Wednesday, April 30, 2014


I really have nothing to show!  I have several almost finished projects.  I had an almost finished baby blanket I ripped out.  The Peep I was crocheting...just a puddle of yellow.  Quickly made a red Bill King "Waterfall Jacket" on the Singer 327, but it's huge and will get ripped out.  Ripped out a red tank I had made eons again on the Singer 327 but had never finished (it needed the side seams sewn and armhole trim--I had already done the shoulders and neckline!).  Ripped out a red stole from Sept 2014 that I was never happy with.  Working on a vintage baby sweater for my neighbour.  Searching still for a yarn for a custom sweater.  Trying to get my Pinterest active (go follow me, if you haven't!  Tracy Mainwaring and also TracyKM Designs).

I really need to update the yarn totals!  A little sad, since some of the yarn I bought, I won't be using for the intended projects, but can't return it now.  Oh well.  It's been a cheap year so far (though that matches my lower income too).  I hope I get everything listed here!

Michaels':  2 skeins Red Heart Super Saver, 195grx2=390gr;
                   1 skein Patons Lace Sequins, 70gr
The Wool Queen:  8 balls Sirdar "Click", 400gr
                    5 balls Sirdar "Escape", 250gr
Len's Mills:  1 ball James Brett Marble Chunky, 200gr
                    6 balls Bernat Denim Style, 600gr

I also got two items for taking apart for their yarn, but they're not yarn yet, so I'm not counting them.  Also got a big stack of old Knitter's Forum magazines.  This is the magazine the Canadian knitter's guild used to publish.  I'm actually in a picture in one!  I'll show it later :)

Yarn In: 1910gr +  1798gr = 3708gr
Yarn Out: 1068gr
Balance:  2640gr more brought IN than out
Cost: $189.22/120days = $1.58/day

Anyone want to buy 864yd of Sirdar "Click" in a creamy colour?!  While my numbers went way up, I'm still less in the yards in then last year (a bit higher in costs though).  And I'm down in yarn out, but this blanket I'm doing right now will bring that up significantly.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


With a few projects at Christmas, I came to realize I really had no acrylic bright yellow or orange yarn.  You don't often need large amounts, but when you need it, it's kind of hard to substitute something else.  I just picked up 174gr skein of something that looks like Red Heart Super Saver in bright yellow, from Freecycle/Frugal Mommy.  I intend to make "Peeps", those strange, marshmallowy Easter treats, vaguely shaped like newborn chicks.  I found a couple free patterns on Ravelry, and started one, though I'm not happy with the pattern writing, or design...but I'm not done.  Other things are getting in the way.  Anyway I need to add the yarn to the totals.  And, I have other yarns to add, though it looks like I'll be returning some, so I'm going to wait on that.  Nothing new that's finished, though there's still a rose bonnet to post about. 

Yarn In: 174gr + 1624gr = 1798gr
Yarn Out: 1068gr
Balance:  730gr more brought IN than out
Cost: $68.18/105days = $0.65/day

Friday, April 11, 2014

Now For Something A Little Different

Just for fun, go ask your friendly local knitter if she'd make a pair of gloves for you.  She'll respond one of two ways:  go pale, avoid eye contact, and shuffle away, or start laughing uncontrollably.  I did go through a glove phase a couple years ago when I learned to use my ribber on my standard gauge machine.  I'm not fond of thicker gloves (did do a few pairs with worsted, years ago), so I thought doing them on the machine would be awesome.  Well, you still have a crazy number of ends to weave in!  One at  the start,  pinky tip, start of ring, middle, pointer and thumb, tip of pinky, ring, middle, pointer and thumb.  That's 11 ends to weave in, if you don't have any change of yarn anywhere.  And it's fiddling weaving in---between fingers, at the tips of narrow fingers...

A few years ago, my mom got a new winter coat, with two shades of "navy" and a dull yellow.  She had been trying to find some navy gloves, but nothing looked right.  I tried a few shades of navy that I had, but nothing looked right either.  I did however, have a couple balls of Patons Decor in a "maize" colour that looked good.  One of those odd colours--it's not beige, it's not yellow, it's not cream...I found a free pattern for gloves in worsted weight and got going.  The colour below is terribly off.  I'm not sure if it's the colour called "Aran" because it's much more yellow than what I think of for aran yarn.

Didn't swatch.  LOL.  I thought it was odd the pattern called for 3.25mm needles.  The pattern calls for alpaca though, which can be very lofty and knit with smaller needles.  Patons Decor...not so much.  I did the ribbing in the small needles, then gradually worked up to 4mm, maybe a 4.5mm (I was working two at once on one circular till I got to the fingers).  I thought the thistledown pattern would bulk up the backs of the hands, but I'm not sure, it's kind of hole-ly.

