Tuesday, June 24, 2008


My Sister told me that there were Eames stamps coming out this week. Seeing how I am an Eames junky I went straight to the post office and asked the lovely post women if she had any Eames stamps and she said “what?” After a few more tries another teller realized what I was asking for and handed her a couple sheets. She took one look at them and said “hump, are these Ikea stamps?”

I told her that seeing how he started prefab he sorta was the forefather of Ikea.

I think the moral of the story is that the new Ikea in Redhook has left it's mark on Brooklyn already.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Hyperbolic Baby Pants Revisited.

Well I finally had a little one within arms reach so of course I scooped him up and stuck him in the pants as a model. And, as we are still waiting for the intended owner to be born I thought this was the best option to make sense of this marvel.

As you all remember I made these awhile back from a pattern in craft magazine. They are for size 6 months, Ben here is only 5 so they are a bit baggy but I think they still illustrate how they are pants and not a flying bat (which is what I think they look like in this picture.)

And isn’t it wonderful that I haven’t managed to mail them yet so Ben here could try them on!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Knitting a Bag of Plastic Bags: Tutorial Part I

After a nice long weekend upstate I found myself with a yet another plastic bag project. I admit it, I went to walmart. And as if that wasn’t bad enough we didn’t bring enough of our own bags so we ended up with several more plastic bags. What’s a good little human ecologist to do? Make something!

So I collected our bags + others from the folks we were visiting and started cutting. I cut the bags in one long spiral strip. I find the best way to do this is by cutting off the top handles and bottom of the bag so you are cutting the strips from a long tube. I also like to cut up a bunch before I start to knit. Cut the strips about ¾” to 1”- it doesn’t need to be perfect!

You can knit plastic bags just like anything else.

I have made a bag of plastic bags before and the best method I have found is to first knit a square for the bottom (mine is 6 ½” x 6 ½”). Keeping the bottom stitches “live” (don’t cast them off) proceed to pick up stitches along the other three sides of your square on circular needles.

You will now be knitting in the round.

Knit in the round adding a new bag when you run out “yarn” (yes you will have to weave in all those ends at the end, sorry).

It is best not to make it too loose a gauge. I am working on 10 ½ needles and getting about 4 st to the inch. The bag will stretch a lot once you put things into it!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Blue Prints Handle with Care

I just had to share my latest plastic bag fusing project with you all, cause it's so darn cute! It is made from the clear bag I was given when I bought paper during a rain storm. It says “blue prints handle with care” on it. I made it to sell on Etsy but it is so cute that I am thinking we might need to keep it for beach trips.

Monday, June 9, 2008

The Great Exchange

Have you all heard of the Green Bag Lady? She has embarked on the noblest quest of all, to rid the world of plastic bags one bag at a time. If you e-mail her she will send you a lovely fabric bag for free. All that she asks in return is that you use it instead of a plastic bag and that you send her a picture of you and the bag. I just received bag #516. Because I think she rocks, I made her a NY times zippy pouch in return.

You can go to her site by clicking here.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Coaster Love

My new sewing addiction is coasters. Some might argue that my love of coasters comes from growing up with lots of wood furniture and coaster demanding parents, but I think my addiction really start because of Denyse Schmidt’s mix-it-up cocktail coasters. I made them with a friend last summer for a mutual friend’s wedding (yet again I don’t have a photo- I really have to get better about documenting things).

Coasters are the perfect project, they are small and achievable and you can machine sew or hand stitch them. I started by making some hand quilted dove coasters and recent moved on to these fun guys.

They are Ikea kid’s sheets. The sheets have big numbers on them but cut up they are very modern. I have been hand quilting around the color blocks on the subway and then machine stitching the outer edge on my machine. A word to the wise, if you are going to make these and plan to machine stitch them, pay attention to the fabric weave. In other words make sure the top and bottom stretch goes in the same direction or machine stitching will not be fun! Also make the inner batting a little smaller then the whole.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Modular Crochet Sweater

Have I told you all the tale of the modular sweater? This all goes back to the great Rev. Callie or as I like to think of her the goddess of crochet. Many moons ago someone lent her this great book on modular crochet and she made herself the yummiest sweater ever. Several of us have been drooling over this sweater for many years. Unfortunately the book is out of print and used copies cost a bit more then any of us were willing to pay. A plan was hatched, we all chipped in and bought the book and decided we would each make a sweater, meeting over the winter to help each other along.

At first I was clearly lagging behind as they all diligently worked on the first few pieces. I didn’t want to start another big crochet project with the beast still needing work. But then, I admit it, I was shamed into starting. And then in my truly obsessive style I made the body a long weekend, that’s a lot of half double crochets. I worked on it so much I ended up aggravating my wrists and had to stop.

All that is left is the arms but somehow that proved more then my brain or hands could make work. I tried a couple false starts to get the arms started but they never seemed right and were always lumpy in the underarm. If it were knitting, I would have more options in my arsenal but I am more timid with crochet. I thought about just knitting the sleeves but thought it might look funny.

Finally I packed it up and took it to a craft night were in mere minutes my friend Katy, who knows way more about crochet then I do, declared I needed to shorten my stitches under the arm and all would be fine. Such a simple solution with such big results; I am happy to report that the arms now lay flat and I am back on track. I will have to get my guy to take a picture of it on me cause it is far less square when worn.

I would also like to point out that I am now far ahead of all those who shamed me into to starting. They seem to have moved on to shinier projects. Of course it may also have to do with the fact that very few people are crazy enough to work with large bits of wool in humid 80 degree weather. What can I say; it takes a special breed of craft-o-holic.