Handmade Heirlooms: Crafting with intention, making things that matter, and connecting to family & tradition by Jennifer Casa
This book embraces the idea of family heirlooms being special keepsakes that are, more often than not, handmade by someone in the family. One doesn’t often think of creating new heirlooms, but this book challenges the reader to do just that – instead of simply making a gift for a family member, make something that will be loved by that person and handed down over the years. These projects are made using a variety of techniques including knitting, crochet, sewing, and more. They range from traditional baby items like booties and caps to more unique objects like a knitted airplane toy. Some are more utilitarian, like a knitting needle roll and a monogrammed bulletin board.
This was such a fun swap to put together! My partner and I figured out quickly that we both like the Mori Girl style and that really informed my process for making things. I got so excited about it! I wrote a few new patterns for knitted items (see yesterday’s freebie for one!) and sewed a bunch. Here’s a quick look at the things I sent:
It’s a new month and I have a new free pattern to share!
Introducing the Linden Bag for Blythe! I wanted to create a really easy-to-make bag for Blythe that could be made to suit a number of different styles. As you can see from the photos here, I went with Mori style, and I made two bags from different yarns. You can see that the texture of each bag is slightly different, which is a result of the yarns being different. The green one is a fractionally thinner yarn made from alpaca, which is a little less fluffy than the cream yarn, which is merino. You can make the strap the thickness you like and as it also forms the sides of the bag, construction is super simple and finishing doesn’t take very long. When you’re done, you can embellish it in whatever way suits you. You could also make it smaller for Middie or super tiny for Petite.
My plan for this sweater was to make something that suits a mohair or mohair blend lace weight yarn and is reversible (can be worn cardigan style or pullover style) – and I succeeded! This sweet sweater is knit using garter stitch, which really works in this type of lofty yarn. It has a collar that looks great no matter which way you wear it, and is a lovely simple canvas for your embellishments. The short sleeves work well with the lightweight feel of the yarn, making this a perfect sweater for spring.
Ahoy! Fashion above deck! This three-quarter length sleeve sweater for Blythe is nautical-inspired but fashionable in any situation. It has a narrow stripe and roll neck and is a classic style. I originally designed this back in 2011 for a swap and recently found my pattern notes and made it again, so here it is!
Last Halloween I participated in a swap and made one of these sweaters for my swap partner. Bats are one of my favorite Halloween icons and I wanted this one to be mostly on the creepy side but maybe just a tad cute as well. This pattern is written and charted, so you can use whichever format you prefer!
Hannah Abbott is a not-super-well-developed character in the Harry Potter series, but she IS a Hufflepuff and thus seems worthy of inspiring this sweater. This sweater is empire style with a fitted bodice that fits Blythe perfectly. It has a two-color star pattern that is sweet without being overly fussy.
It’s another free pattern! Knit yourself a custom-length scarf for Blythe. This is great TV knitting – just cast on and let your mind focus on whatever you’re watching and this scarf will be complete before you know it. It’s seamless and simple! You can embellish it if you wish or leave it as knit for an elegant minimalist look.
Looking for a sleek hat for Blythe? This one will fit the bill! It’s designed with negative ease, meaning that it is slightly smaller than Blythe’s head until you stretch it just a little bit. Then it fits with perfection, offering a lovely snug fit. If you have a Blythe with shorter hair and want something to hold it in place after doing a hair treatment (so it will dry just as you wish), this will work very well! It’s also just super cute for any Blythe. Very simple to make with only two ends to weave in – no seaming!
Is your Blythe a little bit old-fashioned? Does she prefer the classic looks? This sweater dress is inspired by her aesthetic! Like almost all my patterns, it is knit all in one piece, the body flat and the sleeves in the round. There’s no seaming at all! You just weave in ends, sew on a snap in the back, and you’re done. It’s got a high neck that fits Blythe perfectly and a cabled bodice, which is ever-so-slightly high-waisted. Then there’s a ribbed waistline and an A-line skirt, giving the dress a time-honored look that just might be perfect with a petticoat underneath or a pair of high boots.