Friday, January 22, 2010

What I made for Christmas Gifts

I wanted to make a lot of my Christmas presents this year.  I love thinking about what to get people, and deciding on just the right gift way before the big day comes, so I'm usually pretty good about getting all my Christmas shopping done relatively early. This year I totally blew it!  I don't really know where the time went.  I had so many ideas of things to make and things to sew, but I only ended up with enough time to do 3 of them, and then ended up shopping for the rest a few days before Christmas.  Bummer dude...  Anyways, here are some pictures of the things I did manage to get done:

For my mother-in-law, Suanne:

These things just do not model well!

I'm pretty happy with my tote bag pattern, and I knew that my lovely mother-in-law always has use for tote bags (so do I!) so this seemed like a good fit!  Stephen even helped pick out the fabric! Ok so he didn't actually go to the store with me, but I'd used the brown fabric for a previous project, and Stephen has a love for all textiles involving embroidery, so he suggested I get some more for the bag. It really is a pretty fabric, so I was happy to oblige. I really liked how it turned out, and I hear it's getting a lot of use :)   

For my brother, Mike:

No books were harmed in the making of this project... except this one
I started this project waaaaaaay early.  Like Mega-early.  Maybe as far back as early October.  It was definitely before my birthday.  I had seen a tutorial for a secret hollowed out book (who really needs a tutorial for this, anyways?  It's pretty simple - in theory at least), so soon I was just itching to make one.  So I went to the giveaway book shelf at the library and found the biggest, most boring looking book I could for the project.  Big mistake.  I took it home, whipped out my handy box-cutter, and got to work.  It wasn't long before I realized that my handy box cutter wasn't so handy after all.  In fact, it was broken, dull and pretty much all around lousy.  I closed up the book about a 10th of the way in (if that) put it on my bookshelf, and left it there.  For weeks. I thought this hollowed out book idea was pretty much bust.  Oh well.  It would make a nice 800 page paper weight.
Then I caught a lucky break!  For my birthday I got a very pretty new box cutter (see photo) from my friend Pam.  What a difference!  I whipped through the rest of those 700 pages in no time.  I could hardly believe it.  I made more progress in 30 minutes than I'd made the entire time trying to do it with that lousy old box cutter.  I sliced and diced, glued and let dry, filled with candy and wrapped, and gave that thing away! That's it. I can't give you more details on this book.  Then it wouldn't be a secret anymore.

My niece, Josie:

  The final present I made was this little kitty purse.  My niece, Josie, has a thing for kitties, or so I'm told.  Currently, I think she might be more interested in little houses, pancakes, and car rides, but I may be wrong...
For this project, I was inspired by a felted wool kitty purse pattern I found on, but soon realized I had nowhere near enough time to crochet a purse before Christmas.  I decided to sew something similar instead.  I sewed on the face with white thread and a thin zigzag stitch.  Then I just improvised the rest of the pattern to make it look like the felted one.  I ended up finishing it in only one night (because I was incredibly stressed out about getting done in time for Christmas).  I hope she likes it!  If not she can always stuff it in the seat of her new trike...

She likes it!

Fashionable Miss Josie, out on the town with her Key-Cat purse - "No Pictures, please"


Laura Maurer said...

Hey, She loves it! And it is actually referred to as her "key-cat purse" I will send you a picture of her with it on so you can post it. We had to tie a knot in the strap because it was too long, but no biggie.

Laura Maurer said...

PS I know you guys were all jealous of my hollowed out book when we were kids. I will claim inspiration for the book, because I know it really wasn't the tutorial that got you thinking about this. :)