Monthly Archives: October 2012

Personalized Stocking

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in my sewing room! Yesterday’s project was a stocking for my most recent swap. Since my partner’s favorite colors were the redwhiteaqua combination, I decided to highlight this color in my stocking and then used Jennifer Paganelli’s “Sophia Stocking” from Happy Home as the pattern. This particular pattern was super easy to work with, although I admit I didn’t really follow the directions very closely. Since it is unlined, I serged a majority of the seams so it has a clean finish when you look inside and also embroidered my partner’s name to the cuff to personalize it (plus give it a bit more color since the cuff looks a bit plain without it). Overall, I’m really pleased with the size and shapedesign of this stocking – I may have to think about making more personalized versions for friends and family this year!

Nothing But Golf

For the first time in a long time, I did absolutely nothing sewing related. Instead, I spent yesterday on the golf course watching my daughter play at 5A state (and I can honestly say, I was totally exhausted once we were done) – although I did ‘brainstorm’ a new project…. a putter head cover after Taylor mysteriously lost hers on the course.

So, today will be spent working up a few new projects to work on: I’m thinking it’s time to settle on a stocking for my stocking swap partner, a few new stuffers for her package, and start working on a winter wardrobe for me! What is everyone else working on this week?

Craft or Die

I made a bit of progress on my Christmas Stocking Swap this weekend and I have to say, I might have to keep this project (just kidding, but I have to admit, I like how this project turned out a lot). When my husband’s grandmother gave up sewingembroidery she gave me a number of (fantastic) supplies – one of which was a wooden box designed to showcase embroidery. I thought that this was a perfect opportunity to show off some of the fun things that I’ve been making on my Bernina. I decided to stitch up the Craft or Die embroidery design (so it can be used for much more than just sewing) and then cut it to size so that it fit inside the window box….. this may be my favorite project of the whole package!

Does anyone happen to know if they make similar boxes, but deeper? I think this might make a nice Christmas present!

Sneak Peek

A majority of this week has been spent finishing up projectsarticlesillustrations for an upcoming issue of Sew It All. While I can’t show you the exact project(s), I can give you a sneak peek of one that I am super excited about! I’ll also give a little hint: the finished project teaches you how to create one of the more highly pinned, ready-to-wear clothing items found on Pinterest.

Now that these are in the mail, I’m ready to start sewing my next project. The question is, what to make first?

Linky Thursday

Love sewing books? In need of some new titles on your bookshelf? Then you’ll definitely want to enter this giveaway.

This cord keeper project is sheer brilliance – not only does it manage your electronic cords, but is beautifully labeled so you know which is which!

It may be October, but temperatures here are still quite warm (can you believe in the 80’s?). That means it’s still not too late to whip up a cute sundress (and maybe top it off with a cute cardigan for when it does get chilly).

Speaking of cardigans. This tutorial for creating a cardigan onesie has to be about the cutest thing I’ve seen for a baby recently.

Love cute little zippered pouches, but hate ‘messy’ linings? Learn how to make one free from raw edges with this Neat ‘n’ Tidy Zippered Pouch tutorial.

Probably one of the more popular gifts for baby showers are those cute little animal hooded towels. Learn how to make your own with this adorable owl version.

If you’re planning on taking a trip this holiday season then you’ll definitely want to learn how you can give new life to your travel pillows with this easy cover tutorial.

I had a baby that LOVED to be swaddled. Instead of buying expensive blankets, learn how to make your own.

Have leftover tulle after making your little girl a tutu style skirt? Then put them to good use with this pompom garland and wall art!

I’m a sucker for grommets and gathers. Put them together and you’ve got one fun handbag (this also means that I like this shoulder sling sport duffel)

There may be no sewing involved in this project, but I love the idea of being able to easily(?) recover a pair of Toms in your favorite fabric.

Baking & Recipe Sharing

In light of the fact that my recent sewing project didn’t work out I’m finding myself in between projects. While I decide what I might want to work on next, I found myself doing my second favorite thing…. cooking. I’ve managed to accumulate several recipes on Pinterest that I wanted to try. Yesterday’s experiment: Rosemary Olive Oil bread (I opted to make 4 small loaves instead of one large one). If you like rosemary, I highly recommend giving this recipe a try (my husband and son thought that there was ‘too much green stuff’ for their liking, but my daughter and I and the two neighbor boys enjoyed it) – especially if you make a nice fresh ground pepper, Italian seasoning, and olive oil dipping sauce.

