Yarnplanner's Blog

Blogging to control yarn and fabric urges

Day 5 – Crash October 5, 2010

Filed under: current projects,pattern ideas,sewing,Uncategorized — yarnplanner @ 11:07 pm

One of the stories I had planned on telling you about these past months was my new found love / obsession with sewing the perfect t-shirt type top. It started with a flirting interest with using my overlocker (serger) to its full potential and investing in a few cheap metres of knit fabric. I used a pattern from one of my favourite shirts and just winged it really. It has been fun. And very successful. I now have eight new shirts in my wardrobe and a real understanding of stretch fabrics, differential feed and twin needles. I moved back to woven cottons and remade the pattern to suit and then found some lovely light voiles to play with. Throw in to that story an amazing opshop find of a set of overlocking feet (gathering, elastic gathering and several piping feet) which have sparked my imagination about what is possible.
Until last night.
I had planned out a shirt in my head, written a few notes and when I had a bit of time in the evening, cut out the fabric and started work. A Complete Disaster.
The fabric didn’t work, the idea wasn’t thought through. Half way through, trying to fudge and compensate, I knew that although the idea is still probably sound, it really needed more work. I was discouraged, I felt crummy.
Nice fabric, precious sewing hours – all wasted. I could probably make something out of the awful mess that I made but that would waste more time and negative energy.
Until this morning. I picked it up and thought about the waste. I realised that the $3 worth of fabric and the two hours spent were really well spent to learn and discover the things you know about sewing not by reading but by doing. It was valuable. It was enriching. It made me feel good about what I do. Trying something, sometimes failing. Other times possibly triumphing. But sometimes failing.
And so to end on a bright note, my journey tonight.
Finishing a lovely Amy Butler pattern ready for a visit with the lovely Donna tomorrow.
AB Tunic
Sewing in ends on my own little creation which fits me beautifully and which I might wear tomorrow to make the above mentioned Donna very jealous.


A New Day October 2, 2010

Filed under: current projects,fabric,pattern ideas,sewing — yarnplanner @ 11:20 pm

I thought that my Blogtoberfest blogs would be more about the past than the present.  I have so much catching up to do.  But today is different (second day in… not bad).
Today I spent the best day with the lovely ladies from the Australian Sewing Guild Southern Group.  I’ve been once before for a Saturday of sewing and sharing and gossiping and pattern critiqueing but today I was blown away by the interest, knowledge and enthusiasm  of this group.   I don’t have any photos to share yet but imagine a day where you watch a jeans fly front be made – oh – so – easy – you get help to insert your first invisible zip (now you are really jealous aren’t you), AND you are shown, step by step to do an alternate facing for square neck tops that makes it look easy, smooth and even (if that floats your boat) shop bought.  Add in advice about thread choice, using short stitches and…. and…. well …. and … coffee and children and husbands and holiday destinations.

Thank you lovely ladies for all your support for this little newbee and I am so looking forward to contributing to this group.  As we all know, online is great but face to face is just a bit….greater.

For those that are interested I took a precut medium size of the Amy Butler Mini dress / tunic / top thanks to a sewing challenge that Donna and I set for each other .  The fabric was from Bargain Box in Capalaba – the most awesome fabric shop I have been in.  Great fabrics, fantastic prices, really nice service, kids play area which my boy loves.  Perfect – fabric shopping with a happy kid.

I should be done tomorrow with hems and topstiching so will try to get a photo then.  Photo?  I am so torn between taking bad photos and none at all.  I’ll get back to you on that.


This weeks achievements January 17, 2010

Filed under: current projects,finished objects,yarn — yarnplanner @ 9:56 pm

This has been a busy week for me, with really not enough time at home to achieve what I really wanted to get done.  I am a bit behind in my ‘Around the Block‘  blocks and really need to get them done but most of my crafting was done away from home this week.

I was able to finish my second pair of French Press Slippers (Rav Link).  They are not as good as the first so these will actually become my pair.  The other pair just might be gifted as I have no idea why on earth I would want 2 pairs. These were made with Moda Vera Mousse (a wool, bamboo blend) and they felted very nicely in my Mums top loader.  The yarn was a bit chunkier than the Cascade 220 and the results follow.

