Monday, March 21

Bathroom Update

Well, there's not much to report as you can see. The half bathroom has now been torn up for 2.5 months. Sigh...it always takes so long to finish house projects. In his defense, hubby spent a lot of his free time moving snow this winter after he destroyed the bathroom. I've kidded him if he doesn't finish it soon that I will turn it into a closet. LOL!

Thank goodness spring is finally here. The last pile of snow in our yard finally melted yesterday. Woo-hoo! Last night a surprise thunder and lightning storm moved through with one bolt hitting not far from us. A fire truck rumbled by soon after it hit. Our weather forecasters are giving a possibility of snow showers later in the week. Ah, changeable spring weather in Michiana! LOL!

Spring is inspiring me to get my studio and my yarn stash tidied up. After a marathon sort yesterday, things look much better in there. I am appalled though at how much new yarn I have accumulated. I have to post a destash notice on the ISO/Destash Yarn board on Ravelry this week so that some of this unwanted yarn can find new homes.

I digress. Back to the bathroom. The drywall work was finished some time ago. Hubby primed the walls two weeks ago. On Saturday, he began painting the walls yellow. The color is a little brighter than I expected. It's more like glow-in-the-dark yellow. Whatever this paint is it almost stunk us out of the house with fumes. My nose and eyes were burning. I closed the bedroom door to try to contain the smell and keep it out of the rest of the house. Didn't work too well. Thankfully it warmed up enough Saturday that we could keep the windows open most of the day to air things out. By evening the smell was still quite potent in the house. I hung a curtain over the bathroom doorway, lit a candle to try to dispel some of the odor, and moved our HEPA air cleaner in there. It helped but it was still too stinky to sleep in our bedroom next to the bathroom on Saturday night. I moved to the couch for the night. You could still smell faint paint fumes by Sunday night. I did sleep in my own bed last night though I got up with a stuffy nose and a headache this morning. I am so sensitive to this stuff. :( Being allergic and sensitive is a pain in the you know what.

Hubby wanted to put another coat of paint on the walls and ceiling yesterday. I vetoed that idea! I suggested that we go back to the paint store and buy the low VOC paint in the same (or a less bright) yellow. He's agreed to that. So no painting until we get the new paint. Hubby didn't put up much of a fight. He didn't like the paint fumes either.

I've been knitting socks. Several pairs of mine have thin spots under the ball of the foot and the heels. Too big a patch to darn. I tried felting some wool over the thin spots but it didn't work too well. Might work better if you dampen the wool before you try this. I'm considering unraveling the good parts of the socks and reusing it for something else.

There are several crocheted shawls on the drawing board. One in particular has been crocheted and ripped a number of times. I've finally put it into time out and started something new. The new project is turning out very nice.

I have a crocheted felt bag in the works. Testers are currently working on it. I hope to release it next week.

Wednesday, March 9

Head bands, coasters and a scarf to knit

Here are the last 3 patterns that I donated for use in the 2010 Holiday Mystery Group. These are all patterns that are available as free downloads on Ravelry.

First up is the Twinkle Coaster. These star coasters are a take on the vintage circle dishcloths. They’re fast to knit on two size 7 (4.5 mm) knitting needles using short row wedges. It’s easy, I promise! Knit 7 points, cast off, and sew the edge together to form a star. A picture tutorial is given for sewing the short seam. Twinkle measures 4.5” across from point to point. Knit them with leftovers from other projects or make a bunch from one ball of worsted weight cotton yarn (about 15 yards per coaster). Knit piles of these for gifts or donate them to charity fundraisers.

Rambling Rows is a narrow scarf that hugs the neck. This scarf is worked in garter stitch and shaped using short rows (no wraps!). This shows off the long color runs in some yarns. Wrap the scarf around your neck and secure it with a pin. You can make it with 100-150 yards of Aran weight yarn and a pair of size 9 (5.5 mm) knitting needles. I used Lion Brand Amazing (red) and Trendsetter Tonalita (green) for the two pictured scarves. Finished scarf sizes are: Tonalita - 36” outside edge x 22” inside edge x 5” wide (100 yards) and Amazing - 43” outside edge x 35” inside edge x 5” wide (150 yards)
Heady Stuff is a trio of three simple headbands to knit. 1) A bulky weight garter stitch ski band that is seamed (in pink) and 2) a bulky weight ribbed ear warmer knit in the round (in red). Both are knit on size 10 (6 mm) knitting needles. 3) A tie on style headband is made with worsted weight yarn on size 9 (5.5 mm) knitting needles. Use up your odd skeins and scrap yarn for these projects. Add texture by combining 2-3 strands of different weights to create your own bulky weight yarn. Have fun using up your scraps!

Click on the underlined pattern title above to go to Ravelry for a free pdf download. Have fun and enjoy!

Friday, March 4

Diamond Romance Cowls to crochet

Diamond Romance is a set of 2 cowls and 1 scarf made with the crocheted lace motif. (You may recognize the lace pattern from my crocheted Flying Diamonds Shawl.) This pattern contains instructions for a short turtleneck style cowl, a taller cowl that covers your head and ears, and a long tubular scarf that is long enough to wrap around both your head and neck (or add a twist to it for a mobius/infinity look).

You’ll need a size G (4 mm) crochet hook and some fingering/sock weight yarn. For the short cowl 220 yards, 400 yards for the tall cowl, or 500 yards for the long scarf. A solid color yarn or one with long color runs would work well for this design. A fuzzy yarn or mohair would be a good choice too.

The pattern contains complete written instructions plus a crochet for the lace pattern. You get all three styles for $2.99.

The pattern sells for $4.00 through my Ravelry pattern store.

Pattern prices subject to change without notice. Check my Ravelry Store for current pattern prices.