Crafting versus working

So far January has not been about crafting at all. As I entered worklife a few weeks ago (finally), and getting more and more important and serious tasks, my time is limited, and my priorities shifted. Ok, not shifted, let us just say shuffled. I am still trying hard to find a balance between all the things that are important to me, and so far the first two weeks of this year has been dedicated to my family, my work, and my volunteer work. Actually I am very proud of myself that I still found the time to go for my runs, twice per a week.

To give you an idea of the very exciting and eventful and therefore quite busy start of the year at the company I work at, here is a little picture of my little creative corner at home:

Pc vs sewing machine

Yes, my work computer moved in for the afternoons and evenings, pushing my sewing machine gently and discretely back at the wall… Poor thing is just standing there, waiting patiently.

I also find the the quotation below very appropriate at the moment:

work life

But don’t you worry, the situation is not that serious, actually I kind of find the new challanges at my work refreshening and exciting. And I also know that they are seasonal, and will pass.

In the meantime I dedicated 3-4 days to Paddington alone. He fell victim of the nasty stomach virus circulating in their daycare. Don’t worry, I will spare you the details 🙂 But it also meant, that the very first winter day of the season found me and the kids at home (I let Cherry stay at home too for a day). We haven’t got much of a winter so far, it has just been a very long autumn really, with temperature above freezing point and boring rain. But the first snow (and winter cold) came on Monday, so we spent some very happy time in the garden with the children and the absolutely bewildered dog.

snowy

 

I also realised at this point that Paddington doesn’t really have a warm winter hat anymore, as he grew so much since last winter. So I took some leftover jersey fabric, the pattern of the elephant hat, and followed my own tutorial (because I can 🙂 ) to make him two new hats. And that was about all the creative activity I did so far this year 🙂

I was somewhat worried that he was not going to like them, because recently he excercises all the willpower of his almost 3-years-old little self, and refuses to wear clothes I am picking for him, and constantly taking his socks and hats off. But surprisingly, he really loved the hats, probably because he witnessed me making them, and he took the striped one, and didn’t even want to take it off inside the house. He just stood in fron of the mirror, petting his little head under the hat, repeating: “my pretty hat, my pretty head”. It is nice to have a boy with some healthy self-confidence 🙂 I also have to mention, that he is equally generous complementing others than himself too, the other day when I was dressed up smart for work, he looked at me and said: “pretty Mummy”. Awww 🙂

Another big girl crochet cardi, this time with flower

This is the last result of my big-autumn-kids-cardigan-crocheting era.

When I found this tutorial on Vicarno’s Mama, I knew instantly that this is going to be a cardigan made for my daughter, and also one made for my niece. You can see the first result, my daughter’s striped, colourful cardigan here.

As for my niece, who just turned 3 years last month, I decided to modify the original pattern to start with 50 chains, and using dcs again, instead of hdcs. I decided to go with different colours, divided a bit differently, and also, for a more feminine look I made a shell-edging alongside the neck, bottom and front openings, plus, I added a crochet rose to the chest.

What do you think? 🙂

Big girl crochet cardi with flower

 

I am actually very happy with the result. I am thinking about going back to my daughter’s cardi, and finish the edges with shells there too, because it gives a little bit more straight, finished look to the cardigan.

Look at the details 🙂 I love how the two different kind of yarns, the merino wool and the alpaca-mohair blanding work together.

Details with flower

The big girl crochet cardigan

Autumn, winter and soft, warm, home-made cardigans go hand in hand. Don’t they?

I found this fantastic tutorial at Vicarno’s Mama on a beautiful crocheted baby vest, and I instantly knew that I am going to make one for my daughter, and one for my niece.

The tutorial is very easy to follow and straightforward. The only thing I had to use my brain was that the pattern is for a 1-year-old baby, and my daughter is almost 5, my niece is 3. So I had to make adjustments. It was a process of trials and fails, I had to restart it a few times before I found the proper size-adjustments.

Here is what I came up with for my daughter:

Instead of 44 chains, I started with 66 chains, that means ch2+64 hdcs in the first row. From the second row on I used dcs instead of hdcs, and distributed my stitches proportionally among the different parts of the pattern. I changed colours every second row. Apart from these changes, I followed the pattern completely.

