Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Hard to believe a year is up again! I think the years are going by faster and faster. :)

Well, I don't have a project to post, but I wanted to share my New Year's resolution. I don't typically make resolutions, but this year I have something specific and, hopefully, attainable in mind. I am going on a craft diet for 3 months. No new fabric, yarn, etc., with the exception of coop commitments I have already made and notions needed to finish a project. My supplies runneth over and I really want to use it not just stare at it nicely folded or stacked. The second part of my resolution is no buying new rtw (ready to wear) clothing (excluding special items and shoes). So everything for my spring wardrobe will be handmade or refashioned. This is going to be a wee bit challenging because I love spring dresses and skirts and end up with a closet full by June! I also plan on making most of little i's clothes for spring/summer so I shall be quite busy (baby n has soo soo many clothes, lots of wonderful handmedowns!). I've decided to give myself the option of purchasing one handmade item during this time, mostly because Kev will be deployed and I do my own present shopping while he is gone (Valentine's Day is smack in the middle of this time frame ;).

So why handmade only? Why not! I can sew ;) (and knit) I have lots of wonderful patterns, fabrics, yarns, and i tend to love the fit and style of the handmade items I make moreso than rtw, why not stick with what I love? :D

I am adding a pic of my last rtw purchase for the next 3 months: totally frivolous but a steal:

Faux fur lined slippers, very warm and cozy :)

I'll keep the blog updated with my progress and if (really i am not going to ;) I slip up!


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Rest of the Christmas Presents

The boxes finally arrived so I can post the rest of the pictures!

First off, it seems I owe my Dad any apology, I did not include a note about the pillow I made him and he was a bit confused; sorry Dad, it's not a heat therapy pillow, but a little birdie told me you might enjoy one... ;)

A BOOK pillow for my Dad and matching eyeglass case. As you can see the loose ribbon in the middle is the book marker ;). I got the idea from a sewliberated pattern. Little i chose the fabric, the squirrel print is a lovely linen blend japanese import and the green underside it super soft corduroy. The pillow is slipcovered and the insert is muslin with two compartments. the top half is cotton stuffing and the bottom half is buckwheat hulls to give it a bit of weight.

Housewarming apron for my Mom. Patchwork squares are a charm pack from Moda (Sandy Gervais, Pumpkins Gone Wild) and the reverse is a coordinating print from the same line.

(I am taking a chance here and hoping that my brother without internet won't see this before he gets his present!)
A 'manly' apron for my youngest brother that just moved into his own apartment and coordinating flour sack handtowels. Both projects are from Simple Gifts to Stitch and really are simple!

Hot/cold therapy packs for Kev's parents, sister and bil. Little i chose the print fabric again and they are backed with super velvety soft bamboo velour (I love this fabric!!!). They are slipcovered as well so the flaxseeds don't get washed. The little bag is for my sweet nephew (who just learned how to crawl yay!!), it's a boo boo bag, also filled with flaxseed, it's perfect for kids because there is no worry about their sensitive skin being damaged by ice. (and is fun to throw! LOL)

That's all the gift sewing I did this year. I had wanted to do more, but time was too short. I do have some good ideas for next year! I am currently (finally) working on my winter coat. It was actually cold enough last week to make me think about sewing it! Annnd...I almost forgot! I know all of my sewing friends will understand! :) We rearranged some furniture in the house and all of my machines are in the sewing room! Yay! No more hauling fabric and projects all over the house. I can stand and surge (better for my back than sitting in the kitchen chair) and all of the difficult to store knits have their own storage area. :D


Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas Pajamas!

Yes, yes late again, I know. Been having fun with the guys and finally uploaded our Christmas pics. I really like having matching pj's for the boys for Christmas cause I never liked the having to get dressed before we could open presents rule. Delayed the fun way too much for me ;) so I decided cute matching pj's are the way to go; still get fun coordinated pics on Christmas, and no delaying the fun! This is the first year I have made the pj's and didn't have any Christmasy fabric but I think they turned out cute. :)

Some lovely brushed cotton (super soft) sock monkeys for the pants. Hemp jersey (cause I can't find off white/cream cotton jersey LOL) tops, with rib knit raglan sleeves. Top stitching was done is red to make it more festive.

