The Hot Water Whale

Wilbur Whale

I wanted to make a belated Christmas present for my best friend’s (super-adorable, handsome, sweet) little baby Milo.  Since his nursery theme is “whales”, I thought I might have a go at this Lucinda Guy whale pattern =>

I decided to first ask my husband his opinion on whether or not I should make it for Milo.  This is how I remember our conversation happening:

  • Me: Is this cute? (showing picture)
  • Husband: Yes.
  • Me: Should I make it for baby Milo?
  • Husband: Yes
I decided to go for it.

Apparently this is how my husband remembers the exact same conversation:

  • Me: Does this look like a hot water bottle? (showing picture)
  • Husband: Yes
  • Me: Do you like nachos?
  • Husband: Yes

We're whalers on the Moon, we carry a harpoon. But there ain't no whales so we tell tall tales and sing our whaling tune.

 

Mid-construction I changed the whale’s embroidery from “harpooned-whale-red” to “sea-weedy” green.

My brain keeps telling me that at this point you would all enjoy this extremely obscure  Futurama reference.

(My brain says “you’re welcome” BTW.)

 

In the end my husband was wrong.  The whale stuffy ended up looking nothing at all like a hot water bottle…  see???

eye

Because clearly, hot water bottles don’t  have eyes.

no eye

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I mean, really?  How ridiculous would this look?

 

 

So baby Milo, I hope you enjoy your super cetacean-y, marine-mammal-ly, and not at all hot water bottle-ly WHALE.  <3

Posted in Crochet | 2 Comments

Cat-eyePad cover

Don't get fresh with me Rooty Tooty!

 

My friend/ coworker Sylvia had a birthday this week (55!) making her eligible to order more budget-friendly options off the senior menu at our local IHOP.

 

 

 

I once showed Sylvia a picture of this cat iPad cover available for sale on Etsy.  In her aged state, she somehow got it into her head that this was a free downloadable pattern (Nope.  It’s $78 made to order) and has been pestering me since Christmas to make her the “cat iPad cover”.  Well, I simply can’t say “no” to a senior citizen, so this January, Sylvia got her wish.

 

Wasn't I a good enough servant to you?

 

In her day to day life as our school’s speech and language pathologist, Sylvia uses her district-issued iPad quite frequently.  At this point, she was looking to upgrade from…..wrapping it in saran wrap.

 

 

 

While I really do love the cat iPad cover above, I wanted to make something that looked less……. like it wants kick your butt and eat you.  Instead I wanted something modern, but with a 50′s flair (a nod to her birth generation).  I decided to make this great envelope iPad cover listed here on tipnut.  Here were some of the additional inspirations I found on pinterest:

 

 

 

 

 

<= I LOVE the cat’s blue eye shadow!!!!

I soo want to wear some!

(What? It was HALLOWEEN…I hope.)

 

 Ok, maybe not.

 

Sylvia said that her favorite colors were purple and “peacock colors”.  Because I don’t want my husband to have a valid reason to divorce me over my “fabric addiction”, the challenge became how to make this darned thing without setting foot in a fabric store.

Here were some of my initial ideas:

a little too dowdy...

a little better, but kind of...limbless

 

 

 

 

 

that's it!/ front and back

starburst inspiration from this fine china

 

 

 

 

 

 

After digging manically through the stash, I chose a jean for the outside, a purple sateen for the lining, and a light brown felt for the cat.

 

I'm going to eat your soul....

 

 

I then set to work ….

 

 

(Segoe Script)

 

My heart dropped a little when I realized that the script embroidery + jean fabric reminded me forcefully of Guess! jeans in the 80′s.

 

I then figured that since my goal was modern+50′s…. if you take the mean of 2013 and 1958 you get 1985.5.  There you go.  See?  Math explains everything.

 

Flash forward through many OCD-filled hours…and here’s the final product:

cat iPad cover envelope

front

 

cat iPad cover envelope

back

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I added an empty head under the velcro so she wouldn’t look decapitated (or would it be de-cat-itated?) when the envelope was opened.

All the cool cats are wearing mid-back bows

And finally, here is Sylvia with her fancy new iPad cover.  Goodbye saran wrap!

iPad cat cover envelope

(This was the only part of our classroom that was sort of picked up.)  No time to clean though….we’re off for a frugal birthday lunch at the IHOP!  (After our very hard, super laborious morning of work, that is).

