Friday, August 30, 2013

WIP Friday?

It may be FO Friday to the rest of the blog world, but in my world it's WIP Friday. Simply because I have no FO's but plenty of WIPs.

I decided to knit something by the amazing Stephen West. I wanted a shawl or scarf or something to wear at the reception for my painting show come December, and Chadwick fit the bill. I already had the pattern and one skein in my stash: Pagewood Farms St. Elias, which also helped. The second yarn is Berroco Ultra Alpaca, which is such a dream to knit with! I started this last week when I didn't have classes and am already almost done. And here I thought it would take forever. 

Classes started back up Monday, which for me means I get to oil paint again! I already started working on this one and have added quite a bit to it in the 2 days I've been working. Can you tell? (the "old" version can be seen on my art page).

I hung out with an old high school friend last week and she's a sort-of knitter. She decided she wanted to make a blanket, so I gave her the needles and said have at it. After struggling through her first row on circulars, she got all excited! I hope it turns out really nice :) 

Being back in Manhattan means an AMAZING Farmer's Market. I mean it: Their were at least 20-25 tents last week. About half had craft items but still. The produce is amazing! Check out what I picked up for about $15! YUM. 

I've been trying really hard to eat clean lately, and have been keeping a food log at night. I am happy to report that I have had a 95% clean week! I blame school and my busyness. However, I did look up the nutrition facts for those Sonic shakes I was sipping on all summer: BAD IDEA. That's all I'm going to say about that haha. 

I hope everyone has a lovely weekend and if you are in the States you enjoy the 3 days!


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

WIPs and FOs

Today's post is dedicated to everything I have going on right now. Multiple FO's have come off the needles lately and a few hibernating WIPs are becoming active again.

Overdyed white yarn done tyedye style with shade of green. Still a very scratchy yarn, but it worked and she seems to like them. Pattern is a modification of Jeck with a lattice diamond down the front. 

$60 skein of yarn (1200+ Yards) I purchased on impulse last year. Finally decided on a project and completely self designed. The bust ended up a bit big, so there is some sewing modification in the back but I don't care because I LOVE THIS. I almost want to submit it somewhere.....

Started last fall for Project Stash: KAL, the High Plains Drifter has been sitting in my drawer for awhile waiting to be finished. With the encouragement of My Sister's Knitter KAL I am hoping to finish it up by Sept 30 so that I can qualify for some awesome prizes (and feel good about myself). I purchased the Arroyo yarn last weekend in KC with the intention of adding it to this shawl. So far it looks great with the maroon. I am doing random stripes alternating between the 2 colors.

Speaking of Malabrigo! Me and my sister made a trip up to Kansas City last weekend for a girl's weekend. No road trip is complete without a yarn shop stop, and Yarn Shop and More was right by our motel! I managed to walk away with: Malabrigo Sock in colorway 850: Archangel, Malabrigo Arroyo in colorway 227 Volcan, and 2 skeins of Malabrigo Worsted in colorway 30 Purple Mystery. 
The sock yarn will probably be in my stash for awhile. The Arroyo is of course on my shawl. And the worsted was picked out by my sister for a Christmas/Birthday Present scarf. I promise I didn't intend to buy all Malabrigo, but it's so alluring...

Finally, anyone ever heard of Trader Joes? My good friend Ivy is always talking about them, but there are none near me. We managed to find one in KC and let me say that I am in love. This is the ultimate in amazingness for anyone trying to eat healthy and clean. I myself am starting a new "diet" based on the rules I have been reading about in The Eat Clean Diet Rule Book, which I also purchased in KC. This book is single-handedly changing the way I think about and eat my food.  I am slowly on my way to a healthier and happier me.

I hope you all enjoyed today's post, it's been awhile since I wrote anything. Life has been busy and I've been lazy. Hopefully I will start posting more soon. Until then, HAPPY KNITTING!


Thursday, August 8, 2013

Green Sun Tea

Today's post is much more sunny than last week's. Even though this summer hasn't been the sunniest or hottest Kansas has ever seen. In fact, we've been having rain pretty much every day for the past 2 weeks. Some towns are even getting flooded. I personally wish it would just stop - it's getting really muggy and gross out.

Despite the lack of heat, I have still managed to pull off a new obsession of mine: Sun dying. Although not as quick as kettle dying or using a microwave, I think it's more fun to watch the slow process and my results seem so much more rewarding!

You may remember my last post about the hats I had been knitting. I started with this lovely blue yarn that I was just sick of looking at and decided to experiment. One skein got added to a jar of grape kool-aid and another got added to a jar of black-cherry. The end results were much more pleasing than more blue!

With my feather and fan babydoll done (I will share that another time), I decided it was time for more socks and also decided I needed to dye this yarn. And thus my sun dye experiment began.

There are only so many colors you can do with Kool-aid and liquid food coloring (my Wilton's dyes are in Manhattan), but after this project I am starting to prefer these two to the gel.

The first phase of my experiment started with a complete dye. I skeined up and soaked my yarn (80% superwash wool, 20% nylon). Adding lemonade and vinegar to the bath I then let it sit out on my deck until the water became clear (although it didn't get completely clear because lemonade isn't a clear still rinsed clear though). 

I wanted the yarn to be primarily green, but they don't make/sell lemon-lime kool-aid around here... So I improvised. One packet of blue raspberry lemonade (once again, not 'clear') plus several drops of green liquid food coloring led to the above color. In order to preserve some of the lighter shades of yellow, I used basic acrylic and tied off sections, like tye dye. Into the bath it went and sat for the majority of a second day. 

Finally, I wanted some areas of dark and decided on a blue-green. Adding three packets of the blue-raspberry lemonade plus some more green and blue foodcoloring led to this shade, which I really liked. I tied off even more sections, leaving only a few spots here and there and let it soak. I got a bit impatient towards the end and that whole not-transparent blue thing made me mad so I think I took it out a bit early (it didn't rinse completely clear). I still got my desired effect though. 

The dark green didn't soak through every layer of yarn (maybe because I didn't let it soak long enough?) but I still achieved my desired effects. The end result? Two lovely skeins of hand dyed sock yarn, wound and ready for knitting!
I hope you enjoyed my adventures in dying, I really hope I get to do more of this in the future. Have a great week everyone!


How I feel about the rain vs the sun right now.