Christmas Eve (yup that's really Kev, he's home on R &R!!!)

Christmas morning! The boys had tons of fun opening presents except every time we said something was from, say Grandma Gayle, the boys would say 'Grandma open your present'!!!

I also tried wrapping a few presents in fabric, I was surprised by how easy it was to do! No tape, no cutting off too much paper; just fold tuck and wrap in ribbon :).


Saturday, December 27, 2008

A Birthday Gift

I can finally share the gifts I've made! This set is for my Mom, she recently picked up knitting and is sitting waiting to close on their new house, so she is a bit bored. So I put together a little knitting kit for her.

Big project bag, small project bag, double point needle holder, a pouch for extras and stitch markers.

The bag all loaded up read to go! I did the pocket on the inside the same as the pocket on the ella carryall, makes a nice big pocket for bulky stuff.

And lastly, some handdyed sock yarn. This was my first attempt at kettle dyeing, I did it in cold water, just cause, and doesn't have a lot of variation, but just a little to make it interesting.

That's all I am going to post today, I got the Christmas packages out late so I am not sure they have arrived to the recipients yet :). Oh! and I haven't uploaded the boys' Christmas pjs yet!


Monday, December 15, 2008

What's with all the knitting?

What's up with all of the knitting you say? Well I have been sewing but I can't share just yet, those pics will have to wait until 26 December ;)

But in the mean time... more knit hats!

Little i declared once again that he needed a hat. No yellow, no purple, RED is the color of the week, so he decided we had to go to the yarn store as i didn't have any red yarn. (He was actually right on this one, i didn't have any red yarn!)

I got a new pattern I wanted to try: the knox hood by plumknit. Easy to follow directions although my pom pomy bit is a bit...erm... limp.

Reminds me of Dr Suess' Who's. (I had to bribe him to get this picture.)

And a great fun hat to knit: The Hudson Hat by Ky Baby Knits. The pattern uses scrap yarn and was great fun to pick all the different colorways to go in the hat. (earflaps are a little curly as I hadn't blocked it yet.)

oopps bit blurry, the boys were fighting over this one so I think i better make another. I gotta say this is not the hat to make if you don't like weaving in ends there are loads of em!

My first (properly) kettle dyed yarn. I really like how this one turned out! Paton's Natural Marl never looked so good! LOL :)


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Uugly Hats

Little i informed me that the boys need some hats. Yes, we have a basket full of hats but he needed a knit one, 'from you know, yarn mama!" He also decided that it needed to be purple and yellow. So I got out my dyes and bulky yarn and set to work. The results were, well, ugly. I had added a little blue to the mix which blended nicely with the yellow and the purple, but the purple and yellow did not play nice together. They made an uggglllyy gross color of brown.

As you can see the brown is smack dab in the middle of the yellow so it really stands out. I decided to try again and overdyed it with green. The results are better but a little of the ugly brown is still there.

It's not quite as horrid once knit up :) this is another earthly fae pixie hat.

Super cute on...and lost already! LOL so is life with little ones. :)

Another hat from a One Skein Wonder books, Little i decided to walk around for the morning with only one earflap done- and I forgot to take a picture! It was really cute.

Well, I have projects in process, but I can't post them just yet as they are Birthday and Christmas presents and well the recipients read the blog! Maybe I will take some pictures of past projects. :D


oh! I almost forgot! I opened up the comments so anyone can leave a comment (I didn't realize I had it set otherwise-opps), yes Mom that means you too :)

Monday, December 1, 2008

In the Nick of Time

December is upon us, time for a countdown to Christmas of course. :) What better way then with an advent calender? I picked up a panel last year after Christmas and had been putting off sewing it as it's odd to sew Christmas fabric in May, right? And August really isn't any better, so it got left until last week and finished at about 11:30 last night!