Posted in Sewing | 1 Comment

Crafting like an elf hittin’ the syrup

"I used to be with it, then they changed what it was. Now what was it isn't it, and what is it is weird and scary to me. It'll happen to you too." (Grandpa Simpson)

Long gone are the fabulous spendthrift days of fancy free mall shopping; in this decade granny makes all of her holiday gifts herself…

Don't you remember all the great times we had together???

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Christmas season has now become the annual catalyst to my metamorphosis from a somewhat-sane and caring mother to a nocturnal needle-armed beast from the depths of hell.

I love you so much family!

 

 

January-November

 

 

 

keep those dirty little kid-hands off my knitting! Oh, and bring me some coffee. And chocolate.

 

 

 

 

December

 

 

 

 

 

 

Project #1:  Super Gavin

The first project was a gift for Gavin’s 7th birthday.  I saw these superhero masks/ cape on my buddy’s blog that I thought would be perfect for him too.  The pattern is from this cute website (check out the princess crowns …)  I ended up stitching the masks by hand, not because I’m a super-crafter, but because I felt too lazy to sit upright to machine-sew.  Here’s how the masks turned out:

superhero masks felt

My husband slash comic book geek then told me that the gift would be incomplete without a superhero cape.  I figured that as the king of the nerds, he should know what he’s talking about.  Here’s what I managed to turn out the morning of the party with the felt I had on hand (as modeled by a pajama-clad Josie):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I then realized a striking resemblance to……

 

 

 

 

Sorry Gavin, but the sad truth is that superhero costumes are a little geeky after all…although the ability to fix computers is a highly useful superpower that many girls some girls nerds like me look for in a man.

Project #2: Thank You for Putting Up With Teaching My Child

Do you sell a Rupert Grint pattern too?

 

I found this adorable amigurumi owl ornament pattern online and was suckered into buying it because of it’s name “Rupert the owl”.  (Rupert, like Rupert Grint who plays Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter movies!)

 

Anyway… here’s the owl Rupert made in shades of green (Ms. Lee’s favorite color):

rupert amigurumi crochet owl ornament

rupert amigurumi crochet owl ornament

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Project #3:  ”I want a Knuffle Bunny and a Hello Kitty Hat”

 

Josie wanted just that.  Knuffle Bunny is an awesome book about a toddler’s adoration of her stuffy.  I used a tiger pattern and bunny ears both from this book to create a Knuffle Bunny.

 

 

tiger

+

rabbit

amigurumi Knuffle Bunny rabbit crochet

Riger/ Knuffle Bunny

 

=

 

 

 

and the Hello Kitty hat:

knit hello kitty hat(The basic hat pattern is from this book and the bow is made from felt with a chain stitch accent.)

knit hello kitty hat knuffle bunny crochet amigurumi

Project #4:  Penny’s Too Small to Ask for Something Obscure So I Can Still Make Her Whatever I Want

"When somebody loved me"

 

When I asked Penny what she wanted me to make her, she said “bunny”.  I decided to make her a coordinating stuffy and hat using this beloved childhood toy as my inspiration.

(Basic hat pattern found here; pajama stuffy pattern modified from this book).

amigurumi girl in pajamas crochet
I added hair in the end since the poor child looked bald.

knit bunny rabbit hat pink

 

 

 

 

 

knit rabbit hat amigurumi girl doll crochetknit rabbit hat amigurumi girl doll crochet

 

 

Penny seemed to enjoy her ensemble…up until the point that she threw it on the floor and initiated operation “steal Josie’s knuffle bunny”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Project #5: You Really Want Me To Make You An R2D2 Hat?

One of the first times I ever saw my husband, he was in his dorm room playing a non-action-packed round of computer chess.  That being said, I wasn’t shocked when he asked me to make him an R2D2 hat for Christmas  (free pattern here!).

knit r2d2 hat

beep beep

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Project #6: Even More Stuffies

I needed two more stuffies for Gavin and Roxy’s Christmas presents.  The idea for Gavin’s was pilfered from this image I saw on Pinterest:

Pinspiration

I used the stuffy in pajamas pattern again to make a monster-y version this time:

amigurumi crochet boy monster pajamas

 

 

 

 

amigurumi  boy monster pajamas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The plan for Roxy’s stuffy was a modified ballerina bunny from this book.

amigurumi bunny rabbit ballerina crochet

 

<= Here’s the ballerina rabbit I made for Josie last Christmas.  I decided to make it in koala this time around.  Unfortunately, the ears on top of the bunny are there for a reason.  They add height and elongate that cute, pudgy little tummy.

