Little House Comforts

So, the idea for this crocheted blanket was inspired by watching Darlene Michaud‘s video about making a scrappy afghan. It was started with whatever was on hand, (mostly things purchased years ago for making Raggedy Ann hair). It was quickly realized that that would not be enough. Because thrift stores were closed that minute and there was an urge to continue rows that would integrate new colors without waiting any longer, some selections from Walmart were procured.

Soon enough, a hoard was brought from two thrifts to consider for this project along with the Walmart offerings. At first, it didn’t seem desirable to use second hand yarns of which there was no way to know of where they came, (animals, hair, smoke), but realizing the thing can be washed — so it advanced.

And advanced and advanced and advanced. Lots of thought, (aka: intuition), went into which colors to use when and there were even a couple of times that rows were unraveled because they didn’t suit the ‘artist’. The worst event was a time working in compromised lighting when ten rows were unraveled after seeing them later in better light. It had to be done. It couldn’t be lived with.

A row of slip stitches were done in a purple with a glitter thread running through it combined with a maroon. Did she forget to tell you that the whole thing was done with two strands of yarn all the way through? It was. It makes for a very heavy and tight warm blanket. A single crochet was used as well, all the way through, except for the starting chain and the row around the edges for the border, which started with the slip stitch. The single crochet to finish it off was with the maroon and a navy, single crocheted.

It might be made better proportions with a few more rows of width and that could always be done — but, as it turns out, this is wanting to live in the mudroom and works perfectly great as a blanket while lounging on the sofa watching VHS movies in that little comfort room.

After finishing the crocheted blanket and realizing it wants to live in the mudroom, another blanket was wanted for the bed. After utilizing old housecoats as a temporary fix, the idea to make them into a blanket, patchwork style, seemed to be a perfect solution. So here we go with that adventure.

First to do it to take them apart to retrieve usable flat fabric for making patches. Everything is saved for doing something else with as ideas unfold — and they unfold as the cutting is ensuing.

The larger image in this grid is the flat pieces that can be used for making patches.

The seams have always begged for using to create fringe. There is a bag somewhere just waiting for a project like that and these can be added to it.

The cuffs on the sleeves turned out to be just the right diameter to go around a head so can be imagined to be used for warming ears. A piece of elastic might make it more convenient and they could always be trimmed up with embroidery or some sort of embellished or passementerie.

These days approaching spring are a little unpredictable, as all weather is it seems. Recently chilly temperatures have been begging for more and warmer blanket so that the heating bill can be a little less.

The purple got cut out last night and everything went into the sewing room where it could be closed off from any curious kitties.

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It will be fun to see where this all ends up. Original thoughts were of doing a ragged edge for seaming, but instead it is going to be flat felled so that it will be a little more reversible.

Trying to make little house comforts with what there is in stock in the little house. Both of these housecoats were second hand to start.

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

And so the story goes.

Thanks for stopping in.

 

Kind Of Carpetbaggish

This is the process of making a thing (pictures):

