The gifts weren't belated, thankfully, but I think this post is. It's January 3 already, and the world has moved on. Christmas was over a week ago! We're onto the Big News about the Severely Awful Cold Weather that is coming this way (schools in Madison have already been called off for Monday, on account of -45 windchill predicted). This does not bode well for me and my tendency towards stir-craziness since Anya has been sick for two days and isn't getting better and the only time I left the house this whole entire week was to make a run to the post office on Tuesday and go for a 3-mile run on New Year's Day, which was kind of miserable since it was only 7 degrees at the time.


So how about we have a look back and see a couple more hand made gifts? Here is my little brother wearing a hat and scarf I made him for Christmas:

Doesn't he look happy? I think he's happy because he got a snow day today. He and my SIL live in the Boston area, which got socked with a huge snowstorm, so he didn't have to go to work, and that was after having January 1st and 2nd off already for the holidays! Anyway, not that you can really see any kind of pattern in this photo, but the hat is Earthen by Alicia Plummer and the scarf is plain old garter rib. I used Valley Yarn Amherst, and I loved knitting with it. Even in the color black, which is impossible to see. If I weren't Not Buying Yarn right now, I'd get more of it in every color.

The one other thing I have to show you is a sewing kit I made for my mom.

I'm really proud of this one. It wasn't hard, exactly, but there were a lot of steps to follow and I wasn't sure I'd be able to pull it off. The pattern is the Apples to Oranges pattern from Oliver&S. I chose the apple design, obviously. My mom loves apples.

This called for a little of everything! I had to sew curved seams, make a bias tube, install a zipper, line everything, embroider a bit by machine and by hand, and generally do my best not to fuck anything up.  (Sorry about the language, mom. This one was a bit of a challenge!) That said, the instructions were impeccable, and quite easy to follow, even with this complex design. That I didn't mess up is probably more a testament to the clear, superb instructions than to my own sewing ability.

The nicely plump half of the kit is a pincushion, which is filled with stuffing. The other half, the one with the zipper, is where you can put things like spools of thread, measuring tape, and tiny scissors. It looks a little deflated in the picture because I didn't stuff it with anything. My mom goes to a lot of quilting events and retreats, so I hope she finds it useful. 

There is an optional needle pad, which I chose to leave detached from the kit, though I could have sewed it on as a flap over the zipper pouch. I wasn't entirely pleased with how it turned out but I didn't have the time (or patience, frankly) to redo it, so I left it separate and stuffed it in the zipper pouch. This way my mom has the option of not using it, I guess!

My family members are the most deserving recipients of hand made gifts. They are always appreciative (or else they're good at pretending). They deserve the very best I have to offer. I'm glad to say that this time around I was able to make nearly all my Christmas gifts using materials I had on hand. (This tells you something about my stash and supplies…) The only thing I had to buy for the sewing kit was the red zipper, in fact.

I think that's it for retrospective posts. Hopefully next time I'll have a finished sweater to show you! It's been a while.


Naycha said…
I adore the sewing kit!! Very sweet. But I can tell that it is definitely an "ef" worthy project. It would have garnered at least a dozen from me, had I been the one making it!! Kudos to you. Oh, and the scarf and hat are beautiful too.

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