It happened again, I had another crafting weekend. Also did some cooking worth sharing, but I'll start with crafts. It all started on Saturday when F allowed himself to be cajoled into joining me on an outing to Bergen. That would be a small town about half an hour north of Haarlem (not in Norway). Why did we go? To visit Finlandia Import, a great yarn store that I read about on this blog. My expectations were fairly high, otherwise it wouldn't be worth the trip. To my delight, Finlandia Import is a super store and Bergen is cute as a button. Not only did I find great wool, the owner also told me about a website with thousands of good free knitting and crochet patterns available in several languages! Bought a lot of wool and made a couple of swatches right away to test gauge and color combinations. Here are the results:
They're a little more curled up than I hoped, but the colors are fairly accurate thanks to sunlight. I thought one combination looked much more retro than the other - what do you think?
While I waited for swatches to dry, I got out the sewing machine to do a couple little projects. One was a request (or maybe it was an order of the military type) that has needed fulfilling for a while. Here's how that one turned out:
I've made several bags following this pattern. It's super simple and allows for plenty of variation and imagination. I was quite pleased with the outcome, especially the handles. It was my first adventure with making handles for a bag and they turned out much better looking than expected. They look like they'll achieve a nice balance between sturdy and soft. Webbing handles on bags can rub bare shoulders raw, so I try to avoid them.
My other sewing project was a pair of booties. Actually, there has been quite a bit of booty making happening lately and this weekend I finished off all three pairs:
The orange pair is based on the magic slippers pattern. I added a rolled top to them so that a tie can be added later if necessary. The polka-dot pair is reversible and they were a sewing challenge! The pattern is good, including telling you when it's going to get difficult. I wouldn't try it again with corduroy, everything just got too thick. But they are adorable. It would be fun to make a bigger pair (like for me!). The pattern for the black and white pair (still need buttons) is from Saartje Knits.
I'll take a break from the sewing machine for a while in order to do "real life" things. But not to worry, future projects have been planned and added to the schedule already!