Coasters with a twist

Tropical is the theme of the blog lately.  Perhaps it was that hour (yes you read that right) I spent in Providenciales the other day.  Lovely tropical breezes and that really bright Caribbean sunshine got me in the summer mood.  When I came across this coaster project on Purl Bee the other day I knew it would be a good little hostess gift.

I used felt from Michael’s rather than nice felt, but it worked just fine.  I bought one square of each of the colors and two squares of the white.  I found you could actually make three coasters from the colored felt, but I couldn’t face any more fiddly sewing of wedges to pith.  Eight coasters are plenty.

I followed the directions on the Purl Bee site except I didn’t hand sew (horrors!).  I scrounged through the thread vault and found colors that matched well enough for coasters and machine sewed the things together.  I also had an overwhelming urge to pink the edges, so I did.  My coasters a bit wonky, but they’ll do the trick under those beer bottles.

Now for some reason, I’m thinking I’d really like some lemon meringue pie…

More tropical waves

It’s actually brighter than the bad iphone pic suggests and I adore this colorway!  Doesn’t it remind you of  parrots?  The yarn is actually the yummy Knitterly Things Vesper Sock in the Sweetwater colorway.  Perhaps Sweetwater was the name of her childhood parrot?

The socks are for Summer of Socks 2011 on Rav, which is just knitting a pair of socks a month for three months.  I kind of already do that so it’s not a big stretch for me, but I like the concept.  There are suggested sock patterns that you could follow, but you can just do your own thing if that works for you.  I opted for one of the variations of Summer Spirals, the first suggested pattern, since I wanted to use my Vesper Sock yarn.  The bright colored stripes didn’t lend themselves to the cabled pattern (though it’s not technically a cable – just crossed stitches) but there are two variations given with the pattern and I chose Spiral Wave.  The Sprial Wave just puts some texture into the sock but doesn’t compete with the stripes.  Easy enough to travel knit, yet interesting enough to keep the knitting going.

Clearly I’ve still got parrots on the brain from my night in San Juan as they had a big cage of parrots in the lobby of the hotel.  Don’t you love those open air Carribean hotel lobbies?  Muy tropical!  Viva los loros!

Hola!

I wouldn’t wish that last week of work on anyone.  If it could go wrong, it did.  At least there were no medical emergencies…

There was also no crafting, just work and sleep.  The best I can do today is an iphone pic from my balcony of a gorgeous tropical morning sky in San Juan from my too short layover yesterday.  I wish I was still there, despite the crazy humidity and subsequent need for mass quantities of hair taming products.

Crafting-wise the pickings are slim here.  It’s hot and knitting doesn’t appeal.  I have to finish my Folded, it’s almost done so I shall try to hunker down.  Travel project is Different Lines which is lovely, just untouched by moi for the past week or so.  Sewing will be represented by Vogue 1235, pattern and material at the ready for cutting.  Time to do so is a definite maybe.

Sorry for the boring, but summer travel season is here which is a total bitch for my schedule.  Luckily I have jury duty in July so I’m actually looking forward to the break.  I’m probably their happiest jury pool member…

No resemblence whatsoever

After the debacle of the black top, I washed the masses of black knit I had left so that particular error wouldn’t be repeated.  I do indeed have oodles of black fabric left because it is about 70″ wide, very inexpensive and at the store I thought “you can never have too much black knit”.  I have a suspicion it MAY be possible to have too much black knit fabric.

Changing the subject, look what I made.  A black knit skirt.  It was supposed to be a version of a bubble skirt in Burda, but when I gathered some of the skirt into the yoke it looked hideous.  I chopped the excess skirt width to fit the yoke and went with a plain old A-line skirt.   The yoke doesn’t have elastic in it per the pattern but I was suspicious of that.  I left an opening for elastic insertion and indeed after a bit of wear the knit stretched and I looked like one of those kids with their pants down their arse.  I added the necessary elastic and had to retrofit a sewn channel to keep it in place.  The hem is a serger rolled hem because that was the easiest thing to do there.

Voila!  A problem solving skirt that is as comfy as sweats, but not sweats that looks nothing like what I started out with.  It’s not exciting but it should be useful.

They can’t all be good

Sometimes you need a reminder that for every panty victory there is a knit top defeat.  What?!?   That means after riding high from sorting that panty pattern out, I sewed up New Look 6940 and got a fail.

I cut out NL6940 at least a week ago and clearly paid no attention to the pattern measurements and cut out a huge size.  I then compounded the error by not prewashing my fabric.  My fabric also behaved oddly by growing when I ironed it and I ended up with a big ‘ol top.  I finished it and then laundered it to get it to shrink, but it’s still too big.  It’s going into the donation bag so hopefully someone will benefit from my efforts.

I will now prewash the remainder of my fabric and put this incident behind me.  If you’re interested in the gritty sewing details my review of this pattern is here.

Yes I can

I mean the “yes,I can” as an answer to a question, rather than as an empowering call to action.

What, indeed, can I do?  Well it’s make a pair of undies.  I wondered if I could and yes I can.  I’ve seen lots of people do it on the blogs and have even come across some ladies making lovely bras.  I’ve no interest in bra making since I’ve got a super common boobage size and get them on sale.  Panties are the cheap thrills of the lingerie game, so I thought I’d start there.

Now you can buy a panty pattern but I just cut apart a pair that I liked but were ready for the trash.  I made my pattern from the cut up pair and made a “muslin” from a tshirt pulled from the Goodwill bag.  My first sample came out perfectly wearable.  I now have a use for the small scraps of knit fabric from sewing projects or a use for tshirts I don’t want to wear.

The panty construction process also had me review all the stretch stitches on my Bernina that I just wasn’t using.  They’re awesome and I used the stretch overlock for the straight seams and plain zigzag to attach the fold over elastic.  I found fold over elastic for 50 cents a yard at my fave Fabrix so I stocked up for future projects.  As you can tell, I’m pretty pleased with myself for finding a way to wear a tshirt on my ass.

I also made another recipe from my new favorite book Super Natural Every Day.  I’ve made several dishes that were all good and today’s soup was no exception.  It’s the Green Lentil Soup and I made the version with green split peas because I like them better.  Yummy!  It’s a bit spicy with a hint of coconut milk and curry.  Yay for leftovers!