Yarn Along

When Ginny decided to stop doing the weekly Yarn Along, I was bummed.

I liked going every week to find good book recommendations and knit and crochet inspiration.

I am so happy that The Little Room of Rachell has decided to pick up the task of hosting!

This week I am listening to The Wonder by Emma Donoghue.

In Emma Donoghue’s latest masterpiece, an English nurse brought to a small Irish village to observe what appears to be a miracle-a girl said to have survived without food for months-soon finds herself fighting to save the child’s life.Tourists flock to the cabin of eleven-year-old Anna O’Donnell, who believes herself to be living off manna from heaven, and a journalist is sent to cover the sensation. Lib Wright, a veteran of Florence Nightingale’s Crimean campaign, is hired to keep watch over the girl.Written with all the propulsive tension that made Room a huge bestseller, THE WONDER works beautifully on many levels–a tale of two strangers who transform each other’s lives, a powerful psychological thriller, and a story of love pitted against evil.

~GoodReads

Honestly, I’m not sure what to think about this book.

I am about half way through; I don’t hate it, but I don’t love it either.

I wanted a light read, so that choice is A Slice of Murder (Pizza Lovers #1).

Not too much happens in the sleepy little town of Timber Ridge, North Carolina, —which is fine with pizza-purveyor extraordinaire Eleanor Swift. The spunky owner of A Slice of Delight is trying to mend her broken heart and could use a little quiet time. But when a late night delivery customer turns up dead, she’s in for just the opposite in this delicious mystery series debut, featuring pizza as the prima character . . .

~GoodReads

Sometimes, I just want a cozy, easy read.

This week I finished my BOOM! Shawl (yay!  I’ve been knitting this forever).

I had one Caron Cake in Rainbow Sherbet.

I searched Ravelry to see what people had knitted with one cake and BOOM! Shawl came up quite often.

Plus, it is a free pattern!

I love it!

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I love the colors and its is warm and snuggly.

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Next up, Jennifer Ozes Carleton Cocoon Sweater (crochet).

I purchased this as a kit from Craftsy during a sale.

Chocolate brown yarn, not my preferred choice but it was one of the few kits left available .

As always, I am slowly adding to my Charlotte Square Afghan.

Have a good week!

 

School of Sewing

My sewing project this week was a pillow case for my daughter.

She loves Peppa Pig and I was able to find cotton fabric at my local Joann’s.

A while back, a friend sent me a link to Shabby Fabric’s Magic Pillowcase tutorial.

A great video tutorial.

I used it to make Miss ME a fun pillow case using the purchased fabric and some blue fabric I had on hand.

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I love how you roll it up and, like magic, the seam is all encased!

I had some Peppa Pig fabric left over and wanted to use it for something for Miss ME.

I recently ordered and received a GREAT book- School of Sewing by Shea Henderson.

It is a beautiful book with lots of information and 12 projects to build your skills with.

Project Number 2 is a Lined Drawstring Bag (designed by Jeni Baker).

On a side note, Project Number 1 is a Magic Pillow case with french seams.

I forgot about this book when I did the pillowcase, but will do another pillowcase soon so I can practice french seams.

Back to Project Number 2.

This is a clear tutorial  and I managed to make a very sweet bag that Miss ME loves.

Just big enough to hold her “treasures” which include hot wheel cars, a small basketball, an Easter card and a pair of Minnie Mouse socks.

This would make a great sock knitting project bag!

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I plan on backtracking to Project Number 1 (hopefully, king size pillowcases for me!), then attacking Project Number 3-Simple Strings Apron.

Have a good week!

Linked to: SewCanDo, LiveRandomlySimple

 

Weigh In Day

Today was weigh in day.

The scale was not a great friend today…

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Honestly, I expected this after losing 6.2 pounds last week.

Despite the scale, I think I had a really good week!

I tracked every bite that went in my mouth (including my dad’s potato salad on Easter-one of my favorite foods).

I made all my food, except Friday night when the family had pizza and I had a take out salad.

This week two new recipes I made were Skinnytaste’s Lemon Dijon Chicken and Korean Beef Bowl.

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Both were very easy recipes and although I liked both, I really liked the Korean Beef Bowl.

I didn’t think the amount of sauce would flavor all the beef, but after simmering for a while, it was very flavorful (even better the next day at lunch).

I worked out 6/7 days.

