Friday, November 9, 2012

Animals for your head

It all started when I was thinking about things that I could make to sell, give as gifts, and/or donate. I wanted fun and cute and good looking without being too time intensive.

Meeting all of these criteria I found anthropomorphic crochet hats with ear flaps. I'm kinda loving them right now. I've been working almost but not really off of patterns as I take the inspiration but then just crochet away (this is the awesome part of crochet, for some reason I'm not comfortable doing this with knitting).

It all started with this Birdy hat that was donated and destined to be for a kid with cancer:

Naturally it only seemed appropriate to move on to a Penguinal hat:

Emboldened by my success I upped the anti with the more involved Sock Monkey Hat. The project was completely addicting and largely completed in one day:

The next weekend I churned out another hat, this time a puppy in just 2 days. Although the speed on that occasion was more because I was with Bran and he mocks the fact that I never seem to complete anything as I am constantly switching between projects (truth, but also largely because I tend to only work on simpler things when I'm with him so more juggling and less FO [finished object(s)] makes sense):

Up next I am totally making an Owl hat, which is actually the idea/pattern that started it all before I wandered off in my own directions. I am rather lacking the the crafting time/focus lately however so progress is slow (and sad). The new goal is to knock it out this weekend.

Also coming Etsy shop! I decided to branch out this year and along with having stuff at the gift shop have an actual shop online. The challenge is going to be what/how much to keep to ship if needed and what should stay with me to ship if needed.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Nerd Wars Tournament 5

What have I been up to? Well, lots of things. One of those rather time consuming and just as awesome things is Nerd Wars.

The basic premise of Nerd Wars is that you are on a team that centers around some kind of specific Nerdy-subject (sci-fi, science, books, all kinds of things). And over a period of 3 months you craft things to meet challenges which earn your team points.

I joined up with Club 33 which is the Disney team because Disney is awesome, it worked perfectly to build excitement for my trip, and it has so many great ways to connect projects back to the team (bonus points).

Here's what I made:

And one scarf particularly awesome lace scarf that I can't show here because its a gift for someone who may read this.

Today the next tournament started!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Shawl x3

I've been on a bit of a random Shawl kick lately.

I cast on my first ever Shawl on June 20 2011(thank you Ravelry project page). I liked the project but I am far from a monogamous crafter so the Shawl was lost in the bustle of many other projects. It probably didn't help that I was using basically the thinnest yarn ever. By the end each row was incredibly long. However I decided to bring it to the fore and finish the sucker sometime in February or March.

It may be the magic of blocking lace that makes me fall in love with it every time. Overnight my project went from this:
To this:

After a bit of concern about looking too matronly wearing it I've gotten over that as well and have quite enjoyed it on some of these cool spring days.

So fueled by that success I couldn't help but jump on the bandwagon for the Reddit Knit-Along of the Age of Brass and Steele. The pattern was super simple but delightful so I knew it should be a fast project. I found yarn that I was quite happy with at Michaels. It's a cashmere blend so super soft, but from Michaels so still affordable (particularly because I always use at least a 40% off coupon and have gift certificates). The color was was crocuses so I figured that was perfect as well and called the project April Showers.

Unfortunately it came out very much more stripey that I was hoping for which was disappointing. But lo and behold when I wear it everything blends together and gives me the look I was hoping for. Yay.

Now before starting the KAL I was unsure of what yarn to use and considered spinning up Kiwi's fleece as I thought it would be perfect for the pattern. However common sense prevailed when I figured given the month timeline maybe starting from raw wool was not the smartest.

But when I found that it was only a week into April and I had finished half of the knitting already. Plus it was a long Easter weekend made awesome by the fact that I opted not to drive home to my parents but instead enjoy some free time in my own home. So I figured I'd give the spinning a try.

After prepping it into roving on my hackle Kiwi's fleece spun so easily and perfectly into a wonderful DKish single it felt nearly like a miracle. Being a single it was of course twisty but I washed it "thwacked it" as I'd seen suggested. And hung it to dry under the tension of a spray bottle. The resulting yarn did have a bit of twist to it but for the most part seemed to be pretty stable.

