Last Eye Candy Friday for February...

...can you believe it?!  Februaries always go by so quickly!

Today's eye candy highlights the early spring we are experiencing. In our front yard, the lavender is blooming:

Lavender against the morning sky

In the backyard, freesias are popping up everywhere:

Red fressias

And the Blenheim apricot tree is blossoming like crazy:

Blenheim apricot blossoms

Up this weekend: I need to catch up on some chores that were completely ignored while I attended Stitches West. :-) My floors, in particular, need serious attention!

I'm an itching to start spinning some of the yak-silk top that I bought from Greenwood Fiberworks. However, that is the only new project I'm going to allow myself to start. I have not works on Be My Baby [Ravelry]in a while and I need to continue making progress on my Loopy Academy project, Irisa Cowl [Ravelry].

I wish weekends were longer!
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WIP-it Wednesday...

...blog and run style.  I've been knee-deep in Wordpress Builder, trying to customize a theme. I have two goals: One is to redesign my website and the other is to learn about Wordpress Builder, which we use for client websites. The more I learn, the more I can help on overflow work.

I had hoped to take a photo of the new project I started during Stitches, but I ran out of time (and light). I'll get to it soon.

WIP Roll Call

Worked on:

  1. Be My Baby for My Baby (knitting) [Ravelry]
    Continuing to work on scarf portion
  2. Tuscon Twilight (needlepoint)
    Continuing to work on the filling stitches
  3. Irisa Cowl/Scarf (knitting) [Ravelry
    Started 2/19/15; about 5 inches completed
Works In Progress, did not work on:
  • Halloween Phat Fiber samples (spinning) [Ravelry]
  • Mermaid of the Pearls (cross stitch)
UFOs/Hibernation:
  1. Beyond Antares, aka Equatorial Nights (knitting) [Ravelry
  2. Celaeno Shawl (knitting) [Ravelry]
  3. Going Snow Global quilt (quilting)
  4. Peacock Pomatomus socks (knitting) [Ravelry]
  5. Peacock Majesty by Just Nan (cross stitch)
WIPs To Be:
  • Loopy Academy projects, with a focus on techniques
    • Striping: Striped Stockinette Snake [Ravelry]
    • Felting/Fulling: Oatmeal Bonnet [Ravelry]
  • A peacock or mermaid quilt for me.

Stitches West 2015 report...

...the short version:  I had a great class, shopped a lot, and had a good time with friends.

The long version:

I took the Beaded Knitting Sampler class with Betsy Hershberg. Betsy is organized and kept the class on track. I learned lots, and I finished the class sampler:

Class Sampler

Market preview was a blast! I visited my target vendors and bought lots of fiber. I bumped into a friend while I was shopping and we took a few minutes to catch up.

On Friday, I walked the entire market with the goal of visiting every vendor. I didn't quite make it, but I got close. I was on the lookout for some undyed, black DK weight yarn for my boss (didn't find any) and brightly colored rattail for a co-worker (got some at Garden of Beadin'). I picked up a bit more and a little yarn. I made an early day of it and went home to take photos of my purchases. I processed the photos and got it all loaded into Ravelry.

On Saturday, knowing that the Sharks game at the arena was going to cause all sorts of traffic headaches in the area, I arrived at the convention center early so I could park at the convention center, which would allow me to avoid some of the traffic. While I waited for the market to open. I met up with some friends and enjoyed a quick breakfast. My goal was to be out of there by 12:30...I escaped before noon. I concentrated on tools and bought a few things plus another skein of a bamboo yarn I want to use for a weaving project.

On Sunday, I arrived a little early again, mostly for the parking. I did my last round of the market, this time looking at booths that I could not get into during the previous trips. Miss Babs is always crowded, so I went there first. I bought a couple of patterns, some yarn for those projects, and more fiber (I know...). I met a friend for lunch and went with her to a couple of booths. By then I was done, but I was hanging around for the drawing at 1PM. Yeah, I didn't win either!

I took photos of the last few purchases and loaded them into Ravelry.  I tried to nap, but you know how it is when you're too exhausted? My mind wouldn't turn off!

