Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Littlest of Red Hats

When my grandfather died, my grandmother (who will never die--I mean this in the nicest way possible, this woman is an indestructible force) opted to join the Red Hat Society.  Now, her friend loaned her some "large awful thing", and she requested that I make her a new hat, "but not a real hat, something small she can clip into [her] hair."  My grandmother does not like hats.

Now, I've never made a hat, much less a hat with a ten-day deadline in the middle of the Christmas season.  But, she's my grandmother--so what the hey?

Since I wasn't sure where to begin with the concept of "tiny red hat"--other than the obvious--I poked around the craft store and picked up red felt, embroidery thread, purple ribbon, and some various odds and ends.  I have yarn and fabric in nearly every color, so I figured if I needed anything else, I would already have it.  As it happened, I did not.  To get some ideas, I worked on a couple sketches:

The making of the hat was surprisingly easy.  It's hand-stitched (and, embarrassingly, not my best work), with typical sewing stitching for some portions, and blanket stitching where the floss would be seen.  I also used hot glue to stiffen the two bottom pieces of felt before blanket stitching them together. Not the classiest or most professional way to starch the bottom of the hat, but functional under a tight time limit and budget.

Since the hat was so small, I opted to go a bit simple with the details--purple ribbon (just like the red hat logo), a little purple bow, and some Christmas berries, since the hat is for their Christmas party.

And viola!  A tiny little Red Hat!

Of course, I had some concern over the best way to clip it in, but given my grandma's hair type and preferences, I opted to put two loops on the bottom so the hat can be bobby-pinned to her hair.

I even tried it out myself:
Not bad for having no clue what I was doing!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Dinosaur Delight

Inspiration comes in strange places and from strange things.  For me, it's mostly things I have weird obsessions with, like dinosaurs, bunnies, and trees.  And as luck would have it, my boyfriend lives a few mere minutes away from the Hadrosaurus Park in Haddonfield, NJ.  The site is where the first dinosaur bones were unearthed, and is now an undeveloped woodland park, where my boyfriend and I spent the afternoon taking photos, and excitedly discussing the fact we were trouncing around on the very place a dinosaur once walked.

Of course, despite the beauty of nature, I found myself less inspired by the trees, lake, leaves, and my boyfriend pretending he's a panda:

And more entertained by the idea of dinosaur prints and knitting animals and dresses and silly whimsical (yet classy) dino designs.

Dinosaur skeleton fabric by Bratpacksfabrics on Etsy.
Sadly, dino prints tend to be on the cutesy children's side, although I did find one or two gems I could see as skirts, dresses, and various accessories--my favorite being the one posted above.  (Which, hopefully, will be mine sooner rather than later.)

Of course, my day of searching for fun things to craft wasn't going to end in a dino dress, especially given my new-found love for knitting.

Dino the Dinosaur Pattern on Ravelry

Which was only exasperated by the fact my boyfriend would like me to make him the above t-rex.  Probably to go next to his collection of wooden dinosaur skeletons.

It's been a wonderful day all-around!  Rawr!