Thursday, January 20, 2011

2010 Handmade Christmas Gifts IV : The Final Four

I have saved some of my favorite creations for this last reveal. The gifts I designed were the most fun for me to make. Despite their simplicity, I needed to focus all of my creative beams at once, for long periods of time, in order to both imagine and complete what I had envisioned. The press of time throughout all of the projects created something like a finals week for me (15 of the 17 projects were completed in less than 10 days). Since being out of classes I had missed that press a bit, and also the elation and relief afterward!

Projects #13 and 14 Ascots for Judah

Nathanael and I made these stylish necktie alternatives for Judah using the same pattern Nathanael had used to make ascots for our five groomsmen. This time we chose to make one yellow, because it is Judah's favorite color. The other is white because Judah loves to wear and create fantastically tie-dyed articles of clothing.
To have a look at some of the ways ascots are worn, visit this etsy shop.

 Project #15 Recycled Sweater Clutch (designed by me)

I designed this clutch for Micah's girlfriend Tracey, who is now his fiancée!

 I purchased a fancily knit cotton sweater at a charity store, and I had it in my sewing box for a year while it waited for a project where it would be shown off properly.

Sewing sweaters is a little tricky, so I tacked the knit to layer of muslin to be viewed through the design, put thick interfacing to stiffen the clutch, and another layer of muslin to line it. I was really happy with the result, and I have a little bit of this sweater remaining, so my mind has been creating more in my moments before may see more of this knit sometime this year. 

 Project #16 Bunting Banner Clutch (designed by me)

 I designed this clutch for Gabe's girlfriend Nelly. The basic shape is the same as the sweater clutch, but a bunting banner of eight fun prints embellishes the front. Two are recycled from our Grandma's shirts, one from a thrifted shirt, and two are scraps of prints that will soon be appearing on the shells of turtles in my etsy shop (when it opens).

 The leaf lining and purple plaid pocket are touches I love. Nathanael helped me make the decision on those.

 These clutches could be used instead of purses, or as laptop accessory bags. Are they something you would be interested in seeing in my shop eventually? Would you like to follow a tutorial to make one yourself?

Projects # 17 Rayon Ruffle Purse (designed by me)

 This purse took more of my brain power and time than any other project this season. But I love it. And now that I have it figured out, I could do it again without so many episodes with the seam ripper. I designed this one for Judah's girlfriend Jane. Her favorite color is also yellow, but a little on the softer side.

 All of the yellow is a rayon of peculiar texture (waffled?) that I cut from a thrifted long straight yellow skirt. The strap was actually not sewn, but is the hem of that skirt very carefully flipped inside out (by Nathanael, who is stronger than I...ok so maybe it wasn't carefully flipped). Believe it or not the ruffles were the easiest part. Want to see my ridiculous inspiration for the shape? Of course you do. I don't think I have to worry about copyright infringement on that one.


Can you tell this project was my favorite? I was so excited to give it to Jane, and she totally loved it!


  1. I LOVE the sweater clutch. I'm sure Tracey is lucky to be marrying Micah, but I'm thinking she's even luckier to be having you as a sister in-law-in-law.

  2. These are all so wonderful!!!
    - Sennie


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