Monday, March 29, 2010

Toddler Messenger Bag

I made a toddler messenger bag from 2 pairs of Clayton's pants. Not only is this a refashion, but before Clayton grew out of them, I had acquired the beige cargo pants from the thrift shop. The lining is made from donated scraps. I adapted this bag from the tutorial at Noodlehead. (I made it smaller because the pants were smaller...) Clay refused to pose, but maybe I can try him again later.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Playground Fun and Photoshop Magic

On this first photo, I used the wonder of PhotoShop to combine 2 photos. Matt was looking at me in one photo, but Clay was looking away. And then Clayton was smiling and Matt's head was down in the other. It's not perfect, but most people would think it's an untouched photo.

Okay, I'll show you the original photos.

It was a beautiful day and today it's cold and snowy. Strange weather...

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Pj Refashion with Crochet Accents

I realized Clayton's sweatshirt PJ jumper was too short. I cut off the bottom and created this adorable sweatshirt today. Olivia is a lucky girl!

The original pajamas.

Cut off legs.

Cut off sleeves.

Trace a circle at the neck.

Cut off neck.

Use the circle to create a template for the pockets. Trace onto a leg.

Cut out pockets.

Sew a blanket stitch around all cut openings. (I think this is the most difficult step.)

Knot the end.

Trim ends. For the pockets I just went ahead and sewed the crochet down to the sweater when I sewed on the pockets (to prevent unraveling).

For the other areas I dabbed a bit of fabric glue on the knot. I didn't think I could hide the ends adequately and prevent unraveling.

This picture shows the stitching of the pocket. I pinned it down, sewed the straight stitch first, and then the zigzag stitch.

I made some easy flowers.
I cut some small leaves from the leg, marked the placement for flowers and sewed them on.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Bathing Cutie

I love his use of the back scrubber to clean the bathtub. See the extra feet in the tub? Those are mine. Clayton is pretty happy here. I gave him a haircut after the bath, we read a book and he had some ice cream (first time at home.) He did have a rough day. We went for a walk to the playground (one of several in walking distance) and ended up getting knocked to the ground by another boy on a swing. Later, at home he made another kiss to the ground when he tripped . It was a beautiful day... in the mid- 60's. Today we have a couple of inches of snow. It's Friday, so that's cool, but my plans for the evening are shot because the day care arrangement was canceled.

Crochet Hearts

These are a couple of crochet items I am late in getting posted. I used a pattern for the stuffed heart. I didn't get the point as nice as intended...
(Made at Valentine's) I hung the banner up in our bedroom.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

SU vs. Vermont

One cute fan in Colorado will be rooting for you!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Curtains to Slip Refashion

Thrift store curtains were used for this slip. I think it's too long, so I may take it up a bit. I used a pattern from the Japanese Tunic & One Piece book. The ruffle isn't as nice as the book photo, but I'm learning.

Receiving Blanket Refashion

I took 4 of Clayton's baby receiving blankets and created a bed sheet. The sizes weren't exactly the same, so the edges don't line up perfectly, but it works out really well. Because the edges were rounded, I ended up having to cut off a couple of inches after I sewed up the seams. I zig-zag-ed the seams after I trimmed them. I could have easily used my serger, but haven't used it YET. I guess I'm scared, but I really want to break it out in the next few days. Can anyone calm my nerves about it? I was psyched to buy it months ago and totally wimped out.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

On Creativity

Jim Jarmush's Golden Rules

I am going to print these out and hang them up in my studio!
Have you seen any of his movies? You should...

Smarty Pants

Clayton is getting too smart for his own good. He has a very strong vocabulary.

And he repeats what you say like "shit" or "shoot" or even "f__k"- that one was Matt's....

He has adjectives for everything: crunchy, spicy, warm, cold, mushy, silly, messy, tall, Huge (he uses all the time.. like talking about the size of the toilet paper rolls in the public restrooms), rainy

Verbs: sinking, floating, walking, running, swimming, snowing,

He'll say "excuse me or pardon me" when he passes gas or burps. "sorry, mom" for whenever he hurts himself
"Wait... stop" when we are walking away from him.

He knows that red is stop and green is go.
He remembered over a week later that a painting in one of his books was by
Cezanne and pointed to it and said" Cezanne".

His pacifier is his "parse" still and bananas are still "Ma's". For some reason he doesn't want to say these words correctly.

He is TOO funny.

Olivia as a hippy chick

How cute! My niece Olivia wearing the top/dress I made. I can't wait to make more.

My Original Crochet Square Patterns

I finally wrote up three of my original squares. They are for a sweater I am working on (mentioned in a previous post). I should come up with more catchy names, but these will have to do for now. I find it interesting that I used the same type of yarn in many different colors, but some of them were nicer than others. The yellow was quite flimsy, yet the red was thick and easy to work with. Who knows?

I used a G hook (4mm) and tried to achieve 41/2 X 41/2 squares to work with the sweater pattern.


