Friday, February 29, 2008

my new sewing machine

So, this my other new baby. The Pfaff Tiptronic 2010. I finally decided after much debate and I'm still unsure whether I made the right decision (Bernina and Viking were also calling my name) but, I think for the funds I had that I got a good one that is built well, sews wells and does some fancy and crazy things.

What else...I actually bought it in the middle of January but, didn't have the time or patience to even bring myself to learn to thread the machine and bobbin (lame, I know) but I was 9 months pregnant and everything was getting to me. However, over the weekend I decided it was time. I had not used a sewing machine in 3 weeks and I was feeling a little blue about it.

So far I can tell you it sews very well and I like it. The only annoying factor is the stitch controls on the bottom right could be bumped if you are not careful. This happened once but, I was immediately aware of it so nothing bad happened. I made a few things which I will show you soon.

I also tried knitwear with one of the fancy embroidery stitches and failed ruining two baby tees but that's my fault because I didn't use stabilizer in back and didn't read up on it in the manual beforehand. Knitwear is a bit intimidating for me to sew but, I plan to approach the challenge again soon. I remember reading some advice and tips on blogs but, not sure whose it was. I am aware that Built By Wendy is coming out with a knitwear sewing book this year and I plan to buy it and make some of her clothes. I've been hoarding the patterns far too long. They will just have to wait until we move and another 5-8 pounds and then we are good to go.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

cute and cozy

I actually have some new things to post about but, it's not a picture's gray and drizzly but, I wanted to pop in and show you something cute and cozy.

I took this photo of Scarlet the other day (when it was sunny) and love how she looks here. I must admit I did not make any of the knits in this photo. The outfit is courtesy of The Gap, the hat was inherited from my friend Gwynne whose daughter Mimi wore it (I think she said it's handknit and from Brazil) and the blanket was knitted by my cousin Cathie for Little M and is now Scarlet's but, sshhh don't tell him. I am doing some more knitting today and trying to create a knit pattern in my head for a Spring cozy idea I have. I'm also happy to say that I did some sewing. I will post the results soon.

Monday, February 25, 2008

knit and nurse

So, I'm trying not to get too mental about the fact that it is so much harder to get some crafting done these days.

My Mom asked me a few days after I gave birth if I had figured out how to knit and nurse yet. She's a funny one. Well, she knows how super excited I was when I figured out how to use the computer (laptop on a chair) one handed and nurse with Little M so her idea both inspired and challenged me. I'm happy to report that I can now knit and feed my baby at the same time. Let's not get ahead of ourselves though I've just done stockinette stitch in the round so far but hey, it's something.

So, this is Scarlet's dress in progress. I would be a lot further along but, I made a boo boo. I had done about 30% of it and had to rip it out because I twisted it at some point but, all is good now and I'm almost done with the skirt portion. You won't be seeing her model this anytime soon though because I'm doing the 12 month size.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Little Hoot

The super talented Jen Corace has teamed up with Amy Krouse Rosenthal on another book.
Many of you may be familiar with Little Pea which is a favorite of ours here. Well, M & Little M took a trip to the bookstore today and discovered their new book, Little Hoot. The story is written in the same style and is about bedtime and incorporates the same sort of reverse psychology as Little Pea does. The illustrations of course are super good and cute but, what else would you expect from Jen Corace. Go and get your copy now. You won't be disappointed.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

You Make My Day

I bought this photo a long time ago and I have it up on a wire picture holder with other items I love. I never get tired of it. I love the girl and her happy expression, her haircut, her dress, the way the sun shines through the branches of the tree and the beautiful doll she holds. Anyone know the name of this doll by any chance? It's so amazing and I would love to get one for my baby doll.

I received a You Make My Award from Elizabeth. Thanks so much!

Elizabeth was my scrap swap partner and was super good to me. She also has recently offered to send me one of her doll quilts that she made for the collection I am gathering for Scarlet. How sweet is that!

Honestly all of you who stop by here to read my journal make my day and although I don't get a chance to personally respond to all the comments I receive I do love reading them and I appreciate that you take the time to write them and cheer me on.

