Friday, December 29, 2006
I did take a warp painting class while in Texas. This is the second time I had taken a warp painting class and I was very disappointed with the results both times. I have found something on the internet that I will try in 2007. The process to get a space dyed look for your weaving projects is to use your knitting machine (I have one) and knit a simple stockinette, paint the knitting, unravel, use the unraveled yarn to warp your loom. http://www.machineknittingtodyefor.com/. This sounds so great and might solve my problems.
Found two weaving stores and went to weaving guild meetings in Dallas and Ft. Worth. The members were so friendly and made me feel right at home.
I was home from June to August but did not really get much done. I was just so tired. That is when I learned that I had diabetes. We have caught it early enough so that I can control it with diet and exercise but the knowledge through me for a loop. In September, actually I spent Labor Day driving to an assignment, I worked in NewPort News and Virginia Beach, VA. Stayed there until the end of October.
Finally met Sue. She's the one who got me interested in Paint Shop Pro. She came to meet me at the hotel I was staying in NewPort News one day and taught me so much. I had never met her before; a dear friend had told her about me and wanting to learn how to make signature tags and digital scrapbooking. Sue had such patience with me sending screenshots to try to get through to me the things she wanted me to learn. I do not know how to thank her for all she has taught me. Of course, my children would not thank her, I made all the gift tags for their gifts in Paint Shop Pro using pictures from when they were very young. I will post some of the tags when I have a chance so you can see what I came up with. My son said that I made him look like a pimp on one of the tags. At least my daughter knew that it was Willy Wonka from the Chocolate Factory fame.
The week before Thanksgiving, I was sitting in a hotel in PA waiting for my sister to call me to pick her up when I received a call from work that I was being sent to work in New Orleans but did not have to leave until the December 4. My sister and I have never been really close but now that my parents have both died, I wanted to do whatever I could for us to be sisters again. This meeting was the beginning. We talk every week and I feel that whatever caused the riff and I do not know what, we can mend our relationship.
I had fooled around making my gifts so I had to really curtail my plans for Christmas. I left home on December 3rd and took my sewing/embroidery machine and spinning wheel with me to New Orleans. I had to find things for friends gifts, a coffee exchange, and items to finish making family gifts, while running around a strange city were I had so little time after work. Somehow, I got everything done. I even convinced a co-worker that she could do crafts and helped her make funky dishwashing gloves for her sisters. We had been in a shop on Magazine Street in New Orleans when we saw these dishwashing gloves for sale. I told her that we could make them and make them better. I did the sewing of the cuffs and had her do all the gluing of the "Bling" factors on the gloves. She was thrilled. My son has not sent me the pictures we took Christmas so I will have to show you later the results. I was just as pleased as she.
To end the year, I am home until January 2, 2007. I wanted to go by and see my friends. I went to Gail's weaving/knitting shop. She is only 15-20 minutes from me which makes it nice. She is the lady that has taught me the basis of spinning.
Gail would not let me take a picture of her. But if you ever have a chance to go to Gettysburg, PA, you should check out her shop, she is right in the center of town. http://mistymountainfw.com
There is another weaving shop with more yarn but not nearly as much love and friendship.
I also have been working on some socks. My daughter gave me sock yarn and a great pattern for Christmas. I have to get the socks finished that I have been working on first. I always have two pairs of socks (different patterns) going at the same time. I get tired of working on one and then I work on the other for awhile.
I will get them the other sock for each pair done this week or by the time I get back.
The green sock has a cotton yarn top but the foot part is a very soft 100% Merino Wool by Louet called Gems. I did not like the feel of the cotton and did not want it on the foot part. I have to take a picture of the shawl I wove so you can see. I wove it on my 8 harness Ashford 25" table loom using Bambuu 7 from Cotton Cloud. Of course before you see it, I may have used the fabric as panels in a jacket. I have been leaning toward that.
My son-in-law brought me luggage for Christmas for my trip to Europe. Since I am taking the Rick Steves, Europe through the Backdoor tour, you can only take with you what you can carry and put in the overhead bin on the plane. The luggage my son-in-law gave me can be used as a backpack or wheeled luggage. My daughter and son-in-law filled the bag with things I would need for the trip like: a silk sleep sack and a power converter. My son-in-law's parents gave me a travel alarm clock; really needed that.
