Cosy Autumn and Winter Makes

I’ve always enjoyed learning to make new things and the two seasons have been really good on that front.

First thing that I wanted to learn to make this year was to learn to make socks. I did not get a good result when I attempted to teach myself. When a class was announced at a local yarn store, I did not think twice before signing up. The yarn and the needles were part of the class.

Good thing I did because, not only did I learn to make the socks, i really enjoyed it as well as one colour transitioned to another .Whats so exciting is that they fit my foot perfectly!.Im still learning to do the Kitchener stitch perfectly though.

A local yarn store advertised for sample knitters and I applied and got to make a sample blanket.The yarn and pattern were given to me by the yarn store plus paid to make the blanket.

Honestly it was so fun to work on once I got hang of all the repeats right. The yarn was really lovely to work with as well.

What I really liked about this blanket was that the edging on the blanket was also a chevron.

By the time I finished this blanket, this yarn store decided to move to a near by town . So I took a bus to go there to return the blanket which turned out to be another adventure!

I also made a pony tail headband to wear when walking Amber . The yarn is Malabrigo Rios in the colourway Lotus. Its really cozy and warm to wear.

I also tried my hand at candle pouring. Which was really fun too.Ive been using these candles I made constantly

I also took a Botanical Skin care Workshop with Tuwahiwi Botanicals , which was a wonderful workshop and I learnt a lot of face oils .

Of course I had to knit face clothes for these natural powders. They are 100% cotton yarn and such a fun easy pattern to knit from. You can find the pattern on the Knit Picks Website called Slant Dishcloth

This work shop took me straight back to the days when my mom and I used to make all sorts of natural skincare powders.

My dad would tirelessly went to the local native medicine shop to get all the things from our long list of ingredients. Some of the ingredients we often collected from the plants growing wildly near our home.Beautiful carefree days to reminiscence and cherish the love that went into my upbringing.

Looking back at all these things it feels like a very productive season.

Bobble Cowl

The thought of knitting with two colours of yarn was somehow intimidating to me , that I never attempted to even try it. Then I saw one of the ladies in church wearing a similar looking cowl in lovely earthen colours that I was tempted to give it a try.

It always takes some time for me to work up the courage to try new things. Once I start,I always realise that it was not as hard as I thought of it in my head! (Over thinker alert right here ). Sometimes , simply just doing it is best.

When I went searching for an easy -ish free pattern on Ravelry , this pattern came up in the search. I decided to make this pattern only because it came with the tip to look up ‘Blister Stitch ‘on You tube ,which proved to be super helpful.

I decided to use the scrumptious Nunnaba gradient and Naturally Tweed I had in my stash . Once I got an understanding the stitch pattern down, it was a pleasure to work on and proved to be a quick finish.

I made a few additional rows than the pattern called for as I wanted the gradient yarn to come through.

I couldn’t however, figure out how to do the jobless join in this cowl . Its ok I think ,as when I’m wearing it, it may not be that visible .

This cowl is so so soft. I love it.

Surprisingly for this project ,I did not use up all the yarn in the gradient yarn like I wanted to.I also have a little more of the brown tweed left over as well.

Pattern Details :

Pattern : Bobble Cowl by Ina Aleksandrova

Needles : US 7 – 4.5 mm Chiagoo Needles

Yarn :Nunnaba Artisan Yarn White Gum Wool 8ply in the Shabby Rose Colourway

Scrappy Happy Tote

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This everyday catch all tote has been in the making for a long time.

The exterior and interior  fabrics I got  a long time back from my favourite local fabric store Forget me knots , with the intention of making a tote.

I love combining a patterned fabric with the News print fabric, so thats what I decided to do for this tote.I had cut out the fabric . I added the slip pockets (using the same method I learnt long back at the bag workshops in Kuwait. It is my trusted go to method.)DSC_0307

For the pockets ,I just pulled out a few big enough favourite fabric scraps from my stash .

Then  I wanted to add an inside zipper pocket along with the slip pockets. Since I did not know how to do that, ‘procraftination’ happened.

A few tutorials combined helped me figure that out, however, this tutorial in particular.helped me a lot.

