The Fiber Artist

Wow, that sounds pretentious doesn't it. But it is the name of my company, so I decided to use it. This is where I will keep a record of works in progress in the hope that it will result in more productivity. It will also give me a place to ramble on about my life, so that maybe later I will remember what happened in ___ (fill in day, month, year of your choice).

Friday, November 24, 2006

The day after

Thanksgiving for most of the country, or Black Friday, but here in my little section of rural Indiana it is Thanksgiving, we are a having the family on Friday to avoid conflicts with children's Significant Others. And it gives me an extra day to make sure that everyone gets something that they like a lot. For Amy and my Mother honey baked ham. For the rest Turkey, except some years when the vegetarian shows up Nutloaf, no vegetarians expected this year so no Nutloaf.

I have not been posting because my Mom and I were in Virginia, staying in Chesapeake, with my Aunt Helen, and running over to Va. Beach to visit Ewe Knits, and my Brother Bryan, and go to My Uncle's 70th birthday party.

My uncle Jimmie is 11 years older than me. When I was 2, I followed him everywhere, and I do mean everywhere. He taught me to tie my shoes, probably because he was tired of having to tie them for me. I followed him to the pasture to get the cow, and rode the cow back. I helped him milk the cow, (by holding on to her tail for as long as she let me, and then trying to catch it again).

I am absolutely sure that a 13 year old boy was just thrilled to have a 2 year old girl tagging after him everywhere, but he was unfailingly kind and I loved him more than anything.

I am glad that I could be at the party, he was so surprised, and he cried. And he wore his socks all day the next day.

All but 2 of the remaining 7 of my mothers sisters and brothers were at Jimmies party, so my Mom got to see all of her younger siblings, (she at 83 is the oldest). That made her happy, so my mom is happy with me for taking her.

And I was glad to see all my aunts and uncles, and my brothers and their wives and girlfriends, and my crazy cousin Robert. It was an amazing turnout like only a very large family can manage. There was dancing, and drinking, and much laughter, and hugging.

On Sunday, Mom, Helen, Jimmie, Jimmie's wife Kathlene, my brother Robert, his wife Cheryl, and I went over to my brother Bryan and his girlfriend Lori's new condo and had dinner with them and Bryan's son Mark. Bryan is a great cook, and had made oysters, and pears with goat cheese, and he served Gumbo that I could not eat, because he made it before he knew that I was coming and it had pepper in it. Everyone else said it was wonderful.

We left Monday morning, and had a great drive home, unlike the trip to Virginia, when it rained the entire way.

We got back home on Tuesday night. I got no pictures of the socks once they were finished, even though I had the camera with me(bad Anita). I will get pictures of the progress of the knitting after today.

I have been baking for 3 days. There is Mincemeat Pies, Pumpkin pies, Persimmon Puddings, Fruit cake, and Coconut custard. There is turkey, and Ham. Yams, mashed potatoes, and turnips,
broccoli, possibly green beans, and rolls.

The coconut pies are in the oven now and when they come out in 5 minutes the Turkey goes in, and the ham an hour after that. The potatoes in 3 hours, and the stuffing out of the bird back in to the oven and the sweet potatoes, and turnips back in the oven (or top of the stove) to heat back up, while that turkey is resting and being carved and the gravy is being made. Then the cranberry sauces come out of the fridge, and we will be ready to eat.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Progress on projects

Here is the zipper with the flap raised.

The lining is pinned and ready to be sewn in by hand this evening while I watch something on TV, there must be something I want to see.

Here is the makeup pouch tucked into the purse. Almost done here.

Yesterday I received this in the mail. Rayne had torn her ruffle and her dad said that they would just have to throw it away. Setting off major hysterics, so my daughter suggested calling grandma and seeing if she could fix it. So Rayne called grandma (me) and ask if I could fix it. I said I could and here it is. It will be hand gathered and machine sewn. I will reinforce the stitching on the rest of the ruffle while I am at it, and it will go back to Rayne because she likes girlie girl stuff.

she did do quite a job on the ruffle.

While I am hand sewing I might as well sew this in too:

The next thing I need to finish is the Birthday socks for my Uncle Jimmie he is going to be 70 on Nov 19, and his wife is throwing a big party, and I am taking Mom back to Virginia Beach for the party. Mom decided that I should make him some hand knit socks because no one else can give him that (at least not in our family). I am down the leg and past where the heels will go in, (the red stripe is the waste yarn for the afterthought heel)

Caleb's Christmas sweater is coming along nicely. I have the sleeves and back finished and have cast on the fronts, and started the ribbing.

