Hello there! How has your week been?
Mine has been a lovely one, even though we've had some proper wintry weather including hail and storms.
Something very exciting happened last week - a new baby was born into our family so I have a new niece. I knitted her a little set comprising of a pair of booties and a hat. They probably won't fit for long, but I wanted to make something that she could wear right away.
For the hat, I used this pattern and held a strand of alpaca/silk with some sock yarn - the effect is a very soft and light little hat. (Just like these ones I knitted for 2 of my other nieces recently.) And for the booties, I used the same cashmere sock yarn, and a free pattern on Ravelry called 'Greemy Baby Booties.' It's a great little pattern and I noticed baby M was wearing them pulled up (rather than folded over like in the photo above) so they work as little shoes or socks.
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Also this week, I made a couple of embroidered knitting project bags. Both have garden sampler-type designs on the front, and are quite similar but not the same. I've listed them in my etsy shop - poor old shop has been neglected for ages!
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The Auckland Writers Festival took place recently, and I was sad not to be able to attend, as I'd wanted to see one of my favourite writers there, Karl Ove Knausgård. But then I saw that the festival had uploaded a podcast of his talk! You can find it here, along with podcasts and videos of lots of other interesting talks, including those by Nigella Lawson, Witi Ihimaera, Shashi Tharoor, Robert Webb and others. A treat!
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In other news, I had some questions about my last post, and I thought I'd answer them here as my comments don't seem to be publishing properly at the moment. A few people wondered about making the Sapporo Coat I wrote about, and whether I had any more tips for sewing it.
I'm not really an expert in sewing, but I did make my coat three times over, and here are my tips. They mostly relate to being more careful/smarter than I was:
+ Wash your fabric first, then iron it carefully before cutting out the pieces (don't worry if you plan to dry-clean your coat) but it's important the fabrics are ironed to get an accurate pattern piece!
+ It's probably best to trace the paper pattern pieces from the original pattern, rather than cut it out and fold over the edges for your size. The patterns are printed on stiff brown paper, and you'll get a more accurate result if you make tissue-paper copies of the pieces.
+ Pin and cut out the pieces really accurately. You might have to think about this process carefully (at least I did) because some pieces are to be cut on a single thickness and some aren't. No drinking wine at the same time, ok?
+ The pattern is sized quite large. I'm usually a size 'medium' but made the smallest size and it still feels quite roomy. I love that about this pattern, though.
+ I would try to choose a non-stretch, medium-weight outer fabric that has a bit of drape. I think a very thick coating fabric might not sit/drape as nicely for this design.
+ Take your time and don't rush with this project. Having a practice from some non-precious fabric first is always a good idea.
+ There's a video tutorial for making this on YouTube you might want to check out.
Having said all that, it's a great pattern and not at all difficult. Have fun!
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