Friday, January 20, 2012

Dress Shirt to Dress!

DH has a pile of discarded dress shirts that I just can't seem to let go (look at all that wonderful fabric!!!).

Since Sweet Pea is always after more dresses, I thought a quick dress might work. This blog post inspired me to try something cute.
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I followed the tutorial, but left the button band functional (rather than sewing it closed with the waistband).  Next time I might make the waist a bit higher, as it's a bit 'drop waist' right now.  The pink is leftover from her quilt backing several years ago.

But she's seen me embroidery and really, really wanted flowers.  And I can always use some practice with French knots, right?

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

WIP Wednesday

Last week, I came clean about the amount of yarn stash I have.  This week, I'm digging out some UFOs, most of which have been on the needles for months!  They will be finished, or frogged!
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Kindled Fires socks.  One is done, and it wasn't much fun to knit.  The needles are small and the socks are denser than I care for... But the colors in the yarn are beautiful!

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Flip top mittens.  Again, one is done!

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This sweater was too short, and I wasn't wild about how the colorwork on the set -in sleeves widened my shoulders.  I frogged it, lengthened it, and now just need to knit the raglan top.  Now this yarn is discontinued, so I'm hoping that I have enough.

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The Sock Blanket.  I didn't knit a stitch on this last year.  Not one.  Maybe it would be a good baby blanket for Wicket...

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And another sweater project.  This yarn has been earmarked for Sweet Pea since I got it several years ago, due to its pink content (though it looks red here...).  It has, however, survived to major froggings.  This has only been on the needles a few days, but it flying... One sleeve done, one mostly done, and several inches into the plain stockinette body.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Embroidered Onesies

I have not yet knit anything for Wicket (the temporary name for the 3rd in our offspring installments). He's scheduled to join us late in April, just in time to not really need any heavy woolens. But every baby needs some onesies...
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A pack of Gerber onesies and a few hours with Aimee Ray's Doodle Motif book, and we've started a little wardrobe.
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This one is next up - the dragon's a bit more extensive than the octopus, but I can't wait to finish!
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It's a fun, quick way to turn out something unique for the new little one.
Dragon (DMC floss: Body - 3809, Belly - 472, Back - Unlabeled dark green, Fire - 3853 )

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Mittens on a Cord

Kids lose mittens.  My kids lose handknit mittens.  It's hardly a crime, but I'd like to slow the rate of loss.  So, I turned to the coat cord!  A few feet of Icord, sewn to the cuff, and run through the sleeves of the coat.

This has the added bonus of drastically increasing the speed at which we can find matching mittens first thing in the morning.  Plus, according to the Little Dude, it's kind of like having nunchucks hanging out of your coat. You can pick your favorite reason for the coat cord, but they're all pretty good!

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The yarn is Elegance (190 yards), which I've previously used in this sweater, and this scarf.  The picture was taken before I added the cord, but it's now safely in place.  It's a lovely alpaca/silk blend that has, sadly, been discontinued.  The pattern is loosely based on the mitten and tam patterns from Ann Budd's fabulous book.

Of course, once Sweet Pea had a set, the Little Dude wanted one, too.  His is about 175 yards of Knit Picks Swish DK (the grey left over from this sweater, the blue-green from this one) and a butter yellow skein of Heirloom easy care 8-ply.  Both the hat and mittens are already a little small, so a third set may be in the works.  Goodness knows I've got the stash for it!

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Monday, January 9, 2012

Year of the Family Recipe begins with... Salad Spotlight!

Family recipes... the ones that get made over and over again.  Or the ones that are so bad everyone remembers the night you tried them, and ordered pizza instead.  I have a separate blog where I track all of my food exploits.  It's more of a scientific notebook than food blog, really.  I record all the recipes I try, even the one that turn out... not so hot.  Negative results are still results, after all!  But, I wanted to bring some of the more successful and repeated recipes to this blog as well.

This year, my goal is to get 365 more recipes onto that blog.  I use it all the time when I'm short on time, don't feel like going to the store, and need some inspiration.  I started out with 46, so I should get a grand total of 401 recipes on their by the end of the year.  Starting with.. salad!

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These salads are the mainstays of my lunches.  They're easy to throw together, either before work or at home.  When I take them to work, I have a jar of plain lettuce, then carry the rest in a separate jar.  Mix at work, and... ta-da!

Every weekend I cut and wash a big bunch of lettuce, then keep it in a gallon bag in the fridge.  You can try this idea here, but I don't have a Food Saver.  I don't, however, have any problems with browning edges.

1. Cobb

2. Greek

3. Quick Taco Salad

4. Bacon Turkey Salad

3. California Goat

Friday, January 6, 2012

More Stashbusting

2012 has many big changes in store for us.  We are planning a Big Move - not far, but hopefully buying a house!  While I'm excited about some of the changes, the actual act of moving is a bit daunting.  I look around our house, and imagine putting it all (toys!  clothes!  yarn!  electronics!  fabric!) in boxes and get a little weak.

For example:
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That's not all of the stash, just the part I haven't seen in awhile.  It doesn't include the laceweight, or the handspun, or the drawer of fingering weight for colorwork.  Or the sockyarn.  It takes up half a dresser.  There's a sweater's worth of Malabrigo, a couple of half-frogged sweaters that don't fit, but mostly... odds and ends.  Some labeled, some not so much.  Most of it has remained untouched for ~1.5 years, possible 2.  It's a mess, and I'm starting to resent the space it's taking in my house.  And, the potential packing it represents for a move.

So... Stashdown '12.  It's on.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Trying out Applique

I've been intrigued by applique for awhile.  I got a few books from the library, read all sorts of blog posts, then decided to just try it out!  The night before we left for our awesome Thanksgiving trip to DC, I cut out two large rectangles from some of DH's old jeans.  Then I used the method from this blog post to make some circles.  I cut my pattern circle by tracing the top of a pint glass on some cardboard on the way to the recycling bin.

By the time we were on the way home, I had this:

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I folded over the top, sewed it down, and ran a ribbon through it, to get a handy bag:
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It currently hangs from the doorknob and holds my machine's foot pedal and power cord!

Applique no longer scares me!  In fact, I've got big plans...

Next up on my 2012 sewing list:
A Christmas Tree skirt! - I love this one
Embroidered Onesies
An abstract wall hanging
A duvet cover - with more circles!