Saturday, September 25, 2010

I can sew!! ...well sorta...

So, at least a year and a half ago (maybe almost two years now), I bought fabric to make a rag quilt.  Mind you, I haven't sewn much at all...linings for a couple of purses, but that's been about the extent of it.  Anything beyond straight seams scares the crap out of me.  The rag quilt pattern at the local sewing shop consists of all straight seams (bonus!).  AND...they will die cut the squares and fringe the edges for you...HUGE bonus!  If you don't know what a rag quilt is, check out a picture of one here.  Basically, you sew together squares with a good-sized seam allowance and then fringe the seams.  You wash the quilt, and the fringe kind of gathers and bunches between the squares.  I'm too lazy to cut all the squares and too new to get them right, so paying the $12 to have the sewing store cut them and make the fringe ahead of time was totally worth it!

At any rate, I got some sort of stroke of motivation last week to finally assemble my rag quilt.  I've been sewing a bit each day, and I'm actually almost done!  I just have 7 rows to stitch together, and then it makes its trip to the washer.  The suggested fabric for said quilt is flannel...and when they cut it, they just leave the wrong sides together, so it ends up being double sided automatically with no work.  Anyway, because pics are are a couple of pics of the quilt in progress.  I'll take more when it's through the washer....

Stack of rows that have already been sewn...waiting to be sewn together

A few rows sewn together!

Outside of that, I attempted to do more on the "Football Afghan" and ended up having to rip out my work because I made a pentagon rather than a hexagon (doh!).  I will get back to that today...hubby has football to watch :)  The goal is to have the rag quilt from above AND the knitted afghan done by the end of football season.  I think I'm going to make it!

And, finally, I did get some spinning done this week as first Wensleydale wool!  If you don't know anything about Wensleydale, they have really long locks that are very lustrous.  It's not what I would consider a soft wool such as merino, but it is soft in it's own right, has beautiful luster and halo, and is very strong.  The best part is that it takes dye incredibly well.  This one happened to be dyed by Juliespins in the Dark Petunia colorway.  It ended up being a fingering weight yarn, about 560 yds.  Spinning it was first I wasn't sure about it, but it definitely grew on me, and I liked it.  I still had some issues with how much twist to put into it.  There was a fine line between too much twist and not enough to hold together.  That did create some challenges when winding the yarn off the bobbin onto my skein winder.  I spit-spliced some of it together, but it was already 10:30 p.m. when I was winding, and the last break I had was towards the end.  So, I did end up sacrificing about 20-30 yds just because I couldn't bear to try and get it to work again.  No matter...the yarn ended up beautiful, and I now have a better idea of what to do with Wensleydale!  No concrete plans for this yet, but perhaps a shawl??

Close-up of the yarn

Yarn plus a hint of my rag quilt in the background (the underside of it anyway)

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