Without the bunny ears, the stuffy looks a little too…

Jean-Luc Picard for my taste.

 

Captain's blog supplemental

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

amigurumi koala crochet ballerina

 

The Hail Mary was the addition of a last minute crocheted crown to add height to this poor little lady’s head (and draw attention away from those enormous ears).  I then went and added matching earrings which….accentuated the ears.  Go me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

And then Christmas came.  And went.  There are a few more projects that I didn’t have time to get to..and a few more kidlet’s crafts to finish up.  I advise you stay away.  Far away.

Myyy PRECIOUSSS

Posted in Crochet, Harry Potter Obsession, Knitting, Sewing | 1 Comment

Merry Fishmas

It’s that time of year again…making holiday gifts for my co-workers who always take the extra time to remind me that they are my co-workers, not my friends.  Well, I happen to like you guys anyway…

 

First up:  The “bAss pro hat”Fishing Cap | Your Knitting Life Magazine

I wanted to make something quirky/ fun as a Christmas gift for our school principal.  Searching around the internet I came across this fine hat => which is perfect since the gift recipient is a Bass Pro Shop enthusiast/ addict .  In fact, the ONE time in my whole entire life that I happened to wander into a Bass Pro Shop, I ran into him and his family 60 miles from their home shopping for waterproof pants.  I’m not sure why one would need waterproof pants, but all I know is that you can’t craft with them nor eat them, so I really don’t care.

 

I went to retrieve the free pattern for the hat and somehow it was no longer free?!?!?

 Bait. And. Switch.  LITERALLY  

 It then became a personal vendetta-me against the hat.  Even though pattern purchasing would have saved me hours and hours of my life that I could have spent couch-sitting or staring blankly, I REFUSED to buy it.

I found this free pattern for a “dead fish hat“, and then discovered this AWESOME resource for knitting stitches and went to work.  Here were some of the final contenders for fish scales:

 

 

 

 

 

My first attempt at copying the fish pattern went….ok.

 

 

(You’re welcome for adding the makeup.  No one needs to see me without.)

 

I thought the hat looked a little too….

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets basilisk-y

uhh...does anyone happen to have some phoenix tears handy?!?

 

 

or boa constrictor-y

 

 

 

no time to cook... they'll scramble in my stomach

 

I started over, omitted some of the short rows in the mouth, loosened up on the “scale” stitches, and pretty much knit-libbed the fins and tail.  Here’s how it all ended up turning out:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think the recipient at least tolerated his hat.  He let me photograph him after I promised that I wouldn’t put his face on my blog, so here goes:

 

 

Next up: Sylvia’s request for a  ”tarty 50′s apron”

B5435

 

After a briefly heated pre-Thanksgiving discussion with my Aunt Kathy about whether I meant “tarty” or “tawdry”, I began looking for the perfect apron.  I finally decided on Butterick 5435.  Now I must say, the pattern says “easy” on it, but the mental origami required to make those darned pockets was mind blowing….at least for me.

 

What the inside of my brain should have looked like

What the inside of my brain actually looked like

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As usual, the apron’s 50′s fashion sketch looks fantastically fun…and almost makes me want to throw a party just so I can put one on and serve cocktail weenies and molded jello.  But alas… the sad reality is this is how the apron actually turned out.

 

Never let crappy pictures taken at 5:30 am happen to you too…

 

 

 

Sylvia pretended like she liked the apron anyway.

 

 

 

Why are you guys always joking around?!?

Finally: “No nonsense” Lorena

I made her a scarf.

 (free pattern found here)

And now for a restful holiday break filled with eating, crafting, and family!

Happy Holidays to All!

Posted in Harry Potter Obsession, Knitting, Sewing | Leave a comment

Croco-sausage

It’s Hank’s birthday time of year again!  His mom (the felt mouse) is a super crafter, so I know that homemade gifts are definitely appreciated in his neck of the woods, even if they happen to inadvertently turn out kinda-wonky.  Unfortunately, last year I had to very rudely and mysteriously disappear from Hank’s Rockin’ Robot party due a violent illness of light-speed onset….so I was pleased to get a repeat invitation this year.

