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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Bigger on the Inside, FO

Yarn:  1.6 skeins, about 700 yards
Colorway, aqua sol

Needles:  size 3
1.  Made this bigger on the outside by following Damelac's mods on Ravelry.   The result shawl was a generous 64 inches across the top edge and about 70 inches along the bottom.  
2.  Casdena on Ravelry is kind enough to share her alternative ending, a knit on lace.  While this lace took forever to finish, it was well worth it.  Like magic it fit perfectly on the 411 picked up stitches.  
Comments.  This pattern is nothing short of brilliant.  In the beginning I thought the varigations would hide the, but in the end I was quite please with they way they showed.  

I don't know what I was thinking when I block this lace.  Next time around I will thread the wires through the points!  Good think I own a lot of pins. 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Marietta's Flap Hat, Pattern

Marietta’s Flap Hat (Draft)
Please left me know if you spot any errors.  Thanks!

My first try was done in Red Heart which is more of an aran weight.  I reworked the pattern  in Cascade 220 and Knit Picks Swish.  I also tried out some safety eyes.  I had to cut the backs off the eyes because she said they stuck her in the head and made unsightly bumps.  I also did the band in stockinette stitch instead of 1x1 rib.  The ears were shortened and knit flat.   I used a size G hook, which was a little loose.

I credit Sharuya at Go Dolls for her cute Totoro style hat.  Her dolls are Blythe or smaller, and her hat's are just adorable.  My Marietta's head is quite a bit bigger at 12 inches.  
Knit in the round. 
Increase used interchangeably with Kf&b or Pf&b
Decrease.  K or P 2tog, SSK
Single crochet
Yarn:  worsted, Gauge about 5 stitches/inch and 7 rows/inch.  I tend to knit on the tight side.
Needles size  7
Crochet hook F

Earflaps, knit flat.
With white, CO 4 stitches.  Turn at end of every row.
P one row.
K next row increasing one stitch on each end. (6)
P one row.
K next row increasing one stitch on each end. (8)
P next row increasing one stitch on each end. (10)
K one row. Cut yarn. This end is woven in at the end
Place on holder.
Make second earflap but do not place on holder. 
Backward CO 16 stitches.  With right (knit) side facing, knit the first earflap back on to needle.
Continue back in forth in stockinette stitch starting with purl row for 4 rows.  End on right side.
Backward CO 24 stitches. (60 stitches total)  Join to knit in the round. Place marker to mark beginning.
Continue stockinette stitch for 5 more rows. The front band is a little shy of 1 inch. Cut thread leaving short end to weave in.  Change to gray and stockinette stitch. (Knit every row in the round)
Work 7 rows of knit (one inch)
Begin crown decreases.
(K8, K2tog) around (54)
Knit one row.
(K7, K2tog) around (48)
Knit one row.
(K6, K2tog) around (42)
(K5, K2tog) around (36)
(K4, K2tog) around (30)
(K3, K2tog) around (24)
(K2, K2tog) around (18)
(K1, K2tog) around (12)
(K2tog) around (6)
K1,k2tog,k1,k2tog (4)
Cut thread leaving 6 inch tail.  Thread through stitches and pull up tight.  Push to wrong side and weave in end.
Single crochet around edge, crocheting in tails as you go.  When you go around the botton of the flaps add extra single crochet in corner knit stitches to go around the corners.   Add braids to earflaps and pompoms or dust mites as desired.  (I used 6 strands about 30 inches long for each braid, doubled)

Make two and sew in place.  I knit these flat.  They can as well be knit in the round.  It is fiddly but avoids purling.
CO 8 stitches. 
K3, Kf&b, K3. Kf&b. (10)
P one row, knit one row, purl one row.
Kf&b, K4, Kf&b, K4 (12)
P one row, knit one row, purl one row.
SSK, K4, SSK, K4 (10)
P2tog, p3, P2tog, p3 (8)
SSK, K2, SSK, K2 (6)
P2tog, p1, P2tog, p1 (4)
K2tog, K2tog.
Break yarn leaving 12 inch tail and thread through.  Pull up and weave in ends.  Stuff lightly if desired.  Sew on ears about 5 stitches from top.  Embroider whiskers, chest markings.  Add eyes of choice.

 Heart in Flight has a nice tutorial on crocheting eyes.

Marietta is also sporting her new jean skirt.  The elastic waistband came out better, and I added the lace and a bit of length.

Friday, December 05, 2014

Nürnberger Lebkuchen Recipe

My coworker turned me on to the packaged variety of these cookes.  I especially liked the chocolate glazed ones shaped like stars.  My first recipe came from Küche Kochen, A cookbook of the American Historical Society of Germans from Russia.  When I bake them with MF, we use her recipe.  The only difference is 1/4 cup of flour  and 1 tsp of soda more, and an 1/2 tsp each allspice and nutmeg, and 1/4 tsp clove, and the addition of cinnamon, 1 tsp.  Also, the glaze was a boiled glaze, cooking to the thread stage.  (okay, I admit I never it tried that glaze, lol)

MF likes a very thin glaze, just to "seal" the cookie.  She always makes these right after Thanksgiving, as these cookies are best "aged" a bit.   

Nürnberger Lebkuchen

1 cup honey
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg beaten
1 T lemon juice
1 tsp. grated lemon zest
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp each allspice, cloves and nutmeg
1/2  tsp salt and baking soda
1/3 cup finely choppped blanched almonds
1/3 cup finely chopped citron
whole blanched almonds for garnish

Heat honey over medium heat until just bubbling.  Remove from heat and cool slightly.  Stir in brown sugar, egg, lemon juice and peel.  Cool to lukewarm.
Stir rest of ingredients together.  Add honey mxture, ground almonds and citron.  Blend well.
Refrigerate for at least 3 hours or up to two days.
Scoop with small cookie scoop and shape into balls.  Place 2 inch apart on parchment paper lined pans. Press whole almond into top and flatten slightly
Bake 375 for 10-12 minutes.

