Friday, November 15, 2013

Because I’ve Got Extra Yarn

I’ve got a new favorite children’s book!  And those of you who know me, know I love books as much as I love yarn!

The book is titled “Extra Yarn” and it is written by Mac Barnett and illustrated by Jon Klassen.  When I saw it in the library, I had to borrow it.  More for me than my kids… hah!  It’s about a girl who has a box of yarn and keeps knitting more sweaters (or a hat for the man who doesn’t wear sweaters) for anyone she knows.  Then she still has extra yarn so she makes sweaters for all the animals, and then for things that don’t even wear sweaters (like a mailbox!).  But she still has extra yarn.  Her magic yarn box is then stolen by an archduke who was fond of clothes.  But the yarn box was empty!  So he tossed it out his window into the ocean below.  And it miraculously ends up back at the girl.  Who, naturally, keeps knitting sweaters!  Isn’t that cute? 

Now I’m planning to buy a copy for my home.  And it isn’t just me who likes it either.  It received a Caldecott Honor, Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, and is a New York Times Bestseller.  Yarn, knitting and crocheting are definitely back in style, and I love it!

So, now I need to tell you about the sweater I made for something that didn’t need it.  Because it had already had a sweater before.  And before that, I’d already made a fabric cover.  Lol, guess I like my options.

AnnaVirginia Fashion: Extra Yarn

This is an ottoman that I have in my bedroom.  You might remember the Euro pillows that I crocheted for my “pillow headboard.”  I had a smallish ball left over from the aqua yarn that I’d used, and I love that color, so I wanted to use it on something cool.  I was also trying to bring some colors together in the room, so I figured black and aran would work well.

DSC_7142

I used the good ol’ common granny square to do this.  I started with black and did five rounds alternating with aran.  On the sixth round, I did the aqua.  Then I alternated again for five more rounds.  And so on.  I stopped doing the square when it was at the width I needed (in this case, it was 17 inches or 43 cm).  After that, I didn’t do corner increases anymore and it made it three dimensional.  I continued until it covered the ottoman.

DSC_7138AnnaVirginia Fashion: Extra Yarn

It looks pretty good (even better in person!) and I love how it looks in my room with my pillows at the opposite wall!

Do you think you would make a “sweater” for an ottoman in your home?

Monday, November 4, 2013

One More Halloween Post…

AnnaVirginia Fashion: Jedi CostumeI know Halloween has come and gone, but I have to let you know about one more costume that I made this year.  I’ve only got a few photos, and they are blurry (thanks to pictures at dusk without a tripod!), but you should still be able to get the idea.

My husband hasn’t had much of a costume the last several years.  Back when he was in high school, his mom put together a Jedi costume for him, which he loved and so did his little sister!  Anyway, my husband moved out and got married (to me!) and left the costume behind.  And it’s been more-or-less claimed by his little sister.  So he asked me to whip up one in time for our church’s trunk-or-treat activity.

It didn’t give me much time, but I finished with 24 hours to spare!  I bought 5 yards of heavy knit polyester (color: Potting Soil) for the Jedi robe and a cotton bed sheet (color: Brown Stone) to use for the v-neck shirt cover.  I used this website to help guide me in constructing both parts.  Their instructions cracked me up!  But the product turned out quite nice.  And my husband likes it, which it the true test!

The v-neck portion is sort of like a vest, so it just goes on top of whatever other shirt is being worn.  The idea is that it will be hidden beneath the robe the entire time while worn.  This was a good time-saving option for me!  I attached a waist band, made from the same fabric as the v-neck, to the front of the v-neck part.  That way he will just slip the v-neck over his head and wrap the band around.  It hides the stitching that was done to hold the v-neck portions together.

The robe is a simple design that is easy to modify as long as your fabric is big enough.  The knit comes in 59” (1.5m) wide, so I needed to add length for my husband’s longer arms.  I also made the hood even bigger, at 18 by 36 inches (46 by 92 cm).

AnnaVirginia Fashion: Jedi CostumeAnnaVirginia Fashion: Jedi Costume

This was a fun and fairly quick project!  Now we’ll just have to find a decent light saber – the little glow stick just doesn’t cut it!