Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Blue and Gold

Me and Coco, we're best friends.  And we will be forever.  I need to buy all the fabric (ever) now!

This was a dream to sew.

It helped that I already was head over heels in love with the fabric and thread...

Beautiful, I know.  I may go back and buy a million more yards of the fabric!

Well.  Needless to say, I learned a lesson from my last sewing project, before I cut, I made sure the little square gauge was actually the right size.  Measure twice cut once (right)?

Once I finished cutting paper, and then taping it to together, and then cutting the paper again (the instant gratification that comes with getting that PDF immediately is somewhat dampened by that step), it was time to lay it all out and cut!  This time, I used my rotary tool and tailors carbon to mark out the pieces, then used my little circle cutter with my matt.  It was really cool to do it this way!  Made me feel all professional and grown up.  And, I only cut my finger very very minor.  Nothing worse than a paper cut.  Yay me! (my cutter has an automatic blade hider, so if I'm not actually squeezing the handle, the blade is no chance of sitting on it cuts).

I also remembered to take a picture of me winding the bobbin, and a picture of my favourite part of my sewing machine...the automatic needle threader.  Um, YES PLEASE!

And yes, if you can see, I may have been wearing my homemade pj's while making this.

Well, after the cutting, and threading, it was time to actually sew, and sew I did.

If you look closely at my pointer finger, you can see my tiny cut.

Anyway - finished product time.

(pardon the dirty mirror)

(and also the slippers)

But there she be.  My lovely beautiful Coco, of which I will be making in a many colours (and also the shirt version) because she is a sweet swift dream to sew up!

Now, I'm going to quietly crochet in bed to a movie until its sleeping time!


Monday, December 29, 2014



I tried to hold off on another blog post until later this week, but I just gotta post it!

Work today was terribly slow, it doesn't help that I was the only (yes, only) person online.  Makes for a lonely long day.

Well, previously I promised I would post a little about my newer items.

Finished projects.

I finished 2 new hats after Christmas, over the weekend.  A super adorable Deer Hat that I adjusted a little, and took off the red nose (so it could be more than just a Christmas Hat), and crocheted the antlers.  It's for the most adorable nephew I have (okay, you got me, my only nephew).

 That is the final version, ready to go to my handsome nephew.  Needless to say, the final version is better than what was being crafted.  Bigger eyes, and a bigger nose do a lot for a little deer....
Feel free to chortle in laughter, I know I certainly did!

A work friend has also commissioned me to make two lovely hats for a baby shower she is attending, and of course I couldn't help but oblige!

There you have my newest little creations.

The lovely deer will go to this handsome fella (taken fresh after his haircut)

 And hopefully soon (before going back to work) I'll finish this work in project...


Pre Christmas Makes in a Post-Christmas Post

I found it incredibly difficult not to post a lovely blog about the things I was making in the run up to Christmas, but they were mostly gifts!  And I didn't want to ruin the surprise.

So, now that the gifts have been opened, and everyone has their presents, I can finally write a post without the fear of being a surprise "ruiner".

I've created quite a few I suppose I'll start with the Sewing items (since they appear in the blog name first).

So - for the two "newest" additions to my family life (my lovely mother-in-law and sister-in-law) I whipped up a couple of lovely snoods.  I found lovely fabric, and some sweet little embellishments to add.

They were super fun to make up, and I (personally) love the added lace and flower embellishment!

Next, I had some really soft chunky yarn in my stash that I have been trying to find a project for, and I finally found it!

I knitted up my brother-in-law's girlfriend a lovely little hat (just in time too, I would think, as the weather is finally getting any degree of cold now).

I can tell you this now, I have a thing for pom-poms on hats as of recently.  But this little fella was sooooo soft, and super warm, and thankfully easy to knit up.

And the final category of the day - crochet!  This will also be hat in theme.  I made 2 more crochet hats, for my sister-in-law (yes again, same one) and her boyfriend.  

You'll have to excuse some of the poorer pictures - I managed to catch the loveliest cold ever - on the 23rd.  I was really suffering in the lead up to Christmas.

I hope to post an update on what projects I have happening right now (they include two new adorable hats), a cardigan for myself I hope to complete soon, a pattern for a knit project that I have wanted for quite some time!

I also brought some lovely fabric for a beautiful Coco dress that I cannot wait to make, I just need to set myself a day or more to sit down and construct!


