Wednesday, December 15, 2010

How to make a cozy sweater pillow

Here at our house it's been cold. I mean COLD cold. Wear as many layers to bed as you do outdoors cold. And I'm not convinced it's ever going to stop snowing. Maybe in June? Since we're preparing to buy our first house, I've been in perma-nesting mode and want to create handmade things that don't cost a lot of money (as in, zero money).

If you've got an old sweater that you don't want to part with but also don't want to wear any more, this project is for you. My mom gifted me with an old cream-colored cable knit turtleneck sweater a couple years ago, and I think I wore it never. It looked like a crop top on me. So attractive! But I didn't want to just give it away, so I decided to give it a new life as a pillow.

I knew getting started that since this wasn't a wool sweater I was going to have fraying issues, but I wasn't to be swayed. I got out my good, sharp scissors and crafted a plan. The size of the sweater dictated the size of the pillow, and I wanted to cut as little as possible (remember the fraying issues?). 

I cut the sweater across the torso just where the armpits met the body, and was left with a wide "tube". I turned the tube inside out so I could stitch together the cut edge, being careful not to fray it any more than necessary. I used embroidery thread to hold it all together better.

Since the yarn is kind of chunky in the sweater, I was afraid the stuffing would start to poke through eventually, a la our $5 Walmart pillows. I sewed a pillow insert out of some scrap white cotton fabric I had laying around to alleviate any pokage.

I stitched the finished edge together on the outside, since it's so chunky that you can't see the stitches. And if you can, just don't look at it!

The finished product! Looks pretty great on our couch.

Even cats love it!

You might be asking yourself, what do I do with the stupid-looking sleeves and neck that I have left over? Stay tuned, and prepare to be amazed.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

My First Quilt: Part 1

i had a bit of a difficult time deciding what would grace my blog as the first post (after the initial maiden voyage of course), since it took me 11 months just to get something up here...

i caught the quilting bug about a year ago, and decided that with my country/industrial/antique aesthetic, quilts would fit in perfectly. i also felt like it was a dying art, and needed young super cool Martha-wannabes like me to keep it alive. i also have a chronic need to nest. i also want to stay warm. soooo, i took a beginning quilting class at a fabric shop, and started half-assing my way through a quilt! i have pretty basic sewing skills, so there is going to be a major learning curve here.

since i am an artiste after all, frumpy dumpy grandma quilts just weren't going to cut it for me, so armed with little more than an internet picture, basic sewing skills, and sheer determination, i started my very own blanket. the hubs and i decided the first quilt (of many) i make should match our guest bedroom: blue, grass green, brown, white, and orange.

i trekked to a couple fabric stores to find just the right mix of small and large, dark and light patterns. and here are my chosen fabrics (drumroll).

they're even better when a cute kitty helps out.

i'm creating the quilt topper in an hourglass pattern. google it, yo. or, just imagine an hourglass shape and picture it made out of fabric. BAM.

stay tuned. part deux (that's two for all you non-french speakers) coming soon. as in, in the next 3 months if we're lucky.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Like I always say, better late than never

there! i did it. i started a blog. now what to do, what to do...

okay i never actually say "better late than never," but i do find myself saying "hey i could make that!" a lot. but i rarely ever do. i seek the simple and creative life. i hope to record my crafting, gardening, cooking, house hunting, and decorating project here—I'm your modern day homesteader! sometimes i think blogs are a little bit vain...and maybe my motives for this one are too. but all i know is, there's no easy way to start this. so i made lists to kick-start these posts and get all the hi-i'm-on-a-first-date awkwardness out of the way.

just fyi:
- i have a lot of creative energy, and i need to let it all out somewhere (hence, blog).
- i misuse and/or have never heard of many common colloquialisms.
- there are 948,798,479,138,746 things i want to do in my lifetime. blogging being one of them.
- it took me 2 years to start this because i couldn't decide on a name.
- and then once i decided on a name it took me 11 months to actually write the first post.

i like:
- making things with my hands.
- my husband.
- our cat.
- laughing.
- coffee but i don't drink it.
- decorating and all things design.
- attention.

my hopes for this blog are that:
- it won't suck.
- people will read it.
- someone will learn something (here's to hoping that it's me!).
- i will achieve internet fame.
- i will better my sewing skills and actually start doing the "hey i could make that"s.

i hope you think my life is as perfect as i do. and i hope you think my sarcasm is funny.

the moral of the story is who knows where this will take me. stay tuned and thanks for reading...we're going to be great friends, i just know it!