I actually wrote most of this post waaaay back in October. Then I got sidelined by a few things. Dave had knee surgery. And I had kind of a Facebook-induced emotional breakdown. I've decided that Facebook is not a healthy place for me, personally or professionally, so I won't be maintaining my Fibers of Being page any more. I'm going to continue to blog as I'm able, though I know that without Facebook, I will be reaching far fewer of you. At this point, I believe maintaining the website is still worthwhile for me as a creative endeavor and outlet, but I will see where this next year takes me.
I know I promised to share all the wonderful handmade projects I was working on for Christmas gifts, and I also promised to share how my encounter with the sewing machine went. I can deliver on the latter. The other, well, that's where I dropped the ball. I learned a valuable lesson, which is that now that my time is not really my own (well, it never really was, but now I know it), I have to become one of those people who starts working on Christmas gifts in January. At least, I do if I want to make them myself. I did manage - by just a few hours - to have Nettle's stocking ready for Christmas Eve. And I knitted her some "muck-lucks" and a scarf, which she hates wearing. I started making a scarf and some gloves for some friends, but have yet to finish them. And I did just a tiny bit of baking, which was time-consuming but not particularly successful. In other words, the holidays happened. Hmmph.
Aren't those little bunny grahams cute? Too bad they tasted like sawdust! Someday I'll learn not to be so heavy-handed with flax and brans.
Here's a brief, mostly pictorial account of my sewing endeavor, which was not as disastrous as I feared. In fact, it made me want to try another sewing project I've pinned, or make another one of these nice little pentagon balls. The hardest part turned out to be trying to figure out how to draw a perfect, equal-sided pentagon. I couldn't print the template the tutorial provided since my printer has stopped cooperating for the time being, and where's a protractor when you need one? But once I managed to get my pentagon drawn, the rest was pretty simple.
First, this is the tutorial I used: http://gotosew.com/2015/05/pentagon-fabric-balls/
And here's a few pictures of the process...
And that's it. You can see I finished this up in the evening. I worked on it off and on throughout a Saturday afternoon and sewed it up before bed. My guess is it would take an hour or two for someone who is efficient and didn't have interruptions. This ball is about 5-6 inches across and takes 12 blocks. The tutorial says you can make a larger ball by using 24 blocks, so I'll probably be making one of those for Nettie when I get a chance and maybe a few for gifts in the future.
I can't say I enjoyed the machine-sewing part of the project... it was sweaty and nervous.... but my confidence is buoyed a little and I do plan on keeping some sewing projects on my list so that I stay in practice.
And Nettie's been having fun with her new ball.