Finished Nathalie.

I finished this up a while ago but getting a decent finished picture proved to be difficult. I asked my husband to take some pictures and they all looked terrible, then my seven years old asked to take the pictures and none of those worked either. I decided to take some of myself and they all looked strange and I gave up. I really need to invest in a full-length mirror. That would make taking pictures of finished makes so much easier.

The 146-1 Nathalie is a free pattern from Drops Designs. I thought it was a fairly easy, straightforward pattern. I haven’t knit a lot of adult garments and I didn’t think the instructions were confusing or hard. (There is a ton and ton of seaming.)I know a lot of people hate Drops patterns but I think you just need to take the time and read through it first and make notes in spots you find confusing.

I put off the seaming of the arms because I find it really tedious but it was all worth the extra work. I really love how it turned out. It is a little tight in my arms but nothing too extreme. I made the XXL size and it fits everywhere but the arms. I know I probably said all of this in my last post about my in-progress Nathalie but I really don’t think anyone should be scared to attempt a Drops Design pattern. They have so many pretty designs and they are all free! It took me one month and a day to finish this up. Working with worsted weight yarn makes a project just fly by. It was also nice to get 17 skeins of yarn out of the stash.

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Next time I take a picture I need to remember to clean the kid’s bathroom mirror first.

Twirly Skirt for my bestie

I love making things for people, especially when I know that the things I make are appreciated and loved dearly. There are few people that I will willingly make things for, I’ve got to really love ya haha. One person, I do love making things for is my dear cousin who has thoroughly enjoyed and loved everything I’ve made her so far. I decided for her birthday I wanted to sew her a couple more things. With the excuse of it being a birthday present I bought enough fabric to make her two projects, firstly a Twirly Girl Skirt for Women and the Agnes both from Halla Patterns. I believe you can get both of these patterns for free if you join the Halla Pattern group on Facebook.

For the Twirly Girl Skirt, I bought some double brushed poly from Sly Fox Fabrics in the color: Saucy. Sadly they are currently out of this fabric which breaks my heart. I didn’t realize how much I loved it until I seen it in person and now I wish I would have bought some for myself. I keep stalking the site hoping they will restock it. This picture does not do the fabric justice at all, it’s so vibrant and lovely in person.20180613_193735

I was able to get her measurement while I was back in Michigan but also learned that she was expecting. So I knew I needed to pick something that would work for her now and with her expanding belly so that is why I went with the double brushed poly for the fabric. It has amazing stretch and it’s so soft like wearing your most comfortable pair of pajamas all day. With the pattern I  chose the longer waistband option for the Twirly Skirt, hoping that it would give her comfort and a little support as her belly grows.

It was a super quick cut out and sew with only a couple of pieces to sew together. I think sewing them hem on the skirt took the longest out of the whole process. It is definitely something you can easily sew in a day with a few spare hours.

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I used this as basically my practice muslin. I had her measurements but because she wasn’t with me I wasn’t 100% sure it would fit. Since both patterns were Halla Patterns I decided to cut and sew her size and send this one first to make sure it fit and that it wasn’t too big or anything. It’s so hard to judge by just looking at the finished garment.

It ended up fitting her perfectly! Maybe a hair too long since I was going for knee length but the fit was perfect! So now I am working on her Agnes we decided to do knee length dress with short sleeves. She picked the fabric for both projects so I know she’ll love it when it’s done. Fingers crossed the Agnes fits as good as the Twirly Skirt does.

Little’s Dino shirt fights back.

Since I made Big a Lumberjack shirt from Pattern for Pirates I, of course, had to make one for Little too. I thought because I had already made the shirt once before that making it a second time would be a breeze. I was so wrong.

First, by the time I got around to sewing the shirt, I no longer had all the pieces. This was especially frustrating because I had taken extra time to fussy cut all the pieces so everything would match and be lined up. It took me forever to measure, cut and line everything up taking into account the seam allowance that I was so happy to be done cutting this shirt. When I dug it out of the pile to finally sew it I was missing the cuffs, the collar and the back piece. I am sure one day I will find them in the giant mess of fabric I have but I dug around forever and they were just gone, totally disappeared. Luckily I had leftover fabric so I set to cutting out the pieces I was missing. I reused to fussy cut anything and just slapped the pattern on and started cutting. I was so mad that I had misplaced pieces that I wasn’t paying attention to what I was doing and I cut the back piece out upside down. This was a big problem because it was a directional print fabric. I had just enough fabric to cut out another back piece and all my missing pieces. I was finally set to start sewing and I told myself from now on I am going to put all cut pattern pieces in Ziploc bags so I didn’t have to go through this again. Right now I just throw them on top of the fabric pile and call it a day, that obviously isn’t working.

