Saturday, December 27, 2014

2014 - an overview

2014 was my second year of blogging at Vera Luna! What a fruitful year it was! Time for a recap. It was so much fun to look back at all the posts, and be remembered of all the items I made during this year. It was also good to realize that most of these clothes were well worn and loved by my kids.
Here's a selection, in random order...

Shades of blue
Clockwise, from top left: Whale patchZigzag tee; Frozen hat; Snowy trees


Clockwise, from top-left: Scandinavian styleSail Away; Simple stripes; Ahoy


A tiny bit of pink
Left and bottom: Denim details; top right: Luuk hat

Left: Tuxedo pants; Right: Owl sweater

Warm stuff
Top: Fall hoodie, bottom left: Winterland, bottom right: Aviatrix

Yes, it was a good year! Thanks for reading along. I wish you all the best for 2015!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Tutorial - string ornaments

When collecting paper for the recycle bin, I found some nice red cardboard, I was reminded of this tutorial, and decided to make some string ornaments together with my kids.
A quick and easy project, but the result is really nice. 
We hung our ornaments in the tree, but you could also use them as gift tags or other decoration.
Here's a small tutorial:
1. Cut out small circles from thin cardboard. Cut eight or sixteen slits into the circles.

2. Take some yarn (or twine as I did) and tape it to the backside.

3. Thread the string forward through the slit at the top and bring it down to the slit at the bottom. Then, bring the yarn up and forward through the slit next to the top one, and backward through the slit next to the bottom one. Continue in the same way, until you have completed two rounds.

4. Once completed, weave the yarn underneath one of the strings, make a loop and knot it.

5. You're done!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Simple stripes

Sometimes, simple stripes are the best!
This sweater is actually one of my first creations. It was sewn before I started blogging and J is finally old enough to wear it.  It's just a simple raglan sweater, but I really love it.
Don't you agree???

Not much more to add. Just some more pics of the boy and his bear...

Saturday, November 15, 2014

A Frozen hat

The result of my experiment! A wintery hat for M. As soon as she put it on, she burst into singing "Let it go! Let it go!" Indeed, it does remind of the movie Frozen!
M loves it. She couldn't wait until it was finished (which is why it is a bit on the small side - it's hard to keep adding rows when an impatient 6-year old asks you every five minutes "When are you finished Mum?"). She put it on as soon as it came of the needles and has worn it non stop since then (yes, even indoors).
Inspiration came from this pin. I love how the pattern slowly fades away into the white. In hindsight, I should have used finer yarn, in order to let the pattern come out better. O well, that's a good reason to dye some more yarn....
A big fat pom pom tops the hat like a giant snowball. I used up half a ball of wool for it, but it's worth it!

Below you find the pattern that I used.
The hat is 96 stitches in the round, which results in 6 repetitions of the pattern.

Saturday, November 8, 2014


It's been very quiet here on the blog. That usually signifies that real life is not so quiet. Indeed, life has been very busy lately and I haven't had any time to sew, let alone to blog.
Unfortunately, this situation is going to last a while. We're going to renovate the attic to create three bed rooms for our kids. Currently, it is used as our office, sewing room and storage space. We're in the middle of sorting stuff, getting rid of the things we don't need anymore (which is A LOT), and storing everything else -including my sewing necessities- elsewhere in the house.
I don't know how long it will take before I can set up my new sewing room. I guess at least a month or two. In the meantime, I'll resort to an other medium: knitting!

For my latest knitting project, I did a fun experiment in the kitchen. At least, I thought it was fun! My husband did not!
I hand dyed some wool; using food coloring, vinegar and a microwave. As you can imagine, the latter combination was NOT appreciated by my husband! I must admit, it looked and smelled as if I was brewing some toxic concoction. At some point during my experiment there even was a small explosion in the microwave, covering its whole inside in blue spatters. But really, it was a super cool, simple and satisfying experiment.
There are a lot of tutorials on wool dyeing on the internet. Since they are all slightly different, I decided to wing it and follow the instructions loosely. I soaked the (pure wool) yarn, put it in a bowl with water, food coloring and a few spoons of vinegar, put the stuff in the microwave, and let it simmer for a few minutes, until the water looked quite clear (or, in one case, the stuff exploded - probably because I used too little water). Then I rinsed the yarn, and hung it out to dry. Only a few hours later, the first stitches of my new hat were on put on the needles...

Curious about the end result? Stay tuned!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Autumn colors

We are currently having the most beautiful Indian Summer here in the Netherlands. If not for the changing colors and crisp mornings, you could think that it's the end of summer instead of fall. So it's not really time for hats yet. Nevertheless, I wanted to share this hat that I knitted last year, if only for it's beautiful autumn colors.
This is the Luuk hat, a free and simple pattern found on Ravelry. By alternating rows of knitting and purling, you get this fun ribbed hat. It has a lot of stretch, so it fits all of the kids, and even fits me. Let's see who will grab it most often this winter.
I used multicolored yarn, turning from magenta to green, teal and gold, with a deep blue undertone. 
Similar colors as these autumn flowers (Ceratostigma plumbaginoides) that brighten up our garden these days...

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The denim challenge

Sewing a biker jacket has been on my wish list for quite a while, so when Project Run and Play announced this season’s themes, I immediately knew what to make for the ‘Denim Challenge’.
And a challenge it was indeed! This jacket was definitely out of my comfort zone. The pattern is the Young Hero from Ottobre 4-2012. Used as I am to sewing simple tees and sweaters, the number of pattern pieces was overwhelming in itself: 19 pieces and 3 zippers! And reading the instructions, I was intimidated… I simply didn’t understand!
However, when going through it step by step, it turned out not to be too complicated after all.
The jacket is upcycled from three pairs of jeans, which required some creative cutting. The largest pieces -the front and back panels- were cut out of a pair of men’s jeans. It just fit. The other parts – sleeves, collar and yoke pieces- were cut out of two women’s jeans.
The lining fabric is a wonderful heathered teal blue knit that I got at the local fabric market. All topstitching was done in neon orange-pink thread.
The end result: not perfect but very OK for my first jacket. Most important is that my girl loves it (which is not always the case with the things I make for her).
After this adventure I quickly slipped back into my comfort zone and whipped up this cool sweater. The sweater is made from the same teal knit, and is embellished with denim shoulder patches and a big fat M. The edges are left raw, and will fray over time.

As pattern I traced out a well-fitting tee. When sewing up this sweater last night I thought it would end up way too big for her, but low and behold, it fits perfectly! I clearly need to update my mental image of this rapidly growing kid.

For the sidetag (as well as for the hook on the jacket), I folded a piece of twill tape and zigzagged a line with the coral thread. Simple but effective. 

I was a bit afraid that the neon coral thread would be dismissed as too pink. I already had a cover story ready to convince her (it’s the same color as the stripes on Dutch police cars, and they are cool right?), and was even ready to replace it with another color if needed. But again, she surprised me by declaring that this was her favorite sweater! Pheww!
I love it too. It's cool, but not overly boyish. And this soft blue color is perfect on her.
So, a happy girl and a satisfied mom. Now on to cleaning up the mess in my sewing room, which I abandoned way past bedtime last night!