Wednesday, December 22, 2010

happy holidays!

Here are a few more things I've been up to

Rosemary Olive Oil Breads
Cut out wool felt ornaments - silhouettes, cats, stars. I really like the black against the green of the tree.
Pretty garlands inspired by Stephanie's.
Glazing a whole lot of sugar cookies. I love sanding sugar and I added some glitter dust into the icing.
A big lace scarf in the prettiest shade of green.
A red sweater that still needs sleeves and a button band.

The galettes need to be filled, the house needs a scrubbing and if I find any more lights in the attic I will be adding even more twinkle. The decorating is never really done now is it? Or the wrapping but, I'm getting closer.

Hope you all have the happiest of holidays. I'll see you soon!



Monday, December 20, 2010

winter knitting

I have been knitting a lot and feeling guilty about not sewing much. I start things, cut out projects, sew small projects ( a new draft snake, lavender sachets... ) and then leave the attic where the heat is sometimes there and sometimes not. I think when it's really really cold it stays warm all the time and maybe I should just drag the space heater up there to work after the holidays because I've been really missing it. Then of course I'll go on a sewing spree and feel guilty that I'm not knitting.

I have to say settling down under quilts is really really nice especially at the end of these busy days in the quiet house and just being still.

I've got a sweater for Scarlet on the needles right now and if the stars align I should have it finished by Christmas.

Here are a few of the projects though that I've managed to photograph.

Toast (pictured above)

I decided to go down a few needles size and used Rowan Felted Tweed DK. I wanted something tweedy but this is not the softest wool. Maybe it will soften after blocking? In any case, I still like them. I've knit this pattern a few times and I can never have enough fingerless mittens. I like to accessorize.

A hand knit alpaca/wool collar that made it's way into the shop today.

*I may or may not be done with cookie baking though I still need to glaze the vanilla and citrus sugar cookies. Other then those I've made gingerbread cookies and those peanut butter blossoms with help from the family. I'm planning some olive oil rosemary bread this week for Christmas day which I'm hosting this year. I must admit I am most excited about the Buche de Noel that I ordered. It is so so pretty. I will be sure to take photos of it and maybe some of those cookies because my cookies are pretty too.

Friday, December 17, 2010

paper scrap papier-mache balls

These papier-mache balls were originally intended for a different project but, when I came across this box of paper scraps I received from Sharilyn of Lovely Design a new idea came to me. I decided to take the paper scraps and glue them to these pretty round boxes which I had bought here.If this store is new to you please take a look around because there are so many wonderful things there.

The inside of the ball is so pretty too:

For gift giving these can be filled with small treats- candy, tiny finger puppets, stickers, tiny flowers, little mushrooms, jewelry, erasers or whatever your little or big one is into.

I plan to give one to each of my kids this year.

The best part - I have lots more of these paper scraps for more crafting adventures ahead. And these can be used over and over again. What will they find next year inside?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

a dress and some leggings

I found this dress in my work pile cut out from the summer and decided I would put it together. It's a rather simple design I've done before. I didn't have any instructions with it so I just made it up as I went along and decided to do a seam finish on the sides I haven't done in ages which is the flat felled seam. Mostly this is just used for jeans and is really not needed on light breezy cotton dress. A regular seam and serge or even french seam would have worked fine. Mostly I just love the fabric which is so light and full of sweet illustrations. I think I'll wrap this up for S for her birthday which is at least a little closer to Spring.

And, these leggings..... well, I didn't get these quite right. I mean they are sewn fine and I love the jersey but, they are too snug for my girl which is okay because I know some small ones who could get some use out of these.

Edited to add how I make the leggings:

I start with a pair of leggings that we currently own. With these I actually didn't have enough material which is why they don't fit Scarlet.

I use organic cotton jersey for leggings. This one I got from Superbuzzy. I've also purchased from Alabama Chanin but, I'm sure you can get nice jersey at your local fabric shop as well.

The age of your child will determine how much fabric you need. I think I used 3/4 of a yard for the ones I've made her and she wears a 3T.

If you don't have a serger use a small zig-zag stitch on your machine.
Make sure you used the right needle -one for stretch fabrics.
Don't worry if you haven't used jersey. It's not that hard.

1) Fold the leggings in half place the straight edge on the fold and trace around leaving room for seam allowance.
1" at top and half inch around the bottom and side. Do this again. You now have two identical pieces.

2)With right sides together sew up the leg seams leaving the waist to crotch (gosh I hate that word) open. If you have a serger you can go ahead and serge this too.

3) Turn one leg right side out and place in the other leg so everything lines up and sew along the curve. So the right sides are together inside. Take the leg out and you will see they are almost done.

4) You now need to hem the bottoms and make a casing for the top. If you have a serger you can serge along the bottom of the pant legs and the top of the pant before you do the hem. You should use elastic that is 1/2"- 3/4" for the casing.

A casing is rather simple to make and you will not need to hem twice if you serge at the top. Make sure to leave room for your elastic and then sew in shut with a little ribbon or tag so you can tell which side is the back.