I wanted a pop of colour against the black and white lining fabric and  decided to add a bright red zipper that I had bought in Kuwait, back when .

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That the silver metal teeth of the zipper kind of matched the bag interior was an added bonus.I prefer silver, and copper coloured metal teeth zipper to the nylon and gold ones.

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The colourful lining to the zipper pocket was to keep up with the pop of colour theme and to add a little surprise element to the tote.

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And while I was at it , I thought I’d add a key fob too.

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The lovely owner of Forget me knots once told me that it is always a good idea to use darker colours for bag handles as that is one of the places to get dirty first . So thats what I kept in mind choosing fabric  for the handles.The fabric was part of a precut Fat quarter bundle,  I purchased in a sale.

The bag is interfaced with fusible batting and the handles with a thinner interfacing for flexibility and sturdiness.What's in my bag?

I learnt a lot making this bag  as I went along, adding elements that I would like in my dream tote. It’s still a work in progress even though I’m happy with how this bag turned out.

Mod -Cot Quilt

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canva-photo-editor-11.pngIt’s been ages since I made a proper quilt. .

I set out to draft my own pattern  with my own measurements from a picture I had saved on my iPad .Not sure from where .It was more of a  ‘making as  I go  along ‘ kind of  project and  I struggled with it. I did not know  what size would make a big enough quilt for a baby.

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Then I saw the mod cot quilt pattern for sale on the instagram account of one of my favourite online fabric store stitchbird.co.nz. .Since it looked very similar to the quilt I was trying to make, I decided to purchase the pattern.

Having the instructions on hand, really did help.

I used the fabric I had recently purchased with the fabric that Shanna gave me.These are all free Spirit fabrics, one is Tula Pink and the other I forget. I was surprised that the colours all from the old and new fabric went together so well.

Along with the pattern,Lori also sent me the cutting layout on a fat quarter which was so helpful.

The blocks were fairly quick to put together. It was after I put the blocks together I realised that I did not have enough fabric for backing. or for binding. canva-photo-editor (4)

I resisted the temptation to use a Minky  fabric as  backing, like I did for previous baby quilts I ‘d made.

Ordered a metre of fabric for the backing, as I have only fat quarters in my stash . In my hurry to finish the quilt quickly, I did not read the pattern that  said I needed 1.5 metres for the backing . So I had to improvise and make a pieced backing. A first for me.

dsc_0072.jpgI put it  aside a bit,  looked at ideas on Pinterest , most of the ideas I saw were too advanced for me and then finally, it clicked, I just cut the one metre cloth into two equal parts and cut two other co-ordinating fat quarters to add in-between.

I wanted to do the self binding for this quilt but when I did the straight row quilting, I somehow messed up. I did not think of looking up for tutorials on You tube.So went for the bias  binding. IMG_0652

I did remember some of the lessons I learnt earlier in my quilt workshop in Kuwait about how to do the mitred corners.  I machined sewed the binding too. Another first.I would have liked a better finishcanva-photo-editor-8.png

I tied and hid the knots, washed in the washer and its ready to go now.
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Baby gifts

Baby showers are a great excuse to make baby gifts. I love making gifts for babies not only because of how adorable they look but it also makes me marvel at the miracle of life itself, in the words of the Psalmist, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made”.Those verses in Psalm 139 : 14-16, they get me every single time.

I have been plotting and planning to make gifts for a special friend in church, who is having a baby very soonbaby quilt

This was not the original quilt I had planned for her. Like I have done several times before,I changed my mind after I finished making  quilt top with the fabrics I had got before and decided to make her another one

For this simple baby quilt,I used  the dreamy , whimsical woodland themed Hushabye hollow (by Lydia Nelson for Moda) charm pack that I had in my stash plus some extra yardage to make this quilt so that the baby can use it upto toddler stage. I backed it with the softest minky in a soothing  fawn colour. I also added my Hold&Cherish label to it.

Then I also made her a stroller knit blanket with 100% New Zealand Organic Merino.This yarn is no longer available so I’m really happy I had enough to make this blanket. I misplaced the care labels I had printed earlier somewhere and so couldn’t attach it to the blanket. knit baby blankie

The pattern for this blanket was part of a test pattern I did back in June here. You can read how I got to be test knitter in the first place here. Makes me smile every time!

