Friday, February 16, 2007

Muslin, not a Muslin

I have tons of other sewing that I needed to start before I began this step. But I was itching to get a look at my pattern choice in 3D. I am refering to begining the muslin for my wedding dress. I could wait no longer to get a foot in the door. Everything is beginning to feel very real as far as wedding plans and seeing my dress bcome flesh is make that realness more palatable. I am recycling some old sheets as my muslin material - makes it a little more fun to look at may drape somewhat more comprabably than cotton muslin. My grandma would be so proud because I am actually basting my darts and seams. Granted, this habit is really necessary if this muslin will morph into my actual pattern. Still, this behavoir is something that I am usually way too lazy to actually do. I am really excited the more that I see this evolve, the more convinced I am that this dress is the perfect fetching choice. I hope that you enjoy this little fabric and thread treat, since I rarely show you sewn items.

Thursday, February 15, 2007


She said Magenta and Black. I am afraid that I made it turn to the pink side though. This is the evolution of the Smonsters. The new breed is a Smelephant. They don't have first names. I will leave that responsibility to their new keeper, my someday SIL, Debi. She was allowed to adopt them as a 22nd birthday privilege (get the tu-tu theme...darn a tu-tu would have been a fun Smelephant..).

Before they were sent to their new home, I made sure that they could past the good luvin/well-enough stuffed test. I had a volunteer from the knitting table love 'em and hug 'em till they might pop. It was a successful test end even the trunks proved quite sturdy (6 stitch i-cord made from stitches picked up in the middle of the faces with a bit of pipe cleaner stuffed down the middle).

Next I might indulge a suggestion made by Mr. K. I might play at combining animal breeds - I have always dreamed of playing with DNA and having my own Dr. Moreau's island. (Of course, even after I tie the knot it would have to be Dr. Lecrivain's island since, in the future there will be many Dr. C's and Dr. L is still French while Dr. C is Italian.) On (here comes honorary title) Dr. Lecrivain's island, Mr. K suggested that a good first combo would be an elepant plus a mouse. Any other suggestions?

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Smitten Smonsters

I saw their cousin posted under a magnet on the blackboard when I got into work on Thursday. The two headed monsters' original creator, kate sutton(left), and a late night knit night knitter, Hannah(right), both had elements of inspiring cuteness that I could not resist copying. I feel like the kid in kinder being whined at; I keep thinking that I am going to hear "stop copying me" in an annoyed tone whaft over my shoulder. Hopefully, both of these talented ladies will feel the "impersonation-is-the-highest-form-of-compliment" vibe. Kate makes both sewn and knitted cuteness that was featured in an article for the magazine Romantic Homes. She seems to do a lot of charity orientated knitting also which equals tons of good karma. Hannah is a brave knitter (I say brave because the pattern calls for #2 needles) who added her own twist to this robot by adding a blanket stitched heart in lui of his circuit box which quickly deepened my love for this little techie guy.

So, I ordered up a creativity combo with a side of my interpretation and, voila, I give you Heather and Todd Smonster. The way I came to that name is slightly convoluded. You can accept that as the name on face value or you can keep reading to be enlightened. The surname came from this thought process: the two-headed nature of these monsters reminded me of the cuteness of a smitten, the mitten with two hand opening so that lovers can wear one mitten while out walking. Smitten became Smonster. Their first names came from the fact that their green heads look like square froggy heads and the need to honor history with a long lost friend. Heather had a crush on a guy named Todd; they were in a theater program together; the dance instuctor called Todd "toad" one time; Heather had a stuffed WB dancing frog; I dubbed it Todd, the Dancing Frog - now all frogs are named Todd in my head. Therefore, this perfect frog-like couple needed to be named Heather and Todd Smonster.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Braggadocious Teach

Don't read me wrong here. I did not root for this team at the Rose Bowl. I rooted for the Trojans as it is my birth right to do (this really sounds like I actually care even though I mostly could go on living w/o rooting for anyone). The funny thing is that the knitter who made this scarf probably feels equally ambivilant. Please see the mittens she made. She made it as a thank you gift to a Michigan alumna. The pattern is Leslie Bibb's contribution to Celebrity Scarves. The knitter, Debra, edited the original pattern by making it more narrow and a wider pocket. The "M" was cut out of felt and sewn on. (Three cheers for another way to avoid duplicate stitch.)

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Orange you glad...

That is really my favorite joke. Forever and always.
I was going to wait to show you this one really truly finished but who knows when the amazing lining will actually be inserted into this orange number. I was going to give it a white bottom but it would have been yarn wasteful so I continued with the orange. A white bottom is a silly thing for a purse anyway. The gusset was only lightly torturous since the stacked moss stitch is sorta refreshing. If you make this purse, here is another way that I kept my sanity in knitting the long scarf like object: I knitted a bit, compared it to the blocked edge and placed a yarn maker, rinsed and repeated till I had each four side sections done.

Speaking of blocking, I was never a believer until recently. Mostly, I was a blocking agnostic because I didn't make much that really needed to be blocked; I was making more things that could just be used straight away as is without shaping like hats where the beauty of the cable showed because it was stretched over my nogin. I knew that the purse needed some steam loving to show its real beauty and structure. What a pleasant unveiling as the steam relaxed each stitch into place.

I substituted 2 skeins of Lamb's Pride Bulky and worked with it single strand (they wanted double strand). Loverly.

Friday, February 02, 2007

And the stripe goes on

Here is the withheld accessory that I did with the last dribble of yarn from the Mango Moon fun. I used up nearly every dribble of yarn that was put together for this project. Nothing wasted except maybe 2 or 3 feet of the green. And, since it is not officially in the trash yet, it may be used in the near future as poor (lazy) girl stitch markers; therefore, there may be zero waste here. I had been a believer that knitting them in the round was faster and more satisfying that I did not have to do any sewing at the end. But, yesterday, I didn't have any #9 DPN's so I grudgingly cast them on the straights. It was surprisingly speedy and the quick ladder stitch at the end was just as anoying as weaving in ends.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Fly me to the Mango Moon

Here is the Mango Moon Scarf that I was working on way back on our "Snowy Day" (which someone I dearly love did call a big snow which it was for us).

If you recall, I created the stripe pattern via the Random Stripe Generator. I was planning to just keep repeating the sequence of 100 rows until the proper length was reached. Fearing that I would have to repeat it about 4 more times, I set it aside due to dread. Then a different, more hopeful plan occurred to me. I could cast on another matching sequence and each could be the corresponding ends. For the middle, the long ways cast on would again be my sanity. The bias movement of the stripes is created by, on the right side rows, increasing at the start and decreasing at the end. I had left the stitches live on each end section and picked up the same number of stitches on the middle section; then, I used good ole kitchener stitch to join them fairly seamlessly.

There was a fair amount of each yarn left so I offered to make a coordinating hat. To my glee, the offer was accepted. Then, there was tiny bit of each left and I offered to make one more coordinating accessory, which was also accepted, also to my glee. I'll show you what I did with that tomorrow. (Stop complaining; it wouldn't be the first time that I was called a tease.) ;)


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