Dance like no one is watching.
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Thursday, 31 December 2015

The thing is, I've googled it since and I think orange may actually be 'in'!

Well my Christmas break has been put to good use!

I had another spurt of enthusiasm for making Barbie clothes.  This time I made a sloper for Barbie by making a cast of her torso much like the duct tape thing you can do - in real life!?.   I could then use those measurements to make clothes either from scratch or using my vintage patterns for inspiration.

I love this dress that was inspired by a seventies pattern.  Note I say inspired because, as we all know, Barbie's measurements do not correspond to normal body ratios, so I pretty much had to look at the line drawings and then make my own patterns referencing the Barbie slopers I made.

Loving this white dress with its matching underskirt.  The dresses are fully lined because it was the easiest way to have neat seams, although I am now experimenting with French seams.  That is until my enthusiasm for teeny tiny fiddly clothes wears off again!

Happy New Year! :)

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

The Christmas Presents I Made

I made two things as Christmas presents this year. 

For my sister I made this hand quilted bag.  It is using a traditional Welsh quilting pattern and I am hoping to spend a lot of 2016 exploring Welsh quilts more with the hope of making a full size Welsh quilt.  To this end I will come back to this bag in the near future to discuss it more.  You know you have a slight obsession with a technique when you start placing your stitches in a scanner in order to examine them further!

The second thing I made was for my Dad.  He has taken up painting again after many years and painted this scene for me.  Using this scanned copy of the painting I was able to embroider a lavender bag for him of the child with the balloon.  It is made even more special as the lavender in the bag was grown in both mine and my Dad's gardens from plants he had given me.  Can't get that in Marks and Spencers! 

Monday, 21 December 2015

Knitted Gifts and How I Blocked Them

I seem to have made quite a few hand knitted gifts recently.  It must be the darker days that lead me towards the needles. 

The first gift is a hat for my sister.  Choosing yarn can be a tricky thing when making a gift, which is what made this gift so easy - my sister had given me the yarn as she had it leftover from her own project!  It's Rowan tweed and the pattern is a free one from Ravelry.

It came off the needles like the photo above, but I knew it could be blocked beautifully because it was wool. 

I put some fabric softener into some lukewarm water and briefly immersed the hat, trying not to agitate it much.

When the hat was wet I placed it over the inverted plate, placed the plate onto the inverted (emptied!) bowl and left it to dry.

You can also pull in the brim a little while it dries by hand sewing a line of running stitch around the brim and pulling it in slightly to stop the edge of the hat distorting, but I didn't do this and mine turned out ok.

The finished product.  I love how nicely wool blocks.

The second item I made was a knitted washcloth for a friend.  Again, another free pattern from ravelry and I used Sirdar baby bamboo.  This needed to be blocked flat and I had purchased from a local bargain shop a foam interlocking play mat for jobs such as this.

The washcloth is obviously small enough to fit onto one of the sections but you could easily make it whatever size you need and they store away nicely afterwards.  Result!

I had a little bit of yarn left over so I made a tassel for the wrapping and teamed the washcloth with some colour co-ordinating soaps.

The tag I used was from a lovely pdf set I purchased from a knitter on Etsy.  I just printed it out onto label paper and stuck it on cardstock.

The label was great as I was able to put the care instructions from the ball band onto the back of it.

Although I suppose if there is a special way you have to wash a washcloth it probably won't be a very good washcloth...  If you see what I mean! :)