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The Birthday Swap

Every year, there are groups on Ravelry that organize swaps. You can participate in swaps for dishcloths, mittens, shawls, and even for your birthday! Well, I went ahead and participated in one for my birthday this year. I wanted something special, and definitely different from what I did in years’ past. So I signed up for the Birthday Swap early this year.

When the time came around, i couldn’t be more thrilled. Now came the best part after all: shopping! πŸ˜€

I needed to shop for yarn, which was the easy part actually. The rest of the package had to be a minimum cost of $30. The aim was to make the swapee (is there such a word??) feel pampered and loved, even if from far. So I totally went to town with my shopping list. Chocolate, craft kits, and personal care item. It also included a hand-made item from me: my silk-wool shawl Intriguing.

However, I couldn’t manage to make get the package together before Lynne’s (my swap partner) Birthday. I had to send it out before the month was over, and that’s what I eventually did! However, Lynne was a darling and sent mine so that it got to meΒ before my birthday.

Then came D-day: my birthday, and more importantly: package opening day! And boy, was I pampered! Here are the pics of what I received:

The entire package
The entire package. The bag was the handmade that Lynne sent
Lovely lovely yarn! <3
Lovely lovely yarn! <3
Postcards from Yorkshire
Postcards from Yorkshire
Fat Quarter pieces to push me along in my sewing journey
Fat Quarter pieces to push me along in my sewing journey
Books! Lovely collection
Books! Lovely collection

 

What I sent included:

Manasa Gift 2014 001.JPG

 

Manasa Gift 2014 003.JPG

Manasa Gift 2014 004.JPG

Shawl modelled by Lynne
Shawl modelled by Lynne

I guess the pics taken by Lynne are definitely more detailed than mine! But then I wanted to showcase the sheer amount of stuff she sent across! This was a fun experience, and I will certainly look forward to nest year. πŸ˜€

 

 

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The Search for a Perfect Design – Kobo Cover

I have made 3 covers as yet. One was knit and the other 2 were sewing projects. While the knit project as well as the first sewing project were carry-covers, the 3rd cover was basically a stand to put my reader so that I’m not constantly holding the reader directly.Β But I wanted something that covered both these functions nicely.

So here’s the latest attempt:

 

The Outside
The Outside
The Inside
The Inside
How it looks when ready!
How it looks when ready!
After fitting the Reader in
After fitting the Reader in

 

I think I’m too enamoured with the written word fabric. I really need to stop putting it front and center… I think that’s what spoiling the effect! πŸ™

But overall, the dimensions are a bit short. But hey! This is a learning attempt!

 

 

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Cotton Apron

When I got up this morning, I promised myself that I’d get cracking on the sweaters that are pending work. However, once I finished breakfast, I suddenly decided i wanted a new apron. I’m not really sure why I want one though, i hardly use it!

But one thing was sure: the apron I already own has strings to be tied at the back.. and I’ve been enamoured by the professional chef aprons that tie right around to the waist in front. It’s just so cool! So that’s what I decided to make.

Another reason is that I desperately need to use up my fabric stash if I intend to buy more fabric.. So my project was for a good cause: to create space for more shopping! πŸ˜‰

While I havent reached the level where I’m comfortable showing off my haphazard sewing /cutting skills in photographic detail, here’s the final product. Though there are a couple of things I’m proud of:

  • The neat way I managed to make the borders without having fabric lift up after the stitch line
  • My stitched apron strings. This is my second attempt, and I’ve done a great job (even I say so myself)

What I’m not happy about is the fact that the armsyce is different on both sides. I’m not really sure how I managed that, though I do remember thinking that one side seemed easier to stitch than the other…

Without any further ado, there’s my apron!

How it looks on me!
How it looks on me!
Final apron with the disbalanced armsyce
Final apron with the imbalanced armsyce
The neat edges
The neat edges
the neat curved edge
the neat curved edge

 

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Yet Another Attempt!

My goal of having a nicely done cover for my Kobo Touch still seems far away!

This is my latest attempt at making a cover. Though I must say, the cover is definitely better than my last one, not to mention the amount of folds of fabric have made it pretty sturdy! πŸ™‚

While I may have not reached an expert level, I did find that my sewing skills have improved, as has my planning-for-sewing skills. Early on, I used to wing it in terms of size approximations and kind of stitch required. Now I found that measuring and noting down everything has given me a better perspective!

The inside face
The inside face
how the fold looks
how the fold looks
The reverse: my not-so-nice attempt at free-motion quilting
The reverse: my not-so-nice attempt at free-motion quilting

 

The folded up cover: not sure how to jazz up the front...
The folded up cover: not sure how to jazz up the front…

 

 

 

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Case for Kobo Touch

Hubby gifted a Kobo Touch recently. An e-Reader has been on my wishlist for so long, and I was thrilled to get it in my hands! However, with Kobo, you don’t get any covers attached to it. This meant I had to make one.

