Saturday, August 18, 2007

Homey Day

I had a lovely day today. I stayed at home and pottered and did 'homey' things, which is my favourite way to spend my time.
This afternoon I watched Little Women on TV. The Winona Ryder version. I was just in the mood for it. Of course, I can't watch TV without doing some crafty thing so I decided to cut out a new top to make another the same as my green flowery one. Meg was as helpful as ever:

A final stretch on her way off the material!

Yesterday I finished Keigan's vest and bootees:Sewing up is my least favourite part of knitting, but it (obviously) has to be done. I think they turned out really well in the end. The pattern is from one of Erika Knight's books. Wool is Jaeger Baby Merino 4 ply. I love this colour. I found the ribbon fiddly and wondered why I'd bothered with it! It took a few attempts to get the bow to look this good, and I'm not sure how practical it will be after it's washed.I love wrapping presents too and spend too much time designing the wrapping. I got this ribbon from Panduro. It's so sweet. The tape I made from Hagos's tape machine that he uses to label things on tour. My wrapping obsession reminds me of my friends, Janie and Ba, who make their own Christmas cards every year. I should have photographed Ba's from last year, it was a spiral wire Christmas tree with pink bells strategically placed. My favourite of Janie's was when she photocopied her own face onto hers. Then to round off the day Meg and I snuggled up on the couch in the best cuddle ever and I read Harry Potter for half an hour before we both fell asleep.

Thursday, August 16, 2007


I need some lighthearted distraction today because it's been a difficult couple of days, so here it is: my Simplicity top.

I finished it last Sunday. And I really like it. It took me four hours to sew it together - much longer than I expected. I think it took so long because I followed the instructions properly as it was my first time; whereas, now I know what needs attention and what can be bodged it should hopefully not take so long next time. Only problem is, it's a wee bit tight. Not much but it'll look better when I lose a few lbs. The pattern can also be made into a dress and I'm thinking about making another couple of tops, and then using this material to make the dress version:

It's Amy Butler's Star Paisley Lime. I love it. I love EVERYTHING Amy Butler. She has a range of handbag patterns and I'm thinking of buying a couple because they're so stylish.

I'm planning to take it very easy the rest of the day. Will finish Keigan's second bootee and sew everything up. It's just me and Meg at home until Sunday as Hagos has gone to Europe for the weekend. So we'll probably watch a chick flick.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Beach, Cake, Top, Vest

On Sunday we went to Cromer beach for the day with our friends. This is Hagos enjoying the shade towards the end of the day, while our friends went in search of water. We packed a picnic of organic sandwiches and fruit and I baked banana and walnut cake, which was delicious. This is all that was left of it when we got home. I was given Mrs Beeton's book for my birthday years ago by my friends Janie and Ba. I've used it a lot, mainly for baking but also when I need to remember to use a tablespoonful of milk when making scrambled eggs, and a tablespoonful of water when making omelette. I particularly like the section on general household management where it says to be careful when carrying a tray upstairs when wearing a dressing gown. Such sensible advice. I bought a pattern for a top online, the same one SouleMama made. It's the first time I've followed a pattern since I was at school when it took the WHOLE TERM to make one skirt (why was that?). I was so taken with hers that I wanted to make one for myself. I bought the material ages ago in John Lewis and today I traced my size and cut it out.
I decided to trace the pattern from the original in case I wanted to make another one for my sister or friend. The material was fairly cheap and cheerful and it looks stunning cut out. I'll attempt to sew it together at the weekend. I might have to rely on common sense as I don't completely understand the instructions.

I've also almost finished a blue vest for my nephew's baby, Keigan. I've finished knitting it, just have to sew it together. I've made matching bootees to go with it. Just one more to knit and sew up and it'll be ready to give.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Too Many Goodies

Isn't this the most beautiful dress you've ever seen? It's in the new Rowan magazine, which I browsed through today and was VERY tempted to buy but didn't (it's only a matter of time). I thought the new magazine looks really good though I wasn't so keen on the section marked 'Reflections'. But the rest looked lovely. Cable seems to be back. I also looked at the new season's wool, which is also divine. One called Cocoon, 80% merino wool, 20% kid mohair that was SO soft. Knits on 7mm needles.

Anyway, part of the reason I didn't get the magazine was because I could tell all of the projects would take a lot of TIME to knit. I think I might dedicate all of next year to knitting that dress.

Another reason I didn't buy the magazine is because I'm big into sewing these days, and this morning in the post I received Sublime Stitching from the lovely people at Amazon.

I've seen some sweet projects completed on other blogs and I thought I might be able to combine making clothes/accessories with a bit of easy and effective embroidery to personalise it. I have an idea for Christmas presents. I'll have to make a prototype and see if it's feasible. Some of Sublime Stitching looks good, though I was a wee bit disappointed by the range of transfers/designs. I was hoping for a polar bear but there only seems to be cats and dogs. We'll see. I think the instructions at the beginning look well-written. And it has made me realise I can actually make my own designs and embroider them.

It's such a beautiful day today I decided to bring my books outside and sit in the shade to update my blog. I brought our comfy chair out and went back inside for my books and laptop and guess who decided to make herself at home in the meantime? I couldn't stop laughing when I saw her there. I was literally two seconds going back inside for my stuff and when I last saw her she was lying under the picnic table. But she obviously thought the chair looked like the place to be. Softie that I am I left her there and worked at the picnic bench for a few minutes until Madame decided to go into my shed and relax there instead.