Saturday, September 20, 2014

Acorns and Alpacas

Yesterday it was windy all day in Green Bay, Wisconsin. I don't remember another day, however, that produced such a deluge of acorns, and everyone of them seem determined to hit our back deck or skylights (We have 2 of them in the house.).

This afternoon I put Jessie out on her chain for a little bit and she got it twisted around a tree. To retrieve her I had to put shoes on, because the deck is so covered with acorns that I can't risk walking out there in my bare feet. I hope you can see them in the picture. They are particularly evident against the dark brown mulch just above the deck. Then overnight we had a doozy of a thunderstorm, and today it is warmer here. I thought that all the rain we had last night might cause the cancellation of the Oneida Apple Fest, but the sun was out by 10am and I went with AT.

We met in the Schlotzky's parking lot and proceeded to the Brown County Park on the west end of Mason. There were scads of vendors, and I learn now that it is not necessary to be a member of the tribe to participate. Next year Socks by Victoria will have a booth. They have restored a traditional pioneer village, complete with doctor's office and a typical pioneer home. If I remember correctly there are 6 buildings in all. At the end of the village street was a petting zoo with miniature horses, goats, and alpacas.

As you enter the venue there is a small Oneida long house, and they have begun building an actual standard size long house for next year's Apple Fest.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Blocking Lace with Wires

Yesterday I wrote about the blocking wires that I made out of 1/16" stainless steel welding wires and Plasti Dip.

I blocked the shawl this morning, and this is what it now looks like.

First I washed the piece and ran it through about a minute of the spin cycle on the washing machine. Then I began to insert the wires.

This is the unblocked damp version of the shawl. I then ran wires along the top, down the middle, and down the sides.

Below is a close up of the point where the side and center wires cross.

Notice that I am pinning into floor tiles that were intended for a child's playroom. I bought them at a garage sale many years ago. You can get them new at Sam's Club and Knit Picks, but they will be more expensive than these were.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Repurposed Items!

I had an adventure this morning. After finishing a triangular shawl that I have been working on for some time, I realized I didn't have any blocking wires. I don't want the blocked item to be "peaked" so wires are essential. I did a Google search and this is what came up:

A couple more searches told me where I needed to go to buy the supplies, so I hoped in the car and bought. The stainless steel wires are considerably more expensive than the above cited article states, but the Plasti-Dip was still $7.

When I got home I layed out some waxed paper to protect the counter top and began dipping one end of each wire into the Plasti-Dip. I wasn't happy, however, with the flat side resulting from the dipped wire laying on the flat surface. First I tried rolling the waxed paper so I could lay the wires on a slant over the ridge created by the paper roll. This, too, was not successful, because with the addition of more wires, the paper began to collapse toward the counter top. Then it came to me to use rolled up aluminum foil to support the wires, and the rest is in the pictures.

It takes about 30 minutes for the Plasti Dip to dry completely, and I will dip the opposite ends of the wires this afternoon. By that time I should have all the shawl ends woven in and ready to block.

I love finding a new use for something that is usually used in another way. This morning I was able to do that. Made my day. You have a good one too!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Times They Are a'Changing

It is 45 degrees here in Green Bay today, and there is a definite hint of winter. I guess that means if Fall, although no one who lives here is ready for it. You see, we didn't really get summer. Oh, there were a few humid, hot days, but that general summer, hot, sunny, lazy, feeling never really set in for any length of time. I was out at a vegetable farm last week and they were calling it The Year of the Green Tomato. It just wasn't hot long enough to ripen the tomatoes at the normal "ready to pick" time of year.

I've been knitting and quilting up a storm over the summer. I've made 4 baby blankets for the guild to present to the church where we meet, (they give a baby blanket to the parents of babies who are baptized, quilted a quilt for the Comfort Quilts project at quilt guild, and put together a king-sized quilt out of the blocks the guild gave me when my Presidential term was  complete.

I taught a quilting 101 class at guild on Tuesday on Foundation piecing. It was fun and the students seemed to enjoy it. After class I dropped my sewing machine off at the repair place for an 'oil and a lube'. Then I came home and decided I couldn't Not Quilt for 2 and a half weeks , so I
got out my antique Singer Featherweight. Luckily the manual came with it so I could read about each new item. I am using it to sew on the borders. It is a joy to use.

Tonight is Bay Lakes Knitting Guild so I guess I better get my knitting act together. More at you later.