Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Meet Harley...... ten week old miniature daschund. His color is chocolate and tan...with dapple markings. He has the most amazing in color.....and the sweetest personality. He is my little shadow.  :.) He gets along wonderfully with all the other dogs. Yes, I do have other dogs. Three to be precise.  :.) Never thought I would be one to have a houseful of dogs, but I do. The oldest one is a 10 year old miniature schnauzer, Joey, who sees the new addition as a huge relief. It means the other two will leave him alone. He prefers spending his days sleeping with as little activity as possible. He's been sick the last couple of years and we honestly don't know how much longer we will be blessed with him. He will turn 11 in February.

The golden retriever/mix (Rudy) is 8 years old and is fascinated by the new puppy. At first he thought it was this really great toy for him to play with....until he realized that it made noise he really didn't like hearing (whining). Now he simply tolerates it....or at least acts like he does. Heaven forbid if the puppy whines....Rudy will be the first one there to make sure he's okay.  :.)

Then there is Ratt. He's my hubby's dapple miniature daschund. He simply adores Harley, but can't wait until he is bigger so they can really play together. He's the youngest of the three older boys (little over a year and a half old) so he still loves to play. For him, Harley is a very welcomed addition. Now he finally has a playmate.....or at least he will once Harley is a little older and bigger.  :.) At the left is a picture of the two daschunds together. And, yes, Ratt's eyes are what is known as marled (two different colors in each eye) it's not the photo.

Well, enough about the newest four legged addition. Onto some crafty updates. As for spinning.....I have a lovely shetland lamb/baby camel/soy silk blend on the spinning wheel. It's spinning up beautifully! I'm hoping for a fingering weight yarn so I can make some socks from it. The soy silk should give the yarn the strength it needs for socks.

Spent the afternoon dyeing up some superwash roving I had purchased who knows when (it's been that long!). The roving is seconds...meaning the dye didn't take so it is splotchy in color. I don't mind this because I was planning on over-dyeing it anyway. Tried a new (to me) dyeing technique this afternoon. Dip dyeing. Basically, you have three or four different containers of dye set out and you dip parts of your roving in each color....being sure to squeeze out the excess dye before moving onto the next color. I have to admit that I really enjoyed this technique and will defintely do it again. I found this particular roving hard to dye because I simply couldn't get the dye to penetrate the roving all the way. And I would be left with light colored or undyed areas when I tried to hand-paint it. Didn't run into that problem with the dip dyeing. I don't have any photos of the newly dyed roving because it is still outside drying.

Onto knitting:  I finally finished my Karakul rug. Yea!! Thought I would never get this one done. I think it's the largest thing I have knitted to date. The completed rug measures something like 25" x 54". It is backed with a non-skid backing (which I found at Home Depot...and would be great for putting on the bottom of felted slippers) and now resides in front of my sliding glass door where it receives very light wear. One of the smaller dogs may lay on it from time to time....but that's pretty much it. Didn't have a pattern. Just did my own thing for the most part. The yarn is my own hand-spun. I remember picking out the fleece while it was still on the sheep, so this was a sheep-to-rug project.

Of course now that the rug is done I simply had to cast on for a new project.....socks!!!! :.) I have been wanting to make the Oslo socks in Nancy Bush's book "Knitting on the Road". Even had the yarn (hand-spun, of course) set aside and ready to go. I cast on last week. Sock #1 is completely done and I'm working on the leg of sock #2. These are knitting up rather quickly and are very enjoyable to do. I kinda wish my yarn was a bit more consistent, but it's still knitting up rather nicely. I have been making notes of what I would like to do when I knit another pair using this pattern.....which I will.  :.) Love the socks!!  :.)

Onto quilting:  I've actually been quilting up a storm lately. Tried some new-to-me techniques and have been really pleased with the end results. I put some orphan blocks together into a sampler lap quilt and am in the process of machine quilting it. Matching pillows were made with the two blocks that I didn't include in the lap quilt. Tried some new techniques when making the pillows and was pleasantly surprised.  :.) I actually did an over-lapping back on the pillow (first for me) and absolutely love it. Plus I put a binding on the pillow edge so there are no raw edges at all...inside or out. Really pleased with how finished the pillow looks. No pictures though. I will post pictures once the lap quilt is finished.

Started not one, but two new quilts. One is the "Tide Pool" quilt...pattern by Quilt Design Northwest ( I saw the pattern at a local quilt show I went to a couple of weeks ago and just had to have it. It's another new-to-me technique called "continuous line applique". Definitely worth going to the website and checking out. There is even a tutorial on the website on how to do continous line applique. All I can say is that it's easy and tons of fun to do. Oh...I'm doing my Tide Pool quilt all in batiks. The blocks are really pretty.  :.)

The other new quilt I started is an older BOM that I got who knows when. Instead of making each block as it came in, I simply put the kit up thinking I would get to it later. Well, fast forward to......later.....and I have finally pulled it out and am starting to put it together. The BOM is called "Beginning Baltimore" and is a Fig Tree design. I'm using raw edge applique techniques (new to me) for each block instead of hand applique like I had originally planned on doing. Block #1 is done and up on my small design wall. I really like the way it looks and can't wait to make more blocks. One thing at a time though.  :.)

Finally, news on my Pfaff Creative Vision. As you may recall (or not) I was having problems with how the machine stitched out....back in June. Well, I am pleased to say that after  almost 3 months I finally have my machine back. Or should I say my new machine. Yup. That's right. My Pfaff dealer couldn't get my old machine fixed and gave me a new one. My dh picked it up and brought it home yesterday. The Pfaff dealer even made sure it had all of the latest and greatest updates on it. So the new machine is now in my sewing table all ready for me to use....and all I've done so far is turn it on to adjust the sound settings to my liking. I know. I really need to use it and get acquainted with it. I have to confess that at first I was really upset that I was being given a new silly as that sounds. Hey, that was my machine....and it was a bit hard for me to wrap my head around getting a new one. Still is. But I really need to give this one a chance and get to know it. I'm sure it's a wonderful machine and I will have hours upon hours of stitching enjoyment with it. Heck, I even downloaded a pattern just so I can try it out. I'm going to make a dresden plate pillow. Might even put a small embroidery in the plate center....and I will definitely play with a few of those decorative stitches on the plate "blades".

As for the Wickersham quilt....which has been put on hold due to machine troubles.....well, I will continue with that once I'm comfortable with the new machine.


  1. A very adorable addition to your family! You certainly are busy :)

    Good luck with your brand new machine. My machine is collecting dust at the moment. I hope to dust it off eventually and start a new quilt for myself.

    Have fun!