Sunday, April 22, 2018

Color Play, Mandala Vest and Springtime Fling in Hemp Yarn

Every once in a while, I like to play with color! This time, I decided to make another Potholder for my kitchen. I decided to use pink, because it is supposed to be spring. I am not complaining, about cooler weather, no siree. :D I love that it hasn't warmed up here for a long time yet. In north Texas we have plenty of heat and it will be here before we know it. 



Another project that I have been busy on, is this Mandala vest. I made it pretty much from cotton yarns in my stash. There are a few round in an acrylic, in a silk and in a linen, but probably 85% is cotton. The pattern is actually a long sleeve sweater and the sleeves are bell sleeves. I decided that being in TX, I didn't need long sleeves for a spring/summer garment. So, I left the sleeves off.  The pattern has you start in the center of the back and work in rounds.


 When I finished the rounds that formed the armholes, I decided to work back and forth in rows. I didn't work across the bottom anymore, because I decided it was long enough for my 5 ft, 1 inch height. I also, wanted it to come around the front a little more than the designer had it do.


With those projects done, I am ready to start a new Springtime Fling! This is actually my pattern design, and I have made it several times, but I wanted to make one out of dark blue hemp for my self. Hemp is a great fiber to use and wear in Texas for the summer. It actually starts out softer than linen and I enjoy working with it. I am participating in  KAL with My Sister's Knitter group on Ravelry.


Saturday, March 3, 2018

Pairfect Sock Yarn, Crock Pot Applesauce, Corelle and a New Pattern

I know this isn't a big surprise, but when I was in Minnesota, with Debbie, we went yarn shopping. LOL. We had lots of fun and I did purchase yarn, even though I have been saying that I am using stash only for a while.  I lied....... Hahahaha! I needed to get a souvenir, right? What better than yarn??

I purchased Regia's Pairfect sock yarn designed by Arne and Carlos. Let me tell you, I love Regia sock yarn. It is a durable sock yarn, meaning my socks don't wear out quickly. Sure, it isn't as soft as merino, but merino, IMHO, is too soft to be durable socks. 

Back to this wonderful sock yarn.  It has absolutely NO KNOTS. Wow! They designed it to have no knots, the patterning won't work out if it does.  I watched Arne and Carlos's video on You-tube for successfully using this yarn. I wanted to make sure that the Pairfect Yarn came out Pairfect.  :)

I did change up their directions a bit. They like using the short-row heel for their socks and I prefer making the heel flap when knitting socks top down. I found the yarn easy to use and it was so much fun not having to measure the leg. You cast on, knitting one sock at a time, and just knit until you finish the red striping down near the heel. When the blue yarn started I made the heel. After the heel, I kept knitting across the instep, working those decreases and then knit the foot. I started measuring the foot after the blue yarn started again. They were a totally fun project.


What do you do with apples that have been sitting in the refrigerator and are starting to look old? I had some of those and some newer apples and some granny smith apples, too. I decided to make crock pot applesauce. I love homemade applesauce and have made it on top of the stove more times than I can count, but, I had read that if you make it in the crock pot, you don't have to "babysit" it. Confession: I babysat it anyway, I couldn't believe it wasn't going to stick. But, it didn't!

 I cut up, peeled and cored all the different apple varieties. Sorry, but I am not one of those talented apple peelers, who can peel the apple in one long strip...... I gave up on that years ago. After cutting up ALL of my apples, young and old, I had my crock pot almost full. (Picture above) I poured 1/2 cup of water over the apples, covered the crock pot and turned the temp to low. Then I walked away..... and was back in 5 minutes to check and in a half hour to check and 15 minutes to check.... you get the idea......

I even removed the lid and stirred the apples several times, not believing it wasn't going to stick. It really didn't stick!


It did take about 6 hours on low to get my applesauce all cooked, and it did cook down quite a bit, but applesauce does that anyway. This was definitely worth the wait. I didn't add sugar or cinnamon. I usually add cinnamon in my bowl, because my fabulous husband doesn't care much for cinnamon in his applesauce. :) All that to say, that I didn't even add it to mine. The flavors of the several different apple types blended together was wonderful.


Last Sunday I broke a piece of my Corelle...... Have you ever done that, broken Corelle?  It is vicious when it breaks, I like to say that it explodes.  Flies everywhere and in little tiny sharp pieces too. See those cups, well there is one less in that pile than what was there last Saturday. The cup fell off the bottom of the stack, yes I didn't have my hand on it, my mistake. 

The miracle of this is that the cup actually fell into that jar in the foreground! The handle, however, fell onto the counter and flew all over and of course I was in bare feet...... The second miracle was that I didn't get cut. My hubby was home and like I said, he is fabulous and brought my my shoes.

Even though the cup fell into the jar, it still broke. The clean jar, however, didn't break. It was fine! After dumping the broken cup pieces from the jar, I placed it on the stove top to deal with later. I had a floor to mop and sweep and a counter to clean off. 

When I returned to the jar, it looked like this. All those tiny white pieces are sharp Corelle pieces.... Some pieces are small enough to look like dust. I decided my cookie jar, wasn't worth me getting cut up and so it went off to the trash. I loved my Anchor Hocking jar, and thankfully Walmart still sells them and a new one lives on my counter where the other one used to be.


But, wait! There's more!!! I have launched a new pattern on Ravelry. This is the link to it. The name is Checkers Hand Towel. You do get the pattern for the white towel, the gray dish/wash cloth and the hanging towel.