So I quickly knit up a little sample and lo and behold there were some places where I could see the stitches starting to lean but for the most part it was smooth sailing. And the color and texture were just wonderful.

I proceed with much sorting, washing, flicking, hackling, spinning, winding, washing, drying, winding, and knitting. And in the end had this wonderful shawl.

Its impossible to really capture the colors of it as they seem to change even every time I look at it. But I'd say they speak mostly as gray to me with hints of brown at times. The single adds so much character to the knitting that I am now certain I'll be doing a good bit more of this type of spinning.

Hooray for new things!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

I think I have too many things to do.

As is too often the case I have one again neglected to post anything here for quite some time. Fail. The past few months have felt just insanely busy. Tis the season!

First and foremost work really really gets in the way of all of the things I really want to do. And to make matters worse my work doesn't stop at 40 hours a week. Every time we have a concert or special event there goes any "free time". The spring is definitely the worst. And just looking at the calendar May is the most ridiculous month. Between April 30 and May 25 the only non-work day is the 12th. Ouch. Although I do plan on taking a few other days off. Now if I could just get someone to do my job when I'm not in the office things would be rather more dandy.

So it whatever time is left to me I have all of the following things to do:

  • House work: The cat is not pulling his weight around the house and I have to do it all. The little jerk.
  • Yard work:  I think I had to start mowing a full month earlier with the weather so warm. And I've expanded my veggie garden. Here's hoping I keep more than just cucumbers alive this time.
  • Friends: After years of being largely, but not entirely, anti-social it seems that I've recently managed to re-connect much more with some old friends. And I've even found new ones - whoa.
  • Band: The music is kinda bad all too often, but I could never give up playing so i'm glad for the outlet.
  • Video games: Bran got me hooked on World of Warcraft and now he's dragging me into Diablo as well. I try not to admit it but they can be fun. I just wish they took less time and or I could knit and play!
  • Biking: Exercise is healthy and can even be fun, I should do more of it.
  • Photography: My photos really are getting better I think. But as with all learning/improvement more time is always a sure way to better results.
  • Reading: I really don't know how I did it but as a youth I would fly through books sometimes to the tune of multiple books in a week. I've been doing a bit more lately but sometimes it feels like I'm just slogging through them. And the library deadlines come up so quickly!
  • Knitting/Crochet: Aside from the perpetual desire to be working on dozens of projects of my own I even have the opportunity right now to work on growing a bit of my own crafty business. Maybe I should learn lever knitting or whatever the supposed current fastest knitting method may be.
  • Spinning: I am totally getting better at spinning. Latest discover is an awesome DKish single. Knit up so wonderfully.
  • Other Crafts: My awesome sewing machine is practically begging me to use it more often. And wouldn't it be wonderful to work at sketching/doodling/zentangling. Oh and what about the sweatshirt that I've wanted to paint for myself for over a year.
  • Relax: Eh, overrated!

Friday, February 10, 2012


I have this idea for a super cute Valentines postcard with a fiber twist. And I thought it would be a perfect project to share with you all as a little diy project. But then I got distracted by life (happens quite a bit I'm afraid) and I've not yet actually made any myself yet. So today I'll figure I can still share with you my ideas and what I intend to create, and well maybe it will spur some ideas of your own!

My fascination with fiber post cards started two years ago when I participated in a post card swap. My fun knitted post cards are still one of my favorite crazy bits of crafting. And as a bonus they were wonderful valentines as well. When I participated in the same swap last year I wanted to be sure and once again include fiber. And I came up with my little crochet flower postcards. Another successful bit of mail-art.

So putting these past experiences together when I thought about making valentines this year I quickly came up with the idea of putting crochet hearts onto a postcard.

To start I needed a crochet heart. Alas I have yet to try any kind of patterning on my own so it was off to the interwebs. Happy I came across this perfect tutorial for a simple little heart on pinterest (which by the way is highly addicting and highly recommended). I made probably 20 of these little guys quite quickly one evening. The only modification that I made to the tutorial was to use the magic ring as my center instead of the first chain. This kept the heart neat and tidy with a solid center. My first attempt following the directions exactly was a bit wonky as that first chain stretched way too much.

This is as far as I've gotten thus far so bear with me and make a picture in your head.

My plan is to sew them onto a piece of card stock. Now sewing into the heavyish stock really isn't so easy, in fact I found it to be pretty darn painful/ineffective when last I tried. The solution is to poke holes wherever you'll be brining the thread up. I plan to hold the heart on the cardstock on a piece of corkboard and then poke holes just inside of the shape. This way I can invisibly stitch the heart securely down onto the postcard. I will also tie off the thread in a number of different places so that if the thread breaks in any one location the damage will be localized and the heart will stay securely on the card.

Now unfortunately all of the card stock that I've managed to find and purchase really isn't a particularly heavyweight. And so in order to give my postcards a better chance of surviving the mail I add a second piece. This also serves to hide the backside of the sewing. Last year when I was doing this with the flowers I was thinking glue but knew that glue would probably not survive the journey still completely glued. I then had the brainchild of sewing the cards together!

It really is amazing how one can take tools that seem so geared towards a specific craft and morph them into the perfect tool for something a bit less obvious. Stitching around the edges of the cards fastens them securely together quickly, simply and cleanly.

Now if you don't have a sewing machine there is also the option to do something more like my first knitted post card. In that instance I placed (well I poked, but a hole punch would be easier) holes around the outside of the cards and then just sewed loops around the outside. This method adds its own decorative element as well.

Once everything is together you really can mail them just like a regular post card. Albeit at a higher rate. The postcard is too thick to fit in the postcard rate so you can use a regular letter stamp $0.45 now and then you need to add a $0.20 non-machinable charge.

I can only hope that the friends and family who will be receiving these Valentines enjoy them as much as I think I would. Snail mail really is so much fun!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

366 Project

Since receiving my new camera for Christmas (many thanks and much love to Bran) I challenged myself to take a photo every day.

So far so good!

Weekly Goal Wrapup, 1/29

Ooops never clicked publish....

I must confess that alot of this was powered out on Sunday evening, but I accomplished everything. Go me!

1. Finish 1.5 Special Olympics scarves -This was the perfect project to have along with me while working the concerts this weekend. Even so I barely managed to pick it up given the ridiculousness that is two sold out concerts. Still, I am so fast with these now that it was a breeze.

2. Prep all fiber for Marled Yarn -Much of the work was already done. And when I went to hackle the colored fiber it just didn't hold together as it was actually too light and airy. So the plan is to spin all the colored fiber from the lock. I would really like to get good at lock spinning anyways and this project for myself is perfectly suited I think.

3. Knit 2nd "Quick and Easy" Sock - Thank goodness this project really is super quick and easy because I just wasn't feeling it and put it off until late Sunday. But I finished and lo and behold they actually fit way better than I thought. Now I want to make more!

4. Sew convertible wallet to tote bag -Went from start (well a few pieces were already cut) to finish in one night. I'm getting better at these as well, thank goodness. I actually sewed the zipper without using pins. I was nervous but it totally worked. Yay.

5. Finish flower chart repeats on shawl - Before I could actually 'finish' I had to figure out where 'finish' would be located (how many repeats). I did many maths and I'm still not quite certain of the outcome. Crazy lace and its ability to grow. But I'm calling it good and managed to finish 2 full pattern repeats and now its on to the boarder charts. And even more excitedly I really got into a groove with the knitting. So much so that I'm rather anxious to work on the boarder.

So hooray for sucess. There is a bit of a downside however. Getting this stuff done felt rather overwhelming again, even with my 5 item limit. Next week is my birthday week so I think I may just do whatever :-)

Friday, January 27, 2012

Box of Happiness

Yesterday I posted a very long-winded post about using a $50 Knitpicks gift card. Well that post took me a while to write. Long enough in fact that I placed the order last Friday, the 20th, and well my package was delivered on Wednesday the 25th! Ok, so I suppose its not just that my blog writing and posting is slow but also that Knitpicks is super fast - hooray for that.

Here is my box off happiness:

Thanks to the holiday generosity of my Aunt and Uncle it cost me $1.13. That rocks. The split ring stitch markers there were a $2 addition that got me the free shipping. And really one can never have enough stitch markers, right?

This book and skeins are destined to be Christmas presents for next year. I am all kinds of ahead of's pretty doubtful that the trend will continue. I spent a bit of time paging through the book and read most of the intro. I am way more excited than I even realized I would be. The history that Nancy Bush includes has just completely drawn me in and makes me so much more excited for the patterns and techniques. And now I'm even second guessing my original pattern choice. There is a good possibility that I'll choose two different patterns. But then I would have to decide who gets what and well how on earth could I manage to decide? Maybe I'll gift them but say they should share :-)

And well the yarn of course. Oh my is this wonderful yarn. It was hard to capture the colors, but then even in real life colors will change depending on the light. In person they are much darker but still have a beautiful sheen. The alpaca is super amazing soft and lends a very light halo. And holy moly is the stuff thin. I thought that my cone from colourmart was particularly thin, but this Alpaca Cloud is only maybe a hair thicker. It's hard to believe that I'll be able to knit up a whole scarf from skeins that really are quite petite. But that's the magic of lightweight yarn and lace patterns I suppose. I suspect that the hardest part of working with these yarns is going to be not plastering these projects all over the place and spoiling the surprise for my giftees.

Lastly we have my wonderful happy-inducing splurge on self yarn. Yup, it's colorful. But I knew that, what most took me by surprise was how amazing soft this yarn is. I think during the ordering process I was do distracted obsessing about which color(s) to choose that I lost sight of fiber content. Luckily early on in the process I had narrowed in on the 25% alpaca in the Imagination sock yarn. It is soft and squishy and colorful and as such quite wonderful. I immediately (well after the photo-shoot and eating dinner) had to wind one of the skeins into a ball and start working up a little swatch. As I suspected the project is going to be quite super saturated. And the stretches of color are all shorter than might be my ideal, but I am still going to love this project.

And rather off topic, but many many thanks to all who commented and encouraged me last week. On a wave of enthusiasm from your input one of my goals this week is to finish processing the rest of the fiber to prepare for the marled yarn with Max fiber.

Thanks for visiting! Be sure and check out the rest of the Fiber Arts Friday blogs.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

What to get

For Christmas my Aunt and Uncle gave me a $50 Gift Certificate to Knitpicks. It turns out that my Aunt asked my Mother what I wanted. And Mother, having found and read by blog had seen the wishlist I posted about when I was plugging the Knitpicks contest. But anyways it is totally like an amazing awesome gift and I have been thinking about it since the evening I received the code in my inbox.

My first solid plan was to buy the yarn to knit up these amazing Penguin Socks. These suckers are actually what first drew me to knitpicks. It was a few years ago and for some reason my parents had received a knitpicks catalog in the mail. I think it had these super cute guys on the cover, or maybe they just decided to keep it and give it to me when I came home/visited. They had a whole little kit you could buy of the yarns needed for the project if memory serves. I drooled over everything but at the time sock knitting still seemed way out of my league, plus I'm totally cheap. So I just tucked it away in my memory. And at some point along the line when I was on ravelry I found it and added it to my (large) project queue to make sure I would remember it. This winter I actually came *this* close to offering these socks as a gift to my friends, but the weird IOU-ness of having custom socks when I didn't know the recipient (we were doing a Pollyanna) made me decide against the idea in the end. However before it was rejected I had already purchased the book. So now all I needed was the yarn. I spent a good bit of time debating over which yarn/colors to choose. Palette had more colors available but I liked that the Stroll Sock Yarn was super-wash and so I added the yarns to my online shopping cart.

