I am such a naughty blogger - I've got buckets to talk about and then I just don't.
And then of course I forget it all when I sit down at the computer to talk about it!
Summer has been busy. And it was hot all through June and July, and then calmed down a bit during August mostly because it started getting smoky and smoke stops a fair whack of solar radiation getting through.
|Saying goodbye to the long days of summer|
And now it is flipping cold. A week ago it was 27 C, today it was 15 C with a biting northerly wind! I had to put a fleece jacket on and even wore one of my handknitted hats out this evening. Oh the indignity of being plunged into Fall.
And we didn't get any of the rain that other places did this week - we did get rain last weekend but missed out on all the rain this week. However, missing out did mean that we got some sunny breaks.
So I've been madly quilting. I got me a new machine, a straight stitch clone of the Janome 1600P. It goes like the clappers - can do 1500 stitches per minute. I've not been game to push that fast because I have enough difficulty keep up flat chat at about 1,000 stitches a minute (it has a speed regulator on it). Anyway it has a large harp, which makes wrangling quilts through it so much easier!
|It says it is a Singer but it's a Janome really.|
It means that I've been doing a bunch of quilting, like the actual quilting of the quilts not just making tops and backings and then thinking I'll quilt them one day.
|The back of the quilt below. This quilt has|
found a new home :-)
|Started making this in Sydney four|
|This isn't a quilt, it is just a block for a swap.|
Along the way I finished my Riley Blake Modern Quilt Guild challenge quilt. It is only small and not quite square but I had fun quilting it.
|Back of the challenge quilt.|
|Quilting detail - easy|
on my new machine!
|Front of the challenge quilt.|
Along the way I had so many changes of design. I was going to go improv and then decided to incorporate some of the borders from my Modern Quilt Guild's 2015 block of the month. I managed to get a quilt out of it so that was good!
|As an aside,|
that's over a kilo of eggplant there.
|Mucking around, learning how to use|
the Big Machine.
So I'm still working out what threads are good to use with the machine. I had a lot of problems with it shredding thread at first - it just tore it apart. When I swapped to Schmetz needles (it needs high speed needles), a lot of the issues stopped. When I swapped to a tougher, three (or more) ply cotton thread, the shredding pretty much stopped. Tension woes also got better. Now I've used Gutermann, Coats Cotton, Superior Thread's Masterpiece and now even Aurifil in it without any problems. At first I was having lots of problems with the green Aurifil thread but after playing around a bit I've worked out the tension settings I think and things are pretty consistent between threads now - I just have to tweak the bobbin tension a bit.
I've quilted umm four or five quilts now on the Big Machine. I realise I don't have pics of the two or three other quilts that I've finished. The weather has been pretty horrible all week and not good for photography - so dull and when it's been sunny, it's been very windy, which is terrible for photographing quilts. But it is great to get some stuff finished!
Now I have to work out what to do with them. A friend took a bunch and was very welcome to take them. She will love them and use them, and that is why I made the quilts.
I only have four (that I can remember) more to quilt. The current quilt I'm working on has told me its name is Chemo. As in chemotherapy. Why? Because I was working on the top when I was on chemo and when I tried to put it together, it became quite obvious that I wasn't firing on all cylinders. I'm doing the quilting just a bit wrong on it too.
Knitting has been happening too. I made myself a summer top and finished it just in time to wear it on our second last warm day.
|It has a lace band at the base.|
sigh. Typical me... I procrastinated a lot on it because I had to work out how to incorporate the decreases in the yoke into the lace pattern.
|And lace at the top.|
Yep, I designed it all myself. I used a mishmash of patterns to get the idea of how many stitches I needed for the yoke and at what rate to decrease them.
I think it turned out pretty well. Certainly is figure enhancing :-) Yarn is Berocco Ultra Pima and it needed four skeins of the teal but I only had three, whilst I had five of the silver and only needed three!
I've also knitted some baby stuff for my niecelet but I won't show it off until it gets to Oz. Hopefully it is at the sorting facility now.
Oh and there's the birthday socks for DH. He gets three pairs a year, one at Christmas, one at Valentine's (if I hurry!) and one pair for his birthday. I thought this yarn would be perfect for him, combining his three favourite colours with black.
|I think the runners out-bright the socks!|
|Socks under flash.|
Didn't think how Halloweeny it would look. Yarn is String Theory Colorworks Continuum (cashmere blend!) in umm Monoceros. Pattern is the toe up socks I can do pretty much whilst asleep now. I do one by three ribbing for four rounds then shift the purl stitch one stitch forward or back and make the rib travel left or right. Then I start making it go back right or left. Keeps me entertained because it is easy to see how many rounds I've done without counting. I love being able to see progress being made!
Whilst I love the process of knitting and I love having something to do with my hands, I love having a finished object even more. I get about 80% of the way through and get bored with it but (usually) push on. Same with quilting. I like building the quilt top and the quilt backing, then get pretty meh about basting (I don't like basting....), get impatient with the quilting bit and the binding and then voila! I made this!
How about you?
Maybe it won't be such a long time between drinks and I might blog more regularly - it isn't like I don't have things to say. Clearly ;-)