The knitting bag, and her little after thought companions…

My 2012 project list included sewing a pocket tote bag (pattern (Jen Giddens) and materials picked up at Fancy Tiger) to serve as my knitting carry all. The one place to store the basic supplies, easily (and stylishly) carry around a current knitting project all the while tackling another sewing challenge. I received a project bag for Xmas, and have been using and enjoying it, and made a few several weeks ago as a gift for Nana’s birthday. I had some basic supplies on hand and while working on the tote bag, I figured it would be fun to make a few project bags to go along with it. Using the left over material from the tote, I tried my hand at sewing scraps together to spice up the project bags a bit. With my husbands requested vest in mind, I made one larger one with the intention of it being good for larger project such as the vest or a future sweater, and a smaller one to fit projects like a little hat (I’ve got this one here on my needles) or monthly motif project (its time to tackle Motif 4!).  Speaking of the vest, the yarn in the pics below is what my husband picked out for his vest – and I do intend to get going on this sometime soon. Although given that it is already March coupled with the amount of time he spends in the UAE – there isn’t a real rush to get it done.

This was one of the more complex project I have done so far, and also my first time using the interface lining. There were a lot of similar techniques from the kids messenger bags I made for Christmas which made this a lot easier. So, here it is – my fancy new knitting bag and her little companions.

I am thrilled with the outcome, and wishing today had not been a snow day, as I had grand visions of carting my little craft tote down to the coffee shop to make progress on the project on my needles. Alas, a few inches of snow and a school cancellation later, my bag has yet to be put to use.

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February Sew Along Project: Barnaby Bear

This month for the Fabric by Fabric One Yard Wonders sew along, the corduroy Barnaby Bear was selected. My girl and I ran up to the fabric store, where she picked out a lovely dark purple cord, and a small piece of striped fabric to use as an accent. Today we tackled the project and she was a big help, especially once we got our communications dialed in. She was stationed under the table operating the presser foot for some part of the projects, and there was a lot of “don’t stop”, “yes, you need to still press” and of course … “stop, stop stop”.  She also assisted with turning body parts right side out, stuffing them with filler and made key design decisions – most notably the inclusion of a pouch or pocket on the bear’s backside. That girl loves her bags, pockets and pouches and it always stashing, stuffing and storing her things in little places.

All in all the project went well, and was pretty quick and fun for us both. I pre-cut the pieces, so today we just did the sewing and final assembly. We had a few snags – I accidentally poked the first eye through both the front and back of the bear (oops), but we rectified that will a little while heart applique on the back of its “head”. The second challenge was in sewing closed the hole I used to pull the fabric right side out. Simply put, it just not neat and pretty. I’m sure there is a technique that would go a long way to making the area less obvious, and exercising patience and resisting the urge to rush would likely help as well.  However, little Miss K is quite pleased with the teddy, and it was fun to do something together. Her brother arrived home from school just as we were finishing up, and immediately wanted to know what project he and I could do together. When asked what he had in mind he suggested a dinosaur…

Pinterest here I come – looks like there may be another softies in our future…

January Sew Along Project: Clutch

So, I decided to join in on the fabric-by-fabric sew along Africankelli is hosting. January’s project is a flannel Chenille Clutch, and I finished it up yesterday. My biggest challenges were sadly enough getting the squares cut evenly, and getting through all the layers, especially where I placed the webbing handle. I strayed from the pattern on the handle, and opted to sew a webbing wrist strap into the seam. It was a bit tough to get through all the layers, and its the one part of the finished project I am not sure about. I am considering getting the handy little seam ripper out, and taking it away the whole wrist strap. I figure the clutch will still be cute without the handle.
So the question is, leave it as is, take the strap out and have none, or replace it with some other kind of strap…

Swaddle Blanket

As I wrote about earlier, I received a copy of Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders and promised to make the swaddle blanket featured in the flannel section for Nana (she is attending a baby shower) in appreciation of her gifting me the book.

I am pleased to say the blanket is done, and turned out well. We went on the hunt for cute flannel fabric and stumbled across the same fabric shown in the book (which is super cute) and decided to get that. It was my first time sewing with bias tape, and while getting everything set on the curves was a bit of a challenge it worked out well enough.
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This is the project.
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And here is my finished swaddle blanket.

So that is the second project from my 2012 list completed. I’m nearly done with the ear warmer for my aunt as well, so I’ve been thinking perhaps I need to make my goals a little loftier for this year. I noticed on the One Yard Wonders facebook page that someone is hosting a Fabric-by-Fabric Sew Along. I’m flirting with the idea of joining in. I had been toying with the idea of trying a project for each section of the book on my own, but it may be fun to participate in something with a group.

Has anyone joined in an online sew or knit along project? Any thoughts on doing something like that?

Off to finish my coffee and knitting!

Still here and starting something new

We have been enjoying the holidays , some much needed time together, nana and pop visiting and a few days in the mountains skiing to boot! I am pleased to say I squeaked out all my gifts, and managed to hand make everything with the exception of a few things for the kids. I just wasn’t sure how to craft a skateboard. I’ve been working on getting reorganized post holiday and figuring out what I want to tackle next. I have done a small sewing project for my son’s room (more on that later) and just cast on a shawl this afternoon (the age of brass and steam kerchief found here). I’m looking forward to all kinds of fun and exciting new adventures for 2012. What projects are you tackling this year?

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Procrastination

The knitting is almost done. Handmade gifts have been wrapped and shipped, and some have even been received and are hopefully being enjoyed. I have two small knitting projects left, and but the sewing looms overhead. I’m procrastinating. I’m nervous. The curtains were more of a challenge than I was expecting and it’s taken a bit of the wind out of my sewing sails. I know I just need to get after it – to start sewing the scavenger hunt bags for the kids. I’ve made mini steps, the fabric is washed and ironed. Today I will stop procrastinating and get going on the bags. Wish me luck!