1 cup powdered sugar
Mix with 3 T water and 1T lemon juice to thin consistency.  Glaze tops and bottoms of cookies, allowed to dry before painting the other sides.  

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Totoro T Shirt For Marietta

I saw a little video on youtube on how to make a no sew jean skirt from a pant leg.  Mom gave up some gardening jeans.  I put elastic in the back half because I can sew.  Reminder to self to leave more space to thread the elastic!  I got some white T-shirts from Emily Rose Doll Clothes.  They are nicely made and I will have fun decorating them.  I'm sewing for a friend who has a tie dye business ( see the headband) and I am going to ask her to throw a couple in.

I hand carved the Totoro stamp and used acrylic paint mixed with fabric medium.  Lucky thing Marietta does not sweat, so I won't have to wash her clothes very often. The paint is heat set but why court danger.

I really want to make a bubble skirt when I find the right scrap of fabric.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Granola Muffins

My recipe card says this recipe is from Prepared Pantry and is called Great Granola Muffins.  I can't locate it on their site, so here it is.

1 1/3 cup unbleached flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups of granola (I use homemade)
2 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 400 deg.   (375 deg in my convection oven)
Mix granola with buttermilk and let stand while preparing the pan and muffin mix.  I use paper muffin cup liners since I have them and the clean up is easier, otherwise, grease lightly.
Combine dry ingredients.  Add rest of ingredients including moistened granola.  Optional, add 1/3 cup of chocolate chips.  Mix well.  Scoop into muffin cups.  I used my large cookie scoop to drop the dough into the paper cups.

Bake  15-20 minutes until golden and toothpick comes on dry.  Cool.

Enjoy with a little butter and jelly. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Here's Marietta

Once upon a time I lusted for a Cabbage Patch Doll.  I really wanted a girl to sew and knit for having only sons.  Sensibility set in and that dream passed.  But... after knitting a sweater for Molly and hanging out very briefly in the American Girl Knitter's group on Rav ( also know as Enablers R Us)
I adopted Marietta.  I believe it was fate that brought us together since an American Girl doll trial store opened up at Ala Moan Center, and lunch with mom and the Sky Goddess afforded me a shopping opportunity.  That's my story and I'm sticking too it.

She is a nice sized doll to knit for and I may try and sew something for her as well.

Hooded Cape: 
Yarn:  Cascade Sierra?
Mods:Continued seed stitch around  hoodie.  Ran out of wool so hoodie is a little tight and the ties a little short .
Flouncy Skirt:
Yarn:  Knitpick Swish
Mods:Instead of knitting a casing for elastic, I did a 1x1 rib as seen on Rav.  I ran out of yarn literally on the the bind off row, so bound off with Half Moon medium eyelash yarn.  
Yarn.  Lorna's Laces
Mods:  None.  I did the knee high variation.  These do not fit inside the boots that Marietta came in.  It does not take a rocket scientist to know where this will lead to.
I have two quilts to go to the machine quilter after the holiday rush is over.   I practiced my free motion quilting on the St. Patrick's table topper.  I still suck at free motion quilting.  Sigh.  

I used two different patterns of stash Amy Butler fabric and cut 2.5 inch strips.  I followed the Missouri Quilt youtube for Summer in the Park.  

I was able to make two small quilt tops(largest one is 60 inch square) and have enough left for 3 pillows.

The Sky Goddess AKA Yoga Queen wanted mala beads in purple, so I made this one with a fluorite pendant.  Jason at the Bead Gallery helped me with the tassel.  The knots aren't so good as the beads had larger holes so I may be doing this one over in the future.  

Monday, November 10, 2014

Small Project for Molly

Pattern for Hat and Scarf: 
Pattern for Garter Yoke Sweater:  
DK / 8 ply
70% Acrylic, 30% Merino
260 yards / 100 grams 
I found this yarn splitty and not that much fun to knit.  It was a wonderful pink color.  
Needles:  followed the patterns.  
Mods.  I joined the scarf to knit in the round and converted it to a cowl.  I striped it using stock stitch and reverse stock stitch.  The back side is not too pretty.  
Molly lives in St. Paul, MN and we have never met.  I hope these items fit her.  She is an American Girl doll.  My talented sister sewed these other cute items for her to wear.  

American Girl opened a trial store at Ala Moana Shopping Center but I have not been down there to visit.  There is a ton of construction going on and parking is kind of nuts.

As an aside, I finally hemmed my San Francisco souvenir fabric purchase from Britex Fabrics
I can spend hours in that store.  I was very lazy and did not cut off the selvages.  The 60 inch apple fabric (see first photo) fit my table perfectly.  I hope the fabric world is not phasing out the 60 inch fabric.  They are getting harder to find.  My iron is leaking so I didn't iron it.  Okay, the truth is I probably won't ever iron it, lol.  Now to find a good iron.  The old one was a Rowenta.  They are expensive and I'm not sure they last any longer or iron any better the the cheapos.

Blogless Melody is back in town.  We had our first card date.  Thanksgiving Day theme.  So much to be grateful for!

 We also went to the the Craftsman Fiber Exhibit at the Honolulu Art museum.  There were so many inspirational pieces.  I loved the Sashiko Quilt all hand made and designed by a 94 yo lady.  The "blueberries"  are unwound silk cocoons.  We started the day with a wonderful lunch.  I tried something different, the mahi soba salad and it was yummy.  There was an incredible crochet wire basket and and a sculptural necklace made of nails.  Creative!!