 

Funny Confession Ecard: I live in constant fear of accidentally mentioning something I only know about you because I've stalked you on the internet.

In my free time as an internet stalker, I discovered that Hank was having an alligator-themed party this year.  I decided to knit him an alligator stuffy from Zoe Mellor’s Knitted Toys.  (My sewing machine is currently on hiatus due to the beginning of awesome KNITTING WEATHER!)  Here’s how he ended up turning out:

 

knit crocodile alligator zoe mellor knitted toys

knit crocodile alligator zoe mellor knit toys

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On a whole, I like it… but I wish it looked a little less….sausage-y. To me, it looks kind of like a sausage that might bite you back… like a spicy Italian flavored one or something.

 

I decided to make the crocodile something to eat so that he would look a little less….processed by Jimmy Dean.  I actually looked online as to the diet of alligators/ crocodiles and briefly debated whether or not I was skilled enough to somehow fashion a gazelle or wildebeest out of scraps.  After a full night’s sleep, I joined all you fine folk in what you call “reality” and decided to make a fish instead.

knit crocodile alligator zoe mellor knit toys 

 

 

So sorry if this picture caused a re-living of painful childhood memories of carnival prizes long gone.  :(

 

In the end, the party was great, the kids had fun, everyone got into the spirit, and I think Hank enjoyed his alli-Italian-sausage-gator.

OMG-isn't Hank such a cutie?!?

design by Josie


 

definitely NOT anywhere nearly as adorable as Hank...

 

Posted in Knitting | 1 Comment

The dress from ACK!

Or I just forgot how to sew.  Or suffered brain damage somehow.

My co-worker’s daughter had a 4-year birthday party this Saturday.  Along with a gift for Riley (the birthday girl), maybe I should have taken along those infant bibs I made when her baby brother Christian was born and I never gave to him?  (He’s almost 2 now).   The bib tutorial I used can be found here.

bibs

a day late and a dollar short

 

Funny Workplace Ecard: 'Can I talk to you for a minute?' Means 'can I take 10 minutes to say what a normal person could spout out in 5 seconds and confuse you along the way?'

 

Because Riley’s poor father has to work with me at least 2 days a week…which involves incessant listening to me talk at him, hearing unsolicited advice,  and relentless harassing, I decided to take a stab at making it up to him by sewing his precious firstborn a Disney princess dress.

 

Take it again. I think the thermometer needs more time to warm up.

Riley loves Rapunzel, so I decided to make another version of Simplicity 2065 with sleeves from Simplicity 2817.  But, somehow along the way I lost the ability to sew properly.  In my defense, I may have had a fever at the time.  On the third consecutive trial of taking my temperature (after 2 readings of 98.7), the digital thermometer registered at 99.5.  See?  Super hot.

 

 

this is how I didn't look

So you can all feel better about yourselves by hearing about how much I suck, here is a list of the mistakes I made along the way:

  • sewed lining of the over-skirt in the completely wrong position
  • sewed on the sleeve lining backwards
  • joined the shoulder lining backwards
  • sewed the tulle to the wrong side of the ruffle
  • eyelets kept falling off
  • Cut a chunk out of the bodice lining when trimming the waist seam
  • Incorrect bodice construction

 

 

But let’s try that again….  Time to have a glass of wine (maybe that’s why I kept messing up?!?), channel my inner cheese, and here goes:

Oh dear little Riley…

It’s not that I made a desperate attempt to patch up the lining I hacked……

It’s that, like a classic Raggedy Ann doll, I added a heart on the chest to serve as a constant reminder that those around you cherish you always.

I meant to do that

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s not that I banged eyelets into the dress like a crazed woman with a hammer until I ran out of eyelets hoping the ones I put on would at least hold until the end of the party…

 

It’s that the eyelets on the dress, like your baby teeth, will slowly fall out marking time as you grow

 

 

It’s not that I somehow sewed the bodice incorrectly, un-stitched it, tried to fix it and was unable to, purposely redid it the wrong way, and 1hour later desperately tried to make it look like the original mess I had…

It’s that the bodice serves as a reminder that when you embrace imperfections, they themselves can be beautiful

"Beauty always promises, but never gives anything". Simone Weil

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it may be necessary from time to time to give a stupid or misinformed beholder a black eye." Miss Piggy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All in all, it’s a dress… it’s a metaphor…  it’s me praying that Penny does not want to be Rapunzel for Halloween because I’d rather sew a hole through my left pointer finger (again) than make another princess dress.

