theraineysisters knitting and so much more

August 22, 2016

From Both of Us: In Vogue

Filed under: Updates — Both Sisters @ 6:34 pm

One of things we often do when a new knitting magazine arrives is to page through it together over the phone.  Last week, when we received the new Fall Vogue, we both fell in love with the Leather Caged Purse kit from Maker’s Mercantile (shown on page 9).  The kits weren’t “live” on their website yet.  We hounded them kept checking back until they appeared and then placed our orders before the hoarders could get them all.  And thank goodness we did!  They are now backordered.  Yay for the hoggish speedy Rainey Sisters!

The kit comes with a cage and 3 skeins of  HiKoo by Skacel WoolieBullie in your choice of colors.  The fabric lining can be purchased from them or on your own.

Susan finished the cream colored version with black cage straight away and decided that to justify the expense of the cage, she would make another bag in brown.  She bought the brown yarn locally at Amazing Threads to get going ASAP.

Susan’s husband saw the bag on the table and said, “I just saw that in the most recent issue of Vogue Knitting!!”  😉

Here is the brown version:

Yes, the cream one is cuter, but they couldn’t both be cream or there would be no point!!

Sally selected a red purse cage and cream yarn.  They had several cute fabrics to choose from so she ordered two fabrics with her kit.  Here is her “When in Doubt Wear Red” rendition of the bag:

They all turned out really well and we feel quite cagey! 😉  ::Groan::

From Susan to Purrlie who said, “There’s just something a little perverted about that leather strapping.”  That’s what I like about it!! 😉

August 13, 2016

From Susan — Sew What??!!

Filed under: Updates — lv2knit @ 11:20 am

Hi, Folks!!  I am immersed in watching Olympic Gold!  The Americans are doing so well!

When  Sally was here in July, she and I stopped in at Blue Bamboo, one of my favorite fabric shops.  It is primarily for quilters, but I find most of my fabrics there.  They had a very cute, Minnesota-themed tote bag as a featured pattern for the quilting shop hop.  You could pre-order the kit, which I did.  Here is the pattern:

I think it is a fairly popular pattern.  I got the kit last week and made it over the weekend.  It turned out so cute!

It looks ginormous in the picture, but it is only about 12 inches high and 15 inches wide!  I had to play around with it a little bit to make the straps longer – the kit only included the exact fabric needed.  It has six very nice pockets inside:

The picture looks like a fish, but is just the pockets! 😉  I added a magnetic snap.  I really like it and may make another, though it was a TON of work.  The second time around I would know what I was doing!

August 5, 2016

From Susan — Do you feel like dancing?

Filed under: Updates — lv2knit @ 8:21 am

Dancing with Bears!!  If you hang out on Ravelry (and who doesn’t? :) ), you may see newly added patterns flash across the Patterns Page.  I used to check out every single bloomin’ pattern that was added but unfortunately I have not kept up with that practice.  However, a new design by my good friend Carol Sunday was just released!!  It is the same shawl I saw at Knitting Camp that I just had to make.

I knit it out of Carol’s yarn: Angelic 5-ply, color Moth.  I absolutely love, love, love her yarn!!  It is soft and lofty.  The finished items are light as air.

I made a few changes: I made the largest size, but mine is shallower because I continued the short rows at the same pace throughout (this will make sense if you knit it!).  I used smaller needles to make it a bit tighter as well.  I did wrap my short row turns (not picking up the wraps, though, because it was in the garter section).  Carol did not do wraps and that looked good for me on one side but not the other.

A very nice project, though with >600 sts at certain points, it can feel like a slog!!

Hope your summer is going well – we are anticipating a perfect weekend!

PS to Suzan:P Good advice!  I do always read the Sales and Promos Forum!!

July 21, 2016

From Sally — Shopping Camp, I Mean Knitting Camp

Filed under: Updates — surly @ 11:33 am

Here is my Camp recap:  I bought a lot of yarn.  The end.

Unlike Susan, I didn’t participate in the camp knitting contest.  How could I compete with Mr. Darcy, not to mention the fabulous Girl with the Pearl Earring shadow panel?  (I’ve always wanted to knit one of those pieces of shadow art; I own several of the patterns but haven’t made the commitment yet.)  Instead, I chose to contribute to the economy.

