Sunday, 30 October 2016

Upcycled gifts

Christmas is coming with all the presents to make but first couple other presents. Upcycled paper flower for my mum and my first zip it up pencil case for my daughter's friend. 

I actually remember my mother's birthday when asked but when it actually is - I don't remember it. I realised it on saturday when she was talking about making a cake and the birthday was on sunday when we were also going for a visit. I was going to spend few days with my kids in my home village so the visit didn't have anything to do with the birthday and I simply had forgotten. That needed some quick thinking. 

She likes orchids and I remembered seeing pattern for making own paper orchids in Pinterest. Upcycled paper was perfect for this, I have saved some magazines that have big pictures and nice, glossy pages. Then I needed a branch and a pot for the flower. I had saved yogurt cup and that seemed to fit, just had to figure out a way to make it heavy enough to stand with the flower. So I went "shopping" outside, found branch out of pine and took some sand from the kids' sand box. The problem was that all of these were quite wet so I took them inside, lit up the fire on fire place and put my treasures there to dry. Try and imagine the reaction of my kids when I was doing the exact thing I have forbidden them to do! No bringing sand and branches inside, right?

After making the flowers, I attached them to the branch with hot glue.

The whole thing turned out pretty nice if I may say so. And my mother liked it too. :)

After making it I can only admire the work she has done for making the tutorial. Definitely not the  easiest thing to sew, must not have been easy to figure it out in the first place! Thank you very much, I will be making more of these in the future! Already my kids said that they too absolutely need these, so...

I used quite thin fabrics so it was doable to sew, no broken needles for this one. For the lining I used usual cotton fabric but added one extra layer from similar fabric inside to make it sturdier. The pencil case something to make it stand and the tutorial mentions using some plastic, plastic sheet for example, I used coffee bag. I have saved couple just in case I would need them and now I did. For the hardener it is important that it is rather light, soft and bends. Coffee bag filled all the requirements and worked just fine. The outer fabric is from a skirt from recycling center.

My little old home village with a population under 2000 has own recycling center! People can bring there their clothes, toys, dishes, shoes, books and everything is free. I found bag full of clothes (will be shown later with more detail) and new leather shoes - all for free! The recycling center has been in great use and why wouldn't it? People are recycling more and more and why not to take your old things there when it is easy instead of throwing it away?

I made a suggestion about having recycling center here in my current home village. I got written reply with all the actions that were taken based on my suggestion and I'm glad they had taken it seriously. Someone had actually visited the mentioned recycling center but the decision was that there is no need for it. I may disagree and I tried to press the point in my suggestion but didn't work this time. To tell the truth, I didn't expect anything more this fast but I hope that someone will remember the idea. Who knows, maybe someday we have a place like that too? 

Monday, 3 October 2016

Old hood turned to mittens + free pattern!

*This article includes some Finnish as I took part in a finnish challenge by Villa Nanna*

Villa Nanna haastoi minut tekemään roskista tai jämistä jotain. Suostuin toki, haastehan on ihan kuin minulle tehty! Minä osallistun tekemällä vanhasta hupusta hanskat lapselle (ohje oli, että kotiin tai itselle, käykö tämä kuitenkin? :D) Vaatteet on jo myyty, mutta huput jäivät pyörimään kun en poiskaan niitä osannut niiden löydyttyä heittää.

I started a project to make autumn clothes for our kids out of soft shell. I got as far as cut parts for an overall and pants for our son and used scraps for two pairs of mittens. Then I wanted to try out the pattern for gloves and also try out how the soft shell is to work with. So before getting any further I had made these:

Not water proof but resistant to make playing outside a bit more comfortable when it is just wet instead of real raining. Funny thing is that making the mittens doesn't feel like upcycling

Then one thing left to another and I had made also these (the overall and pants are still cut in pieces):

I happened to lay my eyes on hoods that were left out when selling/passing away old outdoor clothes. Our kids don't like the hoods and whenever they are attached to the clothes with buttons or snaps, they take them away. So when I took the clothes to second hand store, the hoods were nowhere to be seen and I found them only when it was too late. I couldn't throw them away, all that good fabric and so on. So I saved them for future use.

I decided to try out if I could make mittens out of them with the pattern I had just made. They turned out pretty ok and that useless old hood turned into a pair of usable, warm gloves. I used just one hood so plenty left.

And here is how. I have also created new page with header "free printables". This pattern can be now found there with instructions but here is with pictures.

Näihin löytyy kaava ja suomenkieliset työohjeet blogin "free printables" sivulta! Tässä ohjeen tueksi kuvat.

First let's take a look how much fabric one hood contains:

The hood was out of winter overall so it had rather warm lining. It was thin enough to use with this pattern so I used that too.

When working with small pieces it is best to draw the patterns onto the fabric rather than cutting the fabric half like usually. Just remember to flip the pattern before cutting the other part or you have two gloves for one hand...

Have you ever played Tetris? Fitting the patterns to a fabric that looks almost too small is quite close to playing Tetris. Half of the lining was cut like this:

The other half was used almost as well and this was left:

If you get tired of attaching the pattern to fabric with needles, use pattern weights. I have mine taken out of old pennants from my grandpa.

Now you can start sewing. First the hand part:

Snip notches and trim seam allowances if needed, don't turn yet.

Sew the hand part together with top part, match the seams with the marks in top part of the mitten glove.

Pay extra attention when crossing the seams or you get nice wrinkles on right side. It is best to open the seams if you have Wonderclips for example.

It's best to stretch the fabric slightly while sewing:

Snip notches, tream seam allowances and turn the gloves/mittens. If you have lining, sew it the same way, just don't turn. Put the lining inside the gloves.

Sew the wrist bands:

Fold the wrist band half width-wise and attach over the glove with couple of needles/wonderclips:

It's best to use only couple as you don't have that much working space and more than that would be just on way. By the way, if you are going to make lined gloves for a two year old, please think twice! These were for a six year old and I could just sew them, anything smaller would have been near impossible.

Make sure that the wrist band doesn't escape, it slips away easily:

I used extra Wonderclip in front of the pressing foot to prevent it slipping. Not easy so be careful, go slow.

I know, I know, the thread doesn't match. I like to save my time in stages that aren't necessary. There is time and place to change all the serger threads, the gloves for (own) kids out of old hood isn't one of them.The kids will use them so that I strongly suspect they will be whole when the spring comes. They are gloves made for playing, not a piece of art. :D

Something scrap turned into gloves, I'm very happy!

The rest is the challenge instructions so thank you for my English spoken readers for reading. The pattern is free to use of course but it would be nice to see what kind of gloves/mittens you make with it.

Haasteen ohjeet:

Haasteen tarkoituksena on haastaa kolme blogia tekemään jostakin tietystä aiheesta jotakin kotiin tai itselle päälle. Aiheen valitsee haastaja. Jokainen toteuttaa haasteen haluamallaan tavalla, esittelee sen omassa blogissaan, Voit myös muualla somessa käyttää tagia #diyhaaste2016. Kun haastettu on tehnyt postauksen, laittaa hän linkin haastajan kommenttiboksiin, näin saadaan näkyvyyttä töille. Haastaja voi laittaa halutessaan omaan blogiinsa linkkilistan haastettujen töistä. Voit tehdä myös ohjeen työhösi, mutta se ei ole pakollista.

Minä haastan mukaan Miman ja Madam B.C.:n. Aiheena vanhat neuleet; sukat, lapaset pipot, puserot. Haastakaa rohkeasti mukaan seuraavat!