Monday, May 9, 2011

The T Family Gifts.

One of my best friends lives in Canada, over the other side of the world from where I live in Australia. I stayed with her and her family when I visited Canada in 2008, and now I like to send gifts to them each holiday season. In keeping with my theme for last year, I was trying to make hand made gifts for her and her family. Because of shipping times, this means that really, I should have finished all of the gifts in early November to get there in time for the holiday seasons. But, this year for one reason and another, I got super busy, and actually didn't manage to finish these gifts until last weekend. Yes, in April for all of you playing along at home. Now before you go "oh my god, could you be any later," I have to confess that they aren't actually Christmas gifts, they are Hanukah gifts. And Hanukah was in early December last year. The gifts were all cut, and in various stages of started, just none of them were complete.


But, with the arrival of a brand new, baby T a few weeks ago, I got a second wind for these gifts, and managed to finish them all. I'm posting them on Tuesday.

So, Jenny, if you are reading this, please stop now, so that in a few weeks, you get a nice surprise :)

For the first time ever, I included labels on everything I made. These labels aren’t perfect, but I like the effect they gave on each of the gifts. I used an orange fabric pen on calico to create labels like this one:

As I finished each project, I would put it on the ironing board. By the time I was completely finished, my ironing board looked like this. I just love this shot.

J's Sketch notebook bag.

I had originally planned to make a journal cover similar to the ones here. I had a gorgeous purple wool chosen, and a button, but I got sidetracked. And then I saw this bag pattern at vivatveritas from guest blogger nette, and I knew that I had to make that instead. I still wanted to incorporate the idea of an sketch book, I added a pocket on the inside of the bag, just big enough to slip an A5 sketch book into.

The bag is made from black and white paisley cotton (I love the fabric, and could never bring myself to part with this remnant, so this was a perfect way to use the remnant), lined with a purple polycotton, and decorated with three fabric flowers, made from glittery crystal organza. I put my label on the inside, behind the pocket.

K and A’s gifts.

Sketch book messenger bag.

I had originally planned, and cut and started sewing, a journal cover similar to the one here, but I just wasn’t feeling it. I still wanted to give the sketch book. I remembered seeing a tutorial for a messenger bag here at mmmcrafts, so using that as a base, I made a navy blue felt messenger bag, lined with red whale fabric, with an internal pocket to hold the sketch book. I used press studs to close the flap, hand sewn to a double layer of felt, and then zig-zag stitched to the bag. I sewed my label to the inside of the front flap, and was really pleased with the effect on the front of the flap.

Although not part of the T Family, A is another one of my good friends, who happens to live in England. I try to send him a holiday gift every year. He also got a felt messenger bag.


I was at a bit of a loss for what to do for R&D until I saw this table runner at moda bakeshop. Using that as my inspiration, I created a felt backed circles table runner. The fabrics are a combination of things I had in my stash and things that were in my scraps bag. I used a gold embroidery thread to sew everything down.


When I saw this project on craftgossip, I just knew I had to make it. Again, I used the original instructions from Fawnda from firefliesandjellybeans  more as inspiration than anything else. I sewed each leaf to the polar fleece backing by stitching the veins using gold thread.

Baby T

I didn’t know the sex of the baby, (I’m not sure if R&D didn’t know, or if they just didn’t post it on facebook), but it meant that I had to make a nice, gender neutral gift. In the end, I went with two things. The first is more practical, 4 terry towelling bib. I used the pattern here from liaspace. The second gift was more fun, a stuffed octopus toy using the pattern here for oppsie the octopus on moda bakeshop.

J's Birthday

The last gift in the parcel was a birthday gift. Again, I was inspired when craftgossip posted a link here for a free pattern download from bramcost publications for this awesome 1953 party apron which now isn’t free, but is only $3.99, I knew it was perfect for J. And really, who doesn’t need a fun, flirty, 1950s apron?

So, happy holidays T family!

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