I am finally sewing along, things are going great and I get to the sleeves. Well for some reason I didn’t mark the correct placket length on the pattern piece and I ended up cutting the placket way, way too long. I believe it was only supposed to be a couple of inches and I ended up doing five or something like that. So I had to cut out a whole new sleeve. I was barely able to squeeze a sleeve out of my leftover fabric but I just my upside down back piece and thanked my lucky stars I overbought fabric for this project.

Once again I am sewing along on these sleeves that I am really starting to hate and I sew the binding onto the placket I take these very long-nosed, pointy scissors and go to cut my threads and cut a huge hole in my sleeve! I couldn’t believe I had been so careless and cut a hole in my project. Now, I didn’t have enough fabric for another sleeve so I  took two long pieces of scrap and sewed them together to make a piece of fabric big enough to cut out a whole new sleeve. I kept telling myself that this is just my muslin so it’s totally ok for it to not be perfect, I am basically just seeing how it fits. This mantra was going through my head none stop because I wanted to take this project and just throw it in the trash.

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Third time is supposedly the charm and I was now sewing the sleeve for the third time. I sewed the binding on my placket and I somehow sewed it in totally incorrectly leaving a giant crease in the button placket that refused to lay right now matter what. Now I could have just torn it out with my seam ripper but I was at the end of my patience so I just took some scissors and made the shirt into a short sleeve shirt and we all lived happily ever after.

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Haha, of course, that didn’t happen. I ripped another hole in the fabric cutting my buttonholes out and when I was all finished Little refused to wear it because he no longer liked Dinosaurs… The story of my life. He did finally try it on but refused to get a picture in it. It’s too short and too big. At least this is just the muslin…

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Oasis Afghan

This is one of my latest sample knits, my very first for Herrschners.

– I am not getting paid for this blog post and none of the links in this blog post are affiliate links this is just something I am wanting to share for free because I am excited I got the opportunity to knit for them. 

This is a super easy pattern that I was able to complete in 11 days. Easy to memorize so it makes for easy tv knitting. It is an afghan kit so when you purchase it you get all the yarn and the pattern, so everything you need beside the needles, to finish the project. If your interested click here and it will take you right to the Oasis Afghan on Herrschners website.

Here is a picture of the finished project before I sent it into Herrschners.

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This was my very first time knitting something as big as a blanket for a sample knit. It was such an easy pattern it went a lot faster than I thought it would.

 

Big’s Batman shirt.

I am not sure if anyone remembers but back in Januray, I cut out a bunch of different projects so that whenever I had a minute I could spend it sewing instead of cutting and drafting patterns. It worked out fairly well, there are some things I plan to change about my method of storage that I will talk about in another blog. Anyways, I cut out two Lumberjack Shirts from Patterns for Pirates one for Big and one for Little.  I bought some cheap cotton fabric from Walmart that I was basically using as a muslin that I could hopefully use at the end. Big picked Batman fabric for his shirt. The shirt itself was a fairly easy sew except for the placket on the cuff. I couldn’t get it to look or lay right no matter what I did. Next time I do this pattern I am going to see if I can find a helpful video. Sometimes for me, it’s easier to understand something after you watch someone else do it. I made the collar and the inside of the cuffs with a yellow and I thought it turned out really cute. Big really liked the shirt at first.

It was a really fun sew and I learned a lot about shirt construction sewing it up. Big was super excited to wear his new shirt to school but unfortunately, the other kids at school picked on him because it was Batman, they told him that Batman is for babies. He now refuses to wear it at all. I feel bad that that happened to him and a shirt he really loved he now won’t wear at all. The shirt ended up fitting him pretty well and I think he looks adorable in it. Kids will be kids though.

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Sea Turtle Birthday Party

For Little’s birthday, he requested a sea turtle themed birthday party. It was so much fun. For games we had the kids do sand art. I remember going to the fair once in Ohio and paying five dollars or something like that and filling a plastic sea shell bottle up with sand. I don’t remember what age I was but I remember having so much fun filling that bottle with my cousins all around me doing the same.