My son gave me a video IPOD so that this way I will have my music, books, and can download my photos while on my trip. He also gave me a desktop computer. He is on his way to see me today and set up the computer. For some reason I am not trusted to do it myself. Okay, so I spill coffee, water, soda into my computers but I promised that I would not do that anymore.
My son is here, I am getting a new computer with flat screen monitor....HURRAH!!!!!!
Thursday, December 28, 2006
The first is from Joan. I met her while working in Dallas, Texas this year. She is a quilter in every sense of the word. She is the only person I ever met that buys fabric by the bolt.
Against my better judgment, Joan is determined that I become a quilter. I think there is no hope, but I am willing to try. I received some beautiful fat quarters, a subscription to McCalls Quilting and a cute pink bag to carry my quilting supplies in. I was thrilled with these but the treasure was a ceramic house for my Christmas village of a Quilt Shop. I have named it Joan's Quilt Shop and will make a sign to sit in front of it for my village next year.
Don't you think it is precious....., I do.
I also received a mountain load of gifts from Vicki. She is my new knitting friend. We have not met but it seems like I have known her for years. She was my secret sender in the One Skein Exchange and made a beautiful pin for me knitted on toothpicks. I will never get over that. We decided to stay in touch and send each other knitted gifts for Christmas, etc.
She had mentioned that she like the fingerless mittens that I had sent my One Skein Exchange person, so I made her a pair for Christmas. When I received her package, I almost fainted. I received homemade creme candy (melts in your mouth) made from a receipe from her grandmother, as well as homemade Chocolate Bark candy (I seem to have a piece in my mouth all the time). She also sent homemade marmalade that has been a part of my morning breakfast since I received it. So delicious. She made the marmalade from the fruits that her sister brings her.
I have some beautiful note cards that I can only send to special people that can appreciate them. Vicki said that they were a Bible school project with yarn scraps. According to Vicki, there is no end to what she can do with scrap yarn.
I have no words for the yarn. But I should not be surprised, Vicki's taste in yarn is breathtaking. I will never find a project that will do it justice....however, it will be fun trying. The colors......no words can express.
She admitted that she used my blog to find out what I liked. I had mentioned in a previous post that I liked Creme Brulee coffee. I can not find it very often around where I live so when I go to a coffee shop that has it, I become a very good customer of theirs. To my amazement, she sent me Creme Brulee coffee from her favorite coffee shop. I am sitting here at this moment savoring the aroma and taste of that coffee. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you, Vicki.
And now my knitted gift....I have never tried to design any knitting. She made me a skinny scarf that she designed and made herself.
I wore it to my local weaving/knitted shop and got so many compliments. I was smiling so hard you would have thought that I had made it.
Isn't the internet wonderful. You meet such wonderful people.
I have a short story to tell you about another internet friend. I had been receiving emails of jokes for almost a year but did not bother to tell the person that I did not know them because I loved the jokes. I had to say something when I received an email asking for the address of a relative. I wrote her back and told her that I did not know her but would like to stay on her contact list because I loved the things she sent.
We sent back a few notes and she sent me a picture of her and her husband. When I found out that I was a diabetic, she wrote me to tell me that she was Type 1 and that I could control it. She sent me magazines, pamphlets and a cookbook as well as being a wealth of knowledge on what I need to do. Because of her help, I am not taking any kind of medication. I have everything under control with diet and exercise. I can eat anything I like but in moderation and have to watch portion size. Thank you very much Susie.
Tuesday, December 26, 2006
First however, I want to show you what I sent for my coffee swap and also some pages from the Chunky Book Exchange.
In the coffee swap you were to send a box to your coffee exchange partner that consist of goodies and coffee. My box is on it's way from my exchange partner and I can hardly wait. Here is what I sent her:
I asked her for a wish list and she told me that she would love a book by E Zimmerman or Nancy Bush. I found that the bookstores in New Orleans did not have many books. I found a store just before I sent the box that had one book. I also sent the coffee that the locals in New Orleans drink which is a combination of coffee and chicory as well as a pound of regular coffee. I was happy to see that the yarn store that had the book also sold hand dyed sock yarn. I never worked so hard trying to put a box together as I did this time.
I also received my Chunky Book. The pages were to be 4X4 and the theme was Santa and Me. I did not have a picture of me with Santa but I had one of my daughter so I put my baby picture face over hers. I was happy that we were facing the same way.
This was so much fun. I would I would love to do another project like this.
We could not leave the back of the pages blank as you can see.
I met my friend Ileana a few years ago while working in Akron, OH. She kept me laughing while we walked in the evenings after work telling me about coming to the U.S. and not being able to speak English. You know that the person has a good heart and a great sense of humor when they can laugh at themselves. She has written a book about her faith which I will tell you about in another post. For quite sometime, I have been trying to get her to get a hobby. Since she loves jewelry, she called me one day and told me she was taking a jewelry class. After she took the class, she called me back to tell me that she loved it and was making me a present for Christmas. I was speechless when I opened the box. The first thing I saw was a beautiful purse made with fabric from her homeland in Guatamala. She knows how much I love their weaving. I then saw a small white box that held a gorgeous fused glass pendant. My mouth was in a constant grin when I saw the little green box, it held another fused glass pendant. I had no idea....They are so beautiful. I am going to get a simple chain for one and let my daughter make me something for the other one. I am sure you will agree that they are beautiful.
I received two more boxes from friends. But that is another post.....
Hope all had a very Merry Christmas...
I sure did.
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
The exchange hostess asked everyone to share their favorite coffee mugs. I have two. One I have only had a few months but find I use a lot now and the glass one I have had a very long time. They both keep the coffee nice and hot. The brown and blue one is about to take a trip. I am being sent to work in Lousiana on Sunday so this cup is packed. I hate the plain cups in the extended stays we are housed in.
Also, we were asked to show our favorite coffee spot. I live in a town with one stop light, a blinking light at the end of my street, a grocery store, and 2 pizza shops. They also have 2 coffee shops that are as different as night and day. One is a combination religious gift shop and coffee shop. They have a comfy sofa and lots of chairs and tables. They have a few pieces of dessert and bagels if you get their early. Every time you go in, there is a different person working so you never get to know the staff.
The other shop has one table and two chairs, lots of delicious desserts and of course, coffee. This second shop is called Main Street Sweets and is owned by two very nice ladies, Wendy and Jennifer.
I truly like the atmosphere of this shop, it is a 5 minute walk away and you can buy bite size desserts for 50 cents. So if you have not guessed, my favorite shop is Main Street Sweets. I went down to take these pictures today and get a cup of their Gingerbread Latte and found myself walking back not only with the Latte but a piece of some delicious pecan something. Made the trip worthwhile.
The exchange also asked that you complete a questionnaire on your blog or the exchange blog.
Here is the answers to my questionnaire:
1. WHOLE BEAN OR GROUND: ground. It is easier for me since I am in hotels most of the time.
2. FULLY-LOADED OR DECAF: Fully loaded of course...is there any other kind?
3. REGULAR OR FLAVORED: I prefer Flavored.
4. HOW DO YOU DRINK YOUR COFFEE: Lots of half and half with Splenda
5. FAVORITE COFFEE EVER: Creme Brulee..Unfortunately, I have not found a place near me that sells it.
6. ARE YOU FUSSY ABOUT YOUR COFFEE OR WILL ANY OLD BEAN DO: I am a little fussy
7. FAVORITE TREATS TO HAVE WITH YOUR COFFEE: Oatmeal or Peanut Butter cookies
8. ANYTHING ELSE ABOUT YOUR COFFEE PREFERENCES: No
9. YARN/FIBER YOU LOVE: Natural fibers
10. YARN/FIBER YOU HATE: Synthetics
11.WHAT'S ON YOUR NEEDLES: I have three projects going, socks-fingerless mittens-a purse
12. FAVORITE COLORS: Everything
13. ALLERGIES: No
14. ANYTHING YOU REALLY LOVE, REALLY DON'T LIKE, OR JUST NEED TO GET OFF YOUR CHEST: I have to go back to work and it is not fair. I will have to fight with the masses to fly home for Christmas and then back to work the day after New Year.
Also, I am looking for a wife for my son...he has a great job, loves to travel and have fun. No stuck in the muds need to apply.