Close up of today's gift, two little snowman snowmen. It's a good thing I have more than one crafty pursuit as I was all out of fiberfill stuff so i ran to my felting supplies and used a bit of wool roving. (I must say wool makes very nice stuffing very soft and non bunchy.) I did cut the loose thread this morning :) I am not entirely pleased with the stitching on the calender, my presser foot/feed dogs are misbehaving, I think it is time to clean the machine.

And another holiday first for me: I made julekaga! I modified the recipe my mom gave me to work in my bread machine as I have never made yeast bread from scratch (outside of dumping ingredients in the bread machine pan). It turned out pretty good for the first attempt, dough was a bit sticky at first and I think I used too much cardamon, but baby n and I ate half a loaf the night we made it. :P


Sunday, November 16, 2008

Assembly Line Sewing

Little i was in need of some pants (or trousers for those not in the states ;) everything in the stores were either blah or too short in leg so it was time to hit the sewing machine assembly line style. All of the pants are cut exactly the same using the 10 minute pants/one pattern piece method but they are different and fun!

The two pairs on the left are fully lined, the cars print is a totally awesome linen blend from echino and the polka dot are a super soft baby wale corduroy.

Close up of the outerspace and cars prints.

In action! Long enough with room to grow. And no I have not told him Wall-E comes's out on Tuesday, I think it will be more fun for him to see the video in store (and less annoying for me!)

That's all for now, had a sick baby this last week so didn't get too much done. :)


Monday, November 10, 2008

Please don't make me wear it!

Please? I mean come on mama; who wants to wear an adorable hand knit sweater? Not ME!

:sigh: well I got the vest done and he hates it. bummer. no surprise really the more excited he is about a work in progress the more he seems to dislike the finished product. Maybe he will like it next week.

Better pic of the vest. I added two extra rows at the shoulder as some of the comments said the head opening was too small.

Vest pattern is from warm woolies

A pixie hat to match. Baby n was not the intended recipient by he was willing to sit for pictures.

pattern is super super easy! from earthly fae

I still have yarn left from this project! hmm maybe i will tackle some little mittens!

I forgot to take pictures of Little i's trousers again! Maybe tomorrow :)


Friday, November 7, 2008

Knit Mama Knit!

Waiting for baby n to fall asleep in a carrier so thought I'd share a few knitting pics. :) Most of these are on my projects page on (what? you knit? and you are NOT on ravelry?!?! check it out ;), it's has an unbelievable list of patterns for everyone and great project planner. my screenname is sewzenmama!) I know lots of you don't knit so here's my watch tv projects.

Wristlets from One Skein Wonder book. The boys helped 'sew' these so i think i started over at least three times on each wristlet but they turned out pretty nice and are so soft and warm enough for holding the cold steering wheel, but allow me to buckle the boys into their seats (impossible to do with gloves!)

With the leftover yarn from the wristlets I made a little headband that matches. I kinda made it up as I went so I am quite pleased with myself that it turned out. oh and wool blend yarn is sticky enough to stay in my slippery hair!

Work in progress, a little vest for little i, he was so excited to try it on.

it doesn't fit yet mama, sew some more! (everything is sewing lately)

another work in progress. TBW knitalong scarf, it's nice to have a couple different stitches to try out, now the real question is: what color to dye it...


eta...don't know why the pictures were so odd sorry about that! should be fixed now

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Dr Wall-E and Bewitching Emmeline

I am a little late posting this. I was debating about not posting because the project was such a pain in the a**, but not everything can turn out perfectly so without further ado I present...

Dr Wall-E!
(and Mr I... get it?)

This was my first year making a Halloween costume, we had been moving or I couldn't find patterns/fabric/time. It was a paaain to sew. The sizing was aweful, neckline a mess, fabric shrank so I had to cut creatively, gah makes me not want to sew! But little i had a great time and really like it so it was worth the annoyance.

