tiny stitches

One of the advantages of redoing my room is that I can now, for the first time use the quilt my grandma made for me years ago.  I actually received it when I graduated from highschool, back in 2000.  It’s been sitting in a box ever since.  But doesn’t it look better on my bed?


Here’s a close up:


I’ve never even attempted quilting, but I really admire the dedication it makes to create one.  This one, especially – every single stitch in the quilt was done by hand – seaming, basting, quilting.  And it’s queen size – which, along with color scheme, was one of the reasons I had shied from using it.  But my bed is rather high, so it worked out. (As a matter of fact, my grandpa built the bed himself not long after he was out of highschool.  I have a double heirloom in that picture!)

Quilting is one of my grandma’s winter activities – she also knits (she taught me), crochets (tried to teach me, but being left-handed I kept twisting it), tats (taught me that too), and does counted cross-stitch (large pieces – summer activity) – and I’m probably leaving something out.  She’s made/is making a quilt for each of her grandchildren, as well as a queen-sized Double Wedding Ring she made for herself (there’s a challenge!).  This particular pattern is Grandmother’s Fan.  I’m so glad I can use it now (and so is she) – and I look forward to using it as more than just a daytime bedcover come cooler weather.

In knitting news, I’ve been swatching like crazy.  I don’t know why, but I just haven’t been “grabbed” by any of my projects this summer.  Other than Elm Row, which is nearing completion.  (It’s also rather addictive, at least with the yarn I’m using.)  I think my gauge issues may play a part, but I also haven’t really found a good yarn-pattern combo.  The yarn might look good, but the bamboo‘s just too splity, and I think I’m bored with 100% merino. (Even though it’s one of my favorites.)  So I decided to try to find the perfect pattern for one of my spring purchases, Briar Rose Fibers Sea Pearl.  Given the stormy colorway, I thought something a little stormy or watery would be perfect.  But I couldn’t find anything just right.  I hesitated, took a big breath, and jumped in the murky waters of design.  Although a bit scary, I decided it couldn’t be too bad, I’m in a design field (architecture).  This of course, may be hubris talking…Fortunately, the local library had all (4) volumes of Barbara Walker’s Treasury of Knitting Patterns.  I’ve been doing a lot of swatching, and I think I’ve come up with something I like.  (And I LOVE the yarn.)
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The final project, as currently planned, is a  rectangular stole that’s somewhere between the two swatches above.  (To avoid confusion, there’s two different edgings on the first swatch.) Since I’m already in over my head, I’ve also decided to go for it and make this my Ravelympics project.  I’ve never knit a stole that quickly, and this isn’t exactly worsted weight, so I have my doubts…but I’m planning on watching a lot of the Olympics, and I find sports pretty easy to knit to – even lace.  So we’ll see how this turns out! Crossing my fingers for a finished lace project by August 23rd!