Friday, December 18, 2009

Felt Vest

I found a pattern in a library book a while ago that I've been wanting to try and I finally made the time! It's a recycled felted vest. I took an adult size wool cabled sweater, washed it a bunch of times (only need to wash once or twice in a top loader), cut the sleeves off, washed a few more times, needle felted some dinos and other embellishments, and VOILA! I did the dinos by using clip art templates of the three main dinos, then winged the rest, but you can use cookie cutters, whatever! It's VERY easy and fun. I do recommend using a needle felting tool that contains multiple needles, it takes way too long to use a single needle but was very quick with my new tool ;-) I need to clean up the edges of the sleeves, I think I might try needle felting some edging on.



Sunday, November 29, 2009

Felted Snake Boots!

I decided to make some felted boots, snake style, for my 3yo. I cut a pattern out of duckcloth (if you do this, make sure that it's large enough to account for shrinkage).

I started with this.

Then I laid out my wool, got my hands wet with soapy water, and went to work! After I was tuckered, I rolled them up in towels and washed them a few times, until they were the right size. I then shaped them by stuffing socks in them, let them dry. I cut down the center till about midway, added some buttons, elastic string, cut off the bottoms and added some leather soles, added the snakes and VOILA! C'est Fini!

For the Snakes- I used Lion Brand Fisherman's wool, kool aid kettle dyed green variegated, worsted weight, feltable wool, size 9 circ's.
For main body-
CO 4 (if i had this to do over again, I would cast on 8), work in I-Cord for length. Once you've achieved the length you want (accounting for a bit of shrinkage), begin the snake head. k1, m1 in each stitch till last stitch, k1 (-6 stitches), do one more row of i-cord, next row k1, m1 in each stitch till last stitch, k1 (10 stitches). Switch to stockinette stitch and work until snake head is correct size. Begin decrease. On rs, k1, k2tog till last stitch, k1. Next row P across. Next row continue decrease. Continue in this manner until there are four stitches left on a rs row. K2tog, leaving you with 2 stitches, on next rs bind off.
Then I made an underside to the head by co 4 stitches, work in i-cord for one row, k1, m1 in each stitch till last stitch, k1 (-6 stitches), work in i-cord k across for one more row, k1, m1 in each across till last stitch, k1 (-10 stitches), begin working in stockinette until it's almost as long as the first head, on rs k1, k2 tog till last stitch, k1. ws purl. rs, k1, k2 tog till last stitch. ws purl. next row, bo all stitches.
Tongue- Make a 2 strand i-cord of red for about an inch (I also used smaller needles, but use what you have around).
Eyes- make black x's over the eyes on the top side of your snake head.
Putting it all together-with snake head pieces right sides together and tongue placed in place with it facing inwards, stitch around the outside leaving an opening at the neck area. Felt as much or as little as you want.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Been Busy!

I'm proud to say that I've been busy!!! I've made a few gifts, I won't mention what they are though, just in case. The projects I've worked on so far have gone very quickly, much faster than I thought. I'm crossing my fingers all the other projects go quickly/smoothly and maybe I'll get half the list done before Yule!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

New Sweater!

I made a new sweater for my 4 year old. It's adapted from the free Humbug Sweater Pattern.
I added the striping and the intarsia skull and crossbones. This was my first real intarsia and it was a very good first intarsia project, small. Really, it was easy, I just couldn't do it with my kids around. There was a lot of finishing work that needed to be done around the hood and pocket, but in the end it looks really beautiful! The only two things I would do differently are make the hood a little taller, and make the pocket bigger and raise it a few rows. All in all, very pleased! And most importantly, he loves it!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Holiday List

I hope this will grow, I also hope I will cross things off!

1. Felted ball tree ornaments (make felted ball, dye with Kool Aid, then wrap with beads/ribbon/whatever, make a loop at the top, and that's it!)
2. felted bowls for friends/family pattern here
3. several amigurumi (I have a great book, but I'm also going to do another one of the teratoma ones, I should blog about the one I already made!)
4. a few more washclothes (there's a garden pattern from Ravelry that I want to make for my mama)
5. bookmarks pattern here
6. afghan (SC all the way!)
7. homemade knitting needles (such as these and these
8. play yard play mat (similar to this
9. the quilt that I never finished for Ronan's b-day (vintage fabric, Humpty Dumpty)
10. a quilt for Wolfe (dinosaurs)
11. soft book with toys for the car
12. plasters for my mama
13. felted soaps
14. hand, Kool Aid dyed playsilks
15. Two wooden benches/storage things for the playroom that can use a playsilk as a canopy like this. Although this one will require hubby's help.
16. And something likethis. I made a small one but seemed to have lost it at some point. Probably find it after i make a new one.
17. Nesting Boxes
18. Knitting Book for Sage from
19. And this Waldorf doll for my son who LOVES babies!
20. Robin Eggs. Yes, my list is becoming endless.
21. Starting to laugh now, this list will keep me going for years!!! Rocks

Saturday, October 24, 2009

time, time, who's got the time?

