Monthly Archives: March 2011

Linky Thursday

Ruffles are big this year. Learn how to recreate some of these retail looks for just a few dollars. JCrew’s Ruffle top knock-off, Anthropologie’s Squeezebox Top, and an Anthropologie inspired Tutu shirt.

I honestly have to admit, I didn’t realize there were so many types of press cloths. Find out about each one and what projects they work best with.

Just in time for spring, a pretty, ruffled scarf – make this in a voile or lightweight cotton to make this the perfect accessory.

Add a bit of interest to your couch with some pyramid pillows or some geometric styled Piano Pillows.

Win a beautiful pearl knit clutch or learn how to knit your own.

Everyone loves a party, so why not make a (girl’s) dress for it?

I’m feeling St. Patrick’s-y. I think I’ll make some fun green food today… including this green candied popcorn.

One of the first things I ‘pinned’ on Pinterest was this spring-form bucket tutorial. It looks like a fun project, the only drawback is that you have to ‘harvest’ the spring from an existing bag.

Easton was a kid that had to be swaddled for a long time. I could have used this tutorial to make my own.

I’m a sucker for cute plush. This tutorial for marshmallow peep bunnies is one tutorial I’ll probably be making this Easter.

I love this messenger. I don’t even care that it’s child sized.

A cleaver way to store art supplies.

My Favorite Felt Sweets

Hot off the heals of our Felt Friends from Japan giveaway is another fabulous Japanese craft book, My Favorite Felt Sweets. This title shows you how to create over 100 realistic felt treats including cakes, Petit Fours, candies, cookies, and doughnuts. The directions are easy enough for even a beginner to follow and best of all, all the patterns are full size – no copiers need to enlarge the designs (however, you will need some sort of tracing paper to copy the pattern pieces as they are ’embedded’ in the book and many overlap each other). Felt Friends from Japan giveaway is another fabulous Japanese craft book, My Favorite Felt Sweets is perfect for anyone looking to make play food for children (I would recommend this for older children as many of them contain small pieces such as beads and many of the desserts can be disassembled), beautiful pincushions, additions to dollsdoll houses, incredible looking displays, or if you’re just wanting to try your hand at making felt (food). Overall, this book is pure eye-candy, the attention to detail on these pieces is amazing, yet the author keeps it amazingly simple so that re-creating these treats is easy. I can’t wait to try a few of these myself – I’m thinking Easton will go nuts for his own play desserts he can ‘make’ himself.

Want to win this book? Just leave a comment in this thread bymidnight (CST) March 21 to be eligible for the draw. Earn extra entries for blogging about this contest or Tweet about it with a link back to this entry (you can use the handy “Share This Post” button at the bottom of the page) then come back here to leave additional comment(s) in this thread with a link to your post andor let me know about your tweets. Good luck!

I Love The Office

I’m an Office nut. In the grand scheme of comedies, it ranks (almost) right up there with Seinfeld (my all time favorite show). So it comes as no surprise that I’ve joined The Office Swap on Craftster. In fact, this is my fifth one. This also means that I’m having to be more creative with this swap in an effort not to make something I’ve already done, but at the same time, keeping with my partner’s likes. First up…..
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Pins, Book Draw, And Upcoming Contest

And the winner of Felt Friends from Japan is….. believe it or not, #1 – Kate from Needle & Spatula! If you didn’t win this time around, don’t fret, I’ve got another contest coming up this week! That’s right, stop by Wednesday for a review of My Favorite Felt Sweets – a gorgeous book that helps you create realistic felt food.

Now that the winner has been announced, it’s time to talk about our weekends! I spent a majority of my weekend heavily modifying a pattern (it’s been a ton of work, but I’m feeling very Project Runway at the moment) and putting ‘pins’ in my Pinterest BurdaStyle, but I’ve really had a chance to play with the site and think it’s amazing! What is Pinterest? Basically, it’s a virtual pinboard – a place to categorize all the things you love, admire, and that inspire. Not only can you keep track of your favorites, but you can also track others boards as well (just a few or all of them) and even allow others to post things that you may find interesting to your boards (this is an optional feature). Currently, I have 10 boards and 48 pins….. but so many more to go!

What has everyone else been doing this weekend?

Sophia’s End Result

With numerous deadlines in April (swap, holiday, and otherwise), I’ve been working diligently to finish some of the more difficult projects first…. the Sophia is one of them. I think I really made this project a lot easier by all the changes I made since sewing this one up seemed to go much quicker (and I only broke 2 needles this time) than my last. I’m also thrilled with the end result – not only does the contrast sections of the bag work well, but the reduced amount of interfacing seems to still keep the bag’s shape and gives it a nice, soft feel. So what changes did I make?

1. I used contrast fabrics to the handle, end tabs (along the zipper), and bottom of the bag.

2. I reduced the amount oftypes of interfacing used. The pattern called for woven interfacing, needlepunch fleece and Timtex (for the bottom). I used two layers of a mid-weight fusible only and Timtex along the bottom panel.

