Tag Archives: finished!

Christmas Sewing Update The Second

Last week’s Christmas sewing session was very productive, but not completed, hence the lack of photos. Over the course of the week I’ve slowly been finishing what I started and I’m now finally ready to share.

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The trees are either going to be hung as a garland or as individual decorations, I’m not quite sure yet. But as a novice sewist I’m quite impressed with what I’ve done and how neat it all looks. My seams are usually fairly straight but I often struggle with tension. I didn’t really have that problem this time, maybe I’m *gasp* improving?!

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I was a little wary of sewing the heart, I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to make the blanket stitches neat enough for my perfectionist ways but I think I did alright! And it was very relaxing, carefully stitching it together whilst listening to a podcast (I’m slooowly catching up on the lovely A Playful Day). I’m thinking I might have to make another one.

This weekend I’m taking on the challenge of patchwork and making a gorgeous Christmas cushion cover for my sofa. I’ve picked a very straightforward pattern so I’m hoping the hardest bit will be picking out the squares of fabric.

But if you think I’ve abandoned knitting, think again. Check back here later as I have a very cute little character that I’d like to you to meet.

And a pattern.

And mini pom-poms.

A Hot Design

My latest published design is a gorgeous colourwork cover for your hot water bottle to help keep you toasty warm. I find there’s nothing quite like a hot water bottle to snuggle up with on the sofa or to ease any aches and pains. This would also make a fantastic gift in the colder months, perhaps with a supply of hot chocolate and marshmallows? Or a mug and cookies? The ideas are endless!

New hot water bottle cover
Pictured: Rowan Pure Wool DK in Purple & Dahlia (100% Wool, 136yds/124m per 50g ball) & RYC Cashsoft Baby DK in Bloom (57% merino wool, 33% microfiber & 10% cashmere, 142yds/130m per 50g ball.)

I found it quick to knit but that’s probably because I couldn’t wait to see the design in my head become a finished project. It was always ‘one more round’ or ‘one more pattern repeat’! Even if you’re not as eager as me, I don’t think it would take long to complete and the finishing is very minimal. I avoid sewing things up whenever possible so this is worked almost entirely in the round.

Also, as it take less than a ball of yarn for each colour you can use up your leftover balls of yarn from other projects as well as be creative with the colour combinations! The pattern includes handy links to tutorials of the techniques used but I’m always happy to help with any questions too.

For a limited time only, the pattern is available at the reduced price of £2.00.*  You can purchase the pattern using the button below (you do not need to be a Ravelry member).

Materials
3x 50g DK weight yarn
4mm/US#6 needles (circular or dpns) or size
required to get gauge.
Spare needle one size larger for 3 needle cast off
3 Snap Fasteners (15mm)
Darning needle
Waste yarn

Gauge
8st and 30 rows to 4 inch (10”) in charted pattern.

Finished Measurements
This cover will fit a standard hot water bottle 33cm in length (total, including top opening) and 20.5cm in width.

Skill Level
Intermediate – As well as basic stitches, this uses colourwork, a provisional cast on and a 3 needle cast off.

*Until 10/10/12. Regular price: £2.50

Graceful Chartwell

I finished this a while ago but only got around to blocking it this last weekend. It didn’t need a lot of blocking but it has sorted out the edges, opened it up a bit and it now drapes lovely rather than laying like a fluffy cloud.

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I have a lovely monochrome flower print dress that I think it’ll look fantastic with. I’m thinking it’ll work both as a wrap for fancy evenings out or as a scarf for a bit of luxury during the day.

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The yarn is Rowan Kid Silk Haze in the colour Ghost which I was lucky enough to find with 10% off. I love Kid Silk Haze, it has great colours and is so soft with such a lovely sheen. In my opinion, there’s no other yarn that can match it*. The only downside is that it sheds a lot. I could probably have spun some mohair yarn with the amount that came out of my project bag at the end!

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Chartwell is a pretty straightforward pattern. It starts from the long end with a daunting 263st to cast on. But it gets better from there with decreases every other row although it takes a while before it actually feels like its going faster! I did have just one gripe with the pattern, it has one of the smallest charts I’ve ever seen! It’s not an incredibly complex or intricate pattern so it didn’t need every stitch for the first 66 rows to be printed out, a box marking the pattern repeat would have sufficed.

Overall, I enjoyed knitting it but I’ll enjoy wearing it even more!

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*Debbie Bliss has recently bought out Angel, a yarn with very similar fibre content. I’ve squidged it in a shop but I haven’t tried it as I’m not so keen on the colours.

Ta-dah!

My weekend bag is finally finished! It took a few more days than I was expecting but I got there in the end.

Bag

It’s the first project I’ve made using my sewing machine and while it’s not perfect it’s really not that bad either. There are only a few wonky seams and I’ll probably sew the handles on again neater at some point but the main point of this project was to learn and that was a complete success.

I’ve practiced doing bias binding, interfacing, seams and getting the tension right amongst other things. Plus, I can now change threads and wind bobbins without looking up the instructions. Oh, and I’ve learnt it’s a good idea to check the pockets before you sew things together, before you do something silly like sew the liner in upside down…

I’m planning to use the bag for my knitting, I can use it as a stash basket or alternatively it will easily hold everything I need for a WIP (or two!). There’s 8 balls of yarn underneath the WIP in the picture below and still room to spare!

Inside the bag

I put pockets on the inside and outside as the bag is reversible although I’m probably going to keep it patterned side out. There’s also an additional mini pocket on one side.

Handy pockets with pretty needles

The worst of the wonky stitches was on the handles as I struggled to keep it straight whilst sewing with the bulk of the bag. I’m quite pleased with the handles themselves though.

Wonky stitches

I’ve got so much more to learn but I think that’s a pretty good start! :)

Bag

Now I need to decide what to make next…