Thursday, January 31, 2013

Drop and Give Me Twenty Challenge

After much thought and flip-flopping on my decision, I'm making the commitment to this challenge.  So...

I, Mair (known more formally as Maryann), a quilter of reasonably sound body and questionably sound mind, do commit, for the month of February, 2013, to spend at least 30 minutes each and every day doing some quilting, piecing, cutting, ironing, or some other activity that will bring me closer to having one or more of my current projects completed.  I am planning to work on completing the hand quilting on my Florabunda quilt (which needs 12 more blocks quilted), adding borders to the S-Charm quilt (which will then complete the top), and preparing the backing and basting the iris quilt.  I may not finish any of these projects, but seeing them get closer to completion will be a huge  accomplishment.

If you want to enter, take a look at Beth Helfter's rules here, and her blog here.  Beth (AKA Quilting Hottie) is a funny, talented quilter and designer who is hosting this challenge for the second year.  Take a look to see what everybody has pledged to complete.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Completed Socks

Fresh off the needles.  I  enjoyed making these.  My knitting experience is limited and the rib stitch for the leg was just complicated enough to keep me interested but not so complicated that I needed to keep checking a chart.  This is only my third pair of socks and I'm still not totally confident in the heel and toe.  I think these socks will be very warm.

The next socks will be another over-all pattern on the leg and top of the foot.  But, it's time to get back to quilting.  This was a good diversion and now I'm itching to get back to hand quilting.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

New Socks, New Car?

I have decided to give into my restlessness and start a pair of socks. I started them on the 8th and finished the first sock last night and cast on the second.  I figure it was like a craving - if I didn't give in to the urge, it would build and build and I would have spent more time looking at knitting and not gotten anything done on anything else.  At least that's my justification.

I was toying with the idea of delaying the second sock while I did some more quilting, but I want to do the second while the pattern is still fresh in my mind.  Another justification.

The other thing that is now occupying  my thoughts is a new car.  My '97 Taurus turned over 200,000 miles in October and it was my plan to start looking for a new vehicle once I reached that milestone.  The car body is getting rusty and every time I take it to my mechanic he clicks his tongue and says " ... it's awful rusty under there...".  He's assured me it's still safe, but parts are getting fused together and it's getting harder and harder to repair.

This is the most miles I've put onto a single vehicle and, after having owned this for nearly 14 years (I bought it used), I've got to find something else.  The question is, what?  I've narrowed it down to small, 4-door sedan.  I took a trip to the library today to check out Consumer Reports and have a list of 4-6 cars that I need to check out.  I guess I'll go and do some test drives this weekend.  Honestly, the whole process of buying a new car doesn't excite me.  I'm hoping a test drive or two will help.

Monday, January 7, 2013

I'm Getting Restless (a small rant)

I've been quilting on the Florabunda quilt since March and I'm itching to do something else.  I have the center block and all the sashing around the center  complete, and 6 outer blocks and all the sashing around those complete.  I figure I'm 2/3 - 3/4 done with the hand quilting.  The fractions make me feel better - I usually count my quilt progress that way.  But, I'm getting really restless to do something else.  However, I know that if I take my attention off of this to start something new or work on some other project, I will put Florabunda down for quite some time.  (As an aside, I really need to come up with a real name for this quilt.)

That being said, I finished a charity quilt last night.  I picked up the package with a pieced top, batting, backing and cut binding from my guild in August with the idea  that I would practice some free motion quilting.  It got tucked away until the whole ordeal of new carpets on the main floor was complete.  Then I felt guilty for having this for so long (not that the guild minds).  Mostly it was an excuse to do some machine work.  Now that it is complete, I'm remembering how much I enjoy my Pfaff, and that I would love to spend some time working on my treadle machine making something beautiful.

And, I find myself browsing patterns and completed projects on Ravelry.  I've got yarn to make three more pair of socks and I'm dying to do those.

It's not that I'm not enjoying hand quilting.  It's just that I'm at that part of the project (and this happens on most projects) where I can envision what it will look like and it's not happening as quickly as I would like.  We all only have so much leisure time and I have to learn to spend it wisely.

So, I think it's time I stopped looking as pictures of other people's knitting projects and start working on my own.  I will still work on Florabunda, but I will cast on those socks and stop wasting time on the computer.

There, I feel better.