Thursday, 26 January 2012

Tee to tank refashion

Yesterday I showed you this ....

which got cut up like this ...

and now looks like this ...

Thanks to this fab tutorial over at Crafterhours, I now have a great 'new' tank to wear to my fitness classes and during the summer. I hacked a hideous old tshirt of Mr CraftyAdy into strips and used one of the strips to make the straps for this tank and actually left the hem on this tshirt untouched. It's so comfortable to wear. I love it!

I'm off to hack up a couple more old tees to make more tanks.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

My creative space

The crocodile stitch neckwarmer that was in my space last week is still there. Only it's now grown to 12 inches in length. I reckon I have maybe another 6 or 7 inches to go before it's done. It looks pretty much as it did the last time - only longer.

I've been sidetracked ever so slightly by a couple of quick projects. This one is a fabric headband which I spotted on CraftGossip several days ago. It's from a tutorial on Able to Sleep's blog here. I reckon this would be a really nice project to use up bits and pieces of scrap fabric.

The second quick project comes from this fab tutorial over at Crafterhours. Mr CraftyAdy was chucking out a whole bunch of old tshirts and I took the opportunity to snag a few to refashion. I reckon these will be great for summer and also great for me when I go to the gym for my fitness classes. Anyhoo, here's the old tshirt I scrounged from the man ...

and here's how far I got tonight ...

I'll finish it off tomorrow night after my fitness class. If it turns out well (and I can't imagine it won't), there are 3 more tshirts waiting for the same treatment.

Find out what other creative peeps are up to around the world over at the home of creative spaces.

Have a creative day, friends.

Monday, 23 January 2012

Happy Chinese New Year!

Kung Hei Fatt Choy!!

"Kung Hei Fatt Choy" means "Wishing You Prosperity and Wealth".

It's the Year of the Dragon and it begins today! The Year of the Dragon is considered to be the luckiest of the Chinese lunar years. The Dragon brings us the promise of change which is traditionally associated with new beginnings and good fortune.

My Lunar New Year here in the UK normally begins with lots of Pineapple tarts! In Malaysia and Singapore, pineapple tarts are very popular during this time of the year. I made some last year and the year before that which I blogged about here. This year, I've made them again. Mmmmmmm ....

I started a bit later than usual this year with my pineapple tarts which meant that I was in a baking frenzy last night! Still, 175 of these little gems are packed and ready to go to the office with me this morning and there is another batch of pastry sitting in the fridge awaiting my attention tonight.

For all my friends out there who celebrate Chinese New Year, I wish you a very happy and prosperous year ahead. Kung Hei Fatt Choy!

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

My Creative Space

There's not a whole lot going on in my creative space right now. I have some bits to cut out for a boxy wash-bag but haven't gotten around to it yet. The only thing floating around is the crocodile stitch neckwarmer I showed you last week. One week on and it's only grown 3 inches.

Slow progress but progress nevertheless I suppose. I intend to persevere on this one.

Find out what other creative peeps are up to over at the home of creative spaces here.

Have a creative day, friends.

Sunday, 15 January 2012

A couple of small UFOs and a bit of stash-busting

I was hunting around in the plastic storage boxes on my desk when I came across a little stack of small rectangles of fabric. I reckon I must have cut them out to make little zip pouches but got distracted by something else and they ended up being forgotten.

It didn’t take me too long to knock them up into small lined zip pouches. They are the blue floral one in the back and the red one on top.

Once I got motivated to start on them, I spotted some off-cuts left over from making the wash-bag I showed you a couple of posts back. I figured I would use them up by making yet more lined zip pouches and managed to squeeze two out of what I had left.

I’m sure I have a handful of big UFOs somewhere that need to be cleared out. Just need to go find them.

I've had a good weekend so far - worked on these little projects, did a few more rows of my crocodile stitch neckwarmer and met up with some good friends for a fun evening. I find that weekends tend to pass by far too quickly for my liking. Hope your weekend is going well, friends.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

My Creative Space

One of my New Year resolutions was to try to improve my crochet skills. Being a leftie, I’ve always struggled with my crochet. I have discovered that Youtube is a terrific resource – there are quite a few very helpful video tutorials there for left-hand crochet beginners like me. Anyway, this is currently occupying my creative space right now.

It’s the crocodile stitch and this is the beginning of a scarf or maybe a neckwarmer. Probably the latter since it's shorter than a scarf! It took me a while to get started and to figure out the instructions. Five days on and I’ve only managed this much ...

My crochet has always been painfully slow. I’ll get there in the end.

Have a creative day, friends.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Another UFO is no more

This Un-Finished Object (aka UFO) has been hanging around in a corner of my workspace for some time now. Looking back, I think I blogged about this foldaway shopping bag in one of the My Creative Space posts way back in July! How disgraceful is that?!

So last night I decided to stop procrastinating and finish the poor little bag off. It is now done.

Here it is all folded up and ready to go shopping with.

If you fancy making one yourself (and hopefully you won’t take as long as I did), you’ll find the tutorial link in the Tutorials bar on the left.

Wishing you a great day ahead, friends.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Pressa's new cover

One of my new year's resolutions was to make a new cover for my little table-top ironing board. This is Pressa. Pressa came from IKEA well over fourteen years ago ... I am trying to think when I actually got this little ironing board and I am sure I moved into our present house with it in 1997.

