Saturday, December 31, 2011

Moar Kitteh Toys

On Christmas Eve FH and I headed to the western half of Missouri.  His grandmother lived in a little town about 100 miles south of Kansas City.  We figured driving 100 miles on Christmas morning would be preferable to 350 miles at an even earlier hour, so we planned to stay with a friend.  There was homemade fried chicken, cookies, good scotch, sulfite-free wine, and leather carving in the kitchen.  It was a fantastic evening.

Anyways, whilst FH was driving I made Artan and Pollux a new toy.  Actually I made two toys, but I believe the other will be given away.

This is actually the one I stashed.  Artan already got a hold of his.  You can see it on the right in the picture below.

This is the same pattern I used for his first crocheted toy.  It was much easier to work up in the car with him still at his grandma's house.

PS: I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe New Year's!

Friday, December 30, 2011

A Prancing Pony

One of our best friends has an affinity (possibly bordering on an obsession) with a particular car maker.  To that end, FH and I came up with an interesting Yule gift for him.

One prancing pony, carved in leather.
I'm not sure which he liked better.  The finished result or watching FH do the carving whilst seated in his kitchen.  In the time it took me to fry chicken and make mashed potatoes, FH had this marked, cut, and tooled. 

He will be making a frame for this piece himself as he's our favorite woodworker.  I'd link to the posts featuring the pieces of his that we're proud to own but they're lost in the blog, tag-less.  Maybe I'll have time to dig them out of the darkness but not today.  I have a ton of projects in the queue that need finishing and a few that need to be started with definite deadlines.  The next several blog posts were written all at once and scheduled to post.  I'll be officially back sometime in the next couple of weeks.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Tiny Baubles

Some of the gifts I made this year for family were earrings. Namely both of my moms and Auntie Rose

Artan may have kept me from putting my most delicate treasures on the tree this year, but he didn't do anything to these.

These were such fun.  I think I may play with these beads again when I have some time.  Maybe make some for next year's Guild auction.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Leather and Lace

FH and I decided to make ornaments as gifts this year.  We had so much fun, we;ll be doing them with the same theme for a while.
The shapes will be different each year.  In fact we're almost done with the leather ornaments for the next two years, but you'll have to wait to see them. ;-)

I hope everyone had a safe and wonderful holiday.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Isabella's Gifts

I got to play Santa on Wednesday for Ms. Isabella.  She came 6 weeks early, but is now home and doing well.

She has the yellow pair of booties in this photo, which will fit in March/April when it's still cool here.
 I made her the tiniest pair of red and white booties for this weekend.  They are the ones in the center back.
She has one of these:
And one of these:
Every girl wants a pony.
And finally the stocking that she can fit into, but we decided to let her eat in peace instead of slipping her into it.  The main body is a supple buckskin, trimmed with white rabbit fur.  The carved detail is the piece I showed you earlier.  I made a lining out of some red fabric and stitched the trim and lining on at the same time with a sewing awl.  Her parents are friends from the Rendezvous scene, so a buckskin stocking was very fitting.

I loved doing this stocking, but if I ever do more I'll sew them well in advance as the whole thing, minus the lining, was stitched by hand.

Friday, December 23, 2011

He'll Have A Blue Christmas

But that's ok, 'cause he's only going to be wearing blue.

One of the ladies in Guild has a new grandson.  He was born right before Thanksgiving.  She also hasn't been well this year and knew she'd never get anything made for him this Christmas.    I asked her about particulars and came up with these:

Happily I've had these booties cut out and ready to go since this summer.  As before, these are Vogue 7707.
 Same with this puppy.   (Vogue 7760)
 The only thing I had to cut out was the little boater-style hat.  Same pattern envelope as the other little hats I've done.

He also has a pair of the red and white booties.

Additionally I made a little something for his cousin in California.  Again I had the pieces already cut out.
Here's a close up of the mouth and nose.  Embroidery on fleece is a pain, but I think I'm getting better at it.
Both the bunny and puppy are from the same pattern envelope as the ponies from the earlier post.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Happy Anniversary

Four years ago I married my best friend.  I still love you, Dearest Heart.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Seeing Red

But maybe not the way you're thinking.

 Of course I had help.
 Ta da!
 A little too plain though.
 Some randomly cut pieces of fleece....
But we can't have hats without the proper shoes.
The hats are from the same pattern envelope as the Tulip and Newsboy Hats I did before.  The booties are my favorite Vogue 7707.

And now I'm off to sew again.  Ttfn!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Leather In Progress

In addition to me working on stockings, FH and I are working on some leather ornaments together.  He doesn't like working with some of the coloring products, so generally that's where I step in.  However I've help with some of the carving on these pieces.

