Monthly Archives: April 2011

Lucky Pins

With all the weekend ‘excitement’, I haven’t felt like or really had the opportunity to do any sewing – so I thought I’d ‘ease’ myself back into it by starting with a small project… a pincushion. One of my absolute favorite pincushions came from a swap so I decided to ‘re-create’ the style for my next swap: Fabric Lover Scavenger Hunt. This is a pretty low-key swap with the only requirements are to make 1 small item, send 1 yard of fabric (or the equivalent of one yard, like 4 fat quarters), and find items that ‘fit’ 5 categories (for example: something green or something sharp). I figured no matter who my partner is they could always use a pincushion – plus with the shamrocks on it, it fulfills the “something lucky” category well. Now that I’ve gotten something made and two cups of coffee in me, I’m motivated to do a bit more sewing…. I wonder how much I can sneak in before everyone wakes up?

Linky Thursday

On a shoestring budget? Then this shoestring (and straw) necklace is sure to fit the bill – and trust me it looks far more fashionable that what it sounds.

Go green: bring your lunch to work or school with one of these reusable bags.

Turn a pleated skirt into a knockout dress.

Easter is right around the corner and beside sewing projects, I’m always on the lookout for fun food items too. This Baa Baa Black and White Sheep is sure to catch a few eyes.

Truly a gorgeous corsage – made from felt!

Have lots of rewards or credit cards that you need to keep track of? This quick and easy folding card wallet is a good way to store them.

I’m gearing up to teach a sewing class for beginners. I’m thinking that this pillowcase tutorial might be a fun way to start out – and perfect for adults or teens.

I’ll admit, I’m a bag nut – and there’s something about this Osoberry bag pattern that makes me want to sew it up. I think it’s the denim… I’m a sucker for denim.

As messy as it sounds, I’ve been thinking of making some chalkboard pillows. Speaking of chalk…. it you’re thinking of making your own this summer, I think this tutorial sounds fun, easy, and a perfect project with the kids.

A free bag project from Lazy Girl Designs.

Know a new sewer who’s scared to start making their own clothes? This tutorial for making a simple pair of kid’s pants is a good place to start!

This Sunburst Pillow is simple, but the ‘pintucks’ add a lot of interest.

The 5 minute skirt – the perfect project for sergers.
Need something to wear under a sweater, but don’t want to make a whole top? Then the Faux Cami is a perfect project!

In The Mail

The best part about participating in so many crafty swaps lately is that there’s always little ‘surprises’ in the mail. Two of my most recent swaps arrived recently and I thought I’d share all the creativeness my partners made (the photo on the right is a green recorder that my partner sent from The Office Swap… more on that package in a minute). One of my favorite, all time swaps is the Week of Baby Onesies. My partner, Erin, created a set of beautifully-stitched, embellished tees in some of our favorite themes:

There’s a zombie and Elmo tee (both of which are Easton’s favorite, in fact, Easton is wearing Elmo today), a Where The Wild Things Are shirt (my personal favorite), a large “E” and the number “3” for his upcoming birthday. The photos don’t do the shirts justice, these tees are wonderfully crafted. Of course, nothing says how much we love the shirts like an action shot:

Another fun swap I recently did was The Office Swap, Round 5 – I couldn’t miss this one since I’ve participated in the other 4 rounds as well! My partner totally spoiled me on this one and sent a ton of goodies…. that my children mostly claimed.

My partner had a wonderful sense of humor and created a great themed package (she sent ‘gifts’ from the characters of the office – the kids totally enjoyed unwrapping them and getting the back story as to why these particular things were sent). I’m sure I felt a lot out, but inside the box was: a recipe card box with recipes from everyone in the office (like Stanley’s pretzels), an oven mitt, Schrute bucks & Dwight’s green recorder, a Dundee, Kevin’s M&Ms, an office clipboard (with notes), embellished envelopes, Office Stickers (I didn’t even know they made those) along with some with cats (from Angela), A notebook, Herr’s chips, Jelly Beans (from Pam’s Desk), and even Cup-O-Noodles!