 

 

Happy Birthday to Riley!!!  (as modeled by Penny)  Hopefully you like your Rapunzel dress a bit more than Pascal here did.

"Mommy says if I ask to be Rapunzel for Halloween, I'll never get dinner again"

Posted in Sewing | 2 Comments

Plums are ok…

But peplums are awesome!!!

meh

adorable!

 

Maybe because they hide my biggest problem area in such cute fashion, or maybe because they remind me of one of my childhood favorites The Jetsons….

 

 

but I love peplums!!

 

Who wouldn’t want to look like an old-school futuristic housewife?

 

 

One morning during my usual sneak out of bed at 5am because that is the only time the house is quiet and I can drink my delicious, delicious, so delicious cup of coffee uninterrupted and scour the internet for future projects to obsess over routine:  I saw this on sewing pattern review, and thought it might have potential.

 

 

 

So I thought and thought and thought about it all day (“Students, let’s work on thinking flexibly by discussing the pros and cons of versions A, B, and C of NewLook 6130″).  Driving home from work I even had the idea of sneaking all the way over to Jo-Ann Fabrics and looking for the pattern (“oh family…I’ve had such a tough day at work and just managed to break away now!“).  I admit though, I got lazy.  Really lazy.  I passed a Walmart on my way home, and it was that day I discovered that Walmart carries NewLook patterns…. and really cheap gum.

 

Cute, but not a prudent choice for my job at the local public school.

 

I used some of my leftover powder blue pique fabric to make a franken-version.  I was so pleased that I managed to cut the entire top out of scraps..and then realized that I forgot the two back pieces.  :O  I ended up making up some sort of v-back (is that the right word for opposite of v-neck?) from the scrap’s scraps in order to avoid looking like this.  =>

 

Pants too tight. Can't breathe. Must. Look. Cool.

 

 

The top needed a bit of adjustment.  I ended up taking in the sides about 1/2 inch and the shoulder seam by about 1-1/2-2 inches. I think I may have overdone it a tad.  I guess there’s a reason that my friends from high school tease me about my love of near spandex-tight clothing.

 

 

 

And here is how it all turned out:

 

 

new look 6130

new look 6130new look 6130
 

 

 

 

 

Next up…I’ll be taking the flying car to Mooning Dales to search for an overly-starched triangle-collar that matches my new peplumed shirt.

 

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Third time’s the charm

I think…

Rip-off this awesome Roland Mouret dress

I’ve had my eye on the Vogue “galaxy dress”for quite some time now.  Clearly, other sew-ers have fashioned FABULOUS versions of this dress for themselves, as evidenced here, and here, and here, and here, and ….

 

Attempt 1:

Sometime back in August 2011, I found a gorgeous turquoise and black polka dot fabric at my favorite place and it was Vogue galaxy time!!  I got to work one weekend and decided not to sleep until I was finished.  Imagine my surprise when I realized that the sleeves required netting.  “Netting, how fun!” I thought.  I was definitely going to wear this one on my first day back at work.  And then….

Oh my 80’s!!  I was never a very stylish pre-teen, but if I was, I would have DEFINITELY worn this dress with a French braid (or maybe a side pony?) to my school’s “Turkey Trot” dance.

This is what a crazed sew-er looks like at 2am. Please don't judge.

 

 

The dress has now taken up permanent residence crumpled in the closet corner waiting for both a hem and that my school of employment have an “80’s day”.  Tell me why, why, why are there so many “pajama days” and never an 80’s day?!?….  I’ll keep my hopes up…when my dream is finally realized, I’ll have the PERFECT outfit.  I’m not getting any younger… so by then my varicose veins might coordinate quite nicely with the turquoise of the fabric.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Attempt 2:

shoulder pads ROCK!!!

Instantly obtain the physique of a linebacker--shoulder pads ROCK!!!

 

August 2012, I gave the vogue 8280 another stab with some leftover burgundy poplin I had on hand.  Even though I have been a shoulder pad aficionado from a very young age, I decided to pass on the puffy sleeves this time.

