Category Archives: Crafts

A mushroom sunglasses case

I bought some new prescription sunglasses this year (I can finally see in sunlight!), and they came in the biggest sunglasses case ever!  They’re Roxy sunglasses, so they really should know better.  Who has space in their already-bulging handbag for a giant sunglasses case?  Nobody, that’s who!  So, I took it upon myself to make a new one for the glasses.  I chose an inner fabric of bright orange and an outer fabric of mushrooms.  I love this fabric so much!

Sunglasses case 1

It’s basically sewn together the same way I made this bottle bag (still in weekly use!), but with a binding edge like you’d do for quilted blankets.  I used a hand stitch to do the binding which you can see in the photos.  It’s cute, I think.

Sunglasses case 2

I lined the case with wadding to protect the sunglasses, and I forgot to cut diagonally across the corners to make it easier to turn the right way round, and the result is that the case is slightly asymmetrical.  However, it only took an hour to rustle up and is perfectly useable!  A very quick and easy job for anyone to do!

Sunglasses case 3

My sunglasses now live in my bag for sunny days!

Phone pouch for bike

Here’s a random thing I made whilst I was on my holiday.  I had originally intended for this knitted thing to be a scarf, but I didn’t like it.  Then I was on my exercise bike getting annoyed about the fact that there was no where to put my phone, and I decided I should make a pouch.  And suddenly I had a use for the knitting I didn’t like!

Phone pouch for bike

This is definitely one of my more random craft projects, but it works!

Crochet ripple blanket update – it’s nearly finished!

Crochet blanket April 2014

My crochet blanket is getting very big.  I’m very excited with it.  I love the colours!  I have eight stripes left to do.  I’m planning to finish it in May.

Crochet blanket April 2014 2

I was going to do edging in cream when I’d finished the stripes, but now I think I’m going to do no edging at all.  I don’t want to detract from the stripes.  Any thoughts on this?

Charity project #18

I finished a charity scarf this weekend.  I didn’t intend to, as I’m supposed to be focussing on my knitted top.  It just happened, as these things often do.

I don’t really like it, but I guess that doesn’t matter as it’s not for me.  I made a stocking stitch and used up scraps of yarn.  It’s not very exciting.

Charity project 18

Another pair of fingerless gloves

I recently made another pair of fingerless gloves.  They’re so quick to make, and it’s always satisfying to finish projects quickly!

I made these for a friend’s daughter.  She’s a sports photographer in the making, and she needed gloves that would keep her hands warm but allow her to use her camera whilst she’s sat around watching horses, etc.  Hopefully these will do the job!

The yarn is an aran weight yarn, in a denim blue.  I don’t know the blend. I picked it up very cheap in Aldi one day (it was like £5 for 500g or something equally cheap!).

Gloves for Alice

Second handmade top – blue and purple

On Saturday, I had a go at my second handmade top (you can read about my first try here).  This one is sleeveless, although the shoulders are quite wide.  I made this one without a pattern, again.  I’m not trying to be clever (!), I just don’t have a big fabric shop nearby so I can’t easily buy a pattern, plus I am rubbish at following instructions so I know if I did buy one I’d struggle.

I hadn’t done my hair when I photographed the top, so you have a headless photo.  Also, I don’t think I’m really that white!

Second handmade top 1

I had to use two different fabrics for this top, because as with my first one I don’t have any big enough pieces of fabric to make a top in one fabric.  I need to buy some more fabric, but I’m on a spending fast (and I have lots of small bits of fabric that need using up!).  However, I measured really well, and the joins match up fairly well.  The chalk pencils I got for my birthday might have helped with this!

Second handmade top 2

It was fairly easy to make, and it only took a couple of hours to do.

Firstly, I measured my bust, hips and shoulders.  I’m a size 12 (UK), and my top measures 42 inches at the top, 44 inches where the blue and purple fabrics join and 46 inches at the bottom.

I folded my fabrics in half to make a centre line (almost visible in the final top above), and cut my trapezoid shapes (the purple front and backs are 21 inches at the top and 22 inches at the bottom, and the blue front and backs are 22 inches at the top and 23 inches at the bottom.  Hence, the trapezoid shapes are barely noticeable as there’s only an inch difference between top and bottom).

I decided what kind of neckline I wanted and then drew and cut it on to the front of the purple piece.  Then I shaped the back neckline and did the same.

Next I pinned and sewed the shoulders together.  Then you can check that your head fits through the hole you’ve measured!

Second handmade top 3

Then I sewed the front blue to the front purple, and the back blue to the back purple.  This is easy to do if everything is measured correctly, as you can line up your centre creases.

Then I pinned the sides and sewed them together, leaving arm holes (I left 10 inches for arms).  (In the photo below the top is right side round, but you want it inside out to sew the sides so your stitching is on the inside and not visible.)

Second handmade top 4

I left my top and bottom edges raw with the intention of binding them, which is a bugger (don’t do this for your first top unless you have experience binding, perhaps with quilting projects).  I couldn’t decide on a ribbon to hem with, so ended up making my own bias binding.  This is very easy to do, and I’ve done it for all my quilting projects, so it wasn’t new to me (there are instructions on the web if you need help).  The bias binding I made for this top is a lot narrower than I”m used to using for quilts, so it was quite fiddly to iron and to pin to the top.

Second handmade top 5

You should stitch your binding with an invisible thread, but I didn’t have any matching colours so I used white!  It meant my final stitching is visible (and it’s not perfect).

To do the sleeves, I just folded them inside twice and hemmed with a straight stitch.

Second handmade top 6

And we’re done!

I honestly can’t believe it took me six years to finally commit to a garment sewing project, as I’ve really enjoyed both the projects I’ve done so far, and they’re wearable.  The neckline on this top is puckering a little, so were I a contestant on the Sewing Bee I’d get marked down, but I’m pleased with this effort given my lack of knowledge and experience!

Glittery knitted top update

I knit really slowly, so the knitting project I started recently with the yarn I’d intended to use for a blanket hasn’t grown very much yet.  However, I wanted to show you what the yarn looks like when it’s knitted.

Knitted top, back

The glitter is quite subtle, I think.  The yarn is lovely and soft (it’s a cotton blend) and I bet it will be really comfortable to wear!

This is the back of the top and it’s a nice and simple pattern.  I just need to knit 1 row purl 1 row for 29 inches.  I can cope with that!

Charity project #17

Charity project 17
In amongst all the craft projects I’ve got started at the moment, I found time to finish a children’s scarf for charity.  I used a new stitch, and I like the pattern.  The stitch is listed as “squares in squares”, and you can find instructions here.  The steps are easy to follow.

Charity project 17 close up

This is the first charity project I’ve completed this year.  I have two other scarves on the go, along with my own projects!