It lives right next to my workspace and was increasingly looking sorrier and sorrier for itself. The original white cover got browner with age and a lot of use and more recently, started to wear through. I couldn't bring myself to even take a photo of the now discarded hideous cover. I am too ashamed. So instead I will show you Pressa's new cover.

I'd been putting the task of recovering Pressa off because I thought it might be cumbersome and difficult. In the end I bit the bullet and it turned out to be a pretty simple make. I took off the old cover (cringing with shame as I did so!) and unpicked the binding around the edge. There was a piece of thin and sorry-looking fleece under the fabric cover. I used it as a template to cut two new layers of Insulbright which is a kind of fleece-y wadding used for placemats, oven-mitts etc. I then used the old cover as a template to cut a new cover piece from some old Debbie Mumms quilting-weight cotton fabric from my stash.

I used the old binding to measure out a piece of new bias-binding. I reused the nylon cord from the old cover and inserted it inside the binding as I sewed the binding around the new cover. The fleece layers sit on top of the metal frame and the new cover over the top of that. Then the cord is pulled and the new cover tightens itself around the frame and holds the fleece in place. The whole project took just over an hour to complete (with coffee break included!)

I am very happy with this project and Pressa looks as good as new. As far as new years' resolutions go, this was a quick win for me.

Hope you are having a good weekend, friends.

Friday, 6 January 2012

Tom's wash-bag

This year, I gave my team at work handmade presents for Christmas. Two of the ladies in my team received quillows for Christmas. One lady received a glasses case and another lady received a jewellery pouch. One of my team members is a great young man named Tom. When I was trying to work out what to give to each team member, I realised that the stuff I make is all very 'girlie' (handbags, purses etc) and that I had very little in the way of masculine fabric. My fabric stash (aside from the fabric I normally use for lining pouches and bags with - ie the polka dots and the odd striped fabric) was very much female oriented.

Tom's a keen swimmer and he plays water-polo very regularly too. A casual discussion few weeks before Christmas gave me the idea of making Tom a zippered pouch or wash-bag for his swim stuff like shower gel etc. I found the outer fabric for this wash-bag in my local quilting shop. Here's the wash-bag I made for Tom for Christmas. Isn't that a great fabric for a sporty kind of wash-bag?

I cut one piece of outer fabric, one lining (polka dots from my stash), one iron-on interfacing and one piece of fusible Thermolam fleece, all measuring 14 inches by 16 inches. The zip I used came from my stash too and is a 16-inch (roughly) open-ended slightly chunky nylon zip.

The inside seams have been enclosed in bias-tape. I also cut a 4 inch by 7 inch piece of fabric to make the handle.

The finished wash-bag measured approximately 10.5 inches long, 5 inches wide and 3 inches deep. I had sufficient fabric leftover to make myself a washbag exactly like this for my gym stuff too and it happily holds my sweat bands, knee support, weightlighting gloves and a 50ml sports drink bottle. I think this is a great size boxy zippered pouch for all kinds of purposes and I plan on making a couple more to hold my crochet / looming projects. I might even try to see if I can put a photo tutorial together when making one of these. What do you think?

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

The general plan for 2012 and a finished UFO

Hello friends! A very belated Happy New Year to you all. I hope you've all been well over the festive season and had wonderful times with your friends and family. Mr CraftyAdy, the kids and myself stayed at home and thoroughly enjoyed the Christmas break. The kids have been off school since 16 December and they return to school tomorrow having enjoyed the long break. Mr CraftyAdy and I were off work for 9 days (not including weekends). It was the longest break I've had all year and I very much needed it.

I spent some of my time during the break doing some sewing and enjoyed that a lot. I decided that one of my 'resolutions' for 2012 is to do more sewing - specifically using the stash of fabric I have accumulated over the past couple of years. In no specific order, I thought I could commit to the following resolutions:
1) do more sewing and use the CraftyAdy fabric stash
2) try to pick up crochet again and actually learn to do it properly
3) re-cover my table-top ironing board
4) find all UFOs (Un-Finished Objects) and finish them.

On that note, on New Year's Day whilst looking for something in a storage box, I found 6 squares of fabric in a little plastic wallet. Two 15-inch squares of brown printed upholstery-grade fabric, two 15-inch squares of a red lining fabric and two odd-sized small bits of the brown fabric. I must have cut them out sometime ago intending to make a bag from them and just never did. I imagined the smaller pieces would have been intended as pockets. I found some black quilting cotton in my stash and put them altogether to make this bag for myself. The black strips across the body of the bag are strips of grosgrain ribbon.

I think originally I might have been intending to make a basket-bag like the first one pictured in this blog post which has a magnetic closure. I decided I actually wanted a zipped closure instead. So I used the odd-sized bits of brown fabric to form the gusset zip closure in the top of this bag.

I like the bright red lining and thought I could omit the pockets. The handles and the inside facing were cut from a long quarter (as opposed to fat quarter) of black fabric and the silver rings are actually flat split rings.

I've been using this bag for work this week and it's a nice size for me. It felt really nice making such a positive start in 2012. Last year's resolution was focused on stash-busting of the paper variety and I thought it went really well and hopefully will continue into this year too. The theme of stash-busting continues this year with the focus on fabric.

What are your resolutions for this year, friends? Is there anything in particular you wish to achieve, hope to learn or want to make this year? Whatever your resolutions, I wish you every success and may 2012 bring you lots of wonderful things.