Wednesday, August 31, 2011

WIP Wednesday: Black Fingerless

It's Work-In-Progress Wednesday, and this is my WIP that's been waiting patiently for months. I took a break from this project to work on variations for the Tarnation pattern. That's all done now, so I can get on with the gloves!

As you can see, this left glove only needs the pinkie and a bit of finishing, and she's done.

I love fingerless gloves. This one-soon-to-be-two is for a friend, who fell in love with the pair I keep in my coat pockets. I offered to knit some for her, and she asked for black. I'm loving the way it's working up. Might have to make a black pair for myself next.

For more WIP Wednesday posts on other blogs, check here.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Plarnation Rectangle Rug

This variation on the Tarnation Rectangle Rug is crocheted with plarn (PLastic yARN), made from cut up grocery bags. I think it will make a great little patio rug.

There are no real modifications needed to the pattern, except to use plarn instead of tarn. The rug pictured above took 40 regular-sized grocery bags for the plarn, and it measures 21" wide by 31" long. It's got 56 rows plus the foundation chain.

Click here for plarn-making instructions.

Note: This rug is machine-washable.
Don't put it in the dryer--it will melt.

For other variations on the Tarnation Rectangle Rug, see the following posts:
Carmel Macchiato Tarnation Rug
Drip-Dry Tarnation Rug
Tarnation Kitchen Runner Rug

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Mend-athon: Day 5

The Mend-athon project for Day 5 was to sew down the facing on the neck of this dress. Flappy facing drives me nuts. This took about 5 minutes to stitch down, and the usual 30 seconds to put away the yellow thread.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Mend-athon: Day 4

The Mend-athon project for Day 4 was to replace the little plastic ring that broke on a nightgown strap. It took a minute to find my mother's itty bitty crochet hook, since I almost never use it, but it was in its place, just hiding amongst the bigger hooks. It also took about 10 minutes to do this mend, because I had to experiment a little with how many strands of sewing thread to crochet into a ring (4 worked best). Then another 30 seconds to put away the thread, and I was done.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Mending a Tarn Rug

After years of frequent machine-washing and drying, your tarn rug might develop a few failed stitches at the edges. You can fix this by making a single-crochet border around the rug, using more tarn.

Here's how to do it:

1. With the same size crochet hook and tarn that you used for making the rug originally, start at the corner of the rug nearest the frayed area. Work the stitches for this border slightly tighter than usual, to avoid rippling edges.

2. Make a loop with the tarn, put it on the hook, and work your first sc (U.S. term) in the first row-end st at the corner of the rug.

3. Work 2sc in the row ends between each "bar," and work an sc in the bars until you get to the next corner.

4. Work 3sc in the same st at the corner, and sc across the last edge row or starting foundation chain. At the end, work 3sc in the last st.

5. Repeat steps 3-4 until you arrive where you started. Connect to the first sc of the border with a sl st, tie off, and work in ends.

You can find more tips for the Tarnation Rectangle Rug and Tarnation Oval Rug in the following posts:
How to Make Tarn
Choosing Fabric for Tarn
Saving Your Hands and Arms When Using Tarn
Making the Print Show
Allover Print Tarn

Monday, August 22, 2011

Mend-athon: Day 3

The Mend-athon project for Day 3 was to repair the first tarn (t-shirt yarn) rug I have ever made. Over the last 5 years or so, it has been washed probably 30-40 times (elderly cat, you know the drill). It took about 10 minutes to to do this mend. The crocheted row-ends in the big black stripe were wearing out, and there were some loose ends. So I decided to crochet along the edge with some tarn that I had sitting around. I'll put up another post, describing how to do this, in case anyone is interested--here.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Mend-athon: Day 2

Took a day off because we were out of town. The Mend-athon project for Day 2 was to sew a button onto my favorite sweater. It took 2 minutes to find the button, about 1 minute to sew it on, and 30 seocnds to put away the thread.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Tuffer Is Famous, Too!

Our Tuffer is today's Caturday Cat, featured on Contessa's blog, Writing, Yarn, Pucks, and Diapers. The post about Tuffer is here:

There's a post on my blog about him, here.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Mend-athon: Day 1

My first Mend-athon project was to sew up a little hole in this bedspread (upper right). It took 30 seconds to do the mend and 30 seconds to put away the thread. Wow... not even 5 minutes. You can see Tuffer trying to blend in by assuming the pose of the Celtic dog.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

5 Minute Mend-athon

My new mending basket

Do you have an overflowing mending basket, like me? Does it make you a little nuts every time you look at it? My mother had one when I was a kid, and torn clothes went in and stayed in until we outgrew them. Some of them were still in it when she passed away. When I went off to college, like a good daughter, I started a mending basket of my own. The stuff in it never got mended. The items would get tossed every few years when clothing styles had changed or I no longer wanted to wear them.

Today I've been inspired by the FlyLady, to do something about it. Since laundry is the FlyLady's habit of the month, it's a great time to figure out how to tackle the mending. This morning, I realized that if I use the FlyLady's philosophy of doing things in small, 5-minute chunks, I can conquer my mountain of mending.

Here's the plan:

1. Make a list of the items that need to be mended.

2. Gather the materials that will be needed for mending them, like the right colors of thread, etc.

3. Put away the items to be mended. That's right. Put them where they belong, even if they're not mended.

4. Get a small basket to hold your mending supplies, list of items to be mended, and a pencil. It's great if the basket (or box, bag, tin, whatever) has a lid or can be closed, but don't stress on this.

5. Put the basket next to a comfy chair that you use every day--maybe for watching tv, reading, or taking a 5-minute sit-down break during the day.

6. Once a day, always at the same time, get out your mending list, and go get the first/next item to be mended. Sit down for 5 minutes with your little mending kit and get it done. Put the item, thread, etc. away, and cross it off the list.

7. If your list is empty, get in the habit of checking it once a day at the designated time, anyway. Otherwise, you'll start forgetting about it, and when there's actual mending to be done, it will slide into never-gets-done oblivion.

I figure that if I follow this plan, I'll be caught up on my mending by the end of the month. Then as items present themselves needing buttons, rip repair, hemming, etc., they'll go right on the list, and they'll be back in service quickly.


What's in your mending basket?

You can follow my mending progress in these posts:
Day 1: Celtic Bedspread
Day 2: Cherry Print Sweater
Day 3: Tarn Rug
Day 4: Nightgown Strap
Day 5: Flappy Facing

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Spazz is Famous!

Our calico kitty has been featured as the Caturday cat this week on Wypad's blog, Writing, Yarn, Pucks, & Diapers.
Check it out:

There's a post about Spazz on my blog here.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

WIP Wednesday: Plarn Tarnation

It's the first anniversary of Work-In-Progress Wednesday, hosted by TamisAmis!! Congratulations, Tami!

This WIP is probably the last variation on the Tarnation Rectangle Rug. From the beginning, I have wanted to try this pattern in plarn (PLastic yARN) made from cut-up grocery bags. It's working up very nicely, although this rug will not be machine-dryable, because plarn melts in the dryer.

Instructions for making plarn are here: How to Make Plarn.

For more WIP Wednesday posts on other blogs, check here.