Saturday, January 14, 2012

High Five for Little Monkeys!

This New Year has brought with it my third trimester and therefore a lack of energy. I've only found time for a few crafts but each of which I am stoked to share.

First up, my two and half year old, Silas, has been asking to paint almost daily. As the paintings pile up because the hoarder in me won't toss any of them, I decided I had to do something with them. My favorite so far has been this "Hi" card... or "high five". I have quite a few hands I cut out in preparation for this years birthday cards =]

Next project was inspired not only by the little feet that lovingly kick my organs all day and night, but also by a little 3 month old darling with no shoes for church... we couldn't have that. So I pulled out my old pattens and found I already had this one from Hook Candy.

The pattern is genius, I love the two layers of the footbed creating the stripe around the outside. I used Lion Brand Cotton Ease and found I had to go down a full size on the pattern to get the sizes right. But since I have every color in this yarn (because it's what I make my Owl Hats out of) I plan to make a few more pairs to match certain outfits. Yay for accessorizing little girls!

On to my long awaited trip to CA... I have a few things I really wanted to make for this trip and the 8 1/2 hour flights each way. First, a neat quiet book, but I went the easy route and borrowed a friends instead. Second a felt road or train track mat, which can't find the motivation to even cut the pieces out for some reason. And last, a fabric house, barn, or train shed. Silas would have adored this, but it's still on my To Do list

I did, however, finish what I consider to be the most necessary item for traveling alone with a 40 lb 2 1/2 year old who jets every chance he gets. Since I can't really pick him up and carry him for long periods of time due to my current condition, I refashioned his little backpack into a harness with a removable leash.

I felt like a terrible person even wanting a harness for him, but honestly, I have such a hard time having any adult interaction having to do with standing at a counter because my kid just runs. So, I am just going to overlook to nasty glances I'm going to receive and play it safe.

The strap for his chest took all of 10 minutes to sew together. the best part is the chest strap is tight on the backpack straps, so as you reposition the height or the clip, it stays in place!

The D ring on the bottom I had to sew into place by hand, that took about 45 minutes. It's not easy sewing down through the bottom of a backpack and into two layers of that strap.

The leash is totally removable and stores nicely in the pocket under the monkey's face (not the zipper pouch, there's another one under the flap) Score on that Old Navy clearance find from when Silas was born. Luckily, my guy loves wearing this back pack, but he may think differently about it after this week.

And my on going project: I've been working on this beauty since the week after Christmas. JoAnn's had a big yarn sale, so I picked up some EcoWays yarn because they had all the colors I wanted to use and have been working on this wave blanket for the bun in my oven in my spare time, which is quite a lot.

It works well since I have been told by the doctors twice now to sit with my feet up often (I've been in the hospital twice and the amount of contractions I've been having concerns the Doc a bit, but with a relaxed life style I can really feel a difference.) But hey, I'm 30 weeks now, not much longer till we've got a noob on our hands and NO time for crafts. 

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Xmas Craft Round Up

Somehow I made it through this month with something to show, but not nearly as much as I had hoped or planned, typical! But here's why...

The week before Christmas, aka MY crafting week, after I finished Xmas Etsy orders and made it to the one party we had to attend, I woke up early Monday morning with a terrible need to pee. As with most women in their third trimester of pregnancy, this is not abnormal, but the following events surely weren't part of your every day pregnancy.

Long story short, I wound up in the hospital for 5 days with a kidney stone, came home Friday because I refused to spend Christmas in the hospital (though I did spend my wedding anniversary there). I was only allowed to have a pain killer that would merely dull the pain at home, and was unable to move for the most part. I got the best gift of the year on Xmas Eve when I passed the stone mid-day and was able to stop taking narcotics. Those things can really mess a person up! I truly feel giving birth this time around will not be quite the ordeal the kidney stone was, it's true 100% that the pain is equal to that of labor. Christmas Day I was starting to feel like my old pregnant self again, waddling here and there, but still sluggish. And finally, today almost a week later, I have energy to do more than just make it through the day. Hence the blog post, yay!

So although I have no ornaments or crafting purely for joy to share, these are the orders I managed to finished.

