Friday, February 26, 2016

ALMOST BUNNY TIME

Yes bunnies are coming out to play around my house,  I have to say very happily we are having another cool snap this weekend with night temps in the 30's.  I'll hang on to the coolness for as long as possible.

With the snowmen melting away - it's bunny time.  I usually don't get bunnies out till March but it's been so unseasonably warm in the deep south - I thought it was time.

I couldn't resist getting out this tangled bunny rug canvas last weekend for our monthly rug guild meeting.  He was started last year.  Boy do I love how this is coming out.  It was color planned by one of my very favorite teachers - Dianne Kelly from the Woolen Cottage in Hiram Ohio. 

You might can see the very rich antique red background under the belly.  There won't be much background in this rug but Dianne sure chose an unconventional one which I just loved.  This will eventually become a tote bag I believe.  I added the splashes of pink and the blue,green,pink spot dye from my stash.  I was pleased with the addition of a little more color.

I might have shown this rug last year.  It is my oldest rug WIP, it spent years hiding in a bag with the other forgotten toys.  It has some special memories for me so I decided I did indeed want to finish it.  It was the very first rug camp Dianne Kelly taught at Castle in the Clouds.  It was my first "away" camp as a newbie hooker.  the original design was a Woolley Fox pattern by Warren Kimble which is no longer being produced.  Dianne altered the pattern to include my idea of having cabbages take up the entire background.  I just love the rich black dirt effect and the carrots in the border along with the black and white check outline. 

The last bunny is in progress. The progress is slow because it's not a traveling rug, it's on my big Townsend frame and I just work on it at home when I have time.  A few minutes here and there or an hour or so.  This is probably the most primitive rug you'll ever see me hook.  It is simple, na├»ve  and even though it's not the first rug I completed - it certainly is a beginners attempt and it shows.  Way back 15 years ago when I started this rug - I didn't know what "style or type" of hooking I wanted to do  In spite of that, there are things I love about this rug and I do want to display in my home one day.  We all started somewhere and hopefully we continue to improve our craft as we go along. 

This little bunny is by a local prim artisan.  He's perched on a giant wool carrot.

Changing gears a bit - here is a needlepoint class piece I did some years ago.  It is Ruth Schmuff's bunny tree.  It is such a fun colorful piece and just screams Easter .
Here's a closer shot of the hopping bunnies, hidden eggs and pastel flowers. It's a fun piece with all kinds of beautiful fibers. It is a bit challenging in that it is just so dang busy.  It's one of those pieces you just have to focus on one motif at a time and not the complexity of the overall project.  I think another problem was how exactly to tackle it.  In class you just do one element and move on.  I have done a lot of jumping around on it but I wonder if starting at the top and working down or starting at the bottom and working up would be a more efficient way to get it done.  I am going to consult a np expert friend of mine tomorrow and see what she thinks.
 
I had a cross stitch bunny design by With Thy Needle and Thread I wanted to show a photo of but I didn't have time to hunt it down this morning before I left the house.  Maybe I'll come back again before Easter and show my progress on these 3 WIP's.
 
So my friends - it's Friday again and almost the end of another month.  I hope whether you are still enjoying snowmen or are playing with bunnies - you have a great weekend full of everything you love to do.  I always enjoy hearing from you - please leave me a comment - I love them all.

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

WHEN FEBRUARY'S COLD WINDS BLOW

All kinds of things happen around my house.  I have been overcome by the wool fever this winter.  Once we finally got out of the 80's around here - the fever came upon me.  It happens every year just later than usual this year.  Frequent visits to the LYS have produced yet more wool around my house.

I've also been stitching a fair amount and knitting a lot.  The problem with the stitching is that I am still stricken with Startitis - a terrible disease that befell me a few months ago.  Once I finished my Queen of Hearts and the Autumn House - it came upon me with a vengeance.  Starting sometimes 2 or 3 projects a week - sometimes in the same day even.  Shock and horror !!!!!!!!!!

The other malady that has struck - since all these wonderful stitchers on Facebook have been showing their 7 most wonderful samplers - I have been under the spell of thinking "oh yes"  I have that one and maybe I could get it out and finish it.  HA - that is a sick thought for sure !  however there has been some disturbances "in the force" as my DH would refer to my plundering thru the stash in the wool room, rummaging thru boxes, bins and tote bags looking for *MY* Beatrix Potter sampler which sits unfinished or the dozens of other samplers barely started or just waiting - kitted up with luscious silks and linen.  So sad this situation of the long forgotten toys. 

