Saturday, 14 January 2017

Cozy Winter Hood & Mittens

We have seen some snow this week, not much by some standards but enough to warrant the typical melt down of national transport routes overnight and the frantic search for winter woolies from storage. 

This prompted me to make L a pair of mittens from the Oliver + S book 'Little Things to Sew'. I made some for her when she was a baby and they were a quick and simple project.

Using some red fleece fabric from an upcycled Ikea throw I made up a pair of mittens. Then seeing as they didn't take me very long (plus I had the book out anyway) I cut out the Cozy Winter Hood as well. I think the original blanket cost me under £2 so this is nearly a freebie project!

The hood is such an adorable make. It keeps her ears nice and toasty and thanks to the ribbon ties, it doesn't fall off. I made the medium for both hood and mittens. The mittens are a bit big on her, but the hood is perfect.

I used quilting cotton for the lining, it was a recent Christmas fabric from Makower which goes really nicely with the red fleece.

I think I managed to make an error when sewing it together and I need to get it down on here so that I don't make the same mistake again. (I do refer back to my blog notes when I am making a pattern again just in case I had any issues).

The fleece had no obvious right or wrong side so I must have sewn it to the center panel the wrong way up because when it came to sewing the inner and outer shells together, the edges were fractionally too long one side of the ribbon tie and too short the other side. I have made this before, here, and didn't have this issue, but that fabric was obviously one way up. So I had to wiggle and contort the edges a bit as I went along. I don't think it lies as smoothly as a result of my mistake. But it still works.

She is looking very mummy-made today with her Oliver + S School Days Coat on too. I think there may be a home sewn tee on under all those layer too!

How fabulous is the light?! Shooting outdoors in the snow has to be one of my favourite settings to take photographs. 
As you see, just a light scattering of snow but at least she is snuggly warm!

Patterns: Cozy Winter Hood & Mittens both taken from the LTTS book

Saturday, 7 January 2017

2016 Recap

We are just finishing up the first week of 2017 and it is time for me to reflect on what I have achieved over the last 12 months. I find that these annual posts give me a much needed boost this time of year. December can be hectic and it can feel as if there isn't time to get everything done. I often end up looking back in disappointment at not ticking off enough of my to do list. But, as ever, in gathering together all my projects, my spirit is lifted at the realization of all that I finished.

I have a very long list of clothes I wish to sew for me! I am not going to get everything made no matter how much time or money I have to spend on sewing! This year however, I did well. It is obvious that I never stray far from one colour scheme, but blues and greens make me happy and so they shall always feature heavily in my garments!

Ottobre Tee, Thurlow Shorts, Archer Shirt, Moneta Dress, Qwist Hat, Barley Hat, Moneta Dress, Traveler Tunic, Gallery Tunic, Striped Knit Sweater

I made up three patterns that had been languishing in my stash forever! The Colette Moneta dress, of which I made two and totally love them. The Sewaholic Thurlow shorts got as far as a test muslin. With a few tweaks, they will make a really great pair of trousers/shorts. I am looking forward to revisiting that pattern soon. Lastly, the Lisette Traveler tunic. My most worn item of the year by far.

For Boo, who is growing out of the reliable Oliver and S patterns I love, this year has been a voyage of discovery. Seeking out patterns that go above the age 12 sizing but do not yet hit the small ladies. Yes, I have entered tween size territory and it is terrifying.

Luckily Simplicity/New Look do a range of half sizes which means that she will still fit into the 8-10 category. These styles also seem to be the sorts of things she likes to wear so I am keeping an eye on the new releases and snapping them up. The purple dress below, the blue and green knit dress and the peachy cardigan with faux tee are all from the Simplicity range and are great patterns.

I finally got to sew up some City Gym Shorts and they are just as wonderful as everybody describes! I will be making some more this year (hopefully for me).

New Look 6296, Flax Sweater, Kwik Sew 4113, Simplicity 1382, Grannys Favourite Cardigan, Simplicity 1025, O+S Sketchbook Shorts, City Gym Shorts, O+S Butterfly Top, O+S Rollerskate, Ottobre Vest & O+S Nature Walk Pants, Ottobre Tee and Skirt, O+S Art Museum Vest, Kwik Sew 3816 Bodywarmer

L got a few new things, she is still happily riding the wave of hand-me-downs but to give mummy her O+S fix she did get a couple of new items. A Hide and Seek Dress and a Bento tee as well as one of my favourite makes of the year, the pairing of a kitty Music Class blouse and some chambray Puppet Show shorts.

O+S Hide and Seek Dress, O+S Bento Tee, Sew Liberated Tee's, Vintage Sirdar Hat, Flax Sweater, O+S Music Class Blouse and Puppet Show Shorts, Jalie 3461
Alas, poor Jay, he got a shirt. Just the one. 
I must try harder....

But he does love this shirt, his second Negroni, so I didn't fail completely.

 Some of my favourite makes however weren't for my family at all. They were made with love for somebody else. The essence of why I make things in the first place. To make someone smile.

These mice were a commission for my lovely friend Nicole. If you are unfamiliar with the book Mouseton Abbey, go and have a look, it is delightful and these mice were based on some of the different characters within the book.

I used the Dickensian Mice knitting pattern by Alan Dart and adapted it to recreate some of the main characters. I made some notes on my ravelry page for those who are interested.

For my school friend Victoria who had her gorgeous baby boy last year I made a couple of O+S Lullaby Layette Pants and knitted up a Puerperium Cardigan in a soft bamboo cotton yarn. This was a lovely item to knit and I would certainly make it again for any newborns on my gift list!

My goals for this year go something like this:
  1. Continue to learn and get better at crochet. Still very much a beginners craft for me but this time next year I hope to have developed in this skill.
  2. Sew a new coat for myself. I have the Closet Case Files 'Clare Coat' in my possession and the fabric to make it. I am just so tired of my other cold weather coat that I need an update.
  3. Try out more of my Thread Theory patterns for Jay and make him more than just one thing!
  4. Having been bought the O+S Building Block book for Christmas (thanks Hubby!) I want to make a few things from that and involved the children in the design process.
  5. Have fun and don't stress. (maybe this should have been up at number one!)
Happy New Year to you all. Thank you to all my sewing and knitting friends from all over the world. You continue to be a source of inspiration and joy to me through your wonderful creations and comments on IG and other channels. Have a productive, healthy and happy 2017!

Katy xx