Cloaca casualty

A couple weeks ago i agreed to participate in a yarn swap on Ravelry in the Tiny Owl Knits group. The swap was meant to be a mini swap but I just couldn’t help but spoil my partner. The package was to be summer themed and had to include a card/postcard from your hometown, something handmade *or* handmade related & something that would make you and your partner think of summer.

I included a skein of handspun yarn, a hand painted post card of my living room window, an “Adventure Scout” enamel pin, some fiber balls, blueberry herbal tea, a few summery crystals, some citrus grove beer soap and last but not least…. A hand sewn travelers notebook.

Now, this is the 3rd of these types of notebooks that I have made. I have a large A5 size journal that i made and use as my personal journal, as well as a small A6/Pocket size that i use as my wallet with a card holder insert. But it was THIS notebook that people saw and said “I need one of those!!”. So lo and behold, shortly after sharing pictures with some of my students and coworkers, I have a couple of orders for notebooks like this one.

Now.. I said this was the 3rd but i feel i should clarify. This is the third SUCCESSFUL version.  I have a sewing journal in which i write all of my notes as I make things. Somehow, the last time i made a pocket journal (which is the intended size of the journal pictured above) i ended up writing down the finished measurements… with no seam allowance. Which means my first attempt at the swap package journal ended up being approximately too short by way too narrow. I also had no idea how to properly install the hardware… as you can see below.


Kinda looks like a snakes butthole. Trial and error folks! So after a few curse words, a little wasted fabric and a good deal of wine I have it worked out. See exhibit A:


 Now I know it still isn’t PERFECT, but it is still miles bettter. Today I took to sewing an A5 version and another pocket journal. After finishing a large journal cover that was a custom order, I was left with only enough elastic to make the closure band of a smaller journal i was making to put up in my shop. Because life just works out like that sometimes. I am getting more elastic today but for now all I can do is imagine which charms would look nice gracing the spine of the pocket sized notebook. I am thinking of this brass number:

I am pleased to say both of these worked up to be the sizes i needed and my sewing notes have been corrected to include seam allowance. It was a good day for sewing but now I am going to retreat and do what is really really calling my name: Knit some hexipuffs. Today my goal is to make just 2 or 3 and I will be using this leftover “Moonchild” yarn made by Casual Fashion Queen.

Have a great day and remember to keep on keepin on, even if your attempted hardware installation ends up looking like a snakes butthole!

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