 

 

 

I even lined the dress with some adorable leftover navy polka dot fabric.  “I’m gonna look so cool, like I just walked out of Tommy Hilfiger” I thought.  But (butt) Ack!!!  The fabric had NO stretch to it.

 

Preferring to keep the more unflattering pictures of my backside off the internet, I will spare you the photo of the reverse of this dress. Let me just say that “butt wrinkles” is not the look I’m trying to achieve.

 

 

That day I learned a valuable fact.  The recommended fabrics on the back of the envelope are recommended for a reason.  I’ll add that one to my list of “life’s valuable lessons” along with this beauty (see below):

 

 

  • It is a BAD idea to attempt to smuggle chocolate chip cookies out of the dorm cafeteria by hiding them in the elastic waistband of your shorts.  When you smile at that sweet looking group of guys walking by, the cookies WILL fall out through the crotch of your shorts at EXACTLY that moment.  (And yes, this did actually happen to me…you think I would have gotten more dates in college after that…but sadly, no.)

Attempt #3: Gabardine

I still don’t know what gabardine is exactly.  I think I like it though..it’s super cheap, machine washable, and doesn’t wrinkle.  The third attempt cost me about $10 to make.  I decided on the same version as attempt #2, but with the flange modification shown here.

Oh thank you fairy godmother, I'm going to look so fabulous at the IEP meeting!

 

When I tried the dress on, my mother commented that it seemed too fancy to wear to my public-school job.  I decided to wear it to work anyway.  As usual, mom may have been right…when I stepped out of my car first thing in the morning, the school groundskeeper yelled across the parking lot at me “I love the dress!  Where’s the ball?”.

 

 

Hot and juicy?!?! (Blush) Why thank you! Oh.....you were talking about your burger...my mistake...

 

I also got complements from two complete strangers at mid-day, which I took to mean that I was appropriately styled during my lunch outing at our local Wendy’s.  Extra bonus…had I gotten sauce on the dress…it’s machine washable and dry-able!

 

 

And finally-enough blabbering, here it is:

vogue galaxy dress 8280

 


vogue galaxy dress 8280

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And now I’m off to the ball!–and by “ball”, I mean of course, passing out on the couch while watching recordings of the Maury show.  “You are the father” and goodnight.

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Beasties for the bestie

 

My best friend Valerie and I have been friends for almost forever.  Well, it seems like forever anyway, we’re like sisters.  It all began one morning in the mid 1980′s at the YMCA “drive the children of working parents to school” drop off.  The girl in the Miami Mice (not a typo) sweatshirt said “hello” to me and it was history.

 

 

 

How's my driving?

Our bonding began over our daily rides to elementary school in the blue YMCA van.  I remember trying to guess at what point the singing would start on the Axel F song, marveling that Edwin was going to eat a 3-scoop ice cream cone from Thrifty’s for his 12th birthday, and hearing Troy’s daily response to the “How’s my driving?” sticker on the Y-van (“it sucks!”).  To those of you who did not have the pleasure of riding in the Y-van, you have likely checked out by now, or have gone searching for a crafting blog where they actually talk about crafting, but for those lucky few of us, I have sparked many warm, fuzzy, un-fond memories.

 

 

Valerie and I quickly became frenemies as we entered the sixth grade.  I send a special thanks to Mr. Covington who did not change my class seating assigment after I begged him in a private meeting at recess to move me away from Valerie.  Over time, many friendships have come and gone but I will always consider Valerie my best friend.

 

 

 

you're welcome

“That’s so nice, but what does this have to do with sewing?” you are probably thinking…so enough of the sap and on with the blog.  Valerie is having a baby (yea!!!  super yea!!!).  Babies definitely require special crafts, even if they are too young to appreciate them and end up spitting up copiously on all of your hard work.

 

Now here are pictures of Valerie with my two daughters.  The BEST thing about Valerie having a baby is that I get a sweet new little snuggle baby in my life…but I NEVER have to wake up and feed him!

with Josie

with Penny

 

 

 

 

 

 

What I'm NOT doing

 

The first thing I wanted to do was make a blanket for baby S.  I decided to begin knitting a blanket one Friday night while at a conference in San Jose.  The sad truth is that I got one weekend away from my family and I happily spent the evening in bed knitting and goggling over Mario Lopez on Extra (which is a horrible show by the way).

