Friday, April 22, 2011

Blankies, afghans, and quilts

It's time to show off some more completed projects. I posted a picture of the hand-knit baby blankie Wennie's baby boy and also posted the hand-knit for Leslie's little one. They're not the first or the last baby blankie I've made for a baby.

I wish I could find the pink Sylvester the Cat blanket and window treatments I made for Mickey when she was a baby....I'm sure there's a picture floating out there somewhere.

In the meantime, I'll show off the crib set I made for Zachary. (Cody got shafted...poor boy was born when Philip and I were struggling financially...we even pawned my $500 camera and never got it back, so we don't even have many photos of him when he was a baby). Anyway, When I was pregnant with Zachary, I wanted a nice crib set. Between the farm animals, bugs, and cheesy animal themed sets...I was annoyed. Why couldn't I find neutral blue baby sets? I finally found a set that I fell in love with but it was $600! Ummm No thanks! I was inspired by the set I loved and decided to make my own.

This is the comforter before I tied the back to the front.

This is almost identical to the $600 comforter that I fell in love with. I made it with flannel fabrics. Here it is in the crib with the bumpers I made to match (and christmas lights on the crib. Zachey was a month old at Christmas time and we found he was mesmerized by the lights, so we put them on his crib to help calm him. It was brilliant).

Awesome, right? It was so awesome that Zachary slept beautifully in that blankie. He would NOT nap at the daycare. I would work all day and then get home and I would lose any time with him because he would go right to sleep. :( I didn't get to spend any time with my baby boy.  SOooooo....

I made him a duplicate blanket to stay at daycare. That's when he finally napped at daycare.

To this day, Zachary still sleeps with BOTH the flannel blankets.

I rule.

I also made Mia's crib set. The only pictures I have are closeups of the fabric.She still sleeps with it, so I guess I could snap a picture of it and post it.

Some of my favorite blankies are the handknit spiderman blankies. First one was made for Zachary and Mia kept trying to steal his, so I made her one.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

In other news....

Mickey and I started to glitterfy her shoes for Prom. So far so good! (I forgot to take "before" pictures of her shoes but they are just your regular plain-jane peep toe heels)

Tokyo Subway Map Quilt progress

4 out of 5 rows of blocks are complete (20 blocks)

I'm so excited to put this quilt together!!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Break from sewing due to Injury!

I have to take the night off from sewing!  I have some kind of muscle injury in my quads.

I'm hanging out in my bed all evening with a heating pad on my leg.

Ok, raise of hands:
Who is wondering how I got a leg injury from sewing?

Even better
Who has actually figured out how I got a leg injury from sewing?

I didn't get a leg injury from sewing! Bwahahaha Got it from running. BUT it does hurt enough that the heating pad on my leg is keeping me from hanging out in front of my sewing machine.

So - here is the status of the Tokyo Subway Quilt.
I have completed 17 out of the 25 blocks.

I think I'm going to do the back in white. I might do the japanese calligraphy in red and have red binding. Hmmm. I just now thought of that while I was typing.

Here are a couple shots of the blocks laid out like it will be together. Pay no attention to the dirty floor. Time to get the teenagers to scrub the floor.

Zachary helped me line them all up. It was like a puzzle. He loved it!

You can really see the train lines forming!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Cold Hard Lessons of Life

The Tokyo Subway Quilt by Elizabeth Hartman is teaching me a couple lessons that I've known but have thrown out into the lonely world all these years.

Perfection, as it turns out, is not overrated (as I've always believed).

With this quilt (and I suspect almost all quilts), I've decided that:
I can sew precise seams...which I do
I can sew consistent seams...which I do
I can align each square up perfectly....which I do
I can even align the seams up perfectly....which I do

None of these matter one bit if I cut the fabric haphazardly without the same amount of perfection and precision.



Monday, April 11, 2011

My own little sweat shop

Yep, That's what Philip called it. I set my sewing machine up on the kitchen table and took over the dining room. I've been spending the past few days sewing like a maniac!

It's been a blast!!!

I've completed 2/5 of the quilt top. 

