Tag Archive | crochet

And sometimes things go terribly wrong!

I have been hard at work sewing lately, although I took a quick break to go to the cottage.  So I only got some crochet done.  Go a weekend without some kind of crafting?  Yeah, NOT gonna happen!

Sewing classes have been going really well.  I have started working on the dress for

Simplicity 3506 and so far so good.  I cut out a 22 in the shoulders and gradually widening out to a 28 in the hips.  This was a great learning pattern for me, because it is the first time I have done any gathering, put in darts or installed a zipper.  Each thing took at least 3 tries.  But I am happy with it and it fits really well!   I still need to finish the seams, add the arm and neck facings and hem, but it should be done soon.

And that is the good news!  Now for the disasters!

So, from this pattern I also cut out the pants…and boy i should have cut a 26 with a 24 in the crotch, because when i tried them on, they were GIGANTIC!  sigh.  So last night I removed the elastic, and took it in a good inch on each side.  I am also going to use a draw string and elastic combo instead of just elastic, and make them capris instead of pants.  In the middle of this process I ran out of thread…

So you will remember the green skirt I had started from

Simplicity 1920 Well I finished it AND the belt and I was pretty happy with it I thought. But you know what?  It was also kinda big.  So I decided I would also take it in and instead of elastic, I would use the same elastic, draw-string combo as for the pants.  So I opened up the waistband and removed the elastic. I managed to rig up a tie with a piece of elastic in the middle and I took the skirt in a good inch on either side again.  But as I was trying to put in button holes (for the tie to go through), I ran out of green thread…*$^@#&*!!!

Breath SJ, breath!

So I had also cut out a plain tank top pattern in fuchsia knit.  I was being so smart, I cut out a 22 in the top and widened it out enough to fit through the bust and waist.  I started assembling it and so far, so good and then I finished the neck line and tried it on…AAARRRRGGGGHHHH @#&@$#&&#$&*$*#&%^%&@#&!

The damnable thing went almost halfway down the front showing an excessive amount of cleavage, and the shoulders were still too wide and the arm holes too small!

It was at this point last night that I decided it was time to go do something else.  So I did.

I have a couple of ideas for making it work for me, and adding some decorative elements…I might tackle that tonight, or just wait till the weekend.

So the red pants and the green skirt are on hold until I can get to Fabricland and get more thread (thankfully I kept the sticker with the colour code on it).  In the mean time I have lots of fabric to wash and items to cut out from my last trip to Fabricland from the weekend.  My Aunt who does costuming for a local theatre popped by on the weekend, with some great kids fabric for me, so I bought some patterns for my 4-year-old niece.   As well as a bunch of fabric to cut out more stuff for myself.  My DH also issued me a sewing challenge for a case for his, oh I can’t remember what it is called, but it measures electrical current or something like that. I wish I could book a week off work and just lock myself into my craft room!   I have an urge to make some chain maille too.  But of course the weather is so nice out, I like to spend as much time as I can in my garden.  Good problems to have 😉



A Slightly Tragic Occurance

I know it has been a couple of weeks since my last post. It isn’t for lack of anything going on however. I was keenly sewing away the week before last when the worst happened. The 25 year old Jenome finally gave up the ghost. The motherboard wasn’t in great shape by then, but it finally decided it had had enough. Right in the middle of working on a top!  Thankfully, my excellent neighbour came to the rescue and let me borrow her Singer, which was  until I got a new one.  Sadly, the top I was working on was also a disaster.  It should have been a simple v-neck sleeveless top in a knit.  But for some reason, which I discovered later, the top was huge in the neck and shoulders and fit perfect everywhere else…huh.  I had cut a 26 or a 28 , I can’t remember, but it did NOT fit.  SIGH!  So I might try to make something from it later, but for now it will sit in a drawer.  It was during this fiasco that my machine died, and I used my friend’s Singer to finish the hem and arm holes and then add some ill-advised darts…oh dear.  I did NOT take any pictures of it.

So after a long consultation with my mum and her best friend who was always like an aunt to me, both of whom are extremely accomplished seamstresses.  We decided that my mum and step-dad would come and visit for the weekend and mum and I would go shopping for a new machine.  Both my mum and Aunt Carol are Jenome users, and won’t buy anything else, so both recommended that I get a Jenome as well.   I had planned to get a fair amount of things done on Friday before they arrived, which I had off from work, but unfortunately I threw out my back on Wednesday morning.  I ended up spending a very painful day at work, and then didn’t actually manage to get OUT of bed on Thursday, although I did crochet a fair bit!  Still, My parents arrived on Friday afternoon, and Saturday, my mum and I went to the Sewing Machine Hospital on Merivale to shop for a new machine.  The Sewing Machine Hospital specializes in Jenome and Pfaff Machines.  I looked at the one my mum has, the Jenome 4120, but it was a lot more $ than I wanted to spend, and did a lot more than I really needed.  So I can home with a brand new Jenome 3160!


photo 3

Isn’t it Pretty?!  I couldn’t wait to get it set up and start using it, so I did!  I had cut out a number of projects during the week while my machine was out of commission.