Here are a couple of collages that show my purchases.  Fiber and yarn:

Stitches West 2015 - fiber and yarn

R1: Rushing Water Merino-silk by Wonderland Dyeworks; Calypso yak-silk by Greenwood Fiberworks; Meteor Shower yak-silk by Greenwood Fiberworks; Metro Teal yak-silk by Greenwood Fiberworks; Rivendell by Greenwood Fiberworks;
R2: Mermaid BFL-silk by Wonderland Dyeworks; Drake's Bay merino-bamboo by Royal Hare;  Purple-green gradient by Purl Up & Dye; Natural merino-black silk by Royal Hare;
R3: Purple-gray Crazy Batt by Faerie Mountain Fibers; Lemon-Lime Crazy Batt by Faerie Mountain Fibers; Stitches Badge; Turquoise Crazy Batt by Faerie Mountain Fibers; Mystery Mix alpaca by Ranch of the Oaks;
R4: Peacock Bombyx silk  by Greenwood Fiberworks; Sea Glass bamboo by Fiberlady; Cream Cottolin by Louet; Brown Diaanhelo by Diakeito; Lemon-Lime lace yarn by Fiberlady;
R5: Shades of Turquoise Merino-Yak-Silk yarn by Greenwood Fiberworks; Livid Yummy Yarn by Miss Babs; Lavender Makimo yarn by Fiberlady; Amethyst Mousou yarn by Fiberlady; Amethyst Makimo yarn by Fiberlady;

The other stuff:

Stitches West 2015 - the other stuff

R1: Ringlets stitch markers by Knitifacts; Knitted Bead Sampler class project; Pink Grapefruit Lo-Lo Bar, regular and small sizes from Bar-Maids;
R2: Mother of Dragons shawl pattern and Song of the Sea cowl pattern; Stitches badge; Knit Blockers by Knitter's Pride;
R3: Felted Dryer Balls from Ranch of the Oaks; Gadget Trays by Chic-a; Beads and rattail from Garden of Beadin'

There are quite a few WIPs in my future!

WIP-it Wednesday and some finished objects...

...yeah, yesterday got away from me. It's been happening a lot lately.

I was productive during the long weekend and finished two things.  First, I finished the Ghouls, ghosts, and witches...oh, my! project. I finished all of the stitching Sunday night. On Monday, I pressed the project, added the button, and tucked it into the pillow.

Ghouls, ghosts, and witches...oh, my!

Specs:
Started 7/14/2014;
Finished 2/16/2015;
Cross stitch kit from Pine Mountain Designs

On Saturday, I finished spinning the singles for Goat Rock [Ravelry] and let it rest until Monday, when I chain-plied it. Here it the finished handspun:

Goat Rock handspun

and the close up:

Goat Rock handspun, close up

Specs:
Started 2/7/2015;
Finished 2/16/2015;
Polworth-silver top (4.0 oz) from Royale Hare;
204.7 yds., 12 WPI

I worked on the Tuscon Twilight needlepoint and discovered an error in a previously stitched area. The good news is that it was a pretty small area and involved no metallic threads. The bad news, of course, is that I have to re-do the area. Oh, well!

I'm really looking forward to the next 4 days...it's Stitches West time!!  I have a class tomorrow afternoon (Bead Knitting Sampler) followed by the Market Preview. I can't wait!

WIP Roll Call

Worked on:

  1. Be My Baby for My Baby (knitting) [Ravelry]
    Continuing to work on scarf portion
  2. Tuscon Twilight (needlepoint)
    Continuing to work on the filling stitches
Works In Progress, did not work on:
  • Halloween Phat Fiber samples (spinning) [Ravelry]
  • Mermaid of the Pearls (cross stitch)
UFOs/Hibernation:
  1. Beyond Antares, aka Equatorial Nights (knitting) [Ravelry
  2. Celaeno Shawl (knitting) [Ravelry]
  3. Going Snow Global quilt (quilting)
  4. Peacock Pomatomus socks (knitting) [Ravelry]
  5. Peacock Majesty by Just Nan (cross stitch)
WIPs To Be:
  • Loopy Academy projects, with a focus on techniques
    • Striping: Striped Stockinette Snake [Ravelry]
    • Felting/Fulling: Oatmeal Bonnet [Ravelry]
    • Slipped Stitches: Irisa Cowl (although I'll probably leave it as a scarf  [Ravelry]
  • A peacock or mermaid quilt for me.

Eye Candy Friday, long week-end style...

...and the weekend before Stitches West!

The trees and plants are started to bloom in our garden.  We are starting to see daffodils:

Daffodil 1

and nasturtiums:

Nasturtium

Our flowering plum tree always puts on a great show of blossoms:

Flowering plum 1

Up this weekend: It's a three-day weekend! Hooray!

I need to do some housekeeping as it's been neglected lately. The cats will be a little perturbed when I pull out the vacuum monster, but it must be done.

I'm going to gather my supplies for my Stitches West class. I think I have everything on hand. If not, there will be time to buy the remaining items over the weekend.

I'm making decent progress on the Be My Baby project, but I'm getting a little bored with linen stitch. I think I'll start one of my Loopy Academy assignments just to have an alternate knitting project to take to Stitches.