Workouts this week were:

  • 21 Day Fix Kill Cupcake
  • 3 mile walk on Easter Morning
  • 21 Day Fix Total Body Cardio
  • 21 Day Fix Upper Fix
  • 21 Day Fix Lower Fix
  • work-no workout…although I was busy at work
  • 21 Day Fix Cardio Fix
  • I was >9K steps each day
  • Met my weight watcher fit point goals for the week

I love the 21 Day Fix work out because they are 30 minutes.

This was school vacation, so it was a short enough timeframe for me to exercise before the kids became bored and interrupted me.

All in all, I think thats a good week!

I need to rethink my fruit intake.

I have a berries, bananas and oranges practically every day.

I’m sure the natural sugar is not my weight loss friend.

Have a good week!

WW Week 2

Total loss: 6.4 pounds

Learning

My last sewing class (until the end of May) was Saturday.

We learned how to make a simple stuffed bunny.

Simple, but with lots of learning points: making darts, sewing curves, pattern cutting, etc.

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This bunny was intended for a newborn, so no eyes and I sent the pompom tail incase they wanted to put it on (choking concern).

A charity I give to, Hooking for the Homeless, has put out a request for handmaid stuffed animals so I plan on making more of these (and other easy animals) and sending them off in the next couple of weeks.

They will provide the stuffed animals to police stations so officers can use them for children in difficult situations.

I also made a simple reversible baby blanket.

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I had grand intentions of making this one, but you need to have one particular skill (which I don’t have).

You need to cut nice, straight lines.

After failing and changing my plans, I read comments and now have tips on how to do a hem and then make the blanket.

I think it makes a cute set!

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Today is Opening Day here in the Boston Area and the kids were dressed appropriately! (A big feat for me as I completely forgot St. Patrick’s Day and sent my kids to school in blue and pink).
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Also, yesterday was my brother’s birthday, 2nd one since his passing.

 

Many family members and some friends came out to my neck of the woods to participate in an Autism 5k and raise a glass to Matt after.

A nice way to spend the day.

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I hope you all have a good week!

Tote Bag

In my Sewing 100 class, we are making a tote bag.

However, it is too small a bag to use for work.

Once again, onto Youtube I went in search of a suitable size bag.

I need a new bag because my current bag is on its last legs.

This is particularly sad for me as I have had that bag since 2008.

I bought the bag at M&S when I was in London with my mom.

I LOVE this bag.

However, as you can see, the handles are so frayed it is going to rip soon.

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Now, I’m not getting rid of the bag.

I’ll either put new handles on or cut it up and use the fabric for other projects (all ideas welcome on how I can use Twiggy’s face somehow).

The bag tutorial I found was Beverly’s DIY Reversible Tote Bag.

I wanted a lined bag, and this video looked easy enough.

Now, I swear I watched the part about the pocket 40 times and each time I said, “Are you sure?” to myself.

Maybe I was just constantly hearing her instructions incorrectly, but my pocket was upside down on the finished item.

Since the bottom of the lining is open until the very end, I was able to rip stitches out and do a little repair work.

Now the pocket is correct and is large enough to hold my stethoscope (although, my intended slot for pens had to be sewn shut to do the repair).

I found the fabric in the clearance section at Joann’s and used 1 yard to make the bag (using the same fabric for the lining).

Using some fusible fleece to give it a little strength, the entire bag cost me bout $6.00.

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I’m sure as my skills increase, I’ll be able to make a bag that has slots and pockets galore to hold all my work stuff.

For now, this will be just fine!

Next up, making a small zippered pouch to hold my pens, sharpies and scissors.

I also whipped up a little something for a friend that I will show after I send it 😉

Tomorrow is my last Sewing 100 class then it is onto a one day class to learn how to make stuffed animals.

Hope your weekend is proving to be relaxing!

Linked to: SewCanDo

Book Reading Pillow

To practice my sewing, I searched the internet and found the perfect project for me!

A wedge pillow to make reading in bed nice and comfy!

Sew Very Easy on YouTube provided the perfect pattern.

I used up some fabric and used some fat quarters to make a very comfy pillow.

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It was a great project to practice skills on!

Please be aware if you use the video tutorial (which is great), she does mis-speak on one measurement.  Be sure to click the link for the written pattern and schematic.

I showed my cousin my finished pillow and she loved it…so I made her one too.

For hers I used this fabric, which reminded me of Van Gogh’s Starry Night, and the sides were a nice bright, golden yellow.

