Beaniemania

I’m slowly (ever so slowly) getting through my mental list of things I want to create.

Latest off the machine are beanie hats for Caj and Lula.

Both are reversible.

For Caj’s I’ve used two co-ordinating merino fabrics. (Looks way better on head head than off. )

Lula’s is merino / cotton lycra but just as warm and cosy.

Caj’s was intended for Caj but Lula’s became Lula’s because she was the first to say she wanted it. Though to be fair Zel had already grabbed an earlier one and Alice (aka MissFinn) had one of my trial hats by default that it fitted her gorgeous head of curls. Must take some photos of them in action.  Problem is, by the time I settle down to write up a blog post the kids are long in bed and I never think to grab a photo during the day.

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Dinosaurs

Funny…I never thought of myself as such a great fan of dinosaurs but it is dinosaurs that have given me back my knit mojo after a good 6 month plus absence.

My friend Kylie was a test knitter for the Diplodocus sweater pattern by Kate Oates. (Photo above is from the sweater pattern…aren’t the colours great?).

I saw a photo of the  sweater that Kylie had knitted up and I was in love. I could just see it on my 6 1/2 yr old Caj, and I love knitting colourwork and fairisle which relieves the boredom of just a straight one colour knit. To entice me even further, this sweater is knitted from the top down, avoiding the need to seam it up when you have finished.

First step was to track down some worsted weight yarn as it is a weight that is hard to find here in New Zealand, especially  with no decent wool shops in town.  I got off to a false start when what I had been knitting up turned out not top be a worsted weight yarn as I’d thought but was more of a chunky yarn. Ripped it back and a hunt through my stash revealed a Woolorganics worsted weight that was perfect.  I ended up ordering a couple of skeins of fleece artist woollie silk  3 ply from Coloursong for the contrasting colours.

So far I’m loving how the colour combination is turning out and the yarn is feeling super soft and scrummy. I’m also loving how fast it is knitting up and how easy the pattern is to follow.  I’m already planning a ‘little sister’ version for Alice (aka MissFinn).

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Finally finally

My sew mojo has returned. It was probably hidden away in the back room along with the bags of clutter fabric. Didn’t help that the foot control of my overlocker went AWOL while we were hanging out in Laos. After 3 weeks of fruitless searching I succumbed and ordered a new one. The down side of leaving a group of teens to turn our house into party central housesit while we were away.

I’m taking part in a toddler clothing swap with a group of friends so first up were a few items to help fill the box for start-up. I had forgotten how to sew…after countless attempts (including totally unpicking the garment) the first effort ended up thrown in a corner and I went back to an old favourite.

One wee tunic/top dress. Looked so cute on Alice (aka MissFinn) that it was tempting to keep it.

Next up were some hats. I’d gotten carried away when making hats for my lot and had lots of fun experimenting with different patterns and fabrics.  I was really wanting cosy hank knitted hats but with arriving home to the depths of winter and needing then NOW knitting wasn’t an option. I knew there was a reason to my madness, that my stash of fabrics would come in handy when one’s sewing urge is up and running in the early hours of the morning.

I find making hats to be very addictive. I play with the pattern, alter the pattern, try different fabric combinations, I even recycled some old t-shirts and woollen jumpers. I’m finding that cute hats  breed fast in this house especially now that the teens and young adults have rummaged through the fabric stash and  put in their orders.

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Not again

The old camera has gone AWOL. What is it with me and cameras this year?  A post without pictures is just …well….bland and boring in my world.

I will post anyway…just so that you can all see read that I have been busy creating. Not a lot to show for hours of sleepless nights. Two nights of unpicking until I had finally unpicked the entire garment, resewn…still not right and the balled up fabric is now banned to the corner … never to be played with again.

Never mind…these things happen…onto Plan B. A pattern I’d never tried before but looked easy enough. It was easy enough….only problem is the finished garment would fit a 12 yo ..not the 4-5yo size it was intended to be.

NOTE TO SELF: When you have a deadline that was 2 weeks ago do not try sewing from a pattern you have never used before.

Plan C. Back to an old favourite that I should have started with right at the beginning. Dare I make a few changes to alter the pattern.?  I’m totally over this particular project so figure I can’t do any worse than I had over the previous few days and slice into the fabric….beyond the point of no return. Luckily it went together easily and even fitted the reluctant model. Sigh of relief. Two 4am bed times and a whole day of sewing for one finished garment that should have taken a couple of hours at most.

Now to find that camera. I was looking back over by posts and am amazed at the lack of record keeping there actually is of my creative endeavours. In my mind I’d blogged about them all.

 

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Upcycled Winter Warmers

After spending seven weeks  with packs on our backs and dripping sweat from the heat we are back right into the middle of our New Zealand winter and everyone is freeeeeeeeeeezing.  I was so needing to sew but in our absence the unsupervised teens housesitters had turned the house into a party house rearranged everything and in the process the overlocker (serger for those of you in the States and Canada) control foot had vanished. After a few weeks of searching desperation had me relent and order in a replacement.

The man’s away for a few days and he was barely out of the driveway when I gave the floor a quick vacuum and covered it in mounds of fabric.

First up was a wee bit of upcycling with a woollen jumper.

Add a little merino (hat 1) and a little cotton lycra (hat 2) and a wee bit of overlocking (serging) for each hat and the kids aren’t going to feel so cold tomorrow.

Still got a wee bit of hand stitching to complete them but look …

they are even reversible … two hats in one.

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OMG…a phobia

Not just any old phobia but one that is  just devastating to someone who lives, sleeps and breathes fabric. More so to one who has a stash of fabric that really needs to be tamed.. I had made a commitment to take part in a kids winter clothing swap. I had the pattern all drafted and ready to do……the fabric picked out and sitting in front of me every day….but for the life of me I just couldn’t get any further with it. Late last night (close to the bewitching hour) I took the bull by the horns scissors by the handle and decided it was now or never (and never wasn’t an option). That was when I had the realisation that my head just wouldn’t let me cut into the fabric. My hands grew clammy and my heart started palpitating. I really had to push and prod myself to make a few cuts. It wasn’t an easy task (cutting into the fabric) but it was so worth pushing through that inner turmoil to hear the whirrr of the machine and to achieve the end result. 

I have no idea when the bizarre phobia took a hold of me but one thing is for sure…it can not stay.  Fabric is my passion and I love nothing more than creating an original garment for one of the kids. Have decided that the only cure for this is to sew up a storm…force myself to cut and sew until once again wielding the scissors becomes like second nature. First in line is MissFinn who is wanting a toastie warm hoodie similar to the one she is modelling. This one is already on the courier, heading towards a new home.

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Royal Paper Craftiness

I put a small wedding kit together for my aunt who by now will be sitting comfy in front of her tv waiting in anticipation for the wedding of the century. I’m just a little miffed with myself that I ran out of time to make a flag and cucumber sarnies to go with it.  A mini union jack bunting , a  cardboard crown incase she has a forgetful moment and needs reminding whose wedding it is and no royal wedding would be complete without a special wedding hat to wear….

Coloured Card from my friend Nicci from Buttons by Benji  As well as the cutest buttons ever she is now stocking high quality crafting card at very good prices.

Union Jack Printables from: http://www.freefunfings.com/bunting/pdf/great-britain.pdf  http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/pdfs/Union_Jack_printable.pdf   http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/pdfs/Union_Jack_ribbon.pdf

Crown from http://designeditor.typepad.com/design_editor/2011/04/free-royal-wedding-party-printables.html

Hat from my personal collection

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