Monday, November 28, 2011

Fluffy Fibers: Episode 10 ~ Making Do with Little Time

Simplicity 3678 Sneak Preview :)
Simplicity 3678 Sneak Preview

I managed to free up a bit of time to put out a recording just before the end of November. Yay!
P'tite Mignonne was a bit crazy this time, so I hope the occasional meowing in the background won't be too distracting (she is a very vocal cat).
Also, the baby was dancing all along the recording; but that you cannot hear. :)

You can download the episode (36:10) here, or listen directly from the embedded player below (if it works on your browser).
Here is the direct feed for the podcast, and you can also find the podcast on iTunes.

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~ Episode 10 Shownotes ~
1. Sewing Projects; 2. Knitting Projects; 3. Something Natural, Something Seasonal

Thank yous.
Fluffy Fibers group on Ravelry
Tini sent me an Ottobre issue.
Jali had a giveaway - I won a darling Kwik Sew Duro Dress.
Tanesha sent me a copy of Scandinavian Stitches from her birthday giveaway.

- I made a dress! Simplicity 3678, which I altered for maternity wear. Sneak preview on top of this post; "real" pictures and alteration details are forthcoming. :)
I had previously made a winter version with crossover bodice back in 2007; and a summer version, with scoop bodice and cap sleeves, in 2009.
With a knit print that Melissa brought me last Spring. The whole story is here.
- Took pictures of my Jalie white top: see this post.

       2.a Finishes
- Baby Hospital Hat, by Annika Barranti; knit in Katia Eco Cotton.
- Other finish: see the "Something Natural" section.

      2.b Currently knitting
- Started knitting a baby cardigan/jacket that I'm designing.
- Plugging along on the Garter Stitch Baby Kimono, in Dream in Color Smooshy. One sleeve (and the edging to go). The end is nigh!
- Also making slow but steady progress on my Étole Jardin des Plantes, by La Droguerie; knitting this in alpaca (Sierra Andina by Adriafil) - very lightweight, and therefore a perfect commuting project. I'm 3/4 done.
- Started on a white baby sweater in a true newborn size this time, for baby's first few hours/days. Design is Brassière Cashmere, by La Droguerie; from their book Tous les Bébés de la Droguerie, but also appeared in Les Bébés de la Droguerie, and in one of their very few English books, La Droguerie's Babies. I say in the podcast that this was supposed to be knit in a DK yarn, but the recommended weight is in fact worsted. As I couldn't find any white superwash merino here, I'm using Drops Baby Merino (fingering), held double. I really like this yarn. This is a fun design.

     2.c Coming up next
- The über-famous Fetching gloves for my brother's girlfriend; out of Drops Nepal in light grey green. Tany made a pair of elbow length Fetching for me 4 years ago and I still love and wear them to bits.
- Mitts for Seb (my own design), in the style of Mitchell's gloves in the British series Being Human.
- Baby pyjamas
- A vest for my 2-year old nephew's birthday.

Where I talk about crocheted washable scrubbers. The design I use is Spiral Scrubbies by Judith Prindle.

Credits: Music: Piano Sonata in E-flat Major, mvt. 3 by Joseph Haydn, played by Mario Ajero.

Super Quick Knits (1): Alpaca Cowl ~ Tricots express (1): col en alpaga

Version française: cliquez ici (et décochez l'autre case)
English version: click here

Hello, friends!

I am sharing the first in a small series of projects that were super quick to knit - but are also quite useful!

Today, an alpaca cowl to go with my red coat...
Cambrian Cowl

Design: Cambrian Cowl, by Alana Dakos; from the Coastal Knits book, which I reviewed in episode 9 of my podcast.

Yarn: Montana, by Lang Yarns; a thick-and-thin slub alpaca yarn. See the irregular stitches this creates?
Cambrian Cowl
Love it. It adds a nice rustic touch.

Cambrian Cowl
Buttons are from La Mercerie in Montpellier.

I like this cowl, and the construction was fun. After wearing it a few times, though, I wish I'd made it smaller. As it is, it absolutely needs to be folded on itself to stay put; so I am slipping it on wrong side out, and folding it over, so that the right side and buttons lie on top.
Something to bear in mind if you have (or are knitting this for someone with) a narrow neck.

Bonjour, bonjour!

J'entame aujourd'hui une petite série de tricots rapides (mais non moins utiles ;)). Aujourd'hui, un col en alpaga, pour aller avec mon manteau rouge...
Cambrian Cowl

Modèle: Cambrian Cowl, de Alana Dakos; tiré du livre Coastal Knits dont j'ai fait un compte-rendu dans l'épisode 9 de mon podcast.

Fil: Montana, de Lang Yarns; de l'alpaga en fil mèche, donc irrégulier. Voyez les mailles irrégulières qu'il donne :
Cambrian Cowl
J'aime beaucoup ce petit effet rustique...