In browsing I had completely fallen in love with pretty much all of the luxury yarns Knitpicks carries: Alpaca, Angora, Cashmere, no matter the flavor if it sounds soft I will drool over it. I wasn't quite sure what to make however. But then I feel in love with a beautiful delicate lace pattern on ravelry that I thought would be perfect for my Mother and or Aunt. Now over the holiday's I learned that they've both read the blog so I don't want to spoil the surprise but I found a perfect lace alpaca blend that seemed just divine. Plus I was being super good and thinking about and planning to start my Christmas knitting super early.

Knitpicks has free shipping at $50 so, of course, I must hit something just above that value. My cart needed more stuff.

After seeing it on someone else's blog I had absolutely fallen in love with the Peerie Flooers Hat. And having somewhat recently become comfortable (and dare I say good) at stranded knitting I thought it would be a super fun project. Plus I had some left over palette finger colors from the tiny Christmas ornament knitting I had been doing. So I set about choosing the other colors I needed for the project. But in doing so I was perusing all of the other projects on Ravelry and completely fell in love with the idea of using a different color palate. So I went about drooling over all of those possibilities and spent lots of time excruciating (did you know that excrutiated is not a word? well at least not one I can manage to spell. weird) over finding the perfect colors. As much as I love online shopping this is where it really let me down. There was really no way to know how perfectly the colors would work together firstly because my monitor could be showing something different and then secondly because it's yarn and the dye lot could be different.

In the midst of all that color planning I realized that since the pattern I needed for the lace alpaca scarves was from a book, Knitted Lace of Estonia, so well maybe I could use a Barnes & Noble gift certificate (also a gift) to purchase that. They had the book but before I ordered I realized that so did Knitpicks! Plus the Knitpicks version included a DVD and was a few dollars cheaper.

Well adding that to my shopping cart just messed up my whole plan entirely. After much deliberation I realized that I just wasn't nearly so enthralled with knitting the Penguin socks as I had once been. Many other projects seemed more appealing. So out of the cart they came.

And then to really shake things up instead of Peerie Flooers I had the brilliant (crazy) idea to make a different hat from the same designer. Originally made from all different shades of sheep I could blend up my own shades of alpaca! And possibly even come up with my own alpaca charts. Crazy, but awesome. And it requires no more purchasing. Out of the cart came all of the yarns for the hat.

Now I was left with another $20 burning a hole in my pocket. So I ended up thinking about more of my linen stitch scarves. On numerous occasions I had contemplated how some of their sock yarns would look knit up in one of those marvelously colored scarves. But I was already planning two spinning project ideas to be knit up in the same pattern so it seemed like over kill.

But the more I thought about it the more I convinced myself that it was ok. This was my Christmas Present after all. Why not go ahead and splurge (ok ignore the fact that all of this is splurging really) and just do whatever I want. After a good bit more excruciating over color options I settled upon the crazy wild and bright Over the Rainbow which was in a luscious sounding 50% Merino Wool 25% Superfine Alpaca, 25% Nylon blend. The colors are super wild and I'm worried that the whole scarf will just be too super saturated and not look that great. But then when its cold and I'm bundling up in a scarf I really will need something bright and festive to warm me inside and out. So it'll be good.

All very very good.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Weekly Goals, 1/23

Having taken a bunch of "down-time" around Christmas I've started to actually miss all of my assigned tasks that were ever-present this fall/early spring. I am the type of person who is most fulfilled when I can see results and accomplish things. But at the same time I don't want to completely overwhelm myself. So I think I'm going to try and set myself 5 objectives for each week. The number may ebb or flow depending on the projects, my time, and deadlines but it seems like 5 should be a reasonable accomplishment with out being overbearing. Plus there's always sure to be side projects that maybe I'll count towards bonus points :-)

1. Finish 1.5 Special Olympics scarves - I've established a deadline for my knitting group of February 7th (our first February meeting) and I'll want to get them all out in the mail ASAP after that. When I last checked I think I had 1.5 or so balls of each color remaining and I want to use the stuff up!

