Well, this story stars with 2 short haired dogs. One I've been making coats for a while now. I swear manufactures do not believe that big dogs get cold. Dobermans are especially prone to being cold as their short coat is also not very thick. So, between my mom and I we came up with a coat pattern loosely based on a coat I did find that actually fits a Great Dane (he's big but not quite that big, but his chest is HUGE!). I made him one that he wears all the time and I needed to make more. I THOUGHT that the little monster pup was set as I FINALLY could buy one since her chest wasn't too wide and she was small (well, for me she seems small). So she got this sweater which I did NOT make but came from PetsMart:
Sweater from PetsMart (bought)
Isn't she adorable? Yea, looks can be deceiving. Actually she had this through at least 3 wearings which shocked me. After that 3rd wearing... it was put through a shredder.... or it looked like it was shredded. Yea, never trust a bored pup. LOL
So... I had a sewing machine... and I found a fleece blanket for $1 at Wal-Mart. It was small and a bit on the thin side for a blanket but perfect for what I had in mind. I found a free pattern and I had some black fleece on hand which was left over from a long ago project (which I recall I also got for a great deal). The pattern is from Mimi and Tara and is a mash up of the raglan dog sweater and the add-on hood (just click on the links to go to her posts on the patterns and yes, they are free).
The problem with the patterns is that there really isn't any instructions and I don't sew clothes. Luckily youtube came to the rescue and I figured out how to sew the raglan and the hood was easily figured out with the blog post Mimi and Tara had on her blog. I did add a cuff to the sleeves and because it was so long on her (it fit perfect otherwise) I added a small amount of elastic on the front of the sweater (stomach area) which also helped keep debris out of the inside of the hoodie.
And yes, there is already a hole after the 2nd wearing on the sleeve. There is now a patch there. LOL
The second one was much easier. It was like coats I used to make my dad's dog and only snaps on one side. This one is VERY easy to make and you could probably find something close to it on the web.
It was also made from a remanent fleece I found. I also don't put it on her that much as I do the other as she has more of a tendency to try to chomp on the back end of it more than the hoodie. Darn pup!
The big boy's coats
Of course I couldn't leave the big boy out and besides I needed to make him other coats so I can wash the one he loves. The blue one is a thick fleece and it wraps around his chest and is snapped on both sides. I added elastic to the chest piece (like I did on monster pup's coat) to keep it more fitted and debris out. I did the same with the rust coat. I didn't have much of this fabric so I used the fabric I had used on monster pup's hoodie for the collar. I made my $1 stretch! Monster pup is in the photo trying to undress the boy. She figured out the coat comes off from the snaps and now tries to unsnap him as much as possible. As you can see by how he ignores her, he is now used to it. LOL
I'll probably end up having to make more next year, but hopefully the monster pup won't shred them as quickly.
With all the craziness that happened over the holiday season, I did get a few things done. Nothing like I planned, but well... I guess you do get laughed at if you plan.
One I did get done was for my sweet 90 yr old friend.
These are done in the hoop on the embroidery machine. This one is from Lovely Leaf Applique (Etsy store) and the small tag was from Buggalena Embroidery. I made the large pouch with a D ring attached to the ribbon on the side and made the wristlet strap on my regular sewing machine. The smaller pouch just has a swivel hook on the end of the ribbon. All this was done with scrap fabric!
The next one I got done was a towel for a cousin who just got married.
The embroidery file was from Hoop Mama Designs (and was free during the season but is no more but available for purchase at her website). The towel was a microfiber towel. Blue and Yellow (or gold in this case) taken from the colors of her wedding.
A couple of other projects rounds it out...
This was actually a play mask from Ohana Applique Designs but changed it quite a bit for my eye mask. I flipped the eyes to look closed (a little bit more wrangling than that, but you get the idea) and then made the front from felt and quilting fabric and the back was made with satin. It is then filled with smooth tiny beads for a cooling and relaxing feel.
I don't know the designer for the tray (I got it free) but the letter design at the bottom of the tray is from Designs by JuJu. It can be unsnapped flat or partially snapped for a partial tray or fully snapped for a full, but small tray.
I made myself some pattern weights. The top two were from Buggalena Designs. It was made differently than I did as it required you to use non-fray fabric, but I thought that if I flipped it a bit while making it I could make it out of quilting cotton and have no raw edges. The one that says Pins is also a pin cushion. All have metal washers (get at a farm store) to create the weight. The 3 underneath are smaller and I used other designs I had on hand. The back is foldover elastic (which is part of the original design) to keep things in place and to give something to hold onto. FYI, I used unicorns, peacock feathers and star wars characters since you probably can't see them clearly. The horn on the unicorn is iridescent scale vinyl and the ears are glitter vinyl.
New school year, same old problems . . . At Mythos Academy, everyone knows exactly who I am: Rory Forseti, Spartan girl and the daughter of Reapers. Even though I fought alongside my cousin Gwen Frost to save the mythological world from Loki and his evil Reapers of Chaos, I’m still the most hated girl at the academy because of all the horrible things my parents did. I had hoped that this school year would be different, but the other kids just won’t let me forget about my parents. But something strange is going on at the Colorado Academy. First, I run into a Viking guy who dislikes me more than most. Then I notice some odd artifacts in the Library of Antiquities. And worst of all, I start hearing rumors about a new group of Reapers who can summon mythological monsters. I might be the most hated girl at Mythos Academy, but I’m also the only one who can save it . . .
This is the first book in the spin-off series of the Mythos Academy books with Gwen Frost as the heroine. In this book, Rory Forseti, Gwen's cousin who we briefly met, is the heroine in this series set in Colorado. Since I'm a fan of Jennifer Estep's writing and also a fan of anything set in CO I knew this was a total win for me. I was correct. I enjoyed my time at the CO Mythos Academy. For those that have not read the main series, I do suggest it, but I think you could read this book first. I still think that you would feel as if you are missing something and you would be right. I really loved that first series and I do think you will as well.
If you are familiar with this world you will be easily transported there in this book. It does have the same feel as the other series and the same kind of adventure. We get a more seasoned warrior in this book but she also is inexperienced in life having just felt betrayal from people she would never expect. Recovering from that, bearing the bullying at school and tempted with a choice on almost every level we find ourselves engaged with Rory and rooting for her from the beginning. We are also introduced to a new talking sword. As much as I did like Babs, she hasn't quite stolen the spotlight from Vic just yet. However, the griffins have totally stolen my heart.
Btw, can I have a griffin? Would go great with the Fenrir wolf I want as well (you'll get those references if you read the books in this world!).
I give this story 4 stars. It is a great reintroduction and expansion to the world I knew and enjoyed. There is no real romance in this book, but there is a lot of potential! So those who like a slow romance may find themselves enjoying this series. I recommend it to those that love a fun fantasy world.
For a limited time, the first 3 Mythos Academy series books (the series that started it all) and a prequel novella is on sale. The series is listed at $2.99 as of this writing. I'm not sure how long it will last.
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