This is how they were laid out ready to stitch but…
somehow I managed to create a gap…
…so I went rummaging for something to span the gap
I think I like it better this way
As I was going along, the thought was that it would be a cushion; but I’m stuck on the bag idea for awhile me thinks.
It’s going to be a big one.
Rummaging around in search of a lining for this bag, I ran across these pant legs that were cut off for shortening some for a client. The hems cut off can be used for handles or for a casing to run elastic or a cord through at the top.
Often dress pants are a mile long to allow for altering; perfect for lining this. The taupe/olive drab seem to be the winners. Those cuffs give me anxiety. I hated cuffs. Charged extra for them.
I pulled out a collection of trims to think about covering the raw edges where pieces were joined. Some of the trims in #ResourceCentral date back as far as 1969. The cellophane cover was of better quality then too. More recent ones just crumble off. These were still very intact. I’m blown away by their guarantee; unheard of in today’s market.
So every time something is added, things need to be reaccessed. It doesn’t pleat as softly now with the trim applied and it feels like it still needs something. I added the string of silk roses because it popped up while rummaging and seemed to be a thing I wanted on this.
Not sure at this point which will be the front. Perhaps it won’t matter on this one.
I’m going to square off those pointed ends. I should have applied that piece before the side ones so was trying to finish it off neatly.
The piping was stitched on by machine, but all the lace was hand stitched with gold floss in a running stitch.
I’m rethinking the pleats. May do a soft gather or take the pleats out to the seams.
It was late when I added the purple and lighting was poor. I had seen it in the bright light and knew it was a risk; but intuition forced me to add it. We’ll see how it works itself in.
As with most things, I’m not sure if I like it at this point. So many times, clients would literally freak out at the time of installation of a decor redo. I would always tell them to sleep on it. Never had anyone remain freaked out. Change is hard. Most things just need a little tweaking to make them perfect or time to adjust. Wall colors were an especially big challenge. Especially men as most of them want white.
Some gold gimp was added around two of the patches. Adds to the texture and integration of colors; I think. Also added a piece of purple so that it shows up on both sides.
I’m really liking the pleats out on the sides and the whole thing is growing on me.
Found another color of lace trim…??
Wasn’t liking the pointed ends on the bottom but didn’t want to square them off. After adding the lining, I will simply tuck the seam in like a pleat and stitch along the seam to anchor it to the bottom.
Pictures are posted so that I can remember the process should I want to repeat it or teach it to someone; so, forgive if redundant or seem unnecessary. There are details that I want to remember.
This allows for it to remain able to puff out but gets rid of the points at the bottom
The pleats at the top are more complex
The lining will be made the same dimensions and attached so that a portion of the top is able to flop open. This is a deep bag and this will make access easier and the opening bigger. I imagine some kind of a dowel along the top edge with the straps running through the fabrics, under the dowel and back up long enough to go over the shoulder.
I fixed one corner of the gray trim to have the same miter slant as the other so now it looks more like a frame and am adding a row of purple embroidery stitching at the bottom of the lace to help it differentiate from the fabrics under it.
This piece was added in to the collection that constituted the inspiration box as when I put all the pieces together, I managed to space them wrong and needed to add something. Turns out to be one of my favorite pieces and I love where it ended up. It shows up on both sides so gives the bag continuity.
The front mostly complete. A few little details to add.
This is the back of the purse face fabrics.
So now for the lining. These were lengths cut off of a pair of mens dress pants. As you can see, the pieces didn’t cover the width of the purse face fabrics and were way longer than needed. That was cut off and used to splice pieces to compensate for the width issue. It just barely made it; almost too perfect. Phew!
The two ends were stitched together and the edge finished with a stretch stitch.
After evening off the two pieces that were cut off from the length, it was just exactly a fit. Now I’m trying to add a pocket before attaching the lining and also trying to figure out how I want to make the opening. I’ve got an idea for dowels but still trying to work it out.
This striped fabric was a pillow cover I got for a song at a dollar store and cut up to use otherwise. I have PLENTY of pillows.
Another piece cut of of a pair of mens pants.
It isn’t quite deep enough so I will either cut off to match the lining or just roll the edge over to the lining side?? I got in a hurry to see how it looked and didn’t press the pants fabric. Will do.
one of the first images that came up for the search term “Carpetbaggish”
Mary Poppins bag

To view this story in pictures instead, click this link. This post is a compilation of the descriptions on the images.

Mary Poppins bag

Sewing Bucket List

She’s been a little busy.

Since ‘retiring’ a year or so ago, she hasn’t been taking client work. That means she doesn’t have to quit in the middle of creative juices flowing and then try to get back to it later; she can just keep with a project uninterrupted.

She’s finally gotten to her sewing bucket list. The first one on her mind was a patchwork quilt. As a child, her mother started her three girls doing them for rainy day projects. It has been a thing she has wanted to revisit ever since.

The bucket list seems to increase rather than diminish. This ‘toothbrush rug‘ one of the increases.

A yo yo quilt has long been on the list. She seems to cater to the 40’s style of things. Doesn’t it seem that each generation seems to like what was popular in the era of their mother’s youth?

This T-shirt yarn, Tarn, scrappy rug didn’t turn out well. She couldn’t keep it from ruffling no matter how she tried to do the increases. It’s in a drawer awaiting another life.

A long time on the sewing bucket list was to make a Canadian Smocked pillow. She mastered the smocking but failed to sew the seam before doing the smocking, so the two ends couldn’t be matched. Somehow she failed to do a row that would have made it right. She may turn it into a square pillow. It was supposed to be a bolster.

The thing about researching”how-to’s” is that you run into other fun stuff along the way. This scrappy rug was inspired by a lady on Etsy that makes hats and she was trying to find a tutorial for her technique. She ended up working it out on her own. It’s not easy crocheting with knots, she learned.

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Once in awhile she gets housework done or a project that makes sewing easier. She finally turned these lollipop display stands into thread and bobbin holders.

If you remember, her career was mostly working with clients, in their homes, helping them design their furnishing and window coverings. She had a little stint of trying it on her own and accumulated scores of fabric sample books to help her do that work. While she still had an electric washing machine (she now does all her washing by hand), she tore apart a big bunch of them, washed them and arranged many of them into ensembles she imagined could become something wonderful together. Many, many more books she simply gave away. Well, she is finally taking one box after another to work these imaginings out.

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Art to wear.

She never knows where it will end up when she starts out. She lets the fabrics tell her what to do. Above image is the front. Below image is the back. It went through many gyrations getting to this point. Still more to complete.

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Trapunto detail on the rose.

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The plaid pocket accommodates a small flip phone.

The “Tiny Purse” is the latest project, started with the intention of making a credit card holder for a friend’s upcoming birthday. She got carried away when the fabric told her to do otherwise.

She spent a great deal of the Summer trying desperately still to get her food to grow in the southeastern desert of Arizona. It’s a big challenge, but she did make progress and learned lots of new things.

Now that the cooler, shorter days are here, she will be working inside, spooling around a lot more.

She hopes this post makes up for her long absence from the blog, that you are well and headed toward an enjoyable Winter season.