Until next time...have a great day
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
In the previous post, I posted a few pictures of my Christmas Village. Here are a more.
After reading the post from Monte on the Dept. 56 newsgroup, I will be running out to get some baking or pool soda to make my snow. His looks so realistic.
I have a meeting to go to on Thursday (work), so I will have to stop working on my Christmas gifts. Work always seems to get in the way of fun.
Monday, November 13, 2006
The theme of the Chunky Book page is that you have to use a picture of you with Santa. Well, I do not have a picture of me with Santa but I do have one of my daughter with Santa. I just put my face over hers and I was set. I just put the picture in an ornament and decorated. You were asked not to leave the back of the page plain. I decided to use the Sports Illustrated cover because I thought I made a great cover girl. LOL
Next I finished up my Christmas Village. It was so hard to decide which village pieces that I was going to use. I really wanted to use all but would have to move out all my furniture.
I will have more pictures in my next post. I was only able to put a few on this time.
Just have a couple more sewing projects to finish and of course some knitting and weaving.
Wait until my son, daughter, and son-in-law see the gift tags I have made. I may be banded from the family. I will show you some examples later.
Isn't Christmas fun?
I really do not have much shopping to do because I buy all year round but I do like to make things and usually get right up to Christmas before I finish.
See you later...
Friday, November 03, 2006
I have started on Christmas. The table is up in the living room for my Christmas Village. You will see the progress as it I get things done. It takes me a couple of weeks to get it like I want. There probably will not be a ski lift this year. I can not figure out away to add it.
I basically start with a few houses to decide on the layout and lighting, then the hard part of deciding which houses and stores I have room for. I collect Christmas in the City and Snow Village from Department 56 as well as the great houses from Ace Hardware. In fact, I love the Ace lighthouses so much that I am trying to decide where to put them so that I can have a fishiing village as part of my Christmas setup.
Since the Christmas in the City pieces are smaller, they go toward the back that makes it look like the city is in the distance. That is where my park is also located. The train station is in trouple as to whether it will be added this year. Not sure how people get in and out of town. I might leave the bus station since it takes up less room, we will see.
I have purchased a few Christmas presents but I have cut out fabric for items that I am making for my daughter as well as myself. I want a new coat this year. When I was at the fine art craft show in Annandale, VA, I saw the perfect coat but it cost so much. I am trying to make one that will satisfy that want/need. Anyway, the fabric is cut out for all my projects and now the sewing begins.
There are are few people that I want to weave some gifts for. I promised a scarf to one friend and a throw to another. Oh, and as for me, I wove some fabric that was suppose to be a shawl but now will be panels in a jacket just have to weave the fabric for the main part. I will show you pictures of all the projects as they are finished.
I do not send many Christmas cards but the few I do will need to be designed in PSP (Paint Shop Pro), use my embroidery machine to make free standing lace ornaments to put in the cards and somehow get them out in time. I did not send out any cards/ornaments last year and I have one friend that told me that she has a blank spot on her tree because I did not send her one last year.
Oh, I have some socks and mittens/hats to get knitted.
Time, Time, Time, is there ever enough in the day.
Thursday, October 26, 2006
I had purchased the yarn to make myself the purse. When I joined the exchange I thought that the pattern would be great for my secret pal, Kim. I decided to use different yarn for the flowers and purchased what the lady at the yarn shop told me was "good" yarn for felting. Well, I can assure you that the yarn is "NOT" good for felting. My green trim (represents the leaves) is floppy and the flowers which was suppose to be two layers, did not felt so I only used one layer.
I was at my daughter's this week crying and getting very upset because the purse was not what I had expected after washing everything 3 times. I call it my "flower garden purse". I thought by give the purse a name, it would be something Kim will like. I put a treat inside hopefully to make her smile.
I am happy to say that I received my tote from my pal. The tote was full of such great gifts. I did get embarrassed because I was wearing what I thought was a pin she had sent me and when I thanked her, she said that she had sent stitch holders and just put them on a safety pin. I was wearing the pin (stitch holders) on my work sweatshirt because it matched.
I downloaded the picture of the purse but must have deleted it by mistake. I will show you my great purse in my next post.
I am in two other exchanges that I need to work on now. Hopefully, I can stay home long enough to get them finished.