3. I eliminated the piping (I believe this is what really reduced the bulk and kept me from breaking so many needles).

4. I eliminated the false bottom panel.

Now it’s on to my next project – a little something for my Office Swap partner!

Linky Thursday

SisBoom has a new, cute tutorial out just for the guys – a bowtie sized from newborn to adult. Easton and I have decided he needs a sequin green version for St. Patrick’s Day.

Win a Bernina!

Transform a purchased shirt into one with peek-a-boo shoulders.

Add a pretty scalloped edge to a front button skirt.

Get Lucky -a lucky pillow pattern that is. Just enter this contest for your chance to win one of three patterns for a St. Patrick’s Day themed pillow.

Sew an accessory. Download this tutorial for a pretty, lace cuff or repurpose a sweater and make a felted bracelet.

Something I never thought of, use worn out socks as ribbing.

Every guy needs a wallet, even the youngest one – Learn how to make a boy’s billfold.

Have you seen Kate Spain’s latest collection, Central Park (Beautiful, IMHO)? Here’s a chance to win a fabric bundle from her new line.

Finally! A book just for boys clothes – to celebrate it’s release this fall, the authors are giving away 3 patterns. Enter here for your chance to win.

Turn a bedsheet into a fun messenger bag.

Keep your crafts organized and make a knitting needle case (I like how these are labeled with sizes).

A New Sophia

I’m down to the final item for my Crafty Detective partner. I’ve mulled over several projects, but finally decided on a (modified) Sophia Carry-All. This is a much larger project that I intended on making, but I kept looking at her ‘wishlists’ on several sites and a bag with a similar design kept popping up… I just couldn’t resist making her one.

I decided to use the same Amy Butler print that I used for the All-in-One Wallet, but use a dark grayalmost black solid for some contrast (the bottom, ends of the zippered panels, and straps) and eliminated the piping. I also altered the interfacing a bit on this one – I eliminated the fusible fleece and decided to use a midweight interfacing instead of the woven. All of this should help reduce some of the bulk that I experienced when I sewed this up the first time.

With the cutting (and fusing) behind me, I’ve managed to put together the front panels with the straps. I have to say, I really like the contrasting look to this purse already – it really makes the print ‘pop’!

Felt Friends from Japan + Giveaway

I’m not going to lie to you, I adore Japanese crafts. Consequently, I’m absolutely thrilled when a popular Japanese craft book is published in English – not only does it become more economical (many popular Japanese titles can cost as much as $30 or more, plus shipping from overseas, while the translated versions cost around $15 or less), the ‘fear’ of sewing in another language is also removed (measurements are also in inches instead of metric). The latest book to be translated? Naomi Tabatha’s Felt Friends from Japan. This title has over 80 projects inside: stuffed toys, coin purses, badges, flowers, quick tie bags, and even mascots (pocket sized animals) all made from felt and hand-stitched together in a cute, kawaii style.

The instructions for Felt Friends are exactly as you would see them in the Japanese version of the book (except translated to English, of course) – Each step is described and has an accompanying drawing to further clarify the directions. I always find these illustrations to be most helpful… it’s amazing how much information you can pack into a drawing (what areas to stitch, what stitch to use, where to place each piece, etc.)! There’s also a handy little section with all the stitches you’ll need to use, how to use the patterns, and how to stuff your little critters. Best of all, all the patterns are included in the book and almost all of them are full sized (I only noted that one needed to be enlarged on a copier).

Intrigued? The publisher has sent me a copy of Felt Friends from Japan to give away to one lucky winner. Just leave a comment by midnight (CST) March 13 to be eligible for the draw. Earn extra entries for blogging about this contest or Tweet about it with a link back to this entry (you can use the handy “Share This Post” button) then come back here to leave additional comment(s) in this thread with a link to your post andor let me know about your tweets.

Want even more chances to win Japanese books? Come back by later in the week for a peak at My Favorite Felt Sweets and a chance to win a copy for yourself!


Sometimes, no matter how busy you are, you just have to drop what you’re doing and whip up a little something for your kids. Easton has been sifting though all the shirts in my closet and he keeps pulling out the same one each time…. Operation. So this weekend, I decided to sacrifice this shirt so I could bring a bit of joy to my 2 year-old. I used Jalie 2918 (size 2, but lengthened it by 1/2″) and the parts of the shirt, right down to the neck ribbing. Fortunately the logo just barely fit without noticeably cutting anything off the finished design. I also sped the sewing process up a bit by using the existing sleeve hem.

Easton was totally surprised that I managed to ‘shrink down’ the shirt to fit him and you can tell from the photo, he was thrilled wearing it. The only change I’ll make to future tees enlarging the neck area (maybe going up one or two sizes) since it was difficult getting the shirt off his head at the end of the day.