Like everything I tried to do this on the cheap so I found a blog online that showed how to make your own colored sand. I found this blog here and decided that it didn’t sound too hard and to try and make my own. Like it says in the blog I used Tempura Powder Paints.  I found out they also sell Tempura Powder at Michaels when my paint was taking to long to arrive and I panicked and ran out to buy paint. So just in case, you don’t want to wait to start your project that is always an option. The first time we started we used regular play sand because that is all we could find. It really didn’t work. It was way too dark and the colors all looked muted and not what I was expecting. After a quick google search, I found some white play sand at Lowe’s. It’s this Quikrete play sand. Honestly, it’s way cheaper at Lowe’s than on Amazon but that is the exact kind we bought.

We didn’t really measure our color to sand. I just poured some in and colored it and I used way to much color because when our sand started to dry it got super clumpy. It wasn’t that big of a deal we just used a strainer to get the large chunks out and crumpled it up with our hands before the kids started to play. I love how it turned out though and would do it again. We have so much powder paint left to use for crafts for the kids.  I bought the sand art bottles from Oriental Trading I bought the Under the Sea ones to go with our theme. I also bought the Funny Sand Art Bottles, they were smaller than I was expecting but the kids really loved filling the weird shaped bottles more than the sea creature ones.

The day of the party it rained so we had to do the sand art in the garage but the kids still had fun doing it. 20180405_205358

In this picture, the sand is still wet. I think we got our sand too wet because it took a couple of days of sitting it out in the sun for it to dry. I was starting to get worried it wouldn’t dry in time for the party. A good tip if you are planning on doing this is give it a week to dry. That way you don’t start to feel panicked and rushed if the party is looming closer and you still have wet sand. I bought the containers they are stored in at the Dollar Tree.

Another thing I like to do is make a special treat to give the kids that are related to the theme of the party. I am totally “that” parent but I love throwing birthday parties. I like doing candy mold candies because it gives that wow factor without really doing much work. I bought the Sea Turtle Lollipop Mold and just used brown and green candy melts swirled together to give my turtles more dept and make them look a little fancier than just doing a single color.

I decided not to make suckers with my turtles and filled them just like normally would and just didn’t put a stick in it. I bought little pearl candies and crushed up graham cracker to make sand and I had a bunch of sea turtles laying eggs. The kids loved them and they are really quick to make. You just pop the candy melts into the microwave and I spooned the heated melts into the molds and then pop the molds into the freezer for a few minutes. The whole process goes pretty quick but it looks like a project that took hours to accomplish.

On the needles.

I was bogged down with sample knits recently. I had four right in a row and it seemed like every spare minute of knitting I had was all toward sample knits. Now that I have a couple of free minutes of knitting for myself I started a cardigan. I know it’s not the sweater I vowed to do in the resolutions post but I was cleaning out my closet and found a box full of worsted weight yarn. I forgot I even had this yarn but remember buying it from a Herrschners truck sale. It’s called Sundance Yarns Stonewash.  The yarn has a woven or chained I think it is called middle with acrylic yarn blended into the middle.

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I know I got a heck of a deal on it and it was sold per bag. I bought 2 bags or 20 skeins total of two different colors. One color was a very pretty teal and the other is a gray. The teal was definitely calling my name so I did a search of Ravelry using my yarn to find a pattern that would work for it. I ended up picking the Drops pattern 146-1 Nathalie   The original pattern called for a cotton linen blend and my yarn was a cotton acrylic blend so I knew mine wouldn’t have the drape that the original had but I was ok with that. I have been knitting on this cardigan since May 17th and I almost have it finished. I knit the XXL size for a 53.5-inch bust. Right now I am sewing in the sleeves and it will finally be done. The sewing up part is always the least fun so it takes me forever to get around to actually doing it. I am using my Knitters Pride DREAMZ needles. They are my absolute favorite knitting needles. I use circulars with every pattern I knit and I love how these needles have the size stamped on the size and that they are all different colors. I am asking for another set of these needles for my Christmas present this year.

I will post pictures when I do finally have it completely finished. Have some working pictures of it to share. The color of the yarn is so pretty. Little’s favorite thing to do was use the cardigan as a blanket and take a nap on my lap.

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