I had visited the Fabricland in Kanata again and picked up more great fabric.

So I cut out Simplicity 1620 in a pretty white and blue floral cotton,  The top that is the same as the dress.

photo 1  I cut out a smaller size on top this time, and it fits a lot better!  What my mum and I discovered as we were going through my pattern collection and taking the necessary measurements, is that above my bust, I am about a size 22, and my back is even narrower.  My bust is somewhere between a size 24 and 26, and my waist and hips are a perfect 28.  This complicates matters when it comes to making a dress or top, however, we managed to work out how to adjust a couple of the patterns so that they will fit me perfectly!  So this top I cut out a 26 for the yoke, and a 28 for the body, but I made the pleats larger so that it would fit into the yoke.

My mum also showed me how to do seams in a much more finished manner.  I put in a row of stitching at 5/8″ and 3/8″ inches, and then trim to the 3/8″ line, then overcast the edges.

I also cut out Simplicity 1920 in a brilliant Kelly green!

photo 2  This is a perfect fit in a 28.  However, I can’t quite figure out the final instructions for the slit and the hem, so I am taking it to my sewing class on Wednesday for the teachers help.  This was Sunday evening and Mum was already on the road home at this point.  I cut the belt out in the same green fabric as well.

I have also cut out the pants from  Simplicity 3506 in a lovely red linen, but I haven’t started assembling these yet.  Maybe tomorrow evening.


The Great Craft Room Renovation – Part I

So as you can see lately, I haven’t been making a lot of jewelry.  Mostly I have been doing a lot of crocheting and knitting, probably because it is just too cold out to want to do much else than cuddle up with lots of yarn!

Then one day about 2 weeks ago, I was thinking about my yarn stash and how utterly unorganized it is, all crammed into a large plastic bin.  So I was poking around Pinterest to see what inspiration I could find for yarn storage,  and as I did so, I started to think about the craft room as a whole.  I love my craft room, but it isn’t exactly decorated in the nicest manner.  The walls are a very strong, almost Smurf blue, and the vinyl flooring is dirty and peeling in places.  The closet is full of clunky particle board shelving.  The more I thought about it, the more I thought that maybe it was time to overhaul the entire room.  Time to patch the holes, paint the walls and redo the closet.  So began my research, I have been scouring Pinterest, Ikea, Canadian Tire for ideas and products, and last week I started cleaning out the craft room.

Craft Room 0

Oh my gosh, I don’t know how I managed to accumulate so much stuff!

It took about 3 nights to get to this stage.

Craft Room 1

And most of Saturday  to get to this stage!

Craft Room 2

Getting the closet apart was a challenge, especially when a heavy shelf fell on my head, then hit me in the arm and squished my thumb.  My head and thumb have recovered, but the arm is still bruised!  The thing that hurt a lot more than the shelf incident was opening up the bins of my childhood stuffed animals to find that they were all covered in mold.  When we first moved in I washed them and I thought they were dry, but I guess not, and now two years later everything was just covered in mold.  I know that they are just stuffed toys, inanimate objects, but it felt like a loss.  I managed to salvage a few of them, and my hubby came to the rescue again, he bagged up everything else so I wouldn’t have to do it.  Thankfully, one of the ones I was able to save was Miss Mousie.  She has been with me since I was a year old, I even forgot her on a bus in Florida, and the driver actually drove back to the airport with her for me!  I would have grieved to lose her completely.  Silly as it sounds I am still sad to lose so many of the others.

Sunday my hubby helped me remove the rest of the closet shelves and patch the cracks and holes in the walls.

Craft Room 3

The next stage is to fix up a few more patches, then the walls will be sanded, cleaned and painted.  I am going to stick with a nice clean white, simple and bright.  After that, the floors!

Till next time!

Of Snow and Shows and Other Things

Well hello there faithful readers.  I know it has been a while, but here in Ottawa we have been doing a bit of hibernating as temperatures have dipped below -30 more often than I think I am equipped to deal with!

