Category: sewing

week 238

I actually am a bit proud of myself for almost finishing two projects this weekend. Will get to why only one, and not both are done.


This pullover.  Have started working on the round at the bottom, until it reaches a nice length. Being limited in yarn means it might be a tad shorter than I want but can use another yarn to make it up. Which will work nicely if I add the second yarn to the sleeves.

By the way this is inside and the side back seams are less noticeable on the outside.

adding on length to pullover for me


Not quite what was expected but Dylan’s pullover is finished. Need to block it but it looks nice enough, even though one sleeve is wonky.

Also, it should have been in a darker colour. Haven’t tried it on him, other than when the neckline was being adjusted so it wasn’t tight.

Dylan's pullover


The coat is not finished but looks so nice. The sleeves are a tad shorter than I wanted. Adding the cuffs was more of an afterthought and there would have been wider cuffs if I had cut out the pieces earlier, but gives it a nice touch. I need to fix the sleeves as there is extra inside lining fabric, because of overzealous cutting of extra lining pieces.

The reason it isn’t finished is the original buttons for the coat do not fit through the loops, so spent a little time testing out smaller ones in my button collection. Need to get six because black buttons or anything other than the tablecloth fabric will be too jarring.

I tried on the coat and it fits snugly in the shoulders but is loose everywhere else.

Some of the stitches are off. As what was said before, couldn’t figure out the sleeves but most of it is nice to look at, inside and out. Seams don’t line up on the outside if you look at the shoulders, but it’s symmetrical so not a big deal.

I moved the pocket to inside and switched it so the pocket has the lining on the outside and the main fabric on the inside.

coat without buttons


Spent quite some time undoing this bit of yarn. Thankfully it’s only one skein that I messed up. I need to own an umbrella swift. For a skein of cotton slash acrylic it gets more knotted than necessary.

tangled yarn in the process of being untangled


Construction paper houses that I was going to use but they are too thin and flimsy to make stable houses. Need sturdier paper.

orange and black construction paper houses


By the way, I finally finished part one of a certain boy’s birthday project. I’ve been slacking and just finally sucked it up and did it. Need to put it in something then can finally send him everything.

week 237

**An addendum to last week’s post. Wasn’t really confused that he bought me the yarn, because he bought me the yarn. I was being sarcastic.**

**Another addendum to last week’s post. I forgot to say I wore a crochet floral crown on my birthday. I was quite proud that I made it in about a day. 22 gauge copper wire, bit of red and green yarn and this was the end result.**

myself wearing the floral crown

I was going to do this blog last night but the light wasn’t right to take pictures of everything. The picture still came out terrible and blurry. Need to stop taking hurried up and slow down.

Progress on two yellow pullovers.

The one for me is a little weird looking now because I underestimated one side would be too narrow so added bits on the side of the back. It doesn’t look like it would fit but it’s big enough that I put stitch holders at the bottom row and can crochet in the round to make a top. I want to add short sleeves but we’ll see how much yarn is leftover after getting to the right length.

Knitpicks doesn’t have GlossDK in Honey anymore so have two balls left. I expected it to pill more but except for that one time, I threw my crochet across the room with the hook and the hook caught onto part of it, it looks pretty good.

back of second pullover

This is a blurry picture of the sleeves with Dylan’s pullover. It’s covered but originally made the hole to slip over his head too small and he didn’t like that. The hole is wide enough without that issue. The sleeves aren’t attached but after that, just seam up the sides and it’s pretty much done.

unattached sleeves and main body in Dylan's pullover


The paper house looked lonely by itself so I decided to make a small village or town or whatever and have two rows of houses lined up, back to back, so it’s like you’re driving around a street. I’m going to add something to the paper so it’s not just white.

one lonely paper house

Future houses. And, yes, that is the Mollie Makes house template from issue 84.

paper houses to be


I’m slowly attaching the coat pieces together. The main body is attached, and have to put the collar next. I like seeing it come along although I don’t have things exactly lined up which after five tries, I gave up and just made them line up the same way.

Had to try it on because wasn’t sure where the pockets were, in line with my arms, but they’re fine where located. I added the front pocket. It might be in the way of the buttons but I don’t care. I’m tempted to do away with the bits for the buttons and just add a place to cinch a belt. Although I’m not keen on belts because they are never in the right area. It feels oversized which I purposely did, so can wear several layers underneath.

coat front without collar and other bits

week 236

Some days where I’m productive and multi-tasking, some days where it’s a struggle to accomplish anything unless I’m sitting down and completely focused. Every week.


