Tuesday, December 16, 2008

FO - Grandma's Knit Slippers

My Grandmother lost her husband this last year.  I know that I can't give her anything to make up for that loss, but I wanted to give her something that would comfort her in her greiving.  I hope she feels that these slippers are like a little hug from me every time she puts them on.

They were made from the Plain of Flowerly Slippery Pattern, which is available as a download from Ravelry as well.  I made them in Lion Brand, Jiffy Solid, an Acrylic yarn, that I knew my grandmother wouldn't have any problem careing for, and was already familiar with (unlike the newer superwash wools, which she is sure to treat like regular wool).  

Even though the flowers will make them slightly harder to care for, I thought they were important to add.  They are my version of my Grandmother's favorite flower, a yellow rose.

~Merry Christmas

Monday, December 15, 2008

Gift Idea #6 - Embroidered Brooch

Another one bites the dust.  Yet one more Christmas present in my queue has been completed. My latest project was this little embroidered brooch, approximately 2" in diameter.  It depicts the Ebola virus, and will hopefully soon adorn the lapel of a young doctor.  I thought it would be a laugh for her colleagues, and a great conversation starter with everyone else.


Friday, December 12, 2008

Gift Idea 5: Heated Eye Mask

Christmas keeps comming closer, as inevivible as the passage as, well, time.  With it comes more Christmas presents.  I made this eye mask out of recycled materials for my grandmother who has eye problems.  If you have all of the materials on hand, and hour can see several made.

Materials for One Eye Mask:
1.  Burda Style Pattern Marcel #7997.  This is a free download, and the entire pattern should fit on a standard piece of paper.
2.  Two pieces of soft fabric approx. 9" by 5".  I got enough fabric for 3 masks from the front of a cotton dress shirt (the rest of the shirt had already been repourposed as napkins.
3.  Flat batting in the same amounts as the fabric above (optional).  I used cotton batting let over from a quilt, but fleece, or rescused batting would work well too.
4.  50" to 60" of ribbon, .75" to 1" wide, cut in half.  Deside on the total amount of ribbon you want to use based on head size. I used the ribbon from a kids store's elaborate gift wrapping.  One package yielded more than enough ribbon.
5.  Rice.  I used about 0.125 pounds of inexpensive long grain rice.  You can probably find enough in your pantry.

Instructions:
If you know how to sew, this will probably be a no brainer, but Burda Style has no instructions on this pattern (as of this writting), so....

1.  After printing and cutting out the Marel pattern, pin the pattern piece to your fabric (with the grain of the fabric), mark the side openings noted on the pattern on your fabric, and cut the fabric in pattern.  Do this so that you get two pieces of fabric in pattern shape, then do the same with the batting.

2.  Make the following fabric/batting sandwich; (Beginning on the bottom) batting, fabric (right side up), fabric (right side down), batting.  Then stitch around the edges of the mask with a 5/8" seam allowance, leaving the spaces that were marked "ribbon" on the pattern open.

3.  Turn your "sandwich" inside out.  The fabric should now be on the outside, the batting on the inside.

4.  Insert one of the ribbons about 1" into the ribbon slot, fold the fabric around the ribbon slot inward to that it looks as if it had been sewn with the rest of the eye mask.  Sitich the ribbon in place very close to the edge of the mask. DO NOT SEW THE OTHER RIBBON IN PLACE AT THIS TIME.

5.  The ribbon slot on the other end of the mask is still open.  Use this opening to pout in your rice.  Make a funnell with a spare bit of paper, stick the small end in the ribbon slot, and pour the rice in the large end.  Pour in enough rice so that half of the eye mask is full.


6.  With the rice at the opposite end of the mask, attach the 2nd ribbon as shown for the first in step 4.


~Happy Holidays

Edit:  If you would like to heat the eye mask, place it in the microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute.  Test it's temperature on the sensitive part of your arm before placeing it on your eyes.  It should be warm, NOT hot.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Crafts in the Attic

Yesterday Mr. Incredible was rummaging around in the attic looking for an elusive box of Christmas decorations.  He found the decorations, as well as two boxes of craft supplies (one rather large) that I had forgotten existed.  I plan to have pics of the loot to follow.

Friday, December 5, 2008

I-Pod Nano Case

My latest project is finished.  It is an i-pod nano case for my cousin.  The tutorial was from Made by Petchy.  All of the measurements she gives are in cm, so if you, like me, live where yo can't find a metric cutting mat to save your life, let me know.  I have already figured out all of the English measure equivilents and can share them with you.

Closed.
Open, with an "i-pod" inside.  I don't have an i-pod, so I made a paper one to the correct dimensions to make sure the case would work.
Open and Empty.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Back to the Daily Grind

We have been back for a few days now, but I always find it difficult to get back into the swing of things after leaving town.  It is especially hard when we cut ourselves off from all major modes of communication during the vacation.  Thanksgiving found us in the mountains of North Carolina.  There was ice on the ground, a chill in the air, a fire in the grate, and a cup of hot cocoa in my hand.  There we have no TV, no Internet, little cell phone phone connection, and only one radio station.  It is blissfully disconnected from modern life.

I decided not to bring any of my Christmas gifts/projects with me, as this was supposed to be relaxing vacation time.  I intended to relax, at least as much as is possible with two toddlers in tow, and I spent much of my time there curled up next to the warm fireplace with a good book.
My kids spent as much time as they could outside exploring the mountainside.  They were hoping to find snow, but instead found large and small icy pools all over the mountainside (the only ice we see in Florida comes out of the freezer).  The smallest were ice filled ruts in the road which they used as an ice skating rink.  The largest was a lake that they threw rocks at for at least an hour to see which would bounce off the ice and which would crack the surface.