What a fun bunch of packages! I’m still expecting one more. Although I don’t know who it’s from or when it will arrive…. this swap had ‘mystery’ partners – which makes checking the mail just a bit more fun (you never know what you’ll find inside).

New Boy’s Shirts

Before this weekend’s fiasco(s), I rummaged though my fabric stash and noticed all the unused kid’s ‘novelty’ knits that I had. I decided that it was time to put them all to good use – not only will this clear some room in my closet, but the sewing is always instant gratification! One of the first projects I intend on tackling: some new shirts for Easton. He’s grown quite a bit over the last few months and a majority of his tees show his belly. I plan on using some cool, Volcom fabrics from The Fabric Fairy to make up Jalie 2918, the short sleeved men’s T-shirt.

Project Details:

Jalie 2918, View A

Volcom fabrics from The Fabric Fairy

Materials & Cost:
Fabric………$5.94 (+ stash)

When It Rains

As the saying goes, “When it rains, it pours.” That pretty sums up the last few days. I always knew that having an active boy would eventually lead to trips to the emergency room andor dentist, but not in the same weekend.

To make a long story short, Saturday Easton began to limp, painfully and just a few hours later, his leg would buckle every time he put weight on it. Since he had been outside earlier in the day, we thought that he might have hurt himself, although he never cried and never commented that he had injured himself. They took X-rays that came back negative for broken bone(s) and came back with the diagnosis of Toxic Synovitis. Basically, the coldvirus we just finished up with settled into his hip joint. Apparently, it’s quite common (especially in boys) and isn’t life threatening unless a sudden high fever develops signaling a sign of infection in the joint.

Even though Easton was completely incapacitated Saturday evening, by Sunday he was a new kid. There was a little limp, very little pain, and he could even run. It was amazing. So, I let him play outside…. and that’s when he chippedbroke his two front teeth. We found a dentist kind enough to come in on his Sunday afternoon to look at Easton. He thinks it’s just chips – no nerves exposed and was happy to see that his teeth were still aligned in the correct places – unfortunately, Easton’s mouth is so sore, he doesn’t even want to swallow saliva, let alone eat or drink. We’ll have to go to a pediatric dentist for some reconstruction so they can sedate him to do the work.

Needless to say, I’m haven’t accomplished anything and I probably won’t for the rest of this week – I’m one stressed-out mom!

Sock It To Me

My latest tutorial for The Sewing Republic is live – learn how to make a ‘classic’ Sock Monkey! For this one, I used women’s knee high socks, although smaller socks would work just as well (however, the long arms and legs would be much shorter). If you’re looking to make your own, I found some of the cutest (and most reasonably priced) ones at Target….. and they even have (Paul Frank) sock monkey printed ones!

Love the concept, but not into monkeys? Purchase an extra pair of socks (or shorten the armslegs of this version), eliminate the small ears, and cut some long, bunny ears instead – it’s perfect for a quick basket stuffer.

Upcoming Projects & New Fabrics

There’s nothing better than plotting and planning for upcoming projects (IMHO). Since a bulk of my ‘sewing with a deadline’ is completed, it’s time to start planning some new items…. just for me. Consequently, I thought it was time to pick up some new fabrics (these can all be found at Gorgeous Fabrics) and patterns. Here’s what I have planned:

This mesh is what really prompted me to buy some new fabric – as soon as I saw it, I knew I had to work with it. It arrived yesterday and I can say, I’m not disappointed – it’s even prettier in person. I haven’t found a pattern that I want to use it with, but I’m leaning toward a tunic style top like McCall 6287 or 6204.

As soon as I saw Vogue 1240, I knew I had to make this dress. I love the style and I think it will be perfect for a wedding we’ll be attending this summer. So with a perfect dress comes the perfect fabric – a gorgeous grayblackwhite silk chiffon. I’m excited to get to work on this one!

