Friday, January 15, 2016

Geranium Dress

On Black Friday, I finally bit the bullet and bought the pattern for Geranium Dress; there were so many beautiful examples all over the Internet. I even bought the expanded version, which includes all sizes from newborn to 12T.

The pattern is so versatile. There are 3 shoulder options (sleeveless, cap sleeve, flutter sleeve), 2 skirt options (pleated and non-pleated) and 2 different lengths (top vs dress). There are also 3 neckline options, but I'm too lazy so will just stick with a rounded neckline.

Here's my first attempt... made from a Joe Fresh a-line dress that no longer fits me. The original dress had a lining and pockets, both of which I kept. Surprisingly, there isn't a lot of leftover fabric!
The pattern instructions are very clear and I experienced zero problems while sewing this dress! If you sew and have a little girl, I strongly recommend this pattern.  I will, no doubt, be making more.

Sunday, January 03, 2016

Mama's Tshirt Refashion

What to do when t-shirts shrink (or you expand) and don't fit anymore?

I had a collection of striped tees from Joe Fresh (looking somewhat like these). 
They are cheap enough that I bought multiples, but when they no longer fit, it's such a waste to donate them all...

Solution: Baby C gets some new dresses!

The most obvious is narrowing the fit and sleeves. With a serger and keeping the original neckline, this look 10 minutes.  I might add something to spice it up, but for now, it's very "French".
This version, I stitched a new neckline. I tried sewing a pocket but it failed and added applique denim hearts to cover up the holes. 
And this final version... I did shrink the neck line a little bit, but kept the original neckband. Although the serger lines are visible, who is going to reach into my toddler's neck and examine the neckband?! The white skirt was originally a halter dress which was pretty (you can't see from the photo, it has 2 tiers of eyelet) but not practical at all. So I chopped off the skirt & lining and serged it to the top.
Voila!  Baby C gets three new dresses and mommy can buy some new striped tees!

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Tables Runners, Placemats & Mug Rugs

I had a lot of charm squares in my stash that were originally planned for baby blankets... but years later, there are fewer babies and the fabric prints are not that "baby"-like anyway.

They are now runners and placemats/mug rugs!

Neptune, by Tula Pink for Moda Fabrics

From a 34 square charm pack, I just stitched 2 rows of 17 squares.  It's long and skinny but colorful and happy. The backing is a blue damask pattern and the binding looks like fish scales.
ODYSSEA, by Momo for Moda Fabrics 

This charm pack had 42 charms.  The runner is 3 rows of 12 charm squares, with a red fish backing. The placemats used 3 charm squares for each of the 4 placemats.  I didn't have enough charm squares so had to cut out some extras from the red fish backing and from Neptune's fish scales print, which I also used for the placemat top. The placemats also feature a red fish backing.
Oh Cherry Oh by Moda Fabrics 

From a 39 charm square pack, I stitched 3 rows of 13 charm squares.  I found the cherry backing in a sale bin but it was a tad short so I added a few inches of red.  However, my stitching was really crooked, hence the added ribbon to hide the flaws!
Wonderland by Momo for Moda Fabrics *All Scraps!!*

I used this fabric to make 2 baby quilts but had some beautiful scraps left over. Being inspired by the whimsical decor in Basho Cafe, I made these for Sister C. I was able to make a mini skinny runner and 6 mug rugs.  The mini skinny runner features a forest pattern on one side and fun polka dots on the other side. Three mug rugs also feature the forest pattern, and three mug rugs have the fun polka dots. On the other side of the mug rugs, there are random patches from the cheater panel.
I have a few more packs of charm squares...

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Sent with Love Leftovers Mug Rugs

Remember those green leftover pieces from the Sent with Love runner?

I made 4 mug rugs that look like this (added some pink strips).
What are mug rugs? There are several descriptions online but in short, it's a mini-placemat that is larger than a coaster to fit a mug and some snacks (optional).

A way to use up scraps, potentially try some new techniques and no size rules... sounds good to me!

These ones measure 7.5 X 9.5 inches. Currently, baby C uses them as placemats for pretend picnic and tea time.

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Something for Bear Bear

I made this bear for Baby C but she is not attached to him at all. I made a top for him, hoping to make him/her more attractive but no, Baby C would rather play with other things!
He's so lonely!

