Thursday, December 17, 2015

Homemade gifts part 4

Finding small gifts for people can be hard. Most of my friends and family simply have everything that they desire (a combination of satisfied people and no money problems). I feel that my ability to sew, crochet, knit etc has really helped me in my quest for nice presents. A hand made gift usually requires more work than going to the store and fortunately most of the people that I want to give gifts, realize that. This way I can give gifts that are inexpensive on the financial side, but show that I care due to my invested time. Turning a rejected item into a new gift gives even more satisfaction. In this post I will show you how I turned an impractical pot holder into a cute Reindeer pot coaster.

Okay, let's be honest from the start, I could just have folded the potholder and get an instant coaster, the hole thing would even have been bigger, but where would have been the joy in that? I have sewn many children clothes, but I am a novice when it comes to quilting. Although my Pinterest feed often makes me drool over the most gorgeous creations, I didn't really try it yet. It is usually good to start small, so this pot coaster seemed a great idea (I know it is not true quilting because I didn't sandwich the fabrics in the end, but I have no clue how to call it technique other wise).

First, I took out all the original seams, so also the sandwiching stitches. Then I cut narrow strips of fabric and sewed them back together using both sides of the fabric. With hindsight I could have cut more interesting shaped strips, but keep in mind, I am just experimenting. Then I enlarged the new free Sis Boom's Rachel Reindeer to 160% and drew my two sides of the deer on my my re-sewn piece of fabric.  The pattern lines are the sewing lines, so if you want to pre-cut your fabric make sure you use a seam allowance. The 160% enlargement was the maximum size that I could draw of my fabric piece, but it is also a perfect size for all my pots. Then I puzzled my heath resisted bating (which was a part of the original pot holder) into a deer shape. I took two layers (the maximum that I could cut from it) to make sure my table was optimally protected.

Sewing the two sides together had to be done slow because the hole thing was rather thick, but  going round still took me only about 10 minutes. I carefully cut corners and seams allowance before turned the deer to the right side. I considered sandwiching the piece together with some decorative stitching, but in the end I decided against it. I started sewing on the side, but because the thing is rather thick I immediately broke a needle. I wanted to save my time and frustration and just kept it like this. My decision to not stitch it through also had to do with the fact that I couldn't decide on the color. Due to the December month I felt the urge to use red, but the deer is so cute that it could also protect your table in spring, when the red combination would be slightly less appropriate.

I made this deer as part of this year's Sinterklaas (Secret Santa celebration with my friends). I also embroidered three small towels with inspiration quotes that I found on the web. I did the one with more space between the letters a day before the other two. I do not know why the whole thing got more condensed, I only noticed it when I took the pictures. The pictures are not of the best quality because the procrastinator in me had me postpone these project to the last moment, and I had to make pictures in the night.

For the same joyous occasion I also knitted a hat from a free pattern. I knitted it to be an optional gift for one of the male partners of my friends. In the end we enjoyed the evening that much, that not all the gifts were exchanged, my daughter really didn't want to part with the hat, so I made sure she got it in the end. My girly girl wears it well.

Here you can first part 1, 2 and 3 from this series.

I love to hear what you think of my creations. Feel free to leave a comment in the language you prefer (although Google translate might have to assist me if you choose something different than English, German, Dutch or Hungarian). 


  1. Gelijk heeft ze, jouw dochter! Die muts staat haar geweldig! Supercreatief wat je daar gedaan hebt met dat rendier!