It started at The Yarnery, where I dropped a ton of money on some Shibui Linen and Twig.  (Not pictured below.  That will come in a later post.)  I hadn’t even made it to camp.  Or Wisconsin.  Oops.

My one non-shopping activity at Knitting Camp was participating in Show & Tell.  The only problem was I had nothing to show when I got there.  I felt as if much of my knitting in the past year has been pretty boring and since I only brought two suitcases (not a light traveler) how much knitting could I be expected to have on hand?  I stayed up until 2 or 3 in the morning the day of Show & Tell finishing a shawl.  The quickie block I attempted hasn’t held up well.  Here’s a little preview.  I’ll post more photos once I’ve had time to reblock it.  The name of the pattern is Paradise Apples by Alla Borisova.  The yarn is Dye for Yarn’s merino silk fingering in the color Love Is Poison.  The color is more intense than it looks here.

On to the shopping!  Like Susan, I bought the yarn to make Helsinki by Janine Bajus (although I’m using a different background color).  Then I went wild at Sun Valley:  four skeins of Dust in the Wind (gray), 2 skeins of Coral, and one skein each of Antler (white) and Twilight (blue).  Their Painted Desert gradient kit called to me.  Twice.  (Hey, I didn’t know what I wanted to make out of it and I just hate worrying about having enough yarn.)  Finally, I picked up some beautiful silk lace weight from Lost City Knits in the color Silver Bells.  Whew.  That’s a lot of knitting in my future!


July 15, 2016

From Susan — Camp in Review

Filed under: Updates — lv2knit @ 11:51 am

Sally, Kim, and I came back from Meg Swansen’s Knitting Camp 2.75 on Monday.  I can’t speak for them, but upon returning from Camp I felt completely unplugged!  Dragged about for days.

Camp was great.  I loved seeing my favorite Campers (P, L, H, J, L, B, D, S, etc…you know who you are!!) and listening to Meg wax poetic about knitting.  Amy Detjen was particularly delightful this year. :)

I went a little bonkers with my shopping:

The Complete Surprise by Cully Swansen (Meg’s son) takes EZ’s Baby Surprise Jacket to a whole new level.  As one of the few knitters who has never made a BSJ, I hope to do so with the inspiration of this book!  Cully described some details about the book and is presenting in other venues as well.

1 – an array of beauties from Sun Valley Fibers (from left to right: Calligraphy, Coral, Wedgewood, Maverick, Antler, and Cobblestone) in a variety of fibers – I just picked pretty colors!!

2 – sweater quantity in Jamieson Spindrift to make Helsinki by Janine Bajus, a fellow Camper.

Speaking of fellow Campers, we were honored to attend Camp with the extremely talented and prolific designer, Carol Sunday of Sunday Knits.  She was so unassuming and understated she really kept her light under a bushel!!  She had a shawl with her that will be coming out very soon.  I quickly ordered the yarn (her Angelic 5-ply in Moth) and will be starting it ASAP.  S T U N N I N G!!  She had several beautiful designs on her needles so we have much to look forward to!

One of the highlights of Camp is the annual contest.  This year’s theme was “Kniterature: Favorite Book or Movie Character.”  Kim and I both entered.  Kim’s entry was hilarious — she knit a sheep and placed duct tape over its mouth…”Do you hear anything?  Do you hear anything?”  Silence of the Lambs!

The winner was Jane, with a stunning shadow knit of Girl with a Pearl Earring:

Second place was Mary, with a full tilt rendition of The Cat in the Hat:

She goes all out!!  My entry took third.  Those who know me accept the fact that I have a full-blown yet well-founded obsession with Colin Firth, especially in his signature role of Fitzwilliam Darcy in Pride and Prejudice, BBC version, 1995:

The above collage was part of my presentation.  In addition, I made a knitted replica of Darcy, with a little handmade shirt:

He is about ten inches tall – the exact size as Darcy in the poster!  The final touch was that I sprayed his shirt with water — because it is all about the wet shirt!!  😉

The look of horror on the faces of my husband and daughter during the creative process gave me pause, but that did not stop me!!  :)  John is a little worried about the increased competition in the house!

Sally will share her Camp experiences soon.  She bought a ton of yarn and has some beautiful FOs to share.

PS to Pam — About the hair:  The hair was a lot of work!  In the pattern you start at the top of the head with the hair color and then switch to the face color – it looks like a skull cap.  After you finish the body, you go back and duplicate stitch the part in the hair and all the hair on the back and sides.  By then it looked like the middle picture.  To get the “Firth-Darcy” curls, I soaked yarn in starch and then wrapped it around large knitting needles until dry.  I layered kinked yarn over the entire head and then layered loose curls in the front and along the hair line at the nape.  The picture on the right shows the hair at its best.  It started to droop over time and after I sprayed him a couple of times with water!!


July 7, 2016

From Both of Us — Gone Campin’

Filed under: Updates — Both Sisters @ 7:45 am

Today we leave for Meg Swansen’s Knitting Camp.  We will be gone until next Monday!!  Very exciting and should be full of fun surprises.

July 1, 2016

From Susan — Let’s Review!

Filed under: Updates — lv2knit @ 10:34 am

Susanne asked about the fabric I showed on the blog in reference to my very orange Newsom – at least I think this is the one she was talking about!!

I was deciding between a dress and a shirt and opted for the shirt.  Got it done, but it doesn’t go with the sweater!  It fits funny when worn together.

But, I do like the shirt and wear it a lot.  I get comments every time because it is so “out there!”  Fun and bright for summer!

I am off now for the holiday and KNITTING CAMP which starts next Thursday.  I am so not ready!!  Sally arrives on Wednesday and I plan on taking her to Blue Bamboo, now that she is such an accomplished seamstress!!

PS — A couple of you asked me about the pattern.  It is Butterick B4231.  Long out of print but still available: Amazon has sizes 8-10-12, and both Etsy and Ebay have it in sizes 14-16-18.  I recently bought a replacement for my copy because it has been used so often!!

June 28, 2016

From Susan — From Here To Eternity

Filed under: Updates — lv2knit @ 1:50 pm

Q: “Momma, what is eternity?”

A:  “The time it takes to knit an afghan, dear.”

I am going to bulk it up a bit to speed things along!  Not as bulky as called for in the pattern, but when you have been given strict guidelines as to color and you don’t want to spend > $200, it limits your options!!

DD the elder (my very knitworthy girl), asked for an afghan like the one she uses when she comes over to watch Game of Thrones.  I said to just take that one…but, no way!  Wrong color!  She wanted the same gold as in her one of her bedroom throw pillows:

I opted for the pattern Umaro by Jarod Flood in Berroco Vintage Chunky, color “Sunny” (6121).  Umaro takes very bulky yarn, but I had trouble finding what I wanted in the right color that did not break the bank!  I had $50 worth of gift certificates for Sheepy Yarn Shop in White Bear, so I figured this would be a great time to use them.

I like the yarn, and I like the pattern, even though it has annoying seed stitch.  But I have not yet gotten into the rhythm of the knitting — the large needles are awkward.

DD left for Korea last Friday to study and returns in August, so I hope to have it done as a welcome back present, or maybe for Christmas?  She missed the season finale of GOT, which is a travesty that could not be helped!!


June 17, 2016

From Susan — Wiser?

Filed under: Updates — lv2knit @ 9:30 am

If you’re older, aren’t you supposed to be wiser?  Then I must be très, très, très wise!! Thank you all for the wonderful birthday well wishes!!  :)

Here are the roses that my husband got me.  They are stunning!!

Sister Surly was not to be outdone!!  She sent me the yarn to make Leap Year by Suvi Simola.

Some people think you have no imagination when you choose the same color and/or combination as the prototype — however, sometimes the color is a big part of what you LIKE about the prototype!  Don’t judge me!  😉

Surly bought me Cumbria Fingering by The FIBRE Co. in colors Buttermere and Hadrian’s Wall from Fibre Space in Alexandria.  It is heavier than the yarn called for and that is fine with me!  It contains brown masham wool, which is a long wool variety.

You can also see a small metal tin in the photo:

They are stunning pearl stitch markers that are better looking than most of my earrings!!

My plan is to work on Leap Year at Knitting Camp, which starts at the end of 4th of July week…coming upon us very fast!!  I have a lot to do before then !

June 15, 2016

From Sally — Special Bulletin

Filed under: Updates — surly @ 8:38 am

I’m interrupting our regularly (or should I say irregularly) scheduled blogging for a special announcement:


Happy Birthday to my big sister!!!!


Susan is my best friend, my mentor, my therapist, my partner in crime.  Happy Birthday!  

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