Wednesday, 17 December 2014

WIP Wednesday 17/12

Well I have been very very very busy this week. I even managed a finish :D Two of them actually.

I have a finished dishcloth. It looks lovely and colourful. This pattern is so easy to do. I talked about stitching this pattern in this post. 

The next finish has been waiting a year and a half. My cousin's wedding sampler is finally finished.
I will get better photos during the day but at the moment I keep forgetting to set up for photos while there is light.



Now before I show you my next project we went for a walk on Tuesday morning to get rid of some energy, It was lovely walking down to the river despite the mosquitos that we had to deal with. We were really lucky to catch a koala in the tree while we were there. 


Now the last project I've been working on is the last of the Christmas gifts. I have been making some mug cozies. They look so pretty. The design is my own just a simple treble crochet, with a colourful edging. I just used hair ties and I'll add a button to tie them around the mugs.


Don't they look pretty. The hair ties I crochetted into the edging so that they don't fall off and I don't have to sew them in.


Happy Stitching,
Caitlin

Monday, 15 December 2014

How to make a fabric book cover - Part 1

Here I want to write some instructions on how to make a fabric book cover. Sorry it took me a couple of days more than I intended but with Christmas coming up and trying to get a car fixed to go away time ran away with me.

Of course being me I'm not an expert on this I've only made 4 covers so far though I do have a fair idea of the times I've made plenty of mistakes. Mainly because I'm rushing through just throwing ideas through my head. The main issue has been when I estimate what I think it should be then I have serious problems. All entirely my own making.



You Will Need:

- To have some basic sewing/quilting skills
- A sewing machine
- A mix of fabrics, ribbons and trims that match.
- A book or folder that you want to cover.
- Iron on interfacing that is large enough for the cover to sit on. 

Now I am going to assume you have a basic knowledge of quilting and sewing. That you know to sew right sides together and to use a 1/4" seam.

STEP 1
Now you start with the book/binder you want to cover and place it down on top of some paper and measure it. Here is where I made my first mistake. I got cocky and traced around the book then cut out on that line figuring I could add the extra I needed as things went on. DON'T DO THAT! Trace around your book and then add an inch on the width and the length of your cover. This leaves you with a quarter inch leeway on all sides plus a quarter inch seam allowance.


I didn't allow for that this time around and because I didn't, I didn't manage to catch everything when I stitched it up. It's better to be safe than sorry.

STEP 2

Now is where I hope you have a basic understanding of quilting. I like to make crazy quilted journals and they are so much fun to make. You also don't have to measure anything you just keep adding on until it's the right size.

A couple of rules to follow:

1. Sew right sides together then press seam to one side.

2. As you build up the pattern you need to sew the whole length of the side that you're sewing onto. If that means piecing parts before sewing you may have to.

see below:

The bits don't have to be perfect the idea is not to make it all perfect. You can see in the photo below that the edges aren't lined up perfectly and that is alright it gets sewn so that it looks very neat.


Also as you can see here below the bottom row needs to be pieced separately then sewn onto the whole piece.


3. If you're adding ribbons onto a small piece then make sure you sew them in when you do the seams. If you are adding large pieces on then you can sew them at the end.

4. Feel free to fussy cut your fabric like I did for the trumpet above or use pieces with embroidery like I did for my first book cover with the kangaroo.

See Below:



Keep sewing until it is as large as the piece of paper.


STEP 3

Now you need to cut a piece of iron on interface the same size as your pattern piece. This you will iron onto the back of your quilting.
Warning: iron on the quilting side not the interface side it can stuff up your iron.

STEP 4

Here is the fun bit. Now your fabric has a bit more protection and is solid with the interface you can now add all your machine embroidery/ribbons etc. that you want to sew onto the front.

If you are hand sewing the embroidery you may want to sew before you put the wadding on but I'm not really sure on the logistics because I don't do much hand embroidery yet.

I'm going to leave the instructions here tonight there is a lot for you to be doing. I will start up next time with instructions to help you make the inside pockets.

Happy Stitching,
Caitlin

Thursday, 11 December 2014

Journals

Now I have never been crazy about having a journal because I tried that through university. I would start the year/semester all excited about the weeks ahead. Every tutorial and lecture would be written in and all would be clear.

But I would always end up forgetting about it in 3 weeks. I hated having empty days and felt like I had to write everything in. Some weeks I'd do stuff but forget to write it in so I'd go backwards and fill it and feel absolutely stupid. We all have those days.

About a month or two ago though I started using a method called bullet journalling. I love love love it. You search up how to bullet journal and you find all sorts of cool stuff. I've even dragged out all mum's old stamps and maybe bought some more owl ones for myself.

