Tuesday, December 4, 2012

It's a hoot!

The weather has finally taken a dip here in Delhi which is great. I enjoy the break from the hot weather even if it's only a short one.  I've been trying to clear out some of Anaiah's old clothes and filling her drawers with her winter wear. How I wish I could turn back the clock a little and see her in some of the cute dresses she wore as a baby, she is growing up way too fast!  As it's getting cold, I like to have layers for her to wear now. I picked up some very basic and cheap camisoles or vests as they are called here. They were such a boring plain white that I decided they needed a little extra something! Freezer paper to the rescue! 

I brought some freezer back back with me from the US this summer for just such an occasion. If you have never done any freezer paper stenciling, you don't know what you are missing. It's pretty easy and fun and turns out super cute! There are probably a million and one tutorials out there for this so I am not the first one to explain the simple process. 

I found a cute owl design here, it's really a pumpkin stencil but works great for this also. You could certainly draw something yourself too! 

Just draw/trace your design onto the dull side of the freezer paper and cut out the part that you want to have painted onto you fabric.  An craft knife would work great for this but I couldn't find mine so I just very carefully used my scissors. 

I loved this simple owl. Isn't he cute? 

Once you've cut it out iron the freezer paper onto your fabric. (for best results pre-wash your fabric)

Make sure the paper has fully adhered to your fabric. 

I used Faber - Castell fabric paints because that is what I had on hand. Anaiah picked out this color. Please refer to your paint for drying times. Most fabric paints require you to set the paint by gently ironing on the back side after the paint is dry. 

Before painting.. place a sheet of paper under the layer of fabric that you are going to paint. This prevents the paint from seeping through to the backside if it's a little runny. 

Paint! I painted 2 cotes, letting the paint dry in between them. Do as many as you like. 

After the last cote was dry to the touch I very gentle peeled off the freezer paper and there he was in all his owly cuteness! My paint requires it to dry fully for 24 hours before ironing on the back and 72 hours before washing it so that is what I'll do. 

Simple. Fun. and Cute! My kind of project. 

There are so many possibilities with freezer paper stenciling. You could add several colors, customized initials.. you are only limited by your own imagination!  

Friday, November 16, 2012

More hats! F.O. Friday!

I just finished up my 5th hat of the season. It feels really good to get more done and more stash used up!. (I've posted about my resolution in this post.) I'm aiming for at least one more.. hopefully many more but I must do at least one.  I'm also excited to give these hats away to kids who need them this winter. I hope to get my daughter involved with that part too. 

Made so far:
I think number 6 should be another girly hat. 

What are you knitting this November?  Are you knitting anything for charity? 

Go check out some other fun Finished Objects here

Sunday, November 11, 2012

An early resolution.

I am not usually the kind of person who makes New Years resolutions but this year I am making one and making it early. I want to knit away some of my stash yarn. I want to make hats for those who may need them this winter from my stash yarn and I will not buy anymore yarn for myself till I've done so.  I'm kinda of disgusted right now with the amount of yarn I have, I know I have more than I need and I feel like it's time (past time really) to give something back on the yarn/knitting front.  

I've finished one hat already that will probably be going to a little boy named Lucky. He is the youngest son of the presswallas who do their work near our apartment. They have 4 children and I hope to make them all hats! 

Please join in if you feel like you have more stash than you need and you see a need around you. In India where I live the need is everywhere in the winter time. In fact you probably don't even need to go out to find it because while sitting in traffic these child will come right up to your window!  Plus it's a win-win! They get a hat that has been made with love and compassion and you get more space for new yarn! ;)  

Happy knitting! 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Work in progress..

It's Wednesday, time to share what I'm working on! 

I've been trying hard to finish my Red Coat of a Yankee and am down to the last few very long rows! I'm also still trying to decide which buttons to use. I'm leaning towards wooden ones. 

I've also just cast on a new project. I'm making a Malabrigo Neck Thingie by Anna Sahakian. I'm using Malabrigo Seleccion Privada and it's probably the softest yarn I've ever worked with! There is some pink in the colorway I have that I am not too fond of however, the sheer squishy-ness of this yarn makes me want to forgive it for being pink. (I hate pink in case you didn't know.)

I've also been making fillings for making handmade chocolates! I'm planning to meet up with a friend tomorrow to make chocolates. I've not made too may before so I've been experimenting with different fillings. We'll have to see what tastes the best.  I've also washed and dried some corduroy fabric that I hope to turn into a fall/winter dress for Anaiah some time soon. 

There are always so many things I want to do but just not enough hours in the day to do them all. Do you ever feel like that?  

Check out other fun works in progress here! 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Another use for DPNs!

