Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Wild and crazy dryer balls made of felted wool scraps, an old sock and bright jersey fabric

 Dryer balls!!!!!!!!!  I love how these turned out!!  I was less than successful getting wool to felt in hot water and the dryer as so many online tutorials indicate it can be done.  In the end, I did find one place where the lady simply stuff an old sock with other old socks until it was the size and weight she wanted to make her dryer balls SO..... I just decided to make my own version.  I have a bag full of small felted wool scraps which my daughter gifted me so I used them to create a ball wrapping it with yarn as I went to keep all the pieces together.  When it was big enough I stuffed the ball into a piece of old sock and tied off both end using cording woven through the sock and tied off.  I have made a supply of these for my dryer and because they have sock wrappers they are boring brown and black but do the job. 
I decided to gift my daughter a set of six of these dryer balls for Christmas so I decided to give them a make over before wrapping them.  I dug through my fabric stash and found this really stretchy jersey top which was too large for me and I upcycled it into covers for the dryer balls.  I cut a 5" square of the jersey, I fold it in half and stitched up the side using zig zag first and then next to it a line of straight stitching using very short stitches.  You can see the seam on the right hand side of this ball.  I turned it inside out and stuffed a dryer ball into it - amazing how much that jersey stretches!!!  Then I used a large needle and cording to make a line of running stitch on one end about where the fabric meets if you stretch it into place.  Once all they way around I tightened ed only slightly the stitching and then tucked the extra fabric inside and under the edge of the line of running stitch.  As I pulled the ends of the cording tight I kept tucking the inner fabric inside so that once the two ends were as tight as they could be you no longer can see the sock dryer ball.  I tied a square knot and then pulled the ends into the ball to hide them.  I did the same thing on the other end. Dressed up those dryer balls pretty nicely!!!!   

 I wrapped them in one of the Bento Bags I made earlier this year and they fill it perfectly!!!
It will be a happy little surprise for her for Christmas!!!         Therese

Slow Stitching - All three floral hand stitched collage bookmarks

I managed to get a shot of all three bookmarks together before they are sent on their way to their new homes!!  


Slow Stitching - #4 in my second set of rainbow squares

For this purple square I pinned my strips (its a now the theme of this set  vertically and then stitched horizontal lines of running stitch to secure them in place.  I tried to catch the edges of the fabric on each strip to prevent raveling when this square finds its final home in a quilt.  I used various combinations of thread.  I am using small pieces so sometimes I find 2 threads and some singles so in this case the one set of stitches was executed with a 2 purple and 2 green thread combination.  For another I used 2 purple and one gold thread but I see it is not obvious in my scan.  For this square I secured the ends of all my strips with stab stitches and then added stars (three overlapping stab stitches) on five of them using red thread.  This heart was also cut from a combination of fabrics which I machine stitched.  I did one row of stab stitches all the way around a bit far apart with purple floss and then went back around and added another set of stab stitches using red floss.  To finish off my square I added a red star on the inside of my heart.  I am liking those star stitches and can make them more consistently even because I have come to the realization that I should first make an X and then add a stitch across its center.    Therese

Handmade thread holders

I have been saving some ruined sign holders (election leftovers) for this purpose.  I finally got to making them up!!  Thanks to DH's extensive wood scrap bin we have some very nice mahogany bases 5" x 5" with three drilled holes on the diagonal. He routed the edges and sanded them all down very nicely.
I cut the rods I needed from the sign uprights - 1.5" for the bobbin holder, 6.5" for the spool holder and about 12" for thread holder AFTER I formed the eye at the top.  I used the vise and a hacksaw to cut the pieces and used a file to remove the burrs.  There are two because my sister is getting one for Christmas from me!