Wednesday, December 31, 2008

No More: December

I never did do my post for December... nor the habit, to be honest.

But I *did* come up with the idea and I *will* implement it. So, I'm saying good bye to junk mail. That's right, a big sticker is going on my letterbox asap. I wanted to do an informative post on the impacts of junk mail, but well, that's what led me to never post... from memory there is a litre of water in every 7 pages of junk mail. On the day I found this out I had over 40 pages of junk mail delivered, so, what's that? Over 5 liters of water... multiply that out by everyone in your street... by each junk mail delivery... scary stuff... I'll leave it at that for now.

A Sewing Summary

For memory's sake, I thought I would copy and paste my 'to do' and 'done' lists for this year. Then I can start afresh tomorrow for 2009.

I didn't get everything I wanted to done, but geez, for someone who could barely sew a straight line and took 10 good minutes to thread the machine this time last year, I reckon I've done ok! A huge thankyou to the girls at EB for getting me going and providing lots of inspiration.

Christmas Presents To Make

* toddler dress x 2 not started :(
* toddler apron x 1 not started :(
* taggy not started :(
* toddler dress x 1 WIP
* oven mitt x 1 - WIP
* note book cover - DONE
* toddler dress x 1 DONE
* oven mitt x 2 DONE
* toddler apron x 2 DONE
* pot mitts x 4 - DONE

To Do in 2008 - NOT GOING TO HAPPEN :(

* christmas bib x 2
* little undies x 6
* curtains
* fruit bags
* skirt for me
* aprons
* pencil rolls
* overalls

Done in 2008

* toddler head-band
* baby shoes x 2
* oven mitt x 2
* Buggy Bib x 2
* little undies x 2
* woolen nappy cover

Christmas wrap-up

Well, here we are at the last day of December. Poor blog has been neglected again.

There was a mad rush to sew up presents before christmas.

I made two more oven-mitts

a note-book cover

and a dress.

The note-book cover I'd made earlier but stuffed it up - the book didn't fit. I had to make it a bit bigger than the pattern said, but I got it right the second time.

The dress was the first dress I've ever made. It was actually pretty easy! The most daunting part was unfolding the pattern (first real pattern I've used) and tracing all the bits. After that, it was pretty simple. I even did french seams (first time, thanks to RS for mentioning those earlier in the peace). They made it look much neater. Next time I won't use the interfacing, I really don't think it needed it. Hopefully I'll get a pic of the recipient wearing it sometime soon.

I still have a bunch of chrissy pressies to go I'm afraid. I found my sewing room today (it was a complete shambles with the rush up to christmas) so I hope to get a couple of projects done before the week is out - I have another dress cut up ready to sew, and another oven-mitt that needs a bit of repair work before it is done. Luckily I'm not seeing these people for a while yet. Then there are 2 dresses, a tag toy, and, um, I think that's it. Then I get to think about all the fun stuff I can do in 2009! Looking forward to it.

Monday, December 22, 2008

A Little Apron

A little apron for a little boy.

I actually had three of these to make for christmas, 1 down, 2 to go. I was thinking I'd only need one by actual Christmas, but we had a last-minute invite so I had to get one finished by yesterday arvo. It was close! We (it was DH's idea) tried to get all fancy with the neck strap, it's got elastic in it, it looks cool, but alas, it didn't fit over the little boy's head :( Luckily his grandma is a wiz with a sewing machine so I left it with them for her to fix. They all still seemed quite impressed with my efforts.

This was my first applique attempt - I hope it stays on!!

The train material came from good old Spotlight. My zigzag edge is *mostly* where I wanted it to be! It is hard to sew under pressure!!

And here it is all wrapped up. And in the middle of it was a train cookie cutter. Hopefully the recipient will get lots of fun from it.

The second one is under way, I 'just' need to sew on the straps and the pocket. Easy!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Last-minute KK pressies

I had a week's notice that my extended family was doing a KK. I really didn't want to break my "all christmas pressies will be home-made" vow. So, despite my list of projects that need to be finished by christmas, I set about to make some KK presents.

I decided that pot mitts would be nice and easy. I have not done them before. They were pretty easy, once I worked out how to do the binding on the right angles. I found some instructions on the net, but I struggled to get what they meant. In the end I just trialled it on some scrap and it worked. The other problem I had was how to neatly finish off the binding. Again, I found some info on the net but couldn't quite work it out (is this nappy brain? the stress of christmas? or something else?). I worked out on the last mitt that I'd been cutting the binding on the wrong angle (which will make since if you've had to finish binding off before).

I made four, two for each person, in a fabric that I felt reflected the receiver. The first was ok, the fourth one, was pretty good. The only thing I would like to improve is the hanging loop - it wasn't possible (for me at least!) to have its ends concealed neatly like on the oven-mitt as I wanted it on the corner. Any ideas? Maybe when I make one with a little more time it'll be obvious.

They really were quite quick to make, even faster if I'd have had the binding already made. I started them Saturday night, and finished them Sunday morning (about an hour before leaving!!).

I'm sure it was less stressful making them than going to the shops to buy something would've been.

A Buggy Bib Update

Thanks for all the comments on the Buggy Bib.

A funny story - the recipient of this bib (well, the little girl's mother) thought it was a vest! So, got me thinking, I'm now inspired to alter it a little to make it a bit "vest-ier". It's a project that will have to wait till the new year though I'm afraid. Still a few too many chrissy presents to go...

Friday, December 12, 2008

A Buggy Bib

Buggy as in butterflies and bees, not errors...

A last-minute pressie for a 1st birthday. I used the tute found here: but left off the pocket (I was in a hurry!!). I did do a practice run yesterday which DS tried out at dinner last night. It worked! I'm pretty excited at how quickly this came together, I cut it out and pinned it last night, and made the bias binding. But I did all the sewing this morning. There's about 2 meters of binding involved.

I can see some problems with it - the binding is wrinkly around the neck (anyone wanna tell me how to fix that??) and when I was taking photos I noticed that I sewed the arm holes bits on unevenly...but it is just a bib so I'm not too stressed. Plus, it's the thought that counts - right?

I can see me making a few more of these as pressies. I did the back and the binding out of the same stuff (ummm... that'd be black drill(?) from SL) and the inner layer is an old towel. It is pretty thick, but I figure that is good, nice and absorbent. Handy for learning to drink from a cup and that sort of thing.

Monday, December 8, 2008

No More: Dishcloths

Purchased ones that is. We had decided to give up buying dishcloths a while ago, I thought I included it in November, but it appears I didn't. Well, maybe it was a bonus one? I know I haven't written my No More post for December, but it's coming, and it's not dishcloths...

But anyway...We decided to not buy more dishcloths and the last one was getting manky. So I had to finish this little project which I started long ago. It really didn't take me long, finished it off while a little somebody napped. Made it out of crochet cotton that I got from freecycle. Gotta love freecycle. To be honest, I wasn't sure how it would hold up, but it is doing well so far. Survived at least a dozen work outs so far. And it feels good, so much better than store-bought cloths.

So here it is. Dodgy photo, I know, but you get the point.

The second one is currently in production - I got a whole bag of the cotton from freecycle and it's all going to dishcloths. They are great way of trying out new patterns too, as it really doesn't matter if you stuff it up! After all, it's only going to be used to wash dishes!