Thursday, April 30, 2009

Am I Crazy Or What?

I got a great deal on some raw fleece this week. Most of it has yet to arrive, but I did get in a pound and a half to play with. When I opened up the box I could immediately smell the barnyard. Gotta love that raw animal/hay/feed/manure smell. (this is when I started to wonder if I was nuts. I was excited about dirty wool!) Without hesitation I went about getting it all washed up. The fleece that I got in is a gorgeous black and brown crossbreed wool. It's Columbia x Rambouillet x Corriedale mix. Sooo pretty. It was pretty dirty, the water turned a dark brown and it took many washings to get it nice and clean. I let it dry overnight on my ironing board.

Note: Take off your ironing board cover to use it as a drying table. Ingenious! Why didn't I think of this months ago.

This morning I began preparing it to be spun. I just grabbed some chunks and used a hand carder to fluff it open enough to put it through the carder. It carded up beautifully. I've never had such soft and fluffy fiber in the house before. I can't wait to get the rest in.

I also go some Alpaca seconds and thirds. You just can't beat $1.50 per pound! I read that you can make batting for a quilt with this stuff. So, I'm planning on carding it all up and then making a small blanket or something. Not sure yet, but it'll be warm and soft.
This week I also did some more dyeing. It's still so foreign to me. My colors never come out how I expect them to. But, overall I'm pretty pleased with the results. I also dyed up some white cotton recycled yarn. They all came out in pastel shades. I was going for much deeper colors. Maybe the dyes I'm using aren't meant for cotton.

I just wanted to end this post with a very special thank you to my family. They have been living in a house that smells like wet dog and barn for the past 3 days.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A Very Busy Bee

I've been sewing a lot this week. Late last week while at the fabric store I came across the cutest crab and starfish print cotton that I thought would make up sooo cute into a shirt for the girls this summer. I chose Simplicity 2986 and made up this pink shirt to test the pattern. It came out so stinkin cute! The only thing that I'm planning on changing is the bodice. I think I'll use the smaller size for the bodice. There are a few variations for this top including a dress which my oldest daughter really wants. After finishing this shirt, I went out and bought 6 different co-ordinating sear sucker cottons to make them more of these. Next up though will be the crab and starfish print!
I found a great tutorial for making a good wallet online last night. I've been wanting a bigger wallet than the one that I've been using, but I knew I would be making one. I really liked this pattern so I gave it a try. I used cottons for the inside. I just love the undies print! And, I found some purple wool from an old blazer that I used for the outside. It fits all my stuff and there is plenty of room for more. The only modification I did to the pattern was to add the pencil holder in the center.
I still had a chunk of the undies print leftover from the wallet. I wanted to do something with it. So, I decided to make some more project bags. I just love these things. They are super simple and totally practical. I made a bunch of these this last Christmas to wrap our gifts in. They never did make it into the Christmas boxes when Christmas was over though. They have been used for so many things around the house. But, I'm getting a little tired of seeing Santa and snowmen all over the house. I made a few of them in some random leftover fabrics. I will be making a few more to take to my mom when I see her next week.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Spring Break

Our spring break through the lens of my camera.
Columbia Valley Area. Sorry I don't remember exatly where we were when I shot this. It was gorgeous though.
White Pass. The lake was frozen over. I've never seen a lake that size frozen over before. My hubby got this shot.
Columbia River near the town of Hood River. It was so windy. But very pretty.
Erma. Without whom we would have gotten lost more times than I can count.
My end table. Crowded with a few projects. Yarn spools from Yarnia, A scrappy hexagon quilt in the making, and some drum carded batts waiting to be spun.

I would insert a picture of the kids here. But, I honestly didn't get very many pics of them. That's kinda sad actually. I'll have to take some over the next few days. The weather is gorgeous right now and the girls have been frolicking outside with their friends.