 

oh the colors....

The nearest Hobby Lobby was 45 minutes away in Modesto and my friend/ co-worker flat out refused to drive me there.  We went to Michaels instead.  I remember walking in, picking out the yarn and a pattern book, purchasing, then walking out.  My friend/ co-worker, on the other hand, describes watching me in an approximately 45-minute long yarn feeling trance.  Regardless, the end result was the purchase of this fine baby blanket book which I would highly recommend.

I decided on this blanket because Valerie has always loved plaid.  When I asked my friend/ co-worker what she thought of the blanket pattern, her opinion was that it was “orderly” and reminded her of “a teacher”.  Perfect!-Valerie is both.  Here is the final product.


 

 

 

 

 

so sorry :(

 

I kind of struggled with what else to make.  Valerie loves monkeys,  and I later found out that her nursery theme is whales…but I’ve always loved the bear sweater pattern in this book

 

 

 

I'm so cool. I make cakes.

 

My thought was that if Chef Duff can be a “bad ass” cake maker, than I can be the “bad ass” crafter.  You say you like monkeys?  Your theme is whales?  Oh yeah?!?  Well I’m knitting you a bear sweater with a matching hat because I’m sewLOCA!  Here it is:

Oh yeah, I'm bad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Every new baby needs a stuffy too.  I used a pattern from this AWESOME amigurumi book.  Even the stuffy has a stuffy!  I put a jingle bell inside the big bear’s head so it would make a little rattling sound.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The bears got tired of modeling and took a rest.  They also forced me to make them a matching blanket.

 

 

 

 

And finally, a bear buddy bag for baby S (such a cute pattern purchased here).  I had a little bit of difficulty with the boat.

Too plain

too 10th grade geometry class

what is that?

 

 

 

 

 

 

just right, I think....

 

Something else was missing…I just couldn’t put my finger on it….finger….finger….OH MY GOSH I FORGOT TO PUT ARMS ON THE BEAR!  (un-stitch).  And here’s the final-final anthropomorphically-anatomically correct product.

 

 

voluntary time out-banking time for later evil-doing

close up

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

interior

 

The end.

And that folks is what happens when you take (prescribed!) pain killers and muscle relaxers and sit down to write a blog post.  I’m so sorry and goodnight.

 

Posted in Crochet, Knitting | 2 Comments

Off the wagon and back on the horse

My lazy living landscape. TV looks blurry. I must need more coffee.

After a great deal of sitting on the couch knitting (shhhh-It’s for someone who actually reads this thing.  I’ll post later…), I’ve returned to my true love-my sewing machine.  I decided to celebrate with a Vogue 8789.

 

 

Is it wrong that when I see young folk on a date I want to scream "don't do it!" at them and point at my children?

 

 

I went to the fabric store thinking a white dress with black polka dots would be nice….kind of like a dalmatian, but flouncy, and summery….not hairy and drooly.

 

 

 

Trust me, it looks better on her.

 

When I got to the fabric store I changed my mind after becoming enamored with a black fabric with white polka dots, and bought it up for my new dress.  When I got home I remembered that I already have a black dress with white polka dots!  Oh well, no returns once the fabric has been cut….

 

 

 

 

 

It was pretty easy to put together thanks to this tutorial (thank you, thank you!  I swear I spent about an hour ignoring my family, muttering curse words under my breath, and trying to turn those loops before I found you…).   What?  The buttons are brown!?!  Seriously?!?  Brown!?!   But I already sewed on 10 of them!  I mean…….. I selected brown buttons to provide a slight contrast to the black fabric.

 

 

 

Is a cummerbund holding up those jeans? If so, I certainly hope that it is red to match my fine corsage...

The only thing I’m still not sure about is the cummerbund.  Yes, I said cummerbund.  Like the prom.  I haven’t been to a prom since….oh wait, I never went to the prom.  Did I mention that I did go to winter formal once and my date wore jeans?  I may or may not have mentioned that before…

 

Here is the end result.  Not quite the playful dalmatian I initially envisioned, but maybe a polka dot zebra?  Mutant okapi?  Bizarro giraffe?  Oh, who cares.  I’m off to a baby shower.

 

Posted in Sewing | 1 Comment