Saturday, September 25, 2010

Mitts for Kate [2010]

Dear Shayne,

This time last year, I posted some mitts I made as a birthday gift for my cousin-in-law, Kate. Kate really likes fingerless mitts, so I made her another pair this year. Maybe it will be an annual tradition! (If Kate is reading this, she just said "Yay!") (Kate really likes mitts.)

Sort of a vanilla pattern, but in a very soft Royan Cashsoft DK (colorway: 518 Thunder). It's a lovely blend of merino, microfiber, and cashmere. To spice it up a little, I sewed on six different thrifted black buttons with red floss:
Mitts for Kate

My friend Katie (Hi, Katie!) graciously agreed to be my hand model. It is waaaay easier to take photos of mitts on someone other than yourself, I gotta say:
Mitts for Kate

I gave them to Kate yesterday and she loves 'em, so I'd call these a success.


Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Dear Shayne,

Four years ago, this blog started with humble beginnings. Who would have thought then that we'd make it this far? :) Sometimes we post more often and sometimes we post less frequently, but through it all, I'm glad we've kept posting. (And crafting!)

I guess we should do a retrospective or a giveaway or something to commemorate this day, but I'm exhausted, so I just wanted to check in and wish you a Happy Blogiversary. Here's to another 4 years. (At least!)


Monday, September 20, 2010

Home Ec Project #3: Tote bag

Dear Shayne,

Here is my third project in Home Ec (that online sewing class I told you about). This one came out waaaay different from the original pattern. Part of that was intentional and part accidental.

First of all, I screwed up and cut my fabric so the orientation was more horizontal than than vertical. And maybe not even the right measurements -- it's unclear. Not a huge deal, except it is a little... "gappy" at the top now. Might need a closure or something:
Home Ec Project #2: Totebag
(It looks way larger in this photo than it does in real life. Odd.)

Another "accidental" mod wasn't really my fault. The straps are kind of wide and I didn't realize that when they said "1/4 inch seam," they actually wanted me to sew a 1/2 inch seam and then trim back the extra 1/4 of an inch. So I sewed a 1/4 inch seam, making the straps about 1/2 inch wider than they should be. Whatevs.

Some mods I made on purpose -- they wanted us to leave the fabric edges unfinished inside. First... yuck. Second, my fabric is Sup-ah Fray-y, so my bag would unravel if I did that. I knew how French seams work in theory, but had never actually tried them, so this was a good opportunity to experiment. They came out great!
 Home Ec Project #2: Totebag [French seams]

The pattern also called for attaching the straps inside the bag, but mine kept coming out looking all janky on the front, so I decided to make the strap attachment a "feature" and put them on the outside.

I also took a cue from my friend Hollie (Hi, Hollie!) who said she likes to use contrasting thread for topstitching fun, which I never do. I didn't have any that matched the fabric this time, so I gave it a whirl and... I really like it! The orange thread matches the leopards' spots:
 Home Ec Project #2: Totebag [stitch detail]

My final mod was to square off the corners, rather than leaving the bag flat. I inserted a piece fabric covered plastic in the bottom to keep it sort of rigid. I just did this because... well, 'cause I prefer it like that.

So this bag... wasn't even remotely close to the bag in class. :) But the class helped me get off of my butt to make a new bag, so that's a good thing.


Friday, September 17, 2010

A Challenge

Dear Kelly,

Are you up for a long-term challenge? I just bought a Moleskine Watercolour Notebook - the kind that's bound horizontally and has the nice, thick, creamy paper - with 35 double-page spreads. Here's what I propose (partly taken from a challenge we've both read about on the blogs of Kal Barteski and Elise Blaha):
  1. We each pick eight words to act as a theme, plus one "anything goes" theme.
  2. We have one of the husbands pick the words at random to determine the order we use them.
  3. We each have two weeks (including mailing time) to create a double-page spread based on the theme word. Any medium. Any interpretation. Directly on the page. Glue in. Whatever.
  4. After 17 months (!), we will have an amazing, joint work of art. 17 spreads each, 34 total. (We'll just figure something out for that odd leftover spread.)
  5. Then we fight over who gets to keep it.
You in?


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I want: this gorgeous table runner

Dear Shayne,

You may have seen Victoria's work before -- she's a reader of our blog (hi, Victoria!) and I even won her blog giveaway a couple of years back (you can read my rave about her work back then). I am constantly amazed and inspired by the lovely things she makes.

But today, Shayne, I saw this latest piece in her Etsy shop and my jaw just dropped. I am in love with this table runner:

I cannot bring myself to buy such an exquisite piece of art for the abuse we put our dining room table through, but... but... I can't help the "My preccciouuusss" feeling that overtook me when I saw this. So I had to share it with you. Isn't it gorgeous?

Look at her stitches. Just look at them:

Sigh. Perfection.

Keep up the beautiful work, Victoria. You are truly an inspiration to sloppy amateur quilters like myself everywhere.


PS - Images are, of course, from Silly BooDilly's Etsy shop where you can find other beautiful items like this awesome quilt.

Sunday, September 05, 2010


Dear Shayne,

Wow. Talk about your fabric printing fail. I bought this cute Christmas-y fabric this week:

It's cuter in person, as the background is more of a cream color. So I got it home and it's sitting on the table and all of a sudden...

[cue the needle screeching on the record]

What the &*#@?

Is that "LA" printed... backwards?!

Why yes, yes it is.

Oh, well -- I'm planning to use this fabric to make gift bags, so it's not a huge deal, but I'm glad I didn't use it for a quilt (or another project that I really care about) before noticing. Sheesh.


Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Hey, TJ! You've won!

Dear Shayne,

We have a winner of our blog giveaway! The random number generator chose "6," so TJ is our winner.

TJ, I'm going to take a wild guess that you'd like your Scrabble earrings to be "T" and "J" but contact me (onetomatotwo [at] gmail [dot] com) and we can work out the details.

I love giving stuff away! Congrats, TJ!