Christmas Production Line

Sewing CenterHow’s everyone coming on their Christmas shopping?  I’ve been feeling an increased sense of urgency as the days are getting shorter and nights colder.  To that end, I manhandled my sewing equipment downstairs to the guestroom so that I could start my annual sewing marathon soon, unimpeded by the Commander’s steady progress on painting our bedroom.  An offshoot of that move was the need to do some weeding in the guestroom closet to make room for the ironing board.  So I bagged a lot of clothes that could go to Goodwill and rearranged the fiber stash that is growing faster than my ability to spin it into yarn.  Fiber takes up more room than yarn, by the way.  And if you make the mistake of opening the bags to feel the fiber….watch out.  The stuff balloons on you, expanding in bulk at an alarming rate.

PillowcasesEvery year I make customized pillowcases for the extended family.  It has become a family tradition.  I really have more fun finding the perfect novelty fabrics to fit the interests (or quirks) of each relative.  These are just a few examples of ones that we’ve kept for ourselves.  (The Commander loves Mexican food, in case you’re wondering…..what the heck?)  Over the years, I’ve made pillowcases out of fabric with outhouses, beer bottles, wine corks, doctors and nurses, mad cat scientists, blueprints, racing cars, pinup girls, hunting scenes, Dora the Explorer, and even a special appliqued Enneagram pillowcase.  And that’s just naming a few themes.

This year, I’ve already ordered and received most of the fabric for the new batch of pillowcases.  In fact, the freshly laundered fabric is sitting in the guestroom waiting to be ironed and then cut into the proper dimensions for the cases.  If you’ve never tried making pillowcases, it’s not hard at all.  There are so many really fun fabrics available now that I think I could probably find a fabric to fit most everyone’s interests.  Well, I HAVE had one little challenge.  I have yet to find any fabric about disc golf.  But I did notice that there were a lot of mountain biking and extreme biking fabrics this year.  Back when my daughter was dating a fellow who competed on the bike racing circuit (we’re talking bicycles that race over uneven terrain), I couldn’t find anything with bicycles on it.  Thank goodness she didn’t marry him and thank goodness that she married the great guy she did who loves hunting.  I can find lots of fabric with outdoor hunting scenes.  I figure that in a few years, I’ll find disc golf fabric.

Aran SweaterOn the knitting front, I’m making progress on my mini-sweater square of the Great American Aran Afghan.  I’ve reached the reduction rows of the body of the little sweater.  My progress was slowed down because I was working away at finishing my Damson Shawl.  The shawl is blocking right now and I’ll have pictures of that when it finishes drying.  I’m very pleased that I didn’t frog it  near the beginning.  I was tempted as I started out but kept on going and boy, do I like it now.  I love how the Mini Mochi yarn feels in that shawl and how the patterning of the yarn displayed in the finished product.  Well, you’ll just have to see it for yourself when I get it unpinned.

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