Finish the Year

I tend to start a lot of projects, and then once they are nearing completion, I let them languish. I have unfinished projects of all types stashed away. Gretchen Ruben, in a recent podcast, suggested having a theme for Christmas and I liked that idea, so I have chosen a simple one.

That theme inspired me to have a project theme as well. So, I’ve decided to “Finish the Year”. All those projects that are sitting around 1/2, 2/3, 3/4, 99/100 done, I will finish by December 30. An easy fun project is my train case, which I plan to use within the next few weeks as I have a few over-nights. It’s been sitting with the lining ripped out for about a year.

I recently decided to go and buy the fabric for the lining and when I went to look at it to determine how much I needed, I discovered I’d already bought the fabric. It’s almost done now, and ready to be used. I’ll post a picture when it’s complete.,Another large project that has been sitting since late last spring is my big lounge chair.

After I got it, I immediately sewed the cushion covers. Then, because the prospect of pulling so many staples was daunting, it sat looking very ugly for a long time. My husband offered to give me a hand this week, and we moved the project forward by a lot. Just another hour of stapling should complete the chair.

Lounge chair recover

And, of course, there is a partially completed ‘sideways’ sweater on my knitting machine. It took some math to figure out the shaping, so of course, that made the whole thing grind to a halt. Please, someone, diagnose me with dyscalculia so I have a legitimate excuse. There’s more, of course–but I am going to Finish the Year. I will not start any new projects until the WIPs are done. Wish me luck.  Winking smile

Quick Update

Not very good at updating my blog right now! You read that all over the internet of course. We’re coming down to the final three months before my daughter’s wedding. I was talking to someone yesterday about taking a watercolor class. Not until fall, I told her.  Yes, weddings are all consuming, she said. Well, we’re trying not to let it get that way with some good planning, but it does seem a rather large event looming on our horizon. A bridal shower is being planned in about three weeks time, and although I said I’m not getting involved, I lied. I’m starting to bake this week, keeping in mind that I’m hosting a family dinner on Friday and attending another three hours away in Saturday. Thankfully, my family is very forgiving and unlikely to bat an eye if I do something like forget the main course. A few Christmases ago, I made a turkey dinner and found the dressing untouched in the oven a few days later. I don’t know how that happened because for me and a few other people, dressing is the main event. Anyway, I’m living by the pen and notebook and looking forward to everything.

The knitted dress? Even machine knitting takes time to learn as I’ve come to realize. While you can make large rectangles of plain knitted textile very quickly, making a garment to fit right off the machine bed, along with patterning at least part of it so it’s not so plain takes a longer. So far, my experimental sweater has two sleeves, two backs, and one badly made front. I’m starting  a new front. The discarded front and back will probably turn into something like a cut and sew hot water bottle cover. The road to the actual dress is much longer than I anticipated.

I’ve also been doing some paper crafting. I love the box cards I’ve been seeing all over Pinterest and took a swing at making some. The first was made using a purchased project from Cricut. The second, is made from scratch using a box card base template from The Non-Crafty Crafter. The box cards fold flat to fit in an envelope, but open to display the details within. I’m  inspired to make more, bigger and better!


All Occasion Box Cards by Lori Whitlock available through the Cricut Design Space


Box card made with The Non-Crafty Crafter template and Cricut DS images.

I also have to fit a little work in. Over on Ponybox:

And on, things keep rolling along.

And now, I’m sure I have something to do…

Passing the Winter Days

My project this winter has been to learn to use a knitting machine.  I now have two,  a mid-gauge suitable for knitting fine yarns and a medium gauge for heavier yarns. I’ve so far made some simple projects such as cut and sew sweaters,  some charity hats,  a braided scarf and other wearables.

Now I’m working on a sweater so that I can experiment with patterns and sizes to finally make myself the sweater dress I would like. I was lucky enough to find 4 cones of alpaca acrylic blend in a very fine yarn. I have two in a natural color and two in black. Judging from the amount that I’ve used so far to create my first sweater there will be plenty left over to make things like socks and who knows what else. Learning to use these machines means that I’ve relied on lot on YouTube videos. There are so many helpful people that have put instructional videos online. Two that I’ve relied on a lot are Roberta Rose Kelly and Dianne Sullivan.

It is very satisfying to make something that can’t be deleted with the press of a key.

As Busy As I Want to Be

I’ve been as busy as I want to be lately. I’ve been redecorating my house. The kitchen is almost done. Walls have been painted, new flooring installed. A new sink and tap has been purchased, and new ceiling fixtures have been installed as well as some cool under counter lighting. A new chandelier is waiting to be put up in the dining room. We need to pick out new counters, but are feeling tentative about it! Too many choices!

I’ve been crafting like crazy too. My Cricut Explore has given me so many options! I’m learning to make greeting cards, and today, I plan to cut an intricate leather design for the pockets of a pair of jeans I’m making. I’m sewing too. My favorite recent creation is what I call my tight pants. Every time I wear them, it reminds me of the Jimmy Fallon/Will Farrell tight pants skit and I feel like singing the song. The pants however, are anything but tight, so my family is a confused about why I call them my tight pants.

And because I don’t have enough to do, I bought an old knitting machine. I’m just learning how to use it and so far, have almost completed a scarf for my husband. Everybody might be getting scarves for Christmas next year, because it’s just so much fun to zing back and forth, and I haven’t learned how to do decreases and increases, or fancy patterns yet.

The next plan is redecorating a spare room into a crafting/sewing studio. I’ve got the paint and am waiting for some help to move some furniture. Then, the bathroom is going to get redecorated.

Right now, I better get out of my PJs and get going. Think I’ll wear my tight pants.

Tight Pants – Will Farrell and Jimmy Fallon