Last week was my birthday and have a couple huge parcels arrive, that a certain boy got me. Or not got me. I don’t know. Bit confusing at the moment as he refuses to claim he did it, even though the package arrived with the receipt inside and his name is on the BILL TO bit.

The one involving yarn was a huge WEBS order he made.

order from WEBS


I feel I’m getting closer to finishing a few things.


The coat is ready to be sewn together, then have the lining sewn and attached.

pieces for the coat and the coat lining

I spent part of today making fabric covered buttons, which is a tedious thing to do, but feel it needs to have buttons. I’m not very good at making buttonholes so not sure if I’ll use them for anything other than decoration, instead of practicality.

(There is no picture of them but they’re 1 1/8″, or 28.575mm, and covered in the green tablecloth fabric.)



Some leftover of the lining fabric and it somehow came out this shape, even though I originally had it planned to be heart-shaped. The white is from one of the tops I’ve split apart.


bowtie and bag

Made a bow-tie, and if you open the bag, it’s the same fabric. These are without the snap buttons.

Dylan wore the bow-tie for his Spring Picture. Sorry not sorry that he didn’t enjoy wearing it for the brief time he had it on.

There is a fabric that was a former crib sheet that has been prepped to be used for a bunch more bow-ties.


crochet top

This top looks weird as of this moment, and just winging it, but the sides and sleeves might be something else. It looks nice but not wide enough to wear it, if I were to close the sides as they are now.


knit and crochet piece that is oddly pencil shaped

I just wanted this done and it looks terrible. Do like the knit part but not sure why it ended up with a triangular top.

week 234

I’ve been a bit scattered this week and have been hopping from project to project.

(Sorry for the semi-blurry pictures. Taking pictures haphazardly with a regular camera in bad lighting isn’t the way to take pictures.)

I’m making progress on the green coat.

coat pieces with other fabric in front

I don’t have enough interfacing, and not sure what to line the coat with, but the main pieces are cut. I actually have enough fabric to make one or two more pockets and a small zipper purse.

I’m not sure if it was mentioned last week, but used a jacket pattern in my stash and extended the length of parts of it to make a coat.

various shirts in pieces and whole

I’ve finally decided to do something with these shirts that are just sitting around, either in my closet or in a pile, and started today to take them apart, to use bits and dye them and use them all together to make a tunic or dress. For the skirt, I want to use a shawl I kept dying and want to remove the dye and redo the colour. It will be various shades of blue, since one piece is already blue.  Or might incorporate pieces into the dress I keep putting off making.

second sleeve started of Dylan's pullover

I’ve started on the second sleeve but don’t have enough to finish it, although I get the feeling I do but it will affect the dormant knitting striped pullover.

purse without closure

So, that purse, which am tempted to turn into a flap bag, because I’m too lazy to locate another metal frame, had extra fabric so made this. It doesn’t have a closure yet, but it turned put quite nice. I wanted to add a zipper top to the lining but the zipper part turned out inside out then when I went to fiddle with it, the pull came off, so just did away with it. I should have two flap on top and made that a zipper top, but didn’t think this one out thoroughly.

week 212-213

I don’t really factor in time getting lost when it comes to some projects, but oftentimes I should.

I made a Hans Solo costume for my great-nephew, and wanted to be done with it sooner than the day before Halloween. Except, my son broke the soap dish in one of the bathrooms, so spent a weekend and a day fixing that. Fixing that pushed back the time I was allowing myself to get it done.

I had almost half a costume the night of my brother and sister-in-law’s party, but luckily they had a backup. (Last weekend was filled, also, as my son is born right before Halloween, so between that Halloween party and his birthday party, I didn’t get much done. Sunday wasn’t full of accomplishments, either.)

Everyone loves the costume. All I see is the parts where I could have done better. I didn’t make the boot covers big enough. The elastic waistband wasn’t done right. Stitching was horrible. I embrace my mistakes usually but when it’s done for someone else, I care what the end result is going to be, and this was completely sub-par work and really embarrassing.

But, I figure it will only be worn once or twice, so longevity isn’t a factor here.

Han Solo costume


Along with not giving myself enough time, I procrastinated and spent time on this. It was finished the day after, on Halloween morning. It’s a big enough purple and pinkish striped lap blanket.

I reused that yarn for the oversized cowl and it looks like a small amount, compared to the other colours.

purple and pink striped crochet blanket


At some point, during these two weeks, the project using the Mandala yarn was just sitting in the corner, so I decided to take it off the needles and crochet a bit of it. I want to do the same exact to the second ball and attach them on the wider side.

continuation of mandala yarn project


House 2 looks weird and somehow I ended up with a pumpkin or squash. So, I’m calling House 2, The Squashers. I didn’t make the pillowform full enough, but eh.

