Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Potholders and Pillowcases

As promised, pics from both last Tuesday and this Tuesday.

Sorry about the wrinkled pillowcases. We are using them and this was right after I woke up. Being 100% cotton, they wrinkle. A lot. However, they turned out really nice, and were super easy. Plus this was fabric that was initially in my "get rid of " pile. The tutorial for these can be found here: http://www.filminthefridge.com/2010/01/27/pretty-quick-pillowcase-tutorial/

Last week I needed pillow cases, this week we needed potholders, and I found these cute ones at Craft. http://blog.craftzine.com/archive/2009/04/craft_project_simple_quilted_p.html I used some of my 1930's reproduction scraps for these in red, blacks and yellows. I am considering making some kitchen curtains out of thrifted white sheets. I have some retro looking anthropomorphic pots and pans embroidery transfers that I was thinking of embroidering on the curtains in black and red, and these cute potholders will fit right in. I might make some flour sack towels with patchwork borders in the same scraps too. The kitchen here has never had a real makeover since 1t was built in the early 1950's. I can't afford to give it one, so I guess we'll just go with the outdated style by making retro stuff to fit in.

I have been just organizing stuff in general, and lately I've been working on my fabric collection just because it is way too big. I am trying to be ruthless and give away stuff that I haven't used in the last 3 to 5 years and honestly will never use. The little wall pockets from a couple of weeks ago are perfect for fat quarters. I'll post pics later when I'm finished.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Camera Problems

Ok, so I was going to post a tutorial review every week and try and keep more updated on projects here on this blog. Well I have had some camera problems the last week because I'm pretty sure I left the good camera either in Kickapoo State Park or in the Subway in Danville, which is where we were last weekend. We do have the other camera, but I just don't like it as much. I finally broke down and took some pics with it the other day outside. I guess I'll have to use it in lieu of the other one, at least until I can afford to get another one.
Anyway, just because I didn't post doesn't mean I didn't do a tutorial last Tuesday. I did, in fact, make pillow cases out of fabric that was headed for the resale shop, or perhaps it would have been crocheted into a rug. They actually turned out quite nice, and John and I needed new pillowcases. He has these awful flannel ones that I made him years ago that are just falling apart now and never seem to come quite clean. The white parts of the print have turned sort of dingy. So I made new ones. I will post pics of them on Tuesday when I post the tutorial review of the week.
I was also busy in the kitchen last week. I made crusty sandwich bread early in the week, and then on Wednesday I did some oven dried tomatoes from some of the plum tomatoes in the garden. Oh were they yummy! I made angel hair pasta tossed with oven dried tomatoes, fresh basil, Parmesan and olive oil. I also made bruschetta for John one night for an appetizer, and then I made blueberry pancakes for breakfast yesterday. Blueberries were 50 cents a pint at the local grocery store. I am going to make blueberry muffins tomorrow I think, and I may go back and buy some more because I really am thinking I can make blueberry jam as well as the raspberry. I'm also going to make pesto and freeze it, I have so much basil. I will take pics and post them when I make them.
Gary's dad passed away from cancer last week, and we went out to the memorial service yesterday. I had not seen his parents in a couple of years, since before he moved in with Chris and Richard. His mom seemed to be holding up pretty well, but she's still in shock. She is planning on staying where she is for now, although Gary said if she wanted to come up here he would move into an apartment with her. Jimmy is living at home now, so that gives her time to really mourn and then figure out what she really wants to do. They live pretty far down south, about 35 miles from Pontiac in Chatsworth. If we lived nearer I would go and visit her. She's always been such a quiet, retiring woman. I think when it hits her it's going to be really hard.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Late Posting From Yesterday

Ok, so I didn't write about a tutorial yesterday, but that doesn't mean I haven't tried any. I actually made a potholder which I did not like, so I went with these cute patchwork cuffs instead. http://jchandmade.typepad.com/jcasapatterns/2009/10/mama-chic-wrist-cuff.html They are another one from Jennifer Casa at JCasa Handmade, she has such great stuff. The two pictured here are made from scraps from vintage bed linens. The brown one is made just like the tutorial, the pink one I made a little longer and used a buttonhole instead of an elastic loop to close it. These are super cute, and will make really nice stocking stuffers. There is a pdf file to download with the pattern, so it couldn't get any easier!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

New Etsy Stuff and Gifted Magazines

The sales in my shop have started to pick up, mostly due to the recycled fat quarters. I have sold 38 of them in the last week, plus half a dozen pieces of recycled fabric. I am really excited that people are using recycled fabrics, and I've cut some new ones to replace the ones I've sold. I'll list them in the shop over the next week
I made another patchwork clutch and listed it this morning.

I also made these cute coasters to replace the recycled apple coasters I sold.

