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21  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / granny square throw from leftover yarn on: February 11, 2012 05:56:08 AM
I'm finally getting around to posting what I'm calling my Thesis blanket. I started absentmindedly making granny squares out of scrap yarn for stress relief while finishing up writing my thesis and preparing for my defense last semester. I must have been really stressed because a month and a half later, not only did I have an accepted thesis, but I had a new throw for the living room as well!

It's 80 squares total, arranged 8x10. Each square was supposed to be 6 inches but I ended up crocheting a little lose so they are more like 6.5 inches. So the throw isn't quite twin bed sized, but is still pretty large.

I made the inner four rounds of the squares first, then arranged them and joined everything with the dark brown yarn on the last row using the join as you go method. Attic24 has a good tutorial for the joining as you go method here: http://attic24.typepad.com/weblog/joining-asyougo-sqaures.html

22  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Re: Boho Maxi Dress on: February 10, 2012 09:01:31 AM
I've been thinking about making a shorter version from this tutorial. Nice job!
23  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Re: Purple Dress for a Winter Wedding on: February 10, 2012 08:55:50 AM
Very nice! I've been too afraid to experiment with formal fabrics.
24  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Re: Tutorial! Simple skirt with pockets. on: February 10, 2012 08:43:55 AM
wifeofbath: yeah the pocket geometry is kind of confusing...I saw something similar on a skirt in a store and thought it was brilliant and had to replicate it! I like it because the opening for the pocket is larger than when pockets are on the side seams and not visible. I don't regularly carry things around in my pockets, I just use them temporarily when my hands are full, so pockets that are easy to get things like keys in and out of are what I need.

1.    Any wrinkling would depend on the fabric more than the pattern. The two skirts shown here use a cotton that might wrinkle some, but since the pattern is kind of busy it shouldn't be too noticeable. If I made this skirt in a solid or light color I would make sure to choose a fabric that didn't wrinkle too much.

Lining also depends on the fabric...I tend to use darker or thick fabrics for skirts so they don't need to be lined, but if you used something light colored it might be necessary. If you need to line this I would suggest cutting another front and back in the lining fabric and sewing it in the same manner, connecting it to the skirt at the pocket curves and waistband, that way the pocket ends up under the lining and doesn't show. Then hem the lining separately, making it a little shorter so it doesn't show at the bottom.

2.    Yes, the width at the bottom just depends on how much flare you want the skirt to have. I just estimate, but I've made a lot of skirts and have a feel for it. If in doubt you could compare it to a skirt you already have to get the angle right. In general a fabric with good drape would look good really wide at the bottom, while a stiffer fabric would look good as a straight or pencil skirt, maybe with a slit on the side seams.
25  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Tutorial! Simple skirt with pockets. on: February 09, 2012 02:09:41 PM
If I make enough springy clothes it will warm up faster right?

I made a tutorial for my basic skirt pattern. I've made a few versions of this skirt and absolutely love it. It's really adaptable too. It's only four pieces (well, technically six because you have two pockets and two parts to the waistband) so it's pretty simple.

You'll need two measurements for the pattern: your waist measurement, W, and a length measurement, L. I always over-estimate on the length because it's much easier to make a skirt shorter than longer.

Make your pattern pieces using the measurements in the picture. The front and back are the same, except the front has the cut out for the pocket. If you want a skirt without pockets, just make the front just like the back and skip all the pocket instructions. The amount the skirt flares out is up to you. The first skirt shown at the top is a straight skirt and the blue and purple one I'm using for the tutorial is more A-line.

To make the pocket pieces, trace the top 10 inches or so of the front. Then fold the pocket in half and make the angle of the vertical side match the flared side.

Pin the pattern to your fabric and cut out the pieces. Cut the front and back on the fold, and cut two waistbands and two pockets. If your fabric is directional like mine be careful. I labeled my front pattern on the wrong side and almost ended up with upside fish!

Pin the pocket to the front of the skirt as shown and sew just the curved part. The yellow lines show where my pins were and the white paper is just to make it easier to see where the pocket is because this fabric doesn't have a right side and a wrong side. Make all seams 5/8".

Repeat for the other pocket. I pink the seams so they don't unravel too much, but it's optional. You could also overlock stitch, french seam, or just let them fray. Clip the curve and press the seam. You should end up with something like this:

Fold the pocket in half as shown and stitch the bottom of the pocket. Press seam.

With right sides together pin front and back together at the side seams, making sure the pockets are on the outside, so they will be on the inside when the skirt is turned right side out. Stitch the side seams and press open.

Pin waistbands with right sides together. Stitch short end on one side (shown in red), and on the other side leave a 1 inch gap for inserting elastic. Press seams open.

Fold the waistband long ways, right side out, and press. Pin waistband to skirt, matching side seams, and making sure that the opening will end up on the inside of the skirt. Stitch waistband to skirt and press seam allowances down.

** Edit: It's hard to see the waistband in this picture--I should have used that piece of paper to help show where it is. What is going on is that the main part of the skirt is right side out, and the waist band is around the top, upside-down, right sides together. The gap to insert the elastic is facing out at this point, so once the waistband is sewn to the skirt and folded back up it will be on the inside.**

Draw inch elastic through the waistband. Try on the skirt and adjust the elastic to the right size. Cut and sew the elastic ends together.

Hem the skirt using whatever method you like. I like using blind hem stitch. It's the stitch that looks like a half triangle wave, and you fold the hem in a way that most of the stitching doesn't show. I was pretty excited when I figured out how to use that stitch. But you can sew any hem you feel like.

Ta-da! Skirt with pockets!

26  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / ideas for jean back pockets on: February 09, 2012 05:57:42 AM
I cut up many many pairs of old jeans for a denim quilt, and set aside the back pockets because they seemed useful. Now I have about twenty back pockets (plus an inch or more of the fabric around the pocket...so like more than just the pocket, but the whole cheek surface if that makes any sense), and I can't for the life of me figure out what to do with them!

My first thought was some sort of hanging organizer, like this shoe organizer (http://www.amazon.com/Honey-Can-Do-SFT-01256-Organizer-Storage-Natural/dp/B001F51AIA), but of course jean pockets aren't large enough for shoes. It would be good for toys (matchbox cars!) but I don't have kids. It could work for paint brushes and markers and stuff but that just doesn't excite me.

So I was wondering if anyone had other ideas for cool stuff to do with jean pockets?
27  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / flirty apron on: February 09, 2012 05:44:10 AM
I made the Dating Divas Flirty Apron from this tutorial http://www.thedatingdivas.com/kristen/flirty-apron-tutorial/

I pretty much followed the tutorial, but made a few small changes. First I made the apron about 3 inches longer and 2 inches wider because I'm a little taller and wider than average and I wanted to make sure it would fully cover my clothes for cooking. I also gathered the ruffle instead of pleating it just because I like gathers betters. Finally I left off the pocket.

I realized after I bought the fabric that it is sort of xmas colors, but hopefully not too much...since I didn't notice it in the store hopefully no one else will notice either until it gets close to xmas and suddenly my apron is festive! Oh well, it was a really easy pattern (took about two hours while watching/being distracted by tv) so I could always make another in different fabric.

I made one mistake that I had to rip out and redo, so if you make this apron learn from my error and save yourself fifteen minutes: I didn't account for seam allowances when I attached the neck band and waist ties, so when I pinned the two sides of the apron together I realized the ties would get caught in the seam corners so I had to rip them out and move them away from the corners by about 5/8 inch.
28  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / knit dress from free pattern on: February 08, 2012 05:47:56 PM
I made this dress from a free pattern posted here http://m-sewing.com/patterns-catalog/women/dresses/knitted-dress-with-a-raglan-sleeve.html

The pattern seems to run big, or maybe my fabric was stretchier that the pattern was written for? I followed the size chart, but it ended up too big. I ended up having to undo the neckline at the back and taking the dress in about four inches to get it to fit. But it was a free pattern so I can't complain.

29  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Re: Upcycled! Old, broken frame to decorative hair accessory holder on: July 28, 2011 01:30:28 PM
Nice! I've seen similar things for jewelry but never hair accessories.
30  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Re: cotton socks from unraveled thrift store sweater on: July 06, 2011 07:29:58 AM
I unraveled the sleeves before knitting the unraveled yarn into socks, they aren't sweater sleeves sewn into sock shapes. Now that I think about it, something like that could work with a wool sweater felted into slipper shapes though...
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