I was cleaning up my crafting space a bit last night when some alligator clips caught my eye.  I decided it would be fun to make some bows for my daughter's hair. I had seen some in the mall the other day that I liked, being sold for about  6 USD a pair! That seems crazy expensive to me. I don't know who is able to afford to buy such hair clips for their child, and even if I could I find it hard to justify spending nearly twice the amount a day labourer might make in India working all day on a pair of silly hair clips!

I've been wanted to make korkers, you know those fun little pipe curls made out of ribbons, to add to my bows. Directions I find all over the web say that you need wooden dowels and wooden clothes pins.. things I have not seen in Delhi. (I'm sure you could find them somewhere if you made it your personal mission to find them, I just have not. ) However, I had a light bulb moment and grabbed a set of DPNs ( that's double pointed needles to those of you who do not knit.) and some metal binder clips I had in my stash, and I was all set to make my own little curly ribbons.

In case you don't know they are super simple to make, just attach the ribbon to one end of the DPN and wrap around tightly till you reach the end and fasten with another clip. 'Bake' in the oven (about 135 degrees Celsius) for about 25 min. Cool them, remove from needle and enjoy the curly goodness! I found that the grosgrain ribbon worked the best. The satin ribbons had mixed results, the better quality ones did better. (the navy blue was really cheap)

Here is what I made: total cost for these was less than a dollar!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Anaiah of Green Cables

I got it done! (Well, ok if I am honest it is not blocked yet.) I'm really pleased with how it turned out! I think it will be a great addition to her winter wardrobe assuming that is we ever get a real winter here. As you see from the picture she is still wearing shorts! :) 

A sweet little goofball! 

Check out other awesome FOs here!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Wednesday Work in Progress

I'm almost done with my Anaiah of Green Cables cardigan!  Just one sleeve and the button loops remain. (and of course all the weaving in of the ends) It feel so good to think that I might have this project finished BEFORE the weekend!  I think it might end up being a tad big on her but I think that is probably a good thing! 

This was on October 5th: 
 This is today:

What are you working on?

Now go check out what other knitters are working on here! 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

My sewing machine has been buzzing!

It's done!  The costume is finished.  Let me just say making it was a pain at times, all those layers of slippery fabric and satin. I had to change my sewing machine needle twice because of that black dotted fabric. But it was all worth it to see her buzzing about this afternoon.  Can't wait till Halloween!

 It's was not a difficult dress to make other than dealing with the slipperiness of all those fabrics.  It's a half circle bubble dress made of satin with a cotton lining underneath a synthetic sheer fabric with the tulle/dots sewn on in stripes. The wings are the same material as the outer layer of the dress with a little trim around the edges. The bodice is 2 layers of cotton broadcloth with a layer of the tulle/dots on top.  Mask is made of felt. 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

What I did all Sunday afternoon.

This morning I checked my mail as I usually do and found that my mom wanted me to make her a photobook. She had printed a bunch of photos at Target and discovered that she had a coupon code for a free photobook. She is not very computer savy so the job was left to me. I've spent all afternoon and a little of the evening making this book. I really hope she'll like it. Because I work so hard on it I wanted to share it with everyone. So, here is a glimpse of Anaiah's summer. 

Start your own Shutterfly Photo Book today.

Hope you've had a great Sunday!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Time to dust of the sewing machine!

It's been months since I touched my sewing machine. Truth be told I just kinda dumped the bags of yarn that I had bought in the US on my sewing table and have yet to clear it off. I bought so much yarn that I just don't know where to put it all! :)  

I had asked Anaiah if she wanted to dress up this year for Halloween. She has done so every year so far with costumes that I had purchased in the states. She decided that yes, she did want to dress up this year, not that she has any real idea about what Halloween actually is. So I have an excuse to dust off that machine and get busy! She has decided on what she wants to be and I'm hoping to make a costume that fits the bill but probably a little stylized rather then going for real life accuracy. I want it to be pretty and re-usable(if possible) too! 

Here is a picture of some of the supplies I've bought today. I bet you can figure out what Anaiah is going to be for Halloween!

Are you sewing any costumes this year? What are your kids dressing up as?

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The start of something wonderful! (hopefully)

Pineapple! Oh, how I love thee! I get so excited when I start seeing more pineapples around. I love them. They have that citrus flavor mixed with juicy sweetness that I just cannot get enough of. Personally I think they taste best fresh. Made even sweeter if they come with strawberries on the side. However,  I have learned the hard way that in India the season comes and goes sometimes very fast so I want to make use of it while I can. 

I didn't really have a recipe for pineapple jam and the recipes I did find were for people who have loads of them and I just had one. So I kinda made up a recipe, added some pectin and sugar and then there was jam. Next time I'll cut out a bit of the sugar though, because it turned out really sweet.  Thankfully this little jam jar was small enough that it could be processed in a large pot because I'm still trying to get my hands on a bigger stock pot to use as a water bath canner. Hopefully this little jar represents the start of a great season of pineapple and Canning! 