And now, the coolest thing that happened this week! My friend Holly was getting rid of this basket of magazines! There are knitting, crocheting, sewing, crafting, jewelry making, cross stitching and assorted other craft magazines. It will be weeks before I go through all of them. Thank you, Holly!

And this is the 4th anniversary of this blog! It doesn't seem that long.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

My First Tutorial Tuesday!

I've decided to have Tuesday be the day I try out tutorials from my web wanderings. This week is from Jennifer Casa at JCasa Handmade. It is a really nice and super easy wall pocket. She designed it for her kids to keep projects and toys nice and neat, but it would work equally well for us grown ups too. We are in the house my husband grew up in, and it is over 50 years old. Like a lot of houses from that era it is small and has very little storage space. SO anything that helps keep clutter under control is good, and this could work in a lot of rooms for a lot of things. The link for the pocket is here: http://jchandmade.typepad.com/jc_handmade/2008/01/for-you.html The only thing I changed on this one is the handle. It calls for cotton webbing. I didn't have any, so I used fabric that I interfaced to strengthen it. I can see several of these in my sewing room, holding fat quarters or maybe some of my vintage Workbasket magazines or even to hold balls of my hand spun yarn.

Oh, and I also made bread. I finally used the Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day book that I've had for awhile now. I made the American White Bread recipe because I think John will like it, and because I need a good white bread with no high fructose corn syrup in it. I haven't cut it yet, I'm just waiting for it to cool so I can make a turkey sandwich.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Bonita Hat

Finished this hat on Saturday; I had to change the hat band some because it was way too big. I got the pattern as a download over on Ravelry , the designer is Rebecca Averil. I had it queued for awhile, and I decided to take it over to moms on Friday to work on while I was helping her with her laundry. It was an easy and fast pattern, I would have had it finished on Friday night if it weren't for the 6 pack of Mike's Hard Lemonade that got in the way after dinner. Anyway, I went down a hook size on the band, and then I ended up decreasing the 2nd from last sc row. I did a sc. and then dec over the next 2 sc's all around the hat. It ended up a bit tight for me, but for sure it won't go flying off!

I decided that I am spinning to make the sheepy mittens in Homespun Handknit. They are made with a sock weight yarn and have a pattern of cute little knitted sheep on the back. The chart looks fairly simple. The colors in the book are natural, dark brown, light brown and grey, and I think I'm going to go with those colors. I actually should have enough yarn in the next couple of days. We are supposed to have rain for the next 2 or 3 days, so maybe I'll finish spinning as the rain moves out and can dye on the first clear day.

Friday, August 06, 2010

LOVE This Site

Ok I just discovered www.tipnut.com How I could have gone so long without knowing about this site I don't know but it is really cool. Lots of tutorials, patterns and links to blogs. All kinds of crafts are covered, it is just really cool.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Trying Tutorials

There are so many great sewing tutorials on line. I have decided that I'm going to give one a try once a week. I figure I'll end up with some neat stuff for myself and for gifts, or for some of the craft shows I plan on doing this fall. In the past week I've tried two, so here they are.

This first one is a small padded clutch; the directions are here: http://fromanigloo.blogspot.com/2010/03/scrappy-clutch.html
I have to say that while I like the style of this clutch there are a couple of things I will do different the next time I make it. The first and major one is, I won't use fusible fleece. It's too thick, and once it's fused the bulk can't be trimmed out of the seam allowances. It's also a pain in the butt to gather the bottom pieces with the fleece fused in. I would rather use a thin polyester batting and baste it in place. I also used a piece of interfacing in the strap to make it a bit more sturdy. All in all it's a nice clutch.

This second project was infinitely cooler and more satisfying. It is a reusable baggie that uses mylar food bags for the inner liner. I have seen a lot of these made with ripstop nylon or vinyl, but this is much cooler because it recycles those bags that would be headed for the landfill. There is a down loadable pdf file here:http://frenchsleepdeprivationstudy.blogspot.com/2009/06/snack-bag-tutorial.html
I had the iron too hot and melted a bit of the mylar and then I had it too cool and didn't get all the wrinkles out of it, but other than that it turned out pretty well. Next time I make this I will use sew on velcro to keep the flap closed instead of the bottom elastic/button set up. I see myself making a ton of these and giving up baggies almost entirely. The only problem is I have to wait til we have another empty bag to make another one

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Self Striping Hat

These are hand knit arm warmers made from some of the hand spun berry colored yarn I dyed. I crocheted a hat, too. It's already listed in my Etsy store.

I love the way the colors came out when I knit up the self striping yarn! They are so vibrant and pretty. I knit the hat on a size 10 circular because I couldn't locate a smaller one, and i wasn't sure how it would look, but it's just fine. I think there will be just enough yarn left for another hat too.

I am working on a new spinning project and I hope to post video on this one pretty soon.