Saturday, December 20, 2014

Casual Weekends

I have just so many projects I want to complete it is getting crazy. Things I need to do
- make my Megan Dress from my Tilly Walnes book
- make another skirt 
-sew 4 top secret Christmas gifts which I will post once they are done, but I think they will be super cute!
- crochet/knit another 3 gifts!

I have a few hat orders to complete too!  I made my first Etsy sale the week (to make a hippo hat for an adult) and while that has been done and send, I've got requests for 2 more owls, 1 sock monkey, and a giraffe!  

I don't have a picture of a giraffe I've never made one!  I will photograph it though...I promise.

In the meantime I found the perfect fabric for my Coco dress (from my favourite collection of Tilly and the Buttons patterns), and I can't wait to make that!

I think though, to settle my sore head from last nights work Christmas party, I'll start the weekend off with a lovely cup of tea and some easy reading.


Sunday, December 14, 2014

Sewing Adventures #SewingFranciose Contest

I can't remember for the life of me how I stumbled across this person, or her book, but it is the little spark of fun that I needed to make me want to start sewing.

I actually think seeing the book made me go out and get my sewing machine within the week (having justified it with the husband as my joint Birthday/Christmas of the few exceptions I'll make for a "slashie").

Well the blog announced it was running a sewing contest.  It was easy enough to enter (I've just sent my email).  All you needed to do was make a Franciose Dress before midnight December 14th 2014.  Well...I did it! As I've said in my facebook/instagram posts #SewingFrancoise

I took some extra pains to remember to photograph my whole experience...all starting on a lovely Friday evening, with of course, some home made Mulled Wine (you match my home made dress making).


Well I started to assemble the pattern, after some painstaking cutting (I opted to print out the pattern via a printer rather than wait for a beautiful professional print), I realised (foolishly) that I had the sizing on the printer wrong.  Doh!  Unfortunately it was late Friday by this time, as I wasn't able to sneak off from work early that day....poo.  Bed time.

Saturday morning, I had some errands to run, and house cleaning to do.  So while the house was cleaned I reprinted the pattern, and from there I re-cut, and re-taped the thing together!!

Well, after all that was done, I picked out a lovely grey fabric I had bought the week before (it was in the pile of leftover fabrics, and it was lush).  Laid it out on my lovely floor (the table just isn't big enough), pinned it and cut cut cut!

Gosh.  Well once that was done - it was onto sewing.  Pinning and sewing!

Believe it or was late Saturday evening by this point.  Maybe this is why Tilly made the dress over the scope of more than a week on her blog...not just on a weekend whim.

Sunday morning...

Some lovely earl grey in my mug, onto the next steps of making the dress!

So, I sewed and sewed and...oh...I ran out of thread.  And its a Sunday....its a good thing it's near Christmas and C&H Fabrics is open today!  Off I went into town (chilly)

Grabbed some thread, oh, and some really nifty buttons (they are super pretty)

And got back on the job.  Thankfully, all I needed to do to finish the dress off is add the collar, add some interfacing, insert the invisible zip (yes Mom, I can do invisible zips too), and do the hems!  Easy.

Yes, you can squeal.  It's super cute.  Yes, also, those are darts.  I did darts.  Darts, sleeves and an invisible zipper.  You might think I've been doing this my whole life, not a matter of weeks.  Well, don't worry guys, its just as cute on.
 excuse the double chin, no one likes taking photos from below....

And finally, as my sweet nephew would say when any camera is pointed at him.... CHEEEEEEEEEESEEE


Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Please stop reading over my shoulder....

I am that person.

That person that does something a little bit odd on the train.

I'm no longer quietly reading my kindle in tiny print on the train to and from work.  I'm quietly reading crochet instructions (or sewing instructions when I get a new pattern or book).

So there I am, being that wierdo crocheting on the train.  Sleeves rolled up (because people who make coats assume we all have long long arms), little bag of yarn sitting nicely on the tray, and me, crocheting away.

Yesterday, as I was sitting on the train getting out my crochet, a man sat next to me.  No big deal.  But this man was the most fidgety man I've ever sat next to, I don't think he sat still for one second...well actually, yes, one second, maybe even one minute.  To try to read the crochet instructions I was using.

