Monday 22 July 2019

Twelve and counting

Summer projects are preferably lightweight, small, cool and fun. It is also a good thing to use up small rests of material, and it would be nice if the result would be useful to someone. I don't like to waste anything, not even my time, so when I'm watching something on the TV that doesn't require my full attention, I usually knit or crochet.

I saw this book in the Summer Sale of the bookshop, so I bought it:

The book has patterns for crocheted and knitted octopuses for premature babies or other persons who like to fiddle, like dementia patients, and many ideas for creating different looks for the octopuses.

I had many small rests of cotton and bamboo yarns from dishcloth making, so I started crocheting with the Tour de France TV broadcasts. So far 12 little creatures are finished and some empty shells are waiting for stuffing. I have stuffed them with the polyester wadding I use for the Unicef dolls but my bag is empty now and I hope to get some more today.

The tentacles take a lot of yarn so some have bi colored tentacles when I have seen that there is not enough yarn left for 8 tentacles. The book's instructions are good and they give explanations for their "rules" too. For safety reasons the max length of the tentacles is 22 cm. The octopuses will also have a hot wash in the machine before they get donated to a baby ward so they will be ready to keep company to the smallest babies.

Saturday 6 July 2019

Four new quilts in one weekend

after a long time of no quilting. You know I don't like to waste fabric, and one of my ways of avoiding waste is to cut irregular rest bits into squares and saving them for future use. Usually it means 2 ½" squares, sometimes bigger, but also 2" squares. I have different plastic trays and jars for the different sizes, and last weekend I decided to look into the 2" container. There were lots of little fabric squares! 

First I picked the ones in red, and some others, almost random, and the neutral ones, and arranged them into a 7 x 9 grid, and soon had the first quilt top put together and ironed. Then I used the remaining light squares together with the more feminine bits, and made another quilt. You can't see it really, but it is Titty's quilt in the bright sunlight below here. Digging deeper I found 63 squares in brown, green, grey and blue tones for the third quilt, that's Roger's above on the right.

I had been moving a stack of burgundy 2½" x 6½" strips out of my way, and noticed that I would get 3 squares from each very easily. I had some floral print rests from dressmaking, too oddly shaped to make a doll's dress but more than enough to make the second color for the last quilt. There was an uncut 2½" strip of the burgundy, and it was just the correct length for binding. Always a pleasure to use up something with nothing at all left!

Two of the other bindings were also finds from my bag of binding rest bits, one was what was left of a plaid border and also a perfect length. Naturally, the wadding was from a leftover strip of a normal quilt, and the backings came from my stash of recycled fabrics. Many reasons to be pleased: the joy of sewing and finishing the projects, using up material that has just been laying there, making something 'useful' with no material costs, and getting to play with the dolls a little.

The quilts could have been a little bigger, but as the dolls sleep very nicely flat on their back, they don't need bigger quilts. For picnics or sunbathing I can borrow them something more suitable.