Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Lights for Christmas

I finished some Christmas lights just in the nick (St. Knick) of time.

Remember those old, old Christmas tree light strings? The kind that were so delicate and temperamental. If one light went out, the whole string went dark. To fix it you had to remove one light bulb at a time and replace it with one you knew was good. You would go from bulb to bulb and finally two bulbs from the last one the string lit up!

This was a tedious process. It was important to plug in the string and see that it lit up before you hung it on the tree. My father did this. After a few days of admiring the tree with its festive display, one string would go dark. To do the testing and replacing one had to crawl around and into the tree. It was worth it.

Today, I sewed up some 4.5" square Christmas lights quilt blocks that will never blink off.

If you would like to make your own paper pieced Christmas lights, click on the graphic below and you will find a three-part foundation to print out. If you don't know how to paper piece, go to my Paper Piecing Primer http://www.winnowing.com/ppp.html

Here is a suggestion for fabric placement:
Merry Christmas.

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Sunday, September 14, 2014

Before summer ends

Try this delicious cheesy casserole before we run out of summer squash or zucchini.
 This is a recipe for one or two people, but you can expand it easily to serve more.

1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Tablespoon butter
1 slice of bread crumbled
1/2 onion chopped
1 medium summer squash (or zucchini)
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon milk
1/2 teaspoon "Perfect Pinch" or any other non-salted herbs of your choice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter the inside of a small lidded casserole.
Crumble the bread slice and mix the crumbs with soft butter and set aside.
Slice the squash into thin rounds.
Chop the 1/2 onion.
Sauté the squash slices briefly in olive oil in a skillet.

 Next, add the chopped onion and sauté until the onions are soft. Sprinkle vegetables with your herb seasoning. Add some pepper and a tiny bit of salt (to your taste).
In the meantime, in a separate bowl, mix together the cheeses, sour cream, and milk.

 Put the warm squash-onion mix into the casserole.
Gently stir in the cheese mix into the vegetables.
Use your fingers to drop the bread crumb pieces over the top.
Bake covered for 25 minutes. Take off the cover and bake five minutes more to brown it a bit.

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Friday, April 04, 2014

Flashback Friday

I was sorting through some old photos this week and came across a picture of Robert at a wedding in the early 1980s, and then I found a picture of  Victor Thresh (our grandson) wearing a tux for his high school Senior Prom last year. I was struck by the resemblance. Two handsome guys.

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Friday, March 07, 2014

So Mochi fun

 I've been having such fun. Mochi is a yarn from Crystal Palace Yarns. It's 80% Merino wool and 20% nylon and comes in all sorts of marvelous colors. There was a Mochi Hat contest on Ravelry and I wanted to enter. I ordered two balls of Chunky Mochi intense rainbow from K2TOG in Albany, CA on Friday, February 21.
 It was delivered to my post office box on Monday the 24. I had until Friday, the 28 to get it finished and post a photo before noon. I was still knitting the last row of ribbing Friday morning. There was no way I could get it blocked and photographed and uploaded before noon. Well, darn it.
 The beret project combines knitting and weaving. First, you warp your loom-board on a kraft paper pattern.
 Then you weave the weft yarn to make your circle beret top.
 The woven circle does not have to be hemmed. Pick up the warp and weft loops all around the edge and begin knitting.
I think it is really neat. To toot my own horn: please check out my book, Knitter's Weaving Book. There is a free downloadable PDF pattern for another beret using the same technique on that page. The book is also available on Amazon.com

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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Decorating finished

 I was a little late this year but I managed to finish my Christmas decorating. Whew!
This year the log cabin tree has ornaments! I designed this in 2009. If you want to whip one up before tomorrow, click HERE for the pattern.

My sons and grandsons visited me this week so I am feeling content and cozy. Now that I have the decorating done I can sit back and read with my new Kindle.

I'm also weaving a collar for a sweater to use in the forthcoming Knitters' Weaving Projects book.

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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Hat's off!

No, the beret is on.
 The beret was blocked and came out just fine.

How to block a beret? Find a large dinner plate (the same size as the kraft paper pattern used for weaving). Thanks to Elizabeth Zimmerman for this tip in her book Knitting Without Tears.

 Dampen the top of the beret in lukewarm water, squeeze most of the water out, roll in a terry towel to absorb more moisture, and then stretch it over the plate.
 Don't stretch the knitted ribbing.
Let it dry away from heat or sunlight for 24 hours.

This project will be in the next book following Knitter's Weaving Book. The next book will be called Knitters' Weaving Projects.

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Sunday, October 20, 2013

Around and around and around

This is fun. I am knitting on a circular needle around my checked beret fabric. After I darned in the outside yarns (picks and warps) of the circular woven piece I picked up the loops around the edge and knitted two rows. (See my last post for a starting picture.) I then did two decreasing rows and went back to plain knitting.

As a quilter I've been using store-bought fabric for years and years. Now I'm weaving my own fabric. I love the way the red and white check came out.

I'm doing the final ribbed band right now. I hope I get it off the needle and block it tonight. Blocking wet wool takes a least a day for drying. Tune in again soon.

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