Monday, June 18, 2012

Finished Products!

This weekend was a productive one--I lucked out and had four days off in a row, and the fun activities I'd planned (a trip to the beach, etc.) got canceled due to unforeseen circumstances (a sick spouse and a very old dog with severe issues). This meant I could work on my crafting a lot.

First, on Friday I finished the chenille washcloths I was weaving. That poor project was really, really a learning experience.
Washcloths taken off the loom on the railing in front of Yarnorama
When I was "finished" I discovered that, in addition to the mistakes I already knew I'd made, I had use the cotton that was supposed to be the warp as the hem and the yarn for the hem as the warp. Oops. And I had totally forgotten to put a row of a contrasting color between cloths to make for easy application of Fray Check and subsequent hemming. And to top THAT off, I had mis-remembered the instructions and not woven enough picks of the hem.


I took the loom and cloths off to Yarnorama (which is looking great after remodeling) to make sure I finished it right. I am sure Susan laughed at me internally when she saw how much I had been oblivious to her carefully written-out instructions. Then I went ahead and cut the cloth you see above into separate washcloths. However, since I didn't have the convenient contrasting color to mark the part with Fray Check on it, I missed, causing much of the fabric to unravel. Sigh.

So I stuck the poor li'l washcloths (one of which is a hand towel, because I made it longer on purpose) in my bag, and decided to move on to the next thing. Perhaps I'd be more successful warping the loom if I had help. There were a couple of other people at the yarn shop with their Cricket looms, so I knew there was back-up (though one other woman was only on her second project, too). I found some nice red sport-weight wool that I thought would make a great warp for placemats for our kitchen. I wanted to warp it to use with sock yarn, so I got the 10 heddle out.

First, I brilliantly WATCHED Susan warp her loom. That helped me do mine. I did it right this time, and Susan helped me with the tension.

Correctly warped loom, or "dressed" as they say
The other thing I did at Yarnorama was to get more yarn to finish my little silky cardigan. I needed nearly all of an additional skein to finish it, even though I was making the smallest size! I worked on the last arm a bit while I was at the yarn shop, then came home and did more.

And Then Came Sunday

On Sunday, Lee and I went to see his dad for Father's Day. Since there was a lot going on there that I wasn't supposed to be involved in, I had a lot of time to knit, both in the car and in Yorktown. In rhe car, I patiently and with great difficulty finished off the washcloths. They do not have the hem they are supposed to, but they won't be unraveling. Since I took this photo I washed them and trimmed the ends where I changed the yarn, and they look fine. They will certainly make nice soft things to dry off with or clean up with. And I learned a lot from the project!

Washcloths and the little towel (the one on the left).
  When I got to Lee's dad's house and was chatting with the old fellow (just turned 89 and doing much better after his bladder cancer bout), I finished the cardigan. Adding the neck edging really made it look better.
Before the neck edging was added.

After adding the finishing edgings. And smiling because people told me the previous photo was a bit scary.
There is also a slip-stitch crochet edging around the sides and bottom of the cardigan. It's quite small--I might have needed yet another skein of Heichi if I had made the medium size.

After finishing up with the Heichi/Silk Cloud cardigan, I went back and worked on the beaded Hitchhiker and got a few more points done on it. I am getting close to the end of the first skein of yarn on that one, but I am going to add a few more, then I think another pointed edge on the cast-off side. What the heck.

When I got back I was pretty stressed out, but I used my lovely new Soak washing liquid to wash up both the washcloths and the cardigan. The lovely scent helped with the stress. The cardigan is still sitting on the dining room table drying. I sure wish I could find those darned blocking squares (so I can finish the drape front sweater!).

Today Is Monday!

Today was full of worry about our dog--we didn't know if we'd need to euthanize him today or not. Much of the day was spent waiting for a mobile vet (the part not spent taking the daughter of an old online friend from the Dysfunctional Nonprofit Organization out to lunch). I started on the sock yarn plac emats to distract myself. I think these will be a lot of fun. The plan is to use the red warp on each of four mats, but use a different one of my MANY self-striping sock yarns as the weft for each of them. I started our with an extremely yellow ball of Opal with lots of little stripes, along with some green. Here's the very beginning:

Beginning of place mat
You can see the sock yarn, and a bit of how it is working out with the red. I've done about 11 inches of it now, and the colors look really interesting. Some of it looks like tapestry weaving. I am doing a fairly loose weave, but am pretty sure it will fill out more once I wash it. I don't want very thick mats--I might do that later.

If you look at the bottom edge of the weaving you can see I tried a new skill for me, which is hem stitching. I think that will look great. That way I won't have to knot the fabric at the end, and the fringe can be nice and smooth on each one. I do hope I was able to follow THESE instructions correctly. I used a book called Weaving Made Simple for nice clear instructions.

I'm feeling a bit better about weaving. At least even the icky things I made are useful. And they don't have to be perfect.

On the other hand, I can still knit, at least simple things. Next on the list is another garment made from Heichi, this time in a rust color. It's a cool vest called Shadow. I will really enjoy wearing it, I think! I have a feeling I will enjoy the yarn more when I use smaller needles.Those huge needles and the loose gauge on the previous cardigan were not easy on my little hands!

WELL, glad I finished some stuff at last. I honestly feel better about many things. I also know I have so much still to learn. Those people who are good spinners and weavers are really amazing.


  1. Between blogspot and Flickr my old blog is toast, so started a new one

    Lotsa history gone with old blog but wasn't anything I could do to get it back.

  2. I'm impressed that you're learning to weave. There are many things I would like to learn to do, but I'm too busy procrastinating. Plus, I'm still learning so much about crochet and designing crochet patterns that I continue to find it fun enough to maintain my interest. I wonder about your doggy.


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