I got them in the mail last Friday, April  4, and although it's April, I knew they still had a lot of snow!  Haven't heard a response yet, but then again, I'd need to be home to hear the phone LOL!

Yarn In: 1624gr
Yarn Out:  75gr + 993gr = 1068gr
Balance:  556gr more brought IN than out
Cost: $68.18/1001days = $0.68/day

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Yes, Another Pair

I love it when a client refers someone new to me!  I got a request for another pair of felted clogs, this time in an 8.5/9 though.  I used a variegated yarn (Classic Wool).  I started the inner sole with one strand bright pink, and one strand of the multi.  Then when I got to the body of the clog, I used two strands of the multi, but realized after a few rows that I should be matching up the colours on both strands.  Sometimes, this meant cutting a bit of one yarn as the colours started to not match up after a few rows.  I did the outer sole in dark brown, with "no bumper".  On the second clog, I ran out of bright pink on the inner sole, so for the last row I used a purple with the multi.  For the cuff, I didn't worry about matching the colours of the two strands, hoping for a slightly different look than the body.

When I started these, I thought I had 9mm needles, but couldn't find them, so used the 8mm which is what I knew I used to use.  I was just about done when I found the 9mm ones.  I was a little worried, because this meant I was knitting a bit tight, and the 8.5 size is kind of in between two sizes.  I did try to knit loose, but somehow, when I set them out to take a before picture, one was smaller than the other!!

I felted it a little less, and stretched it a lot!!
Yarn In: 1624gr
Yarn Out:  175gr + 818gr = 993gr
Balance:  631gr more brought IN than out
Cost: $68.18/100 days = $0.68/day

Monday, April 07, 2014

Bits and Bobs

After creating all those hearts, I got thinking about other small items.  At about 3gr of yarn each, they don't use much yarn, LOL, but the impact is pretty high.  I had thought last year, of creating a broach for each month.  Something that could go on a lapel, or hat, or even a purse, keychain, or rearview mirror.  Whatever.  My next item after the heart was shamrocks.  I gathered my green worsted weight yarns and started.  I found only one free crochet pattern (I just found another one, very similar though). 

I also tried it for a four leaf clover.  The kids declared it ho-hum and not worth the "extra" work.
All together, I made 6 clovers, though one seems to have disappeared (the one made in a different shade of green).  I'm not sure why the colour is funny in the picture above.  It was an emerald green.  Total weight...a whopping 8grams.

I was also getting into the Easter spirit, thinking I could actually start early.

I don't have much in the way of yellow and orange yarns.  This guy just needs an eye and the ends woven in.  I also made a white bunny, but I can't find the picture.  These two guys each weighed in at 0 grams.  Together, with the shamrocks, the total was 9 grams.  It'll take a long time to get through the stash making these LOL!

Yarn In:  1624gr
Yarn Out: 9gr + 809gr = 818gr
Balance: 806gr more brought IN than out
Cost:  $68.18/97 days = $0.70/day

Friday, April 04, 2014


My neighbour is expecting her second baby, and this time it's a girl.  This couple is not what I'd consider traditional, but by today's standards, they aren't unusual either.  Think tattoos, black clothes, etc.  Wonderful people and their son is adorable.  When he was born, I gave them a pumpkin hat for Halloween (he was born in early October).  This time, I was a little stumped.  We're not cozy neighbours, but our husbands chat quite a bit when outside. 

When I first started TracyKM Designs, the photographer I was working with sent my an inspiration picture.  I recognize the crocodile stitch booties in a Knit Picks ad a while later.  Recently, I got around to purchasing the pattern.  I thought they'd be a nice modern gift.  I poured over the choices for KP Chroma but couldn't find one I really liked.  Sometimes these modern young people actually do like traditional baby items because it's so different to their daily lives.  I wanted something vibrant, that I could possibly pair with black or dark grey (I was thinking about a little sideways garter stitch jacket too).  Since I was also ordering myself a set of KP Options, finally, I decided to wait on the Chroma and see what I had in my stash, or could find locally.

I finally set off to look.  I was rather disappointed.  The sock yarns had colour changes that were too short.  Or odd colour pairings.  The fingering weight baby yarns were blah pastels.  Or, the colour changes were too short.  I didn' t really want to go to the "real" yarn store though.  On my second browse-through, I found two odd balls in a clearance section, with no prices.  They were perfect! 
"Loops and Threads" Graceful, for $3.99 each.  I chose a ball of Patons Lace Sequin in the dark purple.  Black just seemed too harsh.  I think I will use the vibrant ball on the left.  All three balls came to $14.43!

Now, I just need to finish up some other things :)

Yarn In: 270gr + 1354gr = 1624gr
Yarn Out:  809gr
Balance:  815gr more brought IN than out
Cost: $14.43 +$53.75= $68.18/94 days = $0.73/day