Now the decision was actually whether I should sew one or knit one. Well, my decision was both! But sewing gets done faster, so the first cover was to be the stitched one.

Being a novice in the sewing department, I turned to the internet for inspiration. There were a few tutorials but:

  • I didn’t understand the instructions as they were geared for someone who knew what they were doing. I didn’t.
  • The instructions were geared towards cases for Kindle or Sony. I wanted spoon-feeding! πŸ˜‰

Finally I found a tutorial here. This was truly a life-saver! And I got down to the serious business to making a quilted cover for my Kobo. However, I did not make the quilt with pieces from various fabrics. Instead It was a single sheet with design that I quilted using batting and lining material. I finally got to use it after a major shopping trip at RC Puram almost a year back!

Hmm. Batting. Not to mention that fancy lines ruler. I had no clue such things existed before this project. But then, I again wanted this cover now. So I managed to find some sponge sheet left over from some project. I used this in place of batting. Seemed to work well, but I really need to get to the market for some serious quilting material shopping if I have to get this right! I remember seeing something similar to that ruler at some store a long time back. Need to get back over there and check it out again. Ahh, my shopping list takes shape again! πŸ˜€

With the help of the tutorial, I managed to make my case. And here it is!Β  πŸ™‚

The finishing did leave a lot to desire. But then again, this is my very first sewing project (mobile pouches and repairs don’t count). So, I forgive myself. πŸ™‚

the materials
the materials
The front - after quilting
The front – after quilting
the back - no awards for neatness though!
the back – no awards for neatness though!
And the final product! :)
And the final product! πŸ™‚

 

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Basic Mobile Pouch

This is my first project on my new sewing machine. πŸ™‚ YAY!!

Actually I have done other stuff with the machine. It’s only that most of them comprised of repairs of clothing and bed sheets, and new pair of pillow covers. So I finally mustered up some courage to get sewing projects.

I have some self-knit mobile pouches. But, like handbags and shoes, a girl just can’t have too many. So with the left over fabric from the pillow covers, came this lovely mobile pouch. πŸ™‚

The pouch came out fast enough. The problem lay with the handle and the deco. For deco, i zeroed on some leftover flower sequins which could be pastes on. The handle was tougher. I decided to do a ragged-y braid with the same fabric. It’s not the neatest look, but I kinda liked it that way.

The final product πŸ˜€
The inside (wotever can be seen)
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UFOs :D

 

I had to write my thoughts down when i first saw this tag. I just didn’t understand the connection between extra-terrestrial entities and knitting.Β  Only later did I understand this particular designation. So here goes for the uninitiated (like me) :

UFO: Un-finished Object

FO: Finished Object (not an expletive, think positive!!! )

WIP: work-in-progress (ok, this one I already knew)

I actually started out on this blog as a kind of show-case for my finished items. But, with time, I came to realize that there’s so much more to write about than just the few things I actually make. There’s so much more to learn, and not really related to knitting or regular crafting. Like, there is my attempt at sewing. I call it an attempt because i have bought a sewing machine, I bought the fabric, but am yet to sew a single stitch!!!

That of course is my resolution for this month. ! item a month. which also would mean that I will have to increase my tags to include sewing. Hmm.

So here I enter the world of UFOs and write about How I progress on each of them, and on my resolutions to get them to move into the FO category.

 

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Drawstring WaveLace Cardigan

 

I started this project as my very first test knit for Shoshana Silberstien. It was supposed to complete within 1-1.5 month/s. But thanks to holidays (her’s and mine), guests at home (mine) and various other reasons, this got delayed. But here it is, finally done, edits and all! πŸ˜€

Ribbon Tunnel
Flame Lace

 

 

 

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Daily Use Mobile Pouches

After my last attempt to make a pouch in wool, I wondered if I could make the same with thread.. this time with knitting cotton. I did buy some knitting cotton, but more for the reason to try and make some tops to wear with jeans (for myself) or to try n make some doilies … again inspiration from the crochet work sis-in-law makes. πŸ™‚

So this is the result from my attempts.

Red Beauties! πŸ˜€

Pouch 1 was done in a single color… I took a guess with the size. It came out a lil squat, but actually fit a Blackberry like a glove. The design is something I came up with myself. Am not sure if it already exists, but I definitely didn’t see it anywhere! πŸ˜€

BlackBerry Pouch

Pouch 2 was my first ever attempt to use 2 colors while knitting. Nice job, even if i say so myself! πŸ˜‰ The design is called Bird’s Eye.

Bird's Eye Pouch