Oh, and if anyone knows where to get canning jars in India I'd love to know! 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Friday and Finished!

It's finally Friday! I've been looking forward to Friday all week. You see it's the day my hubby comes home, the day I can stay up late knowing that I could possibly sleep in on Saturday. (Staying up late translates into getting things done and that is wonderful!)  

It's been a busy and tiring week. Feeling kinda drained but nothing helps revive me like finishing a little project or 2. Drum roll please.. here is what I finished this week!

I finished a that cute little shrug for Anaiah. I had taken the yarn with me to the US thinking I'd be making a different cardigan with it but after finishing nearly half of the other cardigan I realized that I was going to run out of yarn. So, I frogged the other one and cast on Artichaut. A delightfully cute little pattern that complimented the dress I had made for Anaiah really well. I love how it turned out! 

About a year ago we had a visiting Raveller named Carol here in Delhi. She was such a joy to talk to! She also generously brought little covered measuring tapes for all of us to enjoy. I was to taken with mine that I decided that would be a lovely little project someday. Just before coming back to India I stumbled upon a good deal for these little tape measures and picked up some.  It's been really fun and fast to cover these and I hope that the lovely ladies who receive them will be as happy as I was with the ones I received from Carol. I'm not totally sure yet who the perfect recipients are for mine but I have some ideas.. 

What did you finish this week?

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

W.I.P. Wednesday.

Here is my work in progress for the week. (and probably several weeks down the line.) I've just started a new project. It's the Avalon Cabled Cardigan by Heather Cabanas.   A very cute asymmetrical cardigan with a lovely cabled collar.  I'm not sure how in love I am with the asymmetrical part though.. might make it symmetrical, but I love the Celtic looking cables. I've never done a 'large' sweater with cables before and I am a slow knitter so we'll see how long it will take. 

I've done about 9 repeats of the cable pattern so far. (more than what is show in the pic) I'm loving the hunter green color but then I love most every shade of green. I've named this project Anaiah of Green Cables just for fun. :)  I'm using some yarn I bought because it was on clearance. Lustrous Lamb from Jo-Ann fabrics. It's 80% acrylic 20%wool and has a slight sheen to it. I hope it's a good match with this pattern. 


Another work in progress is the tiny garden Anaiah and I are growing. I by no means have a green thumb, in fact I'm not really fond of gardening but I keep having this feeling like being able to grow some of my own food is a skill I should have and something that Anaiah can learn a lot from too. While we were in the US we picked up some fun seeds. They had Veggietales' characters on them and so appealed to Anaiah right away.  

So we've planted a few seeds. The cucumbers I'm most excited about but we've also planted some Zinnias, some Bachelor buttons and a few red bell pepper seed from a bell pepper we bought at the store.  I had bough a little kit in the US that worked great for germinating the seeds. 

Our cucumbers!  It's been a challenge for me to get decent soil. When I asked for good soil at the nursery they handed me a bag and upon arriving home I found it was all clay soil. I finally did get some compost that was mixed with the clay soil. Hopefully the plants will not mind it too much. I worry that I will over water them. Any tips? 

Anaiah inspecting the growth. 

Hope you are having a great week!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Yarn shopping in Minnesota.

I told myself (and a group on Ravelry) that my goal  for 2012 was to knit from stash and that I was not going to buy any more yarn till I had used up some of my stash. 
EPIC FAIL!!  I was doing great till I went back to Minnesota this summer. If you've ever been to MN and love knitting you'd know that they are blessed with many cute little local yarn shops. Shops where you can find all kinds of pretty yarns that you'd never find in India.  So I threw my resolution out the window and decided to visit as many of these shops as possible! 

I visited: 
The Yarnery  and Borealis in St.Paul
Knit'N from the Heart in Woodbury
Needlework Unlimited, Linden Hills Yarn, (and one other one who's name escapes me) in Minneapolis
and Darn Knit Anyway in Stillwater

Had there been more time and space in my luggage I would have visited more and bought even more yarn! 
 Borealis Yarn in St.Paul. If I lived here this would probably be my LYS. I loved it, went there a few times. 
sock yarns at Borealis

Darn Knit Anyway in Stillwater. 
I did try to keep luggage space in mind when I shopped, so no sweater quantities of one yarn. My mom went with me to some of these shops and  bought me some lovely yarns also. Thank you mom. She does not knit but she has always been a creative person and so she loves enabling me. 

It was so refreshing to find yarn that was not 100% acrylic or 100% wool. I bought new yarns with fibers in them that I have never worked with before like Alpaca and Merino. I also bought some cotton blends for summer knits.  I broke my yarn resolution for this year but I don't regret it at all! 

