Testing Frixion Pens

At Urban Stitches I was asking everyone what kind of marking pen they used. A few people mentioned Frixion Pens which I’d never heard of before, but then the following week I was suddenly seeing adverts for them in the craft mags. Last weekend I was at the shops and picked up a couple to try.

Frixion Pens

I used some scrap calico and marked out simple lines with each colour

Frixion Pen Test

I then erased the ink by rubbing the fabric with the little ball on the end of the pens. The ink removed fairly easily but you did have to hold the fabric very taught so you could really cause the heat motion to remove it. It didn’t appear to damage the fabric at all.

Frixion Pen Simple Rub Away

For the next experiment I wrote out a word in each colour then embroidered over it with backstitch. This was very basic embroidery with cheapish thread. I left gaps in the embroidery to remove the ink.

Frixion Pen Test Embroidery

I found on larger sections the ink was very easy to remove however it was slightly difficult to get in very close to the stitching line where I deliberately missed stitched it. Again the fabric needed to be taught to get the friction motion. I don’t think you could really do this on small pieces.

Frixion Pen Black Rub Away

Frixion Pen Blue Rub Away
Lastly I decided to wash and iron the fabric to see if the ink would fully disappear. Any remaining ink seemed to wash away and the fabric seemed fine.

Frixion Pen Ironed

So after my experiment I think I will use these in future in my craft. I was limited to my colour choices at the shop last weekend. I’m seeing on their website they do have a brown colour which would be very useful in marking out embroidery lines. If I was to use them on an actual item I was making then my markings would be more straighter and my stitching neater so it would look better than in just a test piece.

Project Completed

Over the weekend I completed the embroidery project I started at Urban Stitches

Pendant Necklace

We were supplied with suggested instructions on the colours to stitch each pendant. I opted to embroider this geometric one in shades of blue as it more suited my colour taste, at the time I didn’t know what I would use each pendant for. In our project pack we were supplied with the notions to make one pendant into a necklace and by chance I picked up a project bag that had a blue leather necklace in it. Once I finished stitching this pendant it was always going to be the necklace. I really like how it turned out.

Hedgehog Button

I decided to turn the other pendant shapes into fabric covered buttons. When I assembled the first one I didn’t really think too much about it. I’ve never made fabric covered buttons where print direction was an issue. It was only once I snapped the backing on the button I realised I should’ve paid attention to the front of the button as the loop on the back of the button is side ways. If I turned him into a hair tie he would be facing side ways. The fabric is double layer as it has a backing on it so I couldn’t easily snap it out of the button and try again. I’ve decided instead I’ll thread some elastic cording through it and turn it into a necklace for a child this Christmas. The side way loop is perfect to hang it as a necklace

Embroidered Buttons

I paid more attention when assembling the other 3 pendants. I will wear these as hair ties.

Doll Needle Holder

I got a great tip last weekend from Jodie (Ric Rac) about storing doll needles. Put them in a toothbrush travel case. I was waiting in a chemist yesterday, saw them for sale and picked one up. My needles are now safe and secure.

Doll Needle Holder

Unfortunately it was only when I putting them inside it I discovered it had drainage holes at either end so your toothbrush doesn’t get all manky inside it. When I put the needles in they fell straight through, so to get around this I cut 2 rectangle pieces of felt and placed them in each end to block the holes. If I gave it a little more thought I would’ve tried to find pale blue felt. I have an extra-large 254mm needle that didn’t fit in it so I will still keep that attached to the card however all the other sizes fit perfect.

Doll Needle Extra Large

Urban Stitches Sydney 2014

Urban Stitches Sydney 2014 was a lot of fun. If you have never heard of Urban Stitches, it is sewing retreat held in the middle of a city in a major hotel both in Sydney and Melbourne. Its hosted by Erica from Under The Mulberry Tree and has Ric Rac (Jodie Carleton), Melanie McNeice and Rosalie Quinlan as the guests of honour. I’m a big fan of all 3 designers and have made many of their projects. It is held over 2 days but it is your choice which day you wish to do or you can do both. I always do both.

Urban Stitches Display

 

Day 1
On day 1 we got our project bags of the activities we could complete over the weekend. There was a fox softie, a needle and pins sewing bag and a set of pendants. I chose to work on the pendants. The pendants were a popular choice as you complete it in a day and feel like you finished something. After I finished my first one I realised if I’d cut my linen up to place it in the pendant ring I couldn’t lie the rest of it flat in my hoop to finish the others so I’m going to wait until they are all complete to do it.

Urban Stitches Project End Day 1

Each day there is “show and tell” where you can show off items you’ve made. I took along my teaset that I will be giving as a gift later this month. I had to take a photo of it to compare it to Jodie’s one. I’m pretty proud of my teasets when I look at them along side the designers one. Jodie was laughing at me as I was taking the photos. Jodie thinks I do a great job with my teasets and that means a lot to me.

Urban Stitches Teapots

Urban Stitches Teacups

 

Day 2
If you attended the 2 days you got a different goodie bag on the 2nd day. In the 2nd day goodie bag there were some wonderful items including some Cosmo threads, a needle keeper, fabric bundle, stitchery gift cards, a gift voucher for the shop, Christmas cards and a fabric Log. I’m very excited as I’ve never owned a Log before. I don’t want to open it as it looks so pretty and I’m scared of what to make with it because I don’t want to waste it.

Urban Stitches Goodie Bag Day 2

Urban Stitches Log

 

On day 2 there were fewer people attended but there was just as much laughter and fun had. A Rugby League team was staying at the hotel over the weekend before their match so all weekend they had to put up with us, they posed for photos with needlework and had to put up with female laughing. After lunch on the 2nd day they decided to come into our venue to see what exactly we were doing all weekend. Just observing them on their own looking at every thing was hilarious. These boofy young blokes were amazed and getting excited over toys and stitcheries. I could hear comments of “your girlfriend would love this, mum would like this” They asked questions and were actually interested in it all. My friend said it was very intimidating and difficult not to stab herself with a needle as 3 blokes stood around her fascinated by what she was making.

Framed Angels

I took another show and tell item along this time the framed Angels stitchery I did last year. Rosalie loved how I got it professionally framed. I’m proud of it and again to have the person who designed it like it means a lot to me.

Urban Stitches Project End Day 2

By the end of the 2 days I look at the stitching I did get completed and think really it isn’t that much however the fun and relaxation that I had in those 2 days is what counts. I learnt things and asked questions. How often do you get to ask a designer to show you something or explain something.

Urban Stitches Shopping

I may have done a little shopping over the weekend as Erica sets up a little shop in the room. I had a wishlist before I went so I picked up some items that were on that. I found some extra items I wasn’t expecting such as stitcheries that are factory seconds but look perfect, a pre-printed bunny panel that I will cut out and stitch up for a Christmas gift and some supplies for some bags I’ll be making for this Christmas. I got a couple of patterns for gifts for next year and I ordered a pattern book that didn’t make it to sale in time for the event.

Urban Stitches Book

I was able to get a copy of Melly’s book and she signed it for me. I’ve never had a craft book signed before so it is one I shall treasure.

Little Black Bag

There is nothing like wanting to use an item to motivate you to finish it.

LBB

This little black bag I started last year and actually finished knitting earlier this year but put it aside to join together at a later date. I decided I would like to use this bag this coming weekend at Urban Stitches so yesterday I made it my mission to finish it. It really is simply just a knitted front, back and strap with a black button and a bit of elastic. I wanted a simple little bag I could throw over my body to keep my phone and wallet in. After trying it out I think I may have made the strap a bit long as I forgot knitting stretches so I’ve come to the solution that I can always knot the strap half way so the knot will sit on top of my shoulder if needed.

First Beanie

I can now add beanie making to my list of knitting skills

Grean Beanie

This pattern is the “Custard Beanie” from the Better Homes and Garderns Your Knitting & Crochet Collection magazine. It actually super simple to make as it’s only one rectangle piece done in garter stitch that is mattresses seamed together at the sides and then gathered together at the top with a running stitch. I’m sure you could make it in various sizes by adjusting the amount of stitches you cast on and how long you knit the rectangle piece. If you wanted to make it fancy you could add a flower or pom pom. I know this is a pattern I’m going to continue making over and over. This is for my stash of items for KOGO

Heatpack Feedback

I’ve gotten some feedback about the Shoulder Heatpack I made a few weeks ago

Shoulder Heat Pack With Cover

The person I made it before liked it however mentioned it isn’t the most practical to heat in the microwave due to the size. You need to really fold it up and the keep flipping it over to ensure it heats evenly. The size and also the weight was a worry I had from the start with it. The weight really isn’t an issue, it is more the size.

Shoulder Heat Packer Inner

So would I make it again? I do like some concept of the pattern such as the chambers that are filled to stop the rice from moving but I don’t think I will make the same size and shape again. Perhaps just a narrow rectangle one with chambers you can wrap around your neck. I do have a commercially made one which is rounded similar to those travel pillows you get so I might trace around that next time and create a pattern.