I keep sneaking off and working on things I *want* to knit, instead of the things I have to knit. So Beadwork is down to the underarm on the back and I have picked up the fronts and am working on them.

And Trip Trap gets a half hour or 2 every once in a while, also.

Backpack assembly

Zipper in place pocket showing underneath.

The Mylar circle.

The pocket from the wrong side.

Below the pocket bottom and side seams being finished.

And the pocket finished from the right side

Backpack progress

I have to finish Sierra's Backpack today because her birthday is tomorrow. So I got it out, after taking some medicine for the arthritis in my hands. Then we banged in the grommets. Carl helped after I called down stairs and ask him if he had something hard I could bang on, (it has just this minute occurred to me why he came up so fast, and he hid his disappointment well). After we got all the grommets in I started working on the lining. I wanted a (more or less) hidden pocket so she could put things out of sight.
First I marked a rectangle the length and width of the zipper, on the right side of the fabric.

Then I cut the hole out for the zipper, finger pressed the openings, laid the fabric over the zipper, and started pinning.

The side of the pocket that would be closest to the lining was positioned and a seam allowance was folded under, the whole thing was pinned and checked several times.

Then the lower side of the zipper was sewn in place.

Next I folded a piece of material in on both ends and in half and slid it into the opening so that it would cover the zipper, to make the pocket less noticeable.

the part of the pocket that would be behind the zipper and closest to the outside of the backpack was put into place and every thing was checked and then I sewed the zipper seam and the flap and lining in place, catching in both ends at the same time.

Next I turned the whole thing over and sewed the ends and the bottom of the pocket, twice, so that things would not end up between the lining and the outside of the bag.

The ends of the nylon braid was over lapped and sewed on each end of the overlap and back and forth across the braid several times.

Then all that was left was the assembly, I had cut a circle out of Mylar, to put into the bottom of the bag to add a little bit of structure and cut 2 circles of material for the bottom of the lining so that it would not wear out quickly.

I also took some of the left over material (I started with 1 yard) and made a make-up pouch with the other zipper I got yesterday.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Winter Doldrums

Growing up in Norfolk, Virginia (mostly) I hated winter. What I remember is days and days of drizzly rain and 35 degree temperatures. The cold would seep into your very marrow, there was no way to get warm because of the damp. We are having that sort of weather here lately, and I don't like it.

DH says that it is my mother's fault, well think about it, all that time while I was growing up, she was there too. And now this year, she is not going to Florida, she is staying here. One has to admit he may have something, I never realized it, My mother may have rained on my parade my entire childhood, and I never knew it. This must be thought about some more.

Weather affects me a lot, dreary weather makes me draggy and sleepy, I hurt from the cold, so in order to keep my joints warm I wear long johns tops and bottoms, then long sleeve shirts, (usually cotton knit tees) and pants. It took me some time to come to this accommodation, and I do not go there willingly even yet, all the pulling this up, and pulling that down, then this up, then that down, just makes me tired and grouchy. Probably because my fingers are hurting.

I normally realize that my fingers have been hurting for months, sometime in the spring when you start getting that strong bright sun thru the window, and it warms my hands and they stop hurting, and it is wonderful because they don't hurt anymore, and they have hurt so long that I have forgotten what it feels like to not hurt. My feet used to feel like that, but don't now because I make wool socks, and I wear wool socks, with sandal's, all winter (as long as there isn't snow actually on the ground) and my feet are warm and cozy.

I have a pair of fingerless gloves that are 50/50 wool dog down and they are wonderful but I forget to put them on. I need to go find them and put them on the desk, where I will see them so I can use them.

My other weather related activity is soup/stew making. When it gets cold I make soups. Tonight I made an African Peanut butter Soup that someone on one of the lists I am on talked about making this week. I thought I saved the post, but couldn't find it and I forgot to get yams while I was out so I used chickpeas. And I added mushrooms, because mushrooms go with everything in my opinion, and my opinion is the only one that counts when I am alone in the kitchen

While I was out I also got the makings for fruitcakes. Chris is supposed to come home so I will get him to help stir the fruitcakes, that is the hard part. I want to make Persimmon puddings, and cookies as well. The fruitcakes will go into their tins. And the Puddings and cookies will go into the freezer.

I am also cooking steel cut oats for breakfast tomorrow.

I got beans today and I have ham hocks, and cornmeal. Another good cold weather meal. Just wish we were still using the wood stove for heat, I would put the beans or soup on the wood stove and get free cooking. I liked that.

Well it's time for Grey's Anatomy so I will go maybe pictures tomorrow.