Single crochet…. sc

Half double crochet…hdc

Double crochet….dc

Triple crochet….tr
Slip stitch….Sl st

Tamara Square


Ch. 6, join with a Sl st to form a ring.

Round 1

Ch 3 (counts as a Dc now and throughout), 15 Dc, sl st into top of beg ch-3(dc) 16 total stitches

Round 2

(make 2 stitches between each of the 16 stitches from round 1)

Sl. Stitch in space between current stitches and ch1 (counts as a *Sc)and hdc, in next space- dc and tr, in next space tr and dc, in next space hdc and sc

Repeat from * 3 times. The corners are the spaces between the tr. Drop COLOR 1

32 total stitches


Round 3

Pull up a loop in a corner ch 3 (counts as a *Tr) Tr ch2 2Tr, dc and hd in next stitch, 3ch skip 5 ch from round 2, hd and dc in next stitch, 2tc ch2 tr (2nd corner).

Repeat from * 1 time. Join with a Sl st to top of beginning. End off COLOR 2


Round 4

Pull up a loop in a corner ch2 (as a *hdc) hdc 2ch 2hdc, 2 sc, ch2 skip 1, 4dc in ch.3 space, ch2 skip 1, 2sc,

Repeat from * 3 times. Join with a Sl st to top of beginning ch3. End off COLOR 3

Tamara’s Oval Center Design


Ch. 6, join with a Sl st to form a ring.

Round 1

Ch 3 (counts as a Dc), 15 Dc, Join with a Sl st to top of beginning ch3. End off Color 1

16 total stitches


Round 2

(make 2 stitches between each of the 16 stitches from round 1)- 32 total stitches

Sl. Stitch in space between current stitches and ch1 (as a *Sc) Sc, 2 hdc, 2dc, 2 tr, 2tr, 2dc, 2 hdc, 2sc

Repeat from * 3 times. Join with a Sl st to top of beginning ch3. End off COLOR 2


Round 3

Pull up a loop between 2 tallest Tr, attach with a Sl st, ch 3), 2Tr ch3 2Tr (corner), *ch1, 5 dc, ch1**, 2Tr ch3 2Tr (corner), ch3 skip 3 Sl st, skip 3 ch 3, 2Tr ch3 2Tr (corner),

Repeat from * to **, Join with a Sl st to top of beginning sl st. End off COLOR 3.


Round 4

Pick a corner, pull up a loop and ch3 (counts as *dc) dc ch3 dc, 2dc in first space, 4 dc, 2 dc in next space**,

Repeat from * to ** 3 times.

Join with a Sl st to top of beginning ch3. End off COLOR 4.


Round 4

Pull up a loop where you left off on round 3. Ch2 (counts as hdc) 4Hdc , *at corner 2hdc ch3 2 hdc**, ***Dc, 2tr in next stitch, skip 5 stitches, 2tr in next stitch, Dc, 2hdc****,

Repeat from * to **( 2nd corner), 9 hdc, Repeat from 8 to ** (3rd corner),

Repeat *** to ****, 4 hdc, Join with a Sl st to top of beginning ch2. End off COLOR 3.

Tamara’s Flower Center Square

Round 1

Ch. 4, join with a Sl st to form a ring.

Create 8 petals:

* Ch 3 (counts as a Tr) 4 Tr ch2 Slst in ring **,

Repeat from * to ** 7 times. 4Sl st. up beginning Ch.3 and begin Round 2 in center of first petal. This will be a very tight squeeze.

Round 2

*Ch. 4, Sl st. to center Tr of next petal, Ch5, Sl st. to center Tr of next petal**.

Repeat from * to ** 3 times. The 5 ch. areas will be corners.

Round 3

Sl into first 4 ch. area, ch 3 (counts as *dc) 3dc in same area, 3dc ch3 3dc (create a corner)**

Repeat from * to ** 3 times. Join with a Sl st to top of beginning ch3.

Round 4

Ch 3(counts as first hdc), continue 5 hdc stitches until the corner, in corner space- 2hdc ch2 2hdc, hdc in next 9 stitches**

Repeat from * to **.

Create another corner- 2hdc ch1 2 hdc, 4 hdc. Join with a Sl st to top of beginning ch3. End off.

Still to write up:

Heart Center Square

Circle Center Square

My mom suggested a peace symbol square. I will get to work on that....eventually... why not right now when I've got 10 other things I should be doing!!!!


I participated in a little survey a former student proposed to aid her with her college senior thesis. It was about what reminds you of HOME. Here was my response.

Goofy things my dad did (and does), snow sledding up the road, running every day down the dirt road and beyond, playing badminton (trying to play without a partner, too), cross country skiing on our property, our malamutes who lived and howled outdoors, mowing the lawn, mom's garden, our dirt basement, insane annoying ...neighbors, family picnics, our tiny house with no room to get away from anyone, mom's cooking, making dinner starting at a young age because mom worked the 3-11 shift, getting up in the middle of the night to stoke the wood stove, bats in the house and mom freaking out, dad chopping wood, shoveling, great tunes on the turntable...

What would your response be?