I used my 4.5 mm ChiaoGoo fixed knitting needles for it and they are a dream to knit with.I’ve used a few circular knitting needles now to know that ChiaoGoo fixed circulars are my favourite . I plan to get them in a few sizes and lengths.

My friend is on FB and Instagram .I didn’t want to ruin the surprise  for her so I did not post it anywhere else online, except here because the maker in me couldn’t contain the excitement of having the gifts ready to give  to the precious baby. Fingers crossed these gifts will be received well  by my friend and be used till they fall apart.

Zippered Pouch

Its almost back to school time! I am happy with how our holidays went this year.

I finished one zippered pouch. J wanted one to put knick knacks in. I’m in love with the post card fabric and Essex Linen fabric.

I think they both go well together.

With each bag I sew, I’m learning a new thing. Like for instances , with this bag, I learnt to pay more attention to the zipper tab I’m using. I added a little shoe charm zipper pull as the zipper I got was a lock type short one which I did not know when I purchased it.

It has always been my dream to embroider on Linen and using linen embroidery thread from DMC, I did a little freestyle stitchery because I was not able to transfer my design using carbon paper.

Right after I finished making this pouch J wanted me to make him a smaller pouch with just the linen fabric .

He gave me the specifics  about the size and the features , he wanted in his pouch, like a  little pocket to keep his cards

 and also a zipper pouch for change.

After working on the previous pouch, I kind of made up as I went along. I should have searched up for tutorials but with busy days, I did not have much time for that.I have a lot of practice to insert a zipper pocket. But the fear of adding a zipper pocket is gone. One step forward Yay!

I  added the same stitchery ‘ Begin each day with a grateful heart ‘to this pouch.

It is a simple design I drew after I decided that Grateful was going to be my word for the year.

To accept the good and the bad things with a grateful heart. Because I believe that God is in control always and makes all things to work together for good, for his children.

I’m thrilled  to see J carry it around with him everywhere.

Secret Santa gifts

Last year I enjoyed my  Secret Santa Gift so much that I decided to participate this year as well.

After a lot of pondering, I decided on the Three Colour Cashmere Cowl for her. I’d seen a lot of different versions and thought it  would be perfect for my secret santa partner. I had  also wanted to make this pattern forever. It seemed simple enough and I was confident I could handle it even if it was my  first time.

I ordered the yarn , got to work right away. As I was working section B of the pattern , I realised that it was going to end up as a chunky large knit. I had completely missed taking note  of the fact that the pattern required a fingering  weight yarn. duh!

It was also about this time I realised that I did not have a lot of time to order yarn I wanted to make it with  and make same pattern again.  Change of plan happened and actually turned out better than plan A.

The  One Row Lace Scarf  that I started turned out to be a better choice as its summer time here , this scarf is light and airy and my partner wouldn’t need to wait until Winter to use her gift.

This is my first fingering weight knit project. and I love how light and warm it turned out to be.


Project Details :

Pattern:   One Row Lace Scarf

Yarn: Feather Brush Yarn  Fingering ,Colourway :Tiara (Merino/Silk 50/50)

Needles:  4.5 mm Chiaogo Needles

I also made her  my absolute favourite drawstring bag pattern from In Colour Order blog  renamed Hold and Cherish project bag to hold all the little treats I put in for her .

She can  use it as a project bag to hold small projects like a hat or socks later on.A gift within a gift is always a welcome surprise, no?

 I  had been holding on to this  fat quarter bundle for a long time.It was one of the very first purchases   from a quaint little quilt fabric and notions shop called Forget me Knots not very far away from my home. Finally it has been put to good use.

The size of this drawstring bag is slightly smaller from the Everything  Size that is in the tutorial. I had to adjust the size to match the directional print . For the drawstring I used a nice festive ribbon that a very kind salesperson pointed out to me as I was searching for a matching ribbon at the store..

I really hope my secret santa partner really liked this little package as I was not able go  watch her unwrap the gift.