Wednesday, March 2, 2016

The Hat Ladies


I think that we are up to 9 by now.  That is 9 fleece hats that have been custom sewn for our girls through a school fundraiser by The Hat Ladies.

I am a proud member of The Hat Ladies team for Franklin and Randall school and have likely sewn close to 100 hats - for other kids - by now.  Each one is so unique and fun and it is great to see them worn around Madison in the winter months.  Our team sews hats at two of our community building/fundraising events each year - the school dance and the school carnival.  There is an entire team of parent volunteers that supports this effort - fabric cutters, sewers, table volunteers and people that help kids choose their panels and pieces.

I love that the kids get to select their own colors and patterns and they always pick exactly what they want -- and the hats turn out great no matter the combinations.

One of these days I will line up all the fleece hats in our house to share - but until then if you are interested in kicking off a hat fundraiser of your own you can check out this link.

This entire Hat Lady project was started by my former preschool teacher Nancy Daly - what an amazingly small world that I now get to spend time with her again at the sewing table making hats for kids in our own public school community.  Her program volunteers in multiple schools, community organizations and all over Dane County.  They are making a difference for so many kids!

Monday, February 22, 2016

FO: Socks


Another pair for me off the needles.  I love the coziness of this pair.  It can stay winter here as long as it likes - my toes will be warm!


Sunday, January 10, 2016

A few more...


I was amazed to find a few more hours before the holidays to squeeze in a couple more presents.  Pure fun for me.

I finally got around to framing the cross stitch (above) that I completed for a special little baby boy and sent it out to him in the mail.  In case you can't tell, I am a big fan of Alicia Paulson's work.

The next gift was a second taggie blanket for special friends that just welcomed their second baby girl.  I made two for their first daughter (she needed a second one because she loved through the first!) and I really wanted to send out another for their new addition.  These owls are too cute and paired with a bumpy purple minky should be fun for the baby to explore.  I sent the blanket along with a crocheted turquoise crown - I called it the 'big sister crown' - made by a friend for the older daughter.



The last few presents came from a burst of sewing for my own three oldest daughters.  They all learned to knit in the week before Christmas so I sewed them each a knitting project bag and filled it with a skein of yarn and some needles.  They love then and I love seeing the bags and their knitting float around the house: the couch, the bed, the dining room table and their locker.  I first made the fox bag below to match the needle case for my niece.



Then I made three more.  I am really happy with the construction of these bags.  My serger makes such a professional finish and the satin cording for the drawstrings work perfectly.  I modeled these bags on the small della Q bag that I have for myself and they turned out great - perfectly sized and perfectly useful (I did skip the interior pocket this time around).


Saturday, December 19, 2015

Handmade Holidays


The first handmade gift of the holiday season is for myself - a new double-pointed knitting needle roll.  Using fabrics from our trip to Japan last February I put this sweet little roll together in about an hour.  It replaces my much larger needle case crafted in 2008.  That one was made to accommodate 10 to 14-inch straight needles.  In the years since I made that case I have gravitated towards using circular needles and my little double points kept falling out of the over sized roll. 


I am just in love with this little case - it is perfectly sized and the fabrics make me so happy.



This next gift is a whimsical tree ornament from the Posie Gets Cozy collection that I have been working through.  When I was working the most recent set of three ornaments I made a rookie mistake by crafting two identical trees when I should have made mirror images!  I even make this mistake TWICE - on the snowflake ornament too - just goes to show that crafting and mothering at the same time don't always work out the way that you expect.  Yikes.  At first I was disappointed/frustrated by my silly error, but quickly realized that with a little more effort I could turn it into a second ornament.  This second tree will go to my Mother-in-Law for Christmas.

The kit was actually sold out for this set of ornaments so I purchased the pattern and then ordered felt and matching floss from Prairie Woolens.    


This cowl, completed a couple months ago, will head to my Sister-in-Law.


This next needle case will go to my niece who has recently learned to knit.  I purchased sets of aluminum straight needles (which she seems to prefer) from Ebay and crafted the case to fit them.  Paired with some skeins of yarn it will make a great starter knitting kit for her.  And since I am partial to them, I put in a couple circular needles and double-points to round out the collection for her too.



Speaking of knitting, we have THREE new knitters under our roof!  This past month I taught my three older daughters to knit and they just took off.  The scarves they are creating are incredible and they couldn't be more excited to watch their own progress.  Abby (below) is wearing the first thing she ever knit - a red scarf for her favorite 5th grade teacher.  We had to google 'average length for a men's scarf' which came back about about 6 feet.  Abby decided to cut this one off at 5 feet.



My eight year old is part of a Girl Scout Troop that is focused heavily on the arts.  This past month they went to a local pottery studio that also carries a great selection of beads.  She was so into it!  In that short afternoon she made earrings for her older sisters.


The following week she and I took a separate trip to a local beading store and made more earrings for older sisters and a necklace for her younger sister.




I am so excited the crafting and creating is becoming a part of what we can do together as a family and that they are all excited to make things for others.  While I didn't 'make' as much this year as I have in years past I am finding so much joy in seeing my girls make for others.