Archive for April, 2009

I needed a new small purse, the old one recently had a shoulder strap emergency and it is really too small for the phone I have now anyway. I’ve had this handwoven fabric around intending to make some bags from it.

dark and light blue log cabin fabric purse

While I was at it, I replaced some plastic bags containing odds and ends with proper fabric ones from the scrap collection.

three small bags

Astute readers will recognize some of these fabrics from other projects.
I had a scrap of the pink and purple floral print from the quilt just the right size for a change purse, which I decided to make with a zipper mostly because I can’t find the snap setter right now. The batting is actually flannel, which I had to piece because there wasn’t enough. It’s a wonder I hadn’t thrown it out.

The little blue envelope is for, ahem, “items” that had otherwise been floating around in the bottom of my purse. I’ve been needing something a little more convenient, so here it is. The fuchsia drawstring bag contains mainly stuff that doesn’t fit in my wallet, although it’s supposed to have that tiny first-aid kit I’ve been meaning to assemble. So far I’ve found the travel-size tube of hand lotion.

I carded batts of black Merino top and started spinning. Even from the fold with a broken-off section of fiber, it handled just like the original top. So I’m going to have to go with the damp technique. The small bit of batt I sprayed down and let dry is much improved, so I’ll be doing that to each one in turn.

A while back I started messing with some swap fiber I didn’t know what to do with. I still don’t, but I’m pressing on and now making yarn I don’t know what to do with. Some person will undoubtedly be getting a gift before this is over. But I need to stop with the acrylic baby knitting for a while and go back to a fiber that has some connection to an actual organic substance.

I took the carded multi-color single and plied it with two more of carded black Merino. I’d been looking for something not so fine, a better match for the original fiber, but then Paradise Fibers had a sale. I hand carded a little to do this sample:

black, purple and green yarn

I’m not totally thrilled with the black because I don’t like how mill-processed Merino top handles. Dampening it and letting it dry might improve it, but I’m too lazy to go that far. The fiber is also a little too long to draft well as a woolen. I’m always a little reluctant to make something that I’m not completely in love with from the beginning, but it will look and feel a lot different when it’s done. And I would never wear anything with chartreuse anyway, so I don’t have to get attached to it. It’s supposed to be an experiment.

Right now I’m in the middle of carding the 160g of black to go with the 80g of single already spun. Even if it weren’t too long to nicely hand card, I’d do it on the drum carder because there is so much to do and no concern for maintaining distinct colors. Carding commercial top is not as easy as one might imagine, it’s very dense. Just like Merino fleece, you have to open it up a lot to get good results. But it doesn’t handle like fleece, it acts more like fiber with almost no crimp.

I got a sample of the fiber we are using for Maker Faire and started experimenting with it. The discussion is rather long and has several photos, so I’ve put it on a new page rather than a blog post. You can find it here: Spinning Karaoke Wool/Soy Silk Blend.

Now that the gift package has been delivered, I can post these pictures. A few weeks ago I pulled some odds and ends out of the stash and made this simple square quilt for my (we hope not too) soon to be born niece. The prospect of a preemie modified my project plans a bit and instead I did some tiny hats and this little quilt.

blue and purple quilt

The two fabrics are both remnants I picked up without a particular plan. I had just enough to do this squares and rectangles pattern. It doesn’t look it in the first picture but it is indeed square. It is completely machine pieced and quilted, with fusible polyester batting which makes machine quilting really simple. All three layers are bonded together for stitching and the resin washes out after the piece is complete.

quilt closeup

It is quilted around the inside of the squares, which is a little less than the maximum distance for this batting. I actually turned the piece to stitch around, which was a big pain, because I haven’t practiced free-motion stitching and I don’t have a good presser foot for the sewing machine to do it with. The quilting projects I’ve done have all been small, mainly they are not pieced much and I do an all-over grid. The one hand quilted piece took forever for a small pillow top. I have some ideas for additional quilts but for anything larger than a baby blanket I’m going to find somebody with the proper equipment to do the quilting.

Creative Commons License

© 2004-2007 Andrea Longo
spinnyspinny at feorlen dot org