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Things for Baby C

Baby C is growing very fast, and most previous knits no longer fit. :(

I've made a few new items for her, which are so far, still waiting to be grown into. :)

From leftover scarps of yarn and butterfly buttons...
From my favorite fabric and a Debbie Bliss pattern...
From a frogged project.  I still contemplating to rip back some of the gray bottom so it's just a edge (like the neck and armhole bands... what do you think?
Details can be found here, here and here.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Coffee Cozies

Sister C requested some coffee cozies, so these were born from stash yarn.

Details can be found here, here and here.

Monday, June 01, 2015

Amazing Destash

I had a random inventory of Lion Brand Amazing in my stash. Two of the skeins was used to make a baby dress (now a tunic) for baby C.

The yarn itself is a little bit fuzzy, but washer-friendly. It's a "budget" version of Noro (without the crazy color combos) and I wanted to get rid of if from my stash.

First, is the granny triangle, using less than 5 skeins of the Glacier Bay colorway. Details can be found here.
Second, is this ribbed convertible scarf/shrug/cowl, using less than 4 skeins of the Aurora colorway. Details can be found here
The buttons are from a make-your-own-buttons kit with brown silk fabric.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Quilted Table Settings

After a baby-induced quilting hiatus, I was really missing the humming of the sewing machine. I found a Sent with Love by Deb Strain honey bun in my stash and was brimming with ideas! I was originally drawn to the red/pink (Victoria Secret?) color combination but what to do with 40 1.5 x 44" fabric strips? 
To make my main project(s), I excluded 6 fabric strips that had green colors, leaving me with a total of 34 strips to work with.

As you may know, I like to use up all the fabric per collection (if possible) and so I made the following:  

Table Runner
I didn't really know what to do with the 1.5" strips, so I just sewed them all together. It's not that creative but looks good!
The backing is a white denim from my stash. For the binding, I bought a simple red polka dot fabric.

Placemats (X 4)
I bought half a metre of the Michael Miller pink fabric with red dots (my favorite! So very Victoria Secret), which works well with the Sent with Love collection.
These placemats also have a white denim backing and red polka dot binding,

Mug Rug/Trivets (X 2)
With some left over scraps, I was able to make 2 mug rugs/trivets. It was an opportunity for me to practice making a postage stamp quilt - and with my first attempt, the squares do not line up! I also didn't do a good job arranging the squares and had to manually pick apart some squares and re-arrange them so that the colors were spaced out "randomly".
Mini Buttons
With all the tiny left overs (1.5 inch X 1.0 inch rectangles), I made some mini fabric buttons. I bought a kit from the Japanese toonie store and it only cost $2 for 27 buttons.
I'm not sure what to use them for, but they are really cute!

Now, what to do with the 6 green strips?

Sunday, March 08, 2015


What do you do with one skein of yarn? Cowls!

Woodland Cowl

A free pattern, this used one skein of Lion wool-ease thick and quick. Because the yarn is not soft, this is not the most comfortable cowl.  I may eventually frog it (again) to make this hat. However, I do like this pattern with the buttons, so I may also eventually knit this with another yarn!
Notes from Ravelry here.

Secret Santa Cowl

Another free pattern, I used one skein of Fleece Artist Hayley and made this for secret santa. This cowl is super soft and I wish I didn't have to give it away!
Notes from Ravelry here.

I may make a few more next year as Christmas gifts (wishful thinking!).

Sunday, March 01, 2015

Tunics X 5

People always say, if you find something you like, buy it in multiples.

I stumbled upon this free Pickles baby tunic pattern and fell in love.

Creative-wise, this pattern is perfect for a new mom.  It is easy to knit, with few details to remember, is knit in the round and has unlimited options for customization.

Wearability-wise, this pattern is perfect for baby. It is easy to put on, has no sleeves that could get dirty, covers the belly and can be styled as a dress or a tunic.

I made one...
This one used up 250 meters of Bernat Handicrafter Cotton.
Notes from Ravelry here.

Then I made two more (in a slightly larger size)!
Each one of these used 3 skeins of Bernat Handicrafter Cotton (2 skeins main color + 1 skein contrast color).
Notes from Ravelry here and here.

Afterwards, I found another Pickles pattern that was basically the same as the tunic, but shorter and with a little pattern to spice things up. Each one of these took 2 skeins of Bernat Handicrafter Cotton.
Notes from Ravelry here and here.

They are perfect layering pieces for playtime and used up all my stash of Bernat Handicrafter Cotton. Yay!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Bébé Cardigans II

I love cardigans for babies. They are easy to put on, and the sizing is more flexible.

Otto Day Cardigan

This was from a free pattern and while it looked great in the pattern, the finished one was short and stout and not particularly flattering. Cassidy only wore it a couple times before it became too small.

I used 2 skeins of Bernat Handicrafter Cotton in lavender.
Notes from Ravelry here.

Note: This cardigan has since been frogged and knit into something else! 

EZ February Sweater

All of Elizabeth Zimmerman's patterns are part cryptic, part suspect but always brilliant. Used about 300 meters of Bernat Handicrafter Cotton (this was from one of those huge balls, not the little skeins). I had fun selecting the buttons (from BabyVille).
Notes from Ravelry here.

EZ Baby Surprise Jacket

After making one of these in worsted weight yarn, for some reason I thought making one in fingering weight would be a good idea. What was I thinking?  I used Zwerger Garn Opan Regenwald sock yarn and it was WAY too small. Especially since C was born 7 lbs 11 oz, she was already too big for this sweater!
Notes from Ravelry here.

Definitely to be frogged, I might make this into a dress tunic or something...Hmmm... the possibilities!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Noro Aya

Some time ago, I bought a bag of Noro Aya from Elann.  Note: Elann has since changed their business model and appears to no longer carry discounted yarn from designer brands. They focus on their own branded yarn and now shipping exclusively via ebay. Booo, but that's another story.

The colorway of the yarn was very bright (magenta, teal, emerald, orange, lilac...) but hey, at less than $6 per skein for Noro, I grabbed all I could, all 13 skeins of it.

I don't like wastage and made not one, but three FOs with the yarn!

As the colorway was quite strange, with a smorgasbord of beautiful bright colors and dark autumn browns/blacks/greens/orange, I separated the dark colors from the bright ones.

The bright colors were used to make a BB blanket for C and a skinny scarf.

Bébé Circle Blanket (brights)

Inspired by the knitted pop blanket, I searched for a crochet version and settled with this free pattern from Lion Brand.

This blanket used less than 5 skeins of Noro Aya and 4 skeins of Lion Brand Recycled Cotton (cream parts).  There are a total of 16 squares and each square consists of 6 rounds for the circle.
Notes from Ravelry here.

Skinny Scarf (brights)

With less than 3 skeins of leftover brights, I made a happy skinny scarf. Just casted on about 250 stitches and double crocheted rows until yarn ran out.
Notes from Ravelry here.

Missoni Chevron Scarf/Wrap (darks)

The autumn colors were used to make a chevron shawl. Found a chevron pattern and just ran with it. Used over 5 skeins and it measures 13 X 72 inches.
Notes from Ravelry here.

All three projects were crocheted! I guess I am officially a "hooker"!

Monday, February 09, 2015

Summer Dresses

I made a few dresses before C was born. I love dresses as they tend to last longer on growing babies. When it grows too short, just add leggings and voila, a tunic!

Summer Lin

Previously made similar ones for my nieces but wanted to try a different pattern. I like this one, it uses less yarn and feels more structured! This pattern is free and I used some leftover Mission Falls 1824 Cotton.
See Ravelry notes here.

Striped Dress

Pattern is from the Debbie Bliss Spring/Summer 2009 magazine.  I used Knit Picks Comfy Sport (about 1.5 skeins or ivory and 1.5 skeins of lilac mist) and a little bit of Jaeger Matchmaker Merino 4 Ply in dark purple for the edges.
See Ravelry notes here.

Amazing Dress

Free pattern from Lion Brand and I used 2 skeins of Lion Amazing (I found 1 skein for 2 in the clearance bin!)
I made several modifications to the pattern, such as knitting in the round, adding length to the skirt and some other minor finishing details.

See Ravelry notes here.

Striped Dress with Bow

Another pattern from Debbie Bliss, this time from the Spring Summer 2011 magazine and I used Knit Picks Comfy Sport (2 skeins parchment and 1.5 skeins fairy tale). In the original, there was a bow but I replaced it with 2 buttons that I happened to have in my stash.

See Ravelry notes here.

Lotta Dresses (from Lotta Jansdotter Simple Sewing for Baby)

As mentioned in the previous post, I love this book.  And I loved the pattern so much, I made 2 of these. Super easy to make, and super easy to dress the baby (with 2 buttons on the shoulders).

The green fabric was upcycled from a failed top I sewed for myself and the black and white fabric was left over from C's nursing cover.  (I don't think I documented the nursing cover, which is basically a large rectangle with some boning, based on this free tutorial.) I lined the two dresses with some old tee shirts.
Since all the materials were from my stash/unwanted clothes, the cost for these two dresses was $0!