2. Prep all fiber for Marled Yarn - All of the encouraging comments on Friday helped solidify my love of the project and even gave me enough faith to go ahead with the colors as is. There is actually not that much prep that needs to be done. I finished flicking out the last of the colored locks yesterday and started washing up already pulled Max roving. So I just need to finish washing the Max (and flick and hackle more if needed) and then use the hackle to pull the colored locks into roving as well.

3. Knit 2nd "Quick and Easy" Sock - These suckers really are super quick and super easy, got the idea/pattern from the Yarn Harlot, but I'm not very happy with the fit of #1 so I've been slow to knit #2. There's really no reason that I actually need to force this project except to say that it's done and make my piece with it all.

It's the knitting that goes on and on and on and on...
4. Sew convertible wallet to tote bag - I made a bunch of these around Christmas. It was pretty crazy challenging (the highlight was literally pinning the thing to my finger) but I loved the product so much that I managed to suffer through 5. They were all given as gifts however which means that when my co-worker thinks she has someone who would like to buy some I need to make myself a sample to show off.

5. Finish flower chart repeats on shawl - Well, actually, only if there are less than 2 repeats to go. This thing is epic at this point and it takes like an hour to complete a front row (maybe 30 for purling down the back). But I would really love to see this sucker finished by March maybe?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Marled Yarn

All four colors after some prep (flicking).
Way back in September I purchased a pile of raw dyed alpaca from Alpacas of York at Knitters Day Out. I purchased without intention just because I loved the colors, and the price was good. But I really like to have fiber/yarn with intention so I quickly, I think I was still at KDO, came up with the perfect idea for the fiber.

The doomed swatch. I had already started frogging when I
remembered to take a picture.
I wanted to spin it up so that each of the 4 colors was still distinct but knit it up into a linen stitch scarf where all of the colors would blend together (like the Koigu Linen Stitch Scarves on Ravelry). I even went so far as to spin and knit up a swatch. Two swatches actually as sometime late fall or early winter I made some adjustments and spin and half knit myself up a second swatch.

Now coming off of the holiday maddness I am thinking about the project again. So I, finally, finished swatch #2. I was happy with it and weighed it to see approximately what gauge I was getting vs. the amount of fiber. DOOM. My not terribly large swatch was nearly half an ounce and I only have around 5 ounces of fiber. The maths would not work.

So I spent a few days rather sadly contemplating the state of things and unsure of quite what to do. And then at some point it came to me....a while back I remembered reading an article about creating marled yarns as a way to stretch dyed roving on the knitty blog. Perfect!

Now in the blog she talks a good bit about which color to choose. Being as I don't have that much of a fiber stash I just went with my good ol' Max fiber which is virtually never-ending around here. Plus the chocolate brown worked well with the rich muted colors.

Marled Yarn, pre-wash.
Unwilling to sacrifice any more of the fiber to swatching I rather crazily managed to un-spin the last swatch back into a single. I then re-spun the single to make sure the twist was still ok. This resulted in some rather funky yarn but for testing purposes I decided that was acceptable. Once I had enough Max spun up I plied the two together.

Almost all of my crafting these days is done at night while it is dark out by the lamps of my living room. In that relatively poor light I was rather worried about the yarn. Everything just seemed overly dark and muddied together, except of course the yellow which was high contrast. But I finished up the sample washed it and hung it to dry over night. [I've taken to hanging/laying things out over the top of the furnace in the basement, best drying method ever.]

The next morning I found that I was much happier with the yarn in the daylight. I had to be out of the office over lunch to sell tickets and whenever those days come I like to take a good craft project. My swatch was perfect for this. So over the next two days I knit up the new swatch in between selling tickets and answering questions.

Swatch - take 3.
I really am surprised how much I love the next fabric. The way the colors pop on the solid brown background just seems like such fun. Although I'm a bit worried that some of the colors, especially the green, fade into the brown a bit too much.

