Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Completely Random Projects

We've been plugging away here with Nathan gone a lot...he was in New York this past weekend and is now starting rehearsals for his Christmas show so we won't have him very much through the holiday season.  One of the ways I'm handling that mentally is by trying to come up with new projects for the kids, but also for myself after I put them to bed.  I'm not sure these are all worth sharing because some of them weren't 100% successful but I decided to anyway, in case even my failed attempts happen to provide some inspiration for some of you:

Zoe hasn't been interested at all in the idea of me knitting something for her this fall/winter, but she and I finally decided together that legwarmers would be fun.  These were the first pair and I'm working on a second (thin, single row rainbow colors in between 5 rows of black) and I plan on making as many as I feel like in different colors so she can mix and match them.  This rainbow pair is a little loose so I'm making the second pair a little tighter.  For these, I cast on 38 stitches then did 5 rows of ribbing (k2, p2) and stockinette stitch (5 rows per color) until the last color when I did another 5 rows of ribbing before binding off.  I knit them flat and then sewed the seam when I was all done.  I actually think these are a better beginner project than the typical first project scarf.  They are shorter so they go faster.  I'm trying 32 stitches for the second pair and I think they'll fit a little better...

For some time now, I've been wanting to improve my sewing skills but am having a hard time organizing my thoughts around it.  I suspect I may not be giving myself enough credit for the skills I do have, but I have yet to feel like I can really hold my own and make a nice looking piece.  Whenever I do happen to come across a pattern I like, I inevitably mess it up somehow and decide to scrap the pattern and make it work however I can even if it comes out looking kind of crappy.  I guess I might be a sewing rebel in that way, which is fine but I do wish I could call myself a reliable seamstress if nothing else but for the fact that it might help me if I decide to go back into wardrobe at some point.  Anyway, I do enjoy playing around with refashioning once in a while, and these are my latest attempts:

 Two old favorite shirts that I've never wanted to just give away, but don't really wear anymore because I don't like the way they fit me....

The more successful refashion of the two...I cut the neck off of the shirt and then the torso just under the armpits.  I pinned the torso piece onto the neck as evenly as I could so it would come out just a little gathered all around and sewed it right on.  It's a perfect fit for her and could be either a little tube dress in the summer or a skirt with a roll top waist anytime.

I'm tentatively happy with this one, but for some reason she won't even try it on.  She swears she likes it and I think she probably just feels funny because I made too big a deal of it so I'm sure one of these days she'll try it on but for now I just have to patiently wait.  I don't know how to explain how I did this but if you're curious let me know and I'll try.  The pink strip is a piece of an old shirt of hers.  I cut the sleeves off both shirts thinking they'd make cute leg warmers but although they fit her legs perfectly, they won't  stay up even with elastic at the top. Oh well!

These pants are kind of lame, but I'm using them anyway.  I made them out of a plain old thermal of mine...got the idea and instructions from the book The Creative Family but there wasn't really enough material in the shirt to make them properly so they are embarrassingly messy.  I have trouble finding pants that work on Owen though so since they are the right length and are comfy for him, I'll use them.

Just had to throw this in here because it makes me happy.  Zoe drew it for me months ago and it's been hanging above our kitchen sink ever since.  It's me and her standing under a rainbow together.  It makes me feel ridiculously happy and loved and I'll keep it forever.

Had to be sneaky about getting a picture of the skirt in action.  My incessant picture taking is finally wearing on my kids and more and more they run away or scowl when I get the camera out.

The kids worked on nature collages this morning...they sweetly worked quietly side by side for a half hour or so.

Owen proudly showing off his finished product...

...and Zoe hers!

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