Sunday, January 31, 2016

Coworker gifts

So when you have a lot of coworkers, gift season can be difficult.  You want something that can be personalized, doesn't cost a lot, is quick/easy to finish, and I prefer that it be practical if possible.  Enter the plastic bag holder.  Since I'm in the veterinary profession, almost everyone I work with has animals, and plastic grocery bags are awesome for poop scooping, as well as trash can liners, etc.  So I made a whole bunch of plastic grocery bag holders to hand out.  Most of them are shown in this pic, but there's a few more that sadly didn't get photographed.  I tried to semi-customize the print to the person, but almost all were animal related.  Mine were based off of this pattern, though I didn't follow it exactly.  All my holders have loops made from self-fabric, for example.  I really like these - I actually have one in each of my bathrooms, plus in the closet (for the dog bags) and near the cat box.  Great assembly line gift if you need one.


A colleague had asked me about making scrub caps quite a few months ago, and I had said sure, but don't know when.  Good thing I said that, since it took months to get around to it!  She gave me the paw print fabric to use, plus another one that apparently never made it into the photo, and I found a free pattern online.  I made four out of the paw print fabric.  The monster print was leftover from my scrub shirt, and that will eventually be a gift for a colleague's birthday.


My original prototype was the bug print on the left - I had a bunch of that in stash.  Not sure why the monster one showed up in a second pic, but there it is.  And the Walking Dead cap on the right became a Christmas gift for another colleague who is hugely into that TV show.


Now that I have the pattern down, I figure caps may become popular gifts for coworker's birthdays....

Friday, January 29, 2016

And now for a little yarn fun....

I have a colleague at work who is obsessed with Bigfoot.  Seriously.  So when I saw this crocheted bigfoot/yeti pattern, I knew that I had to make it for her.  These little guys are pretty hilariously adorable, and I'm sure I'll be making more.  I did the yeti first and decided to go down a hook size on the next attempt, just to keep stuffing from showing through the stitching.  I like the bigfoot better, so I'll be sure to go with the smaller size in the future.


And my colleague who is expecting a baby fell in love with combat booties that she found on etsy.  Because I'm a kind soul, I offered to make them for her, if she bought the pattern and the yarn she wanted.  I think these newborn size are pretty stinking cute, and she loved them!  (They were also much too tiny, so more sizes will be coming her way in the future.)


Speaking of more sizes, my nephew's daddy is a soldier, so I thought he might need some for Christmas.  I made two sizes to send, just because I wasn't sure of sizing.  I think they turned out pretty nice!  Hopefully they get used.


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

New baby onesies - paw prints!

Somebody at work is having a baby, so I thought that baby onesies would be a great gift, of course.  So I did one with the baby's initial, but then I thought, we're a vet clinic.  Paw prints!  And my new obsession was born....

These are for baby Jay - each one is a different size.


And since it was a great idea, I made one for my nephew, too!  Along with his initial....


I'm thinking these would be great for a vet-related fundraiser item, too....Must ponder this....

Monday, January 25, 2016

Still in cross-stitch....

Might as well finish up all the cross-stitch posts at once, right?  So doing the Blackhawks logo and Blues logo made me decide that cross-stitch was a good project to take to work for lunchtime and down time, and I looked through my old stash to see what I might have on hand.  I found a barely started Thomas Kinkade kit - my mom's a huge fan, and I must have started this for her fifteen to twenty years ago.  I actually found two of them - this was the smaller one, and I hadn't started the other one yet.  So I decided to go ahead and finish this.  And then I realized why I'd put it away...

This is one of those cursed cross-stitch projects that has the background printed onto the cloth, and you're supposed to add stitching to embellish it.  Sounds great, until you realize that the background and what's printed on the chart don't quite match up.  And I have crafting OCD.  Oy!  This became a horror to work on, because I don't do well at winging my projects.  I was thrilled to finish, and I went ahead and paid JoAnn's to frame it so that I didn't have to spend another minute on the project.  I have to say that the final product does look really nice, and the framing employee made suggestions for framing that make it look amazing!  I'm really happy with how it turned out, and I'm pretty sure I'll never do another of those "printed background" projects.



And then awhile later, after completing the Cardinals logo, I decided that a small cross-stitch project would be a good palate cleanser.  This was a little kit I picked up on a whim at Hobby Lobby.  My aunt likes cows, and I haven't done anything cow-related for her in awhile, so I figured it'd be a good Christmas gift.  I found the frame and mat at JoAnn's, and I'm really happy with how it turned out.