Wow - this wasn't started as a true confessions episode ..................

Without further delay - let's see what I've been up to lately.

This is the first Plum Street Serial Bowl - stitched for me by DF Ellen L - I don't know what I did to deserve this but I am so in love with it.  Finishing by Janice Lancaster in Orlando.  She finishes for Glendon Place and many other fine stitchers.

A very appropriate fabric from stash.  Oh that is one of my Liberty Hill boxes on display.
 

Rats - This beautiful Mirabilia Alphabet pillow got turned the wrong way.  My dear dad stitched this for me but then I decided it was crazy for me to think I could make a quilt out of 26 of these plus I thought they were quite expensive.  That didn't keep me from ordering M E L when he said he would do more !  This lovely finishing is also by Janice and she chose the colors and style of the pillow.

This was such a fun piece to stitch.  Pina Ghoulada from the JCS magazine.  I missed Halloween but I'll be ready in 2016.  Again another cute finish by Janice. gotta love that eyeball button!

I found this fabric and thought it was perfect and the orange rickrack at the same quilt shop.

My second tree in the Fanciful Forest club by the Needlepointer.
I believe I showed my tree #1 finish before or I hope I did.  I have an idea for finishing these and I plan to make an attempt to finish them myself.  It will only take messing up one of them to send me running for the finisher but I really do want to try to do more of my own finishing.  A goal of mine for this year.
 

A close up to see the blocks, nothing hard about it, just great colors and fibers in this club.  I am so happy working with Mary at the Needlepointer - I decided to join their next Pippin Studios exclusive club - Hats, Bats and Boots - absolutely darling Halloween ornaments.  Can't wait !

Here is LHN No Pole Express - getting close to being finished.  I have to get it done before "snow" season is over or I will lose interest and be off to the bunnies.

The final installment of the club My Dwelling Place by LHN came yesterday.  This is my favorite of the designs. 

This is a small afghan I am doing from long stashed wool.  It is Malt by Tin Can Designs.
It is a very easy mindless project.  I always have to have those for late night knitting.

This one is actually a more accurate depiction of the color Beach Fog.  Dream in Color Classy if anyone is interested in exactly what it is.

Just a cute striped cowl for a special little girl.  Yarn is  a Universal worsted weight.  Simple pattern in the round of garter and stockinette rows.  Fun, colorful mindless - perfect for the brain dead network administrators out there.

Another mindless knit in the round row after row.  This is what I thought would be a quick poncho for a special little girl.  hummm - winter will likely be over but I'm trying.  It is 3 colors, the bottom is a beautiful purple but it doesn't show against the blinding yellow.  The hood is a 3rd color yet to be seen because I am still in stuck decreasing forever to the neck edge.

Both the P&W cowl and the poncho were recent purchases from the LYS KnitWitz. It was great to see so many new-to-me yarns there this winter.  Above is a company from Florida who uses American spun wool and hand dyes.  It's called The Fiber Seed.  I am anxious to get something on the needles, not sure what this lovely blue overdye will become, we'll see.
 

This is 2 lovely Mirasol yarns.  I've seen a lot of this brand here and there but I don't think I've ever bought any.  It is mostly alpaca from Peru and a portion of the profits go to support the Peruvian people.  The LYS had a lovely cowl on display in a different colorway and I had to have it.  It always helps to see a model you like and then to find the exact yarn called for in the pattern.  A sure sale!

The Fiber Seed company does Spouts too !  cute little 60 yard skeins suitable for color work or fair isle.  This adorable hat is in the newest issue of Vogue Knitting.  Can't wait to get it started.

To top it all off - I have finally taken the hexie plunge - I have so many friends who rug hook who do English Paper Piecing and make Lucy Boston squares or these little hexie pieces.  I'm not sure what these will become but I think I might make a little pincushion that I saw in the Moda Candy Squares booklet.  Beyond that - who knows maybe a quilt, its a whole big wide world out there.
 
and on that note - this ends the tour of my current afflictions er I mean affections.
 
Hope if you are wintering - you are hunkered down with some hand work and enjoying all that you are doing.  Thanks to my followers, I always love your comments on my posts.