And a fun family shot. I actually spend most of my time with my eyes open, really I do. I did not make the pumpkin costume, but I did do the trick or treat bag!

On to a great pattern to sew!! The Emmeline Apron from Sew Liberated. Three coordinating Halloween Prints (which also shrank a ton- the fabric ended up being 40" wide!) My only complaint about the pattern is, yup that's right, hand sewing the bodice. I really and truely dislike handsewing and it never looks neat and tidy so I machine stitched the neck strap to the bodice.

Fun and funky purple spider print. I will definitely be making this pattern again and I think it could be modified into a cute dress.

I am currently working on some adorable trousers for little i and will enventually make my winter coat (but it is by the same company as the dr costume and I need a break from their patterns LOL).


Friday, October 17, 2008

America's Next Top (3 Year Old) Model

No really I don't watch that show. Honestly. I don't even like reality tv. except the completely hilarious stuff on the cw :)
The latest project was quite comical from beginning to end.

First there's baby n helping trace the pattern:

Like any good mother I had to take a picture for embarrassing future girlfriends; then, of course, I took him off the table.

Then there was the fact that i ran out the thread with only the pocket and waistband to sew at 7:30 on Saturday night. The fabric store closes at 8 and it takes 20 minutes to get there and 15 minutes to wrestle children into their carseats (no pic of that!)

And the model! Oh what a ham!

uh I....can'

got it! tada. he was saying the whole time: 'take a picture of me like this. okay i wanna see. no take a picture of me like this. oh how cute!' Well okay!

The hoodie is from ottobre designs spring 08. I must say that I love the incredibly simple directions. They do not show any steps just a small box of a few written instructions and the pieces you need to trace. The hood is elasticised, so drawstrings don't get in the way.

The pants are the wonderfully easy britches and bloomers with a cargo pocket added. I also appliqued a shirt with the robot/skull fabric, but it really looks like every other shirt i applique! oh and it's in the wash.

Not much sewing this week, but hopefully will get some projects done!


Monday, October 13, 2008

Thursday, October 9, 2008

One Skein Knitting

Time always seems shorter than all of the projects I want to complete. Especially knitting projects, so I've been doing some small one skein projects. Ohh and I dyed some more yarn! That's fun and quick too, it's interesting to see how the colors combine and knit up.

Look Mama! I can knit too! This Cascade 220 yarn that I dyed.

Some lovely hand dyed yarn in fall colors, green mostly felted bowl from 101 designer one skein wonder book. I think I need to felt it more my washing machine is extra gentle on clothes which doesn't make felting very easy! Finished scarf. I got Super Stitches Knitting book and have been trying out some different stitches, I did a basket stitch on the ends of the scarf and along the edges.

I am currently working on some black and purple knit babyleggs. Little i had declared that his favorite color is purple so I thought purple and black would be fun for Halloween. Oh and I finished my first pair of socks but completely forgot to take a picture!

That's all for now :)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Orange Coats: Part 2

Part 2: Little i's coat! I had this done about a week and half ago but it has been hot and humid here. Or warm and humid. or well, humid and humid. Little i has refused to wear the coat but I finally got a few pictures today. :)

A combination of apples and pears for the hood and sleeve lining and owls in trees for the body and pockets. The pattern is Burda 9676, which is yes, a girl's pattern, but I made it work for a boy. :) I modified the pattern a bit and am pretty pleased with the results!

come on already! I want to play!!

Maybe i'll smile, maybe i won't :P
snap studs are orange and sockets green (or i could have that backwards LOL)

Super fun pointy hood.

Just cause they are so cute together!

and i have been playing with dye and wool. this is your sock yarn mom! hope you like it :) it's purplely, blue and a deep chocolate.

Part 3 is my coat, but I need to order the lining material aaaannndd.... I have been asked to be a pattern reviewer for sewmamasew blog! I am very excited! I will be sure to post pics of the project I do :)