Saturday, December 31, 2011

Christmas Knitting

I just had to slip this post in before the new year.  I have two new family members this Christmas, a son-in-law as of May and a daughter- in-law as of September.  They needed Christmas stockings to match the ones my husband's aunt knit for him and me and our three kids in the mid 70's and 80's.  My husband's original stocking from his childhood was moth eaten and had been knit for him around 1948.  His Aunt Ruth replaced it at the time she made one for me as his new bride.

My husband found the pattern on line and I had my work cut out for me- my intarsia knitting skills were quite rusty.  But here are the results, and in time for Christmas, too.  Jeremy and Carrie's colors do not quite match those of about 30 years ago.  But neither did the ones from the 70's and 80's match those of the 40's and 50's.  Color palettes do change! 

Christmas Quick Flannel Completions

My daughter was here for five days over the Christmas holiday and we had fun just hanging out in my sewing room, pulling out my fabrics, and looking at kits I had purchased and have yet to make. We just generally enjoying each other's company in the colorful ambience of oodles of fabric.  It is neat how we both share a love of color.  She really liked these blue bowls and blue tea kettle... the color of her recent May wedding. 

I rediscovered purchases I had stored away. She too fell in love with several of them and I was bemused enough to  quite gleefully let them return home with her in her itchy little hands.   I got inspired to complete some tops that just need backing and border decisiveness. I think they have mellowed enough and, after sharing ideas with Robin, I have enough renewed enthusiasm that I can move forward on them.

I was also energized to whip up some short projects that are very satisfying because they can be 100% completed rather quickly.  My daughters bridesmaid is having a baby in March.   I felt it only fair that I spend at least as much time sewing items for the baby as the bridesmaid had spent ironing my daughter's gown, train and crafting table cards and seating posters for my daughter's wedding!  I sewed up a flannel baby wrap ( two layers of flannel, no batting) and some burp cloths. The projects were quick.   The baby wrap was a flannel panel (selvages on top and bottom) that I backed with a coordinating flannel print by wrapping the edges around on either side for the vertical print borders.  Ironically the fabric was purchased when I was out visiting my daughter in OK, traveled back with me to CA, and now will be used by a baby back in OK.

I did minimal quilting around the animals and palm trees to hold the two layers of fabric together but kept it sparse so the flannel will still be able to drape softly.

There are some quilting lines around the borders, also.

 And here is the front and back of the coordinating burp cloth.

I also made two dinosaur burp cloths.

I made an owl burp cloth and a giraffe burp cloth.  I love the variety of colors and prints.  I think half the fun is picking the fabrics to pair together.

Grinch: Quick Assembly Update

Well, last blog I was all excited about the framing fabric for each quilt block and went into my choices and reasoning in great detail.  This quilt is unusual for me in that I have no plan and I am just winging it as I go.  No surprise then that the assembly is not going smoothly.  Here are the framed quilt blocks all together.

I have already changed the framing on the Grinch and Cindy Lou Whoo with presents block from that multi colored mini block print to a less chaotic two tone green. I have also decided that the framing of the two yellow blocks will need to be changed as well to something of the green or red bent.


I wanted sashing between the blocks but did not want it to look orderly so I added some stack and whack green rectangles.  These were originally going to be catty-wampus checkerboards of red/white/green/yellow but even before assembling them, I realized the high contrast would compete for attention with the Grinch blocks.  I backed off to just shades of green.

Here is a close-up of the TOP half

And here is a close-up of the BOTTOM half

Here are some photo responses after a frantic e-mail to my daughter on Dec 4th titled "Help, the GRINCH is winning"  (Hard to believe it has been so long since I blogged-  but Christmas IS a busy time of year).  She suggested I add some red lines to draw the eye to the Grinch blocks.   I think the idea could work but I do not particularly want to cut apart seams I have already done so I have set this project aside to think on a while.

Robin's Option 1 Wonky Crosses:
Robin's Option 2 Wonky Crosses:

Stay tuned.  I may be a few weeks before this project comes off the back burner.