I'm sure it looked odd...not everyone is lingual in the

3rd Rw: Ch4. * 1dc in each of the next 2 dc. Ch1. Miss next ch-1 sp. Rep from *

But I enjoy it, it is sometimes a puzzle in what the instructions are getting you to do, and when you work a few rows away, you can see it finally coming together.  This poor man tried this several times, but was not brave enough to quite ask me anything (this has happened before).

Anyway, I guess his trying to read the instructions wasn't quite nearly as amusing as some of the looks I get when I'm attaching eyes and mouths to my little creations....

So, after a few days of exclusively making teeny tiny hats for children/babies, I've decided to use some of this suuper loverly yellow (its named Haystack, but it looks like a burned yellow) yarn to make myself a little jumper.  It's called a "Cap it Off Topper", but I am hoping to delve in the changing the pattern bit, and make the currently written out short sleeves either into long sleeves, or 3/4 length.  Something for me.

If you're at all curious as to what I was making in the picture above (as the keen eyes on you will note the colour of the yarn is not yellow at all, but grey), I made this lovely little fella as a gift to my new future niece/nephew.  As we don't know the gender of the baby, I made it into a lovely neutral grey.  And it's so damn cute, I am going to be a little sad to part with it.

As I write all this out I am patiently (not so patiently) awaiting a delivery from various suppliers to kit out my sewing machine (yes....I ordered 25 accessory feet for the thing).  And once I get those, I hope to be able to update you all with a lovely skirt I've partially built.  I'll also hopefully be able to update on a lovely table runner I have in my mind that I want to make, as my first foray into the quilting world!


Monday, December 1, 2014

Jenna Crafty Hands (Like Edward Scissor Hands...but crafty)

Well's happened.

I'm officially 28 going on 82.

As many of you are aware I have slowly been taking up the "arts & crafts".  Or shall I say, the sewing, knitting and crochet (hooray)!

As well as my lovely new Facebook page I thought I would set up a little Blog - to document my journey into the "this old thing, well I made it myself" realm.

So [you ask] why am I 28 going on 82?  Well, let me tell you, whenever someone asks (as people sometimes do) what I do in my free time, I generally get a blank look of "really?!, you do that?!"

I started knitting again about 2 years ago, after an incredibly terrible and failed attempt at teaching myself, I got my lovely Mom to give me a session.  That started one little obsession which has grown slightly from the 20 new dishcloth squares, to scarves (thanks to my dearest friends Steph and Justin who happily received my first gifts of knitted scarves), and more recently little sweaters.

Following that obsession and getting tired of knitting squares or rectangles, I started looking at knitting patterns, and some (a lot) combined both knitting and crocheting, or some (where I liked the finished look) were only crochet.


Do I teach myself to crochet (I knew this would turn out terrible, like my self taught knitting experience), or should I wait and get another private learning session from my Mom.

Patience paid off my friends.

Just after my wedding my Mom sat down for a day and taught me crochet.  Needless to say, I've really taken to it (as shown by my newly crocheted infinity scarves, sock monkey hats, and of course owl hats).  I hope to add to my zoo of hats by making a little hippo one, but that's for later.

You would think I would be happy to be that woman (strange to be that woman and not that girl) on the train crocheting to her hearts content (and getting compliments from other women).  But no.  I wanted more.  I wanted machinery.  I wanted a throwback to my old junior high self, sewing away happily on a sewing machine.  I wanted to reminisce to the days where I would get some fabric that my parents bought, spread it out on the floor, and carefully trace and cut out a pattern to sew.  Granted my junior high self only did this for a few Halloween Costumes.  I wanted to glory of making things again.

Conveniently, it is roughly December...Christmas falls in this month, also my Birthday is in December.  Normally I am not a fan of these "combined" presents.  But since I knew what I wanted (and I knew it wasn't cheap) I made a deal with the Husband.  I can have a sewing machine for combined bday/xmas present, and he can have that shiny new PS4 for his bday/xmas present.  Deal!  He's distracted with a toy, I'm distracted with a's a win-win!

So - here is where I'll document the attempt at becoming a sewing master.  Hopefully one day I can turn it into something a bit more substantial (thanks to friends who have started purchasing things), just really to supplement my little addiction.  There will be pictures soon, and probably some giggles at my attempts!

Stay tuned my friends.....stay tuned.