Yarnplanner's Blog

Blogging to control yarn and fabric urges

End of Week challenge round up August 27, 2012

Filed under: finished objects,Uncategorized,Year Long Challenge (YLC) — yarnplanner @ 9:52 pm

I’m still in ‘excited’ challenge mode and am really enjoying ‘shopping in my own store’ and using up fabrics that I own and getting rid of some that I don’t love anymore.

It was a busy week ‘in real life’ with the ‘Book Character Parade’ costume taking most of my sewing time but the result was good as my little Pinocchio was a hit! Pity I didn’t get a really great photo but just for the record:

If you’re wondering that is a leaf at the end of his long nose – it doesn’t work very well front on!

Onto the YLC (Year Long Challenge)

This past week the lovely Donna and I destashed a big pile of fabric (and me a little yarn) at the fabulous Fabric-a-brac.   It was a great afternoon.  Not only did I get rid of a heap (either by selling, donating or sending off to the op shop) of dreary, never to be used fabric, I didn’t leave with anything but 4 patterns. I have to admit that I nearly ‘caved’ but in the end, found the enjoyment of walking away better than the thrill of buying new fabric.   Donna did very well with just one canny purchase of fabric to match a pattern she had also just bought and she is following a very sensible  ‘buy to make’ rule because her stash is no where near as monstrous as mine.

I have also made FOUR skirts this weekend.  Two from the fabulous Nikki M’s A-Line Skirt pattern (I know, I know, I am so late to the party on that one) which is the best pattern EVAR!  I cut the full pattern out of a vintage sheet with the intention of making a proper muslin but it has worked out so well, I’m starting to rehearse fabrics to make a top to match.  It was late on Saturday night but I still had enough in me to cut the skirt part from again and throw a yoga style fold-over stretch band where the yoke should be.  It worked a treat and I actually wore the skirt to work today and was super comfy all day.

This is the muslin

The other two skirts were both the Fay skirt pattern from StyleArc.  This is the funkiest pattern I have ever seen! My first skirt was in a heavy weight two way stretch ‘something’ and it worked like a dream so just for fun I pulled out a one way stretch poplin and it is just as good.  These skirts are to die for, each taking less than an hour from beginning to end so I’m now stash diving to find a fabric for my third.

This is the stretch poplin which I cannot seem to photograph at any flattering angle. but trust me – it’s great!

So for the record I am now at day 42 of my challenge.  I’m loving it.


Quilts Part Two – A very special quilt May 6, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — yarnplanner @ 4:13 pm

One of the best things I did in 2010 was participate in Sheridan’s Around the Block, Round 1.
The group of girls involved in this bee were an absolute inspiration and being new to quilting, I felt very lucky to be involved and to be able to contribute to all their quilts and end up with one of my own.
What I wasn’t prepared for was the completely awesome quilt that I would end up with.
It took over a year and needed to very special help of Donna but it was finally finished at the end of last year. Ididn’t work on it continuously and it was a slow process as I ‘ummed and ahhed’ over sashing, binding and quilting decisions. At the end, I was in awe of how fabulous it is.
Here are my original thoughts on the quilt and what I was trying to achieve. I am proud to say, I succeeded, 10 fold.
Of special note in my instructions is; I am excited about getting a wide variety of block types, each telling a little story on the quilt.  This is what makes the quilt so special for me.   Another special part of the quilt was that I had Spoonflower print up some fabric with my boys name on it and asked the girls to make sure there was a little bit of that fabric in every block.  My little boy (now nearly 5 years old) still squeals with delight when he finds his name on a block.
So onto the photos:

Rocket Quilt - the front

Rocket Quilt - the back

And finally to all those fabulous ladies:
Sheridan, Donna, Helen, Lara, Becky, Louise, Bronwyn, MJ, Amy, Lyn, Rita, Kate, Rachel, Jan, Annie,
my heartfelt thanks for making this special quilt with me.  I’m sorry it has taken me so long to recognise all your hard work.


Quilts Part One May 5, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — yarnplanner @ 11:31 am

One of the things I really should have been blogging about are the quilts that I have made in… oh… the last couple of years.

I don’t see myself as a big quilter but I do love the way the different fabrics come together, making the whole so much more than the sum of the parts.  Yes, I was one that once asked a quilty friend why (on earth) would you cut up all those little bits of fabric just to sew them back together again.  I also ask Donna on a regular basis how many quilts she really needs.  So I guess that puts me on the outside of the quilting fraternity until I deeply, truly and wholeheartedly understand the answers to those two questions.  

Nevertheless, I have made a few quilt like things and this was the first real quilt.  It was made from a kit which overcame my first fear of quilting – having to chose all those fabrics.  I’m pleased to say I’m over that fear now and even though I am still a novice, I am learning step by step about fabric choice and I really enjoy that part of the process . I am sad to say that I can’t remember who I bought the kit from.  I should, but I can’t.  It was called Top Gear and I bought it at one of the craft fairs at the Brisbane Convention Centre.  If anyone can help, that would be great!


It was made for my boy and I had it professionally quilted with a cars pattern all over.  The cost of the kit and the quilting made it quite an expensive process but I am pleased with the result and we all use this one regularly.  Even though it was made for a (then) three year old, I think the colours aren’t too babyish so this will be good for a while yet.

ImageA good start I think.


If Chaletgirl can do it… so can I! May 1, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — yarnplanner @ 5:59 pm

When the master of the blogging community says she is back… a mere padawan like myself can but follow.  And whilst I don’t have any party photos to share I might have a thing or two that I have been working on in… oh… the age since I last blogged.  But all I needed was a good excuse and I’ll make an effort.  I promise.

Thanks Sheridan for the kick up the tracky dacks.

More soon.



The Urban Troubadour August 23, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — yarnplanner @ 12:30 pm

I really am so behind in my blogging, you can expect to see a flurry of FO’s, which I need to catch up on.  The first is the Urban Troubadour.  I loved this pattern from the first time I saw it and just had to make one.  Working from the chart was much easier than I thought, except for the cream and brown section in the middle. All the other stripes have a pattern to them (which you can chant in your head as you go). But this section is a 28 stitch repeat which, line by line had no discernable pattern.

Urban Troubador
It is knitted with Bendigo Woollen Mills 5 ply classic in a range of colours on 4mm needles and even though I got guage, it is just a bit snug around my shoulders. I would definitely knit this again with a few modifications and make it just a bit bigger. Still, It is perfect for chilly Brisbane mornings and I love it.


Easy Gift Giving April 30, 2011

Filed under: finished objects,Gryff,sewing,Uncategorized — yarnplanner @ 8:37 pm

I’ve had an idea for a kid’s present going around in my head and finally had the chance to give it a go.  The two children of the lovely Donna have their birthdays close together and rather than giving more toys, I took the opportunity to try to get my idea together.

A while ago I bought some hamburger shaped bento boxes from an import store that was closing down.  I can’t quite remember how many I bought but there are a few.  They were cheap but lovely quality.

So I decided I needed to make a bag for the bento boxes to sit in which looked a bit like a paper bag from a well known fast food outlet. I made them out of a linen/ cotton blend fabric and just made it up as I went along.

I ended up with this:
Bento box bags

Gryff was the guinea pig but he loves his as much as the two lovely kids did today.  The bento boxes are not ideal for lunches as they don’t fit a sandwich easily but they are great for snacks and the kids like pulling them apart to see what is in the different layers.
Bento boxes
The whole process was fun. It was easy and quick and I think the kids really like them.  Watch out if your child is likely to get a present from me any time soon….


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.