With two little ones at home and an almost full-time job I have little time left for crafts, writing, blogging, cleaning, or anything else. Now that the weather is getting cooler, the rain has returned, and the days are shorter, I'm feeling rejuvinated in a crafty kinda way. I have spent quite a bit of time on MDC, following recommended links from fellow MDC'ers, and bouncing ideas around with other mamas. I now have a plan: to make time to craft! My short list for the next month or two is as follows:
1. Finish the matching sweaters for my boys. Very cute, dk and lt gray striped with skull and crossbones intarsia.
2. Make some very cool embroidery bookmarks found on MDC
3. Finish the afghan that I started for DH three years ago. Yes, three years ago. It's SC, but I was learning how to crochet when I began and have had to rip it out and start over several times. I'm now about 1/5 of the way done. I plan on having it finished by Yule.
4. I plan to completely clean all of the wool I have in my laundry room. It's starting to smell VERY bad at this point!

I hope this list will help me focus and keep me from starting a million OTHER projects and not finishing these ;-)

Friday, August 7, 2009

I need to remember to take pictures of my projects! My stepson's mom is getting married, today actually, and among our gift bag is a washcloth that I knitted. I used Bernat bamboo yarn, chunky.
C/O 35
Rows 1-7: k1, p1 till end
Row 8: (k1, p1) 2 times, k till last 4, (p1,k1) 2 times
Row 9: (k1, p1) 3 times, p till last 5, (k1, p1) till end
Repeat rows 8 and 9 until piece measures 6.5 inches
Repeat rows 1-7, b/o
Finished piece measures around 8 in sq

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Sage's First Birthday

Due to my very strong political beliefs, we did not purchase any "objects" for Sage's birthday. (This is of course very easy to do with a baby, my anarchistic anti-capitalist views go out the window for the older kids ;-() I made him some very cool stuff though! I'm still finishing two projects, the quilt and bamboo bunny.

My first battle with fondant. Sage's birthday is near several holidays, so this year we themed it Cinco de Mayo. The Mexican flag is backwards because it looked better that way.

I also made a felted ball with some old wool sweater scraps. I dyed them with kool aid, seamed them up, and washed them repeatedly, then stuffed with bamboo stuffing.

I crocheted some Morroccas (sp?) with dishcloth yarn and a few jingle bells inside from this free Ravelry pattern

I made a large star shaped doll with organic bamboo velour and an old organic cotton shirt that was stained up. I cut out a star shape (you can find instructions online), seamed it up, turned it right side, cut a slit in the neck, took an old scrap from a t-shirt, stuffed it with stuffing, tied it off, put it inside the neck, stitched the neck by hand, painted the face with fabric pens, knitted a wool hat (the orange/red is hand kool aid dyed, the brown is natural undyed), and that's it!

This doll was similar, but I cut it out wrong somehow and ended up with the wrong shape. Waste not, want not! I made a triangular doll!

I also made a very large felt ball, like the ones I've blogged about in the past. The only difference is that this time i wrapped leftover wool scrap yarn around it in oranges and browns. It looks kinda cool but I can't find a picture, I swear I took one...

Wool, Wool, and More Wool!

A friend of a friend gave me bags and bags of raw wool. I will be making a futon, spinning some, and doing other various craft/art projects with the rest. The first thing to do is clean it all, which is a very big job! To clean raw fleece here's what I did:
1. laid it all out on a blanket and picked through to get rid of the clumps of poop and vegetable matter
2. filled up a bunch of lingerie bags from the $ store
3. used my grandma's top loading washing machine (front loaders don't have enough water)
4. soaked in hot water with Dawn dish soap (I don't know why Dawn, everyone just seems to think it's the best) DO NOT AGITATE!!!!
5. spin DO NOT AGITATE!!! Spinning is okay and won't felt your wool.
4 and 5 again. repeat
6. rinse in cold until water runs clear DO NOT AGITATE!!!
7. let dry in sun
8. made two "combs," basically make a T with cheap wood (one part for the handle, the other for the comb), drilled holes for long nails alternately spaced along one end.
9. combed the wool (videos on Youtube)
10. carded at the Eugene Textile

Monday, April 20, 2009

Flapper Cap

I finally made something for myself. It's crochet, which I'm very terrible at, but it was great practice. I did have to rip it out and start over 4 times, but it was well worth it. I do wish that my crochet would be tighter, it's a little too big and no matter how tight I pull on those stitches, it doesn't seem to ever tighten up. I was going to link to the pattern that i used, but it seems to have disappeared from Ravelry, though I could find similar ones. It's called a Flapper Hat and the pattern was free. If someone really wants this specific pattern, let me know and I'll research it more.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Baby's First Teddy Bear

My mom gave me the book, "Kyuuto! Japanese Crafts: Amigurumi," by Chronicle Books. Although I wish it had more detailed instructions on things like joining a nice ring (I'm still a beginner at crochet), it is a great book with easy to follow patterns. I made the oversized teddy bear, which is the size of a normal teddy bear and larger than any amigurumi I've ever seen. I made Ronan some woolies with clearanced organic wool (see previous post) and used the leftovers for the bear. I'm a loose crocheter and decided to felt it. After it felted, the stitches tightened up and it looks more, smooth I guess. I'll try to remember to post a pic later. Here it is prefelted-

Circus Striped Woolies

My mother started them, then I finished them, so this is a joint project ;-) My mom bought some organic wool on clearance, but they only had one skein of pink and one of blue. She bought them both and they came out really cute! I had enough left over to make a teddy bear to match. We don't use patterns for these, but basically it's k2p2 rib over the entire pants, knitted in the round top down. When you get the rise long enough, put half the stitches (-5) on a stitch holder and the other half (-5) on circs using magic loop or on dpns (I used dpns). The five stitches in front and 5 stitches in back, can be kitchenered together for a nice crotch (I would usually make a wider seam here, but the wool was super bulky so 5 stitches was wide enough). I used the stretchy bind off for the very loose, circusy cuff. I double strand chained some pink to make a stretchy belt. Since these were knitted top down, I can take out the bottom of the legs and add more as he grows. They are stretchy enough, thanks to the all over ribbing, that he will be able to wear these until he's at least 4 yrs old (at that point, they may be shorties). They are very easy to make. Maybe my description sounds complicated, but I think that longies are the simplest garment to make and I started knitting these up when I was still a very beginner knitter.

Saturday, February 7, 2009


I knitted some sweaters a while ago and forgot to post them here. The first is the first article of clothing I ever knitted. I love the way it came out! I used some yarn my mom gave me. Instead of adding snaps to the side, I chained four lengths that tie together. I think it's much cuter that way. Anyway, it was a very easy pattern and very quick to knit. Here's the FREE Lion Brand pattern- Hooded Baby Poncho

I then tried my hand a knitting another sweater. This pattern is from Ravelry (have to be a member to access patterns, but it is free). If you want the pattern, just search for Yoda Sweater. It was also easy. I adjusted the pattern a bit to make it fit an older baby. I do wish i had only made it longer though, it's quite wide. Again, I just used some gifted yarn because I really thought it wouldn't turn out so well. I just keep surprising myself ;-) I also made matching hat, mittens and booties. The booties don't stay on his feet though, so I definitely won't share that pattern!!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Felted Wool Balls

I made some felted wool balls for Christmas presents. I gave some away before taking pictures. They had cool spirals on them. Oh well. I made matching ones for the boys, one with an A and one with an S. They are from organic wool batting and were dyed with Kool Aid.
To make the one shown here:
grab a bucket, some dish or castille soap, some hot water, and some wool. Pack a smallish piece of wool as tightly as you can with your hands, then dunk in the hot water in your bucket. Hold under the water until bubbles stop. Gently squeeze repeatedly. When it feels like a good lump, add some dish soap directly to the wool (just a drop). Rub it around gently. Dip in the hot water then repeat the soaping process a few times. Wrap another tuff of wool around this, repeat the dipping/soap thing. Do this over and over until it's about 50% larger than what you want it to be. Stick it into the bottom of a trouser sock or some old hose, tie a knot around the top of the ball and throw it in the washing machine. IF you have a front loader it takes at least 4 loads to get a good felted ball. you can pull it out and keep checking as it goes. If you have a top loader, apparently one or two washes does it, but I wouldn't know. Then you can embellish your ball. I soaked mine in lime Kool Aid, rolled it around, then rinsed. After it was dry to the touch (a day or so), I needle felted some blue raspberry dyed tuffs in the shape of an S. After it was good and on, I stuck it back in a sock and washed it two more times. Let it dry and it actually bounces! If you want to make a jingle ball, add a bunch of jingle balls at the beginning and wrap your wool around it. I found that you really need to have quite a few balls, otherwise they are too tight to rattle well. Oh, and I got creative and used some old crappy acrylic yarn that my mom gave me, rolled it into a ball, and covered it with wool. I think it saved me some wool and gave that useless yarn a purpose ;-)