I wasn’t able to get much crafting done in the first part of the month as I spent an entire week sick in bed, too sick to go to my craft room…that is SICK!  Not that the time was entirely wasted.  I did teach myself how to crochet a granny square and have since made quite a few as well as starting a blanket project.  I realized it was time to start using up some of my vast yarn stash so I took out all my worsted weight yarns in greens, blues as well as tan and grey and decided to start a blanket made to look like a simple topographical map of an island. I have made it out to sea, but ran out of navy yarn, so I need to buy some more yarn.

island beginsisland blankie

It have another baby blanket on the needles in a aqua and white basket weave at the moment as well, so anyone I know who gets pregnant in the next year is in for a treat 🙂

I did finally kick the cold to to curb a week ago which was a very good thing.  Besides the obvious lack of coughing, I got an email from the Trend Arlington Community Association to let me know that Feb 2nd, they were having a garage sale/craft market at the Community Centre.  I happy applied for and got a table, so now I had something to get making jewelry for!

Bracelet Rainbow

new bracelets

I am still pretty hooked on my Rainbow Jump Rings, so I made a few really neat bracelets with those.

I also made a number of really pretty earrings in cut glass and glass pearl.

I didn’t bring my full set up from the Christmas Show, just my Eiffel Tower for Necklaces, my earring case and a tray for bracelets.

WM Table

At first the turn out was great!   Sadly it started to snow pretty heavily and it slowed down, but I still had a great show and made lots of sales!   I can’t wait to do another one!

I also have a number of new items now to put up on my Etsy site, which will be my plan for this weekend.

Till Next Time!


Temperature Scarf

So I finally got caught up with my temperature scarf this weekend.  I am not 100% pleased with the colours I chose for it though. I should have picked a brighter green instead of the pale sage colour and the dark green is a bit too dark.  Other than that, I like the yellow, orange and red.  As you can see, it has been a lot warmer here in Ottawa in June!

temp scarftempscarf

This was the only crafting I did this weekend as the rest of it was spent retiling the main bathroom with my husband.



Crochet that is, and cross stitch apparently.  As I mentioned before, on my shopping spree at Michaels, I had picked up a book on how to crochet as well as a beginners cross stitch kit.

The results…


This is my Bernat Temperature Scarf knit/crochet along.  The pattern is created by assigning a colour to a range of temperatures (here in Ottawa that goes from bloody freezing, to hot, back to bloody freezing), then each day you take the average daily temperature and knit or crochet 1-2 rows of the appropriate colour.   So I had originally done 2 rows, but quickly realized my scarf would be about 12 feet long, so I started over with just one row per day.  What you are looking at above is January.  The grey stripe is the border, this appears between each month.  This is the colour scheme I am using,


We are in June now and so far the scarf will be mostly blue.

I was quite pleased to discover that I can actually crochet, I have also made a couple of cotton wash cloths as well and have plans for a baby blanket, (because they are smaller and therefore easier).

So I also finished my first cross stitch and I have to say I really enjoyed it, it came out well and was an enjoyable past time, so I have definite plans to do more!


Cute eh?

So that is what I have been up to lately.  My friend Meagan popped by today for cookies, gossip and beading.  I did chain maille for the first time in ages!

Reuse, Recycle

You have a 2 inch head pin and a 1/4 inch pearl…you have a good inch of wire left over after making your loop.  Throw it out?  Of course not, now you have just the right amount of wire for a small eye pin.

image (4)

I am fortunate enough to have an Aunt that does theatre costuming.  The company was getting rid of a bunch of old jewellery that people had donated over the years, and guess who got it?   I have been happily deconstructing things from this treasure trove and every now and then, they come in very handy.  These earrings are made with glittery acrylic beads I got at McBead and I just happened to have these great glass crystal AB beads from something I had dismantled.  Let’s face it, there is NO such thing as too much sparkle!

image (2)

So in my previous post I confessed to a bit of a shopping spree at the local Michael’s.  Well, you can tell me if you think it was worth it 😉

image (3)I couldn’t resist these, they called to my Dutch heritage (2 generations ago), and I think they make a super cute bracelet, especially with the large white glass pearls framed in a filigree bead cap.

image (5)The main brass pieces of these came from McBead, they caught my eye the last time I was in the shop.   I didn’t know what to put with them though, and didn’t fancy anything in my stash with them,  I came across these glass bicones in a yellow, topaz and smokey quartz mix.  I only used the yellow and smokey quartz, I am thinking the topaz ones will look better with copper.


Until next time folks, I am going to attempt to crochet…wish me luck, and my husband, he has to sit beside me and listen to me swear.