Monday, December 24, 2012

Book Clutch

I saw these book clutches on the interwebs and decided that I absolutely had to make one for my daughter. She's an English major and is obsessed with literature. I followed this Instructables pattern and found it simple enough.

I used duck cloth so it would be durable, but it also made it difficult to work with and a bit bulky. If I had it to do over again, I would use a lighter weight material. Basically, you just buy a hardcover book that looks good without the sleeve. I had no idea how difficult a task that would be! I tried to find her favorite book, Wuthering Heights, but all of the hard cover books I found had plain covers, so that was out. I did look online, but it was difficult to tell what the actual book looked like. I found  Sir Walter Scott's, The Waverly Novels, that had a nice looking, vintage, cover.  This is perfect for my daughter because Waverly was the first historical novel written and my daughter is a historical fiction writer/reader, she's actually completely obsessed. My husband was horrified that I was cutting out the pages of a book. He freaked when I went to burn it in the fireplace and even made me rewatch Fahrenheit 451. Lol. In my defense, the cover was in good shape, the pages were not. I avoided the beautiful books in great condition to alleviate some of my guilt! So, you cut out the pages, make the lining, and attach purse handles and closure snaps. I had some purse handles on hand that my mom gave me last year, so all in all, this project cost me about $5 to make (the cost of the book). I have since found a Wuthering Heights version on Etsy and wish that I had just bought it for her (very reasonably priced). It's still very cute and I think she's gonna love it! 


Sunday, December 23, 2012

Kid's Cooking Set

My boys are very interested in cooking, so I decided to make them a cooking set for Yule! I made them aprons with some cheap fabric I got on sale. I am terrible with patterns, so I just winged it. The length is 19 inches, cut on fold for the first one, about 4 inches across the top (8 inches total), then I just cut down in a gentle slope until I had what looked like an apron. I seamed it up with double seams so there are no frayed edges, then attached some binding that I had laying around as the neck and waist ties. For the other one, I did not cut on the fold, then I added a panel in the center with the opposite stripe pattern. I did this to make it a bit bigger for my older son and to add some interesting detail. I made different sized pockets to make it a bit more fun, then puffy painted their initials on them. I would have liked to have used a contrasting color fabric for the pockets and binding, but I was in a rush and also trying to just use what I had on hand. I went to the dollar store and bought two holiday tins and two sets of measuring cups/spoons. They can keep their measuring set and apron in their tin. I used nail polish to put their initials on the measuring sets. Then we went to Barnes and Noble and picked out a kid's cookbook. Unfortunately, they didn't sell one kid's vegetarian book, but we can just modify as we need. All in all, this whole set cost me about $15 for both kids (they're sharing the book).

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Cold Turkey fingerless gloves

I made my mom a pair of these fingerless gloves. They were a quick knit and came out really cute! The only pattern modification I made was to pick up two stitches on the inside of each thumb to avoid holes. I'll be making some for me soon! (It's just a regular ole red, not sure why it's so hot in the pic.)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Blooming Rose Necklace

I am completely in love with this project! In case anyone was wondering where I get my obsessive craft stuff from, that would be my mother. She went through a wool dying phase last year and dyed skeins and skeins of undyed (sort of white) wool with natural and edible things. In case you haven't tried it, wool is so fabulous and can be dyed with things like onions skins, walnut hulls, and even Kool Aid. (I am trying to convince myself that no one actually drinks Kool Aid; their customers are just all woolie folk buying it for smell good dye!)

Anyway, my mom gave me a bunch of her dyed yarn and last year I made a bunch of projects with it. I started this blooming rose for my daughter, but then I completely forgot about it until I was cleaning the drawers of the armoire and found it. Last night I finished it (really, a quick project). I did have some trouble rolling up the rose and my base is just a tad bit too big, but overall I think it's GORGEOUS! My daughter loves anything Victorian (obsessed) and she has the most beautiful, long neck. I think this is going to be beautiful on her! The rose is actually very large, about the size of my fist.

I used my mama's worsted weight purple'ish, rosey yarn with size 7 needles for the rose petals. For the base and leaves, I used Red Heart Eco Ways Bamboo/Wool in deep green. It is a fabulous yarn, but sadly, it appears to have been discontinued.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Bauble Tree Ornaments

I made a few of these fantastic bauble tree ornaments. They are crochet, which I am absolutely terrible at, but they still came out super cute! They were also very quick to make up. I just used leftover scrap yarn, beads, and some jingle bells I had laying around. I will definitely be making more of these for gifts next year!

Here's the pattern:

I'm only keeping one of these, but I thought it would make a nice picture to see them on a tree.

This one was my first and will be a gift for a friend who is having a holiday party.

These next two are gifts for my adult daughter. It's hard to tell, but the first one the inside is deep purple, the second and last layers are light blue, and the last dark one is black.

This one is for my youngest son. He picked out the colors, which are super bright (although you can't tell from the pic). My older son has requested his colors, so I'll be making his next!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Child Mittens

I made these mitten for my oldest boy. They were too big, so I felted them up a bit and now they're perfect! And warmer. Gotta love wool! These also match his vest and Bugerloo hat.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Borough Mittens

I made my husband these awesome mittens for one of his Yule gifts. I realized, after I weaved in the ends, that they were inside out! Honestly though, I think they'll match the hat I'm making better this way (it has a similar rib pattern). The mitten part folds back and buttons down so you can either have them full mittens, or fingerless (for working). Here's a pic before I've attached the buttons. I have some antique compass buttons that will look great, but I left them in the car after raiding my mother's bin. The pic isn't so great (lighting is poor in my house and I live in Oregon, which means that there's no lighting outside for 8 more months), but they're a slate blue. I also still need to add some buttons.

The pattern was easy to follow, quick to knit, and they look really great. I didn't make any adjustments to the pattern. I'm thinking of making some for myself! Here's the pattern:

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Bugerloo Hat

I made the Bugerloo Hat ( for both of my boys. The pattern is a bit large (could easily be for an adult by just making it a little bit taller before the decreases), so I felted it! Here's the first one I made. I added an antique leather button from my mom's 70s stash.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


I was looking for a vest pattern for my boys who LOVE vests and found this great vertical stripe!
The sizing was a bit unclear, so I made the large figuring that it would either fit my four year old, or my seven year old. It looks like it will fit my four year old, with growing room.  I was worried that just one size up wouldn't be large enough for my seven year old, so I switched from size 7 needles to size 9. It was HUGE! It *almost fit my husband, who is 6 ft and average build. One more reason to love wool- I felted it!

The details- followed the pattern, except that I did random stripes on the size large and matched the stripes on the extra large. I used several colors instead of just the recommended two. There is some puckering on the increases, not sure how to correct that for next time. I also added a garter stitch border for five rows, including button holes (yo, k2tog). All in all, it's a great pattern! My husband is now asking for one of his own.

The size large (~ child size 6)

The size extra large, after felting, hopefully a child size 8 The green is the same green in the hat and cowel below. I think they'll all look great together!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Boys Skull Cowel

Worsted weight on size 8 needles. Gauge- does anyone really check? I tend to be a loose knitter, if that helps. I used a bamboo/wool blend in a forest green.

c/o 38 stitches
work in k2p2 ribbing for 20 rows.
Row 21- continue k2p2 ribbing for first 8 stitches, knit until last 8, continue k2p2 til end of row.
Row 22- continue k2p2 rib for first 8, purl until last 8, continue k2p2 rib.
Row 23- Continue ribbing pattern first and last 8 stitches throughout chart. begin working skull cable chart. Start on WS (start w knit stitches)
After chart is completed, go back to regular ribbing across. Continue until piece measures 23.5 inches from cast on edge, then do a row of button holes. I did a y/o k2tog three times, evenly spaced, for the button holes. Continue in the rib pattern for another 5 rows, then cast off in pattern.

It *looks* like it came out great, but I won't know until Yule/Christmas morning when he can try it on!

I also made this very cute "Boy Hat" to match. The pattern isn't actually for a boy, but I used a size 5 needle instead of what was recommended and it's tight on my head, so I'm assuming it should fit him well. If it's too long, I can turn it up with a brim until he grows into it. Here's the pattern

I'm also working on a vertical striped vest (although the pic looks like it's horizontal, just turn your head to the side) that uses yarn from this project as well as yarn from a felted pub hat I made for him, so he can have some matchy-matchy stuff. So far it's coming along... This is the pattern

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Soap Sweaters

In addition to making some melt and pour soap, I made some little sweaters to go along with them. They were super quick to knit up and came out really cute! For those of you who are like my husband, these actually serve a purpose. They're like a washcloth with the soap inside. When you have all of those little chuncks of soap left, just stick them in the bag and no more waste! I modeled them after the following pattern, but I added a chained strap so they could hang in the shower to avoid muckiness. Also, instead of using a button I sewed in a snap on the inside. My husband was worried about folks washing their hoo-has with buttons. Very thoughtful of him ;-) The best part about this pattern is after doing one or two, you can really play around with different cables and other interesting stitches.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


In anticipation of the holidays, I am knitting like a fiend! I do wonder why I wait until the end of October to start knitting for the winter holidays, but it seems inevitable at this point. I'll start posting some of my finished products and their patterns as soon as I can. It might make me feel as if I'm accomplishing something; in reality, I just keep ADDING to my list at a much faster pace than I am crossing stuff off, but...

I've been knitting some dishcloths for gifts and just finished this one for my adult daughter who has been a Harry Potter fan since she could walk (that's not much of an exaggeration). I found this fabulous pattern here:

Here's the finished product!