Friday, June 26, 2009

Little Ginger's Jumper

Pattern Used: Little Ginger's Jumper

In April, I had the opportunity to visit some friends for a week-and-a-half. There are two little girls in the family, and before I came, I made both of them a Little Ginger's Jumper-- the same pattern that my mom used to make our jumpers out of when we girls were little. :-) I had wanted the jumpers to match in the purple fabric, but didn't have enough of it, so I made K's out of the purple and H's out of the gingham and hearts fabric (which we've had for years upon years!)

I made both of the dresses a size larger than the girls really are, so that they can grow into them. Hopefully they will be able to use them for years to come.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Another Shell Afghan

Completed Winter '09
Pattern: "Stunning Shells" from Crochet with Heart Best-Loved Afghans

Spencers, Pelisses, and Prestons, Oh My!

I recently earned this pattern by working outside in the yard, moving rocks:

The person on the far left is wearing a sleeveless pelisse with a frog enclosure. In the middle is a spencer jacket, closing the same way. On the far right is a double-breasted pelisse that can also be made a spencer jacket if you omit the skirt part.

I don't have any material yet, but I am coming up with ideas about what I want to make. I'm not much of a fan of Pride and Prejudice 2005 (starring Keira Knightley), and I think most of the costumes are pretty sad-looking. But one that I do like in it is Lizzie's coat:

I am pretty sure this is the same coat that Elinor wears in Sense & Sensibility 2007, but I don't have an up-close picture to compare. I simply love the way it blows in the wind when she (Elinor) is climbing the hill and thinking about Edward. *sighs* I think I can make something pretty close to that using the Spencer jacket pattern (the one in the middle) and adding a skirt to it. The collar still wouldn't be the same, but I am not sure how to make that kind of collar... Anyway, I'd like to get some brown linen, and either I'd close it with frogs or alter the pattern to button in the front like Lizzie's. Any ideas?

Another of Elinor Dashwood's costumes that I like is her blue pelisse. Marianne's is really cute too. :-)

Elinor's looks just like Mrs. Chancey's pelisse pattern and looks like it would be so much fun to make. I'm not sure what material it would be made out of... it looks like a thicker material, but it's hard to tell. What do you think?

You are probably wondering what the word "Prestons" in my post title had to do with anything. It doesn't really, except that another coat that I want to reproduce is Molly's when she goes to meet Mr. Preston in BBC's Wives and Daughters (my 100% favourite movie!!)

She also wears it when she is showing Cynthia around Hollingford in Episode 2.

This is one of my favourites of Molly's costumes! ;-) (That's about all of them, actually. :-P) It looks like a very similar pattern to her red dress that she wears at the very beginning of Episode 2 when she meets Cynthia. The fabric looks like wool or something along that line, and the collar is faced with black-- I'm assuming velvet.

When hauling rocks, I also earned this pattern from Sense and Sensibility:

Once I have made an 1830's corset and petticoat, as well as some Romantic era dress, I'd like to try making Molly's coat by altering the day dress (in the picture, it is worn by the girl who is stooping). This won't be for a while though, due to lack of fabric and lack of money to buy fabric. ;-) But it's nice to plan. I do have both of those patterns and I can at least make a toile to fit. I welcome any of your ideas on how to make these projects, and which one you think I should do first! :-)


Days it Took to Make It: 2 days

About six or seven years ago, my mom bought some fabric to make a dress for my sister, but she didn't like it and it was put in one of our many drawers of fabric. I finally pulled it out, and, using Jenny Chancey's chemise pattern, made it a nightgown instead. The only things I changed about it was the length, and I used a prefolded bias tape instead of making my own.

Light, airy, and comfortable!

I love it! :-)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Shell Afghan

Completed Summer '08
Pattern: "Shell Baskets", from Leisure Arts A Year of Afghans: Book 2

Yellow Afghan

Completed Fall '07
Pattern: "Earth Awakens", from Leisure Arts A Year of Afghans: Book 2

Striped Poncho

Completed Fall '06
I created the pattern (but did not write it down, unfortunately :-( )

Pansy Afghan

Completed Spring '06
Pattern: "Pansy Perfection", from Crochet With Heart Best-Loved Afghans

Bandanna Afghan

Completed Fall '07
Pattern: "Bandanna Blocks" from Leisure Arts A Year of Afghans: Book 2

White Regency Gown

Pattern Used: Simplicity #4055, View B
Days it Took to Make It: 3 days
Satisfaction: *****
This is my favorite project of all. It is all-white and I LOVE white!!!!
I made this dress a little bit differently than the last one. One of my alterations was that I lengthened the bodice one inch. I didn't like how the last one had such a high waistline. The one inch made a nice difference and it gives the appearance of the late 1790's, early 1800's style more than the very high empire waistlines of the teens. Another feature that I altered started as an idea that I got watching "Sense and Sensibility" (Emma Thompson). I noticed that many of the sleeves were 3/4 (the long sleeves that come down almost past the wrist are a feature of the early teens, I believe.) Here is a screen still from S&S with the sleeves that I'm talking about.
For my dress I cut down the sleeve-length to make them 3/4. Still a little longer than I'd like, but it was hard to judge by holding the pattern piece up to my arm.
One more alteration-- actually, it wasn't much of an alteration, really. With my blue dress (and this one) I had a hard time with the lacing. It's supposed to lace at the top and at the bottom, but then it gapes terribly. For my blue dress I used hook-and-eyes, and for this one I was going to, but only had one hook-and-eye left. :-/ So I decided to try lacing it! All I did was sewing the string through at intervals. This worked for a while, but then the string broke, so I am not sure what to do with it now. I might find another way to lace it with the string. I welcome any suggestions!
So there's my dress! And I've probably rambled on quite enough about it. :-)
Here's a close-up shot of the fabric. I love the subtle flowers! :-D

Blue Regency Gown

This is the first historical dress that I made for myself!

Pattern Used: Simplicity #4055, View B
Days it Took to Make It: About 3 days
Satisfaction: ****


This was my first Regency gown to make; therefore, it is mainly drawn right from the pattern with no alterations. It was an easy pattern to go by and it didn't take me very long to make it!


The one challenge I had with this dress was fastening it in the back. The directions say that to fasten it in the back, you tie it at the top (the drawstring goes through a channel around the neck), and at the waistline (another drawstring goes through a channel at the bottom of the bodice). However, I found that it gapped horribly! So, my solution for this dress was to add hooks-and-eyes. As you can see, it still gapes a little.

Look! It's Catherine Morland, enjoying tea with her friends, Mr. and Miss Tilney, at Northanger Abbey! Surely there must be some mystery to uproot here...

Note: To go with this dress, I made a historical accurate chemise, short stays, and a petticoat from Jenny Chancey's Regency Undergarments pattern. I highly recommend that pattern as it is fun, relatively easy, and very accurate.


Welcome to Hooks and Needles! My sister "Marianne" and I have created this blog to share our handmade projects with you. Marianne mainly crochets and I mainly sew, so there will be a variety of projects posted about on here. Also I may, from time to time, dissect favorite costumes from period dramas.

We hope that you enjoy browsing our blog, and hope that above all, Christ would be glorified!