Sunday, June 28, 2015

Peace card, ruler sleeves and spool pin doilies

The JCS 2015 Ornament Preview issue arrived, and I was immediately drawn to "Peace" by Cathy Haberman of Hands On Design.  It was shown in the chalkboard style that she has popularized lately, but my eyes just can't take stitching on black.  I hoped that doing it on a blue fabric would work out and I do like the result.  The photos are a bit blurry... rainy days and I kept missing my opportunities when the sun came out.  I think it makes a cute holiday card with the rick-rack trim and a couple of sequins.  The sequins are actually to hide my mistake in cutting the window... necessity and the mother of invention you know.

I'm still on my quest to find the best way to finish the 6" ruler sleeve.  I stitched another of Vavi's 'long' alphabets,  "ABC Romantique" on Edingburgh dirty linen.  This time I did not do a full lining, but used iron-on interfacing to back the stitching.  The border fabric is doubled. I folded in a seam allowance on each side, then folded up from the bottom and used a blanket stitch to sew the side seams.  Blanket stitch is really hard to do nicely so that the back looks as good as the front.  I never seemed to get the hang of piercing the fabric at an exact 90 degree angle.  Now I understand why quilters don't usually go for  the 'stab' method that x-stitchers use.

I also tried another one with just plain fabric and a quilt type binding.  I added a crochet motif for interest.  Not sure I like that one either.  I think I may be giving up on this type of project.

Sandy of San-Man Originals discovered a vintage item that crocheters use to make, something called a spool pin doily.  These are used on old sewing machines as a decorative replacement for a circular felt pad that sits under the top spool of thread for stabilization purposes I guess. 

 Here's a photo of one that is currently on sale on Etsy .

Sandy was planning to make one for her old Singer treadle machine, but it looked like something quick and fun to do so I made three and sent them to her. Such cute little things.  They are each about 2.5" in diameter.

The first came from a flower pattern at this link:
 Kimberly's Coaster Patterns

I used crochet cotton doubled (I had a ball of thread that came that way already) and a size 6 steel hook. That made the hole about the right size. It's 2.5" in diameter. 

This was an old motif from my stash.  I think the pattern was from the "Harmony Guide to Crochet".

The final one is the Dahlia Circle from the book "25 Floral Blocks to Crochet":

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Tin of Postive Vibes

A FB friend of mine recently posted a link to a "Knapsack of Hope".  It showed a little gift bag filled with items that represented a positive way of looking at life. After some additional Googling, I discovered a number of variations on this theme and thought it was a cute idea.

I had started stitching a design for an Altoid tin top about that time to give as a little gift for a friend who is having health problems and will be going in for surgery in a week.  This "Knapsack of Hope" idea seemed perfect for tin contents.  I renamed it to be a "Tin of Positive Vibes" and modified the items for the box and their meanings somewhat.  I'm not sure I have all the contents exactly as they will be when I send out the gift, but I'm pretty close now.

The design for the top is by Homespun Elegance, an oldie but goodie called "Delivering Posies".  I had those two cute buttons left over from some project and they made the perfect wheels for the cart.  Then I added the teeny heart at the top left.  It's over-one on 28 count light blue Monaco, all DMC.

The crocheted heart in the lid comes from this free pattern.  The crocheted star is done with metallic thread... just as hard to crochet with as it is to x-stitch with!   This is another free pattern that you can get here.

Here's a list of the contents so far.  I have a little flashlight, but I hadn't put it in the box when I took the photo.  I'm sure I'll add lip gloss, because it's such a feel good item.

Tin of Positive Vibes

•    A sparkly star to remind you that you are one
•    A flashlight to help you shine
•    A quarter so you will never be broke
•    A paper clip to help you hold it all together
•    An elastic to help you stretch to your limits
•    An eraser to fix all your little mistakes
•    A band-aid for little hurts
•    *An ice cream cone because ice cream has medicinal properties
•    *A harmonica so you will have music wherever you go
•    *A telephone so you know that help is only a call away
•    A heart so you know you are loved

* Starred items are vintage charms from my childhood collection.