I have always wanted to make a ‘vintage’ 1940’s style luau dress (Simplicity 4559) and this material seemed perfect for it… now if I could only find the pattern (reasonably priced). I’ve also been scouting out similar halter style designs, unfortunately, I only thought to buy 2 yards of this and most patterns I’ve looked at require 3 or more. Maybe this fabric is destined to more of a sarong?

I currently don’t have plans for the last three fabrics, but they were so pretty I couldn’t pass them up. The sweater knit seem perfect for fall, the floral border print seems just right for a springsummer dress (or skirt), and the large floral jersey will undoubtedly be turned into a fun top (although I am leaning toward Jalie’s sleevless faux wrap top).

I think those fabrics (and a few for the kids) should keep me busy for a month or so. What about everyone else? What are you gearing up to work on?

Linky Thursday

Stay in fashion this spring, make yourself a ruched skirt – no pattern required!

We have a wedding this summer and I’m on the hunt for bridal shower gifts. I think this Casserole Carrier is screaming “Make me!”

New Peeps – this time, they’re chicks!

Cluck, Cluck, Sew’s Sprocket Pillows remind me of Amy Butler’s Honey Bun Poufs. I love them both.

This strawberry tote just screams ‘spring’! Wouldn’t it be cute with an Easter dress? Of course, if you really want ‘Easter’, you’ll want to try this floppy eared bunny bag.

A fun halter top style tutorial – perfect for a t-shirt reconstruction.

While I’m not personally a fan of the fabric, but I love the design of this messenger.

Perfect for teaching kids how to set the table, but kitschy enough for adults… I’m in love with Punkin Patterns Table Setting Placemats.

10 ways to decorate your eggs this EasterMartha’s silk tie technique is probably my favorite.

I don’t do a lot of paper crafting, but this Easter Owl Goodie Bag printable makes me want to do more.

Spring is in the air and so are the dress tutorials: easy empire waist version and ‘paper bag’ dress.

Bring spring inside. Make some Felt Flower pillows.

Sew What’s New?

All I can say is that the last few months at our house have flown by. So as I was sitting down in front of my computer this morning, contemplating today’s post, I thought that I would catch everyone up on our ‘non-crafty’ news. Probably some of the biggest news: No more speech for Easton (for those longtime readers of this blog, you’ll know that my son had some severe language deficits and started receiving services around 18 months)! He’s made HUGE gains and now we can barely get him to stop talking – something I don’t mind at all! Toileting, much like speech, has also been a challenge. About a month ago he told me “Ever, Ever poop or pee in the potty. No!”, but we’ve had a sudden turn around (I’d like to take all the credit, but it’s really more of the fact he doesn’t like wetsoiled pants) and now he’s totally trained. I may even celebrate by making some cool boxer briefs. Now if we could only work on sleeping……

Taylor has been just as busy and I’m happy to say…. she made high school cheer! We’re now in the process of signing her up for summer activities: golf, cheer camp, strength and conditioning, and…. driver’s ed. I can’t believe she’ll be old enough to get behind the wheel of a car soon. The other shocking thing? She’s now, just ever so slightly, taller than me.

Bret has been traveling a ton for work – in fact with the exception of this week, he’s been away more than what he’s been home. That means, of course, I play ‘single mom’ a lot and spend much of my time toting everyone around to all their activities and just ‘doing it all’. Thank heavens for sewing because it helps keep me ‘sane’…. I’d say it’s cheaper than therapy, but then again, my fabric bills have been rather high lately (it may also be why you’re seeing tons of new projects up recently, too)!

Polka Dots

I promise only have just a few more ‘sneak peeks’ and then I won’t be teasing you for awhile. This particular teaser is a fun tutorial that I’m working on for The Sewing Republic. It gave me the opportunity to work with some fun and new (to me) fabrics and turn them into a novel, yet functional project. Look for this project to appear on the site in coming months!

Now that my large projects and swaps have come to a close, I am going to concentrate on doing some sewing that I’ve been meaning to get to and a few just for me! The first project(s) I intend on making…. pajamas. I have a rather large stash of kids, novelty knits that have been waiting for me to tackle them. Anyone care to sew along with me?