Friday, May 24, 2013

monkey feet and silk scarves

As well as an awful lot of sewing this week, I have made FOUR sets of monkey slippers.  If you have never made knit, then felt, slippers, this pattern is fun and easy.  
It is a free pattern, once you register with the site.  I made the smallest a couple of stitches smaller and the length an inch shorter.  Then just wash them in hot soapy water until shrunk to size you want.  I hand sewed the non slip sole to the bottoms.  This is good because they are slippery slippers otherwise, and the bottom of the slipper will wear out too quickly without that protection...

 Then I made some new dryer balls. These ones are so pretty with silk fabric embedded into the surface!  In case you have never used dryer balls, they are thrown into the dryer (I use four at a time) with your load, and WITHOUT dryer sheets.  You get no static, as the wool balls bump the clothes apart and reduce static naturally.  You also get about 25% less drying time with most loads, because the wool absorbs some of the moisture.  Just towels seem to need the full drying time for me.  It is easy to find uTube video on how to make these.  I use extra felting wool, rolled into a tennis ball size ball, then cover with merino roving, and silk fabric, and mohair yarns.  Place in panty hose, tie off, and wash in full speed hot soapy washing machine.  One or two cycles works!
 And here are the newest nuno-felt scarves.  I rescued several vintage silk saris from India, and used pieces from at least three different fabrics to build a new silk and wool fabric that is crinkly and shiny and amazing.
 bits of wool, yarn, and silk fibres, and laid out on the patchwork of sari silk.
 Navy, red and orange pops.
 Close up of wool, yarn, and silk fibres.
 Tan, burgundy, black.
 shimmering silk and wools

These scarves are so light weight and one of a kind.  Way better in person.  About five feet long, and 18 inches wide, they can be a shoulder wrap, or circled around the neck as a cowl.  This item can be used year round!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Look at this...

I received this letter yesterday and was overwhelmed by the inspiring words.  I have so many requests from googlers who find the golf club covers, and do not knit, and just ask ME to knit for them..... "how much would your charge? " or, "please send me a set in purple and black..."  !!!!  I respond with a form letter that declines knitting for them (you could not afford me) and suggests they find someone who knits, and who LOVES them, buy them the yarn, print out the pattern, and THANK them for the hours of work!
Not only has Mary Ellen learned to knit, just for this pattern, she now knits them for everyone she knows.  You are amazing Mary Ellen.  Truly the soul of a knitter, selfless, creative, and inspiring.

I share with you her letter.....

Dear Chris,

In November 2012 I got a new golf bag and wanted headcovers so I searched the web. I saw yours and thought they were darling, and wanted to make them right away. Oh! A small pesky problem....I don't know how to knit!

My mother tried to teach me 50 years ago (I am 59) but she was left-handed and I simply could not follow her. Over the years I became an advanced quilter and needle worker, but never attempted knitting until I saw your headcovers because they are so darn cute. Mom is gone, so I jumped onto YouTube and searched knitting. I hit pause/rewind about a hundred times, but I "got it" enough to try.

Well, the rest is history. I have made myself and now seven friends full sets of your headcovers and have requests for more rolling in. I live in Florida and played all winter with snowbirdie friends from all over the north, including your Canada. Now the requests are coming in from Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Ontario!

I even knit while I play golf! When it is slow, I do a row to keep relaxed rather than getting annoyed at the slow pace. I can't thank you enough for your wonderful pattern and many hours of enjoyment.

Mary Ellen

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

One and a Half MILLION ... wow

I have an awful lot on my plate these days.  I am altering wedding dresses, and prom dresses ('tis the season), as well as refashioning many of my friends' spring clothes.  I am also painting a large sofa size house portrait.  Golf is up and running, and I am out there four times a week, whacking the little white ball around the big green park.
I have a new pattern almost finished, but it is slow with all the extra things occupying my time!
And, sometime last week, my views surpassed one and a half million!  So thank you again!  I have been receiving lots of emails, mostly about attaching pattern notes, but lots are wonderful letters thanking me for the patterns, and discussing patterns and gauges, and yarn choices.  I love them all, so keep up the emails and comments.

 My sister dropped in for lunch on Mother's Day (what a treat, as she lives in Winnipeg, but fit me into a quick work related trip... thanks Kim).  She was wearing a beautiful knitted coat, that she knit this year.  She does wonderful work, and I wish I took a photo.
More patterns to come soon, more felting to show soon, more nice weather to golf in soon.... I love spring.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Birdhouses, Soap and Wine

What a great week. I was invited to join the knitting group in Niagara-on-the-Lake, for an afternoon of knitting and chats.  I met so many new knitters, and had so much fun, we are going to do a repeat.  A home and away visit with my knitting group and the N.O.T'y knitters! 
I also just wrapped up the felting workshop, and we made birdhouses and felt soaps.  Lot of different looks with the birdhouses, as you can see.  You can also notice some soaps, and the wine.  I only bring the wine out AFTER the hard work is done, and it is a nice finish to the afternoon.
 From the other angle...
Always fun, because knitters and felters and crafters in general are a special breed.  I love them all.