He seems to like it, and it keeps him warm in our cold house, so I really like it.
As a little kid, I lived in sweatsuits. No frilly dresses and definitely no jeans, just comfy cozy sweatshirts and sweatpants for me. It seemed important that I make 5 his very first sweatsuit!
I made the top with plenty of room to grow and the pants to fit perfectly right now. Not exactly intentionally...
He seems to like it, and it keeps him warm in our cold house, so I really like it.
The pants are sweatshirt sleeves with waistband ribbing for the waistband. The top is pieced together from scraps leftover from my sweatshirt dress.
The shirt is symmetrical, but I chose this to be the front because it's kind of Star Trek-y. 5 to the bridge! Warp speed!
The back is plenty cool too though. Cooler than any of the sweatsuits I wore as a kid. Anyone who says boys' clothes are boring has no imagination!
I have been working on a little something here and there for a few weeks now. You may be able to tell from the picture that it's a rug. And a ball. The ball is eventually going to be the rest of the rug. It's not done yet. I love having a project that I can just whittle away at whenever I have even a minute or two.
I love, and I mean love, braided rugs, but I didn't think I'd ever make one myself because if handsewing is involved, it's just not going to happen. That all changed over Christmas when I saw the braided rug my Sister-In-Law had in her basement. It was braided, but instead of hand sewing the rows together, it had been machine stitched with a wide zig zag. Ha! I thought to myself (slightly fiendishly) I know I just finished a rug for our house and our house is carpeted, but we totally need another one right now.
So, I pulled out the pretty substantial amount of Tshirt yarn I already had made from a previous failed experiment and got to braiding. It was lovely, I had the braid safety-pinned to the top of our couch and whenever I had a few minutes I'd just braid a yard or two. It was so fun peeking over the edge and seeing the growing pile of beautiful braid behind the couch.
I finally ran out of yarn yesterday and took it all to the machine. 5 even let me get a fair amount done while he carried the basketball-sized ball of braid around the house leaving a little braid trail behind him.
As you can see, it's still quite small, but it is definitely already well-loved.
Do you have any here and there projects?
Apparently after all that precise, pattern-following sewing I just did, I really needed to do some fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants sewing. So sorry for the distracting background, my assistant was feeling particularly inflexible...
A few weeks ago I picked up this super cute shirt dress that fit almost perfectly. I decided to bring it home and use it as a guide to make some that were a bit longer and (ahem) a bit roomier in the hips. Seems simple enough, right? There weren't even any darts for crying out loud!
So I had a whole two hours to myself one night and just went for it. I had to re-cut only twice for the body, but the sleeves were an unmitigated disaster. Honestly, they're still kinda wonky, but not so much so that I didn't wear it today.
I have two more big men's shirts just waiting for me to wrap my head around this project properly.
This father/son art center trip resulted in the wondrous discovery of the new kid's entrance to their Youth Gallery! I remember being absolutely delighted by little doors, little anything for little people as a child. 5 seems to have had the same response. I can't wait to go in and see all the new work they've done, I just love our local art center!
This, my friend, is evidence, nay, photographic proof, of "helping". 5 now helps to put his own clothes away. Why do I keep his clothes in a pile at the bottom of the stairs? Hmm, that is an excellent question...
We fold his clothes downstairs and instead of throwing them wildly about, Five has started grabbing (too big of) an armload and walking it over to the stairs before realizing that he cannot possibly carry said clothes up the stairs and throws them as far up as possible.
I am so thrilled to have such a helper. Even if it makes more work for me.
Patterns, that is... I did some SEWING FOR MYSELF this weekend. Namely, the Lola Dress from Victory Patterns. I used 2 XL sweatshirts and have enough pieces leftover to make at least 1 sweatshirt for 5 (yippee! more matchy matching!)
i was pretty pleased with the pattern and instructions, of course I changed a few small things... the one issue I had was that the sleeves were crazy tight, like, I had to cut the ribbing off tight. Not sure what's up with that. I mean, yeah, I have a little meat on my arms, but there is no way a grown up arm would've fit in there. That's fine, I like short sleeves anyway.
Check out all that fancy detailing, yo! Big big big pockets- they wrap around to the back. The sweet curved waistline and fitted bust seams- have you ever seen such a fancy sweatshirt dress? I actually modified the construction to reduce some fanciness and increase the easiness. I do love easiness...
Did not get quite as much done as planned this weekend because somebody (who will remain nameless) was being terribly cute and playful and we had to have dance parties and snugglefests. I think I'll manage.
Look Ma, No Socks!
We're doing our very best to be snuggly and cozy this week, although 5 DEFINITELY does not understand the link between wearing socks and NOT having icicles for feet...
