February wasn't particularly exciting. The days were short and the workload was big. I didn't think I had any good pictures to show you from the daily drudge that was this past month but a funny thing happens when you take a picture every day and group them together. They tell the same story in a different way. They talk about quiet nights wrapped up in warm clothes, pizza dinners with pop cooled on the window sill and short days enveloped by a thick layer of snow. That's just how I like February to be.
It's March Break and the rain is starting to fall. Our chandelier is bare and in desperate need of some colour. It's the perfect time to colour some new eggs and decorate for Easter.
This card was so much fun to make. How else could I have justified a whole day spent doodling with a spirograph?
I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted it to look like. I spent quite a bit of time working out the idea in my sketchbook before I decided it was time to pull out the authentic-still-in-the-box-1960s spirograph. They just don't make them like they used to. I started to doodle and I just kept doing more and more of them. Then I started to layer them and once they started to get a little bit busy I pulled out the eraser and took the rings out. The entire afternoon was lost in pure creativity. I'm really happy with how it turned out.
There are also a lot of thank yous I want to send out. I want to thank everyone who signed up to receive this year's card. If you missed out on this one you can always sign up to get next year's card. I want to thank everyone who received this year's card and was happy to see it arrive in their mailbox. I want to thank everyone who emailed me, called me, facebooked me or saw me in the street and had only nice things to say about it. I want to thank everyone who saved the envelope. It warms my heart to know it's appreciated. A special thank you to Alchemy Pickle who sent me a card to let me know that I inspired them to write more snail mail. Another special thank you to Halley in the Philippines for letting me know that the card arrived. It was (hopefully) the last one to arrive safely at its destination. It was a bit late but that likely made it that much more of a surprise. And one final huge thank you to Sarah Phelps for posting about my card on her blog. Sarah is a very talented printer and designer and I was lucky to get one of her cards in the mail this year: Plaid Tidings (my favourite one).
Every year I make something for the girls for Christmas. I was planning on making them some warm flannel pyjamas but those little stinkers learned to sew and started running those pyjama bottoms through the machine like they were seasoned pros in a sweat shop.
I had to up the ante.
With some inspiration from this magazine, the perfect cotton/linen blend yarn from Fibre Fixation (I am in love with this yarn. It's soft and it holds it's shape really well.) and McCall's pattern 6098 I was well on my way.
My projects usually run something like this: make a mock up, rip it out, resize, resew and repeat. Sometimes there a few too many repeats. This one was so different. I wish I knew how it happened because I would like to be able to do it this way more often. No mock up, no ripping out, one initial resize, sewing, done. Okay, maybe it was a little more complicated than that but it still came together without a hitch. With about 24 hours to spare, it was a really lucky thing.
I watched the girls for a few days taking note of which t-shirts fit them the best and then used those to take the measurements. I graded the pattern down quite a few sizes to match up with the measurements but kept the length. I ended up using cotton sheeting for the nighties themselves. When all was said and done someone asked if I had used vintage sheets. I'm kicking myself that I didn't think of it. I just bought the material at the local fabric store.
I did a little sketch for the crochet section and then did up a test piece. I tweaked the design and then sent it through the wash because I knew there would be some shrinkage. Once I had the shrinkage factor, I did the math for the final pieces. The yarn and the crochet hook are teeny tiny but they went together surprisingly fast. Then I ran them through the wash, ironed them out, sewed them on and laced up the backs.
I will forever be amazed at what can be done with a little piece of string and a crochet hook. I love how they turned out. I might just have to make one for myself. I certainly have enough yarn left over.