To get an idea of how this is built:
1600 total squares
Square sizes are 2.5" x 2.5'
The squares are sewn together to complete blocks
Blocks are 64 squares total. 8 x 8
The blocks will be sewn together 
Quilt is 5 x 5 blocks 

Here is an example of a block layout before sewn:

Here is the block sewn together (and placed below the above block to show how the blocks fit together.
Here is a kinda closeup of the top row (5 blocks)

Aaaaannnnddddd....Here is an overhead view of the top row (5 blocks).

This photo is how I discovered a completely messed up block. The black squares represent "stops" on the subway. But this block has a black stop sitting way off in it's own little spot with no train coming near it. OOPS.

Luckily, I'm a master at using the seam ripper and I managed to take it apart and fix it. :) I've been much more careful about putting my blocks together.

Soooooo a recap

I have completed a total of 11 blocks out of 25. Top two rows of the Tokyo Subway Map Quilt top are complete.

I'm taking suggestions. I am trying to decide about the back. I think I want a red fabric. Who has a better idea on the back?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Rock-a-bye Baby.....

Babies make me happy.
My babies.
Friends' babies
Strangers' babies.
Even Fur-Babies!!!

I love babies.

I really really really love crafting for babies!

When I first learned how to knit, I wanted to knit Mia a sweater. I did but it was HUMONGO. It fit her older brother Zachary. He loved it but his daddy wasn't fond of him wearing a pink sweater in public. Sheesh. Let the boy wear pink!

So, my second version, I decided to actually check gauge. This pretty blue with pink stripes was worn by Mia the entire winter when she was just a year old. The yarn was a cotton yarn and was OH SO SOFT.


 Then I learned my awesome friend Leslie was gonna have another baby! I had a boat load of pink wool yarn. When we found out we were having a girl, I started knitting! (even though my SIL was pregnant, too - I had no intentions of knitting for her since I didn't think she would appreciate a hand-knitted item).
The pink knitted blanket in a basket weave pattern was big enough to cover the entire crib. Probably didn't need wool since it doesn't really get cold here in SC, though.  The picture was the only picture I got when it was finished....that was at work when I gave it to Leslie. :)
I had the same kind of yarn (Bought it in bulk in several colors) so I knitted Mia an apron top. 
Isn't she so adorable?
Same yarn - I made her this cute summer dress.  
This pattern became my "Go-To" pattern for baby girls.

Here is my friend September's sweetie wearing the same dress (cotton yarn instead of wool...wool just doesn't do it for a summer dress heheh)

A blue and yellow version for Baby Ellie

Here is a pretty yellow with pink trim I made for a local friend.

 By the time Allyson's TWIN GIRLS were on the horizon, I was really tired of this pattern. I found a cute new pattern and a cute shrug pattern. I even found the most amazing soft yarn to use for the TWIN GIRLS. (can you imagine cute baby girl TIMES TWO? Allyson will need to hide the girls when I'm around because I fully intend to steal them).
Amazing soft yarn. Highly recommend this yarn if you want super soft silky yarn to run through your fingers.

How beautiful are they! Yep...totally gonna steal them.

When I discovered the pattern "Elenka" on Knitty, I knew I just HAD to make the dress for Mia. My friend Tiffany also wanted one for her little girl. I made Tiffany's first....then got the blue for Mia (I love Mia in I usually knit do all things blue for her).
Mia models everything that I make. This day, she did not want to play with the camera.
I can't figure out why this is the only photo I have of the blue "Elenka" I made for Mia. She wore this alllllllll summer last year. She still tries to put it on...even though with some shrinkage and her growth, will NOT fit her.

Fur Babies! 
These are shrugs that are also patterns on Cables and Bits (<--I think?). The colors are probably familiar...same yarn used on Mia's Apron top. One is for a little girl named "Lola". The blue shrug is for a little boy named "Mister Big"

Monday, April 4, 2011

Tokyo Subway Map Quilt Status

861 white squares cut.
30 more to go.

I know y'all were waiting in suspense to know the status.

You're welcome.