House 2 - Squashers


Moving on, I have started House Three. Not sure the end result but this one will be more rectangular than the other two.

start of House 3


And, I added a small amount to the weaving.

continuation of weaving


By the way, I’m just going to put this here, but I bought my son’s costume.

Dylan in his hot chips costume

He didn’t like wearing it until I told him he needs to wear it so he can get candy. We only went to about ten houses, in the neighbourhood, and at each house, he insisted I go with him, after I tried to pass him the bag where he put his candy.

Having an autistic child, he couldn’t say Trick or Treat and spent a lot of time just looking inside people’s homes, fascinated with door frames and such, when people would open their door to give him candy. He also went to more houses than last year.

Also, I think since we were close behind a couple and their three kids, when the guy took a picture of one of his kids, Dylan and I might be in that picture.

week 210

My mother’s birthday was late last month, and one of my brothers gave her flowers. I was taking out the rose petals as they were slowly wilting until they were all slightly worse for the wear.

Yesterday, I finally purchased a stock pot and boiled the petals to remove the colour. Unfortunately some edges had already lost their freshness and had some pale brown bits. Also, I’ve never made dye from nature before so this is a whole experiment in what ifs.

I boiled the petals in distilled water for an hour then let the petals seep in the water overnight.

water with rose petals and without petals

I let the rose petals sit for another hour until I took out most of the rose petals. It turned this beautiful amber brown colour.

yarn being weighed

I have a postal scale that I use on occasion and have to re-calibate it because it kept changing the weight, so it’s somewhere between 50-85 grams.

(Just for your amusement but my brain somehow assumed packages weighed in other countries goes kg mg, and have no idea why I skipped over grams. I changed it to pounds and ounces but am trying to retrain myself to also consider things in metric.)

yarn in liquid

I let the yarn soak in the leftover distilled water, but didn’t think too much about alkaline and acidic when I felt it needed more water and just added sink water, then weighed it down by filling the empty gallon container with more tap water.

I let it sit in the bucket for a few hours then squeezed out the excess water. Most of it is one of the fingering yarns from Knitpicks and I’m not sure what the other small bit is from, but probably also from that website.

I added about a half tablespoon of alum and the same amount of cream of tartar to boiled water then added that to the liquid. I made the mistake of taking out some of the liquid post adding those, for another project, but I doubt alum and cream of tartar would affect being used as a watercolour coat on canvas.

After boiling all of it for about forty minutes or so, the water turned more brownish and less amber.

I somehow expected the yarn to be dyed darker and with a bit of red, but the yarn looks pale brown. I’m letting the yarn sit in the dye overnight, but doubt it will get much darker than it already is at the moment.

I’m not sure what I will do with the end result but it’ll become something.


progress on parrot yarn top

I made the top part seven inches in length and broke the yarn, then started working on the main body.

For some reason, I calculated that I started with 180 stitches, but recounted and started with 160. I was going to make the main body 120 stitches, but had to frog that and make the main body 60 stitches. At this moment, it’s around four inches or around ten centimeters, in length. The sleeves will be seven, with something between them, then the main body will be fifteen inches, or thirty-eight centimeters, then an extra bit at the bottom.


first part of weaving

I’ve been wanting to weave again for the longest time and actually made two looms, but sticking nails in an empty frame didn’t hold up. I was successful with cutting out notches in the cardboard. I tried to line them up but I’m not sure they do, but it’s not a big deal in the scheme of things. I don’t mind things on the wonky side. I am used to small scale but wanted something bigger.

I’m going to use the frames and attach muslin to them and use those as canvas.

So far, I have only one part down, as I’m currently indecisive over the rest of the colours. The layout has already been determined, it’s just what colours.


fabrics for constume

One of my older brothers is dressing as Chewbacca this year. (And the picture proof cracks me up.)  His son’s son, my great nephew, is going to be dressed as Hans Solo. I’m sure you can tell which version by the fabric.

I took some basic measurements on Monday but basically will wing it.


progress on this knitting project

And did a few rows of this project. I know it’s blurry. I was going to take another one then had to charge the camera battery.

week 203

After so much frogging, I finally was able to settle on something I liked for House 2.

crochet side one of house 2

It’s not perfect and I’m going to add something to outline the lighter blocks, but this is the first “wall”. Yes, I did mess up when adding the second colour but no big whoop. Just have to remember to mirror it when I repeat for the other “windows”.

I plan on having four windows on two sides and the thinner sides will all be that red.