The candy canes are done except for signing the backs and sealing them.
 These snowmen need another coat of white, their details painted, and signed/sealed.
 The trees need their garlands painted and signed/sealed.
Here are the carved sections for two new stockings in progress.  I should add that FH isn't helping with these.  He just doesn't have time.

The letters on this one got a little wonky, but overall I'm pleased with it.
 Still need to finish the carving on this one.  There will probably be another small motif at the bottom, with the name in the middle.
Hopefully next time I'll have some more finished things to show off.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

An Experiment In Irritation

So FH and I were at Tandy Leather a couple weekends ago and I saw they were having a class on a leather stocking.  The sample was trimmed in rabbit fur and had a cute little buckled belt across it.  I thought it was really cute and the class was only two hours long, so I signed up.

When I got there on class day it was another story.  Suddenly the cute belt with buckle were nixed (by the instructor/manger) and instead we were to personalize our stockings with a piece of veg-tan leather.  You know... the kind that FH carves on.  Ok..... I went along with it thinking "why not?"

I'm really happy with how my carving and dye work went. 

However, that's where I cease being happy.

The only thing resembling a pattern that we worked with was a tracing of the original class know, the one we didn't work with.  I should also note that we didn't get to keep the pattern for whatever reason.  Let me state again that the design concept was changed that very morning... minutes before we walked through the door with no prior testing.

The class turned into an all day affair, six and a half hours, with the extra time it took to work on the carving.  No one left with finished pieces.  I had purchase supplies that FH didn't already have in order to finish it at home.  It took me the rest of the evening to sew the seam closed by hand since I couldn't use my machine thanks to the carved section.  But that's isn't the worst part.

The carved section was to be attached with decorative buckstitching before the stocking was sewn shut.  The piece was so large that I had to trim it down to make turning the stocking right side out after sewing even possible.  This meant I would loose width on the rabbit fur trim, a point the whole thing still had in it's favor.

This is what it looks like.  I refuse to finish sewing the fur together at the top because I'm debating tearing the whole thing apart for parts.  I'd turn the carved section into an ornament somehow and use the suede for minis if I take it apart.
I've already figured out how to fix every issue I have with this project and am working on two new ones at the moment.  I'm just disgusted that the whole thing cost a bunch of money and I hate the result.  I'll be posting pictures of the new ones sometime soon.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Thread Crochet Wreaths

I've finished most of two thirds of the thread crochet wreaths.  Only a half dozen more to go.
I've already given one as part of the gift exchange at the Guild's Holiday Tea Party.  In fact, the one I gave is the ornament pictured above.  Here are the rest:

Mine, fastened onto the tree via safety pin.  Much harder for Artie to remove it from the tree that way.
 Seven completed ornaments, ready to be wrapped.
 The final two from this dozen with the last few inches of red ribbon.  I need to go buy more this week.
 Some of them have wonky centers as the stiffening agent was working faster than FH and I could pin and block them.  FH said they look more like real wreaths that way.  I tend to agree with him, but the perfectionist in me is irritated.  Ah well.  :-)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

In Progress

I've got many projects in progress at the moment.  Most are gifts for the holidays, but a few are me trying to play catch up with the wedding and bay gifts.  Here's what I've got pictures of.

Hopefully I'll get some of these done this week.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Warm and Friendly Rivalries

One of my nephews is a die-hard Chicago Bears fan.  FH and I are Green Bay Packer fans.  But since we love him, we don't hold it against him.  Besides the Bears are a really good team... and they aren't the Vikings. ;-)

Anyways, himself outgrew his old twin bed.  Funny how teenagers do that.  So Aunt Kat came to the rescue with a ton of polar fleece.  I had a little help from the usual suspect.

To give you an idea of how big this blanket is, check out the back.  (That's my dining room table with one leaf in it.)
I whipped up some big pillows for flopping on too.

 Complete with zippers so my sister can wash them. 
I did make a third pillow but forgot to get a picture of it by itself.

Unfortunately you can't see the ear to ear grin on his face.  But believe me, it was there.
The rectangles are fat quarter-sized (18"x22") and sewn together wrong sides facing with a one inch seam.  Then I fringed the seams.  Three of the edges are fringed as well.  I made one end smooth so he wouldn't have fringe tickling his nose at night.  There are several seams down the full length of the blanket to keep it from trying to turn inside out in the wash.  I disguised them along the fringed areas.

The third pillow is behind him.  It's a football pattern print.  I found it as a remnant when I went to get more orange fleece for the back.  I also bought him a Chicago Bears Santa hat just because.

Ta da!