Office Organizing

Check out this cool solution for my cross stitch projects. When I was working on putting my office back together I found these extra capacity sheet protectors and they nicely hold my thread and the chart. I then put all of the projects into a binder so they fit neatly on my shelf.

Cross Stitch Organizing

I also went through magazines and for the issues that only had one or two projects/patterns that I wanted to make I ripped them out and put them in sheet protectors and then into a binder.

Have you found any helpful craft organizing/storage solutions?

Posted in Cross Stitching | Tagged , | Comments Off on Office Organizing

Baby Saz Gifts

Last summer when I found out that my friend Saz was expecting I was compelled to make a sweet baby quilt for her. I found a great baby quilt tutorial from Mama Doan and then the boy and I dug through my charm pack club packages to find the right fabric line for Saz. We decided on Good Fortune by Kate Spain and we may have also pre-emptively picked out fabric for other friends, whenever they decide to hop on the baby train. 😉

Since we were going to be in Scotland in Aug/Sep I pushed myself to finish the quilt before we left so I could take it with me. 🙂 Amazingly enough I was able to knock it out along with another baby quilt and a baby sweater for some other friends.

The layout I figured out had a rather large inner border so I decided to try my hand at stenciling a design in and tracing it. I created a template based on a cabled pattern in one of my books, traced it on the quilt and stitched the outside borders. Then I went back and filled in the center bits on each side. I back tacked at the end of each point and then moved the quilt to the next part that needed stitching. At the end I had to go back and clip all the long threads between each center bit but it looked like a cable!

One side quilted

stitching on the inner border

Of course I forgot to take a proper finished photo. I have a really grainy cell phone photo but no one wants to see that. I swiped this photo from Saz’s flickr feed. It also includes a picture of the little recipient – baby Alana.


Baby Alana enjoying her quilt. 🙂

I also knit up a wee cria as a test knit for Ysolda which I also gifted to Saz. The FO shots are from Scotland after I finally sewed the buttons on (in the car on the way to her mum’s house! haha).



Finished baby Cria

Finished wee cria for Saz.

I think I’d like to make a few more wee Crias to have on hand as gifts. I should go stash diving to see what yarns I have. 🙂

Have you made any awesome gifts lately or even not so recently, since these are from last August?

Posted in gift, Knitting, Quilting | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Baby Saz Gifts

FO – Colette Crepe Dress

I recently acquired a new sewing machine and have been sewing up a storm. Going through my draft posts I found this almost three year old sewing post I wrote and never posted. Woops! 🙂 Enjoy.

Some of what I wrote still reflects my sewing experiences of the past month. More on that soon! (And hopefully sooner than 3 years from now. hahaha.)

– LittleWit

October 1 (2011), two of our friends were married and I had the brilliant idea to sew myself a dress to wear to their wedding. I searched around for a dress I thought would suit me well and happened upon the Colette Crepe dress. I bought the pattern in June and then got busy with work and forgot about it. In July, while prepping for the bride’s bridal shower, it suddenly dawned on me that I hadn’t purchased any fabric yet. I went to a couple of the quilt and fabric shops in town in search of a nice print.  At Sew to Speak I fell in love with a green and cream polka dot print. I then got busy again with work and suddenly it was the beginning of September, I was leaving on vacation and I hadn’t even picked a size to make, woops!

After I got back from vacation I spent a painful evening taking measurements, doing math and scouring the internet for assistance. It’s at times like this that I wish there was a “Ravelry” for the sewing world.

One of the problems I was having was that there was an 8 size difference between my top and bottom in the pattern sizes but not in my actual body. The pattern states that if you are between sizes to go with the larger size, however making this choice was clearly going to leave me swimming in the dress. The pattern also did not provide finished measurements for the hip region – which I honestly don’t know if that’s normal, abnormal or a reasonable expectation on my part. I thought they would be there since it was a measurement given to determine your size. Normally I just do dresses to my bust size but then the hips are usually only off by one size. So given my knitting background I figured the only reasonable thing to do was to figure out the math from the pattern piece measurements.

I did the math and came down to two sizes and went with the larger of the skirt sizes since I figured I could always sew the seams wider to take it in. I started tracing my pattern pieces and with the help of a friend figured out the grading for the waist that I read about in the helpful sew-along I found.

I got the pattern pieces cut out and the skirt sewn together and then left on another business trip. Got home from my business trip sewed the bodice mostly together and then dove into my stash for a contrast fabric for the sash. I was so thrilled again that I chose to do the Solids club at pink chalk fabrics this year. I decided on an awesome raisin color fabric that also went well with the boy’s suit he was planning to wear. I sewed the bodice to the skirt, figured out that something else was wrong, and then it was off for another business trip.

I got home and went with the boy to find french cuff shirts to go with his suit and a tie to coordinate with my sash. Then I went to the bride’s home to help with last minute prep and one of the knit night ladies saved my dress and told me the alteration I needed to do to make it fit better.
I fixed the waist, the boy pinned my hem – because he is awesome! – and I got my hem sewn the night before the wedding. Success!

