2020…

Happy New year everyone!! I hope it has started off well. 2020 was the strangest year, and I’ve been going through my photos to remind myself that there were lots of positives mixed in with all the negatives.

I realised that I’ve never looked back at a full year of making before. So I thought it might be interesting to share what I made in 2020, as I didn’t get to show everything on this blog.

Knitting wise I made less than I thought – just 5 handknits. I did cast on other projects, but they were all taken off the needles after a few rows…. I think I just found it hard to settle on anything this year.

My Caramel Cardigan is my favourite, and has been worn almost every week since I made it. I really think it was worth the time it took to figure it out, without using a pattern, and I’d like to try doing something similar this year (and maybe even writing out the pattern this time!)

My Caramel Cardigan
Soldotna
Fuss free baby Cardigan (free pattern on Ravelry)
My 2nd Sunday Cardigan by Petiteknit

I’d also like to make another Sunday Cardigan, it’s a shape that really suits me and works up quickly too.

I had wanted to try more crafts this year like embroidery, painting, or weaving. The May Bank Holiday weekend threw some weaving material my way, when my husband was clearing the garden and I used the flexible brambles to make a basket:

It dried out nicely and while it’s not as strong as a willow basket, it held its shape perfectly.

That led to me signing up for a one day, (group of 4) willow basketry course in August when restrictions had been lifted. (I had attended one of these classes a few years ago).

This time I came home with a very sturdy willow basket:

And now I’m dreaming of a Sally garden with my own willow… Some day!

I tried out some embroidery/applique on a RTW tee shirt:

I also tried needlepunch for the first time. I bought an Amy Oxford punch needle that works with dk/aran weight wool, so that I could use up my leftover Yarn:

This isn’t my original design, I saw a beautiful painting and free handed a drawing onto hessian, which I then filled in with yarn. It is now brightening up a wall on my house 😁

This was attached to the frame just a few days ago!

I was surprised by how little sewing I had done. I think outside of my day job, I spent alot more time outdoors, hiking, cycling or swimming depending on what restrictions were in place.

My Burda Dress, which is now Navy… I’ll update with a photo soon.

Grey and pink skirt

My grey and pink skirt was quickly followed by another version in a striped denim, it just need buttonholes to be done!

I also made a shirt around the same time from a fabric swap. It’s Mccalls M7575.

Mccalls 7575

I took a copy of a sweatshirt I owned and made it in a navy floral scuba, which I gave to my Mother for Christmas and she loved it. It reminded me that I’d like to make more things as gifts, especially for my Mother as she is always chuffed to have something I made. (A cross-stitch Xmas wall hanging that I made in 1992, was hanging by the tree again this yearπŸ˜‚

And finally the most recent item I’ve sewn: this is McCalls M7694 and as soon as my silver snaps arrive it will be properly finished!

I hope it’s brought some inspiration, or even a distraction for now.

Cheers to 2021πŸ₯‚

Christmas Crafting

Its less than 2 weeks to Christmas, and here I am again with no presents made and wondering how I can pull it together in time.!

I am surprised that I’m surprised… Every January I think to myself that I’ll make one gift a month so I can give everyone some hand knitted/sewn/woven/printed loveliness.. But it never happens!

I did however, manage to add to my handmade decorations!

The tree above was made with the help of a small helper, a glue gun and my jar of odd buttons.

The star below was made after I came across a video online, (@bookhou on Instagram). I used 7 a4 sheets of light card and the glue gun again instead of staples.

I had some willow left from making a basket during the summer and I twisted it into a very rough circle to make this wreath and added a few extra bits:

And finally….! my mother mentioned she would like a wreath so today I went to the garden and gathered any flexible branches I could find along with some ivy and any other interesting wildflowers/weeds!

Then some twisting and tieing and it didn’t look too bad:

Natural, biodegradable (and free!) wreath

2 weeks isn’t much time to make gifts in, but I’m pretty sure I’ll manage a few more decorations 😁

Buttoned skirt – Rtw skirt copy

I made this skirt by taking a pattern from a cord skirt that I love to wear… It buttons down the front and is unlined so I knew it would be a good option to make a copy.