Baby Slippers: 6-12 months

Lots of Owl Hats:
Introducing new color schemes: "Lily" in Childs Large

...and "Olivia" in Teen

Another of the ever popular "Sophia" in Adult Large (I made three of these exact ones)

...and one in Toddler

And for the first time in a few years, I made scarves! 

This one was a thank you gift for the wonderful lady who watched Silas the week I was in the hospital.
I'm calling it the "Chain Scarf". It's not super warm, more a decorative design, with a removable flower to boot!

This one is a self tasseling scarf from the Happy Hooker crochet book. I love the stripes, but it's a bit rigid, so I went back to the drawing board.

...and came up with this. I called it the "Flex Scarf" because it's very flexible and cuddly. It couldn't be more simple. If you know crocheting, you can see in the close up it's simply a single crochet and a chain stitch repeated row after row. It works up very fast!

The scarf and gloves were commissioned by a friend probably 2 months ago to match a Sophia Owl Hat for a complete set. I fell so far behind but I'm glad I had time to rework them because the stretchy new scarf I came up with led me to remake the Frejya glove pattern and use the same combination of stitches for the wrist. It's a LOT better.

I also have a new sizing chart for the Owl Hats which allows for the hats to fit much more loosely, hoping they will in turn be a bit warmer. I'll change up the sizing chart on Etsy too and add a tab here for it. The more I rework these patterns, the more confident I become in my actual pattern, hoping it will one day push me to actually write the pattern I meant to write years ago... one day, it will happen!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Million Dollar Blanket

I can't describe how nice it is to FINALLY sit under this blanket. I started it when I was 7 months pregnant with Silas in 2009. I had just finished crocheting his baby blanket and was on a roll. But, well, then I had the baby, and all motivation went out the window.

So after moving into our new place in Maryland I realized just how for off track I became with most of my projects while I was in Germany, there was too much inspiration around me, I wanted to do too much and I started WAY too many projects. So here I sit with a backlog of projects to clear up space in the office/crafting room in our house. and well, I'm proud to show my first big finish.

Made from 100% organic cotton yarn (aka super super soft) this blanket feels like a million bucks (and cost a pretty penny too). But it was SO worth it. It's 6' long! Long enough for my gangly body to fit under and wide enough for a twin bed (as if I'd ever relinquish it to a child though, ha!) And honestly, it's the only thing I've crocheted for myself (other than a scarf) I'm so proud!

It really came in handy yesterday when I was feeling like I couldn't peel myself from the couch or I'd fall over from exhaustion. But I'm back to 100% today and motivated to pick another half-finished project to get moving on (but after all the christmas crafting of course :)

Etsy orders here I come! (Another hat sold today, yes!)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Felt Ornament Inspiration

I love the creativity here. I may end up buying a few of these if I run out of time, but I'd like to try making them first...
From StudioTree. Set of 3 Retro Ornaments

From Bloom and Barnacle: A felt stocking, from recycled sweaters, genius!

From Dekapo: Felt Christmas lights! So colorful and bright.

From Shroompers: Felt baby sprout, perfect for the baby-on-the-way :)

From KatieCanavan: Even your tree can have a mustache!

I also searched for a felt pickle to use as an ornament, remember the German pickle story??? I couldn't find a good one. the search is on for a felt pickle pattern =]

Christmas Sewing is Underway

This custom order from my Etsy shop (12-18 month baby slippers) has brought out the Christmas sewing in me. Oh the grand plans I want to set myself up for... But I won't. Outside of orders from Etsy, I want to make a 2012 felt ornament and LOOK for ideas for stockings to make for my kids, I'm not promising to make on in time, but I will take notes.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Smallest Sophia Owl

I finally have a really good pattern that goes as small and newborn for my owl hats. This was my first order for this winter, so I decided to change things up a bit and do color at the bottom instead of the neutral I generally end my hats with. I love making the NB and 0-3 month hats, so tiny and cute! As usual, the Sophia color way is the most popular! Looking to purchase one? See my Etsy listings.

Go Lions!

Christmas gifts for a friend... I came up with these (I made one for a 1 year old and one for a 3 year old) because she told me her nephews like the Lions, I'm not sayng I'm going to be making NFL themed hats, but if you have any ideas, I can try! Hope you like then Jenn!