Saturday, January 23, 2016

More cross-stitch!

So I got hooked on having a hand project to take to work for breaks, and I really liked how the Blackhawks and Blues logos went.  And the executive director for one of the non-profit organizations I work with saw both of them, and she suggested that something like that would make a great auction item for their big fundraising dinner, maybe paired with donated game tickets.  

Well, I had no interest in doing another Blues logo, and I wasn't sure how popular the Rams would be.  (Good thing, right, now that they're relocating to LA?  Sooo glad I didn't pick that one!)  I figured that the Cardinals would probably be the most popular choice, anyway, and I really like how this one turned out!  


The pattern was once again full stitches only, which is nice.  It stitched up really well, and I got a LOT of comments/compliments while I was working on it (including at one continuing education meeting - I promise I really was listening, too!).  I chose to do this one on a grey background, and I really like how the colors look against it.  Then I had it framed at my local JoAnn's store - wanted this to look as good as possible since it's a fundraising item.  Here's hoping they raise a lot of money with it!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Aaaaand....I'm back...

Well, it's been forever since I posted, and I really have no excuses.  I'm just going to start throwing things back out there, and I'll start with something I was starting at the time of my last posting.   Thing 1 had decided, rather last-minute, that he wanted to be a dragon for Halloween.  I putzed on it for a bit, trying to find an actual ready-made dragon costume to buy, but apparently once you're beyond little kid size, nobody wants to be a dragon?

Anyway, someone posted about making their child a dragon costume, and I absolutely loved the mask.  They had used the Dragon Mask pattern from oxeyedaisey.  Though I really am not fond of handsewing, I showed the pattern to my son, and he also loved it.  So after a trip to the fabric store, in which he chose his own colors and placement, I got started.

I have to say that the pattern is very easy and straightforward, though time-consuming.  The vast majority of it is handsewn, making it a very portable project.  I worked on this basically everywhere I went, until I finished the day before Halloween.  (Like any good costumer, right?)  And I love how it turned out.



As did my son, which is what matters.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Other fun

 I used to do cross-stitch a lot, before I really got into sewing.  I liked the graphical nature of it, and I had a lot of fun with putting small designs on clothing.  I had quite a few big pictures that I started, but not so many that I finished - oops!  And most that I finished were given away.  I'll have to dig up the few that are still here and photograph them.

Anyway, there are certain times that you need a project and can't lug your sewing machine along.  (As evidenced by last Christmas' slipper production....)  But I eventually got tired of slippers...even though I have a pair that need to be finished....so when I knew that I had a long day out with not much to do, I turned back to cross-stitch.  At this point, my favored Blackhawks were starting the Stanley Cup finals, so I bought a logo pattern on etsy and picked up the few needed supplies.  Nearly a month later, I finished it while en route to the United Center for a U2 concert. 


It's actually still not done - the logo is complete, and I do really like the pattern.  All full stitches, and it stitched up nicely.  I will say that I changed the color of the face - that was originally the same yellow as the feathers, and that was just not right.  The other colors perfectly matched the logo on my sweatshirt from the Winter Classic 2015, so I just took the sweatshirt to the store and matched the floss to the face that way.  (If anyone wants to know, I used DMC 783 for the face.)  Now I just need to decide what font I'm using to add the years of Stanley Cup wins around it, and whether I'm going to add "Chicago Blackhawks" or "Stanley Cup champions" to it.  Decisions, decisions.....

However, this one is finished!  I have a misguided friend, so I bought this pattern and made it for her.  I added her name and "#1 fan" below the logo.  It turned out really well (except for being the wrong team....)!  I love the colors in it, too.  That electric blue is one of my favorites.



As an aside, this is also the first cross-stitch picture that I've framed myself *the right way*.  I looked up online how to do this properly.  It's mounted over a piece of acid-free foam-core mat board, and it is laced in the back instead of taped or anything crass. ;)  I didn't add a back over the opening, because I want her to be able to remove the mat in case an autograph opportunity presents itself.  And I included an acid-free pen in the box, for use in such an opportunity.  She was really thrilled with it, and I'm delighted with how well it turned out!  Now I need to figure out how I want to finish mine so that it can get into a frame!