Thursday, February 13, 2014

Improvised Knitting

When you can't  carry your sewing machine around with you to places such as the hair salon, kntting is a good option. I am working on a dress using Classic Elite Sprout bought from Holleys Yarn Shoppe here in Dallas. The pattern is (surprise) slightly improvised. It's based on the dimensions and look of the Emma Peel dress pattern from Mason Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines. However it's mostly reverse engineered based on Elizabeth Zimmerman's knitting philosophy. So that math I learned at Hockaday has been useful for something!

The only problem is the growth rate of my garment is not keeping up with the growth rate of my kid. Knit faster!!!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The quilt saga continues

Now that I have completed my Master's degree from University of Denver *woot* I have no excuse not to blog or do actual crafts. Thanks to my friend Ashley at Decorology for the encouragement! So I'm still working on my first overambitious and lightly planned quilt. I have put the quilt sandwich together (top, batting layer, backing) and am now HAND QUILTING, yes, you heard it right, hand quilting the border around the colorful strips.

Hand quilting - going in circles...

My technique

  1. I outlined the rectangle with back stitch in No. 8 Perle Cotton in indigo blue. No, I didn't mark this out with chalk! I just eyeballed the distance from the straight edge.
  2. I took a pot lid and the chalk and started at the upper right corner. Trace overlapping circles with the lid and chalk.
  3. I'm going along the long side outlining the circles in back stich and the same No. 8 Perle Cotton
I'm thinking about hand writing something, like a quote, along the top and bottom strips, so my handwriting will also be a part of the quilt for my kid.

Next intimidating step will be creating my own bias tape!!! This is terrifying. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Creativity Can for Kids

Recently we were shopping at our great local toy store, the Toy Maven in Dallas, Texas when we found out that the Creativity Can people were coming to town. The product designer and a couple of others from Faber Castell were hosting a demo day at the store. You could get a Creativity Can for free, so we did. It contained a bunch of random but good stuff: feathers, google eyes, colored craft sticks, whatnot, doo-dads, etc.
It turns out that they are on a campaign to get kids creating all across the country. Of course, all of their "Creativity for Kids" products encourage that. But the cans in particular are intended to raise awareness of the need for arts education in underfunded public schools. You can get your coupon for a free kit here:
With the creations, which included using the can itself!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Crafting as a form of procrastination

I do lots of crafty projects without much fear. I will try just about any craft, and sometimes it may not work out - or I may start something but never complete it. This week, I became obsessed with piecing my first quilt. Rather than follow a pattern, like a sane person would, I decided to design my own first quilt using a Moda Jelly Roll featuring bright fabrics by V and Co. The colors look great when arranged in a roughly rainbow order. I'm thinking of an inky indigo blue for the background.

Moda Jelly Roll - Simply Color by V and Co.

Here's the general plan
  1. Sew each of the 44" wide by 2.5" tall strips together along the 44" edge in rainbow order. 
  2. Figure out how much indigo background fabric I will need to make the quilt twin size.
  3. Sew that to the rainbow strip, then become confused or lose interest when faced with adding the back side and batting!
Through with the green stripes.

At the moment, all of this craftiness is certainly related to procrastinating from my masters degree program capstone which I'm working on this quarter at University of Denver University College. The closer I get to a project deadline, the more I want to sew this rainbow! Or embellish my new 2013-14 calendar with unnecessary scrapbook supplies. Or go back to one of the many partial knitting projects next to the couch. 

What kinds of crafty procrastination have you done? Do you find you are more creative when procrastinating from some other "important" task?

The first section - pink and orange.