If you try this and it works out let me know. If you have any questions feel free to ask and I will try to help you in the comments section.


Monday, December 13, 2010

carousel ride

If Christmastime is a little bit about magic then throwing coins in the fountain and a carousel ride in Bryant Park is sure to bring a little bit of it into the holiday season. Followed by gingerbread cookie making at home of course.

*I just noticed that S is riding a bunny as is the girl on her little tote purse she wanted to carry to the city. How funny.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

craft room curtain

I made a curtain for my craft room. It's a pretty dark room with only one window so I wanted something that would diffuse the light.

I decided it was time to put away the piece of fabric that was hanging there though I miss the lavender clouds with the french writing the piece had sun damage. I've always wanted to incorporate vintage handkerchiefs into a curtain. I remember long ago having a conversation at work with someone whose sister had done so and had already amassed a collection of my own. I'm happy to have finally tried it out.

I used muslin and sewed on 6 handkerchiefs. I wanted it to be mostly pale in shades so most of them just have embroidery in the corners or lace edging. For the top I just made a pocket for the rod to fit through. The one with the blue edging was made by my Nana.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

linen stitch bookmarks

A bookmark is a rather humble object and not one that too many people think about but, how nice to have a pretty one to hold your page. We all know it's sometimes those simple pretty things that make our days all the more sweeter.

The stitch is linen stitch and the project hails from the very same More Last Minute Knitted Gifts I've been babbling about. I'm getting good use of this book. I still have two projects to show you from it. 'Tis the season for quick projects.

One of these was gifted to my Mom today. I hope she likes it as much as I do.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

liberty of london bunting

I always love to make party decor. In fact, I've been mulling over ideas for my daughter's 3rd birthday since this summer. It's in February if that gives you any idea.

My Mom's birthday is today and she is coming tomorrow so I made this bunting (I make a lot of bunting) and hung it up which I'm sure will be a nice surprise. My Mom doesn't use the computer (can you believe it?) so there is no chance she will see this. It will be fun to drink our tea and eat our cupcakes under. I hung some fairy lights too.

This is a no-sew bunting and was rather simple to make. The tutorial is here.

It made me want to get back to work on my cathedral windows quilt which uses some of the same fabrics. I have quilts/quilting on the brain a lot lately and I hope to get to work on them soon.

*I own one of Confetti Systems gorgeous garlands but I think that might a bit much for my Mom. Certainly not me and certainly not little ones which make up the majority around here. I think I will hang that for S's birthday.

Monday, December 6, 2010

doll dress with matching hat

This doll dress was quite fun to sew up. All the tiny seams, the collar and puff sleeves.
A matching bonnet was made too.
The pattern is still Simplicity 4707.
I found the red thread afterwards but I don't mind the white stitching on the red ric rac portion.
I used stick-on velcro on the back for a closure- it works well and is great for little ones to dress the dolls.
I do hope she likes all these doll clothes but, I'm not expecting much. I know she will like them but, of course it's not going to elicit the exact same response as this. She has wanted one of those for at least a year. It's the only thing she asked Santa for. Well that and a real horse which unfortunately she's not getting this year.

I think this may be it for the doll clothes for Christmas.

* A sweater was knit for her Purl Rabbit. The rabbit raglan sweater and the pattern for that is here

Thursday, December 2, 2010

cotton candy wrist-ees

Knitting these I kept thinking of spun sugar and how long am I going to have to wait for the yarn to come for the second pair. Rowan Kidsilk Haze is dreamy. I know I have been on a bit of a knitting spree lately but, I can't help it.

This is a mohair/silk combination and they are fuzzy and soft. I made the smallest size thinking these would fit Ms. S but, instead they fit me. Apparently, I have tiny wrists. How dainty.

The pattern is White Rabbit Wrist-ees by Tiny Owl Knits and I'm going to make them in the the same yarns as intended because who doesn't want to feel a bit Alice-like sometimes. The pattern is actually not in her etsy shop but a free pattern on Ravelry so if you are on there you will find it. These are knit flat and then stitched up leaving room for the thumb.

I have the pattern for the Meow Mitts too and now just need to get my paws on some yarn for those. Look at those robin and nest ones too.

Some yarn pulled for more projects.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

seed stitch bracelet, sugar scrub and a nickel

Hmm, what can I say. I've just gotten home from the hospital with my kids. My 5 year old boy swallowed a nickel. Thankfully he is fine and sleeping now and the coin is safely sitting in his intestines waiting to well, pass. I can not tell you how often I tell him not to put things in his mouth and have warned him about such things but, it seems to go in one ear and well now out the bum!

Another project from the previously mentioned More Last Minute Gifts except instead of using 2 different Koigu Yarns I just used one: Koigu Mori which is merino and mulberry silk (gorgeous) and finished it with a fabric covered button in a Liberty of London print. This sort of bracelet has a simple beauty to it that I just love.

Also, made some sugar scrub recently for gift giving. I made one for myself too. Just raw sugar, a little olive oil to coat and a 4 or 5 drops of Lavender Essential Oil all which I had at home. Thanks to Amy for the link.