Baby stuff and an amethyst shawl pin

Boy bib

I’ve had a lot of work to do this week, including a trip to Wales and a few sessions on the laptop this weekend. It hasn’t left a lot of time for crafting, but I did manage to make a boy version of last week’s baby bib (not yet pressed, I’m afraid).

This one fastens with the type of press stud (aka snap, popper) that you attach with a hammer – always a satisfying process, and a lot less fiddle than sewing on Velcro dots.

I’m not sure about the applique design though. I positioned the tie quite low, to allow room for a top button, but maybe that was a mistake. I think the next one will either have a higher tie and no buttons, or maybe a bow tie with buttons below it.

Kimono-shaped baby jacket

Patons Crofter 4-ply yarnAlso on the baby theme, I’ve started a knitted jacket. I found a ball of Sirdar’s Crofter Baby 4-ply in a yarn shop’s bargain bin and couldn’t resist it. There isn’t enough for a whole garment though, even a 1-3 months one, so I’m going to work stripes with plain white.

The pattern I’ve chosen is Garter Stitch Baby Kimono. I’ll fasten it with a button and loop instead of the buttonholes that the pattern indicates, because that way I can leave the boy/girl element until the end, by which time the baby should have arrived.

Amethyst shawl pin

The only other thing I’ve managed to make in the last week is a simple shawl pin for the lilac mohair scarf I knitted recently.

Lilac mohair scarfIt’s really too short to tie, being more of a neck-warmer than a scarf, which means it was crying out for a pin to hold it closed. I’ve made one from a bamboo barbecue skewer and a few amethyst chip beads. Gemstone chips are very cheap to buy and I love to mix them with more expensive gemstone beads, so I generally have a few leftovers around.

I sawed a length off the blunt end of the skewer, using a serrated kitchen knife on a chopping board. I could have got out a saw, but why bother? Then I rounded the cut end into a blunt point using a Swiss file. An emery board or nail file would have done just as well.

I gave the whole thing a rub over with fine grade sandpaper to make it absolutely smooth, then dyed it a nice dark brown by applying two coats of some walnut wood dye I’ve had since forever. I did consider waxing it after that, to give it a sheen, but was afraid that might make it too slippery to be effective as a shawl pin.

Shawl pinFor the beaded head, I just threaded several amethyst chips onto some fine beading wire, wrapping the wire between the beads, to create a roughly circular arrangement that would hold its shape. Then I twisted the two ends of the wire together.

Archimedean drill and bitsThe next job was to drill a small hole down the blunt end of the bamboo pin. I have a set of very small, modellers’ drill bits and a tiny hand drill with an Archimedean action – you hold it between finger and thumb and then pump it up and down to make it spin, like an old-fashioned Yankee screwdriver.

It was perfect for this job, but I expect my Dremel would have done just as well with a pin in the chuck as a substitute bit. (A nail in a full-sized drill will produce a surprisingly good hole, when there’s no suitable bit to hand.)

I tested the depth of the hole with a pin and then trimmed the twisted wires to the same length, dripped superglue onto them and slid them into the hole.

Mohair scarf and shawl pinResult: one cheap-and-cheerful shawl pin to match the mohair neck-warmer.

About yorkshirecrafter

I live and work in West Yorkshire.  I've always enjoyed crafts of all types, from woodwork to lace-making.  I also enjoy anything mathematical, which makes knitting a favourite pastime, especially complicated designs.  I've been advising businesses and industry on environmental matters for 30 years and also have an interest in green living, especially where it saves me money. I live with my husband and our Maine Coon in a 100-year-old cottage that constantly needs something doing to it.  Fortunately, I enjoy DIY too.
This entry was posted in jewellery, knitting, sewing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Baby stuff and an amethyst shawl pin

  1. chrisknits says:

    A bow tie with buttons below would be adorable!! Love the shawl pin.

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