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While cleaning a while ago I opened a box and found yarn.  I've knitted on and off (mostly off) all my life but never imagined I'd accumulated so much yarn

This bunch of yarn was for a sweater and the receipt is clearly dated 4-23-88 (remember when they embossed credit cards).  The contest entry to win a Pearl Necklace was due on July 12, 1987 and the store where I purchased it no longer exists.  I knitted more than one half of the front of the sweater and lost interest.  I think I'll try to turn it into a bag.

I have lots of remnants of yarn left over from knitting a Kaffe Fassett sweater.  There were so many color changes it kept my interest going and I finished it and it fit.  I still wear it somethimes.  The only other sweater I finished ended up being too small and I have a few others I started and didn't finish.  But, I have finished lots of hats and scarves.

I also have many single skeins of yarn.  They where either on sale or caught my interest.  I have no memory of buying some of them.  The maroon on the left was from an afgan I knit and I remember the red-orange above it - it was on the clearance rack.

I got this monster cone of cotton a few years ago when knitting dishclothes for gifts seemed like a good idea.

After some research on the internet I found there are lots of free patterns out there for small items - hats, bags, potholders, dishclothes, etc.  So, one of my new missions is to knit again, every once in a while and start using up some of this yarn. 

It turns out that the yarn on the monster cone makes great potholders.  This potholder isn't a free pattern, its from Domino Knitting by Vivian Hoxbro.  The squares are fast to knit and can be put together so many ways.  I think I can use up the odd bits of yarn that way.

I found a free bag pattern for the yarn and I'm working on that now.  I think I'm addicted to knitting again.  We'll see how long it lasts this time.

Don't worry, I'm still cross-stitching ... and quilting ...


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The ABC's of Cross Stitch Alphabets

Alphabets are quite popular on cross stitch samplers and there are many decisions to be made when choosing an alphabet.  Upper case or lower case is one decision.  It seems that upper case is most popular.  Using lower case causes all sorts of compications.  Extra space is needed for j, k, l, p and the other letters that extend above or below the main line. 

Another important decision is even or odd.  The alphabet above is odd.  That is, it is and odd number of stitches high, in this case 7.  Notice the B and D.  Both are symmetryical.

This is an even alphabet that is 6 stitches high.  Notice that the B and D are no longer symmetrical.  I prefer odd alphabets.  I've been known to change the size of a sampler to mak an even alphabet into an odd alphabet.

Both of these samplers are in a traditional font.  But it is easy to re-arrange the stitches to create different looks for you alphabet.  Here is an elegant alphabet that is only 7 stitches high:

Each letter takes up more space and gi…

Do Overs

Starting over means re-doing some of my projects.  A lot of the projects that I've done I don't want to do over.  Some turned out not to be the worth effort and others were not fun at all.  There's also a feeling of "been there, done that".    I've also discovered that I enjoy the act of creating more than the results sometimes.
My first do over was this penstemon I designed a while ago.  It's small and simple and only 2 colors.  I'll eventually be restitching many of my own designs.  Luckily, I still have the charts even if I no longer have the item or pictures of the item.
My second do over is actually actually stitching something for the third time!

After the second stitching, I'd had enough.  But, I was given the 2010 Just Cross Stitch Ornament issue with the pattern and that was a sign that the reindeer needed to be stitched again.  Hopefully, that's it.
My last do over represents all the EGA seminars that I attended over the years.


Interesting Scraps and Tea

Here are some scraps from 2 different fabric projects I have going on.  They almost made it into the trash but they looked so good together.  I think they are going to be turned into a potholder.
They need a tan background and I don't have any tan fabric.  White didn't work.  My lights were all too yellow or too blue.  I haven't made it to the fabric store.
So, yesterday I made a batch of strong tea and dyed some muslin.  It's the perfect background color.

These scraps are from a different project.  An unfortunate math error resulted in blocks being an inch too big and I had to trim.  These scraps are also to interesting to toss.
I'm thinking of a modern looking potholder or smaller wall hanging, depending on how they sew up.
These don't look as good on the dyed muslin.  But, white may work.
Stay tuned to see if I actually turn them into something.