Fall Yarns and a Fun Tote

Two self-striping sock yarn colorways are now available in my shop:  Fall Colors (with Plum), which is on the left, and Dark Anchorage Autumn on the right.

For eye candy, I included photos of a tote bag I made in July for a fundraiser for the Alaska Sudan Medical Project  The colorful designs were created by printing with food onto white fabric.  It was a lot of fun and a therapeutic activity on a dark winter day.  The wavy red lines at the top of the tote in the last picture were created by edges of (uncooked) lasagne noodles.

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Etsy Shop Update and Newborns in Need

I have just updated my etsy shop with about 20 skeins of superwash sock yarn.20170713_110450

I returned recently from 6 weeks in Europe, primarily in Germany, where I improved my language skills at the Goethe Institute, but also a week in Switzerland.  It was amazing, of course.  Upon my return a week ago I dove into yarn-dyed and creating memorial envelopes for the local chapter of Newborns in Need.  The primary goal of Newborns in Need is to provide a bag of supplies to parents of newborns who have absolutely nothing for their new baby. Usually these bags contain at least one handmade item, such as a knit hat, a crocheted blanked or a hand-sewn changing pad.  A secondary goal of Newborns in Need is to provide items for parents of deceased infants, which is my special interest.  Currently I am making multiples of the item shown below, an envelope that parents can use to keep birth and death certificates and other small items such as a hospital bracelet, photos, a lock of hair, etc.  The primary materials I use for these envelopes come from donated wedding dresses.  If you want to put your sewing, knitting or crocheting skills to good use, go to the website to find and then contact your local chapter.20170712_063129

Sprinkle-dyed Sock Yarn

As I wind down from dyeing for LYSs, I’ve dyed some yarn from my sadly-neglected etsy shop.  I’ve especially enjoyed sprinkle-dyeing, perhaps because the results are always a bit different.  It’s impossible to control exactly where the specks of dye will land, and impossible to know which of the specks of moss green will release a little orange, and which specks of lavender will release a little fuchsia.

In some of the skeins, I immersion-dye the yarn first.  In one colorway, “Glacier Cruise,” I’ve sprinkled the dye onto a white skein.  In my shop, I’ve described the process a bit more in each listing.

The first shot includes Fireweed and Dog Sled Team yarns, hand-painted in the traditional way–well, traditional for me, which involves using a medicine dropper.

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I guess “hand-squirted” doesn’t convey the same feeling as “hand-painted,” although no one actually uses a paintbrush.

The final photo shows all the yarn currently available in my shop–the bottom row consisting of self-striping sock yarn.

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My Most Important Craft Work To Date

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A dear family friend, pictured above, died three years ago.  His daughter is, at age 46, unexpectedly (and happily) pregnant for the first time.  She emailed me her favorite photo of Dad and I found the music online for a song he liked to play. Mom gave me one of his shirts, of which I used one sleeve and one strip from the front, saving the rest for future projects; it is the dark gray with blue and purple stripes at the bottom of the first photo, and you’ll see multiple squares of it in the photo below.

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The staff at The Quilted Raven helped me select fabrics to add to those I already had.  (They have a HUGE selection of Alaskan fabrics, FYI.)  To transfer photos to fabric, I used Lesley Riley’s Transfer Artist Paper, which I ordered online from JoAnn’s.  It transferred the images beautifully to fabric, but the fabric does feel a bit stiff, so I may try something else next time.  (Do you see the photos I used of the Northern Lights, the Alaska flag and the words to the Alaska Flag Song?)  A Quilted Raven staff member suggested denim for the edging, and I found a beautifully dark and soft denim fabric at JoAnn’s.

Experienced quilters will find plenty to criticize in this quilt, but no one else offered to make a quilt like this for these beloved family friends.  This is our best shot at having Grandpa hold that new baby girl in his arms.

Almost December 2015

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I added a new colorway to my shop, Alaskan Rainbow.  Use coupon code Nov2015 now through the end of the month for 10% off all items.

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My son has just opened an etsy shop featuring DIY kits to create wall art such as the item shown above.  He only has a few items in the shop now and will have more in the future.

A podcast you may like is Krista Tippett  On Being. Another is Meighan O’Toole’s; I especially liked this post.

Happy Post-Thanksgiving Weekend!