Friday, July 20, 2012

Finishing Projects

When DS#2 and his family were visiting last week, the girls wanted to finish the quilts they had started last summer.  They also wanted to learn how to knit, and how to play the piano....  So we tackled the quilts first thing.  The oldest girl had finished the centre of her
quilt and just needed to sew the narrow pink border on.  That she did with great care.  We laid out the backing, batting and top and together, taking turns and using 501 basting spray made our three layer sandwich.  The meander quilting on machine is too difficult, even for a 12 year old, so I did that part for her.  I also (Saturday morning, before they left) sewed on the black and white binding.  Dear Granddaughter will have to sew the binding to the backing with hand stitching.

That should not be too hard, as her younger sister had that job this past week.  Her quilt was complete except for hand stitching the binding to the back.  That is actually a time consuming step, even for an accomplished quilter, so DGD spent a long time putting that finishing touch to her project.  But she did it!  Both quilts are lovely, and are the girls' own choices for material and arrangement of blocks.  Both quilts are very attractive also, and I'm really proud of them for finishing their projects and for making such a good job of them!

They both wanted to learn how to knit, so we got started on making some scarves.  There's a great, simple scarf pattern that is as follows: Cast on 18 sts.  Knit every row until you run out of yarn.  (That's supposed to be two 50gram balls.)  On the last row, knit, but don't bind off the first three stitches.  Bind of the centre 12 stitches, and let the last three stitches fall off the needle.  Pull out the first three and last three stitches all the way down to the beginning.  They will form loops on either side of the knitted centre.

 We picked yarn from my stash in colours that the girls liked.  The blue yarns are for the younger girl's scarf and the purple for the older one's.

Knitting always looks so intriguing to children, but they soon find out that it's a slow go.  The scarf projects went home with them at the end of the visit.  I wonder how far they will be by our next visit?

I taught dear daughter-in-law to knit about ten years ago, and she's done many projects since then.  This year she wanted to learn how to knit socks.  Since I'm on a toe-up sock binge right now, that's what I taught her.  She powered right through, knitting one sock from the toe cast on to the ribbing above the heel while she was here, basically from sometime on Tuesday to sometime on Friday.  That project also went home with her.  She's planning to purchase the Toe up, 2 at a time sock book from Mary Maxim.  That's an excellent book with clear explanations and very good photos to show each step.

I was able to finish the new pair of socks for my dear Sis while they were here.  I had sent her a pair for her birthday in May, but they were too big, and were lovingly adopted by her husband, who thought they were nifty.  So I hope this pair fits her.  I thought they were very attractive.  It's a Mary Maxim yarn, Aloe sock yarn in "Horizon" a self-striping yarn.  The trick then is to get both socks to start at the same place in the yarn.  These turned out rather well.

Now that those socks are finished, I'm turning my attention to finishing some old projects.  I got out a beautiful colour work cardigan that I started in 2008, as a project for our trip that year.  I soon found out that the chart was too complicated to knit in the car.  It requires careful attention.  The back is finished, and I'm working on the left front.  A few more rows and I'll be through the chart and able to knit much faster with just the background colour.  Of course, after that there's the other front, the two sleeves, sewing the pieces together and knitting on the front plackets and the shawl collar.  It won't be done in a week!

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