Here’s an awesome shot of me in the dress at the wedding (swiped from my friend’s flickr feed). 🙂


Ordering ice cream for the table at our friends’ wedding. 🙂

Crepe Front

Crepe dress not quite hemmed! 🙂

Things I learned on this dress:

  • I am smaller than my measurements.
  • I have a lot to learn about sewing patterns not written by simplicity.
  • Pockets are pretty easy to put in and are awesome!
  • I can sew an entire dress beginning to end in 2.5 weeks even when traveling for work.
  • I do want to make more of my own clothing.

I am mostly pleased with how the dress turned out but I think there is still room for improvement and a better fit.

Posted in Sewing | Tagged , , | Comments Off on FO – Colette Crepe Dress

Sweaters for Siblings

My sister is expecting her second child in June and I thought it might be fun to knit matching sweaters for the siblings. I found some super bright pink Rios yarn at a going out of business sale last year and snatched up a sweater quantity for my niece Fia. Turns out it was a good match for the Abate pattern by Alicia Plummer which is also a lovely unisex pattern that can be matching without being matchy match. I bought a lovely red yarn for the future baby and sought about figuring out how to size the sweater down for 12-18 mos ish.

Once I saw the gauge and needle size recommendation I figured it wasn’t going to be easy to just cast on 2 needle sizes smaller and wing it. So I swatched dutifully for Fia’s sweater and knit hers up first. That way I could be sure where the right spots were for making the baby sweater smaller.

The last sweater I knit for Fia was a bit short on the arms when I gave it to her and since she’s nearly 6 she’s still growing a lot. I decided to make the 8 yo size so hopefully she and baby sibling can wear their sweaters at the same time next winter. I also had Fia try her sweater on twice, blindfolded. haha. I really just wanted to be sure the sleeve length was going to be long enough and the first time when I measured her sleeve length it didn’t line up with how the sleeve length is measured in the pattern.

The baby version of the sweater knit up quickly. I knit it with a DK weight yarn, cast on with the 6 yo size numbers, and knit to about .5″-1″ smaller than the 2 year old measurements. The lovely thing about babies is that they start out small and grow. so at some point, this sweater will fit the baby. Hopefully it’s a cooler month! 😀

I gave Fia her sweater at my sister’s baby shower this past weekend and she dutifully modeled it for me. 🙂 She also said “Wow!” as she pulled it out of the gift bag. So hopefully she’ll continue to enjoy the things I make for her. I may have to switch to sewing though! Her sweater’s finished measurements was only about 8″ smaller than mine! haha.

Fia in her Abate

Fia in her Abate

all of the giggles

The drawstrings really make the sweaters. They both transformed overnight when I wove in all the ends and added the drawstrings. No modeled photos of the little sweater yet – for what I hope are obvious reasons. hah!

Baby Abate

What are you making these days?

Posted in gift, Knitting | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Sweaters for Siblings

Dreaming of Knits

With some prodding from a friend and Ohio finally being warm enough to prompt putting on my favorite maxi dress from last summer, I am dreaming of all of the knits – knit fabrics that is. I tried to sew with knits once before but at the time I didn’t really know what I was doing and I think I was treating them too much like a woven fabric. Colette recently released some knits patterns and a book on sewing with knits. I’ve thumbed through my friend’s copy of the book and am definitely planning to buy it as soon as I sit down and pay for it. haha. I also acquired the Moneta dress pattern as I think it will work splendidly as a wardrobe staple for business travel and training. With all these plans for sewing knits my next step was to find a place that sold knits in prints that I would want to wear. Girl Charlee Fabrics to the rescue. I might’ve gone a little crazy in ordering but I have big plans for all of the maxi dresses for this summer. And if the YouTube tutorials are to be believed I could knock several out in a weekend. *fingers crossed* I sew all these dresses up quickly!

Girl Charlee Order - Maxi Dress prints

Girl Charlee Order – Maxi Dress prints

All of these prints are destined for maxi dresses to wear this summer. I don’t care what you say about the bottom print, I love it. heh. I also reserve the right to turn the red fabric (upper left) into a fancier dress.

Girl Charlee Order - Fancy Dress Prints

Girl Charlee Order – Fancy Dress Prints

These lovely fabrics are intended for the Moneta dress (or something similar) for work for this summer. They should travel well and be nice enough to train in. After seeing it in person, I am considering  making the chevron fabric just a skirt or maybe move it back to the maxi category. Decisions, decisions.

Girl Charlee Order - Tops

Girl Charlee Order – Tops

I ordered a few of the knit prints to make some tops for myself. I’m kind of excited about the thermal fabric in the upper left. The stripes on the right *could* end up back in the dress piles. Time will tell. 🙂

Girl Charlee Order - oops

Girl Charlee Order – oops

I bought this fabric because I thought the print would make an amazing maxi dress but my brain willfully refused to comprehend that it’s a sweater knit fabric. haha. Soooo, maybe a sweater? Or perhaps a lined maxi dress for fall wear? We will see how warm the fabric is and then what it becomes. Have you sewn anything with knits or do you have any tips for me on my new adventure? Do you have any favorite knit dress or sweater patterns?

Posted in Sewing | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment