I thought the Soccer Stars need a ball to go with them (or how else would they play)
These are a mini version of the pentagon balls I’ve made previously. As you can see they are only about 2″ in diameter. They are done using the English Paper Piecing method. The paper templates I created on the computer in Word by using the inbuilt drawing tools shapes. I drew a couple of size pentagons on the page and it printed it on scrap paper. I decided a size I liked then copied the shape 12 times per ball. I use scrap paper I save from work. Scrap paper is good in a project like that as you’re not having to see through the paper.
I did have a small issue after I made these. As the stuffing gap was so tiny I used my pinky finger to stuff these. I do have proper stuffing tools but I just used my finger as it was um handy…. Bad idea I sprained my pinky finger. I must admit I did stuff these really tightly and pushed the stuffing into all angles . I had to strap my fingers for 2 days and was on craft restrictions for most of the week. Lesson learnt always use a stuffing tool.
This year I know a couple of soccer (football) mad fans so for their birthday this year I wanted to make them something special.
These pair are based on the Superhero pattern by Dolls and Daydreams I’ve just adapted it to be soccer players. This first little guy is a Tottenham Hotspur player. To be honest I had to Google what the uniform looked like. He has navy shorts, a white jersey which I had embroidered navy stripes on and of course soccer boots on.
On the back I hand embroidered Spurs just in case there was any doubts of who he was.
This second little guy is Western Sydney Wanderers player. I know what this uniform looks like. For his jersey I couldn’t find any black and red stripe fabric in my stash so I made my own. I cut strips about 1″ wide and pieced them together. It was pretty quick to do and it overcame the problem. He has black shorts and his black boots. He didn’t need any embroidery on his uniform as he is pretty distinctive.
He is a little unique as if you look closely he has a feint 5 O’clock shadow. Some of the black felt hair and threads from the black strip has shown through the face fabric giving the appearance of a facial hair. I could claim this to be intent but it is pure accident.
I love these guys. I wanted to make a toy that suited each child and I have. I did buy the felt for the hair but all the other fabric came from my stash. Toys are a great way to use up fabric from your scrap stash as often you only need small amounts of fabric for their pieces. The Dolls and Daydream pattern was a great base to work from. You could use this pattern to make a toy for any child or adult just by adapting the fabrics. I hope the boys like them.
This is the start of my Pamuke blanket. Pamuke isn’t a fancy pattern name, it is the combined name of the people whom I’m making the blanket for (you know how celebrity couples are given a combined name) I wanted an easy name when referring to this blanket.
I’m making this as a wedding present. I’m using Lucy’s from Attic24 Granny Stripe pattern but I’ve made it longer. I found this blog post from Easy Crochet Pattern which lists the starting chains needed for various size blankets. A Granny Stripe might sound boring or plain for a blanket so significant as a wedding present but I wanted a blanket they could use everyday and be practical. A blanket that could be thrown on the back of the couch and used when watching movies or could be thrown over someone if they fall asleep and you don’t want to wake them. I’m using Bendigo Woollen Mills 8ply Classic 100% wool again as it is machine washable, the colours are Tasman Blue and Magnolia. I wanted to make it in the colours of their favourite Rugby League team (Canterbury Bulldogs) At first when the yarn arrived I must admit I thought I had chosen the incorrect colours as I was after a deep royal blue and a white whereas these a more a muted blue and a cream. After working up a row or 2 my mind changed and I really like them. They are more sophisticated and better suited to a wedding blanket.
I’ve never done a 2 tone Granny Stripe before and I wasn’t sure how many rows I would get out of each 200g ball. I lost crochet roulette but it gave me and indication of how many rows I will get. I’m hoping to get as much of this blanket done before Sunny CAL starts March 1st.
I have a gift I want to make this year but it involved a stitch I’d never tried before Knit One Below (K1B) I can only do basic knit and purl so I had to learn this new stitch. Thanks to Pinterest and YouTube I found this clip which explains it. Once it is explained it is actually very easy. Instead of placing your working needle (the needle the stitch is going onto) into the stitch as you normally would do, you place your working needle into the stitch below and knit the stitch dropping both stitches as it passes onto the working needle. Watch the clip it explains it a lot better than I do :-) After a couple of minutes of practice I got the hang of it.
I decided to test out the pattern I’ll be using and make a dishcloth from it. It was easy enough to do and I like the texture of it. I can’t just knit something unless it is going to be used so dishcloths are great to practice new stitches and patterns on. If the stitch isn’t perfect it doesn’t matter as the cloth will still clean your dishes regardless and really you can’t have too many dishcloths.
Softies for Mirabel is a toy drive to support the Mirabel Foundation, an organisation which supports kids who are abandoned or orphaned due to parental drug use.
The toy drive has now been going 9 years, for the last few years I’ve wanted to contribute to it but have never gotten the chance. This year they have a theme “all creatures great and small” After this mishap of making Pony early last year I decided I would donate her to this years toy drive, by chance she fitted right in with this years theme when it was announced towards the end of last year. When I finished her off I was really pleased. The koalas also went to the toy drive. I hope these little guys make some kids happy. They are not fancy toys but they were made with love with the intention to be loved by a child. Every child should be able to cuddle up to a soft toy when they are scared or lonely or just because they want too.
The deadline for this years toy drive is January 28th 2016. The toy drive is usually announced around mid October. This year when it is announced I’ll post the details on here if anyone else wants to get involved.
These little guys were from a pattern in Patchwork and Stitching Yearbook magazine (Vol 16 No 3) They are very cute. They are meant to have clothing but I never got around to making the clothing however I think they can get away naked (most koalas do) These were quick to make. Even though they didn’t get there clothes I really like how they are different just by the colour difference in their inner ears. Its just a subtle variation in them. You could make a batch of these and just change the colours of the ear around for each child. All the fabrics came from my stash. I had actually finished them last year but they were set aside. This is a very basic toy but basics are best. They are a toy a child can snuggle up with and that’s the purpose of a soft toy.
Castaway To Couture 2016 is a competition being held by the Australian Sewing Guild where participants are challenged to bring new life into old garments. The rules are pretty simple you either purchase an item/s from an op shop (charity / good will shop) or you raid your own stash for clothes you don’t wear for whatever reason and you alter the item into something new. It is a nationwide competition with some fantastic prizes for the winners including a sewing machine, gift vouchers and patterns. Winners are awarded by judges on the most transformed item but there are also viewers’ choice winners.
I’ve decided to enter this competition. I’m not in this to win some of the fantastic prizes, but who would say no a Craftsy voucher. I’m going to do this a personal challenge. Bringing new life into old garments is something I have wanted to do for a long time, it’s about time I gave it a shot. The first item I have chosen was an article of clothing I have culled from my stash just this week (thanks CC for the inspiration) This is a nylon/polyester velveteen stretchy long tube skirt. After picking it up for the first time in years I discovered that some of pile had started to come away from the fabric. It has been dragged on the ground or caught in shoes. It was time for it to go, I was going to add it into my fabric stash thinking I could use it in a toy. 2 days later I discovered this competition and thought perfect I have something already.
The 2nd item I’m using is some polyester imitation suede pants. I had culled these about 12 months ago, it was only during a night of insomnia and hot weather that I remembered I hadn’t actually taken these to the op shop yet and they were still sitting in my spare room. I’ve had these for a good 10 – 15 years. I stopped wearing them due to a) they are really hot to wear and b) they sit low and there isn’t much room in the crotch area. Looking at them now the hem has come undone on one leg and I never bothered to fix it. Also they don’t have pockets, I can’t wear pants without pockets. These have a funny story. In a department store once I went past the baby section and happened to see pants that were exactly the same as these! Same fabric, same stitch detail above the knee. I remembered thinking I have toddler pants. I have a feeling I never wore these again after that day.
Both items have pasted the first test, the wash test. Both say to hand wash separately but I stuck them both together on a cold water wash and they survived. I dare say that’s how they’ve always been washed all this time as I don’t do fancy washing. I have a few ideas of what I want to do. Not sure if all will work but you never know if you don’t try. I can say during my night of insomnia I pretty much planned it all out at 1:30 am and wrote all the ideas down later. With the ideas I have in mind I don’t see myself winning most transformed item, however hopefully I’m going to have an item that I can wear. An item that I have created using principles that I feel strongly about – upcycling, recycling, simple living by making it myself. It will be a free item as I’m not planning on purchasing anything extra for this. All materials will come from my current stash or the item itself. I love a good challenge and this is my challenge to me. Watch this space and no matter the outcome I’ll share this with you.