Haven’t decided on the roof yet.

partially done rug of pom poms

For some time now, I had a load of pom poms in a plastic bin, after making them from leftover bits from previous projects, using the lazy method, as in using the Clover devices to make pom-poms. I can never make them full enough with the fork or cardboard methods.

So, while watching DVDs–Actually, just Shrek 2 and the pilot and half of the first episode of I Love Lucy, before my son shut it off and demanded dinner–I attached them to the empty rug pad. And ran out after the green, white and grey ones. Slowly in the process of making more and finishing this rug. I need to make more reds and blues and purples.

Not sure if I’ll give it a proper trim as the messiness looks quite nice. Just need to fill in holes, after popping on a “last” pom pom on the bottom or top left corner.

muslin pieces of dress to be

Making up pattern pieces for a dress is hard, if you have never done it before. I’m so used to changing up already made patterns that I wanted to just start from scratch.

Not the first time to admit this but math can escape me. Like to the point of calculating things more than once then getting confused because none of the times end up with the same result. In my case, it’s measure four times, then measure again, then cut. None of this Measure Twice, Cut Once. With knitting and crochet, you can frog and start over, but fabric, you cut it once and you’re done.

(Just a funny anecdote but I bought more muslin this morning and the lady cutting it had to recut it when she was about to give me three yards when I asked for four. So she wasted three yards. I would have totally been fine if she had just cut one more yard and added that to the three she already cut.)

I made the pieces after drawing out the measurements on muslin. I actually had sewn the front and back pieces together and they were the perfect length, but a bit tight. I could breathe easily but want it a bit looser. I didn’t add any darts and it didn’t seem to need one. Funny enough that I thought it was perfect after adding an inch all around for the seam allowance and ended up with a seam allowance of 3/8″, which is almost a centimeter. The front is perfect, except have to add for the shoulder seams, but want to add to the sides of the back piece. I need to fiddle around with the pieces a bit more before I am willing to cut into the fabrics.

And, yes, I labelled it according to which fabric I’m using, in my various sketching of ideas. So, some pieces are labelled A, and some are labelled B. Until I can come up with a name for it, it’s going to stay labelled that way.

starting of next knit project

Finally decided to use this yarn from Lionbrand. I only have two cakes and want to make a pullover. Will it happen? We will see.

Yes, I pulled from the bottom. Wasn’t paying attention and also cast on 80 stitches onto a size 11/8mm circular needles but, since then, moved it to a 10.5/6.5mm on a purl side. I could probably close this but want the front middle something that hasn’t been decided yet.

I want to experiment with making cables which I’ve never done before but want to save that for when the yarn is all one colour.

week 202

Okay. I call it a suit because the fabric matches. The skirt and jacket are finished.

waistband upclose

Had to remove some of the binding from inside the waistband because it was too thick while trying to push the top of the snap through the fabric. It got to the point, in my frustration, I started to pick the waistband apart but ended only resewing the inside of the waistband, as there wasn’t complete separation of the two.

Not sure why handsewing the buttons to the top of the pockets made them look askew but I’m guessing because I didn’t attach the pockets on the same exact level.

jacket with snap buttons closed

Finally attached the snaps to the front of the jacket. It’s too late to fix the pocket flaps but they aren’t awful.

In case, you needed to know how to attach the snaps to the clothes.

YouTube tutorials and these:

snaps, hammer and snap attaching tools

Sometimes using a hammer makes you feel like you know what you’re doing. Operative word being ‘sometimes’.

By the way, the pants I had made that fit are low rise and feel like they would slide off at any moment, so will probably need to buy a belt to wear them.


That being said I frogged one project and just ended up stopping continuing on another.

The shawl was not working, so I frogged that yarn. After using both straights and circular needles.

Spent two days of trying to start knitting socks.

16 cast on stitches on needles

It took several tries but each time didn’t look or feel right.

So it became crochet socks.

beginning of a crocheted sock

It looks horrible but the start made sense. I frogged the whole thing and will try again at another time.

The one that was sitting in a bucket for a longest time became another cowl.


I crocheted the edges before seaming the short ends together. I like how it looks but should have made it longer so it could be wrapped around two or three times.

Also, it should have been the same yarn in two different colours, so it’s more noticeable with the stitches switch.


So, I’ve gotten ambitious and have decided to make myself a dress, and not using a pattern and actually drafting the pattern myself.

dress sketch

This is what the front will look like.

original dress sketches

The back will have a rectangle in the upper part.