Pretty stamp box :D


This said I've managed to keep up with my journal this time because I'm looking at the whole week and giving myself jobs. I'm not making it a daily thing I'm making it a weekly need. I'm even planning menus.

Now this said there is a crafty reason behind this post other than the pretty stamps. I was lusting after the kikki k personal planner. The one in lilac since it's such a pretty purple. I also liked the monthly view so I can plan ahead but also that I wasn't held down by weekly views.

I couldn't justify spending $80 on a planner though. Then I did some more research, I worked out that I could buy a cheap $4 ring binder from office works and then make a pretty cover for it. I loved the idea so much I went out that day to buy a binder.


It doesn't look like much but I wanted to turn it into something.



I'm so excited about how it turned out! I will be showing you much more tomorrow when I do up a tutorial on how to make a cover for yourself.

Happy Stitching,
Caitlin

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

WIP wednesday 10/12

Well I actually managed to take photos earlier today so I'm kinda excited to get it all up.

 I'm getting much closer to a finish with this one. I need to finish the green at the bottom and add the names and date. This will be done in time for Christmas.


I also have a pile to show you.

 It's looking so pretty :D I'm kinda excited about this pile. I think I have enough made now because I am thinking of pairing them with some cup cozies for the males rather than cloths. I will see how things go.




So many pretty piles :D I just love the colours I am using.

Happy Stitching,
Caitlin

Wednesday, 3 December 2014

WIP Wednesday 3/12

The majority of what I've been doing this week is dishcloths. It's only 22 days until Christmas and I'm not sure how many more I can make before then. I haven't been feeling the best this week it's been a very nasty cold where I've been dizzy as soon as I try to stand. I'm finally feeling more normal so I can actually stand up.

BUT I do have an old WIP I want to show you. This should have been completed in November last year. It does kinda have a time limit as it was meant to be for my cousin's wedding last year and I kinda let it slide.

So I'm showing you the latest photos I've taken today. This week I will be putting some focus on this and I want to see if I can get the border all finished.


I'll show you more as the week goes along. Hopefully I will continue to feel better and not get worse again.

Happy Stitching everyone,
Caitlin

Friday, 28 November 2014

Ebb and Flow Dishcloths

Well I have been crocheting dishcloths again. Actually I've never really stopped. I just try not to show you them constantly!

That said I tried a new pattern this week. It's one of the free downloads from knit picks called Ebb and Flow Dishcloth.




I love the simplicity of this cloth while it looks really fancy, it's very easy to do and you quickly don't have to think about the repeats.

That said I found a number of issues with this pattern. They really haven't done a good job of editing their free patterns and if you aren't confident with what you're doing it's easy to misread their patterns and mess up.

1. It's in US crochet terms so make sure you're aware of that. 

2. One thing they don't mention that is useful to know is that you want to have 40 stitches across as you stitch and it is good to keep an eye on it. I found the when you came up to the SC rows it's really important to watch because it's easy to lose track of the pattern.

3. The other part that can be tricky until you work out what you're doing is the crossed double crochet stitch. I've got some pictures below. They are easy, you skip the first stitch and do a double crochet. Then you do the next double crochet in the skipped stitch. It feels weird but the more you do it the better you get.



The other tricky bit with this part is when you start the row with the crossed double crochet you need to skip the first stitch because you've made a 3 chain and then you skip the second stitch and do a double crochet in the third stitch from the beginning.  This is because you have to come back and do the crossed double crochet.



You can see that you have two stitches that are crossed over and they do look a little weird at first but you get used to it.



The other thing I found with this pattern is that they recommend cutting off the yarn after each colour. That is stupid. What I changed was to carry the yarns up the side and at the end I add a border around the finished cloth. I think this just makes it look neater and there are only a couple of ends to tie in instead of 30!



4. For the border I went round with a row of single crochets and then went around with a border of reverse single crochet. 

5. Where it says to repeat rows 1-8 you actually want to repeat rows 3-10 as you don't need to have double blue rows. They have labelled two sets of rows as 1 and 2.

I hope you do enjoy working on this cloth and that this has helped you work through the pattern.

Happy Stitching, 
Caitlin

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

WIP Wednesday 26/11

Well I haven't really done much this week... I had a craft day and half made a card for my cousin's party on Saturday.

I'm having so much fun with my stamps. They are so pretty and happy :D I need to finish up the inside and then it's ready to give.

I do have some crochet but I will give you some information about it on Friday, as I want to help you make it. So today is a small post and look forward for more later.