Saturday, September 09, 2006
I received a comment on this blog from a DeltaDawn that I could get in touch with her regarding yarn shops in Virginia Beach and area. However, she commented as anonymus so I have no way to reach her. DeltaDawn, if you read this, please tell me how to get in touch with you. I am off on Saturday's and need additional yarn to finish the tote I am knitting.
I have been working on my tote for the International Tote Exchange. The base is finished but I need to buy the yarn for the flowers based on the colors that my secret pal likes. Looks like I will only have a chance to work on it on Saturdays since I get in so late from work that all I want to do is crawl into bed. Here is what I have so far:
I do hope she will like it. I had purchased the pattern and the yarn for myself before I heard about the exchange. The colors of yarn that I had purchased for the flowers is not the favorite colors of my secret exchange pal so I will just save that yarn for my own purse that I will make later.
I am also doing a mitten KAL. I have almost completed the first convertible glove. Oh goodness, I was just looking at the picture and see that I will have to make one of the fingers longer. Did not notice that before. I had planned on these for myself and kept wondering why there was no change in instructions for men and women. I tried on the incomplete one and it is gigantic on my hand. Guess my son or son-in-law will have convertible mittens for Christmas.
Want to knit for another 1/2 hour or so before dinner and getting ready for work tomorrow. Just the thought of 12 hours answering questions and going over estimates is making me tired.
Saturday, September 02, 2006
Packing as we speak. Have to get my knitting projects packed for the tote exchange and mitten KAL as well as make sure I have everything I need for the Christmas Page swap that I just signed up for. I work 12-14 hours a day so I will not get a lot done for awhile.
I will post pictures of my convertible gloves so far in the next post.
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
I was working on some signature tags the other night and my eye kept roving to the wall behind my dinette table. I have changed the theme of the the kitchen/dining area but had done nothing to the wall. I searched the internet for something out of the ordinary but cheap without success.
My eyes fell on a signed poster that I had of Venice Carnivale. The creative juices started to flow. Now I ask you, when you see poster tape, a poster, ribbon and your printer; what comes to
I am not sure what you thought of but I saw those items and the first thing that came to my mind was to make a wallpaper border.
Since I have lots of images that I use in making my signature tags, it did not take me long to discover that I had numerous images of Carnivale mask. This is the results....
I do not have a blank wall anymore.
Wonder how long before I get another idea and come up with something else?
I am off to start knitting my tote for the International Tote Exchange, and possibly work on the convertible gloves for the Mitten KAL. Oh, I also have to finish warping my loom for the scarves I am making and spin some yarn for part of the design on the tote. Where does all the time go?
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Because it takes me so long to warp, I am warping to make two scarves, one for a male co-worker as a Thank You gift and one for me. The warp is Bambu purchased from Cotton Cloud at 30 epi (ends per inch) and the pattern is from an issue of Weavers that I really liked but had to make a couple of changes to make it fit my scarf.
It was my intention when I purchased the yarn to have the warp and weft in the same yarn. However, now that I have started to warp, I read a post stating that the yarn stretches. This has caused me to rethink what I am going to use for the weft so we will just have to see. Since this is the most epi that I have ever warped, I am taking my time and praying alot.
I put on an extra yard of yarn to sample and finish as if I was making the final item, rather than put on a small amount of yarn and have to warp for the larger project once it looks okay. Something else that I discovered was that by warping with something smaller than I was actually making did not show me the drape or could I see how the complete pattern was going to work on the finished project. I am also saving all my samples, whether I like it or not, to make a quilt someday with my handwoven.
The first piece was made on my 4 harness Norwood 22 inch workshop floor loom about 8 years ago. The fiber for warp and weft is a wool/silk blend. I made this scarf for my father so it is shorter than what I normally make.
The second scarf was made on the same loom about 5 years ago. The warp is Dragon Tail varigated rayon and tencel , the weft is tencel.
The last is 2 years old and it was made on my 8 harness Ashford table loom. This is the loom that I take with me when I travel because it folds flat even with the warp on it and the table makes a great stand for my warping board. The swinging beater and the placement of the levers is very smooth. I have been toying with the idea to sale my 8 harness to get the 16 harness Ashford table loom. Someone told me that this loom does not fold as flat. Even with this new knowledge, this is still something that is very much in my mind.