I’m finally using the cloud fabric and fabric B will be white velvet. The skirt will be a-line and I do want a lace underskirt.

drafting the front of the top

This is the second time drafting the front top. I did take into account that shoulder to shoulder and base of the neck to my waist is square, at both 17 inches in length (about 43cm), but did not really take into account other measurements. It doesn’t look like I made the lines straight but I will redraw the lines if the need comes up.

I also added an inch for seam allowance, because I figure that’s wide enough for now until I get the pattern pieces exact and use the 5/8 seam allowances which seems to be the norm.

Actually should have started with the skirt, but rather get the slightly more complicated bit out of the way. Actually, none of it is complicated but getting the measurements right is making me overthink it.

I’ve also just put the letter A on them, so it’s just easier for me. If I ever do come up with a funny enough name, then I’ll write the name on the pieces.

I measured myself yesterday and my measurements are shrinking. My shoulders are still the widest part of my body. 40-34-41 and my shoulders are 43 inches. How they shrank four inches, I have no idea. In metric, that would be 102-86-104 and my shoulders are 109cm. And, yet, I feel like I’ve gained a lot of weight.

dress pattern pieces


I found a rug pad and will sew in all the pom-poms sitting in a bin into it.



Oh. I also frogged the yarn for the crochet pillow. I will also redo that in crochet but need to actually sketch out where the “windows” will go.

week 200-201

Is the Jorinde jacket finished? No. Because the snaps are not applied yet.

However, remember when I said there were pants that matched with it, using the same fabric? I tried to put on the pants and it was so tight in the crotch it wouldn’t budge.

So, it became a knee length skirt.

skirt with zipper being attached


It took a while to figure out what sort of zipper closure I wanted and just put the zipper back the way it was.

Unfortunately, I didn’t apply the waistband smoothly and it’s not perfect in front.

floral cat lining

I didn’t have any leftover grey fabric to line the skirt so used the same one that I had put on the shoulders of the jacket. Had to do it several times before the lining was big enough.

buttons on pockets

I did the waistband so badly but it doesn’t look entirely awful. The insides look nice at least.

Those needs snaps and they’ll both be finished.


House 2 project wasn’t making me happy so I frogged it. The middle especially.

house 2 was a fail

So, I began again and in crochet form. So far, this small bit.

house 2 but crochet


The striped red jacket is pretty much done.

short sleeve crochet cardigan


I like how I keep promising myself my next project will be purple and I can’t stop making items with red yarn.


Oh. I don’t know what I will call it but the Teacher Blanket so far. I haven’t made this week’s two rectangles.

four knit rectangles

Two a week for every week in session, and one for every week there’s no school.

week 199

I’m nearly at the finish line to the Jorinde jacket being done. It’s pretty nice, even though I would change so much if I were ever to do it again. Just need to apply buttons, and I’m putting heavy duty snap buttons, rather than the self fabric ones I had sitting around for it, originally.

The pockets took forever. I have no idea what I kept doing wrong but kept sewing the living side of the pocket the wrong direction but it took way more tries than I thought necessary.

Once that part was to my liking, I finished both pockets and then stitched all around.

The cuffs turned out wonky because I didn’t adjust them, so at the same point, they sort of fold over. I just turned up the cuffs and not an issue.

pocket from lining side

After finally getting the living in the right direction, I had a raw edge when I attached the top to the main body.

pocket inside of jacket

Yes. I know there’s a hole one side but it’ll be on the inside, and only I can see it.

pocket outside of jacket

It’s not perfect. And, you can see all the previous stitching on the bias tape but it just adds to it.

I tried it on and it fits quite well.


The stitching is all wonky but don’t care. This was before I fixed the cuffs, collar and the bottom hem. Had hand sewn the collar but it came undone while attaching the lining.

It looks all pretty now. Good thing about the lining, is it won’t stick out when I have it on.

jacket without buttons

It doesn’t look even in front but it is and just needs buttons, but it’s pretty much done. It’s not as crisp without the interfacing but still like how it looks.

Thing about selfish sewing is it doesn’t have to be perfect, but if I was doing this for someone else, I would care more about the funny bits.

There are matching pants but not sure if they still fit. Need to fix the waistband for the pants after trying them on.


I’ve already decided my next project.

It will be house two.


Cast on 45. Then did a quick calculation and my math was slightly off, but from stitches 10-15 and 30-35, starting on the second purl side, the “doors” will be placed. It’ll be 14 inches high and not sure the width. The four doors will be on two sides, while the other two will be three doors.

It’s not this one but really want to make a wee knitted dollhouse, where you can open one side and not sure how to manage that, so it’s still in the planning stages.

I want to start making knit houses on commission but not sure how to manage that either. Also, need to get the shop up and running. I have no idea why I keep stopping myself from actually doing it.