Archive | January 2012

The Challenge – Days 2 and 3

Due to a rather long day at work yesterday, there was no progress on the challenge made yesterday (kind of shocking really on day two to already be finding excuses). However I picked it back up again today and did some of the knit rounds, I got to the five that I was aiming for and felt that there was not quite enough purple yet so I am going to do some more. I have now added six knit rounds to the five purl rounds and this is what it currently looks like:

I am beginning to realize that I really have set myself quite a challenge, hopefully the finished dress will be worth it…still I have the feeling that I have a fair few weeks…if not months until I get to that point.

Quilt – The next step

Today I continued working on the remnant quilt  that I started in the week. Previously I had not quite finished sewing all of the small fabric squares together. Today I managed to complete this and also managed to sew the rest of the squares together. I firstly did them in rows


Then I attached all of the rows together

This means that I now have to complete the boarder and the back of the quilt, first I will have to go out and buy some wadding. I am pleased with how the quilt is progress although I did unpick the fabric squares several times because I was not happy with the corners coming together so I am sure that the project is taking much longer than it should, still I follow the belief that I need to be happy with it or it will just be folded away and not used.

The Challenge, Day One

The other day I was set a challenge at the craft club that I go to, I was provided with a vintage knitting pattern and asked to give it an update. Today I started to have a think about what I want to do with it. I have decided that I would like to make it into a dress using the diamonds from the original pattern. I have a huge ball of grey and a huge ball of purple Aran wool so I will use these.

This is the first knitting pattern that I have ever had a go at so it will be a bit “wing it and see what happens” but I aim to keep uploading photos documenting my progress as I go along.

The first thing that I did was take my measurements (I am not going to put these on the internet!) and then I knitted up some swatches, this was to work out how many stitches I do per inch. I knitted one swatch up in stocking stitch

When I measured the 18 stitches came to 3.5 inches

I then also did a swatch of rib stitch

The 18 stitches in rib measured 2.5 inches

Using a bit of maths I worked out how many stitches I needed at my hip, waist and bust and how many I needed to cast on. The diamond pattern from the original pattern is repeated over 28 stitches, I worked out that to cast on I required 304 stitches (I am doing the dress on the round) but to make it divisible by 28 I rounded this up to 308.  I have now cast on and done five rounds in purl and one round in knit I aim to do another four rounds in knit and will then start the diamonds. This is as far as I have got

I aim to work on this a little bit each day and post my photos as I go along. If it all works out I will then type up my first ever knitting pattern.

Handbag Organiser

As mentioned in my post the other day I found a fat quarter of fabric that I brought ages ago and never used. I was very happy with the find and decided to use it to make a case for my phones and memory stick that I can put into my handbag.

I did not do any measurement to make this project but hopefully I can clearly explain what I did. Firstly I laid out my two phones and memory stick onto a piece of paper to get an idea of the size that I would like the organiser to be.

I then cut out all of my fabric pieces. I folded the material in half so that all of the fabric bits have two copies. I cut out the following:

1) Two pieces of the complete size

2) Two pieces for the pocket

3) Two long pieces for the tie and band

4) One full size bit from firm stabilizer

The first thing that I did was attach some bias binding to the top of pocket. This also acted to sew the two sides of the pocket together.

Next I laid the pocket onto one piece of fabric (full size) and laid the items I wanted to go in the pocket on top. I marked the places with a pin for where I needed to stitch to separate the pocket.

I then stitched where I had marked from the top of the bias binding to the bottom of the fabric. This attached the pocket to one piece of the full sized material.

I then made the long pieces of fabric into the ties. I did this by ironing the fabric in half length ways, opening in out, folding the bottom edge into the middle and ironing and then folding the top edge into the middle and ironing and then folding it in half and ironing again, this means the raw edges are inside.

I then top stitched down each edge of the tie and zigzagged stitched the ends and then attached it to the fabric in the following way.

1) On the full sized piece that does not have the pocket on, mark where the tie needs to be fixed. Attach the tie at this point (I attached it at the middle point of my tie, stitching back and forth several times.

2)  I cut a short (probably two inches) from my other fabric tie. I then laid this over the top of where the tie is attached to the fabric and zigzagged stitched over the ends to fix it to the fabric.

I then sandwiched the material, wrong sides together with the stabilizer in the middle. I also rounded the corners to make the bias binding easier to sew on.

I then attached bias binding all the way around, being careful not to catch the ties as I was sewing. This is the inside of the finished organiser

This is it all tied up

Hopefully I will now be able to find my phone when it rings now, it usually is in the bottom of my bag and difficult to lay my hands on…no excuses now. The project took less than an hour and I am very happy with the results.

Remnant Quilt One

I sorted out my sewing cupboard the other day and came across many of the beautiful fabrics that I have left over from various projects. 


I had a ponder over what to do with them and decided that I would try my hand at making a quilt, I liked the fact that it would use some left over fabric whilst reminding me of the different projects that I had made with each fabric. I have never made a quilt before so the first thing I did was have a look on you tube (this is always my fail safe options with crafts, somehow watching how it is done makes it so much clearer for me). I found this mini series and felt that it made it nice a clear.

I decided to make a quilt that was six squares by five squares, with every other square being made up of four small squares. This meant that I needed to cut out fifteen large squares and sixty little squares.

Once all of my squares were cut out I then laid them out on the floor to decide my pattern (I first had to give the dog a bone as she kept wandering all over the material)

I then piled the squares one on top of the other working from the bottom left hand corner to the top right hand corner and then worked on sewing the smaller squares together prior to attaching any of the larger squares. Following the video from you tube I checked where the seams were so that there was not too much bulk and I also pressed seams as I was going along.

I have not managed to finish the sewing of the smaller squares yet but aim to continue tomorrow. I’ll post again then with my progress.

The Challenge

On Monday was the club meet up, it is run by the family that run Little Sew n’ Sews in Epping. I have been using it to work on a jumper that I started a little while ago, as previously mentioned this is a design by Kate Davies and I got the design from Ravelry. This is the progress of the jumper so far, it is knitted on the round on circular needles.

I have done the very last increase and now have to knit to just before the armpits.

Whilst there we were set a challenge, we were each given a vintage pattern with the task of updating it. This is the pattern that I took:

I will have to get my thinking cap on how I want to update it…I’ll keep you posted.

A bit of sorting

Now that my uni course has restarted my crafting time has taken a bit of a hit, so I thought that I best organise myself so that when I have the chance to do some craft I can find my things really quickly.

Whilst sorting through, I found a project that I started quite a long time ago but had to put to one side as it required a button hole foot, something that I only acquired a short time ago. It is the Lotus Cami top by Amy Butler, I added the button holes and buttons to it today and then realised that I could not find the material that I had previously cut to make the bias binding, so I had to stop again. On a trip out this week I will try to buy some bias binding so that I can finish it off. This is what it currently looks like:

The fabric is very cute, this is it:

Hopefully I will get a chance to buy the binding and finish it off this week. If I manage to do my reading on the train on Wednesday I can have a short study day on Thursday so I should be able to do it then…that is my motivation!

I also refound this in my fabric stash

I forgot that I had it so it was a nice find. Another project for Thursday, there is only a fat quarter but I aim to make it into an organiser for my handbag.

Tomorrow night is the craft group meet up so I will work I bit more on my knitted jumper. It is a very simple but beautiful jumper, I got the pattern from Ravelry. The pattern is called owls and is by Kate Davies, I was lucky enough to have enough left over wool from a jumper that I knitted for my dad, I post some pictures of the jumper shortly.