review: Handmade Heirlooms

Handmade Heirlooms

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.

full disclosure: I borrowed this book from the East Lansing Public Library through the MeLCat ILL system

Spring Showers and Spring Flowers Blythe Swap

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:

And the awesome package I received:

how to do my favorite knitting increase

I often use this increase in my patterns – it’s easy and has a tidy result, so it’s my favorite in most situations. A few folks have asked me how to do this, so I made a quick video demonstrating how it works.

Are there other techniques you’d be interested in seeing demonstrated? Other videos you’d like to see?


The usual excuses! I’ve been so behind on posting new patterns! But here is another one, finally! I’m hoping to get back on track with regular posting – fingers crossed!

Skully sweater for Blythe

Who doesn’t love a skull? I certainly do, and I think that this one is super cute on Blythe. She’s got style and this sweater shows off a little bit of her dark side.

Skully sweater for Blythe

Is your Blythe a bit of a badass? Download this pattern on Etsy, Ravelry, LoveKnitting, or Craftsy.

FOs for a friend

This weekend I attended a friend’s wedding shower and was so happy to present to her a gift that I mostly made myself.

dishcloths for Sarah

I created these four dishcloths using two patterns available on Ravelry. I picked colors that go with the kitchen items that were on their registry. Personally, I always appreciate a gift I can use, and I find these dishcloths so handy to have around the house myself (I use them for almost any cleaning purpose).

Dishcloths and organic detergent

I packaged them in a basket along with some earth-friendly detergent made with aromatic herbs – who doesn’t love the fresh scent of lemon verbena! You can’t see it in this photo but the second bottle has a green label that also matches the dishcloths. I hope that she and her soon-to-be husband find them useful!

comfy cozy Ren

More cozy sweaters! There can never be too many cozy sweaters!

Ren Sweater for Middie Blythe

This time I’ve designed a reverse-cardigan for Middie Blythe. Actually, it can be worn regular cardigan style, too! It’s slightly oversized to give Middie a warm look and to give you the option of using this sweater layered over other clothing. It is roomy enough to accommodate whatever styling you prefer.

Ren Sweater for Middie Blythe

Worn reverse-cardigan style, this sweater has the look of a pullover, but without the fuss and muss of pulling something over Middie’s hair. As shown cardigan style, I’ve fastened it with just one snap at the top, but you could add multiple fasteners for a closed-front cardigan.

Cozy up to this pattern on Etsy, Ravelry, LoveKnitting, and Craftsy.

ready for warm weather?

Dream with me for a moment. It’s warm outside, multiple layers are not required to be comfortable, and there’s a refreshing beverage somewhere nearby.

Band Collar Tank Top for Middie Blythe

It’s a perfect time for a halter top! This one features a band collar that fastens with a snap at the back of the neck. The collar and hem of the top use a moss stitch for a nice texture and for sturdiness in the construction.

Band Collar Tank Top for Middie Blythe

This pattern was inspired by a request from an awesome Blythe enthusiast and knitter. She suggested a tank top with this type of collar. As soon as she asked me about it, I was super excited to figure out the construction and set about prototyping. I worked on a few different ways of constructing it before I hit on a way that works shape-wise, makes sense construction-wise, and is easy to knit up. I haven’t designed much for Middie yet and this was a really fun way to gain experience in that area, as well as in making a tank top, which I also haven’t done before.

Band Collar Tank Top for Middie Blythe

I’m so pleased with how this turned out! I am also excited to work on a similar pattern for Neo Blythe, now that I have more knowledge about designing a halter top. What other patterns might you like to see? I’m always happy to hear your ideas!

Get your Middie pattern at Ravelry, Etsy, Craftsy, or LoveKnitting.

winter bobbles for everyone

I posted last week about my love of bobbles, and my mom shared this adorbs photo of my sister and I wearing bobble hats as kids.

Anne and Susan in bobble hats photo anne and susan bobble hats

How adorbs is Susan’s expression?! I love it. I also remember these hats quite distinctly! Mine was, I think, two shades of pink. Fittingly, I recently finished this bulky yarn bobble hat for Blythe in pink yarn!

Bulky Bobble Hat for Blythe

This hat is so quick to knit up, it feels almost ridiculous. You barely get started and voila! You have a finished item ready to be worn! Of course you can play with the size of bobble like always. Bulky yarn can make up some truly luscious bobbles!

Bulky Bobble Hat for Blythe

Find this pattern on Etsy, Craftsy, LoveKnitting, and Ravelry.