April Sew Along Project: Hot Pad Apron and Placemats

The project for this month’s sew along was a 2 part effort: the hot pad apron from the Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders book and placemats. I decided to get back on track, having missed last month’s pillows and purchased the supplies for the apron. This was a fun project to sew, and doing the pleats was a new thing for me.  I made one small modification to the pattern, making a skinnier, longer, double sided waist tie for the apron. I like to wrap things around and tie them upfront – makes me feel fancy. The pattern called for quilting weight cotton or home decor fabric. I went with the latter as I liked this print. Its a bit stiff, especially once you factor in the hot pads on the underside. I’m guessing with wear and washing it will soften up. When taking pictures of the apron, my daughter and I decided to try our hand at making raisin bread.

I was going to leave it at that, and just do part of the challenge for this month. However, I got a second wind at the last minute yesterday evening and decided to get the placemats done as well. I searched through the remnants and items in the closet, and pieced together a placemat for each of the kids. The left over fabric from our barnaby bear (February’s sew along project) became a placemat for my daughter, while my son’s is pieced together from the remnants of his messenger bag Christmas gift.

And speaking of my girl, here she is straight out of bed asking for pancakes to go with her new placemat.

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On and off my needles

As of last night, I’ve got 12 inches done on the Alberta vest. I’m slowly making my way to the goal of 14, at which point things start to get more interesting with shaping the shoulder area.

In the meantime … because for some reason I like to have a few thing going at once … I cast on some fingerless gloves. My stash isn’t large, but I have a few skeins that were given to me over the years and I wanted to put them to use. One of them is a skein of Noro Kureyon and this camp out mitt pattern is just perfect for my one little skein. We are planning on camping in Moab over memorial day weekend, so in addition to being pretty, they may come in handy as well!

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Despite the image, I’m just about finished with the first glove.

I also just finished up motif 5, from my Learn-to knit Katie monthly knit along.

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I’m still on a mission to find summery knits, more specifically neck accessories, and I have a serious crush on another Brooklyn Tweed pattern (shocking I know) the Rock Island Lace Triangle. So, my internal dialogue goes a little something like this: It is so pretty. It is a bit intimidating. I think I’m in love. I don’t know a thing about blocking wires and T pins, nor do I have the supplies. It would be a challenge. Could this be the perfect summer accessory? What if I spend the time and it isn’t my thing…and so on and so forth. Dilemmas, dilemmas!

On the sewing front I missed last months sew along. Between the construction at our home and torn up craft area, our vacation and Jackson’s passing, it just didn’t happen. However, I have the sewing area back together, and picked up supplies so there is no excuse to get back on track with the project for this month!

There you have it, the crafty update. I hope you are finding and finishing fun things.

Gifts for Gents: Felt iPhone Case

My folks got fancy and picked up a set of iPhones recently. I knitted an iPhone cozy for my mom a while back. My Dad mentioned he was interested in one, but with one small request…a place to hold the headphones that come along with the iPhone. I didn’t feel like a knitted one was quite masculine enough, nor did I know how to tackle the whole pocket thing…so, I opted to go down the sewing route. After a failed attempt with some geometric fabric, I switched gears and came up with a little something else; a felt iPhone case.

I ended up trying a few different options – the flap/pocket, one with a band across the back, one with a narrower flap…all looked good, had varying pocket sizes, and all followed the same basic steps. The fun part is you can easily modify the pattern to suit your needs. Here are the steps I took.

  1. Cut two strips of felt, one for the body and one for the cover. The width of the felt should cover both the width and depth of the phone (including any case on the phone), as well as the seam allowance. In my case, the body of the case was 3.5 inches in width and 10 inches long. The case cover was also 3.5 inches, and I cut a curved edge for interest.
  2. Assemble the pieces and mark the snap location.
  3. Instal the snap to each piece of the phone case. I bought a little kit from one of the local shops.
  4. Line up the snaps and find the proper placement of the cover on the backside of the phone case.
  5. With the case unfolded, sew along the bottom edge of the case cover attaching the cover to the back of the case.
  6. Refold the case, and sew up each side of the case.
  7. Voila, you are done and can enjoy the new phone case.

Baby Cardigan

Many many years ago we met a wonderful couple and became great friends. They moved, did the school thing, we had a kid, they moved again, we had another kid, they settled down in NC and started a family too…and now its been years since we’ve seen them and our emails and chats have become sporadic at best. Well, they just had another baby and I jumped at the chance to do a little something. I’ve wanted a baby to make stuff for, and I just don’t know anyone around these parts having babies! This cardigan is great in so many ways. The single piece pattern means limited sewing when finished, the lovely seed stitch trim is to die for, its a quick knit with simple, easy to follow directions and lastly its just plain cute. However, this should not come as a surprise as this is a Joelle Hoverson design from her book More Last-Minute Knitted Gifts.

I went with a neutral superwash merino and then added some green buttons for a little pop of fun. The hand knit tag is something I downloaded this winter during the handmade holiday extravaganza from Elisa McLaughlin Designs and think it is a fun touch and a good place to put a spare button.

Even though its on a very small scale, this is my first garment…woot woot! It’s supposed to be a 9 month size, so we shall see if it fits the little guy this fall/winter. Need a gift for a little new person, or someone expecting – this should certainly be a contender!

Our trip to Kauai

So, here is our trip in a few snaps. We stayed at the Sheraton Kauai Resort in Poipu beach and had the amazing sunset view from our ocean side patio. One morning while exercising I even saw a breaching humpback whale! We rode bikes in Waimea Canyon – both a mountain bike ride on one of the trails to a scenic lookout, and a road ride up the canyon which was an amazing 20 mile, 3,500+ foot climb to the look out – and then the 20 miles back to the car! We took a couple of paddle board lessons – once on the calm water of scenic Hanalei Bay and once in some bigger waves in Kalapaki beach where my husband actually surfed (way to go!) while I was pleased to just find my balance and remain upright in some legit waves. I really enjoyed paddle boarding and hope I have the chance to do it again sometime.

It was a great trip. We relaxed, enjoyed gorgeous views, had a few adventures, read books, sipped a few cocktails and had a great time.

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The vest

One skein in, 8 inches down, and 6 more to go before the shoulder shaping starts. I am finally making progress on the Alberta vest by Jared Flood just in time for spring. Oy. While my timing is off, this is the perfect multitasking knitting project – easy to do two things at once when you are just knitting, knitting and knitting some more!

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Motif 4

It seems I am always behind on the monthly motifs I am doing with my dear friend Katie of Learn-to-Knit with Katie. I just finished up motif 4, I have instructions for motif 5 sitting in my inbox and apparently motif 6 will be on its way shortly! I love these little projects. The 12×12 swatch is the perfect way to learn a new stitch. As we near the half way point (well in theory if I were all caught up) I am starting to get a sense of how it will come together as a throw.

Here are my four date.

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