Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Home Stretch

The end is near!!! I have the front panel and the back panel of my Anthro Copy sweater done. I pinned it onto my duct tape dress form to figure out the sleeves. I used scrap fabric to make a pattern piece that will serve as a guide for my knitted sleeves. When I was purchasing the yarn for this sweater, I accidentally bought one skein in bulky weight in exactly the same color. I was going to swap someone for another yarn, but then I thought that I might be able to knit the sleeves out of the bulky weight. Not really sure how it will turn out but it should be interesting. The sleeves are knitted in reverse stocking knit so the difference in texture will be more pronounced with the bulky yarn. The bonus is that they won't take as long to knit :-) I was dreading the sleeves and now that I have figured out the size and shape, the rest is cake. The part that I will enjoy the most is the knitting/crocheting of the trim... I can't wait!!!!

Here is another project that I did almost a year ago and haven't posted. If it isn't obvious, I am a 100% Do-it-yourself-er!!! I love the appreciation that I have for things that I have hand made, re-styled or re-purposed. This project was so far my favorite.... mostly because it didn't cost me a dime.

I have this old set of French Provincial dressers with hutches that I had for my bedroom furniture when I was a kid. I don't throw anything away so they were being used in my "craft room" for storage. My bedroom is painted red and I painted my master bath a teal/turquoise color. I decided to use the left over paint to transform one of the dressers into an over-sized night stand. I didn't take a picture of the before, but here is the sister dresser to give you an idea of what it looked like before:
And here it is the finished piece. I love love love how this turned out!!!! In my craft room, I replaced the dresser with a utility shelving unit and I gained a TON of storage in my bedroom.

Now, I am searching Craigslist high and low for a specific buffet that I plan on re-styling into a TV stand for my basement. Hopefully after that I can get the "Theater" renovations that I started 2 years ago finally done!

Thursday, January 13, 2011


I am reading the Millennium Trilogy by Stieg Larsson. The 1st 2 books were paperback that my mom sent me after she read them and the 3rd book was on my new e-reader that my parents got me for Christmas. We share an account, so my mom already had it downloaded and just waiting for me to read. After I reached the 1st half of the 1st book, I couldn't stop... they are so good, so I was completely excited that I didn't have to wait to read the 3rd book. Upon starting this book on the e-reader I was a little nervous because the e-reader is so thin and feels like I am going to break it at any minute.... and for those of you that know me know that my clumsiness does not mix well with fragile pieces of technology. So, I looked on the internet for a case to go around the e-reader, that will hold and protect the reader while in use, and they only had 2 available. Both cases were completely boring and the only 2 differences are that one had a light and the other didn't and one was $30, the other $50. To top it all off, they both got a 1 star rating in the customer review section that convinced me to make my own.

I already had an idea in my mind of a hand made e-reader cover, my girl Erin made this one a while back for her Kindle.
I knew that I wanted mine to have a "case" around the actual e-reader but that was about all the direction I had. The same Erin told me about the Pellon, Peltex 72F Double-Sided Fusible Ultra Firm Stabilizer. It is a very stiff fusible stabilizer that when sewn inside, acts similar to cardboard. So I bought some of the stabilizer that set me back about $3 (half of a yard for 40% off at JoAnn Fabrics) and then I decided to use some of the fabric that I have been accumulating to make the rest.

During the planning stages I saw this art quilt on a this blog and LOVED IT!!! I wasn't looking to "Quilt" my e-reader case but piecing the outside cover fabric was definitely possible. So with all of those things in mind, I rushed through making it yesterday. Consequently the sewing is horrendous and all of the edges aren't square... but it works. It was extremely tedious to make the "case" inside since I left openings for the important ports, buttons and alike. I also made some pockets on the inside front cover. I'm not really sure what I would keep in there, but it was real handy for small book light that I already have. It just clipped right on!

Luckily, I learned a lot and have already made some revisions and when I have more time to spend, I will make another that is much better. But for now, when I am reading... I don't feel as if I am going to break the darned thing! Oh and sewing through the thick Pellon was actually a lot easier than I thought! The best part about all of this is that I spent $3 on this case and I am definitely going to give it at least 3 out of 5 stars!

Front over
Back cover
Inside... don't look too close, it looks pretty bad... but definitely FUNCTIONAL!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Keepin Busy

I've started on my Anthropologie Sweater Copy!!! This will make the 2nd sweater that I have ever knitted, 3rd if you count the infant sweater that I knitted for my son. I like the challenge of trying to copy this without having a pattern. That makes a little more room for disappointment, but if all else, I expect that I will learn something :-) I am kind-of guessing on size. The original sweater is fitted and tight and I imagine that the actual sweater used for the website picture was a Small or possible even an Extra Small. Since I am making what I would consider a Medium, probably more like a Large... I am making some adjustments that I think will help the fit. Another difference is that I am using a dark charcoal color for the main yarn. We shall see how it turns out.

Here is a picture of the original:

Here is the front panel that I just finished:

And here is what I have so far of the rest :-)

I am just casting on for the back. Luckily I have the mindset that this might take me a while, not just to knit, but also to make mistakes and fix them. I am in it for the long-haul, but so far it has proven to be knitting up fairly quick.

Since I am in the mood to copy, or as I like to fondly refer to it as "rip off", here is another Anthropologie goodie that I like. The necklaces at Anthro. are fairly reasonable in price, but I am cheap and decided to try to copy this one with stuff that I already had. I also find that I appreciate them more if I make them myself. :-)

Here is the one from Anthropologie:
Here is what I came up with:
Not exact but definitely and inspired piece. That is about it for now. I have a bunch of things to sew once I get my craft room organized and cleaned up. I am also reading the 2nd Stieg Larsson book in the Millennium series, so that is taking up a bit of my time too. I hope to have more to post fairly soon.... maybe even a completed sweater! *wishful thinking*