Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Messing around

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Although I usually don’t make new year’s resolutions, I really wanted to blog more this year; so here is my second post!!

Ahum. What happened? I don’t know. I guess life happened. It’s not as if I haven’t done anything with yarn or fabric, but it wasn’t really much to show or tell about. Is there now then?  No, there isn’t. So this little post is just to say I’m happily messing around.

The picture above shows crocheted strips which I’ve woven into a piece. The idea was to see what happens in different layouts of the strips. Of course I forgot to make pictures of all the pieces.

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This morning I came down and this is what my table looked like:

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Most of the things you see are connected with the knitting in the left corner. I’m trying to mix a lot of different kind of knitting-patterns together, and this takes a lot of thinking, trying, math, and writing down. The pile of books are knitting books, which I use for examples, and more specifically for knitting terms and ways of making a pattern readable.

On the right there is a shirt of my son, who wants me to sew on a few more patches. As a scout he should do it himself, I know, but as a mom using needles and thread every day, it is a small favor to do it.

In between you can see a book called ‘Zoet, zuur & zout’, which is Dutch for Sweet, sour & salt. It is a book I received only a few days ago, which is about how to preserve food. I never learned about the techniques used to do this, and it does interest me so maybe this will help.

On top of the table, you can see a piece of fabric, which is probably going to  be made into a pair of pyjama pants.

Groetjes, Dorien



Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Going to make an effort

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At the last moment I find time to make a post in the first month of this year. So much for New Year’s resolutions! Usually I don’t really make them, and this year is no different, except for one thing. I’ve been thinking about this a long time, and kept putting off inquiring about it, but now really was the time to do something. What I’m talking about? Trying to be a lot more conscious about waste. Looking at all the garbage produced by our household is quite shocking. So the intention is to reduce this. We won’t go ‘zero-waste’, at least not now because I don’t think that is realistic for now. But the first step is trying to avoid all plastic (and even paper) bags used for produce and bread.

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So I started with making these 4 drawstring bags with sheer fabric. In the first picture you can see them after my first visit with them to the shop. Which was quite strange, because there was nobody else, using their own bags, and at first it was a bit awkward to use them.  But I’m sure this will get better, the more I do it.

These bags are just fine for produce not weighing too much, but the onions already were too heavy. So I had to think of something else.

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A piece of cotton I cut off some curtains a while ago was just perfect. It still is thin and light, but a lot stronger than the sheer fabric. So I used every inch of it to make bags in different sizes. The large one is perfect for bread (10.5 x 16 inch), and the smallest measure 7.5 x 9 inch.

And making these bags, I realised that one kind of food I’m really fond of, is cheese. So I looked around and found these wonderful beeswax cloth tutorials on the web.

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A piece of cotton and some beeswax are all that is needed. After grating the wax and sprinkle it around the fabric, it was put in the oven (fabric folded).

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After just a few minutes, the wax melted and holding the fabric to cool down, it became sturdy and ready to use.

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I wonder how this is all going to work in reality, and I know there are a lot more possible, but for now this is the first step.

Groetjes, Dorien








Thursday, December 28, 2017

Something new and something (too) old

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A pair of new mittens! Very much needed because it feels so cold when walking with Fleur, and the nice thing about this pattern is that these mittens are quite long. So my wrist is covered too.

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I’m very happy to have managed to match the colors in the yarn on both mittens.

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The pattern is Circle Dance , the yarn is Drops Fabel (black) and Drops Delight, colorway 12.

And then something very old. I guess we all have had that pair of jeans which we wore every day if possible. Just the perfect jeans and then just too soon this happens.

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And although it seems to be fashionable, and young boys and girls pay extra for new jeans like this, I’m not too happy about a rip like this. But because I didn’t want to say goodbye just yet, I tried to repair it.

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Two scrap pieces of blue fabric and strong quilting thread.

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One piece is sewn onto the back to the tear, two pieces are patched onto the front. The stitching isn’t too neat, because I didn’t think that would be the right thing to do on such old jeans.  Hopefully they last a couple of weeks longer now.

Groetjes, Dorien





Thursday, December 21, 2017

Putting an end to chaos

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Early November I showed the chaos on my table, and now I’m very happy to say that most of those projects have now been finished. In the picture above you see three of them. Two scarves with roses and the black cardigan.

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This is how just one scarf looks. I really don’t know how many of these I’ve made by now, but they still give me so much joy.

The cardigan is finished too; making it was not that joyful, but wearing is!

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This is what it is; just a plain, black cardigan. I can’t make it any prettier than this. But it is just perfect for me. The pattern is Weekend Walk.

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And the last finish of the lot are these two scrabble pillow covers. Because English is not my mother tongue, it isn’t too easy to play scrabble. So I see it as a kind of exercise to make these, and besides that, it is just a lot of fun.

Well, that ‘s it for now. I’m finishing a pair of mittens, but that’s for next time. Leaves me to wish you very happy holidays!

Groetjes, Dorien

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Here comes the postman



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This is a present I made for our oldest son. A backpack with lots of room and quite a few pockets.  On the front there is a zippered pocket and two smaller pockets beneath it. Both sides have an open pocket and inside there is a compartment for a laptop, a pocket for cell phone, a zippered pocket and two more for all the bits and bobs he always likes to carry around.

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The bag itself closes with a zipper. This is the easiest way of closing a bag, and I know that if there wasn’t a zipper, the bag wouldn’t be closed at all; it’s so much work to close buttons or straps!

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The top can be used as a roll-top with the straps or just left as it is, to have
more room for all his stuff.

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To carry the bag I made two soft but sturdy straps which can be adjusted.
All around a faux leather piping gives the bag a more sturdy look.

The boy was happy with his bag; I’m ambivalent about it. The bag itself looks great, but if I had to make it again, I think I would use a different material for the straps. They are now made with a cotton band, but it is a bit too fragile for this bag. So next time I think I would choose (faux) leather or something like that.


Groetjes, Dorien

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Covering notebooks

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Earlier this year I already made a bookcover like this, and I because all my men use these notebooks, I wanted to make each one of them a personalised book.

It starts with finding a quote which is perfect and not too long. Then the fun starts. Using my embroidery software, I start with the quote as it is, and then play with fonts, lettersizes and layout until I’m satisfied.


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The last step of designing is to add something extra, in this case a swirl and a banner. Then it should look like this.

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After making all three quotes into designs, they were embroidered on felt and then the covers were glued on to the books.

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Groetjes, Dorien

Saturday, December 2, 2017

No care needed

The last couple of weeks have been quite frantic. Today we’re going to celebrate our evening with Sinterklaas and I wanted to make as many gifts as possible myself. And even though I started a couple of months ago, it was as always a race against time to finish it all. And of course I thought just this week of the most complicated gift of them all. I’m not going to tell and show all of them, and certainly not all at once.

Today I want to start with these little cuties.


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Three little knitted cacti made for J. He has moved out of our home last year and he loves to make his room cozy and homey. So he bought himself some plants. And you probably can guess what happened….. they didn’t live that long.
So he tried a cactus. Didn’t give it too much care, but some of his (female) friends gave it a bit of water when they visited. So the cactus lasted longer, but in the end, it didn’t survive either.

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So as a kind of a joke, I made him these three little ones. The pattern is by Drops/Garnstudio, and the yarn used is Stylecraft Special DK.

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Hopefully these will last a bit longer!


Groetjes, Dorien