Thursday, December 31, 2015

Identifying Fit Trouble

p. 32-33

"The most important characteristic of a well fitted garment...consists in its absolute freedom from wrinkles or puckers...Having made a tentative decision...magnify the trouble by pulling or pinning at the seat of the difficulty to verify your own opinion. If this causes a deeper wrinkle you are probably right and to correct the trouble you can release the garment to the point discovered. If this doesn't remove the wrinkle, pull or lift the cloth in the opposite corner and pin it over to note results."

A friend of mine told me she gave up on making clothes for herself because she would have trouble making a dress fit and couldn't figure out how to fix it!

And, a little parting note at the end of this section:

"Time, technical skill, human labor, intelligence and inspiration are the secrets of producing distinction in a well-fitted dress."


Monday, December 28, 2015

Isn't That Difficult?

This photo is from the lovely time I had in Iowa in October. I just realized I never shared it with you. Some of the knitters (or maybe just one? If so, she was too shy to tell me.) made these little cuties to go on people's name tags at the event. Best. Nametag. Ever.

I've said it before, and I'll probably say it again. I truly believe that knitting teaches me what I need to know when I'm ready to know it. Maybe other things work that way for other people. Knitting has taught me how to sit still. It has made me a better listener. It has given me a mastery of 3-D thinking that has been a big stretch for me, at times. It turned me into an author, a public speaker and a better teacher than I was before. 

Last year, I met a knitter who was showing off a lovely Green Apple Bohus sweater. (More information about these amazing sweaters is here, but you should also check out Poems of Color for a closer look.) I told her that I had heard that the Green Apple is the most difficult Bohus sweater to knit, and wondered at her skill. She looked at me, frankly and humbly, and said, "I just followed the directions." Well, of course, she did a lot more than that! She had the skill, the materials and the patience, too. 

It made me think. There are lots of times I've been put off from trying things because I thought they were too difficult. I think we all do that. 

I also caught myself thinking - what if life came with "directions." It's an appealing idea, at first thought. But, what if you didn't like the path those directions laid out for you? Then, it would be a prison sentence. 

There are a thousand things I could choose to work on at any given moment. It's wonderful, but sometimes the hard part is choosing the best way to use my time. 

Right now, I need to make more time for writing. I owe myself (and some other people!) some work in that area. I would LOVE to take my notes from my History of Socks talk and turn it into a podcast, so that even people who can't see me speak in person can experience it, in some way. 

This is a little difficult, but in order to make time for more writing and re-starting my podcast, I need to back off from daily blogging. I will probably be most active on Instagram, if you want to see photos of my kitties and other things. 

I haven't decided on the exact schedule, but once I start, I will really try to keep it consistent! 

Here's to 2016! It will be the 11th year of this blog's off-and-on life.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Fitting Tip for the Bust

p. 31

"It is very easy to fit the blouse too closely through the bust at the first fitting, because the sleeves are not basted in place. After altering the blouse pin sleeves in place to check on this point."

Monday, December 21, 2015

End of the Year

I hope, no matter what holiday you  happen to celebrate, you have a chance to lay around like a big orange kitty for at least a little bit this week. I certainly plan on it. So, see you next week!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Minneapolis Street

We have never eaten at Murray's (I hear it's great!), but I love that the access cover on the street in front of it is stamped to look like meat on a grill. Awesome!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Testing for Overall Fit

p. 30-31

"Garments fitted too closely tend to slip up when being worn. Try sitting in a chair to test tightness over hips, and crossing the arms to touch the shoulders with the finger tips for tightness across the  back. Bend the arms and try to reach over the head to test tightness of sleeves."


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Pillow Cat

We put large pillows on our chairs to try to control the "our cats are made of hair which is adorable, but messy" problem. It works pretty well!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Yoga Shorts - Finished!

These "Yoga" Shorts are strictly for sleeping and lying on the couch while watching movies with my baby. Perfecto!

They were easy to sew and included with this Craftsy class

Monday, December 14, 2015

Lovely Handspun

I didn't spin this yarn. My lovely sister, Lisa, did, as I prepared to talk about spinning and socks to a bunch of spinners who are probably better spinners than I. Having the yarn there gave me a little more confidence. Thanks for all of your hard work, Lisa!!!!!

Friday, December 11, 2015

Fall Leaves Knitspiration

I realize this is about three months old, but I found this photo on my phone and realized I never shared it with you all. I love the combinations of colors! I think I will pick a top two or three and use them together in a design next year.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Clear Morning Light

Sometimes I struggle a bit with, "Am I in the right place, doing the right thing?" 

When, Minnesota tells me: "Yup."

Monday, December 07, 2015

Re-Made Tshirt

I'm happy to report that the "test" from last week went fine, so I went ahead and recut a men's 2X t-shirt into a shirt for myself. It looks pretty good, if I do say so myself!

Often, buying an existing garment and cutting it down is cheaper than buying new fabric. It's weird, but that's what the global economy has wrought! 

Friday, December 04, 2015

Sensible Slippers

I was going to wait and release this pattern when I had a prettier sample knit, but there seemed to be so much interest, I couldn't wait. So,  here's my church-basement-yarn project:

They originally had an unlovely name: Slippers No. 2260. So, I'm calling my version Sensible Slippers, since that's what they are. They're perfect for beginners or knitters who need a last-minute project.

The pattern is available on Craftsy and Ravelry. I can't wait to see what you all make!

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Sizing Up

I love how she can't resist the admonition: "If all this seems too much trouble, how much more sensible it would be to purchase the correct size in the first place!"

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Boomer Celebrates Himself

We've been getting into reading about Allen Ginsberg around here. He really had a fascinating life! Boomer, however, is unimpressed. He prefers Whitman. 

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Making A Muslin

Testing out a sizing/FBA issue on some really, really thin and kind of not-pretty jersey I picked up on sale at Hancock Fabrics.