More importantly, I have been preparing for my next couple of projects by dyeing some yarn.  I overdyed some Moda Vera Socks for a Noosa Shawl (eggplant and light electric blue) and overdyed some Bella Baby Sugar in Lavender for my Daybreak (red, purple, blue) last night. The bright red / purple / blue will be paired with a navy blue solid yarn.   I am very pleased with the Noosa Shawl effort (although there is more light blue than in the photo) and will reserve judgement on the Daybreak combo until after I have knitted a bit.   For the Noosa Shawl, I used the KoolAid Donna gave me last year for Christmas (the light blue Rasberry) and then overdyed in a light eggplanty purple. I think it will look nice – because it was going over that variagated brown sock yarn, there is quite a lot of different shades. Pleased that more stash yarn is being used.

It feels good to use stash yarn and be happy doing it.

I am four repeats off finishing my Saroyan… feeling that excitement you get when a project is nearly done but you are loving it so much, you don’t want to finish.  It will be lovely to post a picture soon.  I am already thinking about how I would make this project again.


Husbands! July 27, 2009

Filed under: bits of life,current projects,finished objects — yarnplanner @ 8:48 pm

Its been hard to blog lately as access to our main computer has been…. limited.  You would think that being married to a computer geek (who works in IT, speaks geek language and spends his evenings doing geeky things) would have computer advantages but I can assure you the opposite is true.  There does not seem to be one day when I can turn it on and things will be the same as the last time it was turned on.  We have multiple hard drives, run 3 different operating systems (testing environments) and a wide range of accessories which may or may not work (depending on which computer is running them).  I try to keep all my ‘stuff’ in a discrete little corner of an external hard drive but for some reason, it has been found and needed to be ‘tidied’ (this from a man that has trouble finding the washing basket with his socks and is always complaining that nothing is ever where he left it (because that is usually on the dining table just before dinner is ready).  So now my camera link, the place I like to put all the photos when they are downloaded and my ‘notes to self’ are all in different places.  He thinks it is ‘clever’.  I think it is daft.  Hopefully, very soon I can move them all back together again. Otherwise I will scream.  Please.. please can I have my own computer (from the many that we run in our house) and please, please, please can it be left alone.

Enough husband bashing!  He is lovely … really…

So what have I been up to?  This last week I finished the light and airy scarf made from the fabulous mohair / silk yarn dyed by Knitting by Zen and edged it with the Kaalund that Donna gave me.  I really wanted to see what the two looked like together and am so pleased with the result even if the yarn was a bit more aqua than I was expecting.  I can’t wait for my next project with these two together.

Then I put together a little shrug with a leftover 200g ball of Bendi 8ply Rustic (peppercorn).  I used the chevron pattern from Milobo’s chevron lace cardi and the same yarn, just made a big rectangle and seamed it under the arms.  It is suprisingly warm and I have worn it a few times.  No pictures as I have promised not to take any more photos in the bedroom mirror but I’ll get one soon.

My greatest achievement this week was this lovely little library bag for my boy.  I love making him things.  I put a couple of big pockets on one side (to hold a small bear and a pencil case) and his name on the other to practice more machine applique.  Its better than last time but still needs work.

And I also added a couple of rows on to the bottom of one of his vests.  Just trying to get it to last until the end of this winter. I love crochet… just add in yarn and keep going.  The yarn is a bit different but I’m sure a wash or two will sort that out. Not that pretty but fast and functional.  Love it.

I have still not been tempted to start on another big yarn project and realised today that as the weather seems like it is getting a bit warmer, I’m probably not inspired by any big woolly projects so I’m still looking at smaller, lighter garments.


Quick WIP update (and an FO) June 4, 2009

Filed under: current projects,finished objects — yarnplanner @ 1:34 pm

Here are the pics I promised from the finished crocus bud and the WIP clapotis.  The crocus bud finished up being 2.2 metres but it didn’t get much wider with the blocking.  I didn’t block too hard though.  I’m pleased that I have plenty of length to play around with different wearing options.

