Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Light, Glorious Light!


It's actually hard for me to describe how excited I am about this - my Singer has a light for the first time in YEARS.

When it first burned out, I took it in for a tune-up that it needed, anyway. The repairperson told me that I needed to order a different bulb than the ones he had. Ok, no problem. I bought my bulb. I could not get it in to the machine!

Fast forward about 4 years, when my darling sister, Lisa, emailed me a link.

You. Guys. It works. It cost me about $1.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Review: SEW...The Garment-Making Book of Knowledge

My sister introduced me to Barbara Emodi's blog a little while ago. I love it! It's one of my favorite sewing blogs.

When I heard she was writing a book, SEW The Garment-Making Book of Knowledge: Real-Life Lessons from a Serial Sewist, I was super excited! Disclosure: the publisher sent me a PDF of the book, but all opinions are mine!

I love Barbara's book! I even read it on the bus - which is saying a lot, since reading on the bus makes me rather motion sick. It's full of tips and tricks. Barbara's writing style is relaxed and happy. She's informative without being preachy.

One of the features that I love in the book is her mini lessons. One's about v-style necklines, and I decided to try it, since I've had a few neckline fails, lately.

I took an old tee and cut away the neck into a v-neck shape. I then cut a binding strip 1 and 3/8-inches wide and the full length of the fabric.



I ended up marking the exact location of the bottom of the v with wash-away marker. Barbara doesn't say to do this, but I felt I really needed it to hit the mark.



Is it perfect? No. Is it better than what I've done, lately? YES! I think I just need to practice more. Also, maybe a little glue basting is in order, for me, until I've tried it more than once.



Wednesday, April 04, 2018

New Pattern: Reliable Spring Socks


When I saw the colors in this yarn, they reminded me of a field of crocus flowers. These little blossoms are often the first sign of spring. I sometimes say that spring, as a season, isn’t reliable around here until (at least) Mother’s Day. There’s nothing like some color in your wardrobe to make you feel a little better about chilly weather. So, I hope these socks can put a reliable spring in your step, no matter what the temperature!

This pattern is featured in the April 2018 Sock Artisan Crate from Knitcrate, but you can also buy it, without the yarn, on Ravelry. Use my coupon code: math4knitters20, to save 20% on your first order!


These socks are knit from the top down and feature an easy-to-work stitch pattern.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Taking a Nap


Happy December! 

I never, ever let Wolfie or Victor play with my yarn. He simply plopped down for a nap on it, for some reason. If I'm knitting and he wants to play, I put the yarn away and play with him. 

I have a lot going on and have even more planned for 2018, so I'm going to let this blog take a little nap, too, while I get myself sorted.

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Project Journal: Ponte Pants

I don't wear pants very much, but I took a chance on McCall's 6173, and I'm really happy that I did!

This is not me. This is a model who is waaaaay taller than thinner than I ever have been.
Pattern: McCall's 6173, view A-ish, size L, with petite adjustments that were marked on the pattern paper.
Fabric: Telio Ponte Leggero Knit in black 65% Rayon/31% Nylon/4% Spandex. I washed the fabric in cold water and dried it in a low dryer. It sat around a bit before I had a chance to use it, so I also ran it through a steam refresh cycle in my dryer before I cut it out.
Notions: nylon zipper, hook and eye, 1-inch elastic
Tools: Sewing machine with zipper foot, edgejoining foot (for stitch in the ditch) and regular foot. Serger with  Four-Thread Ultra-Stretch Mock Safety Stitch for seams and narrow coverstitch for hems, pressing tools (lots of steam from my iron and a clapper, mostly).
Changes:
- No zippers on the legs.
- I serged the darts and all seams except the fly area and waistband finish. I reinforced the crotch seam with a line of sewing machine stitches within the seam allowance of the serged seam.
- I cut my own waistband and reinforced it with elastic, using techniques from The Busy Woman's Sewing Book. It's all of the comfort of an elastic waistband, but with a tailored look.
- From the same book, I used the two-step fly - a zipper fly with just two lines of stitching! I did have to do the second step over again, after basting a little bit, since it went rather off the rails the first time.
Verdict: On the first wear, these are super-comfy! I hope the fabric holds up well. The legs are much looser in the calf area than in the photo, so if you want a fitted calf, definitely do a basted fitting to check it. This is the most comfortable, best-fitting waistband I've ever worn.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Meet the Kittens: Victor and Wolfie



These are our two little babies, Wolfie on the left and Victor on the right. 

We've never had kittens before, and it's quite the adventure! We adopted them both from the Animal Humane Society after Travis and Boomer left us a few months ago.  

Wolfie is short for "Wolfgang." We named him that because he looks like a tiny wolf pup and we both love Mozart. He even howls a little bit when we're getting his food ready.

Victor's about a month older than Wolfie but is a lot bigger. We think he's part (or all) Maine Coon. Wolfie looks like he may be a Russian Blue.

They wrestle and play a lot, but they also groom each other and even fall asleep in a semi-cuddle, semi-play position like this one.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Knitting Dishcloths


I'm knitting cotton dishcloths along with my students at St. Louis Park Community Education.

They are so relaxing to make! I love playing with different color combinations. The first batch of dishcloths I made is about 12 years old. The cloths are JUST NOW starting to wear out, so the timing on these projects is pretty good.

My sister gave me these knitting needles about 16 years ago, when I told her that knitting with cotton made my hands feel sore. She bought them at a festival and I have no idea what brand they are, but I think they're ebony wood. They feel so smooth and nice!

If you're just learning to knit, I recommend the ballband dishcloth as a skills-builder. You manage two colors of yarn (but, not at once), work with slipped stitches, have to stay on-pattern and knit and purl.

I'd love to see you in class! Check out my schedule, here.