Happy stitching,
Caitlin

Monday, 24 November 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

I received a lovely invite to join the around the world blog hop last week from the lovely Rhona over at Tangled Threads. I was really excited to answer the questions as I've been seeing them appearing more and more on other blogs. So here goes.

1. What am I working on?
It's more a matter of what I'm not working on. I love working on Ink Circles Baroque at the moment. It looks pretty amazing. I love all the sparkles.

 
 I've also been doing some crochet and having lots of fun making dishcloths.




2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?

To me the big difference is how many crafts I seem to do. I'm comfortable picking up a hook or needle. I just enjoy tackling many different tasks and making whatever I can. 

I love teaching others and passing on my knowledge and sharing what I do.
3. Why do I write/create what I do?

 Because I have to make stuff. Simple as that and I need to share what I do and what I love. I can't not make things. I've tried that and it's never worked for me.
4. How does my writing/creating process work?

I just write. I'm not very good at planning things out so I just write what comes out of my head. This is sometimes a good thing sometimes not.

 Now keep an eye out for next week. On the 1st of Dec I've got two lovely bloggers joining in. I tried to get a third person but it kept falling through. 

I have shebafudge joining me I love her cross stitch and I always enjoy reading about what is happening with her. 

Also joining me is Charbella stitching she has some amazing work on her HAED designs and also finds time to knit for her daughter's barbie dolls. 

So happy stitching everyone and thank you for visiting. 
Caitlin.


Thursday, 20 November 2014

WIP Wednesday 19/11 on a Thursday

Ohk I could give all sorts of excuses for not posting yesterday but the main reason is I went to Movie World yesterday with my sister, cousin and his girlfriend as my cousin was visiting from out of town.

 Here I am in front of the Bat Car. I was slightly excited.

 We got to see an awesome stunt show. Thankfully the storm stayed away long enough for us to watch it.

This is the Arkham Asylum... used to be the lethal weapon. I just watched my sister and cousin on this one as I'd just been on the super man ride twice and my motion sickness was playing up.

Now since it is WIP Wednesday a day late, I do actually have some stitching to show everyone. Not the best photo ever but we haven't had much solid sun in the last couple of days it's been very cloudy.

That said if you follow me on instagram you'd have an idea about what I'm about to show you.


I finished the second motif of Baroque! I was really excited but I've been waiting for some good light to photograph it but that wasn't going to happen. The heat wave is gone replaced by stormy weather. It's still hot but we're getting storms most evenings.


I love how the colours look on the sparkly fabric.

I've already started the next motif. I like the green I'm now using.

Happy Stitching,
Caitlin



Friday, 14 November 2014

Cross Stitch Bookmark

I wasn't sure what I was going to post today but then I managed to have a finish so I decided to show you how I like to finish my cross stitch bookmarks. I finally completed the tiki bookmark that I bought in New Zealand when I was there in July. It was very close and when I grabbed it out of my bag it didn't take long to complete.



Doesn't it look gorgeous all finished with the back stitch and for once I finished the stitching today and managed to finish the piece today as well. That has to be a record for me too actually finishing finishing something the day it is finished!

Step 1

 

Gather all your supplies together. 
You will need: 
  • Your finished bookmark
  • Fabric Scissors
  • Felt
  • Fabric Glue (I really like the glue pictured above)
Step 2

Cut out the felt starting by making it bigger than the bookmark then slowly making slightly thinner than the sides. You want it longer than your cross stitch to start with and you will cut it down later.

See the picture below:


Step 3
 Trim down the ends of the bookmark so only about 1cm or so is left at each end. Fold one end up and make sure it is glued up before placing glue along the bottom and then halfway up the sides.

 Step 4
 Carefully place the felt on so that it lines up slightly above the bottom of the bookmark. Make sure it is even on both sides then press it onto the glue.

Now you can fold down the top of the bookmark and glue it down.

Step 5

Before you glue the rest of the felt trim the top, of the felt, so that it sits just below the edge of the bookmark.

You can see below what it should look like.


Then glue the felt down like you did for the rest of the bookmark.

Step 6

 Show off your finished piece!

This shouldn't take you long to do. It only took me about 5 minutes to cut and glue it. The longest part was having to go to spotlight to get some more glue because mine had dried up at the worst possible time! I use this glue all the time and it seems to hold really well ... until I leave it with the lid slightly undone.

Hope this helps you to make your own bookmark in time for christmas. It could make quite a lovely gift for the book lover in your family.

Happy Stitching,
Caitlin

ETA:
I had a question about the tiki pattern. It was a kit I bought at a souvenir shop in Wellington. It's manufactured by CraftCo Limited. It's called 'Tiki' by Lyn Manning.
I hope that is enough information for you to find it.