In the spirit of coziness, I have a few things to share with you-
Mmmmm Quilty Goodness
You may be thinking that this looks kind of familiar. Yeah, I *nearly* finished this quilt top way back when and it took me until Christmas to finally finish it! But! It is done now and just in time for a windy spell.
It is cold where I live. Not SO cold, but our house was (seemingly) insulated by a bunch of teenage boys with ADD so when it's cold and windy there are rooms where you can feel the breeze.... so new quilt=good.
A side note: you can see that we have a pretty serious brass bedframe in this picture. When my in-laws found themselves with some extra beds they asked us if we'd like one. I REALLY wanted this one just so I can sing that Bob Dylan song about laying ladies on his big brass bed. Ha, it never gets old, I'm chuckling right now.
This is the quilt of all fiber dorkiness. It was my BIG Christmas prezzie for my Mom this year. I started work on it in September-
1. Dyeing the fabric
2. Screen printing the pieces
3. THEN making a queen-sized quilt out of it
Pretty awesome, it turned out almost exactly how I imagined. Thanks to Mom for taking a much better shot of her quilt than I did of mine...
Hot Drink With a Dumb Name
I'm going to share the recipe for a drink I apparently didn't "invent" but more "discovered" as my husband claims to have invented the same drink 10 years ago. But I will point out that I'm the one who made up a dumb punny name for it.
Nocha (it's like a mocha, but with NOT coffee)
ingredients (to make 1 cup)
1 bag Roastaroma by Celestial Seasonings tea
2 Tbsp sipping chocolate mix OR
1 Tbsp cocoa and
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 mugfull boiling water
1/2 mugfull milk of choice (I've been using full fat goat, yum!)
I don't drink coffee and I'm not always in the mood for something as sweet as hot chocolate. The Roastaroma tea is great because it smell kind of like coffee, but is definitely not! This drink is hot, a little chocolatey, and not very sweet.
I boil some water in the tea kettle and then fill my mug with teabag up half way. I let it steep 5 minutes and then pull the teabag out.
Now it's time to add the sipping chocolate or cocoa/sugar mix. Make sure to stir in any lumps.
Add milk and drink! (Feel free to add whipped cream if you're feeling fancy...)
The Cats are Out of the Bags!
Whew! I hope everyone had a lovely xmas/new year's week! We returned home from our travels on Dec 30 and were SO glad to be in our own cozy bed again. Now that the holidays are past, I'm so excited to share some of my handmade gifts with you!
This is the Black Apple Doll that I made for 5. Isn't it cute? I had such a fun time picking fabrics out of my (many) scrap baskets, and then agonizing over drawing a gender-neutral face. I think it's adorable. 5 thinks it's delicious. He likes to give it big kisses (and bites)- you may be able to see the gingerbread smeared on the chin... I also have to do some handstitching on the hair already. His little teeth have done quite a number on the hairline. If you want to make one yourself, you can download the pattern pieces and instructions here. You can also purchase an already-made, super nice one from the Black Apple Shop.
This is our new rug. I made it. From old sheets. Yeah, it took a long time. No, 5 was NOT a big help. We worked on this every day for MONTHS and as much as I love how excited 5 was to crochet, he mostly just pulled stitches out which really sucked.
I stored the rug in a transparent bin in the dining room all while I was making it. I was so sure that Fred had figured out what I was making, but he didn't! It was a surprise! On Christmas Eve morning, when we decided to do our little family gifties, I went downstairs first and laid the rug down in front of the tree. So great. I still have some pretty weird calluses from crocheting so much with that ginormous crochet hook for SO LONG....
This is the mobile I made from the crocheted bracelets I talked about way-back-when. I love it! I got some kind of stove accessory to hang them all from for 25 cents from Vinnie's which was the full extent of my cash investment for this bad boy since I used yarn scraps and bracelets I bought more than 10 years ago. Yahoo!
I think my favorite part was wrapping the metal with yarn though. I got kinda Zen about it. Good times. I was DEFINITELY in need of a little forced meditation in those last few days before xmas.
Finally, I thought I'd share this Christmas Eve morning pic- it's not great, but I love that he's JUST opened his mittens (he figured out how to get them out of the toilet paper roll all by himself!) and some of my other handmade gifts are strewn about in front of him. I made the mittens from leftover fleece scraps, rick-rack, and fuschia ribbing, not even realizing that they would coordinate with his hat that you can kind of see at the bottom of the picture but can see better here. And of course I had to make him another pair of flannel pants with some Anna Maria Horner LouLouThi flannel (and Good Folks scraps for the cuffs).
Did you survive the holidays?
My name is Ansley Knoch. I am the creator of Rispok, a line of accessories for big and little people made from repurposed materials. I live in Madison, Wisconsin with my husband, Fred, and our son, also Fred, better known as 5.