The other WIPs are not as portable, so it would be god to work on them this weekend.

We have no plans for Valentine's day...maybe just a bottle of champagne and some strawberries.  I'm not getting enough sleep and I'm pretty tired...the Husband is fighting off a cold. We'll just keep it mellow.
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WIP-it Wednesday, blog-and-run version...

...it's been a busy day and I just ran out of time to photograph one of the WIPs.  The sun has set so it's too dark to try now. Sorry about that!

WIP Roll Call

Worked on:

  1. Be My Baby for My Baby (knitting) [Ravelry]
    Successfully increased by 4 stitches; knit 8.5 inches of the 67 inches required for the scarf portion.
  2. Ghouls, ghosts, and witches...oh, my! (cross stitch)
    Working on the bottom half of the design
  3. Goat Rock handspun (spinning) [Ravelry]
    Spun almost 2 ounces of the 4 ounces in the bump; this polworth-silk combination is harder to draft than other fibers I've spun. I wonder if that's just the way polworth is or if only this particular bump is difficult.
  4. Tuscon Twilight (needlepoint)
    Completed the diamond areas; working on some of the filling stitches
Works In Progress, did not work on:
  • Halloween Phat Fiber samples (spinning) [Ravelry]
  • Mermaid of the Pearls (cross stitch)
UFOs/Hibernation:
  1. Beyond Antares, aka Equatorial Nights (knitting) [Ravelry
  2. Celaeno Shawl (knitting) [Ravelry]
  3. Going Snow Global quilt (quilting)
  4. Peacock Pomatomus socks (knitting) [Ravelry]
  5. Peacock Majesty by Just Nan (cross stitch)
WIPs To Be:
  • Loopy Academy projects, with a focus on techniques
    • Striping: Striped Stockinette Snake [Ravelry]
    • Felting/Fulling: Oatmeal Bonnet [Ravelry]
    • Slipped Stitches: Irisa Cowl (although I'll probably leave it as a scarf  [Ravelry]
  • A peacock or mermaid quilt for me.
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Finished Object for Tuesday...

...and some random stuff.

Here is the first look at my I'm Just Mad About Citron quilt:

I'm Just Mad About Citron quilt, first look

Specs:

Started 7/15/2014;
Finished 2/1/2015;
No pattern; most fabrics are from Michael Miller's Citron/Gray fabric collections
Machine quilted


Not the best picture in the world, but you get the idea. I'm still struggling with taking pictures of things that contain a lot of white. I decided enough was enough and I signed up for a Craftsy class "Shoot it! A Product Photography Primer." It has a lot of positive reviews for photographing knitting pattern photos. I hope that there will be some useful tips that I can use to photograph quilts.

Top of the waves:
  1. Spin-In was fun! I started spinning Goat Rock [Ravelry], a Polworth-Silk that I purchased from Royal Hare at last year's Stitches West. I'm not happy with the way the polworth is drafting--it's very sticky. But, I made decent progress and have a little more than 2 ounces let to spin.
  2. Be My Baby for My Baby [Ravelry]  is also progressing. I've knit 8.5 inches of the 67 inches required for the scarf portion. I was able to move over to straight needles, which is much better than the circular for this portion. It is going to be a long haul as the large needles combined with the linen stitch are very hard on the hands.
  3. No new rodent sightings nor any nibbles in either car. Hooray!
  4. I actually worked on Turquoise Trail on Sunday!
  5. I also worked on Ghouls, ghosts, and witches...oh, my! (cross stitch)!
I can't believe that Stitches West is next week! I'm working on my vendor map, marking up the booths I want to visit and potential new sources of fiber.
 
Guess I really need to look at the required supplies for my class...
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It's a rainy Eye Candy Friday...

...hooray!! We desperately need the rain!

This morning's sky showed the promise of the rain that arrived a few hours later:

Sunrise 2/6/15, another view

And because I can't have an eye candy post without a flower,

Close up of a pink rose

I joined the Rockin' Sock Club for 2015, its 10th anniversary. I only missed one of those years (last year) and I figured the 10th year was a good one to be in. The first installment arrived at the beginning of the week. I'm not putting it behind spoiler picture...I'll just make it small.

Rockin Sock Club, January 2015 Installment

We finally caught one of the rodents that have been lurking in our backyard. It was huge...how it fit in the car engine, we have no idea. One down, 50 million to go. And let me add: EWWWWWWW!!

Up this weekend: Spin-In tomorrow!  I'm going to make a dessert that uses up some of the leftover ingredients from the Christmas baking...chocolate chips will be involved!

