. Will post a photo when I get a chance.

General progress report:
I did a couple more rounds of the French Market Bag last night while watching The Amazing Race, Lost & ER. My theory was that if I did a little bit on each of my different projects, I would hence avoid further repetitive strain on my inflamed thumb joint. Not sure that it worked (I think I'll be hitting the chemists for the Voltaren today). As well as the FMB rounds, I cast on and did a couple of pattern repeats for Scarf Style Misty Garden, finished off a pattern repeat on the Midwest Moonlight and hand-quilted one block of the C&D Wedding Quilt. I also had the sewing machine out and constructed 1 block for the S&T Wedding Quilt (30 down, 19 to go!). Hmm, maybe it's no wonder that my hand is seizing up.

Wednesday, 22 June 2005

FMB progress and colour rationale

French Market Bag is coming along (see picture in my previous post) - I've done about 6" since I finished the increases although I may have to slow down for a while, as I seem to have managed to inflame my left thumb joint.

[materials - Lincraft's Cosy in brown, green, purple and black for the handles - slightly odd colour combination I know, but I did have a logic thought process behind it - brown for the earth, green for grass/leaves/foliage, purple for petals/blooms and black for the hell of it - it's a practical colour for the grubby handling bit. I'm knitting up with 2 strands on 5mm bamboo circulars (I used 4.5mm dpns to get it started) so the result is quite firm to begin with.]

I've hard to buy some more yarn though - another couple of balls are called for if it's going to get to the suggested length and I wasn't able to match the dye-lot for the purple (hmph!). Felting will be interesting (ie: hopefully it will disguise the dye-lot variance). I've got a front-loader and I've read conflicting reports on their successfulness in felting. I guess we'll find out in a week or so.

Monday, 20 June 2005

Friday, 17 June 2005

Finally! The Apple store called this morning and my green iPod mini (4 gig) has arrived after umpteen weeks. I spent a few goodly hours a couple of weeks ago loading up a selection from my CD collection onto my iBook - currently about 1.8 days of music. That will do a few commutes before it starts repeating itself. Now I can knit on the train with a soundtrack.

Speaking of knitting, I did suggest that I would muse about knitting. Current knitting WIP is the French Market Bag which will be my first (deliberate) foray into the world of felting. When we lived in London we did manage to felt a brand new Laura Ashley woolen polo neck jumper as we hadn't worked out how to turn down the temperature on the front loading washing machine (mysterious beasts to most antipodeans). We took it back and they very kindly exchanged it. The jumper went on the handwash list and we worked out the whole temperature control theory for the machine (ie - turn the dial back as far as it will go).

Photos of the aforementioned bag-in-progress will have to wait until I figure out how to post photos to the blog. One step at a time for this Womble.

Thursday, 16 June 2005

I've never kept a diary on a regular basis before (apart from a 6 week sojourn in France at the age of 16 - I think I needed an English language outlet) so I'm not sure what makes me think that I'll be any different with a blog. But I've been lurking on other people's blogs for a while now and felt that I wanted to share my work with others outside my real world circle.
So stay tuned for quilt pics, knitting WIPs (my copy of Scarf Style has just arrived from Amazon) and the odd grump about dubious anaginds in the daily cryptic.