Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Living up to my Domestic Disaster name

Today is Dave's birthday. He has been SO busy of late. Working working working working. We didn't have time to invite family over. He didn't even expect to be home for dinner tonight, so I didn't make dinner. Boys and I were either going to eat leftovers or frozen dinners. (I know, frozen dinners are gross, but they are so easy and my boys love them.) Well, at 6:15, while I sat at Special Olympics basketball practice that would last until 7:00, Dave shows up and tells me he will be home for dinner after all. Uh... We are having frozen dinners... Uh... Sorry honey, it is your birthday, and you get a "meatloaf" dinner in a plastic tray.

Truly a domestic disaster moment.

A braided rug Chapter 1

I've long wanted to make a braided rug. I started last week, the day a box arrived in the mail holding the metal "braidkins" that help you fold the material before you braid it and the metal "bodkin" that helps you sew the braids together. I had already started tearing the strips of wool and sewing them together. I'm putting this one in front of the kitchen sink, so I'm using brown, a variety of yellows and golds, some black/gray herringbone, a gray/brown/yellow plaid, and probably some plain black before it is all done. All are colors from the counter top in the kitchen.

The middle is a bit "puffy" but so far the learning curve for this project has not been bad. I've pretty quickly figured out how tight to braid and how tight to pull the lacing twine. I have a blister on my index finger from pulling the twine.

I'd love to watch an experienced rug braider work. I'm sure I'd learn much more quickly. Anyone know such a person?

Oh, and you don't need to tell me that I have 15 projects going at the same time. I know it.

P.S. Kris from Resweater--The yellow I'm working with in this photo is from your blanket!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

A new wall piece

Here is another small wall piece. This one is some kind of hybrid quilt patch, penny rug, button mania. I'm thinking of making another similar piece to make the whole thing twice as big. As it is it is about 9x10. I think a piece 18x10 would look nice in that corner.

I've also started a braided rug. I stumbled across a $1 coat day in Goodwill a few weeks back and bought a few 100% wool coats. One thing has led to another, and I'm now about 5 rounds into a rug for in front of the kitchen sink. I dream of making a rug big enough for the family room--but I know with my attention span, a project that big might just be too much.

Thursday, February 11, 2010


So, here is a work in progress of which I'm actually proud. I decided to wait on the BIG wall hanging for above our fireplace until I had a better technique figured out. For this small piece (15X15) I used fusible interfacing. I was trying to do the whole wall hanging with reclaimed stuff except for the thread. It just didn't work. Nice interfacing made this MUCH easier to sew, and thus, a much more successful final product, I hope. Not quite done yet, I ran out of thread and can't find the 6 spools I bought a few weeks back when Joann had a huge sale on black and white thread. I want to put a 1 inch border in the darkest green. Photo taken with cell phone, so color isn't great.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Resweater Giveaway!!!

If you have been thinking about wool felt, and want a chance to try it without actually ruining one of your own sweaters, or venturing out to a Goodwill store to buy one, check out this great giveaway at ReSweater-- Click

Here (

If you win, you get to pick any sweater she has in her shop!!! I think you have until the 13th of Feb. to enter. Good luck!

Alex Twirlling Posted so I can find the video

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Progress on my wall hanging

But I'm still not sure I know how I'll finish it... I have all the strips cut except the blue. I need two blues if I follow the colors of my model exactly. (See previous post for the Amish quilt that is my inspiration for this project.) I have never seen a thrift store sweater in the right color blue for the second blue. I have a nice royal, but the second is like a light royal blue... I have a lot of different shades of blue, but none are right. I may go with a slightly different blue than is in the model. Note that the colors of all the strips is way off. The strips in the foreground of the photo are black and green...

I've sewn the middle section, and the next set of strips. If nothing else, I've discovered a cool way to make a beautiful scarf. I think the middle part with the black, brown, and pink would make a fun scarf.

I still have to figure out a more secure way to finish sewing the piece. I may put it on a backing, or I may do hand sewing, or I may try another layer of machine sewing somehow. My original idea to hand sew the pieces to a backing one at a time didn't work at all... I may have to get the quilt frame out to stretch it onto a backing piece in order to do the hand sewing and keep it all square. It isn't coming out perfectly square the way I'm doing it now, so...

I just hope that someday you see a photo of the finished product hanging above the fireplace, and NOT a photo of the whole thing being burned IN the fireplace out of frustration. I just keep looking at the photo of the original, and thinking how cool it will look, and how it will be fine, even if it isn't "perfect."

Second and Third Attempts

I won't even show a photo of bootie #1...

They are getting better and I'm learning how to sew with suede. (My best tip that I didn't read elsewhere on the internet: Hold it together with little clothes pins, 'cause you can't use regular pins....and that seems easier than the binder clips others suggest.)

I'm still fiddling with the pattern and the design. I want elastic in the ankle part, but that is easier said than done.

The green one looks better, but in fact, it isn't put together in a way that will make it easy to put on and off, so... Back to the drawing board.

Monday, February 01, 2010


I spent last week's crafting time playing with baskets. I made a few that I like a lot. I spent a lot of time on one that didn't turn out very well. I don't have a photo of it here. The basket above is one of my favorites. The bird's nest is also a favorite. This week I'll be playing with baby/toddler shoes. I found suede jackets for .99 this week. I've wanted to make slippers or toddler shoes but needed suede for the soles. Now I have some.

I'll make free shoes/slippers for the first FIVE readers or facebook friends that send me the length of their baby or toddler's foot. In return you must give me honest feedback. What do you like or not like about the design of the slipper/shoe. I'll post a photo of what I have in mind once I get them made.