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Wipes

Mike and I have made the decision to only use cloth diapers and cloth wipes with out baby.  The initial cost of using these two things is the one con that I see to using them.  To help with that, I decided to make the wipes.

I found this blue flannel fabric at the LA Garment District for about $2.  And no, I’m not talking per yard here…it was $2 for about 2.25 yards of fabric!  That is my kind of deal!  In my opinion, I don’t really care what color the flannel is, or how it looks because it will  be used primarily to wipe up poo.  So blue?  Not a problem for me at all.

I made the wipes using these instructions for two layer, turned and top-stitched wipes, and nothing could be easier, or quicker to put together. In one hour, I was able to finishe 4 wipes, and cut out 20 more (and the cutting took the majority of the time).  To moisten the wipes we will try a few combinations from some wipe solution recipes that I found online.

For those of you will kids, do you have any idea how many wipes I might need to start out with?

Bronson Lace

Bronson Lace

Bronson Lace is another block weaving pattern, like summer and winter.  Because of this, it is an easy design to visualize.  When I picked out the colors for this piece, I must have still been thinking of the colors for the baby’s room, because I came home with yellow, purple and pink (though I decided to nix the yellow later).

This is the pattern I designed:

Bronson Lace Block design

You can easily see the pattern in the finished piece:

Bronson Lace Detail

One thing I didn’t realize when designing this is the lace can be seen easier if there is more than one block together.  With the way I did it, the actual lace is a bit hard to see because the blocks just kind of collapse on themselves.  If I had put blocks next to each other, you would see more spaces.  Luckily I still really like how this piece looks, and I plan on making a longer one to use as a sash/headband.  Maybe I will even reconsider using the yellow…

Weaving Detail

Another week means another weaving project for me.  Actually, I have another one on the way, because I’m a little behind on my homework!  This time around we were given a Summer and Winter project.  This type of weave is called Summer and Winter because the finished fabric is opposite on each side…one side is light, and one side is dark.  My teacher told us that this first became popular in America when families did not have enough money to buy two bed covers for the warm season and cold season.  They would buy/weave bed coverings in the Summer and Winter pattern and use one side for the warm months, and the other for the cold months.  Traditionally, white yarn is used for the background, and a dark color like navy is used for the foreground.  Since this was my first time attempting this type of weave, I decided to go with the classic look.

Another characteristic of the Summer and Winter weave is it is usually a fairly firm weave, making it great for towels, handbags, and bed coverings, but not so good for clothing and scarves (unless you use teeny tiny threads).  I opted for a set of hand towels because they are small and easy.  I used 100% cotton thread for optimal water absorbancy.

What I loved about Summer and Winter is it is really easy to design a pattern.  Basically, with my loom, I can make two different pattern blocks, A and B, and put them together in an almost unlimited number of combinations to make a pattern. 

Up next?  Lace!

Summer and Winter Hand Towel

Colors for baby's room

Making decorating decisions has to be one of the hardest things for me to do.  As many of you might already know, I am incredible indecisive.  I think I went through about 10 different color combos before settling on this one.  And, by the way, is anyone surprised to see yellow as the main color in the palette??

What I like about these colors together is they do not scream “baby”, and they do not scream “girl”.  They are cheery without being too pale or bold, and they are feminine without being too girly.  I am now in the process of altering my fabric to contain these colors so that I can still use it in the room.

I have made some other small decisions, like using this darling mobile for over the changing table.  I love that it is black and red, two colors that babies are highly responsive to.  I also love that it is not pastel colored, with stuffed, cartoon-like animals on it.

I have to mention how much I admire Meg of Sew Liberated, and this beautiful room she put together for her son.  She has some great ideas that I will be “borrowing”, like keeping a few toys and books out in rotation, instead of keeping them all out.  I also like the mirrors and pictures that she put at baby’s eye level where they can really be enjoyed.

I think part of the reason I have been so indecisive is I am not ready for my babe to be born yet.  I feel like there is so much I have to do before she gets here.  I want to be a good mother, and sometimes I think there are so many things I need to “fix” in my own life before I bring a new life into this world.  I am constantly trying to remind myself that no aspect of my life is ever going to be perfect for her.  I will always try to improve things that need improving, but I don’t have to be perfect to be a good mother.  I hope that I will be able to be humble enough to let my little girl teach me as I teach her.

If you have children, how did you prepare for the arrival of your little one?

Baklava

A piece of Baklava

Probably the number one thing pregnancy is known for is the cravings.  So far, there have not been too many weird things that I crave (though once I ate a whole jar of green olives).  My main problem has been TV commercials.  Everytime a new food item pops up, I feel like I have to have it.  Lately I have taken to looking away, or concentrating on something else when commercials come on so that I won’t have to worry about craving a huge Big Mac with extra-large fries and a Coke!

One of the things I have given in to however, is Baklava.  I figured since I have already made this twice (in the last 7 days), I ought to share it with you.  The first time I made Baklava was for Valentine’s day last week.  I thought it was a special dessert that went perfectly with the kabobs and humus that Mike and I were having for dinner that night.  What I didn’t know was how much I would love it.  The kind of love that makes you wonder where this has been your whole life.  I proceeded to have it for breakfast for the rest of the week.  I ended up taking some of the dessert to work so that I wouldn’t eat any more of it.

tray of baklava

But now, I’ve made it again.  Luckily, this time I have another social function that I can take leftovers too as well…assuming I don’t eat the whole tray over the next few hours.

I only made one tiny adjustment to the recipe…instead of filling the pastry with a mix of walnuts and almonds, I only used walnuts, because for the second time in a row, I forgot to purchase almonds.  Um yes…I also have a severe case of pregnancy brain.

What is the craziest craving you have had, or experienced a friend having?

A Valentine’s Scarf

Mike's Scarf, Detail

This is my latest weaving project I’ve been working on…a long, warm scarf for Mike!  Somehow I missed the fact that the colors are very reminiscent of the 70’s, but I still love the scarf, and more importantly, so does Mike!

I used a super soft bamboo cotton blend, and wove it in a zig-zag twill.  I am still deciding how to finish the ends…right now they have about 8″ of fringe hanging off them…not so good for a men’s scarf!

I hope you all have a fun and relaxing weekend! 

Mike's Scarf

Spool Holder

Spool Holder

Sorry everyone for a my few days of silence.  Today I wanted to share with you Mike’s first woodworking project for the year…a spool holder!  I was having trouble managing all my huge spools of yarn for the different weaving projects I’ve got going on.  There is a lot of unwinding that I have to do when I’m first setting up the loom for a project, and I was always scrambling to find something that I could put the spools on that would allow the yarn to come off the spool easily. 

To make the spool holder, Mike found some good, solid wood at Home Depot in their scrap bin.  If you ever are working on a small project, check the bin first (Mike got this piece of wood for less than $1)!  He sanded the wood down and softened the edges so that I wouldn’t get any splinters.  This really brought out the beautiful grain of the wood. 

Unfortunately I didn’t think to take any pictures of what is actually holding the spools up!  They are 3 strong dowels, each about 5″-6″ long.  Mike drilled three holes in the wood the same diameter of the dowels and then inserted the dowels with some wood glue to keep them in place.

I got a chance to use this over the weekend, and it works beautifully!  No more trying to put the spools on our curtain rod!

Spool Holder