Monthly Archives: November 2012

A little hat with a big flower

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Before I knew how to knit or crochet I only owned two hats. If the weather necessitated a hat, I wore things that matched my two hats. End of story. And that seemed to work just fine. But somehow, once the power of creating hats was in my power the “need” in my wardrobe for hats increased exponentially. Sounds like funny math. But why not? Hats are fun and they keep your head warm. I recently picked up a sweet little boiled wool brown jacket at TJ Maxx and before I could wear it I had to make the hat that was always meant to go with it. I never considered not making the hat, or not buying the jacket just because the required corresponding hat didn’t exist yet. I used the French Country crocheted hat pattern for sale on Ravelry and decked it out with the pretty corsage flower pattern. I love that flower pattern because the flower is crocheted in a row and then sewn up in a spiral, which requires much less counting and right side/wrong side nonsense than crocheting a flower the usual way. I like a pattern I can follow with only one tiny part of my brain while the rest  focuses on keeping my kids from setting the house on fire. The hat pattern was nice too. Quick and cute. Because I have a small head I used a smaller size crochet hook, but then as I neared the brim I was afraid it wouldn’t be long enough so I added an extra row of cluster stitches. That was a mistake because it really didn’t need the additional length, but it didn’t end up so long that I felt like I needed to unravel the brim and re-do. I used natural, un-dyed wool for the hat but mixed some strong tea in with my water when I blocked it to darken up the color just a tad, to make it match the jacket better. I just pinned on the flower so that I can opt to wear the hat without it, and so that I can wash the hat more easily if necessary. Now if I can just squeeze this new project into my overflowing hat drawer…

Turkeys for my turkeys

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Gobble gobble! Dorothy and I made felt turkeys today as a homeschool art project. I cut ovals from brown felt and sewed them together, Dorothy stuffed them, and we did the rest with glue and scissors. My my little turkeys have their own turkeys, and they seem thankful indeed. Happy Thanksgiving!

An impromptu wool skirt

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This is an awkward collection of photos of an otherwise cute skirt. It’s hard to get blog photos of an object that is basically made to cover my own bottom.

My husband had a work-related event last week that involved taking me to the track for the afternoon (that’s a horse track–I’m in Kentucky) to spend the afternoon gambling and drinking with strangers. Hmm. It was a chilly day and I knew I’d have to be outside part of the time, so I wanted to wear something comfortable and warm. I was thinking on the morning of the event that if I had a charcoal-colored knee-length skirt to wear with a sweater and boots it would be perfect. Then I remembered that I had an old charcoal-colored wool blanket downstairs in my fabric stash that I’d picked up at a thrift store last year. Why not see if I could whip up a simple skirt to wear that afternoon? I set Dorothy to some independent school work and fetched the blanket.

Unfortunately one of my cats seemed to have found the wool blanket on the low shelf where it was being stored and had been using it as a napping spot. No problem, the skirt wouldn’t require much fabric–I just cut some skirt-shaped pieces from a non-hairy part of the blanket. I didn’t use a pattern, just eyeballed the shape of panels from another skirt and cut an appropriately-sized waistband. The boiled wool wouldn’t fray so I didn’t even finish the top of the waist. I serged it all together with purposely exposed seams and a perky little button at the waist. I tugged it on over some tights and was pretty pleased, but decided I needed to press it out a bit because the wool had some creases. When I pressed the warm iron onto the wool I realized the problem–it smelled like stinky cat. In a very bad way. Ick.

Because this is my homemade blog, not a what-to-wear blog or a fashion blog or a how-not-to-stink-in-public blog I’m going to confess that I wore it anyway. Once the wool cooled I decided that no one would smell it if they didn’t press their nose right up against my skirt or apply heat to the wool–both quite unlikely. The skirt served its purpose perfectly that afternoon and I don’t think anyone would have guessed that it was an old blanket a few hours earlier in the day. I felt kind of crafty-powerful after my successful quick project. When I got home I gave the skirt a little rinse and soak in some lavender Eucalan and now it no longer stinks. What more could I ask?