I have some stash photos to take: there's the first Pro-Verbial club installment for 2015, the Loopy Academy yarn for the second semester projects, and whatever else I might have missed. I also need to take photos on the completed I'm Just Mad About Citron quilt.

Other than that, my plan is to enjoy the wet weather as long as it lasts. Hot chocolate and knitting might go well together...
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January 2015 recap...

...in which not much was finished due to Rodent Wars. I did read a lot, though.

Finished:
  • 1/31 Walking on the Sun handspun [Ravelry]
    Sea Monster top (4 oz) from Dragonfly Fibers;
    204.7 yds chain-ply, 13 WPI
  • Books:
    1. The 19th Wife, David Ebershoff
    2. Blackberry Pie Murder, Joanne Fluke
    3. 1st to Die, James Patterson
    4. 2nd Chance, James Patterson
    5. 3rd Degree, James Patterson
    6. 4th of July, James Patterson
    7. The 5th Horseman, James Patterson
    8. 7th Heaven, James Patterson
    9. The 8th Confession, James Patterson
    10. The 9th Judgement, James Patterson
    11. 10th Anniversary, James Patterson
    12. 11th Hour, James Patterson
Started:
  • Nothing
Worked on:
  • Be My Baby for My Baby (knitting) [Ravelry
  • I'm Just Mad About Citron Quilt (quilting)
Works In Progress, did not work on:
  • Ghouls, ghosts, and witches...oh, my! (cross stitch)
  • Halloween Phat Fiber samples (spinning) [Ravelry]
  • Mermaid of the Pearls (cross stitch)
  • Tuscon Twilight (needlepoint)
UFOs/Hibernation:
  1. Beyond Antares, aka Equatorial Nights (knitting) [Ravelry
  2. Celaeno Shawl (knitting) [Ravelry]
  3. Going Snow Global quilt (quilting)
  4. Peacock Pomatomus socks (knitting) [Ravelry]
  5. Peacock Majesty by Just Nan (cross stitch)
WIPs To Be:
  • Loopy Academy projects, with a focus on techniques
    • Striping: Striped Stockinette Snake [Ravelry]
    • Felting/Fulling: Oatmeal Bonnet [Ravelry]
    • Slipped Stitches: Irisa Cowl (although I'll probably leave it as a scarf  [Ravelry]
  • A peacock or mermaid quilt for me.

WIP-it Wednesday, and a finish...

...and whoa, it's Wednesday already!

I was planning on posting yesterday, but the day ended before I could get to it.

Over the weekend I actually finished two projects. On Saturday, the last day of January, I finished the Walking on the Sun handspun [Ravelry].

Walking on the Sun handspun

and a close up:

Walking on the Sun handspun, close up

Specs:
Started 1/10/2015;
Finished 1/31/2015;
Sea Monster top (4 oz) from Dragonfly Fibers;
204.7 yds chain-ply, 13 WPI

I tried very hard to finish the quilt on Saturday, but it didn't happen. I finished I'm Just Mad About Citron quilt on Sunday, the first day of February...oh, well! No photos yet because I need to find a location with good lighting to get some decent pictures.

I'm making slow progress on Be My Baby and I actually worked on a cross stitch piece!  With Stitches West coming up in a couple of weeks and Loopy Academy starting up again, it would be good to make progress on my existing projects before I start something new!

WIP Roll Call

WIPs in Rotation:
  1. Be My Baby for My Baby (knitting) [Ravelry]
    Restarted on the scarf portion for the third time
  2. Ghouls, ghosts, and witches...oh, my! (cross stitch)
    Working on the bottom half of the design; about 30% done
Works in Progress:
  1. Beyond Antares, aka Equatorial Nights (knitting) [Ravelry]
  2. Halloween Phat Fiber samples (spinning) [Ravelry]
  3. Mermaid of the Pearls (cross stitch)
  4. Tuscon Twilight (needlepoint)
UFOs:
  1. Celaeno Shawl (knitting) [Ravelry]
  2. Going Snow Global quilt (quilting)
  3. Peacock Pomatomus socks (knitting) [Ravelry]
  4. Peacock Majesty by Just Nan (cross stitch)
In the Queue:
Loopy Academy projects, with a focus on techniques
  • Striping: Striped Stockinette Snake [Ravelry]
  • Felting/Fulling: Oatmeal Bonnet [Ravelry]
  • Slipped Stitches: Irisa Cowl (although I'll probably leave it as a scarf  [Ravelry]

Eye Candy...

...on a Saturday. After  processing the photos and uploading them to Flickr, Facebook, and Instagram, I forgot about the blog. Oops! The y...