Now, as I finish prepping the rest of the fiber, I'm a bit on the fence. I could run with the "Max Brown" color for the entire scarf. I'm pretty sure I would love it. But I could also try spinning up some of the Fawn fleece that I have (Lance), rip out, un-spin (again), and re-spin with the alternate color. It's a tricky choice...

I'll probably go ahead and continue the ridiculousness and try me some Lance sampling just to be sure. Boy am I crazy sometimes....

Thanks for visiting! Be sure and check out the rest of the Fiber Arts Friday blogs.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


What feels now like ages ago, October maybe, I had my friend, C, over to visit on a weekend. She was getting married on New Years and when we stopped by Jo-Ann's she mentioned the possibility of sewing a wedding veil. Apparently the suckers sell for a couple hundred bucks.

Being the knowledgeable crafter that I can pretend to be I stated that sometimes fabric costs are just ridiculous, but suggested we look into it. So we found a pattern that was, thank-goodness, on sale. (Seriously why do they price patterns so high and then have the rotating sales available constantly, anyone who knows what they are about just waits for the brand they're looking for to be on sale.) And then we investigated the fabrics.

Embellishing the test veil.
C found this beautiful tulle with detailed lace and beading on it. It too could be yours for only $25 (ish) a yard. And at 4 yards needed for the veil holy-moly that's a bit of a gamble for a project where success was not guaranteed. Then it occurred to me that we could just buy the cheap tulle at $3 (ish) a yard and practice! We proceeded to do just that.

At home I couldn't believe how easy it was. The most involved step was cutting out the giant swath of tulle with rounded edges (admittedly a good bit of time was saved in our test as we just left the edges raw). From there you baste a line across the top and then gather it all up into just a few inches. Secure the gather, attach some kind of fastener, and Huston we had a veil.

A bit later we went back to Jo-Ann's and C purchased the fancy fabric and left it in my care to be transformed.

Now of course things couldn't continue to be so easy. The 'good-fabric' had a nice lace/bead trim edging on each side of the fabric. Obviously this worked wonderfully for the hem on the bottom of the veil. The tricky bit is the fact that at its edges the fabric curves gently upward and only ends at the top of the veil.

Pinning the trimmed edging along the curve.
So to make things nice first, using the pattern, cut of the top un-used portion of fabric. Then I set about very carefully cutting along the scalloped lace edge, following a particular strand of thread/beads. There was only a bit of length left as it stretched past the curves on the left and right hand corners so I also cut off the same strip from the unused 'top' portion of the original fabric panel.

A close up of how the cut piece was moved.
I then carefully pinned the cut bit of lace along the curve of the pattern all the way up to the top, Being careful to overlap the top and bottom pieces to follow the scallop curve. And after pinning it was on to sewing. Using a matching thread I basically couched the edge of the lace piece to the full panel. If you're not familiar with embroidery that is simply bringing the thread up on one side of the piece you are attaching and immediately down on the other side. It forms a little loop over top of it. I wanted it to be secure so I tried to do this at least every quarter inch. The beads, small and long, made for good targets and were secured on both sides.

It certainly wasn't difficult or incredibly painstaking, but it wasn't very fast either. So after a couple of evenings of work the sucker wasn't going anywhere.

Super-super carefully I cut the fabric panel following just to the outside of my hand stitched line. I needed to hide the edge but certainly didn't want anything coming loose.

It is not easy to get like 4 feet of this stuff gathered into like 7 inches.
Then it was, finally, time for some machine sewing. Once again it was a simple baste across the top. Except complicated a bit by beads and embroidery getting in the way. I quickly learned that removing any beads in the path of the machine feet was a very smart plan. The heavier tulle plus embroidery and beads was rather heavier that the original tulle experiment. So it was rather more difficult to get everything gathered up in just a few inches. That was some fun pinning.

But I persisted. And while it may not have been the best sewing as the machine struggled with the density of it all, in the end I had a beautiful veil.

And C, of course, was a beautiful bride!