Sunday, June 15, 2014

Silk Hankies

So I found out quite by accident something that has intrigued me to the point of reading and finding out its history in the fiber world -- silk. I guess my interest was piqued when I went to the Alabama Fibers Arts Festival a month or so ago with my sisters. I purchased some sari remnants.  After that I was on a mission. I have read, watched videos and made an additional purchase. My recent purchase -- silk hankies. Yes hankies. Not like the cotton-type put in your handbag or you embroider with pretty designs, but squares made from individual cocoons that have been processed, stretched over frames and then dyed.

The processing and laying out of the hankies one on top of the other renders what looks like not much fiber, but when you start pulling the individual layers from the center the magic begins. What didn't look like much silk to begin with rendered this amount of silk to knit with:

A total of 22 cocoons made this much silk. I did not spin the silk, but opted to pull the fibers (really long fiber length) and will knit with it this way which will do just fine. I have three more packets to pull.

The silk fiber was purchased from See Jayne Knit. She has an ETSY shop and sells some of her hand dyed silk hankies there along with information on the amount of silk you can get from the hankies and expected estimated yardage. The color of my purchase is Monet.

I will knit something special as a gift and will post end results later.

Happy knitting....


Sunday, May 4, 2014

Chevron Baby Blanket

So I had a special request from a woman I work with for her new little grandson. She gave me a piece of the gray and white chevron pattern that would be the design for the bumper pad and crib set. So I thought about this pattern and decided on my version of chevron while still using the gray and white. I incorporated a hit of blue for a little guy. She really liked the blanket.

Alabama Fiber Festival

Last weekend my sisters and I took a vacation day on Friday and went to Montgomery, Alabama. One day for family visit and another at the annual Alabama Fiber Festival.

Friday we spent the day with our 90 year old aunt. She is the last in my Mother's family. What a delight to spend time with her. She is as sharp as a tack and doesn't miss anything. My favorite picture of my aunt is one where she is holding her cellphone. Not bad for 90 years old.

On Saturday, the three musketeers went to the Farmers Market in Montgomery and looked at the flowers, fruits and vegetables. Really wish I had a pick-up truck. I would have loaded it up with plants and bushes for my backyard. Instead, I came away with red and green pepper jelly, Mayhaw jelly and apple butter. Saving the pepper jellies for Christmas to serve over cream cheese with crackers.

Then on to the Alabama Fiber Festival. What fun we had! Got to look at all kinds of fibers as well as the real live alpacas, sheep and rabbits. Bought an organic cotton baby afghan kit and two sari silk skeins. Little sister and I took a spinning class. Harder than you might think. Big sister took a weaving class. We came away with so much to talk about. Dreams of future purchases of spinning wheels and looms danced in our heads. We are planning on going to the next fiber festival in Georgia to be held in the Fall.

Relaxing today. May pick-up an afghan I am crocheting for the newest member of the family -- great nephew baby Nick.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

First Book Read in 2014 - The Joshua Code; Job Change

Finished reading my first book of 2014. The Joshua Code written by O.S. Hawkins. A spiritual guide book to various scriptures in the Bible. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It definitely made me think about my past, present and future. There are times I need to read something besides fiction, biographies or history. This book fulfilled the times for something else to read. It also helped me to look hard at my present and where I want to be in the future....

I want to read more and work on my crafts in 2014. I have been too involved in my secular employment to the point where I am truly burn-out. I haven't found the energy to read or work on crafts. Both things I love. I have decided to find another job. I have worked for this company for 8 1/2 years and will not spend another December not enjoying the holidays because of my job.  When I left work on Friday before Christmas on Wednesday, I had chest pains and could hardly see to drive home. This from someone with heart disease. I will not let the stress do me in. So I am looking to either work at home or dial back considerably. I intend to keep my agents license and the designations that I have worked so hard to obtain over the years. So the change I will make is where I obtain a paycheck twice a month.

Time to call it a day and get some rest. TGIF tomorrow.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Memorable Christmas

Needless to say, Christmas day was memorable in Mobile, Alabama. A tornado hit mid-town Mobile.  This is the second time in a week that a tornado came through this portion of Mobile. The first one was an F1 and the second an F2. The second tornado a result of a weather system tied to crazy jet streams and it was named EUCLID. When did the weather channel start naming storms moving across the US? Hopefully, they will stop that nonsense quickly. Being in the insurance business, naming a storm on the Gulf Coast creates all kind of havoc. Hopefully, we are done with this type of  bad weather for awhile. Since I live in the outskirts of Mobile, no damage here. The mid-towners didn't fair as well. I hope they can get their repairs done and back to some sort of normalcy soon.

Other than weather, Christmas was great. Received some readables including crafting and knitting books. Also, got to spend the day with my family. What greater gift can there be.

If all goes well in 2013, I might be able to post more knitting projects. Have a few ideas and things in the wings that will make it to the blog.

Happy Holidays to everyone and I hope you have a blessed New Year!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Life Lesson

I wish I could say that I have learned a lot in my almost 57 years on this earth, but life lessons occur often. Today was another life lesson for me. This one was a tough pill to swallow. I worked for an individual for 11 years and knew a lot of this persons friends and family members some of whom were clients. We got together at company functions, birthday parties, etc. I left this individuals employe in 2005 for a better job opportunity. This person passed away last week and I went to the services. I was snubbed by this persons brother and a close friend. I talked to them daily if not each week for 11 years and saw them regularly. So imagine my surprise when they acted like they didn't even know my name. My leaving this persons employe caused this individual to take a nosedive? I don't think so. I could not stop this individual from the choices made. I forgive the individuals for their action. More importantly, I pray that God will give my former employer peace; peace not accomplished here on earth.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Family Tree - Needles in a Haystack

So I've spent some time lately with little sister shaking some family trees. Not the Northern family or even those on the East coast, it's the Southern line that we are working on diligently. I must say that I am not impressed with the documentation found so far and the skills of the enumerators. Their skills (spelling) have a lot to be desired. What you might find in one year may be totally different in the next ten year census (spelling). How can they be so far off? Not all are bad. In fact, I've found some that are really quite good. I was totally impressed with the information that the census-taker provided. But, for the most part, they are pitiful.

So with the complaining aside, I have managed to tap on some Southern walls and found quite a bit of information on my Grandfathers family. There are, however, some proverbial "needles in the haystack". I'm going to keep digging until I find my "needles".

Between myself and little sister, we have spent some hours researching, looking and ordering information. I hope that we can leave our family with enough information so that they will not question who were the leaves on their trees ever again.

I might need to pick up the knitting needles again and think of something else for a change. I'll get back to the tree soon though.