I also got the meet some of the Twin Cities Ravelers! It was so much fun to meet them for the 2012 Ravellenic Games. I hope that I can stay in touch with these lovely ladies (and gentlemen) through Ravelry. I had a wonderful time talking to them about our common love for yarn.  Huge thanks also to Debbie for the nice yarn she passed on to me! 

Hopefully next year I will be able to keep to a yarn diet! (or not - we'll see)

Where has the summer gone?

It feels like the end of summer. I'm back from my long visit to the US to see my family. It was WONDERFUL! I don't think I can say that enough! It was really wonderful to see my dad and go out to the movies with him. It was lovely to see my brother John and his fiance Lindsey and spend time with them. It was amazing to see my older brother Erick and his Korean girlfriend Min Jeong and to hear about their lives in Japan. It was fun to see friends and relatives. But most of all it was wonderful to see my mom! She has always been one of my best friends and so seeing her is like a tall glass of ice water on a really hot day, it makes me feel good even on the inside. I miss her terribly already! 

It was also just wonderful to see Anaiah interact with them. She learned a lot from them and is already missing them too.  I could post hundreds of pictures I'm sure so here is just a sampling.  We really had a great time. 

Playing dress-up with Grandma while waiting for Uncle Erick to make some new belts. 

'Hiding' with Grandpa under a tree. 

With Auntie Lindsey and Uncle John and Snoeks the cat. 

Uncle Erick and Min Jeong.


Friday, June 15, 2012

It's hot! and other rantings..

It's burning hot outside these days. The monsoons have not arrived yet so it's still a dry heat but it's so intense that for me even 5 minutes under this sun and I feel like I'm on fire. This heat also zaps all of my energy most days and often leaves me with a massive headache. It's no fun, no fun at all! So, I am so excited to be going to the USA this summer. In a little less than 2 weeks from now my daughter and I will be hop-ing on some planes and land once again on US soil.  I'm already starting to get nervous about it! It seems everywhere I look people are having tough experiences with the TSA and luggage allowances are being cut. I remember last time I flew I was 'lucky' enough to get an enhanced pat-down and I am praying that I don't have that happen again or far worse have to see Anaiah go through that.  But I'm also not comfortable with those full body scanners.. radiation.. cancer.. naked pictures being viewed of my body.. no thanks! Where is this world coming to!!??

Anyway, in an effort to be fully prepared to keep my 3 year old happy and entertained I am trying to gather up little toys and idea for in flight entertainment. Have any great toy ideas to share I'd love to hear them. I've been working on gathering travel themed coloring pages that I am personalizing a bit and will make into a coloring book. I've also found a cool crayon that is like 6 crayons only all attached into 1 'wheel'  sort of thing which does not roll away. I've bought a sticker/activity book, and a new lift the flap book. I'm also hoping to buy some big beads and shoes laces and maybe a few craft type projects and of course some more little toys.

On the sewing front I did manage to make a neck pillow out of comfy soft flannel for Anaiah. I hope she'll like it.

Still have a huge list of things to-do, gifts to buy and essentials to pick up. But the big question is do I bring some knitting with me on the plane or not?

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Speaking of skirts..

I had mentioned in the last post that I wanted to do some sewing for myself and lo and behold it's Skirt Week coming up soon on Crafterhours!

I love wearing skirts in the summer. In fact, I think they are just about all I will wear!  I've already sewn up a lovely tiered skirt in Chambray that I hope to enter and have a few more fabrics just waiting to be turned into skirts sitting next to my machine.  If you love to sew skirts you should definitely enter! They also have a children's skirt category so I might be sewing up a skirt or 2 for Anaiah as well.  

Happy Sewing!

Monday, April 30, 2012

KCWC - Day 7

I'm afraid that I didn't get anything finished on Sunday so I don't have anything to show for the last day of KCWC. I'm totally ok with that. I'm happy with what I managed to get done. There is still a long list of things I'd like to make for this summer for Anaiah but they can wait a little because I need to do some sewing for myself! I love to wear skirts in the summer and really need a few more so those at at the top of my list now.  Hopefully the un-finished things will get done shortly too.  

Here is what did get finished this week.  I feel so honored too that my fishy top was featured on Elsie Marley blog post. It was a great week of sewing. Thankfully other than a buttonhole issue the actual sewing went smoothly. I am coming away from this week feeling inspired by all the other moms (and maybe dads) who made beautiful things. 

I am very impressed by all the wonderful and creative kids clothes that were made with week by all the participants.  Just check out the Flickr pool!  There are hundreds of beautiful garments. Every time I scroll through them I find new 'favorites'!  Here are just some of the ones I loved most in random order:

Me Sew Crazy
Farr Better Life
A Rhythm of Joy
Darci Bee
Daily Design Delivery
Maze & Vale
Sew Country Chick
Aren't they just gorgeous?!