Cambrian Cowl
Les boutons viennent de La Mercerie in Montpellier (choisis avec une amie qui se reconnaîtra, un bien bon souvenir ;)).
Cambrian Cowl
J'aime bien ce col, et la façon dont il se monte est originale ; mais après l'avoir porté plusieurs fois, je dois reconnaître qu'il est trop grand pour moi. Pour pallier ce problème, il est impératif que je le porte replié sur lui-même. Du coup, je l'enfile à l'envers, et je replie le bord supérieur sur le bord inférieur, pour que les boutons et l'endroit du tricot soient posés sur la couche inférieure.
Tricoteuses aux cous graciles, pensez-y si vous souhaitez tricoter ce col !

Friday, November 25, 2011

A casual top: Jalie 2804, adapted for maternity wear

Hello, hello, friends!
I am truly and completely swamped (and exhausted!) at the moment, and very behind with my blogging - not to mention the podcast. Things should start to calm down in a couple of weeks. In the meantime, this post will be short and sweet - still better than none at all, right?

Here are pictures from a couple of weeks ago...
Jalie 2804, adapted for maternity
This is Jalie 2804 - the Empire Crossover top, which I altered for maternity wear. It is so comfy, and I trust it is long enough to last me to the end of the pregnancy - and beyond, as it is also nursing friendly.

I made this out of 100% cotton jersey. The bust line sits a little high (I underestimated how much fabric I needed up there!), but it is still wearable IMO. If only because it is so cosy to wear! I also like the ruching at the sides.
Jalie 2804 - adapted for maternity wear

Oh, and you bet I wasn't going around with just a top on in November - so here was my whole outfit:
Nov. 13, 2011
With my Un-Iced jacket, which I've been getting so much wear out of; and my Damson shawlette, which I love to bits.

Thank you very much for your wonderful comments on my coat. When time allows, I'll devote a longer article to maternity alterations, with pictures of how I redrafted the lower bodice for this particular pattern.

Have a lovely weekend!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Little Red (Riding Hood) Baby Bump Coat / Manteau de (Petit Chaperon) Gros Bidon Rouge

Version française: cliquez ici (et décochez l'autre case)
English version: click here

Hello, all!
Finally, pictures and a review of my red maternity coat!
Maternity coat
(Montpellier cathedral in the background)

First off, the pictures were taken 2 weeks ago. I was hoping for sunnier weather to take better pictures, but I'm not sure when that will happen - so we'll have to be content with these!

Those of you listening to the podcast already know all about the fabric - a cashmere and wool blend - and the troubles I ran into with the pattern. I do NOT recommend the book this pattern is from - Les Intemporels pour future maman, by Citronille. If you don't have any experience in coat/jacket sewing, save yourself hours of frustration (and the waste of beautiful fabric) and do not go anywhere near this pattern.

I do like the finished result, though.
Maternity coat
This picture and the next show the coat well, but the true colours are those of the first picture - it's been impossible to take good pictures since this coat was made, as we've been having weeks and weeks of heavy rain.

Oh and look - pockets - of course!
Maternity coat

Luckily, I'd read up a lot on the topic of coat/jacket making a few years ago, and had written a tutorial to add a lining the proper way back then; it all came in handy.

Here's a peak at the pleat I added to the center back of the lining, for extra ease:
(again, the red is much cooler and deeper in real life, with a magenta sheen.)

I was at first a bit frustrated with having to settle on something so common as a black lining (as always, by lack of choice locally), but I have to say it does look classy against the red.
Maternity coat
(see how I'm flashing my baby bump at you - shocking I know!)

The top, by the way, is Onion 2017 - I made it years ago and it is one of my most oft-worn handmade garments. The front usually flows in deep pleats for a look that is absolutely not maternity-like, but the fabric is now all filled out. I have been wearing this, and my longer version, a lot lately, as the fit was rather loose to start with, so that I'm not stretching out the fabric - yet.
Maternity coat (and outfit :))
(Taken 2 weeks ago, i.e. just shy of 5 months pregnant)

This has been one of my favourite maternity outfits lately.

Bonjour à tou-te-s !
Voici (enfin !) des photos de mon manteau ceinturé.

Maternity coat

Le tissu est un mélange laine et cachemire, bien chaud, bien doux.
Le patron, "manteau ceinturé", est issu du livre Citronille des Intemporels pour future maman, que je ne recommande pas... Surtout pas à des débutants ! Si vous n'avez jamais fait de manteau ou de veste avant, passez votre chemin, et épargnez-vous des mètres de beau tissu gâché et des heures de frustration.

Si cela vous intéresse que je partage mes modifications du patron avec vous, alors faites-le savoir en commentaire. J'ai si peu de commentaires de lectrices-lecteurs francophones que je n'ai pas envie de passer du temps à réécrire mes modifications sans savoir si cela sert vraiment.