Here is the Clapotis which I have vowed to finish (along with the rest of my WIPs) by the end of June.  I am going to start the new financial year with NOTHING outstanding.  Good idea?? I have also vowed that I will not buy any more fabric, patterns, vintage sheets or anything else unless I need it to finish my WIPs for the month of June as well.  I have so many good project ideas and good fabric and yarn, I am going to use up a bit of it.  Now that is blogged, I will have to stick to it.  If you see anything new popping up between now and the 1st of July, feel free to rap over the knuckles.

For the record the yarn is JL Vinca and this is nearly 2 skeins worth.  I will be doing about another 5 pattern repeats on the straight section and then the decrease.  That should use up about another skein.  I hate having half skens left over!

And here are the Amy Butler lounge pants and appliqued t-shirt I gave my sister for her birthday.  They are the same as the ones I gave my other sister and my mother but in different colour ways.  I think they all really like them.


Covert Operations May 15, 2009

Filed under: current projects,finished objects,Gryff — yarnplanner @ 1:21 pm

Last year, for my boy’s first birthday, I made him a blanket which was a big commitment for me at the time – the largest project I had done but as my boy is a big commitment and a pretty big project too – it seemed most appropriate. 

possum's birtday blankie 

I loved making it and love seeing it in his cot and now on his bed.  So I decided last year that I would make another one this year (and maybe even try to make a blanket or quilt for each of his birthdays to come – it seems like a nice idea to be able to give him 18 blankets on his 18th birthday although he will most probably prefer a car).  I have been working on this years blanket on and off since the end of last year.  It was originally a ‘car project’ because I can do it without looking at it all the time and when it got a bit big for the car, moved in to the house.  It then started to go a bit pear shaped and I put it down for a while as I needed to decide what to do.  This is often one of my great weaknesses – I get to a problem and rather than sorting it out and enjoying the challenge of solving it… I sort of tuck it away and get on with something else.  Anyway… one of my strengths is that I don’t abandon it all together.  So now it has been sorted I am back in love with the project and in true form, now racing at the end.  But racing in a good way – I’m loving how it is coming together and how it has all worked out.  I love the granny square concept, I love the offset which I sort of worked out for myself (even if it did start to go a bit pear shaped) and I love the colours and how they come together.  It is right that I love it so much seeing as it is going to my boy.  I will get it finished on time so it doesn’t really matter that I did put it down for a while – I mean no point in finishing his birthday blanket at Christmas time is there! I already know what next years quilt will be but I’ll get this one out of the way before getting it sorted. here is a photo of it now. the offset square means it will have to be blocked before use to even it up but I am confident it will work out beautifully.

Possum's 2nd birthday blankie WIP


Finishing off! May 11, 2009

Filed under: current projects,finished objects,sewing,yarn — yarnplanner @ 2:12 pm

I am in a big finishing mood at present – really keen to get all my WIPs under control and I mean all of them. I found that I had 15 things that were started in some way but just sitting about. Although 15 does seem a lot, there are probably 5 that I didn’t ever expect to actually finish at this time but took an opportunity to start in some way (I had the fabric out, wanted to check the yarn was right etc.). Having said that, 15 is way to many for me, particularly when I am also putting new ideas from my head on paper and trying new things while they are fresh. I’m sure that my currrent obsession with finishing has something to do with the fact that we going on holiday in two weeks and it would be great to be able to come back with some space around me to get on with ideas I have while I am away. It will also be good to take a few of the smaller WIPs with me so that I have no choice but to finish them. So I am being very focused on getting on with the things that need to be done. My first FO was my Mothers Day gift to my Mum. She got a pair of Amy Butler lounge pants and a tshirt with a little heart applique on it. I didn’t take a photo before I gave them to her but I will try to get her to model them for me when I next visit. It was the first time I had used the blanket stitch on my machine and the first time using the applifix fusible web. Both worked really well and I enjoyed the process immensely. I like the blanket stitch better than the buttonhole or satin stitch because it is so much lighter looking. I can see a few more little applique’s happening for Gryff’s t-shirts and such I think. I am making the same combo for my sisters birthday and so will get to follow up on the applique technique again soon. After that there is some holiday sewing for me and my block party blocks. Watch this space for more FOs!