The yarn for this scarf is tencel and Dragon Tail varigated rayon for the warp and tencel for the weft.
As you can see I love weaving with tencel which is a wood based natural fiber. I purchased some white silk but have not had a chance to give it a try. That will be my next weaving project. I want to dye the yarn and weave a shawl for my trip next year.
Beside my Ashford and Norwood looms, I have a 8 harness 45" LeClerc jack loom, 40" Gallenger counter balance loom for my rugs, and a triangle loom that I have not used for quite a while. I find that I use my Ashford even when I am home because it sits in the living room.
My next post will be to show you my latest sewing projects unless something else grabs my attention.
Thursday, August 17, 2006
I am also working on making animated signatures. This is the first hobby that I have ever had that cost "nothing" once you buy the program. At some point, I plan on making digital scrapbooks using all I have learn making the tags.
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
My secret pal has been such a dear and the skeins I received were exactly what I would have chosen for myself. As impressed as I was in how she knew what I would like without us ever meeting, the item she knitted for me is something I will cherish. I am still trying to imagine how anyone could knit on toothpicks. Yes, I received a scarf pin, with beads, knitted on toothpicks.
Can you believe this piece of art. I wish the computer had feelavison because it is so soft. I thank her again and again.
My secret pal is getting fingerless mittens from me. I use them mostly in the winter when the steering wheel is cold and I just need something on my hands until the car warms up.
I have to get these into the mail for her and I need to start on another pair for myself. I lost the ones I keep in the car.
I really do weave, I will show you what I up to in the next post.
Monday, August 14, 2006
On Saturday, my daughter and I took a trip to Adamstown, PA, to go antiquing. There was one problem, nothing is open on Saturdays. A lady that we met came to our rescue so that it was not a wasted day by telling us of a place that had artist studios in Reading, PA, called GoggleWorks.
I will visit GoggleWorks again. We found artist studios for anything you can imagine from bronze sculpture to pottery. The highlight of my visit was meeting Janna Carrozza of Handwoven Designs in Studio 321. Janna is a teacher by day and works in her studio as often as she can. When I met her she was warping her Macomber loom with tencel. She uses natural dyes and fibers in her weaving. A friend was visiting when my daughter and I were there. I did not get the young lady's name and I am quite sorry because she was fascinating to talk to.
Some friends have asked that I show them some of my projects. I am always working on something and usually work on 2 or 3 things at a time. I do love making things for my home. I keep telling my daughter that I am going to stop making and buy real furniture, however everytime I go the furniture store, it only gives me more ideas. I end up heading to the hardware store.The first picture you are looking at is the table I made for my bedroom. My children always tell me that my bed is my office. That is true, and normally I can not find my book, glasses and more than once I almost fell asleep with my laptop on my lap. I finished this table last night. It is on wheels so that I can push it back and forth. Yes, everything is black and white (today). I change the colors of the floor with floorcloths and make my own pillowcases. With black and white as a base, I can change colors of everything else in the room every day, which I am known to do on occasion. By making my pillowcases and floorcloths, I just need a solid bedspread and I have a new room.
The second picture is a picture of one of the walls in my living room. I've collected posters from lots of places and wanted to display them. However, I did not want my wall to look like a teenager's bedroom. I decided to put the posters on foamcore, use my little Rotozip saw (gift from my son-in-law) to cut out parts of the poster and put this on thicker foamcore to make parts 3-D. Unfortunately, the photos do not show how 3-D the posters really are. Under the poster is my loveseat that started out as a loveseat with a back but with the help of my power saw, is now a chaise.
The third picture was suppose to be the legs of my cocktail table but for some reason I got the living room wall twice. Could not figure out how to delete it. The fourth picture is the top of my cocktail table. Once I had a very formal wood and glass table, I gave it away because I was tired of cleaning the glass. I had a table from Ikea that I had purchased probably 20 years ago when I had a den. I painted the table to reflect ME. There is a quote about "family" on each side and my children's name on each end.
This gives you a glimpse of where I live and what I love. I am working on some weaving and knitting that I will share with you in a future post as well as my weaving studio and sewing room. If you would like to see more of my home or want to just chat, let me know.