Cela dit, j'aime bien le résultat final.
Maternity coat
Cette photo montre bien le manteau, mais pour la couleur, c'est la première photo qui est la plus fidèle : un rouge profond avec des reflets magenta.

Et comme tout manteau qui se respecte, il a des poches !
Maternity coat
(ici encore, le rouge est plus profond et froid en vrai.)

Voici un aperçu de l'intérieur :

J'étais un peu déçue d'avoir si peu de choix pour la doublure et de devoir me rabattre sur du noir. Mais finalement c'est plutôt classe en contraste avec le rouge.
Maternity coat

Le haut est Onion 2017 - je l'ai fait il y a des années et ça demeure un de mes hauts faits main préférés. Comme il était peu ajusté au départ, je peux encore le porter pour un petit moment sans le déformer, grâce aux deux pinces profondes du devant. J'aime beaucoup porter ce haut et version plus longue en ce moment.
Maternity coat (and outfit :))
Photos prises il y a 2 semaines, c'est-à-dire à presque 5 mois.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Fluffy Fibers: Episode 09 ~ Cashmere and Alpaca

Brassière à la française (rangs raccourcis)
Brassière à la française (short rows baby sweater); shown over my coat's cashmere fabric.

In which I indulge in sewing cashmere and knitting alpaca; offer (hopefully) encouraging tips on sewing a coat; share a small pile of knitting projects; and give a review of Coastal Knits, by Alana Dakos and Hannah Fettig.
With guest appearance by P'tite Mignonne ;)

You can download the episode (1h15min - oops!) here, or listen directly from the embedded player below (if it works on your browser).
Here is the direct feed for the podcast, and you can also find the podcast on iTunes.

Podcast Powered By Podbean

~ Episode 09 Shownotes ~
1. Sewing Projects; 2. Knitting Projects; 3. Book Review

1. SEWING (4:27)
      1.a Finished projects (4:27)
- Manteau ceinturé ("Belted Coat") from Les Intemporels pour Future Maman
- Couture Sewing Techniques by Claire Shaeffer
- my tutorial for making and sewing a lining to a coat or jacket.
- how to sew sleeve and sleeve lining hems by machine for an invisible hem (Threads article on bagging a lining: scroll down to part entitled "Sleeve hems by machine").
      1. b Coming up next (23:20 )
- Maternity/nursing pyjamas - out the same wool jersey from which I made my well-loved pyjamas years ago.
- Long-sleeved dresses
- Items from my "regular" wardrobe I found I can still wear: Onion 2017 top and tunic, and Simplicity 3678 dress.
- Onion and Minikrea sewing patterns - a Danish pattern company.

2. KNITTING (33:36)
Sunnyside Baby Cardigan in alpaca

       2.a Finishes (33:36)
- Finished the Sunnyside Baby Cardigan (shown above), in Alpaca from la Droguerie - AKA the softest yarn I ever knit with. Made fabric-covered buttons for it (see this blog post).
- Finished the Plaid Torsadé by la Droguerie. I plan on backing this with flannel.
- Made a baby dress: Super Simple Baby Tunic, out of Sirdar Crofter.
- made felted slippers - quickly made, and put on my feet so quickly that I haven't had a chance to photograph them. Made out of Drops Eskimo - my first experience with Drops yarns, which I am very impressed with.
- made the Cambrian Cowl, a very new design by Alana Dakos - just needs buttons. Made in Lang Yarns Montana, an irregular slub alpaca yarn which created a rustic kind of fabric.

      2.b Currently knitting (48:50)
- Still plugging along on the Garter Stitch Baby Kimono.
- Almost done with my Brassière à la française (shown on top of this post). Yarn for this project is Plassard Boud'chou, which I don't recommend.
- Started on a grey scarf in alpaca to go with my red coat - Etole Jardin des Plantes by La Droguerie. A fairly long project, but this is "potato chip knitting". Alpaca is Sierra Andina by Adriafil. Perfectly soft, in a subtle, luminous grey.

      2.b Coming up next (59:25)
- a newborn outfit for the hospital (wrap cardigan, hat, and booties)
- Baby Tiered Coat (sorry about mispronunciating this).

3. BOOK REVIEW (1:01:07)
Coastal Knits, by Alana Dakos of Never Not Knitting and Hannah Fettig of Knitbot.
I first mention the Gnarled Oak Cardigan. My favourite design is the Wildflower Cardigan.
I then mention Hannah Fettig's Bayside Pullover, the already quite popular Rocky Coast Cardigan, and her Water's Edge Cardigan.
Alana Dakos's Rustling Leaves Beret is lovely, but too small for me.
Projects by Alana Dakos that I already knit: Spring Garden Tee and the Cedar Leaf Shawlette.

Credits: Music: Piano Sonata in E-flat Major, mvt. 3 by Joseph Haydn, played by Mario Ajero.