The idea with the 'You Make My Day' award is that I now pass this on to ten bloggers who I admire and who inspire me.
I am passing the award to Jenn, Laura,Ann, Fiona, Abby, the girls from the Purl Bee, Claire ,Jenny ,Sarah and Abigail

Friday, February 15, 2008

textile jewelry

I've been finding myself drawn to jewelry made from textiles so I had an idea to make myself a necklace with ribbon and fabric yo- yo circles. I quite like the way it turned out. I have another idea involving yo-yo's but it requires a thrifting trip to find the right garment.

I purchased this beauty from Bitter Betty's Etsy shop recently (image from Bitter Betty) which reminded me of the days when I took a lace-making class.

I would love to pick that back up again. A college friend of mine and I took the class together at a historical society and we fashioned our own cushions and attached the patterns to a cylindrical cushion that sat in the bigger cushion that the bobbins would lay on. It was so much fun to sit and wind and chat with the older ladies and make lace. I may have to dig that cushion up from my Mother's attic and give lace making another try.

Hope you all have a lovely weekend.


Thursday, February 14, 2008

happy valentine's day

Thank you all for the well wishes and comments regarding Scarlet. She is a such a joy and we are savoring every moment of these early newborn days with her. I can get so lost just holding her and breathing in her scent. I am lucky enough that Mick has some time off of work to help out esp. with Little M. Although last night he ran off to a meeting and in 50 minutes I managed to help Little M finish dinner, clean up, do the dishes, change and nurse Scarlet, read stories with both of them on my lap and put Little M in bed. Impressive...well to me it was.

For Valentine's Day I made...

Little M some multi-colored crayons from broken up pieces then melted in a baking tray in the oven. Directions here. I wish I had a small heart shape baking pan for these but the circles do nicely as well.

For Scarlet - I started a handknit dress in Manos Del Uruguay Cotton.

Mick and I indulged in some Whitney Smith pottery which you can see up on top. Images from her Etsy shop.

Hope you all have a very sweet Valentine's Day.


Saturday, February 9, 2008

scarlet elizabeth

Here she is, our little girl. Scarlet was born on Wednesday, February 6, 2008 at 4:33 PM. 8 lbs, 4 oz, 19 inches. We're all doing great.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

6. 5st wrap cardigan

I had set a goal in my mind to finish this baby sweater before the baby was born. Once I set my mind to something I can be very determined. The knitting I did in spurts over the past month with merino yarn on size 3 US needles in a color I fell in love with and purchased at NYS Sheep and Wool. I knitted it for size 3 months. You can see one band is wider. That is not in the pattern but, I wound up liking it and left it in.

I love the color as it is rich yet variegated and in a muted shade. I paired it with vintage wood buttons given to me by a dear friend (thank you Anna K) and Japanese linen fabric purchased last year from Kitty-Craft. The sewing of the panel to the knit piece took 3 tries to get right. The pattern which intimidated me a little was not so hard after all. Sometimes your mind makes things harder but, when you step back and breathe it all makes sense.

More shots on my flickr.

Pattern can be purchased here

Saturday, February 2, 2008


Waitng for those little feet that keep kicking me to make their appearance. This mysterious tease of a child.

Oh, the waiting is so hard especially with contractions that start, increase in intensity but, don't come consistently enough and then stop. The ankles have swollen. The sick feeling has set in but, I trudge on. Today, we looked at a few more houses. We may put a offer on one...still deciding.

Little M has decided she is coming on Tuesday. I don't know how he came to this decision but, we will see if he is right.

-The baby booties shown here were actually ones I knitted for Matty. I just swapped out the ribbon colors.

Friday, February 1, 2008

handmade valentines

I made these sweet Valentine Cards using the instructions from the Purl Bee. I love making my own cards and I always do handmade valentines's. I loved the color scheme so I went with the same color cardstock but at a slightly bigger size, 4x6 inches, and I used fabric I had on hand.

Last year I made these

I do like Valentine's Day not the red roses, Hallmark thing but the crafty, retro, historical warm feeling behind it. Oh, and little kids passing out pasted Valentine's cards to each other is really the best too.

Last year we watched Marie Antoinette(such a good film) and had cheese fondue (yum!)which is pretty close to what we will do again this year. I like to keep it simple.

Here are some more great Valentine's crafts I'd like to try but most likely won't get to. Why don't you?

Decoupaged valentine buckets to fill with treats found here

A very pretty paper heart garland found here

-MSL wrapped store bought candy bars done up nice and retro here