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Each pillow used an entire 32 oz bag of fiberfill.

Using coupons, the gift pillow cost me $12.oo to make…you can’t buy one of these for that 🙂

Of course, I need to make one for my husband since the kids have destroyed his backrest.

For his, I think I’ll use fusible fiber to give it some more structure.

I know I’ll be using more Sew Very Easy tutorials soon!

I hope to find a kindle/ipad pillow holder video/pattern.

This week in sewing class we have sewn all the pieces for our tote bags and next week we put it all together!

Next week is the last week of Sewing 100.

I wanted to do Sewing Patterns 101, but I am doing a road race the first day of class and working an additional Sunday during the 5 week schedule.

I’ll sign up for that class when my schedule allows.

I am going to a one day class to learn how to make stuffed bunny rabbits which will be a great project for Hooking for the Homeless.  They are currently looking for handmade stuffed animals for police departments to hand out to kids when they are called to a domestic disturbance call.

I swear I haven’t given up on my knitting and crochet!

I am working on Charlotte and my Boom! shawl.

Have a good week!

 

Snow Day

What to do on a snow day?

Well, in our case, we played, we baked muffins and then we all did our own thing.

The kids played in the play room and watched their kindles.

This allowed me to practice my sewing!

I wanted to make E his own pillow.

Using the instructions from class, I increased the size to a 16X16 pillow.

It is not perfect, but E likes it!

Welcome to a yet another Thomas the Tank Engine addition to our household!

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This pillow from start to finish probably took 30-45 minutes.

A nice quick project!

I decided that I didn’t want to always pack the sewing machine away after each use.

Onto YouTube I went.

Low and behold, I discovered Crafty Gemini Creates!

I think she must have had an older site named The Crafty Gemini.

This is where I found her video tutorial for a sewing machine cover.

What an easy to follow video!

The book nerd that I am, I wanted to use some Harry Potter fabric I bought when I bought the kids fabric.

I realized I needed to create a solid main piece for the cover so both sides would be right side up.

I used  patterned fabric to make a middle panel of the main piece and used the same material for the sides and a pocket.

I lined all pieces and the pocket with Fusible Fleece (super easy way to line and give it structure).

It is in no way perfect, but I love it!

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Picture below shows true color.

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Don’t mind the wonky stitching on the pedal/cord pocket, its located on the back of the cover, so I didn’t rip it out and redo.

Someday when I know how to do a bias tape edge, I’ll neaten the bottom up.

For now, it does the trick!

Hope all you New Englanders are surviving the storm!

Sewing 100

Week three of my Sewing 100 class is complete and so is Project #1!

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A simple pillow, but I was super proud when my pillow form actually fit in my finished project!

My seams are a little wonky (note to self, fleece was not the best choice fabric to start with-stretchy).

I have already purchased two more pillow forms and Thomas the Tank Engine and Peppa Pig fabric to make additional pillows at home.

This class pillow is for Miss ME and I think she likes it!

I can’t recommend The Creative Sewing Studio in North Attleboro enough!

If you are local to the area, check it out!

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Since I am hopeful that I will sew more and more at home, I decided to make our dining room into a creative/sewing space.

We use our dining room table twice a year (Christmas Eve and Christmas Day), so it has now become a desk.

I quickly and easily covered some cardboard boxes with paper for books and organization, used a vase for my knitting needles, jars for my crochet hooks and a lidded box for my circular needles and expensive crochet hooks.

Also on the “desk” is our printer and my new sewing machine (I love it!).

I purchased a basic Brother model which, across multiple websites, had only positive reviews.

I need to make a sewing machine cover and pad (I think I can handle that…hopefully!).

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I hope to complete Charlotte Part 3 this week.

Have a lovely week (12-18 inches of snow expected here in New England on Tuesday).

Cables

In an effort to learn new skills, I did a small knit cable project today.

Using up some wool yarn from my felted bag, I made a cup cozy.

I found a simple pattern on Ravelry (free) by MissKnityPants.

Link found here.

This looked like a simple enough pattern to start out with, and I was right!

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I finished it quickly and, for me, the hardest part was seaming my cast on/bind off edges.

This is perfect for my reusable cup from Starbucks (certainly needs a sleeve as it is not insulated).

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I’ve already found some left over LionBrand yarn I’m going to use to make another!

Have a lovely day!

Find me on Ravelry: MrsMcD918

Linked to: LiveRandomlySimple, Sew Can Do