In making a pattern from clothing there are a few ways to approach it – it can be cut apart and used as a pattern Or it can be traced without damaging the original. I want to keep wearing this skirt, so tracing it is…

Grey striped fabric and original cord skirt.

I pinned the skirt onto brown paper and added the seam allowance for the button placket:

I took some photos and a video as I was tracing it and have it saved on Instagram.. The link below should bring you straight to it… (If I’ve done this right!)

I cut the new skirt from a lovely grey suiting fabric with a pink stripe, which I got from the recent fabric swap.

Cutting the pockets at an angle
Pockets have been lined and are topstitched on

I underlined each skirt piece with some thin habotai lining, before folding and sewing the facings.

Front facing folded and front waistband attached
Skirt fronts finished
Interior.. Side seams sewn
Bias strips of lining to finish the side seams
Seams bound and waist facings attached
Testing out pink buttons

I had some pink buttons that were the perfect size and made the buttonholes using the embroidery unit on my Pfaff machine. I took alot of photos of that process and will post about it soon.

In the meantime since the pattern worked out – I have cut and almost finished a 2nd version.

Burda 113/02/20

Anyone remember the Burda Dress I started back in March/April?..

burda 113/02/2020
Burda 2020

I finished it (finally) and got a few pictures last weekend. It’s fine… But I’m a bit meh about it!

Maybe it’s just too much green? I bought that fabric in Hickeys Fabrics for some jeans-type trousers and I think I should have stuck to that plan.

I’ll wait til the summer and try it with a different top/cami underneath or I might dye it!

Also I’m pretty sure it’ll need extra buttons…

Also visible is where I had to piece the left front πŸ˜†
I love how the buttonholes are integrated into the waist seam.

I really like the large pockets and the waist buttons, and I might even make it again if I find the right fabric. Anyway it’s good to finish it and move on.

I’ve had a burst of sewing lately, I got involved in a fabricswap on Instagram that was organised by Gillian from Worthy Design studio and Ann Marie from Craftystudio

I received fabrics and some patterns from 3 lovely ladies and I gave away two pieces of fabric that were sitting unloved. I made a new skirt that I’ll upload soon and I also made a new shirt which is pictured below waiting for buttonholes.

M7575

I used McCalls M7575. Its my 2nd time using this pattern – the 1st shirt is made from a white and grey fabric, and even though the colour isn’t great on me, I still wear it to work because I love the fit. (It might go in the dye bucket with the green dress now that I have a replacement!)

Plans for this weekend including hiding from the rain and wind and prepping some patterns for my next burst of sewing. Oh and for anyone interested – I did manage to get in the sea last week for the first time ever in November – not as cold as I expected so I must be acclimatising πŸ™‚

Bits and pieces..

I hope all is well in your part of the world… Things are OK for now, but alot can happen in a few weeks and I’m wondering when life will feel predictable again.. I know it never really is! But there would be a comfort in knowing plans could be made and friends could be gathered….. in the meantime we find a distraction….

The best distraction is a bracing swim in open water…!

I’m trying to get as many ‘last’ swims in before the weather changes drastically… Each one gets savoured in case it is the actual last, but maybe I’ll be able to brace the cold for another while!

Otherwise I spend alot of time thinking about making, but not enough time actually making (for myself at least)…

Some things I’m enjoying making – like this teeny tiny Cardigan for a baby gift:

Its the fuss free baby Cardigan (pattern available on Ravelry).

Other items I dread sewing.. (why did I agree to alter a dress?)… I forget how little sewing time there is and then regret using it up doing sewing that’s not for me! 🀣 (update: the dress is done, and gratefully received… and I’ve reminded myself how to say no, and to stop worrying about causing offenceπŸ˜†).

My cardi is getting lots of wear!

I also have a new finished object that’s almost ready to share, it’s a Punch needle picture that I started in March, using leftover yarn. I just need to get a frame to pin it onto, and I can hang it up.

Fluffy detail of the Punch needle picture!

Other than that I hope to get some sewing cut out and some more knitting cast on, in the hope that it’ll kick start my motivation again!