Little gifts

This morning I worked on making some gifts to give to some friends we’re seeing in the next few days. I say friends, they’re friends of my husband’s who I’ve only seen at our wedding 3 and a half years ago. I’m not sure if I even spoke to them! It’ll be good to finally meet them but it made it a bit tricky to know what to take as a gift. I know they have a little boy who I think is about 18 months old. I decided to make him a little reversible bag which I’ve then put two small lift the flap books and some stickers in. I didn’t really have any boy fabrics but I think the spots and owls will be fine. Making it was pretty simple and I even caught myself when I was about to pin the handles on the wrong way round. But maybe I got overexcited about that as I then sewed the inner and outer parts together with two rows of stitching so that the handles were reinforced, but completely forgot that I needed to leave a gap to be able to turn it the right way out. So I unpicked two small sections, sewed over the ends of the stitching so hopefully they won’t come undone, and then hand stitched the top when it was all the right way round. I’m really pleased with the result.

For the wife I made a pot stand /hot pad thing. I made one for another friend ages ago and she uses hers all the time so I thought it would be a good gift… Decorative but functional.

I planned to try some free motion stitching on it but have discovered that although I can put the feed dogs down on my machine I need to get an additional quilting/free motion foot to go on it. Free motion stitching will have to wait for another day.

Stitching it all together with the wadding in the middle was fine, but I hit problems when I tried to attach the bias binding around the edge. Does anyone know of a good online tutorial that would show you how to put it on properly, getting neat corners around a square object?

I didn’t have my phone nearby and decided to wing it! I actually made my own bias binding (after my experience with my top) so I could use a patterned material for it. I pinned one side on, bending the corners up and then back on themselves as I would when edging a display board in school. Then I stitched all the way round πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚. Oops, then you’ve stitched things in place so you can’t fold them over the top to the other side. I unpicked those corner sections and it seemed to work then but I decided against pinning it in place as it wouldn’t sit flat and opted for ironing and then holding in place.

The finished result is OK… But only because its a patterned material. I’m not happy with it and think it’s quite messy, especially at the end of the binding. It’s still going to be given as a gift though and I hope it will still be useful.

And the husband? He’s getting chocolate! πŸ«πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚


Working with sissy… And a little bit more crochet

Well, since she’s been named, poor sissy (my sewing machine) hasn’t been brought out to play. But today was the day!

I wanted to make a little present to say thankyou to a teacher in school who gave me a beautiful faux fur long gilet that she was wearing for world book Day (in order to dress up as a bear!). She didn’t like it as she thinks she is too short for it and she thought it would suit me better as I am tall! Well, I love it, and it has certainly kept me warm during the snow.

I decided to make a little bag that she could use in school, maybe to put things in for the kids to pull out etc. But I wanted it to be a bit interesting too.

I had this gorgeous material with little woodland creatures on, so decided to copy the bunny and blanket stitch on a felt version to the front of the bag.

Of course this meant I had to line the bag to hide the stitching, so this is the result of a full morning’s work (not least because I unsuccessfully tried satin stitching the detail on the ears and tail before unpicking it all at it looked too messy). I’m really, really pleased with the result though and think it was totally worth all the effort. I really love the sparkly ribbon that I had in my stash… I’ve never bought ribbon… Just kept anything that came my way!

This evening I carried on with a bit more of the second octagon for my top. Here they are next to each other. The one on the left is made with a smaller hook, and has one row less than the one on the right. I’m thinking I’ll add that round to it and then continue both with the bigger hook and they’ll be fine for front and back with no frogging required! What do you think? Can you see flaws in this plan that I haven’t spotted? Let me know more if you can! All help and advice will be gratefully received πŸ’ž