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Probably I could have started with a little less chains as well, as the cardigan didn’t turn out to be a slim-fit one, but I actually like that it is not that tight on my daughter and she has a lot of space to move around and to grow.

The yarn I used was partly the same easy care merino wool I used for a baby jacket, partly alpaca-mohair blanding. I am very happy about the colours, I think they give a nice impression together, and the vest has the advantage of matching most of Cherry’s other clothes this way.  Plus, Cherry made sure to tell me every time she saw me working on her cardigan, that “it is going to be sooo pretty with all these colours, Mummy” 🙂

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Fall Time Is Crochet Time

It is funny, how I set aside crocheting this summer, and favoured sewing instead. Probably the sunshine and warm weather calls for other activities than cuddling up on the couch, surrounded by yarn.

But autumn is back, and I have started different crochet-projects again.

The first one is the most important one, and also the most exciting of all: Have I told you that I’m going to be an auntie again??? Well, I am 🙂 According to the plan, my husband’s sister is giving birth to her second, a baby boy, in exactly 4 weeks. Well, we know that the business of birth rarely goes according to any plans, so let’s just say, it can happen anytime. We are all very excited about the growing belly and looking forward to meet the new addition to our family. This baby, just like my now 3-year-old niece, is going to be a winter baby. Winter babies need lots of cardigans! 

I went to my favourite local yarn shop, resisted the urge to buy everything I saw, and after a lot of hesitation and yarn touching, I chose a few balls of super soft, easy care merino wool baby yarn in different colours. You see, I am about to crochet a lot of cardigans and vests, not only for my upcoming nephew and my niece, but also for my own children. 

For the newborn cardigan, after days and days of research on my pinterest board, I chose this pattern: the simple method of making two granny hexagons, and join them. You can find a lot of tutorials on this, I chose to follow this one of Trash to Treasure. I made two identical hexagons, each of 8 rows. However, I didn’t make a hood for the cardigan, as it is going to be mainly used inside, and not as an outside jacket. For the closing I opted for a pair strings instead of buttons. 

And here it is:

Hexagon Baby Cardigan

 

What you cannot see on the picture is that is just so lovely and soft! You just want to rub your face in it 🙂 I hope the baby will appreciate it too 🙂

Details in grey and baby blue

Little Girl’s Tee Dress

I am on a serious stash busting mission recently. Yes, I guess I have a problem – when I see some cute fabric, especially when it’s designed for kids, and even especially when they are on sale, I just cannot help it, I have to buy a meter or two of them… Probably you know the feeling 🙂 Anyway, this habit of mine actually leads to a storing problem of the above mentioned cute fabrics. So I decided that this summer I am not going to buy new clothes for my kids (or for myself), I am going to make them. Because I can 😉

Tee Dress

So I decided to make a small, girly version of the summer dress I made for myself, and asked Cherry to choose a fabric from my stash. She picked a lovely, summery fabric with funny peacocks on it. After picking the fabric, she pointed out, that one of her little horse toys is very sad, because he doesn’t have his own blanket, and is freezing, poor thing. So after I am done with her dress, will I make a blankie for the horsie of the same fabric please? Well, of course I made one. I don’t want to be blamed if the horse catches a cold, or something 🙂

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Making the dress again was super easy and super fast. I just picked a shirt that fits Cherry perfectly, folded in half and placed it on a piece of pattern paper. I draw along the edges, and prolonged the pattern at the bottom to the desired lenght, so instead of a shirt, it becomes a dress.

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Once the pattern was done, I took the fabric, and folded it into 4, with the wrong side out. I placed the pattern alongside the fold, and cut it. This way I got two pieces of dress-like fabrics, that I just had to sew together along the shoulders and sides.

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After that i adjusted the lenght of the dress and cut a little bit more of the neckline in the front, zigzagged all over, and sew a hem on them. And done 🙂

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Told you. Easy 🙂 Now we just have to wait for the nice summer weather to return, so Cherry can wear it.