Looking for a few other recipes to add to your board? I highly recommend these Pepper & Cheese Popovers (featured on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives), Skinny Poolside Dip (I tried this at a party this weekend and it was a HUGE hit), slow cooker ribs (considering that these ribs never touch a smoker or grill, they are surprisingly good), and Ruth Chris’ Sweet Potato Casserole (I never liked sweet potatoes until I had these – I make them every year for Thanksgiving and they are DELICIOUS).


As soon as I saw this top from Burda 9/12 (view 130A), I knew I wanted to sew it up. It’s edgy, casual, and nothing like I have in my wardrobe. I found a fun print from Joann’s – not only did it feel good, but it had excelled drape and stretchrecovery and set to work. My first obstacle for this top was the side ruching on the side. The instructions have you stitching a length of elastic to each seam allowance (next to the seam). I began doing this to one side of the top and determined that this was just going to be too bulky look at that edge if I did this to both sides so I took a different route: Stitch the side seam, then add the length of elastic. This was also a disaster because the length of elastic became over stretched (in my opinion) and just didn’t seem to gather enough of the material for my taste. So, I took a third approach: Gather the material on both edges prior to sewing (making the finished gathered area the same length as what the elastic would be), then sew the seam together. While this looked better, I determined that there is very little difference in appearance between the gathered side seam and the ‘regular’ – part is that it gets ‘lost’ in the print of the fabric and the other is that there just isn’t much gathering to make a difference anyway. My other issue is the length. I understand this is style is designed to be a bit longer but seriously Burda, this is a dress.

Now I’m debating what to do with this. Not only does it need to be shortened, but the sides of this top are a bit on the loose side as well and the sleeves will need to be altered because they too are supposed to have ruching and I just can’t see that it will make any difference in they way that they will look on the finished design. Overall, I’m just disappointed, this top just did not turn out how I wanted.

Sugar Skull Pillows

Remember those sugar skulls that I embroidered last week? I finally put them to good use and made pillows out of them:

For this project I used the slipcover tutorial that I wrote for WeAllSew. However instead of using a solid front, I pieced the embroidery and fabric together. To do this, I cut the sugar skull to a 6.5″ square, sewed two 4.75 x 6.5″ rectangles to each side, then added a 4.75 x 15″ strip to the top and bottom of the embroidery. From there, I followed the directions as written. Now my question is, which one should I keep and which one would my swap partner like?

Blousy Boxers

Now that a majority of my deadline sewing is complete, I’m able to go back and work on some projects that have been setting on my table. First up, The Louey Boxer Short! This pattern sews up exactly the same as the Tommy Boxer pattern, so I don’t really have anything new to talk about during construction. However, I can talk a little bit about the fit. While I think that the Tommy Boxer fit is spot on, the Louey is a bit blousy in the legs (you can probably see this in the photo as the fabric is ballooned out around his legs). Even though these are meant to be large and roomy, the elastic pulls in the fabric so much they look a bit odd on if you’re not wearing a shirt to help hold all that extra material down, in place next to your legs. I think the key to sewing this one for next time is to sew a size down, but use the same length of elastic for the wasitband.

Linky Thursday

Halloween is almost here, time to make a good witch hat.

If you’re looking to stop using ziplock bags, then go for an alternative: reusable snack bags!

Chances are if you have a teentween they aren’t looking for a ‘traditional’ costume, instead they may go for a more cute monster style like this one.

What kid (or musician) wouldn’t love a plush keyboard?

It’s fall which means one thing: It’s pumpkin everything! From lattes, to cakes and muffins, to play doh? Learn how to make your own pumpkin pie clay here.

Halloween doesn’t have to be scary. Make a Halloween themed Eye Chart pillow to add to your decor.

Already started sewing for Christmas? Then you’ll definitely want to sew up a few of these adorable owl ornaments.

If you’re looking to spruce up your wardrobe, look no further than this Colorblock Draped T-Shirt tutorial.

For diaper changes on the go, grab a bi-fold diaper clutch, but if you’re looking for something bigger then be sure to check out this All-in-One changing mat that folds up into a clutch.

If you love to carry around interesting coin purses, then you’ll definitely want to check out this triangle version.

Since the weather is getting cooler it’s time to add some winterish accessories to your look. Learn how to make this pretty ruffle scarf – just in time for the weekend!