[sewing] Nursing cushion cover

Do you recognise this fabric? Yes it’s the one from my latest tee. I had some left over and I didn’t want to use it again for another tee, and when cutting my fabric I discovered that it had some stains on, maybe due to some bleach. But I still had some length and I wanted to use it for something that would make me smile.

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My sister-in-law has kindly lent to me her nursing cushion, and I felt the need to make it a little more personal. The original cover of the cushion is a clear blue fabric not very interesting. With this new striped fabric I made the cushion a little more to my taste. And I must say it makes me smile!
It was rather easy to make: I just draped the fabric over the cushion and marked the seams with a chalk. Then I cut four times the same piece making sure to align the stripes.
The main question was how to close the cover, as it has to be removable to be washed. I’m not entirely happy with the solution I chose, but I wasn’t going to place a zipper on stretchy fabric! My original plan was to use snaps but it didn’t work, so I just zigzagged the opening, this will make it easier to see the seam later on!

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This is a rather easy sewing, a bit like making trousers with the waistband closed.
Just after completion, I tried it. Not for nursing of course, but to take a little nap and I must say it is very comfortable…

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[sewing] Back with a tee

Hi everyone,

I feel like I’ve been away for ages, which is probably true. I have an excuse: new ceilings have been installed in parts of my house, comprising the kitchen and bathroom. Can you imagine the mess it is to live without a kitchen? It was really tiring.. and it took us ages to get everything back into place. Fortunately I was going to work during the day so I didn’t have to live in plaster dust all day!

Yes, it's my kitchen..

Yes, it’s my kitchen..

During the works I received the second issue of my Ottobre subscription, one of two issues aimed at women. And I have found at least two designs that I can still wear! The first is a simple tee designed for fluid knits (with bamboo or viscose) and couldn’t be simpler: a front, a back and a length of fabric to make the neckline and armhole bands. Within a few days of receiving this issue, I had traced the pattern (according to my new and ever-growing measurements), cut the fabric and assembled the whole thing. I love this tee! It is really comfy, has plenty of room for my belly and makes me smile everytime I wear it. It surely will be great with a bamboo or linen knit when the summer comes (if summer ever comes round here).

Haven't finished cleaning up

Haven’t finished cleaning up

For this version I even managed to match the stripes at the shoulder. I’m being dishonest though, it’s totally accidental 🙂 but I’m glad they match!

Sorry for the weird angle, it's hard to photograph one's shoulder!

Sorry for the weird angle, it’s hard to photograph one’s shoulder!

It’s such a great design that I’ve cut and sewn two other versions already: one in a bright yellow and one in teal. You can see the cutting of the teal one here; told you it was easy!

 

The grain of the fabric was a little off..

The grain of the fabric was a little off..

The tee is #2 and my next make from this magazine will be dress #19, I think it can work with a pregnant belly. I still need to trace it though! Here’s a link to the design page pdf.

 

tee #2 – photo from the Ottobre website

I’m leaving you with this picture of our garden after the snow storm we had last week: so much snow is totally unknown of around here, though I must say that we’ve had snow very often in the last four years. When I was a kid, we were lucky to have a few centimetres every other year. It’s a pity because snow is much more fun when you’re a kid than when you need to go to work. Needless to say, we didn’t leave the house that day, northern France is not prepared for so much snow so roads and motorways were closed and public transport was completely out!

 

We did a little path for the cat who stubbornly wanted to go outside

We did a little path for the cat who stubbornly wanted to go outside

[knitting] Knitting for my wee one – de la layette pour moi, enfin pour lui, ou elle !

Yes, I’m pregnant! And very excited about it, I must say… My baby (boy or girl I don’t know yet) is due early June, so it will be a summer baby. For those of you who get the idea I’m 19 weeks pregnant now – that’s one of the many things I’m learning at the moment: so much info going on!

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Of course it means that my sewing plans are a little skewed, my main goal will be maternity sewing – I’m just starting to really see my bump growing, so now I only have one pair of trousers fitting and they will probably not last very long. Two skirts have also been put at the back of the wardrobe. I’ve been taking a look at maternity patterns but I’m not too inspired by them yet (might change once I’m more heavily pregnant). If you have recommendations, I will gladly welcome them!

On the other hand, expecting a baby does open a wide range of possibilities sewing and knitting-wise! As a Christmas present for me I subscribed to a year of the Ottobre magazine: it’s really full of very cheerful and useful clothes for kids of all ages. I know – I’m a little late to realise that but bear with me it’s my first baby and I had no reason to really look into that before.

I haven’t started sewing anything yet for two reasons, first I have to wait two weeks for the next ultrasound and maybe know if its a boy or a girl. the other reason is because I need fabric, mostly knits, that I can’t find in my home town: I want 100% cotton knits, I think polyester can wait a little before entering the life of my child. To find cotton knits (not even mentioning organic knits), I have to go to Paris or order online. So that will happen soon, I have found an online store selling beautiful knits for kids (and older ones), some of them are used in the Ottobre magazine (btw, Ottobre have an Etsy store I didn’t know about either!!! Told you, so many things to discover). For those of you who are in France, it’s TyFlorianBoutik. When I went through their website, I had visions of striped bright t-shirts!

Expecting a baby when you’re a knitter also means many many cute things to make in a relatively short time (makes me think I should start knitting the blanket I have planned). I have started a little after Christmas, I have booties already and am knitting cardigans (striped ones, I love stripes and it’s a great way to bust some stash) and a bright red alpaca hooded jacket. You’ll see all that appearing in the next few weeks.

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For the crafty mums or aunts here, I’m wondering how many items of each size I should make? I’ve heard that I shouldn’t concentrate too much in newborn size (maybe 3 or 4 onesies, some socks, 2 jumpers or cardigans), but for the rest I don’t know! I want to take advantage of the time I have ahead – even if my maternity leave isn’t until the end of April, I might not have as much time to knit or sew once the baby is here. Again, advice and recommendations very welcomed!
Wow that was a long post, I hadn’t intended it to be so long, I got carried away apparently 🙂

[knitting] Shellseeker by Heidi Kirrmaier

Still no sunshine around, it has been raining nearly every day for the past few weeks, so I wonder why I bothered to knit summer sweaters. This is my first, since then I have finished another on and I think it will be the last for this summer, I’m back to winter knitting and thick wooly jumpers!

The pattern is Shellseeker by Heidi Kirrmaier, aka Pipibird on Ravelry. I followed the mods another knitter did on Ravelry: she chose to knit the yoke in wider stripes (4/4 instead of 2/2). I did the same and continued the 4/4 pattern on the sleeves. The front pocket is what drew me to this pattern, I think it’s fun and adds an interesting design detail to an otherwise basic raglan.

I chose the yarn according to the colours available: Miami by Annell is a 60/40 cotton/acrylic blend, it’s really soft to knit and has plenty of vibrant colours. I used less than 4 balls of each colour, so 1 ball less than what the pattern called for. The yarn is knit here in 4.5 mm (US 7) instead of the recommended 4 mm (US 6): the result is a slightly looser gauge. I’ll see how it turns out and hope it’s not too loose.

I only have to wait for the summer, though it looks unlikely at the moment. What about you, have you knitted something for summer, or did you abandon the idea of wearing cotton?