Monthly Archives: January 2008

A Rant, Of Sorts

With a new house comes the inevitable – home decor sewing (btw, thank you all very much for your suggestions on the bay window cushion). While I don’t mind doing some sewing for the home, it’s definitely not my favorite sort of project to work on. Consequently, I hadn’t planned on doing much – that is until I got the idea to make a swag (to hang over our bathroom tub) that matched our new bedding. That’s when the trouble began……

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49 Sensational Skirts

According to, 2008 is the year to create. Want a way to bring in this idea to your wardrobe? Look no further than 49 Sensational Skirts: Creative Embellishment Ideas for One-of-a-kind Designs!
What’s nice about this book is that it covers all the bases – from deconstruction of materials to add to your original designs to a brief discussion on how to alter the pattern provided in the back of the book. Yes, that’s right you don’t need to search for the perfect skirt pattern – one is provided for you! However, the real ‘meat’ of the book is on creating fresh, one of a kind, contemporary styles. While the construction of skirts are relatively simple, the embellishments provided are extraordinary works of art. Techniques include fabric folding, embroidery work, silkscreen, stencils, and embellishing with buttons, beads and found objects.
If you love to wear skirts, but are tired of the same styles and designs, be sure to give 49 Sensational Skirts a look. You’ll definitely be have people stopping you asking where you found your outfit!

Cute Stuff

If you search on eBay or Etsy, read a number of sewing blogs or hang out at sites such as Craftster, or even shop at some online fabric stores you’ll see that there’s a new interest when it comes to sewing – Japanese craft books (and magazines). The Japanese style definitely has it’s own look that, so far, hasn’t been recreated by American writers. Until now, that meant, if you had an interest in trying out some of these cute projects for yourself, you not only had to track down someone who was selling these international books (and they can get quite pricey), but you also had to figure out a way to overcome the language barrier once you received your book. Thankfully, both of these dilemmas are now solved because Vertical publishing has taken some of the most sought after Japanese craft books (IMHO) and translated them into English and made them available through American booksellers!

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Foam Is Costly

I had no idea the price of foam was going to be so expensive. I went into Joann’s yesterday to pick up some foam padding (the kind in those long ‘sheets’) for Taylor’s bay window so that I could make a comfortable seat for her to use when she wants to sit and read, etc. After finding a good thickness I decided to calculate how much I’d be spending – $30-50 a yard! Yikes! Even at 50% off, I was going to pay at least $35 just for the padding alone, not counting the piping I wanted to make (roughly 10 yards), fabrics, and notions. Needless to say, this is one time I’m opting not to make something and will look around to buy something or make several box cushions later on. Any other ideas?
In the mean time, I might just stick with a few baby items. Threadbanger just posted a new tutorial – on making a Baby Pod (quick and easy and from a recycled sweatshirt no less!), sharkgrrl pointed me to a site that has adorable freebies (I think I’m making a few of those baby burp cloths), and I’ve had my eye on making a sling for awhile now.
Edited to add: I fixed the post so comments are now enabled! Sorry about that – I think I must have put up this post too early this morning!

Laundry Is My Nemesis

No doubt I’ve mentioned it before, but I despise laundry. I actually don’t mind the sorting, removal of stains, and the actual laundry part of it, but I can’t stand folding and putting it all away (and let’s not talk about the need for ironing). Unfortunately, that’s what I’ll be doing today – that and waiting on the lighting guy to come and install our outdoor coach lights we purchased. What I’d much rather be doing is working on my latest project, Kwik Sew 3090 (which has now been added to the side bar). The pattern is traced, the fabric is cut, and I’m anxious to try out my new snap setter for this project. Right now I’m only making one – since I have no idea how big this little guy is going to be, I’d hate to make an assembly line of rompers, only to find that he can wear each one once before he outgrows them.
I also want to send out a huge Thank You to Lori (you may know her best from her Sew Forth Now podcasts and Girls In The Garden blog). She had several pieces of material up for grabs on her site and I was able to get the floral jersey! This is the same material that I used to make the Burda Plunge Back Top this summer (by the way, if you don’t subscribe to World Of Fashion Magazine, the pattern is now available through Burda as number 7830). As soon as Taylor saw the material she fell in love. I think I might be making her something with it soon!

Lots (And Lots) of Links

It seems by Thursday, I’ve done so much surfing that I have a ton of fun links to share. This Thursday isn’t any different, so here’s some of my favorites:
Making Easter a bit more fun – knitted eggs! I wish I could knit better, I’d make a dozen of these!
I love felt food and am totally amazed at how realistic some of them look. Here’s a chance to make some for yourself – these fortune cookies are adorable and would make a wonderful (and fun) Valentines gift (especially with sweet love notes tucked inside). If you like this design, then be sure to stop by the designer’s website where she has lots more ideas. [link via CraftSanity Blog]
Have a favorite quilting show, but always seem to miss it? Then be sure to check out Quilters TV! [link via Craft Gossip]
I may not wear a lot of them, but I secretly love aprons. That’s why when I saw Montessori by Hand’s Emmeline apron, I couldn’t resist. Not only is it one of the most stylish ones that I’ve seen lately, but it’s reversible too. It’s on pre-order only, so my pattern won’t arrive until sometime in February… be prepared for a review then!
These hanging storage bags are not just functional, but they are so adorable! I may keep this in mind for toys to keep away the toy chest clutter. [link via Craft]
If you’re looking for a charity to support this year, be sure to check into The Sewing Machine Project. This charity donates sewing machines to weather stricken areas (right now it’s New Orleans) and helps coordinate volunteers to sew various charity projects. [link via Bernina Sewing Trends Blog]
It may not have much to do with sewing, but definitely falls under the ‘what not to wear’ (or sew if you’re thinking of knocking that celebrity garment off) category – my favorite snarky girls are about to release their upcoming book Go Fug Yourself: The Fug Awards. This ought to be a fun read!
Speaking of books, I’m in reading 49 Sensational Skirts. I’ll be posting a review soon.
With all the talk of bigfoot on Mars, this entry from Sewing Stars seems so appropriate (not to mention cute)!

I Have A Changing Pad Too!

First off, thank you all so much for the nice comments and great tips on my new diaper bag. I’ve already started ‘loading it up’ even though Bret will never use it (I’ve registered for a more ‘manly’ diaper bag). So, what’s next? The matching changing pad!
I had plenty enough leftover fabric from my Nappy Bag (I purposely purchased extra) that creating this pad wasn’t a problem. Instead of purchasing terry cloth from my local fabric store, I opted to buy a store bought towel – which meant I had a lot more color options! The pattern also called for 2 layers of batting, but since the thickness of the terry and my home decor weight fabric seemed thick enough I opted to use one layer which seems puffy enough. I also decided to skip making the case for the changing pad – I thought it would be too difficult to pull it in and out of a bag (therefore I’m less likely to use it!). After a bit of cutting, sewing, and quilting, here’s what I came up with:

It’s all rolled up and fits nicely inside the bag itself. I feel very stylish, like I purchased this set at some sort of upscale boutique! I can’t wait to try my hand at making another bag & changing pad sometime soon (and now that I’ve tried one of her baby patterns, I’m even more excited about Amy Butler’s upcoming book, Sew Baby – September is so very far away!)