Monday, December 27, 2010

Canine Couture

Louis came for another holiday visit -- my how he has grown.  From 5.5 lbs last year to 11.4 lbs this year.  You can see the difference in the size of the water bottle!  (same brand)

Ohio had a little more snow and colder weather than he's used to in Georgia, so we decided it was time for a new coat.  Actually we have a couple more planned as well.  The first one is from McCalls 6218.  We shopped the stash and decided to use the same blue fleece from last year and paired it with a traditional woven plaid for the lining.

Once I started sewing it became clear that the blue fleece should be the lining to provide comfort and warmth -- and the plaid for the outside.  The blue fleece was better for the contrasting scarf.  Here's the finished coat.

Maybe I don't know how to measure dogs, but I thought his length is 14" and his girth is 16". I had measured around his belly and from the pattern envelope it would seem that the Large is the correct size.  It seems too big around, but we accommodated that by trying it on him and then deciding where to attach the velcro.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Exchange gift

'Tis the time of year when we need token gifts but want them to be nice.  The criteria for this exchange is that it can be handmade (or not), have a sewing-related theme (or not), but must be < $10.

I decided to make a simple little purse organizer--the tutorial was found here:  purse organizer tutorial

I happened to have some striped ultrasuede that looks a little like denim and includes a rainbow of colors.  Since I have no idea about who the recipient will be in this grab-bag exchange (other than it will be a female), I figured this would work.  Her favorite color has to be in there somewhere, right?

Then it meant digging in the stash for something to use as the lining.  I could have been conservative with a solid color but found some calico that was more fun.  The colors seemed to be echoed in each piece.

I used the dimensions of the original tutorial since again, I don't know whose handbag will become home to this organizer and I don't want it to be too big.

I didn't take pictures of it in process, but some things I did were to make sure that I pressed the seams open on my pressing buck before turning.  That helped to have a nice edge, especially on the ultrasuede. I used my stitch-in-the-ditch foot to make sure that the edgestitching was even and I used a size 16 denim needle.  Another thing was that I rounded the corners to make it easier to turn the ultrasuede and avoid any lumps.  I used a tape dispenser as my template to get a nice curve. 

I used the stitch that backstitches at the beginning and end of the row of stitching to make sure that the vertical "divider" stitches wouldn't some undone with use.

It can be rolled up like a jelly roll for a small purse, or it could be just be allowed to wrap around the entire perimeter for a larger purse. 

I think there will be a few more of these to come out of my sewing room this year ....

Saturday, December 18, 2010

More ruffles?

Yes more ruffles!  This is actually a knitted flounce.  You may remember that I made some of these last year.  Like those, this one is also a gift.

 The yarns are both very soft -- the main yarn is 70% soft acrylic/30% cotton (Bernat denimstyle; color 03117) and the trim "eyelash" type yarn is 100% polyester (Yarn Bee- Frosting; color is Polar Icing).  The combination made for a very soft boa.  I went looking for anything "blue" that I had in my yarn stash and these were the winning candidates:

The pattern was a little lacier than the one I used last year.  It starts off with 110 stitches and after 11 rows there are almost 900 stitches on the needle before binding off.  I think I like this one better. If you want to make one, the pattern is from Lion Brand Yarn -- just search on "potato chip scarf."

When worn, it curls up into itself, but here is a close up to show some of the detail: